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Friday, October 30, 2009

Pakistan has a problem. Hillary notices.



trish said...
But although we had near a decade of the most miserable, piss-poor, inexcusably weak effort alongside the loftiest American promises in re Afghanistan, AN ENTIRE FUCKING YEAR has been wasted by the guy who swore to correct it.

I'm not without sympathy for those who are given to clean up the last guy's shit pile. I'm not. But a year frittered away, to leave most of it in the litter box?

That's just wrong. Really, really wrong.


______________________

Fri Oct 30, 01:03:00 AM EDT

Clinton minces no words on Pakistan visit
12:00 AM CDT on Friday, October 30, 2009
From wire reports

ISLAMABAD – In a series of contentious public appearances in Pakistan, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton challenged the country to defend its territory from extremists and bluntly asked why the government was unable to find top terrorist leaders.

To journalists, on the reported presence inside Pakistan of Osama bin Laden and other terrorist leaders:

I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn't get them if they really wanted to."


To college students, on whether their government should move against militants, as it has in South Waziristan:

If you want to see your territory shrink, that's your choice."


To a woman in Lahore, who asked why the U.S. should be trusted after past perceived betrayals:

It's difficult to go forward if we're always looking in the rearview mirror."





73 comments:

  1. When you have a spreading addiction from cigarettes, a chronic cough, wheezing, high blood pressure and get some real bad news from your doctor, it is past time to quit. You have to give it up and take the time to heal.

    There is not a single country in the Middle East worth the cost being self-inflicted by our unsustainable ME habits. Obama probably has come to the same conclusion. He probably and understandably does not know where to start.

    It is a mess and now it is his mess. It is our mess, but it is not impossible to unwind. The US must end its missionary experiment in the Middle East.

    Here are some basic facts:

    1. Israel can defend itself. Israel needs nothing from the US to do so. Israel will come to an accomodation with her neighbors. Israel knows that her interests and the those of the US are not the same. Israel will be just fine because there is no power in the Middle East that can survive a serious exchange of hostilities with Israel.

    2. Pakistan can defend itself and solve its own internal problems or break up into further new countries. That is their probelem. Pakistan is nuclear and that is a problem for India and China.

    The US can have an honest conversation with Pakistan as to why they do not wish to have a nuclear misunderstanding with the US.

    3. Afghanistan is ultimately unfixaable for at least the next two hundred years.

    4. The Middle East is mostly hostile to democracy because democracy as we know it was rooted in the Protestant Reformation and a reaction against the past tyranny of the Roman Catholic Church. Their is no grass roots similarity in Islam. Forget democracy.

    5. The US has to end dependence on imported oil.

    Sometimes, when you become addicted to a real bad habit, you just have to start to quit.

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  2. About that Dover Air Force photo op, I was just reading it was 18 years ago a policy was put in place, no cameras. Bush followed that policy, and was criticized for it, even accused of instigating it, so as to divert attention from the ugly facts, sanitize the war. That policy though was considered to be a policy for the respect to the dead.

    Obama has now broken that policy, for a photo op.

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  3. On #3 and 4, it might be said the west is acting in place of the Protestant Reformation, making an alternative, where not much of one exists.


    The history of democracy in the west is really more complicated than just the Reformation though. Even excluding Greece, in the north the old thanes voted about certain things, at least informally. It's a complicated topic, wish I knew more.

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  4. Bob, it is obviously more complicated than that which I have reduced to a sentence or two, but the reformation started the process of cleaving secular rule from the dictatorship of the clergy. Islam in nowhere near that.

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  5. 2164th said IN THE WRONG ORDER, I've Corrected it:

    Here are some basic facts:

    1.The US has to end dependence on imported oil.

    2. Pakistan can defend itself and solve its own internal problems or break up into further new countries. That is their probelem. Pakistan is nuclear and that is a problem for India and China.

    The US can have an honest conversation with Pakistan as to why they do not wish to have a nuclear misunderstanding with the US.

    3. Afghanistan is ultimately unfixaable for at least the next two hundred years.

    4. The Middle East is mostly hostile to democracy because democracy as we know it was rooted in the Protestant Reformation and a reaction against the past tyranny of the Roman Catholic Church. Their is no grass roots similarity in Islam. Forget democracy.

    5. Israel can defend itself. Israel needs nothing from the US to do so. Israel will come to an accomodation with her neighbors. Israel knows that her interests and the those of the US are not the same. Israel will be just fine because there is no power in the Middle East that can survive a serious exchange of hostilities with Israel.

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  6. Wan to solve MUCH of the world's problems?

    DESTROY the Value of OIL....

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  7. It's a bitch to realize the world doesn't dig Thomas Paine and company like we do. I wish the assclowns in DC from the groupthink factory at the Kennedy School of Government would wake up.

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  8. WIO, the sequential editing is appreciated.

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  9. Oil, directly, or INDIRECTLY, finances so much of what you read, hear, see (after all, Saudi Prince Alaweed owns fifteen percent of Newscorp - Fox, Wall Street Journal, etc.) that it's unlikely that you're aware that we CAN get off of oil.

    Ex: Timothy Searchinger (Jurist, activist) has long-standing ties to IDF. IDF is strongly supported by Big Oil. He writes articles on Indirect Land Use that make no sense whatsoever. The studies are commissioned by the Nature Conservancy. Nature Conservancy is largely finance by Big Oil.

    He gets his articles published in the Journal Science. The Journal Science largely makes its living publishing AGW nonsense from organizations largely funded by BIG OIL.

    This isn't what you'd expect, but, it's what you get. It's a TWO AND A HALF TRILLION (at the minimum) Business.

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  10. Regarding the present situation: I can't help think of the "Lemay Loons" pressuring Kennedy for a "Preemptive" strike on the Russians, and Kennedy holding out for a "diplomatic" (compromise) solution.

    Obama knows we need to get out of that mess. He knows it's a tarbaby. He knows this could be HIS Vietnam. He, also, knows the Republicans are going to savage him.

    I'll forgive him being a full-fledged Communist if he's smart enough to figure a way out of this mess.

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  11. BTW, Deuce, your first comment is as good a summary of this silliness as I've seen, ANYWHERE.

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  12. His strategy seems to be that he's going to blame it on "Karzai." I think that's smart. It gives us a "face-saving" way to exit-left.

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  13. In my prior post, IDF should have been EDF (Environmental Defense Fund.)

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  14. We have One Big Problem. This administration has appointed hundreds of "eco-nuts" that are totally ignorant of how the world actually works.

    In this link the Dem Sec of Ag has to correct the USDA Under-Secretary, and explain to him that corn production is up, not because of increased acreage, but because of Sky-rocketing Yield Increases.

    Link

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  15. In This Letter to the EPA Sen Grassley is forced to inform the EPA that Nitrogen fertilizer isn't used in soybean production, inasmuch as Soybeans "fix" their own nitrogen.

    One "big-shot" broad from the EPA testified to Congress that it took 400 Acres of Corn to produce a gallon of ethanol.

    The incompetence in this administration in the nuts and bolts issues is staggering.

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  16. Comment by blutown

    OMG! The economy is growing at 3.5% Bubble-mania lives! We just can’t get enough of this stuff. Take one good last whiff Comrades cause this might be it for a while. In fact, it is going to be downright ugly.

    Word around the banking industry is that the Federales (aka FDIC) are coming in 2010 for the big smack down. They are staffing up to start the long overdue task of taking down insolvent banks, not in the hundreds, but in the thousands (over 1000 banks failed in the S&L crisis). By one one estimate, of the 8000 banks in the US, only about 4000 are expected to survive. The FDIC will repackage their assets and sell them off at 10 to 30 cents on the dollar. Mark to market will be in full view. To fund this, the FDIC is asking banks to pay a full 3 year assessment today (taxpayers likely to fund the balance when that is dried up). If you think any of this will be good for real estate valuations, you’d be wrong!

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  17. Unlike nationwide housing issues, option ARMs are largely a problem of four states; California, Florida, Nevada, and Arizona. 75 percent of option ARMs sit in these states and 58 percent of all option ARMS are here in sunny California. Option ARMs are a subset of the Alt-A universe. Alternative A-paper includes option ARMs but also includes 30 year stated income loans, interest only loans, and other questionable products that were below prime. Specifically in this article we will look at option ARMs, the amount of option ARM loans outstanding comes to $189 billion that is securitized:

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  18. I wish the assclowns in DC from the groupthink factory at the Kennedy School of Government would wake up.

    Fri Oct 30, 08:39:00 AM EDT

    Which reminds me: I can't wait to go back.

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  19. 2,900 banks/savings & loans went down in the S&L Crisis. 4,000 banks went down in the Great Depression. I doubt we hit 200 this time around.

    We'll have, at least, one more decent quarter. They HAVE TO rebuild some inventories at Some point. After that? Problematic, I'm afraid.

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  20. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton challenged the country to defend its territory from extremists and bluntly asked why the government was unable to find top terrorist leaders.






    See, you can trot someone out to do this every couple of months but it's pointless beyond US consumption and really just pisses off the Pakistanis, who from their POV are doing everything possible (just short of that which is actually necessary) to satisfy us.

    (The joke used to be that when OBL is killed in Pakistan, the Pakistanis would make sure that he was killed in Afghanistan. Things have improved since then, but it's a sensitive issue.)

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  21. I've said all that I have to say (at least twice) about South Asia.

    About the Middle East, which has rather fallen below the fold, I've not said much.

    The difficulty in "unwinding" anything there is that while we are in control of policy, we are not in control of events. And the Middle East will continue for years and years and years to suck the oxygen out of every other region on earth, interest-wise.

    It's where the action is. We're far, far from done.










    Brush up on that Farsi.

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  22. Most folks can understand, even if they don't like, guarding the oil fields.

    Guarding the Poppy fields? That's a step too far, I think.

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  23. It's where the oil is, yes. And beyond that we have exceptional political relationships that really do not exist anywhere else on the globe.

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  24. The right wing republicans see the "rapture," and the dems see the cousins of their main campaign donors. That covers our "special" human relationship.

    After that, it's all oil.

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  25. I don't know who's more irritating when it comes to speaking with a kind of casual truculence, rufus: You or me.




    Used to be Doug.

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  26. This was a really bad time to "Crash" the World's economic/banking system.

    The lower classes are getting hammered by loss of jobs to China, and high gasoline prices. In fact, they can't drive gasoline prices high enough to "light a fire" under alternatives.

    With the Banks down, those entrepreneurs who "see the future" can't get any money to do anything about it. Add to that, the Sauds', and Exxon's power to "Control the Message," and we've got a hell of a mess about to fall on us.

    The "good news" is that if this deal comes down like I'm afraid it will this will be the "shortest" communist administration in the history of the world.

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  27. And I'm just jealous when it comes to the Middle East because because South America, for all intents and purposes, does not exist.

    We're lower on the foreign policy totem pole than Africa, for crying out loud.

    And it's going to stay that way.

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  28. 'Skuze me, I gotta look up "Trukulants."

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  29. (Trish has NO desire to go to the Middle East. I feel like I ought to knock on wood.)

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  30. Cain't hep it, Trish. Africa has tyrannical despots, and SA has Socialists. Tyrannical Despots is just a lot easier to "work with."

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  31. If it's any consolation, I tried to get my son to move to Colombia. I think the country has a hell of a future.

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  32. It has a hell of future, indeed, Rufus. And isn't that nice that everything's coming together here, as opposed to almost anywhere else? It really, really is.

    They've worked hard for it in countless ways.

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  33. Now if only they could make a decent hamburger and do something about the late-night noise.

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  34. Trukulants is some kind of flower I think, or a type of pancake.

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  35. I thought they were some kind of small three-wheeled trucks. Oh well.

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  36. It's rained, here, almost every day, for over two months. I've never seen anything like it in the midsouth. No wonder I'm getting (?) grumpy.

    It's good for naps, though. Later.

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  37. Americans might be surprised to know that their 3rd largest embassy is in...BOGOTA.

    And I think we're going to be opening up a consular affairs in Cartagena.

    FWIW.

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  38. Right behind Moscow and Beijing, I believe it is.







    Enjoy, Rufus.

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  39. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  40. Press Release

    9:15 AM EDT

    Oct. 30, 2009



    AEHI expects Idaho nuclear site approval soon and seeks new states to build more plants to address "Global Warming"



    Boise, Idaho, October 30, 2009 Alternate Energy Holdings, Inc. (OTC: AEHI.PK): AEHI projects at least one of their Idaho nuclear sites will receive local approval early in the first quarter of 2010. The approval will trigger investments predominantly from international sources for the plant site.



    In addition to the Colorado site, the company is seeking other states that have indicated interest in an advanced reactor including Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Nevada and Utah.



    Don Gillispie, AEHI CEO and a 45 year nuclear industry veteran said, The EPA recently projected 180 new nuclear reactors would be needed to significantly reduce US emissions and meet energy needs by 2050. However, they did not consider that most of the nation’s 104 nuclear reactors would be past their useful life. Therefore, almost 300 new reactors would actually be needed while only 30 or so are planned. If the large regulated utilities are not going to help with this challenge by replacing their coal plants with clean nuclear, we certainly are willing and actively seeking new sites and investors to help address this critical problem. If we build electric cars to reduce emissions, but our utilities continue to build carbon power plants like coal and natural gas we have gained nothing environmentally.”





    About Alternate Energy Holdings, Inc. (www.alternateenergyholdings.com)

    Alternate Energy Holdings develops and markets innovative clean energy sources. The company is the nation's only publicly traded independent nuclear power plant developer willing to build power plants in non-nuclear states. Other projects include, Energy Neutral which removes energy demands from homes and businesses (www.energyneutralinc.com), Colorado Energy Park (nuclear and solar generation), and International Reactors, which assists developing countries with nuclear reactors for power generation, production of potable water and other suitable applications. Also, AEHI China, headquartered In Beijing, develops joint ventures to produce nuclear plant components and consults on nuclear power.

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  41. Hillary catches flack with the Pakis:
    ISLAMABAD – Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was confronted repeatedly by Pakistanis Friday as she ended a tense three-day tour of the country, chastised by one woman who said a U.S. program using aerial drones to target terrorists amounted to "executions without trial."

    On another thorny topic, Clinton slightly softened her blunt charge of a day earlier that Pakistani officials know where al-Qaida terrorists are hiding and are doing little about it.

    Clinton faced sharp questions from Pakistani civilians about the U.S. effort that uses unmanned aircraft to launch missiles to kill terrorists along the porous,
    ungoverned border with Afghanistan.


    Read the rest

    Maybe we should leave them to their own devices.

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  42. Hey Hillary,

    Whitey Bulger has been on the FBI's 10 most wanted list since 1995. How come you haven't found him? Perhaps you should put more effort into it.

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  43. During an interview with Clinton broadcast live in Pakistan with several prominent female TV anchors, before a predominantly female audience of several hundred, one member of the audience said the Predator attacks amount to "executions without trial" for those killed.

    Another asked Clinton how she would define terrorism.

    "Is it the killing of people in drone attacks?" she asked. That woman then asked if Clinton considers drone attacks and bombings like the one that killed more than 100 civilians in the city of Peshawar to both be acts of terrorism.

    "No, I do not," Clinton replied.


    Pakistan is an Islamic country caught between modernity and the 6th century. Like Christians in the west, devout Muslims see their societies spiraling toward hedonism and humanism.

    Another man told her bluntly: "Please forgive me, but I would like to say we've been fighting your war."

    I think that about sums up the opinion of the Paki street.

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  44. Another man told her bluntly: "Please forgive me, but I would like to say we've been fighting your war."


    Which was going to be my response to the suggestion that we leave Pakistan to its own devices.

    We can't. They're fighting our war. And, um, harboring our evildoers.

    The best thing we can do for them and us right now, in public, is flatter, flatter, flatter. If Congress wants to have a cow over that, let 'em.

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  45. Speaking of modernity, I've heard reports lately that in Germany, most couples do not get married. Men do not stay with the women and a woman is lucky to get a man who will stay long enough to raise the kids.

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  46. All over the map:

    I've been thinking about our future with China and one thing I would like to throw out there is:

    The Chinese have a tendency toward enthusiastic nationalism, (something the US knows about). This could become problematic for us and the whirled in the coming years.

    I'm not sure about their capacity for compassion.

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  47. This site purports to have the most recent data on Marriage rates by country

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  48. I've been there where the "ally" thought they were fighting "our" war. I know how that turns out.

    I'll guarantee you, there's not ONE Pakistani out of 50 that would turn OBL in.

    Guys, they're Pakistani. We're Americans. They're Muslim. We're Christian. We're over there, "Killing Pakis" in Pakistan. You can bet, "Most" of them would like to "Kill" us.

    It's just wasted "money for Boeing, and Lockheed."

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  49. Happy Days are here, again.

    Signaling the end of the worst recession in 70 years, the Commerce Department on Thursday said the economy expanded at an annual rate of 3.5 percent in the July-September period, snapping four down quarters with its fastest growth pace since the third quarter of 2007 and exceeding forecasts for a 3.3 percent rate.

    Down in the story:
    "The economy is entirely dependent on federal deficit spending at the moment. But the stimulus will not fade right away ... that means we can rely on solid growth continuing through the first quarter of next year," said Chris Low, chief economist at FTN Financial in New York.

    "Once the government steps aside, growth is likely to fall back to a 1-2 percent rate of growth."

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  50. Same with "rise" in home prices, Whit.
    They point to Case Schiller Median, but that just reflects than more sales are now being made in the medium price range rather than low price range of the last several months.

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  51. rufus said about bank closings:
    I doubt we hit 200 this time around.

    Where did you get that optimistic number from. Going into Friday night, we're already at 106. We'll know tomorrow if there are more this week. The word is that nearly $300 billion worth of Commercial Real Estate Loans will mature each year for the next few years. Vacancy rates are soaring and Banks aren't lending. There is an expected Tsunami of failures. The FDIC expects to take out another two or three hundred banks. Granted that's not as bad as the Great one or the SNL bailout but this time around the global credit meltdown which Deuce pointed out early, early on is destabilizing a world recovery. I don't believe anyone has begun to address rebuilding the system. Right now, it's still at the 'pulling survivors out of the water stage.' Meanwhile, I get the feeling that the stockmarket is full speed ahead oblivious of the icebergs.

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  52. After Americans lost $20 trillion in wealth and are left underwater and saddled with debt, does anyone really expect a recovery in the next ten years? How about for a generation?

    My question, still unanswered is have we tripped into a paradigm shift? Have we gone from a growth model economy to a poorer but less materialistic society? If so, what does that mean about a recovery?

    Then, of course, underlying all of this is the massive explosion of debt and the devaluation of the dollar.

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  53. I just pulled 200 off the top of my head, Whit. Doug would probably point to a more southerly location for my find, though. :)

    If they're figuring a couple hundred more, I'll defer. I doubt it, but I'll defer.

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  54. I've been pre-emptively denied the pleasure.
    Bet you're wrong, tho.
    ...again!

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  55. 18 of 19 families DENIED BHO permission to photograph Self/w Caskets!
    1 agreed.
    Probly why he was there for THREE HOURS!

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  56. Not in too many headlines...

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  57. Whit, I've been where you're at. It was called, "The Carter Years." It seemed impossible that the Republic would survive in a "recognizable" form. The pendulum swung, and we got Reagan.

    We've, quite likely, got a pretty rough decade coming at us. But, in the long run it's still the United States. The stuff that made us great isn't going away. We're not going to forget how to innovate, or educate, or dodge the taxman. We've just got to get over a few "hurdles." If we can't jump'em, we'll crawl over'em.

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  58. I agree about the American entrepreneurial spirit which I think will continue as long as the anti-capitalist crowd doesn't prevail. Personally, I am not worried. I can grow and can veggies. My material needs are low.

    I may be wrong about the FDIC numbers. I recalled hearing that we are about a 1/4 of the way through the bank failures. As of 12 days ago, the FDIC had on its watch list, 416 banks with nearly $300 billion in assets.

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  59. Hell, I'm just tickled to death it's not "all of them."

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  60. Whit, that old pizza building in Moscow, that I pointed out to you, it's gone. Bulldozed. Don't know what's going on. We already have a Baskin-Robbins. The wife is hoping for Dunkin' Donuts.

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  61. The 'death panels' crap is back in the 1990 page screw America health bill.

    Grandma's time has come.

    I'm going to the Casino for a drawing, while I still have time.

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  62. Honduran deal in the works. I would have told the US to stick their interference up their ass; however, I don’t need the aid dollars.


    Zelaya on his way back

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  63. Anonymous said...About that Dover Air Force photo op, I was just reading it was 18 years ago a policy was put in place, no cameras....That policy though was considered to be a policy for the respect to the dead. Obama has now broken that policy, for a photo op.

    In the aftermath of the Midway debacle, the Japanese Navy had a similar policy, total ban on any information about the defeat. It took ten years for the barest sketchy details to filter out into Japan at large. When we die we like to know that someone, somewhere still thinks of us from time to time. Otherwise it will come to pass (Psalm 103:15) "[15] As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more."

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  64. I'm with Obama on this one. If we can send them off to War, we can let them come home in the light of the day.

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  65. Dozed, bob, because it had no economic value, and the taxes were eating the owner.

    As an empty lot, the tax bill drops.

    Chances are better than even that nothing replaces it. At least for a while.

    Cost less to doze it than maintain it and pay the taxes.

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  66. Shine the light of day, truth and justice on those home coming through Dover. No need to hide them, as if to see them or photograph a casket some how dishonors those interred.

    Hiding them is dishonorable, allow or even promote the apathy and indifference to the results of policy that the absence of their visible existence as evidence allows.

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  67. WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Pentagon will offer the H1N1 vaccination to detainees at the U.S. facility at Guantanamo Bay, officials there said Friday.

    The Pentagon made the decision based on U.S. government assessments that people held in detention facilities are at high risk for the pandemic, said Maj. Diana R. Haynie, a spokeswoman for Joint Task Force Guantanamo Bay, which is in charge of holding the suspected terrorists.

    "Detainees at JTF Guantanamo are considered to be at higher risk and therefore they will be offered the H1N1 vaccination," Haynie said.

    "JTF Guantanamo conducts safe, humane, legal and transparent care and custody of detainees. As such, we must provide detainees the medical care necessary to maintain their health," she said.

    Base officials had not received the vaccinations and did not know when they were expected to arrive, Haynie said.

    Once the vaccinations are received, doses will be administered to active-duty personnel before being offered to detainees and others on the base, Haynie said.

    The vaccination is mandatory for all uniformed personnel, she said.

    The vaccinations will be voluntary for the detainees, who will be briefed on the virus and the vaccine prior to deciding whether to receive the latter.

    Some of the detainees have already voluntarily taken the seasonal flu shot, Haynie said.

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  68. According to the guy who took over from Mark Levin tonight, the no photo policy was the result of an incident back in the Bush I time. Bush was giving a speech and the network kept dividing the screen with photos of Dover,etc. This ticked most everybody off, dems and reps alike, some of the relatives complained, etc, as a crass propaganda ploy, so a policy was put in place, no photos.

    No use of the dead for partisan propaganda.

    Until O broke this policy with a early morning visit, complete with newsmen, cameras, film crew, etc.
    --

    It's possible the old building was dozed to save taxes, but I kind of doubt it. You'd still have some hefty taxes, you'd have given up the possibility of finding a good tenant, which is always possible, you'd have all the expense of dozing and cleanup. I will check on it periodically and see if some construction begins. This is an issue of major import here at the EB :)

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  69. I quess I think some kind of official US military photos, no politicians involved, periodically released, would be a good way to go, if photos are an issue.

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  70. Recent history in Pakistan is similar to events in Iran during the rule of the Shah. Both leaderships were strongly backed by the US, and were involved in widespread repression or attacks on their own people. Both regimes followed policies that were deeply unpopular domestically. In Iran, this led the revolution of 1979 which created an Islamic Republic. Could something similar happen in Pakistan?

    http://watching-history.blogspot.com/2009/10/future-of-pakistan.html

    btw, nice template. :)

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