"From this hour I ordain myself loos'd of limits and imaginary lines, going where I list, my own master total and absolute, Listening to others, considering well what they say, Pausing, searching, receiving, contemplating, Gently, but with undeniable will, divesting myself of the holds that would hold me."
Walt Whitman (1819-92)
"When I look back now over my life and call to mind what I might have had simply for taking and did not take, my heart is like to break."
Akhenaton (d. c.1354 BC)
And now, the current weather, from some random person we pulled off the street:
Thursday, May 06, 2004
Why I Do
pol-i-tics Function: noun plural but singular or plural in construction
Etymology: Greek politika, from neuter plural of politikos political
1 a : the art or science of government b : the art or science concerned with guiding or influencing governmental policy c : the art or science concerned with winning and holding control over a government
2 : political actions, practices, or policies
3 a : political affairs or business; especially : competition between competing interest groups or individuals for power and leadership (as in a government) b : political life especially as a principal activity or profession c : political activities characterized by artful and often dishonest practices
4 : the political opinions or sympathies of a person
5 : what I'm about to address (yeah, I know that definition was too long.)
OK, I'll confess it here and now. I like George W. Bush.
There, its said. And I'm not saying that I "dislike him less than John Kerry" or that "He's just not quite as bad as Al Gore," I'm saying that I honestly like the guy.
For a man who is president of the most powerful nation on Earth, and that makes him probably the most powerful man on the planet, he is remarkably misunderstood by just about everyone.
When he was elected, he promised to unite our divided country, and I think he's tried to do that. But the net result is that he is so middle of the road that everybody thinks he's on the other side of the issue from whatever they believe.
And don't get me started talking about beliefs! I've had people try to convince me that our president was a Moslem! Like, hello world? Earth to stupid?
People will believe anything.
Then there's the Iraq war. No, I don't think the war was a bad idea. I think it had to happen. Saddam was funding millions of dollars to terrorists and suicide bombers. Did you know that his government had a standing policy of giving large sums of money to the families of suicide bombers in Israel, the more civilian casualties the better?
No, the mistake in Iraq is not the war. The mistake is in letting it be defined wrong. Was the war about weapons of mass destruction? In some ways, yes, but it wasn't the primary factor. Allowing the press to report it like it was will go down as one of the greatest political blunders in history. As it stands now, short of finding biological missles lined up all in a row somewhere, the wmd thing plays in the press as a "lie" when it was nothing of the sort.
So what was the war about? Terrorism? Yes, partly. Iraq was a training ground for them, just like Afghanistan was. Oil? Yes, partly. Iraq sits on some of the world's richest oil reserves.
Was it about revenge? Vendetta?
As much as it may be denied, I think that had something to do with it. It had to cross his mind. And you know what? I'm OK with that. There's a man defending his honor, and his families honor. To belabor a point, that's because he's an honorable man.
And I kinda like that in a president.
There are some that say that George W. Bush is a dummy. I say poppycock.
Actually, it behooves a man in a position of authority not to appear to be smarter than average. If we had a brilliant president, one that could discuss nuclear physics and poetry in the same breath, we would feel like he was somehow above us, and we don't like that in our leaders.
Instead we have a president that says "nukelar." That brings him down to our level. We ridicule it, but as much as we hate to admit it, that makes him one of us.
I met George Bush Sr. once, before he was too famous. I went to a speech he gave before he was president. I shook his hand afterwards. So maybe I'm prejudiced.
No, now that I think about it, I don't think so.
Yeah, I just like the man.
(Feel free to rant in the comments, if you like.)
One word sums up probably the responsibility of any vice president, and that one word is 'to be prepared'.
Dan Quayle (1947 - ), 12/6/89