Monday, July 18, 2011

Catching Up On the World

I have been enjoying a pleasant weekend. We've had Goldilocks weather here in SoCal (not too hot, not too cold) and unlike, say, the Midwest, California is a state that is, by and large, functioning adequately. Anyhow, it's time to catch up on what I've missed.

The implosion of Rupert's media empire is a joy to behold. So far it has brought down the head of Scotland Yard, the head of Dow Jones, and a chief aide to the British Prime Minister. The scandal has a fair chance of breaking David Cameron's coalition. Rebekah Brooks (What's with that hair?) has been arrested. The Murdoch spawn is engaging in fratricide. It's so much more entertaining than regular FOX programing.

Afghanistan Failures
The brother of Afghan President Hamid Karzai was assassinated by his bodyguard who was also a CIA asset. There has been a rash of killings of top Afghan officials that the US military is helpless to stop. There are many ways to stage an insurgency, most have nothing to do with the size of your army. 

National Heatwave
While Southern California has been unusually mild the rest of the nation is suffering from a killer heatwave sending temperatures well over 100 degrees F. But, the fossil fuel industry assures us, global climate change is still a farce. 

Minnesota Beer
It looked like the prospect of running out of booze was going to be the catalyst for a budget deal. Now it seems that Republicans, faced with the opportunity to do something halfway intelligent, are reneging on the deal and are returning to their black caldron to cast bones instead of talking. 

Wisconsin Apology
Governor Scott Walker apologized last week on behalf of the people of Wisconsin for them not realizing that he is a genius and they should have acted like the ignorant sheep they are. Walker kind of also apologized to fellow Republicans for leading them blindly into the Valley of the Shadow of Electoral Death without a road map.

Ladies Soccer
I don't watch soccer, I prefer curling. Still, I enjoyed the Women's World Cup final mostly because the Japanese women were textbook examples of gritty. Up to yesterday, Japan had never won in 25 matches against the Yanks but they didn't play scared. When they fell behind, twice, they stepped up their intensity. The American women, conversely, played like most American sports (and military) teams. They relied more on raw individual power than subtle teamwork, when they took one goal leads they relaxed expecting American Exceptionalism to carry them to victory, and when they discovered that their Manifest Destiny had betrayed them they panicked and screwed the pooch at the end. 

A word about Abby Wambach. She not only was the best player on the American squad she was a class act, gracious in defeat.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wondered where you went. I have to admit I was cheering on the American ladies, but I thought both teams played a pretty classy looking game. At least from my television, they both seemed to be polite on the field, proving you can play tough without being nasty. With the Minnesota government shut down, I wonder why legislators are paid. They have not demonstrated that they are doing anything productive. In California, the stark reality of no pay helped the State achieve a budget for a change -- a crappy budget indeed, but still they had something.