Saturday, July 24, 2004
I know what you're wondering: those Iraqis, the ones we freed, how are they?
The answer is, great. Since the handover of power -- and it's plain for anyone to see that there's a hand over power -- democracy and freedom has been spreading like a freakin' disease. Like an especially nefarious rash that raises bumpy, prickly hives and oozes pus from most of the major orafices, and then crusts over the flesh like burnt wax. Let freedom ring from the bell towers of Baghdad to the... flute shops.. of.. Fallujah, okay, because the freedom rash is spreading like crazy!
Of course, they are experiencing some growing pains. Like all primitive peoples thrown into modern circumstances, there will be some bucking at the start. You know, mismatched socks, fender benders, overcooked chicken, massive unemployment, but these are all kinks that will work themselves out in time.
A study by the college of economics at Baghdad University has found that the unemployment rate in Iraq is 70%.
The number of people out of work in Iraq has been on the rise since the then US administrator Paul Bremer disbanded the Iraqi army, security organisations and the Ministry of Information - a decision that made hundreds of thousands of people unemployed at the stroke of a pen.
Private employment agencies - a new phenomenon in post-Saddam Iraq - are cropping up across the country and advertising their "services" through the mass media.
Long queues of Iraqis can be seen every morning outside the advertisers' offices, carrying their CVs and the $50 application fee.
Guidelines introduced by the private employment offices state that every applicant must pay $50, with just half the amount refundable should the agency fail to get the applicant a job .
Abd Al-Hamid Abd, a Baghdad resident, said he submitted his application despite warnings from his friends. "All the people I know who have applied said they were contacted and told that their applications were unsuccessful," he said. "They suspected that keeping 50% of the applicants' fees was the main objective of the agencies, but I applied anyway. I have to believe in anyone who offers me hope."
In most cases, these offices offer jobs with the US occupation authorities and companies linked to them. Some Iraqis have no problems working for the Americans, while others reject the idea.
"Not everyone is willing to risk his life for the sake of making a living. What do my children gain if I am killed in one of those attacks on a US installation?"
"I cannot accept a job with the US authorities or a company which supplies them. I care about my image in the eyes of my children. After defending Iraq for eight years, how can I accept work with a country that is militarily occupying the country I fought for?"
Well, I see their point, but why don't they look at it this way:
I'll have to think about this for a minute.
Okay, so before, there were no jobs being offered by the Americans or our wicked awesome private contractors. And now, most of the jobs being offered come from this sector. Zero jobs, thousands of jobs. So under Saddam Hussein (grrrrrr!!), who's government employed 100% of the people (or thereabouts), private/ free market unemployment was at 100%. Now, it's only 70%. That's a 30% decline in unemployment in, like, a matter of months. And that ain't no voodoo!
There are some things money can't buy. Sex is not one of them. And starting this week, Boston will become the super-sexiest town in America. Donkey style.
Practitioners of the world's oldest profession are seeking reinforcements to help service some of the 35,000 visitors -- plus untold numbers of police reinforcements -- expected in the coming week when Democrats name Sen. John Kerry their presidential candidate.
"There will be girls from California and from the South in Boston this week," [sex worker advocate Robyn Few] said. "I hope a lot of women make a lot of money and make a lot of men really happy."
For weeks, escort services have plastered advertisements in magazines and on the Internet asking women to work the convention.
"We are looking for more girls right now," said Frank Caswell, who runs the Foxy Lady club outside Boston. "Obviously, hospitality and beauty are expected and the girls must bring something that is enticing to see."
Several sex workers said political conventions were often particularly lucrative. Democratic organizers wanted to point out that many delegates are bringing their families.
"This really is a G-rated event," said DNC spokeswoman Mariellen Burns.
Any comment, Senator Kerry? Hmm. There is something really creepy about all this, and yet something kind of cool, too. I mean, cornfed southern girls, with cut-off denims and straw hats hitchhiking to Boston to be part of the Democratic process? That's really inspiring. Three of those girls barebacking Tom Daschle? A little creepy.
How funny that these girls call the conventions lucrative, like the mother lode had just come in, as if Geneal Motors were coming to town; when the gears of government turn, the women of the night grind.
This is not something the Republican party could pull off. Not because they have moral superiority, but because they're even creepier. You know that prostitutes will be flocking to NYC, too, but I doubt there will be a fun loving flavor to their party. Probably something more like The Scarlett Letter meets Se7en, know what I mean? Lots of sweaty, jowly, uptight, repressed Jesus-lovers reliving old traumas and acting out their deepest, darkest feelings, and when that happens, women usually get found in dumpsters with silk neckties in their mouths.
But those Dems, boy, those playas knows how to kick it!
Friday, July 23, 2004
Well, it's okay. Everything is really okay. Except we're all gonna die. But don't worry, because we are safer now than we were on September 11 -- until we all die in that huge imminent terrorist attack. But no one is really to blame for what happened, no one we could all point a collective finger at and say "You! Why you... you.... JERK!" and dump all responsibility upon. No, no one except for for everyone. Yep, every single person with government letterhead, from intern to president, is responsible. But we can't really blame then, now can we? No not really. But they all share the blame. There is a very complicated system for allocating percentages of blame depending upon positions of power, belief in terror, negligence, ignorance and religious conviction. They could break it down like that, but what would the point be? Because it was the intelligence community's fault, too. They were not very creative. And absence of creativity means abundance of terrorism. But you can't blame any one individual. Not really. It's a structural problem, and these structures must be addressed and re-, um, re-structured. We need to restructure these structural structures. And once we get them restructured we can prevent terror. The inevitable terror. That we can prevent. With new structures.
Yes, we're all to blame here, collectively, in our absolution of responsibility. Clinton should have taken more responsibility. Bush should have listened to Clinton, if, of course, Clinton had treated Osama bin Laden (who cannot stand our way of life, btw) with the respect he deserves. But now we'll be restructuring those failed structures. If the government listens to these dire warnings. And make everything okay.