Thursday, August 25, 2005

Ya gotta love him

Venezuela's president, Hugo Chavez, wants his country's state-owned oil company, CITGO, which operates hundreds of gas stations in the US, to offer its gasoline at half price to the poor in America. No doubt it won't happen--too many logistical and financial obstacles--but he sure knows how to get under the skin of the conservatives, especially George Bush, and lately Pat Robertson, the assassin.

What is there about this name, Chavez? First Caesar, now Hugo. Troublemakers, both. Heroes too?

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Strange bedfellows

While the Left chides Democrats (except for the few who consistently opposed the war in Iraq), the Right berates the NeoCons who plumped for this war. A few Democrats are coming around, now demanding an end to the war, and a few Republicans, too. Very few of each so far, but more today than yesterday, and more on the midterm election day in 2006 than today. Could it be that by then the Left and the Right can coalesce on this one issue: End the war and with it the reign of the madmen who brought it on?

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

It's the inequality, stupid!

This book, by an accomplished social researcher, documents and explains why those at the low end of the economic and social ladder suffer greatly, even if their standard of living exceeds, in material terms, that of their forebears. It's the standing in current society, in the economic and social hierarchy, that matters; which explains why nations such as the U.S., with great wealth, still lags in many health categories among the poorest classes. The relative standing of the poor causes the misery, and in the U.S., with the greatest gap between rich and poor, the poor suffer greatly.

A tremendous argument for socialism--especially potent to me, an inveterate socialist.

Monday, August 22, 2005


There's been much Internet chatter about the squishy positions of "liberal" groups like and others on the topic of withdrawal of US troops from Iraq; and even more hollering about the ridiculous positions of Biden and H. Clinton that troops levels should be increased. Well, as I hope readers of this blog know, the author has always demanded immediate withdrawal--from the day our troops entered Iraq to this moment. Just checking, just making sure you're sure. Out today, out yesterday, out in March, 2003, out forever.

As for what happens in Iraq if we withdraw immediately? Nobody knows. Just like nobody knows what will happen if we don't, except that the US will lose more troops, more money, and more standing in the world.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Hallelujah Halliburton

This post by Juan Cole is the first I've seen that raises the question of the impact of Islamic law in Iraq (now that the US has sanctioned it) on the myriad of corporate enterprises that were plundering that nation in the aftermath of our invasion. Wouldn't it be lovely if the mullahs decided to void all extant contracts as not in conformity with Islamic principles? Laugh, I thought I'd die!