Why Libya is An Extension of Suicidal Policy

The other day I was perusing through the comments here at SUFA and stumbled across a short and simple post from Mathius. He asked whether there was anyone here at Stand Up For America that agreed with what was happening in Libya, specifically, the US participation in that country. I don’t remember what the answer was from everyone who answered. What I distinctly remember is what I thought when I read his question….. No, but why? I most certainly don’t like what is happening in Libya, or what happened in Afghanistan or Iraq either, for that matter. Although I understood the the first foray and tolerated the second. But the real question I wanted everyone to answer, because it seemed as though most were answering “No”, was WHY are you opposed to what is happening in Libya?

Is it because you are simply opposed to whatever Obama does? Or perhaps you are bitter that the media is giving him a pass on this while lambasting the previous President as waging an “Unconstitutional War” (which it most assuredly was not, Bush actually went further than Obama and got Congress’ approval for his). Or do you oppose what is happening in Libya because you oppose ALL military action? Perhaps instead you feel we are backing rebels who may very well be our enemies. Or you fear that the next leadership group in Libya will be more radical and dangerous. I am certainly interested in hearing the why behind everyone’s opposition to the US action in Libya. But first, I am going to fill you in on why I oppose it.

In short, I oppose the war in Libya because I feel it is an extension of the suicidal foreign policy directives of an arrogant and habitually schizophrenic federal government. I will give examples and state my case. But allow me a moment to express my thoughts on how this has harmed us. The common question asked by Americans is, “why do the countries in the Middle East hate us so much?” The most frequent, and for the record the most incorrect, reason given is the verbal diarrhea that flows in the form of, “they hate us for our freedom.” Bullshit, they don’t hate us for our freedom. How does our freedom impact them in any way? Did you hate the USSR so badly that you wished to have terrorist attacks occur there because you “hated their communism”? Of course not. In fact, almost universally American citizens didn’t give a squat about communism until they felt like it may encroach on us here.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand that jealousy can breed hatred. All you have to do is listen to the far left drivel against the wealthy to see how jealousy and a lack of understanding breeds hatred and a desire to destroy them (along with, of course, a healthy dose of sowing the seeds of class warfare as a motive for stewing that hatred). But that isn’t the case in the Middle East. Our freedom doesn’t negatively impact their lives. A young man in Saudi Arabia doesn’t sit around and say to himself, “Those damn Americans are so free…. I desire to sacrifice my life to punish them for it!” That is ridiculous. And it is nearly as ridiculous that so many Americans accept “they hate us for our freedom” as a plausible explanation.

NO! Do you know why they hate us? They hate us because our government negatively impacts their lives in real ways. They hate us because it is our own arrogance and greed that causes us to do so. They hate us, not because of our freedom, but because we do so much to ensure that they will never have theirs. They hate us because we will support and defend even the most brutal dictator if it serves our purposes. They hate us because we will later change our mind and destroy their country to take down the same brutal dictator that we supported a decade ago. They hate us because we are hypocrites, whining about innocent deaths while simultaneously dealing out or allowing innocent deaths.

I know some of you are starting to cringe. You are thinking that perhaps USWeapon has finally cracked and gone to the dark side to reside with Black Flag. Fear not. While I don’t see BF’s side as being quite as dark as many would think, I haven’t switched over to simply hating everything the US does simply because the US did it. But failing to recognize, acknowledge, and demand change in regard to flawed foreign policy is akin to silently watching as someone disconnects your gas lines and turns on the gas. You are inviting your demise. If we are going to survive the next century and truly embrace some of the concepts that we drone on about here, it should include how we deal with the rest of the world. Some examples:

LIBYA: We all know that Libya hasn’t been exactly one of the favorites of the USA. However, there have been significant shifts in Libyan policy directives over the last decade. President Bush moved to normalize the relationship between Libya and the US. This included lifting of sanctions and official relations after a period of none. Libya acknowledged their role in the Pan Am bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland, and as a result, the US embraced Muommar Qadhafi.

Qadhafi saw Al Qaeda as a threat because the Islamic radicals opposed to his government in Libya were shown to have ties to Al Qaeda. But Qadhafi was brutal to his people, and as a result they have revolted against him. Those radical Islamic groups stepped forward and challenged his power. Now, the US government which once supported the brutal leader who made the lives of Libyans hell, has reversed course again and given support to the radicals challenging him (The same radicals who have ties to Al Qaeda according to some reports).

EGYPT: Hosni Mubarreck was a brutal dictator. There is no doubt about that. Oh, I know that he didn’t always fit the legal description of a dictator. But what looks like a duck and quacks like a duck… And for a very long time we have supported him in his position despite leaked cables within our government such as this:

“The police use brutal methods mostly against common criminals to extract confessions, but also against demonstrators, certain political prisoners and unfortunate bystanders… NGO contacts estimate there are literally hundreds of torture incidents every day in Cairo police stations alone.”

Why do we support him despite his brutal tactics and harsh ways? Because he kept in place the peace treaty with Israel. So long as he acquiesced to that one demand, we gave him money every year and supported his claim to power. So in the eyes of his people, we supported their oppressor. Then we withdrew our support when we felt it benefitted us (when it was obvious a new sheriff would be in charge, we immediately switched sides).

SAUDI ARABIA: We could do an entire article on nothing but the insane relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia. The relationship dates back to the World War period, when even Roosevelt said the the security of Saudi Arabia was vital to the security of the United States. Despite the US support of Saudi Arabia, the relationship has always been tenuous at best. A letter from Crown Prince Abdullah to George Bush in 2003 stated:

“A time comes when peoples and nations part. We are at a crossroads. It is time for the United States and Saudi Arabia to look at their separate interests. Those governments that don’t feel the pulse of their people and respond to it will suffer the fate of the Shah of Iran.”

In other words, Saudi Arabia felt it was time for the partnership to come to an end. The Saudi’s have always acted only in their best interest (which I don’t fault them for). The real question has always been how far are they willing to go in order to serve their interests? The reality in Saudi Arabia is that we have supported a ruling family that has continued to oppress its people. How many of you, before the last few weeks when people talked about it on the news, knew that it was against the law to protest against the government in Saudi Arabia? In a ministry statement published on the official SPA state news agency, the Saudi government decreed:

“Regulations in the kingdom forbid categorically all sorts of demonstrations, marches and sit-ins … as they contradict Islamic Sharia law and the values and traditions of Saudi society.”

They threatened to take “any and all measures necessary” in order to quell the protests. Do you know what they were primarily protesting over? They wanted the release of a an outspoken Shiite prayer leader who demonstrators say was arrested more than a week ago after he gave a sermon stating that Saudi Arabia should become a constitutional monarchy. He had the audacity to suggest a different type of government. So the Ministry of Truth came and got him. The Saudi’s don’t hate our freedom, they desire it. But we instead support the monarchy that doesn’t even allow them to say they would like a change. We cannot endanger our oil source, now can we?

IRAN: Where do I even start? The good Colonel is giving an accurate account of the current situation in Iran. But Iran’s hatred for the US goes back a long way. Forget that the US helped put in place and has staunchly defended Israel, which Iran wants wiped off the map (YES they do BF, your refusal to admit such is maddening). Our meddling in their government was the catalyst for their hatred. Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi maintained close ties with America during most of his reign, which lasted from 1941 until he was overthrown by the Islamic Revolution in 1979 (And let’s not forget where he immediately ran to when the proverbial crap hit the fan). During that time, the American and British government helped pull off a coup in 1953 while simultaneously pretending to support the Prime Minister they helped overthrow.

Despite what you may initially think, it wasn’t about oil. The British were the beneficiaries of the oil in Iran. It was about Iran’s position as the largest and most powerful country in the Middle East and their proximity to the Soviet Union. But all that is neither here nor there. After the coup, the US supported the Shah without fail. He was a frequent visitor to the White House and received Billions in aid. But what was he doing? Torturing his people, hoarding the country’s wealth, and oppressing any who believed differently than he. All while under the express protection of the United States. It wasn’t until Jimmy Carter that a US President came out against the human rights violations of the Shah’s regime (while only months later praising the Shah for being an island of stability in a crazy region! WTF? ). By then it was too late.

The Iranian people blamed us for supporting and protecting the man responsible for their horrible lives. The revolution happened and the rest is a history that we are all pretty familiar with. We ended up with anti-American Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini.The Iran/Iraq war followed and after its end we “allowed” trade with Iran, and the country started to prosper. Bill Clinton ended that by putting a complete embargo on Iranian trade. We then had our Congress pass an act that basically prevented any other countries from making any large investments in Iranian energy. From Iran’s perspective: We love them, we hate them, we love them, we hate them and we keep them from achieving economic prosperity. And when the few who rose up to challenge their oppressive government, they were slaughtered while we did nothing about it. What do you think they are feeling as we intervene in Libya now?

IRAQ: Speaking of Iraq. We seem to like the idea of helping someone gain power within a country whenever we deem it to be in our “national interest.” So the US government decided to use the CIA in the early 60’s to help the Ba’ath Party come to power in Iraq. And with that party came one Saddam Hussein. The brutal man who terrorized his people so horribly that we deemed it necessary to later remove him from power. A man who used chemical weapons on his own people, who had dissenters dragged outside and shot on site. A man who’s sons used Iraq as there personal playground, terrorizing anyone as though it were a game. It is well documented the gruesome things the Hussein family did to the people of Iraq, including one son who liked to take whatever pretty woman he saw, force her to come back to his place, rape her, beat her, and then give her to his dogs to tear apart. Great family those Hussein’s. And we helped put them in power. I am sure the people of Iraq loved us for that.

And then when we felt it was no longer in our interest to support the brutal dictator that we helped put there, we decided that we should remove him from power. We put sanctions on the country, stifling economic growth, which punished the people of Iraq, not the leadership. Then we acted militarily. And no matter your position on the war in Iraq, you cannot dismiss the results. Many, many innocent people killed. Millions more injured and maimed for life. A mother doesn’t care that you removed a brutal dictator when she sees that an American bomb took her child’s limbs or their life. Once again we supported a man who brutalized them and then became schizophrenic and punished the people to remove him.

AFGHANISTAN: True to our Schizophrenic nature, we have also flip-flopped on the Afghani people. It began when we imposed our influence there when the Soviet Union decided that they wanted to stroll into the area. What did we do? We armed the resistance. To the tune of about $3 Billion. And we turned a blind eye when what evolved out of our assistance was the ruthless Taliban government. From the Afghani perspective, we helped put the Taliban in place, or at least enabled them to take charge. As a result we had a government in Afghanistan that was as ruthless as any towards its own people. Soccer stadiums used as hanging fields. Women oppressed and mistreated in horrible ways. Government torture houses, assassination of political opponents. And we said nothing.

Then 9/11 came along and we believed it was perpetrated by Bin Laden while he was under asylum in Afghanistan. There was little question that the Taliban was a supporter of Al Qaeda. And there was little question of the brutality that the Taliban was horrible to its own people. But now that we had been attacked, we decided to care about the plight of the Afghani people. Those poor women and the horrible soccer stadium! We had to remove the Taliban from power, not only because they supported terrorism, but because they were mean to their people. As a result, we invaded. Again a vast death toll that included many, many innocent people. Normal for a war zone, I agree. Try telling that to grieving parents.

There are a lot of other countries that we could talk about, such as Syria, Yemen, Ivory Coast, or Tunisia. Add to all this our unwavering support of Israel, no matter whether they are wrong or right on their actions and reactions within the Middle East. What it all boils down to is that what the Middle East sees from the United States is schizophrenic foreign policy where we support then oppose (or vice versa) based on our own interest. We help people rise to power in those countries and then we sit back and do nothing while those people brutalize and terrorize their citizens.

We come in and take a “moral stand” on something like Libya, Iraq, or Afghanistan while simultaneously doing nothing when North Korea starves its population, Iran slaughters protesters, Genocide happens in Darfur, Rwanda, or the Congo. When there is no economic or political interest in a region, we are happy to sit on the sidelines while entire populations are murdered, terrorized, and repressed. But a little unrest happens in the oil rich countries that we need and we cannot stand the site of innocent people being slaughtered in the streets.

You can talk all day of all the good that America does in the world. And believe me, I am well aware that there is A LOT of good that America does in the world. But that isn’t what THESE people see of America. What these people see is an America that abandons them we they need us most, bombs them in the name of saving them, and who sides with any person, no matter how evil, if it serves our purpose.

I know that there are those of you who will claim that they hate us because we are not Muslims. I won’t go into the whole Islam is a religion of peace speech. If you want my personal opinion, there is NO religion of peace. NONE. There is no religion that hasn’t been used in the justification of war. There are those in Islam who preach hatred of non-muslims. But they wouldn’t be nearly as able to take root in the minds of young people if not for all that I talked about above.

So the next time someone tries to tell you that the people of the Middle East hate us because of our freedom, remember what you read here. Remember that this is a statement rooted in absolute bullshit. They don’t hate us because we are free. They hate us because we constantly manipulate their world in an effort to serve our own interests and impose our definition of morality on those who have a different definition (It is kind of like Paris Hilton telling you that you dress like a whore).

And we cannot continue this suicidal policy as a way to deal with the rest of the world. We are doing nothing but creating an environment where the world turns against us. It is like the tough kid who runs a gang. Those who take our side do so because they fear us, not because they admire us. They join us because they feel they economically cannot afford not to or because they are afraid to oppose us means that they will be next on our list of “regime changes.”

Before I go, allow me to make one important point. I don’t hate America in any way. I love my country. I love the ideals that we were founded on. I love the freedom that I have and the promise of opportunity I was given. I have shed my own blood, sweat, and tears because of how I feel about this country. But we cannot continue to stray from our principles and to move away from what is truly moral (not the crazy definitions of moral I hear from some folks that result in massive contradictions like “we must steal to be moral” or “trampling another’s rights is moral”) if we hope to survive and prosper going forward. When you have a family member that is a drug addict, you love them, but you know tough love is needed to turn their world around.

When it comes to American foreign policy, America needs an intervention.

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Comments

  1. All you have to do is listen to the far left drivel against the wealthy to see how jealousy and a lack of understanding breeds hatred and a desire to destroy them …

    This is where I stop reading … with all due respect, it is an arrogant and as “incorrect” a statement as you can find anywhere on any topic.

    Jealousy? Prove it. How do you explain monied so-called “leftists”? Explain the Kennedy’s for me, please … and show how they are “jealous” of money. Come on, USW. Sometimes your posts are just over the top.

    “Lack of understanding” … is this like the “Remnant” article? Is anyone who doesn’t agree with capitalism uninformed? Are we all just not getting it because we disagree with you/your philosophy?

    We’re the haters … we want to destroy. If that’s really the case, why not shoot us and have done with it? Get rid of us before it’s too late?

    That was sarcasm, of course, but seriously, do you really believe all those who agree with progressive policy are “jealous” and/or “lacking understanding”? If so, that’s sad.

    Some of us (leftists, red thru and thru, etc.) are forced to shake our heads at those kinds of statements. We try not to get insulted, but frankly the arrogance of such statements is a bit perplexing. Seriously, where do you come off making them?

    Jealousy, a lack of understanding … geesh. How about an ounce of humility once in a while? The interesting thing about the elite argument (from the right and the so-called left) … they’re always right.

    Sure.

    • Truthseeker says:

      Charley, you proved his point. So to counter it, you point out Rich lefties? How about you? You complain about someone making a million dollars an hour. WHY? I bet you are jealous and if you were making 1 million an hour, you wouldn’t complain at all.

      • Truth, you are clueless about me. Absolutely clueless.

        • Truthseeker says:

          I am sorry. But I remember you complaining about being unemployed and going through a few wives. Do I really need to know more about you? Are you so blind in hatred that you cannot see past your own face?

          Jealousy is never good.

          • complaining about being unemployed
            Not complaining at all, champ. Why would a writer complain about that? God bless unemployment. I paid into it all my life and this is the first time I’m “forced” to use it. I have no problem doing so, brother. None whatsoever.

            going through a few wives
            Now that’s funny. Doesn’t measure up for you? Not conservative enough? You think God is frowning? Not sure what my “going through a few wives” has to do with anything, but feel free to make a fool of yourself bringing it up. It only confirms you have a rigid mind.

            Do I really need to know more about you?
            Obviously not. You have it all at your fingertips. Are you one of the remnant, by the way? Just curious.

            Are you so blind in hatred that you cannot see past your own face?
            Hey, I’m one happy individual. Very happy in fact. I’ve accomplished quite a bit in my short 54 years. The funny thing is, even when I was fairly wealthy, I felt the same about my political preferences. I happen to abhor arrogance (in any form).

            The interesting thing about your claim of my “hatred” is that that is what a left wing blogger said about me for attacking his defense of Obama. Is that (hatred), like, the new buzz word?

          • PENALTY: UNNECESSARY PERSONAL ATTACK!

          • USWeapon says:

            What does being unemployed or having made some mistakes in choosing a marriage partner have to do with being jealous? I truly do appreciate the support for my position, TS, but there was no reason to attack CS’s personal life. His positions are easy enough to attack on their own 🙂

            • Truthseeker says:

              I apologize. I meant to use the word Envy. And yes, Charlie is complaining. look at all of his posts complaining about bailouts.

              BTW Charlie, I do not believe in God at all. I am a Fiscal Conservative and I do not believe I should be able to tell people how to live their life. So I am socially liberal (if you want a quick and easy label).

              My Mind is probably as rigid as yours is.

              • Well, you’d be wrong about envy also, so you’re 2 for 2.

                Liberal and you take issue with me having 4 wives? Interesting, although I still can’t figure out what 4 wives has to do with anything.

              • Truthseeker says:

                4 wives is a distraction that is used to disarm people. I see that you are resisting!

                Envy: Envy (also called invidiousness) is best defined as an emotion that “occurs when a person lacks another’s (perceived) superior quality, achievement, or possession and either desires it or wishes that the other lacked it.” – Wikipedia

                So tell me, if you do not Envy those that make 1 million an hour, why do you CARE? Care is an emotion. You do not necessarily have to have to apply Envy to yourself. Even if you are rich, it doesn’t mean you cannot be Envious (SP?) for others.

    • USWeapon says:

      A little touchy this morning aren’t we Charlie?

      First, I didn’t make the claim that everyone on the left is jealous. I made the claim that you can listen to the far left drivel and see jealousy. There are some on the left who are jealous and others who have different reasons.

      As for you personally, I don’t claim to be able to read your mind, but I don’t recall ever thinking to myself that you were jealous and that caused your beliefs. I think you are wrong. I think that you have gotten some values turned upside down based on your belief that you or anyone else has a right to money you didn’t earn. I think that your insistence that no one is entitled to more than they “need” (based of course on YOUR determination of what they need) is fatally flawed. And I think that to follow your path on wealth re-distribution would be the death of innovation and the advancement of society.

      But I never thought that you were jealous.

      As for some of your other statements, some quick retorts: The Kennedy’s are not far left progressives. I don’t think you are a hater who wants to destroy. I just think you are naive as to the consequences of your version of the future. I don’t advocate shooting you or anyone else because you have not committed any form of violence towards me.

      I have plenty of humility and have no problem being challenged on what I say. I don’t always think I am right. But you know, the same arrogant statement could be written about you and your statements against the rest of us on MANY of the opinions that you write both here and on your own site. Fortunately, most of us don’t get as offended as easily as you have this morning.

      I wrote my opinion on the war in Libya and why the Middle East hates us. I feel bad that your fragile feelings caused you to stop learning the subject matter because you got offended in paragraph three.

      USW

      • A little touchy this morning aren’t we Charlie?

        Up early (4:00 a.m.) working … (see that, TruthSeeker … working).

        All you have to do is listen to the far left drivel against the wealthy to see how jealousy and a lack of understanding breeds hatred and a desire to destroy them

        What you wrote (above) is hard to dilute to your second explanation … but okay.

        The Kennedy’s are not far left progressives. I don’t think you are a hater who wants to destroy.

        The Kennedy’s (and their Democratic Party ilk) are referred to here at SUFA (not necessarily you, but in general here) as Socialists/statists, etc., over and over and over again. If Obama is a socialist, the Kennedy’s must be hard core Marxists. I know the Kennedy’s aren’t hard core progressives, but like George Soros, they have tons of money and do not agree with conservatism …

        But you know, the same arrogant statement could be written about you and your statements against the rest of us on MANY of the opinions that you write both here and on your own site. Fortunately, most of us don’t get as offended as easily as you have this morning.

        My site has a single “other commentator”; a conservative (Doc) who rips me to pieces at every opportunity (and it is always welcomed because Doc is one funny individual) and although he’s usually wrong 🙂 I often agree with “some” of what he says (when it isn’t over the top).

        And I’m not as easily offended as you think. Someone over sensitive perhaps? I wouldn’t read beyond the generalization (how I read your statement quoted above) because that kind of statement is too much a turn off to keep going.

        On the other hand, I do not post articles here (have thought about it, but just can’t commit to the time it usually takes to respond to BF alone, never mind the choir). I usually make a statement, get torched (usually with personal attacks) and then I respond (and depending on my mood at the time/the amount of time I have to respond, etc.), I either respond in kind (nasty) or stir the pot a little more.

        So let’s start over on this one. Consider it writing advice. Generalizations are dangerous, especially without documentation. One thing I’ll give BF is his constant use of documentation (albeit one-sided and heavily subjective) …

        For the record. I do not hate rich people. My 2nd wife is a multi-millionaire. Part of the reason we split up is because I was doing illegal stuff and we didn’t want to jeopardize her legit income. We remain friends to this day. She was a Brit blackjack dealer without a college education who came here and performed the American dream as good as anyone; built a small business into a big one. I give her all the credit in the world for it. I have no problem with her success or that paradigm. And for the record, she agrees with national health insurance (and she has to pay through the nose for her employees). The world is just not black and white, whether you choose to adhere to “rational thinking” or not.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      Since you brought up the ‘Kennedys’, don’t miss it !

      http://www.reelzchannel.com/kennedys/

      I watched parts 1 & 2 last evening, which will be replayed. Check it out.

    • “All you have to do is listen to the far left drivel against the wealthy to see how jealousy and a lack of understanding breeds hatred and a desire to destroy them …

      This is where I stop reading … with all due respect, it is an arrogant and as “incorrect” a statement as you can find anywhere on any topic.

      Jealousy? Prove it.”

      OK & good morning Charlie.

      http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/jack-coleman/2011/04/01/ed-schultz-us-arming-qadhafis-foes-why-are-we-concerned-who-gets-arms#ixzz1IYmn4vpB

      Ed Schultz is so gungo ho for the Libyan war that he wants Obama to provide weapons to anti-Qadhafi forces — without scrutinizing who gets them.

      Seeing how Qadhafi’s opponents in Libya could include al Qaeda and Hezbollah, according to the U.S. NATO commander, what could possibly go wrong?

      Here’s Schultz engaging in his singular brand of bellicosity while talking to a caller on his radio show yesterday, followed by an unintentionally hilarious remark by Democratic congressman Adam Smith later in the same show (audio) —

      CALLER: I’m with you on this. I mean, I feel comfortable standing behind this administration a lot more than I did the last. And given the situation, I would think that we definitely have to have some kind of covert action going on and it shouldn’t have been leaked out. But, I mean, we can’t just go in there and start arming random people. We gotta know who we’re arming, for one thing. But I like to think that we’re trying more to disarm Qadhafi more than we are actually trying to arm people. And I would think that that would take some covert action or, you know, somebody on the ground (inaudible) this thing …

      SCHULTZ: Well, why are we concerned with who gets arms? I’m just, for conversation now. … I mean, if they’re going to take out Qadhafi, hell, they can’t be all that bad!

      To his credit, Congressman Smith wasn’t on board with this an hour later on Schultz’s show —

      SCHULTZ: Do you think we should arm these freedom fighters? Do you think that we should give them a chance to defend themselves from being butchered by Qadhafi?

      SMITH: Well, I think we are defending them. I mean, part of the problem the last two or three days, I know part of the problem, has been bad weather which has limited the ability of our air campaign to stop Qadhafi from …

      SCHULTZ: No, but they want arms, congressman …

      SMITH: Oh, let me get to that, let me get to that. I mean, what I’m saying is, yes, I think we should help. As far as whether that we give them arms, we gotta figure out who they are first.

      • President Obama, who was swept in on a tide of anti-war sentiment and anger over GOP spending, is now running yet another unpopular war and spending more than any president in history. If the GOP tried this, the news media would beat them with their microphones. But because it’s the president with journalists in his back pocket, there is little controversy.

        It wasn’t so long ago that Code Pinkers were the darlings of journalism. You could find them across the media landscape. The Washington Post had lovingly huge features on them titled “Protesting for Peace With a Vivid Hue and Cry; Code Pink’s Tactics: Often Theatrical, Always Colorful.” “Bring the troops home,” that 2007 story ended. Four years later, we know no one on the left really wanted to send the troops home. They just wanted to send Bush home.

        Or there was the Code Pink protester confronting Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice during a Capitol Hill hearing. As The Post described it, “an antiwar protester shouted ‘War criminal!’ and waved blood-colored hands in her face.” Who hasn’t seen that picture? The news ran that so often it was like they got royalties. (News outlets are desperate for cash these days.)

        Or how about Cindy Sheehan protesting in Texas outside the Bush ranch? She and others were there long enough that they could claim squatters rights. Sheehan is still anti-war, but the crowd behind her has thinned to a bridge game.

        Where did that crowd go? There are no major anti-war rallies on the mall. The crazy lefties that flock to an ANSWER event are nowhere to be seen. There aren’t enough liberals singing “give peace a chance” to fill up your average coffee house.

        When Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Libyan troops had “been planting bodies ‘of the people he’s killed’ at the site of allied air strikes” media outlets reported it dutifully. Had the hated Don Rumsfeld said as much, the sound of media laughter would have been heard from sea to shining sea.

        Yes, a few left-wingers have complained about Obama’s attack on Libya. “Fahrenheit 9/11” director Michael Moore used Twitter to criticize the president, urging “a 50-mile evacuation zone around Obama’s Nobel Peace prize.” But there is no organized resistance because he’s on their team.

        The 2004 Abu Ghraib scandal gave journalists the chance to talk about the evils of war and blame them on George W. Bush. The Post did more than 1,700 Abu Ghraib stories and about 800 of those mention Bush. A new scandal involves an alleged “‘kill team’ of soldiers,” and their purported crimes. It was shocking enough that Rolling Stone wrote more than 8,000 words how “U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan murdered innocent civilians and mutilated their corpses.”

        One word wasn’t in that report: Obama. The commander-in-chief.

        I wonder what the leftover hippies would have to chant about that. Oh, that’s right, they don’t chant, they’re enchanted with Obama.

        Some liberals claim the right is echoing Qaddafi by linking the rebels to Al Qaeda. The implication is that conservatives are defending the dictator for political reasons. No sane person would defend that monster. Obama said Qaddafi “denied his people freedom, exploited their wealth, murdered opponents at home and abroad, and terrorized innocent people around the world.” He’s right. Qaddafi has funded terrorism, been responsible for the horrific Lockerbie bombing and attacked his own people with jets.

        But by that measure, half the leaders in the world should be attacked and maybe more. Qaddafi is an amateur when it comes to butchery and mayhem. There’s Kim Jong-Il in North Korea who has nuclear weapons, blackmails his neighbors and starves his own population by the millions.

        Or Bashar al-Assad, who inherited his presidency from his monstrous dear old dad. The Assads back terror both against Israel and American troops in Iraq, repress their own people and shoot them in the street as needed.

        The list, while thankfully not endless, is still monumentally long. From Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Iran, to the Castros in Cuba to Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, there are plenty of targets to go around. Most on that list would laugh at what Qaddafi has done and consider it minor by comparison. And most of those would be hard-pressed to compete with Saddam Hussein.

        You remember Hussein? Started wars. Invaded his neighbors. Oppressed his own people. Gassed his own people. His secret police were widely feared. Human rights groups regularly complained about his numerous violations. His sons were just as evil, raping almost as a hobby. Hussein was even “condemned by the United Nations’ top human rights body for conducting a campaign of ‘all pervasive repression and widespread terror.’”

        Yet journalists and the left have spent years claiming that was a bad war or a “war for oil.” It’s easy to say the same about Libya, yet here we are, once again, in a new war and the media simply pick the side with the “D” after its name.

        Read more: http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/dan-gainor/2011/04/02/gainor-column-now-media-support-president-waging-another-war-middle-east#ixzz1IYpMUQAT

      • LOI, I’m confused. What does this have to do with proving the left is jealous (or am I looking at the wrong statement you quoted)? Back in a few hours; off to the gym and a visit with Momma Stella …

        • Charlie,

          The majority that attacked Bush are now making excuses or cheering Obama for getting us into another armed conflict.

          • LOI, they have NOTHING to do with me. I cannot stomach Obama (for being too big a sellout). I have no use for either party, trust me. I see the Republicans as a dirty pubic hair to the right of the Dems, or vice versa. But I still don’t see how one is jealous (or am I still off the mark with that–seriously?).

            • Sorry Charlie,

              I was more focused on the “a lack of understanding.” Jealous?
              No, I don’t think that’s a good word for it, my bad.

              • Fair enough, LOI.

                I think I understand and probably go along with much of BF’s anarchist stand (except I don’t believe in the nirvana of capitalism/free market–not so much because it is “evil”, but because I don’t trust man to not be evil when the power is there for the taking. I know that trusting in many men when I don’t trust a single man confounds the “rational thinking” paradigm, but I don’t think the rational thinking paradigm proves anything other than a subjective argument for what leads to greed. That doesn’t make me right … or wrong. It’s all good, though … the discussions, I mean.

  2. Truthseeker says:

    I am against Bombing Libya because:

    1) They did not attack us
    2) Congress did not approve (obviously it was not an emergency action since the abuses have gone on for 2 weeks)
    3) The Coalition is not even half of what was involved with Iraq. But Bush was derided on going to Iraq Solo!
    4) Obama is a hypocrit of monumental porportions.
    5) We just set a low standard for attacking someone that does not attack us. What Obama just did was show countries that if you abuse your people, we MAY attack you. However, Lets see him try this with Russia, China, Egypt, Bahrain and any other country that does this.

    Nobel Peace Prize my A…

    • USWeapon says:

      Thanks for your thoughts TS. A question or two:

      If we take away your thoughts on Obama and the MSM, and focus on just the others, we have the following reasons still standing: #1, #2, #5.

      If the Congress DID approve and if we accepted the weak argument that Libya attacked us and the rest of the world via terrorist bombings, would you approve of Libya being attacked? I oppose this action for a lot of reasons, but chief among them this morning is that I think our foreign policy directives are suicidal and schizophrenic.

      USW

      • Truthseeker says:

        I do not believe in attacking someone unless they attacked us (doesn’t have to be military) or we are %99 sure we will be attacked very soon (not years out, but months).

        So even if Congress approved the measure for Libya, I would still not be behind this attack as it is unprovoked and it is not in our National Interest. The Pan Am bombings happened quite some time ago and that is petty compared to bombing and invading a whole nation.

        I agree that our foreign policies for the past 40 years are suicidal and schizophrenic.

  3. Bottom Line says:

    There’s been some criticism of SUFA with respect to repetitious debates/conversation/arguments.

    So, when Matt asked his question, I decided not to be redundant and say the same thing I always say…

    …that unless they are a threat, it isn’t the US’s right, nor is it it’s responsibility to meddle in the affairs of other nations.

    But it isn’t about defense. It is about money, control, and power. It is about the economic, political, and/or hostile takeover/assimilation of smaller smaller developing nations that have what the US and other industrialized nations want/need.

    It is about the controlled evolution/transformation of second world developing nations into the industrialized first world community.

    It is really about nation building and globalism, first world imperialism and control.

    Do you see the pattern?

    The US manipulates and exploits a developing country’s political or economic system in a way that will likely end in Chaos, then uses the Chaos as an excuse to go in and establish a New Order that is ultimately advantageous to the US and/or it’s UN allies.

    • Bottom Line says:

      Further, I’m not suggesting that the US always creates the situation, but if it isn’t creating it, it is looking for a way to exploit it to it’s advantage, either by economic, political, or hostile means.

      • gmanfortruth says:

        Good Morning BL 🙂 Hope this Monday finds you healthy.

        • Bottom Line says:

          All is copacetic, G. Feelin’ pretty good.

          No hair falling out, extra eye balls, or toes growing from my neck….yet. 😉

          Hope Monday finds you in good health as well.

          • gmanfortruth says:

            I’m doing OK. Quite sore from cutting up tress all day yesterday, but with bad weather today and tomorrow, I’ll have time to heal the old muscles. Things sure change qick after one hits 40, 🙂

            I could use an extra eyeball, maybe on that don’t need reading glasses 😆

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      I dunno Bottom Line – if that were the case I’d expect a lot more cheap ass oil from Iraq to be flowing direct to the US – and its not.

      • Bottom Line says:

        Ray,

        That’s because everything is being done relative to the oil situation fifty years from now.

        The idea is to gain control of the oil sooner to avoid more costly issues later when there is less of it.

        It’s not necessarily just about price, but rather control. Oil isn’t going to get cheaper, it just might be more available when it is in lesser supply if the world can avoid future oil wars and hoarding.

        In other words, it’s more efficient and less costly to take it now rather than later.

  4. Ray Hawkins says:

    @USW – good article this fine Monday morning.

    Few quick comments first…..

    (1) It isn’t just the far left vs. the wealthy – its a classic whipping up that happens to try and convince left-leaners and moderates that the answer lies somewhere in taxing “the wealthy” at a higher/graduated scale because they somehow owe to everyone else. Rather than reel in spending those who claim to be victims of class warfare only perpetuate class warfare by attacking those who have done well financially. Not all of us were born with silver spoons in mouth (my wife and I sure as hell were not). FTR USW – our new Governor is PA is proposing some hefty cuts in spending (which I support) which among other things will affect education – including how places like Penn State get subsidized. I say go for it – the true cost needs to be the true cost – not true cost minus whatever you can soak taxpayers for. Hard lessons yes – but needed no doubt.

    (2) Not sure I am making a point here – but what is the sense of pervasiveness of perception as shaped and molded by some of the radical clerics who preach lies and hate to their people? I realize that is maybe a minute portion of things but is not insignificant as these are the folks willing to strap on bomb vests.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @USW

      We like to use military slang in the business world from time to time…..

      “Pick your battles”

      “You cannot die on every hill”

      I used to think our Foreign Policy should follow a “pick your battles” approach – selectively engage based on only the circumstances that exist at that particular moment – a real “relativist” approach. This is why we’d end up in Somalia, or Afghan or Libya but not Darfur or Burma or China or Saudi Arabia or ………

      But clearly this inconsistency in approach leads us down many dark paths and sets us up for failure later on.

      Why not Libya?

      (1) They never attacked us
      (2) We have never defined what our “National Interest” is and why it should or should not lead to military action;
      (3) Our criteria for sending Americans into harms way is ill defined and not consistently applied (and I mean here military or CIA or “contractors”);
      (4) We cannot afford it – in real/actual dollars and cents and in longer term socio-political costs;
      (5) There is no well defined preemptive doctrine for; engaging militarily – this is related very much to #2;
      (6) We really have no idea who we are potentially supporting / putting into power (even we sorta do we end up with a criminal like Karzai);
      (7) Because being a “leader in the world” (insert any chest-thumping moniker here) does NOT require us to fight other people’s battles. Stronger leadership is shown by not fighting other people’s battles for them.

      The bottom line is we have a myriad of domestic problems that are very serious to our ultimate survival. Why in the world would we think getting involved so deeply in the affairs of a Libya is a smart thing to do? We should get our own house straight and stay out of others.

      • Truthseeker says:

        Very nice reply Ray! Man, I have seen you change quite a bit over the years. Another military saying: this reply is “on point.”

      • gmanfortruth says:

        Ray, Your comments are about how I feel, but I take a simpler route, we have no business attacking Libya, or anyone else for that matter, if we, the citizens are not being attacked or an attack is emminate. Neither was the case. WE have many problems here at home that need addressed, as normal, the government is failing. They are corrupt to the core and need replaced.

      • Ray? Ray Hawkins?

        This is kind of scary…….

        Great post!

        • Bama dad says:

          Easy to explain one’s idea’s tend to change when one has children and has to think of their future.

      • Where is Ray? What HAVE you done with him. Good morning, sir…had to poke a little fun. Hope you are doing well.

  5. April 04, 2011
    Perceptions of America
    By David P. McGinley
    Since 9/11, one of the big concerns of America’s ruling class is what the rest of the world thinks of the United States — hence the lamentation of “why do they hate us?” In fact, one of President Obama’s goals when taking office was to change the world’s perception of America. Of course, the ruling class is worried about only what its elitist counterparts think, not your typical citizen of another country.

    So what does that typical citizen think?

    Since moving abroad last year, I have gained some insight into answering this question. One recent discussion with one of my law students was quite illuminating. The student, who is from Cambodia, complained to me that the U.S. government was going to deport a Cambodian national who had been permanently living in the U.S. for over twenty-five years. The prospective deportee had moved to the U.S. in the 1980s to escape the communist killing fields of the Khmer Rouge. In those twenty-five years, he never bothered to become a citizen.

    Recently, the man in question was convicted of committing a felony. Suddenly, the place to which he had fled that saved him from being massacred, the place that has provided him with a level of personal liberty nonexistent in his place of birth — even before the Khmer Rouge — is supposedly treating him unfairly.

    When I questioned my student as to why, during those twenty-five years, the felon did not become a U.S. citizen, my student, quite matter-a-factly, “Because [the felon] was Cambodian.” So, I asked, since the felon considers himself a Cambodian, why does he have a problem with being deported back there? My student responded that the felon had been gone too long and no longer knew the culture. So this felon considers himself Cambodian and therefore does not want to become an American citizen, but he also does not want to return to Cambodia — and the U.S. government should accommodate him.

    I then asked the student whether the government of South Korea (where I am currently teaching law) has the right to deport me if I commit a felony (or for any reason, for that matter). The student had no problem answering “yes” and added that “Korea is for the Koreans!” I then asked, “Whom is America for?” He did not answer.

    This exchange came as a revelation to me. My student essentially alleged that the United States is there for his (i.e., the world’s) benefit if and when he needs something. Korea is for Koreans. Cambodia is for Cambodians. But America must be for anyone and everyone. Korea and Cambodia have the right to keep you or kick you out, but America does not.

    This perception, while problematic at times, is not all bad. America has always been a beacon for the oppressed. It is a source of hope for millions. While most will never make it to her shores, America’s very existence is a comfort of possibilities: as long as America stands strong, a better life is possible.

    But the perception typified by my student certainly is not all good, either. It presumes that America should expect nothing in return. It also presumes that the world gets to dictate what America can and cannot do. Thus the deportation of even a convicted felon is unfair. How dare America have her own laws, her own sovereignty?

    Most of Europe views America, especially her military, in the same way. For the past sixty years, Europeans have looked down their noses at America for its large defense budget. However, Europe gladly accepted and relied upon U.S. protection during the Cold War while spending little to nothing for its own defense. Instead of being grateful, Europeans maintain a faux moral superiority. Of course, it’s easy to be “anti-war” when someone else is willing to fight your battles. Nonetheless, when the U.S. goes to war for her own self-interest, Europe, cozy in the safety not of its own making, preens with jilted outrage. America must protect Europe, but Europeans think they should get to decide when America can protect herself.

    America’s immigration issues are tainted with this same perception, especially concerning arguments made in support of illegal aliens. Not only, as the arguments go, should the illegals be allowed to stay, no questions asked, but they also should have access to all the benefits of citizenship. And this is not a request or desire; it is a demand (a “right”). Thus, America’s laws are to be ignored, but her benefits must be administered, with the American taxpayer footing the bill. Everyone who crosses into America’s borders has a right to America’s largesse, but America has no right to ask for or expect anything in return — not even that her own laws are followed.

    In a sense, America does belong to the world. For centuries now, America has been a place where the rest of the world’s people have come to get away from the rest of the world. Lately, however, the rest of the world have asked (demanded) only what America can do for them. Well, America and most of her citizens do more than enough. How about doing your part?

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/perceptions_of_america.html

    • Excellent article and I agree. Also speaks to the recent posting about multiculturism and its challenges.

  6. Truth, quick answer down here (don’t see the reply option on you last post).

    4 wives is a distraction that is used to disarm people. I see that you are resisting!

    Then you MUST be superior because I don’t know WTF you’re trying for there.

    Envy: Envy (also called invidiousness) is best defined as an emotion that “occurs when a person lacks another’s (perceived) superior quality, achievement, or possession and either desires it or wishes that the other lacked it.” – Wikipedia

    So tell me, if you do not Envy those that make 1 million an hour, why do you CARE? Care is an emotion. You do not necessarily have to have to apply Envy to yourself. Even if you are rich, it doesn’t mean you cannot be Envious (SP?) for others.

    “Perceived” … I’ll say (for you). Too much to go into (are you on deck for BF this fine a.m.?). I CARE about the inequities in income expanding daily in THIS country because I see “it” as what will be the economic cause for collapse. “I” see that disparity as eventually overwhelming this society. Debt may do it first, but you can rest assured that 2%’s won’t feel the pinch. I happen to believe that no one can earn $2.4 million an hour. If there was national health insurance and people across the board had equal opportunity to earn that same $2.4 million an hour (if they so chose to do so), I wouldn’t have a problem with it at all. I see that figure (and salaries/bonuses much less than that) as the cause for the constantly expanding disparity and the cause for generations of disadvantage for others. Trust me, I’m at a place in life where I’m happy to read and write in poverty (if I had to). I’m 54, had my fun (meager wealth and hedonistic adventures). If anything, I want to give back (in the form of teaching — writing, don’t worry, not political science; your children are safe). It is my belief, right or wrong, that capitalism has seen it’s better days (here). It may do fine in underdeveloped countries (so long as there are other undeveloped labor markets to exploit), but here (in this Global economy), I “think” it now works against the vast majority of workers.

    See 60 Minutes last night? Interesting how all that government regulation permitted (and continues to permit) outright document fraud by the banks it bailed out regarding foreclosures. Paying people $10.00 an hour to commit fraud and not once in the report was there anything other than litigation suits mentioned against the banks by those who managed to catch them in the fraud. The gov’t was looking to sweep it under the rug. What should happen is the CEO’s of the banks (who blamed a contractor) and the contractor should do hard time for each and every fraud committed (serving consecutive sentences). What will happen … not a damn thing; business in the good old US&A as usual (no matter which party is in control). People, literally, defrauded out of their homes. Nice. One more for the 2%’s …

    Okay, gotta go for now (really this time).

    • gmanfortruth says:

      Charlie, How are you this fine rainy morning? Hopefully your new book is coming along well and congrtas on your other book being nominated for an award 🙂

      We definately have disparity, but my knowledge is that this is common in every country, not just the U.S. While many blame “Capitalism” here at home, what is the cause of this disparity in North Korea for example? Or Saudi Arabia, Spain, South Africa ect.? All of these countries have one thing in common, the one common denominator that is the root cause of suffering. I’ll let you take a stab at that then we can continue. 🙂

      • Gman, I miss you! I think it will always be a case of the haves vs. the have nots; how the haves become wealthy whether here or Saudi Arabia or anywhere else, I suspect, is pretty much the same thing (generations of wealth, however acquired passed on and on). And in many countries it is via brutal military rule how thugs remain in power. And trust me, I’m not saying this government could remedy the situation (or that a socialistic government could do it). I’m saying there needs to be caps on wealth so that money is regenerated into society (not so people can lay around and do nothing all day), but to educate them enough so a semblance of a level playing field exists. Do I want to take money from a guy or gal busting their ass to earn $500,000 a year (for example)? Of course not, but a guy “earning” $2.4 million an hour is absurd and totally unecessary (and yes, before BF jumps, in, whatever figure was agreed on by a greater society would be arbitrary and stealing and savergy, evil, etc.), but better everyone have a chance than the very few (who in all likelihood could not have become so without built in advantages, etc.). Oy vey … where’s my pipe … I’m gonna need it now …

      • Gman, thanks for the kind words but those awards (crime writing awards) are as real as Obama’s promise to walk the picket line when collective bargaining was threatened … I take none of that stuff seriously …

    • Charlie

      across the board had equal opportunity to earn that same $2.4 million an hour

      They do, as long as those who believe they know better than other people about themselves leave them alone.

      Any one -in a free market- can earn as much as they want. There are no barriers other than what that person would do to earn it.

      • Except you’re forgetting what it takes to get there and how many of the 300,000,000 are too disadvantaged to have that shot. For some, even with the talent/smarts, etc., the opportunity would never present itself. That’s just a fact.

        • Charlie,

          No one -in a free market- is “disadvantaged”.

          You are merely applying your ego as a measure to other people.

          “Because I love pizza and beer, anyone who doesn’t get pizza and beer is ‘poor'” – Charlie ideology.

          Everyone has, within them, whatever is necessary for them to be happy.

          All they need is the opportunity to act on it – called “Freedom”

          • Everyone has, within them, whatever is necessary for them to be happy. All they need is the opportunity to act on it – called “Freedom”

            Talk about applying ego, BF. That is utter nonsense. How do you know what is within any given person? If you mean the potential, sure, the potential is there. Try doing it coming from three generations in the Ozarks. Sure it can be done, but that would require the in fact have the same opportunity. Freedom isn’t it. Education, nurturing, etc. have at least as much to do with success as your precious “freedom”. Forget the few success stories (those from nothing to great wealth) because compared to the vast majorities of those who don’t get those same opportunities, they disappear.

            • USWeapon says:

              Nonsense Charlie. You want to discount the nothing to great wealth stories and that is fine. But the nothing to middle class stories are vastly abundant. Nearly every one of us has a story like that in our own families. This nonsense about people can’t improve without your intervention is the real problem. Those that DO stay in poverty generation after generation do so BECAUSE of government intervention, not in spite of it.

  7. This is sorta along the lines of my newspaper column this past week: People can’t be forced to be free

  8. USWep

    which Iran wants wiped off the map (YES they do BF, your refusal to admit such is maddening)

    No, they want to see an end to Zionism.

    So, unless you equate Israel with Zionism, then you’d be right. But then Israel would necessarily be Zionist.

    • Israel = Zionism.

      There, does that help?

    • USWeapon says:

      It doesn’t matter what I think. Iran equates Israel with Zionism. Therefore Iran wants an end to zionism = Iran wants an end to Israel

      • USWep,
        No.

        Iranian opinion:
        If the end of Zionism in Israel means the Zionist will burn down Israel, then so be it.

        If the Zionism in Israel ends without Israel ending, so be it.

        • USWeapon says:

          Really? You will claim that Iran has a “live and let live” policy towards Israel? Why don’t they recognize Israel as a country officially, or perhaps recognize their right to exist?

          • USWep,

            History lesson time:
            Iran was the first Muslim-majority country to recognize Israel.</b<

            The post-1979 Iranian withdrew their recognition and Iranian authorities avoid referring to Israel by its name, and instead use the terms "the Zionist regime" or "occupied Palestine" – due to the atrocities and illegal occupation of territory by its that regime.

            • USWeapon says:

              That wasn’t a history lesson for me. It was knowledge I already had. I didn’t ask why didn’t Iran prior to 1979 recognize Israel. I asked why Iran now doesn’t. And you provided documentation to support my claim, but not an answer.

              • USwep

                Actually, it supports my position.

                The historical Iran – and a history within your own lifetime – demonstrates that the Persians hold no disagreement with Israel

                It holds intense disagreement with the Zionist in command of Israel – and its brutality of the Palestinians.

                You appear unable to separate this difference, and hence, you demonize a nation because it is appalled at the behavior of your favored nation.

              • USWeapon says:

                Israel is not my favored nation.

                And it doesn’t show what you claim at all. It shows that the Iranian GOVERNMENT, the one put in place by the United States (per your own testimony), supported what the country that put them in power told them to. As soon as the government leaders put in place by the US lost power and fled the country, the “Persians” took back over and renounced that stance. It appears that it is Iranian leadership that is unable to separate this difference, as their dislike for Zionist has caused them to refuse to recognize Israel, which in your own words is what they have no problem with. If what you claim is true, then the Iranian leadership would recognize Israel and proclaim Israel’s right to exist, and only decry the Zionists. But that is not what they are doing is it? You are too smart to make this mistake. Which makes me wonder why you would make it intentionally.

        • USWep,

          ou will claim that Iran has a “live and let live” policy towards Israel?

          With Israel, yes.
          With Zionism, no. Iran has taken the position that Zionism and Israel are two, different, things. If the latter is born from the former, Iran declares that evil. If the latter is being subjected to the former, Iran advocates for its change.

      • This is an interesting

        April 04, 2011
        Rethinking the End Game
        By Lori Lowenthal Marcus and Asaf Romirowsky
        As the world watches the Arab Spring unfold, few pundits are foolish enough to predict what will be blooming when the rains cease. Yes, there are fervent hopes that freedom, dignity and democracy will blossom, but they are tempered with fears that what is sown will be even worse than the previous brutal repression. These events force one thinking about this region to consider new and fresh approaches.

        But even before the 2011 uprisings, it was time to rethink the Middle East end game. The time had come to press “delete” on the endless replay of failure, and progress to a new formulation, one that focuses on improving the lives of those in the region, and away from artificial constructs.

        The original motivation to create separate nations for Jews and Arabs was a sound one, given the theological and historic animosity of Arabs toward the Jews. And, in fact, new Arab nations were created: TransJordan, Lebanon, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Yemen were created on the desiccated husk of the dismantled Ottoman Empire (dismantled for having chosen the losing side during World War I; losing a war is invariably the source of nation mutation and creation throughout human history). In order to appease Arab Jew-hatred, the plan then became to subdivide again the remaining land into a Jewish State and yet another Arab State. The Jewish State, Israel, was embraced and (re)born, but the Arabs could not bear a Jewish entity within their midst. They attacked the Jewish State, rejected the proffered land, and that territory — the Jordan River’s West Bank — has remained little more than a battlefield ever since.

        The world has already spent sixty years, six wars, thousands of lives, and billions of US Dollars trying to create that additional Arab State, in a region in which 22 already exist. Indeed, the two state “solution” is widely considered the only plausible option for peace between the Israelis and the Arab Palestinians, with any resistance denounced as an obstacle to peace. But perhaps the straitjacket of plausibility led to the atrophy of creativity. Perhaps the obstacle to peace was the ossified insistence on the creation of a Palestinian State. Wouldn’t it make more sense to have the geopolitical configuration facilitate the goal, rather than be the goal?

        In order to plan for a future, we have to believe that at the end of the day, most people want to live safe, productive lives. The ability to read what they want, say what they want, marry whom they want, and go where they want are nearly universal goals. And we all, fervently, want access to good medical care, cutting-edge technology, first class educational opportunities and a vibrant economy. The goal of a real peace process in the Middle East should be a viable model that ensures the greatest number of people — of all religions and ethnicities — have access to all these rights and services, while internalizing the importance of tolerance, pluralism and respect for the rule of law. That model may not comport with the creation of another Arab State, and it certainly does not with the creation of another terrorist state.

        But before this new initiative is rejected as unfair to the Arab Palestinians, consider their history over the last half century, and what has occurred as their own leadership has fought over the new state construct. During this time, while the lives of many in the Palestinian Arab leadership have been immeasurably enriched, the only state given to the people over whom they rule is the state of suspended animation.

        And yet, significantly, there was a time during which the lives of those people improved, and improved dramatically by every objective measure. Those improvements happened in spite of the Arabs’ leadership, and it had nothing to do with the creation of an Arab Palestinian state. From the standpoint of hard economic numbers and demographic measurements of well-being, by far the very best, healthiest, most prosperous period in the lives of the Arab Palestinians was that period most bemoaned by their leaders: post-1967 through to the beginnings of the uprisings, in other words, during the “occupation,” but before the “intifadas.” This was a time of unprecedented, and never-since repeated, good fortune, as revealed by Efraim Karsh in an astounding 2002 article, “What Occupation?” Health for the Arabs located in the disputed territories improved dramatically during that time: mortality rates in the “West Bank” and Gaza fell by more than two-thirds, and life expectancy rose from 48 years to 72, while infant mortality rates fell from 60 per 1,000 live births to 15 per 1000. Their quality of living improved: in 1967 only 20% had electricity around the clock and only 16% had running water, but by 1986 those rates soared to 92.8% and 85%, respectively.

        Indeed, an indispensable tool for success and self-sufficiency — higher education — was made available for the first time to the Arabs in the territories and Gaza post-1967. Before then, there was not a single institution of higher learning available to those Arabs; by the early 1990’s there were seven. Illiteracy rates dropped below 15%, compared to nearly 70% in Morocco, more than 60% in Egypt and 44% in Syria.

        Perhaps most startling: during the 1970’s the “West Bank” and Gaza constituted the fourth fastest growing economy in the world! And the engine driving this quality of life explosion for the Arabs of the region was their interconnection with the modern, western, growth-oriented democratic neighbor, Israel.

        The re-assertion of their political leadership’s control over the Arab Palestinians’ destiny, through its practice of violence and destruction, dovetailed precisely with the re-emergence of misery, poverty, and stagnation in which most Arab Palestinians have remain mired ever since. While the earliest leaders of the Zionist movement from the 1880’s onward worked tirelessly to create institutions and laid down infrastructure to nurture and sustain the people of Israel, the opposite has been the case due to the leadership which controls the Arab Palestinian people.

        Our effort to re-imagine the Middle East Peace Process begins with the premise that it makes no sense to condemn the region’s inhabitants to wait while others franticly flail to revive an old construct, based on a model that has failed repeatedly. It is time to stop rewarding flawed leadership with promises of life-tenure, and time to start, finally, fostering human potential. Insisting that what is necessary to resolve the conflict is the immediate creation of a Palestinian State — especially now that the entire region is in profound and violent turmoil — is not only misleading but dangerously foolhardy.

        Putting the focus on improving lives in the Middle East makes more sense than pursuing a proven failure. We invite others who want peace and prosperity in that region to join us.

        http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/rethinking_the_end_game.html

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Israel was “created” in 1947 as a home for the Hebrews as “reparations” for the Holocaust, at least as I understand it.

      As such, I would probably equate Israel with “Zionism”. It SEEMS to me that the Arabs (and the Persians) are at least PORTRAYED as making that equation as well, though as to whether that is perception or reality is open to some debate I suppose.

      • SK Trynosky Sr says:

        The desire for a “Jewish State” goes back a lot farther than that. The immigration (Zionist) movement started in the 1890’s and only built up speed in the post WW II era. After the First World war when Palestine became a protectorate of the British, they apparently promised the Jews that they would back a homeland and the Arabs that they would not. That British Foreign Office was really something. The history of Israel is well worth a quick research trip especially since it seems to play such a crucial role in our world since 1947.

        The great unanswered question is? How long does your right to claim stolen property last? 50, 100, 500, 1,000, 2,000 years? In a truly “fair” world, the Italians have the responsibility to make it all right again.

  9. gmanfortruth says:

    Speaking of the military 🙂

    A Well Written Police Report

    Augusta, GA

    Orville Smith, a store manager for Best Buy in Augusta, Georgia, told police he observed a male customer, later identified as Tyrone Jackson of Augusta, on surveillance cameras putting a laptop computer under his jacket… When confronted the man became irate, knocked down an employee, drew a knife and ran for the door.

    Outside on the sidewalk were four Marines collecting toys for the “Toys for Tots” program. Smith said the Marines stopped the man, but he stabbed one of the Marines, Cpl. Phillip Duggan, in the back; the injury did not appear to be severe.

    After Police and an ambulance arrived at the scene Cpl. Duggan was transported for treatment.

    The subject was also transported to the local hospital with two broken arms, a broken ankle, a broken leg, several missing teeth, possible broken ribs, multiple contusions, assorted lacerations, a broken nose and a broken jaw…injuries he sustained when he slipped and fell off of the curb after stabbing the Marine.

    Now that was a well written Police report.

  10. Reading along today…

  11. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    If someone can answer the simple question:

    “Why are we involved in Libya at all?”

    Then I will tell you whether or not it is a “good idea”.

    • That is the question –

      Why are we?

    • gmanfortruth says:

      I’m only guessing, but Europe exports iol from Libya, Italy being a large exporter. If European nations can’t get that oil it may mean economic collapse sooner rather than later, and if that happens the U.S. will soon follow. That I guess would be the D.C. thinking.

      We’re going to fail anyway, without Europes help. I’m not trying to start a economic discussion, but I think it boils down to it.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      @Peter – we may not ever know w/o another wikileaks. 😉

  12. 😐 for comments

  13. SK Trynosky Sr says:

    When it was first announced we were going into Libya I remember getting apoplectic. I possibly was foaming at the mouth. The wife came from the other room to see if I was having a stroke or something. When I finally calmed down, I had to examine my conscience. Was I going nuts because it was the wrong thing to do or because it was Obama. I will acknowledge the most intense distaste for the President for a variety of reasons, not the last of which are because he is a liar, a phony and a race baiter.

    However, my main reason is because we have no damned business there. Sorry but there is no threat to the US. In fact Mr. Khadaffi has amply demonstrated that he wants no more beefs with the United States both by his response to Reagan’s attacks and to Bush’s labelling him as part of the axis of evil triad.

    This “progressive, neo-con” nonsense has to stop. People have to earn their freedom. We cannot just deliver it up to them and expect it to flourish. Can you imagine Bill Kristol and Barak Obama on the same page, but they are. That’s insanity.

    The fact that the “rebels” are an unknown factor and supported by????? should set of alarm bells in anyones head. Where is their George Washington or will we replace one colonel with another?

    The complicity of the media is astounding. Under the rug are brushed the atrocities committed by the freedom fighters. How many friendly fire casualties have we caused. How many innocent civilians have gotten in the way. If, according to our own left we have managed to kill hundreds of thousands of Afghan and Iraqi civilians while we liberated them, have our targeting pods on the attack aircraft gotten that much better?

    I thought we settled for once and for all after Vietnam that having CIA types or “Air America” on the ground was “boots on the ground”. How many have temporarily laid aside their military rank and been “drafted” into government sponsored “corporations” so the president can keep up his lies.

    When all is said and done this whole North African fiasco will turn out to be a nightmare for all concerned. Tribes will merrily return to killing each other and settling up old scores. The Chinese, Russians, Al-Queda and Osama will be laughing their heads off.

    Keep in mind always that there is a difference between Authoritarian and Totalitarian. Neither is pretty but one is a whole lot less pretty than the other. In Iran we exchanged Authoritarian for Totalitarian in the name of “freedom”. Worked out really well didn’t it.

    My two cents on why they hate us. Envy is one but for the Fundmentalist cultures it is because of our freedom. Not the democratic kind but the libertine kind. There was a column I once read about Osama’s spiritual advisor, an Egyptian cleric. His position was that the west was corrupt and rotting at its core. He did not want to see that kind of “freedom” make it to the middle east. His most telling comment was I think that the West was once Christian but is now Pagan. I remember a news story after we had invaded Afghanistan and captured Kabul. Larry Flint flew in a crew who brought the latest copies of “Hustler” with them and distributed them to young Afghan men. People thought this was funny. “People”, generically, are pretty stupid.

    Anyone out there besides this old fart remember Fletcher Knebel’s book from the late ’50’s called appropriately, “The Ugly American”? Fiction but based on fact. It was based on our inability to even attempt to understand the politics and culture of South East Asia. If you had read that in the late ’50’s or early ’60’s you would have known how Vietnam was going to come out. The same goes for Graham Green’s fiction too or sadly the late Bernard Fall’s great books on the Indo china experience of the French.

    That last comment of mine reminds me of an overachieving Air Force Colonel I met in the mid ’60’s who went on and on about our superiority to the French, never once wanting to hear anything about their Indo China experience. He knew it all, we knew it all and we and he knew the aspirations of the people there. Listening to this with me was a wizened old Air Force Captain who had spent the first ten years of his career as an Enlisted man and some time on the ground in Korea as a FAC, when the Colonel left, Capt. Murphy turned to the rest of us and just said one word, “asshole”.
    That, in the plural, gentlemen and ladies is what is running our country today. Impeachment anyone?

  14. We have no business or right or moral obligation to involve ourselves in another nation.

    It is the arrogance of American political beliefs that “we” know when it is right to interfere versus when it is right to stand aside. It is American arrogance to “know” that our reasons for action are moral.

    It is American arrogance to believe that we are “freeing” the oppressed instead of acknowledging the truth that “we” are doing nothing more than imposing our own brand of oppression upon another countries peoples.

    Lord help us, when will we ever learn?

    • I think Libya is on Obama’s arrogance, not America’s. We have as a nation been inconsistent in our foreign policy. I think there are some things we can justify, such as WW2, others definitely run counter to our supposed principals, looking more like might makes right than freedom for all.

      http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2011/04/04/karl-rove-nato-libya-president-obamas-reelection-bid/#ixzz1Iac0q5zs

      the 47% of Americans who approved last week of the U.S. air strikes in Libya ordered by President Obama is lower than for any other military action since WWII, according to a new Pew poll.

      By comparison, here are the percentages of Americans who approved of U.S. military action in other post-WWII conflicts:

      49% – Lebanon (1982)
      51% – Kosovo (1999)
      53% – Grenada (1983)
      54% – Haiti (1994)
      65% – Somalia (1993)
      66% – Sudan (1998)
      71% – Libya (1986)
      75% – Korea (1950)
      76% – Iraq (1991)
      76% – Iraq (2003)
      80% – Panama (1989)
      83% – Iraq (1993)
      90% – Afghanistan (2001)

      The Pew poll gave a sense why the public may be uneasy—just 39% believe the U.S. and its allies have a clear goal in Libya, 60% think military action is likely to last for some time, and voters are split 46%-43% on whether the U.S. and its allies should remove Qaddafi from power or only protect civilians.

      • LOI, the “we” is a government we, not a citizens we. Sorry, I should have made that clearer.

        • No prob’, I can be a nitpicker.

          We have no business
          or right
          or moral obligation
          to involve ourselves in the affairs of another nation.

          Hmm. I supported Grenada & Panama. I have mixed thoughts on Korea and Nam, but that’s hindsight. During the cold war, most believed the USSR was trying to become dominate through any means necessary, and the cost would be our and the worlds freedom. I think there are times we have business and the “right”. Ex. Mexico when violence spills over our border. Moral obligation is just justification to become the worlds policeman, which is a useless pursuit.

          • We, in hindsight could question them all to one degree or another.

            As for the Cold War, we never directly intervened in the USSR with military force. We were content to arms race with them or play political games (overtly and covertly) around the world at the expense of the third party nations and their peoples.

  15. Update!

    Feds seek $7M in privately made ‘Liberty Dollars’
    Feds seek $7M in ‘Liberty Dollars’ that were invented by man to compete with US dollar

    Tom Breen, Associated Press, On Monday April 4, 2011, 12:34 pm

    RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Federal prosecutors on Monday tried to take a hoard of silver “Liberty Dollars” worth about $7 million that authorities say was invented by an Indiana man to compete with U.S. currency.

    Bernard von NotHaus, 67, was convicted last month in federal court in Statesville on conspiracy and counterfeiting charges for making and selling the currency, which he promoted as inflation-proof competition for the U.S. dollar.

    His Charlotte-based lawyer, Aaron Michel, is appealing that verdict. He wrote in a motion filed Thursday that von NotHaus did nothing wrong because he didn’t try to pass the Liberty Dollars off as U.S. dollars.

    “The prosecutors successfully painted Mr. von NotHaus in a false light and now the U.S. Attorney responsible for the prosecution is painting the case in a false light, saying that it establishes that private voluntary barter currency is illegal,” Michel wrote.

    The trial was scheduled to resume Monday in Statesville. The case involves more than five tons of Liberty Dollars and precious metals seized from a warehouse, which the government wants to take by forfeiture, according to federal prosecutors and Michel.

    Von NotHaus began issuing Liberty Dollars in 1998, as head of the Evansville, Ind.-based National Organization for the Repeal of the Federal Reserve and Internal Revenue Code. In 2007, the group’s headquarters were raided along with the Sunshine Mint in Coeur D’Alene, Idaho, where the coins were made. The case is being tried in Statesville because one of the organization’s top officers is based in Asheville, and because an undercover investigator made contact with the group in North Carolina.

    Federal prosecutors successfully argued that von NotHaus was, in fact, trying to pass off the silver coins as U.S. currency. Coming in denominations of 5, 10, 20, and 50, the Liberty Dollars also featured a dollar sign, the word “dollar” and the motto “Trust in God,” similar to the “In God We Trust” that appears on U.S. coins.

    “Attempts to undermine the legitimate currency of this country are simply a unique form of domestic terrorism,” U.S. Attorney Anne Tompkins said in a statement after von NotHaus was convicted.

    Von NotHaus has argued it’s not illegal to create currency to privately trade goods and services. He also has said his organization took pains to say the Liberty Dollars shouldn’t be called “coins” and shouldn’t be presented as government-minted cash. Among other benefits, Michel’s motion argues, the Liberty Dollars were a means to help keep currency in local communities by creating networks of merchants and consumers who used the money.

    Numerous cities and regions around the country have experimented with local currency, but laws restrict them from resembling U.S. bills or from being passed off as money printed by the federal government.

    The concerns raised by von NotHaus and his group are finding resonance among some state lawmakers, too. About a dozen states have legislation that would allow them to produce their own currency backed by gold or silver in the event of hyperinflation striking the U.S. dollar. North and South Carolina are among those states.

    That’s partly why von NotHaus’ group has been followed for years by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a group that tracks political extremism. Long before the government began its investigation into von NotHaus, the group was raising concerns about the popularity of Liberty Dollars among fringe groups on the far right.

    “He’s playing on a core idea of the radical right, that evil bankers in the Federal Reserve are ripping you off by controlling the money supply,” said Mark Potok, spokesman for the group. “He very much exists in the world of the anti-government patriot movement, whatever he may say. That’s who his customers are.”

    Von NotHaus is currently free on bond. If the conviction against him is upheld, he faces up to 25 years in prison and a fine of $750,000. A sentencing date has not been set yet.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Feds-seek-7M-in-privately-apf-641808269.html?x=0&.v=1

  16. @USW….Good afternnon. Nice article. I see that the biggest problem is the inconsistenctof our foreign policy. Libya is a tyrant. All of those monarchies,despots, Kingdoms, and Fifedoms are archaic and relics of the past. but it is their way of life. The inconsistency of the application of our foreign policy, I feel, is more dangerous and more destructive than any thing else.

  17. From what I understand is that what is happening in the “middle east (or muddle east)” is a religious war.

    So, here is my fix-all solution to the problem;

    Since it is a religious problem why don’t we just nuke em all and let God sort out the bad guys . . . 😉

    Works for me! :-))

  18. Common Man says:

    All;

    It has been a whirlwind at the new venture, and does not show any immediate slow down. But that is OK, keeps me out of trouble, which is good, but also keeps me from SUFA, which is not good.

    Libya – WE have no more business sticking our noses in their mess than we do in Iran or any of the others.

    What gives us the authority to barge into someone else fight, regardless of our position.

    Is it because we need the oil they produce and sell? Is it because we want to assist those who want freedom? Maybe it is because we feel we should help the repressed and downtrodden. That is all bull. It’s their problem not ours. Leave them alone to work it our among themselves.

    I mean, don’t we have enough issues stateside? I think we do and we should be focusing on our issues not those of a far away land.

    Maybe if we pull all troops back home, start drilling on our own land and shore lines we can support our own oil needs. If we don’t need oil then we won’t be as interested in sticking our noses where they are unwelcome.

    Maybe if we stay out of others business those others will at least learn to tolerate us. Now whether they tolerate, like or hate us is irrelevant to me so long as they don’t threaten my freedom and/or peace. And we certainly don’t need to be sending any more of our young men and women into another powder keg.

    I don’t hate Iran, Iraq, Libya or any of the countries in the Middle East, but I don’t care about their particular woes either; it’s not my business.

    Here is Common Mans rules going forward:

    -Want to live in the US, great, but do so legally, and accept our ways.
    -Investigate and develop alternative sources of energy, but in the mean time drill, drill, drill
    -If the government is involved then it’s FUBAR’d, and as such I chose to avoid or ignore it.
    -I know longer worry about that which I have little or no control or influence over, I put my efforts towards that which I can change
    -Treat everyone with the same, or more respect then they show you, otherwise ignore and avoid them.
    -Teach your kids and grand kids reality, independence, honesty, and respect because the next 100 years is up to them.
    -Save your money and buy things you need with cash.
    -Tell all those that you love that you do every day
    -Help your neighbors, friends and family
    -Give to those that need, as much as you can
    -Be nice
    -Pay attention to the tongue in a man/woman’s shoes far more than the one in his/her mouth.
    -Think for yourself and question everything
    -Dance – Everyday!
    -Believe and work for the best, but be prepared for the worst.
    Live free and be an example, maybe others will be inspired to do likewise.

    I hope everyone is well, ready for spring and prosper throughout 2011.

    CM

  19. We should not be in Libya. If we are there for humanitarian
    reasons as Obama claims, why not, as you stated Syria, Yemen, Ivory Coast, or Tunisia? I think over 300,000 have died in Darfur?

    The only reason for us to be there is foreign policy, at the request of close allies such as the UK, who stood by us in Iraq & Afghanistan. I don’t think that is enough to require us to attack a country having a civil war, but history is full of countries trying to help or pick winners of such wars.

    You would think we would learn from our mistakes.

  20. Nonsense Charlie. You want to discount the nothing to great wealth stories and that is fine. But the nothing to middle class stories are vastly abundant. Nearly every one of us has a story like that in our own families. This nonsense about people can’t improve without your intervention is the real problem. Those that DO stay in poverty generation after generation do so BECAUSE of government intervention, not in spite of it.

    Double nonsense, USW. Nothing to middle class is not exactly $2.4 million an hour … and with a middle class that is virtually disappearing because of the $2.4 million an hour guys, it’s not saying much. It took my family 3 generations to make it to a college graduate, now we have several but … we’re white, our parents came over when New York was in the process of growing and there were jobs waiting for them. Those living in abject poverty and or people of color didn’t quite have the same experience.

    As for the government keeping them in poverty, I have to assume you mean the government owned by big business. A government more representative of the working class might do a bit better since they wouldn’t be there to enforce business edicts and protectionism, never mind bailouts.

    And just for the record, every story in every one of your families you reference above has to give credit to government intervention (especially in the form of education). The difference might be the dozens of other variables you cannot ignore (whether you choose to or not). Race, geographic location, ethnicity, time in history, war economy vs. non-war economy, etc. I wonder how many of SUFA’s membership would have done had their families come from slave backgrounds up and through that nasty government intervention known as civil rights legislation, etc. Or if they were American Indians, after genocidal attempts to rid them from some parts of the land, through reservation life loaded with the pacifiers of alcohol, etc.

    “Just because I did it, everyone can do it” is way too simple an explanation or formula for any measure of success (however great or meager).

    • USWeapon says:

      You have to let this 2.4 million an hour thing go. You continue to use it as your measuring stick when it is obviously a massive exaggeration of reality. It made news precisely because it is so rare and so outrageous. Yet you keep throwing it out there like it is proof of something or as if it were normal in today’s environment. It was a fluke. And your further examples of blacks and indians are no longer representative of today’s reality, either. 50 years ago they were great examples of why things need to change. Today they are examples of how things DID change despite the fact that your red world didn’t cause their worlds to get better. And no I don’t mean big business government. I mean entitlement programs that teach generations to not work hard to rise above.

      To be honest I am a little surprised as this line of argument from you came across as pretty weak. If you want to argue for the future as you believe it should be, I can respect that. But nothing you presented here was a pertinent or rational argument for a red world.

      • You have to let this 2.4 million an hour thing go.

        How do bailed out execs getting multi-million bonuses/golden parachutes after they bankrupted their companies/the economy work for you? Or the AVERAGE Goldman Sachs bonus being $600K plus? Those are pretty recent (last two years) and their far from the $5 billion a year one crook made sitting at his desk.

        The point of using the extreme was exactly that; the extremes are growing.

        And your further examples of blacks and indians are no longer representative of today’s reality, either.

        Spoken like a true white man who has had to deal with none of those issues. I suspect there are quite a few people in those populations who haven’t a clue what a hedge fund manager, CEO and/or stock broker is, never mind aspire to be one. Take the blinders off. I’ve worked in SEVERAL major legal firms in New York (as my wife does now) and you could count the numbers of black partners on one hand (usually one finger) in each of those firms. You might consider that progress, but do you really think it’s hiring the best and the brightest going on at those firms. Likewise, just for the record, you can count the number of female partners on one hand in many of those same firms. As for blacks in those firms, a disproportionately low number are even associates, never mind partners.

        To be honest I am a little surprised as this line of argument from you came across as pretty weak.

        Well, then we see each other as having weak, naive arguments, because I am often baffled by some of the arguments you present as well. Way too simple. You often ignore a lot of the variable in life that just aren’t black and white, USW.

        If you want to argue for the future as you believe it should be, I can respect that. But nothing you presented here was a pertinent or rational argument for a red world.

        Red world is another example of oversimplifying but it seems to make you comfortable doing so. Red world, red-white and blue world, makes no difference to me. When workers have true representation, it’ll be a better world for them. Until then, so long as business gets to own the government, unfair inequalities will exist to support business before people. My future paradigm envisions a close to BF world (in the sense that government is actually stripped of corruption and some bureaucracy–but not stripped completely). A true government of the working man (since he/she has to do the work). You see my argument as irrational. I see yours as oversimplified. So it goes.

        • Charlie

          The point of using the extreme was exactly that; the extremes are growing.

          I completely agree. But the problem is not freedom – but the consequences of government control.

          The formula:
          (1) You believe all men need to be under control
          (2) You use government to control men
          (3) Men fight for and/or buy government to own that control of men
          (4) Some men win that fight and/or own government, controlling government who controls you and other men
          (5) These men use that control to enrich themselves.

          The problem is not (5), that is human nature.
          The problem is (1), your belief that all men should be controlled.

  21. Charlie

    except I don’t believe in the nirvana of capitalism/free market

    I don’t believe in nirvana.

    I believe in freedom.

    The Free Market is not an “invention”, and is not created by a “belief” nor destroyed by a “lack of belief”.

    It is a description of a consequence of free men in action.

    Men can act in a different way creating a different consequence, and it should be described (“named”) differently. Because it is a different consequence, it cannot be the same consequence what we call the “free market.”

    But both exist as both come from the consequences of actions of men. And there are other such consequences (more than two – likely close to infinite) others as well.

    Thus, I do not “believe” in Capitalism (a consequence of free men in action) nor do I “believe” in the Free Market (a consequence of free men in action).

    I believe in Freedom, and whatever consequences bubble from that is just fine by me.

  22. Charlie,

    Everyone has, within them, whatever is necessary for them to be happy. All they need is the opportunity to act on it – called “Freedom”

    How do you know what is within any given person?

    “Happiness” is a state of mind. You do have a mind, right?

    You choose whether to be happy or not. It is your choice – as long as you have the freedom to exercise your choices.

    Thus, as a wise man once wrote by the name of Kent:
    “Without Freedom, nothing else matters”

    Try doing it coming from three generations in the Ozarks.

    Your ego is getting in your way.

    You are measuring the lives of the Ozarkians from your point of view and believing that because they do not have what you have, they cannot be happy.

    But they have lived there – as you said – for generations. They can walk and live somewhere else, but they have not moved – for generations.

    Obviously where they live gives them happiness.

    And that is what freedom is all about – to choose.

    • They can walk and live somewhere else, but they have not moved – for generations.

      That is about most arrogant statement I’ve ever read. Honestly, sometimes your arrogance is incredulous.

      • Charlie,

        sometimes your arrogance is incredulous

        But that was a statement of fact – they have lived there for generations; you said that.

        Therefore, they have not moved. That is a fact, too.

        They can move – , the Ozarks is not a prison (a fact) so they can move if they want. But they have not.

        If they can, but do not, there is a reason.

        If they can, and do, there is also a reason.

        People act in ways of their own self-interest (sometimes referred as “their happiness”).

        Thus, if they do not – it is for their self-interest, and thus, their “happiness”. Their set of tradeoffs calculation:
        “I am more happy staying, then losing the things I need to give up to move”

        • Perhaps, BF, it is a fact based on other variables such as income, ability to earn, ability to educate well enough to learn. If you can’t see that it’s because you choose not to. That’s your problem. Not all people living in poverty choose to do so, contrary to the popular belief here at SUFA. That is just arrogant as well as absurd. Ultimately, it’s what makes others run from your paradigm. I suppose people chose to be slaves … the government formed in 1776 was made of free men or not?

          Again, Phooey.

          • Charlie

            erhaps, BF, it is a fact based on other variables such as income, ability to earn, ability to educate well enough to learn.

            Those are called trade offs

            You cannot have everything, so you have to make choices.

            Having “this thing” will necessarily mean you CANNOT have “that thing”.

            Whatever their reason, they want “this”. Therefore, they will not have “that”.

            You dream they can both, and advocate violence on others to help them achieve both.

            The end game: they get neither and everyone loses.

            suppose people chose to be slaves … the government formed in 1776 was made of free men or not?

            Not.

            Men fought to be free, and then sold themselves into slavery under a different master

  23. I believe in Freedom, and whatever consequences bubble from that is just fine by me.

    Says it all. I believe you believe, BF. I respect it. I don’t agree with it whatever consequence is all.

    • Charlie,

      Freedom for me requires you to be free too.

      To take your freedom away from you takes my freedom away from me.

      Thus, in freedom, whatever you do -for you and to you- cannot be my concern, since it matters not one wit to me.

      If we cooperate voluntarily – that is, both of us are free to say “Yes” or free to say “No” – then we either work together or we work individually. But the latter is not my concern, for you are doing nothing to me.

      So whatever consequence comes out of that cannot be my concern either.

      Live and let live is a successful living strategy

  24. Charlie

    I wonder how many of SUFA’s membership would have done had their families come from slave backgrounds up and through that nasty government intervention known as civil rights legislation

    They made themselves free.

    My family comes from a long line of abused people – the Celts – who were chased all the way from northern India while being slaughtered, warred upon, and shoved until finally becoming pinned on two ugly pieces of rock – Scotland and Wales – and a tiny island, Ireland – and event then, continually attacked and killed.

    Some found their way to North America.

    Another side of the family was obliterated by Stalin. The only survivors were my Gdad and his two brothers out of a family of 12. All the rest, including all the extended family of aunts, uncles, cousins …. everyone.. died by starvation.

    He found his way to North America.

    They all ran from government intervention – the very weapon you believe solves problems. But it cannot, it never has, and it never will.

    People find their own freedom – do not expect government to give it to you.

    • Yet Charlie’s point stands: It took government force to free slaves and integrate schools et cetera. These things did not “just happen” and african-americans did not just integrate themselves – the wielded the power to the government to help them.

      BTW: When you integrate the “Little Rock 9,” you get the “Little Rock 9x + C”.

      • Mathius,

        It was government that made slavery and made the schools. It did NOT just happen. It was enforced by government.

        To then hold the opinion that government “solved the problem” is contrariwise understanding.

        • A governmetn made up of free men, BF. You conveniently almost always ignore that fact … or why isn’t the world in a continuous anarchistic state? What makes you think for a second (seriously) that man would not bully other men in a free state? You don’t make that claim, you say. Okay, so then the strong rule the world. Sorry, not an acceptable paradigm for the weak or those not willing to bully others. That’s the key missing link to your Randism … it leaves people (this free state of nature, so to speak) back to square one; the strong survive however they choose.

  25. http://www.stratfor.com/weekly/20110404-immaculate-intervention-wars-humanitarianism?utm_source=GWeekly&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=110405&utm_content=readmore&elq=607d36a01d8c4caf9392dbd498775f7c

    I like Stratfor.
    Here is their take on Libya.

    I think their point is poignant.

    Intervention on “humanitarian” grounds necessarily means intervening on the weaker side of a two-sided fight. If this side was strong, they’d be able to fight back.

    But intervening on a weaker side changes the entire dynamics of the conflict and thus, turns into changing other countries national interests, goals and development.

    …which is where the danger of tyranny breeds.

  26. USWep

    It appears that it is Iranian leadership that is unable to separate this difference

    That is your error, not mine.

    You confuse Israel, the nation, with Zionism, an ideology.
    You confuse Iran, the nation, with Extremist Islam, an ideology.

    Thus, you are confused about a man (who is not extremist) decrying an ideology that has seized a nation.

    So you complain about Iran, the nation.

    And you believe you are not confused.

    But you are not alone. Even today MSM continues to spew this propaganda – I happened to (unfortunately) catch Piers Morgan on TV and -you bet- echos the same barf as you did that started this sub-thread.

    refuse to recognize Israel

    If you really investigated their complaint about Israel is that they removed recognition because of the ILLEGALLY seized territory claimed by Israel that Israel has declared to be permanent part of Israel.

    If what you claim is true, then the Iranian leadership would recognize Israel and proclaim Israel’s right to exist, and only decry the Zionists.

    IF they did that, they would also give tacit agreement to the land Israel has seized to now be part of Ersatz Israel.

    They will not do that.

    You do not consider the whole story – where Iran has repeatedly expressed that it would support any mutual agreement between Palestinians and Israel. They have repeated that they have no other interest than justice for the Palestinians.

    You are too smart to make this mistake. Which makes me wonder why you would make it intentionally.

    In this matter, you have “blinders” on – you cannot see more than what is shoved in front of your face by the MSM.

    • USWeapon says:

      Silly Rabbit… I don’t watch the MSM.

      Some good points from you. Just one thing I will point out and then I will let it drop, as I don’t think we are making headway:

      USW said “It appears that it is Iranian leadership that is unable to separate this difference”

      You replied:

      That is your error, not mine.

      You confuse Israel, the nation, with Zionism, an ideology.
      You confuse Iran, the nation, with Extremist Islam, an ideology.

      Thus, you are confused about a man (who is not extremist) decrying an ideology that has seized a nation.

      So you complain about Iran, the nation.

      And you believe you are not confused.

      I didn’t complain about Iran, the nation. I specifically said “Iranian leadership”. I would have to go out on a limb here and say that the President of the Country is fairly representative of “Iranian Leadership.” Do you contend that he is not? If you harken back to past discussions, you will perhaps recall that I have always been very supportive of the Iranian people, and of muslims in general. I have been quick to defend them and point out to others that they are regular people with regular hopes and dreams. But the leadership is another story, especially in Iran. Do not change what I said to match your argument.

      • USWep,

        I didn’t complain about Iran, the nation. I specifically said “Iranian leadership”. I would have to go out on a limb here and say that the President of the Country is fairly representative of “Iranian Leadership.” Do you contend that he is not?

        I stand corrected on your statements.

  27. Charlie

    A governmetn made up of free men, BF.

    Oh, Grandmaster of Contradiction, please tell me how there exists a government – which exists to impose upon free men – that is made up of free men.

    You conveniently almost always ignore that fact … or why isn’t the world in a continuous anarchistic state?

    But, sir, it is!! You live in it everyday. You do not notice it, because you only notice when it is NOT there.

    You merrily and mundanely live, trade some coins for a coffee, trade some coins for fuel for your car, trade some of your time for coins – completely oblivious to the anarchistic effort you are engaging – a free man voluntarily trading.

    The moment something interferes with that, you notice! But you do not notice the existence of your freedom, but you notice the loss of your freedom.

    So your world-view is “loss based” – and hence, cannot conceive of the very thing that surrounds you.

    What makes you think for a second (seriously) that man would not bully other men in a free state?

    There will always be some men who do evil.
    So what?

    Does that mean you have to do evil?

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Lets see…a government made up of free men…

      The US sort of comes to mind here. Go figure.

    • Double Grandmaster of Contradiction, that is your paradigm in a nutshell … or how did govt’s come about?

      If man was initially free (is in fact born free), then how oh how did all this slavery/savagery come about?

      The “some men that will do evil” may well be too powerful to handle for other free men, si or no? What happens then? The more powerful survive or men bond to protect one another? You say it’s okay if it’s in the form of a mutual coop, but that a majority deciding on a government is evil. So, what to do with those free men (such as yourself)? Are those few to determine how others should live (the vast majority–unknowledgeable as we may be to your superior thought process) who prefer government and protection? The majority prefers protection … you can have your freedom but not at our expense. We see that as evil. You’ll have to settle elsewhere, I’m afraid …

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