Putting things in perspective…

Found over at Truthdig.

 

37 thoughts on “Putting things in perspective…

  1. That puts the VTech incident into perspective; the only difference – it happened at home.

    Mel Brooks might have said there’s comedy in every tragedy but he didn’t.
    What he did say is: Tragedy is when I cut my finger.
    Comedy is when You walk into an open sewer and die.

    Take the Texas Chainsaw Massacre; there’s humour there too if you look.

    But Jo-Jo only killed 32 – the record’s 35 and it’s still ours.

  2. Perspective? I must not be the mental gymnast I used to be.

    Les: I noticed the tag “hypocrisy.” I’d really like to understand why.

    LuckyJohn: “…the only difference – it happened at home.” You have got to be kidding me. I don’t even know where to start!

  3. I doubt you were ever a mental gymnast, Justice.

    And no, I’m not kidding you and I’m too lazy to go too deeply into the subtleties of distance between comedy and tragedy let alone the similarities.
    But I will venture: If you had a VTech in the US every day for 4 years, like happens in Iraq, would you still feel the same intensity; would you still be saying to yourself: glad it didn’t happen to me or mine or would your thinking change?

    Go to a war zone for fun one day and notice how your tears don’t flow so freely after a few weeks or months, depending on your sensitivity.
    There’s a fine line between pleasure and pain.

  4. I find it somewhat hypocritical that there’s all this anger and outrage over the VA Tech shooting and so little of the same over the situation in Iraq where deaths on a scale greater than VA Tech for similarly stupid reasons takes place on a daily basis. Worse yet, the delusional egomaniac who is responsible for taking us into Iraq is still in power and could do it again whereas the one responsible for the VA Tech massacre has already removed himself from the gene pool.

    Does anyone really think the surviving family members in Iraq are suffering any less than the family members of the victims in Virgina? Or is it OK because it’s a “war zone” over there? A war which we started.

  5. Or is it OK because it’s a “war zone” over there?

    Unfortunately I think you hit the nail in the coffin here.  People for what ever reason expect deaths from a war zone, but not from an academic institution.

  6. Unfortunately I think you hit the nail in the coffin here.  People for what ever reason expect deaths from a war zone, but not from an academic institution.

    It’s all war; the more power you have, the more pronounced it is. Thing is, we’ve learned that diplomacy, trade, and politics are more efficient than weapons. But it still boils down to “how can I get ahead?”, which is, as the PNAC puts forth, exactly the idea behind policy in this government.

    In the end, Iraq’s a casualty of competition.

  7. Does anyone really think the surviving family members in Iraq are suffering any less than the family members of the victims in Virgina?

    Unfortunately, I can’t remember who it was, but back in the Vietnam War days a supporter of the war said that Vietnamese deaths were not as tragic as American deaths, because the Vietnamese accepted death with less emotion than Americans.  Perhaps the same is true of Iraqis, or perhaps all non-Americans…

  8. I had a friend who was in the Marines and fought in Iraq.  He was also Arabian so he understood what the Iraqis were saying.  From the horror stories he told me, Iraqis grieve over death just as much as we Americans do.

  9. The problem I have with the perspective here, is that we’re not talking about similar situations. The diference comes down to expectations. If I lived in Iraq, in wartime, I would be expecting tragedy. Doesn’t make it better or easier, but I would be expecting it. If I was living in Florida, I’d expect hurricanes. In California I’d expect earthquakes.

    In college, in Virginia, I’m not expecting to get shot.

    I’m not saying that one is more tragic than the other, all loss of life is tragic (well, most loss of life). But unexpected tragedy will always be different than expected tragedy.

    A friend who dies are a long standing illness may break your heart. One who dies in a sudden car crash leaves you devestated in a totally different way.

    The rest of my thoughts on the tragedy can be found over at my place. I won’t bother repeating them here.

  10. In college, in Virginia, I’m not expecting to get shot.

    Maybe not but may be you should be.
    According to this list there have been at least 40 in the US since the Kent State shootings in 1970.
    But I know what you mean.
    In Iraq, where suicide bombing is seen by hopefully a minority as a holy jihad, you’re more likely to expect the taking of crowd’s lives.

    Then again you live in a religious and gun cultured country – what d’ya expect?

    How’d you be being one of the many reporting Jo-Jo’s potential violence or one of the many receiving the complaints?
    That’ll all come out in an enquiry and the results may even be published.
    But what can you do about a person saying violent things?
    Nothing; you gotta wait till he does something in exactly the same way wives running from violent husbands have to wait till they’re dead.

  11. The time to reach out to this kid would have been before he started saying violent things. When he was obviously lost, lonely and hurting, rejected by his peers.

    Maybe it wouldn’t have made a difference, maybe people did reach out and he pushed them away. Not enough information yet.

    I think it’s clear from his statements that religion played some part in his problem, both christianity and islam.

    What we seem to have here is a kid who wasn’t wired right, who was picked on and abused and who couldn’t make sense of the conflicting messages he got from society. Someone should have seen that before he became a monster…..

  12. My two cents were on mental health. The fact that there was at least one person who did notice a problem, who could not compel this man to proper help, and others who suspected issues who faced the same barrier.

    You can’t help people who can’t or won’t help themselves. Maybe kindness would have done it. Maybe this, maybe that. But LJ got it right; this man’s a time-bomb that we systematically ignored. There are lots of little life lessons that lead to self-satisfaction, or deter from extremeties. Such lessons were lost on the shooter. ‘Tis a shame.

  13. If violence on the scale of the VA Tech shooting happened every day in Virginia you can bet your ass they’d be calling it a war zone. Certainly a good portion of the violence in Iraq is for political reasons, but quite a bit of it is also just old grudges being settled much like the motivation Cho had for his rampage.

    We’re fortunate that this sort of thing doesn’t happen every day in America.

  14. I’m the worst of all because, though my heart goes out to everyone who lost someone in Vtech AND everyone who’s lost anyone in the war (American and Iraqi alike), I really am sick of hearing about it. All of it. I think it’s even more sickening BECAUSE of this perspective, that the US is still so self-centered that hundreds of deaths in Iraq doesn’t NEARLY equate to as horrible as 32 deaths in a college.

    Whether or not you expect it, it’s still horrible!

    I may be bad, but at least I’m not a self-centered hypocrite. Maybe I just don’t belong in this country.

  15. Here is the problem I am having with this perspective: I am tired of being lumped into, along with everyone I know – including even people posting here – the insensitive, selfish American stereotype. Bush made it into office, but not because I voted for him. Bush launched a war which I did not want. And I feel as bad for the horror in Iraq as I do for the victims of the VA Tech shootings. I am not the only one. In fact, I am a bit taken aback by the sweeping derogatory statements written on this blog by writers who are surrounded by other writers (particularly American writers in this instance) who are whole-heartedly against Bush and his war. I mean, really, it only serves to perpetuate the anti-American sentiment already spreading worldwide, and looking around, you should know better than to make those sweeping statements – look around.

    What did you do to stop Bush and his war, and what have you done to express outrage over Iraq? Are you admitting to hypocrisy because the only thing you have done is vote and/or use blogs as platforms to express your thoughts and feelings?

    See what I mean? Try that one on two days away from the shock and only one day away from the dawning, which is the moment you have to wake up and realize the loss of your loved one wasn’t just a really bad dream.

    There are people who don’t give a shit about Iraqi’s getting murdered, and in fact, I have heard one dead Iraqi is “one less terrorist.” But the people I know don’t think that way, nor do most of the people on this blog think that way, and I think there should be some reaction to the fact that not only are others boxing us all into the stupid and greedy stereotype, but Americans – Americans who know better – are doing it to themselves!

    As human beings, politicians might have experienced the same things we did – shock, sadness, fear, indifference, but what they will deal with are possibly new laws which will make us no safer, and maybe even worse off, than we were before. When you slap down a comic like that, tag it “hypocrisy,” and then leave it so open-ended, you are talking about me, about you, about a lot of the people posting here, about those who just haven’t had the same amount of exposure to the war in Iraq as they have the VA Tech shootings, and about those who feel devastated for Iraqi’s, but also feel hopeless because nothing they have done has had any affect whatsoever on the trajectory of this war. It’s not fair, it’s not accurate, and it’s a really bad idea.

    As for comparing the tragedies (the only difference is it happened at home), I take it as an insult to both sides. From the Iraqi perspective, we had one man walk into a school, kill 32 people, and then commit suicide. They are being picked off faster than anyone can accurately count. Family members are murdered, raped, missing… and not only by the hands of American soldiers. That has to be an entirely different kind of hell; yes, pain is pain, but it is not all the same.

    As for the students and their families, you can throw statistics around to your hearts content, but the fact is people don’t expect to be shot in college. But even if we set aside the differences between a war zone and a school, the comparison is a minimization of the loss experienced by those directly involved whether you mean it to be or not. Think about it. Would you walk up to the mothers and fathers burying their children and hand them that comic or some verbal comparison? You wouldn’t – I hope – but you really just did, given modern technology. It translates to them that their loss just doesn’t rate, and if you have ever lost a child or dealt with someone who has, then you know that is exactly how it comes across to them. For obvious reasons, it is cruel, but it is also unfair, because you are talking to at least some people who are just like you and me – outraged about it all.

  16. Bush made it into office, but not because I voted for him. Bush launched a war which I did not want. And I feel as bad for the horror in Iraq as I do for the victims of the VA Tech shootings. I am not the only one.

    What did you do to stop Bush and his war, and what have you done to express outrage over Iraq? Are you admitting to hypocrisy because the only thing you have done is vote and/or use blogs as platforms to express your thoughts and feelings?

    I dunno, but to a certain extent I’d say that about sums it up. Among my peers living, working, and making families in the United States, and of those, among families with soldiers serving or having served in Iraq, they just don’t care. They don’t want blame put at their feet because, ultimately, they voted for someone, and that’s where their responsibilities end. It would be a lie to say they only want to be held accountable for that, because they don’t even want to be held accountable for that. I can’t even bring the topic up in public. Wars and dead Iraqis are just too many degrees of seperation from them, their house, picket fence, and 2.5.

    I’d posit that’s not an American thing – that’s a human thing. The bottom line is, a shit ton of dead Iraqis won’t affect our day to day lives one iota. The only way it will is if we guilt ourselves about it – naturally, most people take the easy way out and opt to completely ignore the situation.

    I take it as an insult to both sides

    which is, I think, why the comic’s up there. In terms of sheer numbers this happens every day in Iraq, sometimes several times a day. But, as with the above, VT was closer to home and suddenly it matters.

    yes, pain is pain, but it is not all the same

    Then it is equally unfair to bundle the Iraqi victims or the victims at VT together in their own groups – since each person can suffer something individually different.

    you can throw statistics around to your hearts content

    We are, in fact, addressing the numbers, because that’s the most general ground, just as ‘losing loved ones’ glosses over the difference between ‘losing a son’ and ‘losing a spouse’. The statistics are important. That they are impersonal and can be taken personally are of no concern to me (and, though I’m uncertain, of no consequence to the argument).

    I don’t know that I have more to say, I may follow up on this post later. I’m not with it.

  17. Justice: I am tired of being lumped into, along with everyone I know – including even people posting here – the insensitive, selfish American stereotype.

    You’re doing it now.
    I reckon that cartoon did more to show the world that someone in US was in touch with reality rather than being inured to what’s happening elsewhere – well, I really, really meant the Iraq occupation – the situation that your fuckwit, your elected fuckwit, caused cos ya fucking god told him it was a good idea one morning while he was getting the part in his hair just right whilst holding the tip of his tongue just the right amount out the corner of is face to aid in the concentration such a brain consuming task takes.

    I feel embarrassed about having a smarmy PM like the little fella we have in Oz – I won’t do a tirade about him cos no one’s interested in his short-comings.

    it only serves to perpetuate the anti-American sentiment already spreading worldwide,

    It shows how outa touch YOU are – this has been happening for over 50 years.
    If anything this cartoon helps to show the world that someone in US was in touch with reality …
    Oh, I said that already.

    What did you do to stop Bush and his war, and what have you done to express outrage over Iraq? Are you admitting to hypocrisy because the only thing you have done is vote and/or use blogs as platforms to express your thoughts and feelings?

    Can’t do much more than vote or blog – if you do much more than accept your lot for the next 4 years you could end up doing a VTech or be like Iraq and have a cartoon drawn about you.

    When you slap down a comic like that, tag it “hypocrisy,” and then leave it so open-ended, you are talking about me, about you, about a lot of the people posting here, about those who just haven’t had the same amount of exposure to the war in Iraq as they have the VA Tech shootings,

    “haven’t had the same amount of exposure to the war in Iraq”
    That’s why the cartoon was so good and dare I say it, a wake up call that actual stuff is still happening in the actual world outside the actual US.
    What you are advocating is more cotton wool against reality and generally dumbing down of America

    That has to be an entirely different kind of hell; yes, pain is pain, but it is not all the same.

    A loss is a loss is a loss. There is no vaccination. You are falling into the pit of trying to minimise the Iraq experience – not consciously, not on purpose, but it’s there nevertheless.
    That is why the cartoon is good. It’s not there for relations and friends** of the VTech victims – it’s there for you and everyone else that has a degree of separation from VTech – if you can’t grow from it obviously it didn’t hit you hard enough in the right place.

    relations and friends** if you live in a society you have to cop the stuff that society cops … don’t you dare suggest it shouldn’t have been published because a relation and friend coulda seen it cos then you open up another can of worms.

  18. Justice,

    In fact, I am a bit taken aback by the sweeping derogatory statements written on this blog by writers who are surrounded by other writers (particularly American writers in this instance) who are whole-heartedly against Bush and his war.

    As John pointed out, anti-American sentiment is nothing new. It goes back centuries. Sure, the flavor of it has varied over the years, but it is not a new phenomenon and it is not going away anytime soon. And while I agree that it is perhaps unfair to make sweeping generalizations about an entire nation based on the idiocies of many of its citizens, it is my guess that the actions of our leader are what tend to stand out more in the minds of people in other countries. With a moron president who has caused untold suffering and grief on a global scale, is it any wonder that people of other nations tend to hold our country in low esteem? These attitudes may not be your fault or mine (or John Q. Public’s, for that matter), but they are a reality, and I think they are worth examining.

    That being said, I don’t agree that Luckovitch is necessarily targeting run-of-the-mill American citizens with his cartoon. I see it more as a swipe at the mass media than at average Americans.

    What did you do to stop Bush and his war, and what have you done to express outrage over Iraq? Are you admitting to hypocrisy because the only thing you have done is vote and/or use blogs as platforms to express your thoughts and feelings?

    It’s questionable how much the average citizen actually can do apart from voting and/or speaking out in one form or another. In 2003 I traveled to Washington to protest the looming war. Every year since then I have attended peace rallies. So far these actions haven’t done much to bring the troops home, yet I will continue to make my voice heard (on a whole number of issues) until my dying day.

    As for the students and their families, you can throw statistics around to your hearts content, but the fact is people don’t expect to be shot in college.

    I agree.

    But even if we set aside the differences between a war zone and a school, the comparison is a minimization of the loss experienced by those directly involved whether you mean it to be or not.

    Context is key—Luckovitch wasn’t intending to portray a pretty message. He was trying to put across what he views as the reality of the situation, but I don’t think it was his intention to “minimize” the tragedy of the VT shootings.

    Your strong reaction to the cartoon is emblematic of the gravity of the issues involved. You may find Luckovitch’s rendering tasteless, but at the very least it’s inspired thinking and debate.

    LuckJohn,

    A loss is a loss is a loss. There is no vaccination.

    While I think I can see where you’re heading with that, consider the vast ocean of difference between the death of a ninety-year-old and the death of a sixteen-year-old. I would not expect each loss to inspire the same level and degree of grief in most people.

  19. Patness:

    Patness: “Wars and dead Iraqis are just too many degrees of seperation from them, their house, picket fence, and 2.5.”

    That’s just not been my experience. I don’t want to speculate on why our experiences are different.

    Patness: “The statistics are important.”

    Perhaps. I’d rather put more thought into your comments before I go further.

    LuckyJohn:

    I said: “I am tired of being lumped into […]the insensitive, selfish American stereotype.”

    LuckyJohn: You’re doing it now.

    Did you read what I wrote in its entirety? Perhaps the idea that you are doing a little selective reading with a pinch of presumption isn’t so far-fetched, considering:

    LuckyJohn: “…the situation that your fuckwit, your elected fuckwit, caused cos ya fucking god told him it was a good idea one morning…” (Emphasis mine)

    Am I to take that as MY god? Why – because I am an American, or because I disagree with you? Whatever; I am not surprised because this…

    I said: “it only serves to perpetuate the anti-American sentiment already spreading worldwide,”

    LuckyJohn: “It shows how outa touch YOU are – this has been happening for over 50 years.”

    …actually shows how comfortable YOU are making a presumption and running with it. That I used the words “perpetuate” and “already” implies an understanding of a preexisting attitude. I used the words “spreading worldwide” because in the last five years, we’ve experienced a pretty intense wave. Regardless of the ebbs and flows, the highs and lows, and all the aspects of and reasons for it, I do recognize it. Don’t insult my intelligence with presumptions and careless reading.

    LuckyJohn: “What you are advocating is more cotton wool against reality and generally dumbing down of America”

    Bullshit! What I believe is that if people were actually exposed to the reality of war, then people would be far more reluctant to stand for one. What I believe is that if media coverage spent half the intensity on Iraq as they did the VA Tech shootings, then no need for comparison would arise. What I am advocating is a little consideration and a lot more compassion (FOR EVERYONE), and then an honest look at these sweeping statements and generalizations.

    LuckJohn: “You are falling into the pit of trying to minimise the Iraq experience – not consciously, not on purpose, but it’s there nevertheless.”

    Once again, did you read what I wrote in its entirety?

    LuckJohn: “(The cartoon is) not there for relations and friends** of the VTech victims…”

    Yeah. Cos none of them can read.

    LuckyJohn: “don’t you dare suggest it shouldn’t have been published because a relation and friend coulda seen it cos then you open up another can of worms.”

    Now here is where you stopped me. I had to ask myself if I was heading in that direction and knowing doing so would contradict so many other things I believe are right.

    No, I don’t think it should not have been published. I do absolutely think it should be handled with greater care, and not just for VA Tech victims or Iraqi victims, but look at how it was received. Look at the comments made about it (“suddenly it matters”) and other comments made about Americans elsewhere. That Americans are stupid and heartless has become such a mantra that people who should know better than to make these sweeping generalizations make them and/or don’t even catch them when they are made by others. People who are hanging out with the very Americans who are absolutely outspoken and outraged over Iraq are quite comfortable blurting them out, repeatedly.

    If people want to be part of the solution, then they should firmly stand on the side of the solution.

    Sexy Sadie:

    Sexy Sadie: “…anti-American sentiment is nothing new. It goes back centuries. Sure, the flavor of it has varied over the years, but it is not a new phenomenon and it is not going away anytime soon.”

    That sounds defeatist to me.

    Sexy Sadie: “These attitudes may not be your fault or mine (or John Q. Public’s, for that matter), but they are a reality, and I think they are worth examining.”

    They are absolutely worth examining. But if a person is only serving the perpetuation of those attitudes (and it does seem particularly ridiculous to do so while hangin’ with the glaring contradiction), then that person is in no way a part of the solution; that person is one part of a huge problem.

    Sexy Sadie: “I see it more as a swipe at the mass media than at average Americans.”

    That could be. It could also be that the lack of clarity on that matter just sucks.

    Sexy Sadie: “It’s questionable how much the average citizen actually can do apart from voting and/or speaking out in one form or another.”

    Yet, we are accused of not paying attention, not caring, etc. Some don’t, but among them are those only avoiding or ignoring the Iraq situation because they feel absolutely helpless.

    Sexy Sadie: “…yet I will continue to make my voice heard (on a whole number of issues) until my dying day.”

    And I am tired of you being dismissed.

    Sexy Sadie: “You may find Luckovitch’s rendering tasteless, but at the very least it’s inspired thinking and debate.”

    Agreed.

  20. Sadie: I would not expect each loss to inspire the same level and degree of grief in most people.

    Once again I didn’t think. I was thinking like a 20 year old – I gotta stop that.

    Sorry, Justice; for some reason I thought of you as a xian GOP supporter.
    Damn! I make mistakes.

    If people want to be part of the solution, then they should firmly stand on the side of the solution.

    Mate, please don’t do this, with us or against us / part of the problem or part of the solution, thingy.
    It boils down to: you don’t see any positive value in cartoons like the one above and I do.
    It’s not as if it was hate speech in any way – it was a short sharp jab in the solar plexus forcing the viewer to look at more than this one tiny little massacre and in the scheme of thing that’s all it was; just 32 ex people as opposed to your elected representatives’ desire for death and destruction on a much larger scale and then lying about why they ‘had’ to do it.
    At least Jo-Jo was honest in his appraisals … but at the same time apparently quite mad … mmm, that reminds me of someone; the mad bit; not the honest bit.
    Handing shrub the keys to the war machine was like handing a drunk the keys to a Veyron.

  21. This comes up during every war – it is in the interest of warmongers to hide the reality of their actions.

    Justice: “What I believe is that if people were actually exposed to the reality of war, then people would be far more reluctant to stand for one. What I believe is that if media coverage spent half the intensity on Iraq as they did the VA Tech shootings, then no need for comparison would arise

    I would love to see really good coverage of war – forget the “sensitivity to families” and show the gore and suffering.  Hell, the codpiece-in-chief doesn’t even want coffins to be shown in the press.

    The cruelty to families, if any, lies in the actions of the politicians who want to look tough on-camera by wrapping themselves in the flag and beating the war-drum.  Showing the result in all its misbegotten “glory” would make the sound of that drum resonate more hollow.

  22. “…for some reason I thought of you as a xian GOP supporter.”

    I don’t have anything to say about that. I just wanted it to stand out.

    “please don’t do this, with us or against us / part of the problem or part of the solution, thingy.”

    red face Yeah, okay. So, I got a little high on the soapbox there. That is actually quite silly, I realize.

  23. I would love to see really good coverage of war – forget the “sensitivity to families” and show the gore and suffering.  Hell, the codpiece-in-chief doesn’t even want coffins to be shown in the press.

    Given the level of grief at every western soldier that dies in modern conflicts, I sometimes wonder if the press/web etc had existed like this in the ‘30s and ‘40s would the US and UK been able to fight the Axis?

  24. Given the level of grief at every western soldier that dies in modern conflicts, I sometimes wonder if the press/web etc had existed like this in the ‘30s and ‘40s would the US and UK been able to fight the Axis?

    Maybe – suppose they gave a war and nobody came?  I have no problem holding politicians’ feet to the fire over the legitimacy of a war, any war.

  25. Maybe – suppose they gave a war and nobody came?

    Trouble is the dictators always turn up. People from the US are always quick to sneer at the appeasement of Hitler, but given the way WW1 had devestated Europe only 20 years before, there was very little stomach for fighting for what Chamberlain called “A small country far away”.

  26. Fungus doesn’t grow very well in sunlight, and dictators are not inevitable if the environment is not hospitable to them.  If people really knew, maybe they’d look a little harder for ways to head off the dictators while they are still starving artists.  By the time Chamberlain came along, it was too late.

  27. The Weimar Republic was one of the set topics in history when I was a teen.  The teaching then (in the 80’s) was that the far right came to power with the support of the German establishment, who were anxious to keep the real threat of a left wing revolution out of Germany.

    Germany had a real kicking in the peace treaty terms, and along comes a man who presses all the right nationalistic buttons, has massive popular support, and has found minorities to feed the frenzy off. Who inside Germany would say No? Who with a voice in German politics could say no?  It’s a HUMAN, not a German trait- nationalists and racists take hold anywhere where the population can be taught to fear.  Look at the public reaction to the Neo-Cons saying ‘11/9- blame Iraq’. Massive support, anyone dissenting seen as some sort of traitor.  I’ve seen anti war people on this board laugh at the French for um, being anti war.  They laugh at the “Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys”, a term coined because of their refusal to join Bush. (I thik LJ may have been a culprit here).

  28. They laugh at the “Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys”, a term coined because of their refusal to join Bush.

    It’s actually originally from The Simpsons. I remember watching that episode when it first aired and laughing my ass off at the line (because it was delivered so effectively by a disgruntled Scotsman). It’s unfortunate that what was once a genuinely funny line was coopted by the forces of bigotry.

  29. I sometimes use that phrase to refer to the French, but it is always in jest.  It is a parody of the “freedom fries” super-patriot mentality.

    You don’t have to hang out on conservative blogs much to know how much they hate the French for not jumping on the Iraq bandwagon.

  30. PAPAL EDICT NUMBER ‘IV’

    Fred Phelps to spend eternity being sodomised by Osama Bin Laden, while Hillary Clinton urinates on him.

    Sounds like poetic justice. You’ve just got yourself a convert, LH!  cheese

    Of course, the whipped cream on top of the pie would be Fred eternally getting it from Big Gay Al.

  31. You’ve just got yourself a convert, LH!

    I’m a bit upset it took you so long, so I’m going to have to impose strict instructions on you.

    Be Excellent to One Another

    Do you think you can do that my child?

  32. DoF: Given the level of grief at every western soldier that dies in modern conflicts, I sometimes wonder if the press/web etc had existed like this in the ‘30s and ‘40s would the US and UK been able to fight the Axis?

    I think there’s a difference between a country doing expansionist stuff (Germany – in retaliation/response to the draconian conditions set by the Treaty of Versailles) and the carryings on of a 2nd rate hit-man US used to support – it has a unique stench about it when you add in the Big Oil.

    suppose they gave a war and nobody came?

    That’d make a good title of a book.
    Sitting on the side of the hill overlooking The Swamp, smoking dope at night and getting ripped and relaxed in America’s last major debacle, there was the joke about a young soldier who didn’t want to fight anymore being asked by the Sergeant: What if everyone thought like you?
    Yeah, man, there’d be no war; just a buncha blokes sitting on the side of the hill overlooking The Swamp, smoking dope at night and getting ripped and relaxed …
    Alright, it wasn’t very funny – you had to be there. It still makes me grin though.

    DoF, I realise I’m an innocent idealist but we don’t trust what politicians tell us because they lie – THAT’s the problem.
    If you can’t tell me something cos of National Security, FINE; just don’t fucking lie to me.
    And THAT’s why the current debacle has such a bad taste.
    Enough of us know it was never about saving people from an evil dictator – it’s only about BIG OIL.
    Of course the Fourth Estate has a lot to answer for; they were complicit in the lies either by design or stupid.

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