“I’m so bored. I hate my life.” - Britney Spears

Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

the story of the little lie that wants to be a big one

For the past month the United States has worked urgently to end the violence that Hezbollah and its sponsors have imposed on the people of Lebanon and Israel. –Condolezza Rice,

LI does have to wonder how long this joke can last. This is not, contrary to those who immediately go for the Nazi reference, a big lie. This is a little lie. It is little minded. There is little evidence that anybody believes it, except in D.C. circles and the White House. It is not the slogan of a triumphant imperialist movement, but the delusive cry of a ruined, debt ridden, arthritic giant, in slo mo fall as all the Jacks cut down all the beanstalks. So pathetic that it really is appropriate for the WAPO op ed page, that funhouse of thinktanker testosterone, the bipartisan CW that goes all the way from the Heritage Foundation to the New Republic, and produces the undead language of Krauthammer, Fred Hiatt and crewe, a stange speak that is more like a drug than a language, a bit of the old ultraviol swallowed by meritocratic peabrains, enlivened of course with that favorite magic word ‘terrorism.” But something is wrong here. Condi’s little lie lacks, somehow, the robust cynicism of the White House’s past real big lies – the wonderful, silky ones of 2002, when the White House was riding high on its failure to respond to the small threat posed by Al Qaeda in August 2001, its failure to defeat Al Qaeda in December- February, 2001-2002 (the start of the famous meme, Al Qaeda’s on the run, which has become the official way to describe the growth of Al Qaeda – related political parties as they extend their power in the nuclear armed state of Pakistan – always on the run, that OBL, and makin’ videos on the way. Why, he’s a cybernetic Bonnie Parker!) and its failure to sufficiently resource a brief war in Afghanistan, thus extending the stay of troops there ad infinitum – or until, as seems more and more likely, they are handed their asses.

O les beaux jours! So much for democratic intervention, eh? That sweetsounding name for mass murder in the name of superpower aggression – it passed like a fad. Like hula hoops, except with collateral casualties.

Rice’s delusions about what the UN resolution actually says are par for the course. But how about the U.S. making an effort to buy back a little love? Surely Cheney, et al., have enough experience with buying sex that they know – you get what you pay for. But no – cheap Johns to the very end, this is what the U.S is proposing:

“For our part, the United States is helping to lead relief efforts for the people of Lebanon, and we will fully support them as they rebuild their country. As a first step, we have increased our immediate humanitarian assistance to $50 million.”

That and a nickel will buy you ten yards of road repair from Brown and Root. Which may be the problem, in all honesty. There might not be enough profit in humanitarian assistance to Lebanon – no non-competitive contracts for Bush’s own al qaeda of war industry honchos – to make it worth gouging the U.S. treasury.

And so much for episode one, in which Uncle Sam tries to start a war with Iran using its little buddy Israel to light the fire, and its little buddy gets its fingers burnt. Stay tuned for episode two, in which we shift back to the war in Iraq, or, as the AEI site helpfully reminds us, THE WAR THAT WE HAVE ALREADY WON! for the ever stupider ways this administration spirals out of control. We'll be here -- mocking.


Patrick said...

I like the Hezbollah plot twist, but I'm sure that Al Qaeda was going to bomb the planes; this isn't like that little Miami bunch who couldn't get to some place in the Midwest. Hard to remember to keep that in mind when you have to be ironic or stop breathing. I think they will blow up something soon, then the leftists will go under their rocks again. I just hope it's not in New York, anyplace is all right. I figure that's okay to say now, since everybody smart loveth Al Qaeda (or doesn't hate them unduly, since Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld/Iraq has made it easier to stop worrying and love the religions of the Middle East, while secretly thinking megachurches are worse: They are, because unesthetic and also closer. I think Muslims should have to have ID cards myself. Nobody gives a shit whether I get blown up, so I don't give a shit about all their sensitivity to foreign religionists.)

roger said...

I am a big promoter of the line that Al Qaeda is still active -- no. 1000 in the top 2 million reasons not to invade Iraq - so you don't have to convince me. However, I disagree, as you figure I would, with the last part of your comment. If you really want that much security, the more rational thing to do is: surrender. If the U.S. simply surrendered to Al Qaeda, it would not harm any U.S. citizen a hair. It would mean pretty much nothing. This is, after all, not a war about anything of ours whatsoever.
Myself, I don't think the U.S. should surrender to Al Qaeda, but - if you really don't give a shit about Muslims, and you want safety -- that would be the most rational course. After all, this war increases the threat to the U.S. without, on the other hand, allowing the U.S. to gain anything if we win. Anything that anybody really cares about -or at least, I have never heard a single American citizen, since I was a bawling baby, tell me that the only thing he/she really wanted was an elected government in Afghanistan that reflected the will of the people! Go to restaurants, bathrooms, train stations, movies, and traffic jams all over this great land and listen -- do you hear the citizenry, passionately, deeply, with tears in their eyes, telling each other, all I want... is for someday... some Saudi farmer... to be able to walk into a voting booth and pull the lever... for the candidate of his choice! I am willing to give up educating my kids, cleaning up the environment, and my health care so we can accomplish that goal. (for maximum effect, you have to imagine the first part of this speech being spoken a la Sly in Rambo 2 -- one of the great speeches of the 20th century!)

The fact that we are supposedly fighting for something as ridiculous as this makes surrender into much the preferable option. If, in fact, we aren't fighting for this, then we are asserting American interests in the Middle East in such a way that no ID card is going to protect us from the economic and security fallout. So, obvious conclusion to a freak like me is -- wrong way to go about it, fellas.

new york pervert said...

Well, as always, sharper and less confused than I am about everything except 'Cosmopolis.' However, I'll admit I didn't know to want the special ID for Muslims till I read that 40% of Americans want it on Lenin's Tomb. I figured that combo was unbeatable for proving that the liquid threat had been real, just premature in the arrest department--let those careful and decrepitude-sensitive Brits, with their far greater surveillance in all public everythings tell us what to do about this sort of thing, I'd agree with that.

I went to a wonderful traffic jam yesterday and I didn't hear anybody worried about whether Lebanese victorious groups were corrupt or not. I went to the bathroom at an Episcopal seminary and there wasn't anybody in there.

I think I've changed my mind about Mistah Kristoff, who has always disgusted me personally. But he's still more humanitarian than anybody else that gets to write about how humanitarian they are--cares about people in Thailand and Darfur, and does things about it, while being a bore anyway. Then the leftists come in and say he wasn't politically correct about what he said about some form of Prostitutes of Colour, even he really does get off topic in the most extraordinary way. Why, he'll go ahead and write about Darfur and shit while everybody is focussing on a few casualties in the Sidonese and Lebanese dust, as if people didn't die voluminously every day.

I fully believe people are humanitarian based on whatever narrative allows them to do armchair travelogues with buzz to them--which the Congo and anything else in Africa don't, although I can't see what anybody sees in Israel either. Only Jezebel fully humanizes Tyre and Sidon, due to having lived there in preparation for her impressive career. There isn't anything like that about Tel Aviv, and Tel Aviv is an illegitimate city that should be dismantled. I think I hate Israelis even more than Lebanese and have no distinct feeling for Hezbollah, except they were surprise 'Most Likely to Succeed' winners.

I'm sure you're right, and I agree with everything you said that will allow me continued attendance at traffic jams, bathrooms, and not getting bombed in New York. However, if you're not, I hope somebody else gets bombed this time, because most people were glad we took it up the ass 9/11, and if the Pentagon hadn't got sodomized too, they could have just called out Halliburton straightaway. Of course, you realize that I don't have any idea what surrendering to Al Qaeda really means, that I am just going along with you on Boy Scout faith just like I would believe Condoleezza if we were the only people in the room.

roger said...

Mr. NYP -- you are on a roll, man! That made me laugh. Anyway, when a war is designed like a koan, where we don't know what surrender means, or victory -- than I consider that a fucked up war, and look around for whose idea was this, anyway? And -- as I keep pushing, like a monomaniac in a straight jacket, this was a simple war with a simple target, and it was made into a complex whatever it is, with no target and every target. And that wasn't al qaeda's 'fault' - that was ours, for ever believing the group of sapsuckers who rule us knew what they were doing. If they had the competence to conspire, honest to God, I'd take that to be good news -- at least they aren't as clueless as I think they are. In these circs, the Manchurian candidate is actually an improvement.