Steve G.

Archive for January 29th, 2007|Daily archive page

I’m sick of Iraq.

In Uncategorized on January 29, 2007 at 5:51 am

The invasion of Iraq occurred when I was in seventh grade. Influenced by my incredibly conservative urban Dallas surroundings, I took George W. Bush’s words as absolute truth. My father, who described himself as “a bit of a pacifist”, wasn’t so sure about it, but my mother seemed pretty confident. I thus cheered the invasion.

At the end of my sophomore year of high school, somebody linked me to LP.org. I immediately recognized the platform as the true “conservative” principles my parents had taught me. I began to understand that there was no legitimate reason to have attacked Iraq.

Even after that, I occasionally read the monotonous reports of violence. “33 killed in Ramadi.” “67 killed in 3 bombs across Baghdad.” “Sectarian violence taints Iraqi military.” “US troops kill 20 insurgents across Sunni Triangle.” “5 US troops killed in violence across Iraq.” But I haven’t read one of those for almost a year and a half now. I know what it will contain. I know what I think about it. I know that there’s a slim possibility I could be drafted enslaved to contribute to it. But I’m sick of it. I don’t want to hear about it again.

Today, I clicked on a headline with Iraq and a number in it for the first time since sometime in 2005. At first, I was really confused why I had done that. Then I realized that it had caught my eye because the number was 3 digits this time.

I find it hard to believe that I’m unique here. In fact, I imagine many, if not most, Americans feel this way. So here, folks, is another argument against staying in Iraq: If you’re no longer shocked by all the carnage – if you, bluntly, no longer care – what the hell are you doing supporting the presence of a hundred thousand Americans, many of whom are your age (in my case) or your kids’ age (in the case of many others of you) someplace where they could be killed any second? You want them to die in your service, but you won’t mourn them when they die?

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I’m sick of Iraq.

In Uncategorized on January 29, 2007 at 5:51 am

The invasion of Iraq occurred when I was in seventh grade. Influenced by my incredibly conservative urban Dallas surroundings, I took George W. Bush’s words as absolute truth. My father, who described himself as “a bit of a pacifist”, wasn’t so sure about it, but my mother seemed pretty confident. I thus cheered the invasion.

At the end of my sophomore year of high school, somebody linked me to LP.org. I immediately recognized the platform as the true “conservative” principles my parents had taught me. I began to understand that there was no legitimate reason to have attacked Iraq.

Even after that, I occasionally read the monotonous reports of violence. “33 killed in Ramadi.” “67 killed in 3 bombs across Baghdad.” “Sectarian violence taints Iraqi military.” “US troops kill 20 insurgents across Sunni Triangle.” “5 US troops killed in violence across Iraq.” But I haven’t read one of those for almost a year and a half now. I know what it will contain. I know what I think about it. I know that there’s a slim possibility I could be drafted enslaved to contribute to it. But I’m sick of it. I don’t want to hear about it again.

Today, I clicked on a headline with Iraq and a number in it for the first time since sometime in 2005. At first, I was really confused why I had done that. Then I realized that it had caught my eye because the number was 3 digits this time.

I find it hard to believe that I’m unique here. In fact, I imagine many, if not most, Americans feel this way. So here, folks, is another argument against staying in Iraq: If you’re no longer shocked by all the carnage – if you, bluntly, no longer care – what the hell are you doing supporting the presence of a hundred thousand Americans, many of whom are your age (in my case) or your kids’ age (in the case of many others of you) someplace where they could be killed any second? You want them to die in your service, but you won’t mourn them when they die?

Canada: “We fucked up;” America: “Yay upfucking!”

In Civil Liberties, Constitutional Rights, Middle East on January 29, 2007 at 3:27 am

In a dramatic demonstration of why Canada is five places higher than us on the State of World Liberty Index, the Canadian government gave $8.9 million USD to Maher Arar, a Canadian citizen wrongly accused of terrorism, extradited to Syria, and tortured before being released in 2003.

Meanwhile, our government says he’s still a threat.

From CNN:

Canada’s prime minister apologized to Maher Arar on Friday and announced the government would compensate him C$10.5 million (US$8.9 million) for its role in his deportation from the U.S. to Syria, where he was tortured while held in prison for nearly a year.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper again called on the U.S. government to remove the Ottawa telecoms engineer from any of its no-fly or terrorist watchlists and reiterated that Ottawa would keep pressing Washington to clear Arar’s name.

“We think the evidence is absolutely clear and that the United States should in good faith remove Mr. Arar from the list,” Harper told a news conference in Ottawa. “We don’t intend to either change or drop our position.”

The U.S. government has repeatedly insisted it has reasons to leave the 37-year-old on its watchlists. The issue has grown into an unpleasant diplomatic row between the world’s largest trading partners and closest allies.

*sigh*

Alberto Gonzales, this is why students protest you when you speak at Georgetown. You may speak for the American government, but you do not speak for America.

IRS sucks life out of space too

In Taxation on January 29, 2007 at 3:07 am

What if you won a free trip to space, aboard one of the new private spacecraft being built by the likes of Burt Rutan?

What if you couldn’t go because you couldn’t afford the goddamn taxes?

Brian Emmett’s childhood fantasy came true when he won a free trip to outer space.

But the 31-year-old was crushed when he had to cancel his reservation because of Uncle Sam.

Emmett won his ticket to the stars in a 2005 sweepstakes by Oracle Corp., in which he answered a series of online questions on Java computer code.

He became an instant celebrity, giving media interviews and appearing on stage at Oracle’s trade show.

For the self-described space buff who has attended space camp and watched shuttle launches from Kennedy Space Center, it seemed like a chance to become an astronaut on a dime.

Then reality hit. After some number-crunching, Emmett realized he would have to report the $138,000 galactic joy ride as income and owe $25,000 in taxes.

Unwilling to sink into debt, the software consultant from the San Francisco Bay area gave up his seat.

“There was definitely a period of mourning. I was totally crestfallen,” Emmett said. “Everything you had hoped for as a kid sort of evaporates in front of you.”

Man, what a fucking killjoy. You gotta picture some IRS taxmonkey jacking off to this, too. I think they use human tears as medicine. What did the Fresno-bound motherfuckers have to say about it?

The IRS declined to comment, saying it does not talk about individual matters.

Someone needs to kill them in the face.