Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Driving Naked

Long time between blog entries -- too much food for thought, too much sadness...

I seem to remember a bumper sticker from the 60's which read: "Friends don't let friends drive naked!" I think George W. Bush has no friends for he is barreling down a road to total destruction and it's fairly evident that his "emperor clothes" caught fire along with his pants. Bush has said that he will persevere even if Laura and Barney the Dog are his only allies. Lately I'm convinced that Laura is a Stepford Wife. George and Barney are all that's left of the "Coalition of the Oops, Where Did Everybody Go". He certainly doesn't listen to his generals, to his advisors, to the American people or to the folks from the Iraq Study Group aka Baker and Hamilton. In just six years, Bush, acting with a sense of executive privilege and impunity, has all but destroyed 225 years of balance and rule of law.

As for the 110th Congress, everyone is so busy jockeying for position in the 2008 election that no one is standing up for what is right in the here and now. And people are dead and dying because of it. Every day that Congress hems and haws, posits and positions, people die -- people in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in the Occupied Territories, in Somalia, in the U.S., in the military, in the National Guard, in Darfur, in the prison that is Gaza, and in places whose names we don't know and can't pronounce.

The occasional byte of truth slips through. As Bush was threatening Iran on prime-time television, another aircraft carrier was headed toward the Persian Gulf and five Iranian diplomats were arrested by US forces in Kurdistan. ABC News ran a two minute clip of a female Israeli settler in Hebron taunting a group of frightened Palestinian women locked into their home, behind a wire cage, the settler yelling, then whispering "sharmuta" (whore) at them, threatening them, as the settler's children lobbed stones at the caged women and the IDF stood by their tanks and looked on, passively.

But for the most part, the mainstream media ignores all but the most blatant incidents of mass death and destruction, jumping at the chance to focus on fires, train derailments, O.J. Simpson, snow in Denver, boys lost and found, while it adopts the Regime talking points and Rovian language of "Syrian-backed Hezbollah"," Iran's Nuclear Ambitions", "Al Qaeda in Iraq", "cut and run" and "flip flop". I'm beginning to think that Muqtada as-Sadr's first name is "Radical Shi'a Firebrand" and that the pronunciation of Iraq's Nuri al-Maliki's name is up for grabs as no one can agree on a standard and the media doesn't check with Arabic speakers on such mundane issues (or on facts).

Don't get me started on the ethnic cleansing of what was New Orleans. Or the sad state of water or telephone or electric services to the Navajo Nation. Or on the mess that is Medicare. Or the plight of the working poor. And if I hear one more pundit blame the victim, they'll hear me scream all the way up in Santa Fe.

But mostly, I'm just sad...