Saddam was killed last night. I wonder what the US media reaction will be toward another formerly US-backed dictator going down? Would it be more or less ironic if we (pardon, the Iraqis) tried him for the crimes we instigated? And does anyone think we’re done now? The whole trial/killing rises to theatre of the absurd. Why not keep the guy alive to see what he’ll say? (Not ‘cause that would be embarrassing or anything.) Basically, my problem is that if we’re doing this for a Kantian sense of justice, we ought to shine the flashlight everywhere, and if we’re doing this for purely self-interested reasons we just should have left the man in power (the eggs were well and cracked.)
Not much of a rant, I know, but I find myself living in absurd times. I think that’s been the hallmark of this presidency – the more absurd you are, the more difficult it is for the opposition (used to nitpicking) to muster a cogent reply. Why shouldn’t the President paint himself blue and run around the White House screaming? Why shouldn’t he lie to the country so we invade another, causing the deaths of tens of thousands?
Moving on, I think this is adding to the holiday blahs. Those are fought off by good company, and I’ve had plenty of that. I did get to hook up with Photogal, Thinks Before She Speaks, Dicey, and TBSS’s Mom for a lovely home cooked dinner. While I’m passable with pasta, I don’t have that Italian gene that makes it supremely perfect. TBSS and her mom do. We drank red wine and talked about all sorts of things. Law stories were kept to stories about people (not the law per se), and we found out that representing the indigent (me) and representing a small island nation’s two-minded government (TBSS) are oddly similar.
I also took the waters at Eli Cannon’s in Middletown with H, Icebox and the Historian. The Historian is teaching a course (at a very well known college) in early American political thought. The first half of the class is books read by the founders – the second is books written by the founders. Oddly, someone else had asked me what you might want to read before going to law school – so I’ll try to get ahold of the syllabus.
Tonight I’ll be jetting up to see my cousin and his family in the mountains of NW MA. There’ll probably be some wood-splitting involved, and, of course, much story swapping. No one accumulates stories like my cousin.
I feel oddly at peace this morning, as though I’m on a tipping point, but that nothing “new” has happened yet. Perhaps it’s that I’ve tapered my coffee down to a cup a day (that will last, erm, until mid-Jan?). Maybe it’s the winter feeling – it’s all clouded gray and flat outside, a sort of fishbowl effect due to the diffuse but clear light. Perhaps I’ve been reading a bit too much eschatological writing.
(Although I’m currently being entertained by the very light (almost-shallow-young-adult-light) “Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell,” by Susanna Clarke. It’s fun and cute, and I'm willing to keep reading, but, a third of the way through, nothing is screaming “Hugo” at me. And while I do very much appreciate fun and cuteness, thusfar it’s simply a funner and cuter version of Sean Russell’s often overlooked (and hideously reviewed) “World Without End” (protagonist modeled on Charles Darwin.)) (Enough parens?)
In any event, it’s a good morning. It’s always good when you make a break with the past. I admit my immediate surroundings are not the most inspirational, but it’s always nice to feel that you have many open roads before you. Perhaps I’ll write a fantasy novel. What should it be about?