I haven't posted in some time because it's a very busy time for me at work and also because I'm trying to get my head around what a second Bush term means. Like millions of others, I had a lot of emotional investment in Bush's defeat, which is not the same as having a lot of emotional investment in Kerry's victory. (I was fully invested in Wes Clark's presidential bid, but in the end, he played himself by waiting so long to enter the fray. Simply put, he was unprepared politically to be on that stage at that time.)
There are rumblings that Kerry is already considering a second run, which is a patently bad idea. I want a Democrat who is willing to play as dirty as the opposition. If the other side isn't observing Marquis of Queensberry rules, you're a fool if you continue acting like you're in a fair fight.
This is not the same thing as judging a man's competence. As the campaign went on, I grew to respect Kerry and actually believe that he would make a good president. Most importantly, I was excited about the prospect of a new Cabinet. Bloggers level scathing indictments of Rumsfield, Powell, Cheney, and the rest every day, but to me the single most important adjective to describe them is inept. They're simply incompetent.
Now, witness the purge taking place at the CIA. In essence, the Bush loyalists who came up with the faulty WMD evidence the Administration wanted are being elevated. Those who came up with evidence that turned out to be correct are being ferreted out. So, in the end, incompetence is being rewarded.
I can only shrug at the expected Cabinet resignations. Powell turned out to be a lapdog. In many ways, the Paiges, Abrahams, and Evans of the world were just front men who voiced the desires of the corporations that clearly own the soul of this administration. And yes, it's good that Ashcroft is gone but Gonzalez, the chief architect of the American torture doctrine, is replacing him. Is that good? Think about all those people who were recently released from Guantanamo with no charges ever being filed against them. If you were unjustly held in near-solitary confinement for two years, what would you do when you were released? I'd be looking for revenge.
We've created a whole new group of enemies there and in Iraq as well. Call them Revenge Terrorists. And there's not much difference from what they will be and what the US has turned into. Our retribution has been indiscriminate, with little regard for the tens of thousands of innocents we have killed. Expect the same from those looking for revenge.
Today, I heard that two soliders were killed on Thanksgiving in Iraq. It made me flinch. Does anyone care? Is America so sedated from a concoction of reality television, fast food, and porno that it doesn't matter?
There's a numbing redundancy to these stories about 50 or 60 year old reservists who thought they'd never serve another day in the military being called back to action. There's a blatant disregard for the lives of our soldiers that is the M.O. of this administration. And still, the perception is that Republicans care more about the military. It's a myth like the grilled cheese sandwich that resembles the Virgin Mary and sold for $28,000. Still, people want to believe in it.
Did the ignorant fools in this Administration really think the insurgents were going to hang around in Fallujah while we announced weeks beforehand that we were getting ready for a major attack?
It makes me think of the scene in "Stripes" with John Larroquette as an ambitious, empty headed officer. He's sitting in his office, playing war with a bunch of toy soldiers and tanks, adding in his own sound effects of guns firing and soldiers screaming.
That's what W is doing. Sadly, the screams of soldiers and innocent civilians are real. And tragically, more than half of America doesn't care.