Oh my Lord. You absolutely, positively, MUST go read every story in this week's Independent Weekly. If you are not from the triangle, then you might not be familiar with this local publication. A cross between the standard "Who's Playing", "Where to eat", The Hill, and Mother Jones - the Indy has outdone themselves this week. This week's issue offers all the standard who and what and where's, but it is the political coverage that simply blew me away. Perhaps the best issue ever, certainly the best issue since they covered the "Two Americas" in Pinehurst when the PGA was coming to town. A few tidbits with links below the fold.
First off, the cover story. Take every good one-line zinger and every diatribe you have ever wished you could write, wrap them up in black and white and read all over, and this is what you end up with.
What prevails in Iraq today is not even civil war but pandemic civil terror, a sectarian orgy of murder, torture and mutilation whose survivors will never forget or forgive, whatever becomes of the civil government of what used to be Iraq. It's unbearably true that every American soldier who has died or will die in Iraq will have died in vain, and died in a disaster that will yield no net gain, now or ever, for his native country or for the cause of civilization and human dignity. If I had any say in divine justice, these thousands of coffins, forged of lead, would be dragged forever across the battlefields of hell by Bush and Rumsfeld and all the civilians who should have known better, or who must have known better and never tried to intervene.
Wow. But, it doesn't end there.
BY RICHARD HART
It appears the president is about to embark on a disastrous course of troop increases in Iraq that makes this war look more and more like Vietnam. So, let's go back to 1966, when the United States began the year with 185,000 troops there and ended it with 385,000 on their way to a half-million. A debate was raging then just like the one we're in now: Should we get out? Escalate? Negotiate? Expand into neighboring countries fueling the fighting?
A wise Indy reader dropped off a copy of the Aug. 9, 1966, issue of Look magazine in which the editors approached five experts with the question: "Suppose the President asked you, 'What should we do now?'" The debate is frighteningly familiar, as these excerpts show:
Go read it, you won't believe it.
Finally, a column from our own front-pager, Kirk Ross, author of Exile of Jones Street.
Edwardses want to build a community online--as well as a campaign
If there has been anything that has marked a difference between John and Elizabeth Edwards and others testing the waters, it's their grasp of the Web as a tool for action—particularly as a way to build networks.
That the last presidential race did not make better use of the networking abilities of the Net is one of Elizabeth Edwards' peeves. Her experiences online in sharing and hearing stories from others about battles with cancer, the loss of loved ones, and even her obsession with Tar Heel basketball have made her a believer in the power of online social communities.
She has been known to jump into discussions on local and national blogs and doesn't seem likely to log off anytime soon, despite columnist Robert Novak's recent advice that she stay home and bake cookies.
There is more great stuff in the article, about how the Edwards family and campaign are making their more campaign more about reaching out to people and how they believe the internet is central to that process.
Wow. I'll be the first to admit that sometimes I pick up the Indy and put it right back down. But, today I read it practically from cover to cover.