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SHOCK AND AWE OVER GAZA — Jonathan Cook reports from the West Bank on How the Media and Human Rights Groups Cover for Israel’s War Crimes; Jeffrey St. Clair on Why Israel is Losing; Nick Alexandrov on Honduras Five Years After the Coup; Joshua Frank on California’s Water Crisis; Ismael Hossein-Zadeh on Finance Capital and Inequality; Kathy Deacon on The Center for the Whole Person; Kim Nicolini on the Aesthetics of Jim Jarmusch. PLUS: Mike Whitney on the Faltering Economic Recovery; Chris Floyd on Being Trapped in a Mad World; and Kristin Kolb on Cancer Without Melodrama.
Peaceniks Win War!

How Will We Loathe Thee?

by BEN TRIPP

Hey, gang! We won, if you don’t mind Pyrrhic victories. I feel like the guy at Hiroshima who was in a fart-lighting contest just as the A-bomb went off. His last words were “beat that”. In a topsy-turvy way that would baffle the Cheshire Cat, we who desire peace will triumph in the event of war. You see, if there’s a clear loser in the pending savagery, it’s George W. Bush and his administration of barking scrotum monsters.

Right now it doesn’t look like they’ve lost. They’ll have their war on Iraq; they will rain bombs down on that godforsaken patch of petroleum-soaked dirt and before you know it instead of the Iraqi population being 50% children, it will be 20% children, because kids can’t run as fast as adults. After a few days of hand-to-hand combat through the streets of once-legendary Baghdad it will all be over. But George never read the Arabian Nights- too long and too dirty. So he doesn’t know that Baghdad is infested with genies, and we’re not talking about the cute blue ones with ADD who talk like Robin Williams. The ones in Baghdad are the djinn, ancient magical spirits that inevitably trick their masters into self-destruction. Voila! Or if you’re Mozart, viola. But the effect is the same. George W. Bush has already lost the most important battle of all: the battle for the future.

Setting aside money and power for a moment (sometimes I do), what really matters to a guy like George is that he should someday join the pantheon of Great Americans whose marble busts inhabit the halls of our nation’s capitol. He’s got all the power and money he could ever misuse in a thousand lifetimes. What he needs now is to be honored by posterity. This is where he loses and we win. One could argue that George is a marble-headed bust already: that’s as close as he’ll come to being pals with posterity. Posteriority, yes. Posterity, no. He will not be remembered as a brave warrior, a noble patriot, a statesman, a father to his country, a son of God, or even a well-meaning delusional psychotic. He will be remembered as an asshole- and that’s exactly how it will read in the history textbooks, although they’ll spell it a**hole so as to avoid mantling the kiddies’ cheeks with blushes.

In the future, assuming we can still hope for one, George XLIII’s reign will be derided, scorned, mocked, and other words to that effect. jeered and disparaged at the very least, maybe even subject to opprobrium. We– the unlikely alliance acting against his lunatic regime, we Liberals and Conservatives, Libertarians and Progressives and Pentagon generals and disenfranchised veterans, mothers, fathers, mimes, entomologists, podiatrists and transsexuals, all sons and daughters of a government that has turned its back on the principles upon which we were nurtured from cradle to shallow grave– we will bask in the hallowed light of kind remembrance, not George. A fat lot of good it will do us, but there we are. I didn’t say victory would be sweet. Those kids who took a bullet at Kent State? Martin Luther King? The Kennedy brothers? King Kong? They had to die at the hands of The Man to get immortal- it’s a mug’s game. George W. Bush, how will we loathe thee? Let me count the ways.

Foremost among his epic buggerations, history will record that Bush precipitated modern America’s first utterly unprovoked war and rekindled the arms race. Saddam’s not even a communist. A war of opportunity, possibly World War III: this is what Bush will be remembered for, not the inevitable victory over some whiskery homunculus in Baghdad. And that’s not all.

Another first: George will be remembered for reversing the outcome of both the Civil War and the Civil Rights movement. He will be remembered for mixing Church and State: his invisible cloud superhero and your tax dollars, together at last. He will be remembered for nose-diving the economy from a great height. For record deficits and massive bureaucratic expansion- he’ll knock Reagan off the charts. For 50 bankrupt states. He will be remembered for turning his back on treaties. For insulting great nations. For calling the leader of Russia ‘Pooty Poot’. For oppressing the weak and unleashing the mighty upon them. For eviscerating the Bill of Rights, and for secret detentions. For ignoring the desperate environmental crisis which grips the globe like a gut-spasming case of Montezuma’s Revenge. For slipping the government’s unclean fingers back into the womb of every woman in America. For stealing the election of 2000. For rigging the election of 2002, and probably for canceling the election of 2004. Need more? You can’t spin the history of the future, which will read something like this:

Bush, G.W. 43d American President (locum tenens)

In private life an unsuccessful oil executive, George W. Bush was installed as president of the United States by the Supreme Court in the year 2000. At first an ineffectual president both at home and abroad, he was invested following the terrorist acts of September 11, 2001 (see sidebar) with enormous political authority. Seizing opportunity in the name of fighting terrorism, Bush advanced an aggressive agenda to secure the world’s natural resources for private interests, especially the petroleum industry. After initiating a disastrous program of economic, military and diplomatic actions coupled with severe domestic security measures, Bush’s administration collapsed under a wave of scandals. The impact of his presidency on America’s international standing is still felt today. According to an obscure satirist of the period, “George W. Bush was the a**hole that ate the world.”

See also Stalin, J. and Hitler, A.

Just you wait and see. The genie is out of the bottle, and this is one bottle George won’t put down. Us real patriots, the dissidents, have already won- and we’ll get our country back someday. What’s left of it. Hell, in ten years we’ll be able to travel overseas again. History will smile on us. Meanwhile, buckle up your poniards, because we may have won the war, but the battle has only just begun.

BEN TRIPP can be reached at: credel@earthlink.net