Provincial Letters

Far from the mad crowds of the city, Blaise Pascal passed comment on the strange behaviour of this urban contemporaries in his Provincial Letters. The connection between them and this blog is somewhat tenuous.

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Location: Grimsby, N E Lincolnshire, United Kingdom

My star sign in Superstition. And I didn't believe in reincarnation last time, either. The only thing I can't tolerate is intolerance. I am a fanatical ant-fanaticist. I am bigotted only where bigots are concerned. I am a fundamentalist atheist. I'm proud to be a product of evolution; I know it in my genes.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Posted @ 23:55International News I

This is a new excursion for this blog, which has usually consigned its view to the domestic, even the parochial (but certainly the provincial). This has had nothing to do with any restricted vision on behalf of the author, it's just that the international scene is a bit further away and there's loads of stuff going on in the space in between. Especially ludicrous behaviour. Anyway, in the spirit of the season, let's expand our horizons and consider the world outside. Well, as far as the USA, anyway.

George W Bush Makes Embarrassing Gaffe

And nobody is in the least surprised.

Iraq Government Overthrown: Country In A Mess

Forces led by the US, invaded Iraq and brought down the government. Once this was done they realised that they didn't know what to do next. After playing a fruitless game of "Hunt the weapons of mass destruction" for a while, they decided that a new government might be a good idea. In the meantime, the country was totally destabilised and sunk into civil war. This is known as "Building Democracy In Iraq".

It was expected by many that simply capturing and hanging Saddam Hussain would solve all Iraq's problems, but this has proven not to be the case. Political leaders in the West have now decided that all the remaining problems are the Iraqis' own fault and they should be left to get on with killing each other.

Nice Person Wants To Be President

You can hear some of the Daily Show interview and read about it at the Huffington Post: Who Needs "Meet The Press?" Tom Vilsack Has "The Daily Show".The Governor of Iowa, Tom Vilsack (Democrat), has announced his candidacy for the presidency of the USA in the 2008 election. In a recent appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (broadcast in the UK on More4 on 19/12/2006), he came across as a nice person with a sense of humour who had a good grasp of the international situation. He was pleasant without being over-fawning and seemed at ease making fun of both politics and himself.

He has no chance.

Postscript (1 hour later)

Al Gore — should he stand (and, to hear an argument in favour of this, go here) — would suffer from the same problem. He is intelligent and articulate and apparently free from the overbearing constraints of big business and partisan politics. He has a sense of humour. He is pleasant and amusing. He talks in proper sentences. He is prepared to explain the processes of government. With the example of the last two US presidential elections where the electorate fell behind a person with almost exactly opposite attributes, I can't see Gore getting there.

Maybe the US electorate will take pleasure in proving my cynicism unfounded.


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