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A Season of Stupidity

Osama bin Laden wants us to invade Iraq. We're at orange on the alert code. The economy is tanking. We're spending $1.08 billion a day on the military.

The president wants a $674 billion tax cut. In the first year, 50 percent of that tax cut would go the richest 1 percent of Americans and three-quarters of it would go to the richest 5 percent.
 http://www.commondreams.org/views03/0216-02.htm
Published on Sunday, February 16, 2003 by the Boulder Daily Camera

A Season of Stupidity
by Molly Ivins

AUSTIN, Texas The news is not good. Osama bin Laden wants us to invade Iraq. We're at orange on the alert code. The economy is tanking. We're spending $1.08 billion a day on the military.

The president wants a $674 billion tax cut. In the first year, 50 percent of that tax cut would go the richest 1 percent of Americans and three-quarters of it would go to the richest 5 percent. In the years beyond that, the concentration at the top actually gets worse, according to citizens for Tax Justice. To pay for that, he wants to raise the rent on subsidized housing for the poorest people in the country and break up Head Start, sending it down to the states, where governments are frantically cutting everything they can. Money to pay for everything from cleaning up Superfund sites to leaving no child behind is being slashed to pay for this obscene tax cut.

We're about to go to war with a country that hasn't fired a shot at us or anyone else. Our war plan calls for us to "shock and awe" Iraq by smashing 800 cruise missiles into Baghdad in the first 48 hours. That's one every four minutes night and day.

During the last Gulf War, we killed 13,000 civilians directly and another 70,000 died in the aftermath from no water, no food, no electricity, no medical care, etc. I'd like to get rid of Saddam Hussein myself, but how many lives is it worth? And do they get to vote on it?

Meanwhile, al-Qaida the people who attacked us to begin with are still running around getting ready to deliver "packages." North Korea is busy building nukes. Our allies all think we're wrong, even if their governments have been strong-armed into supporting us. When all your friends think you're about to do something stupid, it might be wise to listen to them.

What passes for diplomacy in this administration is stunning. What in the name of heaven are we doing allowing people like Richard Perle to speak for us? According to UPI, Perle said Tuesday, "France is no longer an ally of the United States, and the NATO alliance 'must develop a strategy to contain our erstwhile ally or we will not be talking about a NATO alliance.'" Do these people know nothing about how dialogue is conducted among civilized nations?

I have news for Mr. Perle. Our allies have democratically elected governments. Their people overwhelmingly oppose this war. What do we expect their governments to do? The anti-war sentiment ranges from 47 percent and rising in Britain (a full 81 percent now agree that a new U.N. mandate is essential before a military attack is launched), to 88 percent against the whole idea in Turkey, where the new government has been literally bribed into going along with us.

If 88 percent of Americans were opposed to this war, do you really think we'd be doing it? Perle also referred to Germany's Gerhard Schroeder as "a discredited chancellor." The ever-tactless Donald Rumsfeld managed to lump Germany with Cuba and Libya. We don't have enough enemies that we have go around insulting our friends?

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing this week revealed that plans for a post-Saddam Iraq are virtually nonexistent. "Who will rule Iraq and how?" asked Sen. Richard Lugar. "Who will provide security? How long might U.S. troops conceivably remain? Will the United Nations have a role? Who will manage Iraq's oil resource? Unless the administration can answer these questions in detail, the anxiety of Arab and European governments, as well as that of the American public, over our 'staying power' will only grow." The Defense Department has been moving troops to the Middle East for months, but it opened an office of postwar planning only three weeks ago.

And for a final piece of bad news to complete your day, the antiwar movement has disgraced itself by refusing to allow Michael Lerner, the editor of the intelligent (and very liberal) Jewish magazine Tikkun, to speak at the San Francisco peace rally this Sunday. Lerner was blackballed by the most left-wing of the four sponsoring peace groups, something called ANSWER, for being "pro-Israel."

I am completely disgusted. Why should there be any ideological litmus test for being antiwar? Why isn't the peace movement looking for as broad a coalition as possible? It's the season for stupidity.

homepage: homepage: http://www.commondreams.org/views03/0216-02.htm
address: address: Boulder Daily Camera via Common Dreams NewsCenter

the day the universe changed. 17.Feb.2003 18:57

! formal known as .

The news is great. It all based on your perspective.

Everything is falling into place. Thinks are looking up. I can't wait until Bush's second term...

Bin Laden wants us to invade Iraq? Please tell me she didn't really write this. Ivins isn't the brightest bulb on the tree, but this just makes her look like her shrink needs to up her dosage.

The economy is tanking? A 6% unemployment figure is considered full employment by most countries standards. If it is "in the tank" keep in mind who ran us aground shortly before leaving office.

We aren't going to invade Iraq. We are just going to Sheppard a change of leadership. Like we did in Kosvo. And knock the price of gas in half as a result.

Yes, its all based on perspective. Life is way to short to remain angry and bitter.

!, . = Stupidity, and Disinformation. 18.Feb.2003 12:38

economic meltdown imminent

Auto sales plunged in January--a pull back in mortgage applications last week signals that fewer consumers are looking to purchase homes.

So-called 'unemployment' figures are cooked, because anyone--in any industry, career, or profession--knows how hard it has been to find and keep a steady job in this market for the past three years.

Consumer confidence sits at a nine-year low (see above paragraph).

stock market trading and investing confidence is just as bad.

Enron/Worldcom etc.--though pushed off the front pages--has had a massive effect upon investor confidence and corporate accounting practice.

DJIA sits below 8000, and steadily falling--just as it was on September 10, 2001.

Bu$h has brought the US Budget deficit to near $500 billion since September 10, 2001 (after Clinton had created a huge surplus), with renewed military + war spending, 'Homeland Security', etc.

The US is the Earth's No. 1 consumer of hydrocarbon fuels and petrochemicals. We need to maintain our steady, even supplies in order to keep prices low.

US oil reserves are at the lowest point since the 1973 Arab oil embargo.

Crude oil is $36/bbl and rising.

you can't help notice that gasoline prices have risen, along with home heating oil prices.

US is concerned not only about access to Iraq oil supplies, BUT ALSO THE *CURRENCY* THAT OIL IS TRADED IN--

Iraq, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia and other major producers are *switching* to the EURO, for the purposes of trading oil.

Switching to a Euro-based (instead of US Dollar-based) global oil economy is a very real threat to Bu$h & Co., and to the Federal Reserve.

The dollar has already lost enough exchange value vs. the Euro.

Tony Blair is in deep shit. Bu$h is about to join him.

THE ECONOMY **IS** TANKING.

http://www.rupe-india.org/index.html
The Day The Universe Changed--Part 2. TRUTH.

!, . = Stupidity, and Disinformation. 18.Feb.2003 12:38

economic meltdown imminent

Auto sales plunged in January--a pull back in mortgage applications last week signals that fewer consumers are looking to purchase homes.

So-called 'unemployment' figures are cooked, because anyone--in any industry, career, or profession--knows how hard it has been to find and keep a steady job in this market for the past three years.

Consumer confidence sits at a nine-year low (see above paragraph).

stock market trading and investing confidence is just as bad.

Enron/Worldcom etc.--though pushed off the front pages--has had a massive effect upon investor confidence and corporate accounting practice.

DJIA sits below 8000, and steadily falling--just as it was on September 10, 2001.

Bu$h has brought the US Budget deficit to near $500 billion since September 10, 2001 (after Clinton had created a huge surplus), with renewed military + war spending, 'Homeland Security', etc.

The US is the Earth's No. 1 consumer of hydrocarbon fuels and petrochemicals. We need to maintain our steady, even supplies in order to keep prices low.

US oil reserves are at the lowest point since the 1973 Arab oil embargo.

Crude oil is $36/bbl and rising.

you can't help notice that gasoline prices have risen, along with home heating oil prices.

US is concerned not only about access to Iraq oil supplies, BUT ALSO THE *CURRENCY* THAT OIL IS TRADED IN--

Iraq, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia and other major producers are *switching* to the EURO, for the purposes of trading oil.

Switching to a Euro-based (instead of US Dollar-based) global oil economy is a very real threat to Bu$h & Co., and to the Federal Reserve.

The dollar has already lost enough exchange value vs. the Euro.

Tony Blair is in deep shit. Bu$h is about to join him.

THE ECONOMY **IS** TANKING.

http://www.rupe-india.org/index.html
The Day The Universe Changed--Part 2. TRUTH.

first comment is DELUSIONAL. 18.Feb.2003 13:48

Economy is Tanking

'Unemployment' figures are being cooked. Anyone--in any profession, industry, or career--can tell you how competitive and difficult the job market has been in the past three years.

Consumer confidence at 10 year low (see above).

Stockholder/investor confidence as bad or worse--despite Enron/Worldcom corporate accounting etc. being whitewashed off the front page.

DJIA below 8000--just as it was on September 10, 2001.

Since September 10, 2001 Bu$h has brought back the US Budget Deficit (eliminated by Clinton) to the tune of $500 billion--spent on 'Homeland Security', etc.

America remains the No. 1 global consumer of hydrocarbon fuels and petrochemicals--we need to keep our important (e.g. 15% of supply from Venezuela) sources flowing smoothly.

Crude oil hovers at $36 and rising--can't you notice it at the gasoline pump/home heating oil?

Bu$h & Co. are not only concerned about unfettered US access to massive Iraqi oil reserves, BUT ALSO THE CURRENCY IN WHICH CRUDE OIL IS TRADED.

Many major suppliers such as Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, etc. ARE SWITCHING TO THE EURO.

Dollar is already falling vs. Euro and other currencies--if most of global oil supplies end up *not* being traded in US Dollars, it will not only hurt our economy, but also the Federal Reserve . . .

Tony Blair is in deep shit. Bu$h is about to join him.


look it up 19.Feb.2003 10:27

someone

Of course Bin Laden wants us to invade Iraq. That way we get rid of Hussein and inflame the sentiments of Muslims worldwide. We will kill two birds (and a lot of civilians) with one stone as far as Bin Laden goes. It never ceases to amaze me no matter how many times it's brought up that you just can't make people see past their own ignorance. Bin Laden and Hussein are enemies, always have been, always will be. Hussein is a moderate Muslim, and, in Bin Laden's words, "a traitor to Islam". Our rush to invade Iraq is precisely what Bin Laden wants, which is why it's so funny to hear his recent tape and listen to the Bush administration talk about war with Iraq. Bin Laden is evil, and is a threat to us, so let's go attack his enemy Hussein and help Bin Laden get the holy war that he wants. What brilliant strategy. Let's not forget that Bin Laden has called upon the people of Iraq to overthrow Hussein numerous times in the past 20 years. Now we're giving him everything he wants, the removal of Hussein, and an army of Muslims who hate the United States.

And that part about blaming Clinton for the economy... man, I haven't laughed that hard in ages. Clinton was a war criminal and should be tried as such. I don't want to defend him, but he managed the economy a hell of a lot better than Bush is. But frankly, even if it were true that Clinton somehow booby-trapped the economy (which wouldn't make sense since the economy was so good when he left office it was clear that Gore would win) it still doesn't matter to the average voter who is watching their retirement and job security disappear under Bush. Bush's only chance at a second term is if the Democrats put up someone so spineless and corrupt as to cause people to just give up (Lieberman, Gephardt, Clinton, and Kerry come to mind).