Friday, August 01, 2003

Blogging has been light recently because there's not too much interesting news and because much of my free time has been spent on cat matters recently. You'll remember we found that kitten hiding in the engine of a parked car; we gave her away to a friend of a friend in Sant Feliu. It's a woman and her two kids; they're thrilled with their acquisition. Oscar has lower urinary tract problems that are pretty serious; we have to fill him full of antibiotics and vitamin C--that's to make his pee more acid, which will help dissolve the tiny stones in it. Twice a day we have to poke pills down his throat. He hates it and so do we, but if we don't do it he's going to be a dead little Osky and no one wants that to happen. At least he's doing a lot better than he was a week or so ago. Finally these English people we know, Lucas and Heather, have gone back up there for a couple of weeks, so we're taking care of their cat George, who is one of those huge placid males. So far he won't come out from under the bed in the guest room.

I promised to blog on Baghdad Bob Fisk, but I really don't feel like translating any of his crap. He basically says that the Iraqi Resistance is trying to drive out the hated imperialist Yankees. The various articles I linked to below make it pretty clear that Mr. Fisk is full of crap. Tikrit Tommy Alcoverro is off on some kick about Hamas and Hezbollah being social-welfare organizations (yeah, right, so were the Black Panthers) and about how the Baath Party supported social equality and the nationalization of the oil for the dignity of the Iraqi people and, get this, equal rights for women. The Baath Party also supports killing anybody Saddam Hussein wants to kill.

I find it interesting that Leftists, who are supposed to be at least sympathetic to the ideas of Karl Marx and other scientific socialists, tend to place a great deal of importance on the dignity and the honor of a people or a class. No matter how much evidence you have on how big a sonofabitch Fidel Castro is, for example, the leftist guy arguing against you will say that Fidel restored dignity to the Cuban people and that's more important than, say, the right not to be put in prison or shot at the whim of a dictator. Or the right to eat. Seems to me that appeals to national or class dignity and honor are about as irrational and unscientific as appeals can get.

Most of the news on TV these days is about a) how hot the weather is b) forest fires all over southern Europe c) Real Madrid's tour of China and FC Barcelona's tour of the US d) another domestic violence murder--the latest big one was a cop up the coast in Premia who cut his wife's throat and then chopped her up into little pieces. I'm sure somebody will top that today. Common Myth: Domestic violence does not know class. Fact: With a few horrifying and very well-publicized exceptions like the Premia cop, domestic violence correlates with low socioeconomic level and substance abuse e) what they call around here "Operacion Salida", the mass exit from the major Spanish cities with the beginning of the August vacations. Freeways are blocked up for hours, and it's the busiest few days of the year at the airports and train stations. For some reason most Spanish vacationers go to somewhere on the Valencia-Andalusia coast, when the north is so much prettier and more interesting and cooler. I guess the north is also more expensive. My favorite parts of Spain are Catalonia, northern Aragon and Navarra, the North Coast, and Castile-Leon--the whole upper third of the country. My least favorite parts are the southeast and south-central areas, Murcia and Castile-La Mancha and Almeria.

No comments: