Saturday, March 24, 2007

What if the South had seceded?

It might have been a bit dicey for the black folks, but as this essay points out, the North might well have spent that last fifty years at peace.

Friday, March 23, 2007

In lieu of writing these thoughts myself

I link you an essay that says what I feel about Bush, better than I could ever express.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Surely there's a lesson to be learned

Within ten days, Annika Sorenstam loses in a playoff with an unheralded golfer in the MasterCard tournament; Roger Federer loses in an early round of a tennis tournament in California; Tiger Woods' game goes south--a duck hook, two or three water dunks, yanked putts--during the finish of Arnold Palmer's tournament at Bay Hill, Florida, and he drops from contender to undistinguished also-also-ran. Whaddup?

Could it be that these three monuments to their games are human? Is that too facile an explanation? Could it instead be that our expectations of them are inhuman? Are, for that matter, inhumane?

Sometimes statistics say a lot about a culture

Like this one.

The tar-baby syndrome

I've been laid low for the past several days by the flu, but today I managed to compose the following letter to the editor of the SB News Press. The idea that our continued presence in Iraq fuels the terrorists organizations that are the true threat to the West in its "war on terror" isn't new, but it's been lost in the debate about the "surge," with the result that no one seems to reflect on how the surge is actually Osama's briar patch.

"To the editor:

Among their arguments against withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, Bush supporters contend that “if we pull our troops out of Iraq, we’ll be doing precisely what the terrorists want us to do.” While this may be true of some of Iraq’s disputing factions, it is not true of the terrorists who struck our soil on 9/11. That group, which, it is reported, now maintains affiliated cells inside Iraq and is growing in numbers throughout the world, has consistently said its goal is to destroy the world powers that it claims have long dominated and exploited the lands and people of Islam.

That group doesn't want the U.S. to leave Iraq, not at all. It wants to be able to continue to point to the violent U.S. occupation as proof of Western intent to dominate the region; to exploit U.S. troops’ transgressions there (murders, rapes, torture) to fuel their recruitment; and to bleed our nation’s fighting force and treasure. Osama bin Laden (from whatever cave he could be heard) was cheering Bush on as he announced the “surge” ten weeks ago.

If Bush’s “war on terror” is really that, why don't we pull of out Iraq so we can free ourselves to fight it, instead of feeding it?"

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Smoke and mirrors

The real estate bubble has burst, the foreclosure rate of those easy-interest refinancings and home purchases is skyrocketing, the marginal-loan industry is reeling from defaults and both interest rates and inflation are on the rise. Bush's "improving economy" was never real. It was based upon historically low interest rates that allowed Americans to borrow on their credit cards and homes at unprecedented levels--causing personal savings to dip into negative figures for the first time since the Depression.
By the time the Bush administration is driven from power the United States will be in the worst shape ever, internationally and domestically. Let's just hope we learn from this experience: That we should think before we vote.