Oh, Death!

The year that sucked

$ While President Bush is promising to go after any nation that aids terrorists, Human Rights Watch issues a report linking brutal Colombian death squads to that country's military, to which we are giving billions of dollars in aid and support. Yet another terrorist organization, this one aimed at Vietnam, is said to be operating out of Little Saigon.


$ The U.S. passes the Patriot Act of 2001, allowing the government to detain witnesses, conduct wiretaps, search hard drives, browse through e-mail and medical records, and do all sorts of other stuff.

$ More than 400,000 Americans join the ranks of the unemployed, the biggest job loss in two decades. More than 34 million Americans already live below the poverty level.

$ The Republican plan for economic recovery includes $54 billion in accelerated tax cuts, half of which would go to the richest 5 percent of taxpayers. It would also retroactively repeal the corporate minimum tax, alone giving $3.3 billion back to seven U.S. corporations, including $1.4 billion for IBM, $380 million for General Motors and $250 million for California-gouging, Bush-energy-policy-forming Enron, which hasn't quite careened into bankruptcy and criminal investigations yet.

$ An Asian-Indian man, mistaken for an Arab, is beaten in Anaheim.


$ The president appears in a TV commercial urging Americans to get on with their normal lives, which evidently consists (as the commercial would have it) of spending and consuming. To give up our way of life would mean a victory for the terrorists. Fortunately, our way of life doesn't seem to include civil rights, government accountability, indefinite detention without charges, withholding information from Congress, etc.

$ Our terrorist problems over, Attorney General John Ashcroft turns his attention to Oregon's death with dignity law, instructing the Justice Department to contest it.


$ Enron files for the biggest corporate bankruptcy in U.S. history. Enron's meltdown could have been prevented by proposed Clinton-era Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accounting regulations that were opposed and defeated by lobbyist Harvey Pitt. If you guessed that it was Pitt whom Bush chose to head the SEC, you're starting to get with the program.

$ After Russia aids the U.S. effort in Afghanistan, President Bush invites Russian President Vladimir Putin to suck some American dick, metaphorically speaking, by having the U.S. unilaterally abandon the 1972 ABM treaty. We will instead entrust our security to an expensive, unproven and possibly useless missile shield, some of whose developers are under FBI investigation for falsifying data.

$ The National Academy of Sciences, already on record as saying that global warming is real and largely resultant from human activity, now warns we may expect "abrupt" weather changes in the years ahead, resulting in floods, forest fires and prolonged droughts.

$ George Harrison dies.

$ A test of missile-defense-shield anti-missiles over Alaska accidentally kills Santa Claus.

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