Monday, March 17, 2003

Legs of responsibility

Incredibly smug comment of the hour by Dubya: "The U.N. will definitely need to have a role [in running post-conquest Iraq]. That way, it can begin to get its legs of responsibility back." Although actually he plans to screw NGOs and just parcel the job out to American corporations.

Since writing that, I’ve seen The Smirking One’s address to the nation, and I wish to point out another piece of smugness he’s been doing, and which is spreading. The traditional obnoxious ending of such addresses, “God bless America,” or “May god bless the American people” has been expanded to “May God continue to bless America,” because of course we are god’s faves. Actually, my computer’s dictionary says “bless” comes from Old English, “perhaps originally in the sense of mark or consecrate with blood,” which is pretty fucking appropriate.

Of course blood isn’t Chimp Boy’s liquid of choice. In the part of the address aimed at the Iraqi people, he warns them not to use WMDs, but only after telling them not to harm one drop of our precious, precious oil. He can no longer even be bothered to pretend that oil isn’t his first priority. He also said “It is not too late for the Iraqi military to act with honor. Do not fight for a dying regime that is not worth your own life.” That’s not honor, that’s self-interest. William Saletan at Slate notes that Bush is demanding courage and resolve from the American people, and the complete opposite from Iraqis.

Speaking of self-interest, since there was never a Security Council vote, do whichever countries we bribed to vote for us still get those bribes?

The CBC says that GeeDubya has given up on diplomacy, the Bushies are saying rather that diplomacy has failed. My computer’s dictionary defines diplomacy as “skill and tact in dealing with people,” so I’d ask when diplomacy was ever actually employed.

Robin Cook, who was my choice to lead the Labour Party in ‘92, despite the garden gnome look, resigned the British government today, taking a shot at Bush that was really a shot at his favorite lapdog (one British anti-war chant: “Blair is a poodle, Bush is a noodle”). He said that if the hanging chads had gone the other way, we wouldn’t be at the brink of war. What he is implying is that His Tonyness would have toadied up to the policy of whoever happened to be president. Cook is given a standing ovation. I don’t think I’ve ever seen clapping in the House of Commons before. Here’s his statement.

The supreme court of our other ally Spain has voted to ban the Basque separatist party.

George Monbiot says that international aid is being shifted from every other country in the world to Iraq, to ensure that the US isn’t embarrassed by the entire country starving to death between the time we invade it and the time the camera crews leave. For example, the UN has received 2.5% of the money it requested to deal with the severe drought in Eritrea, 1.2% to deal with the effects of the civil war in Liberia, etc etc. Afghan puppet Karzai was in the US begging for money this month, and was promised a whopping $50 million, but the US insisted that $35m. of that be spent on a 5-star hotel in Kabul.

For all your pimp hat needs.

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