Well, it's been nearly a year since I posted, and I may not post to this blog again. Have I lost the faith? Have I gone over to the dark side? Have I lost my Internet access, fallen into a black hole, or joined a monastery? Hardly. But I've been concerned for some time (read: years) about the personalization of the debate between right and left. I've seen progressives referred to from both the right and the left as "Bush haters." And we need to remind ourselves that while Bush is an enemy of democracy, tolerance, fair play, and everything progressives stand for, he is not the enemy. Nor was Tom Delay, nor is Dick Cheney. Evil men all, but in the big picture, just figureheads. Just personifications of the greater evil that has this country in its clutches.
Blaming everything on a handful of people at the top, no matter how destructive and abusive they've been, misses a critical point. Systems tend to self-perpetuate. Remove one player and the next comes in to ensure business as usual.
Remove Rumsfeld, a man who helped prop up Hussein in the 80's and skewed intelligence towards war, and who do you get? Robert Gates, a man who helped prop up Hussein in the 80's and skewed intelligence towards war.
Replacing those in power won't help if the power structure itself doesn't change. And that means addressing how our own actions maintain this dysfunctional system.
Bush is undeniably a bad guy, but we'll be rid of him in a couple of years at most (sooner, if the legislature does its job). But we won't be rid of the things that got us into this mess in the first place. And I don't mean the Christianist right, the corporate greed, or the pandering Democrats, although they all contributed their share. I'm referring to the apathy, ignorance and downright intellectual laziness of the American people. We need to change our country; we need to change our society; we need to change our culture. And to do that, we need to change ourselves. In the immortal words of Walt Kelly's Pogo, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."
So although Bush is a nasty, self-serving, evil being who richly deserves to be impeached and then sent off to the Hague (or Nuremberg!) for his war crimes trial, I believe his part in the overall scheme of things is actually much smaller than we give him credit for when we focus our criticism on the individual. And while I've always tried to keep focus on the whole bunch of them, calling them the Bush League still gives the draft dodging frat-boy twerp way more than his due.
So I'm not going to do that anymore.
I may finally start a personal blog over at .Mac, and if so, I'll publish a link here. Such a thing would cover a variety of subjects near and dear to my heart, including computing in general and Mac computing in particular, music, the New York Yankees, and University of Louisville athletics (go Cards!) - as well as the occasional political rant. Meanwhile, I'm leaving this site here if only to host my political blogroll. I may even update the links from time to time. And you won't go wanting for reading matter: there are plenty of other people writing more and better stuff about the criminals who have taken over Washington than I could ever manage.
[Edited to correct a factual error - I had misstated the time since I last posted.]