A Dark Day

On this day in 2003, a day that will truly live in infamy, in Kuwait the invasion of Iraq began. From thence idiot President George W. Bush directed the U.S. military to undertake a useless war, one that would result in the transformation of that country into a mess. A dictator was toppled and replaced with an unstable elected government. The existing economic institutions were eliminated I favor of Western interests, causing resistance.

Meanwhile, American soldiers conducted brutal door-to-dood searches to find terrorists. The result was armed rebellion. The U.S authorities tried to quell the uprising by forming local militias (which would put the rebels in an awkward position), but people refused to fight their neighbors.

The U.S. resorted to assigned Shiite militias to police Sunni villages and vice-versa. This time the participants were willing. The problem was that sectarian animosity and fighting were renewed among people who had been living together in peace for a long time. To make things worse, the Shiite leaders who won the nascent elections, bitter over Saddam Hussein’s favoritism toward the Sunnis and probably the renewed sectarian conflict, shut the Sunnis out from the new regime.

The result is that the Sunnis supported the invading Islamic State of the Levant, who hid their true nature. That is the state of Bush’s folly at this point, the disastrous results of a misadventure he conned this country into with false claims.

What we need to think about on the anniversary of that travesty is will any more happen? From Vietnam to Iraq the evidence is ample that invading and imposing one’s will on an unwilling population is not only wrong but destructive and unfruitful. Even President Obama’s toppling of dictator Moammar Khadafi without sending in troops has resulted in societal disarray under a weak government. When will we learn?

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Election Today! Please Vote! Hayes-Santos and Weaver endorsed.

Today is Election Day for the Gainesville City Commission. Two seats are being contested, At-large Seat One and District One. The Candidates Are:

At-Large Seat One

Harvey Budd

Jay Curtis

Ben Meyers

Donald Shepherd, Sr.

District One

Charles Edward Goston

Sherwin Henry

Yvonne-Hinson Rawls

Lucas A. Jewell

Chris Weaver

In At-Large Seat One, Meyers gets contributions from a marketing firm and waste disposal firms, so cross him off. Jay Curtis is endorsed by the Gainesville Builders Association, which means he is likely too developer-oriented, despite his endorsement by the UF College Democrats. Shepherd did not seem progressive in the previous race he ran.

That leaves Harvey Budd, whose campaign is being run by long-time progressive activist Connie Amidei, and Adrian Hayes-Santos, who is being endorsed by a number of current and former city commissioners. They both have contributions from a number of progressive activists.

I pick Adrian Hayes-Santos, even though the Iguana endorsed Budd ( they did nor give a good reason, though) for the following reasons:

  • Harvey Budd contributions, separately, from Ken and Linda McGurn and they have appeared at at least one of his events. Since they are developers and conservative on at least development issues and the homeless, this makes me doubt Budd’s progressiveness. He also got contributions from other builders.
  • Santos’s list of progressive controbutors is more impressive than Budd’s.
  • Santos is endorsed by neighbors (not quite next door, except for Heirs) Suzanne Kiker, Jonathan Reiskind, and Richard Heirs, who are progressive and whom I have known for a long time and trust.
  • Santos is endorsed by the Gainesville National Organization for Women, which is greatly in his favor as far as I am concerned.

In District  One (which I am not voting one since I live in District Three), I find that Scherwin Henry was not progressive as a city commissioner. Yvonne Hinson-Rawls was the the more progressive choice when she won three years ago, but, despite progressive endorsedments this time around, she has taken a ontribution from developer Nathan Collier, which is a very bad sign. She also cast a disappointing vote to widen NW Eighth Avenue, which would also eliminate the bicycle paths therein.

I therefore endorse Chris Weaver who has been endorsed by the UF College Democrats, the Sierra Club, and the Gainesville Iguana. He also got a contribution from the progressive activist Nkwanda Jah, whom I hold in very high esteem.

Above all though, get out and VOTE, which I am about to do!