War reporting and discussion
William Pitt writes an op-ed about where the criticism in the press and blogs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have gone in the last couple years:
A good friend noted recently how little we hear of Iraq and Afghanistan in the news anymore, and further noted the deafening silence regarding those ongoing wars from what he described as “dishwater left-leaning political activists” whose disengagement from the issue, according to him, makes them full of something I can’t repeat in print. That bogus disengagement, he asserts, stems from the fact that Obama is in office now, so everything must be OK. It isn’t, of course, but it is hard to miss the fact that we haven’t heard much about the wars, or the protesters, since a couple of Januarys ago.
Once again, all that was from one single day (Rdan…a long list of bombings and deaths by place). So, yeah, it’s not over over there. Not by a long chalk, and despite the whistling silence, it’s not over over here, either. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan affect every living American well beyond the impact of the flesh-and-blood conflicts we occasionally see on TV. The issue of who is still getting rich off those wars, how our society has been wired to blindly support a permanent state of war, and why we hear so little about these all-consuming matters, remain deeply pressing and of deadly importance.
Jamail is not the only reporter focusing on this. This Thursday, a teach-in will be taking place on Capitol Hill to focus specifically on Iraq, Afghanistan and the issues that surround them. The moderator will be Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) and the panelists will include Chris Hedges, author of “War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning”; Jeremy Scahill, author of “Blackwater: The Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Mercenary Army,” and former Army colonel and current political activist Ann Wright.
There is a lot of conversation on other hearings and news, but as
“Jarhead” succinctly puts it, “We are still in the desert.”
The war(s) have morphed into badly managed, unlikeable programs that are likely to drag on no matter what anyone does, much like agricultural subsidies or a Scalito dominated Supreme Court. The point where a change could be made that would lead to much other than more of the same passed, and unless something unforeseeable happens, the next point where such a change could happen is not going to happen any time soon either. I haven’t posted on the wars in a while – well before Obama became President, I believe – but neither have I posted on ag subsidies or the Scalito bench in that time either. I don’t have much to say about the war in Iraq than what I’ve already put into posts, just as I don’t have much to say about ag subsidies or Scalito than what I’ve already said about those topics.
So why keep at it, when it won’t make any difference and I have other things to discuss that align more closely with my comparative advantage? My guess is that everyone else has made more or less the same calculation.
Certainly I have. I’ll keep pointing out the rising costs–Stiglitz and Bilmes look like incurable optimists now–and note that people such as Greg Mitchell and Katrina vanden Heuvel keep pointing out the human cost at their (basically political) blogs, but there isn’t much of a point in dealing with the wars in isolation on an economics-centered blog.
Too much to write aboot excess reserves and SEC policy to pay attention to lost causes. Waiting for the Palin Administration to get us out of there.
is right. but i imagine lots of folks who voted for O are feeling as betrayed about the wars as i am feeling about SS. of course we have only ourselves to blame. if we had listened we’d have known this was what he was going to give us. i would think that good-cop bad-cop is now firmly established as the principle of american democracy, and only a determination to “show up” keeps us pretending we can make a difference. witness, i think is the word.
Go back and look at Buff’s predictions, and claims that Dems now own it! If you voted for “O” then, for many, your views have been subverted to what was necessary to stay elected and get a job, already started, done.
Yeah I think Cactus pretty much nails it and although things are hardly going well in Iraq, my understanding is that we will be down to 50,000 “trainers” by August and out by the end of 2011, so what should we take to the streets about? Afgahnistan has always been different to a large segment of the population because of 9?11 and remains different now because instead of winding down we are cranking up–it is now Obama’s War while Iraq is still Dumbya’s War. That being said and notwithstanding my ambivelence about Afgahnistan as the place where empires go to die, most would agree that Dumbya badly botched the Afgahnistan War and ignored it after deciding he wanted to invade Iraq and Obama has only had 15 months to turn the thing around. I am not optomistic and at some point in the not too distant future I expect that the left will start making noise about exit plans. That will really cause the GOP’s heads to explode–do they side with Obama or the liberals?
I just met a guy who as a 53 year old will be going back to Afghanistan leading a squad of men doing things such as snatch-n-grab operations. So we are going to be sending our soldiers out to kick down doors, navigate through IEDs, to pick up some insurgent terrorist suspects.
This way of fighting a war to me seems insane. I don’t believe in fighting fair but rather using overwhelming force from firepower or superior numbers. Going street to street in small numbers seems to take away all of our advantages and puts us at the level of our enemies. Our soldiers are still better trained and better equiped but their comparative advantage is minimized fighting the war the way they are going about it.
I think the strategy in Afghanistan is incoherrent. Having soldiers take ground and then turn around and give it up makes no sense. The strategy makes no sense that is if there is a strategy. We had a strategy in Iraq but I don’t see one in Afghanistan.
So why don’t we want to talk about it. Maybe its because liberal democrat leaning journalists don’t want to make the president look bad over an incompetent policy; and conservative republican leaning journalists just want to support the troops regardless of who they are being led by.
The war I am most interested in is in Mexico. That one could really bite us in the ass.
We just need to get out of Iraq and Afganistan asap. It was foolish to go in and foolish to stay.
by Bruce Webb
I don’t buy the central premise.
In 2001 the Taliban regime refused to hand over the mastermind of an attack that killed over 3000 Americans and others, at which point many (if not all) on the Left concluded that a war, hopefully narrowly targetted on Al Qaeda was inevitable and to some degree desirable. That war was launched with a pretty high degree of precision and within weeks a few battalions of American Special Forces troops had Bin Laden on the run and probably pinned down in Tora Bora. Okay so far so good.
But the Bush Administration not only dropped the ball at Tora Bora they proceeded to make the astonishing claim vis a vis Bin Laden that “I am truly not concerned about him”
““The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him.”
– G.W. Bush, 9/13/01
“I want justice…There’s an old poster out West, as I recall, that said, ‘Wanted: Dead or Alive,'”
– G.W. Bush, 9/17/01, UPI”
(a little too cowboy but on the right track, but then:)
“I don’t know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don’t care. It’s not that important. It’s not our priority.”
– G.W. Bush, 3/13/02
“I am truly not that concerned about him.”
– G.W. Bush, responding to a question about bin Laden’s whereabouts,
3/13/02 (The New American, 4/8/02)
At which point it became clear to the Left that Bush fundamentally didn’t give a shit about the specific events of 9/11 but with Cheney saw it as an opportunity to get a long-planned war on Iraq and other elements of what would be labeled the “Axis of Evil” on. To the extent that his Administration drew resources away from the pursuit of Bin Laden and diverted them to Iraq, leaving Afghanistan just enough resources to muddle through.
On Sept 12th 2001 patriotic Americans were united in their desire to see Osama Bin Laden’s bleeding head on the top of a pike. And most of us still do which has led to grudging support of some aspects (but not all) of the Af-Pak war. Most of the Left thought that Iraq was at best a diversion and at worst a war crime and want it wound down as fast as possible.
Obama is winding down our presence in Iraq in accordance with an agreement made between the Bush Administration and the Iraqi government. Given that we can’t realistically unscramble that omelet after the fact that is about the best we can do. In Af-Pak the Obama Administration is doing what it promised to do which was to repurpose at least much of the war into targetting specific associates of Osama bin Laden with the goal of at least metaphorically giving us that head on a pike that we never stopped wanting. Personally I am not pleased with him following the Bush policy of coddling corrupt leaders, on the other hand we need some platform to be able to pursue Bin Laden which unlike the AIPAC Likudnik traitors around the ex-Vice President we still see as the highest priority of the U.S.
Bush forfeited any right he had to automatic support when he said “I am truly not concerned about him”. In my book that was damn close to treason (“giving aid and comfort to the enemy in time of war”), because what is more comforting than knowing that you were basically home free on 3000 counts of premeditated murder. Those who can’t see the material differences between protesting Bush’s war policies and reluctantly supporting Obama’s are simply being willfully blind.
Thanks Bruce…I am with you on this one. Obama’s intent was fairly clear…to take a look and decide. If I recall correctly, it was around election time that I asked CoRev if 100,000 was a realistic number of troops at a high side for Afghanistan…many military analysts were using the figure. It seemed clear to me given the circumstances.
I feel no betrayal by Obama’s policy …I could see no other way for him to proceed in his first year at least. Being handed this set of wars along with everything else made for a more cautious approach. All of Bush’s men took years to change their strategy with not so much to worry about until the economic issues hit them in the face. I guess some things can be ignored only so long….certainly agency leaders did. It is still Bush’s war.
We shall see. Meanwhile foreign policy changes.
I have been saying for a year I will write checks to the first credible antiwar anti illegal detention democrat to primary Barack Obama next year. No I don’t think anybody will unless he expands the war into Syria/Iran or what have you…
I hold no illusions about the hypocrisy of politicians – going all in for Edwards was an education I probably needed. But Obama’s willingness to beat hillary up in debates over her votes for the AUMF and then escalate Afghanistan is a real high water mark imo.
We should stay and double down. The hands of our military in any modern conflict we’ve had are always tied by image control and political correctness. If we leave now, we will just be ensuring the entire mess was a waiste. We will still need to monitor and interfere in the process of maintaining Pakistan’s structure and sovreignty. We still need to maintain a presence in Afghanistan in the future for various reasons.
The economic cost and human cost we have suffered as a singular country does not even come close to the cost we paid on September 11th.
Bush Years-(518 Dead)
Obama Years-(532 Dead)
Total – (1050 Dead)
Just because it is difficult and ugly doesn’t mean that it is not the right thing to do. I know many on the left have complained of the price the civilian population have payed in Afghanistan, but they will pay a deeper price after we leave, isn’t that kinda how this all got started-Us Leaving?
I know many have complained about the corruption in the Military-Industrial Complex, well your probably right, but nothing ever works perfectly, and it needs to be put into perspective. We spent more money on Foreign Aid and the Stimulus package of the same time period than we did on the War, let alone any corruption.
We need to see this thru, and try to accomplish as much as we can, at least till we find out how the Iran Situation plays out.
There is one more issue here which I certainly have no ability to comment on substantively, but which Bruce’s comment touched on: The Afgahnistan conflict has bled into Pakistan, a nuclear armed country which has grown increasingly unstable since 2001. While I do not minimize the blood and treasure we are expending in Afgahnistan, that will likely be a drop in the bucket to what will happen if Pakistan is plunged into civil war with muslim fundamentalists. What I do not know is whether Pakistan’s problems are helped or hindered by our continued involvement in the Afgahnistan conflict. I would like to think that members of the Obama administration have factored Pakistan into the calculus in the policy for Afgahnistan, but that may be naivete on my part. I certainly hope no one is using the dominoe theory.
I don’t think most folks here at AB dispute that Obama owns it. And yes, we’re disappointed. But this is just one more way he’s been like GW so far… and that I’ve pointed out before.
What you said until “”So why don’t we want to talk about it” was all discussed here at AB. We’ve pointed out its illogical. Many times. After a while you get tired of pounding your head against the wall and move on to things you know more about.
Sadly, I think you’re right, DD.
An interesting radio interview today from the CBC show “The Current.”
Pt 3: Ethan McCord – When Wikileaks uploaded the video of an attack on Iraqis by two US Apache helicopters, it included footage of two soldiers rushing injured children toward help. Army specialist Ethan McCord recognized himself caught on grainy video on the very day his view of that war and his definition of patriotism changed forever.
One of the money quotes for me was when some time after finding the two injured children in the van and carrying them for medical care (they survived) McCord, back in his quarters, was cleaning the children’s blood off his uniform and getting more and more disturbed by flashbacks. He approached his sergeant , asking for mental health support his sergeant told him “not to be a pussy”, to “get the sand out of his vagina” (I betcha he didn’t really say “vagina”) and suck it up or there would be “repercussions.”
Yep, just what the army needs — privates who don’t need counseling after pulling two nearly dead kids out of a bombed van.
The whole interview can be listened to through a streaming link here: http://www.cbc.ca/thecurrent/2010/04/april-28-2010.html
Your answer, I think, is better than mine.
I had just pulled these posts together, which got me thinking on the occupation.http://www.angrybearblog.com/2007/06/reader-dan-on-combat-ptsd-and-us.html part 1http://www.angrybearblog.com/2007/06/reader-dan-on-ptsd-part-2.html part 2http://www.angrybearblog.com/2007/06/reader-dan-medical-care-part-3.html part 3http://www.angrybearblog.com/2007/06/reader-dan-on-ptsd-and-medical-care.html part 5 http://www.angrybearblog.com/2007/12/ptsd-and-tbi-at-home.html
i don’t think it will bother them that much. the liberals opposed johnson’s war. the r’s were happy to side with johnson on the war and hate him on civil rights.
okay… what ground are you going to “take” ? your problem is that the “enemy” is invisble.
it’s not the Taliban in the hills that are the problem.
but i like your concluding ratioinalization. dems and repubs do the same thing but the dems do it because they are devious and the repubs do it because they are patriots. yep.
well i guess
i just don’t have the requisite amount of bloodlust. i don’t need to see Osama’s head on a spike. and i don’t need to “see it out” (the way we saw out Vietnam, or the War Between the Sates), and I can’t listen to “fight with our hands tied by image control and political correctness” without wanting to puke. lesson for you guys, Jane Fonda did not beat us in Vietnam, the Vietnamese did. If we had stayed to “see it thru” we’d still be there. Funny thing about people is that whatever they think abou their own home grown bastards, they tend to get patriotic when foreigners come in to “save” them.
The whole terrorist thing could have been handled as a police problem. We had the world on our side after 9/11. After invading Iraq, not so much.
Any time you decide that the way to hunt “terrorists” is to call in an air strike on a building with “less than 30” collateral damages… you are lost.
I am wondering did you tell Mr Bush that “we should stay and double down”? Do you think he stopped chasing Osama because of image control and poliitical correctness?
You see, I take Bruce’s point to mean that the guy who started the war said it didn’t matter. If it didn’t matter then, it never mattered and shouldn’t have been started.
I am sorry for the people in Afghanistan and Iraq myself, and if you show me a way to end their suffering by killing the bad guys, I’ll be in the line to sign up in front of you.
please see my reply to your earlier comment. btw i am not a commie. never was. not even a proper pacifist. but i am old enough to have learned that wars always kill the wrong people.
It appears to me that Pitt’s friend raised a good point, and he didn’t muddy it up with a bunch of excuses. He cut to the chase. I don’t believe that it matters, though.
There is no shortage of government information about the military campaigns being conducted in Iraq, Afghanistan, and, to a lesser extent, other theaters around the globe. Similarly, I note no shortage of available news stories via a Google search. There are reports and other information available if people want to read or listen to such.
Maybe one should acknowledge that people tire of various issues. And items get moved around on the news platter. Certainly, the election of a new President of the United States played a role in shifting the previous focus, both in the time allocated to war coverage by the news media and in the little blogs. The same can be said about the global financial crisis and the various government reactions.
The econ blogs were never a prime source for information about the wars. The level of commentary wasn’t particularly noteworthy, though Angry Bear was an exception a few times each year.
I expect that mainstream blogs’ coverage of the ongoing wars and ocean piracy have gone the way of U.S. trade policy – occasionally discussed, but not particularly well understood nor presented in an balanced manner. The Federal deficit discussions should be next to be muddied up and swept off the blog screens…until late this Fall.
I score the howling about the war campaigns as a loss for the anti-Bush crowd.
People moved on…including many of the little Bush howlers. Apparently.
well, maybe that’s not the best way to say it.
wars are bad things. they shouldn’t be started when you can avoid them. and they shouldn’t be “seen thru” when you can quit. i understand about the Belgian Babies on Bayonetts and all, but dammit sometims a man has to make the hard choices.
it’s a pity you muddied up your comment with the “little Bush howlers.” I wonder if you don’t hear much about the wars because there is no political percentage in keeping it before the people.
Or, as you say, and Cactus said before you in different words, people get tired of talking about stuff that isn’t changing (isn’t “news”) they can’t do anything about and which doesn’t affect them…or they don’t think affects them.
the fact is that the press is a whore, and the people are ninnies. the local democrats are still protesting the war every day, not encouraged but not discouraged by their cynical party leaders.
anybody who wasn’t embarrassed by bush and sickened by cheney doesn’t qualify as fully human.
You know more about what, the issue or the product of group think?
but dammit sometims a man has to make the hard choices
The man in the whitehouse did make a choice. He’s sent a small force to Afghanistan and they are going to do some clearing operations and try to kill some of the Taliban. I don’t see this plan as anything more than a political gesture so he can say he’s not weak on defense.
A rant against Bush is not an Obama strategy.
The whole terrorist thing could have been handled as a police problem. We had the world on our side after 9/11.
Tom Friedman said we were all alone right after the attack. I think he blamed Bush for issues such as global warming, missile defense, and the international criminal court.
i could agree with that. but the man i was referring to was me.
hard to believe tom friedman said that, but it wouldn’t be the first time i disagreed with him. might be the first time all the smart people disagreed with him.
I think we are still in Columbia, but that’s with mercenaries, so it’s not official.
Couldn’t we get the Soviets, er, I mean Russians, to nuke Afganistan in return for an under the table deal to give them the Caspian Sea back?
Cactus: “The war(s) have morphed into badly managed, unlikeable programs that are likely to drag on no matter what anyone does…”
That is generally the nature of wars of empire. Wars of actual defense have only slightly better rhistorical records.
Cardiff: “This way of fighting a war to me seems insane.”
Any way of fighting a war is insane. It is equally insane to think that there is some way of fighting a war that is other than insane. That is the nature of war. It is an insane response to political failure. Sadly enough the history of human behavior provides us with proof of the natural insanity of man.
Cardiff: “A rant against Bush is not an Obama strategy.”
True enough, but it’s always good to recall how things got started, and it’s never bad to insult the worst presidential performance in US history.
Amateur Socialist: “I have been saying for a year I will write checks to the first credible antiwar anti illegal detention democrat to primary Barack Obama next year.”
The return of Diogenes!!
Jimi: “If we leave now, we will just be ensuring the entire mess was a waiste(sic).“
That has already been established and it’s been that way since day two in both Iraq and Afghanistan. As noted above, war is a badly managed and unlikeable program. And by the way Jimi, Pakistan was in far better shape, not good shape, but far better, before we decided to “help out” in Afghanistan. Or since they decided to help us out with Afghanistan. Funny how wars seem to be contagious.
I have been traveling on business os missed this when it got posted.
But your very wrong about Iraq. We will not be gone in 2011. I will bet anyone we will have between 30K and 50K US soldiers/sailors/airmen/marines in Iraq on election day 2012. We are not going anywhere. They just won’t be called ‘combat troops’. Now I may get this prediction wrong but so far I’ve been 100% right on my picks on what the Dems were going to do about the war.
And I’ll beleive the left is serious when I see them risking sunburn on the mall again protesting the war. Heck you can’t even get an op-ed critisizing Obambi about his war policies. Its like the entire topic disappeared once Obambi took office.
And the anti-war left doesn’t care. Its all about who is in office D or R. Not the actual war…
Islam will change
Well I remember when AB had a post every other day on the war, with no more chance to change things than you do today. Have you put all of PGLs rants down the memory hole? This has nothing to do with the war and all to do with the inability of the left to critisize a Dem President. Even though he has openly continued all the war policies of his predessessor that the Dems and left screamed about. As I predicted iin 2006 after the Dems took control of Congress, the Dems were un-willing to do anything to change the Presidents policies. Now the Dems are in complete control. They OWN Iraq and Afghanistan now and yet we are still fighting in both places. We have had plenty of time to leave even at a sedate pace. But we are still there.
So when are we going to see the left calling Obama Hitler? Where are the protestors risking sunburn on the mall with thier outraged fury?
That’s right its a D in office so its all good….
Islam will change
cactus the point is it got quite once Obama took office. The Dems were using the war to take politcal power. Not becuase they were against it (not the overwelming, continuos bi-partisna support in Congress since the start that has yet to abate).
heck Vietnam had far less support this far in than these wars. Lets get down to the point. The Dems support the war. The second they had political power it went off the radar. And has stayed that way. remember when all the news organizations wanted to film the coffins at Dover? So where are they now??? Oh that’s right we have D in the office.
Islam will change
You are supporting Obama doing EXACTLY the same things as Bush has done. The only difference is that Obama is a D and Bush is an R. Period. I’ll wait for you to call for Obama as a war criminal.
And, as I pointed out many times, Osama bin Laden is not the issue. He has never been it. Nor Al Queda. If we had wiped out all of AQ, from OBL to the lowliest waterboy, on Sept 12, 2001 the threat to the US would not have changed. I know you disagree and we won’t change each others minds.
But I still wait for the left to hammer Obama for continueing the same war policies as bush. Until I see you guys risking sunburn on the mall again with a D in the office, I don’t really beleive you guys oppossed the war. Just oppossed an R President.
Could you see the protests on the mall if Gore had led us into Iraq as was US policy under Clinton? Neither can I.
Islam will change
Its now Obama’s war. He nad the Dems have had since 2006 to get us out. They have not and escallated.
Or do you forget Kerry’s speach on the floor of the Senate saying we had already lost in Iraq? Yet he and the Dems did nothing…
Obama and the Dems own it all now.
Islam will change
Wars have become busy-work?
“In the face of one of the worst economic environments in memory, those in the highest income groups had nearly full employment levels, with just a 3.2 percent unemployment rate for households with over $150,000 in income and a 4 percent rate in the next-highest income group of $100,000-plus.”
“The two lowest-income groups — under $12,500 and under $20,000 annually — faced unemployment rates of 30.8 percent and 19.1 percent, respectively.”
“The study – published in February – notes that the poor are suffering Depression levels of unemployment”
Of course it is a stretch to say that we are at war in the first place. The conflict in Afganistan might be defined as a war but Iraq’s occupation is little different than having a military presence in the other 140 nations where we have a military presence. The numerical difference in troops is something that can be changed in a matter of days from one foreign base to another so Iraq has become just another place for ‘busy-work’.
These weren’t big Bush’s wars. These were little Bush’s wars. Now, both wars are Obama’s to finish up. And if he doesn’t get the job done, the wars will belong to the next president.
I disagree with your slap at the news media. Reporters on site are still reporting on both wars; Google has plenty of articles covering both wars.
Buffpilot nailed it down early on. The election of President Obama quieted many voices, notably in blogland. Similarly, the lack of predicted implosion in Iraq by many leftists, Democrats, and others including Members of Congress took some of the wind out of their sails.
The anti-war protests are nothing on the scale of what we observed during the Vietnam war. And most protests across the nation have simply vanished into thin air. The protests appear to have been directed moreso at President Bush II than at the events themselves.
As wars go, the protests in the U.S. are now much of nothing compared to what has unfolded in other nations.
I do not know that you are wrong Buff about events in Iraq after 2011–certainly there is a lot of historical precedent, but assuming Obama has Afgahnistan raging, I do not see the upside in staying. He will not be viewed as weak on terrorism if he adheres to the deal Dumbya cut and at the same time keeps killing people at a good clip further east. The military and defense contractors will not be happy, but I think they tend to support the GOP anyway. As to the anti-war left, I tend to be anti-war and I am more left than right, but I hardly know what the anti-war left is thinking. My suspicion is that Obama is getting a pass because there is such general relief that he is not Dumbya–at least in tone. I do think that pass will end by 2012, just as it did for Johnson. The protests of the 60″s were fueled in no small part by people eligible for the draft which is no longer an issue. One interesting change between Obama and Dumbya is that Dumbya kept the wars off budget and Obama has budgetted for them. The protests against endless war, may come from the same baby boomers who protested Vietnam, not because of the blood, but because of the treasure.
rl love: “Of course it is a stretch to say that we are at war in the first place.”
At an annual cost of some where between $700Billion and $One trillion, depending on how much of the collateral and future costs you include, it would seem like a full blown military adventure to most people. How far can you “stretch” the concept of war? A popular definition would be two sides shooting guns at one another in an effort to kill. Or do we define the middle east extravaganzas as feuds, like the Hatfields and McCoys? Nearly ten thousand dead American soldiers is a good enough definition for me. The other sides count their dead in the tens of thousands. Now count the seriously and permanently disabled on both sides. What would you call the situation? That’s it! Iraq and Afghanistan are just situations awaiting resolution.
you make it hard for me to agree with you when you ignore the facts, or at least the fine distinctions.
the “left” is still protesting. read the post. note the teach-in with Kucinich. read my letter. note the daily protests by my local dems.
then note what some of us said about “giving up” when you can’t change anything and the fact that the “news” isn’t new.
so if your point is that Dem politicians are like Rep politicians… well, I think I may agree about that.
and the great mass of the people surging from one side of the boat to the other at the merest not of their captain and the bullhorn of the press… well, that too.
but don’t let us, here, we few, confuse the Eternal Rivalry with what is actually going on.
NOD of their captain, but “not” will do.
it’s not fair you should get two comments to say the same thing. see my reply to your comment above.
O is getting a pass because the press has never given a damn about what the anti war left thinks. it’s only when a significant part of the ruling class goes “anti war” for it’s own purposes that you hear about the protests.
and yes, the draft had something to do with the protests. a lot. but it wasn’t the protests that ended the war in Vietnam. it was Kissinger’s recognition that he was losing.
i have to remember that you are the guy here with the dry wit. But the problem with nuking Afhanistan is how would you tell?
give it a break. four comments to say the same thing. Of course the war is “bipartisan..” of course the evil politicians, of both parties, will use a popular “cause” to win an election, and then go back to business as usual. but you keep confusing “the left” with “the dems.” How naive!
the protests here are not on the mall, but on the courthouse lawn. still there. no, the press is not. not news.
as for O doing “exactly” the same things as Bush. you have a tin ear.
you force me to defend O, and god knows I don’t want to do that.
there is a difference between the guy who sticks his arm in a tiger cage and the guy who has to go in to try to pull him out.
I said that Afghanistan might defined as a war but in Iraq our soldiers are confined to their bases. It is therefore even a stretch to call what is happening in Iraq an ‘occupation’. And if cost is the definition of war one could argue that we are at war with Okinawa, Germany, Panama, etc.
agree almost entirely. but the reporters are still covering the wars. they are not still covering the protests.
as for blogland… i have my own issues with the liberal press. like i said, whores and ninnies.
and the scale of the protests probably does reflect the lack of a draft. just don’t count on a draft ending the war. didn’t then. won’t now.
as for the protests directed agains Bush. Bush was a clumsy liar. So was Cheney. They created a lot of hate. O has the cover of not having lied to get us into the war, and not being a clumsy liar to keep us there. I don’t like O and I think the war is likely counterproductive and may be immoral, but the differences with W are not insignificant.
as to the morality of the war, any war. a case would have to be made that the cost in blood is somehow “worth it.” an existential threat would qualify. i don’t see such a threat. maybe “they” aren’t telling us. or they are and i just don’t believe them. rescuing the victims of the taliban might qualify… but i can’t see that we are causing less misery than they did/will. and if that is our motive, why don’t we invade Sudan?
and if we are there to protect Pakistans nukes from the jihadists, well, we are going about it exactly backwards.
That’s the beauty of it. Plausible deniability.
“guy who started the war said it didn’t matter. If it didn’t matter then, it never mattered and shouldn’t have been started.”
But this thinking so bogus, it’s taken out of context, and is nothing more than a sandbox gotcha point.
Do you think he stopped chasing Osama because of image control and poliitical correctness?
Yes, it was likely that Osama crossed the border into Pakistan very early, and invading Pakistan in pursuit was a very diffiuclt Political and Military manuver. Instead of following him into Pakistan without the Political structure to appease both Pakistan and our allies in India, the decision was made to create the battlefield in Iraq, and create a large footprint in the Middle East. You may disagree with the decision making, but I don’t!
The way I see Afghnistan is an occupation of two different strategies with two different forces. President Bush chose to be minimalistic, keeping just a large enough presence to prevent the Taliban from gaining control while the resources and the focus stayed on Iraq. Afghanistan is one of the most difficult places on the plantet to fight a war, so the strategy makes sense.
Coberly, I think you are right about the media except that Fox News would be all over it if there were significant anti war protests just because it would undermine Obama and the Democrats. You are absolutely right about what ended the Vietnam War, but arguably Kissinger would have never been in that spot if not for Eugene McCarthy and his anti war following.
It might help to clear your confusion too if you were to consider that the post is about the ‘current’ lack of interest in the ‘wars’. Which my comment addresses… but you are pulling cost and death-count figures from the past. In other words, your comment is disingenuous.
“anybody who wasn’t embarrassed by bush and sickened by cheney doesn’t qualify as fully human.”
There was broad support from our allies across the world both in Iraq and Afghanistan. Bush and Cheney didn’t make them do anything. Are they ninnies too?
“and if that is our motive, why don’t we invade Sudan?”
What are the American interests in the Sudan? It is not good enough to use the military just becuase we feel sorry for people. There must be some sort of threat to us, or our allies that eventually effect us. There was a clear threat in Afghanistan and Iraq, although Iraq was more of a convenience than a direct threat. I have always said that any belief that just because we leave the Middle East and Afghanistan that this war will end is foolish, and naive. Somalia and Yemen are the new fronts in the War on Terror, and I’m sure there is going to come a day when we will shift our efforts to that region.
“and if we are there to protect Pakistans nukes from the jihadists, well, we are going about it exactly backwards.”
If we were not able to find the political will and strategery when we did to infiltrate Pakistan, and appease India, then they would have already got control of the Pakistani government, and probably got control of the nukes. It was the pakistanis themselves who saw the forrest through the trees, and made it much easier for us to manuver there. What should we have done?
i don’t think so. l the north vietnamese outfought us because they were smarter. contrary to what some people “think” nuking North Vietnam was never going to win the war for us.
i don’t know about “significant” protests, but as i keep saying, the local Democrats are out in front of the courthouse every day. their party leaders don’t stop them because they know no one cares.
i see. i offer a bogus sandbox gotcha. and you reply with subtle strategic wisdom.
here is the thing though. clever men have incited the young and the strong and the stupid to fight and die and kill since the time of Cuchullain and Conchubar. You would never guess who “wins.”
and you should know that i grew up in the South when they were still calling on us to “stay the course” and avenge the betrayal at Appomatox. little did I know they had a secret weapon.
oh hell jimi, can’t you read the big words? like “if.” “if that was our motive…” you see, i was saying “if our motive was to help the Afganis, or Iraqis, then..”
so you reply that it was really American interests we are fighting for. well, i addressed that too. i said, WHAT american interests? if we are concerned about jihadists getting the Pak nuke, we are going about it the wrong way. I still say that. Has something to do with making yourself a bad smell in the region.
what should we have done? well, we could have begun by not supporting the Shah. (yes, yes, goes back a ways.) we are making the same mistake we made in Vietnam. supporting a corrupt regime and making people hate us. our problem is that the arabs are a more vindictive people than the vietnamese.
India has been itching to nuke Pakistan for a long time.
Couldn’t we get India to nuke Pakistan and in return work out an under the table deal where we allow the rest of IBM to relocate to Bangalore?
slow down a bit. i think you and jack are on the same side. or maybe i am not getting it. but not every difference is a Difference.
You are missing the pattern of distortions with less than a genuine intent. Naturally, you could not keep track of such things. You could though take the time to read my comment above and what Jack had to say about it and then ask yourself who it is that is trying to add to the mix , and who it is that needs to “slow down a bit”?
No matter what definition one uses to clarify US activities in ether Iraq or Afghanistan the last line of the post says it all: “..but as “Jarhead” succinctly puts it, “We are still in the desert.”
Granted that there are US troops stationed all over the world. One has to see the middle-east as one of many continuous steps toward an effort to dominate that area. It’s still adding to the cost of defense without being a defensive activity. Let’s not split hairs. The press isn’t too worked up because the country is not sufficiently disturbed about it. The cost is too far removed from the individual. Bring back the draft and watch how concerned everyone suddenly becomes. Draftees in Iraq, in their barracks or in the field, would be headline news every day.
I take his column as a wackadoodle moment where he’s telling us the chickens are coming home to roost.
This time we’ll have to pay our own way, and for others. Unfortunately, killing 5,000 innocent Americans in New York just doesn’t get the rest of the world that exercised. In part we’re to blame. The unilateralist message the Bush team sent from its first day in office — get rid of the Kyoto climate treaty, forget the biological treaty, forget arms control, and if the world doesn’t like it that’s tough — has now come back to haunt us.
And who can blame other countries for wanting to shake down U.S. taxpayers when Dick Armey and his greedy band of House Republicans are doing the same thing — pushing a stimulus bill with more tax breaks for the rich, lobbyists and corporations, and virtually nothing for the working Americans who will fight this war?
I still can’t believe he wrote this, talk about a tin ear. 3,000 Americans dead (though to be around 5,000 at the time) and he’s concerned with climate change, stem cell research, missile defense and tax cuts. What a clown.
And that explains exactly what the problem is. You guys want to run in trying to pull the other guy out, and I just want shoot the tiger in the head, so the guy can walk out on his own.
if it makes you feel any better i have a low opinion of the smart kids in office. as i have said before, they were so bright in school they never had to learn to think. or care.
always a mistake to ride a metaphor too far. if you could find the tiger, much less shoot him in the head, you’d have a case. but running around the neighborhood shooting at tigers is likely to get you arrested.
at the end of the day climate change will turn out to be more important than 9/11… unless of course the radical islamists win world domination.
and i have to wonder if you would be as sanguine if it had been tax raises instead of cuts.
but i think his point was that if we stiffed the world on what it wanted, we could not expect the world to help us on what we wanted. as it happened, i think he was wrong. the world did think that 9/11 “made us all Americans.” Invading Iraq kind of turned that around. And the continued invasion in Afghanistan seems to be making us more enemies than friends.
But here is the thing: I don’t KNOW any of this. I don’t think you do either. So I keep a slightly open mind on the subject. Unlike Social Security which I DO know about. In that case both parties are a bunch of lying bastards. And that includes Friedman.
sorry, i don’t always get the point at first read. but i’ve been around jack a while and i think he is a good guy who would not intend to mislead.
but… i think i understand your point about busy work. but you would be silly to assume that your writing is so clear that your point can only be missed by something like criminal negligence. not that you are any less clear than anyone else. just that communication between humans is nearly impossible unless they are very careful indeed or singing from the same hymnal.
jack’s reply seems reasonable to me. but he is looking at a different sense of the word “at war” than you were. he is looking at the killing. you are looking at the money making.
then you take Jack to task because he is not carrying the same “narrative” that you are. no. you are wrong. jack was responding to your “not at war” with the (his) image of what war is. he was not paying attention to the dates of death… if in fact the rate has fallen. just making a very human reaction to the idea that systematic killing and dying is “not a war.”
which is as careful as i can be. leaving me to wonder just what has stuck in your craw. we get a lot of ego around here. even from me. but maybe you need to slow down and recognize that the world is not going to see things exactly the way you do, and is not criminally responsible if they don’t.
so,having taken the time, slowed down even, i still come up with much the same answer. funny how that is.
and i think love was saying that the war had reached a point where no one much cared… it’s just a job. not a war with anything at stake (except for the kids getting killed). why that means he has to yell at you is not so clear to me. but it does remind me of kharris yelling at me. or some other posters who think that if we miss their holy point it can only be because we stupid and evil.
does that describe me? probably, on a bad day. but i hope i never say it in so many words.
The facts are obvious. No one is protesting the war. I don’t see the coffins at Dover on the nightly news, nor any graphic footage from the front. Yet the press sscreamed for years to do so. Id on’t see protests being organized nor any pressure, useless as it was and is, on D politicians. Kucinich is a joke – about as influential as Ron Paul.
I’ll beleive the anti-war left is serious when they treat the D Pres just like the R Pres.
Islam will change
Cedric – Now that was funny!
But your the only one to admit it…my argument is not with you. You at least ‘get it’. There are many here who won’t own up to it – they are to invested in the meme that Bush was evil, even with Obama almost assuridly going to secure Bush’s legacy in the Mideast. See comments by VP Biden…
Islam will change
But he is not getting his arm out and putting the other in.
What the world wanted was to cut the US down to size. Kyoto was all about that not global warming or radical climate change or whatever the buzz word of the day is. There was nothing to actually address the #1 polluter in the world – China.
Islam will change
MG – I see you get it…
i probably agree with that more than disagree, just hate to get lumped into the “unthinking left”. too much like the “unthinking right.”
i don’t know if Bush was any more evil than any other politician, but it showed more with him and cheney than it does with most.
not the same classes of evil. i think the “evil” in Bush shows with his mother’s statement about the Katrina refugees having it better in the stadium than they did at home (yes, i know this was his mom, not him, but it is just a clearer picture of what he showed in everything he did). But mostly Bush was willing to be used to kill Social Security, about which he knew nothing and understood less. The thing with Bush is that he showed this on national television, where a smarter, more evil, politician would not have been caught with his zipper down.
Cheney was so evil that he couldn’t hide it for a second. His fans loved him because he was evil. He’d lie in their face and they’d know it, and they’d say “Oh, Dick, you are so strong, Do it again.”
i got lost in the metaphor. i think i agree that Obama is at least listening to the same people that Bush was listening to. They appear to beleive that there is something at stake in Afghanistan that requires us to be there. They could be right, but they are not convincing and to me it looks like a huge mistake.
I think this DOES confuse the Dems because they did hate Bush and now their savior is doing the same thing… but not in the same way… hence the metaphor.
But, aside from the general entertainment value of politics, I think you miss the point by confusing “democrats” with “the left.” And at the risk of losing ALL of my friends, I would say that when I listen to “the left” I don’t hear anything that sounds like brilliant solutions or great leadership.
At the least, I will argue against war, because that is the ultimate Truth. If an honest man who has the safety of others as his responsibility says, but this war is necessary, I will grant him a measure of doubt. I haven’t heard an honest man at the Presidential level since Abe Lincoln.
Here is what I said: “Of course it is a stretch to say that we are at war in the first place. The conflict in Afghanistan might be defined as a war but Iraq’s occupation is little different than having a military presence in the other 140 nations where we have a military presence.“
What Jack did then was to dramatically alter the context of what I said by quoting my first sentence above without the second sentence. If at this point your mind is playing tricks on you, if you don’t see how that is ‘disingenuous’ — read those two sentences again, ‘disingenuous’ is if anything an understatement…’dishonest’ is probably more accurate.
Then, on a thread about why the interest in wars is ‘currently’ waning, Jack used irrelevant death-toll facts to argue that what exists ‘currently’ in Iraq (if the context of what I actually said is considered), should be defined as ‘war’. But of course the recent death-toll at Fort Hood is higher than it is in Iraq so unless we are to alter the meaning of the word: ‘war’ to include combat-free situations which have soldiers confined to their bases, well… Jack’s argument is foolish; and disingenuous due to the context distortion.
But what is even more foolish is your presumption that I care whether low-integrity types such as you and Jack agree with me or not. If for some reason I were forced to choose between having your ilk in agreement with me or otherwise… I would choose otherwise. I have no interest in ‘any’ type of an affiliation with people who are so vain, dishonest, and narrow-minded as what you and Jack have shown yourselves to be. And if this reminds you of “kharris yelling” at you, it should, but not for the reasons that you cited. I think if by some miracle you could be honest with yourself just long enough to recognize the actual common denominator that links kharris and me together, you would see that it is not that we are trying to make some “holy point”; that assumption comes from your vain need to give yourself importance, we are simply trying to keep the standards at a high enough level to keep this forum from being a waste of time. Conversations such as the one above between Jack and me are rife on these threads and nothing more than a distraction. Naturally though, this forum depends on controversy to be interesting, so only a vain fool would expect and want compliance, and only a presumptuous fool would think that my pointing out that Jack’s distortion of what I said was not ‘disingenuous’. If the use of that one word as a description of his lack of integrity is “to yell”, what would the following paraphrase be? ‘words flow from you like that which spews from the rectum of someone with food poisoning’… That was very close to what was the very first thing that Jack ever said to me. He also included some other anal references that were meant to be equally as insulting but of course that little exchange was acceptable here because the standards on this site vary based on how ‘your’ narrow view interprets the comments. And you… lack the mental discipline, and the consequent integrity, that is critical to reach even the simplest conclusions… honestly and accurately. Anyone who is unable to use the conversation here between Jack and me, along with your delusional intrusions, to reach a similar conclusion, well… that person needs to go back and read it all again.
i think the argument was that China had a right to catch up. the fact seems to be that China is doing more today to develop non polluting technology than we are.
So once again our forward thinking capitalist entrepreneurs are shooting themselves in the foot trying to protect what they got.
here is a brief reply to your first paragraphs, because i can see that by the time i finish reading your comment, i won’t be in as good a mood as i am now.
what jack did was interpret your comment in the context of his own “narrative.” he took your “not war” as violently at odds with his idea of war as “killing people.” he did not parse your language like a diplomat or lawyer looking for loopholes and subtle points.
so far that is perfectly normal human (mis) communication. but you escalate it to a new (altogether too common) level by trying to hold jack criminally responsible for not appreciating the fine points of your comment. i will say, as i say so often to others, that this borders on a paranoid delusion about the importance of your own exact thoughts to the world.
with some care i can almost convince myself i understand what you were saying. to call me dishonest and delusional is to lose my respect and support… which i think you had… and remind me of the sort of people you have to be really, really careful what you say to them. in fact, so careful you can’t say anything at all, except perhaps, “what i hear you saying is….”
i was unaware of the previous conversation you had with jack. that would certainly predispose you to overreact to what he said this time.
good luck with raising the standards of discourse in the blogs. but let me suggest, modestly, that while the standards of diplomacy and care are higher in the real journals, the standards of intelligent thought, honesty, care for the truth, and desire to do good, are not.
That seems like a contradiction in terms. Note that nothing I said relative to your initial comment had even a mild invective regarding its author. Nor did I in any vehement manner denegrade the content of what you said nor you for that matter. I can’t begin to comprehend your prolonged vitriolic attack on both Coberly and me. Disengenuous, dishonest, foolish, distortion, low integrity types, vain, narrow minded, vain and presumptuous fool, lack of mental discipline and integrity. That sums up your more personal attacks. I had to reread my two brief comments above to search out some verification of your response. It isn’t there. I have no idea what you are talking about.
It is unclear as to what point you were first trying to make. I could not determine from your own comments what your primary point might have been. I took on brief line concerning the definition of war as it relates to our presence in Iraq and Afghanistan. In my second comment I referred to your context. After reading your several comments repeatedly I still have no idea of the point you were first trying to make.
rl love? If thats a nom de plume change it. It is totally contradictory to what you’ve got to say. I’ll repeat, when people shoot at one another and some of those people die it’s war.
That most of them died during the worst days of that war and those days are the recent past makes no difference. Iraq is a war zone to those stationed there. Iraq represents a phenominal waste of US resources now and throughout the decade and is continuing to be a drain of unreasonable proportion. And I still have no idea of what the devil you’re talking about.
Here is what I said (AGAIN): “Of course it is a stretch to say that we are at war in the first place. The conflict in Afghanistan might be defined as a war but Iraq’s occupation is little different than having a military presence in the other 140 nations where we have a military presence.“
It doesn’t require a “lawyer or diplomat” to understand that if the first of those two sentences is quoted, without the second sentence, that a simple and obvious example of someone being quoted out of context exists … glaringly. Yet, you continue to add to the seemingly endless spew of evasive and sophomoric attempts to make this about my faults. Naturally, this spew allowed you to sneak in your usual array of unsupported insults, a “paranoid” here and a “criminally” there, all the while accusing me of being the one prone “to overreact”. My words so unclear too– so as to need a “parse” to be understood even after all this parsing. Then, as if to conclude with a showing of your vastly superior understanding of all things, you say essentially that: low standards at Angry Bear are acceptable because: “good luck with raising the standards on the blogs, let me suggest, modestly, that while the standards of diplomacy and care are higher in the real journals, the standards of intelligent thought, honesty, care for the truth, and desire to do good, are not.”
Basically then, it is all dishonest with low “standards of intelligent thought” and the only difference is that blogs are dishonest and lowly too but with even lower standards regarding discourse. I suppose that explains your defense of Jack’s blatantly disingenuous behavior and… just about everything you have said here and why you feel it is your place to intervene in these matters. So… I stand corrected, I simply did not understand that the objective is to accept the idiocy and the dishonesty and then to find ways to excel at being as deceitful and unintelligent as possible. So perhaps I am the fool… and to think that I took you for being simply delusional and narrow-minded when you are instead ‘advanced’.
– Flag – Like – Delete – Edit – Moderate
rl love: “idiocy, dishonesty, deceitful, unintelligentdelusional and narrow minded.” Imagine if someone had actually insulted you personally. And it isn’t even clear that anyone said anything that clearly disagreed with what you said. You do have some anger management issues, but I wil resist getting too personal. As previously noted, War is killing other people with the intention of cowing them into submission of some kind. We’re there. They’re not here and they never had been. We’ve killed tens of thousands of their civilian population. We’re pretty snug and secure. And you never made it clear what you meant to convey thusly, “so Iraq has become just another place for ‘busy-work'”
Now you want to make this about my original comment’s thesis? You of course had the option in the first place to either ignore my comment or to ask for clarification, but instead you chose to ‘split hairs’ over the definition of what constitutes a ‘war’. An argument that was beside the point to begin with but one which I tried to clarify, politely… once. (Yet I am the one who has been accused of splitting hairs). Where your most recent comment gets weird though is the part where you claim that you have “no idea of what the devil you’re talking about”. The title of my comment though is: ‘Wars have become busy work?’ Which then leads to unemployment stats that claim that in the lowest decile of the workforce the rate is 30.8%, and in the second lowest decile the rate is 19%. Then too coberly mentioned that my point had to do with: “and i think love was saying that the war had reached a point where no one much cared… it’s just a job.” Then you still claim that: “It is unclear as to what point you were first trying to make”, as if to give further credence to my initial claim that you are simply ‘disingenuous’. Or, you are simply stupid?
Naturally, stupid people use double negatives:” Nor did I in any vehement manner denegrade the content of what you said nor you for that matter.” Then too stupid people use big words to ‘impress’ but they often times misspell words such as ‘denigrate’. Then too they list “personal attacks” so as to give the impression that someone is less than stable but they fail to realize or point out that the ‘unstable’ person was required to repeat himself because others were being evasive or deceitful. Plus, such a lengthy discussion about so little yet not a peep from your side about the rather obvious context distortion that set this all in motion… even though I have twice shown the two sentences in question. Two sentences that are obviously dependent upon each-other to convey the intended premise. But you of course chose to ignore the second sentence.
The weird thing though that you seem unable to grasp is that if “jarhead” says something– that is not necessarily the last word on whatever that subject happens to be about. In other words, soldiers in the desert does not always mean ‘war’ and with unemployment so high in those lowest two deciles… if soldiers were not confined to the safety of their bases in Iraq, they would just be soldiering somewhere else, and for the last year or so they are in one the safest places they can be, statistically speaking. So it is hyperbolic to claim that there is a ‘war’ in Iraq insofar as American soldiers are concerned, and that is especially true considering that this post is about waning interest in a ‘war’ that is free of combat.
rl love: “So perhaps I am the fool…” If the shoe fits,,,,
“and to think…” No, you didn’t.
This will most likely be too difficult for you to understand but I am unable to resist pointing out that your latest example of context distorting: “So perhaps I am the fool…”, is based on a statement that I made with an obvious intent of sarcasm. As ‘cheap shots’ go, using a quote in the opposite context of how it was intended is about as juvenile as it gets.
I do not need you to continually add support to my previous claims of your having a lack of integrity. If you want to make a valid point, without making a fool of yourself, you must take something from one of my comments and explain ‘why’ you disagree with what I have ‘actually’ said. That gives me an opportunity to defend my premise and that gives you the option of arguing back, etc, etc. It is not a complicated process, but disingenuous comments, those that you presumably think of as being ‘clever’, are a very transparent indication of immaturity and delusion. If it is childish bantering that you are looking for… I am not your guy.
Ray L. Love
Look back at your rant wherein you hurled every personal insult you could think of at both Cobverly and me. Now you hide behind an “out of context” defense when I make a quip out of your own effort at sarcasm. Get real. We’re all reading the same comment pages and out of context doesn’t easily apply as all readers can refer to the original of each quoted passage. Be less insulting to others and they may be less insulting to you.
And you still have not explained your original comment regarding unemployment and war.
I’ll ask again. Are you supporting war as a government program to support increased employment? What did you intend to convey? To be vague is to be misunderstood.
probably i indulge in expressing my opinion that human intelligence, including my own, is much less than most of us think, especially about ourselves. and that is not good politics.
but i think, and of course opinions may differ, that there is a difference in kind and quality between my excesses and your detailed citing of all the crimes committed by people who don’t take the time, or have the intellectual honesty, to properly respect your manifest importance and certifiable correctness.
There is no “side” for me. You are still pushing that nonsense about my wanting your respect. Fuck you… how is that, are you able to understand now that I have no interest in you and that I have never had enough respect for you to care what you think about ‘anything’. Let go of your vanity and drop the generalized disdain for others that presumably assuages your lack of accomplishments and my words will begin to reveal their actual meaning. Your opinions are presumptuous combinations of self-serving distortions. You could not possibly know my emotional state and only a fool would make presumptions to that effect on a forum such as this, but I can assure you that I am not in the “grip” of anything. I am however surprised that Dan allows this low-integrity-tag-teaming to exist on his site though. I understand why you, Jack, and run, are trying to drive-away those of us who question the sloppy use of generalizations, unsupported claims, context distortions etc., these are all that your ilk has in its arsenal. But Dan seems too smart to allow his site to become nothing more than a cult-ish venue with no purpose other than the blathering of regurgitated demagoguery. But, whatever… it is his site to do with as he sees fit and maybe… like I did for awhile, he finds the delusional behavior of some the participants here– that which is ‘gripping’. The delusional aspects do reach preposterous levels at times (“certifiable”,”clinical paranoia”, “heroic effort”) and some times hyperbole is an amusing attempt at hiding the fact that one has nothing substantive to say (other than something abstract, distorted, or based on presumption of course). But just like any low form of entertainment, the novelty wears-off after awhile.
At 1:54PM on EconSpeak you explained your point and made reasonable sense. At 4:34 here on AB you again sound like a paranoid egomaniac. You ask why Coberly and I seem to be teaming up, but fail to recognize that you are the one who went off on a prolonged rant insulting us both for no good reason. You were not attacked!!! Neither I nor Coberly said anything to you that could have been interpreted as personal abuse. Yet you continue to rant on displaying a level of anger that is far out of bounds and not at all related to anything said to you. Grow up or take a Valium. Do something about your shitty attitude. Better yet,
reduce unemployment. Sign up for a tour in Afghanistan and reprot back to us on the benefits of government employment.
I have explained my initial comment to you, to some extent, but you seem not to understand that I have no moral obligation to explain it to you because it was not addressed to you. Had you not been disingenuous from the start I would have been more forthcoming but when someone is disrespectful toward me I simply allow them their ignorance because I have better things to do than explaining myself to jerks. Your latest comment too provides yet another good example of just how twisted your thinking is because it is you who chose to accept a moral obligation which you have since, repeatedly, evaded. ONCE AGAIN, HERE IS WHERE THIS ALL BEGAN AND WHERE SOMEONE (you) ACCEPTED A MORAL OBLIGATION BY QUOTING SOMEONE ELSE (me) OUT OF CONTEXT:
“Of course it is a stretch to say that we are at war in the first place. The conflict in Afghanistan might be defined as a war but Iraq’s occupation is little different than having a military presence in the other 140 nations where we have a military presence.”
Then of course you quoted the first of those two sentences while ignoring the second of those sentences and obviously that allowed you to convey a complete and total distortion of what I ‘actually’ said. And now, after nothing but evading this inescapable fact and… that you made a ‘mistake’, you accuse me of “hiding”??? When… I merely pointed out that you have a propensity for the same ‘mistake’ in judgment that you have STILL FAILED TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR IN THE FIRST PLACE??? Are you so dense that you are unable to do anything other than accuse me of what you are guilty of. Does this seem to be a clever strategy?
Anyway, your argument is pitiful enough but to make things worse coberly is using you to get at me because he wants me gone. coberly is not disciplined in his thinking and his mental laziness has held him back but he is not so stupid as to actually believe that your argument here is “heroic”. You don’t so much as know the basic usage differences between words such as ‘both’ and ‘each’ (see the first paragraph of your most recent comment), and there are many other signals in your writing (remember the double negative) that constantly hint at the fact that you are pretending to know much more than what you do. So when you accuse me of being “vague” in my writing, and with all of the other hypocrisies piled-on too, well… even coberly’s dull thinking could not possibly conclude that your efforts have been “heroic”. Unless of course ‘heroic’ is defined as anything so absurdly annoying that it might drive-away the person who consistently confronts the lack of standards that allow coberly to ‘seem’ scholarly and superior.
But of course if you want to be duped by coberly (it will bolster his false sense of superiority [sweet and giving]) that is your choice. I do feel obligated to say one more thing though: what you call “insults”, or “personal attacks”, well… those are an accepted part of debate so long as they are supported as to ‘why’. It is less honorable for example to exaggerate with hyperboles such as: “clinical paranoia”– based on anecdotal nonsense:
“unfortunately i have seen clinical paranoia before. this is what it looks like.”
This is nonsense because having seen a mental disorder before and having the expertise to make an accurate diagnoses are two vastly different things. This anecdotal claim not only lacks support but it also has one of those little ‘signals’ that I mentioned earlier. After “unfortunately” there should have been a comma, so… coberly inadvertently said that it was he who was unfortunate for being able to make a diagnosis that, considering his qualifications, would instead be not only be fortunate… but […]
The double negitives are something that even most of the Tea Party types have evolved beyond:
“Neither I nor Coberly said anything to you that could have been interpreted as personal abuse.”
It is not easy, but being honest allows the mind a clarity that can be obtained in no other way. I was not “angry” but instead amused and insulated from my emotions because I care not one whit you or coberly think of me. Nor do have any pity for someone who has shown less respect for me than what I extend to all living things. Once you were disingenuous with the initial context distortion, you brought shame upon yourself. Evidently though, shame is what you needed.
Planet Earth calling rl love. Come in. Do you hear me? Planet Earth calling rl love. Do you read me? Can you identify your location? What asteroid are you riding? What dimension are you currently inhabiting?
And try a class in basic English grammar. Double negatives: Love don’t see nothing other than his own ppoint of view. Or, rl hasn’t got no point of view. Reference to more than one person sharing a point of view or any characteristic: Both not having said opinion: Neither I nor another, Both having said opinion: Jack and Coberly. Or, Coberly and I. All four phrases equal we.
I stand corrected on each of the assertions regarding double negatives. I read up on the subject some and it turns out I was confused by constructions that contain two or more closely related elements that can be taken as one, here is the example from my dictionary:
“Neither a counselor nor the boy’s mother ‘or’ father was able to help.”
More important than correcting one another is to form a bond if we share the same goals, especially in regards to the proper role and efforts of our government through our elected representatives. Stay cool and recognize that we need not agree on every detail in order to share the same values.