Right, so General Petraeus is telling us that the surge in Iraq is working, which is interesting, since Rummy (who I thought was irrelevant even before he left office) has said Iraq is being “hampered” by failures in its government, but Afghanistan is a success.1
Meanwhile, according to a poll of Iraqis — you know, the people who actually live there — the surge is a failure.
These are mixed messages, and it’s understandable that one would wonder how to interpret them; conservatively, given the Bush administration’s track record on facts for the last seven years, I think the last thing we want to do is accept as valid anything they — or their mouthpieces — claim to be true.
Thus we have no reason to believe that Petraeus’s assessment of Iraq is in any way valid. He’s not offering any sort of documentary evidence to back up his claims; he’s only making claims and expecting them to be accepted because he says so. That’s not good enough with Bush; why would it be good enough with anyone else?
As for Rumsfeld: He thinks Afghanistan is a success. Whatever else he has to say on any subject after an assertion of that kind cannot be taken as valid. If Rummy tries to tell you the sky is blue, you’d better get out a colorimeter and double check it, on the wild chance it turned orange when no one was looking.
That leaves us with the people we’re supposed to be giving “God’s gift” of freedom to: The Iraqis themselves. And 70% of them believe the surge is a flop; and 60% believe that violence against US troops — which, remember, are viewed as invaders — is valid, acceptable and even desirable. Nearly 1 in 2 believe that the US should withdraw immediately.
Meanwhile on the home front another kind of religious purge is taking place — this time in prison libraries, where the NY Times tells us chaplains have been quietly removing materials for the last several months.
Apparently the Fed — in blatant disregard of the establishment clause — is banning some religious titles on the grounds that they incite violence.
The identities of the bureau’s experts have not been made public, Ms. Billingsley said, but they include chaplains and scholars in seminaries and at the American Academy of Religion. Academy staff members said their organization had met with prison chaplains in the past but was not consulted on this effort, though it is possible that scholars who are academy members were involved.
Anonymous censors, huh? I can think of another group of anonymous “recommenders” whose up-or-down vote wields disproportionate power in the US — another group of individuals whose formation was a bad idea, and which should be disbanded as soon as possible. But one thing I’ve noticed over the years is that some ideas, no matter how shitty they are, seem to persist long after they have outlived their purpose or value.2
And as to the question of religion inciting violence — I have a question for the Fed: Have y’all jackasses bothered to pay attention to the kind of shit that gets piped in on the goddamned television?
1. Apparently the upswing in opium production in Afghanistan, as well as a resurgence in the Taliban, is regarded as tolerable to Rumsfeld.
2. The Electoral College is one such example.
No related posts.
Related posts brought to you by Yet Another Related Posts Plugin.