Showing posts from July, 2007

President Bush Frees Scooter Libby

And I,
holding my head in horror, cried: "Sweet Spirit,

what souls are these who run through this black haze?"
And he to me: "These are the nearly soulless
whose lives concluded neither blame nor praise.

They are mixed here with that despicable corps,
of angels who were neither for God nor Satan,
but only for themselves.

Dante’s The Inferno, Canto III

After living abroad almost ten years in both Saudi Arabia and in The Netherlands, one of the most upsetting and glaring aspects of American life I experienced on my return was the apathy and un-involvement of the average Americans I met. They seldom had the least interest in the governance of their community, scant interest in world affairs, and little sense that they, as individuals, could make a difference.

This was utterly at odds with my experience living in middle class neighborhoods for years, both in Riyadh and in Amsterdam – two extremes of the liberal/conservative world. In both countries it was usual, not unusual,…