Right Thinking From The Left Coast
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Lead Paint: Delicious But Deadly
by Lee

You know all those schools we keep building that are supposedly winning the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people?  (You know, despite the fact that it’s far too dangerous for anyone to actually send their kids there?) Well I have no doubt you’re going to be as shocked, shocked as I was to read that most of the shit we build is useless.

Widespread corruption, an unwieldy bureaucracy and inadequate funding threaten the Iraqi government’s ability to complete or maintain U.S.-funded reconstruction projects, according to an oversight report to be released today.

The report from the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction says some projects portrayed as successes by U.S. officials have started breaking down because of poor maintenance, shoddy construction or simple neglect.

What?  You mean not only is the government incompetent, but they’ve been lying to us about how well they’ve been doing?  Not the Bush administration, surely. Lying is something Democrats do about blowjobs!

Those problems, as well as the continuing violence in Iraq, have prevented the United States from meeting its goals for the $34.8 billion appropriated for postwar reconstruction, the inspector general, Stuart Bowen, concludes in his quarterly report to Congress.

Investigators from Bowen’s office inspected eight completed projects across Iraq and found seven of them weren’t operating at capacity. Among the problems found: an unused oxygen system at a northern Iraq hospital, poorly maintained electrical generators in the Baghdad area and leaking water pipes causing ceilings to collapse in buildings used by security forces.

Here’s the situation.  You have to drive your kids to school in an armored car to avoid the bombs and bullets.  Then, assuming you can even get them there, there’s a pretty good chance that Uncle Sam’s roof will cave in and crush them.  Then, if you’re somehow able to get them to the hospital, the oxygen system that the Americans installed doesn’t work. 

Oh yeah, the Iraqi people should be sucking our dicks in appreciation for all we’ve given them.

“If these projects are typical of the quality and effectiveness of operations and maintenance … the value of the U.S. investment in Iraq reconstruction will be at risk,” the report says.

Anyone willing to bet me that these projects aren’t typical of the quality and effectiveness of operations and maintenance?  Yeah. that’s what I thought.

Update: Allow me to give you my impression of the average Iraqi’s point of view.

“Saddam was an evil, evil man.  I hated him, he killed my brother.  I curse him for all of eternity, and I was happy when he died.  I wanted him gone so I could have a better life for my children, and when the Americans came I was thrilled.  But now, what do we have?  Do we have anything better?  The power still does not work.  There are bombs going off all over the city.  There is gunfire and armed gangs.  We are dominated by thugs.  Under Saddam there was evil but there was order.  Now we have evil and chaos.  My children cannot go outside and play.  They cannot go to school.  They are terrified.  The Americans, what have they brought us but misery?  Where is the better life they promised?  Where is the freedom from tyranny?  Where is the democracy?”

Posted by Lee on 04/30/07 at 12:26 PM (Discuss this in the forums)

Comments


Posted by on 04/30/07 at 12:48 PM from United States

We’ve been bamboozled.

Posted by Para on 04/30/07 at 01:00 PM from United States

You should read your own article , Lee. It says the IRAQI government is so bloated that they cannot maintain building built by US contractors.

How is this an indictment of Bush?

Here I’ll quote it for ya

Widespread corruption, an unwieldy bureaucracy and inadequate funding threaten the Iraqi government’s ability to complete or maintain U.S.-funded reconstruction projects, according to an oversight report to be released today.

Posted by SqdnGuns on 04/30/07 at 01:05 PM from United States

Rome wasn’t built in a day, was it?

Posted by Lee on 04/30/07 at 01:19 PM from United States

How is this an indictment of Bush?

Para, WE ARE AN OCCUPYING ARMY.  Until the Iraqi government gets its shit together (which will probably never happen) the responsibility is OURS.

I fucking swear to Christ, I have never in five years of blogging seen someone go to the lengths you do to avoid assigning responsibility to the people who rightly deserve it.

Remember before the war, how we were going to win hearts and minds by taking out Saddam, fixing their infrastructure, use their oil revenue to provide funds for a government, and demonstrate to the Arab world that they didn’t have to live under strongmen and thugs?

WE HAVE FAILED ON EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE GOALS. 

“But what about taking out Saddam?” Even that was a goatfuck.  Rather than being a legitimate execution for his crimes, his executioners shouted “Moktada!” as they killed him, turning it into a sectarian revenge killing, making the problem worse.

Now, please, write back one of your eight-paragraph missives about how I’m falling for liberal media spin, and how the Democrats are the reason for these failings, and how Bush is the greatest leader in all of human history and would be regarded as such by all if it wasn’t for that durn librul media conspiracy.

Posted by Para on 04/30/07 at 01:26 PM from United States

Lee, you’re an ass.

If you read my response to your question last night, I placed a great deal of blame on Bush.

The article specifically says it’s the bumbling Iraqi government that can’t get it’s shit together.

Posted by Lee on 04/30/07 at 01:45 PM from United States

The article specifically says it’s the bumbling Iraqi government that can’t get it’s shit together.

Of course it can’t.  It has no idea how.  It’s never been a democracy, it has no idea how to be one.  They are the child, we are the parent.  It is OUR FUCKING RESPONSIBILITY to do this shit. 

It’s like Powell said to Bush before the war, it’s the Pottery Barn rule: “You break it, you own it.” Well we broke it, and now you’re talking about how the Pottery Barn employee is mostly responsible for putting a breakable item where it could be knocked off the shelf.  And besides, if Pottery Barn doesn’t want stuff broken it shouldn’t put it out on display.  And it wasn’t done intentionally, the corner of our jacket grazed the item and it fell off the shelf.  We went into Pottery Barn with the best of intentions, and now due to the incompetence of the employees we’re being blamed for the broken item, when in actuality almost all the fault lies everywhere except with us.

Call me an ass all you like, Para, but a fucking Chinese acrobat couldn’t do the contortions that you’re currently twisting yourself into in a desperate attempt to mitigate America’s blame, especially the blame of the incompetent douchebag we have running things now.

If only those mean old Democrats and their willing allies in the media hadn’t put that item so close to the shelf, why, we would have come out of Pottery Barn victorious!

Posted by on 04/30/07 at 02:45 PM from United States

They are the child, we are the parent.  It is OUR FUCKING RESPONSIBILITY to do this shit.

Or, to put it in even simpler terms that Lee will probably like, it’s like blaming your kid for failing his college science class after homeschooling him with Creationist textbooks.

Posted by on 04/30/07 at 04:08 PM from United States

I wonder how many of Bush’s friends, here and in the M.E., got stinking rich off the reconstruction?

Oh wait, that’s just a MoveOn.org thouhgt.  I’m sure all the contractors are good, honest folks.

Posted by Hal_10000 on 04/30/07 at 09:59 PM from United States

The quote from the Iraqi, I think, illustrates the problem.  He’s asking what the US will do, not what the Iraqi people will do.  This is not a nation that had a tradition of self-governance.  This are a people who have contsntly been controlled by someone else—the Ottomans, the Brits, the French, Faisal, Saddam.  To expect to go into this country, toss out the leaders and have a wonderful functional government suddenly spring up from nothing was the height of hubris.

Posted by on 05/01/07 at 10:21 AM from United States

To expect to go into this country, toss out the leaders and have a wonderful functional government suddenly spring up from nothing was the height of hubris.

But don’t point that out to anybody for fear of being called a lefty communist douche bag.

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