Killing for Peace


— Bumper sticker of the week: Where are all those jobs? Please send me one.

— Quote of the week: "We are moving toward an oligarchic society where a relatively small handful of the rich decide, with their money, who will run, who will win, and how they will govern. The defenders of the present system will fight hard to hold on to their privilege, and they write the rules. Nothing short of an aroused public can change things, nothing less than democracy is at stake." Moyers on America, Bill Moyers

— Death toll goes to over 900 in Iraq. And still, nothing but chaos and confusion. Blair and Bush should both be sentenced to life in the desert. They’d last about eight hours. That’s assuming there would be no Iraqis or Afghans around.

— The Cards are hot. The Cubbies are not.

— The Reagan Trail:

1. Cruelly slashed social welfare programs. Intentionally created more unemployment. His comment on the homeless: "One problem that we’ve had, even in the best of times, and that is that people who are sleeping on grates, the homeless who are homeless, you might say, by choice."

2. Fired 1,800 air traffic controllers, opening the door for employers to act against strikers by replacing them.

3. Developed and deployed a host of nuclear weapons.

4. Targeted a tax cut for the rich, with major declines in tax rates for the wealthy. These tax breaks severely widened the gap between the rich and the poor.

5. Deregulated the saving and loan industry, costing taxpayers billions of dollars.

6. Slashed the budget of the Environmental Protection Agency.

7. Embraced South Africa’s apartheid regime.

8. Turned a deaf ear to the AIDS epidemic.

9. Began the corporate merger frenzy by rewriting the anti-trust laws. Made Monopoly the national past-time.

10. Then there was the whole Iran-Contra affair. Armed Saddam Hussein with about every weapon he ever possessed. Than we did the same for Iran. I suppose we were hoping that they’d blow one another away. Ends up they turned the weapons on us. Darn the luck. Oliver North was born out of this cute little arrangement, a serious black mark against mankind. And wouldn’t you know it, all this leads back to Galesburg.

— Voting in November: A paperless voting system is an invitation to hackers, fraud, software bugs, and outright political cheating. The voice of the American people should be a resounding: We want a paper trail. Then at least we know when we been cheated.

— The Patriot Act doesn’t need to be revised, it needs to be dumped.

— Iraqi War: The Iraqi War and resultant illegal activities, not the least of which is holding prisoners unjustly in Iraq and Guantanamo Bay, will become known as one of the biggest atrocities perpetrated by the U.S. in our history. Many of the Iraqi prisoners were sold to the U.S. by Pakistani citizens. This whole disaster is going to run so far and so deep that it will take its place among the top five U.S. disgraces of all time, along with the systematic genocide of Native Americans, slavery, the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Vietnam, and now , the unprovoked annihilation of a sovereign nation. The Bush administration calls it "preemptive war." That’s about as clever as giving smallpox–infected blankets to Native American families, or claiming how many lives were saved by indiscriminately killing over 150,000 innocent Japanese people. It all adds up to the same thing. You can’t destroy a person’s home and family and than turn around and ask them to behave and become a democracy. It won’t work.

— Being a pacifist, people sometimes think of you as a coward. It’s not that you’re a coward, you’re willing to die for what you believe. It’s just that you’re not willing to kill for it.