I'm certain that this is where I am supposed to reach deep within and produce a "Hey, Look on the Bright Side!" post, but I am either unable (or simply unwilling) to do so.
I'm sorry, but 2007 does not look that good to me, no matter how you shake it.
While I honestly do believe the ability to look on the bright side is extremely important to our very survival (in the way that it encourages us to continue to try), there comes a point when one must admit the truth, ugly as it may be, in order to improve the situation as well. I feel that we are that point right now.
No, all is not lost and no, I do not honestly believe all will be ever be lost. I still believe in the will of the American people and I still believe that freedom will survive, every single time (when the battle is fought by freedom loving individuals). However, I do think that our most immediate future appears to be grim because, sometimes, things must become much worse before they can become better. Perhaps I use the words must and can out of turn here, but some of us are insisting upon this dangerous path and the rest of us are sadly being forced along. When "we" suffer as a nation, and I don't doubt that "we" will in 2007, we suffer as individuals as well. Some of us will suffer more than others and those of us who are able will need to triple our efforts to help our fellow American. I suggest we accept this strong possibility and actively prepare for it (as well as mentally). I am that certain that the need will eventually arise.
This is not to say we should ever just throw our hands in the air and give up, merely that it is in our best interest to be prepared for what appears to be inevitable. Yes, accepting reality is not always the easy choice to make, especially when the reality is harsh, but what many rational individuals don't seem to get is that we absolutely do have a choice whether or not we'll accept and deal with reality. Too many Americans are making the wrong choice at this point in time and that refusal puts us all in grave danger. Refusing to accept that which we cannot change may buy temporary comfort but will cause even more pain in the end. I believe we need to face the harsh reality of what doom and gloom may very well be headed our way in 2007 due to those who refuse to face the harsh realities of the threats our nation faces today. I'd rather not think of this at all, but there it is nevertheless.
Islamic terrorism is the single most important issue of our day. No other issue really matters all that much, economic or social, unless we face and conquer this threat. Not everyone recognises this fact. For various reasons, from honest differences of opinion to willful ignorance to self-defeating Bush-hating (I won't pretend to completely understand them all), it looks as if there are those who absolutely insist we experience death and destruction that meets, or perhaps even exceeds, the terrorist attacks on 9/11 before we are allowed to unleash our power and actually win the war on terror. Who knows, many may still insist we act with suicidal restraint even then, but many more will likely wake up to the fact that there is no question as to whether or not we should be at war because we are whether we want to be or not. The question, at this stage anyhow, isn't even can we win but do we want to win. As time goes, and the strength of the United States is weakened, this question may change (in my personal opinion, of course).
In A Self-Correcting Mechanism, Phillip Ellis Jackson over at the Intellectual Conservative writes-
"Wonder what future historians will say about the presidency of George W. Bush? It all depends on how far away you live from the blast zone."
Mr. Jackson goes on to warn-
"What I’m about to suggest is one of those good-news/bad-news things that started off as a joke, but unfortunately like all good parody and satire, has the ring of truth to it. I’ll let you decide whether to laugh, cry, or be offended, but in any case don’t simply dismiss it out of hand. I’m afraid we’re all about to receive a practical application of the old Biblical warning about reaping what we sew."
"If you take every statement made by that whack job in Iran, and all the other Islamo-fascists who threaten us, and use these statements to justify pre-emptive military action against Iran, the liberals/Democrats/press will have Bush impeached and put in prison for crimes against humanity. Their refrain will be something like this: "You should know these people are just playing to a domestic audience and don't really mean what they say. You killed a lot of innocent people for nothing, and made even more of the world hate us."
On the other hand, if these nut-cases go ahead and massacre a few hundred thousand Americans (or Israelis) with the A-bomb, the liberals/Democrats/press will have Bush impeached and put in prison for ignoring the flagrant, connect-the-dot signs that were clearly in front of his face. Again, you can almost hear their words: "They repeatedly telegraphed their plans to you for God's sake! They made their intentions as plain as day [insert 1000+ direct quotations]. How much more did you need to connect the dots! You got a lot of innocent people killed through your negligence."
Such is the state of political discourse in America today, thanks to the liberals/Democrats/press who'd rather regain political power at any expense than try to do the right thing for the people of this country."
And drives the notion home with-
"Had the Left not succeeded in the 2006 mid-term elections, I thought that Bush would have gone ahead and acted (with or without the Israelis) to eliminate Iran’s nuclear threat. If you’re going to be condemned either way for acting or not acting, then you might as well act.
But now that the Dems have taken over both Houses in Congress, I’m not so sure. Bush won’t pull out of Iraq, that much I’m certain of. But it’s less likely now that he’ll expand any action to remove other threats. With the first movement against Iran, Syria or Korea, he would be impeached — and convicted — with unprecedented haste by the Democrat majorities in both Houses."
The bright side in Mr. Jackson's article (which if you will remember "is one of those good-news/bad-news things that started off as a joke, but unfortunately like all good parody and satire, has the ring of truth to it") is a "terrorist blast against New York and Washington, perhaps LA as well, undoubtedly vaporizing all the liberals/Democrats/press who congregate along the East Coast".
Perhaps this is why I am either unable or unwilling to look on the bright side. I just don't live far enough away from the possible blast zone for comfort? Or maybe I've got it all wrong, feel free to convince me otherwise!
Continued- 2007 Part II- What Then, Realistically Speaking, Can We Do?
(Input not only welcome but desirable.)