Housekeeping #19: Summertime Blues


At least that’s what I think it is. Not much activity here the last few weeks. Partly I think it’s the heat and humidity–no AC and sitting at the computer is a trial even with a fan going full blast and aimed straight at me. Usually I like heat (I waaaay prefer it to being cold) but for some reason this summer it’s been getting to me. No energy. No oomph. I did my first post for LitBlogs yesterday in a week and I haven’t written a new story for Snake Tales in over a month even though there are notes for three of them, including the next chapter in the ‘bush wars’ saga, in my word processor.

But another part of the problem is systemic: I find I don’t have much to say that’s new and I can’t see repeating myself endlessly just because the Bushies do. How many times can you debunk the Swift Boat Vets’ lies? In how many different ways can you say that Abu Ghraib happened from the top down? I go through the papers every day and it’s the same old shit, day after day after day. I read it and I think, ‘I said that already–three times’, and find I don’t have the energy to say it a fourth. And you probably wouldn’t have the energy to read it.

So where do we go from here? Personally I’ve spent more of what little energy I have these days on Trenches. I’ve changed the name slightly–to Dispatch from the Trenches–and re-designed the site so it’s more focused on what I really want to get at–the impulse to selfishness and greed behind the conservative agenda. That agenda deliberately plays to all our worst instincts and praises them as our best; it wants us to Look Out For #1, to believe we are not Our Brother’s Keeper, and to build a society based on ‘ownership’–as in if you don’t ‘own’ something, you don’t count. I want to start aiming directly at that profoundly abusive and destructive concept. I know it’s tilting at windmills but where I come from that’s what windmills are for–tilting at.

I’ll likely get back to normal when a) the Republican Liars’ Festival is over (I mean, come on–they’re trotting out the last of the moderates that they otherwise keep locked in closets, and trying to pretend the GOP isn’t run by radicals; the whole damn convention is a lie, that’s gotta be a first), b) when I’ve got something to say that I haven’t said 40 times already, and c) when the weather gets cooler.

In the meantime, check out some of the blogs on the sidebar and see what they have to say. For example, John has a terrific post up at archy about Rove and the SBV attack:

We should not feel good about beating back the Swifties. Rove has a score of these attacks in the wings. Many writers have described the Rove method as “if you throw enough mud, some is bound to stick.” That is a naive oversimplification. The Rove method assumes that as a foundation and adds, “if mud doesn’t stick, try dung, then pudding, then paint, then gravy, then bile, then library glue, then baby poop, mud again, warm tar, herbed bread crumbs, cheese sauce, Silly Puddy ™, that stuff that collects in the trap of your kitchen sink, toe jam, more pudding…” You get the idea.The attack has just begun. We need to brace ourselves for the next assault.

(Note: John? It’s ‘Silly Putty’.)

There are people out there who have things to say that are worth reading. eRobin is doing stellar work at Fact-esque deconstructing the NYT; Bert’s ThatColoredFellasweblog has been re-invigorated recently with a lot of new posts, some excellent political commentary, and a fleet of new commenters; Tim Dunlop at The Road to Surfdom is in the thick of not one but two elections, ours and the Australian; Karlo has a great post up at Swerve Left about Bush’s time in the National Guard; and and Digby at Hullabaloo is, as usual, all over the political ramifications of yet another Bush ‘mis-statement’.

[Bush has] now simultaneously admitted that he screwed up big time on the single most important issue a president ever faces, while also saying that he has no intention of trying to figure out what went wrong. That is the worst of all possible worlds. It’s best not to have to admit screwing up something as important as war planning but if you do you simply have to make the case that [you] learned from the experience and you won’t do it again. He didn’t do that. Iraq is a massive failure and the president has just opened the door to his own culpability on that.

I may be dry as toast at the moment, but others’ juices are flowing strong.

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