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One of the reasons given by the Bush administration for invading Iraq was the need to free the Iraqi people from the oppressive hand of Saddam so they could "flourish under American-style democracy."So. How's that going?
On May 23, Paul Bremer, the US civilian administrator in Iraq, effectively laid off the members of Iraq's armed forces. In truth, this downsizing was little more than a formality since Iraqi soldiers haven't been paid since February.
At the same time, in Baghdad, the first paychecks since the war were issued to local utilities workers. Angry -- and now career-less -- soldiers argued that their military service was a job the same as any other civil service position and that they deserved to be paid for their past work. After all, they had families to feed and care for, and many of them followed the pre-war US suggestion of not fighting for Saddam. Coalition officials promised to get back to them on that and, in the interim, suggested that they be careful and not let the screen door hit them in the ass on the way out.
Meanwhile, oil officials in Baghdad announced that oil production would double within a month and oil exports would likely resume by mid-June. At the time of the announcement, Iraq was producing about 700,000 barrels a day -- up from only 300,000 barrels a few weeks earlier. Presumably, oil workers have been getting paid regularly.
Oh, in case you were wondering, deposed despot Saddam Hussein and his two sons (Villainous and Villainouser) remain at large, probably with at least some of the billion dollars or so they stole from the Iraqi treasury. This is, of course, on top of the many millions they pilfered while still in control of the country. Kenneth Lay is said to be sick with envy.
The Bushies have taken a lot of flak over their apparently fabricated reason for the war. But, to be fair, they are making good on their promise to bring their version of America to Iraq.
Since George W. Bush took office, 1.8 million American jobs have been lost, an average of 73,000 per month. In that time, 37 states have seen overall workforce reductions. In February (357,000 losses), 1.9 million people had been on unemployment for over six months.
But it's not all bad news. According to an article in the Kansas City Star, the chief executives at 23 corporations under investigation for improper accounting pocketed $1.4 billion, or an average of $62 million each, in the last three years. Meanwhile, their companies' stock values plunged $530 billion, or about 73 percent of their total value, while laying off a total of 162,000 workers.
So it's as clear as day: people laid off, the oil industry and its honchos taken care of, leaders using their position to enrich themselves and their cronies.
Copyright 2003. For fair use only/ pour usage équitable seulement .