And now, the War in Iraq is officially declared over. It seems quite arbitrary to me. If they were able to end it so suddenly now (and not one nanosecond before President Obama needed it to live up to at least one campaign promise), why couldn't it have happened sooner?
I'm one of those people who believed that we never should have gone there in the first place. Iraq had done nothing to us. W. was so smug and so certain that "Shock and Awe" would have the nation on its knees, begging for mercy, that it would all be over in a few days. When has that ever happened?
The loss of life associated with the Iraq war seems particularly shameful to me. Our soldiers were led to believe that they were fighting in Iraq for "our freedom." They were not. Our freedom was never in jeopardy, except when the Bush administration started doing things like creating the Patriot act and eavesdropping on civilians. Was Saddam Hussein a bad guy? Yes, obviously. But it wasn't any of our business to go in there and kill tens of thousands of people to get rid of him. As other countries in the region have proved during this long summer of protest, when the people get angry enough, they can topple their own kingpins with much greater efficiency.
I join the President in welcoming the soldiers home. They never should have had to go. What did we accomplish in Iraq? What was it all for?
It's common knowledge that in New England, we talk about the weather. A lot. Possibly because it's it's less contentious than talking about politics, except when it comes down to those weirdoes out there who actually like snow. They must be Republicans.
So far, this winter has been a lot more benign than most, and certainly more so than the one we had last year. That changed quite suddenly yesterday as a cold front pushed through and temps dropped from the high forties and low fifties into the high teens. A sudden shift like that is almost harder to take than a long stretch, and it must be particularly hard on the animals living outdoors. The ground tightens up quickly like a clenched fist. As I walked out on my deck this morning, it creaked and moaned underneath me. Recently, I've been able to turn the gas fire off at night without the indoor temperature dropping below 60. Last night it ran all night long, and never got above 64 in the place. I expect that the oil furnace will kick in today, for the first time this winter.
It had to happen, sooner or later. We've been fortunate up to now.
The prospect of Newt Gingrich as Republican front runner has me alternately horrified and pleased. Republicans profess to hate Government, yet they're leaning towards a man who is as deeply intrenched in Government as they come. But he's also an Arrogant Ass, and that's a quality they seem to admire. In Maine, our new Republican governor is as Arrogant an Ass as they come, and he sweetens the pot by also being a delusional, ignorant loudmouth.
I shudder to think of Gingrich in the Oval Office, but then I look at the pack of candidates, and, really, there isn't a single one that doesn't make me shudder! A part of me does want to say to Republicans, go ahead, give Mr. Gingrich the nomination, please! Please give the nomination to someone like him who can't possibly get elected!
But I don't want to jinx the nation. I said the same exact thing about W., and look at what happened. . .