Ronald Reagan: Hero or Villain?

Written by Arthur Zulu

D-e-a-t-h. The mention of that five-letter word instills fear into many. Only a few mortals could dare death likerepparttar poet John Donne. When his beloved brother died, he wrote death these damning lines: Death do not be proud/ Though some have called thee mighty and dreadful/ But thou art not so/ Nor yet canst thou kill me/ and Death shall be no more/ Death thou shalt die.

The poet was audacious. However, one year after writing his poem, Death killed John Donne. So, "Pale Death, with impartial step, knocks atrepparttar 125982 poor man's cottage andrepparttar 125983 palaces of kings" says Horace. Because man likes deceiving himself and because man does not want to think that he ever dies, he has crafted euphemisms to describe death. Like kickingrepparttar 125984 bucket. Going torepparttar 125985 great beyond. Answeringrepparttar 125986 call to glory.

So Ronald Reagan has joined his ancestors (to use another euphemism). And encomiums are pouring in. One of such is from George Bush: "Reagan is a hero. He brought peace torepparttar 125987 world." It is good to say kind things aboutrepparttar 125988 dead, so that when we die,repparttar 125989 living will say good things about us too. Everyone wants to be remembered at death for his virtues, not his vices. It was for this reason that Solomon,repparttar 125990 wise man said: "A good name is better than precious ointment; andrepparttar 125991 day of death thanrepparttar 125992 day of one's birth." Other graveside orators in some settings have however tried to strike balance. Consider Mark Antony's funeral discourse for Julius Caesar; "Friends, Romans lend me your ears. . . I have come to bury Caesar, not to praise him. . . The evil that men do lives after them. So let it be with Caesar." You may giverepparttar 125993 speech any interpretation that suits you. Meanwhile, let us exitrepparttar 125994 Shakespearean stage and enterrepparttar 125995 real world.

I am suffering from memory lapse these days. Who startedrepparttar 125996 star wars program? What aboutrepparttar 125997 telepathic guided missiles initiative? Who befriended Saddam Hussein and trained Osama bin Laden? Who tolerated Botha and Mugabe? I cannot remember exactly. All I can ell is that during Reagan's regime, it seemed thatrepparttar 125998 world would go up in flamesrepparttar 125999 next moment. Leaders of rogue states wet their undies. Ask Muammar Ghadaffi. Or is it Momar Qadaffi? Gorbachev, yes, I meanrepparttar 126000 gentleman from Russia saw Roman Catholic ‘hell fire.' Andrepparttar 126001 freedom fighters, no, I want a better word—terrorists—yes,repparttar 126002 terrorists ran into caves.

But this compliment about Reagan bringing peace torepparttar 126003 world is what I do not understand. Is thisrepparttar 126004 new world order? Hear William Pfaff: "The new world order has arrived. It is well and truly new, consecrating invasion, aggression and ethnic purge as acceptable international conduct." Inrepparttar 126005 words of Dr. Walker Percy, we have been in "a state of suspended animation" since World War I. It is no wonder that Helmut Schmidt, former German Chancellor said, "we have never governed [the world] in total peace."

Now,repparttar 126006 threat of a nuclear ‘Armageddon' is more imminent. (The Doomsday clock is getting closer to midnight.) The once frightened ‘terrorists' are out from their hideouts and are plottingrepparttar 126007 end ofrepparttar 126008 world. And despite two prayers for peace at Assissi Italy (never mindrepparttar 126009 pope and his prayerful multitudes), twelve wars are going on aroundrepparttar 126010 world this hour. It is for this reason that ‘The Daily Yomiuri' says that "the balance between peace and war is becoming ever more precarious."

"Fahrenheit 911" Wins Round One

Written by Arthur Zulu

Every nation has its inventors. No; make it illustrious sons. (Because there are few illustrious daughters.) Look at this checklist: Alfred Nobel was an illustrious son. While his fellow Swedish natives were busy catching fishes inrepparttar North Seas, he was engaged in harnessingrepparttar 125981 destructive power ofrepparttar 125982 atom. The Japanese residents of Hiroshima and Nagasaki duringrepparttar 125983 Second World War knowrepparttar 125984 rest ofrepparttar 125985 story.

Italy too has her illustrious son. At a time whenrepparttar 125986 Catholic Church believed thatrepparttar 125987 earth (supposedly supported by an elephant or a giant turtle) didn't move, Galileo Galilei came with his telescope to rubbishrepparttar 125988 claim. He was condemned to die as a heretic when he dared say; "Essipur muove." Translation: "the earth moves." Germany has its illustrious son. Whenrepparttar 125989 pope was busy trying to preventrepparttar 125990 layman from readingrepparttar 125991 Bible, Johannes Guttenberg came on stage and inventedrepparttar 125992 movable printing press, which helped inrepparttar 125993 printing and distribution ofrepparttar 125994 holy book. Johannes, however, got away free, but not William Tyndale,repparttar 125995 Bible translator, who ended up withrepparttar 125996 Bible, tied on his chest in a literal lake of fire.

Then there was Michael Faraday,repparttar 125997 illustrious son of England who vanished darkness forever from civilized climes withrepparttar 125998 invention of electricity. But like many others before him, his invention killed him. They were great inventors allrepparttar 125999 same—illustrious sons of great lands.

Yet, there is a not so great nation, Prussia. Ever heard ofrepparttar 126000 name? So thatrepparttar 126001 country is not eternally remembered as a center stage forrepparttar 126002 Great War, enter Mr. Fahrenheit. So that you would know at what degree to heat your soup orrepparttar 126003 safe time ofrepparttar 126004 year to row your boat acrossrepparttar 126005 frigid waters ofrepparttar 126006 Arctic, he inventedrepparttar 126007 mercurial thermometer. Thank Heavens! We now know that at its core,repparttar 126008 sun is about 27,000,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Just in case you can't figure out what that means, try exploding 100 billion hydrogen bombs every second. Or detonate 100, 000 million megatons of TNT per second. Gotrepparttar 126009 point?

When Mr. Fahrenheit invented his thermometer, however, he didn't dream that somedayrepparttar 126010 tallest buildings in America would be engulfed in an inferno and that his innocent instrument would be on hand to measurerepparttar 126011 temperature. Not actually thatrepparttar 126012 firemen came torepparttar 126013 burning World Trade Center on 9/11 with literal thermometers. Butrepparttar 126014 conflagration has spawned a movie "Fahrenheit 911" which sweptrepparttar 126015 57th edition ofrepparttar 126016 ‘Festival de Cannes'—the world's biggest film festival—earningrepparttar 126017 winner Michael Moorerepparttar 126018 loudest standing ovation at Cannes inrepparttar 126019 last 25 years. In his acceptance speech,repparttar 126020 movie star said among other things: ". . . many people wantrepparttar 126021 truth and many want to put it inrepparttar 126022 closet. . . . " Well said Mr. Moore. But what is truth? That wasrepparttar 126023 same old question thrown to Jesus during his trial by a cynical Pontius Pilate. Pity; he didn't wait for an answer. Deduction: Truth is relative.

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