Wednesday, August 30, 2006

on protests

(Photo Credit: Leah Hogsten--The Salt Lake Tribune)

So there was a "large" anti-war/Bush protest in downtown SLC today, that is about a couple thousand people. Blow hard Mayor Rocky Anderson spoke. I saw it on the channel 2 jumbotron on Main Street, and I looked at the window as my TRAX train passed by.

Of all the people to protest to, however, Bush is the worst one to do. He doesn't care what the people think, especially now that he cannot run for re-election. If you protested Clinton, he might care because he loves people and wants everyone to love him (child of a alcoholic). Bush is charming, but he doesn't really enjoy people as people, only certain people. That is, he likes people who agree with him and no one who disagrees with him.

Moreover, I get extremely annoyed with ultra-liberals. They tend to want to talk about their pet issues, to go through the laundry list of greivences, rather than to stay focused and stick to a clear message that everyone can agree with. 55% of Americans want a change of course in Iraq. They don't necessarily want to impeach Bush, or take on Haliburton etc.

In the fall of 2002, I argued with people whom I thought would be the most receptive to preventing the war in Iraq: the DLC. As an employee, I tried to convince the higher ups that Saddam wasn't a threat, that there probabbly weren't any WMD's, that Bush would mismanage the occupation like he did in Afghanistan, that the war would be a big mistake. Of course, they didn't listen that much (but they did conceed that Bush probabbly would mismanage the occupation), and cheerleaded this disasterous policy. But I knew that grabbing a placcard and marching would have been even less effective.

That isn't to say that protests and marching in the streets in general is fruitless. The immigration march in the spring proved that protests are still very effective in the US. I just think protesting this president on this policy with this crowd is a waste of time and effort. But if it makes you feel better, have at it.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Photo of the day

MSGOP anchor Rita Cosby, who 'interviewed' ex-Rep. Tom DeLay right after his indictment, tries to get another scoop.

I am so glad that the media can stop its inane coverage of what's his bucket who wasn't even in the state when that little girl was killed. Now we can focus on some other funny images...

On the way to school today, I saw an astroturf pro-Bush banner on a GOP building owner (he is giving money to GOP SLCo. DA candidate Lola Miller so that she will move the DA's office to his building next year when the lease runs up). [It said "Thank you President Bush, you are our Hero!"] Then a few blocks later, I saw a lampost banner for a play at the University of Utah: George Orwell's 1984. Oh the irony. Eat that Atlantis!

traffic and the White House

So taxpayers and Utah drivers suffered this morning so that Condi and or Rummy could get to their political stunt on time. I was walking to court when I noticed that none of the lights on State Street had changed in quite some time. In fact, the various South's were jammed back with cars, trucks, buses, and TRAX all dutifly waiting for UDOT to escourt the two White House official most complicit (other than Cheney and Bush) in the utter disasters in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, western Turkey, Pakistan, Israel, North Korea, and of course their latest hit, Iran.

Why should the American people have to pay for politicans to give political speeches in the guise of policy? Why should states and local governments have to foot the bill for increased security when said politicans show up? Why can't the RNC or DNC or PACs pay for such nonsense? Because of the WH communications dept's ideas of salvaging their boss' political future rests on tired old rhetoric in front of favorable crowds in favorable cities, hundreds of cases were delayed or continued, hundreds of drivers were late to work, late delivering, late to classes, missed appointments, meetings, subpeonas.

And for what? What new did they say today that they haven't said a million times before? They should have just FedEx'ed a tape of an old speech, few would have noticed the difference.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Do-no-wrong Mayor

The Salt Lake Tribune conducted a Poll on the soccer deal. Guess who won: Corroon.
"Despite reversing course - Corroon argues the terms of the new deal are considerably more favorable - the mayor's approval rating has jumped to 72 percent, according to the new survey."

So even though 55% of Salt Lake County residents oppose the new soccer deal, more people approve of Carroon.

Voters have grown to trust Peter Carroon, they see him as an honest broker and a non-partisan who is looking out for them. And I must say, upon reviewing the new terms of the deal, the County comes out ahead. Appearantly, you don't try to play hardball with Carroon, because he wins.

I think we just might call him Governor or Senator in 2012 or so.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

the definition of stupidity

"The definition of stupidity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." — Albert Einstein

A new article in the Salt Lake Tribune lays this message out somewhat subtly.

Last year, President Bush came to Salt Lake for a older military veteran club conference, hoping to kick off a campaign that would rebound his support (at least amoung his conservative base) on the Iraq War and in general. Of course, Bush went down hill from there amoung all Americans and now somewhere between 55-60% of Americans disapprove of the course we are staying on in Iraq...and have done so for several months now. This was due in no small part to what happened the day after Bush spoke to the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW): Katrina.
"That just dominated all other issues - local and national issues," Utah Republican Party Chairman Joe Cannon said. "There's no question that Katrina sucked the wind out of everything, including the president's views on Iraq.
"And that was the story for months."

It laid bare that Bush's cronyism, incompetance, and ideology over reality can directly hurt Americans back home too, and not just those who signed up to join the armed forces.

This year, the Bush White House is sending not just Bush, but Condi and Rummy to an American Legionniares conference in Salt Lake in an attempt to bail out his, and his party's, abismal approval ratings. Also this year, another storm looms in the Carribean threatening New Orleans, whose leeves are admittedly still not up to snuff.
At the time of Bush's last speech in Salt Lake City, about 38 percent of adults nationwide supported his handling of the war in Iraq, according to a CBS News/New York Times poll. This month, the same pollsters found just 30 percent of the country still felt confident in Bush's war leadership.

And yet, they try again to convince us with the same "cut and run" language that they are right and we--the majority--are wrong.

And although the majority of Utahns still support Bush because he is a religious conservative man who is in power, the rest of America is willing to give Democrats a shot at Congress. Were that 2006 were 2004, and Bush's days would truely be numbered. As it is, he will stubbornly hang around as investigations reveal the true disasterousness of his presidency.

My own view? Iraq may need to be divided into three states now, with UN/NATO peacekeepers squelching the violence as much as possible, a giant Yugoslavia of our own making. The US military cannot bomb our way into ending a civil war, we need Arab allies and other nations to go back into Iraq and try to create peace and stability, but none I fear will want to go. The Iraqis on some level don't trust us anymore, but we cannot leave them to their own devices...some sort of troops need to be there. Right now, Iraq and Afghanistan are failed states, breeding grounds for terrorists and extremists of all sorts. We can't let them stay that way.

In order to win this war that started on September 11, 2001, the people of the middle east need hope: hope that they can get a good paying job to support their family, hope that they can walk down the streets and go shopping without fearing death or pain, hope that life can get better, hope that their leaders are responsive to their needs, hope for peace and security. All these people have now is dispair.

This means creating a viable Palistinan state, complete with access to jobs, housing, and drinking water. This means ending corruption and cronyism in middle east countries. This means ending using hate and religion to keep the public distracted from a failure of governing. Of course this is a tall order, but Europe too was mired in nasty religious wars for centuries until the end of World War II. The creation of the EU, NATO, and the Warsaw Pact helped create peace, stability and economic growth. Now, a war in Europe is a laughable idea.

Oh and if you think things are terrible in the middle east now, wait until the oil really starts to run out.