Sunday, June 17, 2007

Finding Strength to Survive Until 1/20/09

It's another one of those days. The days where even the last couple of minutes of spirit-lifting nature footage on CBS Sunday morning can't fix. One of those days when the utter hopelessness of the world is just too much for my mind. Of all the things that are fixed and set in the world, the one that continues to boggle my mind is the mindset of our administration. Heads buried deep in the sand, unwilling (unable?) to see the world for what it is - they continue moving with blinders on month after month, year after year. I begin to think that there are only 50 people left in the universe who cling to the Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld vision of the world - all of them in that administration or staffing Fox news.

If you look at the bottom of this page, you'll notice that as of today, Bush has 582 more days in office. I have given up hope that anyone, anything, can force the administration to get their heads out of the sand and do their best to fix this mess they made. We need to get OUT of Iraq NOW. In November, I thought the elections showed Congress where to find the spine to drive the efforts. Those hopes have disappeared. For a while I thought the overwhelming opposition to this war by Americans who had supported B/C/R and going to war would bring change. It hasn't.

The only thing that is going to fix this situation is a change in the administration. And as Congress can't find the spine to stand up for those who elected them - they certainly won't have the spine to impeach either prez or veep. I have been slow coming to realize that - but I get it now. And all I have to offer at the moment are links to some must-reads in today's WaPo - and the notice that I'm going to go hide under the covers for a couple of hours.

While fighting for democracy in Iraq - it's apparently ok to watch it be trampled underfoot in Pakistan as long as our buddy Musharraf needs breathing room from whiny democracy-lovers in return for promising he'll crack down on the al-Qaeda/Taliban (ok, so the fact that Musharraf has let them settle in along the border is probably just an oversight). Pakistani journalist Ahmed Rashid reminds us of the administration's democracy hypocrisy. Oh, and if you're wondering where the lead comes from in the administration for our tunnel vision view of Musharraf? According to Rashid, "Current and past US officials tell me that Pakistan policy is essentially being run from Cheney's office. The vice president, they say, is close to Musharraf and refuses to brook any US criticism of him. . . . Pakistani opposition politicians visiting Washington have been ushered in to meet Cheney's aides, rather than taken to the State Department. No one in Foggy Bottom seems willing to question Cheney's decisions."

Steven Simon and Ray Takeyh of the Council on Foreign Relations give it to us straight between the eyes with their no holds barred piece, "We've Lost. Here's How to Handle it."

David Broder's op ed piece "Failure on Two Fronts" looks at the administration's helplessness in the face of their efforts to push Maliki's government towards competency. Efforts that recently included using the New York Times (yes, the NYT) to send a message to Maliki.

Finally, in the "thanks but where were you when it counted" column is George Will's piece on a senator from my old homeland of Oregon - Republican Gordon Smith. Gordo (as my father still calls him) is the "Iraq Caucus of One" in Will's column. Gee George - you think we might all be stuck in this quagmire if you & your crew hadn't worked so hard to push the administration's agenda for the past six years?

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