Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Let the Mud-Slingin' Begin!

And now, we're treated to a Barack O-culpa, not that it will assuage the basement-dwelling fantasists of wingnuttia:

During his first press conference as a presidential candidate at Iowa State University, Obama, discussing his opposition to the Iraq war, said the war "should have never been authorized, and should have never been waged, and on which we've now spent $400 billion, and have seen over 3,000 lives of the bravest young Americans wasted.''

He immediately realized he made a mistake, he later told a reporter. Even the most severe war critics in Congress have been very careful to praise U.S. troops and say nothing that could upset mourning families.

I doubt this is a deal breaker for the Senator, at least not along the lines of Joe Biden's record-setting-in-brevity-death-spiral of a campaign. But I think it's instructive nonetheless--there's a tightrope of myths that candidates must traverse, and one of the strongest, staunchest of these is that our soldiers (once upon a time, "our boys") never "die in vain."

Well, I'm not running for anything, damnit. Obama might have to genuflect to the various mythologies, but not me, and it's damn high time to face the truth. Wingnuts can howl and bay all they want, but the deaths of 3000 soldiers, the wounding of over eight times that many, and the tens of thousands--by conservative estimate--of dead Iraqis (lord knows how many Iraqis have been wounded, or how severe) IS a waste. If nothing else, on a tactical/operational level, ANYONE killed by a roadside bomb/IED while traveling in an unarmored or insufficiently armored Humvee or other conveyence is a wasted life. Soldiers killed by insurgents hiding in plain sight, passing themselves off as trainees are wasted lives. Friendly fire casualties are wasted lives...and, at this point, EVERY casualty is a waste, because, first, the sheer number of dead and wounded in exchange for, what--?--Saddam, Uday, Qasay, his half-brother and a cousin or two (and, if I remember right, a 12 or 14 year old grandkid of Saddam)--is outrageous. It's just plain dumb.

You won't even be able to claim a Pyrrhic victory from this colossal mess when all is said and done. "Young democracy?" I'd laugh, but quite honestly it's too infuriating. You display a contemptible ignorance of not only the region's history, but of your own as well. Oh, and thanks for managing to further empower both Iran AND Al-Qaeda. It takes an exceptional amount of stupidity to do that.

But the myth must persist--otherwise, we might (shudder the thought) question the "wisdom" of screwing up the Middle East/Near Asia even worse than it was before the fact. Meanwhile, entire swaths of this country are literally falling apart: the Gulf Coast might be the most obvious, visible element of this neglect, but I'll bet I could find plenty of examples across the nation. Oh, and on a daily basis, people in this country are murdered, with barely a peep from the reactionaries...except for the occasional, obnoxious snort suggesting that the victim somehow "deserved" it.

Finally, the pathetic excuse we've got for a media will vomit forth the already regurgitated crap they've been tube fed, and will call it "democracy," while engaged in smug, self-congratulatory circle jerks.

Show business for ugly people? More like for stupid people...

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