Sunday, May 1, 2011

So. Osama Bin Laden Is Dead.

And the world is a tiny bit better for it. Cool.

I'm not going to apply 'perspective' to this, because frankly, it's too horrible. I'll just say: congratulations, USA, you got your man. Well done.

Now, in the aftermath, can I make a few requests?

The first is to the USA. For fuck's sake, America -- please take the opportunity to make this mean something. You can start by having a look at the country you were before the WTC came down, and maybe trying to figure out how you can get some of that old mojo back. You could, for example, try putting 'Freedom of Speech' back as an everyday baseline of normality, and getting rid of those incredibly bloody depressing 'free speech zones' that Bush came up with.

You could maybe acknowledge that to date, all the groping and x-raying and all the hostile bullshit at airports has achieved precisely nothing -- that of the three attempted hijacks/inflight kablooies that have been attempted since 2001 (that I know of, anyhow) all were thwarted by vigiliant passengers and aircrew. So - maybe you could look at trying to treat air passengers as human beings again, and perhaps putting away all that fucking hi-tech radiation-scan shit before somebody turns into the freaking Hulk (and Prof Boylan sings about it without due cause)?

You might also take a look at that very badly named "Patriot Act", and see if you can't restore a few things to the people of the USA, including freedom from unlawful search and seizure, and maybe even a little privacy, eh?

And hey - if you don't have to spend quite so much money on chasing Bin Laden and on invading places where he might be hiding, maybe you could give some back to SETI, and to your NPR, and maybe to important bits of your infrastructure that have been growing increasingly worn-out and fucked up. Maybe? Could you?

As for the rest of the world - hey, there are plenty of you that could use this as an opportunity too. Here in Australia, for example. Maybe we could start being less goddam paranoid about poor bastards escaping from hellholes in shitty, leaky boats? I'm not saying we need to offer 'em gold-class citizenships and Prime Ministerial blowies... but is there a problem with treating 'em like human beings while we check their bona fides? Especially the kids, because frankly, I've got a real problem with treating children that way, no matter who their parents are, or what those parents may have done.

In short, folks, a bad man got what was coming to him. Now, maybe, we can start refocusing our considerable energies away from him and what he represented, and back on the things which actually used to make us, and our countries, better than he and his people in the first place.

Fuck knows, we've certainly paid a high enough price.


  1. "For fuck's sake, America -- please take the opportunity to make this mean something."

    We don't roll that way, mate. Meaning, or lack of meaning, will emerge long from now, if at all, and without any design. That is the American way.

  2. Yeah... I know. But -- you don't mind me asking, do you? Because I can't help thinking that somebody should.

  3. I didn't even know he was in jail

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  5. Cat - I'm almost out of words there. I'm perpetually astonished and appalled by terms like "queue-jumper". I'd like to take Tony Abbott by his big, stupid ears and shake him violently while shouting "What's so fucking wrong with wanting to get your family out of goddam Afghanistan?"

    And then I'd like to drop Tony, and lately Julia, and John Howard, and a whole bunch of like minded bastards straight into the worst bits of Iraq or Iran or Afghanistan or Libya. And tell them to find a nice UN camp, and line up nicely and wait their turn.

    That would make me happy.

  6. Well said, Dirk. I personally might be for pulling stakes from Afghanistan right now. Job's done as far as I'm concerned. No power on earth will ever make the place work normally.

    Screw SETI. Give me research on fusion and practical alternate energy, so we can tell those knuckleheads in the Middle East to go fuck themselves and try to eat their oil.

    I'm glad OBL's gone. I won't shed a tear for the guy. But I'm not going to go out and celebrate. It's business, not personal.

    Might have a bacon sandwich, though. Might even send you one. That's the kind of guy I am.

  7. Hmm. The odd bacon sandwich sounds good. Not sure it'll make it through the post, though. By the time it gets here, it'll be classified as biowarfare, and then we'll both be up shit creek. Without a bacon sandwich, I might add.

    Mmmm. Bacon.

    Fusion is good too. And you're probably right about Afghanistan, but we've made some promises to some of the locals, I hear. Gonna be a long, sticky problem yet, I think. But who knows? Maybe this will make it easier to talk sense with the Taliban.

  8. Heard an interesting stat recently, refugees increase when their homeland is in conflict. No conflict, relatively few refugees.

    War in Afganistan and Iraq and funnily enough we get a higher volume of refugees from there.

    It's almost as though people try to flee war zones for their own and their families safety. Thankfully Abbott is around to clarify our obvious misunderstanding.

  9. Yah, nice thought, innit? Personally, I don't see it changing anything greatly, though now the powers-that-be have to find a new straw man to point at. But then, I've been feeling pretty cynical lately.