San Franciscans’ Overwhelming Support for Iraq War

My imaginary friend Ishmael Gradsdovic seems to have gone turncoat on me and joined the other team. I intercepted a letter he sent to my friends across the bay:

San Franciscans—

Thank you for your generous support to the George W. Bush administration and the Republican Congress. When President Bush first came to office, we sent out requests to every American household through the Internal Revenue Service requesting (okay, demanding) donations to help pay for our agenda and our expensive overseas wars.

About 75% of those who responded pledged a donation, averaging $6,878 per household. But San Francisco put the rest of the nation to shame, with an 84% response rate and an average pledge over twice the national average: more than $14,000 each! Thanks, San Francisco! We couldn’t do it without you!

San Franciscans have a reputation for being unpatriotic people with nothing better to do than protest the war and bad-mouth the nation’s leaders. But the numbers don’t lie. San Franciscans may like to march around and chant and complain, but when that hundred billion dollar war bill comes due and it’s time for someone to pick up the tab, nobody is more reliable.

When you see the President announcing our next war, take pride in knowing that when San Francisco was asked to help make it possible, it did more than its share.

―Ishmael Gradsdovic

More from the pen of Leo Tolstoy:

In order that people who do not want war should not fight, it is not necessary to have either international law, arbitration, international tribunals, or solutions of problems; but it is merely necessary that those who are subjected to the deceit should awake and free themselves from the spell or enchantment under which they find themselves. The way to do away with war is for those who do not want war, who regard participation in it as a sin, to refrain from fighting.…

But the enlightened friends of peace not only refrain from recommending this method, but cannot bear the mention of it; when it is brought before them they pretend not to have noticed it, or, if they cannot help noticing it, they gravely shrug their shoulders and express their pity for those uneducated and unreasonable men who adopt such an ineffectual, silly method, when such a good one exists — namely, to sprinkle salt on the bird one wishes to catch, i.e. to persuade the governments, who only exist by violence and deceit, to forsake both the one and the other.…

No one can help desiring that his life should not be an aimless and useless existence, but that it should be of service to God and man; yet frequently a man spends his life without finding an opportunity for such service. The summons to accept the military service presents precisely such an opportunity to every man of our time.

Every man, in refusing to take part in military service or to pay taxes to a government which uses them for military purposes, is, by this refusal, rendering a great service to God and man, for he is thereby making use of the most efficacious means of furthering the progressive movement of mankind toward that better social order which it is striving after and must eventually attain.…

Awake, brethren! Listen neither to those villains who, from your childhood, infect you with the diabolic spirit of patriotism, opposed to righteousness and truth, and only necessary in order to deprive you of your property, your freedom, and your human dignity; nor to those ancient impostors who preach war in the name of a cruel and vindictive God invented by them, and in the name of a perverted and false Christianity; nor, even less, to those modern Sadducees who, in the name of science and civilization, aiming only at the continuation of the present state of things, assemble at meetings, write books, and make speeches, promising to organize a good and peaceful life for people without their making any effort! Do not believe them. Believe only the consciousness which tells you that you are neither beasts nor slaves, but free men, responsible for your actions, and therefore unable to be murderers either of your own accord or at the will of those who live by these murders.

From Carthago Delenda Est.