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« Ruminations – 30jul12 | Main | Carrier Task Groups Converging »

01 August 2012

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Barry Pruett

Very nicely written Mr. McDaniel. When I read your analysis about corporatism, I could not help but think that Ben Emery may be in fundamental agreement with you. You did not mention it in the article, but I inferred that safety nets for corporations are equally wrong.

Let's be clear...I have not yet met a conservative that believes that all of the safety nets should be removed. The public safety nets must be paired down to a reasonable level. 70% of federal spending is far too much and invites rampant fraud. I look forward to this discussion that will likely follow.

George Rebane

This morning's batch of emails included one from a reader who sent me the complete post of what the former Union editor had written about this article. Besides the usual vituperation about my "politically extreme views ... which occupy inordinate air time on KVMR and in The Union", the ace journalist and crack reporter failed to notice that the above article was authored by Mike McDaniel.

His attempt to provide "balance" for McDaniel's piece included extracts from the blog of a "Justin" who presents one of the most intellectually disabled and poorly argued critiques of conservatism I have read. Nevertheless, Justin's approach is typical in its construction of appropriate straw men which then succumb to his meager abilities of analysis and assault. The full treatment may be found here
http://secularist10.hubpages.com/hub/Why-Conservatism-Fails

Barry Pruett

Let's be very clear George. Jeff Pelline is not trying to provide balance. He is bullying The Union and KVMR and you through intimidation. It is his way.
http://barrypruett.blogspot.com/2010/08/intimidation-and-retaliation-tactics.html

THEMIKEYMCD

I feel compelled to note that the above piece is but a microcosm of a larger body of work that I may or may not ever publish.

In this summary, I highlighted the "Wealth/Income Gap" as it is the most used (read accepted) data by the extreme progressives (i.e. the 99%ers).

Barry Pruett

I thought that it was great and logically outlined. As I said, I look forward to hearing Ben's comments on corporatism.

Russ Steele

I am betting that we will hear more crickets than critiques from our local left.

Stoos

George,

The failure of the left is a great topic and of course you friend Jeff has posted the failure of the right. Since he won't let me post on his site any more I will respond to his points here.

As usual his author throws up three straw men that are easily debunked. Here are three real tenets of conservatism that have stood the test of time:

1) The principles of the Declaration of Independence where we know that our rights to life, liberty and happiness or property are God-given and should be protected by the state.

2) The principles of free-market capitalism where government is limited to its proper role of enforcing contracts and prosecuting fraud.

3) The principles of national defense where we follow the wise advice of our two greatest General/Presidents by avoiding international entanglements and control the military/industrial complex!

Those would not be so easy to debunk, but sadly we have very little of them since the 19th century.

John

Todd Juvinall

I went over the extreme lefty blog and read the post and some of the comments. How a person governed by mostly R's can keep claiming the place is purple has got to be a bit goofy. It is obvious the attacks on conservatives the purple fellow uses are personal and explains a lot to the reader about his purple ethics and veracity. I get many more attendees on my little blog than he seems to get. And I get the facts right. Good article Mikey, keep it up.

Ben Emery

I will make one comment on this post.

We are supposed to be the government. That is what was fought and died for by those in the American Revolution. The revolution wasn't fought to establish no government but a representative government by the consent of the governed. Good government can exist but cannot when it doesn't represent the will of the people. Having two corrupt political party's isn't a choice that will bring about the changes we need to establish good representative government.

The fact that having unlimited nontransparent funding of political party's and candidates doesn't scare you to death tells me that is exactly what you want- a government of, by, and for the wealthy.

I posted this to facebook today and will share it with RR as well. This show was pre Citizens United in 2008. The 2012 spending is set to double the numbers of 2008 election cycle.

http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/01252008/watch3.html
Intro

"BILL MOYERS: Despite all the economic woes, you have surely noticed by now that we are in the middle of the most expensive political campaign in American history. And we still have nine months to go. At the outset last year the former chair of the Federal Election Commission called it a high-stakes poker game. To get in, he said, a really promising presidential candidate needed an ante of at least one hundred million dollars. More than half of that - more than 50 cents on the dollar -- goes to buy ad time on television."

THEMIKEYMCD

Ben, did you read the post above or just the title? I think we are in agreement, though your tone makes it hard to tell.

Cliff notes from above: "The political process (and thus the rule of law) has been denigrated by the influences of corporatism (whereby corporations, labor unions, foreign nations, etc buy political influence)."

WHO wins an election is not as important as HOW MUCH POWER he/she is granted upon winning. Decrease the size of the prize (amount of power) and you will decrease the demand for the prize.

George Rebane

Stoos 1102am - Welcome John, good points. And there's more to be said about it all; hope your voice will be heard.

Ben Emery


Mickey,

I think we probably agree on much more than you think. I fully agree with your cliff notes and I did read much of your post. As with Barry P we have a chicken or the egg debate going on. I feel it is the influence of money in our political process that has completely corrupted the system. Where I think you believe the system having so much power is what attracts the money/ corruption. There is one common thread, big money. If we would simply outlaw the money coming in from corporations, labor unions, foreign nations, non profit advertising, ect... what we would have left is functional democratic republic. Also if we eliminated the big money would see the size and scope of the federal government decrease tremendously.

I don't believe regulatory agencies are a bad thing but do believe they have been captured by the very industries they are supposed to regulate. This is where the traditional conservative idea that people then rely on the government to protect them comes into play. I understand and sympathize with this idea. Those who believe that our government is representative of the people ignore what is going on with the assumption government is making sure our needs and interests are protected. On many levels it has done a pretty good job of doing it. I don't know a single ordinary person who could tell me what these ingredients are and what the possible negative side affects they could have with prolonged use. It is a daily household product- Sodium, Monofluoro Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Silica, Triclosan, mint extract for flavour and base.

From what I can gather from speaking with my elder relatives over the last 40 plus years it was Vietnam and Watergate that began this distrust of government. I for one have never trusted the government by defacto of my distrust of the two political party's. I do not trust any large institution (private or public) to do the bidding of the people. It becomes about the institution instead of the people it is supposed to serve. This is why I do not belong or trust the largest institutions in America, the Republican and Democratic Party's. This is why I promote for more political choices and for publicly funded campaigns. We are dealing with 150 years (R’s) and 200 years (D’s) of infrastructure, funding, back room deals with big business (another large institution), ceremonies, tradition, and screwing the people over. On a positive note along the way they also gave into the pressures of the people such as ending slavery, recognizing suffrage to all, labor rights, and civil rights. It is called movement politics.

On social programs we are probably going to disagree but who knows. If we have a government doing the bidding of the people than the need for social programs is dramatically reduced.

TomKenworth

From a dietary standpoint, fast foods, and starchy foods, will contribute to obesity and ill health. Jobs (with lower effective pay, among other things, and more stress) and commutes that encourage the consumption of the same, and foster less time for exercise, and less time for good family relations for good mental health, will up the ante on the sick index.

I could be wrong, but are we not an aging population, which brings with it all kinds of wobbles of the physical bodies involved? Increasing percentages of the population as aging, depreciating, need to be factored into any review of the national health. Having a substantial western county indoor swimming pool would be an excellent public investment in reduced health care. Bicycle friendly mass transit would likewise be wise. I still have no response to my question as to what the quality of life in the Bay Area would be without BART.

George Rebane

TomK 435pm - Pray, what is the relevance of your question? Perhaps a lack of that has generated an appropriate response.

TomKenworth

George, one of the other readers made fun of my economic prowess, apparently in part in regards some comments I made in praise of mass transit. That is the relevance of that final question. I don't think the other writers wanted to consider seriously just what havoc such a disappearance would create in the San Francisco Bay Area, and how adverse it would be for the pocketbooks of the inhabitants, not to mention the inconveniences it would create.

TomKenworth

The one benefit of having the Flublican Party delay any serious action on global warming and alternative energy sources, is that now we get to see the results of actually doing the experiment. I do hope there's a spare planet somewhere if the Flubby experiment goes totally out of control.

Paul Emery

Stoos

Can you elaborate on this
" The principles of national defense where we follow the wise advice of our two greatest General/Presidents by avoiding international entanglements and control the military/industrial complex!"
It was Bush and the Neocons who engineered our involvement in Iraq. Was Iraq a foreign entanglement we should have avoided?

Ben Emery

Progressive Presidential Candidate Arrested Protesting Fannie Mae
http://www.jillstein.org/stein_and_honkala_arrested?utm_campaign=fannie_mae_1&recruiter_id=146941&utm_medium=email&utm_source=jillstein

"Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein and her vice presidential running mate Cheri Honkala were arrested today during a protest at the offices of mortgage company Fannie Mae on Banker's Row in Philadelphia."

Todd Juvinall

They were arrested for eating at a Chick-fil-a.

Todd Juvinall

Here BenE, the latest story about your Muslim pals full of tolerance.

http://www.myfoxdc.com/story/19169024/somali-comedian-who-poked-fun-at-islamists-shot-dead

George Rebane

TomK 623pm - the relevance of such a loss to this discussion is still missing. You could just as well have brought up the obvious inconveniences to the public had any other major part of the city's transportation, communication, or power infrastructure gone missing. Since you have drawn no connection to any of the topics at hand, what is your point other than another illustration of the working of a liberal mind?

TomKenworth

George, if you cannot contemplate bth this thread and the Ruminations thread right next to it at the same time, I can't help you.

Stoos

Paul,

I would certainly agree that President Bush failed to follow the advice that was given by our General/Presidents.

The military/industrial complex is certainly a major problem along the lines that Ben is concerned with: Money buying the power of government so that power can raise taxes and spend it with the companies that put up the money. Ben's solution is to limit the money they can spend, but as I have tried in vain to get him to see, the money will always find a way IF the government is allowed to have that sort of power. The answer is for the people to rise up and elect representatives that are willing and able to reign in the power of government.

As it stands today the two major parties CANNOT do so because the Democrats will not reduce the domestic budgets and the Republicans will not reduce the military budgets. In fact BOTH grow larger as the two parties make more and more "deals" to help the one they like grow. They are leading us to an economic collapse which may be the only way left to right the sinking ship of state.

John

Paul Emery

Thanks John

You're pretty much in line with my impulse to vote third party this time around. There are only subtle differences between the Republican and Democratic parties. That's why Romney was nominated, to insure the Tea Party would be put in it's place. The parties need each other as manageable adversaries but in reality they are supported by the same interests.

George Rebane

Re Stoos 906am - It appears more and more that another defining difference between liberal and conservative worldviews is that liberals want to (one more time) increase regulations and reduce liberties on American citizens in order to reduce government corruption, and conservatives want to reduce government power through reduction of its size and scope so that there is little benefit to bribing politicians.

The latter achieves three objectives - lower taxes, smaller government, retain liberties - the former has never worked and has no chance of working in the future. Money will find a way to influence power regardless of the efforts of either good-hearted naifs or black-hearted autocrats.

Paul Emery

George

As much as you favor smaller government you also support larger military spending as part of our responsibility as the worlds most powerful country (hegemon). Does that not require a huge government bureaucracy and how do you isolate it from the interests of those who strive to profit from and promote war?

TomKenworth

When it comes to solving our economic problems for other than the 1%, we certainly seem to one heckova Pokemon as a Hegemon.

George Rebane

PaulE 1021am - Excellent point worth revisiting. As argued here abundantly, I believe America's world hegemony has contributed enormously to the world's quality of life since 1945. We can't and shouldn't try to pay for lavish entitlements (especially fashioned as commons) and the maintenance of that hegemony. Government's fundamental task is to secure its sovereignty - without that all else is lost. No one has a solution yet for dealing with the potential for corruption in the 'military-industrial complex'.

But going broke and being able to afford nothing but the trappings of a cheap police state to keep our citizens in line is the last solution I want to explore. Remember, we cannot play like we are Denmark or Estonia.

TomKenworth

There is a way to isolate money from power. If you wish to be a government decider, you simply apply for and get an anonymized official "I'm running for ________." You have to satisfy the requirements for that office at the time of application, no more birther or residence location idiocies.

You may write anything you like on the blog, but you may not write anything that identifies who you are. You have to write ideas that attract a response from non anonymized to the government, but anonymized to the public, voters, who are also registered and have log in codes. Such folks can read and comment on what you write, and you can respond.

To get on the ballot, you have to have enough pre pre pre online votes (one vote per anonymized voter) to move to the next level, which is yet another runoff, repeat several times, until finally you have a manageable number of candidates for the election. Then, four weeks before the actual election, the anonymity goes away, and the usual processes take over.

By doing it this way, candidates would be chosen by their abilities to express ideas clearly in ways that voters could understand, and all the other variables would go out the window. Promises that they will do "better" but have to get into office first would fall dead. Pacs would be unable to influence the pre-elections, because would they be going up against ideas, not people who can be smeared, and they would be effectively barred from the blog preliminaries. Incumbents would almost always be able to get another shot, but again they'd be totally exposed to reasoned arguments against their past moves.

Please dearest old friendly Repubbys: Tell me where you saw this before and which Democratic Liberal talking point it is. Ooops, I guess the liberals do not all think alike and have no new ideas. Give that man a non polluting cigar.

Paul Emery

Currently the US accounts for over 40? of the worlds spending on military . That doesn't include the billions spend in military aid to countries such as Israel and Saudi Arabia. Are you proposing that we increase that and how can we pay for it?

TomKenworth

Ok old smarty pants from the 1940's education systems, answer me this:

If you choose an answer to this question at random, what is the chance you will be correct?

a) 25%
b) 50%
c) 60%
d) 25%

TomKenworth

PS, in the blogging election system above, putting in code numbers or phrases or other such constructions to make your real identity known would result in your being yanked from the election or the office, if later proven. Also, making sure that an electee either has his job reserved for him/her when they come back, or at least the income from that job for 5 years guaranteed, would make it possible for the poor man to run. In the last four weeks, all candidates get an identical amount of cash to spend on conventional ads from the government, and that's it. Prior to lifting the veil anonymity, others outside the government can increase the PR pot for an office, but not once they know who is running.

TomKenworth

http://youtu.be/t5FNDRgPOLs


Is that really Youtube, or is it something else?

George Rebane

TomK 1055am - good addition to the discussion. Ideas are only a part (half?) of the reason for voting for someone. The other important part is the individual's qualification is his background/bio/experience/... , otherwise you're pre-voting for ideas that may have no chance when the "usual processes" take over.

And going on an 'ideas first' process to admit and then cull down a large field is something I have also proposed, but without the anonymity aspect which may turn out to be a good twist to this approach. Thanks TomK; let's hear some other voices on this.

PaulE 1113am - I don't propose increasing our military budgets, only maintaining them. But I do support the reduction of the entitlements - especially the destructive ones. Like everyone else over the course of history, we still have to go on carefully buying our friends.

TomKenworth

You have the last four weeks in which to find out the backgrounds of the real people presenting the ideas, that should be enough. If worst comes to worst, you pick the best of the worst. Or start over, if "None of the Above" wins.

By the way, on my side this goes back to: http://farstars.blogspot.com/search?q=vote+anonymous and beyond, all the way back to FSM days.

Ben Emery

Mickey,
My citations will have to be a general statement and proof through negative legislation. I have read so many books I cannot remember the book where the social programs were actually listed. Online they are only referred. Social programs did exist and unless it was major policy it is very difficult to sift through the net to find actual early legislation.

http://www.welfareinfo.org/history/
?The history of welfare in the U.S. started long before the government welfare programs we know were created. In the early days of the United States, the colonies imported the British Poor Laws. These laws made a distinction between those who were unable to work due to their age or physical health and those who were able-bodied but unemployed. The former group was assisted with cash or alternative forms of help from the government. The latter group was given public service employment in workhouses"

billy T

Mr. McDaniel wrote a nice piece. Cear and concise. Oh, don't you love that entitlement feeling? http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/1767152318001/former-calif-union-leader-faces-200-years-in-prison-for-fraud

Ben Emery

Todd,
"Here BenE, the latest story about your Muslim pals full of tolerance."
http://www.myfoxdc.com/story/19169024/somali-comedian-who-poked-fun-at-islamists-shot-dead

What did your link have to do with the policies of the US rounding up 1000 Muslims based on their religion holding them for years with out representation, tortured, and let go without charge? What does it have to do with Peter King (R) holding multiple official congressional hearings on radicalization of Islamic extremism? An FBI investigation has shown that 6% of domestic terrorism is founded in Islamic extremists. The thing I can see how it is associated with your link is American anti-Muslim policies are sparking up more division and violence around the world.

What I am getting from you is to correct violent behavior is with more violent behavior. This is a policy from a weak scared position. It has been the policy for nations and religions for thousands of years and it has only produced a divided world population and oppression.

George Rebane

Re TomK 1123am – Well hell, I guess everyone has taken a pass on this problem; maybe because its statement is incomplete. The correct problem statement would read, “If you choose an answer to this question at random, what is the chance you will be correct given that each type of answer has an equal probability of being correct?”

In the four multiple choices we find that one (type of) answer appears twice, thereby giving a total of three types of answers. The probability of choosing any of the four answers is 1/4, and the probability of the chosen answer being correct is 1/3. Therefore the expected probability of randomly choosing the correct answer is (1/4)(1/3) + (1/4)(1/3) + (1/4)(1/3) + (1/4)(1/3) = 1/3.

A more interesting version of this problem is to consider the case when there are, say, a total of K types of answers appearing in M > K multiple choice positions, where each answer type is repeated nk times, and Pk is the probability that answer type k is correct. The most facile way of solving this is to appeal to the celebrated theorem of the Reverend Bayes.

In the above problem statement we would have K = 3, M = 4, n1 = 2, n2 = 1, n3 = 1, and Pk = 1/3 for all k = 1,2,3.

Todd Juvinall

BenE, you think to much. The link was simply to show you Muslim lovers how they treat people in juxtaposition with them here in America. We treat everyone fairly under the law. Your 1000 terrorists are alive and well fed by you and me. The comedian is DEAD!

TomKenworth

Thanks George, it's driving a lot of people on Facebook nuts.

billy T

Mr. Juvinall, I agree. We are not beheading the 1000 terrorists nor forbidding them from practicing their religious beliefs at Gitmo. Probably about 340 enemy combatants there, but 1000 is a nice round number. Neither do our soldiers strap on suicide vests and walk into Jewish senior center hangouts or school buses and go pow! Without the Christian influence and character of our country, slavery would be practiced here today. The Civil Rights Movement got its momentum from the pulpits across America and the influence of Gandhi. For me, I cannot follow any so called deity that lied, cheated on his wife, encouraged followers to deceive non believers, forced conversions, savage treatment of women and savage treatment of non converts. Sounds like a flawed human, same as anybody, rather than something divine. Guess that is an example of so called moral relativity. Image what would have happened to the womens rights movement if our Nation followed those views! Well, to each his own. http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/Quran/015-slavery.htm

Stoos

Ben,

You are certainly right that the government temptation to get involved in welfare goes WAY back.

Consider this link: http://www.fee.org/library/not-yours-to-give-2/

John

Ben Emery

Todd,
Why am I not surprised that you didn't understand? A thousand Muslims were rounded up without any official charges being brought to a court of law. Habeas Corpus and Due Process were ignored and still are being ignored for some at Guantanamo Bay and in other prisons around the world. So all of your hot air about your love for liberty and freedom go out the window. What you really love is your liberty/ freedom and to hell with others rights whom you disagree. Remember a vast majority of the Muslims rounded up were never tried or found guilty of a crime. Dozens in the Bush administration which includes Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Rove, Libby, and Wolfowitz should be indicted and brought to the Hague for war crimes.

I do not condone terrorist acts and those who perform them but think the crimes against humanity should be done with due process and the rule of law. I also do not ignore or condone fellow human beings natural rights and due process being trampled upon either. Your minimal understanding of natural law and human rights is very disappointing for a former public official who took a vow to uphold the US Constitution.

Ben Emery

John S.
Thanks for the link. As we have discussed many times before about this subject, I can sympathize with the sentiment of the message on the link but just disagree. That is what we have decided as a nation to support. If the will of the people such as social programs become to great the people will elect representatives to reverse the policies. I have no problem with the will of the people but do have a problem with the will of big money special interests controlling "Our" government. Here is a quote from an open letter to the US CA 4th constituents.

"Nothing in our Constitution addresses political parties or partisanship. However, over the past 30 years, political parties have presented partisanship as the only operating paradigm. Our government has become less representative because that’s what BOTH parties want. They fight for campaign dollars instead of votes, then use those dollars to manipulate opinion in an effort to frighten voters to take their side. This was not what the founders envisioned for our grand republic."
Ben Emery

Gregory

Ben, there were hundreds of thousands of Germans held indefinitely within the USA in the early to mid 1940's. No charges were ever contemplated or sought. No trials held.

Ben Emery

Greg,
Same goes for the Japanese. Here is the difference, We were at war (actually declared war) with those two nations. I don't truly know how I would have felt at the time because I wasn't alive but my guess is I would have been horrified. I few years back I sat down and talked with many of those who were forced into camps during WWII. They lost their homes, businesses, and lives when they went into the camps. I am ashamed that we treated human beings that way.

The other difference is torture wasn't part of American policy in the 1940's.

People weren't arbitrarily rounded up because of their religion.

Here is a famous case that was on the light side.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maher_Arar

George Rebane

re BenE's 1204am and 630am - To start "... torture wasn't part of American policy in the 1940s." This statement is naive beyond comprehension of anyone read in history. Torture was so common in both civilian law enforcement and the military that it literally went without saying. It was simply the expected norm. Today's methods pale in comparison.

In old fashioned wars involving culturally cohesive nation vs nation it was common for combatants to incarcerate people whose backgrounds derived from the enemy - their loyalties were unreliable. For example, before WW2 America was full of 'bunden' or associations of ethnic Germans who supported Hitler's rise to power.

Today, the most common denominator of America's enemies share Islam as their faith. And these Islamist enemies come from all countries including the US. They are also fundamentalist end-timers with whom negotiation is futile (cf.taqiyya)- in these pages I have given them the pejorative short label of 'raghead' in order not to have to repeat the lengthy definition of that class of people. To argue the dated and dysfunctional protocols of yesterdays' wars is ludicrous. I have treated the technical basis for discriminating against Muslims.

Paul Emery

George
You wrote on 02 August 2012 at 10:36 AM that "America's world hegemony has contributed enormously to the world's quality of life since 1945. We can't and shouldn't try to pay for lavish entitlements (especially fashioned as commons) and the maintenance of that hegemony."

That seems to mean to me that you are asking for American taxpayers to fund the quality of live for the rest of the workld and neglect our own. We spend billions supporting the infrastructure pr foreign nations while our own highways, bridges, schools and parks are falling apart. Please explain.

"At least 719 military personnel, civilian contractors, Iraqis and third-country nationals died in Iraq over seven years performing U.S. reconstruction and stability operations, according to the first audit of its kind.

The dead include 264 of the 4,409 U.S. troops who died in Iraq from May 1, 2003, through August 30, 2010, according to the audit released today by Stuart Bowen, the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction.

The audit represents the first time a U.S. agency has attempted to tally the deaths associated with spending about $60 billion in congressionally appropriated reconstruction and stabilization funds. "

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-07-27/iraq-reconstruction-effort-cost-719-lives-audit-finds

Gregory

Ben, first, if you give the President war powers, we're at war. The way to stop the wartime footing is for Congress to reverse this. We're at war now as much as we were during the Viet Nam years.

Second, Arar, a Canadian and Syrian citizen, wasn't rounded up by the US because he was a Muslim, he was taken into custody because the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (think Canadian FBI, eh?) had put him on a suspected terrorist list, and they refused his reentry back into Canada.

You may not realize this, Ben, but if you're in a foreign country and they decide you are a persona non grata, you will be deported, and probably to the country you are a citizen of. In Arar's case, Syria because Canada, to their shame, washed their hands of him.

How you can make that into a US wrongdoing is beyond my ken.

Paul Emery

George, on another topic. Do you believe the internment of 127,000 United States Japanese American citizens was the right thing to do in WW11 and would you support such action against Muslim Americans citizens under similar circumstances?

THEMIKEYMCD

I consider Mas a great friend. When a government is too powerful (immoral)...

http://www.theunion.com/article/20111122/NEWS/111129974&parentprofile=search

Ben Emery

Well George,
Legal memos used by the Bush administration authorized, among other things, the use of torture and you seem to think it is just fine. I know of first hand stories of how US soldiers treated others in Central and South America. I don't pretend it doesn't happen but would not condone or advocate the policy. I talked with at least a dozen Japanese Americans from the camps and I asked about their treatment and if there was any torture, not one of them ever saw anything like torture being done.

For the record Islam is not the enemy of the US. It is sad to see you romanticize such a brutal and immoral practice.

TomKenworth

For a realistic view of the world's Muslim population and trends:

http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1872/muslim-population-projections-worldwide-fast-growth

Now since we already have 5 million or so here in the USA, one must accept the fact that if they were all suicidal maniacs, Aurora would have gone unnoticed amidst the general mayhem.

So, rather than using the term, "Ragheads," which is ancient derogatory slang for Arabs in general, why not be much more specific and precisely identifying, and try using, "I-Borgs?" This way the emphasis is put on the tunnel vision behavior of domination through the hive mind, of folks, using the Islamic religion variants, as cameoflage, rather than stereotyping and calling all peaceful Muslims militants, which they are not.

Do you consider the Westboro Baptist Church to be a Christian organization, or is it a gang of thugs extorting money by getting people angry enough to attack them? (They carefully record it all and then sue in court, that's how they keep it all going, WBC has nothing to do with Christianity, other than window dressing,)

Paul Emery

I believe you have the facts wrong Gregory. It was the US that instigated his rendering based on wrong information. You might find this NYT article illuminating.


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/18/opinion/18wed2.html


"Mr. Arar was seized at Kennedy International Airport in 2002 as he tried to change planes on his way home to Canada from a family vacation. He was held in solitary confinement and subjected to harsh questioning before being sent to Syria. He was tortured there and imprisoned for nearly a year in an underground cell the size of a grave until the Syrians finally let him go.

In 2007, Mr. Harper’s government set an admirable example of decency. After an extensive investigation that concluded Mr. Arar had no ties to terror, Canada offered him a formal apology and compensation worth millions of dollars for providing the unsubstantiated information to American officials that helped trigger his nightmare.

By contrast, the Bush administration stonewalled the Canadian inquiry and brushed off Mr. Harper’s request that the United States, which bears the bulk of responsibility for Mr. Arar’s abuse, acknowledge “inappropriate conduct.” When Mr. Arar sued the United States for denying him his civil rights, the Bush administration — predictably — argued that for reasons of national security the case should never be allowed to come to trial. "

George Rebane

PaulE 1015am – I consider our formidable military to have been on balance a force for good in the world, and its cost to us a *necessary* payment to assure our own QoL with the monies that we have left (which is considerable). Without such a military, that has worldwide reach, the level of warfare in the world would and would have been be much higher. (BTW, that’s why I’m a conservetarian and not a true libertarian.)

I consider the sacrifice of life and limb as the ‘cost of doing business’ in a dangerous world. I and my compatriots in the military most certainly believed we were the sacrificial point of the spear and understood our function in maintaining western civilization. Freedom is not free.

Re your 1021am – Yes, and yes “under similar circumstances”, and it is those circumstances (time, mood, events, …) the ignorance of which causes so much heat in discussions removed from such circumstances. All of this would be avoided or at least minimized in a culturally cohesive country. But such occasional incarcerations are the attendant costs of maintaining a welcoming policy to immigrants of all cultures with hope that they will quickly assimilate. But that is another barn we have circled here.

My family and I were interred from 1945-49 in a UN displaced persons camp. While our freedoms were limited, we were not tortured, and our only fear was for our lives should Harry Truman decide to send us back to the tender mercies of Uncle Josef Vissarionovich. But we were never confused as to why we had to be where we were.

Ben Emery

Greg,
Who or should I say what are we at war with, terror? How does terror surrender? The war on terror is a perpetual war that will only escalate because violence breeds more violence. Military Industrial Complex dream come true.

It is very specific in the constitution who has the power to declare war. War powers act/ resolution are limited to 90 days, which is bs and American supremacy at its worst. 90 days of bombing and destruction are acts of war no matter which way we try and slice it. It took less than a day for congress to pass a declaration of war on Germany and Italy- December 11, 1941 both Germany and Italy declared war on the US, by the end of the day the US officially declared war on the two nations. Trying to justify modern injustices with past injustices is a position of a weak individual or culture.

So here is the question that war hawks refuse to answer.

Why and what conditions cause people to become terrorists?

Islam is used as tool much like other organize religions to recruit soldiers but is not the reason for the willingness to join. So please think a bit deeper about the subject since killing other human beings seems to be your solution.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eKEe3VzA4Y&feature=related


George Rebane

BenE 1037am – you and I must use different dictionaries for ‘romanticize’.

Re Islam as America’s enemy – given their own reported actions and attitudes toward America, I suggest that ‘enemy’ is a good placeholder label to characterize Islam until a better one comes along. And Islam is not only America’s avowed enemy, but also the declared and centuries practiced enemy of western civilization – again by their own words. Your ignoring their taught and observed practice of taqiyya is noted in this discussion.

None of this ignores the longstanding conflict between Islamic and western cultures. Islam has always spread by the sword, and it still does. Christianity was guilty of that also for a good part of its history, but has now become a toothless belief system that has run out of other cheeks to turn (I believe we have only four, all which have been respectively slapped and kicked).

TomK 1039am – “I-borg” is a sanitary and an unknown label that does not have any intrinsic pejorative connotation. Raghead is better, especially in the precise sense that I have defined it.

I have no idea what WBC’s Christianity is. Their burning of the Quran is a long practiced and established, if not now dated, response to “heathen scriptures” that was common in all Christian countries of yore – other religions (e.g. today's Islamists) have been known to just kill you for having unauthorized scriptures. If WBC can make money from it, then they join the company of so many other religions, cultures, ‘races’, … who continually get cash awards through courts that punish all kinds of real and imagined slights.

Gregory

Paul 10:57, sorry, try rereading your link: "After an extensive investigation that concluded Mr. Arar had no ties to terror, Canada offered him a formal apology and compensation worth millions of dollars for providing the unsubstantiated information to American officials that helped trigger his nightmare."

If it wasn't for Canada, the country that had issued Arar's passport, telling the US he was a danger, it would not have happened. Before he was put on the Syrian express, Canadian officials interviewed him. Arar was then sent to the only country that would take him, his native Syria.

Yes, the NYT wanted it to be something to hang on Bush, but that's their bias, and, probably, yours.

Gregory

"Why and what conditions cause people to become terrorists?" -Ben

In the case of Palestinians and other Moslems, I think the inability to sweep the Israeli Jews into the sea after exhorting Palestinians to evacuate their homes in order to facilitate the bloodbath that didn't happen had a lot to do with it. So did the decision of Palestine's Arab neighbors to not assimilate their Palestinian brothers and sisters, keeping them in refugee (aka concentration) camps and indoctrinating their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Then there's the dysfunctional Arab street and the 13th century feudal structures of many of their countries whose leaders anxious to channel anger towards the West and not within towards religious and tribal leaders. And Moslems have their own mainstream/evangelical split; leave them alone and the Sunni and Shia will fight it out among themselves.

Since I answered it, I must not be a "war hawk". Thanks.

Ben Emery

George,
Merriam Webster dictionary
romanticize
transitive verb
to make romantic : treat as idealized or heroic

I get the feeling from you that you are missing the good ol days when people really knew how to turn the thumb screws.

We are not at war with Islam and I put much of the blame on people like yourself in a two fold way
1) glorifying war/violence as a noble solution to settle differences
2) promote the idea of exploiting poor nations with free trade

Once again I will give you the actual interview not the two minute cartoon that explains what is a major factor for the creation of terrorism against the western cultures. Here is preface to the ideas put forward in the video and a longer arc to understand how terrorist come to be, remember American revolutionaries were considered terrorists. Colonialism, which exploitation and theft of resources from the indigenous population through force/ violence (my definition). On top of teaching violent take over of regions oppressing the indigenous people to generational abject poverty.

Here is the new legal way of colonization through World Bank, IMF, WTO, and so on.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7fVAifnnlg0&feature=related

Ben Emery

Greg,
Here is another one, since I guess a man being picked up at a US airport detained and knowingly sent off to be tortured from the very nation he fled to avoid military service is just fine with you.

The case of Binyam Mohamed and the cover up by the Obama administration of the Bush administration crimes. I gave Obama a year to actually to change the direction of the human right violations of the Bush administration. I don't where the line of the Bush crimes becomes the Obama crimes but if we aren't there yet we must be getting very close. I don't care what Binyam Mohamed allegedly did , which he has since been cleared, due process and the rule of law needs to be followed.

Democracy Now!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOHAJOLRV0I

Ben Emery

Greg,
"Why and what conditions cause people to become terrorists?"

I agree that poverty and being oppressed create the conditions that breed terrorism.

So the answer cannot be invading/ occupying Islamic nations forcing a western culture onto them, supporting oppressive regimes for corporate American interests, and having dumba$$'s claiming we are at war with Islam while we are torturing primarily Muslims.

George Rebane

BenE 101pm - Now this is a convenient example of the Great Cognitive Chasm between you and yours, and me and mine.

The fighters of Islam have a long declared war on western civilization that began an hiatus with their loss at Vienna in 1683. They have kept the peace in the interval only because they were relatively no match for Europe. That war settled and gave rise to a long period of quiet between the two civilizations.

When Europe (and the west) again showed its weakness, the assault was re-initiated on ALL fronts. Only raw brutal strength is respected in such confrontations. In the case of war, it takes only one to tango. The denialists wind up dead, in concentration/labor camps, and as third class citizens for decades/centuries until the next war.

And I strongly believe that you and your like-minded cohorts in the politics of apologized peace are those who invite renewed violence on all fronts. Naifs and those ignorant of history loudly declare to the sheeple that 'war does not settle anything'; when, as Churchill taught in his monumental history, it is exactly the opposite. It is only the outcome of wars that settle and redirect the efforts and energies of human societies - the pen is powerful only to the extent that it can evoke the sword.

And as collectivists in the last century, you have shown yourselves to be the first to pick up the sword, for that is the only way you have to acquire productive capacity to prolong intrinsically failed economies.

Ben Emery

George,
You're lust for warfare is a dying breed. I will put it to you in other example. Even in nations of Islam there is your beloved topic of the Great Divide. In those nations there are those just like yourself giving examples of western civilizations history and ongoing assault on their faith and culture of their nation(s). Your Muslim conservative/ conservatarian counterpart's answer is to use violence and force because raw brutal strength is the only language the west understands. Genocidal war becomes your only solution. Unfortunately peace isn't as monetarily or politically powerful as war.

I believe we are in the process of the next enlightenment. We (globally) will have a new form of government and economic model we live our lives by. It will be a more decentralized and cooperative form of economics and governance. And yes, global warming/ climate change will play a huge role in shaping it. I don't know if it will happen in my lifetime but I think my kids generation will see it happening for sure.

billy T

The Islamic countries understand one thing. That thing is strenght. Obama has transmitted weakness since his run for President. He was told before his Cairo speech that the Muslim Brotherhood was not allowed to attend by Egyptian authorities. Obama insisted and brown nosed the Brotherhood. That gave them the go ahead to start arming and training and take down countries from Egypt to Libya. They saw a weakness and pounced upon it. The liberals cling to being the party of peace and understanding. Yet, history is quite clear. It is the progressive mind set that believes in confiscation by force and stomping on indivual liberties by force, most often thru the iron hand of government. Government is their hope and salvation in their group think. But it is not always government the progressives use. It is also mob rule that tramples individual rights asunder. Look at OWS vs the Tea Party rallies. Who barred the press from coverage and pelted TV vans with rocks? Was it the Tea Party Patriots? The TPP were labeled an "angry mob" by the progressives, yet who were the angry ones? Who were the mobs? Who sought to achieve their goals thru mob force? Anyone with two brain cells left could win every agrument that it was not the Tea Party Patriots who sought to squash rights by mob rule, nor engaged in violence. Did the Berlin Wall fall peacefully because of America's weakness or by America's strenght? Walk softly and carry a big stick. A very big stick. A stick for all to see. The policy of appeasement has historically failed.

George Rebane

BenE 355pm - "global warming/ climate change will play a huge role in shaping ... a more decentralized and cooperative form of economics and governance." From your mouth to God's ear.

Any role that GW, especially the belief in AGW, plays in human affairs will be from the vantage of strong centralized governments that will use raw force to shape societies and eliminate the last vestiges of liberty - all for our own good, of course. It has already started, and California is leading the way to naked autocracy through the populist application of what else, democracy.

billy T

When Lord of the Flies was publiched, it rocked the Western World. How could such sweet schoolboys act that way when they were seperated from and free of authority? Surely mankind was more enlightened than that. Lord of the Flies was controvestial because the theme was man had a protensity to do evil. Then there was A Clockwork Oragne and it was society's fault. Remember when the nation was shocked beyond belief when a jogger was raped by 7 young men in Central Park about 25 years ago? Made national headlines for days upon days. As people grasped to find the meaning of this horrific event, the only answer was it had to be society's fault. No other explanation was pausible. Nowadays a gang raping by teenager boys of a mentally handicapped 11 year old girl is just another story that passes without any commentary. Must be society's fault. NOPE. "We must REJECT the idea that everytime a law's broken, society is quilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to RESTORE the American precept that the individual is accountable for his actions." Ronald Reagen.

Ben Emery

George,
If you look at the small few that control energy, agriculture, banking, pharmaceuticals, ect... you will see huge amounts of waste involved, especially regarding transportation. As we break these industry's up and restructure the way our world works we will see a more localized style governance and economy. I am sure you are familiar with the term bio regionalism. As energy REOI goes upward due to costs, environmental damage, and scarcity we will be forced to rethink where our necessities are coming from and we will bring it closer to home. By default government will become more local oriented and the federal government will have to take a back seat on many of the issues we face today. There will be a federal government but it will be more focused on how to serve the states and municipalities instead of being the mouthpiece and enforcer for the large few companies that control every industry presently.

Ben Emery

Billy T,
What you are describing is the isolation from community. We are so disconnected on so many levels in today's world it is easy for those who once were seen and connected by the whole community go unnoticed today. That sense of belonging to something larger than just ourselves has be chipped away for many decades through materialism and technology. This is one of the things I like about church, it brings people together and gives a sense of unity. That is what the military does for many. That is what the Tea Party has done for many disgruntled conservatives. It seems to be what AA is based on. It is why organizing labor was so powerful and why big money and big business hate unions so much. As an individual worker you have little say and feel helpless but come together with great numbers the atmosphere changes and the sense of empowerment and pride takes the place of fear and helplessness. None of us are islands and the sooner we realize it the better off we will be.

Gregory

"since I guess a man being picked up at a US airport detained and knowingly sent off to be tortured from the very nation he fled to avoid military service is just fine with you."

Ben, don't be such an ass. It isn't an issue of being "just fine with" it, it's what happens under international law when a persona non grata needs to go. Blame Canada! (That might make a great song). They filed the incorrect information about the guy, and later fessed up and apparently paid up millions to help right the wrong *THEY* were responsible for.

Yes, he was a Syrian draft dodger. Can't blame his family for getting him out of there.


Now, if you recall, Iraq was the aggressor circa 1990 and continually violated the cease fire agreement that was put in place by the UN. Afghanistan's Taliban hosted al qaeda. And the palestinian concentration camps on Arab soil for the unassimilated have been in operation since about 1947. Is there a link? Well, before the Baathist regime was changed, they were paying $25,000 honoraria to the families of Palestianian martyrs willing to turn busloads of Israeli schoolchildren into red goo. Haven't heard much about that lately, have we?

Ben, you seem to think its ignorance that drives folks who don't agree with you but it's the knowledge, wisdom and rationality that you seem to lack that seems to be the problem.

billy T

Ben, I agree that none of us are islands. And I believe no man is a law to himself, save psychopaths and anarchists. And I truly believe in a sense of community. Take a hopeless drunk and make him or her the appointed coffee maker of an AA meeting and watch his/her sense of belonging and part of something bigger than themselves blossom. Isolation is a killer. Same with the quilting club or any thing you can image. We are born with the herd instinct to socialize. When I beat death and could barely walk or stand, I was approached by people to volunteer building the P.L.A.Y. structure behind Hennessy. Being unable to lift anything or help, I was told I could watch the children of volunteers. To this day I feel part of the fabric of the play structure, even though I have not seen it in years. Where I differ from some of my peers is the role of government in our affairs. Hillary wrote it takes a village to raise a child and Obama believes it takes a government to build a business. I see gov't as the entity to turn to as the last resort when you are flat on the canvas and the ref is counting 7,8,9....Government should never be the lender of first resort. Yes, we need a safety net for those who CANNOT for a variety of reasons make it in this world. We need to dispense a good kick in the rear for those who WILL NOT get off the couch or sit around the barn and eat all the hay. Gov't is at the bottom of the totem pole in the hierarchy of society and does what we tell them to do and nothing more, IMHO. Karl Marx was dead wrong on one point. He never envisioned the billions of dollars philatelists would freely donate, nor the outpouring of charity by countless individuals in a society, be they mighty or small. Even the most noble of progressive ideals result in institutionalization of the populace, exactly like a man who sits in prison for years fearing making it on the outside when his release date approaches. Conservative ideals frees the spirit to soar above the prison walls.

Ben Emery

Greg,
I will try and make this as brief as possible but still connecting many dots.

As for your opinion of being an ass, what other conclusion can I come to when you divert responsibility of the US government rounding up people without charge to everywhere and everyone else? I thought you were a libertarian leaning person?

In 1990 Saddam Hussein got the OK from the US government to move into Kuwait.
From US Congressional Minutes

"Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, how did the 20-year war get started?

It had been long assumed that the United States Government, shortly before Iraq invaded Kuwait in August of 1990, gave Saddam Hussein a green light to attack. A State Department cable recently published by WikiLeaks confirmed that U.S. Ambassador April Glaspie did indeed have a conversation with Saddam Hussein one week prior to Iraq’s August 1, 1990, invasion of Kuwait."

"In it, Ambassador Glaspie affirmed to Saddam “the President had instructed her to broaden and deepen our relations with Iraq.” As Saddam Hussein outlined Iraq’s ongoing border dispute with Kuwait, Ambassador Glaspie was quite clear that, “we took no position on these Arab affairs.”

In the 1980's Saddam was the darling of the Reagan and Bush administrations being removed Iraq from states supporting international terrorism and supported Saddam with intelligence and weapons to fight Iran. At the same time through the Iran/ Contra crimes the Reagan administration supported Iran with military equipment and parts to maintain and repair US military equipment from when we (US) overthrew Mossadeq in the 50's and propped up the brutal authoritarian Shah, which directly led to the 1979 revolution and hostage crisis. The US acting in their corporate "interests" have had a direct influence on the rise of extremism, which we seem to keep perpetuating. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy. I won't come back to the ruthless illegal murders funded through the Reagan administration for brevity sake.

Now onto to Afghanistan- the senior members of the Taliban such as Mohammed Omar fought with the Mujahideen along side with Osama bin Laden. As the Soviets exited the US turned a blind eye to the horrible human rights of Mujahideen who would become the Taliban. Refugee camps in Pakistan were petri dishes for the extremist Madrassas. The biggest funders of extremist Madrassas were and still are the wealthy businessmen of Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia another brutal authoritarian government propped up by corporate US "interests".

Everything I just typed out is true and is completely ignored by those on the right side of the aisle, which is both the leaderships of the democratic and republican party's.

Now for the back at you with the ass remark. What makes you an ass is your smugness toward others like you are intellectually superior, which you are most definitely not.

Ben Emery

Billy,
I think you and I are on the same page with many issues.

Michael Anderson

Greg hissed: "Ben, don't be such an ass."

A red flag on the play, GG goes into the penalty box for showing general bad manners and a uncivil disposition. Perhaps a dietary change is in order?

Gregory

"As for your opinion of being an ass, what other conclusion can I come to when you divert responsibility of the US government rounding up people without charge to everywhere and everyone else? I thought you were a libertarian leaning person?"

They responded to an RCMP flagging of a naturalized citizen of Canada being a danger. Canada refused that person reentry into Canada and the other choice was returning them to the only country that would take them?

The responsibility was Canada's, Canada has admitted responsibility and made reparations.

And I didn't make any grand pronouncements; you put up the one name you seemed to place the most gravitas, and it was a case that I'd read about and discussed before. It was Canada that flagged them and Canada that refused reentry of their own citizen, effectively renouncing his naturalized status. Probably Canada that suggested they be repatriated to Syria.

"What makes you an ass is your smugness toward others like you are intellectually superior, which you are most definitely not."

So, you are upset that I'm doing what you're trying to do, only being better at it? Now, aren't you always talking down to TJ as if he's a dunce, despite his winning elective office and you couldn't even outpoll the certifiable loon that was running against you on the Democratic ticket? Ben, you're spinning snide sarcasm over and over. Snark, over your fabricated straw man arguments and mischaracterizations, over and over. That's being an ass.

What a shame the Obama administration has hidden so many of those crimes of the Bushies you are so sure of. I know a 9/11 truther who once held elective office in Nevada County who was sure Bush and Cheney masterminded 9/11, and a far lefty mutual friend and associate took great exception to my characterization of that as being irrational. That was before Obama was elected. You'd like them both.


billy T

Sucks, just when I thought we were really for a group hug. Like him or not, I have to give it to Mr. Ben Emery for trying over and over again to find some common ground. That is more than I have been willing to do. I have gone as far to drop the term libbowels recently, as to not to tarnish the reputation of Dr. Rebane and stretch his patience. Guilt by association and all that. Back to the free flowing exchange of ideas: I am skeptical concerning Mr. Ben Emery's faith that Big Gov will over time divest power back to the states, and in turn the States back to local communities. Big Brother Mega Gov has an insatiable appetite to expand coupled with her unquenchable thirst for more power and control. Absolute control and control absolutely. The nail that stands up must be pounded down. Its the nature of the beast. Do you think for one millisecond that Big Brother Mega Gov will relax the Endangered Species Act or give up anything without threats and an iron fist?? Do you think for one second that local school boards or PTAs can announce that we want our children to learn this and that and we don't want our kids to be mandated to be taught this or that anymore? The fury of the State will fall on that nail standing up. Marx also believed that worker owned/controlled businesses in time would make a heavy handed centralized government unnecessary. He forgot human nature. The beast is never satisfied, its belly never full. Like fire, it can only consume.

Michael Anderson

Hey Greg, you continue to use your shovel in an inappropriate manner. Lawyers are terrible things, and when they start sending out documents all kinds of things happen. I hope you are ready to have a good lawyer party, because everything is lining up very nicely. You might want to email me in private just to get a sense of what is in store. Thanks.

Gregory

Mike, you've made vague threats a number of times in the past... that link was a publically available (from your old twitter page) self caricature of yours in response to your 7:50pm snark.

Perhaps your humor meter is just stuck on 'morose'...?

Ben Emery

Greg,
I picked a random case that had made it into the media, nothing more. It was an example but you hung everything onto it like it was an isolated incident.

Here is the fact, he was picked up and he had done nothing wrong. You seem to think that he was on some list that had any merit to it. Ted Kennedy and Cat Stevens were on the same list.

As for TJ and public office. What TJ displays on the blogosphere is incredible. It is childish mudslinging and very unproductive. If he was under 15 years old I would have more patience with it but he is in his 60's. Our run for office was and is a part of a big transformation in politics. What our campaign stood for was everything those who participated in the Occupy Movement are concerned about. It is real and a genuine concern that will change how politics is funded, which in turn will change how our government functions.

If there is nothing to hide then why the treatment of Bradley Manning and why the legal witch hunt for Julian Assange to be extradited to the US. There is plenty to hide. All governments do things the people would not approve of but we are silenced through the ignorance of the truth and treated like children. It is for our security we are told and those who question the authority have always been considered rabble from those who pull the levers.

"An error does not become truth by reason of multiplied propagation, nor does truth become error because nobody sees it."
Mahatma Gandhi

Michael Anderson

I assure you GG, my humor meter is pegging 11. Don't worry your pretty little head about that.

Speaking of comedy, what's the best way to send you certified mail?

George Rebane

BenE 842am - for a long time now your comments on these pages have hinted at the coming of a new type of government for the US. Every once in a while I can almost make out the hazy outlines of what you are hoping for, but then again, I may have it all wrong. And others may be in a similar situation.

Would you consider writing an extended summary of how you see the new government functioning? If you email it to me, I will post it and we'll have a go at it.

Ben Emery

Billy T,
I comment at RR not to change minds but to show different views. Despite our political differences I happen to believe George as a very decent person. We've only met once but I know many who know him and say he is a good guy. We just see the world through different perspectives. Why I keep coming back is for information and links to things I never hear on the left. Both right and left have very valid concerns and solutions but having it all one side generally doesn't work. That is why I like to try and find the common ground. As for big gov. I trust the federal government about as much as I trust Goldman Sachs, Exxon, Monsanto, United Health, Pfizer, NewsCorp, or Lockheed Martin. All these companies and the industries they are in own and control our government, so my trust for them are the same. The one humungous difference between the two is I am supposed to have a say in the federal government. I protest in front of government buildings or our representative I am exercising my rights but if I protest a private company or CEO I will be arrested. That is the big difference.

Ben Emery

George,
I will give it a try.

Todd Juvinall

I bet we all are waiting with bated breath for that. I can guess it might be as simple as the form of government practiced by the King of Qatar.

Paul Emery

George

I'm quite frankly astounded that you of all people would support the internment and property confiscation of American citizens under any circumstances. This was a most sordid chapter in American history. Look out Muslim American citizens. You have no property rights or personal freedom. Don't all citizens have equal rights?

03 August 2012 at 11:25 AM

1988 that congress and Ronald Reagan apologized for this countries actions and gave about 20,000 dollars to each Japanese. But what is often not noted, a total of around 400 million dollars worth of land was confiscated from the Japanese, bettering the wealth of the American Government.

R

Ben Emery

Todd,
Childish and unproductive. I would guess at least 50% of your comments when using your real name are childish and unproductive. 90% when The Union used to have open commenting and you had the anonymity of other monikers. I hold public officials active and retired to higher standards and that is why I have such little patience with your approach in the blogosphere.


Ben Emery

Greg,
Your link with the bunny ears served what point? Once again, very childish. No wonder you defend other childish commentary on RR.

Todd Juvinall

BenE, your attitude is why you cannot proceed in the elected world. Having been all the things you wish you could be, I must say, I certainly understand your dejection.

If you actually supported American values, you would get some respect.

George Rebane

PaulE 944am - "I'm quite frankly astounded that you of all people would support the internment and property confiscation of American citizens under any circumstances." There you go again; pray where did you get that impression? While swallowing a lot of futility, on RR we do try to keep the arguments a bit more precise than that. I take it you are misconstruing my 1125am, which BTW you should cite specifically as a courtesy to readers who might want to check on what I actually said.

No, I don't support "property confiscation" or even internment "of American citizens under any circumstances." FDR's handling of Americans of Japanese and German descent was more than heavy-handed with regard to depriving them of their property without due process. Given the evidence at that time of Japanese-Americans taking pictures and recording data about US defense installations and passing these to Japanese nationals, and the nature of the 7dec41 attacks, a reasonable case could be made for interring such US citizens. Recall also that at the time an invasion of the US west coast was still feared (no matter how stupid that was).

Bottom line - yes, I believe that a nation-state may impound citizens who bear certain similarities to its existential enemy, and whose sentiments and intentions are not known. It's where you draw the line on instigating such detentions where the problem starts. And there we are all equally concerned. But all of it should be done with built-in provisions that minimize long term harm in the later discovery that a mistake has been made (even on a case by case basis).

And while being "frankly astounded", you also missed the point about my family's internment - that "we were never confused as to why we had to be where we were."

George Rebane

re ToddJ's 1051am - Here we see another example of the dichotomy. BenE probably gets a lot of "respect" from his fellow Leftwingers. But his view of history and understanding of human nature is not respected by most people on the Right, no matter that he puts them forth in civil and sincerely argued comments.

I personally respect BenE's comments for the power of their communication value to a large segment of America's voters - i.e. I don't discount his ideology because it is ascendant in an increasingly democratic welfare state. In short, it's the same kind of respect I would show to a charging bear or even a dedicated Islamist.

TomKenworth

: Michael Anderson | 04 August 2012 at 12:09 AM I have a few choice items that Greg has posted and then arranged to have deleted, and would be happy to add to the pile.

Ben Emery

Well George,
Even with a compliment you can't control yourself and have to make it degrading in some way. That's OK. Those who read RR to see the discourse will also see how individuals handle themselves. Agree or not agree I try and present opinions and information with respect. Do I succeed 100% of the time? No but that is the goal.

I will end it here for the day, just finishing up irrigation and need to get to composting.

Despite being considered radical on RR my opinions are in line with the mainstream of America.


Making tax system more fair 60%
Decreasing Defense Budget 61%
Public Option/ National Health Care 62%
Environmental Protections 70%
Disapproval of Iraq occupation/ Invasion 63%
Ending Fossil Fuel Subsidies 59%
GMO Labeling 80-90%

Too much influence in DC
Lobbyists 71%
Banks 67%
Large Corporations 67%

So say what you will but I am in the opinion of majority of Americans right on target and many at RR are the small fringe.


TomKenworth

"George, do you really think this sock puppet will ever participate in a conversation. or will they just keep following the same pattern of leaps of illogic the guy with his hand up his wahoo is known for?"

H. U. W. GoodNugget at his best. He still hasn't quite figured out L. W. GoodNugget, such a pity!

billy T

There is a big difference between peace time and times of War. Our young nation had no standing army and each abled bodied man was suppose to have a weapon in case of invasion or the call to arms. Later Lincoln faced a cacophony of criticism for suspending habias corpses during the War between the States. His actions are still refered to this very day as a blueprint for trampling personal liberties in times of War. No one doubts Abraham Lincoln's committment to indiviual liberities and justice for all. He had a higher calling which was to preserve the Union. The stone work in a park in my hometown is rumored to be built by Japanese Americans during WWII. German spies were found across our homeland. A Japanese submarine surfaced just north of Santa Barbara and fired upon a once standing oil storage facility. Mines were closed in our area to prevent the Japanese from getting their hands on our gold, lol. Kaiser Alumunim was built inland about 280 miles from the coast in Spokane, WA to protect against attacks. Our Pacific Fleet was discimated and the entire West Coast was wide open after Pearl Harbor. It was War time. Even German U boats were on our East Coast. The same reason we had Canadian and NATO fighter planes patrolling our skies and escorting commerical aircraft after 9/11. War time. As Custer said before he plenty blew Big Horn, "War is Hell." Don't know who said "All is fair in love and war", but I once quoted that to lift my spirits after walking away with a small suitcase in hand from a house, bank account, cars, and a dog immediately following an unpleasant divorce. Radical Islam declared war on us, not the other way around.

TomKenworth

"Radical Islam declared war on us, not the other way around."

Monomaniacs fueled by oil money and using a literal reading of the Quoran as a core values guide and window dressing attacked us. Over a billion other folks who use the non violent parts of the Quoran as a guide to daily living and slave to the fact that apparently we die, did not attack.

I-Borgs to describe the current followers of the late Osama, would be far more accurate, or at least acknowledging the small size in proportion to the majority of the followers of Islam. Even if there were 1 million in the Radical Camp, that would only be one in 1,000 followers of that faith.

That's the Lickspittle of it all, now back to http://www.zooniverse.org

billy T

Tommie, I am certain you would defend to the death my right to agree with you.

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