Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Zell Miller

I've been listening to various political speeches of the last 40 years for some research on intonation in language that I am doing. All I can say is that I better get a damn good published article from this, because I had to spend 20 minutes of hell listening to Zell Miller's loathesome speech from the RNC 2004. To use understatement, let's just say it makes me angry.

Ah, the sacrifices I make for science. ;)

Back to politics, we now have Bush approval ratings below 40% and a majority of Americans realizing Iraq was a bad idea. Where were these geniuses in early November last year? Katrina is the only major event since then. Everything else has been the same. Were so many people that wrapped up in fear and blind patriotism?

OK, I am going to say a thought that has been in the back of my mind for a while. It's going to get me in trouble, because it will be wrong, but it is one in the morning and you get in one of these moods sometimes. You know what would have prevented 9/11? Locks on the cockpit doors and pilots' knowledge not to come out. That's it. I'm not saying this would have prevented any terrorist attack from ever occurring again, but then nothing we have done since then has insured that. We now have 2000 dead American service men with thousands more injured and likely between 10,000 and 20,000 dead Iraqi civilians. I wish all the best for the possible Iraqi democracy that might be created there, and I think tens of thousands of American troops are doing their jobs the absolute best they can and I truly admire them for it, but it is clear we did not take the best path to security and freedom.

If you'd like a more nuanced take on things, you can root through my archives from May and June of this year, where I consider things more calmly.


Killer Llama said...
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Killer Llama said...

There are additional things that are surfacing now that didn't exist back in November. Katrina didn't just reveal our government's ineffectiveness, it raises doubts about the Bush team's plans for handling any national disaster. If the Department of Homeland Security failed this dramatically for an event that was actually predicted, how well can we expect it to react to a suprise attack? The Dept. of Homeland Security was not Bush's idea, but it is a nonetheless a signature piece of his presidency. How well it performs or fails reflects on him.

The apparent lack of competency shown by FEMA chief Brown also is a big negative for Bush because it, combined with other appointed positions (Harriet Meirs for one), is raising accusations of cronyism - America thinks of itself as a meritocracy, and outright gifts of powerful positions to those unqualified except for one's connections tend not to go over well in any part of the country.

And finally the hurricanes have jacked up gas prices. Completely out of Bush's control, of course, but when people have less money in their pocket they tend to be less happy and more worried about the future. Also somewhat out of Bush's control are all the scandals swirling around other Republiclan leaders... Delay, Rove, Cheney... accusations of corruption of these folks reflects poorly on Bush as well, if for no other reason than guilt by association.

Of course smart people like you and I knew all of this would happen back in November, because we know everything. But many that thought they were supporting a war-time president and 'family values' back then are now starting to realize that the war was manufactured and Bush's 'family values' really means 'family values' (spoken with your best Marlon Brando impersonation).