Monday, June 28, 2010

Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory

I guess The McChrystal Flap has caused an extra moment or two of reflection on what the hell we're doing in Afghanistan all these years later. What hasn't been said much, and should be alluded to every time the subject comes up is this: there was at one time a good chance that our incursion there might have been quickly and productively resolved. We could chave been out of there long ago, having made a demonstration of the penalty to be paid for attacks on America, and having left millions grateful there, in a liberated and pacified nation. Instead, they largely hate us there, with good reason. The religious fanatics of the Taliban are about to come back into power there and go to work again with Osama and Al Qaeda, because we let them and him slip away. The authors of this collosal bungle, collosal string of bungles, were Bush and Cheney, who were already fucking up badly in Afghanistan, but not badly enough for their tastes -- for they soon took their eyes off the ball to begin a multi-trillion-dollar boondoggle in Iraq. And yet our pundits don't seem to think one mess has anything to do with the other.

Iraq? they wonder. What's Iraq?

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Home of the Slave

Okay, if they're not "conservatives," and you can't really shorthand their true hideousness in such historical terms that, no matter how apt or carefully considered, won't turn milquetoasts Americans off, how can we characterize American right-wingers?

How about this? They're authoritarians. They waste a lot of breath about how they want a small government, the government which governs (and provides) least, and yet they want a government that polices our private morality quite a bit, and a government that supports a vast and aggressive military/secret police system. They actually like (in fact, they grow sexually excited at the idea of) vast power concentrated in a few hands. They just don't want that power to be elected in the conventional sense. They much prefer the idea of power, even unaccountable power (Is the another kind?) in the hands of corporate executives.

It often seems to me that there is an underlying assumption, even among many Democrats, that the private sector, because people vote for its offerings with their pocketbooks, is somehow more of a meritocracy than the government or academia -- as if white collar workers were actually held accoutnable when their products suck, or people just fail to buy them. Indeed, somer MBAs suffer when their companies tank, but more often the hard working people who actually tried to make things work properly suffer first, or most, and the sociopathic credit hogs at the top cash in or move along to the next sinecure. I mean, who believes that Tony Hayward is going to fall on hard times now that he's poisoned the Gulf of Mexico.
In any case, any honest person who's ever worked for a big corporation will tell you, it's a bureaucracy like any other, rife with dead wood, corruption and inanity. Spasmodic efforts to hold people accountable there almost invariably weed out the nonconforming, not the nonperforming.
So, if the winger objects to being called an authoritrian ("I'm for small government!"), try corporate authoritarian. Only if CEOs have diplomatic immunity are markets really free.

Friday, June 18, 2010

On the Other Hand

I've often reflected on what a crock of shit "conservative," the right-winger's favorite term for himself is. It's hard to imagine how one reconciles multi-trillion dollar experiments in regime-change and forcible democracy-building, blind faith in a vengeful, capricious, bigotted Bronze Age deity, and a similar blind faith in mankind's collective wisdom being expressed through unregulated markets et cetera, with "conservativism" in the rigidly tradition sense that consrvatives have traditionally insisted upon. But right-wingers are indeed conservative in the traditional negative sense -- they are real climbers on the bandwagon, Yankee fans, takers of the safe bet, and as such, suck-ups to power and money -- like Joe Barton and the other stooges of the GOP who find tragedy and "shakedown" in holding accountable a poor defenseless and, by definition infallible multinational Corporation.

But come to think of it, that's part of the right-wing mind set. After all, these are the people who are happy to bomb, rape, and rob any and all, but think that if you just suck up to Jesus enough you're ethically superior.

It really is a shame there's no Hell; it would be a great comfort to many.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Flaming Jesus Update

It's all been so depressing what with the Gulf of Mexico turning into a toxic dump site and American political discourse degenerating even faster, the President turning out to be even more of an empty suit than the Lobbyist predicted, the weather here in DC turning prematurely Panamanian, and all the movies around town sucking hard. But I must admit that, like many, I was oddly cheered by the way Big Butter Jesus burned to the ground after what the underwriters call an "act of God" -- in the form of lightning strike. it was kind of like a Klan rally crossed with Burning Man right there beside I-75. The smiting of the graven image was made even sweeter by the way the Pornarama directly across the highway was completely unscathed!
On the up side, I did get to see Strasburg pitch his super debut for the Nads the other night, and did get to see Patty Griffin at 9:30 Club Saturday, and did see one of my all time favorite movies last night, Will Penny -- which was the best movie Chuck Heston ever did by far, and he knew it too. Bread and circuses -- not just for the couch potato!

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Merde-Ass Touch

It seems that to the degree we have gone along with Republican "ideas" for the last sixty years we have had: distastrous deficits, institutionalized racism, ecological catastrophe, massive loss of jobs and industry, alliance with some of the world's scummiest dictratorships, the conversion of the republic to a pseudo-theocratic, quasi-fascist military-industrial complex wherein extrajudicial detention, torture, warrantless wiretapping, and pre-emptive, undeclared, self-perpetuating forever-war are accepted practice, and, of course, wildly successful terrorist attacks. It may not be surprising that the average couch potato doesn't undertand this, but you would think that profesional Democrats would, at least.

The Republicans royally fuck up every single thing they touch, and virtually everything that's wrong with America today is due in part to the fact that they are never held accountable.
I call the picture above: The Spirit of the GOP. Drill baby, drill.