January 28th, 2003

angry - books

Honestly, i thought he did a good job.

I was tempted to clap a couple of times near the end (though good God i was tired of people clapping every two minutes) because i thought he did a really good job of explaining why we should go to war on Saddam. Starting with all the ways he hasn't disarmed, that that was a condition of the U.N. was really good. And i loved the bit about how the inspectors aren't supposed to be going on a scaveneger hunt, they are supposed to just verify that Saddam is indeed disarming. Then, of course, Saddam is an evil man. Regardless of whether you think war is the answer, he is not someone to support. And i thought the tying together of the terrorism associated with September 11th and Saddam's weapons production -- having weapons of mass destruction not only means that you can use them but that you can sell them to other people to use. And look, we mentioned all of the "axis of evil" (though no mention of Osama bin Laden). One thing he didn't mention is that while we hate North Korea and they're evil and all, because they have nuclear weapons (which they, like Saddam, claimed to not be building) we can't just all out war on them. We have to be more timid, and we don't want to get to that place with Iraq. I've heard that we've left Afghanistan in the lurch as far as rebuilding goes, which if true (Bush's speech implied otherwise) is a shame, and definitely something we should not do with Iraq. Overthrowing evil regimes is not the only work a superpower has.

Another main point of mine is that i really hated watching the State of the Union address in the TV room with about a half a dozen other Smithies. I really do not want to hear anyone bitch about how stupid and everything the President is. Do i care that he looks like a monkey and some people claim he used to snort coke? No, i really fucking don't. (Okay, so the latter point, while farfetched, is important if true in the context of the "war on drugs," but otherwise....) I do not want to hear you laugh every time he stumbles over something in his speech (which happened rarely, and really people, have you never stumbled in a speech?). Was i cynical about a lot of the stuff he proposed? Yes, of course i am. I would be regardless of who was talking. I think the tax cuts are problematic because taxes pay for important services. I think that even if he does follow through on the good sounding stuff he proposed (fuel efficiency, mentors, etc.) it's potentially problematic because money for programs has to come from somewhere and sometimes programs are only bandaid solutions and so on and so forth, but i'm not going to write off everything he says as b.s. just because i happen to not like him. Did the religious references make me twitch? Yes. But i respect the tradition of compassion and justice and all that in Christianity. I still identify as a Christian. I don't think it was problematic enough to be cut out of his speech (i'm fairly certain he didn't attribute a belief in God or anything to the American people as a whole). My weirdest moment was "there's power, wonderworking power, in the" strength or compassion or whatever of the American people. Bev's favorite song much, mom? I'm sure there's some other nitpicky stuff i'm leaving out, but honestly, i thought it was good.

[Okay, now to see what everyone else has to say.]

I wonder if i could move to a convent somewhere.

I have a lot of liberal friends (props to the balanced criticism, btw, sarrin), plus i go to Smith of all places, so i expect my head is gonna start hurting in about 5 minutes. I'm hardly about to become a scary conservative, but processing everything and making it all fit is gonna be quite a task. My door is closed because i can only deal with so much. I expect i'm gonna be doing a lot of bucking the tide of public opinion in the next week. I don't even wanna call it devil's advocacy, because i'm not necessarily saying "one could make the argument that such-and-such, but i'm not." Maybe i am, maybe i'm not. The point is that a lot of what people say is gonna make me twitch (as is true of me and the Left so much recently), even if i do actually agree with some (or even a lot) of what they're saying.