Spanish Town, Jamaica
"IT WAS the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way- in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only."
God Dickens was a genius!! I had (hmm... seems to be a cliche on this thread) decided to stay out of this one but...
Another quote, a la Rodney King: "Can't we all just get along?"
Firstly I must say that intolerance is showing it's ugly head around here. At one point while I was reading, I started wondering when Ron would step in to act in his Umpire's role but maybe the arrangement around venting in the Alley is a little looser than I thought (let me assure everyone that that was NOT a sarcastic comment... tempers are a little high in here so I just thought I should declare that)
I see nothing wrong with the original post, quite frankly. In fact I would have added that a level of incompetence, bordering on stupidity, in safeguarding the heritage of three thousand years, has resulted in much of the history of mankind going up in flames or into thieves' hands. One wonders if there was something deliberate about this.
Now I know that my last statement may result in an online butt-kicking but I am from the school that teaches that saying what you honestly think is not a crime. Of course there are exceptions to every rule but somehow I do not think this is one of them. Lets face it, Americans are ultra-sensitive right now. They are ultra-sensitive to the point of near paranoia BECAUSE of (I believe) inept foreing policies and diplomatic practices by thier Government. How so? Simple: The foreign policies practiced by Bush et al have resulted in world disapproval, which has resulted in Americans feeling threatened which... need I say more? The last poll I saw, said that 70% of Americans approved of Bush and his policies but I think that it is high time that US citizens start wondering what went wrong after 9/11. Lets face it people, there has never before been such an outpouring of love and support for the United States as happened after 9/11. The ENTIRE world, save a mere few, was behind America, INCLUDING France, Russia, and Germany and Canada. I read so much about cooperation from those countries in trying to catch those responsible for the horror of 9/11.
Which brings me to my Dicken quote... It was the best of times (in terms of support) for America, in the worst of times (in terms of the events of 9/11 AND in terms of the inability of the US government to make the best of that support) In plain terms, the Bush administration dropped the ball. Period. So why, you ask, do so many Americans support the Bush administration? Elementary, my dear Watson: After what happened at the WTC, Americans are in an extremely sensitive collective state of mind. They see their country and their way of life as under threat from any many (?) directions. It is human nature for people in a situation like that to be apprehensive. It is also human nature for people in situations like that to look for strong leadership and like him or not, in George Bush they see strong leadership. Trouble is, in George Bush they also have wrong leadership...
Any man who can be called The Leader of The Free World must have certain attributes which few others have. One of these is the ability to be calm in the eye of a storm and to see the bigger picture at ALL times. He cannot afford to be totally parochial. I said in an earlier post some weeks ago that the business of America is the business of the world. What George Bush did was to forget this and the result is costing the US in terms of goodwill. Quite frankly, Bush's handling of the whole situation ie. post 9/11 and Iraq, has been rather myopic and ordinary from a man who is expected to be all seeing and extra-ordinary.
It is easy, and expected for Americans to think that anyone who criticises Bush is snubbing America. Those of us who know better, should not allow this to deter us from speaking our minds and saying what needs to be said without allowing ourselves to get emotional too. Aenimal, I understand how you feel as a Canadian (quite similarly to the Americans I suppose, with the whole SARS thing right now) but don't hold anything against our American friends (and they ARE our friends) I think history will show them what you and so many others are seeing now.
[This message has been edited by morefiah (04-28-2003 12:28 PM).]