Given Obama’s transparent intention to pursue Bush Junior’s conflict up the Euphrates and complete Rumsfeld’s implementation of learnings from the errors of Vietnam, I thought it would be interesting to read a bunch of 9/11-related memoirs – Bush, Rumsfeld, Blair, Powell’s new one, Chirac (Rumsfeld.com‘s papers are more revealing of the French) – as well as the great polyoptics by Bob Woodward and Thomas Ricks.
OK, one writes for one’s audience, and OK, Spain’s military has no ambition greater than retaking rocks from Moroccan ruminants as a prelude to cashing in its rather attractive pensions, a status quo which Spanish politicians appear to accept in exchange for photo-ops. But the lack of interest in Spain, in Aznar and Zapatero, and in the protesting millions, is impressive.
This hurtful perception of irrelevance will undoubtedly change now that Carme Chacón – Bambi II and the next leader of the PSOE and thus the nation – has
taken a sabbatical ducked out of her party’s constitutional crisis (she was never sure which side she was on) to get to know D.C. to speak Spanish at the University of Miami a community college 15 minutes from the beach.
Electorates now and then get the leadership candidates they deserve, but the contrast between Rumsfeld and Bush (done down because he’s a white Texan from beyond the Holy Enclave of Austin, but he’s still pretty dumb), between Alfonso Guerra (I just read his vol 1) and Felipe González, between the hypothetical last remaining intelligent person in the PSC and Chacón, is pitiful.
There’s some controversy about whether Miami Dade is a university, whatever the fuck that means. Let’s put it this way: prior to her canonisation by Bambi “Zapatero” I, Chacón’s academic employer was the University of Girona, awarded a world ranking of no less than 768 from my dear friends, the Ottoman technocrats at METU. Miami Dade College gives out some kind of BEd but has no such recognition.
Woodward describes Rumsfeld somewhere as honest, “though not overly so,” but his is the Washington memoir I’d most recommend of those recently read, not because I’d agree with everything – the appointment of Douglas Feith (Tommie Franks: “the dumbest fucking guy on the planet”) to plan post-conflict was a tragedy for all – but because of its record of a clever, creative, determined individual up to his elbows in many of the most interesting suds to come out of the Washington soap since 1960. And he wore trifocals and had a stand-up make-believe panopticon desk.
- Dead letters
ABC and Ramón Pérez Maura are taken to task by Peter Harvey Linguist. As usual, he’s absolutely right, but I’d just
- Moreno’s master’s: polysemy, polydon’t
Jesús Fernández-Villaverde y Luis Garicano at Hay Derecho had a look last year at the CV of Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla,
- Community leaders
Sarkozy’s going to need to look for some soon, but I fear that the current Parisian definition is the guy with
- Solving the crisis in Spain’s public finances, part LXXII: It’s time to ban socks
The Spanish government is determined to retain the 500€ note as a crucial weapon in the fight to reduce tax evasion
- Francisco Zapatero
There’s an editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal which will raise hackles but probably reflects a fairly widely-held view at the