Which is surprising because it's a pretty damn big inn.
AP reports that there's not enough room to house diplomats at the new U.S. embassy in Iraq, the biggest embassy ever built anywhere by anybody. Wow, that's... what's the word I'm looking for? Incompetent? Yeah, incompetent, that'll do.
Here's the lead paragraph from the AP story, just in case you're pressed for time.
BAGHDAD - The new U.S. Embassy complex does not have enough fortified living quarters for hundreds of diplomats and other workers, who must remain temporarily in trailers without special rooftop protection against mortars and rockets, government officials have told The Associated Press.
80 football fields of space, and not enough housing for the diplomats. Some get to live in secured space and others... oopsie! We'd protect your life and limb, pal, we really would, but it wasn't in the budget.
Bad enough to live in a trailer in a place where the temperature gets to 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit) on a regular basis in the summer, but now that the success of the surge is over and Baghdad is back to being a full fledged war zone again, who lives under what conditions in the Embassy compound is being compared to a game of Russian roulette.
Here's a couple snappy sentences from the end of the story.
It's left some embassy staffers bitter.
An American diplomat — who hunkered down during the wave of attacks in recent weeks — called it a "difficult pill to swallow." The diplomat asked not to be named, lacking authorization to speak to media.
Isn't that nice diplomatic language? The risk of getting killed in your sleep like a cockroach being squashed under foot is "a difficult pill to swallow".
Who gets fired over this kind of incompetence? Wouldn't Condi Rice be at the top of the list, since embassies would be her responsibility as the head of the State Department? What's her answer to this? Something along the lines of her famous answer about 9/11. No one could have anticipated that people working in Iraq would want to live in comfort and security.
When Kanye West made his famous statement "George Bush doesn't care about black people" during a telethon for aid to people in New Orleans, I think he misunderestimated the level of not caring Bush has achieved and incorrectly attributed it to racism. If you aren't one of the people who has pledged undying loyalty to Bush, he doesn't care about you regardless of your race, creed or nation of origin.
This is real news, not all the nonsense of the campaign, but our tax dollars misspent and our people's lives in the balance. This is Republican misrule right out there in black and white, and we can only pray it isn't written in blood before this "oversight" is corrected. We have the very unusual occurrence of no one from the present administration running for president, the first time this has happened since Wilson was so unpopular in the aftermath of The Great War. But every Republican deserves a share of the blame for this screw-up, not least of whom John "50 more years of war" McCain. If this were the issue of the campaign, McCain would probably lose a 48 or 49 state rout, get his ass kicked like Goldwater or McGovern or Mondale. But I'm not sure this will even be front page news. After all, we have lapel pins and 3 a.m. phone calls to worry about.
This blog is still alive, just in semi-hibernation.
When I want to write something longer than a tweet about something other than math or sci-fi, here is where I'll write it.