By Mark Drolette
It is time to admit publicly that some of my predictions of the recent past did not manifest. I believed at one time or another:
• We would bomb Iran
• Republicans would steal (ano)the(r) election
• Martial law would be declared (justified by terrorist attack, avian flu or a sudden nationwide outbreak of critical thinking)
• The Giants would win the World Series (thankfully, my meds have since been adjusted)
Except for that last one, I don’t mind being flat-out wrong about such things, regardless how much my good reputation suffers. Or might, if I had one.
A primary personal prognostication, unfortunately, has come true. Long ago I said:
• The economy would tank
This was bold, too, considering no one in a million years could have foreseen that tax cuts for the rich, two stupid wars, letting Wall Street police itself and putting $40,000 vehicles on charge cards would have negative consequences.
The jury’s still out on other assertions, like this one: I frequently averred that, with the Bushies having done such a fine job of gutting the Constitution, it was dead forever. I am rethinking this. Perhaps if the dissembling disassemblers are prosecuted for, well, gutting the Constitution, as well as green-lighting constitutionally-prohibited torture (it’s that treaty thing) and committing war crimes, then maybe it could rise, phoenix-like, after all.
Sure, I realize it’d be much easier making a case against Dick Cheney and the sock puppet if, say, they’d outright admitted they’d authorized torture, but…
One thing anyone can predict: Barack Obama has his work cut out for him. It’s not easy taking a country gang raped by fascists for eight years and making it whole again. But forget the forecasts. Here are some outright suggestions for our new president (hey, an elected one, finally) if he wishes to make the United States as great as we keep telling ourselves it is/was/oughtta be:
• Get out of Iraq and Afghanistan now
• Close Guantánamo Bay now
• Repudiate all torture now (no exceptions, caveats or mulligans; torture ain’t golf although it does work the other way a round sometimes)
• Stop shoveling money to the military-industrial complex, for cryin’ out loud. The Pentagon budget gets yet another increase? O, say it ain’t so! If you insist on continuing this madness, Mr. President, at least have the fortitude to be truthful about it and rename the damn thing the Department of Offense
• Make a genuine effort to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli mess. How? Take half of the $3 billion or so we give Israel each year (almost all of which goes toward weaponry, much of which helps continue the occupation), earmark it for rebuilding the obliterated Palestinian infrastructure and then apply the pressure to both sides that still only the U.S. can apply to bring about a viable one-state solution. Given demographics, geography and decades of encroachment, creating a separate Palestinian state now is about as plausible as running into an ethics workshop at a GOP convention
• Assign a special prosecutor to investigate and then prosecute Bush, Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleezza Rice and all the other war-loving/profiteering barbarians
What, I already covered that one? Consider it a dishonorable mention, then, of an issue that should be pressed incessantly, actually.
For it’s The Biggie. Just because the chicken hawks have left the coop doesn’t mean they can’t peck out more trouble. After all, they’re peckers of the first order. (All complaints go to the editor.) People (and I use the term loosely) like Cheney, Elliott Abrams, Robert Gates, John Bolton, David Addington and John Negroponte, just to spew a few, didn’t simply pop out of some fetid hole somewhere. Well, OK, they did, but it was a while ago.
And that’s the point. They and others of ilk have caused trouble for a long, long time, with the preceding unusual suspects playing critical roles in Iran/Contra, just to pick a scandal, a breathtakingly unconstitutional gambit for which every perpetrator got off scot-free only to return to power later to wreak even worse damage.
The cycle must stop. Consequences must occur. Otherwise, these mad little men with their mad little minds will continue scheming until they once again maneuver back into position to pursue twisted dreams of ruling the world, thereby neutralizing whatever good Obama or others might do in the meantime. If these animals (and I use the term specifically) aren’t brought to justice for the carnage they’ve caused, here’s one prediction that’s sure-fire:
They’ll be back.
Copyright © 2009 Mark Drolette. All rights reserved.