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Senator's Comments Draw Fire

John Kerry Iraq

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#81 StarDust

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 08:35 AM

AnneZo, on Apr 5 2003, 12:03 AM, said:

StarDust, on Apr 5 2003, 04:23 AM, said:

I think decades of trying to make them feel like equal partners have gone to their heads and the actually believe it now. We've treated them with kid gloves and I say it's time we stop.
I just want to say that I'm actually sort of appalled by this.  Are you saying that you don't actually think these countries are "equal" to us?

Because, you know, they are. In some ways they're superior. In some ways we're superior. But we're certainly "equals" in the world.  

I can assure you, their countries would survive quite nicely without us. Nor do we provide "aid" in the sense of handing out money to support their economies or whatever it is you're referring to.

Anne, who has never believed that possessing an abundance
of weapons infers any kind of moral superiority.


(edited for clarity)
There are not equal to us economically, no!

And yes, we do provide aid in many different ways.

We provide a lot of aid to Russia, of every kind. We provide a huge amount of money and food. We also provide a lot of economic programs. And it was widely acknowledged that having them take part in the Space Station program was white collar welfare, a way to keep their scientists paid and busy so they wouldn't go off and make weapons for Iraq, N. Korea, and other such countries. It was happening, and apperently continues to happen. The module they worked on was a year late and had to be reworked. There have been many such programs.

I'm not sure how much direct aid we provide to France, but we do through contracts their way. We have also provided economic aid to keep their Franc afloat several times over the last few decades when it was close to economic ruin.

And I believe we provide quite a bit of aid to Germany, especially since they started having to deal with the economic costs of integrating Eastern Germany. Their economy is a mess, and would be more so with out our help.

And I make no excuses. If you can't see what is wrong with their constant behavior while coming to us for help whenever they need it, then you live in an alternate reality.

Adding: in what way are they equal?  What state would they be in without us? What shape would Germany be in if we didn't rebuild them? What shape would Russia be in if we hadn't rode in to the rescue after the soviet system fell under it's own weight, when people where starving and ruble was worth nothing? And do we really need to try and find any success in France in how long? They are being crushed under the weight of their socialist programs. Those are just the plain and simple facts. Where would France or Germany be if we hadn't protected them from the Soviets?  And what responsiblity have any of them taken for anyone on this planet other than themselves? They can't help themselves!

You do realize the list of countries on the planet that we don't provide aid to is a much, much, much shorter list than the ones we do?

Edited by StarDust, 05 April 2003 - 08:47 AM.


#82 the 'Hawk

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 08:50 AM

^ An old friend of mine used to say that "if you give and expect nothing, it's charity. If you give and expect repayment, it's business. If you give and expect eternal gratitude and due deference, it's not worth bothering to give."

:cool:
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#83 MichaelHinman

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 08:53 AM

Kahoutek, on Apr 4 2003, 11:52 AM, said:

Talk about idiotic comments ...

This senator is demonstrating why Americans treat politicians and elections like TV shows -- pick one (or not) based on symbol usage and emotional appeal.

I would love to have an hour to talk with him about what he defines as a "regime"!  One of the basic properities of the American governing system is that a "regime" is almost impossible to develop; a regime can happen only when a person or small group of people maintain and expand their power over an extended period of time.

If American did really have a regime, Sen Kerry would fear having his tongue cutout for making a treasonous remark.  As it is, Sen Kerry only has to worry about his brain coming back on line at some point.

Kahoutek :wideeyed:
Oh, please.

Politics from the very beginning has been nothing but the usage of symbols and emotional appeal. That is hardly anything new, and it's not anything that will change ... ever.

And since when is saying that the Bush administration should be voted out in 2004 a treasonous statement? Whatever.

Go to Google, type in "U.S. Constitution" and "Bill of Rights." Then look at First Amendment.

For people who hate the "regime" in Iraq so much that they want to topple it, they sure don't mind acting like that very regime here when it comes to dissenting opinion.
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#84 MichaelHinman

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 08:57 AM

Drew, on Apr 4 2003, 12:32 PM, said:

Yeah, it's just election rhetoric, though badly-worded (idiotically implying a moral equivalency between these two "regimes") and badly-timed. Sen. Kerry is only harming himself.

Shoot, is election year so close? Seems like we just chased all these clowns out of the county, and now they're preparing to return already. Poor New Hampshire.
Might not hurt him as much as you think.

There will come a time very soon when Americans will tire of this war, will want a pull out, if it's not completed soon, and will eventually turn their heads back to domestic issues. Just as they did in 1992.

And it won't be so far-fetched when you see someone "treasonous" like Kerry or Dean as the President.
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#85 Rov Judicata

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 08:58 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 4 2003, 10:42 PM, said:

For people who hate the "regime" in Iraq so much that they want to topple it, they sure don't mind acting like that very regime here when it comes to dissenting opinion.
Ya had me up into there.

Even suggesting there's any sort of equivalance between the two is dubious. At best.

I agree that the dissent is allowed and healthy (although the choice of words was unfortunate).

But comparing the two regimes because some liberal pundits go too far is absurd..... IMO. I realize it's probalby not what you meant, but it stuck out.

AnneZo-- That's too long for me to respond to tonight... I'll try it int he morning, unless somebody beats me to it.
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#86 the 'Hawk

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:02 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 5 2003, 12:42 AM, said:

Go to Google, type in "U.S. Constitution" and "Bill of Rights." Then look at First Amendment.

For people who hate the "regime" in Iraq so much that they want to topple it, they sure don't mind acting like that very regime here when it comes to dissenting opinion.
Go to Google. Look up Arouet, Francois-Marie. Also known as Voltaire.

The following quote, I'm sure you'll notice, is attributed to him.

"I may disagree with what you say, sir, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

For someone who wants to tout freedom of expression so much that they invoke the Constitution, you sure don't mind squelching it when it comes to others' dissenting opinions.

Have a super day.

:cool:
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#87 Anakam

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:02 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 5 2003, 05:42 AM, said:

Politics from the very beginning has been nothing but the usage of symbols and emotional appeal. That is hardly anything new, and it's not anything that will change ... ever.

And since when is saying that the Bush administration should be voted out in 2004 a treasonous statement? Whatever.
That's what idealism is for. ;)

Quote

And since when is saying that the Bush administration should be voted out in 2004 a treasonous statement? Whatever.

It would be if it were really a regime (with all the dictatorial powers and oppression of opposition that implies), wouldn't it?
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#88 tennyson

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:02 AM

Annezo, I believe you meant NAFTA(North American Free Trade Agreement) not NATO(North Atlantic Treaty Organization), since NATO is not nor has it ever been an economic treaty, only a military allience for the defence of Europe and North America.
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#89 MuseZack

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:05 AM

the'Hawk, on Apr 5 2003, 05:39 AM, said:

^ An old friend of mine used to say that "if you give and expect nothing, it's charity. If you give and expect repayment, it's business. If you give and expect eternal gratitude and due deference, it's not worth bothering to give."

:cool:
Indeed.

Back on the subject at hand:

Germany and France are hugely rich, economically advanced First World nations who recieve no significant aid from us and haven't for decades, and who themselves provide huge capital transfers to poorer nations in Europe as well as the rest of the world.  They're also huge investors in the American economy and have financed our huge and growing deficits by buying massive amounts of American bonds.

Russia is still emerging from its rough transition from a command economy to capitalism, and receives some economic aid from the U.S., especially in programs to dismantle their nuclear arsenal.  However, Russia also did us a huge favor after Sept. 11 by increasing their oil production to keep prices down and prevent our current recession from becoming even worse than it already is.  This action has saved our country literally trillions of dollars (oil shocks are the century's leading cause of recession), yet one seldom hears much gratitude from Americans for this action-- even though it actually cost Russia money by driving world oil prices down.

In fact, aside from occasional praise of Tony Blair and the British, one seldom hears any American gratitude for anything any other country has done for us.  Instead, we hear that every nation we've ever done anything for should repay us by never disagreeing with American foreign policy.

I love America passionately, but this weird insistence by some of my countrymen that every other nation on earth constantly acknowledge our superiority and never disagree with us is beginning to wear thin.

Zack
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#90 MichaelHinman

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:08 AM

Lover of Purple, on Apr 4 2003, 02:34 PM, said:

I know I'll regret this, but here goes:

First off, I like President Bush. Contrary to what many liberals like to say, he has done everything he has said( Well, as long as congress agreed). He has been honest, he is compassionate and not afraid to stand up for his country.

What many of us (and I include myself) forget is that the President has access to information and experts we don't. And here we all sit trying to second guess him. (Hey, I did the same with Clinton until I reminded myself he had info I didn't).

As far as President Bush scaring anyone, I can't understand why at all. Al Gore scared me, but that's me. Now, I will defend anyone's right to not like any president we have, had ot will have. IT IS OUR RIGHT! But plesae, let's keep the President bashing to a minumum if possible. He is not the satan some seem to think.

So Damn Insane had to go! Funny so many felt the same way during the original Gulf War but now slam President Bush for doing just that. I really do see double standards here. And many in the country attack the president and NEVER mention Saddam's evilness. Yet they will say he has to go. I often feel like G here (and have seen it over my 40 plus years) that if it is a Democrat President doing this same thing, the liberals either applaud him or keep quiet. (Yes, yes I know the Republican Senate spoke out..but that's politics I expect it...even from Senator Kerry). But why did we not hear from the liberals when Clinton attacked Kosovo?

Now that I've made the mistake of speaking up here, I guess I'll back out.

Please everyone, I am not pointing fingers. I don't think that liberals hate this country, they feel different than I do. There are several viewpoints here and I don't think everyone who disagrees with my view point is unAmerican. As a matter of fact, I think they are very American because they believe their way is best for our country. We just happen to disagree.

Would I like to see more support for our President...of course. But I don't hate anyone that doesn't like him.

LoP
This is not true. He has not done everything that he has said.

I'll give you ONE example.

During his campaign, Bush said that he would NEVER touch Social Security. Now he dips into it as if it's candy and uses 9-11 as an excuse.

But would you like to know when Bush first said he was going to break that particular campaign promise, that was so important in all the debates?

Sept. 9 ... 2001. All the criticism and downturn in polls ended just two days later.

Lucky him, eh?
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#91 MichaelHinman

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:10 AM

Drew, on Apr 4 2003, 03:02 PM, said:

Remind me again how the Clinton Administration helped the economy? He came into office as we were heading out of a recession, and he left office many months after we'd headed back into one. This great economy he always took credit for was none of his doing. And the recession for which Bush gets blamed began months before the election.
We didn't officially head into a recession until December 2001. A year after Bush took office.
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#92 Uncle Sid

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:11 AM

AnneZo, on Apr 5 2003, 12:03 AM, said:

I just want to say that I'm actually sort of appalled by this.  Are you saying that you don't actually think these countries are "equal" to us?

Because, you know, they are. In some ways they're superior. In some ways we're superior. But we're certainly "equals" in the world. 
Umm, sorry, but I think you've got it wrong there.  The little countries of Europe and the big country of Russia are not equal to the US.  These countries are in no material way equal to the US, perhaps not even together.  

Of course, you don't mean that, you mean that they are "morally" equal to the US...that their opinions should also matter on the world stage equally.  To a certain degree that makes some sense in terms of practical realities and sheer expediency.  However, simple countryhood does not immediately grant your nation the ability to tell someone else how they deal with what they percieve as a threat.  The idea that we can work together on these things is one fostered by cooperation, like in the UN, but there is where the problem lies.  A country is a country even if it is as small as Luxembourg or Lichtenstein or run by evil people like Qadaffi or Saddam Hussein.  Their opinions are not "equal" to ours, for obvious reasons.  We've made a choice of what we stand for and the simple fact that a group of small foreign nations doesn't like that is not going to change this.  While I wish that the posture of the government had been less unilaterial, I do not subscribe to the notion that being a country grants instant knowledge or authorty.   What it actually represents is that there are places with different priorites than our own, including economic deals like those that Russia and France have with Iraq which are important to those countries.  In the end, the French position in total, simply represents their own interests that under close inspection are certainly no better than ours and which do not rate at all in determining our foreign policy.

The frustration that the French and certain other European countries (but not all) elicit from parts of the the US population is not really that we think we are better people than the French, but a lack of understanding why the French, who have been past benefactors of our efforts for their liberation (and we of theirs) would oppose us assisting the people of another country that lacks democratic government as well as ridding the world of a very dangerous dictator who everyone knows in their heart has WMDs, has used them, and has programs to acquire more of them.  It also, I might add, represents that the French politicians have decided that our action against such a regime, despite our past aid and alliances, is something that should not only be abstained from, but actively opposed.  And faced with the dual issues of a) failing to support ending a regime like that and b) going one step further and betraying our alliance with outright opposition, I certain start to wonder about the moral integrity of the French position.  I certainly do not regard their position as credibly unselfish.  

So in the end, I think the thought trying to be expressed wasn't expressed in the right terms, but no, I violently disagree that even theoretically, there are countries that are "equal" to us simply by the nature of them being a country.  No two humans are equal to one another, and nor are countries.  We have different abilities, skills and things we bring to the table and there are regimes and governments as well as whole cultures out there that have practices that I will never regard as "just as good"  as what we do here.  I'm not saying this makes us morally superior than other countries across the board and that we should rule the world, but I certainly feel that we're much better than average in quite a few things that matter.
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#93 the 'Hawk

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:14 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 5 2003, 12:57 AM, said:

During his campaign, Bush said that he would NEVER touch Social Security. Now he dips into it as if it's candy and uses 9-11 as an excuse.

But would you like to know when Bush first said he was going to break that particular campaign promise, that was so important in all the debates?

Sept. 9 ... 2001. All the criticism and downturn in polls ended just two days later.

Lucky him, eh?
Lucky?

How can you consider that to be lucky?

Because terrorists cast a spectre over the United States and every one of its citizens across the world?

Oh yeah! Lucky George!

That's just too much for me, bud.

:sarcasm:
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#94 MichaelHinman

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:15 AM

Javert Rovinski, on Apr 5 2003, 12:47 AM, said:

MichaelHinman, on Apr 4 2003, 10:42 PM, said:

For people who hate the "regime" in Iraq so much that they want to topple it, they sure don't mind acting like that very regime here when it comes to dissenting opinion.
Ya had me up into there.

Even suggesting there's any sort of equivalance between the two is dubious. At best.

I agree that the dissent is allowed and healthy (although the choice of words was unfortunate).

But comparing the two regimes because some liberal pundits go too far is absurd..... IMO. I realize it's probalby not what you meant, but it stuck out.

AnneZo-- That's too long for me to respond to tonight... I'll try it int he morning, unless somebody beats me to it.
Really?

That's news to me.

I hear about how no one in Iraq is allowed to have an opinion .. if they DARE say something bad about Saddam, what happens to them, Javert? Are they invited to dinner at Saddam's presidential palace?

No.

They are tortured, they are outcast ... sometimes, they are killed.

War and Bush supporters want you to ONLY speak your opinion if it's in line with Bush's opinion. You have to support him, or shut the hell up. You are ostracized, you are called unAmerican, and in fact, some people label your words as TREASONOUS.

Do you know the actual penalty for treason during wartime, Javert? Look it up.
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#95 MichaelHinman

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:17 AM

the'Hawk, on Apr 5 2003, 12:51 AM, said:

MichaelHinman, on Apr 5 2003, 12:42 AM, said:

Go to Google, type in "U.S. Constitution" and "Bill of Rights." Then look at First Amendment.

For people who hate the "regime" in Iraq so much that they want to topple it, they sure don't mind acting like that very regime here when it comes to dissenting opinion.
Go to Google. Look up Arouet, Francois-Marie. Also known as Voltaire.

The following quote, I'm sure you'll notice, is attributed to him.

"I may disagree with what you say, sir, but I will defend to the death your right to say it."

For someone who wants to tout freedom of expression so much that they invoke the Constitution, you sure don't mind squelching it when it comes to others' dissenting opinions.

Have a super day.

:cool:
What the HELL are you talking about?

You are telling me it's wrong that I voice my opinion AGAINST other people squelching the opinion of others?

Do you know how ludicrous you sound?

Yes .. I think it's wrong for anyone to call criticism of a president and his actions as "treasonous." I could care less what Voltaire said.

Maybe you should consider Voltaire's statements in regards to those on the Right who feel that anyone who dares disagree with them as being "unAmerican" and "treasonist."
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#96 StarDust

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:20 AM

MuseZack, on Apr 5 2003, 12:54 AM, said:

However, Russia also did us a huge favor after Sept. 11 by increasing their oil production to keep prices down and prevent our current recession from becoming even worse than it already is.  This action has saved our country literally trillions of dollars (oil shocks are the century's leading cause of recession), yet one seldom hears much gratitude from Americans for this action-- even though it actually cost Russia money by driving world oil prices down.
And the fact that this meant more business for them is besides the point, right?

#97 the 'Hawk

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:21 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 5 2003, 01:06 AM, said:

Do you know how ludicrous you sound?
Aww, that's cute. I was just gonna say that to you.

You're seeing the Christian right conspiracy behind every bush there, pal.

And with all due respect to your mighty viewpoint, you've really got to bring it down a notch.

You know why? Because I'm not an American, that's why. I'm here for discussion. Not for campaign issues.

You want to get someone else elected, go door to door with a petition.

You want to have a discussion without getting pissy, you come back and find me. We'll pick up where we left off.

Until then you're not worth my time.

But by all means, have a super day.

:cool:
“Now is the hour, Riders of Rohan, oaths you have taken! Now, fulfil them all! To lord and land!”  
~ Eomer, LotR:RotK

#98 Rov Judicata

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:22 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 4 2003, 11:04 PM, said:

Quote

I hear about how no one in Iraq is allowed to have an opinion .. if they DARE say something bad about Saddam, what happens to them, Javert? Are they invited to dinner at Saddam's presidential palace?

No.

They are tortured, they are outcast ... sometimes, they are killed.

Correct.

Quote

War and Bush supporters want you to ONLY speak your opinion if it's in line with Bush's opinion. You have to support him, or shut the hell up. You are ostracized, you are called unAmerican, and in fact, some people label your words as TREASONOUS.

The difference:

It's not the government doing that. It's conservative commentators, it's some people at large, and it's just tolk.

Quote

Do you know the actual penalty for treason during wartime, Javert? Look it up.

Yes, I do. It can be death.

How many people have been charged with treason in the US in the past year?  How many have been charged with treason in connection with Iraq, ever?

Most of the peace protestors who violate the law are taken in, pay a fine, and are out within a few hours.

The equivalance just isn't there. YMMV.
St. Louis must be destroyed!

Me: "I have a job and five credit cards and am looking into signing a two year lease.  THAT MAKES ME OLD."
Josh: "I don't have a job, I have ONE credit card, I'm stuck in a lease and I'm 28! My mom's basement IS ONE BAD DECISION AWAY!"
~~ Josh, winning the argument.

"Congress . . . shall include every idiot, lunatic, insane person, and person non compos mentis[.]" ~1 U.S.C. § 1, selectively quoted for accuracy.

#99 tennyson

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:23 AM

MichaelHinman, please check this out

http://www.theatlant...03/04/kelly.htm

while the tone of the article is not something I agree with, as far as I can see thier is plenty of dissent at work, even posting your opinions on this very messageboard is vastly more dissent than you would have been allowed in Iraq.
and for the record I'm a registered Deomcrat and I voted for Gore in the last election.

Edited by tennyson, 05 April 2003 - 10:41 AM.

"Only an idiot would fight a war on two fronts. Only the heir to the throne of the Kingdom of Idiots would fight a war on twelve fronts."

— Londo, "Ceremonies of Light and Dark" Babylon-5


#100 Uncle Sid

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Posted 05 April 2003 - 09:26 AM

MichaelHinman, on Apr 5 2003, 12:59 AM, said:

We didn't officially head into a recession until December 2001. A year after Bush took office.
The timing is irrelevant since for the most part, as the practices that caused the recession: ie. dot-com overheating, financial mismanagement and dishonest reporting problems, occurred throughout the Clinton administration.  Certainly any action that Bush could have taken, Clinton could have taken earlier and probably with better results.  And don't tell me that they couldn't have predicted it, I predicted the meltdown about a year before it happened, and corporate ethics is a constant topic of discussion.  You'd think that a Democrat administration might have taken interest, wouldn't you?  After all, they aren't the evil coroprate-loving Republicans, right?

I'm not saying that any president could have prevented this recession, but blaming Bush for the recession is like blaming the EMTs for the loss of your child when the fault lies in you not securing the door to the cleaning supply cupboard that they got the poison from to begin with.  Sometimes, there's nothing you can do if you don't nip it in the bud.  If, and that's a big if, a president could have stopped it, logic indicates that Clinton could have done it earlier and much more easily.  

(That's amusing and sad at the same time because you can say the same thing about al-Queda and Iraq too....)
I can picture in my mind a world without war, a world without hate. And I can picture us attacking that world, because they'd never expect it. - Jack Handey



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