Point of View: Reveling a Bit

It is my birthday

Goethe thought solipsism was the worst sin, and while I think he may have a point there, it is my birthday, and what else can I do but revel in the fact. 

And in the fact that you-know-who lost in the Iowa caucuses (to the carpet bomber!) and that Bernie and Hillary ended up in a virtual tie, with the young supporting Sanders and with the old farts — women and men — going for Clinton.

Much is said about her experience in foreign policy, and yet when it came to the salient question of our age, whether or not to invade Iraq in 2003, she caved (prefacing her announcement, as I recall, with a lot of good reasons not to). The Times in its endorsement editorial of her last week made no mention of that, but it is still a question that, curiously, no one seems to have posed; namely, Why did you do it? What was your reasoning at the time? Surely there were others faced with the same “information” who made the wise choice, Sanders being one. But the Cheney-Bush juggernaut was well under way by then, and, presumably, Clinton did not want to seem soft when it came to gore. 

Sanders has said that the Iraq invasion was our worst mistake ever — though, of course, Vietnam is right up there too. It opened up a Pandora’s box of ancient sectarian hatreds that has made the world a bloody mess.

(I might add that sectarianism such as you have nowadays is scary, and when I say that I’m not just thinking of jihadi suicide bombers and beheaders, and massacring fanatics, but also of fire-and-brimstone Christian evangelicals, and true believers of all sorts. How can we say we are free when we are in thrall to ideologies of any sort, whether they be religious or ethnic or nationalistic? Dogma’s throwing us to the dogs.)

Sanders would like to break up the banks, though the time for that worthy goal may have passed. At the least, I hope he goes after the unpatriotic offshorers of money. Repatriate that capital and he would probably be able to rescue capitalism from the oligarchs without much fiscal pain. 

Well, I’ve got to go now and continue, as solipsistic as ever, my quest to find the Fountain of Middle Age.