Archive for the ‘Global’ Category

It’s most bizarre

April 27, 2009

Torture!

Should there be a commission? A special prosecutor? A nonpartisan investigation? Congressional hearings?

Torture? Our country is really talking about torture and the involvement and authorization of those uppermost in our nation’s leadership?

How quickly we become diverted into the “how” rather than the “what” or the “why.” The whole thing is absurd.

Why did we feel we had to scrap our values and trample on the Constitution when attacked on our soil? Was there no time for a sober breath, quiet reflection? Or did someone have a bone in his or her craw all along, and this was the chance to flex some young people’s (some other people’s)  muscle and show the world. Show them what? That we can’t take a punch?

I’m not an historian, but I do wonder if any other country has become so easily and quickly unhinged when attacked. I do wonder if any country in history has ever had such a disproportionate and misdirected response, the virtual destruction of an uninvolved sovereign nation, the displacement of millions, the deaths of hundreds of thousands.  And for what?

I thought I was done ranting on this. It’s most bizarre.

Feed more oats to the horses

September 13, 2008

The energy being generated among the uninformed and/or fearful seems, once again, to be influencing the way the country might go in the fall election. This is reminiscent of the 2004 campaign when the terrorist-on-every-doorstep ploy seemed to work, and every other word was 9/11. But lies and distortion are in play again. How much more of a mess does our country need to be in before someone is held accountable?

An underlying thread in one camp is a selfish indifference to the plight of the “other” and the common good. Many of those yelling a thoughtless “drill baby drill” are immersed in a myopia that is on the verge of being frightening.

These are the folks who fought social security, Medicare, women’s rights and the rights of others … whatever their socio-economic difference may be. There is no end to the benefits worth keeping for oneself, and to heck with everyone else.

I prefer the following for an administration to lead our country:

  • One where there is a philosophy and thoughtfulness involved in answering questions and addressing issues rather than an unwavering ideological certitude.
  • One where others are listened to. For example, listening to those who have invaded and have been invaded, have occupied and have been occupied, have imposed their ways upon other cultures in paternalistic colonial fashion … and remember how well that was received.
  • One who would ask the people in Coventry, Dresden, Hiroshima, Tokyo for guidance when someone knocks down a couple of building full of people. What would be a proportional response? How many hundreds of thousands of innocents must be killed in return?
  • One where an energy policy would be one of “How can we use less?” rather than “How can we get more?”
  • One that thinks beyond the next closing bell, the next quarterly earnings report, the next congressional election, the next presidential election.
  • One that understands long term to mean the length of one’s formal education, or one’s retirement years, or one’s work life, or one’s child-bearing years.
  • One that understands that the United States of America is a global partner, not a global bully. Or to, at the very least, understand what a “world leader” is called to do on behalf of the common good.
  • One that understands that unprovoked aggression is criminal, that torture is a violation of everything America has stood for, that maintaining our security at the expense of our liberties is inexcusable.
  • One that understands that tax credits , no matter how large, to buy health care coverage don’t do much for those who are barely getting by and pay little to no taxes.
  • One that sees trickle-down economics to be as foolish as the old saw, “If the birds are starving, feed more oats to the horses.” The imagery, by the way, becomes more apt the longer one reflects.

Foolish and reckless behavior

May 11, 2008

On CBS news program “Sunday Morning,” there was a clip on post-traumatic stress disorder by Kimberly Dozier, CBS news correspondent in Iraq nearly killed by a roadside bomb. I look forward to the day when I no longer tear up as a mixture of rage and sadness overtakes me. The foolish and reckless behavior of our administration in Washington is a global disgrace, and it will take decades to recover from its damage.