Archive for USA

The Emperor New Clothes

Posted in G 1 with tags , , , , , on November 5, 2008 by Roberto Gravitazero

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Photo from The Big Picture – Boston Globe

OK, it’s been a while since I wrote my last post here. I imagine I could, with a small effort, build up a whole bunch of very good reasons for that. But the truth is,  I’m too lazy to do it. And that’s exactly why I skipped these last three months here. Laziness.

Anyway, I wanted to give it another try since some time, but after such a long vacation, the post subjects that came to my mind always seemed somehow unworthy of the occasion. Well. I guess today I have no more excuses. It’s indeed well possible that, in a few years, people will ask each other what the hell they were doing in such a day. Where they were, how did they live through the event. Exactly like it did happen for 9/11. History could be a whole different story from today on. Maybe. Then, indeed, maybe not.

So, the emperor today had donned new clothes. Magnificent ones, or so it seems. In any case undeniably much, much better than the old ones (not such a difficult task, I concede). And we, from our lookout at the borders of the empire, cannot but rejoice for that. Still, there is a possibility that eventually we’ll discover the naked truth hiding behind the clothes, and won’t like it so much.

In the past, I had expressed some perplexity about Obama, but I ended up liking him more and more. True, it somewhat helped that the alternative,  possibly the only decent candidate the Republicans could put in the field, had squandered his campaign by choosing a strategy based solely upon denigration and by banding together with the genius she-hunter from Alaska.

So, today I’m quite happy. The event in itself has at least a strong, positive symbolic relevance. Therefore I push at the back of my mind the doubts I still have. But I cannot resist to mention again a quote from the late Kurt Vonnegut:

“There is a tragic flaw in our precious Constitution, and I don’t know what can be done to fix it. This is it: only nut cases want to be president.”

I’m personally quite convinced of the truth of that. One must indeed be mad to be willing to bear such  a burden.

However,  there are things (just a few simple actions, indeed) that should absolutely be done for the progress of the US and the rest of the world, but are faced by such a strong resistance that only a madman would be willing to undertake them.

Let’s hope America has just elected such a madman, unlikely as it is.

Words I wish I wrote myself, n. 1

Posted in G 1 with tags , , , , on March 21, 2008 by Roberto Gravitazero

“Personally, I believe that when faced with an imperial power – and let’s not kid ourselves, that’s exactly what the USA is – one ought to do everything non-violent that one can do to resist it, just on principle.

The USA is a great country full of great people. It’s just their propensity as a whole for electing idiots and then conducting a foreign policy of the utmost depravity that I object to.”

Iain Banks, The Steep Approach to Garbadale

Possibly first of a series. I don’t think it will be regular, I’ll just post them when I meet them, whenever I feel like it.

And, to my US friends – nothing personal! As an Italian, I can teach you a few things myself about electing idiots.

Pro-Life

Posted in G 1 with tags , , , , , on March 4, 2008 by Roberto Gravitazero

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On June 1st, the Pope received in the Vatican the new ambassador of the United States to the Holy See, Mary Ann Glendon.

Addressing the new ambassador in English, among other considerations, the Holy Father expressed his appreciation for:

“…the efforts of so many of your fellow citizens and government leaders to ensure legal protection for God’s gift of life from conception to natural death, …”

I wonder what would be the appreciation of such efforts by the people of Iraq or Afghanistan, or by US soldiers stationed in these countries, for that matter. But maybe the concept of “natural death” has a deep theological meaning that baffles my ignorant self.