1.27.2005

not trying to nitpick


but this kind of thing really gets on my nerves. Again yesterday, president bush spoke of what a great thing elections in Iraq are. I won't argue with that, I don't think the elections will change anything but it's still a good thing. Eh, hopefully. But what bugs me is when people repeat over and over that holding elections is a first for Iraq.

Yesterday bush said of the elections:
If we'd been having this discussion a couple of years ago and I'd have stood up in front of you and said the Iraqi people would be voting, you would look at me like some of you still look at me, with a kind of blank expression.
The poor man doesn't even realize that people look at him with a blank stare for the simple fact that he rarely makes any sense but I'd hate to be the one to tell him. What bugs me is the way he and others often tend say that the upcoming election of National Assembly members is going to be a first. This time he even goes so far as to say that the very idea of Iraqis voting would have been ridiculous a couple of years ago.

Ok, maybe he means that we had screwed Iraq up so bad by invading a couple of years ago that no one believed they would have gotten their election process going again by now, but we all know he doesn't mean that. What he is saying over and over again is that, until now, the very idea of Iraqis ever being able to hold elections was just plain crazy until we made it possible.

But, as I've pointed out before, Iraq had been holding National Assembly elections every four years since 1980. The last time was in 2000 and they would have held another last year if we hadn't invaded the country and screwed everything up.

These elections weren't perfect by any means. As I've mentioned, candidates were required to swear loyalty to the Baathist party in front of a panel of officials before they could be considered for the ballot. But the fact remains that Iraqis are no strangers to the voting process. They just didn't have a lot of choice who to vote for. These new elections that are taking place in three days are almost as screwy since most of the candidates haven't even released their name, but that's a whole 'nother topic altogether.

I just can't help but think it's sort of insulting to say that Iraqis didn't know how to vote until we showed them. I could understand if bush said that this will be the first time that Iraqis are going to be free to vote for whoever they want, or that this is the first time that the elections are not going to be corrupt, but he never does. He just keeps repeating that Iraqis are going to be able to vote for the first time in history.

Things like this really get on my nerves. Say it once and maybe it's a mistake. Repeat it over and over again and you're either a fool or a liar.

1.26.2005

... and millions rejoice


AOL has announced that it is discontinuing USENET access in February. Just like waxy, my first reaction was to note that this would semi-officially end the "September that never ended." Maybe Bush has been right all along, evil can be defeated!

1.25.2005

sadly true


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1.24.2005

Always on the run


There are a lot of websites out there that are good little informational pages but there are few that are vast resources. AlwaysOnTheRun.net is the latter.

I've plugged this site before because it seems like every time I hear a cool new artist, alwaysontherun is the only place with the lyrics. It's as if they just know who I am going to like and get the lyrics on there just before I discover them so they're the only place that has the words to the new songs I'm looking for.

Their taste seems to overlap mine so much that in the past I've tried to browse the site and find new artists that I may be interested in but, unless I was just doing something horribly wrong, they had a terrible format that more or less consisted of nothing more than a message board and I couldn't find much of anything.

Now it seems they've revamped the site. The front page has a big list of all their lyrcs and it includes just about all the great new artists I've discovered on my own over the past year or so. They even have some that I thought no one else had heard of before, like Cocorosie, Elysian Fields, Hooverphonic, and Handsome Boy Modeling School. Ok, they dont have Ella Blame, Minus Story or Tweet yet, but if anyone from these groups read this site, and I know at least one does, I think you need to get your lyrics on AlwaysOnTheRun because that site is like the hangout for cool.

Sunshine


Here's another cool song from Handsome Boy Modeling School.

Handsome Boy Modeling School - Sunshine. It even has Father Guido Sarducci in it so you know it's cool. That sounds like it would make it silly, but it's actually a very cool groove.
Sunshine

"Everybody used to think of him as..
well more like a bum, sort of, a musical bum..
than anything else"

[singing]
Your love, is my sanity
Your love, brings me sunshine
I like what you do to me
I like what you give to me
I wander through this world
Needing you so much
I wander through this world
Dreaming of your touch

[both]
If I could see you again..
If I could just see you again..

Forget about your sorrows
Forget about your heartache
Life is nothing but a shadow
("Ooooh-weeee man!"}
Forget about your worries
Forget about the bad times
Life is nothing but a shadow..
("Ooooh-weeee man!"} ..without your sunshine

[Father Guido Sarducci]
Everybody's been wondering where you been
and, now that we know what happened
We're all wondering where you are
And even though we feel bad we won't be seein you around anymore
We want you to know we feel better, we won't have to worry anymore

[singing]
There's a new star, in the night sky
Could it be you, making me so high
Shine on, shine on, shine on, shine on
Shine on and on and on and on and on..

[both]
If I could see you again..
If I could just see you again..

Forget about your sorrows
Forget about your heartache
Life is nothing but a shadow
("Ooooh-weeee man!"}
Forget about your worries
Forget about the bad times
Life is nothing but a shadow..
("Ooooh-weeee man!"} ..without your sunshine

[Father Guido Sarducci]
We know your only worry now is,
you worrying about us worrying about you
And even though we stopped worrying,
it doesn't we're not still sad
And we're happy to let you know that, we always will be

[Sean Lennon]
I used to think time, was on my side
I used to think the world, could be so kind
That was another day..
That was another time..

[both]
If I could see you again..
If I could just see you again..

Forget about your sorrows
Forget about your heartache
Life is nothing but a shadow
("Ooooh-weeee man!"}
Forget about your worries
Forget about the bad times
Life is nothing but a shadow..
("Ooooh-weeee man!"} ..without your sunshine

Less than a week until the Iraqi election


and I'm becoming no more optimistic. I've no doubt Bush will make a big deal of the elections, like he did of the "handover of power" back on June 30th. His scribbling of "Let freedom reign" was released to the press faster than you could say "eh... don't you mean ring?" I'm sure we'll see a big bruhaha again as he pats the wogs on the back for "embracing freedom", or some other empty phrase.

The big election isn't quite as comforting to the Iraqis. As Juan Cole reports today...
... a member of the leadership of the Iraqi National Accord (Allawi's party) said Sunday that if other parties win, it will provoke a civil war.

Well, I guess they already have American-style democracy. This reminds me of Cheney saying that the US would be struck by terrorists if John Kerry were elected.
I'd say for an Iraqi it can be a bit disillusioning to see a former Baathist hit man and CIA stooge like Allawi promising security and prosperity if elected, and promising civil war if others win, but Riverbend, who says they are threatening to cut off the food supplies of people who don't vote, sums up the thoughts of many Iraqis today: "We've given up on democracy, security and even electricity. Just bring back the water."

I always thought that 'freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose' was just a dumb song lyric, but maybe it means more to an Iraqi who is threatened to stay home but starved into voting for unknown people and has to listen people like Bush pat himself on the back for spreading freedom and liberty.

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