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Tuesday, July 15, 2008


On winning

John McCain says he knows how to "win" in Iraq. Barack Obama says that Afghanistan is a "war that we have to win."

Both of these men undoubtedly think that if you buy a $1 lottery ticket every day for a year, and then finally win $5 on one of them, that you have "won." Of course you haven't, since, you've already lost $364 before you finally "won" that $5.

And, it goes without saying, in Iraq and Afghanistan it isn't just money that has been lost on the way to "winning." It's lives. Hundreds of thousands of them.

Of course the lottery analogy is far from perfect. Because even after you think you've "won," someone is going to come along and pick your pocket and take that $5, eliminating even your short-term "win."

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