The staff at Blog Simple has been remiss lately, holiday highs and that stuffed by turkey feeling has led to a dearth of posts.
But not all can be attributed to the above, the current world situation, as presented by the press has continued in the mold of the alternate reality set up by the administration and the Greatest Genereral EVAR Petraeus. The main task of the US government, Congress, the military, and of course the press, is to maintain a state of 'everything's OK', just move along and do your holiday shopping. Let's take a quick tour, and see how the line is being spun, and how long it can continue.
Australia - Howard is out, but the new guy still loves us, just not quite so much as to continue getting their soldiers blown up in Iraq. Afghanistan will still be OK for that, for now.
Afghanistan - the Taliban now control most of the country, NATO members are tiring of getting blown up, though their subservience to Feckless Leader remains impressive. One of the great untold stories of the past seven years is the that European unity has meant less, not more independence from Washington. In any case, the invasion of Afghanistan has been shown to be a total failure for the US, but that will not be admitted into polite discourse for some time to come.
Pakistan - Bhutto's back, Sharif is back, and Musharraf seems to be stepping down as army chief. That is to say that no one knows what's really going on with our nuked up chum. The inner contradictions of Pakistan could blow sky high any moment, so let's pretend that everything is OK.
Iraq - the surge is working! The US, just to prove that it won, is going to keep troops there FOREVER! With all that good news, talking about a million or so dead and four million refugees is just millions of sour grapes, unworthy of consideration. The possibility that things could get even worse is unspeakably unlikely.
Israel/Palestine - today's conference has been a real treat. They've come out of it with a plan to have a plan about negotiating. On one hand you have a propped up nebish (Abbas), who is supposed to negotiate with an incompetent booby (Olmert) who has no intention of allowing a Palestinian state ever. But let's believe it can work because it makes the time pass better. Also, foreign minister Livni's quaint suggestion that the Israeli Arabs can soon be shipped out to the bantustans that will be the new Palestine is something we in America should not ever talk about so I won't link to it.
Money - Atrios's term about the bad debt that has accumulated in the banks and brokerage houses - the big shit pile(s) - is no big deal. Some people will still pay good money for shit piles, that's because they're optimists! And probably, they'll do OK because the final owner of the shit pile will be you and I, dear reader, in our role of sucker (taxpayer) of last resort.
Politics - on the Dem side, the big question of whether Clinton's lover is truly gay, or just bi, remains unanswered. With the Thuglicans, Freddie seems to be slipping, and Blog Simple watches that with consternation. But we need to remember that the question is not whether he's senile and incompetent, it's whether his teflon coating can hold up over the next months. But his handlers need to get him back to looking like a real live person, the challenge of convincing Americans to vote for a cadaver is daunting, if not impossible.