Wednesday, December 31, 2008

What Rough Beast is Slouching Towards Bethlehem?

Happy New Year!

I've been wondering what the new year will bring, more of the wonderful, wacky domestic news, balanced by the deaths of foreign civilians in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

Things remain the same between Israel and Hamas. The Arabian League met yesterday, and can't quite bring itself to get on Hamas's case for sending all of those damned rockets into Israel when they should have been trying to find more productive ways to clothe and feed the 1.6 million Palestinians who live in Gaza. They are sending emissaries to talk with Hamas, if they can find them.

Europe is breathing a sigh of relief today, as the Ukraine has agreed to pay the 2 billion dollar oil bill to Russia. About 40% of Russia's oil that goes to the European market flows through the Ukraine, and if the spigot would have been turned off, many countries would have suffered. Well, as I write this the oil deal fell apart, Russia will restrict oil to Ukraine but Ukraine will not restrict oil flowing through to Europe.

The arrogant and shrill ex-US Representative Cynthia McKinney made the news yesterday, when she went along on a boat ride out of Cypress, headed towards Gaza to deliver supplies, along with 15 other activists and a CNN reporter. Ms McKinney went as the recent Green Party Presidential candidate. The 66 foot yacht Dignity went out at night without running lights, trying to sneak past the Israeli blockade of the Gaza coastline. They were detected, asked to leave or they would be treated as terrorists. After being followed for half an hour, their boat was rammed and they had to limp into the nearest port in Lebanon.

In a news conference, Ms McKinney said they were shot at, though there were no signs of it on the boat. There were no excuses why they didn't go through normal channels to give the supplies to Egypt, which has been controlling the current way in and out of the Gaza strip next to Israel.

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has turned up the heat and slapped the face of his fellow Democrats, by appointing Roland Burris to the Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama. Fellow Democrats have said that they wouldn't seat anyone he appointed, so he appointed a middle of the road black man, just to make things more fun.

For days Blagojevich has been asked to resign, to not make the Senate appointment because it would be tainted love, while they seek to impeach him. His lawyer has been saying that all ya got is trash talking and hot air, and that is not against the law.

The Democrats don't have any legal grounds to not seat Mr Burris, and the Federal prosecutor is now asking for a 90 day extension instead of filing prosecution charges. The sad thing in all of this is the naked ambition in Mr Burris in going along with this. He has run for governor twice unsuccessfully, and is out in the open in lusting for the appointment. Other than that, he has been a public servant who has performed his jobs honestly and without scandal.

And if you think your year hasn't gone well and the next year also looks grim, remember that it could be worse; you could be Mike Shanahan..

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