Alright, folks, only three days left in 2005. It's been a good year for me- I've met many new people, had some good times, finally acheived the big goal of leaving the hometown, and at this point 2006 is looking pretty good. But politically, the year has been an uneven one. Let's have a look at wikipedia to see what we've really been through:
January 4 - Death of the Governor of Baghdad, Ali Al-Haidri, assassinated by gunmen.
Oooh, that whole "peeance and freeance" thing is getting off to a rocky start. If you can call it a start.
January 20 - George W. Bush is inaugurated in Washington, D.C. for his second term as 43rd President of the United States.
Let the games begin! Again!
January 30 - The first free Parliamentary elections in Iraq since 1958 take place.
And this means a lot! To someone. Somewhere. For reasons we're not yet sure of.
February 9 - An ETA car bomb injures 31 people at a conference centre in Madrid.
Proving David Cross correct once again: The war on Terrorism is like a war on Jealousy. And anyone who feels safer now than before 9/11 is a mental infant.
February 10 - North Korea announces that it possesses nuclear weapons as a protection against the hostility it feels from the United States.
And we tell them to BRING IT ON! Yeah! USA! USA!
Wait, we didn't? Huh. Funny, that.
February 14 - A massive suicide bomb blast in central Beirut kills Lebanon's former prime minister Rafik Hariri and at least 15 other people. At least 135 other people were also hurt.
Hey, where's *their* peeance and freeance? I guess they just have to get it on their own.
March 1 - The U.S. Supreme Court rules the death penalty unconstitutional for juveniles who committed their crimes under age 18.
And we join the rest of the enlightened world, leaving behind the company of such human rights luminaries as Yemen, Pakistan, the Congo, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria and Iran. Seriously, WTF? It took us until freaking 2005 to abolish the killing of actual living, breathing children in a country with a vocal lobby to stop the killing of unborn children? Only in America. Which is why I'm going to start looking for a sugar daddy in Belgium.
March 23 - The United States' 11th Circuit Court of Appeals' 2-1 decision refuses to order the reinsertion of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube.
And we narrowly escape setting a precedent where freaks like this can make YOUR life or death medical decisions. I wish I felt more relieved about this.
April 2 - Pope John Paul II dies, causing widespread grief in the world.
Well, grief among many, apprehension among many as well.
April 9 - Tens of thousands of demonstrators, many of them supporters of Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr, marched through Baghdad denouncing the U.S. occupation of Iraq, two years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, and rallied in the square where his statue was toppled in 2003.
Investors in candy and flowers for the liberators find themselves bankrupt, surprised.
April 19 - Joseph Ratzinger elected Pope Benedict XVI on the second day of the Papal conclave.
Catholics and non-Catholics agree: Yikes.
May 2 - 4th president of Singapore, Wee Kim Wee dies from prostate cancer.
*Must . . . remind . . . self . . . there's . . . nothing . . . funny . . . about . . . prostate . . . cancer . . . or . . . Asian . . . Names . . .*
May 10 - A live hand grenade lands about 100 feet (30 m) from United States President George W. Bush while he is giving a speech to a crowd in Tbilisi, Georgia, but malfunctions and does not detonate.
Apparently he has the power to project his ineptitude onto inanimate objects.
May 13 - The United States Department of Defense issues a list of bases to be closed as part of the Base Realignment and Closure process (BRAC 2005).
Support the troops! 'Cept when you don't want to!
May 31 - W. Mark Felt is confirmed to be Deep Throat.
Thus renewing the Right Wing/Scooby Doo villian argument that we could have won that Viet Nam war, if it hadn't been for those meddling liberals.
June 5 - Switzerland votes to join the Schengen area and to allow same-sex partnerships.
And Switzerland spirals out of control, mass divorces follow, violence erupts in the streets and the Von Trapp family turns gayer than ever!
Oh, wait, they didn't? Huh. Someone tell Rick Santorum.
June 30 - Spain joins Belgium and the Netherlands in permitting same-sex marriage.
Still no mass chaos . . . funny how that works.
July 4 - Violent G8 demonstrations in Gleneagles
from left to right, the superheroes of the G8!:
Idiot Boy, Dudley Doright, Pointy Nose, Good Hair, Finger Puppet, Guido, Vlad the Scariest World Leader Alive, El Jefe and Gerhard the Stout.
July 7 - Four explosions rock the transport network in London, three on the London Underground and one on a bus. Over 50 deaths were reported, and over 200 injured.
Still not safer . . . what are we doing wrong?
July 20 - Canada's Civil Marriage Act, legalizing same-sex marriage, receives Royal Assent.
Now the NEIGHBORS are doing it, too?
July 22 - A Brazilian electrician, Jean Charles de Menezes, is shot dead at a London underground station by police who mistake him for a suicide bomber.
A lesson learned the hard way: Don't be brown when the police are after you!
August 17 - The first forced evacuation of settlers, as part of the Israel unilateral disengagement plan, starts.
More proof that any compromise in Israel is going to be one in which nobody is happy.
August 29 - At least 1,383 are killed, and severe damage is caused along the U.S. Gulf Coast, as Hurricane Katrina strikes the Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama coastal areas. Within hours, levees give way and New Orleans is flooded.
Katrina may have brought the flood, but it was apathy that killed New Orleans.
September 26 - U.S. army reservist Lynndie England is convicted by a military jury on six of seven counts in connection with the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal.
September 28 - American politician Tom DeLay is indicted on charges of criminal conspiracy by a Texas grand jury.
And things begin to look up.
September 29 - John G. Roberts, Jr. is confirmed and sworn in as Chief Justice of the United States.
. . . and not-so-up.
October 8 - An earthquake in Kashmir kills about 80,000 people.
80,000 people. Holy crap.
October 19 - The Trials of Saddam Hussein begin.
Thus making it all worth it, right?
October 28 - Vice presidential adviser Lewis "Scooter" Libby resigns after being charged with obstruction of justice, perjury and making a false statement in the CIA leak investigation.
Aright! And the side of good is on the scoreboard again.
October 30 - Hurricane Beta hits the coast of Nicaragua. It is the thirteenth hurricane of 2005, breaking the 1969 record of 12 hurricanes.
Yeah, because global warming, like evolution and women's health, is nothing but JUNK SCIENCE.
November 1 - U.S. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and his fellow Democrats force a closed session of the Senate over the Lewis Libby indictment.
And the dems grow a pair. Good job, guys.
November 8 - French President Jacques Chirac declares a state of emergency on the 12th day of the French civil unrest, see 2005 civil unrest in France.
Well, when you let implicit racism fester, it's gonna do that.
December 1 - South Africa becomes the fifth country in the world where same-sex marriages are recognized.
Even the Southern Hemisphere now.
And what does 2006 bring? Well, it will be the year my sister goes to Malawi to save the world. It will be the year I go to San Francisco. It will, I dearly hope, be the year I save enough for an actual Vespa so I can stop being such a scooter poseur. And most importantly, it will be a year in which the side of rational thinking will have the opportunity to retake seats in Congress and finally get the ball rolling to make this country one worth being proud of again. So yeah, 2005 had its ups and downs. But '06 is where it's at, baby.