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Leaders Report Cards

man_slut

TRIBE Member
I thought this was interesting. Can't say I agree with the grades he has given. I just like the fact that there's an honourable mention to a Canadian Priminister.

INSIDE TRACK ON WORLD NEWS
by international syndicated columnist & broadcaster Eric Margolis
http://www.bigeye.com/foreignc.htm


LEADER'S REPORT CARDS FOR 2003
Copyright: Eric S. Margolis, 2003
December 24, 2003

George W. Bush — Managed by brilliant political handlers, wins big time on the domestic front. Tax cuts, subsidized drugs, a rebounding economy and the capture of Saddam Hussein (and maybe Osama bin Laden just before 04 elections), will likely win Bush re-election. But the worst foreign policy maker in memory.

Middle America loves Texas Ranger Bush, who claims to take his orders from god. But Bush's divinely inspired mission has run up a $400 billion plus deficit and is gravely undermining constitutional rights and liberties at home. Two unresolved wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have cost $166 billion, over 3,000 US casualties, and growing anti-US feeling around the globe. Terrorism continues unabated.

Much of the rest of the world abhors Bush's extremist, Christian fundamentalist, neo-conservative agenda. Abroad, his faux `war on terrorism' is seen as a crudely disguised imperial power grab. GRADE: D

Osama bin Laden — The man who made Bush's presidency. Still in the lam, still encouraging attacks on the US and its allies. A fanatic's fanatic, who commands undue respect across the Muslim World. The US military-industrial-petroleum complex owes this Islamic wildman a great debt: he alone justified an imperial agenda and the Pentagon's bloated defense budget that accounts for 33% of total world military spending. Bin Laden has said he will die this coming year in a spectacular `martyrdom operation.' GRADE: F

Dick Cheney — Bush talks to god; Cheney talks to the Pentagon. He runs Washington's militarized foreign policy through a network of neo-conservatives. Cheney's repeated warnings about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction and links to al-Qaida sound dangerously out of touch with reality. His close links to the rapacious Halliburton company may be a major campaign liability in 04. So may a future scandal over the Carlyle Corp, the shadowy epicenter of Washington's military-industrial-petroleum complex. GRADE: F

Tony Blair — Unrelentingly sanctimonious and preachy, Blair's servile behavior towards the White House in 2003 made many Britons, who detest their government's war policies, wonder if Merry Olde England had not quietly become a colony of the United States. Blair's hopes of joining in the economic rapine of Iraq's oil wealth have, so far, been unfulfilled. GRADE: C-

Saddam Hussein — The Father of All Disasters. Failed miserably to head off impending US attack, just like in 1991. Conducted a pathetic defense. Probably captured by Kurds, drugged, then deeply humiliated by his US captors. A disgrace to the Arabs, who already have disgraces to spare. He should be sent for trial in the Hague. GRADE: F

Pope John Paul II — This noble, heroic man soldiers on in spite of his crumbling body. Acting as the world's conscience, the Holy Father has championed the rights of the downtrodden, the voiceless, the oppressed, opposing current militarism and capitalist excesses with the same force with which he battled the evils of communism and socialism. Who, one wonders, will replace this truly great man? GRADE: A+

Jacques Chirac — The quintessence of a grandiloquent, slippery, scandal-plagued French politician, Chirac has nonetheless gained genuine stature as the voice of `old' (that is, not for sale) Europe. The contrast between Chirac's good sense and reasoned policies and George Bush's crusading religious zeal could not be sharper. France remains the land of reason — French drivers excepted. GRADE: B+

Ariel Sharon — Bush's role model, adored by many Israelis. A mighty smiter of Israel's foes. But Bulldozer Sharon is leading his nation into a wilderness of oppression and apartheid, unless the Greater Israel scheme is ended for good and a viable Palestinian state created. Time for Israel's moderates to be heard at home and in North America. Maybe Sharon will become an Israeli DeGaulle by making peace with the Arabs next year. Whatever, Sharon and his nemesis, PLO leader Yasser Arafat, should retire by the end of 04 and make way for younger, more flexible men who are sick of communal conflict. GRADE: C-

Vladimir Putin — Barely noticed by the outside world, this hard man has gathered all the reins of power in Mother Russia and put his former KGB colleagues in charge of just about everything important. The unsmiling, incorruptible Putin is laying the foundation for the re-emergence of Russia as a great world power and the reincarnation of the old Soviet Union. Tsar Vlad I bears much watching. GRADE: A (with an F for democracy)

Hu Jintao — China's new leader (if you don't count old Jiang Zemin, who is supposedly retired, but still runs things). Hu has not yet made any impression on the world, or done very much visible, for that matter. But by so far avoiding social turmoil in China, and by refusing to give in to US demands to devalue China's fixed rate currency, Hu has prevented a sharp currency devaluation that would have caused massive bank failures and the implosion of China's soaring but still fragile economy - a disaster that would shake the world's economy. GRADE: C+

Special Mention:

Jean Chretien — He didn't change the world, but when he retired this month, this down-to-earth leader left Canada at peace, wealthy, socially tranquil, humane, and respected around the world. It was easy to poke fun at Chretien, but few leaders can equal this accomplishment. We salute him. GRADE: B


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

To read previous columns by Mr. Margolis: Click here
WWW: http://bigeye.com/foreignc.htm
Email: margolis@foreigncorrespondent.com
FAX: (416) 960-1769
Smail:
Eric Margolis
c/o Editorial Department
The Toronto Sun
333 King St. East
Toronto Ontario Canada
M5A 3X5
 

Subsonic Chronic

TRIBE Member
Originally posted by man_slut
Pope John Paul II — This noble, heroic man soldiers on in spite of his crumbling body. Acting as the world's conscience, the Holy Father has championed the rights of the downtrodden, the voiceless, the oppressed, opposing current militarism and capitalist excesses with the same force with which he battled the evils of communism and socialism. Who, one wonders, will replace this truly great man? GRADE: A+
Bah!

No mention of his failure to address the pedophilia problems that plague the Catholic Church, nor the fact that the Church still refuses to promote safe sex, instead opting for the tried-and-failed "abstinence is the only way" approach? A lot of good that did in Africa. :rolleyes:
 

Adam

TRIBE Member
Let's also add that the Vatican claimed condoms are not effective in preventing HIV/AIDS. For that alone, F-
 

~atp~

TRIBE Member
Re: Re: Leaders Report Cards

Originally posted by Subsonic Chronic
Bah!

No mention of his failure to address the pedophilia problems that plague the Catholic Church, nor the fact that the Church still refuses to promote safe sex, instead opting for the tried-and-failed "abstinence is the only way" approach? A lot of good that did in Africa. :rolleyes:
<rant>
The pope is irrelevant, rendered so by religion. Who cares what he thinks, especially given that any just or humanistic action supported by the church is only due to happenstance alignment between their non-sensical religious principles and those which do not require a belief in fantasy.
</rant>


Unfortunately, we can't selectively nuke the churches of this world, especially since that would make me hypocritical, as I believe in the freedom of expression, basic constitutional rights, etc...
 
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Colm

TRIBE Member
Re: Re: Leaders Report Cards

Originally posted by Subsonic Chronic
Bah!

No mention of his failure to address the pedophilia problems that plague the Catholic Church, nor the fact that the Church still refuses to promote safe sex, instead opting for the tried-and-failed "abstinence is the only way" approach? A lot of good that did in Africa. :rolleyes:
Do you watch a lot of CBC, or TV in general?
 

Colm

TRIBE Member
Re: Re: Re: Leaders Report Cards

Originally posted by ~atp~
<rant>
The pope is irrelevant, rendered so by religion. Who cares what he thinks, especially given that any just or humanistic action supported by the church is only due to happenstance alignment between their non-sensical religious principles and those which do not require a belief in fantasy.
</rant>


Unfortunately, we can't selectively nuke the churches of this world, especially since that would make me hypocritical, as I believe in the freedom of expression, basic constitutional rights, etc...
Hmm, perhaps some reading into El Salvadorian history (circa 20th century) is needed. you're usually much more well-informed.
 

~atp~

TRIBE Member
Re: Re: Re: Re: Leaders Report Cards

Originally posted by Colm
Hmm, perhaps some reading into El Salvadorian history (circa 20th century) is needed. you're usually much more well-informed.
Oh I know my comment sounded a bit closed-minded, but really it's just that the church, while having done much good in the world (African and South American missionaries), is founded on fantasy and any righteous behaviour on their behalf is ultimately done in the name of their god, which makes me instantly distrustful of everything they do. It's just my opinion, I'm not asking anyone else to agree with this one. ;)
 
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