I started the following as a comment on Booman’s recent post Paris Attacks, Part Three.

It grew.

Booman writes:

If we’re going to solve this, or at least manage it, we’re going to need a coalition of nations committed to resolving the Sunni/Shi’a war, and that’s not the same thing as killing the Sunni fighters in Syria and Iraq. It’s not going to be resolved by toppling Assad or isolating Iran and punishing Russia. This is much more complicated than that.

This is not about drones or imperialism, nor is it about Islam as a religion. Islam isn’t going anywhere, nor is it going to experience some Enlightenment or Reformation next week that will stop the fighting or the flood of refugees. The roughly one billion Muslims who aren’t currently engaged in killing us or each other are part of the solution, not the problem.

What you can do to help is to talk less and listen more. Recognize that our politicians have to take steps to protect the public and to convince the public that these steps are being taken. Recognize that we face a threat not just of terrorism but also of a really right-wing reactionary backlash that could sweep away not just left-wing governments but recognizably conservative ones, too, leaving us with hateful, nationalistic, xenophobic governments both here and in Europe.


But…the horses are already well out of the barn; the barn itself is burning ever more fiercely and it threatens to take down the entire village. There is literally nothing that anybody can do that will not in one way or another exacerbate these many interconnected problems.

I know that what I am about to say is not a popular opinion here, nor is it in most other segments of the political spectrum, but I am going to say it anyway.

If the idea is truly to protect the U.S., the only way to do so is to withdraw from from the fray.


Fortress America.

Read on for more.
Continued action that resembles the actions of the NATO powers in the Middle East since Bush I invaded Iraq…no matter whether those actions can by some miracle be made both larger and simultaneously more efficient and effective…are simply going to make the current reactions ever larger and more dangerous. Had the U.S. never entered Iraq none of this would be happening now. That effort has torn down our economy, torn down our society and threatens to continue to boil over until it produces a nuclear catastrophe.

The only sane answer to this…given the absolutely clear failure of past tactics…is to stop those tactics!!!

This of course presupposes that the strategic goal behind those tactics was the protection of the U.S. and its allies instead of the ongoing takeover of wealth by elites. I sometimes wonder about that, but no matter either way because the “elites” will have nowhere to hide if a nuclear disaster befalls the world. Even they must be beginning to realize the truth of that statement.

Stop the madness.

Tighten our belts and concentrate of rebuilding the U.S. society and infrastructure.

“Politically impossible,” you say?

Sadly…yes. As long as the media is controlled by Big Corp and Big Corp thinks that it can somehow win an unwinnable war…yes.

Politically impossible.

But it has to be said.

Ross Perot tried to tell us about where neoliberalism was going to take us during the 1992 presidential elections.

He was shouted down.

Ron Paul tried mightily to do the same thing for 20+ years.

He was also shouted down.

And now?

Now? Here we jolly well are, aren’t we.

Cowering under our desks as the world catches fire.

Time for a reboot.

A big one.

Will it happen?

Not under an HRC administration it won’t, nor will it under the administration of anyone else truly in the race on either side. Rand Paul understands but has no position and little talent for the fight. They so non-personed his father that he’s just Nonperson #2. Trump has some good ideas, but he’s an amateur…a demonstrably batshit crazy one in many respects. If he somehow managed to win the presidency the PermaGov pros would eat him up. It’d be like a boastful amateur barfighter going into an MMA cage with 20 highly trained martial artists. They’d eat him up, and all the speeches and rants in the world would make no difference. No chops. No information regarding how to operate the levers of power. None.

So here we are.

I have posted the following several times here recently…an email that I sent to a friend several hours before the Paris attacks…but I am going to post it again because its the only position to which I have been able to come regarding “doing something” about the current state of affairs.

There is nothing left to do that would even create a little hope that some sort of action might actually change this state of affairs. There it is and there it will remain until it falls of its own contradictions, its own weaknesses. All we who know better can do is…survive. Dassit. Teach those who we can reach and survive. Maybe some unforeseen turn of events…some gracious miracle from the universe…will save us. If so it means that said universe still has a use for us. For the U.S. But if not, then those of us who do survive will have to ride out the whirlwind and hope for a better tomorrow.

The current Republican debates must resemble the level of Roman politics as the barbarians were at the gates. Rome got what it deserved and so shall we.

Bet on it.

Be well…


Like I said…be well.

It’s the best that we can do now.

i am about to go out the door to teach some college-level students how to play a difficult musical instrument. Will they have a chance of doing so in the long run? Maybe. Do I have a chance of making it from my Bronx home to downtown Manhattan and back given the current “security issues?’ Yes. Given the ongoing decline of the NYC transportation infrastructure? Yes. But not the same chance(s) that I had 3 or 5 or 10 or 20 or 30 years ago. Not by a long shot. The odds are lengthening. For all of us.

WTFU before it’s too late.



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