Man, I don’t know about this war. The longer it goes on, the less and less progress I see. Now, I know that’s just me – and I’m not as educated on things as some may be. But the daily bodycounts reported on CNN and other news outlets seems to recall Vietnam just a little too closely. (I know you’re not supposed to start a sentence with “but,” but sometimes it just makes so much sense. “However” can get overused and there’s not really another easy contrasting lead-in. Anyway, Stephen King does it – and he makes millions, so I’m OK with it.)
I really don’t know where I stand on this war. In general, I’m against war – like I think any intelligent person would be. Then again, I realize that not all situations can be resolved in a peaceful manner – and that sometimes you need to take action. I think most people with a little intelligence would take a stance somewhere in the “fighting sucks, but I won’t just roll over” vein. Protecting yourself, or someone helpless, seems OK to me. But fighting should be used only as a last resort. I know, it’s an over-simplified outlook on the whole thing – but I’m not trying to solve the whole war and peace thing right here and now.
This war, however, seems a little less than “right” to me. I realize these people were under the rule of a tyrannical dictator. I realize that freedom to do and think as you please is important, and that all people deserve it. I realize that without that oppressive leader in place, the people of Iraq stand a better chance of gaining some of those all-important freedoms. However, I’m not entirely sure that our purpose over there was that noble. And I’m not so blindly optimistic as to think that those freedoms will be miraculously bestowed after a few months of military “house cleaning.” And will those freedoms now come with new strings attached?
I don’t think I’m too hung up on the “Bush lied about WMD” thing, for a couple reasons. 1. He could have. 2. We would’ve gone anyway. Yes, I agree Bush may have used a lot of misdirection to try and gather national and international support for the war agenda. But if it wasn’t the threat of WMDs or harboring terrorists, it would’ve been another reason. Did he lie to his country and the world?, perhaps he did. But shit, you’re telling me that world leaders don’t bend the facts to suit national agenda? C’mon. Even the UN didn’t buy the immediacy that Bush placed on Iraq’s WMD prospects – so there was no way I’d be jaded enough to buy it. But, shock and horror, presidents lie too. Bush said Iraq WMD, Clinton said he didn’t sex up Monica, Reagan couldn’t recall if they sold guns to those contras, and Nixon wasn’t a crook. Problem is, people are dying.
Now we’re screwed though. We went in and fucked up that whole country. Shook the leaves off the Baath party tree and are busy installing a more “friendly” government. We exploded peoples’ houses and buildings, cut the power, changed the lives of a whole country full of people in a matter of weeks. We stirred up the beehive, and before things get any better – they are going to get really turbulent. Meanwhile, we’ve got people dying – not at the atrocious rates we saw in Vietnam, but they are still people. People from all over the world are there and are dying to help “rebuild” this country. I just hope it’s worth it. Saddam was bad, his ruling party was bad, and the people will be better off being out from under their rule… right? I’m just not sure which way the balance works out.
See what I mean? I can’t really articulate my position that well. We’re there now, and we better be committed to fixing what Saddam and we ourselves did to bring that country to the ruined state it’s in now. I’ve got asinine friends at work who think we should “turn that whole desert to glass.” Y’know, drop a nuke on all those “camel-jockeys” and be done with the whole dirty, evil, ignorant lot of them. I can’t believe there are people who think like this. As long as Anheuser-Busch keeps putting Bud Light in cans and there’s a Winston Cup race every week, the rest of the world can eat a big fat A-bomb. My God is more right and more just than your God, and the world would be a better place without you and your blasphemous country anyway. These are intelligent people too! Intelligent people who would actually support us annihilating an entire country full of people. Sweep that shit under the rug I guess. I can’t fathom that mindset. Ahh, but I’m getting off track now.
War is bad. Saddam was bad. Him being gone is good. People dying is bad. But what do we do now? Leave? That would be a worse fate than leaving Saddam in power. I’m just a dude with a very marginal knowledge of the politics and power that are in play here – but the previous paragraphs are my best attempt to categorize where I stand on the whole thing. What’s that? I didn’t clarify where I stand at all? Yeah… that sucks.
On to non-war talk. This weekend we went to see the movie “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.” Man, what a great film. I hate Jim Carey, but he did a great job in it. Really interesting. Since we didn’t go to Chowchilla as planned, I worked in the yard all weekend. On Saturday I bought all the parts for the sprinkler manifold and control valves for the backyard. Then put it all together and spliced it into the main water. Everything worked, and now I just have to connect the valves to the controller in the garage and lay the main pipe.
I had planned to rent a trencher and share it with Dan, since he’s doing sprinklers as well. We figured we could split the cost and save some money. Well, at the last minute Sunday I changed my mind and went ahead and rented one solo. It took me six hours of wrestling and fighting with that 400lbs beast of a machine to get all my trenches dug. And I still have another few hours of trench “cleanup” before I can actually put the pipe down. I’m physically drained from pushing and pulling that machine, it really beats you up. My yard is so unbelievably rocky that it’s akin to cutting through granite the entire time. There would’ve been no way Dan and I could’ve both got our trenching done in one day, so it’s a good think I rented it alone. In the end, I got all the trenches dug according to plan. I plan to use the light hours after work this week to clean up the trenches and layout the pipe for quick assembly.