18 March 2007


Has it really been four years since Our Fearless Leader, the Deserter-In-Chief, the Chickenhawk in a Chimp Suit, launched his foul act of aggression against the hapless people of Iraq? At times it feels more like four hundred years, and this illegal outlaw regime has been on its relentless and wide-ranging rampage of death for at least six thousand ... At any rate, it’s becoming more and more difficult to even remember what the general shape of things was like before the diseased worm of “Neo-Conservatism” unceremoniously hatched itself out of the cavernous recesses of Beelzebub’s back passage, and ascended to the position of dominance it enjoys today.

Four years?

It’s enough to induce otherwise reasonable people to fruitlessly, and idiotically, yearn for the dubious ambiguities of the Clinton era. Or, more accurately, what we think we remember of that particular period, which isn’t very much. But then, not being able to recall clearly almost anything that came before the present Baboon epoch is, obviously, a signature plank in the Neo-Con’s rickety platform. So, whatever.

Yep. Four years of the revolting, rapidly decomposing albatross known as Iraq being hung around our necks, and six-plus years of a Monkey-Man government that was so generous in bestowing it on us. I know that I, and all my brothers and sisters on this particular end of the blogging spectrum -- not to mention the more intelligent, thinking version of humanity generally -- have wondered, have gnawed and gnashed and gummed and basically chewed to pieces the critical but, ultimately, pointless question: How did this happen? Not just the obvious, the violently illegal and immoral manifestations of Neo-Con insanity in Iraq and Afghanistan (and elsewhere), but the tawdry far-right laundry list of murder, destruction, and avarice without boundaries as a whole. What a despair-riddled query to nowhere, as resistant to answers as it is useless.

Four years ... my oh my.

We all know, from unending repetitions of Lord Acton’s dictum, that power corrupts. We are less aware that it breeds folly; that the power to command frequently causes failure to think; that the responsibility of power often fades as its exercise augments. The overall responsibility of power is to govern as reasonably as possible in the interest of the state and its citizens. A duty in that process is to keep well-informed, to heed information, to keep mind and judgment open and to resist the insidious spell of wooden-headedness. If the mind is open enough to perceive that a given policy is harming rather than serving self-interest, and self-confident enough to acknowledge it, and wise enough to reverse it, that is a summit in the art of government.

-- Barbara Tuchman, The March of Folly

(Insert huge SIGH here)


Lee said...

The conspiracy buff in me thinks that this has been the plan all along. Dumb down the masses; Feed them a steady diet of msm propaganda and american idol and who gives a shit that poeple are being blown apart in the new 'American State of Irak'. So long as gas prices stay low what's a few hundred thousand dead Iraqi's and a few thousand dead American soldiers? Makes me want to pull what's left of my hair out. WTF is going to make people wake up?

profmarcus said...

if you read noam chomsky, you will find that he agrees with you... the plan has been and is to "dumb down the masses," and, i think we all would agree, it's worked quite well... however, as chomsky also quite accurately points out, there is nothing particularly "dumb" about someone who can spout baseball statistics all the way back to 1900... we've been given to believe that the Great Issues of Nations, the Workings of International Relations, and the Wisdom of Statecraft are all far too complicated for the common man, and are best left to the Wise Ones who, with their Broad Perspective and Superior Skills, will take care of it all for us...

E. Buttler said...

Lee, you've smacked the nail on the proverbial head, in that financial difficulties among the middle and priviledged classes will likely be the ONLY lever to activate awareness and resistence, as crass as that is; the problem seems to be that they have an inexhaustible capacity to absorb one outrageous rip-off after another without blinking an awful lot. As far as the price of gasoline is concerned, I bought some this morning for $3.19 a gallon, which just isn't high enough yet, I guess. A new war should take care of that, however.

Hey, Professor: Yeah, I've been reading Chomsky for years, all the way back to my Air Force days, which, in tandem with my Deadhead proclivities, raised a few eyebrows on occaision. I think he's just about the only thinking person to put the false dichotomy of the Republican-Democratic "divide" in the proper context, which is largely the reason why I have far more contempt for our erstwhile Democratic "saviors" than I do for the Repugs ...