Tuesday, October 26, 2004

A Good Summary Indictment

war21century
My long "salvoes" have attracted a fair amount of attention at http://www.davidbrin.com/neocons.html and http://www.davidbrin.com/neoromantics.html
 People have written in saying that they use them with that wavering conservative of moderate intellectual.

But who am I kidding? I don't have any real influence. Fortunately, the awakening is happening on its own. Not only are conservatives defecting from "their" president in record numbers, but so are many old reliables of the press. (W's home town newspaper recently endorsed Kerry!)

Now, for the first time in its 80-year history, The New Yorker magazine has endorsed a candidate for president, citing Bush’s record of "failure, arrogance" and "incompetence," the editorial board is endorsing Kerry for President.

Don't just dismiss this as a liberal rant. It's an exceptionally cogent and well-written indictment. This may be the single best articulation of the reasons to vote for Kerry that I have read. It is well worth reading in full and passing around to everyone you know (especially undecided voters in battleground states):

http://www.newyorker.com/talk/content/?041101ta_talk_editors

Oh... and just for laughs (if you don't cry) see:
http://www.monsterslash.org/

(And does anybody really believe the rectangular bulge was really a "badly made suit"?)

4 comments:

Murky said...

Just a quick thing to let you know that I stumbled on these articles whilst looking for information about the Uplift books (I'm wanting to hear more about the galactic civilisation).

I've posted several links to your political essays at http://www.murky.org/

Leviathan said...

(And does anybody really believe the rectangular bulge was really a "badly made suit"?)No, but I also don't believe he was being fed answers. On the flippant side, he wouldn't have been that hapless! More seriously, it would be out of character for a president who follows his gut to the extent Bush does.

Serious speculation:

It was the buckle of a flack vest the Secret Service required the President to wear in at least that debate. (No, there wouldn't have been an explanation of such. Not commenting on the measures taken to protect the president is apparently one of the Secret Service's most deeply-held policies.

Sidereus said...

Dr. Brin,

Excellent blog! Nicely reasoned.

A few random comments about the worldwide (Russian) perspective on current America.

During July of 2003, it was with my great pleasure that I traveled in what is known as Russia Far East.

The villages connecting the train-stops reminded me of the small towns in the Midwest where I live. The people were warm and extremely friendly. In fact, once it was known I was an American, I was treated like a king! Plenty of FOOD and stories ensued. Wonderful people.

(Why is Russia depicted is being gray-skied and dour – it was 85 degrees F and sunny just about every day. I recall seeing a special on MSNBC recently regarding “loose nukes” in which the footage of Russia was grainy and with some other obvious post-processing effects . . . to make it seem “old” and “mysterious”? And no, I'm not trying to paint a tropical paradise ;))

Perhaps this is an oversimplification, but the average Russian sees two Americas today:

Fantasy (movies, television) – usually the “blockbuster” movies. I was often asked “how many movie stars” I know.

War (television news, newspapers)

What is the stereotypical American from overseas? Well, not a pretty picture:

Greedy - we invaded Iraq for oil. Regardless, this is the worldwide perception. In the land of excess, we need MORE. Explain that gasoline is virtually at an all-time high - confusion ensues.

Arrogance – our way or no way.

And this question: "Now that 'weapons of mass destruction' have not been found in Iraq", what are you going to do?"

Not having supported the war in the first place, I still found the question unsettling. Here I was in Russia and the average person, in July of 2003, was asking me what we were going to do. Relieve the people of Saddam was my only reply - realizing this was not THE reason we invaded. Spread/give democracy to Iraq? I hope something good will come of it.

I was intrigued with the ability, at least with the younger adults, to differentiate
between Americans and our Administration. "Your Bush administration went to war". Are we as forgiving?

Speaking of threats, both candidates agreed that, in essence, loose nukes were their biggest concern. Kerry’s goal of diminishing Russia’s arsenal within 4 years is a noteworthy statement. Is Russia still our biggest “threat”? Certainly, based on firepower but not on attitude. Loose nukes . . . yes, this scares me.

And look at this! Recently, a poll was conducted with 10 countries . . . and the 2 that would prefer Bush over Kerry were Israel and Russia! (http://www.guardian.co.uk/uselections2004/viewsofamerica/story/0%2C15221%2C1327568%2C00.html). Yes, the same Russia that signed the Kyoto treaty. (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6305974/).

There have been various polls suggesting that if Bush is re-elected, the majority of his supporters would like significant change than his last term. Significant! This boggles the mind.

Also, my travels in Belgium and England provoked similar responses.

Living in a "Red" state, I see and hear many examples of "blind" faith regarding "W". Unfortunately, many, if not all, have made up their mind regarding the upcoming election. Nothing short of a catastophe will change many of the voters opinions. Generally speaking, polarization is alive and well in Indiana.

On a positive note, we expect record turn-outs.

Speaking of notes, a free song I wrote for Dr. Brin's "tytlal" species is available here: http://sidereus.us/mp3s.html - click on "Tytlal Wave".

Best Regards,
Richard - back to those amazing Titan photos!

Sidereus said...

Battle of the "Bulge"

NASA photo analyst claims that it is not "a poorly tailored shirt" ;)

http://salon.com/news/feature/2004/10/29/bulge/index_np.html

My thought: If this is a "wire", why would Bush rely on someone else's words? Perhaps for quick statistical facts but certainly not for general banter. That would seem out of character . . .

Regards,

Richard