Ding Dong the Witch is Dead

I was watching the Phillies game on ESPN last night and around the sixth or seventh inning the crowd started chanting “U-S-A!  U-S-A!”  The announcers helpfully informed us that they were reacting to the news that bin Laden had been killed and suggested we switch over to ABC for the news coverage.  So I did, listening for about 30 seconds to the braindead talking heads and pundits ruminate on the killing’s significance for the ongoing war on terr’r.

Then I switched back to the game, where one of the announcers (Orel Hershiser, I think) said, “This is like one of those ‘where were you when this happened’ moments” (yeah, thirty years from now I’m gonna remember that I was sitting on the sofa watching a boring-ass baseball game and scratching my ass when bin Laden was finally “brought to justice”).  Some more shots of the crowd, people staring at their electronic devices, more scattered chanting, one particularly dumb fuck stretching the front of his shirt, which, by some stroke of luck or genius, happened to have “USA” emblazoned on the front of it, while giving the “No. 1” sign with his hand.

How fitting that I was seeing the whole ridiculous spectacle unfold in the context of a sporting event.  The death of bin Laden has about as much significance for the lives of the poor deluded chumps chanting “U-S-A” as the outcome of last night’s baseball game—in other words, none.  Same goes for the effect it’ll have on Team USA’s war on the Middle East and Central Asia.  It’s a hollow, symbolic victory at best, a little something for the rubes to cheer about while the managers of the empire go in search of another bogeyman.

Self-Hatred

Over at TNR, Andrew Bacevich writes what I think would be a fairly uncontroversial critique of the “withdrawal” from Iraq, saying, essentially, that it’s another political gloss job, much like the so-called surge, meant to obscure the fact that the war/occupation was a clusterfuck and to prevent the US as a nation from learning the right (or any) lessons—e.g., that maybe using military force to attempt to transform foreign societies into little Americas is a fucking dumb idea.

But anyhow, forget about the article itself, because as usual some dipshit in the comments section steals the show.  Here we have (dim?) bulbman1066, trotting out that tired neocon bugaboo, the self-hating liberal:

Saddam Hussein may have been a bad man, but he was anti-American, anti-Western and anti-Israel, which is enough to make the likes of Andrew J. Basevic regret his fall.

Whatever happened to the heroic Democratic Party of FDR, Truman, Acheson, and JFK? Today’s Democratic foreign policy is feeble, cowardly, cynical, utterly devoid of honor and decency. Its leitmotiv is the self-hatred of of the nabobs of academia and the mainstream media. Obama’s speech reflects this. You could see it in the bored, skeptical faces of the military personnel among those whom our pathetic excuse for a president was addressing.

Really?  Do people actually still believe this shit?  Did they ever?  I thought it was just a cynical ploy used by the warmongers to sell the ever-gullible American public on a war that had nothing to do with national security.*  But then again, I hate America (and Israel, too, apparently), so what do I know?  I have an idea, though.  Next time we decide to invade a country, let’s tie a bulbman1066 to the hood of every Humvee and Bradley Fighting Vehicle on its way in.

*Never mind the moronic nationalistic tripe that equates one’s feelings toward the country they happened to be born in with one’s feelings about him or herself.

David Brooks is the shit that clings to your ass hairs

According to David Brooks, the U.S. government’s little nation building exercise in Iraq worked because, among other reasons:

…833,000 Iraqis had phones before the invasion. Now more than 1.3 million have landlines and some 20 million have cellphones. Before the invasion, 4,500 Iraqis had Internet service. Now, more than 1.7 million do.

Brooks admits, though, that the “success” is “fragile and incomplete.”  Thus President Obama will have to be straight with the country in his upcoming speech and acknowledge that the U.S. can’t withdraw completely from Iraq lest we squander “an American accomplishment that has been too hard won.”

What makes Brooks more despicable than even the most rabid war boosters is that he attempts to bring an air of reasonableness to the whole sordid business.  Instead of frothing about freedom-hatin’ “Islamists” who need to be killed before they kill us, he tells us, in his characteristically bland and mild-mannered tone, how many more Iraqis have internet access.  Well, at least he didn’t raise his voice!  Here we have a morally bankrupt cretin, an apologist for murder and conquest on a grand scale, in the guise of an insurance agent.

I’m sure all of the Iraqis whose friends and family members were killed by the forces of liberation will be glad to hear that their loved ones didn’t die in vain, that their deaths resulted in much-improved phone service and were a boon to America’s self-esteem.