What struck me most about Vladimir Putin’s open letter to America was the totally rational, factual way in which it was stated. There was no demagoguery or attempts to sell any grand vision. Hell, he even gave us a blunt Fight Club-esque “You’re Not Special” line near the closing. Granted, most of our countrymen probably got to the part where he discussed how the League of Nations failed because of the refusal of states to comply with international law and had no idea what he was talking about. “Oh, yeah. I saw that. Sean Connery was in it. I read on IMDB that he quit doing movies because it was so awful. So what does that Dracula guy want us to do now?” For the first time, like, ever, we have seen a head of state address the American people as adults. No American president has ever bothered to try as far as I can remember. Most foreign leaders, when they do address us through the media, throw in a lot of the “We Will Bury You” or “You Will Face the Mother of All Battles” rhetoric. Anyway, it was a nice change of pace. Fortunately, the American people don’t need to be convinced that this Syrian civil war matter is an unwanted mess. I think Putin knows that we’re sick of Obama’s babbling and he just wanted to enjoy screwing with him one more time on his own goal line.
All of it overshadows Benghazi, which was discussed on Fox News back on the 11th. Any year we can make it through the Black Anniversary without a new reason to mourn, blame, or duck and cover is a good one. Speaking of ducking and covering, Comet ISON draws near. History shows that comets are often regarded as bad omens. I’ll admit that I have an affinity for superstition, but I don’t need a big cosmic dust bunny to tell me that the crazy on Earth is plowing right for the sun. Some of the UFO crowd believes that ISON is a mothership or a lost planet but that’s pretty dumb, given that they should know full well that alien craft move way faster than that. A conspiracy conundrum. Either way, I’m keeping my tinfoil doom helmet close by. Even superstitious people can be reasonable though. Here we just had the Pope acknowledge that an atheist can go to heaven. He’s anti-Syria intervention too, so yay, Holy Father.
Back to that other thing, did you notice that Obama’s speech was all about dead children and our moral imperative to enforce international law for their sake while Putin was all about how you can’t enforce international law unless you actually comply with the same standards of international law that your country agreed to when the UN Security Council was established? That was a good counter-point, under the circumstances.
I’m sympathetic to the Obama Administration’s mental fog. My work schedule is going as predicted a couple of months back and I’m a bit strung out. The past few weeks have been a blur of rumors of war, demoralization in the office, and Miley Cyrus with devil horns or something. And who finds twerking sexy, by the way? Do we have anyone in the audience who actually gets aroused by spasms? Because you know if somebody actually did that on your crotch, you’d probably get hurt a bit. No, slow and deep is the way to go. Hey, but what do I know? I’m not much of a dancer.
Not like Snowden or even his erstwhile buddies in the NSA. Both of them break the law with impunity. Putin clearly has no problem with Snowden and the NSA’s ethics are probably pretty familiar to him, even if they probably have better toys. But still, he gets to lecture our government about international norms of behavior. I’m not saying he’s right or a nice guy with good policies toward his own citizens, I’m just saying that the US government is more wrong any way you want to examine it. Even Assad is getting in on the fun by condemning the Administration for arming the rebels. This is directly what was related to Ambassador Stevens’s activities in Benghazi, in all likelihood. Ouch.
As I write this, one of my associates just emailed to ask me if I would come in four hours early to cover for him while he goes to an appointment. Sure, why not? I’m salaried and so far in the hole right now for compensation time. “What difference does it make?”, as Hillary Clinton might say. Nobody has had time to take for personal business, you know. She did a relatively good job as Secretary of State, compared to her successor. Personally, I suspect he’s less of a moron than a drunk incompetent. I’m not one to judge, but I’ve never tried to exercise international diplomacy after three or four highballs. It’s sort of like the part in Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy when Arthur Dent realizes that he just paralyzed the ship’s computer with the problem of trying to learn how to make tea while they’re under attack by the Vogons and he has that flashback about accidentally scoring against his own team in a childhood soccer game. He thinks of all the kids yelling at him for being such a jerk. That was probably Kerry’s reception when he got back to the White House after accidentally thwarting the war his Administration was trying to bring.
Was there a comet in that book? I’m wanting to say no. It’s a good one though. Great characters, fun story. Lots of doom and the specter of destruction for the entire universe. Kind of like the latest fiscal cliff negotiations. This prospect of looming disaster keeps coming up with all the reliability of so much ongoing George Zimmerman drama. You wouldn’t ordinarily think that a nation that has no idea how to even pay the interest on its own debt would go around starting all new wars, but there we are. Much like how people who are already overworked should probably not accept more. You do bizarre things when you’re in over your head.
Got any music for me to listen to later?