'Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.' -- Eugene V. Debs

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Tralfamadorians Against Bush 

Kurt Vonnegut trashes the gang that couldn't shoot straight in a recent NY Daily News article:

They're adroit criminals ... They're committing war crimes - attacking a country that hasn't attacked us. Pretending it had. And torturing prisoners and filling countless graves with dead Iraqis. But adroit, sure. Al Capone was adroit. ... I don't care how Bush does, because I don't believe him. He believes himself, and that's what is quite terrifying.


[Wolfowitz and Rumsfeld were the ones] who allowed this torture to go on, kept it secret since January. These are war crimes. I dealt with prisoners when I was a soldier. We sure didn't torture them - we were well aware of the Geneva Convention. I myself became a prisoner [of the German's in Dresden during WWII] It's my country, not theirs, and they've trashed the reputation of Americans. ... It's possible to destroy a great civilization. Bush and those people have no love for it at all.

and informs us that all he really wants is to be a talking head:

What I want is - they've got all these generals and stuff and military retired consultants to CNN and so forth, I want 'em to have a retired corporal - me!"

Now that's a show I'd watch.

UPDATE: You know, when I wrote the above post, I considered including the Eugene V. Debs quote that Vonnegut was always so fond of, because the quote deals directly with prisoners and the subject of the moment is prisoners of war, but I didn't include it because I thought it would be too hard too explain the connection between a Debs quote and yesterday, etc. But Anyway, now there's a recent article in which Kurt himself cites the Debs quote that meant so much to me:

Eugene Debs, who died back in 1926, when I was only 4, ran 5 times as the Socialist Party candidate for president, winning 900,000 votes, 6 percent of the popular vote, in 1912, if you can imagine such a ballot. He had this to say while campaigning:

As long as there is a lower class, I am in it.
As long as there is a criminal element, I’m of it.
As long as there is a soul in prison, I am not free.

Doesn’t anything socialistic make you want to throw up? Like great public schools or health insurance for all?

How about Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, the Beatitudes?

Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the Earth.

Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God. …

And so on.

And so on.

(original link via Karmalized)

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