RANGER AGAINST WAR: October 2011 <

Monday, October 31, 2011

Predatory Behavior

--U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Chad Calder presenting
U.S. Army All-American Bowl jersey to NFC's Travis Blanks

Most men, when they think they are thinking,
are merely rearranging their prejudices.

--Knute Rockne

I love you more than drinking gin

I love you more than ESPN

but not as much as football

--Not as Much as Football
, Mojo Nixon

Ranger always gripes that the ranks of today's Rangers look to be filled up with failed college wanna-be football players -- much bigger and beefier than they were in his day. They didn't make the draft, so they entered the Rangers (sorry, SOCNET.)

Now we know why:
The U.S. Army sponsors an All-American Bowl -- now don't that beat all?
(North Florida Christian's Blanks Gets All-American Bowl Jersey). NBC will televise the U.S. Army All-American Bowl live from San Antonio 7 January 2012. The game will feature 90 of the nation's top high school football players

There are many things we could say, but suffice it to say this is predatory behavior that would make a pedophile proud.


Tyke's Glamor Shot

Just 'cos it has come up organic to discussion, we will run the poster we made for the American Pit Bull orphan, Tyke.

If anyone is familiar with the needs of this very special little guy and would like a new friend, please contact us. We will make it happen if you are anywhere from North Central Florida to South Georgia.

Without further ado, TYKE:

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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Animal Refugees

--Hobo sign for kindhearted woman

She's a good-hearted woman
in love with a good timin' man

She loves him in spite of his

ways she don't understand

--Good-Hearted Woman
Waylon Jennings

It's a hard world for little things

--Night of the Hunter

I'm a Mekong crocodile from Vietnam
When the napalm scorched each tree
I swam to Laos at dead of night
I'm an animal refugee
--Animal Refugee,
Sheena Blackhall


My neighbor Chris came over this morning to ask about the latest cat seeking succor on our little corner of the planet. "What's the line on this tortoise-shell? Is it a he or she . . . well, she's been sleeping on our porch and the dogs don't attack her." "Probably abandoned -- she drinks water here but is very skittish," says I.

It's becoming an old story: Owners move or drop the animals off due to lack of finances or interest, and the poor animals must fend for themselves. To those not inclined to being kind-hearted, they are now officially "nuisances".

My last cat had this ignoble pedigree -- found as a kitten at a construction site, she was passed through two owners before I inherited her with the rental. Ranger was also found by a beautiful and sweet American Pit Bulldog this August who obviously escaped from being fought as he had multiple wounds. Just washed up on his back porch one morning, and he has earned the name "Tyke" from Buster Brown commercials.

He must find a home as Ranger's dog is terribly aggressive towards him
(the Pit is properly deferential and has no aggression.) So this is an advert, as well:

If anyone would love a sweet and tender small (50 lb.) Pit Bulldog
anywhere near the North Florida area, please contact us; we will transport him.

This sad state of affairs seem to be increasing in this poor economic milieu. Seeing the film,
Night of the Hunter this Friday dovetailed with the dog's and cat's plight and drove the point home hard what life was once like and can be again: Among other things, it is the story of orphan children during The Depression taken in by a kindly older woman (played by Lillian Gish). During the Depression, hobos would leave signs by the roadside to let newcomers know what they might expect at each house, kindness or a brushoff.

Of course, the animals have no signposts and may just as well be flayed as fed. I fear the abandonment will occur more often as people lose their means of support, and also become meaner, enjoying "sports" like dog fighting as a means to express anger. It was just yesterday we enjoyed our blood lust at colisseum fights; bullfighting is still the rage, and safaris are still fun for those with the bucks. Perhaps sometimes, war is
The Most Dangerous Game.

I don't know what else to say. Be kind
. Be responsible, even if others are not. Try and dilute the misery in the world by taking constructive steps to improve someone's lot, even if that someone is an animal.

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Friday, October 28, 2011

Live or Let Die

--Last of the Leaves, Squirrell

Theirs not to make reply,

Theirs not to reason why,

Theirs but to do and die

--The Charge of the Light Brigade,

Alfred Lord Tennnyson

Son, you are a walking violation

of the laws of nature,

but we don't enforce them laws

any which way

--Any Which Way You Can

I just wanna say I think killin' is wrong,

no matter who does it,

whether it's me or y'all or your government

--Dead Men Walking (1995)

But Justice held up in a shotgun shack

And she wouldn't let nobdoy in

So a Nation cried

--Justice and Independence '85,

John Cougar Mellencamp


This is prompted by the killing of former Libyan leader Moammer Qadhafi and the general reaction of glee to that event. (An interesting side note to the glee is the removal of all but one Qadhafi political cartoon from the popular site "Cagle's Cartoons", which had featured a menagerie of renderings of the slain leader the day of the news of his death.)

Such a lot of fun for a minute, and then, so quickly after Secretary of State Clinton all smiley and warrior-like declared, We came, we say, he died, the furore seems to have past. Did it hit us that we were celebrating something grotesque, and that the participant celebrants were a variant of human which we would do well not to fraternize with? Are our attention spans merely so shortened that we are now fishing about for the next best thing? Or are we simply enervated by all of the recent murdering?

It's nigh on embarrassing to discuss the sanctity of life, especially in a God-fearing country like America. Yet we kill our fellows with such rapidity that our guns seldom have time to cool.

Kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out is Cistercian monk Amalric's 11th century Crusader wisdom, which is alive and well in many's attitude toward those we are fighting in the Middle East. The Lord knows them what's his. It is a great motto for those in the killing business, but hardly the motto for a democratic Christian nation.

The basis of all democratic thought is the sanctity of life and the value of each individual, to include that of murderers, rapists and other bad people, including terrorists, who fall under the rubric
criminals. All life is equally valuable. From this tenet flows the rule of law, which we equate to the concept of justice. "Liberty and justice for all" includes terrorists, or more specifically, accused terrorists. (
Even women terrorists are equal, if we can take the 19th Amendment enfranchisement of woman as recognition of their inherent equality.)

In the U.S. one is not guilty until the government can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that one committed the crime. (Ranger has an astounding grasp of the obvious.) Moreover, this precept applies to all crimes; there are no exempted categories in the Constitution or Federal Code which derives from that foundational document.

Today's legal ambivalence stems from our growing lackadaisical attitude toward our core beliefs and values.
We make so many exceptions to our freedoms that we begin loosening our conception of the sanctity of and rights accorded to life.

As well, the immense slaughter that wartime killings in the 20th century alone have wrought has rendered the crossing of the line between sacred and profane more porous. The recent WTC bombings elicited such shock -- whether due to insulation or hubris -- that many presumed some people were to be denied the conception of equality under law.

Now, the Bill of Rights can be macerated and abridged any way we choose; laws are made to be broken. But how do we reckon that with the moral and religious imperative, "Thou Shalt Not Kill"? What if the alleged perpetrator of a crime has killed? Are his human rights revoked? Repellant as the proposed scenario is, it is a common enough situation that a society must determine the answer.

While states in our Union may vary in their sentencing, all adhere to the presumption of innocence and
habeas corpus; that agreement allows us consistency and coherence, necessities in order for a system of jurisprudence to function. The sanctity of life is not Ranger's personal construct but has always been official U.S. policy in both civilian and military environments, whether it be in hostage negotiations or war.

The sanctity of life used to be the tenet of all law enforcement, and was taught in Department of Defense classrooms, as well.
Even in warfare this holds, for why else would we not kill Prisoners of War? The U.S. is neither Nazi nor Communist, nor are their fighters Imperial Japanese troopers.

If we apply the Enlightenment principle of the sanctity of life, one must then accept an elevation of our threat level. But it is a choice; either we believe it, or not.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Two Days Left!

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Spring Forward, Fall Back

You say yes, I say no
You say stop and I say go, go, go

Oh, no

You say goodbye and I say hello

--Hello Goodbye,
the Beatles

The only thing I'm guilty of

is burning gas

, John Gorka

If one place is as good as any other,

it's high time we decided.

Otherwise when we get there,

we won't know we've arrived

--Dr. Doolittle

Oppression is the New Freedom.

Republicans like Joe Lieberman (
yeah, you) are attacking President Obama for his pledge to withdraw all troops from Iraq by year's end (Lieberman Slams Obama on Existing Iraq). But Obama will only be honoring a treaty negotiated by the Bush administration with the Iraqi government.

Is Lieberman proposing violating a treaty which he signed? Is he delusional? Additionally, doesn't the Iraqi government have any say in the matter? Is that not the definition of sovereignty?

A few pages away is the story that many police jobs in municipalities throughout the U.S. will go unfilled for want of funds.

USAToday reports:

By year's end, nearly 12,000 police officers will have lost their jobs, and 30,000 positions in county and municipal departments will go unfilled, both direct consequences of a faltering economy that has forced deep cuts in local government budgets.

The sweeping reductions, outlined in a Justice Department review to be delivered today to the nation's police chiefs meeting in Chicago, put law enforcement on pace for its first job decline in 25 years.

"'The effects of the economic downturn on law enforcement agencies may be felt for the next five to 10 years, or worse, permanently,'' the report concluded, adding that the days when local governments allocated up to 50% of their budgets for public safety are 'no longer a fiscal possibility'" (Economic woes take toll on U.S. police departments).


The U.S. cannot muster $35 million in a jobs bill to help cities hire Five-O's stateside -- maybe the cost of a minute of the war in Iraq. Yet we are supposed to dig deep for $Billions we don't have for protection in our cities to give to continue funding police in the Iraq snafu, this after funding a costly and futile Libyan venture that Congress never even bothered to authorize. Which brings us back to the concept of democracy.

Look at women in any of the "Libya Liberation declared" photos and you will see nary an uncovered head or body. The liberators-nee-brutes are reinstating Sharia law as
Job 1, which means among other things, four and only four wives per man, per the Quran. It just doesn't jibe with jibberish we spout about democratization and women's rights, and yada yada.

Why, in our time of need -- or any time -- is the U.S. supporting Islamic revolutions which will form Sharia theocracies? Money doesn't grow on date trees in an oasis.
We are not England, and being colonial greatly conflicts with being democratic; it is like being a pushmi-pullyu from Dr. Doolittle. At the very best, one arrives at a stalemate. And look where England ended up; pretty knackered.
Democracy in the Middle East is a desert mirage.

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Word Play

[War] is a highly planned
and cooperative form of theft

--The Ascent of Man
, Jacob Bronowski

Isn't it pretty to think so?
--The Sun Also Rises,

Ernest Hemingway


Today we will look at some word games in the press, and who better to play with words than Ranger? These are games that buoy up the U.S.'s continued participation in the Middle East morass. These are words that stoke the fear engine.

First is the word kidnapping, as relates to the recent release of abducted Israeli soldier Galid Shalit. Numerous news sources reported that Shalit had been freed after being kidnapped five years ago by Hamas near the Gaza border (exs. here, here and here).

Shalit was a uniformed IDF soldier; he was therefore, captured. It seems a small semantical issue, but it is not. Societies depend upon legal precision. Actions on the battlefield are different in many ways from those conducted in the civilian world. We conflate the two worlds to our detriment, for we lose perspective and rationality.

Words like "kidnapping" are fear words. Not that Sgt. Galit did not suffer his share of fear, but his plight is unique to his circumstance. People are generally not kidnapped off the street in the U.S. by Muslim terrorists, but using the incorrect term joins it in the flow of scare terms, becoming yet another justification for U.S. involvement in wars in the Middle East.

Next is the assertion by many that the recently exposed wild Iranian assassination plot against the Saudi ambassador to the United States amounted to an Act of War, Reuel Marc Gerecht in the Wall Street Journal among them (Iran's Act of War). Along with this false conclusion is the illogical presumption that the U.S. must respond in kind.

Reuel also sees the U.S. withdrawal (as planned by George W. Bush) to be
"clearly a sign that Washington no longer has the desire to maintain hegemony in the Middle East." Where is it stated that the U.S. is to maintain hegemony in the Middle East?

  • This plot (if true) is criminal, and not and act of war. Assassination is a crime
  • Why MUST the U.S. respond in kind?
  • If we respond we are being reactive, and letting them influence our behavior; reaction is the behavior of a loser. We set the tempo of operations, not them.

William Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard, says it's "time for the U.S. to speak to this regime in the language it understands -- force" (
Speak Softly... And Fight Back). He claims the Iranians are racing to build a nuclear weapon, but he has no facts to substantiate his fear-mongering. He calls the foiled plot "an engraved invitation" to use force.

However, even if Iran were trying to build a nuclear weapon, how does this become a U.S. rather than a U.N. concern? Kristol & Co. fail to see the hypocrisy in their allegations of Iranian force when the U.S. has such a violent history; do they forget that the U.S. occupied Iran during World War II? Iran has not attempted to occupy the U.S. lately, as far as we know.

Kristol's tough-talking conclusion voices the dream of so many:

The next speech we need to hear from the Obama administration should announce that, after 30 years, we have gone on the offensive against this murderous regime. And the speech after that can celebrate the fall of the regime, and offer American help to the democrats building a free and peaceful Iran.

Sorry, but the U.S. missed it's last chance to declare war when the Iranian Embassy was taken over in 1979. That may stick in the craw, but you can't go back in time. Ah, what a nice dream -- to go back and help the Iranian peaceniks. Just like in Iraq, we guess.

When will we ever learn?


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The Audactity of Hope, Muslim-style

--Moammer Qaddafi being sodomized upon capture
by Muslim man (Global Post)

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

No Laughing Matter

War is God's way of
teaching Americans geography

--Ambrose Bierce

Don't hang back with the brutes!

--A Streetcar Named Desire,

Tennessee Williams

Why did you have to act so mean?

Don't you know you're a human being?

-Bad Boys, Bob Marley

Ranger feels confident announcing, ahead of his class, that the U.S. has officially lost the Phony War on Terror (PWOT ©).

We don't know exactly when the fateful moment occurred, but watching David Letterman's monolog last night confirmed it. The host and his audience were larfing it up over the murder of Libyan leader Moammer Qadhafi. Not one audience member protested, "That is not funny". We are sure the other humorists pandering to the lowest common denominator -- like Colbert et. al. -- also joined in the fun.

We publish photos of dead and broken bodies for the entertainment value, and then call them brutal and savage. Is it possible that people like Lettermen and audience must make all of this death into a joke because they find it so incomprehensible?

Secretary of State Clinton is seen laughing after receiving the news with a CBS correspondent HERE. "We came, we saw, he died" she declared, like a great Roman emperor (or more at Bill Murray.) Can you picture Henry Kissinger or Warren Christopher laughing at anyone's -- let alone, a head of state's -- murder? A somber, regal pose is expected by government leaders in the public eye. What hath Survivor and Co. wrought in this nation?

The health of a nation can be gauged by many things, but the level of it's public discourse and sentiment is a strong indicator of its humanity. We howled when
evil incarnate Saddam Hussein was dragged from his "hidey hole", only to by lynched by a rowdy mob.
We are fascinated by images of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarek in a cage.

Now, we celebrate along with Secretary of State Clinton and President Obama the macabre spectacle of Qadhafi's brutal murder and the "freedom" gained by the murderous thugs who committed this atrocity, delivered to them by the beneficent largesse of the
U.S. Nato bombing campaign. We print dehumanizing and humiliating photos as if to cement the former leaders' image as demons somehow worthy of this brutality. Brutality against even a brute is still brutality.

The violence done to our collective humanity is inexpressible. If Manuel Noriega was a Prisoner of War, then Saddam and Qadhafi should have been afforded the protection of a POW. According to the Geneva Conventions, abuse of prisoners under any circumstance is not permissible; yet Qadhafi was murdered and tortured in cold blood. Global Post released shocking video of a wounded Qadhafi being sodomized by the gleeful mob (
Qadhafi Sodomized).

Ranger recalls the night Saddam was executed: he (Ranger) was in a redneck shit-kicking bar and they erupted in cheers at the murder, exactly the same glee in which Letterman was wallowing last night. Laughing at the dead is not Christian; it is not even human.
No Enlightenment value is seen in such emotion.

Letterman went on to joke about the lack of trial in Qadhafi's case. Why do we laugh at the trashing of due process of law? Has that concept been so thoroughly trounced that we figure only rubes cleave to it? Far less funny is the reality that no progress has occurred; in fact, this is a regressive step. At the very minimum, meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

Why is the image of Qadhafi lying bullet-ridden in a meat locker for general photo ops, funny?

The pressing question is: Are we Christian, or a nation of morals? Do we have human empathy? What does it mean to be "human"? Are Enlightenment ideals quaint notions past their due date? Is killing a joke or a sport? If we do believe in a Creator, is he laughing, too?

Moammer Qadafhi is dead and we find fit to rejoice, but have the deaths of all the "bad guys" thus far done us any good? Two weeks ago a tidy U.S. drone killed 16-year-old U.S. citizen Abdulrahman al-Awlaki in Yemen, damage collateral to a supposed kill of a "top al-Qaeda official". (Cute terminology, no? -- al-Qaeda now has officials, just the the NRA, we guess.) It is difficult to say we are winning something when we are killing children and calling it a necessity. When did we last kill a 16-year-old without a trial; for that matter, a 46-year-old?

The War on Terror is having a reverse, unintended effect upon the U.S. The world is not rising to our level, but rather, we are descending to theirs. We now laugh at death as entertainment. The Romans cheered when the Christians were martyred.

Yes, it is a very unfunny coda -- we have lost the war on terror.
John McCain can have the final word when he spoke on the death of Osama bin Laden earlier this year. Though he got it wrong when he stated the much-vaunted Arab Spring was a
"complete repudiation of [OBL's] violent ideology", he was correct in the following:

As we debate how the United States can best influence the course of the Arab Spring, can’t we all agree that the most obvious thing we can do is stand as an example of a nation that holds an individual’s human rights as superior to the will of the majority or the wishes of government? Individuals might forfeit their life as punishment for breaking laws, but even then, as recognized in our Constitution’s prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment, they are still entitled to respect for their basic human dignity, even if they have denied that respect to others.

When we find mirth in brutality we are on par with the brutes.

--By Jim & Lisa

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Monday, October 24, 2011

Don't Know Much

If you don't eat yer meat,

you can't have any pudding.

How can you have any pudding

if you don't eat yer meat?

--Another Brick in the Wall,

Pink Floyd

Don't know much about geography
Don't know much trigonometry
Don't know much about algebra
Don't know what a slide rule is for

--Wonderful World,
Sam Cooke


The president of Arizona State University, Michael M. Crow, blasted Florida Governor Rick "Pink Slip" Scott today in Slate for lacking vision when he insisted our schools graduate more students in the STEM (science, engineering, technology and math) disciplines (America Needs Broadly Educated Citizens, Even Anthropologists). At least, I think that's what he was saying.

While applauding Mr. Crow's efforts, we feel he is the hapless victim of academese, as witnessed in the below statements:

"It is essential that we develop in our students the ability to understand the complexity and interrelatedness of our cultural, economic, natural, political, social, and technological systems. The point here is that we need all of the skill sets from anthropology to zoology as well as transdisciplinary perspectives to reinvigorate programs in civil engineering. Inspired engineering, in other words, could come as a consequence of familiarity with the development of counterpoint in Baroque music or cell biology. Or even the construction methods of indigenous tribes."

"[C]onstruction methods of indigenous tribes"? Well, don't that just beat all? Not only politically-correct, but abstruse enough that one does not know whether to cry or champion the suggestion. A "counterpoint in Baroque music or cell biology"? Yer, good luck with that.

Problem with academics -- and their think-tank brethren in politics -- is they concern themselves with sounding erudite within their discipline. Out here, we don't know what the heck they are talking about. That student with the indigenous tribe construction + Baroque music achievement . . . um, where is his job?
I fear we will have to outsource him to Vanuatu.

We shall leave you with a final dose of the reason you got sick and tired of college

"Every student should have an understanding of complexity and sustainability and decision-making matched with a general awareness of entrepreneurship and business. From this breadth of experience, students gain the perspective and focus necessary to succeed in any academic field and subsequent career trajectory. Given the multiple dimensions and global interconnectedness of many professional sectors, the trend toward choosing two or even three majors is entirely appropriate. Needless to say, the challenge is to design universities that have the capacity to produce such individuals who are also ready to work within the contexts of initially narrower assignments."

"Multiple dimensions and global interconnectedness of many professional sectors"? Two -- or even THREE majors? Not too many students have the wherewithal, financially or otherwise, for such a pleasant dalliance in the halls of academia. What they need is a J-O-B. Thanks, Mr. Crow, but personally, we would need some Bennies to stay awake during your esteemed presentation.

Thanks for giving it the old college try, though. Boo yah.

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A Sartorial Genius of Our Time

--MQ's 2007 Palace of Versailles visit

Not to be snide at all -- because Qadhafi's fate was an abomination -- and most Middle East countries still need a strongman, IMHO.

But a couple of years back Vanity Fair offered a tour of some of the more spectacular looks Mr. Qadhafi rocked over the years while "completing his transition from international pariah to statesman" in "Colonel Qaddafi—A Life in Fashion." The text accompanying the photos is also precious (esp. accompanying slide #12, which is left for you to discover).

Per the above aviator look, one imagines Top Gun had some influence. Not that George W. Bush did not look equally foolish on that flight deck in the flight suit, and just about as credible.

What we don't admit to is, we are every bit the saps for a good uniform that the Arab world is. For us, Mr. Obama's Hart Schaffner Marx impresses; for the Libyans, an 8-line ribbon board with lots of shiny stars thrown in for good measure does the trick. Wait -- maybe that's us, too?

"All that’s missing from the signing of the official guest book during the colonel’s December 2007 visit to the Palace of Versailles are aviator goggles. The Snoopy hat and leather bomber jacket raise the questions: Where does this extraordinary individual get the ideas for his wardrobe? Does he have a team of designers back in Tripoli, working up the hundreds of bizarre looks required of a world leader on official business? What gave him the idea that a fur trapper’s hat was right for this moment in the home of the Bourbon dynasty?"

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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Doesn't Mean That Much to Me

--Stolen valor, anyone?
SOCNET would have a field day busting

Muommar Qaddafi

I been talkin' to playwriters

I been workin' on words, phrases

--Running Back to Saskatoon
, Guess Who

The good life was so elusive

Handouts, they got me down

I had to regain my confidence

So I got into camouflage

--I Love a Man in a Uniform,

Gang of Four

But we've got to verify it legally, to see
If she is morally, ethic'lly

Spiritually, physically

Positively, absolutely

Undeniably and reliably Dead

--Ding, Dong, the Witch is Dead,

Wizard of Oz (1939)


Every time another story is spun on the Arab Spring, I am disgusted anew that the U.S. has wasted so much time and money for nothing to benefit ourselves, and possibly nobody else, either. (Aside from war contractors, that is.) Ten years wasted, and much pain wrought upon our own heads, not to mention others.

The leveling of our society is almost complete. First, they did in our schools with mainstreaming. Next came the corruption and dumbing down of entertainment and media. Now, the U.S. sits in thrall to events worlds away in time and space, their energy which should be placed into local issues dissipated in a flurry of much too many helter-skelter streaming media feeds.

It saddens me knowing my country is a dupe and has paid dearly for one side of the nutters to kill the other, having their snapshots taken near the iced, bullet-riddled body like some cheery Japanese tourists:

"In Misrata, residents crowded into long lines to get a chance to view the body of Gadhafi, which was laid out on a mattress on the floor of an emptied-out vegetable and onions freezer at a local shopping center.

. . .

"Men, women and children filed in to take their picture with the body. The site's guards had even organized separate visiting hours for families and single men."
(Gadhafi Put on Display in Shopping Center Freezer.)

Libya's leader Qaddafi was killed in a most brutal fashion by a power-hungry mob of dissidents, yet Secretary of State Clinton heralds the barbarity as "[bringing] to a close a very unfortunate chapter in Libya's
history, but it also marks the start of a new era for the Libyan people ..." How does Clinton know that?

"For the millions of Arabs yearning for freedom, democracy and new leadership, the death of one of the region's most brutal dictators will likely inspire and invigorate the movement for change." They summarily executed their nation's leader and are pumping meat cleavers in the air -- that is unlike any democracy I know. But it's pretty to think so.

Britain's defense secretary, Philip Hammond, said the Libyan revolutionaries' image had been "a little bit stained" by Gadhafi's violent death. Both he and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said a full investigation is necessary.

The head of the National Transitional Council, Mustafa Abdul-Jalil said Islamic Sharia law would be the "basic source" of legislation, and that existing laws that contradict the teachings of Islam would be nullified (Libya Declared Free).

So the mumblecore is, the new leaders' integrity is "a little bit stained". Well, thank Allah and the US they're free to oppress again in the spanky new Theological Republic of Libya.

Instead of discussing the implications of his murder, we are treated to
news that Qadhafi's executioners tore off his toupee, and told he often looked like a comical buffoon (Arab strongman: With Gadhafi death, an era passes.) DUH? The press offers entertainment as commentary, mentioning his vanity until the end -- but what leader does not want to look good, and we have had our own share of "comical buffoons".

If our infotainment sector can be said to be more directional than a paramecium, there was some pretty good pre-planning here, collusive with our government's intent. There were articles predating the "uprising" by months of Qadhafi's feebleness, and his reliance upon his retinue of young female assistants. One coup interview was with one of his Ukranian nurses, spilling the goods on her erstwhile benefactor.

The press did not so much focus upon the relatively good state of women's right in Libya under Qaddhafi, something we like trumpet as a cause in Iraq and Afghanistan. After all of this time grooming Qadhafi as a world citizen, would it not have been less costly and destructive to have assisted on the negotiating side, rather than the inflammatory bombing side? It seems only when one becomes old and weak -- comical -- that we descend like vultures. Reverence for age (among other things) is something we lack.

Gadhafi's death proves one thing:
The biggest brute wins, for the moment. Oh, and money is essential. Yet again, the U.S. forks it over, having spent several Billion dollars aiding this group of brigands to murder the last. Why the U.S. is in the business of facilitating the ouster of sitting rulers is an unanswered question.

Qaddafi was a brutal dictator, no doubt, typical of the stripe the Middle East is wont to create. But the U.S. or any nation cannot change the people in whom this spirit is indwelling. So Libya has gone from one monster, somewhat contained, to a metastacized new group of monsters -- why would that please anyone?

Libyans are wallowing in an orgy of blood. Meanwhile, where are my well-paved roads and all the other niceties and necessities fast-evaporating from my western nation.

*** PLEASE VOTE! ***
RAW is neck and neck in two categories

[cross-posted @ BigBrassBlog]

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