Victoryish, and other short notes

President Obama’s announcement of the end of the Iraq War raises a number of issues. First, it’s only sort-of true as long as the AUMF for Iraq remains in effect. And even if it is over, how should we commemorate the end of a huge mistake? AlterNet summarizes the enormous costs and the minimal benefits. And Mark Fiore imagines President Obama declaring “Victoryish!”

Whenever liberals propose taxing the rich, conservatives say higher rates will prevent small businesses from hiring more people. NPR went looking for actual small businesspeople who would say the same thing, and couldn’t find them.

Gar Alperovitz, whose book Unjust Desserts I reviewed a while ago, had an NYT op-ed proclaiming co-ops as the way of the future. I want to believe, Gar. I really do.

The Rick Perry parodies continue to role in. A Democratic candidate for Congress made one. And Scott Bateman cartooned over the Perry audio.

Take the quiz: What kind of liberal are you? (I come out as a “working class warrior”.)

It’s not just anecdotal any more: The EPA links fracking to water contamination.

Unlike most conservative columnists, Ross Douthat occasionally provides some insight I find interesting. Like this one: Ron Paul represents what Tea Partiers imagine themselves to be, while Newt Gingrich is what liberals imagine Tea Partiers are.

The columns of Grist’s Greenie Pig (a.k.a. Elisabeth Kwak-Hefferan) examine that very important question: How do you achieve a more sustainable lifestyle without being a superior jerk about it? In this one, she explores the etiquette of bringing re-usable leftover containers to restaurants.

Retired air force Lieutenant Colonel William J. Astore coins a different usage of the 99%/1% split: The 1% who fight our wars and the 99% whose lives are virtually unaffected by them.

We’ve chosen -— or let others do the choosing —- to remove ourselves from all the pain and horror of the wars being waged in our name. And that’s a choice we’ve made at our peril, since a state of permanent remote war has weakened our military, drained our treasury, and eroded our rights and freedoms.

What happens, Astore wonders, if the military 1% becomes sufficiently estranged from the rest of us that they become the troops of the economic 1%, who are “already so eager to call out the police to bully and arrest occupy movements in numerous cities across this once-great land”?

His solution: End all “wars of choice” whose goals are too nebulous and ephemeral to hold the attention of the general public.

Rest in peace, Joe Simon, who gave us Captain America.

A unique take on the nominating process comes from ex-senator and presidential wannabee Gary Hart:

The reason for the current confusion in the Republican nomination race has to do with the confused coalition the current party has become. It is now made up of a variety of factions that have no economic or social cement that holds them together.

Hart goes on to list them: “conservative Protestant evangelicals, neoconservative foreign policy and national security hawks, the Tea Party, much but not all of Wall Street, many of Main Street’s small business owners, libertarians and cultural conservatives”

Less important historically than who the eventual nominee will be is whether the nominating coalition proves strong enough to take over the national Republican party and control it for a number of elections and decades to come.

Why am I not surprised that President Obama and I like the same TV shows?

I got last week’s vocabulary term news desert, from Tom Stites. This week he elaborated in an article at the Nieman Journalism Lab. That was part of a 3-article series you can find here.

It’s time to remind you of my various holiday pieces: Midwinter recreates a pre-Christian winter solstice, and Carol at Christmas is one of my Mike DeSalvo stories. Ghosts of the Unitarian Christmas is my Dickens parody for UUs.

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  • macduff40  On December 19, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    [Working Class Warrier] Me Too

  • Kim Cooper  On December 22, 2011 at 12:34 am

    “The Rick Perry parodies continue to role in”

    I believe you meant “roll”.


  • By Pressures From Below « The Weekly Sift on December 19, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    […] Victoryish, and other short notes. What’s the right way to mark the end of the Iraq War? NPR can’t find the jobs that a millionaires’ tax would kill. Are co-ops the future? More Rick Perry parodies. Links to my holiday stories. And more. […]

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