Jazzed on coffee. Pacing. Not yet ranting, but working up to it.
It's been raining for a couple of days. I'll have to hang up clothes inside. Bummer. Feel my pain.
Okay. Lots of good stuff floating around in the blogosphere this week. "Good" being a relative term. I guess it depends how we feel about our formerly-respected country being at literal and metaphorical war with the rest of the world and with itself. Also at war with science, with the environment, with education and literacy, with America's most vulnerable citizens (a cakewalk, since they can't fight back), and with New Orleans. But I digress.
Take, for instance, this local example of uncivil war. This week on the opinion page of my community's weekly newspaper, there was an editorial about new "standards" of decency for letters to the editor. They said in effect that vicious attacks on local candidates have ramped up to unprecedented levels. Some of them have been printed (go figure). And it's true that some of the letters have been outrageously inflammatory and crude and offensive. Regretfully, some of the worst of it comes from the Dems. So the paper is going to filter through the submissions and print only that which is suitable for children and Republicans. Ah, jeez, there I go again.
Back to the blogosphere.
MUST READ department. Friend Jeff sent me an outstanding piece outlining the history of U.S. involvement in Iraq. It's painstakingly footnoted, so this is not a totally loose cannon writing. (Do cannon's write? Must. Have. More. Coffee.)
Here are a few tidbits to entice you to read all of it:
-- February 1982. Despite objections from congress, President Reagan removes Iraq from its list of known terrorist countries.
-- October 1983. The Reagan administration begins secretly allowing Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Egypt to transfer United States weapons, including Howitzers, Huey helicopters, and bombs to Iraq.
-- May 1986. US Department of Commerce approves shipment of weapons grade botulin poison to Iraq.
-- August 1988. Five days after the Iran/Iraq cease fire, Saddam Hussein begins massive chemical attacks against the Kurds.
-- September 1988. US Department of Commerce approves shipment of weapons grade anthrax and botulinum to Iraq.
I could go on and on, but gosh, I don't want to spoil your reading pleasure. You might want to consider sharing this piece broadly, including some newspaper columnists. How quickly we forget.
VENI, VIDI, WEEPY department. The Huffington Post has a sobering post by Gary Hart this morning. He does a quick chronology of the Julius Caesar handoff to the rule of his sort-of-son Augustus. Hart outlines how Augustus systematically dismantled the republic, brought Rome to its knees before him and sowed the seeds of its destruction. How quickly we forget. (It's a motif.)
If you run out of things to read, you might want to start through the George W. Bush summer reading list. I'm guessing there must be a copy of his Reader's Digest Condensed Cliff Notes somewhere.
Washer is off balance and so am I. More later.