Friday, September 10, 2004

The unicorn is a mythical beast

The Sudanese are responding that there is no genocide--just like there were no WMDs in Iraq, their foreign minister says. Or alligators in the sewers. Or unicorns in the garden. (I guess the Thurber “fable for our time” isn’t directly relevant, but I like it).

Actually, while Powell acknowledged the existence of genocide, he said that “No new action is dictated by this determination.” Genocide is still, like, bad, isn’t it?

Possibly, but our politicians’ focus is elsewhere. Imagine if the energy and political firepower currently being focused on the height of podiums and the temperature of the room in the presidential debates (the NYT reports that the negotiating teams put forth by the Kerry and Bush camps include 3 governors--current governors, mind you--and a former secretary of state. Just show up and debate the issues, how bloody hard could that be?) were focused on the Sudan. Or, with the assault-rifle ban due to expire Monday, there was Sen. Larry Craig on McNeil-Lehrer, explaining how the Senate was too busy to debate loser bills and had more important things to do. Like voting on a flag-burning amendment to the constitution, gay marriage, etc etc. The awesome disproportion in attention and resources--the Bush & Kerry campaign budgets must be larger than the budgets of some African countries--and the laser-like focus on the utterly trivial does not speak especially well for the democratic representative system.

No comments:

Post a Comment