- About TFT
Friday Thing Archive
- Politics
- Media
- Culture and Society
- War On Terror
- People
- Places
- World
- Popped Clogs
- Music
- Books
- Film
- Etc
Help And Info
- Contact Details
- Advertising
- Jobs
- Privacy Policy
- XML Feed

Home > War On Terror

Everything's Fine, Nothing To See, Move Along

We're going to win this thing.
Aren't we? George?
Tell us it's all going to be okay...

10 October 2003

President Bush is out and about, spreading sunshine in New Hampshire:

Situation in Iraq 'better than you probably think,' Bush says.

It is interesting to note how Bush's defence of the war against Iraq wraps itself in the safe, comfortable blanket of abstraction, which keeps out the bitter chill of the particular - so, for example: "We've been through a lot, but we acted, we led."

And: "When you become the president, you cannot predict all the challenges that will come, but you do know the principles that you bring to the office, and they should not change with time or with polls..."

As if the abstract qualities of will and determination are, in and of themselves, justifying virtues. As if you couldn't make the same justification of Pol Pot's extermination of the Cambodians. He stuck to his principles - he acted, he led...

NB - we've had exactly the same rhetoric from Blair, for example at the recent Labour Party conference: "Yes, this is a testing time, but it is a test not just of belief but of character, and the time is for renewal not retreat."

See also - the amazing bit of Star Trek philosophy with which he closed his speech:

"To stride forward where we have always previously stumbled. To renew in government. Steadfast in our values. Radical in our methods. Open in our politics. If we faint in the day of adversity, our strength is small. And ours isn't. We have the strength, the maturity, now the experience to do it. So let it be done."

Make it so!

So that's the abstract. But what about the particular?
Is everything better than we probably think?

This is from Patrick Cockburn's report in The Independent:

Early yesterday I visited a fruit-growing village called Dhuluaya 50 miles north of Baghdad where Ali Saleh, a farmer, had just buried his 10-year-old daughter Namara. Last Friday mortar bombs - nobody knows who fired them - started raining down on his house. He and the rest of his family scrambled to safety but Namara was crippled by polio and could not get out of the way of a large chunk of concrete. It crushed her to death.

Better than you probably think.

Bush also assured the world that: "Americans are not the running kind."

In the sense of not being able to run a country?

Comment on this article: letters@thefridaything.co.uk

Subscribe to The Friday Thing for free

Bad words ahead The Friday Thing is a weekly email comment sheet. Casting a cynical eye over the week's events, it is rarely fair and never balanced.

A selection of articles from each week's issue appear online, but to enjoy the full Thing, delivered by email every Friday - as well as access to almost five years of back issues - you'll need to subscribe. It's absolutely free.

"Razor-sharp comment and gossip." - The Sunday Times

"Hilariously cynical..To describe it as 'irreverent' is to do the newsletter an injustice." - The Observer

"Sharp, intelligent, opinionated, uncompromising and very, very funny. Just like 'Private Eye' used to be." - Alec McKelland

"Wicked" - Channel 4

"Ace" - Time Out

"'We rise once again in advocacy of The Friday Thing. We realize that some of you may be unwilling to spend [your money] on plain-text comment, but you're only depriving yourself." - The Minor Fall, The Major Lift

"Subscribing to this at the beginning of the year was undoubtedly one of the better decisions I've made. Superlative, and utterly marvellous. I look forward to Fridays now, because I can't wait for the next issue. Fucking fucking brilliant." - Meish.org

"Featuring writers from The Observer, Smack The Pony and The 11 O'Clock Show... will continue to attract new subscribers sight unseen" - NeedToKnow

"The Friday Thing is so good it's stopping me from doing a bunk of a Friday afternoon." - Annie Blinkhorn (The Erotic Review)

"So now" - The Evening Standard

"Damn it, you rule. May you never, ever back down." - Paul Mayze

"Ace" - PopJustice

"Snarky" - Online Journalism Review

"Can you please stop making me laugh out loud... I'm supposed to be working, you know!" - Tamsin Tyrwhitt

"Your coverage of stuff as it spills is right on the money." - Mike Woods

"Popbitch with A-Levels." - Tim Footman

"In an inbox full of trite work-related nonsense, TFT shines from under its subject heading like the sun out of Angus Deayton's arse." - Nikki Hunt

"A first rate email. It's become an integral part of my week, and my life would be empty and meaningless without it (well, *more* empty and meaningless anyway)." - Mark Pugh

"Genius, absolute bit of class. And you can quote me on that." - Lee Neville

"If you're hipper than hell, this is what you read." - MarketingSherpa

"The most entertaining email I've had all week. Great tone." - Matthew Prior

"A massive and engrossing wit injection." - idiotica.co.uk

"I wouldn't know satire if it bit me on the arse. But I did like the Naomi Campbell joke." - Matt Kelly (The Mirror)

"Has had an understandably high profile among people who know about these things." - Guy Clapperton (Guardian Online)

"Satirical sideswipes at the burning issues of the day." - Radio 5 Live

"Puerile and worthless... Truly fabulous... Do read the whole thing." - Stephen Pollard

The Friday Thing 2001-2008 - All Rights Reserved