I wish I could laugh
but that joke isnâ€™t funny anymore
itâ€™s too close to home
and itâ€™s too near the bone
itâ€™s close to home
and itâ€™s too near the bone
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â . . . more than youâ€™ll ever know . . .Â
â€œThat Joke Isnâ€™t Funny Anymoreâ€ The Smiths (Morrissey and Marr)
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Iâ€™m supposed to be snarky here, I know.Â But Iâ€™m fresh out of snark.
See, the ridiculous circus that the U.S.A. has become in the last six years has just about wrung out every ounce of laughter in me.Â And the past week has turned me into a full-fledged, chuckle-free zone.
What did me in was the culmination of the events of last week with this morningâ€™s headline in the Austin American-Statesman: U.S. to Monitor Blackwater.
â€œWhat the f–?!â€Â I said.Â The Dude was reading the front page and it was the first thing that caught my eye.
â€œYeah,â€ he said.Â â€œOur troops are going to be sent along with Blackwater security details.â€
“Color me confused,â€ I said.Â â€œBut why havenâ€™t we FIRED THEIR ASSES!â€
â€œThis is why you shouldnâ€™t read the paper first thing in the morning.Â It makes you yell.â€
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Blackwater has been operating in Iraq with almost complete immunity from any of their actions.Â Please explain to me the freaking insane clown-logic the legislature and Bush administration used to make the decision NOT to pull every one of Blackwaterâ€™s contracts, but decided instead to send our soldiers along with these asshats to keep an eye on them?Â
(Blackwater has been so successful in no small part because itâ€™s a killer-for-hire outfit cloaking itself in right-wing-Christian mufti.Â The founder of Blackwater is Erik Prince, a fundamentalist millionaire who is butthole buddies with Gary Bauer.Â Lovely.Â â€˜Cause nothing says â€œLove Thy Neighborâ€ quite like putting a bullet between his eyes.)
But letâ€™s not be coy about this anymore.Â Part of the reason thereâ€™s a need for outfits like Blackwater in Iraq is that the recruitment levels are down and our forces are stretched to the breaking point.Â And the reason that military recruitment is down is that it has finally gotten bad enough in Iraq that no one can even pretend itâ€™s anything other than a cluster fuck. (For those of you with a more sensitive bent, insert: quagmire.)
But letâ€™s be honest here.Â Blackwater is in Iraq just like Halliburton is in Iraq.Â Because Uncle Samâ€™s money spigot is on and itâ€™s time to fill up before the faucet gets shut off.Â (Blackwater was even in New Orleans post-Katrina. Â Please tell me why we had hired mercenaries policing United States citizens.Â Oh never mind, thereâ€™s no good answer to that.Â No, donâ€™t even try.)
We have come to a sorry pass in 2007 when our cowardly legislators and BushCo will send under-paid, under-armed, over-extended soldiers to babysit thugs-for-hire rather than take on those well-connected thugsâ€™ bosses.Â We might as well be pissing on the heads of those under-paid, under-armed, over-extended soldiers.
Yeah, and those of us who want to bring our troops home are the anti-soldier ones.
Oh, and Captain Bunnypants vetoed the SCHIP bill on Thursday.Â â€˜Cause as if treating our soldiers like ass isnâ€™t enough, we should make certain that poor children donâ€™t get medical insurance.Â Because, you know, if poor children have medical insurance, the terrorists win.Â Â Â Â