Comments: Can't Wait Until Ms. Rice Is Off My TV

Concentrated hypocrisy in a can, just add water and viola. Rice’s mention of Somalia shows a certain quality.

At the same time, there were clear failures, witnessed in the unimaginable human tragedies of Somalia…

Clearly our war by proxy in Somalia didn’t result in enough throats being slit by our paid for thugs or the American death squads that came in later to make sure there were no witnesses.

Posted by Rob Payne at January 16, 2009 10:14 PM

Jon, you posted a comment a week ago saying that there is reason to hope and that things often do get better. If you truly believe that, it's not showing up on your front page. Could you tell us what it is you find encouraging?

I love your blog -- Platonically of course -- but it's getting unrelentingly grim. If you really are hopeful, I'm sure I'm not the only one here who would like to see things from your point of view.

Posted by Carl at January 17, 2009 02:34 AM

Save the Oocytes,

Well, they’re a little on the stringy side. Actually I like violas, my apologies to violists everywhere.

Posted by Rob Payne at January 17, 2009 06:36 AM

It's funny that relentless negativity should come up. Where many people see that, I often see a metaphor best described as a floor wax and a dessert topping. Both are characterizations. Both are entirely subjective. Both can be asserted to have been seen without regard to anything that's actually there. But please! Don't try doing do that at home. I did, and I wound up severely depressed, with pound cake covered in mop-n-glo.

Posted by Harold M at January 17, 2009 07:56 AM

Carl, point taken. There are many positive things happening that I'm ignoring. But in my defense, it's hard to see the attack on Gaza, combined with Obama's predictable silence, and not be disheartened. And it's not just the immediate human suffering; we're all going to be paying the price for this for a long time to come.

Beyond that, I actually am shocked at the lies about Iran -- both that they're being told and that only three people seem to care about it.

Posted by Jonathan Schwarz at January 17, 2009 09:16 AM

Take heart, Jon. The good news is that "many try to use the UN to . . . condemn our ally Israel." The UN is becoming less of a US agent, which is putting the Rices on the back burner. (sorry)

Also the part about redoubling our efforts to ensure that the United Nations lives up to its founding principles is good, particularly if it includes the conditions listed first in the preamble:
* to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and
* to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small, and
* to establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained, and
* to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom

As well as Art 2, Para 3:
All Members shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered.

Posted by Don Bacon at January 17, 2009 11:46 AM

Of the UN Charter, that is.

Posted by Don Bacon at January 17, 2009 11:48 AM

I, for one, see no reason for optimism, Gaza and Iran notwithstanding.

Obama is the political equivalent of Febreez.

USer politics now SMELLS a little better, enough that if you didn't SEE the shit in the bed, you'd almost believe it had been un-shit.

Nobody achieves the status of a leader of either of the two "parties" of authoritarian/or corporatist hegemony who poses, or even might possibly pose, the LEAST, the tiniest challenge or threat to the ruling order. And nobody else can get the power.

I mean it in the nicest possible--albeit cynical--way: I suspect Obama is the ultimate token: He makes things LOOK much better, without fundamentally changing any of the dominant structures...

Posted by woody at January 17, 2009 11:49 AM

After 1989 the UN has become much more of a US agent, for obvious reasons. The sole superpower and all that. Maybe it's becoming less so now, but it still has tremendous power, far greater than it had during the cold war.

Posted by abb1 at January 17, 2009 12:16 PM

Jon: I'd long believed that black women named Rice who are willing to be appalling hacks to rise to the top of the foreign policy establishment are a precious national resource.

They've finally determined that Condoleezza Rice is a woman? I thought the question was insoluble.

Carl: I take your point too, and I know I'm responsible for some of that grimness (though I blame reality). Personally, though, I've never read ATR for hopefulness or encouragement, but for Jon's ability to combine useful information with humor. Which I think he did very well in this posting.

The Internet's overflowing with outlets for hopefulness these days, but outlets for brutal honesty with a dash of slapstick are still rare.

Posted by John Caruso at January 17, 2009 12:19 PM

abb1,
If the UN isn't becoming an unreliable US agent then why does the US dump on it, and why does the US depend more and more upon an expanded NATO for its military activities, and why are both US political parties advocating a "concert of democracies" that would effectively bypass the UN?

Posted by Don Bacon at January 17, 2009 12:26 PM

Whatever you got - you want more, I guess.

Posted by abb1 at January 17, 2009 01:05 PM

Jon: I actually am shocked at the lies about Iran

I'm honestly not shocked. I thought both Obama and Clinton said those same things during the campaign, just as they stuck to the putrid "war on terror" formulation that keeps us stuck inthe ditch.

Glenn Greenwald linked to your post on the Iran nuclear lies, if it's any comfort. But maybe you were counting him among the three?

Posted by Nell at January 17, 2009 04:51 PM

Don Bacon: why are both US political parties advocating a "concert of democracies" that would effectively bypass the UN?

Don, I'm unaware of any Democrats advocating this. I remember McCain pushing it during the campaign. Could you provide a cite?

Posted by Nell at January 17, 2009 04:57 PM

Jon S., you realize that while she's off your teevee she'll be working on her book that explains how she tried to stop the Iraq war and is proud that Junior killed somewhat fewer people than he would have had she not been around.

And if you threw a shoe at her* at your local Barnes and Noble, all the nice liberals present would be mortified.

(*Not that you would, but I wouldn't put it past Caruso.)

Posted by The reading is fundamental Versen at January 17, 2009 09:26 PM

Thanks for your comment Jon. I'm glad I'm not the only only who's surprised by the Dems' position on Iran and the ho-hum it's received. People often accuse me of being cynical, but stuff like this makes me feel like a naive child.

John Caruso:The Internet's overflowing with outlets for hopefulness these days...


Not sure what you're talking about, unless you mean the sites that think Santa Clause is real and will arrive January 20. I'm not asking for fairy tales, but if Jon sees a lot of hopeful things, maybe he could share some of that with us once a month.

Posted by Carl at January 18, 2009 08:23 AM