The final vote is 400-4 on immediate withdrawal from Iraq. So, when Democrats hold press conferences stating we should ‘immediately redeploy’ (‘Retreat hell! We’re just redeploying gradually in a different direction when ‘practicable!’), they are speaking figuratively.
I can’t believe that you are still calling attention to this Republican debacle!
This is just too rich.
They managed more bad publicity and bad press in one day than Dems could have bought for them in a year.
I think you are now channeling DougJ, my good man. Not very well, but, you know, it takes some pratice.
no…he’s just an idiot
As opposed to those brave and noble Republicans like Jean Schmidt.
I lift my glass to you, John. Considering what the GOP and Bush has done and continues to do regarding Iraq, it takes sheer gall to criticize the Democrats.
MN Politics Guru
Yes, because Murtha said that the troops should all get on the next Baghdad Air™ flight tomorrow and leave, and thus, Congress voted on Murtha’s plan. Uh-huh. Right.
While I was at the gym tonight, CNN was on and I had a chance to watch it, which I never do because I don’t have cable. I noticed that Wolf Blitzer didn’t bother asking Roy Blount exactly when the troops should come home. I wonder what Blount would have to say about that?
If we don’t declare “victory” after the December elections and come home, we will be there for the next decade, mark my words. That’s the last chance we have. After that, there are no reachable goals left. Staying there will become the status quo.
I’d like to hear your conditions for a victorious pullout.
And the GOP remains too cowardly to commit to the long stay they demand.
Let alone paying for it up front.
Ah Purple, I’m sorry I didn’t record your vote on the resolution to place Jean Schmidt in a wall trunk with a ravenous raccoon for 30 seconds. I can hold the voting open if you wish to be recorded.
Hey John, why does the GOP hate Vets?
No, thanks. I respect the raccoon too much.
I will record you as not voting.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Haven’t you had enough for one day, John?
Hell, I know I’m tired of perverbally beating you down enough for one day.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Damn you, stealing the Chosin reference I’ve been meaning to drop since this afternoon.
John, John, John…
The Democrats have no room to be unreasonable or shrill here, because you’re using up all of it.
However, it’s nice to see that the irresponsible, GOP-led amendment to cut and run from Iraq without a plan failed. It’s just a shame that after two and a half years, they couldn’t come up with any better ideas, and still don’t know how to play nice-nice with the rest of America.
Alert me when you or your party get a clue.
Oh, this just in from CNN
Why do the troops hate the troops?
The Disenfranchised Voter
methinks john is just stirring the pot up again,
this entire situation has devolved into so much absurdist theater, i think his head would probably explode if he were to allow himself to actualize the fact that these are the people to whom he has offered his support (not once, but twice)
so, what’s left?
The Disenfranchised Voter
Heh. You know, given all that has happened today. I wouldn’t be all that surprised if John took that line and ran with it…
Gold Star for Robot Boy
I dunno about that, John. Let the Demos vote on what they propose – and not what the Repubs want to force down their throats – and you’ll get your literal results.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
I’m glad John is such a strong supporter of his party’s feckless “leadership” which has heretofore killed over 2,000 Americans.
Hey John,are you the guy who plays Tucker Carlson on TV?
For the love of everything holy, if the generals on the ground say the conditions for success have been met and the leadership of the country agree, I am all in favor of leaving.
Murtha said “immediately redepoly” and got his bluff called.
Wow. I now know what “yellow” smells like.
John won’t be satisfied until his party has killed more Americans than Al Qaeda.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Who were the three Ds voting for immediate pullout?
And who was the unfortunate R who had a “Yes” vote next to his name in the beginning? Did the House GOP leadership threaten to break his legs unless he switched?
Welcome to Balloon Juice, Rep. Schmidt.
Arizona’s Own Fat Pig Dreams It Up!
JD Hayworth, the former sportscaster (that’s right, just like Rush Limbaugh!) cooked up the scheme, apparently.
All hail the biggest dumbfuck in Washington, D.C.
Believe me, we’ve known this guy since he was a second-rate sports announcer out here. He has a thing for wanting attention. I hope he gets plenty over this.
“For the love of everything holy, if the generals on the ground say the conditions for success have been met and the leadership of the country agree, I am all in favor of leaving.”
Even if they’re Democrats?
And what if the “conditions for success” are written up to describe current conditions, without any real improvement?
Oh, it’s okay then.
no, trust me, its the idiot thing
the generals on the ground don’t set the conditions for success. i believe you know that.
No, but believe it or not, I would look dumber than Tucker Carlson in a bow tie.
I think I have a new favorite ‘word.’
XOXOXOXXO right back at you.
More concrete proof that you and I see the world through COMPLETELY different lenses will never be found.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Thanks for raising another issue, John.
If you haven’t noticed, generals on the ground who disagree with the leadership of the country usually don’t remain generals for long.
now i’m starting to come around to your way of thinking.
The real “conditions for success” have nothing to do with the Iraqi elections.
They’re all about the US elections. Seriously – all Rove has to run on is the war. It’s all he can run on. War, and fear.
Bwaaaaaaahahaha! Sorry, I didn’t know that that’s what you were going for!
What a maroon. Did I mention that you are defending a guy who MADE FUN of not being able to find those darned WMDs under the Oval Office sofa cushions? The threat that we started a war over? HILARIOUS.
These are the people who you think are going to conduct some honorable exercise in Congress today?
Jesus, man. Get a frigging clue.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Heh, you know Tucker is actually against the Iraq War…something to think about there.
Oh come on! I did afterall correct myself. :/
There’s two reasons for Murtha to have been so stridently anti-war all of a sudden.
Either he’s yellow (scared of losing his seat because it was redrawn into a more left-leaning district) or maybe it had something to do with his shady relationship to that lobbying group.
Either way, the Dems got bitch slapped parliment-style. You leftys loved it when Reid pulled his little shananigan, now STFU and take it since you got it shoved up your asses tonight.
And no leftist- NOT A SINGLE ONE- ever gets to pull out this bullshit “we’re disrespecting the troops when we go after Murtha” bullshit. The idea of a leftist even daring to hide behind the very troops you malign as baby killers and spit upon makes me sick.
You scum burn flags, not salute them.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
ppGaz, you from the Grand Canyon State, home to the true grand old man of the Grand Old Party – Barry Goldwater?
Me too. I also knew Hayworth back in the day. And, because we traveled in the semi-same professional orbit, I learned his secret: he’d remember your name after the first meeting, and could recall it even years later. Seriously.
jaime says CNN Says:
ROFL! Wow, that couldn’t have come at a better time, could it have. I wonder if that was Rumsfeld leaking, on his way out. Man, that’s the oddest thing…
Or is that the oddest thing? It’s not ok when Murtha talks to the Generals about it and figures out that it’s time to go, but as soon as they talk to the Republican administration about it, suddenly it’s time to go? *sniff* What’s that rank smell? *sniff* Is that partisanship?
The Disenfranchised Voter
Wow, shut the fuck up you asshole.
“You scum burn flags, not salute them.”
And Bush mocked the nonexistent WMDs for which he sent over 2,000 Americans to their deaths.
Fuck the goddamn flags, man. It’s a piece of mass-produced cloth.
*Bush burned 2,000 Americans.*
The Disenfranchised Voter
Did you just come out of a time machine from the late 60’s or something?
Seriously, you are delusional pal. The vet coming home from the Iraq War are treated with nothing but respect from everyone. Get a fucking clue.
Yes I am. You are talking to a Goldwater-loving Democrat. Alas, real conservatism is as dead as Barry these days. Now you have JD Ego as a poor substitute.
JD is a successful pol, that’s for sure. He knows how to kiss babies and get money raised.
But his idiotic grandstanding on Iraq is wearing pretty thin around my neighborhood (which is basically a blue collar neighborhood in Central Phoenix). Most people I know around here feel like they’ve been had by the spuds, and they are not amused.
Shark- Knock it off. Murtha is a lot of things, but he is no coward.
That shit was nasty and offensive when Schmidt was making the thinly veiled accusation on the house floor. here, I can do something about it, so cut it out.
Hayworth must be trying to get off Karl’s shitlist, after he was quoted saying that he wouldn’t want Bush around campaigning.
Said so right to a microphone. Rather blatant I thought. Bush is not real popular around here these days.
Amen, ppGaz! Another Goldwater-loving Democrat here, too. Poor Barry is spinning overtime at what is being called “conservative” by the likes of JD Hayworth.
…as soon as it is practicable?
And Shark, you aren’t fit to clean Murtha’s toilet, shitberg.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Definitely not. Bush has a net approval of -18 percent in Arizona.
Welp, as soon as it is practicable, I am heading for the hammock. The suspense over that House vote pretty much wore me out …… yawn. Whew!
The Republicans lost this one, and they know it.
When you win, you want people to hear about it. The Republicans should be content to have all the papers and news shows tomorrow talking about how awful the Democrats made themselves look. When the news is good for you, you don’t try to change it.
Instead, we’ve got a senior defense official in the Bush administration calling up reporters late on a Friday evening and telling them that there’s a plan for troop withdrawal on Rumsfeld’s desk. Tomorrow, everything about this little Congressional fiasco will get bumped for that.
Either that defense official is really off-message, or the House Republicans don’t think they won. Neither of those is good for the GOP.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Well, I just found my new favorite word.
Mind if I borrow it, jaime?
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Goldwater is my political idol.
Nobody outside of Arizona gets him, though.
It’s from one of my favorite movies L.A. Confidential.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
“Beat it, shitbird, before I call your wife.”
Yes, the professionals know it. They knew it by about 7 pm EST when the cable shows were basically making mincemeat out of them. How many times did we see the Shmidt clip? Jesus, what a fuckup.
The bloggers haven’t figured it out yet. But they will when they see the weekend stuff and the war support numbers in the coming weeks. Republicans in Congress right now are calculating exactly how many troops they have to get out of Iraq in order to maintain control of Congress. And how to distance themselves from a radioactive White House that has completely lost touch with the people and probably is going to be mired in indictments and legal wrangling next year …..
Meanwhile, there are still people who think that Nixon got a raw deal. Some of those kinds of people post here. So, there you go.
I’m not confident enough to say who “won” this. I do know this: the point of this charade was to split the Democrats apart by forcing them to vote against Murtha. Instead, they (and Murtha) were able to say, accurately, that this was not a serious resolution and not the resolution Murtha had proposed (and if John Cole can’t figure out that a proposal that we gradually withdraw and keep the Marines on the border is not the same as a proposal that we immediately withdraw everybody, he’s… well, we already knew he doesn’t want to hear common sense about the war), and Murtha continues pushing his real resolution without the Democrats being forced to turn against him.
When the Republicans are ready to act like a serious party, then the Democrats may be in for some tough choices. Till then, there’s only one national security party, and it starts with a D.
Dan is right.Republicans should be talking about college football,the new Harry Potter movie,or the best side dishes to go with turkey-anything but Iraq,which is a losing issue for them.This is Bush’s war and the public wants it over.
The Captain of the O
It is very late at night and I’ve not bothered to read all of the comments, but unless that Pb guy is being sarcastic, I am going to have to assume that he is congenitally retarded.
So, the Dems abandon the wacked-out Sheehan/Moore antiwar base when forced to actually vote on the issue they’ve been blathering about by those mean Republicans (the nerve of them!).
My favorite part of all this was Armando’s “Do I favor immediate withdrawal? I don’t know.”
Exactly, Armando. Exactly.
And then he follows with the obligatory, ironic lie about the President not having a plan, when everyone knows the plan is to train an Iraq force to take our plce, which is happening every day, as anyone who reads the Fourth Rail knows. Meanwhile, his plan is “I don’t know.”
And John nailed the essence of why this vote was taken, and why Armando says what he does:
“The Democrats DON’T want the troops withdrawn. They just want to attack the opposition and PRETEND they want the troops withdrawn.”
The Disenfranchised Voter
Enh, I like shitberg better anyways.
Oh no John–I think you’ve opened up a portal from the now wingnut-rich land of Red State! Close it quick!
The Disenfranchised Voter
I’ll have to second that. I missed it at first. No need to be an asshole Jon H. I might not care if you said something like that about our “pal” shark, but John is a different story.
So, the Dems abandon the wacked-out Sheehan/Moore antiwar base when forced to actually vote on the issue they’ve been blathering about by those mean Republicans (the nerve of them!).
Dude, the wacked-out Sheehan/Moore anti-war base knows this wasn’t a real vote on the issue. Vote on a real proposal, and not a stupid parody of the Murtha proposal written by someone who thinks that withdrawing is the same thing as “cutting and running,” and then maybe the Democrats will be in trouble ’cause they’ll have to make some tough choices on the vote.
Oh, and “training an Iraqi force” is not a plan, as Murtha himself points out, because the presence of 100,000 American troops in Iraq is a large part of what’s preventing an Iraqi force from getting trained.
Yeah, how’s that going? I hear they increased their forces from 3 battalions up to 1 battalion. Is that why there’s a withdrawl plan in the works now? I’ll be expecting “Mission Accomplished II” any month now.
Democrats are pretty much in alignment with the average American, TD … you know, the ones you think are “too stupid” to know how to vote.
Most people think that the war isn’t serving its intended purpose, and would prefer that it end as soon as possible. They don’t want immediate withdrawal, and they are tired of seeing no end in sight. They don’t think that Bush has a plan, or a clue at this point. They are tired of being jerked around by politicians. They are feeling a little betrayed, as they should.
And of course, last but not least, they are avoiding your crummy blog in droves. You didn’t think I’d forget that part, did you?
Poor poor Dave. Stuck in a country of people too stupid for him …. must be lonely to be you.
Is that a tear in my eye? No, I just need to take out my contacts …..
How about voting on an actual withdrawal resolution, rather than a wingnut fantasy of a withdrawal resolution, and see what happens? I’m under no illusions; I don’t think the Democrats would come off looking good if put to a real test. This was not it, and the reason it was not it is that the Republicans in Congress have no clue what’s the difference between a real withdrawal resolution and a parody of one.
“That’s debatable”. Heh.
Thanks Jaime, for proving the opposite of what you were trying to.
The plan has always, always, always been to leave when the Iraqis are ready to take over. This means the plan is working and our troops are succeeding in their mission to train Iraqis to take over and defend their democracy. There are 210,000 Iraqi troops now and that number grows by 5K-10K a month. In less than a month Iraq will have a permanently elected government, and indications are even the Sunnis will be voting this time.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Hahaha. Ahh, two great ones right there…
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Good point. Further proof the current crop of Repubs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.
Everyone seemed a lot nicer at the beer thread. I think I’ll go back there.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Bullshit. There is no way in hell they have 210,000 effeciently trained troops at this current time.
Either present evidence or stop making ridiculous claims.
Your ignorance is showing. There are over 100 Iraqi battalions rated as ready to fight by our soldiers. Or are our soldiers lying? I know leftists think they’re war criminals and torturers, I suppose lying is a small charge next to those.
Sticking it to TallDave after an evening like this is like dessert and brandy after a good meal.
The only thing that could make it better would be if Dave picked up the check.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Hahahha, I dunno KC, this thread has provided me with 3 geniune laughing out louds–Your comment being one of them.
Calling our troops liars. Way to support them.
Those numbers are right from briefings given by the military. If you were listening to our military instead of Michael Moore you’d have a better idea what was happening in Iraq.
General Westmoreland, I presume?
Another lefty troop-basher heard from.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Well this sure seems to be a pattern. Bullshit! I call bullshit again!
That is unless you have evidence of prominent “leftist”(I never understood this term, do you retards really think it is a bad label?) calling our soliders war criminals.
My educated guess would be that you’re just talking of of your ass again.
But, please, no Newsmax.com link.
Hey, just because General Halftrack doesn’t always tell the public the whole truth at military briefings doesn’t mean we don’t support Beetle Bailey. You’re the one who wants Beetle Bailey to risk getting his head blown off while he waits for the Iraqis to start loving us.
How Sergeant Snorkel fits into this, I don’t know.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Oh so I can basically sum up your post by saying you have no evidence other than your assertion?
Well good job, el fucko, you just proved my claim that you are just talking out of your ass.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
One Iraqi battalion that can fight w/o US assistance, as of late September.
You troop-bashers really disgust me. You don’t deserve the great defenders of freedom you spit on.
Yeah, call Petraeus a liar or “Westmoreland.” He’s a better man than you’ll ever be.
Are the lefties really trying to spin that HawkishDemocratMurtha wasn’t actually calling for an immediate withdrawl — hours after they were all trying to spin that HawkishDemocratMurtha had come around to their side and called for an immediate withdrawl?
I guess the New York Times, the Washington Post, USA Today, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, CBS News, Al Jazeera, the AP and about every other media source got HawkishDemocratMurtha’s story wrong yesterday. Hmmmmmm.
Look, I know the left likes to rewrite history these days, but customarily, they wait until the ink dries first!
I hope a lot of the phony rhetoric to appeal to MoveOn.org and dKos will stop now. When you bluff, and get raised, you have to fold that hand. Finally, a good tactic by the GOP leadership. You know how good a move it was by all the bluster and fake outrage on the left.
[And as we all predicted upon her election, Jean Schmidt proved to be probably the least qualified person ever to win a seat in Congress. The Ohio GOP is no doubt delighted at her embarrassment.]
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Or, TallDave, are you calling Gen. George W. Casey Jr. a liar?
I’m not quite sure who you’re calling a liar–I only know what they tell Congress. Is someone lying to them? Maybe you should testify.
Are you blind? Read the fucking report. Then apologize to our troops.
The Disenfranchised Voter
What the fuck is your problem asshole? I merely asked for a source and you pussy-footed around, bitch.
Don’t accuse me of calling anyone a liar that I didn’t.
Furthermore your article isn’t evidence of what I asked for. I said “There is no way in hell they have 210,000 effeciently trained troops at this current time.”
You see, my hidden point was that if there is indeed 210,00 effeciently trained troops in Iraq then WHY THE FUCK ARE WE STILL THERE?
If there are enough adequetely trained Iraq troops to handle the job, there is absolutely no fucking reason why were are there.
So using some simple logic it is eay to see that there AREN’T 210,000 adequately train Iraqi troops.
Game. Set. Match.
Is that what they call holding our sides and howling until the tears roll down our cheeks? Outrage?
Son, where I come from they call that “laughing our asses off.”
What you saw today was what will become known in politics as Schiavo Two …. a PR clusterfuck of epic proportions, and pulled off by the same team.
Jesus, you guys are really amazing.
You know, I think you should arrange to have a “troop support” vote in Congress every fucking day from now on. Really. Seriously. Daily routine, just like the Official Prayer.
There are no words for the extent to which you guys are out of touch with reality here.
But, there will be, soon enough. And I shall be here ringside to enjoy them.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Did I miss TallDave’s link?
No. Because it isn’t spin. It’s what he said on Thursday. Now return to your lair.
I will never quite understand why the person advocating letting as many troops stay in Iraq and get killed for as long as it takes to achieve a nonexistent goal — why that person is “supporting” the troops.
You don’t support the troops; what you support is the war. You want to win the war, and you want the troops to stay out there for as long as it takes to win it. That’s not a bad thing, if the war is worth it.
Since this wasn’t a “real withdrawl resolution,” then why were the Democrats afraid to vote for it? It gave them a chance to make a statement without risk of any harm — yet they were afraid to make the statement. You’re kidding yourself if you think a real action plan would be easier for them to vote for than one which was entirely symbolic!
The GOP got them good. If they could’ve only muzzled that retarded Jean Schmidt, it would’ve been perfect for them.
TallDave writes: “Yeah, call Petraeus a liar or “Westmoreland.” He’s a better man than you’ll ever be”
I don’t recall being responsible for an Abu Ghraib, torture of innocent people, rape of kids, etc, etc, etc.
Funny. By my standards (and heck, even Biblical standards) that puts me way ahead.
LMAO Oh yeah, hide behind those technicalities, you slimy little worm.
As I said: you disgust me.
Next time you call our soldiers’ claims “ridiculous,” have the backbone to either stand behind it or admit you were wrong.
I’m pretty sure John is just bored and trying to rile us up with this whole thing. He’s far from an idiot.
I think it was Matthews today who basically said that she effectively just ended her political career today.
Oooh, she was ugly in that video clip. I mean, from the inside out.
The Disenfranchised Voter
And what is this shit about spitting on soldiers? Jesus christ that is sooooooooo 1960’s people. The only person I heard about spitting on anyone was some guy who spit on Jane Fonda.
Are all of you Bushies stuck in the late 60’s or something? I know you desperately want it to seem as if someone is attacking/demonizing the soldiers but that ain’t gonna happen. You see, some people learn from history. Unfortunately, you guys aren’t those type of people.
Thank you. At least someone here is honest enough to openly admit they despise our troops.
How bout the rest of you?
The Disenfranchised Voter
Are you a soldier TD? Because I explicitly remember calling YOUR claims ridiculous.
Get over yourself you asshat.
P.S. Your blog sucks. :P
Of course it wouldn’t have been easier for them to vote for. It would have been hard, it would have split the Democratic party down the middle, and it would have been a disaster for the Democrats.
Tonight’s vote was nothing of the kind, because the “resolution” just asked whether you’re in favor of cutting and running. The Democrats said, no, we’re not in favor of cutting and running, end of story. If the resolution had asked “Are you in favor of starting a pullout within six months,” something specific, then the Democrats would have been in big trouble.
I’m sorry … have you met TallDave?
I’ll be you he still has the America Love It or Leave It sticker on his car.
I quoted what he said. “Immediately redeploy.” TWICE. No mention of “six months” anywhere. I’ll take his words over your frantic backpedalling, thanks.
Hey shit-for-brains, those numbers come from our troops. My God, how can someone as stupid as you own a computer?
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Still waiting on your link, TD.
Even if I were blind, I’d still know what I heard them tell Congress. Whatever your problem is, I’m sure there’s medication available for it.
Ah, I get it now. I missed it the first time. Here is the money shot of your statement: “ready to fight by our soldiers.” Not independently, but by our side.
In other words, they aren’t ready to be on their own and won’t be for some time.
Here is a nice snipped for you to reinforce the point:
And, from the DoD:
Great! One battalion ready to be on its own, 96 that need complete reliance on the U.S. military to succeed, and 3 support units.
At this rate, most assuredly our troops will be home by Christmas…
the article Talldave pasted states there is only one fully independent battalion. The 200,000 figure is total troops that are fighting with us, not the number that can fight on their own. Having one battalion trained and equipped at this point is not that impressive.
The ignorant shouldn’t be arrogant too. “frantic backpedalling”? Fuck you.
Moron. READ THE FUCKING REPORT RETARD!! He explains the discrepancy right there.
Come on, people, one of you muist have a double-digit IQ but I’ll b damned if I can find him.
Another moron. Can’t any of you read?
Why can’t you leftist scumbags see that the only way to honor our fallen soldiers is to continue adding to their numbers? If only you were as wise as Bush, you’d know that long-term planning and exit strategies are for the French. Leftists!
I wonder why. Hmm.
Give it up, Mac. This football game is over. The fat lady has sung. The bus got off at the last exit.
A drawdown plan will be on the front pages tomorrow and the only question now is whether the GOP can hold onto Congress. The American people want the stupid war to be over and they care less every day about whether Iraq gets out of it in one piece or not. That’s too bad, because that matters. But your spuds have blown it.
Damn Talldave, you are beyond parody right now. I’m going to stop and let you take over.
Great, another fucking lying, troop-bashing retard.
One battalion ready to be on its own, 96 that need complete reliance on the U.S. military to succeed, and 3 support units.
BULLSHIT. There are OVER 100 that can and do fight. They are not “completely reliant” on U.S. forces/
..basically said that she effectively just ended her political career today
God I hope so. Politics aside (no, for real) she’s an almost too perfect example of everything there is to despise and hate about politicians.
Sometimes I think people like her are part of a conspiracy to disgust and turn off the american people to politics so we pay less and less attention to what’s going on in Washington.
I don’t usually get this mean spirited here, or at least I try not to, so forgive me, but she really does appear to be a despicable person.
You’re beyond retarded. Bye! Be sure to have someone tie your shoelaces so you don’t fall over.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Oh so what you mean to tell me is that my assertion was correct?
There ISN’T 210,000 adequately trained Iraqi Troops.
God, why I am so right, so much?
It seriously gets overbearing sometimes.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
That’s not what Gen. Casey said.
The right’s reading comprehension skills are really taking a hit tonight. Maybe after they finish the Ethics classes, Bush should sign his guys up for a little time at the Sylvan Learning Center.
from the report “Over 36 are assessed as being “in the lead”—that’s the term for level two—including the one that is assessed as needing no coalition assistance whatsoever; i.e., fully independent.”
now to spell it out with small words: one group fight without us
ppGaz writes: “Uncalled for.”
Oh, I don’t know.
John isn’t calling for a complete replacement of leadership. Bush, Cheney, Rummy, the works.
What does he want more, victory in Iraq, or to support his party’s leadership regardless of the cost of its fecklessness?
I think a lot of people would be more accepting of keeping the troops there *if there were massive changes at the White House and Pentagon.*
How about impeaching Bush and Cheney and replacing them with McCain and Hagel? or even Bush Sr. and Brent Scowcroft?
Given these choices, what would John pick:
1) Keep Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld/Hadley/etc, but bring troops home
2) Keep troops in Iraq, but put in a new GOP administration
What’s more important, winning in Iraq, or allegiance to Bush/Cheney?
Tell me, Dave, what color is the sky on your little planet of stupidity?
Ah, so you are calling Col. Brown and Gen. McCaffrey liars.
Why do you hate the troops, Dave?
Level Number of Battalions at Level Definition of Level
1 1 Units are completely independent; Units do not require air, armor, artillery, logistical support (supplies).
2 36 (estimate) Units are capable of independent operations, requires some level of logistical or heavy weapons support.
3 about 80 (estimate) Units are capable conducting combat operations alongside Coalition forces.
4 Undefined Units currently in training, not in combat
Level 2 battalions control their own areas.
210,000 troops trained.
Well, I hope I raised the IQs of you mental midgets a few points. I know ppGaz will never reach the intelligence of an ape, but I have hope for some of the rest of you.
Then I don’t get some of the lefties here are whining “It wasn’t even a real resolution?” By the way, that “real resolution” will be coming soon if the rhetoric on the left doesn’t simmer down, I predict.
…but the segment of the left that is in favor of “immediate redeployment” just got cut off at the knees. Which is all the GOP wanted — for some Democrats to make a choice between their irresponsible rhetoric and their constituents — you know, to send a supportive message to the troops or something.
Ok… Enlighten me.
What do the generals on the ground say are the conditions for success?
The Disenfranchised Voter
I think you VASTLY overestimate the number of anti-war folk who want to “cut and run”.
The blogosphere is one thing. Regular voters is another.
TallDave writes: “Thank you. At least someone here is honest enough to openly admit they despise our troops.”
Petraeus isn’t a grunt, he’s a political creature who’ll have his career ended if he doesn’t say what Rumsfeld and Cheney want him to say.
Regardless of the truth.
I firmly believe that there is no small enough grain of salt with which to take your triumphalist predictions, ppg — you know that.
What have you done to ensure that the troops are adequately equipped for combat, and cared for after being wounded and/or sent home?
Do you care about the troops in that way? Or do you only care that they be sent to die?
You hear that, ppGaz? Mac Buckets thinks you’re right too!
20% in the last poll I saw say they want immediate withdrawl. That ain’t peanuts, is it?
Well fuck me… had I known the Iraqis *DID* have 210,000 trained troops ready to go… FUCK… Now I am all for getting the fuck out of dodge.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
This site says Level 2 is more than that: “Level 2 means units that are “in the lead” in the counterinsurgency effort. The units plan and execute their own operations, but they do require coalition support. This support is typically logistics, close-air support, indirect fire, medical evacuation and so on.
I don’t know why I expect more than lame, witless ad hominems from you, dude. Color me a hopeless optimist, I guess.
The Disenfranchised Voter
20% of what, 20% of Democrats? 20% of the anti-war crowd? or 20% of the population?
Also, you should already know that I’m going to ask you to provide evidence.
Here’s a transcript of Murtha’s press conference on Thursday. He uses the phrase “immediately redeploy” here:
and four sentences later:
A reasonable person would take his qualification of immediate redeployment into account. Of course, reasonable people would also refrain from calling someone a coward and a traitor because he thinks that the war in Iraq is going badly and that we should try something else.
What bothers me about the Republicans’ actions is that such a resolution could have been the start of a serious dialog about what to do next, given how things are going in Iraq and how a significant majority of the public, here and there, view the situation. Can’t have that.
I think a lot of people would be more accepting of keeping the troops there if there were massive changes at the White House and Pentagon.
Well let me be the first voice toward proving your claim. I’m someone who initially supported the war, and given competent and honest leadership, would be inclined to go back to supporting it.
I think we DO need some kind of timetable, but it needs to be around two years, not something like six months. And we need the president to come out and say, with a freaking chart, “ok, here are our goals, here are the bench marks by which we’ll be able to assess the success of said goals, ect, ect, ect.” Put the Iraqi people on notice that the ball is in their court now, and that it’s time for them to step up.
The problem is, obviously, we don’t currently have competent or honest leadership, so this idea of people just supporting what’s basically, imo anyway, an indefinite, poorly run war, just isn’t something I can get on board with. In fact it seems down right irresponsible.
The Disenfranchised Voter
I hereby nominate this post by Ancient Purple for “Ironic Rebuttal of the Year”
ROFL. You reap what you sow. If you wanted to have a civil discussion, you could have maintained one.
Hey John or Tim, can we have an open thread for music? Just to cool things off plus I’m interested what Balloon Juice readers listen to.
“What bothers me about the Republicans’ actions is that such a resolution could have been the start of a serious dialog about what to do next,”
The Republican idea of a serious dialog is to have Bush searching the White House for the missing WMD.
Your transcript link is missing the Q&A.
Depending on how you look at it, Murtha has been looking at a 2 year withdrawl (or longer). It’s just that for at least the first 18 months of it, the administration has done a lousy job of implementing his recommendations. Actually, they just trotted out their partisan smear dogs at the time. Then, when he came around again, they repeated the same old lies from their last debunked smear campaign. Business as usual for them, I guess.
Also, a music thread would be cool, but then, we already have a movies thread. :)
Thanks, Pb; I’d forgotten about that. Oh, well.
The Disenfranchised Voter
This is for all the people who think it is a good idea for Bush to attack critics of the Iraq War:
That post is from Joe at the Moderate Voice. The man is a moderate and he supports the war effort. When you have someone like him acting as he has been attacked by the Bush Administration then you have problems.
This pandering to the base may be smart, but I guarantee their is still some way to go until you get ot the GOP’s base.
The Disenfranchised Voter
**may be smart from your prespective
The Disenfranchised Voter
bah tons of spelling mistakes…
*acting as if he has*
“The only thing to do is for America to stay the course and remain in Iraq for the next five to twelvezenteen years, until either our resources are depleted or we have been chased from the roof of the American embassy in the middle of a full-blown civil war. ”
Hm. Chased from the roof of the American embassy…
Well, they do say that we’re building the biggest embassy EVAR in Iraq.
I suppose that’s the GOP strategy – build an embassy big enough to fit all our troops on the roof, and fly them off in helicopters when it all hits the fan, or Bush’s term is over, which ever comes first.
Stay the course. We’ll win as soon as the traitor DemocRATS stop filibustering God’s work. We need to support our troops lest the heathens deny us.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Heh…channeling Darrell there, PC?
Remember kiddies, you can’t spell ‘quagmire’ without ‘iraq’.
I think the one and only reachable goal in this war should be when the Iraqi military is capable of taking over. When will that be? From what I’ve read, I think we can be out of there in two years, give or take, with measurable withdrawals earlier.
I think, no matter what anyone’s opinion was about entering the war, we could at least reach a consensus that simply leaving the Iraqis to their fate after we created such an upheaval in the region would be deeply immoral. We have a responsibility, an obligation to see them reach a point where they are able to provide for their own security.
I cannot believe any truly liberal or progressive human being could leave people to such a potentially horrific civil war. I thought I moved Right after 9-11. No, I never became a conservative. The Left simply became illiberal out of hatred of Bush. It’s really, awfully depressing. Humanitarians indeed.
TDV, this isn’t the place to get squeamish about poor spelling.
Everybody interested in the “how many Iraqi troops are there” “debate” above, note that these numbers include many Peshmerga fighters and other ethnic militias with private agendas. Also note that it is estimated that significant fractions of the rest are insurgents getting some extra training/ammo/intel.
The ways to destroy this post from a conceptual level. Mr. Cole, you can do better.
While the Reps and John circle jerk one last time to pyre of Iraq, Gen. Casey has submitted withdrawal proposals to Rummy.
The Disenfranchised Voter
We’ve already established that Gen. Casey is emboldening the terrorists and hurting our troops.
The guy is a traitor!
This isn’t 2003. The “You Hate the Troops” and “Traitor” and “liberal liberal liberal” won’t work.
Face it. Republicans are COMPLETELY in charge and America KNOW’S they suck.
Your party is now the party of torure, of Drownie, of hateful chickenhawks like Jean Schmidt, of Scooter Libby, of Iraq, of creationism, of weak willed pussies like Bill Frist. You’ve lost control of congress to the minority. You’re playing defense and not to lose. It’s over. Karen Hughes has sung.
And GoldStar don’t you dare correct my innacurate assertions again. :-)
The French Connection is my favorite movie anyway.
jaime thingy sez:
Then why did the dems fold on that vote?
Maybe the Congress Dems know a little more about current public opinion than you lefties do, and may not trust the results of the media polls on the Iraq war, which you kooks like to frikking wave around like a bloody flag every second comment around here.
Pay attention. The Dems didn’t vote on a ridiculous, do-nothing GOP sham resolution–the equivalent of all the GOP’s war plans up until now, I might add. Why doesn’t the GOP have any ideas? Or, for that matter, any good ones?
The Disenfranchised Voter
They didn’t fold. It wasn’t the Dems resolution. The Republicans introduced that resolution. Even Murtha voted against it.
Oh Jesus christ not another nutjob who thinks the all the polling companies, even your beloved Fox News, are involved in a vast anti-war conspiracy.
Can’t you see that you are a total joke?
It ain’t trusting polls. We just had an election where the Republican’s got their butts kicked. Republican candidates do NOT want to stand on the same stage as Bush. ANWR failed. The budget went down in flames. Bush hasn’t uttered the words “Social Security” in months.
Dems in Congress stole 9 republican votes on the procedural votes. They voted down a fake poweless resolution. This was the biggest news of the night and it isn’t mentioned on LGF, Powerline all but ignored it, Fox News uses a 6 word hyperlink to describe it, and any TV package will include Raccoon Bait Schmidt getting booed.
From a quick glance at you last attempt at a post, I can only ask one thing: HAVE YOU BEEN DRINKING? Because given the spelling and sentence structure of your last offering is seems that you are shit face drunk. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
As far as these massive electoral gains you’re braying about:
Two states that had Dem governors, elected two new Dem governors.
Smashing Victory. (not exactly 1994, but whatever)
“we’ve got a senior defense official in the Bush administration calling up reporters late on a Friday evening”
As we all know the big news that they want everyone to hear about is released Friday evening. Curses, great high-profile Saturday morning publicity for the GOP is foiled again!
Remember how accurate those Nov 2004 election day exit polls were?
“Democrats are pretty much in alignment with the average American, TD”
Which is why they keep winning elections and poll so well right now, right?
The Disenfranchised Voter
They don’t poll well. But then again, neither do the Republicans.
This, to me, is pure gold. I would nothing more than to see the end of both parties and a new age dawn.
A mutliparty system with instant run-off voting! Talk about a Utopia!
The Disenfranchised Voter
I would love*
Frankly John, this is what you’ve chosen to stand behind.
To answer John’s original question :
I think Joe Gandelman of The Moderate Voice says it pretty well:
Sorry John, guess the little ploy of the Bush apologists didn’t work out to well. Like I said previously, as long as the news of the day is dominated by Iraq, Bush loses. He lost big time last night.
What will people remember about last night’s debate? Well, I think this is accurate:
So what are the “atmospherics” of this whole thing? Well, we got a very down to earth guy that SERVED in the military for 37 years, having been wouded several times, a guy that visits our injured soldiers on a regular basis and cares deeply for them, being seen as the DEMOCRAT while a screaming hysterical chicken hawk bitch calling him a COWARD on the REPUBLICAN side of the issue which supports the war which fewer and fewer Americans think was worth fighting and that we were misled into.
Hmmmmm… yep, you really made the Dems look bad. Lol…. Terry Schiavo redux. What incompetent buffoons the Republicans are.
and I’ll say good-by by going back to the very first comment in this thread. John, you are an idiot if you think this hurt the Dems. Either that or you have a very tin ear for how things are perceived by the American public. They can see very well what a political stunt this was, ala Terry Schiavo, and they are growing very very tired of the REpublicans and their games. Wake up.
Speaking of that chickenhawk smear, Tony Blankely had a good line on McLaughlin tonight, which more or less paraphrases: “according to the logic of those who say that only military vets are entitled to an opinion on war, only fetuses should have a say on abortion.”
I surmise this will shut down a crowd of hysterical “chickenhawk” screechers pretty durn fast, so I’d like to test it.
Moral consistency, anyone?
Has anyone pointed out what they changed his bill to? A “state of the House” (I believe that’s what it’s called), something that does nothing except record opionions. We have a word for that in the rest of America – it’s called a POLL
They also changed/removed information until it implied a very different point, and then attributed it to someone else. We in the rest of America have a name for that too – it’s called a PUSH POLL.
So then a pollster tells you about a supposed illegitimate black child and here you are running out to vote for whoever the other guy is. “George W. Bush? Never heard of him, but at least he’s not that immoral jackass John McCain”
Bravo fellas. You fell for it again. I thought you were against that smearing of McCain Cole? Why are you supporting the exact same thing done to Democrats?
Incidentally, the vote was 400-3. The 3 aye votes were Cynthia (“Jooos”) McKinney, Robert Wexler of Florida, and José Serrano of New York.
Remfin, it was a sense of the House resolution, H RES 571: Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately.
I thought that was what you people wanted, am I wrong? Three Democrats went on record in agreement, so one has to believe that the others are for staying until the job’s done and the Iraqis can take over.
Because you see, the intermediate ground is not very palatable; if you don’t believe in getting out now, and you don’t believe in staying until it’s done, then you simply believe in staying for some arbitrary additional time at the expense of American lives and treasure and for no purpose whatsoever. So if you’re upset about Bush for squandering same for no good reason, you need to examine your own position.
who said that chicken hawks have no right to an opinion? But it certainly is fair game to point out that the person calling a 37 year Marine veteran a coward is a chickenhawk. You guys on the right like to dish it out but you can’t take it can you? little school yard bullies. punks. Calling him a coward is ok, but don’t dare say she is a chicken hawk? Fuck you
“I thought that was what you people wanted, am I wrong?”
You are wrong. The original thing was a BILL (as in, it would have the force of law eventually if it got through all the votes needed). It also spelled out with specifics how things would be done, which is important. It’s not unimportant in context, because it highlights one of the problems with the Bush Admin, that you can’t leave the specifics in their hands
I mean you want to talk about “obvious” things for the military to do, securing the WMD sites we were supposedly in the country to secure didn’t happen with the first “wave” (for lack of a better term). It didn’t happen with the second, the third, or even the fourth. The first wave came back a month after they broke the locks as they buzzed through to “secure” those WMD sites, and the stuff was long gone by then
Anyone competent would have made sure those sites were secured as you went by (within reason of course, I’m not talking about the first wave just stopping there, I mean a unit detailed to come right behind them to secure it). But nope, that’s too smart an idea for the Bush Admin it seems
I mean either they are that dumb when it comes to the military or they knew for a fact Iraq did not actually have any WMDs. Or both! Kind of a hard question for someone trying to apologize for the Administration to pick from
Technically, she was quoting a Marine, so your slam has no force. Think up a snappy comeback to the Marine, if you can. I don’t personally think it’s proper to introduce the term “coward” into House debate, but I don’t call people names like “chickenhawk” either.
Remfin, you’re making what we call a “distinction without a difference.” Any House member who wants what you call for would surely support immediate withdrawal, as we all know that “immediate” in military jargon means “as soon as we can get everybody together”, and would want to have his sentiments on the record, binding or otherwise.
Had the non-binding resolution passed, it would have been a small matter to follow it up with a binding one, for all that. Really, don’t take Representatives for such rubes, they all won elections to get there and they know how to play the game of politics.
You disingenuous ass, John. I would’ve expected you to permit enough nuance in the debate to allow for a distinction between “do exactly what George Bush says” and “run away without looking back.” But apparently the poisonous dishonesty that has infected our political discourse doesn’t stop before it reaches your house. This is what we’re talking about when we make fun of you for getting GOP talking points faxes. Hell, man, you might as well be receiving them on your fillings.
We’ve now established that no Democrats are in favor of “immediate, unconditional withdrawal.” Now that we’re all in agreement there, can we start talking about what they _are_ in favor of, and whether that would be good?
Apparently John Cole was given word by OSM that if he wasn’t wingnutty enough, they wouldn’t pay his bills.
So he posts this shit.
Reading up some of the other news.
The Democrats have clearly won this one, as they control the debate.
I swear to God, people like you are why there are over 2000 dead American soldiers in Iraq. Can you please outline the administration’s goals in the Iraq war? Where is the sign of victory? At what point do we “win”? Platitudes don’t cut it anymore.
On “it is the sense of the Congress that”… an unconditioned “immediate withdrawal” is a good idea…
Because they voted “no” on a resolution that wouldn’t have immediately redeployed the troops, or because they raised a resolution that would have ordered the pentagaon to end the occupation in Iraq and withdraw the troops from there as soon as practicable, and asked to get a vote on it?
What, precisely, does “figurative mean”?
Question – if the GOP bill meant exactly what the Dem bill meant, then why was it necessary at all? As soon as the dem bill was out there, they could say, “look – what a great hole the dems have dug for themselves — now they really have to put their vote where their mouth is! Let’s debate this bill and vote on it now!”… Instead, they chose to raise and sponsor a bill which they planned to vote against. Why would you sponsor a bill you opposed when the bill is identical to the bill already on the floor that you could oppose by voting on?
How stupid do y’all think the rest of us are?
This thread has turned into a microcosm of the country, with a few determined wingnuts screaming at everyone else “You hate the troops! You hate the troops! You hate the troops!”
Sen. Levin makes a proposal for a withdrawal plan with milestones and gets derided. Gen. Casey lays out a withdrawal plan with milestones and gosh, of course, don’t you moonbats see it’s just common sense? Of COURSE we’re going to have a withdrawal plan with milestones.
It’s really sad to see what war does to people (and nations) who, one presumes, would otherwise be rational.
What Iraq war?
You mean the war where our soldiers drive around and get murdered by IEDs? I am sure they love that mission.
Oh, I forgot, the war is because we owe it to the Iraqis to oversee the installation of some government headed by a guy, Jaafari, that the Sunnis consider a traitor because he sat out the Iran-Iraq war in Iran?
Or maybe we owe the people in our image like Iyad Allawi, an MIT classmate of an old friend of mine? Too bad he … isn’t popular. Ex-Baathist, you know.
Maybe we owe it to all those women to make sure burqas aren’t compulsory. Didn’t Saddam get rid of all of that? So we’re doing a kind of back-to-the-future thing?
I sure wish someone a lot smarter than me could explain to me exactly what the mission is, because all I have seen since the “end of major combat operations” is a sequence of incredibly stupid fuck-ups.
I am glad I went to bed so early last night. The Congressional Republicans did well, for once. The Dems got rolled, pure and simple. I can’t wait to see their mythical plan for Iraq, in 2006. Lordd knows, they have got nothing now.
That’s another interesting point… “the conditions for success”.. what the hell are they?
Are we moving toward them, or away from them? If the goal is a secure, democratic iraq, I don’t see how fueling a civil war there is helping that… Looks like continued occupation is getting us further from the goal.
If the goal is, as President Bush stated over and over, “to disarm Saddam Hussein”… well… I think we can safely declare victory on that score…
Maybe if somebody could tell us what the “conditions for success” are, and could point us toward something that hasn’t already proved counterproductive toward meeting them, maybe we could all agree to sit around with our thumbs up our asses and watch people get blown up until those conditions got met.
Bob In Pacifica
John Cole says it’s okay to support withdrawal when The Generals say so.
Does that mean that the generals know when it’s okay to go? Is it when democracy flourishes, or when the last drop of oil is pumped? Did they know when they went into Iraq that it wasn’t about weapons of mass destruction? Did they know it was about regime change and nation-building (a pretty ironic thing considering the consequences)?
Yeah, John Cole is just like the clueless zealots like shark and talldave, fighting this war with the last war’s rhetoric, looking for long-hairs spitting on GIs, ritual flag-burnings, bombings of draft induction centers.
Things have changed. While the Republicans have gotten up the adrenalin of their little fascists with this latest stunt out there in America another couple percent have gotten the idea that it’s time to get out. All the little boys with their armbands and fraternity pranks grab their crotches and brag about the size of their testicles and think they just won something. Gotcha! They just got a handful of themselves, is all.
The Americans don’t need to wait for the imprimatur of The Generals. They’re ready to go home now. Fuck your war.
Again, if some of the Democrats were willing to stand by their irresponsible “immediate redeployment” rhetoric, last night’s resolution would’ve been far easier to vote for than the Murtha resolution. It should’ve been far easier to vote for a “it is the sense that” resolution than a “let’s start loading up the transports” resolution — there’s less risk, since there are no action items. Instead, when asked only whether the idea of immediate withdrawl was a good one at this point, they voted no, often against their own published remarks.
That’s why the GOP called this vote — to show the troops and American civilians that some Democrats don’t even believe their own political rhetoric, and that these Democrats are only politicizing the war to get votes.
This has blown up all over the GOP. It’s a repeat of Terri Schaivo. It has probably hardened more moderates and independents against the administration. At best, it keeps 1/3 of the country in line.
I think that the GOP suffers just as much from Viet Nam sydrome as the left does.
Bennedict Arnold was no coward, in fact he was a genuine war hero. His loyalties simply changed. Murtha, likewise.
Can anyone explain to me why immediate redeployment is irresponsible? I mean, what ARE our responsibilities?
The last sweep in Anbar turned up miniscule numbers of foreign fighters. I think we can safely put to bed the idea that the people we’re fighting in Iraq are a global sect called Al Qaeda. Osama has as much chance at taking over Iraq as Jacques Chirac. We’re fighting Iraqis who are pissed at us.
Now maybe we have a responsibility to keep fighting these pissed off Iraqis. Can someone tell me why that is our responsibility? Is it because pissed-off Iraqi Sunnis are going to take over the country? Can anyone make a rational argument that this is possible?
So again, what are our responsibilities?
You’ve gone unhinged, Pb. The only person I’ve insulted here is Republican Jean Schmidt.
Ok, so if there was more risk for the Murtha bill than for the GOP bill why, again, was it necessary to introduce the GOP bill? If they were lowering the stakes instead of raising them, then what was the point?
Democrats – “we want to vote on whether to end the occupation.”
Republicans – “oh hell no! We’re going to force you to vote on whether we ought to end the occupation, and this will reveal once and for all whether you will back up your rhetoric with your vote!”
Everybody – “huh???”
Come on, man – how stupid do you think we are? Sure, maybe if the Democrats hadn’t just called a vote, it would be necessary for the GOP to call a vote to “show the American people” the Democrats weren’t willing to back up their rhetoric… But with a bill already out there, and the Democrats ready to vote on it… all they had to do was say, “Ok, let’s vote”… Instead, they chose to introduce a “sense of the congress” resolution worded in a way they thought would be politically unpopular and which would have absolutely zero impact on what would happen in Iraq, and which they themselves opposed… Don’t tell me it was “necessary”. Bullshit… they already had a bill that would show the American people admirably where Democrats stand relative to their rhetoric…all they had to do was let it go to the floor… Now what’s the real reason they were scared of that bill and had to introduce this smokescreen bill?
Anyone? Bueller? At what point do we win in Iraq?
It’s not a hard question folks.
Because it would have passed. There probably are enough Republicans that would support Murtha’s bill that leadership was afraid it would pass.
That doesn’t matter, Mac. Seriously. It’s like a guy saying “The reason why I robbed the bank ….”
Well fine, but I still have to take you to jail.
It doesn’t matter what the Spuds had in mind. What matters is what happened. What happened was that the world sees it as a stunt. A stunt by the people who apparently think it was funny — as in funny ha ha — to see George Bush looking under the sofa cushions for those darned WMDs. The Republicans can beat their chests all they want, they no longer have the high ground in this thing. They had it because the people handed it to them on a platter, and then they squandered it. It’s gone.
You can repeat the same crap all day and all night … as you have done … but it won’t change the reality. What happened yesterday was a further setback to the spuds, and what you are watching is a meltdown. Right now the Republicans are in a denial-anger fight-back mode. This will cost them what little support they have left. Early in 2006 you’ll see the president totally isolated, Congress won’t go near him, and the people will be restless to the point of total disgust.
It’s over, man. Give it up. Maybe you can help TallDave write one of his essays about how the American people are too stupid to get this right. Maybe you can raise some money for John Cole’s therapy fund, as he seeks counseling for his problem …. he’s a liberal and hates himself for it. I like the guy, I hate to see him suffering like this.
He’s so conflicted he may split in two.
Probably not the first time around, but… as it was debated, and the sense that it makes started sinking in to the Congress and the American people, I think there really was a good chance it would pass on the second or third time around, with a few issues debated like.. what, exactly, the mission of the “horizon” forces would be… it would pass. And God knows the GOP will not tolerate a result that gets our troops out of Iraq under any circumstances. So, yeah.. I think that was the real fear. That, or they were just being assholes.
We win when the conditions in Iraq are as hospitable as every other country we ever liberated. Germany, Japan, S. Korea. We leave only after we are welcome to stay.
Murtha is a serious man. He didn’t come to this lightly. We’ve never been given a clear cut definition of “success” or any serious plan of meeting the undefined success. Murtha, more than anybody, has wanted to find a way to do this right, but the Republicans have never allowed any serious debate on what it means to win in Iraq and how to win. And our president? This Administration has been “winging” it from the beginning. You don’t think that frustrates the hell out of a military man like Murtha? The Administration’s arrogance and ineptitude have been disasterous, but Congress is just as negligent. Our soldiers deserve better than silence when its clear the architects of this war are idiots. “Staying the course” will merely lead to more deaths. Unless congress gets its act together, we’re going to end up leaving a mess whether we leave today or in a decade, so we might as well leave today and save a few thousand lives.
Murtha doesn’t want to cut and run; he wants Washington to get serious in its responsibilities to our troops, to change the course. Instead, we have yesterday’s stunt. And anybody who thinks Republicans handed Democrats their butts on a platter is fooling themselves. Nobody bought that crap. Nobody thinks the vote sent any kind of message except that the Republicans will smear just about anybody who has the guts to stand up to them. I read this site often without posting, and I’ve never thought John Cole was naive. But you say if the generals say we should leave, then it’s ok? But not Murtha? If you or anybody else thinks Murtha came to this decision on his own, without talking to the generals and the men and women on the ground (and in the hospitals), you really have to be blinded by your support for the war. This is one of the most respected military minds in congress, by both sides of the isle, by the military brass and foot soldiers. If he’s to the point where he thinks we might as well leave, that should bring pause to any serious-minded American. This has been brewing for a while. When a hawk this close to the military says we need to withdraw, you can bet your ass he’s not coming to this conclusion without a whole lot of input from the military.
Finally, a good question!
Actually, we’re fighting Iraqis who are pissed at us and the other 80% of Iraqis who now have majority rule, rather than Sunni minority tyranny. In fact, another of the (I’ll be kind to a vet) misstatements from Murtha’s press conference is that “our troops have become the primary target of the insurgency.” Clearly, Iraqi civilians are being killed at a rate dozens of times higher than our troops. If the insurgents want to kill US troops by setting of bombs in Shi’ite mosques, ummmm, their aim is waaaaaay off.
Since the Iraqi military and police forces were dominated by Saddam’s goons, we realize that leaving Iraq before a new Iraqi police force and military can be trained to a workable level is a “recipe for disaster.” The primary responsibility for that training, and for trying to keep Iraq safe from those who lost their power, while that training takes place, belongs to the coalition. That’s the only reason we’re staying, at this point — and when Iraqis are trained to defend themselves from those who lost their political power in the democratic vote, we will stand our troops down.
Of course not, but any group who can be convinced to suicide-bomb marketplaces and mosques can do a terrible amount of damage in their attempts to kill their political enemies.
Putter: that is the weirdest thing I have ever read on Iraq. I suggest you get the Republicans to introduce a resolution supporting that criterion.
MacBuckets: So we are there to protect the Shia from suicide-bombings, even though we know that tactic will not force an adverse political change?
I’d say that is a truly stupid mission.
Yeah, robbing a bank, and an act of parliamentary procedure. Exactly the same, Ppg. Thanks for boiling that down for everyone. Coo-koo! Coo-koo!
The Democrats bluffed, they got their weak hand raised, they folded, and you call it a victory. Well, re-raise, then! Priceless. Let’s keep our ears tuned for any “immediate redeployment” rhetoric from the Democrats in the coming weeks.
Why? I’ll just copy the Democrats’ essays from November 2000 and November 2004. Or Michael Moore’s “Americans are Idiots” speech!
They weren’t lowering the stakes. Voting on any withdrawl resolution was a raise of the stakes from what they were before. They went from “no vote, but plenty of irresponsible Democrat rhetoric” to putting that rhetoric to the vote. They wanted to show what they’ve been saying all week — the Democrats are all talk, politicizing the war to get votes. The Dems bluff got raised, and they folded.
You are free to have your opinion.
It is no more a pipe dream than the examples cited. Comparitively speaking, we have gained more ground, lost fewer people, spent less money than any of those previous conflicts.
WWII cost 400,000 American lives. It also cost about 100% of one years GDP. 10 trillion of todays dollars. This is another “ism” like communism and fascism that the left said we could never defeat. If you don’t think these are the first battles of WWIV (counting the cold war), you are sadly mis-informed. 1500 people will die in America today from car accidents and gunshot wounds. Do you plan to stay home today?
The training stuff is nonsense. We cannot train political reliability.
We’re just training, and under-equipping, sheep-dipped militia members. They’re happy to get the pay, the nice uniforms, some extra guns, maybe learn some new military science.
“Richard Bennett Says:
But it certainly is fair game to point out that the person calling a 37 year Marine veteran a coward is a chickenhawk.
Technically, she was quoting a Marine, so your slam has no force. Think up a snappy comeback to the Marine, if you can. I don’t personally think it’s proper to introduce the term “coward” into House debate, but I don’t call people names like “chickenhawk” either.”
What I find so humorous of the Libs convenient embrace of Murtha, who IS a brave and it would seem good man, is that some of their parents probably spit on the man and called him a baby-killer when he came back from Vietnam.
If we continue to stay in Iraq and terrorists continue to kill Iraqi civilians at the current rate (which is then often pinned on US troops by some lefties), I figure history will end up repeating itself with some of the Libs. Maybe this in and of itself is enough of a reason to withdraw our troops so they won’t have to one day put up with that crap.
Putter: like I said, get your political folks to announce it as a strategy. I really care whether I am welcome in Iraq or not.
As putter says, this is an entirely winnable conflict. We will wage successful wars on nouns as long as nouns exist. We destroyed fascism. That’s why you no longer see any fascist governments in the world. We destroyed communism. That’s why you no longer see any communist governments in the world.
We will destroy terrorism too.
Not a chance in a billion. They wouldn’t even pass a resolution that gave the sense that it was a good idea to begin to discuss immediate redeployment. The Dems got 3 votes for a symbolic resolution, yet the GOP would help pass an actual action plan? Dreamers.
Uh, China anyone?
I don’t doubt that terroism can be defeated. That being said, anyone that has defeated terrorism, hasn’t done it the way Jr. has. Did the British declare war on Ireland?
Mike: The reason to withdraw has to do with our current situation and policy objectives. Of course different people arrive at the same conclusion by different paths, but yours is novel.
This is patently untrue since the Dems were chomping at the bit to vote on the Murtha resolution. So the stakes went from “vote – to end the deployment” to “vote – to say it would be nice immediately withdraw all troops”… From a vote on action to a vote on rhetoric. The GOP in Congress is saying that the stakes didn’t change at all, that the GOP bill “is” Murtha’s bill… You said that the GOP bill was “less risky” than the Murtha bill….
But when you and John tell me that the GOP bill was necessary to get a vote to show the Americans how the Democrats act when it goes to a vote – you’re pissing down my leg and telling me it’s raining. We KNOW that the bill wasn’t necessary to get a vote, because we know that the Murtha Bill was already there and all that had to be done was let it go to the floor, if it was a vote that was needed. Once again, HOW STUPID DO YOU THINK WE ARE????
“All talk” is insisting that the vote be a “sense of the congress” on something the GOP put together without the least desire to have it pass. “All talk” is avoiding an actual vote that on a resolution that people seriously want to see movement on. And up is down, and black is white…
Why not vote on it then? It sure looks like they were afraid. They tried to have it both ways. They made up their own amendment and then tried to call it Murtha’s. Silly.
Truer words never said, but you’re still probably wrong.
There are some moderates in the GOP, and as they see that there’s little sense in escalating a civil war in Iraq, and that keeping our men and women in hostile territory for no discernable reason is growing unpopular among their constituents… the fact is there is a decent possibility that we will begin to see enough GOP defectors to pass a Murtha-like bill… if it ever gets debated.
Caroline… Exactly… Once again, MacBuckets, or JC, or whoever.. can you give us an explanation why the GOP was so scared of voting on the Murtha bill, yet so insistent on voting on the counterfeit bill? And could you make the explanation not so obviously false that an above-average third grader cannot see through it?
Well, to date those that have answered my question on why we are in Iraq have come up with
(1) Equip and train an Iraqi army. (MacBuckets)
(2) Defend against suicide bombers. (MacBuckets)
(3) Train the Iraqis to the point where they no longer care whether we’re there or not (Putter)
I was a little snippy with Putter, sorry but this rationale seems far-fetched and fairly unique.
Points (1) and (2) are more mainstream, and thoughtful.
Myself, I don’t see (2) as our job, the only good reason to be there is because we believe that we are protecting America, not mosques in Iraq.
I am very pessimistic on the equip-and-train rationale, probably because of my too-deep familiarity with the Balkans. You can put all of the tribes into one army, that doesn’t mean their primary loyalty is to the government.
At any rate, equip-and-train isn’t a rationale for having 180,000 soldiers in Iraq. I say bring them home. If you insist on equip-and-train, I will give you a regiment or two for that purpose,ay a division if you think it is needed for security.
Yeah, the America haters are showing their true colors now.
Or put a couple of divisions in Kuwait, and equip & train them there.
Considering that the occupation is having the opposite effect, and that Iraq is trending less hospitable than more, a realistic plan would involve ending, or radically changing the nature of, the occupation…
The beatings will continue until morale improves… I like it.
Hey, man, I cut this thing off twice, and it’s still too short!
I was a child at the end of Vietnam, so I never spit on anyone. But it’s clear Americans learned a tough lesson. (It’s too bad learning lessons is something this Administration is incapable of.) Despite the rhetoric from the right, supporting our troops in Iraq is universal, no matter what side of the isle you’re on. Many of us support them enough that we think Washington shouldn’t send them to die in an unnecessary war, without proper armor and without a plan for winning. Others support the troops by standing by the president. I tend to think the former is better, but nobody has a monopoly on troop support in 2005. However, if you want to talk about treatment of Vietnam vets like Murtha, lets not limit the discussion to decades ago. Let’s talk about Vietnam vets today. War didn’t end for these guys when they came back. Many of the people who love to throw a parade for war are the same people who think of the homeless as simply lazy. And it’s those liberals you deride who, today, are in the trenches with our most devastated Vietnam vets, trying to get them off the streets, into rehab or reuniting them with their estranged families. Though the Iraq war has lost less lives, this kind of war is especially devastating to the mental health of soldiers. Urban guerilla warfare, with no idea who the enemy is, and with multiple tours of duty, is taking its toll. Iraq vets are already showing up in homeless shelters. It’s disgraceful that we’ve let them fall through the cracks even as the war continues. I hate this war, and my concern for the soldiers is what drives me to want to end it. But once it’s over, our support for the troops can’t end. I don’t want to be serving Thanksgiving dinner a local soup kitchen to baby face veterans next year. It’s heartbreaking enough when they’re old wrinkled vets. Support for the troops means more than putting a yellow magnet on your car. Real support last decades after the troops have come home.
Here are a few more possibilities that I think are more plausible:
(4) Iraq is more likely to descend into civil war without us there.
(5) America will lose an enormous amount of its international stature if we are pushed out by the insurgency, making it harder to have influence in the future.
(6) Operation Iraqi Liberation (OIL).
(7) GWB would never listen to his mom calling for dinner once he’d started playing with his boxes of little green army men.
Why not vote on an action plan, having zero time to debate or research it? Really? Do you really think Congress works that way?
First, because it would be irresponsible and silly to try to have a vote on an action plan in one evening with no time to research — it would’ve been even more irresponsible to actually pass such a thing. Something like that takes months in Congress, and the Democrats, despite their “let’s vote for it now” rhetoric, know that. They knew Murtha’s Resolution couldn’t come to a vote.
Second, because the whole point was to give the Democrats no wiggle room after their irresponsible rhetoric. Why give them the “I want immediate redeployment, but I disagree with, or need more time for, the specifics of the Murtha plan” out? Why not give them a broader, easier chance (knowing they won’t take it) to say simply that we should commit to immediate withdrawl, and then debate the particulars when there is time?
The GOP knew that the Dems weren’t serious, and wanted to have a broad, no-outs resolution to prove they were bluffing.
Hey John, just thought I’d point out the obvious:
Your comments are completely filled with MORONS. Shockingly so.
And RSA – perfect example – Your numbers 6 and 7 – Wow, thanks for the brilliant insight. That was sure a great addition to this discussion. Brilliant.
The cold war lasted about 40 years. Korea was a proxy war in that larger struggle. The same can be said of Iraq. During the cold war, I crawled under my school desk during air raid drills. It was part of the curriculum. You need to get used to the idea that that we will be taking similar precautions for suicide bombings, chemical alerts, etc. if you have your way. Communism did not disappear, but has not been much of a threat until lately. China gained about 20 years in technology during the Clinton administration. He thought you could stop fighting that “ism”. You are both wrong. Islamofascism must be dealt with. This is the “kinder, gentler” way of doing that task. The alternative is to wait 15 years and nuke Iran and Syria.
Because this comment of yours is sure to set the political world on fire.
Well there we go, huh. I guess now we now the REAL truth. Why anyone would pay any attention to your opinion, Searp, is beyond me. These are Iraqis interested in their country’s future signing up for the Iraqi police and military – who are dying at a FAR higher rate than our soldiers, and you just dismiss them as “sheep dipped militia members” out to pick up some nice uniforms and shiny guns.
You are a disgrace.
Who said it had to be voted on that evening? If they had just started debating it that evening, instead of playing stupid, political, diversionary games, it could have been brought to a vote any time.. Nice try… Come on, really try this time… Why is the GOP who is so quick to decry the other sides’ “rhetoric”, so suddenly in love with “symbolic” counterfeits of Dem libs? Is your irony meter broken? Why can’t you just admit that this was a stupid political stunt and it backfired on the GOP because it was their answer to a serious, and deeply considered bill introduced by a foreign policy hawk with a military background. People can see which side is serious, and which one is playing political games.. Why can’t you and JC just say – “shame on them.” I know JC is capable of doing it with his own party, but I’ve never seen it when his party was thumping the war-drum… I’d like to see if he can do it when it’s over the mistakes he shared with his party…
Yeah, because debating with the moonbats that cry BUSH LIED!! is just SO productive.
Sorry, guys, but the GOP stripped the democratic bill of it’s “nuance” and “dislaimers” so there could be no back-tracking down the road – you know, like “I didn’t mean NOW, after the “quick strike over the horizon force is in place” whatever that stupid BS is supposed to provide, and said, here it is boys, leave now or not ?
Not. 400-3. EXTREME moonbats only voting in favor.
Putter: I crawled uder my desk also, of what relevance is that? Why do you impute to me your perceptions of the sins of the Clinton administration? Again, irrelevant.
I agree that we are in a long term struggle with our ideological opponents, our enemies. The question is how to go about that struggle. You seem to think I am a pacifist. I am not. I have worked proudly with the military for thirty years. I am an authentic Cold Warrior, I know what we did in that period. I helped do it.
That doesn’t mean that I support stupid policies simply because the military is the tool of that policy.
Again, I’d ask you to consider the here-and-now, that is what is relevant.
Thanks for reinforcing the belief that this was nothing more than a silly political stunt. Looks like the GOP really didn’t want a debate on the merits of the Iraq policy. This sounds just like the Terri Schiavo debacle. Make ’em vote for or against it to see whether they support the “disabled.” It’s just plain silly.
I have carefully avoided ad-hominem attacks because they seem to me to be counter-productive. Your opinion of me has little to do with the topic at hand, although you might feel a little better by name-calling.
Under-equipping: no armor, no air. That is why many of those soldiers die.
Sheep-dipping: Pesh merga units are joining as cohesive elements of the new Iraqi army. We deployed these units to Tal Afaar. Shia militias are doing the same. The ministry of the interior seems to be run by the Badr Brigades. And the Sunnis?
Aas for 6, are you seriously contending that Iraqi oil has nothing to do with why we went into and are still in Iraq?
As for 7, so I’m not a comedian. But I do believe that Bush’s stubbornness and insularity contribute to the problem.
smijer, have it your way, it was a political stunt. The howls of anguish establish its effectiveness. Far more effective than forcing the Senate into closed session to demand something that was already being done.
Then why are we in Iraq? Saddam is a bastard, but he’s a bastard who allowed Christians their space, who allowed women to attend university, and who despised bin Laden as much as we do. He was a tyrant, but an equal opportunity tyrant. And Iraq was secular until we invaded. We didn’t temper Islamofascism by invading Iraq, we fanned the flames. If we’re serious about bringing stability to the Middle East and ending terrorism, we’re idiots if we think occupying Iraq for a decade is the way to do it.
Because that’s how things work in Congress before recesses. If there was no vote, everybody would’ve just gone home.
Becuase that would be incorrect in every sense. “A serious, deeply considered bill?” LOL! Proposed one day, voted on the next? No, that is a shambolic, hastily thrown together, detail-lacking piece of political pap that had no chance of passage.
And now’s an odd time to suggest that foreign policy hawks with military backgrounds should be listened to, since the foreign policy hawks with military backgrounds who are serving in Iraq patently rejected Murtha’s offering.
Yes, the GOP hopes so. One sides votes for what it says, the other side talks and talks, but won’t vote for a simple, broad resolution to back up their bluff. They say they want to build a mansion, but they won’t even go on record to pass a resolution that says it would be a good idea to build some type of dwelling.
Thanks… Now, the rest of you who are saying how this proves that the Democrats are all about political rhetoric, please let it be entered into the record that the proof is found in the GOP’s effort to derail a substantive action plan put forward by a prominent Democratic hawk, and, in its place, offer the country what they really needed – a “political stunt”. You guys may not be capable of seeing the irony, but I think the average American will be able to..
As to the effectiveness of this stunt, putter, we’ll just sit back and watch for the GOP polls to soar and American support for indefinite occupation of Iraq grow… Hey – if you’re right, I’ll be the first to admit the stunt was effective.. If you’re wrong, this may just be the first skirmish in a national debate where both sides finally get heard… this may be the first step toward actually changing our Iraq policy away from “keep digging, and clap louder!”
Once again, the folks on the left are showing off their complete cluelessness.
The fact is that armies fight as brigades. The smallest element capable of fighting and sustaining itself in the field, in a combined arms fight, is a brigade.
Brigades take time to build. You can have 210,000 Iraqis in competent squads, platoons, or companies and not have a single brigade ready to go.
In order to build a competent brigade staff and command structure, your brigade commander and staff need to have experience commanding and running operations at the company and battalion levels. If you short-circuit that process, the brigade staff will not know what their tools are and will make stupid decisions and not know how to handle the brigade.
The platoons, by and large have been built. There are a lot of very strong Iraqi companies out there, too. The coalition is in the process of bringing the battalions up to snuff. Only then will you have a pool of leadership talent from which to create a brigade command and staff structure that’s ready to operate independently.
It takes time, and there is no way to hasten that process.
You cannot replace U.S. companies with Iraqi companies on a one for one basis, because that Iraqi company cannot self sustain. Ditto for battalions.
It is only as the Iraqi brigades are stood up as functional combat units that we will be able to withdraw significant numbers of U.S. troops.
If Rumsfeld has a withdrawal plan or timetable on his desk, that’s because the generals training Iraqi forces have some visibility on the timetable by which the Iraqis will be standing up functional brigades.
That’s what to watch for: What is the ECHELON of Iraqi units currently getting certified as combat ready?
People just throwing numbers of individual troops around simply don’t know what they are looking at. But the Iraqi brigade is the key to any kind of ability to withdraw significant numbers of U.S. troops.
That is the victory plan. That’s the exit strategy. That’s the success criteria.
Like Casey? Like Hackett? No… I don’t think Murtha deserves special or new consideration because of that. I just want to point out that he is serious, and knows that of which he speaks. I mean that people can tell that he means it when he says that the deployment should be terminated – by virtue of his attempt to have the Congress direct the termination of deployment in Iraq… And they can tell that other Democrats who share his views are committed to those views by their defense of Murtha’s bill and their willingness to debate it and vote for it if it came to the floor.
The GOP sham vote cannot conceal the seriousness of people who are asking for a drawdown of troops from Iraq.
Every single American citizen knows that the GOP sham vote was worth absolutely nothing, and some of you even admit that it was a mere political stunt so that some smart-ass can say, “see, they don’t really favor doing what the bills they sponsor call for, because they didn’t even vote to say it would be a good thing to do it”… And since most voting age Americans are out of kindergarten already, they will likely be turned off by this in large numbers.
Like calling a closed-door session of congress? How naive must we pretend to be? When the other side does it, it’s a stunt. When your side does it, it’s a brilliant tactical maneuver, right?
Yes, it was a maneuver to call the Democrat’s “immediate redeployment” bluff, and the Democrats folded.
And this was also for the morale of the troops, didn’t you hear? This sends a clear message that we are not about to withdraw and risk giving back the military victory we’ve sacrificed so much to win.
They said the same thing about Germany after WWI. That’s what bought us WWII. Saddam was a sponsor of terrorism all over the world. 25k to the families of suicide bombers, etc. He was secular when it suited him, but devout when he was in a corner. (much like, say John Kerry) I would have preferred to start with Iran or Syria, but we didn’t have a license to hunt on those fields. We did not have 15 years of U.N. resolutions to support the cause. We did the next best thing. We took on the biggest bully in the vicinity and turned him over to his own citizens for a trial. Zarqawi was in Iraq before we got there. Many of the taliban fled there.
If it wasn’t important, al quaeda would not be there now! If you can’t bring mohammed to the mountain, you bring the mountain to mohammed. Iraq is attracting people that need killing. People we would not have a license to kill otherwise. They are dying in droves because they are not used to shooting at people who can shoot back. Their stock is going down every day as it becomes more obvious they can only strike civilians. The people of Jordan turned on a dime against al quaeda. Give war a chance. 2 years ago the entire democratic leadership said that “failure was not an option”. They were right then, they are dead wrong now.
This highlights the essential dishonesty and bad faith of the Republicans maneuvering. Republicans took one day to rewrite Murtha’s statement; Republicans scheduled it for immediate vote. They control the agenda. They didn’t let it go forward as is because they didn’t want to allow any nuance in the statement. They scheduled the vote for a day later because they didn’t want to give people two lousy weeks to think about the implications of the statement. Murtha’s statement was a sincere attempt to get at policy; Republicans responded with politics.
Neither Casey nor Hackett want Murtha’s plan, or anything that drastic and irresponsible.
I did not get that. Did you hear that screaming “Tombstones don’t say Democrat or Republican” non sequiter? What was that about? What unasked question was he answering? He sounded like he was doing a Bizzaro Zell Miller impression.
Sham vote? The only sham vote would’ve been a one-day, no research, no debate vote on an action plan on “immediate redeployment” in Iraq. Now THAT would’ve been a sham, and a dangerous one. Good luck spinning that one.
What every American citizen (well, the third that care) will see is that the Democrats have been shown doing exactly what the President has been saying this week, playing politics and rhetoric with our troops in Iraq. Every time the Dems want to pump up the MoveOns by whining about pulling out of Iraq immediately, they’d better watch their backs — they might be called to put their votes where their mouths are!
RSA – Amen.
I’m still waiting or an answer, and at this point, it doesn’t even have to be from John.
What do the generals on the ground say are the conditions for success? I still don’t know and would like someone to inform me.
Yes, but they weren’t calling for an action plan, were they? They were only offering the Democrats the chance to go on record as being for immediate withdrawl. The Dems did not, and good for them, except now they might have to explain some of their irresponsible rhetoric.
The GOP were sending the message to the troops and the American people that the Democrats were just playing politics with the Iraqi solders, and that no one really wants immediate withdrawl of Iraqi troops, regardless of what they say to get votes and donations from MoveOn, Soros, and dKos.
Well, the idea of immediate withdrawl lost 403-3. Back to the drawing board.
I’m not too up on politics, but I think we have a civilian commander in chief specifically to avoid leaving it up to the generals to decide what constitutes success. Military solutions are not always best, because “success” can’t be described purely in military terms. On the other hand, it’s pretty much impossible to figure out what the administration’s criteria for success are, in concrete terms. If we’re not talking about potentially decades of occupation, at least.
I apologize for changing the subject,but on a previous thread Stormy70 charged Cindy Sheehan with being an anti-semite and crossing “the line” on Israel,then abandoned the thread without offering any evidence for her allegation.Since she’s posting here,I thought I’d challenge her again to produce her evidence of Ms. Sheehans anti-semitic words or actions,and also explain what entails crossing “the line”, as I fear I may also be guilty.Either that or simply admit you’re full of shit.
Amen, again, RSA…. I long for the halcyon days of our innocence when success was defined as “disarming Saddam Hussein”. I think now success is “defeat with honor” or something like that.. *cough*RichardMilhouseNixon”*cough*
Yep… Well, while we’re here, why don’t we just take up Murtha’s bill and see how it fares. Maybe his idea will do better than the GOP plan. Any takers?
Wow. So much macho posturing from the pro Bush types. What a bunch of tough guys. Of course their comments are totally irrelevant and ignore the undertone of fear that drove what happened last night.
A hawk with substantial ties to military leadership comes out and says that the US cannot win this war.
The response to his position was a thoughtful plan on how the war could be won, right? Nope. The best the war supporters could come up with was a lie, a diversion. They tried to play games and force the Dems to agree with a resolution the Dems did not support.
Games and more games. But underneath is fear. The increasing realization that there is no way to end this war other than to get out. That was the message from Murtha and despite their bravado, the pro-Bushies are beginning to realize it as well.
There’s fear in the air but for once it’s not the American people who are afraid. It’s their leadership.
Just ignore Stormy. She makes shit up. I think it makes her feel better.
Again, bad faith. If Republicans wanted to offer Democrats a chance to go on record (and it’s not as if some Democrats haven’t already made statements expressing their views), then it’s only reasonable to let them make their own statements, not force them into a political corner. The reason I think this is important is that it’s not as if there’s unanimous feeling on the Democratic side that immediate withdrawal is appropriate. It takes long debate, discussion, and argumentation to come to agreement on a difficult issue like this. By skipping all of that, just proposing a strawman conclusion, Republicans basically bypassed the process. It’s as if there were a debate, and the moderator (one of the debaters) said somewhere in the middle, “Okay, that’s enough talk. I want a vote right now, and I’m going to be the one to describe the different positions.” A victory for politics (maybe), but not too useful.
In this case, we have a CIC who is pathologically unable to take responsibility for anything. So don’t expect any measurable criteria to come out that might make it plain even to the Bush fluffer brigades what a miserable failure W is and always has been. His failure in Iraq will be blamed on the Dems, the military, and just about everyone else that Karl Rove decides to include in the ongoing smear campaign that defines this Bush administration. We’re all going to blamed for all of messes the incompetent bunch of criminals in the WH will leave behind, or at least they’ll keep trying.
“Well, while we’re here, why don’t we just take up Murtha’s bill and see how it fares. Maybe his idea will do better than the GOP plan. Any takers?”
You just don’t get it? You strip out all the weasel words, and the GOP plan is Murtha’s plan. As far as victory is concerned, you will never achieve anything close as long as there is ANY timetable for withdrawal. You win wars when the other side is convinced that they cannot win. There is NO other way. If we could convince Zarqawi that we were prepared to stay there for decades, he would leave Iraq and set up shop elsewhere. Your every utterance lengthens the war or makes the prospect of victory less likely. It is obvious that your perspective on life began on the day of your birth (probably in the 70s or early 80s). = Short sighted.
A Dem hawk comes out and says that the US cannot win this war AND that we should immediately withdraw. Those comments were cheered by so many leftist Dems that Republicans said “fine, let’s vote on it”. You Dems want to support that position, put up or shut up
I think this is a point lost on a lot of people. There are a small number of people in Congress whose opinion on military matters carry a lot of weight. And Murtha is one of these people.
He supported this war, he supports the troops more than anyone, and yet he’s so exasperated with the management of the war, he’s ready to bring the troops home rather than subject them to more of “staying the course.” That he, of all people, has come to this conclusion should scare the hell out of the most ardent war supporters. And it’s clear by yesterday’s stunt that he scared the Republicans. They know he’s universally respected by the military. They know he’s not a Michael Moore clone, Scott McClellan’s comments aside. Last night, Murtha said he’s speaking for the troops because they can’t. But he’s not just imagining their concerns. Everybody can pull out a quote or two, or even a dozen from active troops who say we need to “finish the job.” But this man has probably talked to more wounded soldiers than anyone in Congress. He’s got decades-long relationships with military leaders. I’m sure there are diverse opinions among the military, but when Murtha says he’s speaking for those who can’t speak, he’s not talking about a kid he met at a photo op. He’s talking about hundreds, if not thousands of active duty soliders he’s talked to since the war began.
If somebody, posters on this board excepted, can come up with a legitimate plan to win in Iraq, Murtha would be the first on board. But that hasn’t happened. Congress doesn’t even appear to want it to happen. It’s mindboggling that the Senate is just now demanding that Bush give them oversight of the war. That’s disgraceful and it’s one of the reasons Murtha is at this point. If you support this war, it’s fine if you disagree with him, but it should weigh heavily on you that he’s reached this conclusion.
The quote I cited was from a comment John Cole made himself near the beginning of this thread.
I understand your answer, but it’s not an answer to the statement *John Cole* himself made. So consider helping me in my request to get an answer to my question of Cole based on his own statement.
Her San Fransico speech and her affiliation with Lynn Stewart and Crawford Peace House, for one show me where her political ties lie. She hates Israel and David Duke is praising her. She is anti-semitic, and it is not my fault the darling of the left is such a vile, media hungry Moonbat.
Gotta go watch about 25 shows lined up on the Tivo.
Oh, and the Dems got rolled and it was beautiful to see.
I think John probably misspoke, and has a much more nuanced view, despite his earlier self-description, of the relationship between generals and the leadership of the country (I use the term “leadership” fairly loosely, here.)
Hey, Murtha has every right to speak his mind. If he wants to declare that Iraq is unwinnable, and follow that declaration with a demand for IMMEDIATE withdrawal, that is his right. It is the right of Dems who agree with Murtha to cheer him in this regards.
All the Repubs did was say “if this really is your position, let’s put it to a vote”. Why does that have so many of you Dems in a hissy fit?
I’m delighted that you are so pleased. I’m sure the families of the more than 2000 dead are equally delighted.
Yes it is. But it’s also his right to have his position accurately represented. Only liars like you don’t understand that.
Pretty convincing evidence to make a vicious charge like that.As I suspected,you’re full of shit.All that TV watching is leaving you a little dull-witted.I suppose “the line” is just as sharply drawn.
Jack Murtha is on the record as calling for “immediate” withdrawal. Shall I trot the quotes? What’s dishonest as hell, is the left pretending that Murtha didn’t say exactly what Murtha is on the record as having said
Only in your little world, Stormy.
I stopped at the local coffee shop this morning and the conversation was not about how the “Dems got rolled.” The conversation topic was Jean Schmidt. Old guys, the counter help, the guy coming in from his BMW… all of them were furious at her statement about Murtha
That is what the people are talking about this morning. Not how the “Dems got rolled.”
Only in your little world, Stormy. Your little, tiny, Bush-ass-kissing world.
But do give my regards to Jean Schmidt on a job well done.
It’s clear the opinion of the Republican resolution is in the eye of the beholder, but since most beholders now think the war in Iraq was a mistake, that doesn’t bode well for the the Republicans. And unfortunately for them, when they allowed Jean Schmidt to speak, they screwed themselves. The fact that the resolution is being reported as a stunt isn’t helpful to them either. The real test, though, will be in the next two polls. If it has any impact, we’ll see if its a short-term bump or something more lasting. I suspect, however, that the fake resolution will just leave Americans wanting for legitimate debate on the war.
So why didn’t the Repubs allow a vote on Murtha’s version?
That’s not quite all the Repubs did… And once again, I ask – when Murtha’s bill was already up for debate and vote, what sense does it make to say “if this is really your position, let’s put it to a vote.”
Murtha – “My position is that the occupation should be ended and that we should, as soon as practicable, start withdrawing troops. Here’s a bill that represents my position. Let’s put it to a vote.”
GOP – “Well, if an unconditioned, immediate withdrawal of troops from Iraq is really your position, then let’s scrap your bill, create a bill that says ‘unconditioned, immediate withdrawal of troops’ (but won’t actually direct any withdrawal of troops at all), and put it to a vote!”
Everybody – “What are y’all taking? If that was his position that would be what was in his bill. If you want a vote on Murtha’s position, then vote on his bill.”
I like it how wingnuts say that “immediate withdrawal” means “cut and run today”, while having recently argued that an “imminent threat” is somehow different from a “gathering”, “mounting”, “immediate”, or “urgent” threat.
Because Murtha’s bill contained the vague weasel words “as soon as practicable”. After railing against Bush and the war for X more months or years, if anyone asks why we still have troops, Dems would have the cover of saying “it’s not yet practicable”, while using language in speeches calling precisely for “immediate” withdrawal. Dishonest as hell, but expected from the Dems
How about this idea – Murtha has clarified that, that with logistics involved, he wants troops out of Iraq within 6 months. Why don’t the Dems write a resolution calling for withdrawal of our troops out of Iraq within 6 months and we’ll vote on it. C’mon Dems, show us how much you ‘support the troops’ by carrying the banner on Murtha’s demands for immediate withdrawal.
The Bush administration had to resort to misrepresenting the evidence to start this war. Now they have to misrepresent the Dems’ position in order to try to win this argument.
The Bush supporters clearly know they’re losing the argument. Dishonesty is a striking indication that they know the facts aren’t with them.
Man, did I sleep good last night. That vote really gave me some great peace of mind. In general, it must suck being a Democrat, but after last night it must be painful.
Maybe our single-celled opposition would like to offer some comments about this so that we can feel their pain?
Look who’s suddenly fallen in love with timetables. “As soon as practicable”, coming from someone like Murtha, is not so much a weasel word, but a responsible caveat. As was mentioned upthread, the GOP will not be happy with allowing Dems to have a responsible position, and when someone like Murtha scares them with one, they will do everything in their power to strip away the responsibility of it and then try to pin it back on us… Well, we’re calling bullshit now.
Weasel word, my ass. If you don’t like “as soon as practicable”, then ask what that means in debate on the floor of the house, and then ask the bill to be amended with a clarification…
It’s not an excuse to pull a stupid stunt like they tried yesterday. We’re smarter than that.
While you were sleeping, the tide continues to turn and the days of this war are numbered. The US will pull out because the military leadership has recognized that the war cannot be won. This is the message that Murtha has passed along to the American public. The result will be a clearly weakened US, both militarily and morally. Bush’s legacy will be that he unintentionally supported the terrorists by fighting the wrong war. He damaged the US’s ethical leadership through his lies and his support for torture. And even he knows it – Bush has chosen to further isolate himself from reality by only speaking regularly with those who will support his retreat from reality.
It must really suck being Bush.
Like I said, the ONLY way you win wars is by convincing the bad guys that they can’t win. Not everybody has the stomach for it. The greatest generation knew what it takes. That is why they were willing to spend 400,000 American lives, firebomb Dresden and Tokyo and nuke Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Unless you are prepared to make such a commitment, this war is already lost.
The time for dissent is BEFORE the shooting starts. We had the debate, a decision was made. There is room for constructive criticism – here’s how you can kill more bad guys faster, but no room for talk of appeasement or withdrawal. Humans are resilient when they have hope. To win a war you have to take away that hope. Murtha gave hope to terrorists yesterday. He may be brave, but he is also profoundly stupid. He put his party ahead of his nation. I shall never forgive him. More innocent people and American troops will die because of what he said. Smijer, I can forgive, but Murtha should know better.
What’s to misrepresent? Murtha really did call for “immidiate” troop withdrawal. Twice. He really did further clarify that he wants all of our troops out of Iraq within 6 months. He said that
Too bad for the dishonest left that Murtha’s clarifications are ON THE RECORD
I shall never forgive the liars and incompetents who brought those soldiers into a war that should never have been fought. They lost the war when they had to resort to lies to both start and perpetuate this war. Lying is a clear indication of a position of weakness. The American public gave them the benefit of the doubt but are now coming to terms with the realization that they were lied to. Thanks to the Bush administration, the world continues to lose the war on terror.
The true rationale for the Iraq war never had anything to do with the terrorists. It does now.
Too bad W didn’t listen to his daddy. A whole lot of people would be alive now and the US and its allies would be better positioned to defend themselves against the real threat.
Why don’t you ask your mom or dad to read what Murtha said and explain it to you? You seem to be having real problems with reading comprehension.
Brian, Glad you slept well. Wasn’t much of a comment, but I am glad you saw fit to share your night’s rest with everyone.
Big whoop! If he thought that a 6 month timetable would make a congressional action better or more likely to pass, he would have included it. On the other hand, he can put in a responsible caveat – “as soon as practicable”, and gain more support from Dems and moderate republicans who would not be happy with a 6 month timetable but agree that the occupation must end and the drawdown must begin pretty damn soon.
And, I think that Murtha’s is just the first bill… I think the GOP is eventually going to have find a way to face the fact that much of America is tired of the failed experiment in Iraq, and wants to see a new policy. Eventually there will be a lot more Murthas, and they won’t be silenced by stupid political stunts like we saw yesterday.
Eventually, we will get our President and Pentagon under control. It’s just a shame that it’s taken this long.
“While the Democrats are focusing on how we were misled to war, Bush is focusing on how to mislead us out of it. … If we were wrong about why we went in, we have to be wrong about why we’re leaving. Otherwise it sends our enemies the message that America lacks the will to remain incorrect.” –“Daily Show” correspondent Rob Corddry
This comes down to semantics. Those who take Murtha’s statements to mean that he wants to withdraw all the troops tomorrow are being disingenuous. The Republican resolution was nothing but a glib statement about immediate withdrawal. Murtha’s resolution, on the other hand, laid out a method to remove the troops gradually and safely, over about a six-month period. He recognizes that our very occupation is a big part of the problem, so withdrawal is just part of his resolution. He also wants to add sorely needed diplomacy to the process. And while he wants to give Iraqis what they want – an end to occupation – he doesn’t want to abandon them. He knows they’ll need our help so part of his resolution calls for marines to remain in the region so they’re available for quick deployment. He’s clearly not suggesting that we cut and run and leave the Iraqis to themselves. Anybody who says otherwise is either a dimwit or a liar. Right now, we go into a town, clear it of insurgents, and because we don’t have enough troops, as soon as we leave, the insurgents return. It’s a vicious cycle that’s costing a lot of lives and money. It’s not working and nobody has the stomach to add more troops. And the troops we are sending are at the lowest allowable training level. But we’re supposed to “stay the course”? How insane are we?
Murtha has come up with a plan to withdraw troops, without abandoning the Iraqis. It can be argued that his pace is too fast, but his objective is something most Americans want. Instead of holding hearings to debate and negotiate his resolution, the first thought of Republicans was to smear him. Their second idea was to have a fake resolution. If the Republicans think that’s what Americans want, they’re in for a wake up call. It would have been so good for this country to give his resolution thoughtful consideration, to have hearings. The final resolution may have been altered significantly. It could have been something most Americans could agree with. It’s disheartening that the Republicans didn’t even want to try.
To follow up on Sojourner and smijer’s comments, I don’t recall the administration telling the public that going to war in Iraq might involve 400,000 soldiers’ deaths, firebombing cities full of civilians, and dropping nuclear bombs. I think that might have resulted in some dissent, at least among the non-wingnut population, don’t you? And if that kind of commitment is necessary to win the war, I think we’ve clearly already lost.
Sojourner: Bill Clinton signed the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998. Since that time, the stated U.S. policy toward Iraq was regime change. There were about 20 specifications made in the authorization of use of force. 2 or 3 had something to do with WMD. Some of Saddam’s own generals believed that they would be issued chemical weapons. While “vast” stockpiles were not found, enough ricin, sarin and mustard agent was found to kill
thousands of people. He had thousands of gallons of insecticide in his military facilities. Most nerve agents are analogs of insecticides.
He retained dual use facilities that would have been turned around the moment the sanctions were lifted. About 5000 Iraqi children died every year from common childhood diseases. He was using these children to get the sanctions lifted, even though he spent billions of dollars on palaces. 300,000 people have been found in mass graves. Justifications for this war are boundless. It is sad to democrats becoming apologists for Saddam.
As far as the “lies” are concerned, it is true that congress did not see exactly the same intelligence the President saw. You will learn, after some of it is declassified, that what he saw was even more chilling. Leaks of some of the intercepts, if leaked, would have caused great panic.
Murtha is a traitor, just like General Casey. General Casey wants us to start pulling troops out early next year. I will gladly join in on the pile on of Casey’s freedom-hating plan.
RSA, I hope you are a girl, because I’m falling in love with you.. Why don’t you have your own blog?
smijer, unless you’re a lesbian who sometimes plays for the other team, our budding relationship will have to remain platonic :-)
Yeah, well I’m not, and my wife would have a thing or two to say about a new found amourous connection in my life anyway…
but seriously… you should blog, or something. You’re too good at putting concepts (especially those difficult for certain partisan Republicans) into words that anybody (even them) should be able understand. If you have a sister who doesn’t mind risking the wrath of the most evil – but loveable – woman on the planet, slip me her phone number.
And that’s a problem why? It’s really too bad the Bush Administration started this war and then bungled it so badly, but that doesn’t mean our soldiers should pay the price indefinitely.
Murtha doesn’t have faith that it’s going to get any better with the way the war is currently being managed, so withdrawal is logical. As noted earlier, his resolution is more involved than mere withdrawal. Instead of dismissing it outright, the Republican congress should welcome this debate. Murtha thinks his gradual withdrawal will take about 6 months, but he didn’t put that time frame in his resolution. It could take a year, or two, but until the Republicans have the courage to allow his resolution to be debated, we’ll never really know. Maybe his timeframe is too fast, but I rather start with a resolution that needs tweaking than no resolution, or worst, a scam resolution.
smijer, are you seriously asking ‘RSA’ for his sister’s phone number so that you can cheat on your wife with his sister? Or are you trying to recruit the sister for a threesome with your wife? What else could that post have meant?
Comments here celebrating the famous victory of the GOP in the House yesterday are a splendid illustration of why the Rightwing is currently imploding. They simply can’t get their minds around the fact that they have lost control of the discussion. Having successfully dictated the premises of public debate post 9/11 up through last November’s election, they cannot accept that events have rendered this strategy impotent. Understandible, since they equate control of the institutions with the power to manufacture public opinion. This is never the case in a body politic that retains a democratic pulse. Short of a complete lockdown of all dissenting opinion, such totalitarian schemes will always be vulnerable to the citizenry’s ability to draw independent conclusions based on their own assessment of the facts. What some would sneeringly refer to as “reality based” thinking.
This explains why someone could argue that the refusal of Dems to vote for a Republican motion presenting a caricature of the original Murtha bill amounts to an expose of the Democrats. The only thing actually exposed was the Right’s fanatical conviction that they can invent fictions, substitute them for the actual views of their opponents and make the fraud stick. As has been pointed out, if the goal had been to expose the Dems there would have been no need of imaginative rewrites. The authentic Murtha Bill would have suited the need admirably. We might have been well served by a substantive debate on its merits.
But if anything is clear from the dog and pony show mounted by the House GOP its that the Right is at best uninterested or, at worst, frightened by the prospect of such debate. So they took to their heels, ginning up a spurious resolution of their own making and trying to pass it off as the “Murtha Bill”. Their disconnect from current political reality is now so profound that they thought no one would notice the substitution. They’re reduced to the absurd assertion that repudiating their fabrication is identical to repudiating Murtha’s Bill.
As little as a year ago this flim flam might have flown. But a great deal of blood, both political and human, has flowed under the bridge since then. An Administration and party that portrayed a narrow electoral victory as a national mandate has pissed away what political capital it possessed in a continuous stream of botched initiatives and scandals. Meanwhile, public support for the Iraq adventure, formerly a bulwark of strength for the Right, has collapsed. It’s going to take more than talk radio style shenanigans in Congress and the blogosphere to repair the damage.
To a limited extent I can feel compassion for the plight of Mac, Stormy, et al. For fourty years their crowd has argued that every repudiation of their politics by the public was the result of Liberal control and manipulation of the elite institutions. To admit now that the people at large are capable reaching conclusions independent of and contrary to the aparatus would mean repudiating an entire worldview based on that fourty year old canard. Rather like the impact of de-Stalinization on the Communist true believers.
Darrell… key word “seriously”… Despite everything, I do have a sense of humor. I realize that sometimes jokes are lost in translation on a medium like the internet. Please don’t take anything I say about romance here as anything other than silliness.
That’s right, it enables Dems to posture, demanding “immediate” withdrawal from Iraq in speeches without ever having to vote on exactly what they are advocating. Hey, you think a 6 month scamble is a great idea, fine. It would be nice though, for Dems to propose a resolution which mirrors their rhetoric. But they’re too dishonest to do that
It’s just the usual liberal decadence, Darrell–you wouldn’t understand.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
OK then, but what if the commitment is half-assed?
In WWII, there was a draft, war bond drives, conversion of consumer industry to making military hardware and the explicit declaration that Americans everywhere would have to sacrifice.
Bush, though, wants to win this war on the cheap. And Murtha just told him winning that way can’t be done.
Hey, your sister, not mine
” I don’t recall the administration telling the public that going to war in Iraq might involve 400,000 soldiers’ deaths”
Roosevelt didn’t make any such forecasts either. He just said whatever it takes, as long as it takes, and he meant it. He knew he could count on the opposition party (Republican) members of congress to support the effort for the good of the country. Politics stopped at the waters edge. The media of the day ran articles and made films to BOOST morale.
If you want to blame the war on a leader, blame Chirac. Chirac aparently told Saddam that he could count on a French veto in the U.N. security council. This emboldened Saddam, who blinked too late to avoid an invasion. Oh, by the way, the elimination of the oil for food debacle was sufficient justification for the war imho.
My heart bleeds for every American casualty. Having said that, this has been an astounding success by any measure.
Somewhere between 12,000 and 20,000 people died building the Panama Canal.
On 9/12/2001 Bush made a decision. Not again on my watch! If there are gaps in intelligence, I will assume the worst case scenario. Tenet told him the WMD issue was a slam dunk. Bob Woodward printed it, Tenet never denied saying it. Clinton appointed the dumb bastard, and GWB was still trying to set a “new tone”, so he kept him on. He probably leaked Plame’s name too. You have to be brain dead to assume that GWB’s motives were anything less than noble. Starting a war based on a fraud would have been political suicide. Even if Cheney thought about such a stunt, Rove wouldn’t have allowed it. (tapping into the “Rove is Bush’s brain sect)
Give the “Bush lied” crap a rest. Even Ted Kennedy doesn’t believe that garbage.
It’s now the majority opinion in this country, actually.
That ship has sailed, friend. Party = over.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
But Bush has only said half of that – “stay the course.”
As far as doing what it takes to win, it’s not happening. Otherwise, properly equipping our troops would be a priority. Making sure the armed forces are properly funded would be a priority. Sealing Iraq’s borders would be a priority. Telling the Saudis to knock off their funding would be a priority. And so on.
Really, I don’t think Americans believe we’re doomed to failure. But they can’t stand bearing witness to a war that’s been waged incompetently and half-heartedly.
Oh, sorry, the poll story was fro ABC News on Nov 3.
It is a priority. Let’s survey the troops about it
They are funded
It is a priority, but we can’t even seal our own borders at home
We have closed down innumerable Saudi “charities” which raised money for terrorists. Buy a clue
Terrorism is on the decline, then?
Last throes, would you say?
What are you talking about? Murtha is serious about his resolution. His term “immediate withdrawal” has created a cover for Republicans who don’t want to even debate the issue, but Murtha’s not posturing. He would be more than happy to have hearings and bring his resolution to a vote. Unfortunately, the Republicans don’t want to let that happen.
Give me a break. How is not putting a hard date in his resolution dishonest? Murtha has been more upfront than most anybody else in Congress. He’s certainly more honest than the idiots who put forth last night’s scam resolution. He’s not wishywashy. He clearly laid out his process for withdrawal, and provided the steps he sees to stabilize Iraq. He’s publicly estimated is that it would take about six months for full withdrawal, so I don’t know how he’s been dishonest. But I guarantee if he had put a hard date in his resolution, you’d be bitching about that instead.
The Republicans are always whining about the Democrats complaining about the war without offering an their own plan. So Murtha offers a resolution and lo and behold, the Republicans smear him. If he weren’t so highly respected, they would have ignored him. But they know this is a turning point in the war. Murtha’s resolution is just the beginning. This was the first serious resolution, it won’t be the last. He’s opened up the door for everybody else. We’re going to start seeing similar resolutions from Republicans and Democrats alike.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Yea or nay: The Bush administration has done everything it can to win the war in Iraq/on terror, even when doing so went against pre-9/11 priorities.
Gold Star for Robot Boy Says:
“Unless you are prepared to make such a commitment, this war is already lost. OK then, but what if the commitment is half-assed?”
Now that is a good and fair question! There is a vigorous debate on that subject. One side says more troops provide more control. The other side says, more troops provide more targets. This represents a compromise between Gulf War I and the Afghan “shoestring” model. If, as the Dems are now saying, our presence is becoming divisive, they should be the last to complain.
The “plan” has been clear since Saddam was captured. Support the government and train up the military until we can take the training wheels off. We will probably have around 20,000 troops in Iraq 20 years from now. We need a foothold in the region. The house of Saud was chafing from our presence there. They may live to regret our departure.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
I’ll start: Nay.
During WWII, women worked in defense factories.
Post-9/11, the Army dismissed Arabic-speaking linguists because they were gay.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Murtha backed a draft.
Your idea of a civil discussion is calling me ‘unhinged’? Please.
Oh, and if you want to know what Murtha actually said, I suggest doing some research on the internets. It might make you look less like a fool and a stooge. However, judging from your comments, it seems you don’t care about those inconvenient facts.
Oh, and for those mental midgets quibbling over the exact wording of Murtha’s bill, v. Murtha’s good intentions–yeah, because all bills ever passed are worded in the exact same way as when they start out. Many of you probably thought the Republicans were voting on “Murtha’s bill”, or something “equivalent” to it, when in fact they weren’t–and just didn’t have the balls and the honesty to admit their own slimy, reprehensible tactics. If the GOP leadership of today knew what ‘bipartisanship’ meant, then Murtha could work with Young, etc., and they could hammer out a good, solid bill that combines Murtha’s intentions with Young’s, etc., etc., and withdraw the troops safely within 6 months or a year or whatever and redeploy them, securing Iraq and keeping us largely out of harm’s way. But no, they only know how to deceive, attack, and pull ridiculous stunts that would accomplish nothing of real value. I hope you’re happy.
Well then, if Murtha was ‘serious’ and not ‘wishywashy’, why then didn’t his resolution match his rhetoric? Murtha advocates “immediate” withdrawal of our troops. That is his exact verbatim description. He further elaborated that he wants the troops out within 6 months. Fine. If that’s his position, his resolution should reflect ‘immediate’ withdrawal with troops out of Iraq within 6 months. But his resolution didn’t say that, did it? Murtha instead chose to use vague terms such as troops withdrawing when “practicable”, whatever that means.
I welcome such resolutions calling for immediate troops withdrawals. But leftists Dems are too dishonest to allow their resolutions on Iraq to match with their rhetoric on Iraq, which is why Murtha’s resolution was so different than his speeches.
I don’t think Bush has done a very good job, until recently, of laying out the cost of failure. I think he should start every news conference by showing the video of Nick Berg getting his head sawed off. That is the face of the enemy. An enemy that wants to subjugate women, kill gays and set up a global caliphate. The opposition of the left on these subjects is schizophrenic.
Gold Star for Robot Boy
Agreed. He’s also been miserable at laying out the cost of success, aside from the aforementioned “stay the course.”
I said that AFTER (not to mention BECAUSE) you gave me the old FU. But nice try at rewriting history!
Anyone interested in history can read it for themselves, much to your chagrin I’m sure.
When you talk about ‘bipartisanship’, don’t forget that Murtha, when making his case, started ranting about Cheney’s deferments.. if Murtha was sincerely looking for bipartisan common ground on his resolution, he would not have thrown out the chickenhawk argument. But he did, which tells you a lot about Murtha’s intentions
Good idea! And whenever Bush mentions being a pro-life President, he should flash up a few pictures of aborted fetuses. Nothing like strong imagery to engage people’s critical faculties. But maybe Bush should start a bit smaller. He could mention the deaths on 9/11 whenever he talks about the war in Iraq. . .oh, wait. . .
I’ll believe that when I hear it from John Cole. Until then, he made a very specific statement that he has not clarified.
Very few Democrats have called for immediate withdrawal. Murtha did. But he didn’t mean the troops should come home all at once right away. Yes, he wants to begin redeployment immediately, but it’s a process that will take several months. If you can’t grasp that, it doesn’t mean he’s dishonest, it just means you’re misinterpretting him. Intentionally, I might add. If Murtha is to be faulted, it’s for assuming Republicans took the war seriously. He was naive to think that they might take the time to thoughtfully read through his resolution and have an honest debate on it.
And stop with all the “leftist” this and “leftist” that crap. Murtha’s nothing of the sort.
Before Repubs called for a vote, many (most?) Dems were talking about what great man Murtha is and how we must listen to his message, blah. But when forced to actually vote on immediate troop pullout of Iraq, Dems couldn’t do it.
In his speeches, when not attacking Cheney as a chickenhawk, Murtha has called for ‘immediate’ withdrawal of troops. Furthermore, he elaborated in detail as to exactly what he considers to be immediate, and he explained that troops should be out of Iraq in 6 months. No misinterpretation on my part, because Murtha spells it out so clearly.. in his speeches. For his resolution, on the other hand, Murtha did not call for this immediate troop pullout, but instead chose to call for their withdrawal, as soon as is “practicable”. Well guess what, EVERYONE wants the troops home as soon as is practicable. The problem is, when is it practicable? Murtha spelled out his position in his speeches, but intentionally chose not to do so in his resolution
Gold Star for Robot Boy
This is false. Most news stories went out of their way to mention how Murtha’s fellow Democrats were hesitant to back his remarks.
Murtha has been on record since May 2004 as making joint speeches with Dem leaders Pelosi & Co. telling us how ‘unwinnable’ the Iraq war is
By your logic, Murtha doesn’t support himself because he didn’t vote for the GOP measure either.
After all the words the dems, libs, other team etc. expended about the subject, the wording, the time for debate, and again etc. why did they vote at all on the resolution? If they objected to more time for the congressman from Texas to finish speaking before voting, why not stand up to be counted instead of remaining invisible? Why lose your composure. It looked like Tom Lantos was going postal. Make your position clear and back it. When your team wins the majority you can go back to playing your game.
Murtha calls for “immediate” troop withdrawal from Iraq.
Republican bill calls for “immediate” troop withdrawals from Iraq. Draw your own conclusions
RSA, Bush is as honest as you can expect from a politician. It is just that some people were not listeneing or heard what they wanted to hear. He said he would make no distinction between terrorists and those that fund or harbor terrorists. He also said that the war on terror would not be finished on his watch. At the time he said that, he hoped to serve 7 more years. He also said that you can’t wait til a threat BECOMES imminent.
Why Iraq? Why the hell not? Let me in on Saddam’s good points. Yeah, I remember we backed him when he was killing Iranians. We backed Stalin too. It was one of those “pick your poison” eras.
The belief was, that giving democracy a chance in the middle east was preferable to carpet bombing. If you want to start a democracy, it helps to start with a society that has a concept of modernity. Saddam, for all his ills, had drug the country into 20th century. Of all the options on the table, this one was seen as the most likely to succeed.
Germany never attacked us either. Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, so naturally, our first offensive in WWII was in Algeria! Geopolitics is a chess game. These “sound bite” complaints are not worthy of tic tac toe.
He’s right, then. It isn’t “winnable”. You can’t even describe what winning is other than by making up a story based on magical thinking.
The outcome in Iraq is not in our control. It wasn’t a year ago, it’s not today, and it won’t be a year from now.
Pat Robertson,Jerry Falwell,et al
They want to subjugate women and kill gays?What the hell are we fighting them for?
“As soon as practicable” doesn’t mean “as soon as it is safe,” “as soon as it is prudent,” or “as soon as it is wise.” If Murtha would’ve meant that, he would’ve said that. But that would be Bush’s stance, wouldn’t it?
“As soon as practicable” just means as soon as we can accomplish it. It means as immediate as one can move that many people and that much equipment.
Murtha’s Resolution was for “hereby terminated” US deployment, which is immediate and precise, and then a physical withdrawal “as soon as practicable” which is whenever and imprecise, and then a deployment of troops”over-the-horizon” which is whereever and imprecise, and then a focus on diplomacy, which is whatever and imprecise.
Larry Kudlow thinks the GOP should have voted on the Murtha resolution as it was, rather than distilling it to its only precise element “US forces deployment in Iraq hereby terminated”.
The recitals before the resolution were apparently all sort of “Whereas we were lied to and wee are losi8ng and Iraqis are just scum and not worth worryring about blah blah leftie anti-war talking points…”, so voting on all that would have been worthwhile as a true slap in the face to the emptiness of Murtha’s position. Decorated military veteran he is. Foolish politician as well.
How could he imagine, and his stupid Dem colleagues, that he has any authority to resolve for an “over-the-horizon” force? Does he think “diplomacy” can be engaged with Zarqawi?
I think Kudlow could be right, But I reckon the vote is still a victory for Repubs over Dems, because Dems are resolutely focussed on the US and cannot see Iraqis at all. No mention of Iraqis in Murtha’s resolution. And all the folks in this thread slamming the Iraqis for not having multiple battalions at the ready…you people think Iraqis are incompetent and lazy. I don’t know why you don’t just come out and say it – the Iraqi’s are not worth American Italian Jap Australian Polish etc etc effort.
Now THAT would one heck of a resolution to submit to the house floor. Perhaps Murtha could move it with Buchanan.
“The outcome in Iraq is not in our control. It wasn’t a year ago, it’s not today, and it won’t be a year from now.”
You are confusing the Iraq war with climate change. Try to keep your talking points straight.
Wow, way to get a fresh infusion of talking points!
I don’t know what Cheney could possibly have said to set Murtha off, hmm…
chickenhawk n. – A person enthusiastic about war, provided someone else fights it; particularly when that enthusiasm is undimmed by personal experience with war; most emphatically when that lack of experience came in spite of ample opportunity in that person’s youth.
Strange how what Murtha actually said in May 2004 is at odds with your outdated, debunked, GOP-spun one-word characterization of it.
Those two bills? Still not at all the same, no matter how much you lie to yourself. The GOP doesn’t have a plan, and they don’t want a plan, and so they pull pathetic stunts like this that show how uninterested they are in any real solutions, much like your discourse here shows us every day.
That sounds pretty callous and hateful, why don’t you go write it up and send it to your Congress critters — I’m sure they could use a laugh.
Hey Pb, I might be misinterpreting your comment. My position is that Iraqis are worth this war. I am Australian, and I remember my thinking at he time the whole run up to war was going on. I could not think of a single reason not to remove Saddam from his tsrangehold on that country. We have about 30k Iraqi folks in Oz, I dunno how many in the US and about 500k in the UK, I think. None of them are outside their country cos they like travelling, as with Oz folks. They are outside cos living in their counrty with Saddam in charge was unbearable. I think Iraqis are worth this effort by the US and its coalition. I do. I think Bush’s foreign policy that is prepared to commit force is worthy. Oz did it with East Timor and it was the right thing to do.
I cannot escape the feeling that a bunch of anti-war folks in the US are deep down Buchananite isolationist racists, even thoguh they would never think of themselves that way.
Which is why we’re at war with the United States, no doubt. Please, give me a break.
I’ve got to hand it to him, he certainly made sure of that.
Except that he did, and he has. Remind me again about how honest he is?
He wasn’t a threat to the United States.
Here is my “outdated, debunked GOP-spun one-word characterization” of what Murtha said in May 2004
Here is Murtha in May 2004
How is that in any way “at odds” with how I characterized it? Pb, if you have any sense at all, you would take this bitch slapping as a lesson not to talk out of your ass so quickly
My position is that the Iraqis never did anything to deserve this war. I’m an American, and I remember thinking at the time when the whole run up to war was going on that I could not think of a single reason proposed by the administration that was backed by an ounce of solid evidence. Sadly, I was right. Incidentally, how’s Iraq doing now? Last I heard, living there now is often more unbearable. Now I will admit to not being fond of war–I think it should only be used as a last resort. I will also admit to being something of an ‘isolationist’–that is to say, I don’t think we should meddle in others’ affairs when we don’t have to, or when we might make things worse, or both. Your so-called ‘isolationists‘ (like George H. W. Bush for example) were right. Finally, I don’t see how not wanting to destroy someone else’s homeland makes one ‘racist’. Cheers.
No, that is not Murtha, that is a Google cache of a GOP-spun Roll Call blurb that was debunked 18 months ago. Seems I was right about the talking points. I was hoping I could inspire you (or Mac Buckets or any of your little friends) to do a little research, a little truth seeking; it seems I was overly hopeful. I won’t expect such things from you in the future, but neither will I be your fact monkey; next time, I’ll tell you to find it yourself.
Hey Pb, Sojourner is a pretty good example of the mindset that I was describing. Like, Saddam is responsible for governing his country into the ground, having a bunch of his citizenry flee, seeking aslyum – asylum, right – around the world, to Oz to the UK and to the US too. But somehow that just does not compute with Sojourner as a terrible impact upon those folks who flee.
Republicans are scared shitless that this country is going to be bailed out of the mess in Iraq by a Democrat. That’s why they pulled their little stunt yesterday. But they went too far. It’s one thing to smear a liberal “elitist” from Massachussetts, but going after Murtha was just stupid. The pattern of smearing war heroes is clear to even the most challenged dimwit. And their bogus resolution only put the spotlight on Murtha’s real intent. If Republicans hadn’t made such a circus yesterday, then Americans probably would have thought Murtha really did want to cut and run. But now, people are going to look at his resolution more closely and they’re going to like what they see: a safe withdrawal for our troops and protection for the Iraqis. In the next few days and weeks, we’re going to see more editorials like this:
These kinds of editorials will lead to more serious resolutions for withdrawal, though the word “immediate” most likely won’t make it into the language, lest the Republicans play dumb and interpret it to mean instantaneous withdrawal of everybody all at once. And though Murtha’s name might not be on the resolution that finally ends this war, history will credit him.
I am loathe to put words in Sojourner’s mouth. The only thing I can seem to find in this thread on the topic is a statement to the effect that Saddam “wasn’t a threat to the United States”. I find it hard to disagree with that; in any case, he wasn’t enough of a threat to justify this war.
I think part of your case is based around a false choice–I think it’s true that regime change has–one way or another–been America’s policy towards Iraq since the first Gulf War. However, George W. Bush is the first president to think that this objective warranted a full-scale invasion, take-over, and reconstruction of Iraq. George H. W. Bush and William Jefferson Clinton both tried other means, and both were unwilling to wage a full-scale take-over of Iraq. It seems that they both were right in not doing that.
“He wasn’t a threat to the United States.”
Does the name Neville Chamberlain, ring a bell? What about Eugene Debs?
Saddam is a threat to Western Civization as long as he breathes. John Kerry and about 95 U.S. Senators thought he was a threat. As best I can tell, the recurring theme here is that the dumbest president in memory managed to scam 95 U.S. Senators, John Kerry and the bulk of the U.N “Security Council” into believing that Saddam had WMD. It seems then, that ALL of the Democrats that voted for the war were either incompetent or gullible in the extreme. You should go over to the daily kos and demand their resignation.
Pb, mate, just caught your reply. Thanks for the candour and civility. We are not going to see eye to eye about this. Your position, if I get it properly, is that you couldn’t think of a reason to remove a despot from control in another part of the world which was causing grief to the people of that part of that world, and the only way you’d support such a removal using force is with solid evidence of a threat to you. Iraq is not a basketcase now and if you can’t see the value of 2 elections and a third upcoming shortly, of opened schools, restored commerce, new business, then you are refusing to see Iraqis do well for themselves. You recognise your view as isolationist, which is good, cos it is. But the whole ‘destroying’ Iraq thing? Come on. It hasn’t gone anywhere. It isn’t ‘destroyed’. Iraqis are resilient capable folks going to work, going to school, opening businesses, making money, they have orchestras, museums, the internet, phones. It isn’t paradise, but it is far from destroyed. So your effort at saying you’re no racist cos you were against the destruction is hollow. If it hasn’t been destroyed then being against the war make you a …. Buchanite isolationist racist, even though he/she doesn’t think of himself/herself that way.
You’re certainly welcome. When people are civil to me, I try to return the favor. My position is that I think the United States has a responsibility to do more good than harm–we didn’t do that here. Some people knew the risks involved, but I don’t think George W. Bush was one of those people. I’m happy to see Iraqis do well for themselves, but the news I’ve heard isn’t nearly so rosy. Some regions or provinces may be doing better, but overall the picture seems grim. As for isolationism, check my previous link by the way if you haven’t–is Bush’s father a racist? And I’d also thank you to cease calling me a ‘racist’, because it’s simply false and uncalled for.
Here’s a flashback for ya. It seems to me that Bush didn’t hold up his end of the bargain–why don’t you demand his resignation?
Pb, jeez, this thread goes fast and I forget to check back up. GHWB and WJC did not do the right thing. They did notr stem the tide of Iraqis fleeing their country. They did not imporve conditions in Iraq – except for the no fly zone in the North with the Kurds. So, in the case of the North, yes, they were right. but not for the rest of Iraq. I cannot stres this enough, the Dems and anti-war folks e verywhere, in Oz etc, resolutely refuse to credit Iraq with any kind of worth. To describe it as destroyed, and it’s people as not with fighting for, is…well, you know what I think. I am bothered because I reckon folks who would not be at all racist otherwise in their world view, are being so over Iraq, albeit without direct Buchananite isolationist rantings.
Pb, thanks for the response. You’re capturing a critical point – more good than harm. Your view is that more harm has been done in Iraq and I reckon more good is done. Maybe the difference we have is the measure of time it takes for Iraq to recover from Saddam and from the coalition presence and from Zarqawi’s madness and Sadr’s violent imbecility, and Sunni Ba’athist remnants attacking Shia’s wherever and whenever they can. Your position finds Iraq has endured more harm than good now. I think that ledger is even now, and within 2 years the ledger will be substantively weighted to good. The Murtha thing, and the Dems position about withdrawing now does seem to me all about trying to maintain the argument that the US has done more harm than good. Why now? Why not after the Dec elections? Cos maybe a third election will be objective evidence of progress in Iraq? I think so.
Re the “r” thing – it isn’t civil, I know, but it’s what I reckon.
W,funny you should mention Iraqi expatriates.The Detroit area happens to be home to many of them.It’s been noticable to me since the beginning of these hostilities that they and their children have not been volunteering in large numbers to contribute to the liberation of the land of their ancestors,this despite their valuable Arabic language skills and,in the particular case of my co-workers,emergency medicine and nursing skills.Are they “Buchananite isolationist racists”?
Hey Dumbass. That was the reason your president gave for dragging us into this war. You’re delusional if you think the American people would have tolerated this war for any other reason than the fear of impending mushroom clouds.
Sojourner, fuck off mate. Fuck off to Pat Buchanan’s house. All of the yanks I personally know are not isolationist. They are travellers and care about the world. You’re making my point for me. Anti-war Yanks, like anti-war folks elsehwre don’t give a shit about folks from other parts of the world, because you are racist, some of you more than others. Yank’s don’t need impending mushroom clouds. The concept of pre-emptive war was explained and accepted – you don’t wait for impending mushroom clouds. You fix the problem before it gets to that state. That’s Bush’s doctrine now. No more Kissingerian ‘status quo’.
And rs – could you be any more patronising to the international Iraqi diaspora. You think they don’t phone home? They don’t send money home? They aren’t going to go back, for trips or to move back? Sheesh. Listen to yourself. What is your problem with Iraqi people? You sound like a person who hates them…because they’re Iraqi. That’s what it sounds like to me.
I think everyone agrees that a “failure of intelligence” led to 911. That’s why we had the 911 commission, even though one of the members should have been there under subpoena. How do you gather intelligence on people who send messages by bicycle or on horseback? You do it by making friends in the neighborhood. Before the invasion of Iraq, who were our friends? The Saudis. With friends like 17 of the 19 hijackers, who needs enemies.
You make friends by changing the status quo. Oh, you make enemies too, but we had little to lose in that regard. Now we have atoned for our failure to back the Kurds after the first gulf war. We have improved our lot with the Shia in Iraq. The rumblings of democracy stirred the Lebanese to eject their Syrian oppressors. Ghadaffi has turned over his stocks of WMD, after the U.N. had given him a clean bill of health.
Bill Clinton uttered the most chilling words of an American president that I have ever heard: “we need to prepare ourselves for the day when America is no longer the strongest country in the world”. That seems to be what Democrats are looking for. Someone to lift the burden of being the leader of the free world. As long as freedom is our biggest export, we will continue to be the strongest country in the world. If we turn our backs on the friends we have made, what message does that send? Who will tell us of the next terrorist plot? Who will help us in the future?
Are we going to leave the Iraqis that have helped us in the same situation as we did the South Vietnamese and the Cambodians after that war? 1 million people were slaughtered after that premature departure.
Speaking of Vietnam, where are the Iraq veterans against the war? If the number would exceed the capacity of a phone booth, they would be on CNN 24/7. Most of the wounded WANT to go back. They understand the stakes, too many here don’t.
You’ve crossed the line. Not supporting a war that has resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent Iraqis does not make one a bigot. In fact, the “anti-war folks” are the most concerned about the “collateral damage.” I’d say we’ve also been the most vocal against torture. Read some letters to the editor in local American papers and you’ll notice that John Cole and Andrew Sullivan are the the rare war supporters speaking out against torture. You have no business inserting racism into this debate. You owe us all an apology.
Talk about rewriting history. We did not invade Iraq for humanitarian reasons. In fact, Republicans didn’t much like that excuse when Clinton committed troops to Bosnia for that very reason:
There’s no denying Saddam is a bad guy, but we didn’t much give a rats ass about that whem Rumsfeld was over there, trying to do oil business with him. But as bad as Saddam was, there was never a suicide bombing in that country until we invaded. If we’re there for humanitarian reasons, we’re going about it pretty stupidly. Also, if we’re going to now claim that Bush’s foreign policy is based on humanitarian concerns, then why aren’t we in Darfur? Granted, they have no oil, but the crisis in Africa is far more urgent than Iraq. We’re talking about more than 400,000 dead in just two years, and that number will likely reach the millions. I don’t think we can save the world, but if we’re going to use our military for humanitarian reasons, then why isn’t Darfur our number one priority?
Maybe if we follow Murtha’s plan, withdraw most troops, but keep the marines in the region to protect the Iraqis, then we’ll have the military forces available to engage in Darfur and stop the genocide. Or not. The question of using the military for humanitarian reasons deserves serious debate. But no matter how you personally feel for the Iraqis, let’s not pretend that their welfare is why we invaded their country.
W for president, again!
Too many people in this thread have written far more than they have read. Cheats for X-Box games do not count as literature. Freedom is not free. The only currency that buys freedom is blood. It will always be so.
Liberalism is basically the fear of envy. If you think about it for a time, I expect you will understand what I mean.
Laura, not supporting the removal of a despot who has presided over the deaths of his citizenry and caused thousands upon thousands to flee all around the world seeking aslyum makes you a bigot if you consider the force used, the deaths of armed forced and the civilian deaths, the wrongful abuse and detention of prisoners and the influx of foreign jihadists is worse than the continuation of the despot in charge.
As Pb says, ‘more harm than good’.
Humanitarian reasons for war were not the only reasons put by the coalition. But they were mine, for supporting the war. Intelligence failure – disgraceful, wide spread – as in worldwide spread, not just the Whitehouse (once again, Dems go on and on about this, as if only the US counts, isolationists) – needs some serious attention to fix that up.
Rumsefeld shook Saddam’s, hand, Chirac did, the Oz Wheat Board sold $300m of wheat to him during sanctions and he didn’t use the cash for his citizens…not many had clean hands when it xcame to Iraq. Thats no reason not to do right now.
And L, read yourself – Saddam was a bad but…. It’s the ‘but’ that makes you sound like a
Sojourner says we should have acted only for our own interests. Laura Says that humanitarian concerns are irrelevant if there is oil underneath the soil of the oppressed. Psycotropic medication is clearly in order.
They were wrong. Hussein had neither the capacity, nor motive, to be a “threat” to any civilization. He was a thief, and a thief requires things to steal, the opportunity to steal, and somewhere to keep his ill gotten gains. The situation he was in was quite perfect, tuned and tweaked by him for two decades to be the flawless stealing machine. That’s all he was, just a huckster and blustering thief out to convert his country’s oil wealth into cash in his pockets.
He was never any major threat to the US at all. I don’t care if Jesus H Christ himself thought otherwise, because Jesus H Christ himself would have been wrong.
W,who’s patronising?I’m pointing out my first hand observation that the local Iraqi population are not availing themselves the opportunity to contribute to the American military effort,a failure of will YOU attribute to “Buchananite isolationist racists”.The truth is,I’ve stood side-by-side with many of them in local antiwar demonstrations,but just as many seem to endorse this debacle without being willing to inconvenience themselves,not unlike our president and his kin.What I’ve witnessed is that Iraqi proponents of the war seem to be afforded a special credibility because of their ethnicity(now that’s patronising),even though,as I’ve stated,there’s a reticence to volunteer to actually fight it.To them,the president,and you,I say fuck you.What’s that sound like to you?
I’m afraid the Iraqi people don’t agree with you, but what do they know about how well-off they are, right?
The lying cocksukers on the right, and you know who you are, are not going to get away with sitting here and claiming that failure to offer up the young men and women of this country to “liberate” the fucked up country of Iraq is some kind of “bigotry”.
America does not exist to save every screwed up country on earth from itself. The parents of America do not owe the corrupt government of this country, or the people of Iraq, their sons and daughters for that purpose.
There is one legitimate cause for war, and that is to protect against an immediate, profound, unambiguous threat to this country, and then only when there is no other alternative. The record will show that no such threat existed in Iraq. Trying to cover that up by suggesting that Americans owe Iraq liberation is about as close to real treason as anything I’ve seen in my lifetime.
ppGaz, Read the David Kay report. Read the Dulfur(sp?) report. Saddam retained “turnkey” biological weapons capability in “dual use facilities” This would have begun the moment the sanctions were lifted. The French, the Germans and others wanted the sanctions lifted. Saddam sacrificed 5000 children a year to curable diseases in an effort to get the sanctions lifted. Kofi and his son lined their pockets on the blood of the innocent. Now, as to the motives of the president, you have to consider the context.
One FBI field office was concerned because they got a report about arabs in flight schools that were not particularly interested in how to land. There were some warnings that arabs were planning to hijack some American airliners. Based on these troubling, but vague, pieces of information a six month witch hunt began. With an impending election, this process was hampered by the participation of partisans. Against this backdrop, we have the unsolved anthrax attacks. Thousands of Americans were dead because “the administration failed to connect the dots”. Iraq had more dots than an Indian soccer game! We were told that only 3 countries had ever weaponized anthrax with such a unique anti-static element. Us, the USSR and Iraq. Had we sustained another WMD attack, even remotely linked to Iraq, Bush would have been impeached. The war was as much a political necessity as it was a strategic necessity. Memories are far too short.
The Disenfranchised Voter
I think DougJ should call the quits. We dont even need to parody the wingnuts anymore. See for yourself…
They do a fine job of making themselves look like asshats all on their own.
DougJ, is that you? I mean, it’s the best parody of a talking-point generating spambot EVER.
Since this thread has devolved into “it was worth it to start a war in Iraq to liberate the Iraqi people” (and “it’s worth it to continue to foment civil war there so that the Iraqi people can have their new theocracy tempered by fire”), I’d like to give everyone a friendly reminder:
The evidence is stacked strongly against the notion that we were taken to war to liberate the Iraqi people, or to protect the Iraqi people, the Kurds, ourselves, or anyone for that matter, from Saddam Hussein.
I. Our foreign policy,including the prioritization of the Iraq war, and including our pre-war diplomatic overtures, does not reflect willingness to intervene on the behalf of people who suffer under tyrannical regimes.
a. There was no ultimatum – “Iraq must stop (X, Y, Z) human rights abuses, let the Red Cross into your prisons to document that these practices have been stopped. Further Iraq must set out a timetable for creating democratic reforms that will ensure that the government of Iraq properly represents its people, and must show significant progress toward achieving that goal. If Iraq fails to respond with action in (X) amount of time, the U.S. and its allies will organize a multinational force to take appropriate actions to enforce a regime respecting human rights in Iraq.
b. U.S. leaders failed to prioritize ongoing genocide in Sudan over the genocidal or near-genocidal actions from over a decade ago in the Iraq regime.
c. The U.S. continues to align itself politically with repressive regimes around the world. Examples: Pakistan, Uzbekhistan, Saudi Arabia. The U.S. continues to maintain warm ties with other repressive regimes, giving only lip-service to diplomatic pressure for reform in those regimes. Example: China.
d. The U.S. failed to bring together a coalition of interested Iraqis of all political and ethnic stripes, prior to invasion, to aid in the overthrow of S.H. and to be prepared for an orderly transition to a peaceful, democratic government.
e. The U.S., rather than clearly demanding that the Pentagon be responsible that the occupying forces respected human rights and the Geneva Conventions, sought ways to avoid legal limitations on our own conduct with regard to human rights.
II. The combined results of the first Gulf War, international sanctions, Operation Desert Fox, the presence of weapons inspectors in Iraq, and continued enforcement of no-fly zones over Kurdish territories left S.H. far less capable of posing a threat to his own people, the Kurds, the U.S., or anyone else for that matter, than, for instance Iran, Syria, North Korea, or the Janjaweed/Sudanese government. In fact S.H. had no remaining power to harm anyone on a large scale, and even his remaining brutality within his regime could likely have been addressed with threats, or with multinational insertion of a peacekeeping and observation mission. Nevertheless, the Iraq war was prioritized over all other measures that could have contributed to human rights and democracy worldwide.
III. The rhetoric of the U.S. Adminsitration prior to the war. Human rights and democracy were mentioned as they specifically related to Iraq and S.H., but the reason for going to war was stated repeatedly and unequivocally: “Saddam Hussein must disarm or we will disarm him”, paired with “we will go to war only as a last resort.” The last proved a lie (even though I realize many conservatives would have disagreed with such a policy, believing that we cannot wait until all other measures have failed, or our threats might become imminent, and then it would be too late, because then they would already be imminent. Or whatever.). The fact that the latter proved to be an intentional deception, the former becomes very questionable, as the war was started before we, with U.N. help, could complete a responsible verification of our evidence about Iraqi arms. In fact, the timing of our invasion was such that it came about just as many voices were beginning to ask responsible questions about the validity of our evidence on Iraqi arms. Nevertheless, the stated reason for going to war, and the stated conditions for avoiding war revolved around weapons – not human rights. Add to this the campaign pledges that helped Bush gain the votes of many of those who later supported or demanded the war, that he would not commit our troops for “nation building”, and there is compelling evidence that the administration’s interest in the Iraqi people is a novelty prepared as an ad hoc justification for invasion.
All in all, I believe there is good evidence that our continued occupation of Iraq is working against the goals of people truly interested in human rights there, rather than for them.
I somewhat disagree with Murtha’s vision for calling an end to our occupation. I believe he is too focused on the location of our troops, and not focused enough on what they could or should be doing… I can’t help but have sympathy that, while the Bush administration is in charge, Iraq is a bad place for our troops to be entirely – for the simple reason that the Bush Pentagon cannot be trusted to lead them according to any sane plan… However, I think that it would be better, such considerations aside, to focus on what our troops should be doing at least as much as where they are deployed.
I think that it is in the best interests of the Iraqis and the rest of us to leave with a well trained and equipped Iraqi security force. I also think that it is only inflaming the situation to continue to wage war inside the borders of Iraq. So the first step would be to bring a quick end to combat operations in Iraq. Continue whatever operations are necessary to support a retreat from the field of combat operations, and a redeployment within Iraq to well-fortified training centers, near but not central to, Iraqi population centers. All forces should then commence to a) provide inpenetrable security for those training centers, b) engage in training of Iraqi security forces, c) support airlift supplies to and from these areas. If this leaves an excess of troops, the remaining numbers can be drawn down. At this time, an announcement of the end of combat operations should be made, and joint statements with the Iraqi government should be made to the effect that all U.S. forces will exit Iraq orderly when the training mission is completed. Hereinafter, any attacks on U.S. personell can only occur at well fortified areas where U.S. casualties will be minimized and the enemy can quickly and easily be defeated. Attacks that kill Iraqi civilians will then draw the ire of the Iraqi people and those who conduct them will quickly become pariahs instead of martyrs. The newly trained security forces will have every motivation to extinguish these activities.
Then, we say “Mission Accomplished”, and we leave. And if, from the rubble of our mistakes, a phoenix of Democracy arises – all the better… And if not, we will perhaps finally learn a lesson about how to conduct a foreign policy that helps rather than hurts… And perhaps our next administration will start building a foreign policy that really does center on the defense of the U.S., the use of what prestige we have left to pressure improvements in human rights elsewhere, and the use of force, if it is necessary, to act as peacekeepers in places like the Sudan, should there prove to be no other option for ending the genocide there. If we lead responsibly, we can eventually revisit the situation in Iraq… and possibly even get it right this time.
So why aren’t you demanding that the US go into Africa? China? North Korea? The list goes on and on.
You’re a real nutcase if you think that force solves everything and that the US possesses the resources to solve the world’s problems.
Sorry but the neo-con strategy has proven to be a demonstrable failure.
Then we should have declared war on them. Their countries would be functioning by now.
What France and Germany thought about anything was declared moot by the administration in 2002. They were declared irrelevant by the neocons. Too late to bring them up now.
rs – for goodness’ sake. “…but just as many seem to endorse this debacle without being willing to inconvenience themselves,not unlike our president and his kin.”
Can’t help yourself, eh? Gotta get in a slam on GWB for not being in the military. Iraqis who are pro-war have Iraqi family back home. They are heavily invested in what goes on over in Iraq, they have committed blood to it, their family’s blood. You think that’s a decision they make easily? Lightly? I think the Iraqis you march with are the ones making easy decisions – war is bad, civilian casualties, Saddam is bad but….but…who cares.
You say ‘fuck you’ to Iraqis themselves and ask me what think that sounds like. I think you know what I think.
ppGaz, Sojourner’s waiting in the car for the two of you to go over to Buchanan’s house. There’s no difference between you and the ‘lying cocksuckers on the right’. you reach the same conclusions. War for liberation of others is bad. Period. Even if it does more good than harm.
History will show that George W Bush did his best to undermine the financial, military, and moral status of this country. Can’t blame that one on the Dems.
The template is that only Democrats have pure motives. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that Al Gore had decided that it was prudent to remove Saddam. I have no doubt that the press would poo poo this little intelligence failure. It would have been heralded by the mainstream press as the humanitarian gesture of the new millenium. The only constant would have been the isolationist – Pat Buchanon.
The Disenfranchised Voter
I just want someone to show me the part of the Constitution that says it is our military’s job to police the world and rid it of all “evil”.
Try to get back to me on that one.
What an idiotic argument.
Quite correct. In fact, our Middle East policy is hostile to democracy to this day, and has been for over 50 years.
If we were really out to liberate a worthy people, we’d start with Saudi Arabia, and perhaps Kuwait, and free them from their repressive oligarchies.
As always, I like to conclude this segment of the discussion with “Can you say ‘Shah of Iran’? A brutal despot who was easily the equal of Saddam, and used to dine regularly in the East Room of the White House, with his white silk suits and beautiful entourage.”
I hate it when these mealy-mouthed “defenders of freedom” start pissing on my leg and telling me it’s raining.
“History will show that George W Bush did his best to undermine the financial, military, and moral status of this country.”
They said the same thing about Reagan, who ran a larger deficit and spent more GNP on the military than GWB has. Compared to Bill Clinton, Bush is Mt. Rushmore material.
The most apt comparison to Bush is Churchill in 1938.
John Cole still pretending that everything is nice and sane at the WH, Pentagon, and Congress, and that the opposition party is … interesting, tsk tsk tsk.
Laura gave a nice response to this opinion, which I would also find offensive if it were applied to me. I’ll add a couple of points. First, the strategy of fighting them there so we don’t have to fight them here has a distinct racist tinge that should be equally well-covered by your broad brush. Second, your phrase “anti-war folks” is lumping together people who are Buchanan-style isolationists with those who think that pursuing aggressive diplomatic avenues (or even military methods less extreme than invasion and occupation) might have eventually proved more effective. I’d guess that a lot of (most?) anti-war liberals would cross the room to avoid talking to Pat Buchanan, which further makes your name-calling pretty ludicrous.
Bush will be remembered for lies, incompetence, and torture. Definitely the stuff of Mt. Rushmore.
The Disenfranchised Voter
I’m stilling waiting…
If not Mt. Rushlimbaugh.
“If we were really out to liberate a worthy people, we’d start with Saudi Arabia, and perhaps Kuwait, and free them from their repressive oligarchies.”
Hardly. They are petro-dollar welfare states. When was the last time you saw a product made in Saudi Arabia or Kuwait?
Disenfranchesed Voter, it isn’t in your constitution and you know it. But it’s a fair enough question, cos the US is in the unique position to be a nation rich enough, and strong enough and built on enlightenment principles sincerely enough to actually engage forcefully internationally without any need for any payoff. Your involvement under Clinton in the Balkans was exactly that. Europe should have cleaned that mess, but it was US involvement that stopped the obvious bloodshed. Still goes on of course, and I guess anti-war folks would argue that wasn’t worth it, as a military exercise, cos it did ‘more harm than good’.
The world literally needs an America that is engaged and looking out for others around the globe. Australia can do a bit in our region, but if Indonesia ever got really mad with us over the liberation of East Timor, say, or over our stupid drug mules, we would need US help.
And there’ would not be anything in it for the US, other than helping out an ally. There wouldn’t be any threat to the US, which is the wort of thing that Sojourner et al use as their measure.
And for ppGaz, cos you are hard of thinking – of course I can say Shah of Iran. I reckon we shouldn’t be repeating that sort of tolerance of despotism. You reckon that because it was tolerated, it will ever thus be. The only thing dripping on your leg is your stinking cynicism.
It’s here somewhere, right next to my copy of “One Thousand Years of Iraqi Humor”
You don’t know me, so you don’t know that I live in the most diverse city in the country. You don’t know that there’s only one other white person on my block. You don’t know that in third grade, I was so distraught about slavery, that I created this whole fantasy world, imagining that my ancestors were Quakers in the Underground Railroad. You don’t know that at age 12, I spent my summer reading and crying through all 1,200 pages of Alex Haley’s Roots, much to the chagrin of my step mother. You don’t know that I have a lot of brown skin in my family, and not all of us were born in this country, and not all of us speak english. You don’t know how much I love that about my family. You don’t know how much I’ve contributed to causes in support to Iraqi women, who are losing their liberties now that we’ve “freed” them. You don’t know a fucking thing about me other than my opposition to this war. And yet, you’re so damn smug and arrogant, you’ve decided, based on a handful of posts that I’m a bigot. My God, you’re an idiot. I know people like to make things black and white when they’re debating on these boards, pretend opinions are uncomplicated, but you take the cake. Calling those against the war racists is the most offensive and simple-minded thing I’ve seen on this board. Congratulations.
The Disenfranchised Voter
So wait W, you’re not even an American and you’re telling us that our country is obligated to police the world and defend it from evil?
Ha, go pound sand up your ass. You want to police the world, use your troops to do it.
The founding fathers specifically spoke against the idea of spreading democracy through military action. And I’d have to say they make quite a good case against it. I’ll stick with them.
Yeah, what do they know…
“I’m stilling waiting”
You might want to look at the Declaration of Independance instead. Endowed by our creator with inalienable rights, life liberty, pursuit of happiness. I thought we decided long ago that that did not apply to only the white landed gentry of the U.S.
I think the term bigotry is appropriate.
I’ll ask again, and maybe one day I’ll get an answer from the anti war people.
Would you have preferred Bush had engaged in:
1. Keeping the sanctions, and watching as French and Russians went wild with oil for food scandals, enriching Saddam and his cronies while Shia children died, and allowing Al Qaeda to make big propaganda over how badly we are treating the Iraqis and allowing Saddam to play cute with weapons inspectors, possibly hiding WMD we weren’t sure he had or didn’t have.
2. Lifting the sanctions so that Saddam would be awash in oil money and he could then start rebuilding his beloved arsenal, possibly including reconstituing his WMD progams
3. Effect regime change. Get rid of Saddam so that we can lift the sanctions, allowing Iraq to get more properous and starting up a democracy in the Middle East where it can be example to other Middle Eastern countries, and having it so we won’t have to worry about Saddam and his WMD ever again.
If you have the guts, answer the question.
The Disenfranchised Voter
The Declaration of Independence does not override the Constitution.
The United State’s foundation is the Constitution, not the Declaration, in case you missed that.
On another topic, how odd that the founding fathers specifically left all all and any mention of “god” or a “creator” in the Constitution after having one in the Declaration…
Hmmm can you say “secular document”?
That’s commendable for you, as policy, but it doesn’t even begin to justify this useless war.
Unfortuanately, your government can’t make these distinctions. It sucks the dick of the Shah, and then whines when the people of Iran tire of being screwed over by him and — surprise — end up with a theocratic regime unfriendly to our interests. So then it sucks the dick of Saddam Hussein, and whines when he turns out to be a rude thief who is quite content to screw over his new American “friends.” So then it declares Hussein to be “Hitler” when he acts out a centuries-old territorial dispute which was screwed with when the British decided that they, like the US now, would tame Mesopotamia before they gave up in the face of turmoil and insurgency …. so then we decide that deposing “Hitler” is too risky and leave him to go on stealing …. until yet another feckless government comes along and decides that he is Hitler again, based on dysfunctional intelligence ….
Let me put it this way: When I see an American government that can tell me the verifiable truth about Iraq for two years in a row, then I’ll consider listening to them. Meanwhile, they can go fuck themselves.
The Disenfranchised Voter
*left all = left out
Jeebus, DisenfranchisedVoter. Are you mental? Why don’t you just write down America doesn’t give a shit about anyone but America, not even its allies.
That’s what Oz can expect when the Dems come in, eh? We’re your fucking allies, you imbecile. or are you going to calm down and make an exception for us? And if you’ve done that, are you going to make an exception for anyone else? Iraqis, say? The epitome of the Ugly American.
And Laura, blah blah me me me me, my heart is in the right place etc etc. God, all about you, except for the breif mention of Iraqi women – they are not losing their freedoms. Riverbendblog reader, eh? Think yourself informed? Iraqi women are standing for office in the proposed new govt. Iraqi men, backwards relgious maniacs, are trying to oppress women. The best support you can give to Iraqis, it seems to me, is to support their move towards democracy, not to infantilise them as either victims, or unworthy crazies. To see them as people in a part of the world who have seen a despot removed, and now on trial, and an opportunity to make their nation an Arab-world democracy.
I’d prefer … no, I’d insist … that he begin with complete disclosure, and truth-telling. That he decist from winking at a suggested role for Iraq in 911. That he permit time for all necessary inspections in order to know the full truth about the putative threat there. That he insist that his intelligence resource be able to show that it can track WMDs at least as effectively as it tracked truckloads of oil, before ginning up a war. That he permit the process to take more time and avoid arranging the runup to war timeline so as to impinge on the American election schedule and thereby politicize the atmosphere and create the greatest possible pressure on any potential opponents … that he have at least as much respect for the processes of democracy in his own country as he pretends to have for those processes in Iraq.
But, these things would have required a different kind of leadership. The kind that would not gin up a war on the basis of WMDs and then make a comedy video about not being able to find WMDs later when it turned out they weren’t there.
establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty…
That didn’t take long. Any other hard questions.
The Disenfranchised Voter
I’m not a Democrat you fucking idiot. And furthermore, we may be your allies but that hardly means that we need to police the world.
If you’re attacked, yea we will back you up. But other than that, fight your own damn wars.
An American soliders job is to defend the United States and the Constitution. Not defend the world from “evil” and protect the Declaration of Independence.
Fine. Valid points. But that still doesn’t answer the question. AFTER the debates and the truth and the inspections which you wanted, one of those options would have had to have been chosen. Which one should it have been?
The Disenfranchised Voter
Nice try. Did you really think you’d be able to trick me? Here is the full quote.
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
Hmm you seem to have cut the quote at two very key parts…
I guess that was just an honest mistake though. Pfff.
I beg your pardon,W-our president served proudly and occasionally in the Texas Air National Guard.Actually,I try to be selective with my fuck you’s.Cowards and hypocrites are on the list-so are assholes on a moral high horse who decide Americans who disagree with the waste of blood and treasure in Iraq are racists.
I would have preferred that Bush tell the truth and let the people decide if they were ready to start an unprovoked war so soon after 9/11.
That’s a damn copout. Pick an option. Put up or shut up.
Funny. Still no response on why you’re not ranting about the US failing to invade Africa. You’re a racist and a bigot.
No offense, but I don’t consider you an authority on the alternatives. When you get me a government that can tell time and tell the truth, then maybe we’ll have one that can develop and explain a good list of alternatives.
If you want to run for office, I’ll consider a contribution, but only after I see your platform :-)
You like to make choices, scs?
Make this one: Which government are you pimping for? One that lied, or one that doesn’t have the competance to judge intelligence and plan a war?
It has to be one, or the other.
Put up, or fess up.
Ah, little girl. You talk tough but you really don’t have a clue.
rs, I am not on a moral high horse. I am on a fantastic blog having a comment back and forth with a bunch of anti-war types who between them cannot come up with a single good word to say about Iraqis. Not one. Not you, not the ppGaz, not the Disenfranchised voter – and isn’t he/she just a sweetheart, so grudging about supporting US allies – not one of you.
Can you not write anything good about Iraq now? Because if you can’t then that’s a problem – for you.
And you can shove your saracsm about the nat guard. Our prime minister was s uburban lawyer before politics. So what?
Disenfr – just like Laura it’s all about you ‘I am not a dem’ – no one called you one, mate. But you sure got their talking points.
Look people it’s not that hard.
2.) no sanctions
3.) regime change
Those WERE the ONLY options! Come on, pick one!
Still haven’t seen you or anyone pick one.
Okay, I’ll start. My vote was for regime change. And yours is?
Nobody has requested a good word about Iraqis.
What has been requested is a concesssion that Americans somehow owe the Iraqis their blood and treasure to save them from their own fucked up government(s).
The Disenfranchised Voter
I’m not anti-war. I think the operation in Afghanistan was justified. I’m just anti-being lied into an offensive war with a country that was little threat to us.
So says the Aussie. You obviously are in our your head when it comes to American politics. My military isolationist beliefs are hardly the beliefs of the Democratic party.
The Disenfranchised Voter
You know, it wasn’t that clever a ploy to begin with, and of course the three “options” are a strawman. Within “sactions” alone there are probably five hundred sets of alternatives. But anyway, a little friendly advice, you’ve gotten about all the mileage that that particular wordplay was worth. I’d drop it.
“Nice try. Did you really think you’d be able to trick me? Here is the full quote.”
Didn’t try, did trick you..into establishing that your only concern is your self interest. And yes, it is our job to be the world’s police. The U.N. has done more than abdicate the responsibility. They are enablers for despots. GWB tries to correct the errors of the TWO previous administrations and gets nothing but grief.
Sojourner, I must have missed where you asked about US activity in Africa. Damn straight – Zimbabwe should absolutely be next. Mugabe is starving his folks and brtualising them too. of course, US forces are engaged in Iraq and Afghanistan at the monment. So it is pointless to argue that because they are not in Zibabwe and everywhere else rotten all at the samt ime somehow that is a reason not to address Afghanistan and Iraq as this time.
But for my money, I reckon Mugabe should be next, He is a disgraceful despot with blood on his hands causing misery to his folks who are fleeing when they can.
racist? me? No, mate, not me.
Now, write a sentence saying something nice about Iraqis and we’ll see who’s racist….still waiting as you would sneer.
Beware Greeks bearing Either/Or’s…
I would prefer:
1. Keeping some of the sanctions,
and watching as French and Russians went wild with oil for food scandals, enriching Saddam and his cronies while Shia children died, and allowing Al Qaeda to make big propaganda over how badly we are treating the Iraqis, and investigating and addressing abuses of the oil for food programs, and, carrying out an arms embargo against S.H. and allowing Saddam to play cute with weapons inspectors, possibly hiding WMD we weren’t sure he had or didn’t have.keeping WMD inspectors on the ground, knowing that with their current technology and the assistance of American intelligence (if it was, indeed valid), Saddam would be unable to deceive them much.)
thesome sanctions so that Saddam would be awash in oil money and he could then start rebuilding his beloved arsenal, possibly including reconstituing his WMD progamscould be held responsible for the well-being of his people.
3. Effect regime change, if possible without measures too radical or misguided for the good of the people of Iraq, the Middle East, and the United States. Try to get rid of Saddam so that we can lift
themore sanctions, allowing Iraq to get more properous and starting up a working with Middle Easterners and other interested parties toward creating democracy in the Middle East where it can be example to other Middle Eastern countries… and having it so we won’t have to worry about Saddam and his WMD ever againWe should continuing to worry about WMD until real counterproliferation measures began to show signs of taking hold, with knowledge that Saddam’s WMD threat was among the world’s lowest, and that, should a sectarian Shi’a government come to replace Saddam through the efforts of the Iranian powers and their Iraqi allies to influence U.S. foreign policy, the Iraqi threat from WMD could potentially escalate.
Take yourself off the grill, hot dog. You’re done.
Come back after you’ve graduated from high school.
The Disenfranchised Voter
The core foundation of capitalism is self-interest. What is your point?
Well apparently the Constitution disagrees with you. You might wanna take that up with the Founding Fathers.
I already gave you my answer. Go away, you’re boring.
Now *that* was funny.
For the record, let me reiterate and expand a bit on the good thing I already said about Iraqis–the Iraqi people never did anything to deserve having this war waged against them. Cheers.
I don’t think I should, because this is the crux of the whole deal. I have not seen ONE person with enough courage to pick an option. That is truly sad and emblematic of amny anti-war people wanting to complain but not wanting to make the hard decisions.
You’re a coward. And a hypocrite.
That part shouldn’t have had the strikethrough… too bad I can’t edit my comments…
You guys really do mistake stupidity for courage, don’t you? Any way… see above… I picked my option.
scs,I think you meant to write “French and Russian and American”-I’m sure it wasn’t an intentional oversight.Like you,I’m appalled that kickbacks were a part of doing business in Iraq-current history has taught me to expect more from our corporate citizens.You didn’t include the option of a gradual lifting of sanctions contingent on the return of the inspectors whose absence was primarily attributable to the US in 1998.It’s become clear that former UN inspector Scott Ritter has been the most accurate source of information about the state of Iraq’s WMD program,particularly during the run up to the invasion.
Uh, no. It’s not.
The crux of the whole deal is that there are some pretty serious limitations on the legitimate reasons for a war, and those conditions were not met here. That’s why support is dwindling and why within the year either the government of this country is going to be changed because it wouldn’t face up to this reality, or else the useless and unjust war will be pulled down and our resources reserved for something else. That’s the crux; the war is going to be over, one way or the other. Either this stupid government will do it, or another one will. That’s why we’re here talking about it.
Jeebus, DisenfrV, this is not about you and I am not over my head when it comes to American politics, ya patronising toerag. you write “I am anti being lied to for an offensive war blah blah”. My point is that that very position of yours is inherently isolationist – you focus on being lied to (not a lie, just lousy intelligence, and that’s an argument for another day, but the hell with tenet and his ‘slam dunk’ CIA – we might even agree on this, eh?) and on the US not being under threat. I say some issues, like despotic rulers of countries whose citizens have to flee, trump all that.
That’s the nub. Where is pB. More harm than good. Man, that’s the key issue. That and whoever it was who linked the Telegraph piece about Iraqis not wanting brit troops in Iraq. They are key – have we done more harm than good? I say no.
As per the Iraq Liberation Act signed by Clinton in 1998. I guess we were supposed to ignore that document because we all know he was a liar?
You’ve conflated gratuitous labeling with conversation.
Refusal to die for the freedom of Arabs is not isolationist, it’s a sane and just understanding of my interests.
Calling that “isolationist” is a cheap attempt at browbeating, just like the “cowards don’t cut and run” argument, and the “don’t let my buddies die in vain” arguments, and the “world is better off without Saddam’ argument. All of those are cheap, dishonest manipulations.
The American people have had three years to judge this bake-off, and the verdict is in: The war was not worth it.
Game over. STFU.
Yes, because he wasn’t president, and he was wrong. Two rather good reasons to ignore it.
If Bush wanted to hang his hat on Clinton’s work, he might have paid more attention to the warnings about Osama Bin Laden. If he had, you might still be able to have dinner at the top of the World Trade Center.
Your responses are a cut above our own GOP…
Whether we have done more harm than good is something only history will tell… so far it ain’t looking good for us… but we had a lot of options on what to do, and there were a lot of choices that would have definitely allowed us to do more good than harm… Unfortunately, our leaders, with our hollywood-obsessed body politic in support of them, chose an option that really didn’t make sense toward the goals of doing the most good.
Iraq was one problem among many, and not the most pressing. Furthermore, there were better ways to address it.
And we had the opportunity to check our work and discover our “flawed intelligence” or whatever before the invasion… Bush said we would start the war “at the time of our choosing”… and he chose: before we could take advantage of that opportunity.
But I like your attitude toward it over all. I wish it had been someone with your outlook rather than GWB in the Whitehouse these last 5 years.
W,let me see if I can humor-oh,sorry,that’s humour-you.I am thankful for Iraqis because if it weren’t for their party stores,I wouldn’t have a place to buy a sixpack after midnight.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Well considering that we have created a haven for terrorist in Iraq, degraded the security of the nation 10 fold since our invasion, are allowing a islamic republic to take hold thus losing women’s rights (Iraq was secular under Saddam), have pissed off a majority of the world especially moderate muslims, have increased the rate of terrorist recruitment, have allowed 2100 of our troops to die and more than 30,000 iraqis to die, have lost our credibility because the Administartion deliberately misled us and the world, diverted our resources and forces from the war is Afghanistan which is still on going, and Bin Laden is still at large as a result I’d say we’ve done more harm then good. Then again, that is just me
On “more harm than good”–It’s a tough thing to measure. But it seems to me that the Kurds agree with you, the Shiites are somewhat ambivalent, and the Sunnis agree with me.
Oh yeh, I’m really scared of you. Take your marbles and go home, little girl. I know you’re still crying over the whole Miers thing. You just need to grow up some more.
In a thread devoted to Republicans forcing a vote on their rewriting of Murtha’s proposal, scs writes,
Is my irony meter pegged too high?
Okay Smijer, I commend you for having the guts to answer.
So you’re vote is 1.) to keep the sanctions and continue inspections
I don’t see how your suggestions were different than what we had. We had already lifted some sanctions, much was being smuggled in, and the oil for food was in full swing. Do you really think that French and Russian and maybe US governments would have had the steam to crack down on oil for food shenanigans any more than they did for the last 10 years no matter how much we complained? Was the UN all of a sudden going to get a change of heart, jeopardizing their cronies’ sweetheart deals? Would inspectors really ever solve the mystery of whether Saddam did or didn’t have WMD wihtout full access to their scientists? Do you think some diplomatic mumbo jumbo would have encouraged Saddam to start democracy in Iraq? Do you think Saddam would have just stopped starving the Shia children with some more EU sweet talking?
In other words, status quo. Al Qaeda would have loved that. The suffering of the people in Iraq was one of their greatest recruiting tools. At least now in Iraq we have a chance for a better life for them and by extension for us.
OMG, too funny. Again I am doing beverage abatement on my keyboard …..
I hope most of you can swim. If you want a little help in life, or in the world, you have to give a little. Moslem extremists will not go away. A departure from Iraq will only serve to embolden them. The measure of success is not only the great achievements in Iraq, but the absence of a terrorist strike here in the last 4 years. THAT is an achievement, not an accident.
You need to take a few days off, compadre. You are going to use Al Qaeda recruiting as a justification for this war? Iraq is now their main fucking vacation destination and operations base, thanks to us.
Jesus. I can’t believe you said that.
Right, they are obviously chastened right now.
Did you say that terrorism was on the decline over the last three years?
How much more fucking emboldened do you think they can get?
Muslim extremists in Iraq weren’t a problem before the war. They are now.
Wtf are you talking about?
Thanks rs for the levity, and thanks pB and smijer and even you, DisV, for the replies.
smijer, ‘one problem among many and not the most pressing’ is on the money, but what was the most pressing two years ago? For us down here the problems are local – we have some hostile fanatics in Indonesia and Malaysia and in the Phillipines (? can never remember how many l’s and p’s). Before the Iraq war Oz had experienced the first Bali bombing 202 dead, 88 of the Australians, sitting round dancing and drinking in a bar. Because of being Westerners, because bali isn’t Muslims enough because blah blah whatever disgusting rationalisations suicide bombers come up for their utter contempt for life and complete abrogation of responsibility and restraint.
Indonesia then? No.
Iraq was unique for the UN resolutions, the sanctions and continued asylum seeking immigrations.
What was more pressing? Saudi? Mecca and Medina themselves? That would be madness.
Mesopotamia – that’s a fight worth having.
Yeah, 4 years without a terrorist strike was quite an achievement under Clinton too, I’m sure. Fact is, major terrorist strikes like 9/11 and the Oklahoma city bombing just aren’t that frequent.
So the eight years between WTC attempt number One, and WTC attempt number Two …. that was, what? A great accomplishment for the Clinton administration?
You do realize that the reason why WTC wasn’t toppled without warning and full of people in Attempt One was mainly because they parked their truckoad of explosives in the wrong place?
scs: Call me an optimist… I continue to believe that with the bright light of day shining on our own administration’s wrong-doing, that the people will get enough of it and – if they don’t have cause to prosecute – will at least vote them out… That’s despite the elections of 2002 and 2004.
Likewise with the UN oil-for-food scandals. You know, nobody said a damn word about them until they were jonesing to see some kids do combat in Iraq. Maybe that’s one of the very few good things that came out of this war. But the fact is that these scandals were… well… scandalous. And, if we took all that energy we put into exposing them in order to bolster the case for war into exposing them in order to deal with the problem, then yes – I think the French, German, and Russian people would have become enraged enough by those abuses that they would have demanded some change in their own governments.. And I think the rest of the world would have been enraged enough about it that they woule exert some real pressure on the U.N. to investigate, prosecute, and reform. Pat Fitzgerald is not the only Pat Fitzgerald in the world, you know.
One of their best recruiting tools was American military presence in the Holy Land – particularly Saudi Arabia. The suffering of the Iraqi people was certainly a contributor to their recruiting success, but a) the American occupation of Iraq is far more powerful a tool for them, and b) even bin Laden recognized that the real devil in Iraq was Saddam Hussein, not the U.S.
That’s 2.) Lift sanctions. Okay we would have had inspectors in for a while, the UN, supported by the French and the Russians, give Saddam a clean bill of health, then we lift the sanctions. Then after a few years we start to hear of traffic between Korea and Pakistan and Iraq. Iraq says it’s just for peaceful purposes, and hide what they can from us. We beg, plead, and threaten for them to stop making nukes. But too bad Saddam is well on his way to nukes, just like Iran is. We can’t invade anymore because we don’t know how far along on their nuke program they really are, and we just can’t take the risk, like in N. Korea. So we are left to keep begging, pleading ,and coddling Saddam and his sons, hoping someone there doesn’t pass any nukes to Al Qaeda.
Gee, great option.
scs,when you write “at least now in Iraq we have a chance for a better life for them”,I’m assuming you meant Al Qaeda -because,unlike most Iraqis(or Americans),Al Qaeda seems to be thriving in the New!Free! Iraq.
Maybe you don’t remember, but sanctions were the biggest source of Muslim irritation before the war. Big recuiting tool. Like I said, if, and that’s a big if, we can turn Iraq around, recruiting tool number 1 fades. It could be the turning point for the Middle East.
No bombings HERE. In Iraq, they are shooting at people who can shoot back. W, keep up the good fight. I’m on the East coast. I have to go out and dispense justice tomorrow. Night All
Yep, slavery is all about me. You really are an idiot. I thought after learning a little about me, my causes and concerns, you might grasp that your simple-minded accusations of racism were out of line. My bad for expecting that much from you.
And what part of Murtha’s resolution doesn’t do that? One of the reasons he wants to withdraw is because our being there is only fanning extremism in Iraq. He wants to offer them more diplomatic and political help. He doesn’t think military might is going to bring peace to Iraq. But he is in no way suggesting we abandon the Iraqis, so I have no idea what triggered your rhetoric. It’s true, I personally think that there could have been less devasting ways to help the Iraqis than starting a war, wreaking havoc on their infrastructure, killing 100,000 civilians and turning Iraq into a terrorist breeding ground. But that difference of opinion doesn’t make me a bigot. I don’t know how to make you understand this very simple fact.
Let me ask you, what did you think about the Sacramento Bee’s series on the Pineros? Not familiar with that? Not a priority of yours? That must mean you’re bigoted against latinos. How about domestic violence? You invest any time into helping battered women? If not, why not? You hate women? I’m going to work at the TLC Soup Kitchen over the holidays. How about you? No? What’s your problem? You don’t care about the homeless?
Look, your sole cause seems to be Iraqis. Fine. The reason we went to Iraq had nothing to do with helping the Iraqi people, and if you believe that’s why Bush wants to “stay the course” you’re naive. But many of us against the war were voicing concern for the Iraqi people long before the original reason for invading was proven wrong. I’m sorry you don’t respect that, but your racism comments are just so fucking wrong and so fucking offensive. I’m done trying to help you understand that.
The Sudan is more pressing – 88 versus hundreds of thousands? No contest.
Like I said, there were better ways to address it than the instinct to aggression. yeah, maybe there would have come a point where all the priorities were being addressed in the smartest, most humanitarian ways possible – and maybe Iraq would still be a problem at that point, rather than a solved one – and maybe then the world would be willing to take a serious look at displacing the Baaths by force… but that process got short-circuited. Picking the wrong priorities, then picking force as the first resort… that’s a recipe for disaster.
For now. I still think better there than in Afganistan, as we have more control over it. When, and if, we get a good government set up in Iraq, Al Quaeda will fade too. But we won’t get rid of them completely because they will be a movement all over the world. Even France can’t get rid of their Al Qaeda.
Doubtful Smijer, they are not even enraged NOW. Come on, you ARE an optimist.
The reason we had them there in the first place is Saddams invasion of Kuwait and his eyes on Saudi Arabia. So in order to take out our troops, we had to have some assurance that Saddam wouldn’t try some stunts there again. Hence regime change.
It all comes back to the best and only option. Regime change.
Actually,scs,your option 2 included no mention of the weapons inspectors who were pretty effective in monitoring the disarmament of Iraq throughout the 90’s.Your parade of horribles is terrifying,indeed-it would be even more frightening if it included ants giantized by their exposure to Saddam’s nukes-ooohh,that’s scary.
You really are a child. We don’t have control over them in either Iraq or Afghanistan.
It’s certainly Bin Laden’s first choice. Let Bush do the recruiting for him.
Salada, Putter. I am in Sydney, its half past 2 in the afternoon, overcast day, gentle breeze, gonna take the car down to Centennial Park, fire up the iPod and have a walk and bit of think about all this commenting and check back later. But just afore I head out, as scs has notes, sanctions were a major complaint for most of the current anti-war crew, such as John Pilger and George Galloway and Tariq Ali. So they get lifted because Saddam ain’t in charge any longer – and less Iraqis have died in the wole war than was being asserted were dying yearly under sanctions, yet those same folks can’t see that good has come of the war.
I can’t recall if sanctions made it onto Bin Laden’s list of complaints to justify Sept 11. probably. The man was/is a walking whiney machine who wants a return to a Muslim Caliphate. I mean – crazy. As Oz Treasurer Peter Costello said bluntly recently – there will never be Sharia law in Oz and if you don’t like that get out.
Crazy Muslim terrorists of the caliphate variety, or the anti-Shia variety or whatever, are the problem and the solution is remove every base they have. We cannot remove their rationalse, because their rationales are extremely flexible and crazy. There’s always something – the Crusades, East Timor, US troops in Saudi, the Joooos, blah blah blah.
Clean Afghanistan – and DisenfV, more women elected to parliament in Afghanistan than the quotas they set for women, so not such a disaster there as you would suggest – clean Iraq and support the Lebanese get themselves together from under Syria. All good aims.
I reckon Australia will be playing Afghanistan in the cricket within 2 years. We’ve been playing Pakistan yearly for decades, and most folks in Afghanistan play too. How very satusfying it will be for pro-war folks to attend those tests – cos they wouldn’t have happened without us removing the Taliban madmen.
Iraq – what can they offer? How fantastic will it be to be able to holiday in Baghdad, visit their museum, lunch on the Euphrates and may drive down to Basra for a weekend getaway. Pipe dreams? Not in a couple years. Totally foolhardly to try to do now, in Baghdad and Kabul now. But give them a few years and their tourism departments will be firing up in the good way.
Later all and thanks a bunch – this one top blog.
Well, scs… that was a fun debate. I gotta go to bed, but I’ll check this thread in the a.m. To sum up for the night:
Yes, I am optimistic… yes, I see little rage from European against the beaurocrats in their .gov who abused the system… on the other hand, Americans are just now learning Jack Abramoff’s name. It does take some sunlight, but I’m a big believer in sunlight.
And yes, we did have ourselves a little catch-22 there… we needed to arrange security for S.A. and Kuwait, and we chose to do it ourselves rather than ceding that position to a multinational, Arab-led force… so yes, Saddam’s threat did help create the situation that created Al Qaeda’s motivation for 9/11 and served their recruitment purposes. However, we are serving them much better by employing what you call the “best and only option” by means of force and occupation.
I do think that regime change was called for in Iraq; I’m mainly sorry about how it happened, and the huge price of this war in security, peace, dollars, moral standing, and life. It would have been nice if regime change had come about through another means, especially if we, the S.A.’s and the Kuwaitis had sought out a way to provide for their security without a continued U.S. military presence in S.A. during the interim.
And I do continue to think that the preferences I stated in my initial response to you are closer to an enlightened foreign policy than anything that has come from the Bush administration.
good night for now. :)
Sojourner, you seemed more concerned about putting out snappy one liners than getting at the truth.
Iraq doesn’t have the Hindu Kush for Al Qaeda to hide in and has lots of nice flat desert for us to spy on them. We also have better access to them from Kuwait and don’t have to beg former Soviet satellites to have bases nearby. That’s why I think it’s on the whole better. As to getting control, I agree we will never have complete control of them. We just have to do what we can.
. It would have been nice if regime change had come about through another means, especially if we, the S.A.’s and
Do you think the Saudi’s (or, us, for that matter) would have let any other Arab country protect them? Come on. These other countries can barely protect themselves, and we wouldn’t want any other Arab country that close to the oil wealth. As to a European contingent, it would have been the same situation, infidels in the Holy Land.
Your preferences would have been a nice appetizer without the full meal. Your half measures were likely to accomplish little more than what we had before the war. I just don’t see how half sanctions would have worked any better than full sanctions.
Yup. On top three complaints.
You’re not interested in the truth. You’re only interested in finding any way you can to twist the argument to support your position.
Nukes are no fairy tale dude, they are cold hard reality.
Just a super quick one – for Laura cos she’s so appalling. You judge folks by their race, their gender and their financial standing, eh? Latino, women, homeless.
And I am the bigot?
I try to judge folks by the content of their character. The MLK generation – content of character and not [insert profile here]. I think that that lesson he taught, and which everyone born from the mid-60’s on was taught, was an objectively true and right lesson. I try – I got my prejudices like everyone else.
I find the character of folks who cannot bring themselves to see good done in Iraq to be very very poor. I find Laura’s admission that she sees folks according to categories – Latino, women, homeless – instead of as people to be objective evidence of her racism.
And I am not sure, but was there a bit of victimhood in that comment too – slavery? What, are you black? I don’t give a shit if you are. It’s not the colour of your skin that makes you an idiot.
Ok, out the door.
Because we had him blockaded and he was cash broke. After sanctions are lifted, blockades loosen and plenty of cash for Saddam, with plenty of money to buy even more people off. And plenty of Russians and French who want that cash to help Saddam build “peaceful” nuclear energy plants, just like they are helping Iran do. Yeah, weapons inspectors will cure all evils.
scs was the one a few weeks back who seemed utterly unable to understand why ID is not based on scientific inquiry despite the efforts of several commenters to provide many references and explanations on something not all that difficult to understand. At the time I just figured maybe not too bright, but here I am seeing just another dishonest Bushista ideologue.
Not in Iraq.
Why are the Iraqis more deserving of US aid than the Africans? There is far more genocide, poverty and death in Africa than in Iraq. Sounds to me like you have a racial issue with Africans.
GTinMN – ID is the examination of whether irreducible complexity is possible through mutation and natural selection alone. Everyone’s words of wisdoms were basically “It’s theology dude”. Well I’d be more comfortable with the word ‘pseodoscience’, which I believe is a more accurate representation of the ideas. Anyway, read my latest postings on ID, if you want to bring that up, bring it up there.
anyway, I’ll put my IQ and science knowledge against yours and 95% of people on here any day. I wasn’t a ‘gifted’ student my whole life for nothing. A sign of intelligence is thinking for yourself, not just thinking what is “cool” and what “cool” people tell you to think. Unfortunately, I took the time to ACTUALLY READ UP on what ID is actually about, unlike the people who were arguing with me who were going on media myths. I am a person who doesn’t do group think, and investigate things for myself. 95% think they have an opinion on something because their friends tell them to. You must be in one of those categories.
That’s right. In your case, it is the things you say.
If you’re asking, you’re clearly not reading my posts. No wonder you’re jumping to conclusions, much like the Republicans who claimed Murtha was wanting to cut and run.
You really don’t get it, do you? I was exaggerating to make a point, clearly lost on you. I don’t think you’re a bigot against Latinos because you don’t care or know about the plight of the Pineros. That would be illogical. And just because battered women is a priority of mine and not yours, I don’t believe you hate women. That would be connecting the dots where none exist. And just because you don’t serve the homeless at Thanksgiving, that doesn’t mean you don’t care about Vietnam vets. One thing has nothing to do with the other. I’m sorry my attempt at turning your illogic back on you went over your head. But spare me the MLK talk. He’s one of my few heroes. However, racism is still very real in this country, and when people, left or right, throw the accusation around so easily when it’s not applicable, you belittle the people who are still struggling against it. Opposition to the Iraq war isn’t about racism. That you’re attempting to make it so is vile. I will say, though, that while I do care about Iraqis, I’m not feeling all warm and fuzzy toward Australians about now.
Ok, now I’m really done this time. I can’t wait for church tomorrow. I hope it’s a sermon about letting go of anger. First Michigan loses to Ohio State and now this W guy… tough day.
Actually, that is the exact opposite of the truth, and that may explain why you aren’t feeling the love on that topic.
ID is not an examination of anything. It’s the assertion of the thing.
Examination, using repeatable methods and measures, is going down the road of science. ID is not science precisely because it cannot be examined and measured by such methods.
Wanting to place ID on the same “level” as science in order to represent it as something it is not, its proponents have eseentially tried to redefine what science is, in order to accomodate their misstatements.
You are free to believe in ID, but you are not free to represent it as science, because it isn’t. Or as an “examination”, because it isn’t that either.
The idea rests entirely on proof by assertion. In other words, it’s …. on the same level as nonsense.
Why do you keep dodging the question: who/what is the intelligent designer? Wrap whatever fancy words you want to around it but it ultimately comes down to relying on the concept of an intelligent designer to explain what science cannot yet explain. For those who understand what science is about, that’s a non-answer that does nothing more than attempt to shut down further scientific investigation.
There is no science-based approach to proving or disproving the existence of an intelligent designer. Therefore, it’s not science. Apparently your natural intelligence isn’t enough for you to grasp how science works.
Whatever, I am getting damn tired here of the people who think it’s a good reply to just insult, and then congratulate themselves on how clever they are.
We are on here to debate, man! Exchange ideas! Not toss around juvenile grade school insults. That is a waste of my time. Please come back at me with some info on where my logic was wrong, and then I’ll have a discussion with you. Otherwise, I’ll say to you, talk to the hand, like I’ve said to all the other juvey assholes on here.
I admire the way you think, Laura, but I must beg to differ on the Michigan/OSU result. Go Buckeyes!
Sighhhhhh. Read up on it first, Sojourner. You will only know what ID is when you actully read some of it.
Looks to me like DougJ is trying to explore his feminine side.
I’m going off the name. Duh.
I hope you’re not trying to argue that intelligent design does not assume an intelligent designer.
ppGaz, ditto Soj’s reply. Besidea, if you all want to discuss it again, we should do it in the ID segment, not here.
That would be pointless. You didn’t answer the question about who/what is the intelligent designer there and it looks like you have no intention of doing so here.
It doesn’t. It leaves it open, perhaps, as one of the possible explanations, but is not the gist of the theory. By your reply, I’m guessing that you haven’t read much on it. Did you see T.M. Lutas response in the other thread? I thought that was a pretty good explanation.
Soj, you should be a comedian. You are the queen of the snappy one liners. And that’s not necessarily an insult.
How come I keep seeing words like “planned” and “intelligent designer” if it doesn’t argue for an intelligent designer?
I share your pain. I’m still upset by the Michigan win a few years ago that kept OSU out of the national championship. I have a definite/love hate relationship when it comes to sports. I haven’t learned to take losses in stride yet.
And what would that intelligent cause be?
…or in any other war in American history. Hope that pacifist rallying cry works well for you guys — say it loud and often, please.
I bet that still hurts. It was fun being the spoiler. Today, it helped that Michigan’s season was blown early on, so this game didn’t have a lot on the line – except it was against our bitter (albeit respected) rivals. I haven’t lived in Michigan since I was 9, but my dad raised me right. I’ve been to more Rose Bowls than any of my relatives in Michigan, so that keeps the passion going. I went to San Diego State, not exactly a football school, though we through a scare into Ohio State a couple years ago. I always “wish well” for my own alma mater, but I live and breath Michigan all season. Good luck the rest of the season. I always want the Big Ten to kick ass in the bowl games, even Ohio State.
Soj, as the quote explained, design is the purposeful arrangement of parts. Purposeful, or planned, can mean systematic. For instance, a genetic code is the “plan” for a human. And nowhere in the quote does it say “intelligent DESIGNER”. Try to read your own quotes dude! Obviously, that is what Behe is gunning for, but he keeps it in the background. Where the science comes in is his examination of irreducible complexity. So there’s some good and some bad. That’s why I call it a pseudoscience, but it’s not just theology.
Thanks for the comments and, also, congrats to the Socceroos. It’ll be nice to have Oz at the Big Party after so long an absense!
I think you misread it. “Supporters..say the intelligent cause is OUTSIDE the theory”, in other words, not central to the theory. Slow down and read girl.
No. If that were the case, it would be called “Unexplained Complexity.” It isn’t. It’s called ID, because the whole idea is that there’s an intelligent design … and therefore, a designer. Otherwise, there is no point. The whole notion would amount to this:
Uh, how about that natural complexity, man? Whassup with that? (followed by Beavis and Butthead snickering)
Aside to MSU-OSU football fans: Take it from a lifelong diehard zealot of a sports fan … (Go Big Blue, etc) … being a fan will break your heart. For every thrill, about ten broken hearts. That’s the deal. Sorry, reality is not fair. This year, OSU was the better team. Next year maybe we reverse that.
My argument against intelligent design–this thread. Now, where were we?
I vote for changing the name to Unexplained Complexity.
I think UC may have a slightly better chance with the school boards. But in either case, it was fun coming on here for another evening of insults. Oh the pain feels so goooood. Well, you all take care now.
Take two Tylenol with codeine and call us in the morning.
The Disenfranchised Voter
That’s funny. I never remember calling for a departure from Iraq. I most certainly do believe I and the rest of the world was misled, but I also think we need to get a stable government set up there.
You really shouldn’t assume things.
Ahh but you see W, I wasn’t talking about Afghanistan. I was talking about Iraq. The Iraqi Constitution is most certainly an Islamic document. It says so right in the text.
I also said I think the Afghanistan war was justified.
The good thing about you W is that I think you honestly have good intentions but are just mixed up on how best to go about your goals.
The Disenfranchised Voter
Hmm I suggest you look up the definition of pacifist Mac Buckets…
Clearly pacifism means not participating at all in military conflicts. So how does attacking only serious threats to one’s country fall under pacifism? Oh right–right, you don’t mean to accurately describe the opposing view, you just like to brush them off with bogus “red alert” words such “pacifist” to desribe their views. To you, anyone who doesn’t believe in offensive wars is a “pacifist”.
Get a new gimmick, Mac. That shit won’t fly here as long as I’m around.
Wow, you guys are still at it. That’s so great even if you’ve moved on to intelligent design which is something I have absolutely no interest in at the minute.
For MacBuckets, thanks, mate, re the Socceroos. We’re so proud of them, multicultural Australia at work, German, Italian, Greek, Slavic backgrounds, and Skips, the lot.
About as unracist a squad as there is anywhere.
Laura, I am a girl, but a big round of applause for you for insorrectly assuming my gender, as only a sexist can do. Natch Sojourner likes how you think – incorrectly.
I fully get that one person’s care and concern about one unfortunate group does not mean they do not care about other unfortunate folks. I get it. That’s why I have no time for the anti-war argument that we shouldn’t have gone to war with Iraq when there are other tyrants around the world. I maintain, Iraqis deserve liberty as much as Zimbabweans and east Timorese etc.
You are grasping at straws and not getting to the heart of the argument – I call you out as racist because you don’t think Iraqis worthy of American or coalition forces acting to remove Saddam. You have your reasons which you don’t think are racist but I think, at their heart, they are – because none of your arguments seem to credit the Iraqis as being worth any effort at all. It is not good enough to imagine that the status quo with Saddam in charge was acceptable for Iraqis. It’s inherently cruel to them.
Oh and as for the how dare you cite MLK – well he’s a hero to me too, he’s not your exclusive property. you might want to think a bit about him. He was a fat philanderer, and he was damn well right when he talked about content of character.
And for whoever wrote something about me and not caring about Africa – oh give me strength, we do not need to go after all of Africa – it’s a continent and it is not all fucked. Zimbabwe is a country in Africa. Mugabe is its dictator, who has jailed and intimidated the opposition and now prevented all emigration – just like Cuba and N.Korea – he’s run whites off their farm and even if that is not so bad because of past white racism, he is now trying to transport black city folks onto those farms. Against their will. A bastard syphilitic black Pol Pot.
If you go to church, you might ask your pastor to respond to Jose Ramos Horta, East Timorese – who said it is not enough to want peace, we all want peace, but sometimes war is the only way to remove the despotic rule that is the very obstacle to peace.
What do you do when there is no other way to get a despot out of power?
As for you ‘I don’t like Australians much now’ rubbish, nice. Well, I like Americans as a general rule, and that is despite folks like you.
Unless our aussie friend W is an aboriginal Australian he’s in a poor position to be lecturing other nationalities about racism. He also seems to be using a definition of bigotry found nowhere outside the contours of his own skull. I doubt that he has run his pipe dream about a future cafe/tourist idyll in Bagdad past the Iraqi people. Somehow I think they might find the idea of suffering invasion, occupation and insurgency in order to become a playground for the globetrotting spawn of a colonial enclave less than inspiring. W imagines himself quite with it and up to date in such fancies. Actually, his is just the latest retread of the same old Kipplingesque rubbish used to justify the domination of non white peoples for the last 300 years or so.
One would think such lethal nonsense expired with the ANZAC at Gallipoli. Tell me W, does the League of Empire Loyalists still have a Australian branch? BTW, as an American I find your decontextualized appropriation of MLK highly offensive and indicative of either cynicism or ignorance on your part. If your knowledge of Dr. King extended beyond superficial propaganda, you’d know that his teaching opposed your brand of militarism. I suppose that makes him an isolationist Buchannanite as well.
SCS, one of the worst aspects of being labeled gifted as a child is that it encourages an exagerated sense of one’s own abilities and a correlative contempt for the abilities and opinions of others. You seem to be suffering from this syndrome. You’ve repeatedly shown yourself incapable of comprehending any arguments counter to your own. Parading this failing as a laudible expression of independence from supposed “group think” simply makes you appear foolish.
Intelligence does not consist of redefining words and concepts so that they correspond with your idiosyncratic theories and attitudes, your preferred M.O. vis a vis Science vs. ID. Nor does it encompass a demand that everyone accept your framing of the issues as the standard for discussion, your most recent gambit on this thread. Your proclivity for equivocation in the first instance and simplistic either/or distinctions in the latter does not inspire confidence in your critical or analytical skills. Consequently, your plaintive assertion that those who disagree with you just ‘ain’t as smart’ is unconvincing. It comes across as the compulsive self assertion born of inner doubt.
DisenfV, you did mention Afghanistan, you patronising toerag.
“…diverted our resources and forces from the war is Afghanistan which is still [in bold if you don’t mind – W]on going….”
So I mention that Afghanistan has had an election with more women reps elected than the quota set up for them. Seems to me a war won, and now we are all working on the creation of democratic insitutions from Kabul out to the rest of the country improving all the time. From cricket clubs to internet cafes to whatever. And yes they have warlords who grow poppies and sell drugs. Sheesh, it isn’t paradise now, but there’s no rule says it has to be paradise within 3 years of the overthrow of the Taliban. The war there is not still going on, as you characterise it. yet another example of your inability to credit Afghans, now, with the ability to imporve their lives and live civilly.
It is the common call of the anti-Iraq war folks that “I supported the war in Afghanistan but not the one in Iraq”.
I find it pretty amazing – why Afghanistan but not Iraq? Because of Bin Laden and the Taliban and Sept 11? Well, if so, we get right back down to it – if it is about the US then force is fine, but if it’s about anything else then excuses will be found to argue against it.
I am not mixed up at all about how to go about achieving improvements round the world, mate. Use force where force is what is needed and use diplomacy all the time cos sometimes it’ll work on its own (maybe that Condoleeza Rice thing in Gaza earlier this week is an example of that, we’ll see).
And don’t argue against force because jackass despots like Saddam Hussein will hang on to power like grim death – that’s one certainty. Thye are not in the business of acting honourably and going quietly, at least not til now. Query Bush’s new approach and whether that will make despots think twice – Gaddafi in Libya could well be the first example.
Didn’t Nigeria offer Saddam asylum before the war and the fool turned it down? Imagine if he’d taken it, how very different the world would be right now.
I blame Saddam for the war. People like you and Laura and Sojourner and ppGaz blame Bush. I say you do that cos at the end of the day you just don’t give a shit about Iraqis cos you’re isolationist and racist.
Supporting the Afghanistan action is not evidence of your humanitarianism and care for others – your failure to support the Iraq action reveals that your support re Afghanistan was not about care for Afghans, it was about revenge for Sept 11 – nothing wrong with revenge for Sept 11, mind. The Taliban had it coming.
I supported the Afghanistan war too. But I don’t care about Afghans more than I care about Iraqis. They each deserve some liberty. Bush’s new doctrine is to deliver some liberty to them. I cannot think of a reason not to.
What reason was there to leave him alone? The only reason is the “no threat to the US” reason. I call that a “not my problem” reason. And you know how I characterise that.
Good work WB Reeves, assume I’m male (wrong) and then tell me I can’t use MLK as a hero (mate, MLK was a hero and it didn’t stop at the US border), and then add a nice slight about racism and Aboriginals. I don’t think America is a racist society, so bugger off suggesting I think otherwise. I think you got some racists there. I think many of them are on the anti-Iraq-war side of the fence. Same goes for Oz.
Ah, I see I’m about to be tagged for mis-identifying W’s gender. So tedious when reactionary twits try to appropriate what they take as signature leftist arguments. Of course a sophmoric argument remains sophmoric whether mouthed by the right or the left. At least the cynicism vs ignorance question is resolved. W is definitely not ignorant.
WB Reeves, when you’ve finished wanking, what is your point. I am cynical? My arguments are junior college level arguments? Way to engage, man. If anyone sounds like Rudyard bloody Kipling right about now it’s you, don’t you think?
Why don’t you try writing something nice about Iraqis.
W. B. Reeves, I can’t sleep and peeked. Too bad I did, I got a lecture. Well, at least you were somewhat polite at it, so half good and half bad.
Seems I guessed right about your ethnicity though. I note that Aboriginals are notably absent from your paen to Australian multiculturalism above. As for MLK being your hero, I doubt it since his entire life was dedicated to opposing the sort of sheer bloodymindedness you express here. You also appear to disagree with him about the racial character of U.S. society. He certainly thought it a racist society as well as aggressively militarist one. “The foremost purveyor of violence in the world today.” was his wording. In sum, you appear to know little of Dr. King other than a quote and the assertion that he was a “fat philanderer”. I suppose we should put you down as both ignorant and cynical.
You’re attempt to paint those who disagree with your pseudo humanitarian arguments for the Iraq occupation as racist is ludicrous.
I realize humor doesn’t go over well on the internet, but you have misinterpreted everything I’ve said today, so why not that? For calling you a man, sorry. People assume I’m a man if I don’t use my name, and I couldn’t care less. But you do. So I apologize. If you want to call me a sexist, so be it. You like labeling people. Besides, my boyfriend will get a kick out of that.
As far as your accusations of racism against people, it’s too bad you won’t apologize for that. Maybe it’s because you’re not American that you don’t appreciate how hurtful your words are. I know Australia has its ugly racist past like we do, but I have no idea where it’s at today. In the US, racism is still too prevelant. You’re far to quick to use it against people for reasons that defy all logic. But you’re not willing to understand why that even bothers us, so there’s no point in going on about that. However, feel free to “dare” to talk about MLK. It’s your seeing racism where none exists that is the problem, not the mention of Dr. King.
As far as the Iraqi people not being worth saving, nobody has said that. Nobody. That’s just an accusation you’ve been slinging at everyone. However, that doesn’t mean everybody thinks war is the only means to help them, and that Americans are the ones who have to do the saving. All you’re thinking about are the Iraqis. I can’t understand why you’re not disheartened by the huge loss of Iraqi life brought on by this war, but I do think you’re sincere in your concern for them. However, as an American, I can’t let my focus of this war only be on the Iraqis. As far as I’m concerned, people are way too quick to sacrifice our soldiers. Not just you, but plenty of Americans too. They put the yellow ribbon magnet on their car without pausing to reflect on the long-term costs of this war on our soldiers. It’s not just loss of life, it’s the 16,000 men and women with life-altering wounds. Its the 50,000 suffering from PTSD (many of whom will be living on the streets just like their Vietnam War brethren). It’s the thousands of divorces, the increase in domestic violence and suicide among the military. And these problems won’t end when we leave Iraq. Soldiers and their families will be paying a price for this war for decades. And then there’s the cost to our country. The cuts in programs for our most vulnerable. The debt my niece and nephew will be paying, and then their children. But what really scares me is that my niece and nephew will have to pay for this war with more than just their money. If we don’t get out soon, I’m terrified we’ll be there for decades and these precious children may be paying for this fucking war with their lives. And if I have to choose between my family vs Iraqis, I’ll choose my family every day. If you think that makes me a bigot or selfish, so be it.
Well Wb Reeves, call me biased, but I think my arguments are based on a better grasp of the facts. For instance, the main counter arguments against my thoughts on the misperception of ID were, “it’s just theology and there are no testable results, so it’s not science”. Repeated over and over again. Now is that really true? Let’s examine this quickly. While there may be some elements of theology in ID, there are also elements of science and some testable results. The science is the examination of irreducible complexity. A testable result in ID is the testable hypothesis that certain mutations would have taken too long to result in complex arrangements. Well those ideas have been tested, and apparently they flunk. But that is not to say it wasn’t testable. So both the main arguments used were just wrong. So where am I going wrong here? I think my arguments are very simple, and since people can’t seem to accept them, I can’t help wonder that it must be because they are involved in group think -because it would go against what they consider “cool”. That is the most likely explanation to me sometimes.
As for me implying that people aren’t as smart as me, I would never do that normally, except the favorite reply of some people on here is not to challenge you logically, but to say you’re stupid and say you just read Newsmax (whatever that is). Because I heard that sooo many times from certain people here, I felt compelled to vouch for my intelligence and question their’s. That’s only fair right?
No Reeves, I have no duty to “accept” what you all tell me to think, or as you put it, “comprehend any arguments counter to your own”, if I don’t believe they are valid. Just as any of you have no duty to accept what I say to you. My duty here is to respond in a reasoned polite way to you all – and that is it. And that’s what I have done to most people. The only ones who I haven’t done that with are the people who don’t treat me likewise. And that’s only fair right?
I congratulate you on taking it with good grace. If I seemed to lecture it is only because I thought a formal tone best suited to staying within the bounds of civility.
Go fuck yourself WB Reeves. You guessed right that I am not Aboriginal? Gah, most Australians aren’t. You want a medal, you arse? There are no Aborginals in the Socceroos but plenty in the Australian rules football sides, including Carlton my team. So what if they’re not in the Socceroos? What’s your point? You think I don’t like Aboriginals? You think Australians treat Aboriginal Australians like shit and therefore can’t talk about race? Get out.
And MLK was a fat philanderer and you do him no favours trying to cover up the man’s manliness. He did think the US racist. That’s why he organised such civil rights activity. And forty years hence, 40 years, his efforts have created a less racist society – one which can be measured by that lessened racism.
I am not ignorant because I see things plainly and I am not cynical at all.
you reckon its ludicrous for me to notice that you are antiIraqi by your anti-Iraq war position? Accurate is what it is. Still you can’t bring yourself to write something noce about them. How many opportunities do you need?
The hell with you, man. It’s getting late here in Sydney and you, sir, are not worth arguing with because you, like many anti-war folks, are sold on Iraq being a disaster, and to credit that country and its people with anything positive upsets your narrative. Your racist narrative. That’s my call.
It’s been great to comment here. My views are pretty darned clear I think and the only one who’s challenged them is pB. More harm than good, he says. I say more good than harm but I understand how that’s a subjective measure.
Well wait until you read what I just wrote.
Reeves, allow me to elaborate on my theories of group think. And it is -I believe group think exists. Why? Well I tell you why.
For instance, I notice that many people end up posting a lot of the exact same arguments here, almost worded the same way. Maybe they all read the same article somewhere, or saw one person post it, and just took it up. It’s like they automatically arrive at some consensus with their “group”. That’s all fine and good, but it doesn’t mean the consensus is right. Also I notice if I post a polite, impersonal post that may be contrary to this consensus, people seem to get really angry – like personally. I can’t think of any situation where an impersonal post affects me SO much that I have to get angry over it, to the point where I viciously insult someone. Then I notice one person will insult me, and people whom I have no clue who they are, will jump in on the bandwagon. Now that is something I would never do. I have no need to “join forces” with others whom I don’t know, to personally insult someone whom I don’t know, over a polite post.
So, in summary, we are dealing with a lot of sociological forces here, Reeves, not just a simple debate. We are dealing with tribal instincts- one of the most basic forces of human nature. And sometimes, that translates into good old group think.
Anyway, in closing, you know I like some attention on here, but I think some of you all are giving me a little TOO much attention here lately. I find myself constantly rebutting things people say about me personally. Not to be impolite, but I really only recognize a handful of you all back. So sometimes I get, “Well I’ve been responding to you often in the past”, or inquiries on why I think what I think, or comments on my personality, etc, and I’m thinking to myself, “who the hell is this person?”
I know perhaps I stick out a little more because I tend to be a little more “rightie” on some issues compared to most of you. But really, I think I’m just posting some innocuous posts here. I rarely direct my posts at anyone personally first (with the exception of a few people I tend to converse with), or if I do, I try to make it polite. Honestly, I’m just here for the ideas, not the personalities, and not to engage in some sort of defense of my existence. I just want to post in peace. But that’s not always possible on here I guess.
Hey Laura, I only noticed your comment after my last. It’s a top comment and warrants a reply I think (urgh, have had to redo – I think the comments thread here is getting so long it might collapse soon, it swallowed what I had about 15 mins ago, argh).
I do respect your emotional concern for your family over strangers, Iraqis or otherwise. Makes perfect natural sense to me. The racism thing is a conclusion of mine, though. I think it accurate. It is mean, unkind, impolite, I know. But accurate, in my view. And not just for antiwar folks Stateside. Italians, Australians, etc etc. I think the same charge can be levelled at them for their anti-Iraq war position. So it’s not about Americans – it’s about the anti-Iraq war position.
Your closing comments are common and true for many anti Iraq war folks. Fear of a long term engagement, of debt and problems for survivors. For me, the engagement is not inevitably going to be long term. I have more faith in Iraqis than that. I don’t think it’s going to take them that long to get their society in order. Debt – no one is getting bankrupted over this. No one.
And Viet vets, as in Oz, remember we were troops there too, had to deal with anti-war folks spitting on their actions when they came home, too bloody early. No wonder they went spare. No wonder a bunch of Vietnamese now live in Australia too – they left Vietnam cos the bloody VietCong were allowed to win that war. Cos of folks sounding very similar to you, forced the US out early. And natch the communists turned the country into a toilet and it is only now a comfortable and beautiful place to go to safely. 30 years later. The Iraq war vets will have folks like me spitting on folks like you if you try to spit on them. You follow? That’s the difference between now and Vietnam. There’s a pro-war movement now.
That Viet reference of yours says a lot about you, and to my mind it’s not good. Iraq is not like Vietnam. It is unique. And its war is unique too. Poorly executed in parts, well in others, undermined by mercenerary terrorists in the region and homegrown idiots like Sadr. I know full well the flaws of the campaign. And I know my arugments are blunt. I don’t apologise for them or the tone. Cos I believe the Iraq war has done and will do, more imortantly, more good than harm.
Thanks again and see yuz.
The Disenfranchised Voter
I find it funny that I never once brought up the issue of race and instead constantly pointed to the US Constitution as the source of my beliefs.
Yet I am a racist?
Priceless. And trust me, you don’t know me W, that is for sure.
P.S. As some helpful advice, I suggest condensing your posts. Most people will read right over a long post like that. Brevity is much appreciated here.
First to clear up any misunderstanding. “Duty” is your invention. I neither used it nor implied it. Likewise, if I had meant acceptance I would have said so. Comprehension and acceptance are not synonyms. To comprehend an argument is to recognize its internal consistancy and logic regardless of whether one accepts its conclusions.
I recognize the points you have raised but I and I suspect others, see them as a case of missing the forest for the trees. While it is possible to test certain aspects of the ID argument, its central and defining conceit is beyond the capacity of scientific proof, ie the existence of a “designer”. Can you present a testable proof for the proposition that complexity requires a designer? Do developemental leaps of necessity require a designer? Even if the arguments you raised earlier had been vindicated would they have proved the existence of a designer? No. Said designer would have remained a hypothetical in search of a proof. This is what Krauthammer refers to when he says that ID consists of arbitrarily inserting divinity into any apparent gap in existing theory.
To give a crude illustration, a flat earther would argue that the world is flat because otherwise we would fall off. Well the business about falling off is certainly testable but that doesn’t make the flat earth hypothesis scientific.
As for your discription of group think, I can only point out that both science and language itself are collective endeavors. As such they could, I suppose, be described as group think since they are predicated on a shared knowledge of standards and distinctions. In which case the refusal to participate in “group think” would be tantamount to the embrace of irrelevancy.
I sympathize with your exasperation with those who question your intelligence. Still, responding to them in an essentially defensive fashion only lends them undeserved credence.
I’m pleased to see you don’t shrink from a challenge.
The Disenfranchised Voter,
Obviously you must be racist by proxy then–the Constitution must be racist! I mean, the Founding Fathers had slaves and stuff…
So now we’ve got two 500+ comment threads on the front page about essentially the same topic… is that a record or something?
My, my, testy aren’t we? Seems you can dish it out but you can’t take it. Perhaps you’ll recall this moment the next time you start flinging spurious charges of racism.
This from someone who was twigging people for sexism a few posts back. I couldn’t ask for a better illustration of the cynical and dishonest nature of your arguments. BTW, I didn’t dispute your assertion, I merely noted it. As for Dr. King’s legacy, since I live in Atlanta and know many people who worked and marched with him and who have played important roles in the anti-war movement here, I don’t require any ill informed lectures on the subject from you.
As illustrated above, you are indeed both cynical and ignorant. Since you seem to require further evidence I will point out that you ignore the fact that your pro-war stance is completely at odds with Dr. King’s life and work. Either you are abysmally ignorant on this point or you are cynically ignoring it, since it belies your claim to hero worship. Meanwhile, those here who knew and worked with Dr. King in his lifetime carry forward his legacy through opposition to the war, as do friends and acquaintances of mine in the local Iraqi community. There, I’ve said something positive about Iraqi’s.
Not to mention you might have to explain how Dr. King’s opposition to Vietnam and military adventures in general squares with your claim that he is a hero of yours. Sorry to rain on your parade of slurs, dishonesty and ignorance. It must be tough being a woman and all the while wishing you were Colonel Blimp. Here’s my call. There is a certain commodity that is prevalent on cattle farms and you maam, are full of it.
Comprehension and acceptance are not synonyms….To comprehend an argument is to recognize its internal consistancy and logic
Dude, I think you’re wrong there on comprehension. Comprehending is understanding what someone is communicating -not recognizing internal logic from them. For instance, I could comprehend that someone thinks the world is flat. Doesn’t mean I have to recognize that there has to be some internal logic to the idea that the world is flat. I comprehended what they (many posters) were saying man. They said it a million times. Theology, not testable theories. Like I said, I understood but I didn’t agree and they all went ballistic on me, whereas I could really care less what they all thought. They took it personally. Why? To me, evidence of group think. The emotions betray it. I insulted the tribal code of what the “cool” people think. I think to you and many others, comprehension MEANS acceptance, because you seem to take disagreement as evidence of “not comprehending”.
As to ID, “its central and defining conceit is beyond the capacity of scientific proof, ie the existence of a “designer”, read the quote from Behe above. No where does he talk about a “designer”. See, that is part of the myths I have to keep rebutting because people don’t read thoroughly. He talks about “design”. What is ‘design’ he asks. “Design is simply the purposeful arrangement of parts…” I would say a genetic code, is in effect a ‘design’ for a biological system. He does not state a design has to be done by a “designer” per se, such as human or a god – he leaves that part open. In my opinion, it is possible to interpret ‘intelligent design’ as internal flexibility of the genetic code, the ability of an organism to be self-selecting based on internal stresses. But that’s just me. Anyway, your central premise of a ‘designer’ being mentioned is slightly off. See why I don’t just accept what I’m told here? You gotta read it and make up your own mind I say. And if someone doesn’t agree with me, who cares? I won’t think any less of them and call them stupid. No group think for me! To each our own, I say.
The same things we have always done, from A to Z. The world is full of despots. There is no history of American intervention as rule. There is no doctrine or law requiring action. There is no general support for wars of choice to go off and fight with despots.
Some despots have been allies of convenience. Some of them have dined in the East Room of the White House.
Your question is somewhere between silly, and misleading.
Heh. But you’re arguing with yourself on this ID thing.
Why try to tease new meaning from the moniker? Go to the source:
Wow! I’m envious. I’ve never been to a football game, let alone the Rose Bowl.
Actually, my dirty little secret is I’m happy that Penn State came out on top. I watched them play against OSU and I came away with the distinct feeling that they really, really wanted it.
Good for them.
Purposeful in what sense? Planned by whom?
Investigations of pattern and structure are readily found in mainstream science. It stretches belief to argue that the only thing the IDers are arguing for is the study of pattern, as in the pattern inherent in the genetic code. Clearly they want to take it a step further and imply the existence of a planner or a being who was responsible for the perceived purpose.
If not, exactly what are you arguing? Once again, there is absolutely nothing new or earth shattering about the study of pattern or structure. For that matter, there is nothing in these concepts to argue against the theory of evolution. The bottom line is the IDers want to argue the presence of supernatural intervention. They want to claim this is acceptable by claiming that science would only cover the natural aspect. It’s bullshit to say that the bulk of the explanation of a phenomenon is outside the scope of science while, at the same time, arguing that they’re doing science.
No, they’re saying it’s outside the theory because it is supernatural, not natural. It most certainly is central to the theory because, without it, there is no explanation.
That’s the rub: a “scientific” theory that relies on supernatural explanations to complete it. This is why it can never be considered science unless, like the Kansans did, the definition of science is changed to include supernatural forces.
Internet “debate” traditionally becomes flame war.
Don’t take it personally, it isn’t personal.
Also, do some more of your own research. It’s not “opnion” that ID is a direct challenge to science. So let’s not quibble over that and reinvent that wheel over and over again. The whole purpose of ID is to weaken the position of science in education. That’s not my opinion, that’s a fact. I’m not sure where you come down on those aspects, but you need to get up to speed.
The fact that ID is not science is not in itself a fatal flaw. Lots of things are not science. The problem arises when proponents of ID want to represent the thing as being on the same intellectual plane, as if “fairness” demanded that it receive that sort of treatment. That is false, because it is not on that plane and does not deserve that treatment. If that is so, and it is, then you have to ask, why would they want to promote that mindset?
There’s only one possible answer: To discredit science. To reposition religious belief as being a viable alternative to science.
This absolutely says it all. I am a very recent convert to watching sports, having fallen in love with the Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team about five years ago. Of course I came in during the last really good season they’ve had and have watched them struggle since then.
Because I did not spend my formative years watching sports and learning how to deal with losses, I question on a regular basis the sanity of anyone who supports a particular team. They’ll only break your heart.
I remember a particular baseball season. Baseball, more than any other game, will break your heart on a regular basis, and just when you think you can’t take it any more, it will break it even harder, and keep breaking it until you surrender to the Force. It’s a lesson for life. Nobody gets out of here alive. No fan gets out of here without a broken heart. In fact, you’ll only die once, but you will get your heart broken a thousand times as a fan. As a baseball fan, ten thousand times.
(Baseball is an odd game. It has no clock. The team with the ball is playing defense. It’s a very weird game, and that is what makes it so wonderful).
Anyway, once you surrender and agree with the universe that the game is bigger than you are, that there is no fairness in the world of the fan, that you are just a speck on the vast panorama of sports emotion, then and only then are you ready to enjoy fandom to the fullest.
Then you are ready to understand that when you are riding the wave of victory, you will know and accept that soon you will be in the deepest pit of defeat once again … and that it’s okay. All part of the deal.
In that particular baseball season, my favorite team was literally minutes from going to the World Series, something we’d thought might never happen. In fact, had never happened. And then …. crack! A swing, a long arcing trajectory, and defeat, and it was twenty years before that opportunity came around again. When that ball was struck, I was literally sick. Just then, the phone rang and a voice — which belonged to a fan of the other team — said, “Wow! Did you see that! Wasn’t that GREAT!?”
I did not speak to that person again for a year.
I kind of suspected there was a Zen-like quality to sports. And I certainly understand now why people get so hysterical when their teams make it to the top, especially when it’s unexpected. To win in spite of being at the mercy of the universe is quite a feat.
My mother and brother are UConn Lady Huskies fans. We do an interesting dance each season. Last year, we went to see UConn and Tennessee play in Hartford. My girls didn’t play very well but, somehow, at the last minute won it by one point. My mother was very gracious. I consider her my role model.
It’s one of the benefits of being a Big Ten fan living in California. And my uncle lives in Ann Arbor and is a U of M booster with season tickets, so he’s always able to get us Rose Bowl tickets. I wish the Rose Bowl was still the traditional Rose Bowl. To see non-Big Ten and non-Pac Ten teams play in the game seems sacreligous.
Unless you’re a Detroit Lions fan, because then you never get to ride the wave of victory. Sorry. Just venting. It’s actually easier being a fan of a team that never has a chance at winning. I’m also a Sacramento Kings fan – much more painful. I was raised a huge sports fan, and I played basketball in high school. I’m not a tom boy in the least so it surprises people sometimes when they learn what a sports fanatic I am. And they wonder why I’m still a Lions fan since I’ve lived in California for most of my life. I can’t figure that out myself. Maybe it has something to do with Thanksgiving.
AGREED!!! I have a soft spot for tradition. I guess I understand the desire to have a clear national champion but I really liked the idea of the Rose Bowl being the big prize for the Big Ten teams.
My uncle (RIP) loved the Iowa Hawkeyes football team and the Chicago Cubs. He also was one of the more philosophical people I knew. I guess he’d have to be.
That misstates Behe’s assertion, which is that some systems are too complex to have evolved through mutation and natural selection; i.e., they must’ve been ‘designed’ instead. It’s not really an examination of anything, just a bald assertion with no research to back it up.
In Behe’s own words:
Irreducible complexity? That dog won’t hunt:
irreducible complexity debunked repeatedly
Lots more on Behe debunkings.
Behe jumps the shark
Behe’ s book ‘peer-reviewed’? Not so much
Behe’s Empty Box
Looks like the thread has gone slightly off topic since my departure 12 hrs ago;-)
That’ll teach you to leave.
You didn’t read what Ppg wrote — he wrote that war is only to be used if there are no other options. Well, there are ALWAYS other options. There were other options in WWI, WWII, hell, there were other options in the Revolutionary War. “As a last resort” is a buzzphrase that the antiwar side always uses without thinking — I was just pointing out that we’ve never had a war as a last resort.
Well if this is the way you approach discussions with those of differing viewpoints I’m afraid you’re inviting exactly the sort of treatment of which you complain. People have a reasonable expectation that when they present their arguments they will be addressed. You seem to think that all you need to address are their conclusions. If you can’t effectively dispute the argument your opinion of the conclusion is irrelevant to anyone but yourself. I would suggest that you consult a dictionary about the difference between comprehension and acceptance but judging from your response it appears likely that you would consider that a concession to “group think.”
Sorry, but you’re simply playing games with words here. A thing cannot be “designed” if there is no designer. The design cannot be “intelligent” or “purposeful” unless there is an intelligence and purpose behind it. None of these is subject to objective, testable proofs. They are mere assertions. However, they are central to the definition of ID. Without these unproven and unprovable conceits you are left with nothing but the admitted gaps in existing theory which do not dictate any particular conclusion.
I’m afraid you are confirming my earlier caution about the dangers of labeling someone as “gifted”. What you’re engaged in is not independent thought but solipsism. That’s indicated by your insistance on substituting what you “think” someone means for what they say they mean. That you do so without presenting any evidenciary basis other than the fact that you are in the minority simply buttresses the point. Outside of accepting the innate superiority of your thinking one could just as easily conclude that you are simply wrong.
At this point I’m not sure why you bother entering discussions, unless it’s to reinforce a sense of your own superiority which, oddly enough, requires you to ignore any substantive criticism of your own views.
Not necessarily other acceptable options.
Of course, one doesn’t figure that including the obviously unacceptable ones is necessary, but one underestimates you guys.
And when I say options, I mean options that serve the overriding imperative … abatement of a threat. Not inconvenience. Not some grotesque do-good version of policy like “saving” Iraq from its dictator. Not some sociopathic “he tried to kill muh daddy” brain fart.
A life or death immediate unambiguous threat where war is the only acceptable option to abate that threat.
Not many wars will qualify. Which is the point. Not many should.
The penalty for breaking this rule is that you get what you have now: A clusterfuck and no public support. That’s the second reason you follow the rule. The first reason is that that’s the only way you know you’ll have a moral underpinning for the thing when it all starts to go horribly wrong later. Here you are with a clusterfuck, and there is no moral foundation for the thing because the cardinal rule was broken.
War is not a policy toy for little boys who are trying to show their mommies what strong presidents they can be.
I think the crux of our differences is that you are all getting hung up on the meaning of words like “intelligent”, “planned” and “cause”. You are assumming they have to mean a god, I’m assumming that one could take a more abstract view of those words. Like I said, planned and purposeful could mean something is based off a plan to serve a purposeful function. The development of an animal from a core genetic code is a ‘planned and purposeful’ event, I would argue. The genetic code is the “plan” and each instruction on the code assigns the “purpose” of each component to develop. Let’s not limit our thinking here.
“Intelligent cause” to Behe means something OTHER “than an undirected process such as natural selection” Just because something is not done through natural selection does not mean that it has to be supernatural, like you are all assuming. Plenty of natural phenomena are “directed”. Again the physical development of an animal is “directed” through genes, much of an animal’s behavior is “directed” through instinct. Perhaps there is some process in our genes which can self-select mutations. If true, this self-selection would mean an “intelligent” design, or an “intelligent” cause which directs or controls the development of certain mutations other than chance. Anyway, I’m just thinking abstractly here. My point is you are assuming god or the supernatural, and for argument’s sake, I’m saying it could be some controlling ‘natural’ process we haven’t discovered.
If you forget about the supernatural stuff, I would think it is possible to take the natural rate of mutation that exists (which is fairly constant I believe) and match it up to the rate of mutations needed to provide enough variety to develop certain complex systems in the amount of time they have developed on this earth. If they don’t match up, you say it’s possible something other than the undirected process of mutation and natural selection was in order there. So far Behe hasn’t shown this, but that’s not to say it’s not a testable idea. Hence I feel everyone’s assertions here that there is “no testable method” is wrong as I just listed one for you.
But if you refuse to be flexible in your interpretation of those words, then I suppose we will have to agree to disagree. I’m sorry to even bring it up in this segment actually, but random people keep approaching me with this subject.
Stick with the way words are used by the people advancing ID. That way you won’t have to invent your own.
Reeves, I don’t know what you mean when you say if “this is the way you approach”. I think you didn’t “comprehend” what I was saying there. When I said I don’t care what others think, I meant that, if they have a different opinion than I do, it doesn’t bother me, whereas other people seem to get personally affected. It’s not that I don’t care to consider their arguments. I thought that was apparent but perhaps I was not clear enough. As to what you mean about the difference between their arguments and their conclusions, you lost me there. Kind of all part and parcel, no? Once again, “That’s indicated by your insistance on substituting what you “think” someone means for what they say they mean.” You lost me there again man. I would suggest you stick more to examples so that I can understand better what you are talking about.
As to “afraid you’re inviting exactly the sort of treatment of which you complain. ” Look,. Reeves, I can say and think whatever the hell I want to, that’s my point. People can hold any opinion they want and argue it as stupidly as they want to with me, and it doesn’t bother me! Why should it? If you don’t like something I post or the way I post, or vice versa, just don’t engage me. There are plenty of other people who will (too many sometimes actually). All I ask is that as long as I am polite to someone, that they be polite back. Whether I and someone else will have a meeting of the minds and have a productive exchange on here, that’s up to chemistry and fate. So far it has happened multiple times and that’s why I keep posting here.
And by the way, according to dictionary.com: Comprehension- “To take in the meaning, nature, or importance of; grasp.” Take in meaning. I said ‘to understand’. Hmmm. Now how is that different from what I said?
Whose plan? Whose purpose?
Come on now. In my opinion, it doens’t have to be a “who”. It can be a “what”. That’s what I posted on above. But hey, maybe I’m inventing my own language, like ppGaz suggests. Well, it wouldn’t be the first time – especially after some Scotch.(jk)
Ultimately it doesn’t matter whether you refer to it as a who or what. You’re talking about an intelligent cause that is other than natural. Which means you’re talking about god, spirit, mysticism, or whatever. Really doesn’t matter. It’s not science.
Nor is it original. People have posited these ideas for a long time. But not in science.
Ah, the Scotch defense.
Well, it works for Stormy.
scs,yo,gifted dude-your language and your reference to your specialness in school(like you had to tell us,bro)makes me suspect you’re closer in age to my son than to me.That,and your spirited defense of The Debacle-well,I’ve just got to ask,dude-you are posting from a Baghdad area code,right?
scs is a girl.
scs,yo,gifted dudette-your language and your reference to your specialness in school(like you had to tell us,girlfriend)makes me suspect you’re closer in age to my son than to me.That,and your spirited defense of The Debacle-well,I’ve just got to ask,dudette-you are posting from a Baghdad area code,right?
I did not know that.
And a young one at that.
Love the new translation!
scs has done very well here against us rude and obnoxious blabmasters.
Would you say the same thing if she were a he?
It’s the young part. Of course that could mean anything from ten on up. I don’t know what young means here.
The she part? Generally, I’ve found that women are harder to argue with. For me, anyway. Men are more predictable in an argument. I can stay 3 -5 posts ahead of a male antagonist, especially if we’re talking politics. With women, let’s just say, any time I don’t get killed, I consider it a victory in a verbal contest.
People think I’m joking when I say that I’ve never won an argument with my spouse. I’m not. Sure, she lets me win once in a while, but it’s not like the real thing.
Can you tell on this blog who is male and who is female based on their arguments?
Intelligent Design does not pass the “Okay, so what?” defense.
Spoze that *this* was all put into play by some intelligent being … that leads to a question “so what?”.
Can Behe point to a single scientific investigation driven by a necessary presupposition of ‘intelligence’ to the design?
(to Soj) …
You’re a female IIRC, but I didn’t know until you said so (at least I think it was you, a few months ago).
However I am not typical. I really don’t pay that much attention to the characteristics of posters most of the time … I pay attention mostly to the content of posts.
Tim F embarassed me by pointing out that I didn’t even know he was a “liberal” in here because I hadn’t paid that much attention to his naeon the posts.
I’m afraid I’m a politics wonk.
Yep, I’m a girl. But not a young one. Probably close in age to you.
I also tend to focus on content. But every now and then someone says something that gives it away. scs was really upset over the whole Miers thing so it wasn’t too hard to figure out that she was female and young.
Wow, that’s pretty perceptive. I’m flying blind over here. All I see are polls and rhetoric.
If I didn’t have a 6-month old granddaughter around here a lot of the time I’d …. just be a blog commenter. Christ, how pathetic! I gotta get a new hobby.
A 6-month old grandbaby sounds like a wonderful hobby! And certainly a major incentive to be worried about the future of our country. The future will be hers. Let’s hope we bequeath to her a country that she can be proud of.
59 and counting.
I didn’t acquire a taste for scotch until I was in my 20’s.Of course,scs may be preternaturally precocious in her affection for alcohol.Even so,17 year olds can enlist(with parental consent),and she seems to have pretty strong feelings about our continued presence in Iraq-strong enough in fact to spend her Saturday night using her gifts to dissuade us of our “groupthink”.So of course,inasmuch as 9-11 changed everything and,oddly,the military is struggling to meet their recruiting goals,well,I just was hoping I could get a postcard from Iraq.
51 and getting better with each passing year. ;-)
You’re going to have a very long wait. What’s that saying… a cold day in hell?
Alright, I don’t want to confirm the guessing game because I want to be a mystery (although Soj does seem to have knack for this.) I always think people treat males and females differently in arguments so I don’t want to say.
As to this: Even so,17 year olds can enlist(with parental consent), You know I kind of thought about it. But, I may not be that old, but I’m not THAT young either. I think you have to be under 21 to have the stamina to start up all that. Maybe it’s better for all involved for me to stick to the Scotch.
Hmmmmm, 20 years? 16, maybe? I can’t think of another team that fits that profile besides the Angels.
The Disenfranchised Voter
No, that’s just social conservatives…
There’s your example. I said look up the difference between comprehension and acceptance. You’ve ignored what I actually said and substituted a completely different comparison. This is what I mean by inviting the treatment you complain of. Why should anyone respect your arguments if you indulge in this kind of misrepresentation? One’s forced to conclude that you either do such things intentionally or you’re not even aware of doing them. In either case most folks would simply write you off as, at best, unserious or, at worst, dishonest.
Similarly, take your plaint about people being “inflexible” about the meaning of words. What is that other than an attempt to avoid responsibilty for your own statements? As I pointed out before, language is a collective enterprise and you are not entitled to alter the meaning of words or the statements of others at your own whim. If you choose to do so, you have no grounds to complain if people treat you with something less than respect.
You may be very bright but this is not Alice In Wonderland and words don’t mean just what you want them to mean when you use them. If can’t accept objective standards for language or be relied upon for accuracy there’s little point in talking to you.
Excuse me. That should read ‘If you can’t accept objective standards…’
If you find my argument confusing then I recommend ppgaz’s pithier statement:
scs,as frustrated as you became when your multiple choice test on Iraq was ignored,you were the last person I expected to sidestep my question-are you posting from Iraq,and if not,why not?The only mystery you represent to me is how someone so gifted and with such strong feelings about the war in Iraq can remain stateside and practice their rhetorical gymnastics while military leaders and experts warn of the long term negative effects on the quality of the armed forces.Failure to meet recruiting goals have forced the military to revise downward educational standards (and force others to serve beyond their committment).You,on the other hand,with your specialness,are just the type of intellectually superior brave young American we need to win the Global War On Terror.Not my unpatriotic,slacker kids,who have joined me in protesting The Debacle from the beginning.Despite my children’s vulnerability,I support Rep.Murtha when he calls for the return of a military draft(not one,however,that allows the system to be gamed like the last one did)-I suspect if we had one now we wouldn’t have so many 22 year olds whose depth of support for war entails slapping a yellow ribbon magnet on their vehicle.
The pitcher who served up the homer to the Red Sox later committed suicide.
The Beantowners got their comeuppance in game 6 of that World Series … Buckner’s error.
Addendum – Donnie Moore. RIP.
You asked above, I replied this:
That’s my answer. I did not avoid it. Please read thoroughly before you bitch. No one WANTS to go to any war of course. Doesn’t mean that war isn’t the right thing to do sometimes. As to me getting frustrated about my multiple choice questions, that was mainly directed at Sojourner, whom I had corresponded with before on that topic. I feel that she had pressed me firmly on other topics before and I felt we had enough familiarity for me to press her on something as well. Sorry our conversation upset you. Next time I will specifically address who I mean to avoid that.
Reeves, here’s a summary of our prev convo on this issue. (you are in bold)
Reeves you are being kind of wet rag here. I initially disputed your version of the meaning of “comprehend” as “to recognize the internal logic” and instead said the meaning is closer to just “understanding”.
Then you said I should consult the dictionary on the difference between ‘comprehend’ and ‘acceptance’. I didn’t feel I had to because I pretty much just stated what the meaning of the word comprehend is, according to dictionary.com. That’s like saying to me “I suggest you consult the dictionary on the difference between ‘comprehend’ and ‘kangaroo'”, after I just gave you the meaning of the word comprehend. I think you are the one who substituted completely different comparison as we were talking about ‘comprehend’, I gave you the def for that, and you all of a sudden turned it into the meaning of ‘acceptance’. Like I said, comprehend means ‘to understand’, and we all know understand does not have to mean ‘accept’. What’s your point man?
Reeves, you’re going to have to do better than that.
I hardly think I am altering the meaning of the words “design” on my OWN whim. I am reflecting how Behe presented the word “design” in his quote above about ID, which is the point of this part of the discussion. Everyone over two years old know that language is a fluid, evolving phenomena, and different words can have different shades of meaning to different people. What do you think your great-grandparents mean when they call someone ‘gay’? That’s why you have to take time to bother to “comprehend” what they mean. Behe is using the word “design” in an open, interpretative manner to make his point, such as the genetic code is a ‘design’ for a plant or animal.
Reeves, you are going to have to make some more relevant arguments. If you don’t, don’t be surprised if people are going to start thinking you are just a self important windbag and won’t take you seriously. But hey, thanks for all your advice. It really made me think.
Sorry,scs-I guess I was just reluctant to believe that your best answer was that 21 is too old to be starting a military career.I’ve heard a number of rationales for avoiding military service,but that ones new-I’ll credit you for novelty(by the way,if it’s really your stamina you’re concerned about,take it from an old man whose been there-I was able to do 2&3 consecutive 24 hour shifts while in my late 20’s.My running and swimming times actually improved in my 30’s.With the improvements we’ve seen in nutrition and health care,21 isn’t the death sentence it was in the past).On the other hand,by your own reasoning,with the level of committment shown by people of your (presumed) age who SUPPORT the occupation in Iraq,we’re fucked in the Global War On Terror-unless those yellow ribbon magnets act as some magic talisman.As you’ve no doubt noticed,I’m not by nature a cynical person,but I’m beginning to think that 9-11 didn’t change everything.
You’re being more than a little disingenous here. Care to explain how you can understand an argument without comprehending its internal logic and consistancy? Your point about comprehension/understanding is pointless.
My comment about comprehension vs acceptance was a direct reference to your assertion that when I and others used the former we actually meant the latter. Yet another clear example of substituting your own prejudice for what another person actually said.
Your defense of the “flexibility” of language reeks of the same self serving dishonesty. You’ve been arguing for some time that ID is actually scientific. In Science, terminology is not “flexible”. Science is a discipline which requires strict specificity. If you are arguing that ID requires a looser standard, you are admitting that it is not Science. In any case, can you show where Behe makes any of the claims about the terminology that you have floated here? He certainly doesn’t in the quote above. Nor would he, since he understands, as you do not, that it would destroy his claim to scientific validity. The standards of debate in Science are not the same as those of the coffee shop or pub. If you want to be taken seriously you need to understand that.
Feel free to label me a “self important windbag” or any other derogatory epithet that tickles your fancy. I couldn’t care less. As someone already suggested, the emotional resort to name calling is indicative of a failed intellect.
You ask “what would that intelligent source be?” and I answer “who knows?”
This whole evolve-create debate is like so many other “causes”: the polarizing effect of sound-byte communications has sucked the substance right out of it.
Darwinian evolution is not limited to the nihilistic “accidental soup” theories, and never was. Design-based theories are not limited to the “7 literal day” fundamentalist notions, and never were. But both sides have been manipulated into taking positions in corners into which they have painted themselves in attempting to defend THEMSELVES, not their ideas.
I was raised in the parochial school system of the Catholic Church in which scientific theories were every bit as complex and non-deistic as anything I have read in UMass texts, Clark U texts, or anywhere else.
No one forced me, as a youngster, to connect those ideas with whatever personal sense I had made of the spiritual or religious beliefs I was taught.
It deeply saddens me that so many have been so incredibly vicious that they made it their mission to take the daughter I loved and lie to her over and over. They did this as teachers who made it their mission to punish “oppressor” (blond, apparently Christian) children, as a viciously Catholic aunt who hated my adventuring off into Pentecoatalism as well as Socialist Atheism, as an opportunistic father who did not understand the damage he caused when he allowed these bigotted relatives to manipulate his own confused financial issues to destroy my home at every chance.
Read “Who Stole Feminism” by Christina Hoff Sommers.
She was a professor at Clark University a few years after I was a student there.
Read that book, Sojourner, please. There is a chapter in it about what happened in Great Barrington.
I lived on June Mountain with my little girl when I worked in the office at Simon’s Rock College. The students there were trained in Patricia Sharp’s class to gang up on any professor who did not actively promote the extreme hate-based politics of the feminists who had set up Womens’ Services Centers.
I did not even recognize the degree to which my own daughter’s life in middle school in Great Barrington was being attacked by the same people. I only knew that she was being called names on the bus and we were receiving calls sometimes in the middle of the night from people who had identified me as an “enemy” because I had spoken up against some of the irresponsible school programs and projects that many parents did not want for our children.
These did not seem political at all, but in fact, it turned out, they were.
The same Catholic aunt who lied to the whole family about where my daughter and me were living and what we were doing had actually helped set up the Pittsfield Women’s Services Center with over $250,000 and she had asked me, as an artist, to participate in that Center’s “women’s” art shows. The purpose was to cover the money, that went to reduce MURDER charges against her son and six other young men, who had drowned two men in Laurel Lake in Lee, Massachusetts. The two victims were Barry Griffin anb Richard Retzel. The charges were reduced to manslaughter and then they were aquitted because the jury could not find them guilty of manslaughter without simultaneously implying they were innocent of murder.
The “Lenox 7”, as those killers came to be known, included the nephew of the DA in Pittsfield and my own nephew. My nephew’s sister was simultaneously involved in a trial, as one of FIVE girls raped by a Lenox High School Gym teacher.
That is how my family came to be so terribly entangled with setting up a money-laundering system inside the Women’s Services Centers.
My daughter was in nursery school when those killings happened, and in first grade in Lenox when the family demanded that I co-operate in laundering that money.
My daughter was too young to be aware of those cases. I think the Lenox High School Gym teacher actually got away with a very light sentence, and I am strongly aware that my neice was heavily abused by my own family for helping the prosecution, even though she had been raped!
My daughter saw me break down and heard fights on the phone.
She was NEVER in the courtroom when the judge heard her father say that indeed he had been receiving many calls from her aunt and from “concerned” STRANGERS and she did not hear the arguments with the relatives who did not understand how important it was to protect ourselves against that aunt and that entire branch of the family.
She is in her late 20’s now. She was strongly punished in a variety of ways by her father and her aunt’s friends in the “Women’s Services System” every single time she had so much as the smallest positive or loving thing to say about her mother, me.
She had NO idea why Mr Cohen, the Jewish music teacher in Great Barrington, PUBLICLY HUMILIATED her at the county spelling bee when she won a prize. He did this by turning his back in an open expression of hatred when she and I went through the receiving line to receive her plaque.
I never again went to any of her opening theatre persormances for fear of the horrible attack.
Sojourner, that same aunt whose use of the Women’s Services Center FUNDED the hate attacks in Great Barrington, had a daughter, who had converted to Judaism from Catholicism, who was the “family counselor” in Mr Cohen’s synagogue and who had been stopped in her job in Catholic Charities from using her social work license to help the attacks on my daughter and me.
I was called “paranoid” over and over again, and my daughter actually was taken by two social workers from the class room as a child and SECRETLY INTERROGATED IN AN APARTMENT BELONGING TO ONE OF THEM. I have the papers that I got under the “freedom of information act”, Sojourner.
I did not know about that interrogation, in which they spent an entire afternoon trying to break my daughter’s will in her refusal to stop loving her mother, until LONG AFTER the incident in which my daughter released our German Shepherd when one of those same social workers came to the house.
That social worker, a close friend of that criminal branch of my family, was FIRED when my lawyer showed the court that she had perjured herself and that she was KNOWN in a NUMBER of cases to have been staging unauthorized “visits” on behalf of criminals in Berkshire County.
My daughter was not in the courtroom to hear those arguments.
My daughter was subjected to a horrible gauntlet attack, even worse than those professors at Simon’s Rock College expereienced.
She called me from Missouri to tell me why she had broken down, and she was in tears when she told me what happened.
After the gauntlet, she had been sent to a meeting at the Unitarian Church by the public high school guidance counselor, because she was being called “gay” since she did not date boys at that school.
Her boyfriend had already graduated, and met her after school and in other activities, and I thought that the meeting at the Unitarian Church was going to be a lecture or discussion, so in order to protect my daughter from more of the kinds of attacks she had mentioned (nasty comments that she had parried with the kind of sarcastic wit I consider to be a sign of healthy strength in anyone) I suggested her boyfriend accompany her.
They both came back from that meeting all shook up. They both had always had a wide range of relationships in their theatre and art circles, and they had not been prepared for the emotional encirclement and horrible mental-breakdown type of attack those OLDER ADULTS subjected these 18-yr-olds to!!!!
Eventually my daughter graduated, National Honor Society, with not ONE opportunity for scholarship offered.
She never knew the truth about any of this. When I lived in Boston, relatives lied to her to keep her from visiting me, but eventually she did, anyway.
I never pushed a specific sexual or political or religious belief system on her. I had to leave Boston because the buyer in the gourmet store where I worked had been going to Women Center meetings at Wellesley and had talked to my neice there, and discovered I was the artist who had not helped their shows.
She began harrassing me daily. She even talked about the rape in threatening me! I had provided some of the material I had gathered while writing home-school curricula to a CSI researcher named Thom White who worked at an animal rescue center for his archives, because my material contained explanations of appropriate and inappropriate presentations of various religious rituals in a public school setting.
Thom White was concerned about the techniques he and some other law enforcement officials saw happening in the violent gang scenes they encountered.
When I told him what was going on at the job, he brought the situation to the attention of a State police detective. This was in 1998. I then left Boston and eventually settled elsewhere.
I lost touch with my daughter during this time. She did not know what was going on.
The last time I saw Thom White was at the rescue shelter. He acted strange, met me in the lobby and whisperingly almost pushed me out the door.
The State police detective did not seem to be doing anything to help me, and Thom’s behavior scared me, so because of that and the scary phone calls someone in Brooklyn NY started making to me, I left as rapidly and secretly as I could.
After living in Texas for awhile, I had started to feel safe about contacting family. I thought it was safe to invite my daughter back into the family after so many years, and to attend my parents’ funerals. My daughter was living a happy enough life of her own, and has no idea that I did NOT know that her vicious aunt had decided to try to get her to read from the Bible at the funeral, which my daughter would not have wanted to do. The same aunt then told her cousins and other relatives that I had driven my daughter away from attending that funeral!!!!
My daughter was not there, in her uncle’s house in Vermont, when that aunt said to me “If you are thinking of moving up here, you had better understand I STILL have a lot of friends in the Pittsfield courthouse!”
That aunt had noticed my daughter making remarks to convince me to move back to New England, and I had not said much about my reasons for staying away. That aunt was terrified that I might move back because she saw and heard another relative getting addresses from me of the different design jobs I had held over the years and the different places i had lived. She realized that her lies might be exposed, if I had an interest.
But I did not have an interest. I only wanted my daughter and me to live our lives freely and safely.
That aunt then invited my daughter to her house for Thanksgiving, and I don’t know who else was there but I suspect the whole criminal crowd (my daughter DID NOT EVER KNOW about the murder case in Lee, Massachusetts!) and they apparently put my daughter through the same kind of cult-like “encirclement” conditioning that the Women’s Services Centers activists have helped them use in Great Barrington and Pittsfield.
My daughter changed completely from the independent young woman I could talk with once a week or so to a robot-like and tense young woman who was apparently NOT ALLOWED in her own mind to say anything to me except “Why are you not in a therapist’s care?” and I tried for months to understand what had happened. I blamed the lesbian minister at the ELCA church I was attending for talking about me to her friends in Massachusetts. No one would tell me what was going on and my daughter would not even say WHY she had to keep repeating this horrible dehumanizing mantra over and over.
Finally, in a desperate attempt to force my daughter into a therapist’s office herself, I left a cruel and angry message on her machine. I said something I hoped would signal the therapist to talk with her about my anger level and would signal the therapist to help us both, but what happened instead was that my daughter played that message over and over to punish herself and was apparently encouraged to blame me for everything, to avoid any possiblity of communication and reconcilation or forgiveness of any kind.
Thom White was killed in 1999, having been visited by someone who worked in a social service center in Vermont. That person was there with him in the weeks after he had begun asking questions about material I had given him, that was very strong evidence of criminal violance SUPPORTED by the Pittsfield Women’s Service Center. That person was a volunteer in the same center that my social-worker relative works in. This is the social-worker relative who had tried to use her position in Catholic Charities to pressure me on behalf of her brother in the Lenox 7 case.
Thom White died a few days after some kind of fall down the stairs in 1999, with that “volunteer” there with him, and several of his friends, including me, have requested an investigation, and have been assured that one will happen.
Tomorrow is Mother’s Day. I still live at the same address and phone number I was at the last time my daughter contacted me. I hope she reads this and contacts me again. I love her very much. I don’t believe any of the relatives who have put so much effort into stopping her from having any kind of relationship with me have been there for her.
I comfort myself knowing that she is a vibrant and independent young woman. I know that if she allows herself to contact me and allows herself to see that I am a human being who was broken down under impossible odds, she may forgive me enough so that we may both heal.
There is NO connection between the actions of the criminals I have described above and the strong beliefs of so many vibrant young feminists, because the individuals who have exploited the Women’s Services Centers as convenient channels of laundered bribes are NOT at all involved in the philosophies and goals of the men and woman who truly value freedom, truth, equality and a better planet for all. They are vicious, and should be ignored.