Friday, September 29, 2006

When will we stop and see the light?

* laura:
"Columbia U's Michael Roston says President Bush may use a presidential signing statement issued last year to authorize payment of a salary to UN ambassador John Bolton even after a second recess appointment."
oh jeebus.

* ohare:
"Terrorism is deeply misunderstood when it attracts metaphors like war: a war is a program to cause a unitary decisionmaker to take specific actions of which he is capable, such as surrender, acceptance of occupation, division of a territory, and the like. The war metaphor entails a bunch of nice associated values like courage and determination, but it completely misrepresents a task like coping with terrorism (or drugs). Terrorism is a condition of ongoing risk that is much better approached with the metaphors of preparedness, planned response, and containment that we use for natural disasters than those of war or anything like it. It's a risk that has to be managed, and for a long time, no matter that its agents hate us or offend our gods or won't play fair (though getting these insights right has some predictive value). Would we deal with the San Andreas fault differently if we discovered the geology of California really disliked humans and buildings?

Democrats have to do what they have to do to get elected by a voting population profoundly misinformed and alienated by a ghastly alliance of willful ignorance, greed, power mania, and prejudice. It's not fair, but that's how it is. But they should be careful not to paralyze their time in power with dysfunctional commitments to make water flow uphill, even if voters and columnists desperately want to hear something soothing."

* arkin:
"A lot more is needed today than getting out of Iraq.

If the Democrats had their way, and the "war" against terrorism were just accelerated in Afghanistan and Pakistan, my guess is that "it" would become the new "cause celebre." The "war" against terrorism is the problem at this point, as is our simplistic view of ourselves and what we are fighting.

* arkin:
"Chavez and Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, speak for a huge segment of world opinion and we dismiss their histrionics at our peril.

The perfunctory U.S. response to Chavez, moreover, shows how out-to-lunch we are. I just hope somewhere deeper in the U.S. government, people are pondering why and how it is that we have ended up in such a worse position vis a vis much of the world five years after September 11, 2001.
Hugo Chavez’s speech yesterday at the United Nations should put to rest the notion that American -- and the West -- faces radical Islam or “terrorism” as its main enemy.
Venezuela, Iran, Syria, Pakistan, Bolivia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon. Etcetera. Etcetera. Something ties all of these countries together and it isn’t their “evil” or an insatiable appetite for nuclear weapons or “terrorism.”

At this point, our simplistic view of these nations and their people, and our selected pursuit of a military-only war when we know that it is not all that is needed is as much a part of the problem.

When will we stop and see the light?"


rimone said...

hey, it's only six years--give the dumbfucks in the states time to comprehend.

actually, reinstating the draft might move a few million off their asses when their children are directly affected. but who knows?

nb: i'm totally against the draft.

lukery said...

"nb: i'm totally against the draft."

nb: i'm totally against wars.

yeah - i think the draft would be a good start in getting everyone to WakeTFU

fucking fuckers

LeeB said...

Y'all may recall that right around the time of the Iraqi invasion, Democratic Rep. Charlie Rangel introduced legislation calling for reinstatement of the draft under new rules - it would apply to EVERYone of appropriate age, male-female, rich/poor. EVERYBODY.

The point, of course, was not that Rangel WANTS a draft; he wanted a clear message sent to the idiots who are so damned war-crazy.

The chicken-hawks need to hear loudly and very clearly that whenever they want to jump in and send other people's kids off to fight and risk their lives in these 'adventures,' they are also sending their own children. No college deferments, no marriage deferments, no parenting deferments, like was the rule in Viet Nam. None of that idiocy that managed to keep the better educated, wealthier young people out of harm's way while leaving the military necessities up to the poor and/or brown races to fulfill. Anybody hear echos of AWOL bu$h in this part???

People who freaked out and professed to be opposed to a draft as inferior to the quality of the all-volunteer military sort of missed the point, IMNHO. You'll notice his proposition didn't get much discussion. Can't have people saying out loud that it is only the children of the middle and lower classes who are expected to give their lives in service of their country and their country's corporate masters.

lukery said...

what LeeB said.

i could be for a draft and against wars.

Anonymous said...

same here, what LeeB and Luke said. /rimone

LeeB said...

WooHoo! Yay, me!! Thank you, boys and girls . . . :-)

Now, to carry the thought a little further, mandatory government service is something that has many peacetime applications. There are so many things that need attention, if a 'draft' applied to all, and called for, as an example, two years of service that began with military training then moved on to other assignments, similar to the Peace Corps and VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America) to help with natural disasters, etc., it could have positive 'side effects' like eventually a more community-involved and service-oriented adult population. INMHO, when people have had a hand in helping others up the ladder, they have less interest in allowing or supporting destructive policies.

Also, I've heard some suggest that such a program could provide, in exchange for those two years beginning with graduation from high school, tuition credits to be used after the two years have been served. For those attracted to military service as a career, education benefits would still apply, with ongoing service such as the National Guard does - weekend warriors/summer extended exercises - until graduation, then full-time military service for a contracted period. Of course, if the criminal cabal currently running the country has their way, this will never happen.

I just sent a question to a lawyer I know to find out what he is hearing among his colleagues (criminal defense bar, primarily) and if he has any idea when and what we will hear from the American Bar Association about this dastardly sack-o-crap legislation that was just rammed through Congress.

lukery said...

"I just sent a question to a lawyer I know to find out"

cool - if yuo get an answer, ask if I can publish it (anon or otherwise)

LeeB said...

HA! Would I even dream of withholding such info from you? :-)

rimone said...

LeeB: when people have had a hand in helping others up the ladder, they have less interest in allowing or supporting destructive policies.

exactly. :-)