Thursday, February 07, 2008

News and Stuff

So John McCain now has the Republican nomination all locked up. Mitt Romney packed it in today. No big loss. I've seen a few Romney bumper stickers around here and every single one - I'm not kidding - has been on a late-model Cadillac with an old white guy driving it. And yes, they were all different Cadillacs. We don't need a Prez who only represents the gated-community set. Goodbye Mitt, so long Mitt, don't let the door hit you on the way out.

The south got hit hard the other day with lots of tornados. Ever been through one? I have. Back in the mid-1970's, I used to work in a company in Olive Branch, Mississippi, which is just south of the TN-MS border at Memphis, the same area that got hit Tuesday. Our building was a big 4-story box, with two walls being brick and two walls being glass. One day somebody yelled that there was a tornado outside. So what did we do? We all ran over to the window to watch! Yessir, we sure did. I was standing there watching stuff flying around and then this big sheet of steel came flying through the air and sliced through the roof of the company president's car, like it wasn't even there. I turned around and went back to the middle of the room and hid under my desk until it was over. Afterwards, all the power was out, so we were sent home, and the devastation was amazing: houses demolished, trees down, cars upside down, trailer parks obliterated. Never want to see that again.

Speaking of stuff I never want to see again, I just read an article in Newsweek magazine that horrified me. Back in February, 2003, three US contractors were taken captive by the FARC guerrilla group in Colombia when their single-engine plane went down. Two other men in the plane, one American and one Colombian, were executed. Since then, President Bush has mentioned the three men exactly one time in public, when he was asked about it at a news conference. That seems to be the extent of American efforts to get the men back. There has been no negotiation between the US and the FARC, and no effort to work with any countries who could be an intermediary, even though at least three (France, Spain, and Switzerland) are available. This is obscene. The men are Americans, they are under contract with an American company, to the American government, and the American government is doing diddly squat to get 'em back. You can read all the details here. I urge you to write your Senators and Congressman to put pressure on the Administration to get their ass in gear. (My Senators won't: they're mindless Republican footsoldiers who march in lockstep to whatever George tells 'em, but you gotta tell 'em to do it, anyway.)

Tomorrow I'll post some cheerier thoughts. Promise.

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