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What’s so funny?

July 14, 2006

Late Night Live was interesting last night. Phillip Adams talked to Gareth Stedman Jones and Francis Wheen who both know their Marx. It was on why Marx is so influential today and is making a sort of comeback in all sorts of analytical circles from economics to sociology – this only 17 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall when his philosophy was effectively declared dead. They focus on Das Kapital and The Communist Manifesto in particular. Go download the Podcast, it’s well worth it if you’re into that sort of stuff.

And so on and on it goes: “Since the two Israeli soldiers were captured by Hezbollah, Israeli air strikes and shelling have killed at least 55 Lebanese civilians.”
“Barrages of Hezbollah rocket fire into northern Israel have killed two Israeli civilians and wounded 95.”
After cutting power to most of Gaza for most of the day, the Israeli army is now attacking power stations in Lebanon: “Israel has struck targets close to Hezbollah’s headquarters, including a bridge and a power plant. A police officer says the fuel reservoirs of the power station in Jiyeh, about 25 kilometres south of Beirut, have erupted in flames.”
And so the civilians suffer once again whilst the passionate warmongers issue their warnings and press their buttons.

Each time I read, see or hear about the next “escalation” as they always call it, Tool’s lamentation from “Right in Two” keeps popping in my head:

Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground.
Silly monkeys give them thumbs they forge a blade
And where there’s one they’re bound to divide it
Right in two

Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground.
Silly monkeys give them thumbs they make a club,
And beat their brother down.
How they survive so misguided is a mystery.
Repugnant is a creature who would squander the ability,
To lift an eye to heaven, conscious of his fleeting time here.

And perhaps it may be apt to continue with some Elvis Costello:

And each time I feel like this inside,
There’s one thing I wanna know:
What’s so funny ’bout peace love & understanding? Ohhhh
What’s so funny ’bout peace love & understanding?

Hoping for better days.

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