Note from the Editor

It's the end of the year. Everyone is on holiday but me. I recently wondered with one of you happy few, "why is it that I am not paid and do not enjoy the time for a holiday?" I added, "there is something rotten in this kingdom."

Well, there is nothing rotten in this American kingdom . . . but the kingdom itself. After all, in the land of bees and honey, freedom and democracy, why would an unpaid fellow deserve vacation? It's oh-so un-American. One only deserves recognition according to one's bank account, and even the paid get a week or two at best. And they say the French are uncivilized!

No bank account? Sorry, mate, you are toast. Toasting the year does not need gazillions, however, as you will see in my 2003 review, Grand Guignol.

In three days, we will have our Infamous Swans Predictions ™ -- and we will be back on January 5, 2004. May you all embrace your convictions with sincerity, intellectual integrity and a steel resolve.

In solidarity, Gilles d'Aymery.



2003 in a Nutshell

Gilles d'Aymery:  Grand Guignol

In the wake of Mr. Bush's address to the nation following the capture of Saddam Hussein we were reassured, if we ever needed (we always do), that the world (read the United States) was now a safer place. One week later, on December 21, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge stated, "Today, the United States Government raised the national threat level from an Elevated to High risk of terrorist attack -- or from Code Yellow to Code Orange." Three days later, in a news conference following the case of mad cow disease in Washington State, Secretary of Agriculture Ann M. Veneman declared, "I have been in contact with Secretary Ridge and I would emphasize that, based on the information available, this incident is not terrorist related nor is it related in any way to our nation's heightened alert status." She added, "I cannot stress this point strongly enough." For good countenance, The New York Times printed a column to the right of the excerpts from that news conference, entitled "Intelligence Cites Some U.S. Cities." It read, "Officials said Tuesday that they were analyzing recently collected terrorism intelligence to determine why a handful of American cities were mentioned, but they cautioned that the locales were not necessarily considered targets."

This encapsulates 2003 in a nutshell.   More...



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Created: December 30, 2003