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Unconfirmed: Al Gore doesn't pay for his own carbon credits??

Global Warming Al Gore Carbon Footprint 2007

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#81 Lin731

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 01:47 PM

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No but you can kill the people who believe in the idea and once the people are dead the idea will largely die with them. The people who say you can't kill an idea with force have history against them. We killed National Socialism in Germany by bombing them until the rubble bounced and then thrashing their armies on the ground. Then by occupying their country. We largely killed the idea of secession and slavery in the United States by trashing the Confederates States by turning Grant and Sherman loose on them. Idea will fade away or die when they no longer have followers who will adhere to them. I think the lesson for our enemies is that the United States no longer has the will to fight the type of war when we have to that that will accomplish those tasks.

Ah but your analogy is based on something that won't happen CJ. In the examples you cite, we had civil war here or a global war there complete with standing armies. Not an analogy that works in this situation. These people with the "ideas" you wish to kill don't wear uniforms and fight a conventional war do they? A better analogy would be Vietnam or Korea, how'd those turn out? Ask Russia how well they did in Afghanistan for that matter. BTW...how well has the "idea faded" down south that led to the civil war? I think the lesson for Americans is that you can't smuggly believe that past wars and the methods used to fight them can win out in a war without borders, uniformed armies etc... We've been there and done that and it didn't work. The only way to win in those situation would be to utterly destroy the countries in question. We surely can't nuke folks can we? Afterall when we used them against Japan, we were th only ones in possession of them, which is no longer the case. For me, you fight wars when you have no choice and you deal with the casualties. Americans simply have no desire to sacrifice their children based on futile, arrogant wars that are neither winable in a conventional sense or can provide the abjectives hoped for initially.

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The type of engagement you speak of is never going to work in the Middle East. You have a ruling class who is between us and the people who control what the people receive and what they see of the world. You have a ruling body who is interested in keeping the population uneducated or educating them as fanatics because it makes them easier to control. Disengaging from the Middle East is not going to solve the problem even if we aren't getting a drop of oil from them and all the oil wells are capped off. Right now the regimes and fanatics that breed hatred against us are still propped up and in power because of our need for oil. If we no longer need oil then their base for keeping in power will start to teeter. They will resort to a renewed push for the other thing that keeps them in power hatred and fanaticism. All it will do is create a situation where you have a even poorer region breeding hatred to a greater and greater extent. We are locked in a vicious cycle and running from it will only accelerate it. Our current actions are only maintaining the status quo. The fact is that we need a comprehensive plan for engagement including economical aide, diplomatic, and educational aide to sway the moderates. And the military option to stomp out the diehards who refuse to be swayed by the other options.

Sure the fanatics would try to keep it going that way, their problem would be our LACK of presense in their region to fuel the hatred. There will always be those that hate us for good reason or no reason at all. The difference is hating us is one thing, acting on that hatred is quite another. When we bomb and occupy an area as we have in Iraq, we nurture and aid in turning dislike and hatred into violent response  by a much LARGER number than otherwise wouldhave happened. I also doubt the average middle easterner needs to be spoonfed propaganda when we've provided them with so many real reasons to dislike and distrust us. We hve interfered in their countries for how long now? Covertly funding this, playing off anomosities of this group against that one, helped prop up repressive governments in regions where that repression was profitable to us and claimed righteous indignation where the government wasn't friendly to our interests. Gee I wonder why they'd have a problem? Afterall, doesn't every country want to be treated like pawns in our game of self-interest? Needless to say, every country acts in this manner to some degree, ours is more glaringly obvious because of who we are and the scale of it.

On the issue of Global warming...Would you rather do nothing and hope science is wrong (although evidence seems to be pointing to them NOT being wrong) or air on the side of caution and do something to not only stem carbon emissions and airbourne pollution but also reduce or need for oil?
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#82 Palisades

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 05:42 PM

CJ, first I think I owe you an apology for the sharp and condescending tone of this post I wrote earlier in this thread. I do want you to know that I respect your opinions. It does grate on me when people pooh-pooh global warming concerns, given the gravity of projected consequences such as this.

With regard to some of the points you made in a subsequent post, Carl Sagan was an astronomer, astrophysicist, and philosopher so topics like nuclear winter and the effects of oil fires are well outside of his areas of expertise. That doesn't mean he can't comment on them if he likes; it just means that's not where his academic credentials lay. The guy was brilliant when he stuck to the areas he knew though. Outside of those areas, his writings should be taken with the same grain of salt as a Tom Clancy military scenario.

Also, when looking at what was said about global cooling in the 1970s, one should be careful to distinguish what the scientists actually said and what the media reported about what they said. The media often left out qualifiers and stated things more unequivocally than the scientists did.

A prominent 1971 paper by S. Ichtiaque Rasool and Stephen H. Schneider examined the possible future effects on the global climate of aerosols (tiny particulate pollution) and greenhouse gases. At the time, they believed that the cooling effects of the aerosols would dominate the warming effects of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. In their defense, aerosols do seem to have had significant cooling effects, i.e. global dimming and sulfate masking. There is very strong evidence that these cooling effects exist and that without them the Earth would be significantly warmer than it is currently.

Also, the greenhouse effect was discovered in 1824 by Joseph Fourier, and it was well accepted and noncontroversial that without the greenhouse effect from naturally-occurring concentrations of greenhouse gases, the Earth's surface would be roughly 60 degrees Fahrenheit cooler, and the huge temperature swings between day and night would make the Earth quite inhospitable for us. Things became controversial only in the 1980s when scientists began getting evidence that human emissions of greenhouse gases were significantly enhancing the naturally occurring greenhouse effect.

CJ, combusting ethanol does produce carbon dioxide, but the carbon is carbon that was removed from the atmosphere by the switchgrass, sugar cane, corn or other plant before it was harvested and converted into ethanol. Consequently, the net effect of growing the plant and combusting the ethanol is zero carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere, assuming the farm equipment and ethanol conversion facility are run off of green energy. Pure ethanol combusts into only carbon dioxide and water, maybe some carbon monoxide; however, contaminants or additives might put off other pollutants. However, to me the ecological and human health effects from these trace pollutants are a distant concern when compared with the threat posed by global warming and the resulting climate shifts.

Like you, I find a hydrogen economy to be a more ideal solution than ethanol, but I think affordable hydrogen fuel cells and the infrastructure to produce and deliver the hydrogen gas are too far off to moderate the effects of global warming in time. Also, current techniques of producing hydrogen gas such as coal gasification and steam reforming produce carbon dioxide, which would have to be captured and sequestered. I'm dubious that the sequestered carbon dioxide will stay where it's put rather than finding its way into the atmosphere.


Jid said:

On the other hand, if the science is right, and we do nothing, we're going to have far more to worry about than some short term budgetary concerns. Like it or not, right now, the earth is our test tube. Our grand experiment. And unlike most experiments - we don't get a do-over. We don't have other planets to try to do better on, some other time.
Exactly. And this is an experiment we can't pull the plug on whenever we like. Carbon dioxide stays in the atmosphere for quite some time (on the order of 100 years), and also there's the tremendous lag from the huge heat buffering ability of the oceans (which thus far have been absorbing 90% of the energy imbalance that's warming the Earth). So we don't have the luxury of taking a wait and see attitude. Even if we could immediately switch to a green economy whenever we felt like it, we still would be faced with the lagged effects from the greenhouse gases we've already released, and the temperature would continue to increase until the new equilibrium is reached.

Edited by Solar Wind, 11 March 2007 - 10:41 PM.

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#83 tennyson

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 06:18 PM

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A better analogy would be Vietnam or Korea, how'd those turn out?

Korea was the definition of a conventional war, complete with armoured and mechanized units flowing down the Korean Pennisula. The North Korean Army had been equipped and trained by the Soviet Union into an emulation of thier own armoured and mechanized infantry units and when they came it was the definition of a mass battle. Then once the shock wore off and world turned to Korea(It should not be forgotten that the Korean War was the first United Nations war, fully endorsed by unanimous vote of the Security Council and fought by troops from dozens of nations around the world.) the North Koreans were broken and forced to flee in conventional battle. Then the PRC intervened and rather than expand the war by attacking thier facilities beyond the Yalu UN forces tried to interdict them and fought them in Korea to a standstill. But both the Koreans and the Chinese wore uniforms and fought as units.
In Vietnam the Viet Cong was annihilated by the Tet Offensive in 1968 and from then on we were fighting North Vietnamese regular troops both in and out of uniform. When South Vietnam fell it was by conventional ground invasion spearheaded by armoured units on the Soviet pattern after we had already destroyed a previous invasion in 1972 using our massive air power. and in both Korea and Vietnam you had a superpower supplying the opposing side, completely reequiping thier forces after they had been destroyed. The Soviet Union would constantly send down its best air defence equipment to Vietnam until the air defences around Hanoi were the thickest, most advanced in the world at the time.
In Afghanistan the Soviets never tried to win the hearts and minds of the people and thier foes were being supplied by both the US and the UK. The Soviets tried to rule by fear, killing indiscriminately, leveling any village that might have been near an attack, and that inspired hatred and anger. They never had the support of the people unlike NATO actions like building schools, roads, providing medical care and defending the common person from the Taliban and trying to get to know the people of the region which have won over many on the ground.
The fighters of the 1980s had supplies coming in from around the world including Stinger missiles that decimated the Soviet helicopters and support aircraft and made good losses in the fight. The enemy in Afghanistan does not have the resources of a superpower behind it. They have some money but it only goes so far. Every time they've stood and fought they've died, in some cases by the thousands and they have every nation they operate in against them.
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#84 Julianus

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 06:34 PM

While I agree in general that greener is better, I'm reluctant to have governments heavily involved in making policies and especially laws regarding global warming. Imho, if governments get involved it could be very difficult to turn the experiment off.
Obviously global warming is a political issue in many countries, and here in Massachusetts, bluest of blue states, on the local level the nimby syndrome is thwarting attempts to establish a wind farm off of Cape Cod, Senator Kennedy being a leading resister. There has also been a great deal political upheaval about establishing a new port to receive natural gas that would be cleaner burning than the coal electrical plants.
Looking on the other side of the planet Mr. Putin seems to be a global warming skeptic, and, perhaps not surprisingly, one can read at MosNews:
ttp://www.mosnews.com/news/2006/08/25/globalcooling.shtml

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Russian Scientists Forecast Global Cooling in 6-9 Years

Created: 25.08.2006 17:47 MSK (GMT +3), Updated: 22:33 MSK

MosNews

Global cooling could develop on Earth in 50 years and have serious consequences before it is replaced by a period of warming in the early 22nd century, a Russian Academy of Sciences’ astronomical observatory’s report says, the RIA Novosti news agency reported Friday.

Environmentalists and scientists warn not about the dangers of global warming provoked by man’s detrimental effect on the planet’s climate, but global cooling. Though never widely supported, it is a theory postulating an overwhelming cooling of the Earth which could involve glaciation.

“On the basis of our [solar emission] research, we developed a scenario of a global cooling of the Earth’s climate by the middle of this century and the beginning of a regular 200-year-long cycle of the climate’s global warming at the start of the 22nd century,” said the head of the space research sector.

As a layman I don't think that human impact is perfectly clear yet. While our autos and industries are putting more greenhouse gases into the air, in the "developing" world, older combustion technology and the burning of forests apparently puts cooling particulates into the atmosphere. Few seem to speak of the ozone layer and carbon tetrachlorides these days. The earth has been warming for the last 12,000 years to our apparent benefit. Trying to maintain some sort of temperature stasis might require more energy than we can afford.
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#85 Palisades

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 06:44 PM

View PostJulianus, on Mar 11 2007, 05:34 PM, said:

As a layman I don't think that human impact is perfectly clear yet. While our autos and industries are putting more greenhouse gases into the air, in the "developing" world, older combustion technology and the burning of forests apparently puts cooling particulates into the atmosphere. Few seem to speak of the ozone layer and carbon tetrachlorides these days. The earth has been warming for the last 12,000 years to our apparent benefit. Trying to maintain some sort of temperature stasis might require more energy than we can afford.
Pax,
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The cooling effects of particulates and global dimming are being dominated by another factor or other factors since the Earth is experiencing a warming trend. Also, the pollution control measures we've put into effect to improve air quality directly target the emission of these particulates. As the atmosphere clears of the particulates, the seeding of the clouds returns to what it was before, and this is why global dimming appears to have reversed.

Few talk about carbon tetrachlorides and the ozone layer these days because carbon tetrachlorides have been banned along with CFCs, and the ozone layer appears to be recovering.

ETA: There is some evidence that the Earth would be cooling right now if not for the effects of human activity. Also, the Earth has not been warming continually for the last 12,000 years -- for example there was the Little Ice Age that G brought up. The Earth might be warming even without the effects of human activity, but if so, then the prevailing evidence is that human activity has sharply accelerated the warming. The faster the Earth warms and the climates shift, the less time we have to adapt to the changes.

Edited by Solar Wind, 11 March 2007 - 08:42 PM.

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#86 Lin731

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 10:08 PM

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Korea was the definition of a conventional war, complete with armoured and mechanized units flowing down the Korean Pennisula. The North Korean Army had been equipped and trained by the Soviet Union into an emulation of thier own armoured and mechanized infantry units and when they came it was the definition of a mass battle.

My dad served in Korea and still had nightmares until the day he died about the place and it wasn't as conventional as you might think (in terms of explosive devices and the like) and those who might wear them to blow you straight up to your maker. Yes you had standard/conventional warfare in most respects but you also had terrorist tactics as well. Which is what I was alluding to in that case. The history of the war is fasinating but the point in the end is WHERE ARE WE NOW? We still have troops along the DMZ, you still have a divided country with a nutbag in charge of the North. Somehow I don't think a draw was the intended outcome to that war for any of the allied countries involved. So we ended up with dead soldiers on all sides and a country still divided and now more dangerous than it ever has been.

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In Afghanistan the Soviets never tried to win the hearts and minds of the people and thier foes were being supplied by both the US and the UK. The Soviets tried to rule by fear, killing indiscriminately, leveling any village that might have been near an attack, and that inspired hatred and anger.

I always chuckle when I hear "Winning the hearts and minds" how did we plan on doing that? Somehow I doubt "Shock and Awe" warmed the cockels of their hearts, let alone the undersized force we sent or the wide open borders that followed. Particularly troubling (if I were an Iraqi) would be the numerous references by this adminstration to "Defeating terrorists there so we don't have to fight them here". How humane of us to draw more misery into Iraq and turn their country into a killing field. I can imagine how that admission won them over. Yep we drew them to your country, sorry about the thousands of deaths, maimings etc...it's caused you but afterall, we'd rather your civilians die than ours. Yep, we lay waste to your country, overthrow Saddam and his sadistic sons (a very good thing) and replace it with the Muslim equivalent of the wildwest and a sectarian civil war....I know I'd be feeling the love.

My entire point on Afghanistan was that the Russians got their asses handed to them by the locals. Now they could have passed out candy grams and flowers but in the end the people viewed them as invaders and drove them out. If someone invaded the US tomorrow, how sucessful (regardless of good or bad intentions) would these invaders be at winning our hearts and minds (particularly if they bombed the crap out of us and turned out country into the 7th level of Hell)? It wouldn't matter to Americans what the invaders intentions were, it would matter that they were invading OUR country and we'd fight to the death to push them out. The only reason why Afghanistan hasn't turned against us is many hated the Taliban and because outside of Kabul the US and the Afghan government have very little (if any) presence or power over the warlords. I promise you, if we try to project the government (ours or Kabuls) out into the warlords territories we'd be dealing with what the Russians did, it wouldn't matter what our good intentions might be. As it is, we're so mired in Iraq that the Taliban are gaining strength again and launching more frequent attacks against US troop in Afghanistan.

As to Vietnam, it matters very little what the final blow was, it mattered that our troops were faced daily with the kinds of tactics we're seeing in Iraq. As the deaths mounted from those types of daily attacks (never knowing if that little old woman or child had bombs strapped to their chests) or if the people in those villages were collaborating with the enemy etc...it all wore down the troops and the country. In the end, as I said earlier IMO, you don't go to war unless there's no choice other than to sacrifice our young people (as in WW1 and 2) and if we are willing as a country to do whatever it takes to win. You don't find that kind of will in conflicts like Iraq, Nam etc... because (again IMO) they don't warrant it. Are you personally willing to nuke an entire country and kill a huge chunk of the population (including thousands of innocents) to acheive our objectives in places like Iran, Iraq, North Korea? Are you willing to (in the case of Iraq) to continue sacrificing our children when the administration seems utterly clueless as to how to proceed or what their real objectives are? To be as ruthless and violent as it takes to eradicate the precieved threat? The reason has to warrant that kind of mentality and for the most part, that hasn't been the case.
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#87 tennyson

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 10:54 PM

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My dad served in Korea and still had nightmares until the day he died about the place and it wasn't as conventional as you might think (in terms of explosive devices and the like) and those who might wear them to blow you straight up to your maker. Yes you had standard/conventional warfare in most respects but you also had terrorist tactics as well. Which is what I was alluding to in that case. The history of the war is fasinating but the point in the end is WHERE ARE WE NOW? We still have troops along the DMZ, you still have a divided country with a nutbag in charge of the North. Somehow I don't think a draw was the intended outcome to that war for any of the allied countries involved. So we ended up with dead soldiers on all sides and a country still divided and now more dangerous than it ever has been.

I still have the Life magazine with my adopted grandfather's nephew on it after he fought his way out of the Chosin Reservoir so I know people with personal experience as well.  It's the same human wave tactics that have been seen in every war since the beginning.
When the Soviet Union still existed and was thier patron thier wasn't a lot the rest of the world could do with North Korea. To act against them risked a war that no one could control. Now the job is to mange thier fall in such a way that it doesn't kill millions of people.

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I always chuckle when I hear "Winning the hearts and minds" how did we plan on doing that? Somehow I doubt "Shock and Awe" warmed the cockels of their hearts, let alone the undersized force we sent or the wide open borders that followed. Particularly troubling (if I were an Iraqi) would be the numerous references by this adminstration to "Defeating terrorists there so we don't have to fight them here". How humane of us to draw more misery into Iraq and turn their country into a killing field. I can imagine how that admission won them over. Yep we drew them to your country, sorry about the thousands of deaths, maimings etc...it's caused you but afterall, we'd rather your civilians die than ours. Yep, we lay waste to your country, overthrow Saddam and his sadistic sons (a very good thing) and replace it with the Muslim equivalent of the wildwest and a sectarian civil war....I know I'd be feeling the love.

I was talking about Afghanistan not Iraq. Afghanistan does not eaqual Iraq and when I talk about one I am not talking about the other. Iraq requires its own analysis.

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Now they could have passed out candy grams and flowers but in the end the people viewed them as invaders and drove them out.
No they did not. The Soviets decided to leave because a government had come to power that did not view the cost as worth it anymore. If they had wanted to they had literally millions of troops available and they could have made Afghanistan lifeless without even bothering with nuclear weapons. They didn't because unlike the previous Soviet leadership Gorbachev and his generation weren't willing to use any means to win and decided to cut thier losses.

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In the end, as I said earlier IMO, you don't go to war unless there's no choice other than to sacrifice our young people (as in WW1 and 2)
We had plenty of choice in World War I. Our vital interests weren't threatened except our trade with the Allies and we could have easily just let them grind each other to dust and it wouldn't have mattered to the US.


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and if we are willing as a country to do whatever it takes to win. You don't find that kind of will in conflicts like Iraq, Nam etc... because (again IMO) they don't warrant it. Are you personally willing to nuke an entire country and kill a huge chunk of the population (including thousands of innocents) to acheive our objectives in places like Iran, Iraq, North Korea?

Frankly, I don't see why you project such extreme scenerios when no such thing is necessary or required to even do what you just said(bomb a country into incoherence.We could do that easy enough with our conventional munitions) That being said, such an action is completely unnecessary and not warrented by the threat. Iran can be managed into the family of nations or defeated militarilly if it comes to that without doing any such thing. As for North Korea they will either be dealt with via diplomacy until the regime collapses or defeated militarilly at a heavy cost in lives to the Koreans themselves.(As I've discussed at length its not whether North Korea could win a war but how much damage they could do before they are destroyed. The South Koreans alone have enough military force to beat them without our help but at a heavy cost in civilian lives.) At no point is annihilating the country with nuclear weapons warrented.  

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Are you willing to (in the case of Iraq) to continue sacrificing our children when the administration seems utterly clueless as to how to proceed or what their real objectives are?
I fundamentally disagree with your characterization here. I read the objectives the military forces have there and thier plans and debates and I see plans that need time to work and ideas to actually take effect. Nothing on such a scale works instantly. The people who are fighting there aren't children. They are people who made a choice to serve and are doing the best they can to achieve the goals that most of them still believe in.

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To be as ruthless and violent as it takes to eradicate the precieved threat? The reason has to warrant that kind of mentality and for the most part, that hasn't been the case.
I have no problem with being as ruthless as necessary. That's what MAD(Mutually Assured Destruction) was all about.  I just don't see where there is the need to be here.
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#88 Rhea

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Posted 11 March 2007 - 11:04 PM

Tennyson, are you telling us you believe the Bush administration and the Pentagon have a viable plan in Iraq? Maybe you could be more specific as to what you perceive the plan to be?
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#89 Nittany Lioness

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 10:18 AM

Spectacles writes:
"Bush still has to hold on to the support of the 30% or so who still think he's brilliant. And those folks are pretty much of the "let's nuke those ragheads" mentality. Or there's the schizophrenic "let's blast hell outta them and bring 'em freedom and democracy."

Oh for crying out loud.  Stop it.

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#90 SparkyCola

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 11:09 AM

When I was on holiday I met a professional in geography and global warming - it was her job. She DEFINITELY believed in global warming, it scared her.

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#91 Spectacles

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 04:38 PM

View PostNittany Lioness, on Mar 12 2007, 11:18 AM, said:

Spectacles writes:
"Bush still has to hold on to the support of the 30% or so who still think he's brilliant. And those folks are pretty much of the "let's nuke those ragheads" mentality. Or there's the schizophrenic "let's blast hell outta them and bring 'em freedom and democracy."

Oh for crying out loud.  Stop it.


OK. I admit that was kind of harsh. At that the time I wrote it I was still steamed that Solar Wind was invited to join Al Qaeda because he had the temerity to be critical of some of our actions in the Mideast. I am way tired of seeing anyone who is at all critical of our country denounced as a traitorous, appeasing, America-hater. But still, I was probably unfair in my own comment.

I'll tell you why I said it, though. I've listened to enough of Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and assorted other cheerleaders for the Bush Administration talk about how this is a war between Islam and "our way of life." I've seen plenty of freepers and dittoheads mock the notion that there is such a thing as a moderate Muslim. And I've seen anyone who argues that, in fact, there *are* moderate Muslims attacked as a handwringing, "oh so you want to have tea and cookies with terrorists, ha ha" idiot.

But I was unfair to lump all Bush supporters into that camp.
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#92 Balderdash

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 04:43 PM

View PostSpectacles, on Mar 12 2007, 02:38 PM, said:

View PostNittany Lioness, on Mar 12 2007, 11:18 AM, said:

Spectacles writes:
"Bush still has to hold on to the support of the 30% or so who still think he's brilliant. And those folks are pretty much of the "let's nuke those ragheads" mentality. Or there's the schizophrenic "let's blast hell outta them and bring 'em freedom and democracy."

Oh for crying out loud.  Stop it.


OK. I admit that was kind of harsh. At that the time I wrote it I was still steamed that Solar Wind was invited to join Al Qaeda because he had the temerity to be critical of some of our actions in the Mideast. I am way tired of seeing anyone who is at all critical of our country denounced as a traitorous, appeasing, America-hater. But still, I was probably unfair in my own comment.

I'll tell you why I said it, though. I've listened to enough of Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and assorted other cheerleaders for the Bush Administration talk about how this is a war between Islam and "our way of life." I've seen plenty of freepers and dittoheads mock the notion that there is such a thing as a moderate Muslim. And I've seen anyone who argues that, in fact, there *are* moderate Muslims attacked as a handwringing, "oh so you want to have tea and cookies with terrorists, ha ha" idiot.

But I was unfair to lump all Bush supporters into that camp.





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#93 Bad Wolf

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 05:19 PM

I feel for you Specs.  I am sick of people accusing anyone who does not support Bush or the War or any policy of the administration being called a traitor, Un American, disloyal, a supporter of terrorisms, etc.

It's really really stupid.  (Yes that's intentional and no I'm not editing it so if it merits a warning I'll take it because I'm fed up with people getting to question the patriotism of me or anyone else who is not "rah rah Bush, let's nuke the bastards").

It also ignores one of the cornerstones of being "American"--the idea of LOYAL OPPOSITION.
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#94 Palisades

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 05:28 PM

View PostSpectacles, on Mar 12 2007, 03:38 PM, said:

At that the time I wrote it I was still steamed that Solar Wind was invited to join Al Qaeda because he had the temerity to be critical of some of our actions in the Mideast. I am way tired of seeing anyone who is at all critical of our country denounced as a traitorous, appeasing, America-hater. But still, I was probably unfair in my own comment.

Scherzo got to you a whole lot more than he got to me. I was amused at the irony, given that Bush and his cheerleaders (whom I'll stop short of calling mindless) have caused considerably more harm to America than Al Qaeda has -- although one could argue that without the excuse Al Qaeda gave the neoconservatives, the Bush Administration wouldn't have been able to manipulate America into behaving like a rampaging berserker. Either way, Bush's war in Iraq has gotten America into a situation that appears increasingly no-win by the day, and now our military is so beaten up and stretched so thin that the military is deploying injured soldiers to Iraq to meet the demands of Bush's troop increase. Meanwhile, with our military bogged down in Iraq, North Korea and Iran are seizing the opportunity given to them to advance their nuclear programs. Bin Laden is probably laughing at us.

Edited by Solar Wind, 12 March 2007 - 05:28 PM.

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#95 Spectacles

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 05:40 PM

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Lil: It also ignores one of the cornerstones of being "American"--the idea of LOYAL OPPOSITION.

Exactly. It's disturbing when your loyalty to your country is assailed when you say "hey, I think we screwed up" and propose a different approach.

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Solar Wind: Scherzo got to you a whole lot more than he got to me.

I know. :) You handled it all with much more grace and humor than I could have mustered. And the irony you speak of hasn't escaped me; I'm just old and cranky and fed up these days.
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

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#96 tennyson

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 06:03 PM

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I'm just old and cranky and fed up these days.

That might be an indication to step back and change focus for a little while. There is more to life than these things after all.


To Lil,

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It's really really stupid. (Yes that's intentional and no I'm not editing it so if it merits a warning I'll take it because I'm fed up with people getting to question the patriotism of me or anyone else who is not "rah rah Bush, let's nuke the bastards").

Why would you think that? You've made no attacks on any particular person, only expressed an opinion about a percieved grouping of people.
"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."

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#97 Bad Wolf

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Posted 12 March 2007 - 07:20 PM

View Posttennyson, on Mar 12 2007, 04:03 PM, said:

To Lil,

Quote

It's really really stupid. (Yes that's intentional and no I'm not editing it so if it merits a warning I'll take it because I'm fed up with people getting to question the patriotism of me or anyone else who is not "rah rah Bush, let's nuke the bastards").

Why would you think that? You've made no attacks on any particular person, only expressed an opinion about a percieved grouping of people.

Thanks tennyson.
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#98 Spectacles

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 10:07 AM

Me: I'm just old and cranky and fed up these days.


Tennyson: That might be an indication to step back and change focus for a little while. There is more to life than these things after all.



There's wisdom in that :), but I'm afraid I'm going to be old and cranky until I kick the bucket. I'm also afraid that we're going to be pouring lives and resources down the drain in Iraq until either I kick the bucket or the U.S. is drained away to nothing--and I hope I don't live to see that happen.

I probably do worry too much about our fate, but it seems to me that we're in an awful precarious position these days. We are deeply, deeply in debt and are stuck on our own "flypaper" in Iraq. We have a gee-normous economy, but it's resting on an increasingly flimsy foundation. And I can't imagine how we're going to be able to continue "surging" in Iraq without breaking our military and deepening our debt, nor can I imagine the consequences of our leaving an unstable Iraq. So, to me, our future is looking pretty bleak. This poorly-managed war risks leaving us in such a precarious position that it wouldn't take much for terrorists to bring down the house of cards one day.

On that cheery note....
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#99 Kosh

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 04:05 PM

View Postscherzo, on Mar 10 2007, 04:31 AM, said:

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As far as American support of various nations in the Middle East is concerned, until 1991 the single overrriding factor that determined our relations was the conflict with the Soviet Union. Before the Soviet presence the US had very different goals there. It was the American president Eisenhower who forced the French and British to give back the Suez Canal after they colluded with the Isrealis to take it in the 1956 Suez War. Then the Soviets started arming Egypt, Syria, Iraq and after the 1968 revolution Libya. Saddam Hussien was never "our" strongman. We tried to pull his Iraq away from the Soviet sphere but it never happened. We supported the Shah because the Soviets had been coveting the warmwater ports and oil wealth of the Gulf since World War II. Every Soviet overflight of Iranian territory brought more orders for American military equipment from his vast coffers and more American support. When Sadat of Egypt decided to break with the Soviet sphere that Nassar had so gladly joined we welcomed him with opened arms and billions in aide because it meant Soviet influence was just that diminished. It didn't matter what the domestic situation was in the various nations as long as they were with us against the Soviets. The same in Latin America. The Cold War defined our foriegn policy for decades, and that struggle led to support of people who were bad just because they would give us bases or influence the Soviets didn't have. Economics is only part of the story.
Moving to the modern era, Kharzi is no "strongman." He was chosen by a democratic process native to Afganistan in the form of thier own council. He didn't sweep to power at the head of his own army and he has not employed the tactics of dictators or the previous theocratic councilar government. He was also not made a leader by our mandate. Anyone could have been chosen by that council and it happened to be him.
As far as being run by strongmen, the nations of the Gulf have instituted a host of political reforms that I've mentioned here before. Just look at my Bahrainian military thread. Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Bahrian, all have made democratic reforms or in Yemen's case is led by a democratically elected government. Even Saudi Arabia has begun the process at the local level. Jordan is already a consitutional monarchy. Turkey has had nearly continous democratic government since 1922. But nations like Syria, Libya and Pakistan and Egypt are still ruled by decree. Egypt is our fault for not pressing for reforms when the threat of the Soviets ended and Pakistan is an unfortunate case of the alternative being worse than the general in charge.
I've noticed that Tennyson often makes posts that carefully debunk a lot of the charges that are casually tossed around by the usual suspects here. It's particularly nice to see it happen on this thread, because I was actually planning to come back and chop Spec's post into so much flank steak. I wasn't really looking forward to explaining why it's absurd to characterize Saddam as "our strongman", or how it's a bad idea giving weight to Osama's irrational hostility to our presence in Saudi Arabia. That would have been, like...work, and I don't have hours upon hours to de-construct liberal nonsense on a message forum. Obviously since my previous posts were "over the top" I won't to respond to this subject anymore, but I honestly feel like there's little need to, thanks to the above quoted.

In spite of my warning, I thought this would be a particularly good time to mention that posts like this and others, are making a favorable impression on me Tennyson. I haven't mentioned it before, but you're adding a very strong contribution to the mix here. Well done.  :)

-scherzo



You could learn a lot from Tenn, about sticking to facts, not calling people names, and making an arguement that most of us will read, even if it is the opposite view of the reader. I don't know of anyone who doesn't respect his posts, and that's a very very rare thing here.


In my own opinion, we did support Sadam, by proving things to them as they fought Iran. We supported that which became The Talaban, while they fought the soviets, and we supported the Shah. It may have all been in reaction to the USSR, but support them we did.
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#100 scherzo

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Posted 13 March 2007 - 04:40 PM

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You could learn a lot from Tenn, about sticking to facts, not calling people names...
Uh thanks... :blink:

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In my own opinion, we did support Sadam, by proving things to them as they fought Iran. We supported that which became The Talaban, while they fought the soviets, and we supported the Shah. It may have all been in reaction to the USSR, but support them we did.
Introducing "facts" in a forum like this one, has to be in the service of a point. I have no problem with someone saying Saddam had our support during his lengthy conflict with Iran, as long as the "point" isn't a ridiculous leap that he's a US strongman responsible for the burgeoning ranks of the jihadists. Facts aren't particularly useful in drawing conclusions about US foreign policy, when you're only calculating a tiny percentage of them. This is where tennyson's contributions become valuable, even if they often go unacknowleged.

-scherzo
"Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant; it's just that they know so much that isn't so."    -Ronald Reagan, October 27 1964
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