Charlie Bertsch (cbertsch) wrote,
Charlie Bertsch

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The Price of Freedom?

Back at the beginning of the year, the non-Fundamentalist -- but conservative Catholic, which is almost as bad -- Republican who heads our homeowner's association's Board of Directors asked me whether I thought the Democrats really had a chance to defeat Bush.

"Depends on the price of gas," I said.

"Well who do you think controls that?," he responded. The comment hung in the air for an uncomfortably long period of time before we were interrupted by another member of the Board. Watching Fahrenheit 9/11 reminded me of the exchange. Now, reading through recent entries on the daily Kos, I came across a disturbing bit of research that suggests that both my intuition and my neighbor's confidence may have been right:

I have to admit that seeing lower gas prices in California last week had me worried, even while it was saving us about $25.

If it is, in fact, the case that the price of gas might swing the election, progressives face a real quandry. We certainly can't root for the militants in Iraq or Saudi Arabia, however justified the anger motivating their actions may be. And no one wants an upswing in terrorism, fictitious or real.

Perhaps we should be paying closer attention to the situation in Nigeria. Supporting striking workers is something we're good at, after all.

By the same token, the anti-terrorism people should be paying closer attention to the Gulf Coast of Mexico. Al Qaeda is far less likely to strike a major event on a major day than to, say, target Mexican oil production when no one is expecting them to do so. The country's president does have "Fox" in his name after all. . .


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