Well, the tumultous year that was 2005 has come to a close. This post won't be long, but I just wanted to share some quick thoughts.
This was a rough year for President Bush. Whether it was the Katrina mess, the Terri Schiavo mess, Plamegate, the Harriet Miers mess, the domestic spying mess, torture, and troubles in Iraq--he's taken some hits. His supporters will blame the "liberal media," but he really has to take the heat for this. Undoubtedly, there have been those in the press drunk on anti-Bush zeal, but Bush has control of three branches of government, and an electorate that in many cases seemed to overlook even the most blatant lapses in judgment. Heck, the Dems are out of power. This was his accountability moment.
It's been lousy for Republicans this year. I almost feel sorry for them. I had predicted that the Republican victory in 2004 would be followed by an overreach that would cost them. I had no idea it was happen so quickly, and so brazenly. The naked hubris displayed was astounding. There was the aforementioned Schiavo disgrace, the Nuclear option mess, the increases in spending, Tom DeLay...it goes on and on.
That being said, the Dems have a lot of opportunities to lead, but there is still the problem of the fact that the Democratic Party is basically fractured. We seem unable to offer up a sustained alternative to Bush's policies, without going off the deep end (a la Howard Dean). Jack Murtha thinks we ought to withdraw our troops. He's no coward, but he's wrong on the issue. Dean doesn't think we can win in Iraq. The only high-ranking Dem consistently for staying the course is Joe Lieberman, and I guess, Hillary.
It was a rough year for New Orleans, who suffered the wrath of nature, politics, and incompetence.
It was a good year of TV. We had some damn good TV this year. Rome. Deadwood. Battlestar Galactica. 24. The Office. Lost. Everybody Hates Chris. It was good year.
It was a good year for comics. A good year for video games.
And despite the daily casualties, and all the mess here at home, it was a good year for the Iraqis, who managed to vote in three successful elections, and give a purple thumbs up to democracy.
And, at the end of the day, it was good overall, all things considered.