10 years ago today – not that long ago, but the issues are the same; the reactions and fallout are the same. In a strange way much has changed, but ultimately nothing has, in fact it’s gone from bad to worse.
The series of events we spun into action regarding our involvement in Iraq created at first, a ripple effect – and with time have intensified and spread as the infrastructure collapsed – the fragile elements holding a regime together shattered and turned into factions – the factions turned into movements and the movements have become our new nightmare.
But in 2005 we may stepped into the sinkhole and were pretending we weren’t. It took a Senator, a decorated Marine who served in Vietnam, to point out what many had suspected all along – it was a flawed policy, based on illusion and fed by fabrication. Senator John Murtha pulled no punched in calling our involvement what it was – an ill-informed risk, badly taken with long-term consequences.
And of course those who stood to benefit by any short-term involvement in the Iraq situation blasted Murtha as, himself uninformed, a borderline traitor and a subversive, for the mere suggestion this excursion into the ocean of quicksand was a bad, bad idea.
So while John Murtha was condemning our Iraq policy, the streets of Baghdad were littered with corpses, victims of suicide bombers and skirmishes with militias. And we quietly reported it – told to dismiss it – pay no attention to the rantings of a shell-shocked Senator.
And while at that was taking place, the world continued to spin, this week in November, 10 years ago.
On Capitol Hill, it was politics as usual – more concerned with upcoming elections in 2006, and how our policies would look to constituents, more than tackling the issues themselves. Always the subject of Taxes and Tax cuts, the ever-deepening debt the country was get into, the sinking popularity of President Bush. Calls to trim money from Medicaid and Food Stamps and Student Loans came with huge concessions in order to pass. Flawed policies, seemingly everywhere.
And the issue of Creationism being taught in public schools came up for debate, yet again. Re-packaged as “Intelligent Design” the issue was before a Federal judge in Harrisburg Pennsylvania and being considered as a viable challenge to Charles Darwin’s Theory Of Evolution. It was based on a court case disputing the Dover Pennsylvania School Board’s decision to force 9th grade Biology teachers to tell students about “intelligent design”, a theory that holds some aspects of life are so complex they must’ve been purposefully structured, adding that the Theory of Evolution had gaps. Going along with this and ramping up the debate, the Kansas Board of Education recently approved new state Science standards that expressed doubts about evolution. A few days after closing arguments in the Federal trial in Pennsylvania, 8 Dover School Board members who supported Intelligent Design were ousted by voters. Incoming members were expected to remove to theory from Science classrooms, but may allow it to be discussed in some other setting.
All that, and way too much more for the week which ended on this November 17th in 2005 – just 10 years ago, via the CBS Weekend Roundup.