Category Archives: Politics

Owning your content matters right now

Twitter and Facebook are both powerful tools to help people organize. We’ve seen some of that over the last few weeks of protests. While these social networks are also broken in significant ways, they’re not all bad. They bring people together and expand the reach of posts from our own web sites. That’s why many people embrace cross-posting.

Even more important is the free press. Not just big sites like the New York Times and Washington Post, but also small sites like yours and mine. Trump will continue to attack and undermine the mainstream press. Everyone who publishes on the internet should consider where that leads.

It’s not a good foundation to concentrate so much writing into one place like Twitter or Medium. Distributing writing across more web sites protects us if one massive site shuts down. It gives us flexibility to move to the next popular network if one emerges.

Sometime in the next 2 years, a reporter or blogger is going to break a story about the Trump administration. It’s going to be too important to ignore. But to be taken seriously, it can’t be an anonymous Twitter account that’s easy to cast doubt on. It has to come from someone accountable who has built a reputation by publishing good work and owning it.

Owning your content by having a microblog at your own domain is empowering. Maybe you’re writing about what you had for lunch. Maybe you’re photo-blogging an important trip. Maybe you’re posting from your iPhone at a protest outside the White House.

It doesn’t matter what it is. If it’s happening and worth writing about, it’s worth owning. Now more than ever.

The fight for truth and progress

Kevin Hoctor has a great post about staying above name-calling and focusing instead on positive change during a Trump presidency. Standing up for people, exposing lies, and supporting the free press:

If you have a website, use it. Write more words than you can fit into a tweet. Call out injustice and hold your House and Senate representatives responsible for their actions and their voting. This is a marathon, not a sprint.

You’re not alone if you’ve been aimlessly reloading news sites all day for weeks. It’s easy to fall into a trap of indecision, failing to create anything, unsure of what to do next that will matter. I struggle every day to rebalance my time on the right things.

But to Kevin’s point, a marathon is finished one mile at a time. And I’ll add a quote from Steve Jobs, which I think about sometimes when I can’t focus on making real progress:

Everything around you that you call life, was made up by people that were no smarter than you. And you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.

Remember that Twitter was still in the middle of taking off 8 years ago when Obama was first elected. Not quite mainstream, no Trump account. We’re going to blink and it will be 2018 and then 2020. Everything can change again if we work to make it better.

MLK on Apple.com

Apple dedicated their home page to Martin Luther King today with a photo and quote:

Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a greater person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.

When Apple does this sort of tribute, it’s a reminder of why we expect the best from Apple, and why we complain when they fall short. We hold Apple to a high standard because they’ve set the bar high for themselves, not just by building great products, but by not being afraid to stand for something.

Core Intuition 259 transcript

Daniel and I covered a few topics on Core Intuition 259 yesterday, but the closing segment about the Apple design book — and indirectly, the election — was particularly interesting to me. I decided to transcribe part of the conversation. Here it is, lightly edited.

Daniel:

Alright Manton, I know what a fan you are of lavish Apple products designed for the rich. [laughter] I know therefore you have probably already placed a pre-order for the Apple Book Edition.

Manton:

Is the Edition the $300 one?

Daniel:

Yeah, the $300 one is the Edition. The $200 one is the Edition Lite. [more laughter]

Manton:

So Apple announced this book yesterday, and I believe orders are being accepted today. It’s just this very beautiful, well-produced “we worked 8 years on this” book of essentially product photos.

And I think there’s an introduction with Jony Ive. There’s a video from him that is a classic Jony Ive video about a product.

I’ve blogged about this a little bit, and actually talked about this on my microcast, Timetable. Red flags are going off for me with this product for a few reasons.

The first is, we’re a week out from the election. A lot of us are bummed out and trying to make sense of the world, and Apple releases a book of product photos. It seems out of touch. I don’t understand why they did this right now.

And the other thing, I just hit on something that bothered me about this book. I have a lot of books in this house. Bookshelves and bookshelves full of books. My wife hates the fact that I have every book that I’ve ever bought. I have a lot of books and I have a lot of art books. In a previous life I wanted to an artist, an animator. I have a lot of art books.

And so this is right up my alley, right? I love old stuff. I love art books. Why don’t I want to buy this?

And I think the reason is, unlike most art books, which are about… They’re about the artist as much as the art. And this book is just photos of iMacs.

This isn’t about the designers. And maybe there’s something in the book that I’m missing. That when I hold it I’ll say, “Oh, this book is amazing.” But I feel like this book is not quite right. It’s not about the designers.

I want to know about the designers at Apple, and why they made their choices. I don’t need this well-lit photo of the inside of a Mac Mini. There’s something missing with what they’ve done here.

Daniel:

You know, I agree with you. What you said just now is interesting to me in a few different ways. One of them is — and I know people are going to think I’m crazy for even imagining that this could possibly happen in the wake of a U.S. presidential election — but one of my instincts the day after the election, believe it or not, was actually going to Apple.com to see if Apple had some kind of commemoration or acknowledgement.

And I realized… That’s my passionate, emotional side. Because Apple has been that company on so many issues of national or global importance.

And I get it. Even if I see it as a catastrophic thing for the country and for the world, I get it that it is seen as a partisan issue, and that a lot of people would agree it would be not only poor business, but maybe poor taste to take a stand on Apple.com.

But that’s the kind of feeling I’ve had from this company over the years. I wasn’t surprised not to see something there, but that sensitivity to the current state of affairs in the world, while maybe not driving them to put something on their home page overtly in support of one direction or another… I can see how they could maybe have made an effort to come up with something that somehow spoke to the issue without taking a side. They could have done that.

And I’m not faulting them for not doing that. But your comment about the possible poor timing of releasing this right after the election, it drives it home for me that doing something like that with the home page would have reflected a level of consciousness about what’s going on — their being sympathetic or even empathic to the situation.

Releasing a self-gratifying, expensive art book certainly does not speak to sensitivity about the national and global implications of the election. Nor should it have to. But by doing it the very week of the election, it does sort of tip the sales toward insensitivity.

Manton:

Right. So we had the election. A lot of people are trying to make sense of it. Like you said, you went to Apple. “Is Apple going to say anything?” Reload, reload. No, they’re not going to say anything. “Is Apple going to say anything next week?”

The first thing they said, not about the election but the first thing they publicly said was, “We have this beautiful book.”

Yes, they didn’t mean it that way. They didn’t mean it as a reaction to the election. They’ve had this thing planned for years. But it doesn’t feel right.

I don’t want to take away anything from the designers at Apple and the people that worked on this book, because they do great work. The products in this book are amazing. They do deserve to be celebrated and talked about. But the timing does not feel right.

And like I said before, I think the substance of this book is also wrong. I want to be careful not to criticize too much, because I’m sensitive to this. I don’t want to just bash this book. It doesn’t feel like the book we need about design at Apple. Because there’s no text in it!

It celebrates objects and machines but it doesn’t celebrate people. The people are one of the most important things about design at Apple. It doesn’t seem right.

I had never thought after the election, “What would Apple say? Would they put something on their web site?” I hadn’t thought of that until you just mentioned it.

Tim Cook did send a letter to Apple employees, an email. It wasn’t really partisan, but it was kind of saying, “We know some of y’all are having trouble.”

I don’t know how he phrased it. But the sense of it was, “We’re moving forward together. We’re going to be together. That’s how we get through everything as a company.”

That was private to Apple employees. They didn’t say anything publicly. To say something publicly would have been difficult. This is kind of a cheat, but I’m just going to say it: it would have taken courage to say something about the election publicly. I’m using that word very deliberately.

Come on, Apple. Forget about the stupid headphone jack. If you want to be courageous, take a stand on something you believe in. Do it.

Proud to have voted for Hillary

I couldn’t sleep. I woke up early the day after the election, thinking about my daughters, and cried. I had been so excited to celebrate our new president with them. I had been so excited to watch the returns with my kids, to share a moment of pride and optimism.

This wasn’t a normal election. This wasn’t just a debate over policy. It was much deeper. The world is already worse and darker for many people because of what happened.

There will be arguments over why the election went so wrong, but it’s more complicated than just one thing. There was the overplayed story about private emails. There was the FBI letter. There was the media treating Trump like a reality TV star instead of a threat.

Hillary did her job. She destroyed Trump in all 3 debates. She ran a solid campaign. But she has always been held to a different standard than everyone else. I’ll never get over that.

I’m proud to have voted for Hillary in the primary and in the general election, and I’d do both again. This election was very close. It was winnable. If we had ignored the polls and fought for every state, it was winnable.

Friday night, I went with a friend to see Trevor Noah’s standup show. It was great to laugh for a couple hours, about the election and everyday life. But then the night fades and we’re still in a nightmare.

After Hillary has had some time to rest, and reflect, and be her own person again, I hope she can find another cause worth fighting for. Let’s not forget that she did make history as the first woman to be nominated by a major party. She paved the way and reminded us how hard this is. That matters.

Daniel and I recorded an episode of Core Intuition the day after the election. We tried to capture that feeling of loss, and anger, but also of hope that we can have a renewed passion for our apps and ideas. Maybe some of our products have a place in the work to do before 2018.

Hillary said in her speech, the day after the election:

Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.

On this, I disagree with Hillary. Trump has already shown us who he is — someone who mistreats women, lashes out at his critics, and disrespects immigrants — and nothing he does in office will change that. The only thing we owe him is a short presidency.

Disappointed in Thiel

About 2 years ago I read Peter Thiel’s Zero to One while traveling. It quickly became one of my favorite business books. I’ve always thought we should strive to create truly new products, not just better versions of old ideas. I referenced the book in one of my blog posts about Snippets.today.

It wasn’t until the Gawker lawsuit that I bothered to learn more about Thiel. It’s disappointing enough that anyone I respected was on stage at the Republican National Convention, a 4-day train wreck that I expect years from now the GOP will look back on with embarrassment. Now Thiel’s giving over $1 million to Trump.

Marco Arment makes the case for Y Combinator distancing itself from Thiel:

Wrapping reprehensible statements or actions as “political beliefs” doesn’t protect them or exempt their supporters from consequences. Racism is racism. Sexual assault is sexual assault. Labeling reprehensible positions as “political beliefs” is a cowardly, meaningless shield.

I don’t think we should use the word “shame” lightly. It’s used jokingly too often in our industry; for example, “shame on you” for not using my favorite app or listening to my favorite show. But on this serious topic, I agree with the content of Marco’s post completely.

With her

I’m a Hillary Clinton supporter. I was in 2008, I was earlier this year, and absolutely I am now, as Donald Trump seems intent with each daily blunder to prove he’s the worst candidate the Republicans have fielded in quite some time.

Having said that, even leaving the politics aside, I think the new podcast “With her” from the Hillary campaign is fantastic. It’s exactly what a podcast should be: well-produced, yet informal, with just enough of a look behind the scenes to feel personal. You can subscribe in Overcast or iTunes.

This is Hillary’s week

The Democratic National Convention starts today and the latest round of polls are out. FiveThirtyEight’s polls-only estimate of the election now shows Trump in the lead. Just in case you think we can not vote or not volunteer, and Hillary will coast to a win anyway… we can’t.

As a long-time Hillary supporter — I recorded a podcast episode about the primary process back in 2008, which I’m still very proud of — I’m increasingly frustrated to realize how much damage has been done with the constant attacks against her character over 20 years. She’s held to a different standard of perfection than everyone else. But she’s a very good candidate and fundamentally honest.

Let’s not forget how historic this election is. From a New York Times profile by Gail Collins:

You can argue the pros and cons of Hillary Clinton’s character, or her potential to change the nation, or her position on trade policy. But you can never take away the fact that she was the one who made the idea of a woman becoming president so normal that many young women are bored by it.

If Hillary wins, future generations will grow up learning about how Republicans (and even some Democrats) threw everything at her for decades, and she never gave up on politics. Success isn’t just the best ideas, the best product, the best marketing. Success is perseverance.

There are many people alive today who were born before women had the right to vote. Trump is wrong about what makes America “great”. The country is great because it is progressive, even if progress takes a long time. Electing the first woman president isn’t supposed to be easy. Hillary is a strong Democrat, and her place in history is worth fighting for and celebrating.

GOP train wreck, day 2

I agree with Dave Winer’s summary of day 2 of the Republican convention:

It’s one thing to nominate a grade school bully from a racist family with a potty mouth and an emotional age in the single digits. That’s pretty bad, but to call for the other party’s candidate to be jailed, that’s over the top. To let those words come out of your mouth, even as an anonymous person in a crowd, you all have crossed a line that will be hard to come back from.

History will reflect poorly on the Republicans of 2016. And nearly as bad, while flipping through national TV networks last night, I saw little or no condemnation from the news. Maybe we need a multi-party system just so the GOP stops getting 50% of the air-time.

I called it a mob last night. The only good news: the arena seemed literally half empty.

I’m supporting Hillary, again

As Iowa kicks off the election today, I thought I’d offer my 2 cents on the campaign. I’m a strong Hillary Clinton supporter.

Dave Winer writes that Hillary is what we need right now in terms of projecting a stable image to the rest of the world:

“At this moment, we need a solid hitter, someone who the rest of the world is comfortable with, and who a deeply injured Republican Party can work with.”

It’s great to see the passionate Bernie Sanders supporters, too. I was fired up for Howard Dean in 2004, so I remember what that excitement is like. But I believe Hillary would be a great president.

Eight years ago I put together a short podcast episode about the campaign, trying to capture something from 2008. You can listen to it here. My daughters — who were 7 years old at the time — make an appearance at the end of the episode. Now, of course, they’re 15, and the weight of time passing couldn’t be more clearly felt.

There’s a good line from Hillary in one of the first Democratic debates in 2015:

“I’m a progressive. But I’m a progressive who likes to get things done.”

I think that sums up what we can expect from a Hillary Clinton presidency. I have no idea what a Bernie Sanders presidency would look like — what it would accomplish — and I’m not sure he does either. My concern isn’t in the ideas, but in the execution against a politically calculating, Republican congress.

Bernie and Hillary share something in a fighting attitude, though. Neither candidate will let the Republicans walk over them. If you don’t think Hillary’s got this, re-watch her speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

Paul Krugman on the triumph for Obamacare

Writing his op-ed for the New York Times, Paul Krugman reacts to just before and after the Supreme Court upheld a crucial part of the Affordable Care Act:

“Was I on the edge of my seat, waiting for the Supreme Court decision on Obamacare subsidies? No — I was pacing the room, too nervous to sit, worried that the court would use one sloppily worded sentence to deprive millions of health insurance, condemn tens of thousands to financial ruin, and send thousands to premature death.”

He continues by countering many original arguments against the law, from not insuring enough people to costing too much. He wraps up with:

“Put all these things together, and what you have is a portrait of policy triumph — a law that, despite everything its opponents have done to undermine it, is achieving its goals, costing less than expected, and making the lives of millions of Americans better and more secure.”

And that’s not the only big news from the Supreme Court. Nice way to end the week.

Healthcare fallback plan

In the software world, the best strategy is to ship early and often. Get something out there that solves a real problem, then fill in the missing pieces and continue to improve it. Iterate. In politics, though, we often only have one chance in years or decades to get it right.

The healthcare bill passed the Senate and is on its way to becoming real, even if it’s a shadow of what it could have been. We should be thankful that we got anything — the changes do matter — but at the same time I can’t help thinking it was a missed opportunity.

Who’s to blame? I wish Democrats had fought harder; I wish they’d framed the debate correctly from the start. I still like George Lakoff’s focus on calling the public option the American Plan, but I also like John Neffinger’s point that maybe the real mistake was in not starting with a single-payer plan so that the public option would look like a moderate compromise. It feels like many Democrats were resigned to failure early on.

In an unrelated tweet a few weeks ago, from comic artist Kazu Kibuishi: “If you have a fallback, you will fall back.” My failures reflect that too. To shoot for greatness you have to put everything you’ve got into your first effort.

I keep coming back to something Hillary Clinton said in a debate with Obama early in the Democratic primaries of 2008. It struck me as so true at the time that I wrote it down:

If you do not have a plan that starts out attempting to achieve universal healthcare, you will be nibbled to death.

And that’s what happened.

Palin

I made a comment on “Dave Winer’s points”:http://www.scripting.com/stories/2008/08/29/initialThoughtsOnThePalinN.html about McCain VP pick Sarah Palin that I feel like I should republish here. I’ve commented on dozens of blogs and news sites through the primaries, but I haven’t posted here on this blog, instead preferring to let off steam on Twitter. I think this comment serves as a nice snapshot in time of the race, at least from my perspective, so here it is:

Some of your points may end up being true, but let me just address number 6. Since you didn’t vote for Hillary, there are 18 million people who know more about this point than you do.

Every day this week at the convention, the main news story was Hillary and party unity. What would she say, would Democrats unite? Well she hit it out of the park with her speech, and Bill Clinton did too, and then Biden followed strong and it was easy to be excited about being a Democrat, about the story of Obama and Biden and how hopelessly lost the Republicans were by comparison. Even those Democrats who were frustrated with the party, and disappointed with Obama in general, started to warm up to the ticket.

When McCain picked Palin, it was like none of the week had happened. Everything was reset back to the primaries, in how Hillary had been treated by the press, party, and Obama supporters, and how Obama had passed her over for VP.

On the issues, Palin is no Hillary. But every day for the next 2 months, Palin will be a reminder to disgruntled Democrats that Obama messed up.

Unite the Party

After Hillary won Ohio, Texas, and Rhode Island last month, I decided it was time to think less about actively supporting my own candidate, who clearly wasn’t going away, and more about the future of the Democratic Party and what it would take to come together when a nominee is chosen. I had been quick to defend Hillary on Twitter and in blog comments, but the more I considered the close race and the long month until the next primary in Pennsylvania, now finally here, the more convinced I became that a joint ticket is the answer to a unified party.

Rather than bicker with my friends who support Obama, I changed my tone to emphasize our shared values and launched a new site: “unitetheparty.com”:http://www.unitetheparty.com/. I’ve been posting there regularly since March, and hope to build a group of like-minded Democrats to write on this topic, as well as a list of supporters who want to see a joint ticket happen.

Thinking about the endgame of the race in this context provides an excellent backdrop for discussing the real issues important to voters. There’s still an opportunity to use these campaigns for good: setting the right tone against McCain and bringing awareness of the Democratic agenda to everyone.

Animation podcasts for a Super Tuesday

Need something to listen to on your iPod while waiting in line to vote today? Try out these fantastic recent episodes of two of my favorite podcasts for animators and animation fans.

“Spline Cast with Ed Catmull”:http://splinedoctors.blogspot.com/2007/11/original-spline-doctor.html. I’ll be honest, I’ve followed the careers of John Lasseter and Steve Jobs a lot closer than I have for Ed Catmull, but this podcast shows pretty clearly the depth of impact Ed Catmull has had on the computer industry and the Pixar culture. It’s a great listen not just for anyone who cares about animation, but also for entrepreneurs who want a look into how you stay successful year after year.

“Animation Podcast with James Baxter”:http://animationpodcast.com/archives/2008/02/04/james-baxter-part-one/. There are many great animators, from well known independents who receive Oscar recognition to those who work 12-hour days in relative obscurity at a big studio, but there are only a handful of true masters of the art form. Baxter is one of my favorites. The powerful sequence with Moses and the burning bush and the mannerism of Belle fixing her hair were both always really memorable for me.

Enjoy! Happy Super Tuesday.

Why I support Hillary

Obama is passionate, thoughtful, centrist enough for broad appeal, and a brilliant speaker. If he’s the nominee I’ll support him fully with every bit of strength I have. There is something special about him, and it comes around rarely in a candidate.

“Dave Winer wrote”:http://www.scripting.com/stories/2008/01/08/gluedToTheTv.html: “Obama, like Carter in 1976, may be our pennance for having re-elected Bush in 2004. We’re taking the medicine we deserve for having been crazy enough to re-elect someone who was so bad for us.”

But what about Hillary? She’s part of the establishment, and I volunteered heavily for the Howard Dean campaign. Could I support someone as traditional as Hillary? As “Mike Cohen said”:http://mcdevzone.com/2008/01/08/bad-news-from-new-hampshire: “I oppose her very strongly, not only because of all the baggage she brings, but for her anti-progressive record.”

And yet.

“I posted to Twitter”:http://twitter.com/manton/statuses/578006692 on election night that something had changed between the Iowa vote and New Hampshire: Hillary had found her voice, and it surprised me. Turns out she knows what is at stake. I always knew she was a fighter; after 2000 and 2004, we need the Democrats to show some backbone again. But I think she’s been underestimated even more deeply than that, in her ability to speak to the core Democratic base while drawing upon her new experience and record in the Senate that most people aren’t familiar with yet.

And then there is the woman factor. Some people will say this matters but they don’t really understand unless they have daughters of their own, daughters who will grow up and become teenagers, the defining moment of their lives, during a woman presidency. This is both personal and huge and it could spread like wildfire. For me, it tips the balance.

My family is throwing its support — our money for donations, our phones for getting out the vote, and our voice — behind Hillary. Thank you New Hampshire for making this a real primary election again.

Bush veto

Yes, it’s a politically-themed post. Probably the only one before 2008, so don’t run away just yet.

The Bush veto of the bipartisan children’s health care plan a few weeks ago really made me angry, but it wasn’t until “Justin Miller responded”:http://twitter.com/incanus77/statuses/310113392 to “my tweet”:http://twitter.com/manton/statuses/310110182 that I started to think about why. Here’s the reason.

When Bush was elected in 2000, I expected this kind of stuff from him. Vetoing stem cell research? Killing children’s health care funding? Sure, par for the course for this Republican. But then 9-11 happened and everything changed. The war. Our president’s priorities changed.

Bush got a free ride from the media during the 2000 election, and again after 9-11. He would make the most incompetent and clumsy mistakes and yet be cut slack because, frankly, expectations are just so much lower for him than any other president in recent history.

At some point in 2004, opinion started to shift, led by folks like Howard Dean (who I’ve “written about before”:http://www.google.com/search?q=site%3Amanton.org+howard+dean). Eventually, after Bush won re-election, there would be enough anti-war momentum to matter. And that brings us up to now and this veto.

Everyone is focused on the war. Everyone understands the significance, the mistakes. Most of the country wants it over but we know that it’s complex, and the consequences for any given action will be felt for a decade. Compared to the lives lost in Iraq and the harm done to the stability of the Middle East, the rise of a new generation of terrorists — what does a health care bill matter? Is it worth fighting for?

Democrats in power by a slim majority probably think they have to choose their battles, have to give in on some issues so they can hold on to the important ones, like the war. But I say no. The only thing that works against this stubborn ass in the White House is to take the fight to him. Cut him off at every turn. Don’t give him a freakin’ inch. Call for an override vote again and again.

Every. Single. Day.

That’s how you win. You put people on the ground in every state — organizing, protesting, getting out the vote. You put letters in the hands of our representatives — email, blogs, editorial, flyers. You put a loud voice to what you feel and never, ever back down.

The 50-state strategy

I started writing this post yesterday afternoon. Worried that I would jinx a victory, I wrote two versions: one for a narrow loss and one for what really happened.

Two years ago, after Kerry lost, “I wrote”:http://www.manton.org/2004/11/after_almost_winning.html: “We almost won, and all the hard work of the last 18 months will pay off big in two short years.”

Well, it’s two years later, and we did it. DNC chairman Howard Dean’s “50-state strategy”:http://democrats.org/a/party/a_50_state_strategy/ worked. The media will tell you that the election was just about Iraq and Bush, but it goes deeper than that — voters are sick of Republican corruption, tired of half-hearted attempts at health care, and longing for a real vision for public education. You can see the patterns by looking at the progressive wins in state races and on local propositions too.

There are “20 posts in the politics category”:http://www.manton.org/category/politics.html of my blog, and they include some of my favorites from the last 4 years. It’s nice to be on the winning side again after too long. The next part of the job is for Democrats to show everyone in America that real progress can be made in Washington. Deliver. Then keep organizing and make it all happen again in 2008.

Midterm elections matter

I voted today. Here’s the scene for my precinct today. Not too crowded, but a steady flow of people.

Voting

Yesterday Traci and I called voters as part of “MoveOn.org’s Call for Change”:http://www.moveon.org/. I’m always nervous about calling complete strangers. I did this for the first time for Howard Dean’s campaign and it’s easy to get disillusioned with answering machines and hang-ups. But almost everyone we talked to was planning to vote today, and I think there’s definitely a sense that this election matters. Sometimes a simple reminder is the difference between voting or skipping it, so if you only reach a handful of people it can make the difference in a close race if thousands of other people are doing the same.

I’ll be up late tonight watching the returns. Polls close early in some places and may get crowded, so don’t wait any longer if you haven’t voted yet. For location info call 1-866-MY-VOTE-1.

Five years later

I couldn’t let the 5th anniversary of September 11th pass without saying something. On Friday the Senate intelligence committee released a report showing that there was no link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11. That isn’t news. What is news is the details: that Saddam actually distrusted Al Qaeda and tried to capture Zarqawi. The simple truth is that terrorist organizations are a threat to any government, even ones we have disagreements with.

If that doesn’t make you sick, here’s another one that I haven’t heard mentioned yet. Sometime next year the number of U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq will surpass the civilian deaths on September 11th. (September 11th = 2973, Iraq as of today = 2661)

The level of incompetence in our President, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and their advisors reaches new heights. What can we do? Five years ago we were uneducated and scared, and even two years later we could easily be led by fear alone. Now, just stay angry. Change starts in November.