Friday, April 11, 2008

Woe Is Us

Mark Penn finally got fired – almost. Beyonce got married – maybe. And Moses is dead—definitely. General Petraeus says we need to pause the withdrawal of troops—oh please. American Idol is giving back – hooray! Which of these things has the most impact on your life?

I’ve been thinking long and hard about it because some of them maybe important in the greater scheme of my life, but, as the generous philanthropist George Soros says “do they have some relevance for greater mankind.” Ah, a question to ponder. Don’t get a headache thinking too hard. They all have some significance in the world of deception, pop culture, and religion. I hope I don’t need to explain which is which.

Speaking of me, (because as in the past, it usually is all about me), I am so tired of being angry about this war that I can almost not blog about it. But I’ll try. When I watched the hearings I just wanted to scream at the good Senators, “Ask a real question. Follow up with something that requires an answer. Ask the guy to define his terms like success and goals. Ask the guy to explain why we are funding a war that has lead to us paying over $3 a gallon for gas, while the Iraqi’s are making a profit on –guess what, selling their oil. Ask the guy what will it take to bring the troops home. Ask the guy if keeping his job is more important than the loss of thousands of lives.” I mean does he think we don’t know that Generals and other people who wear military gear, want wars because it gives them something to do. If they don’t have a war to fight than they wind up tripping over each other at the Pentagon. You can only imagine what it’s like to have spent your entire life studying military maneuvers, shooting, and marching and then having no one to order to march, shoot or whatever they do to maneuver. How bored you would be. It’s like asking a Broadway producer if they want their show to be mounted on a stage with performers … or would they rather wander aimlessly and castless looking for a venue for production. You don’t ask someone with a vested interest to defend something on which they are totally dependent not only for their livelihood but for their self image. Remember the theater analogy and insert it wherever appropriate.

This morning the White House Press Secretary Dana Ditzie, was being interviewed and she assured the public that the President wouldn’t enter into any agreements with the Iraqui government without Congressional involvement. But that was only because the Senate found about what may have been yet another disastrous commitment on the part of the “Bush” people. She also outlined the President’s concern about the war. “He’s going to limit deployment from 15 months to 12 months”, she said with a straight face and like it was a gift. “It would not be in the best interest of the country to pull out until the people of Iraq can govern, defend, and sustain themselves.” What then, I want to know, what would be in the best interest of the country. To have our children keep fighting in the retched war and getting killed or wounded for eternity—or until who can defend, sustain and govern themselves. What is going to happen that will make next year, the year after or five years from now any different than it is today. We are in the middle of a civil war—which if we didn’t start we certainly can’t control. We have antagonized even people who like us to the point that they are no longer standing by our side singing “We Are the World”. And where there were no terrorists before, it seems they have done what the old testament suggested — “gone out and multiplied, as a result of this administration’s desire to “save face”.

And what does it mean to save face. Saving face is a macho “boy toy”. For whatever reason, women don’t need to save face. Sure we obsess when we screw up. We blame ourselves and our own ability, we even shed tears. But the only way I know that women save face, it to do it surgically or with very good make-up.

Based on what Petraeus said, we are in a “fragile” state in this war. As opposed to what? The state of things when we invaded and we protected the oil fields instead of the museums. Or the state of things when we decimated the capital and where there was once an infrastructure—water and electricity, now simple services are only sometimes and temporary. Again, these guys just talk and no one follows up with a question that forces them to say anything specific, so there are no answers to any questions the public might ask.

We did see the next President of the United States asking the General and the Ambassador several questions. McCain might as well have been sitting at the table rather than facing it, because we know he is not going to challenge the decision of a General—it’s another military game that people who were in the service play. Obama asked good questions and showed he could be a leader—which is all he needs to do. Clinton asked substantive questions and indicated her displeasure about their lack of substance in any of their answers, but neither of them went for the jugular. I get that everyone wants to be respectful, but when there are lives on the line, the public deserves more. We want a headline beyond “It’s business as usual.”

Speaking of business as usual, my friends went to an Obama, thank you to people who have maxed out in contributions, and they couldn’t get in. (Being maxed out means you have given as much money as legally permitted). They had invitations in their hands and they couldn’t get in the door because they hadn’t maxed out enough, “and besides”, they were told, “they had given old money and now the campaign wanted new money”. Needless to say, they were insulted and angry about this ill mannered rejection, but they were more concerned about the appearance of business as usual in a campaign that is based on hope and change. I hope it changes. My guess is that in Washington this will happen with some frequency, but in more civilized society donors are donors, and they are thanked as well as welcomed. I could be wrong and if it’s true than what can we say beyond, woe is us. We're just sayin...


Anonymous said...

And with this continued economic downturn (funny, I haven't seen an upturn for the last 7 years), news reports that states are eyeing cutting library funding.

Which gets me back to that wonderful college course that has always been relevant for the last 30 years "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire."

When Roman invested more in entertaining its citizens then educating them, that turn of events my Professor would point out was the high water mark of their Empire.

So lets build more baseball and football stadiums for millionaire gladiators with tax payers' worthless dollars. Let's all kick back to be entertained with Idolatry.

Let the rest of the world educate themselves so we can import their brains to work for us.


Anonymous said...

Over the years, many have called the invasion of the Iraqi sandbox a "war for oil". God, I wished it were!

You are absolutely right; we have some serious issues with the the oil profits not arriving here at home--we should get our toys out of the sandbox and go home, while we still have a home.