Monday, May 25, 2009

D.C. Droppings -- XIII

Memorial Daze

The more awful our foreign policy is and the more we inflict terror on populations who don’t want to be democratic – and the more the public votes against such things—the more we as a country spew false love upon veterans and today’s “heroes,” the chumps who sign up to kill or be killed in order to get a college education. Or because they are too aimless to do anything else.

Of course, many young Americans sign up for the military because they feel they want adventure or they want to serve in a job that they see as heroic. But the only reason they see it that way is because civil society paints them as heroes, no matter what their cause or their actions.

You could not turn on the television or go anywhere in public this weekend without being drenched in phony bathos about our “heroes.” Memorial Day was once about dead veterans of the Civil War, then expanded to honor the dead of our good wars, the last one ending in 1945.

In my view, unpopular as it may be, there is nothing inherently heroic about signing up to do a job and then doing it. A lot of people face danger in their jobs, not the least of whom are teachers in urban public schools, traffic cops on pollution-choked city streets or drivers for fly-by-night interstate bus companies.

These soldiers kill for us in a war we all hate but we publicly revere them as gods? We all know why – it is a cheap way of looking patriotic, by honoring the troops but not the war. That is beyond stupid. If we didn’t honor them, if we had no Memorial Days, if we didn’t choke up publicly at every moment, if Marines didn’t lose whole platoons so that they would never leave a fallen comrade behind, then no one would sign up for future ill-begotten wars. We “honor” the troops because of a collective guilt about how Vietnam War veterans were allegedly treated upon their return. Except for the government itself forgetting their medical, emotional and financial needs, they were honored, or at least not dishonored, as is the canard spread by right wingers still fighting the wars of the Sixties.

Stop Him Before He Tortures Again

Which brings us to Cheney, the Dick. All that needs to be said about this sneering sniveling Valdemort is that he ducked service to his country five times. He wants Guantanamo to remain open, even though W. doesn’t.

But I wish someone would explain why Cheney is not there since he is the biggest enemy of our way of life.

When it was known we were torturing people, Cheney denied it , then said if we did it, it was legal and then said if it wasn’t exactly legal it was okay because the president had shysters on his staff say it was. And now he says violations of international law were not only effective but anyone who thinks otherwise is damaging our national security. Yet he also says it only happened three times or so and it was not his administration’s policy. So is he really saying, “Stop me before I torture again?

And if the secret CIA memos really do support the Cheney position that torture worked, how come they haven’t been leaked yet, as was everything else that made the war look good?

Needless to say, with the criminal-in-chief Bush unaccountably silent lately, it is Cheney whose patriotism must be called into question.

Coca Cola Health Plan

And what’s with Bill Clinton, from whom sleaze won’t adhere to the slime? He is a leader in global health and was governor of Arkansas, whose successor administrations instituted a tax on soda pop, in order to help curb the obesity epidemic. But now, the former billboard for junk food is speaking out against a move to apply such taxes in other states. How could that be? Oh, did anyone besides the New York Times mention, just in passing, that the Bill Clinton Foundation receives between $250,000 and $500,000 from Coca Cola?

Catch-2204 7832 6712 0095 Exp. 07/10

With Congress finally cracking down on credit card companies, the usurers will have to find new sources of revenue. And that means instituting fees and shortening the period in which you must pay. And that means a violation of that old Clinton chestnut about governing for “the people who play by the rules” because those of us who make sure never to carry a credit card balance will have to pay for the privilege of paying on time.

Spend a Night at the Museum

I am pretty discerning about movies, and rarely do we venture out beyond the confines of the indie house that features quality films. But despite my general distaste for Ben Stiller (loved his parents, though!) I think Night at the Museum, and its new sequel Night at the Museum: The Battle of the Smithsonian are the funniest and best made movies I have seen in a long time.

It is a PG movie that, like the best satire, appeals to two different audiences at the same time. And the effects are pretty cool, too.


  1. So someone who believes in protecting and defending the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign AND domestic is a "chump' by your standards.

    Someone who volunteers to take a bullet to protect your right to write such unbelievable bullshit is not a hero?

    You're such a putz Ira.

    The only workplace danger you've faced in your life is an effin paper cut, yet you malign brave men and women who have more balls than you can conceive.

    Sometimes, you're simply a schmuck.

  2. So, you didn't like "Night at the Museum?"

    Look, bravery is a lot of things, not the least of which is volunteering to get shot at, but neither is bravery simply getting shot at for no reason. I would actually call that irrational, especially when nothing is at stake. My freedom to annoy you was protected when we won World War II.

    Since your argumentation starts and stops near your zipper, I will try to make this relevant. Since 1945, U.S. military mayhem was caused by presidents with serious psychological issues about trying to prove they were better than their fathers.

    But my main point is that since very few people who used pure reason would volunteer for the U.S. armed forces, I can deduce only that they find either a pecuniary reason or an emotional reason. I am not saying you or anyone else should not "honor the troops," but like public prayer, such acts en masse are transparently hypocritical.

    If serving in the military were seen as having no extrinsic value, people would not sign up as much.

    Honor the troops by keeping us out of useless wars.

    When you calm down, maybe you can explain the curious invocation of the brave men and women who have balls.

  3. You see Ira, there can be no understanding on your part so long as you keep your head in the sand (or wherever you might have it embedded).

    I recognize that you’ve spent your entire life in and around the beltway and that clouds your ability to perceive reality. Those you revere inside the beltway speak in rhetoric, saying what’s politically expedient, rather anything resembling true belief or commitment.

    Thus, you have to total inability to recognize that we are at war, at great war.

    Hundreds of millions of islamic fascists scream “Death to America” and I’m sure you view this as rhetoric, even though they are continually plotting and executing attacks.

    Some believe this war began November 4, 1979, others believe June 5th, 1968, but in any event it is ongoing, and will continue long after you’ve left us.

    Ahmadinejad regularly speaks that Israel has no right to exist and that he intends to eradicate Israel, and I have no doubt that *you* view this as rhetoric. Right up until the moment he actually does it and your head may or may not pop out of wherever it currently is.

    These islamic goons, who respect freedom of the press enough to hand you Daniel Pearl’s head on a platter, are not going to stop until they are stopped. Their mission is to have all the world’s peoples submit to Allah, and believe that it is their greatest good to die trying to make *you* submit.

    So no, there is no understanding on your part that this is a real war, and that real people outside of Washington actually recognize it as such, and choose go and fight it on your behalf. Sit your ass in your easychair, and let volunteer heroes do the work for you.

    Do you really think that Ahmadinejad is *not* building a nuclear weapon and a delivery system?

    Go to Google Earth. Angle it nicely so you can see the strategic value of Baghdad Airport, a U.S. Military stronghold right in the dead center of a hundred-million islamic goons. This right now is the *only* check and balance against these nutjobs. We can deliver conventional and nuclear weapons upon Tehran in mere moments.

    And thus you, writing with your head deeply embedded somewhere, believing that so long as you ignore this war then it really doesn’t exist, can espouse that this is a “useless” war, while truly heroic men and women are out there protecting and defending your Constitutional right to write imbecilic bovine fecal matter.

    *They* are heroes. Ready to take the bullet for you. *You* are a fatuous armchair chickenshit.

    And yes, the heroic women in service to this republic have bigger and brassier balls then your little pair of peas.

  4. That's four rectal references this time, after three testicular ones the last time. So, I actually wonder what's wrong with YOU.

    This IS a real war but the Bush Brigades, of which you are a hopeless sycophant, fought the wrong enemy in the wrong place at the wrong time. The Bush tactics of which you approve have demonstrably made it harder to win this war.

    You of course believe it is a war against terrorism, as if one can wage war against a mere tactic.

    You can wage a war against a country or, in this case, an ideology. As the British learned at Concord, and as the United States, Russia and every other imperial power has learned since, you cannot win a guerrilla war by conventional means.

    There are military, but also diplomatic, economic and scientific theaters in this war. Bush believed in only one.

    As for the troops, you miss my point, for which I take responsibility. It is this:

    Anyone who joins the military signs up knowingly. For whatever reason, and one hopes that it IS because he/she wants to be a warrior, they deserve no more knee-jerk public adulation than anyone else who plays by the rules and tries to better him/herself or country.

  5. You wrote: "This IS a real war but the Bush Brigades, of which you are a hopeless sycophant, fought the wrong enemy in the wrong place at the wrong time. The Bush tactics of which you approve have demonstrably made it harder to win this war."I disagree, and you obviously missed my point. The point is not whether we invaded Iraq to overthrow Hussein's regime, the point was we invaded Iraq to establish a military stronghold. A strategic stepping stone. This is not anything the Bush regime has ever publically pronounced. And it *does* help us win the war. Wrong place wrong time? Not a chance. It's militarily perfect.

    "You of course believe it is a war against terrorism, as if one can wage war against a mere tactic."Of course you put words in my mouth that I have never spoken, so long as it fits your ridiculous talking points. I have called it from day one a war against "Islamic fascists" not terrorism. Islamic fascists who wish to make *you* submit to their life view, or chop your head off in the process.

    "Anyone who joins the military signs up knowingly. For whatever reason, and one hopes that it IS because he/she wants to be a warrior, they deserve no more knee-jerk public adulation than anyone else who plays by the rules and tries to better him/herself or country.That's a far cry from your direct, unconditional reference to voluneers as "chumps."

    Nonetheless, your blatent disregard for the heroic nature of the line of work simply amplifies your personal disdain for these fine people.

    Some jobs are simply heroic by their nature. Simply showing up to do it makes those people heroes.

    The pen might be mightier than the sword, but the guy with the sword is gonna take the bullet for you, while trying to prevent them from chopping your body in to parts to put on YouTube.