Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Time's Arrow

A sixteenth century engraving featuring Time, who "revealeth all thynges." He's the winged bearded dude guiding the naked woman (Truth, the daughter of Time) out from the darkness and away from the fat, vomiting demon guy with the tail (Hypocrisy) who's trying to puke on her.

Still life of an empty paper bag in shadow. This is the bag that my toasted poppy bagel with lowfat cream cheese, tomatoes, and onions from Java City came in. I usually read political news on MSNBC's First Read, ABC News's The Note (which is incredibly annoying), or Wonkette as I eat my bagel in the morning. I was struggling again with some thoughts of whether Edwards might be the best candidate before I settled my mind by recalling that he, like Hillary, had voted for the war, and had tried to convince Kerry during the 2004 campaign not to apologize or retract his support for the war. The issue on the Iraq invasion -- to me and to many, many, many other people -- was a very clear and simple one: we were absolutely wrong to invade and had no justification for it. It was clear-cut to anyone who listened, paid any attention, knew about the Office of Special Plans, Wolfowitz's, Perle's, Feith's, and Cheney's and Co.'s long-standing ambitions to invade Iraq that we were being sold a bill of goods. Obama saw this. Edwards did not. And then he tried to convince Kerry not to retract his support and vote for the war -- when that was obviously the best thing he could have done in 2004 to make clear the choice that the voters had. Now that the war is unpopular, Edwards has stuck his finger in the wind and has determined that his best chance is to recalibrate his position and move to the left of Hillary on Iraq, and to loudly disown his vote for the war. I applaud him for this, and his rhetoric on the war, on the neocon's attempts to push us into an attack on Iran, Hillary's shameless vote on the Kyl-Lieberman amendment, etc.

But in picking between Obama and Edwards, it just sticks in my craw that Edwards was so wrong on Iraq. It highlights the things I fear about him: that he's a lightweight, especially on foreign policy, and that his judgment can't be trusted. Obama was dead right about Iraq: it was an unmitigated disaster, and we were wrong from the very beginning to go in there with no cause whatsoever. I trust the judgment of someone like Obama, over the judgment of Edwards, who voted expediently in 2002, and who appears to be positioning himself expediently in 2007.

A green space on the Angels Flight hill. It is a nice little park, looking out over Hill Street and Broadway to the southeast. Lots of homeless people hang out there during the day, lying around on the grass, napping, sitting on benches reading free copies of LA Weekly. It's pretty peaceful. It's only a matter of time before the corporate people from the corporate plaza just above this park make their way down, to sip their frappuccinos, check their Blackberries, and read Anthony Lane's film reviews in the New Yorker magazines they have delivered to their houses in South Pasadena or their apartments in Santa Monica.

A standpipe in front of a building on Broadway. It looks like if you could blow through it hard enough, you could get some fine music.

Another picture of the parking garage on 4th and Hill. I think I like the way the garage is built into the hill, the vegetation climbing the featureless exterior, and the obstinate solidity of the thing.


MK said...

OG, have you been reading Krugman's columns on Obama's health care plan? While Edwards's original stance on Iraq is a problem and a liability, on some other issues he comes out much more competent than Obama. We'll see how Obama's positions shape up as the contest progresses, but Krugman is right in pointing out that in his attempt to appear as an inclusive candidate Obama does echo some senseless Republican talking points.

toddy said...

Mmm. I have made that vote on the war and the subsequent handling of it a major part of my decision making process as well. Hillary won't do. My wife says she has some faith in Hillary because, as a proven tactical politician with a liberal streak, she feels more comfortable with the scenario. She also like Bill Clinton and the idea that he could be there for policy making and diplomatic matters.

Edwards has at least denounced his past mistakes. Call it what you will. Well, call it what it is, which you might have. But currently he is the only one of the top three that speaks on drastic change with an anti-corporate angle. That appeals to me.

Of course all this discussion is probably all for naught. Thats the defeatist in me speaking.

MK said...

A few worthwhile letters in response to Krugman in today's NYT:

Julia said...

i love reading your blog. you're a wonderful writer b/c you have the ability to turn the ordinary into something exquisite. that's my adult commentary for the day. now i must return to communicating with my 7-month-old for 6 hours until daddy comes home. bash on.