Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Thanks, Rachel

One of the smarter radio talk-show folk seems to be Rachel Maddow, articulate and well read. She explains things so well that even poets can appear to understand.

One of her good points today was that at least one of Bush's cronies is working against alleged U.S. interests in Iraq. The Hunt Oil Company, the head of which has donated $35 million to the Bush II Library [what will be in that library?], has cut an oil deal with the Kurds that effectively removes those oil deposits from the control of the Iraqi government. Maddow's point is that if the alleged goal of U.S. occupation is to establish something that resembles a viable state with a viable economy, removing the main source of economic strength, oil, from the state works against that alleged goal. Thus a Bush oil crony is arguably working against Bush's interests. But who says Bush's interest is in establishing a viable Iraqi state? Another crony in the midst of attempting to seal private oil deals is, of course Richard Perle, one of the main neo-con architects of the Iraqi invasion and occupation. He's working for a corporation with oil interests. Of course.

An old-fashioned way of viewing such matters is through the lens of conflict-of-interests. But I think the point of the military/industrial complex is to remove any conflict between the military and the industrial complex by having the former smoothly pave roads for the former.

The only point at which Maddow got a wee bit predictable is when she asked, "Would a President McCain remove Perle from the usual inner circle of neo-con advisors?" A better question, I think, is whether a President Obama would do anything about the way in which American oil interests trump all other interests, or appear to do so. My guess is . . . No. I think the vision of a United Federation of Iraqi States (or whatever) is a fairy tale, and I don't thing anyone is going to achieve that, especially if it runs counter to oil interests, which, if Maddow's argument is correct, run counter to a united Iraq in control of its own oil and oil-profits. Second, I think Obama is a pragmatist, and I don't think he'd dream of taking on big oil. Even if he wanted to do so, how could he do it? He'd only be the president, not an oil CEO.

Thus ends a poet's foray into Iraqi/oil politics. Thanks, Rachel Maddow. I think I'll stick to translations of Iraqi poetry.
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