Thursday, August 31, 2006
The Folly of "Fascism": It is ridiculous to throw around the words Nazism and Fascism. If everyone is a fascist no one is. Nazism and Fascism were very particular historical occurrences at a very particular time in human history. Technically, Fascism relates to a tyrannical partnership between government and corporate economic power. Fascists, economically at least, are major capitalists. The leadership in a Fascist state is, of course, dictatorial. Mussolini, Hitler's mentor, designed the Fascist political movement. Franco, Spain's dictator, joined those ranks. The word comes from the Roman fasces or rods which were bundled around an axe carried by soldiers in ancient Rome. Fascists are generally thought to occupy the extreme right wing of the political spectrum and are ardent foes of Communism on the left. Islamic movements today do not conform to that definition. Perhaps, Mr. Bush, et al meant to say theocracy which would be, I think, a more accurate term for many contemporary Islamic states and movements. I think that would be a word which Mr. Bush and his minions might be better able to understand.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Leave it to Beaver Goes to Katrina Land: Could anyone on this planet take seriously Bush's photo-oped, rehearsed and completely orchestrated trip to the land of Katrina? He stood in front of the few houses that were reconstructed and uttered a few platitudes. He is seriously inarticulate, speech/thought disordered and he is our president. Does he really think we believe that he read Camus or even Shakespeare? I did not hear someone ask him what these books were about. Like the issues of his presidency, I have no doubt he does not have a clue about them just as he has no clue about the devastation that was and is Katrina. He has read Camus and four books of Shakepeare like I have read the sequel to "My Pet Goat!"
Maureen Dowd's NYT article Aug. 30 entitled "Begat, Bothered and Bewildered" was Biblicalesque about Bush's return trip to the still devastated area of Katrina. As usual, Maureen Dowd writings are brilliant, satiric and sad. Regarding Bush's pathetic photo-oped, rehearsed roll -- or role -- down the memory lane of Katrina in New Orleans and Mississippi yesterday: it's a little too late to, as Ms. Dowd puts it, "restore the soul to the White House." It's long since gone forever. Every sin he and his minions has committed is upon us all. His deeds are done and now we have to reap what he sowed!
Sunday, August 27, 2006
A new New Deal: Interesting article by Andrew J. Bacevich entitled "No Win" in the Sunday, August 27, 2006 Globe. It is clear to me too, at least presently, that our military strategies have not been working. It is costing us dearly in lives, treasure, and prestige around the world. There is no end in sight.
There needs to be a new New Deal where those in power must be able to think about substantive policy changes to live with a new Middle East. To do this Americans must effect a systemic change in government by electing those who are capable of doing many of the things that Professor Bacevich suggests. Our people must see that the majority of their interests are not served by powers that owe their platforms to huge amounts of corporate money and who have a vested interest in perpetuating the status quo ensuring it will be in place for decades to come. His most salient point, in my opinion, was developing alternative sources of energy thereby reducing our strategic presence in the Middle East.
This is certainly not what the large corporate oil interests want. Those large corporate oil interests are embedded within a Republican party that nearly exclusively caters to them. That party is entrenched in the House, the Senate, the Executive and Judicial branches. Our people have been duped into electing those who do not do things to help us and, indeed, have incalculably hurt us. Those now in power must be removed, post haste. Nothing less than our security and our very lives depend on it.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Thinking Anew -- I watched CNN’s Christiana Amanpour's "In the Footsteps of Bin Laden," a history of Bin Laden from engineer in his father's construction company to terrorist premier and the manufacturer of 9/11.
A terrorist she interviewed said that they struck the US because of what the US and the west have done to Arabs. He said that the 3000 killed on 9/11 were nothing compared to how many the US has killed and what the US has perpetrated in the Middle East. He said the Koran says that killing is wrong but if another threatens you first then it is permissible to kill them. Despicable as I thought he was, I endured the diatribe.
As I see it every side thinks their enemy has threatened them first so they retaliate. So who threatened who first? Unfortunately, one cannot escape the boundaries of where one sits to answer that objectively. Howard Zinn, a left-wing historian, says “The old ways are not working, we need new ways of thinking.” Zinn says too that wars and bombs have not given us security. Perhaps he is right.
I cannot love my enemy, but unless we want to give future generations a world of perpetual war or worse no world at all, we must, I think, at the very least, talk to our enemy and think of new ways to deal with our adversaries. Maybe it does not matter anymore who started what first. No one will agree on that. To save us all, maybe it matters more who will speak to whom first and when.
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
How 9/11 Changed Bush a response: Michael Gerson wrote a wonderfully articulate and poignant article in Newsweek entitled "How 9/11 Changed Bush". The problem with it, I think, is that no one has a crystal ball. That is what I need to figure out if Gerson's assessment of Bush's war on terror since 9/11 is correct. I simply do not know. I see his point. We will not inherit the earth if Islamic terrorists win. According to Gerson, who knew the Chief Executive rather personally, Bush took us to war to spread democracy and stop Islamic totalitarian dictatorships.