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May 16, 2008
Random Links

I've had the urge to blog over the last few weeks, but never quite got around to it. Therefore, under the heading of, "things I found interesting," I offer a handful of links. (No time for proofreading, sorry.)

The Most Disappointing President from April 22.

To accompany that one, I offer The GOP's Ideas Deficit.

Achenbach is uncharacteristically serious in The Next Big Scandal from April 21. To accompany it, you might want to take a look at In Sadr City, Basic Services Are Faltering and the happy news that War costs could be under $170 bln: Pentagon. (If you're interested in a bit more background on the failure in Iraq, you might try How Much Did Rumsfeld Know?)

Afghanistan, the forgotten country, may be back on the radar. On May 9, I read that the Pentagon Is Open to Moving More Marines to Afghanistan.

They should never have left before the job was done, but don't let me bore you by repeating myself on that subject for the five thousandth time.

There's plenty of history to tell us what not to do. I can't help but wonder if any of our so-called 'leaders' know any of it.

I can't really say I'm at all sorry to read that one 'legacy' Bush is leaving to posterity is record-breaking disapproval numbers.

I've always said he was dangerously crazy (not really the point at this moment, but I'm having trouble getting past it) and a liar. Like with that Texas Two-Step he's dancing around what he's calling "appeasement"* when he's really just in a snit because someone said he was wrong, wrong, wrong, and public opinion is agreeing with them.

And it's not just Bush. Hypocrisy abounds. Check out Hypocrisy on Hamas, just to emphasize the point that more than one of today's prominent Republicans is as devoid of principles as he is of rational plans for the welfare of this country. (You know what's sad? What's sad is that in today's climate, he very well might manage to sell himself as a "moderate." I mean, I still remember the days when "I'm not psychotic" wasn't actually enough to get you elected in this country.)

On another site, I didn't even have to read the article. I read the headline and knew everything I need to know about McCain. McCain: Victory in Iraq by 2013 the article said.

I see it now. Entirely ignoring reality and common sense, he's declaring that if we elect him, he'll get us almost there by the end of his term, but we'll need to re-elect him in order to get us all the way to the finish line. It's as callous a piece of calculated manipulation as I've seen in this primary season.

Anyhow. I clicked through to see if my expectations were going to be met and found out that the real story was both better and worse than I had anticipated. No flat statement of actual success, but a hope that in another five years, "most" of our servicemen and servicewomen would be home. Most. Not all. He admits there will still be violence in Iraq and that the effects of the region's entire history and culture won't magically be erased. From what I gather, he's picturing some voodoo-based, magically healing version of democracy that will inexplicably grow out of our illegal and unwarranted (unless you believe we're trying to make up for having installed Hussein in office in the first place) invasion.

Eyeballing his predictions from a distance, what I see is an unstable society, divided and prone to outbursts of mass violence, with a frightened and divided population made up of factions that neither trust nor like each other.

You know, that reminds me of something...what is it?

Oh. Yeah. The whole Palestine-Israel situation.

I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but somewhere online I read that War Is A Racket would make good reading for those of us worried about what's called the "military-industrial complex."

More amusingly, I offer this little gem. I make no statement concerning the factual truth of the story and I certainly don't accuse Shrub of neo-Nazism*, but I do suggest that if you look at his behavior, especially in the last 8 years, there's a long string of events that paints a plausible picture of someone who would doesn't have much trouble imagining himself ruling over a chastened mass of obedient consumer-laborers.

The scary thing about Bush, is that his family had the money to whitewash him into the White House. He doesn't have what it takes (for reference, see everywhere) and everything he's done has been a catastrophe (ditto) but he's going to be living in an ex-presidential bubble for the rest of his life, so I doubt that he'll ever be forced to really face the consequences of his actions or to understand how very wrong he was on almost every point. Money can buy protection from that kind of reality.

I swear, the only thing that's saved him from impeachment is that the failures are coming so thick and fast--botched invasions, illegal wars, massive corporate frauds as the result of government indulgence, skyrocketing unemployment numbers, disintegrating housing market, collapsing infrastructure, natural disasters both national and international, and massive inflation--the failures are coming so thick and fast that there's just no time to work up a case around any one issue.**

Now all we can do is to try to keep the pieces wired together for a few more months until we have (one certainly hopes) a saner leadership in place to start fixing the damage.

Drat. I swore to myself I wasn't going to go on a rant, and I just had to spend ten minutes removing a lot of gratuitous insults from the last three paragraphs. Time to stop blogging.


* Although I'm sure he'd fancy himself in jackbooks. (And now I have to go rinse my brain out with bleach.)

* * Also, as I'm sorry to say, as I'm always sorry to have to say, being extremely stupid and criminally short-sighted isn't illegal in this country. Doing the wrong things in the wrong way for the wrong reasons might be morally indefensible, but you don't pay for them in a court of law.

Posted by AnneZook at 02:30 PM | Comments (2)