“Always do what you are afraid to do.”
Fall 2000 already seems like a long time ago, and it actually is. Perhaps I remember in a haze of nostalgia for that period, a brief entertainment of hope for the American polity, one which was soon snuffed in a blizzard of dimpled chads and a lot of votes for Al Gore, who talked as if he were teaching a remedial class. Since then, things have changed, and I now know not only a lot more about Arab newspapers and Islamic sects than I ever wished, but even more about the hauteur of William Kristol and the blustering of Charles Krauthammer.
However, like a narrator in an old flick with a flashback/voice-over, or like the Ancient Mariner mugging the wedding guest, I have to insist that there was life before the 2000 election, and it was pretty bad, too, even though a lot of people made a lot of money without doing anything to earn it. That was called “prosperity” by some and “a Ponzi scheme” by others. That’s right: Repression is hard to surrender because it’s so painful to give up, but here we go. I remember the first Iraq war and the disastrous election of 1992 and the consequent appearance of the Clinton Cabinet, which I noted because it was obvious and also because Bill Clinton said that he wanted a cabinet...