So, legally a lot of bad things are happening. As I mentioned in my last entry, there is work to pass a constitutional amendment to make flag burning illegal. There is also what may be a landmark supreme court ruling in the US allowing local government to use eminent domain to confiscate private property for use by developers and other private capital uses. Big business also now has enough power to feel comfortable with getting involved in national politics. Bloody plutocrats. Fortunately, at least a few people are able to speak out against some of the abuses.
The last point is on Iraq though, and I recently had a conversation with a friend of mine, a lady in her 70s or 80s who sometimes stops by Coffee Tree, on the war -- she didn't seem to be bothered at all that all the reasons for the war in Iraq were lies -- she wanted Saddam out of power because he was an opponent of Israel. Looking at the Wikipedia Article on Saddam (I suggest you read the whole thing -- it explains a lot of detail that most people, especially Americans, are clueless on and provides important historical context), I don't think he actually was a VERY bad leader -- given the circumstances, his means and ends seem, in most cases, to have been quite reasonable. I don't think one can reasonably assume that making any less harsh choices would have preserved the nation of Iraq, and one must note that the US and Europe both regularly deal with and support far worse powers when their economic or geopolitical interests are involved. I'm willing to go beyond the position I've heard often that the war in Iraq was a terrible mistake based on misleading information, lies, and intentional distortion. I'm willing to say, based on what I see, that Saddam was probably a pretty good leader of Iraq, that his supposed crimes were in fact necessary and (largely) appropriate responses for a nation trying to maintain integrity (although the right of nations to do this may bear further examination, somewhere else), and that his removal was unacceptable and likely harmful to Iraq.
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