Mo’ Karpinski

A little birdie (actually an attractive, well-armed birdie) mentioned that Karpinski is on a college lecture tour as a part of a program put on by the “World Can’t Wait” folks – the ones whose tagline is ‘Drive Out The Bush Regime’.

If you go to their website, and then to the Speaking the Unspeakable: Is the Bush Administration Guilty of War Crimes & Crimes Against Humanity section, you’ll see that Karpinski spoke on April 26 at Harvard, on the 27th at MIT, on May 3 at Berkeley, the 4th at Stanford, May 9 at Northwestern, and will be speaking on May 18 at UCLA, along with

Larry Everest, a journalist and author of Oil, Power, and Empire: Iraq and the U.S. Global Agenda. He has covered the Middle East and Central Asia for over 20 years for Revolution newspaper and other publications.

among others.

She’s a co-signer on the site of a petition (the whole thing, including the notables who signed it at below the fold) which pretty much takes on all the moonbat Hitler-simile talking points and is signed by everyone from Mumia to Cindy Sheehan to Susan Sarandon, with a few Democratic Congressmen thrown in for good measure (note that next time you argue that I’m unfairly linking Democrats to the lunatic fringes).

The main impact on Karpinski is, sadly that she’s blowing any chance to have herself taken seriously as a military critic or reformer by aligning herself with these folks. And that for skeptics like me, it’s easier to dismiss her claims as a part and parcel of a worldview that’s only loosely attached to any reality that I know. That’s a shame, because part of me does believe that there are some things that need reforming in the military, and we need brave – if sane – critics to stand up and lead the way.Here’s the petition:

Sign the Call to Drive Out the Bush Regime

Your government, on the basis of outrageous lies, is waging a murderous and utterly illegitimate war in Iraq, with other countries in their sights.

Your government is openly torturing people, and justifying it.

Your government puts people in jail on the merest suspicion, refusing them lawyers, and either holding them indefinitely or deporting them in the dead of night.

Your government is moving each day closer to a theocracy, where a narrow and hateful brand of Christian fundamentalism will rule.

Your government suppresses the science that doesn’t fit its religious, political and economic agenda, forcing present and future generations to pay a terrible price.

Your government is moving to deny women here, and all over the world, the right to birth control and abortion.

Your government enforces a culture of greed, bigotry, intolerance and ignorance.

People look at all this and think of Hitler — and they are right to do so. The Bush regime is setting out to radically remake society very quickly, in a fascist way, and for generations to come. We must act now; the future is in the balance.

Millions and millions are deeply disturbed and outraged by this. They recognize the need for a vehicle to express this outrage, yet they cannot find it; politics as usual cannot meet the enormity of the challenge, and people sense this.

There is not going to be some magical “pendulum swing.” People who steal elections and believe they’re on a “mission from God” will not go without a fight.

There is not going to be some savior from the Democratic Party. This whole idea of putting our hopes and energies into “leaders” who tell us to seek common ground with fascists and religious fanatics is proving every day to be a disaster, and actually serves to demobilize people.

But silence and paralysis are NOT acceptable. That which you will not resist and mobilize to stop, you will learn — or be forced — to accept. There is no escaping it: the whole disastrous course of this Bush regime must be STOPPED. And we must take the responsibility to do it.

And there is a way. We are talking about something on a scale that can really make a huge change in this country and in the world. We need more than fighting Bush’s outrages one at a time, constantly losing ground to the whole onslaught. We must, and can, aim to create a political situation where the Bush regime’s program is repudiated, where Bush himself is driven from office, and where the whole direction he has been taking society is reversed. We, in our millions, must and can take responsibility to change the course of history.

Acting in this way, we join with and give support and heart to people all over the globe who so urgently need and want this regime to be stopped.

This will not be easy. If we speak the truth, they will try to silence us. If we act, they will try to stop us. But we speak for the majority, here and around the world, and as we get this going we are going to reach out to the people who have been so badly fooled by Bush and we are NOT going to stop.

The point is this: history is full of examples where people who had right on their side fought against tremendous odds and were victorious. And it is also full of examples of people passively hoping to wait it out, only to get swallowed up by a horror beyond what they ever imagined. The future is unwritten. WHICH ONE WE GET IS UP TO US.

The World Can’t Wait! Drive Out the Bush Regime!

Sign the call now!

Co-signers include (heck, here’s the whole list – it defines the beating heart of the “Amerikka” crowd):

ACT UP, New York City

Mumia Abu-Jamal, political prisoner, journalist

Imam Talib Abdur-Rashid, mosque of Islamic Brotherhood; Justice Committee, Majlis Ash-Shura, NY

Pam Africa, Move Organization and International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal

After Downing Street Coalition

Vicente “Panama” Alba, Organizer, Laborers Union Local 108, New York

“Alberto Lovera” Bolivian Circle, New York

Aimee Allison, army conscientious objector (Gulf War

90)/counter-Recruiter

Tom Ammiano, San Francisco Board of Supervisors

Anti-Flag

Aris Anagnos, Los Angeles

Arab American Community Coalition, Seattle Washington

Carlos Arango, director of Casa Aztlan*

Edward Asner

Asociacion Tepeyac de New York

Axis of Justice

Rosa Ayala, Justice for Janitors*

William Ayers, professor and author

Russell Banks, writer

Father Luis Barrios, Iglesia San Romero de Las Americas, New York

Rev. Willie Barrow, Women Connecting*

Ed Begley Jr.

Harry Belafonte

Dave Berenson, Cleveland, OH, U.S. Green Party

Michael Berg, anti-war activist

Jessica Blank, writer, actor

Blase Bonpane, author

Bob Bossie, SCJ, 8th Day Center for Justice*

Father Roy Bourgeois, MM

St. Clair Bourne, film maker

Elombe Brath, Patrice Lumumba Coalition, NYC

Catharina Breinholm, musician (Nina Hagen)

Jane Bright, Co-founder, Gold Star Families for Peace

Carol Brightman, author, “Total Insecurity: The Myth of American Omnipotence”

Dennis Brutus

Gabriel Byrne, Actor

Campus Anti-War Network(CAN)

Tim Carpenter, Director, Progressive Democrats of America

Center for Constitutional Rights

Chicago ADAPT

CHOICE USA

Ward Churchill

Citizens For Legitimate Government

Kate Clinton, humorist

Clothing of American Mind

David Cobb, 2004 Green Party Presidential Candidate

Code Pink: Women for Peace

Steve Colman, poet
John Conyers, US Representative

Carlos Cornier, percussionist, Funkadesi, Old Town School of Folk

Music

Barry Crimmins, writer/
correspondent, Air America Radio 

Culture Clash

Charles W. Dahm (Father Chuck), Pastor, St. Pius V, Chicago

Chris Daly, San Francisco Board of Supervisors

Julie Delpy, Actress

DC Anti-War Network

Democrats.com

Carl Dix, Revolutionary Communist Party

Leonard “Len” Dominguez, Candidate for Cook County Commissioner, Illinois

Dominican Women’s Development Center, New York

Ariel Dorfman, writer

Tom Duane, NY State Senator

Michael Eric Dyson, author, “Is Bill Cosby Right?”

Steve Earle, musician

Niles Eldredge, curator of the Darwin Show at the Museum of Natural History, NYC

Edwin Ellis, President of Veterans for Peace, LA*

Daniel Ellsberg, author of “The Pentagon Papers”

Eve Ensler

Michelle Esrick, actress, poet, filmmaker

Donelle Estey, artist, Artists Against the War

Christian Ettinger, exec. prod. of film “The Weather Underground

Jodie Evans, Code Pink

Nina Felshin, curator, writer

Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Rev. John Fife

Jane Fonda

Prof. Barbara Forrest, Southeastern Louisana University (testifed in Dover against intelligent design)

Michael Franti, musician

Aaron Freeman, comdian

Samina Faheem Fundas, American Muslim Voice*

reg e. gaines, poet, playwright

Martin Garbus, NYC

Deborah Glick, NY State Assemblywoman

Ted Glick, Climate Crisis Coalition

Global Justice and Peace Ministries, Riverside Church,

New York

Frances Goldin, literary agent

Sam Greenlee, poet

André Gregory, theater director

Andy Griggs, US Labor Against the War, Exec. Board of United Teachers of LA*

Jose Guerrero, artist and muralist, Chicago

Lawrence Guyot, former SNCC member and former Chairman of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party

Paul Haggis, Academy Award Winning Director/Writer of Crash, screenwriter of Million Dollar Baby

Haitian Coalition for Justice

Suheir Hammad, poet

Sam Hamill, Poets Against War

Kathleen Hanna, Le Tigre

David Harris, founder of The Resistance*, writer

Jon Hendricks, jazz singer/lyricist

Jon Hendricks, artist

Warren M. Hern, MD, MPH, PhD, Director, Boulder Abortion Clinic

Eric Hilton, Thievery Corporation

Hip Hop Caucus

Dorothy Hoobler, PEN

Marie Howe, poet and writer

Impeach Bush Coalition

Mesha Monge Irizarry, Idriss StelleyFoundation

Islamic Association of America

Abdeen Jabara, past president, American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee*

Rev. Jesse L. Jackson

Ron Jacobs, writer

Dahr Jamail, independent journalist

Pramila Jayapal, Executive Director, Hate Free Zone Washington

Alan Jones, Dean of Faculty at Pitzer College*

Bill T. Jones, dancer

Sarah Jones, poet and actor

Rickie Lee Jones, musician

Esther Kaplan, author of With God On Their Side

Janis Karpinski, Brig. General (retired)

Casey Kasem

M. Ali Khan, American Muslim Council

C. Clark Kissinger

Frances Kissling, President, Catholics for a Free Choice*

Yuri Kochiyama

Ron Kovic, author, Vietnam Veteran

Jonathan Kozol

Joyce Kozloff, artist

Jim Lafferty, Executive Director of the National Lawyer’s Guild of Los Angeles

Ray Laforest, organizer, DC 1707, AFSCME*; member, Pacifica National Board*

Beth Lamont

Jessica Lange

Lewis Lapham, former editor, Harper’s Magazine

Martha Lavey, Chicago

Mark Leno, California Assemblyman

Rabbi Michael Lerner, editor of Tikkun magazine

James Levin, co-director of Cleveland Festival of Arts & Technology (Ingenuity)

Simon Levy, director, “What I Heard About Iraq” at Fountain St. Theatre

Toby Devan Lewis

Bruce Lincoln, professor, History of Religions, University of Chicago

Margarita Lopez, New York City Council Member

Haki R. Madhubuti, chairman, publisher, Third World Press

Devorah major, poet & novelist

Make the Road by Walking, Bushwick, Brooklyn, NY

Mike Malloy, syndicated radio talk show host

Lucinda Marshall, Founder Feminist Peace Network*

Bill Martin, philosopher

Bill Martinez, Attorney, Producer

Father Matthius, Pastor, St. Pius V, Chicago

Malachy McCourt, actor & author

Rosie Mendez, New York City Council

Allen Michaan, owner, Grand Lake Theater, Oakland, CA

Cynthia McKinney, US Representative

Ellen McLaughlin, actress and playwright

Camilo Mejia, conscientious objector

Dave Meserve, Arcata California city council member

Carol Migden, CA State Senator

Carly Miller, Clothing of the American Mind

Mark Crispin Miller, author, “Fooled Again”

Alderman Joe Moore, Chicago’s City Council

Millions More Movement, Pittsburg /Antioch CA organizing committee

Bill Mitchell, co-founder of Gold Star Families for Peace*

Leon Mobley, musician

Tom Morello, Audioslave

Tracie Morris, poet

Andrew Muñana, Images Salón, East Los Angeles

Steve Murphy, editor of Tales of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Cecil Murray, Retired Minister First AME Church, Los Angeles

Craig Murray, former UK Ambassador to Uzbekistan

National Lawyers Guild
Armando Navarro, chair and professor, Ethnic Studies, UC Riverside

The Network in Solidarity with the People of the Philippines

Bill Nevins, teacher, Albuquerque

Northwestern College Feminists

Not in Our Name

Mike and Julie Nussbaum

Efia Nwangaza, director, African American Institute for Policy Studies, Greenville, SC

Brian O’Leary, PhD., author, former astronaut

Bertell Ollman, prof. Dept. of Politics, NYU

R. Tomás Olmos, President, Mexican American Bar Foundation, Los Angeles County*, Dean Emeritus, People’s College of Law*

Barbara Olshansky, Center for Constitutional Rights

E. Rendel T. Osburn, Southern Christian Leadership Foundation*

Outernational

Major Owens, 11th Congressional District, D-NY

Ozomatli

Jose Padilla*, executive director, California Rural Legal Assistance (CRLA)

Cristina Page, author of “How the Pro-Choice Movement Saved America”

Grace Paley, writer

Patrick Henry Democratic Club

Harvey Pekar, American Splendor

Sean Penn

Bill Perkins, New York City Council

Rosalind Petchesky, prof., Hunter College & Grad. Center, CUNY

Peter Phillips PhD, Project Censored, Sociology Dept Sonoma State University

Jeremy Pikser, screenwriter, Bulworth

Harold Pinter, Nobel Prize winning playwright

Frances Fox Piven

Sterling Plumpp, poet

Kevin Powell, writer

Sr. Helen Prejean CSJ, Moratorium Campaign to End the Death Penalty*

Progressive Democrats of America

Francine Prose, novelist

Puerto Rican Nationalist Party – New York Branch

Queers for Economic Justice

Jerry Quickley, poet and playwright

Malik Rahim, New Orleans Community Organizer

Michael Ratner, Center for Constitutional Rights*

Reach Hip Hop Coalition

Raghava Reddy, stem cell biologist, biomedical scientist, film maker

Maggie Renzi, filmmaker

Eric Resnick, Gay People’s Chronicle* reporter, peace activist, one time candidate for US Congress

Allan Rich, screenwriter/actor

Boots Riley, The Coup

Walter Riley, lawyer

Dennis Rivera, President of Local 1199 SEIU

Joshua Rosenblum, Composer/ Director of Bush is Bad

Mark Ruffalo, actor

Bobby Rush, US Representative, Chicago

Douglas Rushkoff, author

Kalamu ya Salaam, Listen to the People

Angelica Salas, executive director, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles*

JD Samson, Le Tigre

Sonia Sanchez

Rev. Henry Sanders, Fountain of Life Missionary Baptist Church, Watts, CA

San Francisco Bayview Newspaper

Sapphire, poet, writer

Sheley Secrest, Attorney, President NAACP Seattle-King County Branch

Susan Sarandon

John Sayles, filmmaker

Rinku Sen, Colorlines*

Richard Serra, artist

Rev. Al Sharpton

Lou Shaw, writer, creator of Quincy MD

Cindy Sheehan

Martin Sheen

Stanley Sheinbaum, economist, LA

Nancy Spero, artist

Dona Spring, Berkeley Council member

Gloria Steinem

Malcolm Suber, People’s Hurricane Relief Fund*

Serj Tankian System of a Down

Sunsara Taylor, Revolution newspaper

Studs Terkel

Marianne Torres, Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane*

Dwight Trible, jazz vocalist

George Tuttle & Ben Cushman, grapegrowers

Gore Vidal, writer

Kurt Vonnegut

Alice Walker

Maxine Waters, US Representative

Wavy Gravy

Leonard Weinglass, lawyer

Rev. Dave Weissbard, senior minister, The Unitarian Universalist Church, Rockford, IL

Cornel West, Princeton University

Rev. Phil Wheaton, Episcopal Co-pastor, Community of Christ, Washington DC

Joan Wile, Director, Grandmothers Against the War

Saul Williams, poet

Standish E. Willis, National Conference of Black Lawyers

S. Brian Willson. Veterans for Peace

Krzysztof Wodiczko, artist

Ann Wright, former US diplomat, resigned in protest of Iraq war

Daphne Wysham, Institute for Policy Studies

Leland Y. Yee, Speaker pro Tem, California State Assembly

Juanita Young, courageous resister, leader in October 22nd Coalition*

Dr. Quentin Young, Health and Medicine Policy Research Group*

Dave Zeiger, filmmaker, “Sir, No, Sir!”

Zephyr, graffiti artist, writer

Robert Zevin, Robert Brooke Zevin Associates, Inc.

Howard Zinn, historian, “A Peoples’ History of the United States

David Zirin, author, “What’s My Name, Fool? Sports and Resistance in the United States

*Organization for identification purposes only.

Click here to view full list of signatories. 

56 thoughts on “Mo’ Karpinski”

  1. Wow.

    If I ever saw anything that gave me compelling reason to support Bush, then it was that. If they all signed an affirmation of my faith, I think it would cause me to question mine.

    I wonder if they are aware, that for persons such as myself who held thier nose voting for Bush, just how much thier oposition to the man increases my esteem for him. If person can be judged by the sort of enemies that he makes, then Bush has made a very enviable list of enemies indeed.

    Again, these people would have been far more successful in undermining Bush if they’d thrown thier full support behind him.

  2. What celebrim said goes double for me. Although I generally do support the POTUS on judicial nominees and his overall approach to entitlement and health care reform and he delivered a fine speech on immigration reform Monday night. That an utterly worthless piece of dog feces like John Conyers has the seniority to become a committee chair in a Democrat-controlled House may be just enough motivation for me to go to the polls to reelct my GOP Representative despite my many disagreements with him and my usual policy not to elect incumbents who have been in for more than 12 years.

    Thank God those people aren’t on our side.

  3. “I wonder if they are aware, that for persons such as myself who held thier nose voting for Bush, just how much thier oposition to the man increases my esteem for him.”

    If this isn’t the perfect illustration of Hate-based political opinion forming, I don’t know what is.

    Furthermore, I’m absolutely certain that neither the Democrats nor the co-signers of that letter give a rat’s patutie what people “such as yourself” think or who you vote for (or against, in your case).

    And please learn how to spell “THEIR”. Its not that hard.

    “If person can be judged by the sort of enemies that he makes, then Bush has made a very enviable list of enemies indeed.

    If by “enviable” you mean “huge and growing” or “not limited to Evil Liberals and Leftists by any stretch of the imagination”, then I would agree with this. But that this would make you support him even more provides a perfect example of the success of the politics of hatred. You’re a tool (as is #2) of the right wing propagandists.

  4. So Wiz –

    Reacting to irrational, hate based (Hitler similies) arguments with disdain and disapproval is itself hate based?

    That’s kind of like the “if you’re so tolerant why won’t you tolerate intolerance?” conundrum.

    Look, the facts are that the middle isn’t going to rise up and support clowns like this. They aren’t a revolutionary vanguard, they’re fossils.

    A.L.

  5. “Reacting to irrational, hate based (Hitler similies) arguments..”

    A Hitler “simile” doesn’t make it a irrational, hate-based argument.

    Except for that one comment, can you identify which of the other 15 statements are “irrational” or “hate-based” (you used the plural term “arguments” here”)?

  6. Wiz, I appreciate that you think that these are legitimate claims:

    Your government, on the basis of outrageous lies, is waging a murderous and utterly illegitimate war in Iraq, with other countries in their sights.

    Nope. “outrageous” lies? “murderous and utterly illegitimate” war? Maybe to Cindy Sheehan – or you – but even people who think the war was a mistake or has been badly run would have a hard time swallowing those.

    Your government is openly torturing people, and justifying it.

    Hmmm. I think I just wrote about that.

    Your government puts people in jail on the merest suspicion, refusing them lawyers, and either holding them indefinitely or deporting them in the dead of night.

    Well, that’s better than shooting them a dawn, I’d think.

    Your government is moving each day closer to a theocracy, where a narrow and hateful brand of Christian fundamentalism will rule.

    Hmmm. The courts are mandating tearing down a cross in San Diego that has been there for 40 years. Did I miss something?

    Your government suppresses the science that doesn’t fit its religious, political and economic agenda, forcing present and future generations to pay a terrible price.

    The government isn’t doing a good job in dealing with the scientific community,that’s true. Being published in the New York Times is an interesting way of being suppressed, though.

    Your government is moving to deny women here, and all over the world, the right to birth control and abortion.

    Denying funding is different than denying a right.

    Your government enforces a culture of greed, bigotry, intolerance and ignorance.

    As opposed to – Mao? Stalin? Hugo Chavez? The mullahs in Iran?

    Sorry, Wiz – if those are your positions, you’re more marginal than I’d assumed before.

    A.L.

  7. “And please learn how to spell “THEIR”. Its not that hard.”

    Don’t you know that when the opposition is reduced to attacking your spelling, you’ve won the debate? It’s practically a rule of internet debating.

    “If this isn’t the perfect illustration of Hate-based political opinion forming, I don’t know what is.”

    Interestingly, I think preaching hatred is one of the main areas that particular group of people have in common, and hate is one of the only things that they can agree on. That’s a pretty broad spectrum group of idiotarians signing on board the document. If alot of people whom for separate reasons I’ve come to question thier judgment can all agree to something, then sight unseen it tends to make me skeptical of the thing.

    But I don’t hate them. Thinking that they these are not the sort of people I’d look to for guidance, and hating them are entirely different things.

    “Furthermore, I’m absolutely certain that neither the Democrats nor the co-signers of that letter give a rat’s patutie what people “such as yourself” think or who you vote for.”

    That’s evident.

    “But that this would make you support him even more provides a perfect example of the success of the politics of hatred. You’re a tool (as is #2) of the right wing propagandists.”

    I beg to differ. I am a ‘right-wing propagandist’. I’m not a consumer of memes, but a meme producer. I’m quotable, and quoted, and if I needed an ego signatures to validate myself it would be a mile long. I say things that other people have not heard before and I say those things because I thought them myself first. And I read things other people write, and I make up my mind about them and sometimes quote them as the sort of thoughtful thing people ought to be thinking about. No one tells me what to believe, and no one’s propaganda has much of a chance with me unless its information and not disinformation because I’m too used to thinking for myself.

    One of the reasons I know this to be true is that I’ve never found any person with whom I agree with everything that they say, and I’ve never found anyone that agrees with everything I say. Hense, I can’t be anyone’s tool and no one is exactly my tool either. My opinions are pretty eclectic. It’s highly unlikely that anyone could put forward 15 separate contriversial propositions that I would agree with. I consider it therefore rather telling that this particular group of people can agree to a manifesto of such serious, absolute, unqualified, extraordinary, sensationalist and far reaching assertions. And frankly, looking over the list I don’t think that this should be surprising, because we know the sort of statements these folks have made in the past.

    I would also like to point out that the manifesto is long on denouncing and short on actual implementation details. That in itself causes me to find it a rather unserious document, regardless of its other attributes.

  8. Just think – if all those signators would come together in the U.N. building… Naw, forget I wrote anything.
    But still…

  9. Wizener,

    Just to make a point, in your comment #4 you state:

    “And please learn how to spell “THEIR”. Its not that hard.”

    Note that you meant to render its as “it’s,” that being the proper form of the contraction for “it is.”

    Sometimes we just write things fast. Comments on a blog and all.

    Your other points are too silly to warrant remark. The petition speaks volumes for itself, as do these signatories signing on to it.

  10. It wasn’t actually Casey Kasem. It was really Mr. Petrovsky, in the Casey Kasem suit.

    And he would have gotten away with it too, if it wasn’t for those meddling blogger kids!

  11. This is the one I love the most:

    “Your government suppresses the science that doesn’t fit its religious, political and economic agenda, forcing present and future generations to pay a terrible price.”

    Hahahah. Libs and Leftists want “edgy” entertainment that avoids feel-good pap, and feel-good pap science. For example, every Leftist on the planet thinks that evolution magically stopped among humans. Because. Well just because.

    Over and over again we hear the Lefty mantra “race is a social construct” that comes smack against genetically based drugs designed to work on, well race. An example of hypertension drugs designed specifically for African-Americans.

    Lefties hate science and Darwin as much as Creationists. Maybe more.

  12. If I ever saw anything that gave me compelling reason to support Bush, then it was that. If they all signed an affirmation of my faith, I think it would cause me to question mine.

    I have seen you say things that were pretty smart. This is not one of them.

    Look, when you get a statisticly significant sample of total idiots, you can expect about half of them to be on each side of many two-valued questions. If it takes more than slogans to figure out a decent response, and there are adequate slogans on both sides, they’ll pick pretty much at random which slogans to go with.

    Letting the most prominent idiots on one side make the choice which side you’ll take — you see where I’m going on this? It isn’t like there aren’t a whole lot of total idiots prominently behind the republicans too.

    I don’t judge republicans by their stupidest supporters. It’s only an accident that those guys aren’t democrats. And vice versa, the stupidest republicans could just as easily have been democrats or libertarians.

  13. “Wiz, I appreciate that you think that these are legitimate claims.”

    Here we go again.

    My opinion of these claims is irrelevant to the issue.

    And now you’re trying to re-define my question as whether the claims are legit or not. I’m not saying they are or aren’t. I’m only pointing out, for the umpteenth unanswered time, it seems, that your inflammatory and dismissive comments are the product of some deep seated bias or prejudice….which hew a lot closer to “irrationality and hatred” than those with whom you disagree, being based so strongly on bias and prejudice.

    And there are a lot of respectable and serious people on that list, including for example Niles Eldridge. That some signatories are perhaps not so smart or serious doesn’t mean the points are rendered null as a result. If that were the case, pretty much every Neocon/Republican issue you support would be totally worthless, as the policies and actions of this government have attracted more kooks, loonies, racists, white supremacists, fascists and just plain idiots than any in my lifetime, certainly.

    So your little smear game is ridiculous.

    Doesn’t it make you wonder why so many good and smart people would sign on to such a strongly worded anti-Bush statement? Did it ever, even once, make you stop and think about what kind of leader would incite such strong emotion in people who would otherwise rather go about their lives in peace? Instead of trying to examine the actions of the one who is ultimately responsible for this, Bush, you’d rather believe that the accusers are crazy.

    That is the definition of a brainwashed bubble-boy, and its weird, tiresome, and foolish.

  14. I find it most interesting that a retired officer would sign a petition that openly advocates rebellion against the government of the United States (I may not agree with the administration, but I sure as hell would not mutiny). Apparently she’s forgotten that officers hold their commission for life unless they specifically resign it. I really can’t even begin to say how jacked up I think Karpinski’s actions are. In fact, if I were on the Army staff, I’d start looking into recalling her to active duty to court martial her for conduct unbecoming an officer and making threatening comments against the commander in chief. Oh, in case anyone is wondering what I’m referring to, here’s a snippet from the petition:

    “And there is a way. We are talking about something on a scale that can really make a huge change in this country and in the world. We need more than fighting Bush’s outrages one at a time, constantly losing ground to the whole onslaught. We must, and can, aim to create a political situation where the Bush regime’s program is repudiated, where Bush himself is driven from office, and where the whole direction he has been taking society is reversed. We, in our millions, must and can take responsibility to change the course of history.”

  15. I saw very few “good” people signing that juvenile petition, and almost no “smart” people signing it.

    I did see a rather large percentage of dishonest people signing it.

    One is known by the company one keeps, and being known as an associate of despicable people like Ward Churchill, Cindy Sheehan, Cynthia McKinney and murderer Mumal Abu-Jamal puts one down in credibility’s blackhole.

  16. I still say that since humans no longer have natural predators, nature had to devise a mechanism in which Darwinian natural selection can still exist. Thus, nature decided to program some humans (5-10%) to act as vehicles for the disposal of genetic waste matter from the species, by acting in a matter that hastens their own weeding-out.

    That is why things like partial-brith abortion, suicide bombing, the desire to teach 1st graders about homosexuality in public schools, genital mutilation, etc. are advocated by such humans. That is why they oppose things that would prevent *themselves* from getting killed – like the Patriot Act, NSA surveillance, or War in Afghanistan. That is why they sympathize with murderers and child molestors, with no sympathy for the victim. Every action is uniformly and consistently self-destructive.

    Fascinating how nature has evolved the human species to fit the new reality. Waste matter of the evolutionary process still has to be disposed of, and nature has created a ‘self-operating wastebasket’ subspecies.

  17. Hahaha!..

    man you guys slay me!

    The collective heads around here are so far up the collective rears, it a pretty ugly image, I gotta say!

    Now, on to the propaganda sorting –

    As an aside, whatta classic redirect. I mean, focus on obscure issues like Karpinski and a petition she’s is signing, while right now, the Executive branch feels free to ignore laws that they don’t agree with, normal americans are being tracked and recorded from their email to their phones –

    I guess I’m going to have to start calling this site “Winds of Butts in the Air Because Their Heads are in the Sand”!

    So first – classic smear – “hey! look at this – she is associating with Dr. Eeeviill, so she’s eevvilll too!!

    No, what is at issue here, is the early 2002-3 decision that quasi-torture was somehow a good thing for Americans, through the military, to do.

    And of course, people on this site are ALL FOR IT – unless of course it happens to their family. But yes – guess what – the terrorists are worse! Glad we agree there, because that is completely obvious – and again, guess what? Beside the point.

    Also Tom,

    While you might get your kicks calling Conyers “dog feces”, that just shows what an utter moron you are. He’s done more good for civil rights, serving this country in Korea, for civil rights, in Congress – basically does more good in an afternoon than you ever will in your life.

    I realize this is sidetracking from the post and it’s a side issue – but you are still a hateful buffoon.

    There ARE left-wing morons on this list – from my own experience, Tom Ammiano springs immediately to mind – listening to that idiot’s supercilious moron-ity and incredible egotistical narcissism – justified as policy – is enough to drive a guy bonkers…if ever there was a walking talking postcard for a guy representing gay issues that should never be near a podium – well, there’s your guy.

    but again – besides the point.

    But hey, A.L., keep looking for irrelevant petition signing, while the administration breaks laws with impunity. THAT is certainly going to change things, isn’t it?

    By the way, since you are into investigating obscure issues – any issue that makes “liberals” look bad, no matter how obscure – I think the Society for Debating How Many Angels Can Fit On The Head of A Pin, is hiring for a treasurer.

    Perfect fit for you!

    Oh, and as the Keyboard Commandos say – bring it on! This is all umimportant pixels on a screen, so this is no better than a game. Let’s play. Best insult gets a beer on me!

  18. #16

    Straw man alert! Neither Bush, nor his administration, constitutes “the US government” by any stretch. Nor does wanting him gone imply “rebellion” any more than voting against him did in 2004.

    #17

    LMAO.

    People who sign petitions are not cohorts or companions with one another. You might imagine that most people on the list have no idea, or don’t care, who else signs it.

    However, appearing on a radio show with a Right wing hatemonger and drug addict, repeatedly, seems to be a lot closer to what you’re suggesting. Or giving a commencement speach at Bob Jones University; or being buddy-buddy with Enron executives who bilked 20K employees and countless numbers of investors out of millions. Hmmm, seems like I’m going to have to agree with you that people should be judged by the company they keep. I don’t really think you want to go there, believe me.

    I’m sure you’re definition of what makes a “bad” person now includes anyone who signs this “juvenile” petition, making a beautiful little circle of illogic (“they MUST be bad BECAUSE they signed it; thus, no one who signed it is GOOD”).

  19. Wizener,

    Let’s see – do you think Enron is a much greater crime than the UN oil for food scandal – $20 billion skimmed while 500,000 Iraqis die of starvation?

    Also, do you oppose the US War in Afghanistan after 9/11?

  20. Wizener,
    You started with the claim that the signers of the list included a lot of “serious”, “good” and “smart” people. You made the claim that the list of signers was some sign of the validity of the petition. It was your claim that the “cohort” here had some evidentiary value.

    That you wish to abandon your claims so quickly is not a surprise at all.

    Both because the list of people is not a list of “serious”, “good” or “smart” ( and in fact I could not improve upon it with a joke list ) and because the petition is silly.

  21. hypocracyrules – you seem to think you’re on Kos, Freep, or LGF.

    The next thing you post needs to be an argument about the issues raised in the relevant post or you’re history.

    There are lots of sites where guys who rant can go jump up and down; this isn’t meant to be one of them.

    Ball’s in your court.

    A.L.

  22. “I have seen you say things that were pretty smart. This is not one of them.”

    Nobody bats one-hundred percent. I should have written more clearly and lucidly. On the other hand, since you seem to have some mistaken ideas about what I said, I’m not ready to concede to you on this just yet.

    “Look, when you get a statisticly significant sample of total idiots…”

    Idiotcy is not the issue if by ‘idiot’ you mean dumb. I’m sure some of the people on that list have above average IQ’s. (Some I am quite sure, do not.) Kurt Vonnegut for example is a very intelligent man, whose mastery of the English language exceeds my own (and most everyone elses) and who has written several works I admire and enjoy as works of art. That qualifier is important. For the most part, I don’t admire them as works of philosophy or anything else. I admire his prose, much as I think he wastes it with artistic pandering and pretension. It’s not his intelligence at question. Indeed, its not even his ‘goodness’ which at question. Reading his works and listening to his words, I get the impression of a cynical, bitter, self-absorbed, nihilist, who is blinded by his own childish petulance and emotional scars. I love his writing, but I don’t much trust his judgment on anything.

    It actually mostly goes down hill from there. Most of those I wouldn’t give even that much credit. I’m on record for saying that Jane Fonda deserves to hang. You can’t get much more opposed to someone than that.

    “you can expect about half of them to be on each side of many two-valued questions.”

    I’m not sure that I concede that these issues make for nice two valued questions, and in any event its not the quality of the arguments being made which is the real issue. I will judge the arguments on thier own merits regardless of who says them. No, I’m mainly digging for something deeper here.

    “Letting the most prominent idiots on one side make the choice which side you’ll take — you see where I’m going on this?”

    I’m not, and while I see where you are going I think you miss my main thrust. Partly that is my fault. Partly I think you are preclassifying the argument.

    “It isn’t like there aren’t a whole lot of total idiots prominently behind the republicans too.”

    I’m sure. They don’t seem to make the nightly news quite so often, and I’m not sure that I would agree with you about which republican supporters are idiots and which are not, but for the sake of argument if Pat Robertson was said to strongly support someone, then it would probably cause in me the same reaction.

    “I don’t judge republicans by their stupidest supporters.”

    I don’t judge any group by its stupidiest members, nor did I do in the above post you object to so strongly.

    This isn’t a question of supporting something or not. This is a question of supporting somone or not. This isn’t a question of intelligence or even correctness. It’s a question of character.

    Character is a very difficult thing to judge. You can’t judge someone’s character by what thier enemies say about them. You can’t judge someone’s character by what thier friends say about them. You can judge someone’s character by the negative things that they say, but you can’t judge someone’s character by the positive things that they say. They could, after all, being liars and hypocrits. You can judge someone by thier fruits, but often times you must wait a fairly long time for fruits to come to fruitation before you can make a fair assessment. So what to do?

    The only sure ways to get a quick assessment of someone’s character is by the company that they keep and the enemies that they make. In Bush’s case, he seems to be making all the right enemies. The sort of people who dislike him, the ones that just really loath him, are precisely the sort of people whom I think you should count it a compliment for them to insult you. When I look over that list I see a long list of tasteless classless people with notably poor judgement, poor character, poor manners and who are promoters of poor character in others.

    That such people think George Bush to be a terrible person leads me to believe that he can’t be all that bad. That opinion has nothing to do with judging George Bush right on a particular issue (I’m opposed to all sorts of things he supports), and it has nothing to do with judging the Democrats, Liberals, or any other group.

    Look at it this way. You ask that I not judge the Democrats by thier stupidiest members. Ok, I grant you that. But suppose a particular Democrat continually hung out with the stupidiest members of the party, and pandered to them. Couldn’t I judge that person by the company that they kept. Or conversely, suppose a particular Democrat rose the ire of exclusively and particularly the stupidiest or most corrupt members in the Republican party. Wouldn’t that tend to cause you to take that person more seriously?

    Consider that elsewhere I have written about how offended I was that Ashley Simpson was invited to attend a GOP fundraiser because I felt it reflected badly on the whole party. It’s not like my position on this is inconsistant.

  23. I personally oppose Bush’s open-borders policy, his tax policy, and cronyism in some of his appointments.

    Roberts I think is first rate, others (Brownie?) are crony clowns.

    I don’t hate him nor do I wish to see him “driven out.”

    I wish him to NOT do certain things and DO other certain things. If I wanted perfection I wouldn’t bother to vote. I don’t know any perfect human being.

    James Pierson has an essay on Commentary “here”:http://www.commentarymagazine.com/article.asp?aid=12105047_1

    It explains why the practical Liberalism of JFK died with him (focused on practical results and not ashamed of America or use of force).

    The hate-filled, conspiracy-mongering, “Paranoid Style” Liberals certainly fit Pierson’s thesis.

    If you REALLY were concerned about practical policy issues you’d push them and try to force GWB to enact them through overt lobbying and organization. Not politics as therapy

  24. I’m familiar with Rev. Dave Weissbard.

    His congregation and supporters are as socialist as they come. Their answer to social problems is: steal frm the rich.

    I had considered becoming more involved with the Unitarians locally until I had some interactions with him and his congregatiion.

    They do have the right attitude on the drug war though. Sad that the right has given this club to the left.

    Dave is a perfect example of:

    Neville Chamberlain Was A Man of Peace

    BTW thanks A.L. for the whole list. I would have never looked at it otherwise.

  25. Neville Chamberlain was not a bad man. In all likelihood, he was not a stupid man. He just wanted very badly something that England was not destined to have, which was peace in his time.

    When that became apparent, he was gracious (as I understand the history) in bowing to Winston Churchill, who had turned out to be correct in his forecast of events, and ultimately in his prosecution of the war in the interests of England.

    This desire to demonize people because of party affiliation has to stop. Karpinski has joined a camp of demonizers. That means reasonable people need to dismiss her, just as reasonable people dismiss David Duke, Lyndon Larouche, Ward Churchill, and Noam Chomsky.

    Note to whomever-it-may-concern: if the idea of a pogrom — any pogrom — gives you a warm fuzzy, it’s a sign you need to re-think your value system.

  26. Good post, Mark (#28)

    We’ve reached a point in political discourse that some on both sides (but it seems to me currently more lefties) insist on their own version of events. This to the exlusion of patriotism, reality — anything. GW made a mistake, and that’s all there is to it. (picture child hearing something they don’t want to, holding hands over ears and singing “la la la la” as loud as they can)

    This means the real problem with the war in Iraq (if people insist on calling it that) is not that we are winning or losing, it’s that, to a large chunk of people, we HAVE to lose. That’s what fits into their world-view. And we’ll have to keep losing until the exercise is over, at which point they will announce that “we’ve lost” Then they will keep reminding us of that forever. Fifty years from now some movie in Hollywood will be produced by some new Oliver Stone that will have murderous US Marines smoking dope and shooting the locals. That’s the way they have to see reality.

    Demonization is only one part of it. Chamberlain realized that the world did not turn out the way he wanted, so he changed course and supported his country. Iraq, as I understand it, has been exactly the way it was described. Certainly there were those that predicted flowers in the streets, but as I recall we were told the war on terror would be long and bloody. So far, promise fulfilled. And we’re just getting started, folks.

    You can quit now and declare failure, but the GWOT ain’t Vietnam. If we pull out, the bad guys WILL come looking for us. Then, I suppose, we will start hearing the “they would have liked us more if we were just nicer” routine. Ah — the spin never ends.

  27. What strikes me most about the petition — both in its fervent religious tone, _and_ its tacit admission that “we’re losing and losing badly” — is how very much it reads and sounds like many of the recent missives from an increasingly desperate and progressively irrelevant Al Qaeda.

    Mostly mouldering ’60s LEFT-overs trying to rally their few remaining followers. It might be poignant if these folks were not so dangerously deluded.

  28. And the funny thing is, reality doesn’t matter.

    Picture Iraq in ten years. Coalition forces perhaps present to a minor degree, maybe we cut and ran. Suicide bombers still around (hopefully lessened), some religious nuts in political power, and an unhappy population. What will be the rallying cry? Not “Hey look how far we’ve come. Isn’t great that they are dealing with their underlying cultural issues?” nope. It will be “Look! Another American Failure!”

    What’s the old saying? Who needs enemies when you’ve got friends like these?

  29. “Picture Iraq in ten years.”

    Thats certainly a possibility. But look at Iraq in ten years had we not invaded. Saddam getting older and meaner, his sadistic sons waiting to inflict another generation of attrocity. At worst its probably a wash in the affected areas assuming Baghdad and the Sunni Triangle are the new Beirut for another decade.

    But- here is the difference. Right now the fate of Iraq is in the hands of the Iraqi people. It isnt Saddam ruling with his iron boot or Paul Bremer twisting arms in back rooms. A democratically elected government has been formed and a failure will be their failure. Most people have said it as a matter of rote, but its true- we can only take the Iraqis so far. They have to grasp this opportunity themselves, and if they do Iraq could easily look like Turkey in even 5 years. We have provided the catalyst for hope and opportunity, and say what you want that was something the entire population of Iraq would have been denied for at least another entire generaion without the invasion.

  30. #28 Mark,

    You are correct about the history. I’m well aware of it.

    However, the core idea – that you can bargain with anyone – is still a moral failing of many. Perhaps not when applied personally (although even there…) but certainly when dealing with national actors.

    Besides, it is a funny juxtaposition don’t you think?

    And the punchline:

    Neville Chamberlain Was A Man of Peace
    He had the papers to prove it too!

  31. Right now the fate of Iraq is in the hands of the Iraqi people. It isnt Saddam ruling with his iron boot or Paul Bremer twisting arms in back rooms. A democratically elected government has been formed and a failure will be their failure.

    This is true.

    This is why the US troops in iraq should be put under iraqi command, while they stay in iraq.

    And this is why US troops should be subject to iraqi law while they stay in iraq.

    If we would agree to those two things we’d give the iraqi government the legitimacy it needs to actuaally govern. And resistance to US troops would vanish. Whatever opposition we got would be from people who opposed the iraqi government. Theuy’d stop believing we were an occupation force.

    We need to put out troops under iraqi command and make them subjec to iraqi law, or else get them out of there and let the iraqi government have its own successes and failures.

  32. J Thomas (#34),

    _resistance to US troops would vanish. Whatever opposition we got would be from people who opposed the iraqi government._

    With all due respect, I think you’re misreading the cause and motivations of resistance to US troops in Iraq. Remember that US troops aren’t just occupiers, they are *infidel* occupiers, and no amount of concessions of military sovereignity (well intentioned, or a good idea, or not)will change the religious component to Muslim territorial conflict (Dar al Islam vs. dar al harb and all that). I guess it all depends on how much resistance to US troops are based on Iraqi nationalism and how much is based on Baathist holdouts, Al-Qaeda sympathisers foreign and domestic, mercs, etc. I’d bet that little of the resistance is nationalistic in nature (but readily concede that there’s little reliable info one way or the other).

    A common mistake in cross cultural conflict is mirroring, assuming that The Enemy shares our underlying assumptions & consequently can be reasoned with under our terms (I recall an essay discussing how the interacting rules of Bushido vs. Jacksonianism ensured that neither the Japanese nor US troops took (m)any live prisoners in the island conflicts in WWII). This is certainly an issue when thinking about radical Islamists.

    Of course, back to the thread, the opposite mistake (assuming a bunch of arguably not very competent politicos are Unspeakably Evil just ’cause they’re on the other side) is also in full effect.

  33. There are lots of sites where guys who rant can go jump up and down; this isn’t meant to be one of them.

    Someone should clue in Joe…

  34. Mark

    But- here is the difference. Right now the fate of Iraq is in the hands of the Iraqi people.

    The fate of Iraq has always been in the hands of the Iraqi people.

    Saddam didn’t have super powers of mind control. He ruled through brute force because he was allowed to do so. He played off sectarian differences to shuffle the deck as needed to maintain control.

    Ever wonder why Shia, Sunni and Kurdish Iraqis let him get away with it?

    Look at Iraq right now and you’ll see the obvious answer.

  35. GeneThug, if US troops were under iraqi command i doubt they’d get many attacks. People who opposed letting them follow government orders could tell their representatives to make them go away. And unless they’re ordered into untenable positions our soldiers are very hard targets. Possibly a few people might attack them just for being infidels but they wouldn’t get a lot of support.

    But we’re arguing counterfactuals. I can’t imagine that a US president would allow US troops to be put under foreign command or subject to iraqi law. And while the US military is there, not subject to iraqi law or iraqi authority, calling in airstrikes wherever-the-hell we want, attacking wherever we want, commanding the iraqi army, etc — just how much legitimacy does the iraqi government have?

    I recall an essay discussing how the interacting rules of Bushido vs. Jacksonianism ensured that neither the Japanese nor US troops took (m)any live prisoners in the island conflicts in WWII)

    That’s fascinating and I’d much appreciate it if you could give me a link or even some good keywords. I did a little bit of study on that independently but not enough to get very far.

  36. J Thomas

    _But we’re arguing counterfactuals._

    Just so. Still, what is the internet for, if not debating the impossible? Oh, “right.”:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=etVCUmgfMag (vaguely crude song alert).

    _I’d much appreciate it if you could give me a link_

    Try “this.”:http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m2751/is_1999_Winter/ai_58381618/print Though there’s little detail, the money graf is:
    _The Japanese, another people with a highly developed war code based on personal honor, had the misfortune to create the same kind of impression on American Jacksonians. The sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, the gross mistreatment of American POWs (the Bataan Death March), and Japanese fighting tactics all served to enrage American Jacksonians and led them to see the Pacific enemy as ruthless, dishonorable and inhuman. All contributed to the vitriolic intensity of combat in the Pacific theater. By the summer of 1945, American popular opinion was fully prepared to countenance invasion of the Japanese home islands, even if they were defended with the tenacity (and indifference to civilian lives) that marked the fighting on Okinawa.Given this background, the Americans who decided to use the atomic bomb may have been correct that the use of the weapon saved lives, and not only of American soldiers._

    You could also try g__gling Jacksonian and Japan. Steven Den Beste might have gone into greater detail on this, but alas, his site appears to have ascended.

  37. “Jose Padilla*, executive director, California Rural Legal Assistance (CRLA)”

    !!!!!

    PS. I thought Gloria Steinem died, no?

  38. I don’t see Col. Karpinski as generating much head of steam for anything. Remember, she’s one of the designated fall gals for Abu Ghraib, and the pity is not that she so marked, but that the investigation never got where it really belonged, probably Gens. Myers and Miller. And of course the civilian enablers like Bybee and Woo. Therefore it hardly bothers me that she’s now hanging out with new friends on the extreme left, whom she probably wouldn’t have given the time of day three years ago, and vice versa.

    I do like Daniel Markham’s latest excuse for our lack of progress in Iraq: we just need 10 more years of it. There isn’t any particular reason that I can see to think our current plans will make an Iraq that is more politically stable in ten years, or even has electricity, oil, and sewer service at Saddamite levels, but it does postpone the apparently inevitable admission that things are really not going according to plan.

    I know this will be the century of the blog-commenter, but it’s so hard for Markham to drown out the Vice President of the United States, who you will recall proclaimed the insurgency in its last throes eleven months ago.

    The vice president said he expected the war would end during President Bush’s second term, which ends in 2009. [emphasis added]

  39. Do a graphic analysis on the newly released snippet from the Pentagon: Bush did 9-11. “Loose Change 2″ can flesh it out a bit for the truly slow.

    Context: Jeff Gannon’s homosexual partner of a recent two years’ logged into the residential side of the White House was cheated into the closed National Guard by his Congressman father, who signed off on getting 58,000 other mothers’ sons dead for the pope in Vietnam.

    GHWBush, adulterer with Jennifer Fitzgerald, is on public record stating his inability to recall his whereabouts upon hearing of JFK’s assassination, six weeks afte NSAM 263 ordered us out of Rome’s SEAsian latifundial estate, even though a pair of FBI memos place him in the Agency, which a jury determined committed the crime (Hunt v. Liberty Lobby), calling in to the Houston FBI office on the subject of the Kennedy assassination from his home in Tyler TX seventy five minutes after it happened.

    The Chimp, draft-dodger, closet-queen, who needed an MD to help him impregnate his homicide wife only has one qualification to now be in the Oval Office: his father has yet to be brought to justice for assassinating President Kennedy.

    It is no coincidence that his grandfather was Hitler’s banker (Google: Prescott Thyssen Auschwitz), or that Bushes have been Rockefeller lieutenants since Standard Oil was built on unredressed murder and arson in 1870’s Cleveland OH.

    Get smart, or stay dumb…but don’t kid yourselves.

  40. (#41) “…I do like Daniel Markham’s latest excuse for our lack of progress in Iraq: we just need 10 more years of it…”

    LOL. Thanks Andrew. I guess.

    I’m not making any excuses for anything. If I am, please tell me about it. I can observe that in every democracy I’ve seen, there are underlying cultural issues that take decades to work out. Why would Iraq be any different?

    Iraq has a democratically elected government and constitution. Seems to me that THEY are the people you would want to ask about making progress and all of that.

    How much military support we provide to our new ally is certainly debatable over here. But sewer, water, and electric rates? Get a grip. I’m not an Iraqi voter, I’m an American voter.

    As a larger note, I continue to point out that this phrase “Iraq War” is misleading and inappropriate. If this is a war then where could there ever be a surrender? When and how could there ever be a cessation of hostilities? There can’t, and it isn’t. By not acknowledging the difference between “ally support” and “war”, we’re placed in these ludicrous positions of having to defend sewer service in eastern Baghdad or some such nonsense. Unless the Pentagon is planning a 176th fighting plumber battallion, our discussion of events in Iraq and the reality of the situation is naturally diverging.

    Andrew – I don’t think any excuses are needed because, quite frankly, it’s none of our busines. We should support Iraq as we would any of our friends in the region. But as far as whether there is some trajectory towards good or trajectory toward bad, that responsibility is not ours. We can help Iraq (and we should) but with the new government sworn in the Pottery Barn rule is now officially over.

  41. Daniel, I don’t think your remarks are compatible with construction of the largest embassy anywhere in the world, not to mention the permanent bases that the moonbat left suggested were a motivation for the invasion in the first place. (And appear to have been correct.)

  42. I’m not aware of any incompatibilities.

    Perhaps you could point them out?

    We’re building a big embassy and we are using and refurbishing Saddam’s old bases.

    As far as the embassy, does the size of an embassy represent our “ownership” of internal government affairs of foreign powers? I don’t think so. And does use of military bases constitute continued occupation? Once again, that doesn’t add up.

    It’s obvious we have an interest in the region that has little or nothing to do with Iraq. There are many other regional issues, including Iran, Syria, etc. As one general put it, the strategic center of action is no longer Europe, but the Middle East. That is a true statement no matter what the opinions or status of Iraq.

    I would hope that we are not having an extremist discussion when it comes to Iraq. The choices do not have to be “stay and own the country and all of its problems” or “admit failure and leave as quickly as possible” — surely there are many places in between for reasonable people to find agreement. To some degree, I blame blogs for the lowering of political disucssion in this country (except a few like WOC.) Arguing is so much more fun that the actual work of solving problems. But when our kids are dying, we should try to tone it down a bit and look for common ground.

  43. #43: Ahhh, yes. The old George H.W. Bush “Criminal Mastermind” allegation – or should I say plethora of allegations. Apparantly, George H.W. Bush has been involved in a string of global crimes which would be the envy of Lex Luther. All I’ve got to say is that if he’s really a criminal supergenious from a family with apparantly more power than the Gnomes of Zurich, reponsible for manipulating most of the world through the 20th century, then you’re pretty much mentally out-classed and you don’t have much of chance. No doubt the only reason that I find your allegations hard to believe is that I’m under the influence of the orbiting mind control laser manufactured from scalar vector technology that we reverse engineered from the Roswell crash with the help of Bigfoot and Nicolai Telsa’s encrypted notes.

    Let me know if you discover Bush is actually a member of the Hermetic Order of the Silver Twilight, and the War on Terror is actually a cover for his attempts to raise Rl’yeh. Maybe then I’ll take you seriously

  44. Uh-oh!

    They’ve figured out the orbiting laser mind-control device!

    Now all that is left is the radio transmissions that we are sending through dental work.

    Thank goodness they haven’t found THAT yet.

  45. #47 Did you not “bother” doing the graphic analysis? Is proof of Bush complicity in the treason of 9-11 not compelling enough for a little mental exercise? Tsk, tsk.

    The Pentagon wall height is known. The fuselage dimensions are known. Ergo the ratio of wall to fuselage is knowable and the missile seen in the recent video is half the “proper” height…to say “nothing” of the many witnesses on Capitol Hill who reported looking toward the boom from the Pentagon to see a jetliner sweeping up over the Capitol…the Columbia Pike approach path deadends into the Pentagon and is co-linear with the U.S. Capitol.

    Philistinism, Treason, or Misprision of Treason…care to divulge?

  46. “Philistinism, Treason, or Misprision of Treason…care to divulge?”

    Is there a daily special?

    I hate these choices.

    Ok. I would like the missile conspiracy salad, with a side order of genius Bush, and a large Bourbon and Coke. Better make that a double.

    I would also like to take this moment to ask all of you to contribute to the John Nash memorial fund.

  47. One of these days it might be fascinating to explore why it is that people find the need to adopt ridiculous and irrational conspiracy theories to explain major events.

    But this isn’t that day.

  48. Argument from ignorance
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    (Redirected from Argumentum ad ignorantium)
    Jump to: navigation, search

    This article covers both the ‘Argument from ignorance’ and the ‘Argument from incredulity’.

    The argument from ignorance, also known as argumentum ad ignorantiam or argument by lack of imagination, is a logical fallacy in which it is claimed that that a premise is true only because it has not been proven false, or that a premise is false only because it has not been proven true.

    The argument from personal incredulity, also known as argument from personal belief or argument from personal conviction, refers to an assertion that because one personally finds a premise unlikely or unbelievable, the premise can be assumed not to be true, or alternately that another preferred but unproven premise is true instead.

    Both arguments commonly share this structure: a person erroneously regards the lack of evidence for one view (or alternately, regards their personal bias against the view) as constituting evidence or proof that another view is instead true. In reality this is not valid evidence or proof, as further described below. The types of fallacies discussed in this article should not be confused with the reductio ad absurdum method of argument, in which a valid logical contradiction of the form “A and not A” is used to disprove a premise.

  49. As far as the embassy, does the size of an embassy represent our “ownership” of internal government affairs of foreign powers?

    Then, pardon the silly question, why would it need to be so big, if not to house the modern-day Lord Cromer? Why so much larger than our embassy in Jordan, which is likewise in the Middle East? Why so much larger than our embassies in Canada and Great Britain, where we need commercial attachés and so forth. I am afraid I can not accept the suggestion that it is a coincidence.

    I don’t think so. And does use of military bases constitute continued occupation? Once again, that doesn’t add up.

    We have a problem: we got to keep military bases in Germany and Japan because we conquered them. However, we are laboring under the convenient fiction that we have liberated Iraq, and in that case we can no more keep unwelcome bases there than in France. Now, do you truly believe that the Iraq government—any Iraq government—will want US bases on its soil? I have a bridge you might want to buy…

  50. Andrew (#53)

    You asked wht would it [the new embassy in Iraq] need to be so big? How about because we are going to spend billions of dollars in aid to Iraq over the next few years? How about, aside from the money, the huge American presence and interest there?

    You also said that “we got to keep military bases in Germany and Japan because we conquered them”

    This is so stupid as to be inane. Nobody keeps bases somewhere because of military conquest. You keep bases because of strategic interest. Our strategic interest in Europe and Korea is actaully waning now (as I pointed out), while our interest in the Mid-East is waxing.

    I’m not even sure that if you made your point it would amount to much. In every place in the world we are likely to have covert interests. Iraq should be no different. The question I raised is whether or not we are responsible over here for domestic conditions inside Iraq. Aside from a lot of hand-waving, you are failing to make much progress in your argument that we are.

    If it makes you feel better to assign nefarious and hegemonic interests to U.S. actions, then I feel sorry for you. Because it is never just one thing — actions we take in the world are for a variety of reasons and are usually the result of groupthink and the path of least resistance. We are no more evil geniuses than we are stark-raving idiots. But what we are NOT is owners of Iraq any more. The Iraqis have that role. And as of today, if they want us out, we will leave. Who knows what the policy of the next administration or congressional policy might be?

  51. It would be silly to deny US control of the iraqi government, except that it has potential propaganda for our enemies to admit it.

    So for example before Bremer left he made sure that each iragi government office had an american “advisor”. And he set up an american-led group of inspectors who would fire iraqi government employees for corruption. And the rule was that all his laws etc would remain until a replacement was voted by the iraqi Assembly. And so far the iraqi Assembly hasn’t gotten around to voting on that stuff, they’re too busy with more important matters.

    So if you’re an iraqi government employee working in the Green Zone, and you insist on doing something your advisor says not to, what’s the chance the inspectors will come and fire you for corruption?

    On the other hand if you’re an iraqi government employee outside the Green Zone, how will a US advisor find out about what you’re doing unless you report it or some other government agent reports it? We have pretty much complete control over what the top levels of the iraqi government gives orders to do, but we don’t have much control at all over what “the iraqi government” does on the street.

    So it’s possible that we told the iraqi government to set up death squads. And it’s possible that the iraqi government did that on its own initiative and we went along. But independent of those, it’s likely iraq would have government death squads regardless. Because people tend to do what they know how to do. Iraq used to have death squads, they were the police with the most status and the most mojo. Of *course* that’s what unsupervised police would aspire to. For awhile there we were putting iraqi police through a training program telling them about suspects’ rights and such. They thought we were wimps. Now, how are we going to control them? We’d have to watch what they do outside the Green Zone.

    So yes, we’re controlling the iraqi government to the extent it’s getting controlled. But our giant embassy is mostly controlling the Green Zone, plus it stands between the iraqi Assembly and high officials versus the orders that go out from the Green Zone. It doesn’t actually control much.

    You asked wht would it [the new embassy in Iraq] need to be so big? How about because we are going to spend billions of dollars in aid to Iraq over the next few years?

    We’ve pretty much shot our wad about aid money to iraq. On the other hand we give billions of dollars a year to israel and egypt, and it doesn’t take that big an embassy in those countries. This whole argument is silly. We wouldn’t even be having it except Lazarus etc want to make the US effort in iraq look bad, and Markham etc want to make the US effort in iraq look good.

  52. Daniel, I don’t see a lot of difference between my claim that we have the world’s largest embassy because (barely) behind the scenes we will be running the show, and your rebuttal (I use the word loosely) that it’s because we will be spending a great deal of money there. Well, we aren’t going to be spending that money by dropping it from helicopters at crossroads, and the way that we spend the money—which will doubtless amount to more than the Iraq government generates on its own—is how we control the country. Purse strings and all that. You talk about money, presence, and interest. I talk about running the show behind the scenes. Your language is euphemistic. The idea is the same.

    We were able to keep bases in Germany and Japan irrespective of the wishes of the people because we had conquered them. Do you think we are building those bases and will then allow their existence to go to the Iraqi parliament or a referendum? No way.

    The Iraq we envision will be less independent than Bulgaria and East Germany under the USSR.

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