Monday, May 30, 2005

Honoring The Fallen; There's More Where They Came From
Today, of course, is Memorial Day, the holiday formerly known as Declaration Day, during which we reflect upon the sacrifices of the men and women who died in military service to our country. It's a somber occasion, marked most poignantly by the recollections of veterans who've lost close friends in battle, sometimes sixty or more years ago, and it's clear that for many the pain is as sharp as when the wounds were visible.

Memorial Day parades are a beloved tribute, and every town with more than a dozen people has at least a two-block affair to showcase its veterans. Rolling Thunder is another event renowned for its sheer scope, and some of the riders' speeches that I caught on CSPAN were truly stirring. Many of the riders are veterans themselves, with their own stories to tell.

Nothing I write will compare to any of that. These men and women have seen such sights as I will never see, and the last thing they need is some asshole at a keyboard telling them how it is. I will note only that our esteemed President has seen fit to add 1,657 names to the list of the fallen while he himself risks nothing personally and with no end in sight to his obscene war.

Thank you, Mr. President for cutting veteran's benefits and for failing to armor our troops as needed. Thank you for ducking out of your duty when it was your time to serve, and thank you for later sitting back while your surrogates trashed an actual, decorated veteran in your name. It takes astonishing arrogance to drape yourself in the flag while sending other people's sons, daughters, husbands, and wives to die for your manufactured war, but everyone already knew about your arrogance. But the presumptuousness of laying a wreath in memory of those who've served and died, especially when so many have perished for your lies, is really breathtaking.

Before his Memorial Day remarks in 2003, Bush had declared major combat operations at an end, the U.S. government confidently predicted that weapons of mass destruction would be found and American generals said troops were in the process of stabilizing Iraq.
That's from here and elsewhere. Mission Accomplished, Whistle-Ass.

It's a good bet that none of those 1,657 will be the last to die in Iraq or in the nominal War on Terra. So thanks again, Mr. President; with you at the helm, we'll be sure to have plenty of newly-dead to memorialize next year.

But perhaps the most respectful annual commemorative is the dutiful countdown of the top 500 songs of classic rock. Countless stations have been doing it for years, of course, though the sheer volume of voting irregularities suggests that Ken Blackwell might be involved in all of them. Still, it's nice to know that while our armed forces are engaged overseas, Zeppelin still outscores Thin Lizzie by a wide margin.

These little reassurances help me keep my focus on the important things.

Not sure if I'll be back tomorrow in this capacity--it all depends upon the JB's reaction once he's surveyed the horror I've wrought during his absence. We'll see...

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