“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Inevitable Showdowns

The UN issues anther warning about Sudan and calls for stronger sanctions. In Eqypt, Mubarak pushes through a controversial group of Constitutional Amendments in an election boycotted by the Muslim Brotherhood. Today the US rattled the saber but is it just for show and will Iraq even slow down in the run up to the inevitable showdown between the Islamic world and the West?

As if George Bush didn't have his hands full fighting the "evil doers" abroad, the lynch mob is gathering outside AG Gonzalez's office. Bob Novak wrote a column echoing what I said about George Bush being one of the loneliest lame ducks in Presidential history.


  1. Whit, I guess you posted this just before the news broke, but the Senate just passed a version of the emergency war appropriations bill that also calls for a deadline to pull the troops out of Iraq. They have to reconcile the bill with the House, but it looks like a showdown with the President promising to veto such a bill. Let's see who blinks first. My guess is Bush, because the Donks don't really give a crap about the war on terrorism.

  2. My problem is basic. If GWB was my brother-in-law and wanted to borrow $25,000 to start a business, I'd take a pass. He had all the support in the world after 911. Think of him as a football coach. Would he end up in the Hall of Fame?

  3. On the other hand, what the Democrats are doing is wrong. What a dilemma.

  4. Exactly, Ms T.

    Ms Pelosi will be a hero to her consituents, if Mr Bush vetos the Bill. First though, watch for the Conference Committee to "go slow" on a reconciliation of the differences between the Bills.

    Like basketball, each side playing for the "last shot", as the clock winds down.

    To even mention this reality, to much for some to bear, to play politics with the War, unreadable, they claim.

    Manage the clock, foul 'em, send them to the line, make a three pointer to win the Game.

    Mike D'Antoni as politcal guru.

    "Don't hesitate. Knock 'em down," read a sign in the Phoenix Suns' locker room ...

  5. Fox News is all over Chuck Hagel and his complicity with the dastardly Dems.

  6. My problem is exemplified by our GI's getting chopped up by IED's. Those Iraqis who live around there know who is doing it and they do not get involved.

    Where is the Iraq indignation about Iran taking the British marines?

    I have no problem with war against Islamic enemies. I do not want to see Americans dying for ungrateful Muslims. I honesly am not sure which side is in our interest to be the winner?

    Anyone care to tell me?

  7. The Saudis are the real enemy with the Pakis right behind them.

  8. Neither side is on our side.

    To assume otherwise is to be played for the fool.

    We should have left Allawi and Chilabai and Talibani in charge, from the get go. Given them an Army that was paid and led by US, not them.

    By now we could've turn the whole shabang over to them. Iraqis that had been to the US, as exiles, not Iran.

    But demcoracy was all the rage of an earlier age. Better luck next time, we've made our Iraqi bed. Best to leave the Hotel. Come back again, if need be, later.

    It'd better fit our style of War.

  9. Iraq, Basra, was ruled by Saddam with a Security to population ratio of 1:40.

    There are aprox. 22 million Iraqis left in the country.
    We'd need 550,000 loyal troops to secure it.

    Just what that General, Chief of Staff or some such reccommended to Congress, preWar.

    We do not have 550,000 men to send. The Iraqi have not proven reliable, not 400,000 of them, anyway.

  10. The Democrats are the real enemy. Whoever second place is, they're way, way down the list.

  11. Hagel got a lot of American Soldiers killed, today.

  12. The Pakis, the General President, and the Sauds, they're joined at the hip, duece.

  13. I'm game, nothings changed.
    just don't call me names.

    Makes me so, so sad.

  14. I don't, honestly, hate anyone except whiners, democrats, and hagel. I'll be damned if I'll capitalize that worthless motherfucker's name.

  15. I guess, rufus, that after a while that alarm siren, it does have a bit of a whine to it, don't it.

    Should we turn it off?

    Better not, the full force of the tsunami has not hit, yet.

    There may still be some unkowing innocents, down there on the beach

  16. That's not a "warning" siren, that's just incessant whining, bitching and snarking. Kind of like the little boy "who cried Wolf."

    After awhile, no one took him seriously, even when danger did appear.

  17. Hagel and Smith went with the Democrats.

  18. Gateway Pundit is reporting that Maliki tried to have al-Sadr killed during the past week. Hmm...

  19. Some Sunni are cooperating - probably too little, too late.

    “Coalition troops cordoned the area, when ‘local citizens provided information about a second truck bomb that may be in the area…’”

    Another chlorine truck bomb found near Ramadi


  20. Spengler has a reason for staying in Iraq, and it has to do with the collapse of the neo-Persian empire.

    “That is fanciful, to be sure, but conveys a deeper truth about the character of Persian rulers, who were among the most lascivious, concupiscent, slothful, sensual, deceitful and greedy gang of louts who ever had the misfortune to reign.”



  21. Great link, Allen. There's just one thing that confuses me (well, at this moment, anyway:-)) Zoroaster was the "original" Monotheist. Wouldn't that make the conflation of "Pagan/Zoroasters" an oxymoron?

  22. 72 Goats

    For Children- A Woman
    For Pleasure- A Boy
    For Ecstacy- A Goat”

    you might have to scroll down

  23. Don't mean the wolf was not in the shadows, the whole time the kid was shoutin'.

    Just the old folks nightvison wasn't up to speed. To much time lookin at the fire, drinkin beer.

    The siren wailed before the Election, old folks told the kid he was wrong, wave wiped out the majority they had.

    Kid said they were lost, on the wrong course, old folk said there ain't no way, then the President said he taken 'em all on a path of Slow Failure.

    Those old folk, they just do not listen to what they do not want to hear.

  24. Trish,
    A year or so ago I thought you were fucked up. The exact reason is in the dustbin but the deal is you just keep rollong out these dustbunnies that go to the same place.
    You're still, fucked up.

    Somehow you have come to believe that you know what is going on with the troops in Iraq, how they don't get feedback etc. Well you, Rat, Chuck Hagel, and the Democrats are the ones undermining the troops.
    Don't EVEN pretend to play the "I support the troops, but I yadda,yadda, yadda...nobody is buying that shit anymore...You too are in the John Kerry/Daily Kos coalition of lose it at all costs school. How you folks get that buggered is a mystery but you must like it cause you just keep on keep'n on. Will you be the first on your block to spit on an American GI when they come home, or will you be the one in the parade helping DR drag the Stars and Stripes in the gutter?
    But let me end on a positive note and help you out.

    Do some research on five positive things that have happened in Iraq in the last six know schools opened, hospitals with full electricity, safer market areas etc. Then let us know what you found that's working. You'll feel better utilizing the Power of Positive Thinking ...honest.
    Good luck

  25. 1. Mr Bush declares Basra an Iraqi Success story
    2. Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution Iraq has control of Basra
    3. The Iranian Rial is the currency of choice in Basra
    4. Ms Rice declares Basra an Iraqi Success story
    5. Mr Cheney declares Basra an Irai success story
    6. The Brits announce they are leaving Iraq, Basra being an Iraqi success story.
    7. Mr Maliki announces Iraq will take over the Security Mission in all of Iraq by November.
    8. The oil-revenue sharing Bill is stalled
    9. The de-Baathification reconciliation Bill is stalled
    10. The Commander of the Iraqi territorial waters said the Brits were not in Iraqi waters
    11. The Iraqi Foreign Minister said they were.
    12. 2 million Sunni Iraqi are external refugees, 2 million assorted Iraqi are internal refugees
    13. 63 families returned to their homes in Baghdad.
    14. The Kurds released a couple of neat TV spots in the US
    15. Do not hear much about the PKK any more.
    16. US troops entered Sadr City, not a shot fired at them.

    There you go, amigo mio, 16 good things, all indicators of success, if not total Victory, in Iraq.

  26. Rat, you have no fucking idea what the currency "of choice" is in Basra. You're just babbling, idiotically.

  27. Habu1: Do some research on five positive things that have happened in Iraq in the last six know schools opened...

    The insurgents got that covered. They may not be able to blow up all the schools and hospitals now with the surge guarding those places, so they are just targetting the teachers and doctors for assassination. Expect Bush to call for an additional 50,000 troops to act as individual bodyguards for every educamated Iraq so the "embers of Democracy in Iraq are not snuffed out". You're either with the President or you support terror.

  28. Panama Yellow,

    The deal is this. I picked up on this blogsite when BC went uptown, wanted only 800 word analysis on some minutia and a pox on badinage. So Deuce spotted everyone some free drinks, dip and chips and we rolled.
    But from the get go I don't think I ever heard an encouraging word from you about any aspect of the entire Iraq situation. I don't know for sure 'cause I haven't read every word you've written but you are a drag man. A know it all who doesn't.
    This entire war was never presented as easy, and always presented as a long haul deal against evil. Hell, you cratered within a year and it's been one daily shit report from you after another.
    I don't know what tramatized you but something did and you're rabid to prove that George Bush is the epicenter of all that's evil. Ain't true. One gets the distinct impression that you don't care how bad it gets after we get out, just get us out.
    Well dude, like it or not we're the big dog on the globe and we have a huge stake in winning this. Getting out and just letting "things" happen isn't in anyones best interest.
    You sound like the left during Vietnam. Dominoes falling, hooey they said. Well, Laos and especially Cambodia didn't fair so well after the Democrats did just what they're trying to do now and you're helping them. Of course you didn't make the Vietnam show, but it was in all the papers.
    So let me help you out. Pick a few areas to study where positive things are happening in Iraq and talk about those for a while. Look at it as badly needed therapy.

  29. It is total nonsense to think that changed facts will not change an opinion on anything. 70 % of the troops geeting killed are being chopped to pieces by driving vehicles on roads that are not secure. The factories that make the weapons that kill them have not been targeted.

    The weapons are placed on public roads, and the people that are being defended by Americans are not stepping forward to warn the GI's nor are the turning in names of those responsible.

    I don't care how many schools are being built. that is nonsense. The only thing I care about is winning a war that needs to be fought. I want to support the mission, but have to believe it first. I do not believe for one moment that Iraq will ever be a democracy. There are no Islamic democracies. it is anathema to Islam.

    It is a fools dream. I do not want to see good talented young soldiers shopped to pieces for an idiotic mission that keeps changing for a people that do not deserve one drop of American blood. To hell with their schools.

    And to hell with you Habu to think you can attack the patriotism of people that have an honest point of view that also represents about 60% of public opinion. Grow up.

  30. Three of the Six Enemy Tribes of Anbar have moved to neutral, from pro aQ. Three Tribes still side with aQ.

    That's good.
    Brings us to 17.

    Or 19, depends on if we count those Tribes enmass or individually.

    20. The Maliki Cabinet was not reshuffled, on schedule. Proves independence from US and our desires, good thing.
    21. The Assistant PM, the Sunni fellow did not die, though his brother did, in a Mosque bombing.

    I keep thinkin' & reasearchin'. Keep you'll up to date on a daily basis, as I did with all these good things, as they happened.

  31. Whit must have been prescient with the title for this thread.

  32. Bob, interesting take on old Dr. Z. I always just assumed he became mesmerized one night sitting around the "Magic" campfire, and decided to invent himself a religion.

    Your explanation is much more, shall we say, elegant? Of course, I've got a hunch that my take might have been somewhere in play. :-)

  33. Panama Yellow,

    See, you just can't get yourself to not be caddy and cynical about the entire deal.

    Your world must be really messed up man to constantly filter your thoughts through the cynicism that is your most throughly developed personality trait. But there's no doubt you're a fully infected cynic.

  34. Deuce, did all those Kurds convert to Catholicism while I wasn't looking?

    You Grow Up. We need to win this thing. The situation on the ground IS getting better. This is all about Politics, 08', and BDS. If you buy into it YOU'RE letting those young soldiers and Marines down.

  35. Rufus, the only way this thing will be won is if malik takes charge and decides to kill those oppossed to him before they kill him. If the Shiaa wins, Iran wins. If the sunnis win, the Saudis win. I'll borrow from Kissinger and hope they all lose.

    I do not know how many schools were built today but this happened:

    Truck blasts kill 50 in Iraq town

    George Bush said US forces had regained control in Talafar
    Insurgents have blown up two trucks in the Iraqi town of Talafar, killing 50 people and injuring 125, police say.
    One bomb was hidden in a truck that arrived at a market loaded with food supplies, and was detonated by the driver, a police spokesman said.

    It was one of the largest attacks in Talafar since US President George Bush used the town to illustrate progress in Iraq, just over a year ago.

    Other attacks took the day's death toll across Iraq to around 80.

    They included an ambush which killed Sunni insurgent leader Harith al-Dari.

    In other developments:

    Two elderly sisters - said to be nuns at Kirkuk's Cathedral of the Virgin - are reportedly stabbed to death in their home

    A mortar attack on the Shia enclave of Abu Chir in southern Baghdad leaves four dead, including two children, and 14 others wounded

    Four people die when gunmen open fire on a Sunni funeral cortege in Iskandariya, south of Baghdad, Iraqi army officials say

    The US military announces the arrest of two men it says are responsible for car bomb attacks accounting for 900 deaths in Iraq.

    Iraq is a human cesspool. It is the fruit of Islam. It is an insane asylum. Had anyone had the slightest clue that all of this would be a daily occurence, would they have willingly gone into this? Get real.

  36. Why can't we have a disagreement without the personal attacks?

  37. DEUCE! New York City has 50,000 of the finest police officers in the world. They will assure you they have the City under control. There was all kinds of crime there yesterday. And, Texas; about the same number of people as Iraq had all kinds of violent crime, yesterday.

    SO WHAT?

  38. Besides, don't be naive. You know damned well, that if things aren't a hell of a lot better in Aug. the Pubs in the Senate are going to tell Bush he's through.

    This bullshit that's happening in congress now is just a bunch of political bullshit that's going to get American troops killed.

  39. I was in NYC yesterday. Had a superb steak at Gallaghers. THEY UNDERSTAND RARE. I bought a new suit, three shirts, two ties and no one either threw a telephone at me or tried to blow me up. A rather lovely day.

  40. Because I'm so goddamned pissed I can't hardly type. I had to live my entire fucking life with one fucking defeat because of a bunch of totally worthless fucking politicians. Now , the motherfuckers are going to stick my kids and grandkids with the same fucking stigma.

    I don't fucking like it. And, on top of that out of a couple of decent fucking people in Washington, I have to hear that one is going to die of liver cancer. Shit!

  41. I do believe the uptick in violence is in concert with the dems move in the Senate. This is the third time they did it. Viet Nam, Iran-contra and now.

  42. 2164,

    In the Air Force radio rooms where the REMF's all stayed, ok ,yeah that's you.
    But what's this shit about "I want to support the mission, but have to believe it first."

    Hmm. I never recall going into a mission with the thought that I had to believe in it. I was covert, I did the mission ,period.

    Maybe you Rear Echelon Mother Fucker's had the gum time to talk about "buying into the mission" before you turned on the big headset you wore but most real soldiers and Marines just DO the mission. The Air America men I flew around with and the covert CIA people just DID the mission. So fuck telling me about your "I want to support the mission, but have to believe it first." That's where your growth is stunted.
    Now we move to the patriotic part. I don't believe John Kerry is a patriot and he's a US Senator. Chuck Hagel just cut the balls off our troops so he slides into that catagory. Jane Fonda, is she your patriot homecoming queen?

    See here's the deal big brain. In October of 1941 80% of the American population in a Gallup poll were against going to war. They knew what England was going through. France had fallen.Poland over run and Warsaw pounded to rubble. Hitler has conquered the whole of Europe except England. The 80% were being pulled by Charles Lindburgh and the American Firsters and Lindburgh had just been feted by Hitler and Goring. They didn't care much for the humanity of Europe.
    Well buddy boy we're a bit past that and we don't run wars based on take your 60% public opinion and shove it up your ass.

    If we lose this it'll be you and DR and your lefty friends who once again abandon, bugged out,chickend out of the battle that is the right battle. And we'll have to clean up after you shits once I'll just say that I can call your patriotism into doubt as well as your sychophant buddies and Senator Kerry who must be a blood brother to you by now. Read me?

  43. We will all die of something Rufus. He is a decent man. I hope he takes the most agressive possible treatment and does not stop or tire of it.

    It is tough getting cancer the second time. You have no allusions about what you have to go through. It tires you and grinds you down, along with the terror of knowing you may not make it.

    There is some consolation in coming to terms with your own mortality, but the time line is the thing that plays on your mind. You cannot aford to lose hope or tire of the treatment. The alternative is woorse.

  44. Rufus said: I agree with you, Habu. I'm so sick of Rat's Defeatist, Whining Shit that I can't stand it. He makes this blog totally fucking unreadable.

    I third that. Nowadays I just quickly scan over here to see who has posted. When I look down the thread and see DR, Doug, DR, DR, DR, DR, Doug, Doug, Doug, Trish, DR, etc., I don't even bother reading. Apparently, they have taken to noting that too, cause they now comment on their own comments....compounding the whining.

  45. Here's one, aQ kills a Sunni Insurgent leader, is that good, or bad?

    BAGHDAD (Associated Press) -- A military leader of the 1920 Revolution Brigades, a major Sunni Arab insurgent group, was killed Tuesday west of Baghdad, the group announced in an Internet statement.

    A local official confirmed the death of Harith Dhaher al-Dhari, saying he died when rocket-propelled grenades hit his car and an accompanying vehicle in the Abu Ghraib district. Two associates also died, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of security concerns.

    The U.S. military, however, said al-Dhari was killed when two suicide car bombers targeted a house in the Abu Ghraib area. Three bodies were found by U.S. troops, it said.

    The district official also blamed the attack on al-Qaida in Iraq, but did not provide any proof.

    aQ killed an Insurgent Leader, kinda but not really allied with the government.
    Guess that's neutral, then.
    Just more blood.

    The killing came one day after the departing U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad told reporters that American and Iraqi officials had talked to representatives of insurgent groups hoping to draw more Sunni groups away from al-Qaida.

    The 1920 Revolution Brigades has consistently been rumored to have taken part in those talks, which are believed to have been deadlocked over the demand that insurgents lay down their arms and join the political process.

    Al-Dhari's father is the sheik of al-Zuba'a tribe in Abu Ghraib. Also a member of this tribe is Deputy Prime Minister Salam al-Zubaie, who was seriously wounded Friday when a suicide bomber blew up his vest of explosives at the prayer room of his Baghdad home.

    The Islamic State in Iraq, an al-Qaida-linked group, claimed responsibility for the attack on al-Zubaie, which killed nine people.

    In separate statements, al-Dhari was mourned by the Iraqi Islamic Party, the country's largest Sunni Arab party, and by the Association of Muslim Scholars, a radical Sunni group led by the slain leader's uncle, Harith al-Dhari.

    Then there are the less important Iraqi, those with no names of importance.

    Iraqi police reported at least 109 people killed or found dead nationwide
    We'll put that in the Bad Column, aye?

    "It is with a profound sense of sadness and regret that we announce the loss of a U.S. Government contractor as the result of a rocket attack on the International Zone in Baghdad, Iraq," Charge d'Affairs Daniel Speckhard said in a statement issued late Tuesday.

    Not in the Good column.

  46. bobalharb,

    re: tomahawk

    At last, a manly smoke!

  47. Okay, I've had my rant; it's bed-time for Bonzo. G'nite all, I'm not religious, but, I might sneak one in for Tony. Maybe tomorrow will be a better day.

  48. And to hell with you Habu to think you can attack the patriotism of people that have an honest point of view that also represents about 60% of public opinion. Grow up.

    2164 comes out of his peacenik closet. I have long suspected that 2164 secretly takes great relish in DR's snide, caddy, cynical remarks. Habu poked 'em one too many times, and the BDS can no longer be repressed. And as Trish, bless her dear heart, noted in the last thread, the tone of the host posts, and I'm not talking about Whit, have been decidedly more pessimistic, if not quite cynical.

    Were it not for Whit, Rufus, Allen and Elijah, I would not have continued to visit. Glad to see Habu return and stoke the fire - his and Possum Tater's humor have been sorely missed in this dungeon.

  49. We need a peace bong and a little less firewater.

  50. Good nite Rufus, and Habu I am pleased to know you still care.

  51. Whit is decidedly more to the right than I am, but I would not call him optimistic.

  52. Cussin 'em out, that's the ticket to success.

    The GOP Senators allowed the vote to proceed. When the votes were for non-Dinding Resolutions, filibusters were in order. But when it's for real, the GOP Senators, patriots all, let the vote go on without needing 60 ayes.

    They are playing politics, letting Mr Bush fade the heat for not funding the troops in the field, if he vetos the Bill.
    Those same GOPers were sure he'd veto McCains' Finance Reform, Mr Bush was sure the Supremes would invalidate it.
    Today it's the Law of the Land, brought to US by the crafty Republicans, who voted for feeling good.

    Could have stopped this Bill with a filibuster, they chose not to.


    Maybe they figure Mr Bush is not up for election and cannot be hurt, like they could. Reelection comes first with Senators.
    Of either Party.

  53. This blog as I see it is not a cheerleading session.

  54. Just one LAST THING. Optimism is for children. Men (and Women) are expected to "get up and go to work."

    We didn't go over there because we woke up one morning and felt "Optimistic." We went over there because it had to be done. And, now, we've got to finish it the best we can. And, the way the Dems and hagel are doing it "IS NOT" THE BEST WE CAN.

    Now, I'm finished.



  55. This comment has been removed by the author.

  56. Unlike other supporters of the war in Iraq, Christopher Hitchens has never gone wobbly.

    This bar has been misnamed - it should be called Wobbly's World - that would make many of its regular patrons feel much more at home.

  57. It is interesting reading that the blog has turned less optimistic than 6 months ago. Whit and I ocasionally talk on the phone and exchange little notes in the back posting area.

    We have both observed that we try and find more upbeat stories, but let's face it this is never going to be a maggie's farm. I don't do pie recipes or pin-ups.
    I am a serious person by nature, and we live in serious times. I have accomplished what i wanted to here.

    All things end. They tire and maybe the EB is reaching its apogee. when I see that happen the Elephant will be closed. I promise not to let it die a slow and painful death.

  58. "If we can start this company off and expand this company, and grow manufacturing of such a product, it can't do anything but benefit the economics of this state," said Sen. Frank Barnitz (D) Lake Springs.

    In the demonstration, zouline was the only armor to withstand the shots.The rounds went right through a one inch steel plate and thick concrete

    "The 50 caliber armor piercing round go right through that and kill what was on the opposite side of that. It is frightening to know that our troops don't have that much protection," said Barnitz.

    1 Plate at a Time


    You're not closing until we've got OBL.

  59. May the blood splattered cave walls of Tora Bora never be found.

  60. Bump from earlier thread:

    2164th: All things end. They tire and maybe the EB is reaching its apogee. when I see that happen the Elephant will be closed. I promise not to let it die a slow and painful death.

    Ironic, because it was when Wretchard starting closing threads for comment over on the BC that the EB was born as a place for the more active, less serious posters to land. Maybe someone could start an afterhours blog called "Praying to the Porcelain Throne" for those revellers who had to much to drink here at the Bar. But I don't really think the EB will die. About ten years ago there was a chatroom on Undernet called #bible, but the management put too many rules into effect, which stifled the discussion, so the "crowd" moved over to #scripture where the rules were a lot less restrictive and we've been there ever since.

  61. J Willie: Glad to see Habu return and stoke the fire - his and Possum Tater's humor have been sorely missed in this dungeon.

    Now that we're all done playing musical identities, and as soon as I can square away some things that are eating all my blog time, I want to get serious and make this a good place. I'm not sure 2164th and co. appreciate what they got here.

  62. Someone tell me how DR can cynically criticise:

    The President
    The entire Intelligence community
    The Officer corps
    Most of the generals
    Most of the diplomats
    The industries that make the fighting tools
    etc. etc.

    And then think that he's not hurting the morale of 18 to 23 year old soldiers whose very lives depend on the chain of command and having faith in their abilities?
    God knows what he emailed Jr. in Iraq that then Jr. started spreading around,undermining morale.
    Can anyone imagine DR sending Jr. a good assessment? Do you think Jr. didn't talk to his fellow Marines?
    Ya can't have it both ways. You can't piss all over the command structure and then claim you're not hurting the young kid in the field. That's not leadership , that's subversion.
    Most of us have seen people in life who are miserable for whatever reason. Many of those people gain great satisfaction out of accentuating the negative as a natural state of being. They drive the negative until all around them are miserable too, then they gain some psychological relief because they are no longer negative but now "normal" since all around them agree with them. Sound like anyone 'round these parts?

  63. Habu: Most of us have seen people in life who are miserable for whatever reason. Many of those people gain great satisfaction out of accentuating the negative as a natural state of being. They drive the negative until all around them are miserable too, then they gain some psychological relief because they are no longer negative but now "normal" since all around them agree with them. Sound like anyone 'round these parts?

    I'd say calling for the incineration of millions of people was, on balance, rather negative.

  64. For cheerleaders.

    For serious discourse.

    I just prefer mine sans droning and tiring cynicism.

    Blogs are interesting studies in group dynamics. Were it a business, one would want to decompose the market into its natural segments and optimize content accordingly. When it's a hobby, and the hobby is political discussion, a bar brawl is likely to occur. Shit happens. Some folks go home and then go back the next day to find out what happened. Some go home and never go back.

  65. What we have had here in the EB tonight is a minor skirmish compared to this sickness.

    More here. Disgusting and truly evil.

  66. MsT,

    You're much too sharp to try and mix those apples and oranges.
    But just to help you.

    One defines the psychological dynamics of an individual.

    The other defines a war between two irreconcilable ideologies, or religions if you desire and has nothing to do with first.

    If you are really having trouble understanding the difference between world war, democracy vs. theological totalitarianism, and individual psychosis then I recommend you do some additional
    study before trying to mix the immiscible.

  67. But the oil data most likely would be overshadowed by continued concerns about the Mideast, analysts said. Tehran continues to hold 15 British sailors it captured on Friday, giving no indications of their whereabouts despite repeated pleas for their release from Britain, the United States and the European Union .

    Also, the U.S. kicked off a military training operation in the Persian Gulf on Tuesday that commanders said was meant to send a warning to Iran. The operations are the largest show of U.S. force in the Gulf since the 2003 invasion of Iraq .

    In other Nymex trading, heating oil futures up 1.96 cents to $1.8060 a gallon while natural gas prices climbed 6.7 cents to $7.570 per 1,000 cubic feet.

    Oil Data Overshadowed

  68. Nope, not to many e-mails to Jr, he didn't like to write, I wouldn't distract him from whatever they were doin'. Especially with regards US politics.

    Besides when he was in Iraq, things were going "better". We were finally taking down Fallujah, during his tour there. Not far down that course of Slow Failure, as it was finally described by Mr Bush, in December '06.

    When he did write it was to get new DVD releases.

    The Iraqi Police went on a rampage in Tal Afar, once the premier US success story in Iraq. Seems they got bummed out over random truck bombings, then took the habu route of indiscriminate shooting of semi-innocent people, as revenge.

    Early reports have the casualty figures in the dozens, at least 45 dead. Killed by the cops.
    Guess that'd be bad, no.

    Or is that good?
    That the Sectarian, green on green violence is escalating outside Baghdad? I've seen it appaulded by some, as a form of US success.
    Now Mr Bush has always claimed US Goals were to stop the sectarian violence, not all of you here at the Bar agree with him about that.

    Some postulate that his statements are just strategic or tactical deceptions. Tose holding that position representing the "wink & nod school" of Presidental policy pronouncements.

    habu rants on about a World War. While the US is engaged in no such endeavour. Anything but.

    That discussion necessitates returning to a review of Hamdan and subsequent US Law. Maybe when he's finished reading Mr Lewis, he can get back to discussing the realities of US Policy and not just the scholarly theory presented by Mr Lewis.
    Or not.

    Scarborough Country at MSNBC had an interesting show, mirrored the discussion here about the Emergency War Funding Bill.

    Pat Buchannon taking the McConnell position that the President would veto the Bill, then get exactly what he wants from a fractured Democratic Party. Getting both the money and political points.

    Scarboro, exGOP Congressman, thought the Dems would just send up the same Bill, over and over. As I presented here, as their most likely course. Both Scarboro and I drawing on Newt's experiences with Bill Clinton, but factoring in the differing popularity levels of Mr Bush, now, versus Mr Clinton, then.

    The other two heads saw it more like Scarboro than Buchannon. All three of the guests were smiling like the cat that ate Tweetie bird, at the end of the segment.
    Each self-assured his point of view would prevail.

    I do not think that the Dems will give Mr Bush what he wants. They intend to run out the clock, stripping the funds, while blaming Mr Bush, saying they DID deliver the Funding. He then rejected it, not understanding their legitimate "Power of the Purse".

    As Ms T said, many of the Dems will not care if the money is ever authorized. They are looking forward to a confrontaion with Mr Bush.
    In the end, the troops lose. No matter which Party finally makes the political points at the buzzer.

  69. Caroline Glick, now that lady is caustic, in her own sweet way.
    Kinda snide, also. Anyway she does not much approve of what the US is doing in her Region of the World.

    First, in a number of paragraphs she describes the mriad of reason why the Iranians may have snatched those British sailors and Marines
    Then she says:

    "... AGAINST THIS backdrop, and given the stakes involved, it could have been expected that the US and its allies would be concentrating their attention on how to weaken Iran and its terror proxies and curtail Iran's ability to acquire a nuclear arsenal. But, alas, the US is doing just the opposite.

    The Iranians acted as US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was en route to the region. Since Friday, Rice has shuttled between Egypt, Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan, and is on her way to Saudi Arabia. She is not working to coordinate moves to check Iran's increasing bellicosity. Rather, Rice is laboring to empower Teheran's terrorist allies in Hamas, the Islamic Jihad and Fatah. This she does by promoting the so-called Arab peace plan, which demands that Israel agree to dangerous and strategically catastrophic concessions to the Palestinian terrorist government. ..."

    Then she lists the failures of US policy, regarding Jihadi, in the 90's, under the Clinton Administration. Then she compares the Bush Team to Bill's

    Rather than acknowledge the existence and threat of the global jihad to US national security, Clinton pressured the global jihad's primary victim - Israel - into transferring its heartland and capital to the godfather of modern terrorism.

    But while Israel and America bled, Clinton himself paid no price for his behavior. Rather than be blamed for the war he contributed so richly to enabling, Clinton is upheld as a hero at best, or at worst a tragic figure who devoted his presidency to the cause of peace.

    Today, Rice's newfound mania for peacemaking comes when local conditions negate any possibility of peace. Just last month the Saudis promised the Palestinians a billion dollars and so paved the way for the Mecca accord, where the Iranian-sponsored Fatah terror group surrendered to the Iranian-sponsored Hamas terror group ..."

    But it does not end there, for Ms Glick, no indeed, she continues with a reactionary diatribe, casting negative vibes on the very core of US policy in the Middle East, the Saudi Solution:

    In behaving as she does, Rice, like Clinton before her, is aided by a politically weak and strategically incompetent Israeli government that is willing to sacrifice Israel's long-term security for the benefit of prime-time photo opportunities with bigwig American leaders and Arab potentates.

    Sunday, the Olmert-Livni-Peretz government has announced that it is open to negotiating on the basis of the Arab plan. As one government official told The Jerusalem Post, Israel will "not dismiss" the plan.

    THIS IS Israel's position in spite of the fact that the Arab plan calls for Israel to surrender east, north and south Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights to Hamas and Syria and for Israel to permit four to five million hostile, foreign-born Arabs posing as Palestinian "refugees" to immigrate to its truncated territory. As the "peace" plan makes clear, all these suicidal Israeli moves must come before the Arab states will be willing to have "regular" (whatever that means) relations with the indefensible, overrun Jewish state.

    Commenting on the government's position, the official explained, "We would not reject this out of hand."

    Ms Glick does not see those Palistinian refugees, in Lebanon, as similar to Mexican migrants returning to the "Atzland Region" of the US. Such limited vision she has, not to see the benefits that those people would bring to Israel and the new Palistine.

    She also has the audacity to claim that Israel did not win the 34 Day War in Lebanon. Obviously she did not read many of the posts here or at the Belmont, that explained how well Israel did, then.
    She closes saying that both the US Administration and the Israeli are cowards. So vindictive...

    It can only be hoped that the Israeli and American people have learned enough from our experiences to demand that our leaders stop their reckless behavior before the price of their cowardice and perfidy become unbearable.

    Better her than me.

  70. Mike Brown, once head of FEMA, was prior to that job, the Chief of the Arabian Horse Association of America.

    How that qualified him to run FEMA is part of the story ...

    There was an exhibitor that just kept winning, better horses, better training, better performance then his peers in the Show Ring.

    True to form Mr Brown and company concocted a scheme to remove him from the competition.
    If you can't beat him, kick him out. That was their theory anyway.

    Well two things happened, the fellow they "got" bankrupted the Association with legal fees defending their position in Court. Seems he had deeper pockets than the Club, eventually winning in Court, as well.

    During his "suspension" the unjustly persecuted exhibitor went down to Brazil and found a whole new flock of "whales". Which he brought back with him when the Suspension was lifted. Beginning again his domination of the Show Ring.

    "Brownie" showed typical Bush Administration tactics in his management of the Association, which is all that qualified him to run FEMA, that and he was a frat brother and college roommate to a Bush insider.

  71. OMG! What a bloodbath in the "Bar" yesterday evening! Hell, I thought I was hated more than Desert Rat. Rat, hopefully I am, so heat will be taken off you! I just read everything this morning - came in for my regular beer and cornflakes and there it was; teeth, hair and eyeballs all over the place! I'm sorry I missed it.

    You can't continue to support Rome when its leaders are in the midst of a breakdown. In order to change a political entity the people have to realize the system's broken first and then elect the new representatives. Only then can we begin the improvements.

    I'm sure some Romans still argued for Nero during the "day". Bush is no Nero but he HAS BEEN SCREWING UP!

    It is NOT unpatriotic to point this out! It is a necessary public duty!

  72. habu1 wrote:

    "most real soldiers and Marines just DO the mission. The Air America men I flew around with and the covert CIA people just DID the mission. So fuck telling me about your "I want to support the mission, but have to believe it first.""

    Well if that is true then why are you worried about whiners on blogs destroying the morale of the troops?

  73. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  74. rufus wrote:

    "We went over there because it had to be done."

    No, that is just plain wrong. It was not a war of necessity it was a war of choice.

  75. Every war is a war of choice.

    True pacifists choose no.

  76. ...So, ‘war of choice’ means nothing, because every war begins with a decision to fight or not. The issue once again becomes a fight over events and their relevance.

    In the bigger picture, it is just another example of the constant superficial claptrap of campaign and bumper sticker slogans that have replaced serious thought and policy making in some circles. Life's great when you have no responsibility.

  77. cutler,

    re: Life's great when you have no responsibility.

    Well said.

    No job is too big for the man who doesn't have to do it himself.