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July 07, 2004
Coffee and Complaining

(I'm not writing about coffee…I'm drinking it. And I didn't bring enough for everyone, sorry.)

Given the choice, religious extremists (of almost all religions) would prefer we abandon television and tight jeans for prayer meetings but it's never made sense to me that religious Muslim extremists halfway around the world were actually more interested in "American freedoms" than in life in their own countries. This makes perfect sense to me. 9/11 wasn't about us...it was about them. (And it remains an interesting theory that Bush, in invading the Middle East, has played right into the terrorists' long-term plans. This isn't the first time I've heard this suggested.)

Nor is it a surprise to me to hear that "foreign jihadists" aren't being captured in Iraq in large numbers, indicating that the 'insurgency' is actually being mounted by Iraqis, contrary to the Bush Administration's claims that fighters pouring over Iraq's borders are responsible for the ongoing violence in the country.

I would suggest, of course, that a handful of capable foreigners connecting with the relevant unhappy Iraqi population could create damage completely out of proportion to their numbers.

I would also suggest that it strikes me as odd that those "suicide bombers" we hear so much about aren't coming out in more force. (Contrary to what viewing headlines of the Israel-Palestine conflict might make you think, it seems there are few Muslims actually willing to sacrifice themselves, secure in the knowledge that there's a houri-infested paradise waiting for them on the other side.)

I mean, either those suicide attacks were a blip on the radar or...surely not…the media isn't telling us about them any more.

On the other hand, the precarious peace in Sri Lanka has been endangered by a suicide bomber. Let's hope both sides remain calm.

Well, take a look at this:

U.S. Response to Insurgency Called a Failure
Some top Bush officials and military experts say the Pentagon has no coherent strategy.

That's…that's just painful to read. I mean, the entire world figured out that the Bush Administration had no coherent strategy six or eight months ago, right? And it took the Bush Administration this long to figure out they needed to blame it on someone else?

How incompetent do you have to be when you can't even cover your ass?

By the way, in case the USofA media doesn't report it, Tony Blair has announced that he thinks we oughta close Guantanamo.

I'm finding the Right's panic-attack over Edwards pretty entertaining. Some publications are jumping through some pretty entertaining hoops to explain, very earnestly, why he's going to be so damaging to Kerry.

Said populations are, of course, desperate to avoid saying the real thing they don't like about Edwards. He's dangerously close to being an actual liberal!

The Guardian has a nice round-up of media opinions on the subject.

(Terry Jones is on-stage at the Guardian again today, as well.)

Is the voting population taking a left turn? We can only hope.

Thanks to a note from Professor Kim (blog linked on the left) in the comments below, I found this site. It's fascinating and I only regret that I can't sit here all day today and browse the archives.

Posted by AnneZook at 07:29 AM


Isn't it reasonable to say that the conservative era peaked around 1991 - 1995 when Rush Limbaugh was at his peak and Newt Gingrich seemed more powerful than the President? Isn't it reasonable to say that in the winter of 1996 the American electorate began to shift to the Left? If the current conservative era began in 1968, didn't it begin to end in 1996? In April of 1995, with the Okalhoma City bombing, Americans got to see where pure hatred of the government lead. If it weren't for the resurgence of nationalist sentiment after 9-11, I think the pattern would be clear. Think of what a moderate tone descended on the public in the late 90s, compared to the early 90s. Or to put it another way, if the Lewinsky scandal had happened in 1995, when Clinton was still hated, isn't it obvious he would have been forced to resign?

Posted by: Lawrence Krubner at July 11, 2004 09:39 PM