The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Monday, October 15, 2007

Monday Thoughts

1) I don’t believe that Bush passed along everything he got. I believe that it was filtered to reflect what he believed. The “American People” or Congress, did not have the same range of information Bush got, and therefore are not remotely as responsible for their vote. ONLY if evidence was presented to Congress contrary to the position of "Saddam has WMDs." Sorry, but I believe Richard Clark's assertion that the White House seemed set to go into Iraq from the get-go. And after he has left the White House, and no longer has so much leverage to distort and shut people up, I think that this will become clearer. It is totally possible that he believed that everything done was done for the good of America, however. Ultimately, this is between Bush and his soul. I do think that as evidence emerges, the case for him having deliberately distorted and filtered information will do nothing but get stronger.
2) It is certainly possible that torture resulted in information, available no other way, that saved American lives. Yes. It is possible. But I’ve seen no evidence to suggest torture works better than other methods, and some to suggest that it is inferior—but DOES appeal to the righteous and revenge-seeking part of our personalities.
3) Tananarive, Blair and I will be signing CASANGEGRA at EsoWon books in Leimert Park from 3-5 next Sunday. Tananarive and Blair are going to be there too—don’t miss it! 4331 Degnan Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90008 323-290-1048 website: email:
4) I don’t think its racist to suggest that a country isn’t ready for Democracy. It would be racist to say that “those people will NEVER” be ready, or to suggest that there is something intrinsic to their genetics. If you believe that a child adopted out of Iraq and raised in America would be pretty much just another kid, then racism isn’t the issue. To suggest that there are developmental stages that a people have to move through to be ready for Democracy, and that they are still operating at a tribal level (for instance) isn’t racist in my mind, although there are people who will say it is.
5) Tyler Perry’s new movie “Why Did I Get Married?” opened at the #1 position with 21 million dollars. Critics wonder why, when the films are admittedly clunky and populist. I offer an explanation: ask what they are offering that their intended audience hungers for. If you haven’t eaten in a week, you’ll swallow a sandwich with sand in it. I’ve yet to see this one, but will.
6) The blogosphere is buzzing about Al Gore's Nobel Prize win. The most often quoted objection I see has to do with the British judge who had 9 (0r 11) points of contention with the film "An Inconvenient Truth." He requested that the substance of those objections be offered to British students watching the film. All across the Internet (and I heard it first on El Rushbo) this was described as "Eleven Lies" in the film. But the thing that disturbed me was that the judge also said that the content of the film was "substantially accurate." Excuse me? If you trust this judge enough to quote him, doesn't it hit you that if the content of the movie is "substantially accurate" then this is a frightening and dire situation, worthy of rapid action? I literally don't understand. To say "yes, anthropogenic global warming is a hypothesis with growing support. But we don't no quite what to do yet" might be a responsible reaction. But denial? That seems like some kind of odd death wish--for your grandchildren. I really don't understand, and the easiest answer I can come up with is that there is a schatoma tied to political position, a sort of: "don't give the Left an inch" mindset that even obscures doomsday scenarios. This is kind of frightening, actually.


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