It was beautiful this morning. Snowy. It snowed insistently; big fluffy flakes you knew wouldn't stick around, and would be too soft for much good if they did, but still, one hoped. I tried to make the moment last by scrutinizing them in my gloved palm as I waited at the bus stop. Despite the claim, they all looked pretty much alike to me. I'd like to focus more on things like this, like my favorite seed catalog that arrived recently, thick with possibilities to transform my yard into oases of spiritual and physical sustenance, or this lovely home for sale in Uruguay--BUT--there's always something more pressing to blog about.
These days, what's NOT to blog about?
The Pakistani government has ceded control of Swat, a town 100 miles from the capital, to the Taliban. That is, the Pakistani government reached "an accord" with people who've been terrorizing the citizenry by throwing acid in little girls faces and leaving beheaded officials on display in the public squares. Now that there's accord, sharia law will prevail in the Swat valley. This is the scary prequel envisioned back when Musharraf agreed to be allied with the US back when we first invaded Afghanistan. Now there are, allegedly, al-Qaeda-linked Taliban and otherwise-linked Taliban and the latter are the ones in control of Swat. The Telegraph says the US' interest is best served by the sharia law in Swat scenario because it appeases those Taliban enough to not link with the al Qaeda-linked Taliban.
Those Predator drones that hit Pakistan recently (not to mention Senator Feinstein's "oops" about them) and the 15,000 extra troops now heading into Afghanistan---totally unrelated to the Swat thing, right?
Then there's the global economic crisis, foreclosure fiascoes, money mismanagers and sundry other road signs on the economy's ride to hell in a handbasket. One company made a
Bernie Madoff doll that you can beat up on for $99.95, but I suspect it doesn't bring relief to those whose money he squandered. Some seemingly lovely gentleman from Britain who'd done all kinds of good in war-torn and disaster-ravaged regions of the world, blew his brains out because of what Madoff did. In Lee County, Florida, where judges have to sign off on foreclosures, they're bringing in retired judges to help handle the crushing load of foreclosure hearings. Two things from the article stood out: one of the plaintiffs hadn't paid their mortgage since January of 2008. That that mortagee is just NOW being foreclosed on, after over a year of nonpayment, surely is an indication of how much foreclosure business the lender has been handling. The second thing that stuck out is the middle school teacher whose mortgage payment went to $3,300 from $1,600 once the ARM adjusted, so now she can't afford it. Listen. I'm no math whiz, but you know, they DO give you numbers to work with. It's not like you just wake up 5 years later and your mortgage payment has morphed into some random amount of money! I know there are fast talking lenders (they're salesmen after all!) and gullible or just eager or underinformed buyers, but...I'm thinking there were more knowingly taking a gamble than not.
Fortunately (not) we still have these boffos, Senator Burris and Congresswoman Bachmann for comic relief. Bachmann seems like the fairly harmless "I have no idea what the hell I'm (or you're) talking about, but I'll be damned if I'll admit it" type whereas Burris egomania seems to have no end. The guy's in the Senate now, for Pete's sake, Blogo is even gone. He could cruise obscurely through the next accomplishment to be chiseled on his mausoleum,but NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! He's got to call the media back to point out what he neglected to point out in previous affidavit revisions and that is, maybe, just maybe, he DID do a little solicitation of funds on the Governor's behalf. This is just sad now.
Tell me, on a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being most important, which do you care about the least:
1. A-Rod taking steroids.
2. A single unemployed woman having 8 (more) children.
3. Who wins the Senate seat in Minnesota.
4. Whether Cheney is peeved that Bush didn't pardon Libby.
5. The shot chimp in the New York Post cartoon.
In good news, DC may finally get a vote! The New York Times even wrote an editorial about it. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton said she'll give Stephen Colbert a key to the city when it happens! Wonder how Mayor Fenty'll feel about that?
Maybe tomorrow I'll tackle California , Kansas, and the auto industry. Ha!