Tenacious Tempest

May 6, 2012

Politics/Elections were in the cutting wind this weekend — President Obama kicked-off his re-run for the White House yesterday, now moving ‘Forward,’ mostly-due to the terrifying fact “…we can’t turn back now,” while across the ocean, six European nations are holding ballot-box shit today, including France’s voting whether they should glide left, or remain mon amour.
Greece and Italy are voting on the ‘austerity‘ of living on nothing.
Especially the Greeks.

And tomorrow, one of the longest-running knuckleheads on the planet, Vladimir Putin, will be inaugurated for a third term as president, but this morning the BBC reports of clashes already between protesters and police near the Kremlin, with opposition members staging a sit-in until Mr Putin’s inauguration was cancelled.
Brave, good intentions, but bat-shit crazy.

(Illustration found here).

Just discovered something wonderful — even if it’s drenched in way-black humor, and in reality, very sad.
From this twosome comedian/singers, ‘Garfunkel and Oates,’ a bad-funny video, parody of even self-parody.
Check it out at Firedoglake.
Truth in a shitload of irony.

And one major aspect of Obama’s continual move ‘Forward‘ should be way-fostered in climate change and how exactly can we pull the brakes on this runaway train — a pretty conclusive example of the urgency came this week in a new report that also glaringly once again revealed the actual whereabouts of climate change in time.
New studies on some aspect of climate science nowadays nearly-about-always prefaces that certain weather/climate shit is happening faster than earlier anticipated — odd, irritating and more than just-a-little frightening.
Via Think Progress:

“This suggests that predicted ecosystem changes — including continuing advances in the start of spring across much of the globe — may be far greater than current estimates based on data from warming experiments,” said Elizabeth Wolkovich, who led the interdisciplinary team of scientists behind the new research while she was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, San Diego.
“The long-term records show that phenology is changing much faster than estimated based on the results of the warming experiments.
This suggests we need to reassess how we design and use results from these experiments.”

In this instance, we really don’t need a NASA researcher (who did indeed aid in the above research) or any kind of rocket scientist to understand and relate to the results of the study — easy memories a couple of months ago of DC’s cheery blossom-bloom dates coming earlier this year because, according to Danielle Piacente of the National Park Service: “Overnight temperatures haven’t been low enough, they’ve been in the 50s. When it’s warm like that they don’t want to slow down.”
And the hot temperatures in March (15,000 new records) following ‘the winter that never was.’

Also catching heat again this past week was the late and not-at-all-so-great Osama bin Laden, who apparently even dead as re-surfaced alive inside US politics.
Obama’s been touting his killing of Osama in political ads, while Republicans like Karl Rove just can’t believe it.
Rove in a huge, nauseous wave of hypocrisy, claimed Obama’s cheering himself was a “dumb move” — strutting around like a way-mentally ill Tom Cruise on the deck of a US aircraft carrier isn’t?

Osama’s final days, however, weren’t all that glorious.
Noted correspondent Patrick Cockburn checks out the al-Qeada’s leader’s life near the end.
Via the UK’s Independent:

By the account of these couriers, who had worked for Baitullah Mehsud, head of the al-Qa’da-linked Tehrik-e-Taliban in south Waziristan, Bin Laden played no active role in the leadership of his organisation after 2003.
The couriers no longer felt bound by oaths of secrecy after Mehsud was killed by a drone in 2009.
They say that the al-Qa’ida leader’s physical and mental health had deteriorated after Tora Bora and he had to be moved from house to house in South Waziristan.
He was becoming increasingly unrealistic and delusional, obsessed with a desire to attack Pakistan’s nuclear reactor at Kahuta (though no bombs were stored there).
“He had become a physical liability and was going mad,” one courier told General Qadir, adding “he had become an object of ridicule” among militants in South Waziristan.
Another courier said: “Nobody listened to his rantings any more.”

Osama was fortunate to have George Jr. do all the heavy lifting after Sept. 11, 2001.
And nowadays no (and that’s absolutely-no) Republican never, ever, invokes the name, memory or even existence of George Jr.
Maybe Obama will capitalize on George Jr.’s liabilities later in the campaign — he would just have to say, ‘Look , just look at what happened with the last Republican president.’

Just how bad was it?
Read a lengthy 2009 recap of George Jr.’s days at Salon.
And an indepth 2007 economic recap by Joseph E. Stiglitz at Vanity Fair — Stiglitz starts it off by writing in the very-first graph: The damage done to the American economy does not make front-page headlines every day, but the repercussions will be felt beyond the lifetime of anyone reading this page.
Pretty bad shit, there, but that was before the 2008 financial shitstorm — now the economy does make headlines every day.
And this from a Global Research post in October 2008, which pretty-much sums up George Jr. — without the depressing, horrifying details:

Whoever is elected president in the coming November 4 American election will inherit a most miserable situation on nearly all fronts.
This is because George W. Bush has been one of the worst presidents the U.S. has ever had, if not the worst.
It is widely recognized that he was a below average politician who led his country on the wrong track, both domestically and internationally.
Today, only a meager 9 percent of Americans dare to say that their country is moving in the right direction.
As a matter of fact, a very large majority of Americans — both Democrats and Republicans, men and women, residents of cities and of rural areas, high school graduates and college-educated— all say that the United States has been headed in the wrong direction under George W. Bush’s stewardship.
Bush’s approval rating reflects the lack of confidence that Americans have in him and his administration.
In fact, George W. Bush has recorded the lowest approval rating of any president in the 70-year history of the Gallup Poll.
And, around the world, the United States has never had a leader who commands so little respect and confidence.
Most people in the U.S. and abroad will find satisfaction in seeing his term come to an end.

Just say, ‘look…’

However, Obama can’t look too far.
One big horror left over from George Jr. is the presidency itself — beyond the land laid waste.

He believed, along with Vice President Dick Cheney, that presidential authority had eroded dangerously over the years as Congress asserted itself.
One of his major legacies is “the idea that presidential power should be at the forefront and should be used aggressively and brazenly,” says Princeton historian Julian Zelizer.
“That’s not going to be rolled back anytime soon,” adding, “We rarely see presidents relinquish power.”

When Obama closed the door to legally prosecuting George Jr.’s entire torture/war on US citizens operations, he also left all the doors open from the previous administration — a tempest in the midst of a boiling reality.

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