Dying in Iraq: Pick a number

July 11, 2007 by barbara

barbara writes:

Got an email from Al Franken yesterday. Well, okay, 500,000 other folks got it, too. Franken wrote to urge us to lean hard on Normie Colemeleon – the man who currently occupies Paul Wellstone’s Senate seat. Franken’s letter cited American death stats, which at any given time are inaccurate because doggone it, they just keep dying over there. Click to play the numbers game.

Anyway, looking yet again at those tragic numbers raised a question for me. What, exactly, is the tipping point for this administration and its minions, Norm Colemeleon and perky freshman-in-Congress Michele Bachmann, with respect to deaths in Iraq? Bachman returned from a Congressional delegation trip to the Green Zone. She thinks we need to stay the course.

There is zero interest in the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi dead. Also In the huge and growing number of Americans who are half-dead or die when they get home. So let's stick to what's readily available in the land of the fees and the home of the knaves.

Clearly, 3,600 dead (54 of them Minnesotans) isn’t spectacular enough to warrant rescuing our troops. So what are the magic numbers? At what point are Republicans totally revolted by what is happening? 100 Minnesotans out of 7,000? Crikey, where will they hide all those coffins? How about 5,400 out of 36,000? 10,000 out of 75,000? Those are impressive numbers. Would they be high enough to get the hell out of Iraq?

Just asking.

Posted in


perhansa (not verified) | July 11, 2007 - 12:28pm

Barbara, I'm sure you're asking bloodied-tongue-in-cheek since we know by now there isn't a number for these immoral SOBs. Just like there isn't any plan...just like there isn't any cost too high since they aren't bearing any of it (see Paul Krugman's excellent editorial in Strib today)...just like there isn't any shame...just like there isn't any...you get my drift.

The only thing that will move the self-interested folks in Washington is the ELECTION (and that seems to include the Dems). POWER and who will get it or retain it seems to be all that matters.

Maybe being at two miles above sea level on Sunday cleared my mind a bit. Now I'm disillusioned with the entire lot of windbags, carpetbaggers, litigators, and profit-seekers in DC. Even Cindy Sheehan has put herself back in the spotlight threatening to run against Nancy Pelosi if she doesn't put impeachment back on the agenda by July 16th (or some date near that).

Our proto-human-rhomboid-in-Chief has his tape track stuck. He can't utter anything other than the new version of "stay-the-course" which is "the-decisions-will-be-made-by-the-commanders-on-the ground" (which must mean the deceased since there aren't any decisions being made).

I see now I was naive enough to think we still had a balanced government with oversight and checks and balances and rule of law. I was a knave. This Administration is able to stonewall everyone they want about anything they want and to deny any oversight, access, information, investigation, prosecution, without a cost.

They have no MORALS and they have no SHAME. They understand nothing but raw power and ideology.

They own Talk Radio and they are gaining ownership of the formerly liberal MSM. I'm afraid we LOST a while back and didn't even recognize the day...THE WAR ON TERROR is a euphemism for the War on Liberalism and a War Against Ourselves.

Liberalism has failed. It taught an ideology instead of how to think. Now we have non-thinking "Liberals" and "Libertarians" along with anti-thinking "NeoConservatives" and "Fundamentalists" and our society is ultra-divisive and it sucks. We're seeing the natural end (result of) of the marriage of Capitalism and "Unthinking" Liberalism.

The UNDERMINERS are gaining control of the blogosphere.

TRUTH? No one knows what's true anymore. How can you know? Who can you trust? The Surgeon General is stifled. NASA is stifled. The EPA is stifled. The Justice Dept. is under seige. Soccer Moms and NASCAR dads and all those in between look around and see that society is crumbling and do the most human of all things---grasp the easy answers and the slick promises and go into a state of denial and start living in the "good old days" of the past. Even the hollywood movies are harkening backward to comic book heroes, transformer toys, old TV shows and UnderDog!!! But they make a S***Load of money for the DEEP POCKETS.

Liberalism was based on the same beliefs as Christianity but didn't have the power of the "Big Stick" (GOD-damnation-punishment-hellfire, etc.). No one goes to a Liberalism revival and comes away born again...because we can't promise simple answers. But we also didn't teach people to think and reason and live morally without Daddy God. We believed Dostoevsky when he said if there is no god anything goes. Very few really believe in Darwinian evolution either. The implications are too dangerous. What if we are ANIMALS? What if genetics primarily determines WHO and WHAT we are? What if this wonder SHOW called LIFE isn't all about US? What if 4.5 billion years went by before humans ever walked upright on the earth? What if several billion more will go by after we're gone?

If you sit with these realizations they're quite terrifying. The brutality of the facts is what we continually deny. The facts of evolution. The facts of global climate change. The facts of extinction. The facts of greed, power and self-interest that are threaded into our very DNA just looking for every opportunity to express themselves. We don't have Free Will, only Free Won't. And we exercise it primarily to deny and lie to ourselves and blind ourselves to the brutality of the facts.

And that's where Liberalism should have started...so this is all true...now what? Nuf said....I'll consider a post once I get back into the State of Denial...


barbara aka babs (not verified) | July 11, 2007 - 8:14pm

Now what, indeed? Perhansa, we have been played like violins by the First Plucker. Well, not really. But by his marionette string pullers. And here's the scary thing. With respect to being used by Cheney, Rove et al, we are no better than George W. Bush. That is a very sobering thought -- for those who need any more sobering.

In Susan's post above this one, we lament the lack (existence?) of a chosen one to lead us out of this terrible wilderness. Not 40 years this time, though. It just feels that way. A messiah? No, just a strong, principled truth-teller.

I can't remember who said this (maybe more than one someones). But one of the principal differences between Dems/progressives and "The Others" is that Dems supposedly trust the people and therefore tell them the truth. I don't see that happening.

One of the things that's wrong in this high-stakes chess game is that we're largely in the dark. We are ascribing to our leadership the will and the capacity to undo some of the immense damage done to America under BushCo.

Apart from public hearings, what are they doing? What's happening? Is there a master plan? A strategy to which all loyal Dems (Lieberman need not apply) are privy?

Or are they all as flummoxed as we are? That's what I fear the most. That what we're perceiving as immobilization may be what's real.

Amy Klobuchar sent out an email the other day that started out with bunches of sweetness about marvelous Minnesota and her wonderful 12-year-old daughter, blah, blah, blah.

If you stuck with it, and read between the lines carefully, there was the tiniest hint that they're at least trying.

You know what? I don't expect nor do we need to know the details of the plan, the strategy, the game that's afoot. But we sure as hell need to know the truth. Is anything happening beyond what we're seeing?

I'm totally babbling here and I know it. It's what's become of most of us in BushCo years. We rail against NewSpeak and Big Brother, we express our fear for all of us, but there's nothing to hang on to. It's like trying to box up fog, which is coming from both sides of the political aisle.

Enough. I am truly, genuinely distraught.


Anonymous (not verified) | July 12, 2007 - 9:00am

Well then, why aren't all you distraught guys supporting the candidacies of Kuccinich, or Gravel, who are courageously taking the tough stand on things? Right - I'm guessing it's because you/we know that they don't stand a chance of winning and actually doing what they believe is right. So how's that different from the so called spineless newly elected Democrats, who aren't doing things fast and furious enough, because they too know that such tactics haven't a chance, that fast and furious simply won't work?


susan | July 12, 2007 - 11:45am

Hey, Anon, who are you supporting? Just askin'.

"Well then, why aren't all you distraught guys supporting the candidacies of Kuccinich, or Gravel, who are courageously taking the tough stand on things?"

We may be distraught but we're not totally looney. I do support lots of what Kucinich says and puts out there and I like what he brings to the debate. I'm glad he's in public office. But having been upclose with this guy over a month-long campaign in New Hamphire, back in 2004, (I was on a different campaign, but in NH you're all constantly running in to each other.) I found him a little too peculiar to be the inspiring, bring-the-world-together kind of president we need now. Not much he can do about that, but it's the way it is. And Gravel brings equal goodies, but to the wrong debate. I mean, when you are on stage with a bunch of creationists it's not hard to be the stand-out.

As for fast and furious, etc., you might read today's post (Wimps Like Us) and get my take on that. 51 votes is a long way from 60.