Sunday, December 24, 2006

Woodward to Billy, the Kid...

Bob Woodward's book, "State of Denial", is something else again. It's damned near impossible to read more than one of its short chapters before having to cease because you've gone into a state of rage. Took me...and I'm a fast reader...over a month to read that book because I'd get so damned mad that I had to put it down. Finally did finish it and loaned it to another writer. It affected that writer the same way. Bottom line is that I cannot recommend it enough.

Had recently reread "Locked In the Cabinet" by Robert Reich, Clinton's Sec of Labor. And again enjoyed that very close-up and personal view of just what it's like to run one of the Cabinet agencies. Not fun. One of the things that stuck with me is the fact that, even going full tilt, it takes a Cabinet member, when a new president is elected, from their swearing in time in January until June before the agency is truly ready to do business.

So here is our new SecDef, Gates, who has just about a month to come up with the solution to the Iraq War for our idiot administration. Good luck, buddy. I found it most interesting that Gates was prepped for his testimony before Senate confirmation by VP Cheney's office. And of course he was part of Baker's Iraq Strategy Group. So how much can the nation expect him to depart from Bush's "stay the course"?

Baker...the Saudi royal families' main lawyer. Ah, the links to this chain never end and get tighter every day.

Thank heavens for Denny's restaurant. It will be open for breakfast in the morning....Christmas morning, that is. Another writer and I meet for a patio breakfast (has to be a patio because I demand a smoke with my coffee) weekday mornings and are often joined by other writers. Kicks off the day very nicely. But our usual place is closed tomorrow. Denny's will be open. Bless 'em...they're always open.

So the writer who flew in from Colorado last week joined us for breakfast and today I read that his town there didn't get hit with that snowstorm, but did get hit with tumbleweeds...massive numbers of them flying around in strong winds.

Which reminded me of one of the loneliest places I've ever encountered. Billy, the Kid's graveyard in Old Fort Sumner, New Mexico. Dirt, the desert, falling down wire fence, and the constant wind, the slow-rolling tumbleweeds across the Kid's grave. Billy lays between two of his fellow gun-slingers, all three covered with a concrete blanket, out there in that little graveyard with its worn, half-fallen, wooden crosses here and there. And nothing out there for miles except the cottonwood trees on one side of the gravel road and a small concrete building next to the graveyard.

Next to Bush and his administration, Billy, the Kid was a piker. No comparison in the number of deaths each was/is responsible for. But then, Billy was a real cowboy, whereas I doubt Bush has ever sat a saddle. Pathetic.


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