Why START II is a Waste of Debate Time

As we enter a new week, I don’t want to take away too much from attempting to finish the Corporate taxes conversations because I haven’t gotten much of a response from the left yet, and I figure that will happen more today. But I do want to have a new topic, and thus wanted to address something that wasn’t too massive a topic to handle at the same time. This weekend has flown by for me, with a lot of yard work with Mrs. Weapon, which was nice. Added to that was some good time spent out on Saturday, hitting the farmers market here, and while there having a fried catfish sandwich at the North Carolina Seafood market. I must tell you it doesn’t get much better than that. Overall I have had a very busy, but awesome weekend with Mrs. Weapon, something that doesn’t get to happen too often (I usually work the weekends). Add in some time with legendary couch slayer, Canine Weapon, and the weekend was complete. But when I had time, I read up on the START II treaty negotiations and found myself thinking, “who cares?”

Last week during the open mic, D13 offered a quick note about the new nuclear arms treaty that President Obama and Russian President Medvedev signed. The good colonel was seeking thoughts from others on what this treaty could mean for the United States, Russia, our national defense, etc. I had some thoughts then but I wanted to sit on them for a bit and see what else I could learn before I offered my thoughts. As I mentioned above, once I did so, I found myself really ambivalent about the whole thing. But at this point, I am at least ready to offer my two cents on the subject. Let me first say that I was very knowledgeable about the first START agreement. I remember it well, and I supported it then for the same reasons I will offer below, which is really less about support than it is about not thinking it is all that important in terms of our national defense strategy.

So what are the basics? The START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) idea was begun under Ronald Reagan. The first treaty was completed in the early 1990’s and expired last year, paving the way for the new treaty to be signed last week by the President. From Wikipedia, some general information on START I:

START (for Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) was a bilateral treaty between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) on the Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms. The treaty was signed on 31 July 1991 and entered into force on 5 December 1994. The treaty was signed by the United States and the USSR, that barred its signatories from deploying more than 6,000 nuclear warheads atop a total of 1,600 ICBMs, submarine-launched ballistic missiles, and bombers. START negotiated the largest and most complex arms control treaty in history, and its final implementation in late 2001 resulted in the removal of about 80 percent of all strategic nuclear weapons then in existence. Proposed by United States President Ronald Reagan, it was renamed START I after negotiations began on the second START treaty, which became START II.

The START I treaty expired 5 December 2009. On 8 April 2010, the new START treaty was signed in Prague by U.S. President Obama and Russian President Medvedev. It will enter into force after its ratification through the parliaments of both countries.

START I – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

So, as you can see, the new START II treaty isn’t the brainchild of a reckless President who is hellbent on making America weaker. It is a continuation of a program begun under a Republican President who is considered a very strong military and defense President, Ronald Reagan. I have seen a lot on the blogs out there mentioning that this treaty makes us weak and shows how bad President Obama is at understanding the threats facing the United States today. I listened to a clip from Rush Limbaugh saying so outright and another conservative talk show host, John Gibson, spent an entire hour on the subject Friday, declaring all the doom and gloom that you expect from the GOP pundits whenever someone removes so much as a bullet from the US military arsenal.

It should also be noted that while this new version is being called the START II treaty, it really isn’t the second one. It is the third. START II was originally completed during the Bush Senior’s last days in office. It banned the use of MIRV warheads on ICBMs.ย A multiple independently targetable reentry vehicle (MIRV) warhead is a collection of nuclear weapons carried on a single intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) or a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM). START II was ratified but never put into force because Russia backed out of the treaty the day after the United States backed out of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. So there you have the first two START agreements, both signed by a Republican President. And there was another START agreement that was negotiated during the Clinton Presidency, but an agreement was never reached and the treaty never signed.

Under START I, the United States reduced its number of delivery vehicles for nuclear warheads to 1,600, and the number of nuclear warheads themselves to no more than 6,000. At the time I remember feeling that it was really nothing more than a political dog and pony show that allowed the US to appear the be cooperating while essentially destroying outdated equipment, a lot of chopped up B-52’s as I recall.

On to the START II (or should we be calling it START III since there was a II already? No, we will continue to call it START II and forget the MIRV one ever happened). Again, the easy basics from Wiki: It will limit the number of operationally deployed nuclear warheads to 1,550, which is down nearly two-thirds from the original START treaty and is 30% lower than the deployed strategic warhead limit of the 2002 Moscow Treaty and it will limit to 800 the number of deployed and non-deployed inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) launchers, submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) launchers, and heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments. Also it will limit the number of ICBMs, SLBMs, and deployed heavy bombers equipped for nuclear armaments to 700.

New START – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Another aspect that many of the articles out there are not touching on is the fact that the Russians have recently stated that they will likely pull out of the treaty if the United States continues to build up ballistic missile defenses in western Europe. This is the one aspect I do care about. I have zero issue with our building defensive networks in western Europe or anywhere else where the countries they are in have allowed us to put them there. While Russia is not necessarily a threat, I think these defensive placements are important in a world where countries such as North Korea and Iran will continue to seek nuclear weapons. So long as what we are setting up is defensive in nature, I am OK with it, and I think that it is important for us to pursue. I am all for reducing our offensive capabilities. But I am never for reducing our defensive ones.

So now that we have what the START II treaty is about, allow me to explain why I simply don’t care about it. A list of reasons why it isn’t important to me, or better put, why I don’t think it matters a bit:

1. It still leaves us with massive offensive capabilities. Despite the claims from the right that this treaty makes us look weak, we are still left with the ability to inflict massive damage, and essentially to destroy just about every nook and cranny of the earth a couple times over with the nuclear weapons that we will keep under this treaty. Do you think it really changes anyone’s minds about us? If Iran was afraid of us when we had 6,000 nuclear warheads, do you think they suddenly sighed and said to themselves, “oh, we can take them now. They only have 1,550!”? Which leads to the next reason…

2. It changes nothing about what the world thinks of our capability to frack up anyone who wants to push our buttons. Let’s be clear ladies and gentlemen. We have been pushing around anyone we needed to push around for the last 70 years without using a single nuclear weapon. No country in the world thinks we have suddenly become a meek little corner dweller. We still have one of the most powerful conventional militaries in the world, if not the strongest. It changes nothing in terms of our relative strength in today’s world.

3. Because I don’t think for a second the US would ever stop finding new ways to frack up the enemy. Does anyone here really believe that we aren’t continuing to research and develop new and exciting ways to make friends throughout the world? I would be willing to bet that the pace of new weapon development is not affected in the least bit by this treaty. I also would not be all that surprised to find that we secretly have developed something far worse than a nuclear warhead. Maybe that blaster they tested on the goats in Atlas Shrugged is working now!

4. The treaty doesn’t force us to destroy nuclear warheads. To be clear, the treaty requires us to meet the numbers of active nuclear warheads. It doesn’t really force us to do anything with the inactive warheads that we are removing from service. How long do you think it would take them to re-activate all those inactive ones they have stored away, you know, in case we need to destroy the world a 7th or 8th time?

5. The promise to not use nuclear weapons on countries that don’t have them or signatories to the non-proliferation treaty doesn’t mean anything. Think about this realistically, if the United States military decided that they were mad enough or crazy enough to launch a nuclear weapon on some other country in the world, then things are pretty bad. If we are willing to take the brunt of the world’s disapproval for such an action, do you really think that something as silly as a treaty would stop us from doing so. Look at the Constitution. How well have they adhered to THAT contract. I will go out on a limb and say the US government doesn’t much care for contracts of any sort when they don’t want to. And if some nation out there would grow their arsenal larger than ours, I will guarantee the US government will use that as an excuse to void the treaty.

So, you see, I just cannot find the gumption to get myself riled up about this entire thing. Because I first don’t think it does anything that hurts our ability to defend ourselves in any way. And I second don’t believe that the United States government will adhere to any contract when the proverbial shit hits the fan. So the Presidents of Russia and the United States can run out there and do their dog and pony shows all they like, but I don’t think that it means anything at this point. Maybe one day it will. It is nice to dream of a world without nuclear weapons. But I figure that dream is as likely as a world without war.

Now I will shut up and let everyone blast me for my short-sightedness. But be prepared folks, you have a tough task ahead of you if you want to convince me that there is anyone in the world who doesn’t think the US is a pretty big threat with or without this treaty.

Advertisements

Comments

  1. Posting for comments.

  2. I am sorry USW…..for the first time…I must take SERIOUS….really SERIOUS issue with you on something in your post…sorry, brother, but I must call you out on this one.

    USW casually remarked: “and while there having a fried catfish sandwich at the North Carolina Seafood market. I must tell you it doesnโ€™t get much better than that.”

    D13 must correct: “Sir…..TWO fried catfish sandwiches are much better than a mere one. My god man, have you taken leave of your senses?” Ummmm…were there hush puppies as well…with hot melted butter, some delicious fried, and a brewsky?

    • See? You had me so shook up….”fried” = “fries”. My heart is still shaken that a fellow SF eats only ONE sandwich such as this.

    • USWeapon says:

      D13,

      I don’t know what I was thinking. It was late when I wrote. A long day in the sun had preceded the writing. I was simply lost in the writing wilderness. Thanks for catching my mistake and making a correction.

      Yes, there were hush puppies. They were yummy too. But no brew. The farmers market attempts to promote a family atmosphere so they don’t serve alcohol. That is a missing component of the experience though.

      USW

    • A couple of words to all of you:

      I canceled our cable TV – calculated we spent $5/hr watching for the amount we watched and its costs.

      Now, its “Boxee” and “Hulu” ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Frack-Have you been watching Caprica ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Don’t think there’s a ‘c’ in “Frak.”

      Adding, I only saw the first two/three episodes of Caprica, but I loved BSG. Is it worth it?

      • The kids and I had a little ritual we called SciFi Friday.

        It involved pizza and sodas and watching:

        Star Gate SG1
        Star Gate Atlantis
        Battle Star Gallactica

        Those were great Friday evenings. My youngest still recognizes the Cylons and remembers the story lines from time to time.

        We never saw what I thought was going to be the finale. The Cylones hidden within the human ranks travel with the humans to earth and eventually destroy them. The Cylones establish a new civilization based on their single god and eventually come to call themselves “human”.

        • RIP SG-1, SG-A, BSG.

        • Have you watched Star Gate Universe-I really like this show. The last show was about the civilians on the ship trying to take over and not let the military on board control the ship-was interesting and I am still trying to decide who side I would be on. Course that is because I suspect it would just be a changing of the control not a democracy.

          • I watched the show until it went on hiatus.. I see that it’s back on now, so I’ll have to catch up.

            I’m loving V though. ABC has a record of canceling awesome shows, but it’s quality sci-fi. Reminds me of a show called First Wave I used to watch back in the day.

          • V.H.

            I have not had a TV for almost three years now, so I have no idea what is on the boob tube anymore.

            When scanning internet news and crossing the usual celebrity gossip headlines I find myself asking “who the hell is that?” and “whey the hell am I supposed to care?”.

            My loving wife laughs and replies “how the hell should I know?”.

            The price I pay for my new enlightenment?

            I did not get to see Mikelson’s slicing 6 iron to the green on 13 yesterday nor the tearful joy at 18. It sounded like a wonderful thing to behold.

            Live Free my dear. Hope your weekend was wonderful.
            JAC

            • I had forgotten that you gave up TV-Not me-I love the TV- will have to be a little less enlightened ๐Ÿ™‚

              • V.H.

                Oh, I love it too. So does the family. It is an addiction I think.

                When we travel and get a motel room we soon find ourselves glued to the tube.

                Surfing the channels like the good old days.

                The only difference is that back then we would have seen a list of great possibilities. Now we see a list of garbage with only a few things worth watching. The change in our perceptions have been interesting.

                But we still watch.

                My youngest hates traveling in the gypsy wagon cause we won’t get a motel with a “big screen tv”.

              • That is why God gave us the Discovery Chanel, the Science Chanel, the History Chanel, etc.

                I can always find something worth watching (that is, when I’m not busy working 13 hours days).

              • You do know that you can watch TV on the computer now ๐Ÿ™‚ Now I feel evil to tempt you in this way. ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

              • VH

                Bad girl.

                I didn’t hear that………….

              • If you purchase netflix, you can also stream movies and whole tv series instantly to your computer

      • Is it worth it-I watched the first season the whole time saying “this is a weird show” ended the season saying and it’s pretty sad too-I feel like I’m stuck in a b novel that I just have to know the ending too.

    • USWeapon says:

      VH,

      I haven’t watched Caprica yet. I watched BSG religiously though. One of my favorite all time series. I was depressed when the show ended. Didn’t care for their explanation of Starbuck either. But the show ranks right up there with Firefly for overall awesomeness.

      USW

      • I, too, was not a fan of what they did with Starbuck. (Adding, it’s weird seeing her on 24..)

        Firefly was awesome, but I just wish it could have run a longer and really gotten into it a little more. It just felt truncated.

        Now, for an awesome sci-fi show, I’m going to have to go with Sliders. Tell me that wasn’t a great one.

      • Frak or Fracking is their favorite word on Caprica-they use it to the point of making one want to scream.

    • Firefly was good, but sliders couldn’t hold my interest. Giving away my age here – my youngest loved to watch “Space 1999” . . . he called it “spacety 99”. R2D2 from Star Wars was “arty detoo”, but then again that was before most of you guys was born.

      I have developed an interest in Caprica solely due to the fact that I am very interested in AI especially in independent robotic forms. I have lived long enough to see that a lot of science fiction turns into science fact over the years. Motorola has admitted that the shrinking of the cell phone was inspired by the communicators on the original Star Trek series (btw, I have one of the first Star Fleet Manuals that was offered to the public and it even has the short skirt regs in it). Our recent advances in RPAV’s that are being used in combat zones and other electronically powered “seeker” units that automatically return to their take off point when the battery gets low are a few examples of AI that is starting to appear on the horizon.

      I just hope I live long enough to see personal robots named “Jeeves” answer the door of private residences . . .

  4. Now…to the Start Treaty. As you said this is nothing new and it is a continuation of a series of treaties that no one pays attention. I watched the opening remarks of Obama in his statement that “the single most important threat to our security is the fact that a rogue nation, a terrorist nation, could get control of a nuclear weapon.” The president said. “We know that organizations like Al Qaeda are in the process of trying to secure nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction, and would have no compunction at using them.”

    Like Al Qaeda… Taliban? Hamas? Hezbollah? Interesting comment.

    Perhaps I could add: the single most important threat to our security is…..Obama and the sitting Congress? Too much of a stretch? Note, I did not say NUCLEAR threat. I think that this particular threat would cause more damage and destruction than any rogue nation acquiring a nuclear device.

    • My thoughts exactly, D13.

    • All the more reason for all of us to get involved (and get as many others as we can to get involved) in the political voting process and get these idiots out of office and keep their likeness out of our government.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        I know you will continue to disagree, and that is fine. However, I must point out (yet again) that regardless of the color of tie worn by the candidate you vote in in order to replace the guy with the other color of tie who is currently there…

        The ONLY thing you MIGHT be able to change is the PACE AT WHICH YOUR FREEDOMS ARE BEING TAKEN AWAY.

        Nothing else will change.

        • “The ONLY thing you MIGHT be able to change is the PACE AT WHICH YOUR FREEDOMS ARE BEING TAKEN AWAY.”

          Funny your statement seems to be saying that there is a difference in the guys in the ties-even if it is just the amount of time they will take to destroy us-I will happily take the extra time-alot of things can change with time-it remains to be seen whether it will be good or bad.

        • Your right, I will continue to disagree.

          Mainly because if enough of us get involved and stay involved, then WE can restore our freedom – However FIRST AND FOREMOST, we MUST get INVOLVED . . . and not just sit around bellyaching about how it is such a shame that our freedom is being taken away.

          I honestly hope and pray that someday in the very near future you will come to understand that.

  5. Ray Hawkins says:

    @USW – no blast coming from here – to me, START II is more about perception. I’m sure we have some secret sauce-a-brewing that will render the Nukes benign in comparison. Key for me is that there is at least effort to cut the stockpiles – and as RR understood – we cannot swing for the fences in this at-bat. There will be more of the same START treaties ongoing or coming in the future for certain – the short term perception gain is what the cash register is ringing on now – and as you astutely point out – as much as POTUS will claim this to be the greatest thing since sliced bread in a latex condom – so too will the GOP carp that we are now weaker on defense – the dumb voter will thus be easily distracted by more important issues that remain unresolved.

    Later,

    Ray

  6. OT – but have to comment that in the pic at the top – at 1st glance I thought it was a cartoon !! Oh my gosh – our current commander in chief is REALLY a live caricature !!

    Actually two smiling puppet heads there..

    • Wow-that is a really bad picture! Have to say there is nothing wrong with the Presidents looks.

  7. Canine Weapon says:
    • Canine Weapon says:

      And this is nauseating:

      http://www.firstpersontetris.com/

    • CW . . . SIT . . . STAY!

      Good Boy!

      Now go chew up another couch . . . ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Yes…chew up not only the couch but the matching love seat as well. Hell has come to breakfast….it is a good thing that the command “hit any key” did not pop up or I would be looking for a new computer.

        • Canine Weapon says:

          After I chewed on the love seat for a while, I took a nap and drooled on Mrs. Weapon’s pillow. Then I took a tinkle on the rug.

          Afterward, I spent three hours trying to beat the impossible tetris (hell version). This was made extra difficult by my lack of fingers.

          • Clip your nails….it works better….But once you determine that you cannot beat the hell version….then drag your favorite chew toy onto USW’s sleeping pillow and stay there for a couple hours…then tinkle on the end of the bed three hours before he gets in it….

            If you survive…you win. Tetris be damned.

  8. Don’t know if the following is true or not but just in case.

    “Please tell every dog or cat owner you know. Even if you don’t have a pet, please pass this to those who do.
    Over the weekend, the doting owner of two young lab mixes purchased Cocoa Mulch from Target to use in their garden. The dogs loved the way it smelled and it was advertised to keep cats away from their garden. Their dog (Calypso) decided the mulch smelled good enough to eat and devoured a large helping. She vomited a few times which was typical when she eats something new but wasn’t acting lethargic in any way. The next day, Mom woke up and took Calypso out for her morning walk . Half way through the walk, she had a seizure and died instantly.

    Although the mulch had NO warnings printed on the label, upon further investigation on the company’s web site,

    this product is HIGHLY toxic to dogs and cats.

    Cocoa Mulch is manufactured by Hershey’s, and they claim that “It is true that studies have shown that 50% of the dogs that eat Cocoa Mulch can suffer physical harm to a variety of degrees (depending on each individual dog). However, 98% of all dogs won’t eat it.”
    *Snopes site gives the following information: http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/cocoamulch.asp *

    Cocoa Mulch, which is sold by Home Depot, Foreman’s Garden Supply and other Garden supply stores contains a lethal ingredient called ‘Theobromine’. It is lethal to dogs and cats. It smells like chocolate and it really attracts dogs. They will ingest this stuff and die. Several deaths already occurred in the last 2-3 weeks.

    Theobromine is in all chocolate, especially dark or baker’s chocolate which is toxic to dogs. Cocoa bean shells contain potentially toxic quantities of theobromine, a xanthine compound similar in effects to caffeine and theophylline. A dog that ingested a lethal quantity of garden mulch made from cacao bean shells developed severe convulsions and died 17 hours later. Analysis of the stomach contents and the ingested cacao bean shells revealed the presence of lethal amounts of theobromine. “

    • FYI (from one who has had German Shepherds for over 40 years) – Any form of Cocoa, and I do mean ANY FORM, is deadly poison to all breed of dogs. First they get sick, then they die.

  9. I think based on the tv show discussions that most here agree that START II is irrelevant, lol.

    I love Stargate! All of them.

    • My wife, Emilius, gave me a hard time a while ago about watching Stargate. I had to explain to her that I’d seen every episode since I was a sophomore in high school and that I had no intention of stopping. She said the show was stupid and she had no idea why anyone would want to watch such junk. I had to kick her out of the room because she kept talking about how much she disliked it. Then she went into another room to watch The OC or Gossip Girl or Judge Judy or whatever.

      I think there is an important lesson here for all of us regarding relativity.

      • Hi Matt!

        Now you can feel how “other” opinions and dislikes can effect your life. If the Mrs. was a freedom loving American, rather than being infuenced by a progreesive mindset, you would not have had the experience. Hence, why I can’t stand the current political mindset in D.C. ๐Ÿ™‚ Yes, you can learn from it, it sucks being told what is good and bad, don’t it!

        Peace my Friend!

        G!

      • I wonder if newton and Einstein knew how far their relativity theories would extend?

        I wonder….what did DPM do? Or is being locked in the basement a good enough deterrent to keep from riling the Mrs?

        • The missus doesn’t like going into the basement, so the Dread Pirate is free to do whatever he likes down there. It is his man cave.

          • Ahhhhh…the man cave…of course…all of us should have one.

            I have the Colonel’s bunker.

            Also, have the Colonel’s Grill…..NO ONE touches the grill. NO ONE!!! It is death to touch the Colonel’s Grill…

            The sig other once thought she was helping..took a wire brush to the grill….she was a great sig other…I shall miss her.

            • I understand, sir.

              However, I prefer my wife use the grill. She is by far the superior chef. I sit in a lounge chair and wait for the rare/mediumrare perfectly seasoned steak to be brought to me while I sip an ice cold beer. How can life get any better?

      • The medallion in Til’k’s forehead bothered my wife. Go figure.

  10. Interesting video from the UN.

    http://www.hosem.org.il/D8/?????-??????—???-?????-????-UN-Watch

  11. START II is very relevant.

    It means “jaw-jaw” and not “war-war”.

    It may not mean much materially, but it means a lot in keeping the pretense of civility while holding on to the most evil of weapons.

    • If you wish to define relevancy to mean that there is no war….then you are correct. There is going to be no war between Russia and the United States anyway. No one wins.

      If you define relevancy to mean that this is a verifiable and enforceable treaty, then you are, in my opinion, incorrect. The only relevancy that I see is if the nukes are eliminated…the world over. Everyone…then perhaps there will be some relevancy.

      For the United States and Russia to enter a limitation and reduction treaty in hopes that others will follow suit…well, we have been doing that for years…that will never happen. And if we rid ourselves of deteriorating nukes and warheads, then that is great but it takes no treaty. Just simply do it. But we MUST have a grandstanding stage for political purposes.

      But talking is better than mushroom clouds in the skies….Too bad that the treaties are not global. Want to impress me? (Which I doubt is high on anyone’s agenda) Then have a global treaty…enforceable and verifiable and everyone……E V E R Y O N E…..be party to it. But…that is Utopia and Utopia does not exist.

      • Sorry folks…..Holdgren has me really pissed today and even a 44oz DP, Jalapeno eggs and migas, chorizo with goat sausage….is not going to pull me out of it for awhile. Not to mention in the soft buttered corn tortillas and green chili sauce.

        I will try to get in a better mood. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Flag, I find we are agreeing on more and more lately.

      Perhaps it is just a random coincidence due to the topics we’re debating.

      -Nukes
      -Immigration
      -Nudity
      -Etc

      Go figure…

      • It is the moon, Matt…..the MOON. It is casting weird things on everybody.

        No wait…it is the ozone….no wait…it could be global warming….no….I got it…

        The secret and sinister plot by DPM to infiltrate the minds of the people? I am wearing the foil hat today.

        • That’s it.. I’m unplugging the sump pump. I’ll drown that damned pirate in the basement.

      • Mathius,

        It is a viral infection – at times fatal – but I hear lots of sleep and sex won’t cure it – but your wife doesn’t have to know that part.

        Just tell her “Black Flag” said it would be good for you….

        ๐Ÿ˜‰

        • BF…don’t you think that his significant other should sacrifice for the greater good for him…and go for it? Just tell her you need the sleep and sex….it has been recommended for life saving purposes.

          Then follow up with the Teriyaki burger and three brews…

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        Mathius,

        Fans of Freedom and Liberty can be very “progressive” when it comes to things that…

        SUPPORT the idea of personal freedom and individual liberty!

        The problem is that “progressives” are very progressive when it comes to certain personal freedoms, and EXTREMELY repressive when it comes to other individual freedoms.

        Thus, where your “progressive” ideas ACTUALLY support individual freedom/liberty, you and flag (and I) tend to find agreement. Where your “progressive” ideas directly contradict the concepts of individual freedom/liberty, we have vast disagreements.

        What you must do is ascertain for yourself WHY you support individual freedom/liberty in CERTAIN cases, but you blatantly reject it in all other cases. Only once you have figured this out will you gain enlightenment.

        Here is a hint:

        Why is it ok for people to walk around nude if they so choose (even if it violates “societal norms”) but at the same time it is not ok for these exact same people to choose whether or not they wish to purchase health insurance?

        • Canine Weapon says:

          Why is it ok for people to walk around nude if they so choose (even if it violates โ€œsocietal normsโ€) but at the same time it is not ok for these exact same people to choose whether or not they wish to purchase health insurance? No time to really get into this (again), but the short answer is that your failure to have health insurance creates a greater drain on society than the value (yes, I can attach values to freedoms) of your right to choose whether or not to purchase insurance. That is, if you rack up a massive medical debt and have to declare bankruptcy, you will sick society with the bill. Likewise, if you get sick (due to lack of immunization or treatment), you impair the societal “cluster immunity” which protects us all.

          Conversely, forcing you to wear clothes does not justify the violation of your rights. People will just have to get used to it.

          See the difference? Real hard damage (costing society money / infecting people with real tangible microbes) vs offending sensibilities.

          Deep calming breaths…

          • Silly dogs. Should stick to things they know something about.

            My NOT purchasing insurance does NOT place any cost or drain against society.

            It simply keeps the insurance guys from making money on me when I don’t need their product.

            I you could only ………SQUIRREL…………..

            • Canine Weapon says:

              SQUIRREL?!?

              WHERE!?!

              Hello there…

            • Canine Weapon says:

              Bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon only one thing smells like bacon and that BACON where’s the bacon I can smell it I just can’t see it! Bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon bacon BACON!

  12. Off Topic……

    yeah, its a slow night… ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Looks like those racist Birthers have infiltrated the Kenyan Parliment….

    http://www.thepostemail.com/2010/04/11/kenyan-parliament-claims-obama-born-in-kenya/

  13. Canine Weapon says:

    Not sure why Westboro Baptist “Church” was protesting Twitter, but it seems San Fransisco figured out the correct way to handle them:

    http://laughingsquid.com/san-franciscos-answer-to-westboro-baptist-church/

  14. Richmond Spitfire says:

    Hi all,

    Not sure if you’ve seen this yet, but Bill Whittle at PJTV mentions how much he loves Kent’s take on the Gadsen Flag.

    Here’s a link…mention on Kent starts at about 6:40…

    http://www.pjtv.com/v/3353

    Hope all are doing well…

    RS

  15. U.K. KFC Faces Boycott Threat From Muslims Over Halal Trial

    News of the World (After reading this story, I had a craving for their new sandwich. The “Double Down” is filling, but a little plain tasting to me, suppose I am to accustomed to bread. It’s about 550 in calories, but over 1200 mg in sodium)

    The fast food chain was being threatened with a boycott by both Muslims and non-Muslims.

    Fingers were not lickin’ good for KFC in their bid to sell fried chicken to Islamic customers in Britain.

    The fast food chain was being threatened with a boycott by both Muslims and non-Muslims.

    It hoped to woo the Islamic market by opening 86 trial outlets selling halal-only meat, slaughtered under strict religious guidelines.

    But KFC’s target diners insisted the chickens were not being killed in the right way and said they would stay away.

    And furious non-Muslim customers have set up Facebook groups protesting that the trial branches, which also ban pork, have dropped their favorite bacon-topped Big Daddy burger from menus. Groups with names such as “Against the KFC Halal Trial” and “No Halal at Colne KFC” — referring to a branch in the Lancashire, northern England, town — were rapidly attracting members.

    For meat to be halal, the animal must be alive when its throat is cut as a verse from the Koran is recited.

    KFC insisted their methods met the approval of the Halal Food Society. But Islamic leaders disagreed, saying the pre-stunning of animals in the chain’s mechanical process means a third were already dead at the point of slaughter. And the fact the prayer is played over a speaker means each bird it not blessed individually as it is killed.

    They have now threatened to warn the U.K.’s 2.4 million Muslims not to eat KFC meat, and will meet with the fast food giant Wednesday to question how it is killing chickens sold as halal.

  16. Judy Sabatini says:

    Hi All

    Have a question here for you all and would like to know what your take is on this.

    My husband heard on the radio yesterday, that now when you sell your house, and the inspector comes in, and if you appliances are not up to par, they will require you to buy new ones before you can sell your house. Anybody here heard that one?

    My answer is quite simple, I’ll take my appliances with me before I am required to buy new ones. Since when is it anybody’s business if your appliances are not new? Say you did buy new ones, and the prospective buyers don’t like them, then what? You’re either stuck with them and spent money you didn’t have to, or you try and sell them to someone else and hope you can get what you paid for them.

    That’s like having to put new carpeting in and the new buyers don’t like the color. Sorry, but I think this is getting to where now, they’re interfering with your business of selling your house. And before you ask, I don’t know exactly where or who he heard it from, was just passing the info to me, and now I’m passing it to you people.

    • I remember watching a story that said flea markets could be a thing of the past due to new regulations requiring any used item sole to be certified to be lead free. Did a search and found this….

      http://www.allbusiness.com/government/government-bodies-offices/14066926-1.html

      The government has given you one more thing to ask your remodeling contractor. Starting April 22, the Environmental Protection Agency is mandating all renovation contractors who work on pre-1978 homes be certified to properly handle lead-based paint to avoid environmental contamination. Lead-based
      paint was used in more than 38 million homes before it was banned from residential use in 1978. Lead has been shown to affect children’s brains and developing nervous systems, causing reduced IQ, learning disabilities and behavioral problems; it can also be harmful to adults.

      Lead in dust, which is often invisible, is the most common way people are exposed to lead. Common renovation activities, such as sanding, drilling and demolition, can stir up a lot of dust. So in an older home where lead-based paint was likely used, it is no wonder why there is cause for concern. The EPA’s new renovation, repair and painting rule tries to reduce the exposure of lead, especially to children. The new federal law targets homes, schools and commercial buildings where children are present.

      • Bottom Line says:

        I just happen to be a professional painter.

        Frankly, I find that new requirement laughable. On average, painters abide by EPA standards and regulations about 0% of the time.(unless it’s big commercial job with OSHA on site)

        Like most EPA regs, they won’t enforce it. It just isn’t realistic and/or feasable. The only realistic way to implement it would be to require the “lead paint disposal training” as part of getting a contractors license. After that, it’ll mean virtually nothing to the average contractor/painter.

        Without going into detail and writing an essay on the processes of painting and the frequency of issues with lead paint, I’ll simple say this… it’ll make little to no difference in how a house is painted.

        It’s complete BS.

        I submit that it is just something to make eco-nuts feel like they are saving the planet.

    • Hi Judy!

      What you mentioned is in the “Cap and Trade” bill that the Senate has not voted on yet. The HoR passed it, but thats where it lays. But, yes, it is that bill.

      G!

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Hey G

        Well, I think that’s just ridiculous if you ask me. What happens if you want to sell you house, but can’t afford to buy all new appliances, then what? You’re stuck staying there whether you want to or not. This is really getting frustrating to think that now if we want to sell our house, we’re going to have to buy new stuff first. I got a new stove from the boys last year for mother’s day, and our fridge isn’t that old, and our microwave is what, I think 10, but it works like a Champ

        When the government starts telling you what you can and can’t do, or what you must do before you sell your house, then that’s just going too damn far. It’s enough they’re intruding in other areas of our lives, now you can’t make a sell without their permission first, and you must pass the inspections. What ever happened to when you sell and the prospective buyers tell you not to do anything because they have their own ideas, and they want to pick their own colors or a certain style.

        Good Lord, enough with the intrusions. What’s next, what kind of toilet paper you can use, or what kind of mattress you can sleep on? Or how about when you should go to bed and get up. My God, will this s$$$ stop?

        By the way, hope you’re doing good G.

  17. Judy Sabatini says:

    While I am not a fan of Snopes, Snopes did verify the authenticity of the below letter.

    I find this very interesting reading, so let’s keep it going if you agree. It only takes a few days on the Internet and this will have reached 75% of the public in the U.S.A. Seniors need to stand up for what is right, not what the politicians want or big Corporations want.

    This was sent to Mr. Rand who is the Executive Director of AARP.

    THIS LADY NOT ONLY HAS A GRASP OF ‘THE SITUATION’ BUT AN INCREDIBLE COMMAND OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE!

    Dear Mr. Rand,

    Recently you sent us a letter encouraging us to renew our lapsed membership in AARP by the requested date. I know it is not what you were looking for, but this is the most honest response I can give you. Our gap in coverage is merely a microscopic symptom of the real problem, a deepening lack of faith.

    While we have proudly maintained our membership for several years and have long admired the AARP goals and principles, regrettably, we can no longer endorse it’s abdication of our values. Your letter specifically stated that we can count on AARP to speak up for our rights, yet the voice we hear is not ours. Your offer of being kept up to date on important issues through DIVIDED WE FAIL presents neither an impartial view nor the one we have come to embrace. We do believe that when two parties agree all the time on everything presented to them, one is probably not necessary. But, when the opinions and long term goals are diametrically opposed, the divorce is imminent. This is the philosophy which spawned our 200 years of government.

    Once upon a time, we looked forward to being part of the senior demographic. We also looked to AARP to provide certain benefits and give our voice a power we could not possibly hope to achieve on our own. AARP gave us a sense of belonging which we no longer enjoy. The Socialist politics practiced by the Obama administration and empowered by AARP serves only to raise the blood pressure my medical insurance strives to contain. Clearly a conflict of interest there!

    We do not understand the AARP posture, feel greatly betrayed by the guiding forces that we expected to map out our senior years and leave your ranks with a great sense of regret. We mitigate that disappointment with the relief of knowing that we are not contributing to the problem anymore by renewing our membership. There are numerous other organizations which offer discounts without threatening our way of life or offending our sensibilities.

    This Presidential Administration scares the living daylights out of us. Not just for ourselves, but for our proud and bloodstained heritage. But even more importantly for our children and grandchildren. Washington has rendered Soylent Green a prophetic cautionary tale rather than a nonfiction scare tactic. I have never in my life endorsed any militant or radical groups, yet now I find myself listening to them. I don’t have to agree with them to appreciate the fear which birthed their existence. Their borderline insanity presents little more than a balance to the voice of the Socialist mindset in power. Perhaps I became American by a great stroke of luck in some cosmic uterine lottery, but in my adulthood I CHOOSE to embrace it and nurture the freedoms it represents as well as the responsibilities it requires.

    Your website generously offers us the opportunity to receive all communication in Spanish. ARE YOU KIDDING??? Someone has broken into our ‘house’, invaded our home without our invitation or consent. The President has insisted we keep the perpetrator in comfort and learn the perp language so we can communicate our reluctant welcome to them.

    I DON’T choose to welcome them.

    I DON’T choose to support them.

    I DON’T choose to educate them.

    I DON’T choose to medicate them, pay for their food or clothing.

    American home invaders get arrested.

    Please explain to me why foreign lawbreakers can enjoy privileges on American soil that Americans do not get?

    Why do some immigrants have to play the game to be welcomed and others only have to break & enter to be welcomed?

    We travel for a living. Walt hauls horses all over this great country, averaging over 10,000 miles a month when he is out there. He meets more people than a politician on caffeine overdose. Of all the many good folks he enjoyed on this last 10,000 miles, this trip yielded only ONE supporter of the current administration. One of us is out of touch with mainstream America . Since our poll is conducted without funding, I have more faith in it than one which is power driven.

    We have decided to forward this to everyone on our mailing list, and will encourage them to do the same. With several hundred in my address book, I have every faith that the eventual exponential factor will make a credible statement to you.

    I am disappointed as hell.
    I am scared as hell.

    I am MAD as hell, and I’m NOT gonna take it anymore!

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Part of this cut off. It was just sent to me and I wanted to share with everybody here.

      • Hi again ๐Ÿ™‚

        Well written letter!

        I was watching that horse riding video I posted awhile back, then watch the rider do an interview with Ellen Degenerous. I thought, WOW, this lady teaches this stuff as well, and I thought to myself, It’s folks like you and her and everyone I know and talk with and communicate with that has always given me that “Fight for Freedom” mentallity that I have always had, and will continue to have.

        With that said, it’s that American Spirit that will be hard to crush, no matter how much the Elite think they can.

        I ask a question of vets: If Marshal Law is ever ordered, and the Constitution is suspended, where would your allegience be, with the Government or the citizens?

        Food for thought!

        G!

        • Judy Sabatini says:

          Oh, I think I can answer that for my son’s. Always with the citizens, always and forever. Doesn’t matter to them I think that they are in the military, they always put other’s ahead of themselves. That’s the one thing I can about them, they care about what happens to people and what is going to happen with this country. They already think it;’s going to hell in a hand basket.

          Hope that answers your question, even though I’m not a vet, but I’m a damn proud mom of 2 son’s in the military, and damn proud to be married to a vet.

          • Maybe this would be a good question for “Open Mic” and see where the vets sit!

            I think your right in your assessment!

            • Judy Sabatini says:

              Maybe you can mention it to USW and see what he thinks. I’d be interested to see also what they think and others who aren’t a vet.

              I guess this government doesn’t give a rats behind on what we Americans think of what they’re doing to this country, but you can bet your sweet patooties, they have an awful lot of people to go through, before we let them take this country down.

              I know one senator here whose numbers are falling fast by the grace of God. But the sad thing is, his son is running for governor, and if he wins, this state can kiss it goodbye.

            • Are you sure that’s a good idea? Vets are already in the crosshairs. Don’t give anyone any ideas on who to pick up first…..

  18. Judy Sabatini says:

    I’m out for the night. Hope everybody will have a good rest of the night, and a great day tomorrow.

    Love you all

    Good night

    Judy

%d bloggers like this: