Wednesday, June 19, 2013

It is citizens who choose whether to be defined by a wall

Obama held a press conference with Angela Merkel in Germany.

SCRUB? “But what I have been able to do is examine and scrub how our intelligence services are operating, and I’m confident that at this point, we have struck the appropriate balance.”

AVERTED: “We know of at least 50 threats that have been averted because of this information not just in the United States, but, in some cases, threats here in Germany. So lives have been saved.” We might be a bit more impressed if he’d tell us what exactly constitutes a “threat.” Then again, we probably wouldn’t.

Asked about his failure to close Guantanamo: “But about a month ago I gave a speech in which I said that I would redouble my efforts to do so.” Redouble: 2 X 0 = ?

Then he gave a speech at the Brandenburg Gate.

THERE WERE TWO BERLINS, YOU KNOW: “It was here that Berliners carved out an island of democracy against the greatest of odds.” Also a lot of hippies evading West German conscription, as I recall. And dogs in the restaurants, which was nice if unhygienic.

DEFINED BY A WALL: “Their strength and their passion, their enduring example remind us that for all the power of militaries, for all the authority of governments, it is citizens who choose whether to be defined by a wall, or whether to tear it down.” Elsewhere today, John McCain called once again for the US to build the dang fence. Just saying.

AS THE ACTRESS SAID TO THE BISHOP: “And this square itself, once a desolate no man’s land, is now open to all.”

EVOLVING: “The Iraq war is now over. The Afghan war is coming to an end. Osama bin Laden is no more. Our efforts against al Qaeda are evolving.” Our warriors are evolving huge index fingers with which to push the button on the drone controller’s joy stick.

WHO ARE YOU CALLING ORDINARY? “Our current programs are bound by the rule of law, and they’re focused on threats to our security -- not the communications of ordinary persons. They help confront real dangers, and they keep people safe here in the United States and here in Europe. But we must accept the challenge that all of us in democratic governments face: to listen to the voices who disagree with us”. Yeah, that’s what fucking worries us.

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