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And you may find yourself
living in a shotgun shack

And you may find yourself
in another part of the world

And you may find yourself
the wheel
of a large automobile

And you may ask yourself,
"Well - how did I get here?"

Letting the days go by (let the water hold me down)
Letting the days go by
(water flowing underground)
Into the blue again
(after the money's gone)
Once in a lifetime
(water flowing underground)

So I'm driving home yesterday, listening to NPR (least among evils at that  hour, unfortunately), when on comes a brief report about some or other attack in Iraq. And as I listen to the report, I am jarred to attention - transported - my thoughts ripped from the banal northbound lanes of the 405 in west L.A. to the mean streets of Baquba or Tikrit or al-Najaf or wherever the hell it was they were reporting on.

My mind's eye flashes on the tableau: American soldiers, tense, eyes darting as they arrive on the scene, M4s - or AKs - at ready position: a hot, dusty street, rubble from a blasted building, smoking hulk of a small car, glass shards and debris, the smell of cordite and blood. Part of a human arm lying on the ground in the late afternoon Iraqi sun.

And I think to myself:

Wait a minute - we're still there???

And I realize that there is absolutely no reason on earth that we should still have combat troops in Iraq.

And you may ask yourself,
"How do I work this?"
And you may ask yourself,
"Where is that large automobile?"
And you may tell yourself,
"This is not my beautiful house!"
And you may tell yourself,
"This is not my beautiful wife!"

We're still there?? In a country we invaded illegally? After a prolonged, orchestrated series of lies that the lying liars who spewed them - and now, their pathetic offspring - are desperately trying to whitewash?

Same as it ever was . . . same as it ever was . . .

We're still there?? We've got soldiers in harm's way because the war criminals in the BushCheney administration started and waged an aggressive war that had and has absolutely nothing to do with keeping America safe, nothing to do with defending the Constitution?

. . . same as it ever was . . . same as it ever was . . .

We're still there?? American soldiers at risk every single day for - what?? So some corporation can make hundreds of billions of dollars?

. . . same as it ever was . . . same as it ever was . . .

Damn. We're still there?? WTF??

. . . same as it ever was . . . same as it ever was

I drive past the Sunset Blvd. exit toward the Getty Museum. I'm here, while all those young Americans and beleaguered Iraqis are over there. I thank god for the traffic and the ability to drive 50 miles a day on a freeway that hasn't been bombed beyond recognition. I thank god that all the members of my family are alive and together with each other. I thank god for my beautiful house and my beautiful wife.

And I wonder why on earth we are still in Iraq.

And you may ask yourself,
"What is that beautiful house?"
And you may ask yourself,
"Where does that highway go to?"
And you may ask yourself,
"Am I right? Am I wrong?
And you may say to yourself,
"My god! What have I done?!"

Originally posted to Important if True on Thu Jun 04, 2009 at 11:36 PM PDT.

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