Stupid radio

So I'm listening to the radio earlier this morning and the DJs are talking about the new rules being considered requiring senior citizens to be retested regularly for their driver's license. Overall they were pretty respectful, until they got into talking about how “these people got their licenses when the road conditions were really different — they can't be expected to understand how to interpret modern highways!” (Caveman lawyer anyone?) Then it moved into complaining about immigrants — “How can they possibly learn to drive a car when all they've ever seen is a Yak cart? At best they can drive a wagon pulled by an armadillo at five miles an hour!”

I was pretty shocked.

Then the white woman DJ started whining that she has to take the same test that a kid has to take… She thought they should have a “quick” test for white adults. Insane. Obviously a person's age (at either end of the scale) and ethnicity is irrelevant — there's a standard test that determines whether a person can drive that should not be biased. If you want to retest seniors, retest across the board. Make everyone take a small test every five years. If they score low, make them come back in a year. If they fail, institute a “clean up” program to make sure they're driving safely.

It's not that hard, and it needs no mention of race or age.

From here on, it's going to turn into blah, blah, blah… I feel like rambling.

Not that anyone cares about deaths that happen outside of their own borders — we all expect the world to cry with us, but don't you expect us to cry for them in return! — but goddamn is it getting unpleasant in Gujarat… Why do people even bother with this crap? Sure, if your faith declares another religion is evil petition against it and do what you can to save people from it's clutches… But burning their babies seems a little extreme! It's not as if I have the head of Steve Haworth on a stake in my backyard over the CoBM debacle.

Anyway, as much as I'm horrified by the events, what interests me more is American response to foreign terrorism. America expects the entire world to rally behind it after it is attacked, and even goes so far as to declare any country that doesn't evil. I wonder — will America rally behind India? Somehow I doubt it.

The economics of the attack are interesting to start looking at now too. A couple people have emailed me to say, “Well, at least we proved that terrorism doesn't work.” Hmm…. Ok, let's look at this — almost all the high-ups who orchestrated the attack are uncaptured, and will probably continue to remain free. Using an estimated $200,000 investment they killed three thousand people (in trade for a very small number of their own “troops”), have forced the US military to blow $30,000,000,000 (30 billion), did enormous damage to the US economy (I've seen people claim trillion-dollar figures), plus had a huge destabilizing effect on the politics of the US both internally and internationally, and have brought world-wide attention to the issues they wanted addressed. They WON. Plain and simple. They won this battle.

On an economic level, and on every functional measurable level, these attacks have proved both that terrorism works, and, more worryingly, that America is a very easy target. It's a simple fact that it is impossible to get rid of all fanatics. Sure, maybe given enough time and money they can eliminate Al Qaeda. I doubt it, and I suspect this hunt will just make Al Qaeda bigger… But more to the point, we'll never get them all. Which means that it is a guarantee that there will be more attacks as long as the US — and the West in general — continues along this path.

We need to make America a non-target. It's not as if people are blowing up buildings in Denmark. Denmark is a very advanced Western country, and a real nice place to live… and there are no crazies crashing planes into their cities… Why?

The West isn't a target of terrorism because a bunch of Muslims want to take our land, or because they object to our way of life. I'm sure they find our way of life deeply offensive, but that is not what caused the attack. The attacks were caused by one thing alone: objection to US foreign policy and perceived US attacks on the Arabic Middle East. So… If you want to minimize the possibility of attacks, what do you do? On top of radically reconsidering foreign policy, here is what I'd do if I was Bush:

  • Major scaleback of the military. Eliminate general troops altogether and have specialized strike forces only. Cannon fodder is a thing of the past, and is an easy target for guerilla forces.
  • Major scaleback of small weapons with a move to large nuclear deterrant weaponry. Reinstate a nuclear program to ensure we have scientists who understand these bombs.
  • A heavy push toward responsible energy independance. Strong push to install large solar and wind and alternative power arrays. America should never have to rely on its enemies for fuel or food or any other essential resources.
  • Shift the public concept of “AMERICAN” to mean strength through multi-culturalism, and open up the borders more to strengthen the workforce and economy.
  • Since the military is scaled back, without raising taxes the government would now be able to offer free universal healthcare (including glasses and dentistry, everything but elective surgery), and free universal education (right up through university).
  • Make a very hard push for space research. If China beats America into space, it is China that will rule this millenium, not America.
  • Include world history and world politics in the public education system. Allow foreign television easier access to US airwaves. Create a well educated, well cultures, and aware populace.

Anyway, I could go on and on. I don't think that anything I've mentioned above is a big leap, nor do I think it would be particularly difficult to implement. And the end result would be an America the whole world could look up to. Of course, as long as the American population doesn't get to determine who their leader is, and as long as the government works for big business and the upper class, none of these things will ever happen… They're far to empowering.

Capitalism, and the US government by extension, is a pyramid scheme. That is, for them to stay rich, and for them to stay in power, they have to keep you poor and weak. I don't know why the average person can't see that…

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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