September 25, 2005

Must. Stay. The. Course.

Phil Donahue recently made Bill O'Reilly flinch during his Fox show, The O'Reilly Factor, as transcribed at Counterpunch.

O'Reilly has admitted that the occupation of Iraq has not gone well. But he clings to the idea that it is necessary to "the war on terror." That is, since we turned Iraq into a terrorist free-for-all, we have to stay the course -- which will obviously have the effect of keeping it a terrorist free-for-all. This failure, this making things worse, in O'Reilly's mind, as in so many others, is the reason we can't just leave.

I am uncomfortable conflating the Bush's murderous wars with wind power developers (though Bush himself is tight with former wind pioneer Enron (making Texas a "showcase" for a while) and off-shore wind facility builder and war profiteer Halliburton), but both of them worry me (to put it mildly) and both of them are supported by a wide range of fellow citizens despite negative evidence.

I recently read in the comment section of an article at In These Times the same illogic for continuing wind development as Bill O'Reilly's for staying in Iraq. Namely, evidence that it has not worked is precisely the reason it must be expanded.

O'Reilly et al. chant "war on terror" to fend off reality, and the supporters of industrial wind chant "climate change." They understandably need to believe that we are doing something about a real problem. The need appears to be stronger than any desire to honestly assess the effects of what they support.

Few people easily switch from belief in an idea to realization of its sham (the rise and fall of celebrities provides a redirection of that need). So they more strongly assert the belief, as if to convince themselves, as if to make the doubt, and even the evidence, go away.

War on terror! Climate change! Must. Stay. The. Course.

Meanwhile, nothing changes except for the worse. The sham continues. (The "neocons" rationalize such policies of lies as "creative destruction"!)

By the way, Donahue brought up a chilling parallel, saying that two things related to Iraq have doubled in the past year: the number of Americans killed, and Halliburton's stock price.

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