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stupidity of war (and a few words about music) - Rounding up the Usual Suspects
Steve's Livejournal
stupidity of war (and a few words about music)
Note (2018) Although this was posted to a music mailing list (the source of most of my other 20th century tagged items), it's about politics, except the final paragraph. Off-topic content was occasionally tolerated on the mailing list. I was replying to a couple of other people who had gone off-topic first. I quoted them at the time, and preserve the quotes for context (minus names, for authors' privacy).

From: steveXX@microsoft.com
Subject: Re: Little fluffy synapses
Date: 27 Jan 1992 11:12:40 PST

Author 1:

Lately I've been reading history books, which it seems I do every hibernation season; the latest was a not quite college level account of the origins of [The Great War]

Nice to have some perspective: no matter how stupid and corrupt the current generation of Republican autocrat-thugs may appear, they still lag behind the Harding administration– not for want of trying, of course; wait till Quayle gets his licks in!

Author 2:

Ha! I'll go you one better. *I* recently finished Shelby Foote's The Civil War. If you want to read about four years of appalling stupidity and bumbling, give it a try. For example, it appears that most people thought Lincoln (the first Republican president, by the way) was a complete idiot at the time.

I think there will be accounts of any war that will show the whole thing as a mess of bumbling stupidity. Look at the Gulf War, for example. Already there are a lot of things that are turning up that look pretty dumb about it. Sure, the military leaders did a fine job of meeting their goals of causing incredible destruction to military targets and causing minimal obvious destruction to non-military sites. But it's looking more and more like the political leaders screwed up. (Although they did an excellent job of manipulating public opinion to turn a pretty successful sanctions campaign into a military operation. I'll skip the details, since this isn't a war discussion list after all. But I think there will be some history books about this one telling about the military parts, and some telling about the political bumbling behind the scenes, just like any war.

Obligatory music content: Tonight I'm going to a Siouxie show. Sure, she's pretty poppish, but still fun to listen to. Report to follow when I get around to it, unless I get too many complaints that she doesn't belong on the list.


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