BUGPORN is REAL GROSS!

     
 

The New American Standard
2002-04-18 22:02:02


Cackles of the Mad Reverend
 
i should probably reiterate that this whole thing is probably a delusion. if it continues in my head i may write a spy novel.
-- Sylvia

 

America. We like to project a certain image to the rest of the world. “Freedom” comes to mind because we brandy it so much before everyone else on the globe. This freedom includes the right to go out and take risks and make something for yourself because you had the necessary chutzpah. “The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward,” we say, and we encourage this even though some ventures will inevitably fail. Such has been the course of things throughout our history, and as a nation we generally look to the Oval Office for guidance on what risks we, as a nation, will take.

By now, whether you like it or not, you’re at least peripherally familiar with the Bush administration’s abject failure to continue the honorable work of the Clinton administration at the peace table in Israel. Some months back, I wrote a scathing piece about how Bush lacked the mental capacity and respect of the principal parties to step into Clinton’s sizeable mediator’s shoes. As with all other things in the early days of Bush’s foreign policy, the feeling was, “Not our problem.” Until a problem came up and bit off one of our butt cheeks, that is.

The current Administration line is, “Well, we were afraid of failure if we were unable to wade in and achieve a peace agreement.” Within this sound byte justification, a chilling new mentality reveals itself: through fear and incompetence and impatience, Bush and the Cabinet are fostering a nation of mealy-mouthed cowards.

So Bush is a dummy. So his Cabinet is mostly made up of people for whom the fiscal bottom line is the only line. Like you didn’t already know this. But in the context of the Middle East Peace Plan, Bush’s stupidity and his cabinet’s greed added up to the same thing: a better bottom line for American oil companies. Since about 41% of our oil comes from our own soil, upward fluctuations in the price of oil futures are a windfall for many Texan companies. That windfall would also spread to Canada and Mexico (our friends in NAFTA and strategic buddies in times of crisis), which provide 16% more of our oil between them. This makes for one cozy North American bloc, which is what it’s all about for the Bushmaster. With everybody over here making so much money from Mideast unrest, why would Bush possibly want to extend himself into an area where he’d surely make a buffoon of himself before the world stage? Avoiding an interdiction in Israel served to both preserve Bush’s illusion of leadership and promote the interests of at least one sector of a devastated economy. Between those two ends, a re-election bid had legs.

But that’s four years down the road. In his eight years at the helm of Mideast mediation, Bill Clinton got both sides to cover incredible ground,—the establishment of the Palestinian Authority, the ceding of land to the Palestinians by Israel, the complete pullout of the Israeli army from Lebanon—only to see all these gains completely fall apart at the last Camp David meeting when Arafat scoffed at Barak’s Jerusalem offer and Sharon went on his now infamous march through the Temple Mount. Eight years for nothing. Bush may be an idiot, but even he can see looming potential futility. This is especially true since the Bush folks like instant results. Despite the propaganda of an “extended war on terrorism,” the Afghan operation shows that the Administration wants things done NOW! There’s little patience with anything that could take a while. Patience in the Mideast requires a type of perseverance that eludes cokeheads and the company they keep. (If you’re unfamiliar with this concept, grab an eight-ball, snort some fat rails, and see how committed you are to anything after that second gram; then multiply this consumption by twenty years, and you’ll be seeing through the eyes of our Chief.) Since it was unlikely that the highly complex and sensitive issues involved in the Mideast plan could be concluded within the four-year timeframe of the (hopefully) first Bush tenure, by the President’s reasoning, the whole process would have been a failure.

Speaking of failure, since when is it a crime to fail in this country? “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again,” was the maxim kids have been raised on for most of America’s history. We’re bred to be tough and resilient, bold and inventive, flexible and pragmatic. These are the traits of evolution. Yet, none of them are embodied in our Chief Executive or his Cabinet, whether in regard to the Mideast or anything else. With this kind of limp leadership, to whom can today’s kids look to for inspiration? Looks like we’re back to creampuff movies stars, insipid musicians, and rapist pro athletes. I can hear the motto of future generations now: “When the going gets tough, the tough get the hell out of town.”

Bush’s complete abdication of responsibility for the Middle East Peace Plan and the Administration’s recent pathetic attempt to secure even a peremptory cease-fire have far more ominous implications for the nation than the high prices of gasoline and everything shipped by tractor trailers. They corrupt and retard the aspirations of today’s young (and still-inspired middle aged) in that they’re now effectively discouraged from taking the “big risk” because they might fail or because it will take too long or not make enough money. In an age where insurance companies have already neutered our adventurous spirits and restrained our options, it’s sickening to see presidential cowardice further degrade “ . . . the home of the brave.” Hopefully the effects of the current Administration will be limited to a single tenure. Otherwise, our empire will become another Rome crumbling underneath the weight of immense proportion and insufficient resolve.

Over.  End of Story.  Go home now.

czech@pigdog.org


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