“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."

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Jim Cramer on the Stimulus Package

The Stimulator

The plan put together by The President and Congress is no more well thought out and will probably be as effective as most other big Washington ideas. Jim Cramer has a better idea.
This actually makes some sense but is missing an important component. How do you stimulate housing and not face the same problem again? It seems to me that there has been way too much investment in housing and too much use of housing to encourage spending over savings. Add a component that addresses that issue and Cramer may be on to something.

The Phony Stimulus
The Bush economic plan is a $150 billion debacle. Here's a cheaper, more effective, and longer-lasting alternative.

By James J. Cramer NYmag Published Jan 24, 2008

Everybody likes "free" money. So it's no wonder that President Bush's plan to give up to $1,200 per family to taxpayers to get the economy moving again will sail through Congress. The logic seems compelling: We face a looming recession because the consumer isn't spending. Give 'em some money to spend! The president's team is hailing the plan as a cheap $150 billion shot in the arm that will check the downturn and get the economy rolling again.

Do you mind if I'm blunt and say that this is the stupidest, most wasteful, and least effective idea possible to reverse the decline in the U.S. economy, a decline that is pulling the rest of the world down with it? The only stimulus this package will generate is a boost to the bottom lines of Men's Wearhouse or Nike or maybe Apple, as if what really ails America is slowing suit, sneaker, and iPod sales. The stimulus plan shows, once again, the cluelessness of this administration about how the economy works, something I find especially depressing given that Hank Paulson, the Treasury secretary who was no lightweight when he ran Goldman Sachs, should know better. He must know the plan will do nothing, other than get some politicians reelected, because it doesn't address the core issue: the decline of home prices in America and the broader financial impact of that decline. Until homes sell for $1,200, this plan's not worth the paper the rebate checks will be printed on.

The fact is, we can attack the root of the crisis, mortgage-related problems, for far less money and resurrect the economy much faster with a couple of simple ideas. First, let's take a hard look at the real cause of the problem: We have too many defaulting mortgages and home-equity loans from people who bought homes-some on speculation, some because they actually wanted to live in them-and could not afford the purchase price. Encouraged by former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan and current chairman Ben Bernanke, home buyers used exotic mortgages that required them to put little money down to purchase homes that were quickly appreciating in value. Millions of home buyers then took home-equity loans on top of their mortgages to capitalize on that appreciation. Now that home values are declining nationwide and mortgage rates are being reset higher, the buyers can't afford to pay either their first mortgage or the home-equity loan and are facing defaults and foreclosures that threaten to leave them destitute.

It's tempting to suggest an Agricultural Adjustment Act type of program under which we actually obliterate excess homes that can't be sold. That would certainly restore home-price appreciation, but Toll Brothers houses cost a whole lot more than pigs or corn, and even the winners in that game might find that solution excessive.

But there's another strategy that's by far the cheapest and most immediate way to deal with the problem: The Federal Reserve needs to cut the federal-funds rate, the short-term rate that it lowered last week to 3.5 percent, in half, to 1.75 percent, and it needs to do it now. That would be a huge shock treatment that would send mortgage rates plunging and allow home buyers from the 2005-2007 vintage, where the real problems are, to escape the death spiral of adjustable mortgage resets (those rates are pegged to the federal-funds rate). For those who have put down little or no equity and are hanging on, the Federal Housing Administration also needs to guarantee a refinanced mortgage at a much lower rate, which it will be able to do without much risk if the federal-funds rate is cut that low. The FHA is already set up to make just this kind of guarantee (and funded to absorb potential losses). Meanwhile, a huge number of people with good incomes and equity in their homes will be able to refinance their existing mortgages, which would put far more spending money in people's pockets than a onetime $1,200 check. In fact, in many cases it could produce that kind of savings every month.

With short rates this low, people would also come off the sidelines to take advantage of the glut and buy homes. Some would say that the short-term teasers that would be available could cause the same problems we had in the last go-round. But the unscrupulous lenders who made those loans are almost all wiped out, so that's not an issue, and only creditworthy borrowers would be able to take advantage of the new loans, so there is no moral hazard there. Bankers have at last learned to give loans that actually have a chance of being paid back to their own banks instead of shipped off to Wall Street as part of a residential-mortgage bond that no one trusts or wants anymore.

Finally, to ensure that mortgage money is available, banks have to be able to quantify their current losses on their –residential-–mortgage bonds. Right now, most of the toxic instruments the banks hold that might go belly-up are insured by two large financial insurers, Ambac and MBIA. The losses on these pieces of paper are so much greater than those companies can absorb that the banks can't count on getting paid from them in the event of a default. The uncertainty is paralyzing the major banks. What the federal government should do is guarantee the insurance that has already been written, taking warrants in both companies, à la the successful Chrysler bailout of the eighties. If we are worried about the cost of those guarantees, we can limit it, allowing only a 50-cents-on-the-dollar payout on the insurance. With this guarantee in place, banks would be free to make the loans they can't afford to make now and get the economy moving again. Given the low rates that they would have to pay to depositors (they're also keyed to the federal-funds rate), banks could lend at 5 percent, a good deal for borrowers, and still make terrific profits that could be used to offset the losses they would have to take on the portion of their bad loans that are not guaranteed.

What about inflation? We only need a temporary dip in rates, just long enough to refinance everyone, then we can take rates back up again. Frankly, the mortgage mess is so deflationary it wouldn't hurt to have a few months of inflation.

Why hasn't a plan like this been suggested before? We have a Fed that only recently woke up to the crisis and is so ridiculously independent despite its obvious incompetence that it can't be counted on to take rates to levels that would make my plan work. When this problem is fixed, and rates are then brought up higher once refinancing is in place, Congress should investigate why the Fed keeps getting it wrong and whether the power and independence of these unelected academics is a good thing, considering their endless recklessness. Meanwhile, you can spend $150 billion making sure that the mall is jammed for a couple of Saturdays. Or you can spend virtually nothing by slashing rates and offering mortgage-insurance guarantees to banks and get the country moving within a matter of months. It's the free solution to a trillion-dollar problem that will never be cured by a bogus stimulus boondoggle.


  1. Stimulus may boost borrowing

    About those 'Junior Jumbo' loans

    Big loans could get cheaper

    Supporters say the proposal would help borrowers and stabilize the housing market

    The economic stimulus plan worked out Thursday in Washington would provide nearly a year of cheaper loans for Californians buying or refinancing higher-cost homes, and the news elicited jubilation in the beleaguered housing and mortgage industries.

    Leaders of the House of Representatives and the White House agreed that the size of loans that can be purchased by government-sponsored mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac should be increased sharply for a year from the current cutoff of $417,000.

    The plan also would nearly double the size of loans insurable by the Federal Housing Administration, from $367,000 to $729,750.

    The FHA was set up to provide mortgages to first-time buyers, including many with less-than-perfect credit, and insures loans to borrowers with down payments or home equity of as little as 3%.

    Currently, any loans above $417,000 are considered "jumbo" mortgages. In recent months, they have become harder to obtain because skittish private investors have become reluctant to buy them.

    Interest rates on jumbo loans were running about 6.5% this week -- 1 percentage point higher than rates on the so-called conforming loans that Fannie and Freddie could buy. Someone who wanted to borrow $500,000 would save about $330 a month, or $3,960 a year, if such a loan were considered conforming and thus had a lower rate.

    "It's the single most effective step they could take to stabilize the housing and mortgage market," said Rick Simon, a spokesman for Calabasas-based Countrywide Financial Corp., the nation's largest home lender, which had led the lobbying to raise the loan limits.

    LA Times

  2. The arguments against higher limits:
    They would newly expose Freddie and Fannie -- and ultimately taxpayers -- to some of the least stable housing markets in America, which are the expensive ones. As Mike P said here yesterday, "In other words, taxpayers all across the country are now on the hook for California-sized mortgages. I bet they're thrilled."

    Also: As Cal points our here, Fannie and Freddy's limited capital "will be soaked up by California (and other parts of the country) Jumbos, leaving a lot less for everyone else."

    In other words, explain to someone in Cleveland why the government should back one big California mortgage instead of three normal-sized Ohio mortgages.

    Why it won't be temporary: Because on Dec. 31, 2008, it says here, the housing market in California and other bubble markets will still be weak. The lame-duck Congress will have a choice: let the junior jumbos expire, which would hurt already weak markets, or extend the junior jumbos. Congress, lame or otherwise, rarely crosses the financial industry. The junior jumbos will survive.

    Why the Bush administration rolled over on this issue: Its opposition to higher loan limits for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is well known. From Treasury Secretary Paulson, at a news conference, acknowledged that he was not happy about the higher limits. “I got run down by a bipartisan steamroller,” he said. “Republicans and Democrats reunited on this.”

  3. Why do I get the impression that this new found bipartisan activity is more show than go? Like the massive post-Katrina aid, it's important to the nanny state that the Government be seen as "concerned and engaged." Never mind how much it costs or where the money is coming from.

    Experts say that the $150 billion stimulus is window dressing. I say it's all about perception prior to the upcoming elections.

    If there is one overarching concern I have for the good 'ol USA, it is our elected leaders at all levels of government. Spending is out of control. Elected officials have carried the lavish "lifestyles of the rich and famous" mentality into government without regard to the costs to our economy and our society.

    We are heading for trouble; a tax showdown. You can dismiss Mike Huckabee for other reasons, but like all of the candidates (Republican) who make good points, Huckabee pushes the Fair Tax. This idea needs to be discussed and debated. We must have tax reform at all levels and cannot continue the trend toward exempting
    a majority while shifting the tax burden to a minority.

    Taxes and spending are a problem which dwarfs the current sub-prime kerfuffle.

    We've got trouble right here in River City. Trouble, and that starts with "T" and that rhymes with "D" and that stands for Democrats and taxes.

  4. BTW - I've got a new entry one post back. Mr. Musharraf's Busman's Holiday.

  5. How could we finance the huge leviathan the Federal governement has become without an income tax?

    A retail consumption tax aims at the lower end and elderly, as does any "sales" tax.

    But a transaction tax would not.
    A tax on every comodity trade, every stock trade, every real estate sale and retail sales.

    The tax could charged in cash, for cash sales or paid in equities if a corporate buy out was just a stock trade.

    This type system would spread the tax base across the entire economy and not impact the lower end of the economic spectrum as much as a VAT type tax on only retail goods.

    Doubt it'll happen.
    Doubt any substantial reform happens.

  6. From

    The FairTax actually eliminates and reimburses all federal taxes for those below the poverty line. This is accomplished through the universal prebate and by eliminating the highly regressive FICA payroll tax. Today, low and moderate income Americans pay far more in FICA taxes than income taxes. Those spending at twice the poverty level pay a FairTax of only 11.5 percent -- a rate much lower than the income and payroll tax burden they bear today. Meanwhile, the wealthy pay the 23 percent retail sales tax on their retail purchases.

  7. Anything that pits classes against one another is a "turn off" to me.

  8. The problem with the economy is the devalued US dollar. And the problem with the devalued US dollar is oil.

  9. The Mises Institute presents:

    The Federal Reserve System

  10. A universial prebate?

    Everyone gets a check at Christmas?

    Spending at twice the poverty level?

    What does that mean.
    Young people buy a lot stuff, on credit. All those purchases would taxed. Not based upon income levels or wealth, but credit rating and expeditures.

    Are rents taxed as expeditures?
    Home purcases & mortgage payments?
    Is the interest payment on credit cards considered a purchase? Should be, you're buying the money.
    At least renting it.

    Or is the tax just on cars, food and tv sets?

    It'll never get through the Congress, along with the Constitutional amendment required to outlaw the income tax, again.

  11. The oil price is a symptom, not a cause, mat.

    The Government not maintaining control of the money supply is the cause.

    Oil has maintained its value, in gold, not risen in price at all, but for a small war premium.

    Oil did not cause the inflation any more than gold did. It is just a measure of the devalued dollar.

  12. No, dRat. There's no intrinsic reason to buy gold. The same cannot be said of oil, at least not yet. The government is increasing the money supply to finance increasingly expensive oil. The Iraq war expenditures being part of that expense.

  13. The US government does not control the money supply, mat.

    Did you learn nothing from the Mises video?

    The oil is used an excuse for the inflation, but is not the cause. All the comodities have risen in price, in tandem with the gold, oil & construction materials.

    Intrinsic value is a perception, gold has a percieved value, whether you wish to admit it, or not.

    As shown often before, the price of gold tracks inflation, up and down, just as the price of oil has.

    You're blaming the symptoms for the disease

  14. There are two events in the 20th century that created the modern Leviathan.

    1. The income tax.
    2. Employer withholding of income tax as agent for the government.

    It is (IMHO) these two acts of the two worst presidents of the 20th century that fueled the growth of an out of control federal government.

    Measure #1 started out only to be levied on the richest of the rich and at 1% of all income at that.

    Measure #2 was an emergency - and temporary - measure needed to fund the war.

    The rest is history.

    I believe the FairTax is the best proposal out there that can tame the federal government and put the power back on the side of the citizen and away from the K-Street Mafia and their whores in the Capitol. It is not perfect, but every other proposal is a minor tweak to a horrible system that punishes hard work, thrift and risk-taking.

    With 40% of the population officially in the parasite class paying zero income tax, you can be sure that 40% of the population opposes any change to the status quo.

    I almost think two years of Hillary and a democrat Congress may be the last great hope for us. They will screw everything up so badly that we may finally wake up enough people to the fight off the socialism once and for all.

    With $43 trillion in liabilities and no money to pay for them, we don't have much of a choice.

  15. "The US government does not control the money supply, mat."

    That's the official line. If you watched the video you'd know better than that.

  16. Been talked into going to the gun show in CdA, Idaho. Last time, years ago, there was a really neat Thompson machine gun, in a violin case! Wll report. Later.

  17. It also doesn't help that more than half of the US federal budget is spend on welfare programs.

    Later, Bob. Enjoy the Show.

  18. It's a chicken and egg deal, now, quite symbiotic, mat.

    The folk that control the Fed, control the Government, too.

    But the Government does not control the Fed.

    The third generation of that leadership speaks for himself

    David Rockefeller (CFR founder), page 405 of his 2002 book Memoirs: "Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as 'internationalists' and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure - one world, if you will. If that is the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it." ISBN-13: 978-0812969733

  19. From Vanity Fair, of all places, a liberals'revelation about Billary.

    Bruce Feirstein: Bill Clinton, Nasty Man
    Time to face an inconvenient truth: Bill Clinton is running for a third term.
    �It�s okay. And we�re not hung up about it. And we won anyway. We fought hard. And we won.�

    In other words, We are running for president. Not Hillary. Not the junior senator from New York. But We�Bill and Hillary�in a de facto end-run around the 22nd Amendment.

    Watching the Democrats debate in South Carolina, I was struck by the heated �I�m here. He�s not� exchange between Senators Obama and Clinton because it so perfectly encapsulates the problem with the two Clintons: Bill is out there with a shiv�presumably with the full countenance of his wife�while Hillary deftly manages to avoid being held accountable for him, or taking any responsibility herself. And therein lies my real issue, should this hydra-headed candidacy succeed: Bill Clinton will always be there. He�ll always be larger than life. And, if the last few weeks have demonstrated anything, we�ll never know who�s really calling the shots.

    From where I sit in California, where Senator Clinton is currently ahead in the polls, Bill Clinton�s behavior over the past fortnight has struck me as sordid and undignified. And his de facto back-door attempt to retake the presidency is nothing short of unseemly.

    We are not Argentina. We are not a banana republic.

    Wanna bet?

  20. The chicken is the egg.

    It's your country. Maybe your vote will count for something.

  21. We will see about that.
    I doubt it accounts for more than one vote, amonst many.
    I'll send my Primary vote in after the Florida Primary.

    There are to options available, both are a protest vote, here in winner take all Arizona. Home to John McCain, he has quite a core of support amongst the Party faithful. Years of favors to call in.

    If Rudy does well, wins in Florida, I'll vote for him, to protest McCain.
    If Rudy does not carry Florida, I'll vote for Ron Paul, in a more general protest.

    Either way, McCain will carry the State and its 52 delegates.

  22. welp, that Kramer piece is one piece of sh*t. His 'free' solution to a multi trillion dollar problem ...riiiight - just slash interest rates (seems like that is part of the reason why we are in this problem) and government guaranteed bond insurance. No cost? yeaaaa, riiight.


    Your tax notion, from what I can tell, would jibe nicely with what many economists say. Politically it is a tough nut though. In Canada under the conservative government of Brian Mulroney a new tax was was introduced with the same 'tax everything equally' type of notion you've been espousing. It is called, here in Canada, the GST (Goods and Services Tax) which was supposed to be a 'in plain sight' levy upon everything - Goods and Services. The political wrangling to get it passed ended up with an exemption for food and other essential items. I don't believe it is assessed on stock transactions and other corporate buyout behavior but I really don't know who far up the chain it extends. I'm not aware of any GST assessed on my stock purchases but any invoice I issue I've got to levy a GST tax. I also get to deduct all GST tht I pay. It is essentially a self policing mechanism - you collect GST, substract what you paid and remit the difference (of course one can cheat but there are strong incentives to maintain the regimen). The introduction of the tax was HATED by most. His government eventually fell to Chretien liberals who campaigned saying they would kill the GST. They had numerous majorities and never touched the tax. Ironically the new conservative government is reducing the tax, against the advice of most every economist. One of the problems is the taxes honesty - it is plainly marked as an extra on every purchase. You know the definition of a Canadian - it is a person who, when they get their income tax refund they think it is a gift from the government(most everyone pays more in installments then is owed - by design)

    Anyway, a consumption tax levied on every transaction is a sound notion. The one drawback is that can disproportionally affect the poor but these problems can be addressed.


    Here is a clear and concise statement you wrote that exlempfies how your published writings could run afoul of Canadain hate laws:

    "So to put an end to all this Luxuriating and all the complaints, the Israeli should kill the Arab with every opportunity that provides itself. Anything more?"

    Arabs are ok to kill and any opportunity?? Can you not see how this is an expression of hate (killing surely dovetails with hate) and being Arab is an identifiable group. You, an Israeli, feel you are free to kill the Arab who sells me my lunchtime falafel simply because he is Arab? You are urging all other Israelis to do the same. Sounds a lot like the neo Nazi jew hating anti-black folk to me.

  23. Ash,

    Again, you miss the whole thrust of my argument. Reread the rest of my posts on that thread. I don't have the patience for your selective vision and queer misinterpretations. I also believe you do this on purpose, so I'm not going to waste my time with you.

  24. If Mark Steyn is found to have violated Canadian Law, mat,
    you'd be guilty, too.

    Regardless of your protestations of being misunderstood. Your missives are much more hateful and disrespectful and are far beyond anything Mr Steyn has ever written with regards Arabs or Islam.

    Mr Steyn would set a precendent that would find you to be beyond the pale of the Canadian standards.

    If Mr Steyn is found to be within his rights, you might slide by with your protestations of innocence.

  25. It's be back to Israel, for you.
    That or fines and jail time.

    If the Canadian government jails folk for hate speech/writing.

    I have no idea about the particulars of the Canadian Law, but do enjoy Mark Steyn, you are for more radical than he is.

    If he is guilty, you'd be, too.

  26. This comment has been removed by the author.

  27. No, dArt. All I did is hold up a mirror and show you the image of the arab in front of it. If Ash has a problem with that, she will have to take it up with her Imam at the next head-banging sadat session.

  28. Drat... your take on the middle east reads like a playbook from alice in wonderland.

    a few points to straighten out your warped looking glass

    not that you'll be able to actually understand my points but I will waste a few moments to try, again.

    you state:" As wi"o" tells us often and loudly
    Israel is such a small fraction of the terrain and population in the Region, as to be insignifigent, lost but for the emotional ties to US."

    I state that the Jews have been expelled by the arabs from 649.9/650th, driving 900,000 of them and their offspring INTO israel, I state that the surrounding 21 1/2 arab countries surrounding israel are after it's genocide.

    as for your line "as to be insignificent, lost but for the emotional ties to US" total bullshit.

    Israel & the Jewish capital are the Center of the world, hardly insignificant, regardless of israel's size. Size is not important to jews, survival is.

    you continue::

    The Israeli base their claims to Israel on the Old Testament

    The Christians base their support of Israel on the New Testament

    The Muslims base their opposition to Israel based upon the Koran.

    Well dRat, where do I start?

    your ignorance is showing like a Nkor Bad Hair Do

    1. Jews dont base SHIT on the "old Testament"

    Jews base the Attachment on Israel on several things

    They base it on Torah, not a reader's digest version of our "Instruction" book

    They base it on 3000 continuous years of living in the land, they have lived in the land so long BEFORE arabs came to the land even the mountain's names are from our Torah.

    They base it on the League of Nations agreement to re-establish, not establish our historic homeland in our lands that had put us in a minority position

    They currently base their rights as a nation on the UN.

    now you stated:

    The Muslims base their opposition to Israel based upon the Koran.

    Well there you go showing your pink slip again.. any number of islamic scholars would correct you quickly that the q'uran actually supports the idea that israel is and always will be for the jews.

    Frontpage Interview's guest today is Prof. Khaleel Mohammed, Assistant Professor at the Department of Religious Studies at San Diego State University.

    FP: Prof. Mohammed welcome to Frontpage Interview.

    Mohammed: You do me a great honor. Thank you for giving me this opportunity to introduce my views to your readers. As you know, I am interested in a moderate Islam, one that is inclusive and is concerned about all human rights. My mission is to help reclaim the beauty that once was practiced in Islam, a message not currently in fashion amongst more traditional or fundamentalist Muslims.

    FP: You are yourself a Muslim and yet, quite unconventionally amongst Islamic clerics and scholars, you teach that the Koran says Israel belongs to the Jews. Can you educate us on this Islamic teaching?

    Mohammed: The Qur'an adumbrates several principles that hover around a common theme: God does not love injustice and will assist those who are wrongly treated. And it focuses so much on this that the person most mentioned in the Qur'an is Moses -- who is presented as God's revolutionary, and who leads a people despised and tormented for no other reason than that they worshipped God, out of the land of bondage to the Promised Holy Land.

    The Qur'an in Chapter 5: 20-21 states quite clearly: Moses said to his people: O my people! Remember the bounty of God upon you when He bestowed prophets upon you , and made you kings and gave you that which had not been given to anyone before you amongst the nations. O my people! Enter the Holy Land which God has written for you, and do not turn tail, otherwise you will be losers."

    The Quran goes on to say why the Israelites were not allowed to enter the land for forty years...but the thrust of my analysis is where Moses says that the Holy Land is that which God has "written" for the Israelites. In both Jewish and Islamic understandings of the term "written", there is the meaning of finality, decisiveness and immutability. And so we have the Written Torah (unchangeable) and the Oral Torah (which represents change to suit times). And in the Qur'an we have "Written upon you is the fast"--to show that this is something that is decreed, and which none can change. So the simple fact is then, from a faith-based point of view: If God has "written" Israel for the people of Moses, who can change this?
    The Qur'an refers to the exiles, but leaves it open for return...saying to the Jews that if they keep their promise to God, then God will keep the divine promise to them. WE may argue that the present state of Israel was not created in the most peaceful means, and that many were displaced--for me, this is not the issue. The issue is that when the Muslims entered that land in the seventh century, they were well aware of its rightful owners, and when they failed to act according to divine mandate (at least as perceived by followers of all Abrahamic faiths), they aided and abetted in a crime. And the present situation shows the fruits of that action--wherein innocent Palestinians and Israelis are being killed on a daily basis.

    I also draw your attention to the fact that the medieval exegetes of Qur'an--without any exception known to me--recognized Israel as belonging to the Jews, their birthright given to them. Indeed, two of Islam's most famous exegetes explained "written" from Quran 5:21 thus:

    Ibn Kathir (d. 774/1373) said: “That which God has written for you” i.e. That which God has promised to you by the words of your father Israel that it is the inheritance of those among you who believe” . Muhammad al-Shawkani (d. 1250/1834) interprets Kataba to mean “that which God has allotted and predestined for you in His primordial knowledge, deeming it as a place of residence for you” (1992, 2:41).

    The idea that Israel does not belong to the Jews is a modern one, probably based on the Mideast rejection of European colonialism etc, but certainly not having anything to do with the Qur'an. The unfortunate fact is that most Muslims do NOT read the Qur’an and interpret it on the basis of its own words; rather they let imams and preachers do that for them.{134C7CDA-8B3A-44A2-AC6C-792B0B25F0EE}

    but let's continue on your little, and i do mean little opinions

    dr: If the returning Gaza residents bring bombs and rockets with them, whose fault is that? But the folks that put 1.4 million in a prison camp, then turned off the electricity and food supplies?

    Now let's look at this... the arabs PUT the fake nationally named people in camps and keep them there for 60 years, not israel

    As for your comments about food supplies, there never was any shortage it was all typical propaganda for which you fell hook line and sinker

    as for the electricity, does it surprise you to know that 70% of the gaza strip's electricity never was cut off and that israel supplies it? does it surprise you to know that the palestinians staged "candlelite" sessions of parliment, candlelite with the shades drawn in DAYLIGHT?

    To make the comment that :that put 1.4 million in a prison camp, then turned off the electricity and food supplies? : sounds like it's a warsaw ghetto with people starving to death stacked like cordwood

    nope, the people of gaza broke out of gaza to BUY tv's, telephones, viagra, and as many stated to go to the MALL, not quite a prison break for freedom or food....

    compare that image to the liberated prisoners of dachau, how many starving palestinians died from eating bread? I remember stories of american GI's feeding starving prisoners not knowing that simple bread could KILL them after truly being locked in a prison and starved

    your arguments are hollow

    you state: Instead the Hamas forces took the obvious step to the blockade.
    They broke it. Justifable reaction to an escalation of the "War".

    except that this was not spontaneous, for a couple of MONTHS hamas has been CUTTING with torches the fence, and when they were having their opening meeting in damascus, led by syria and iran, they used 17 explosive devices to topple the fence.

    dr: The tit and tat of rocket attacks not enough for the Israeli, they escalated, upping the ante.
    The Palistinians attacking static fences, and breaking out.

    yawn, nice try, but you seem to think that the 5000 rockets, mortars that have been shot INTo israel in the last 24 months are self defense? do you not remember israel LEFT gaza, LEFT greenhouses, LEFT border passages that worked up til the til HAMAS over ran the border points and destroyed them?

    do you not remember the invasion of israel from gaza that left 3 israelis dead and one kidnapped BY HAMAS?

    do you not remember the sniper (by hamas) that shot into israel last week and murdered that young man, shot in the back?

    do you not remember after israel did infact start to cut back access to ISRAEL, israel still took hundreds of gazas into israeli hospitals?

    do you not remember that after israel allowed fuel and food supplies (not that they were critical, fore they were not) hamas shot 19 rockets into israel that very next day?

    now you return to more of your compare the jews to the palios warsaw ghetto crap:::

    The average Palistinian as much a threat to Israel as the average Jew in Warsaw was a threat to Germany. Not much of one at all.
    Except in the warped reality of the fascists.

    interesting, last time i check germany was INVADING POLAND and exterminating jews by the millions, whereas the actual population of gazan arabs has tripled in 20 years....

    last time i checked the average jew in the warsaw ghetto weighted about 81 pounds and hadnt eatten a real meal in 15 months

    last time i checked the warsaw jews were never given food aid, medicine, power, fuel, schools, a seat at the UN, 21 other nations of jews numbering 300.000.000 that controlled 1/2 the world's oil supply...

    nope the average palestinian is far better fed, far better funded, far better warlike that the average starving to death, dying, sick waif like jews of the real ghetto called warsaw

    i do love your sick attempt at humor:
    Doubt if they'd just walk meekly to the trains.

    Now come on, if israel wished to be nazis gaza would be dead in a flash, to make your train comment is just baiting...

    you continue and man your like a 4 year old and a bottle of soda, you can piss all day long

    dr No, mat, you wish to kill folks because of their ambition, their desires, not their actions.

    You're a tad hateful towards innocent civilians, advocating killing 1.4 million of them because of what they think

    this innocent civilians voted for hamas that has a platform to destroy israel, they have declared war, they shelter in civilian areas, rockets,bomb factories and such they are not "innocent", as per the geneva convention, israel could just bomb these civilians under the laws of that convention and all blame should go to hamas...

    as for advocating killing ALL of them? if the USA had 5000 rocket attacks on any town in america, or any other country for that matter, the source of those rockets would be leveled like...




    or anyone of 100's of other examples...

    israel is in a war, and your shading of this as a pissing contest between two peoples (gazans/palios verses the israelis ) is just, as i have said before, like a horse with blinders on

    the fight is simple, that collective arab world uses the palios as a pit bull on israelis doorstep

    israel wishes to live

    the arab world wishes it dead, BY ITS ACTIONS

  29. To wordy to even read, wi"o"

    You seem to be trying to draw a correlation between what happens in the Levant and the Laws of Canada.

    Wouldn't work, amigo.
    Not in a Canadian court, if Mr Steyn is found guilty.

    The Court ony cares of the writing in Canada, not of Wars undeclared that some believe are on going on the dark side of the world.

  30. I wouldn't worry too much about Mr Steyn. He comes ahead of the game any which way you look at it.

  31. So mat, are you saying you were simply being sarcastic and mimicing what you think is the 'arab' position? If so, you might want to examine your writing style and see if you can't find some way to improve it because your intended meaning (if that is what it is) is certainly not being communicated.

    Do you really believe that the Israelis should not wipe out the Gazans?

  32. Ash,

    Notwithstanding your obtuse reading, I think it was made pretty clear that if the Israelis behaved exactly as the Arab do, there wont be any complaints. So am I right?

  33. I am not worried for Mr Steyn, he is a US citizen, the actual defendent is the Canadian magazine publisher, I do believe.

    As here, Canada could take on Google, if they thought they'd get favorable ink. As for your legal liability, as a Canadian, only ash would know fer sure.

  34. That is not what you advocate, mat.

    The numbers of Israeli killed are already lower than the numbers of Hamas folks that have taken a bullet.

    The Hamas roockets are ineffectual, hardly ever a casualty. The IDF hits the mark, on time, on target. Plus some collateral damage, on occasion

  35. dArt,

    Where's the proportionally?

    Simple math has us at

    That's a 1: 200 ratio.
    No, the IDF has a long way to go to come up even.

  36. desert rat said...
    To wordy to even read, wi"o"

    yep rat, i use fact, history and logic, things that never pass your lips...

    but you do tell wonder tall tales..

    the bag bad israelis... ( who number 8 million) against the little itty bitty arabs (who number 300 million)

    yep those land stealing jews... forced out of 649.9/650th by the arabs to live on a sliver of land control are the root to all evils, just ask dr...

    yep i use words dr...

    try reading something else besides the protocols

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  38. Your "facts" do not jive with the CIA

    note: includes about 187,000 Israeli settlers in the West Bank, about 20,000 in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, and fewer than 177,000 in East Jerusalem (July 2007 est.)

    Enough said

  39. dr you keep thinking that the war is between the palios and the israelis...

    it aint..

    it's between the arabs and israelis

    always has been

    sorry if you cant see the forest for the trees

  40. But the US is not at war with any of them, wi"o". And I support the US and its' positions, first and foremost.

    We support the Arabs, across the Region. The Saudi recieving $20 Billion in US weaponry. So if Israel is at war with our allies, all I can say

    Remember the USS Liberty!

  41. desert rat said...
    But the US is not at war with any of them, wi"o". And I support the US and its' positions, first and foremost.

    We support the Arabs, across the Region. The Saudi recieving $20 Billion in US weaponry. So if Israel is at war with our allies, all I can say

    Remember the USS Liberty!

    Just love the way you cant answer the statement and switch to jew baiting blood libels to try to change the attention to the points of discussion


    I am not surprised...

    america IS because the (as you call them) the musselmen DECLARED war on the 13 colonies.

    this made us our american nation, and this american nation born from the murderous attacks by the arabs helped us form our navy and also propelled americans to be zionist long before israel was re-established.

    the was is the arabs against everyone else..

    nothing new...

    so nice try with your bullshit uss liberty dig but try again, btw are you sure your not c4?

  42. That war ended, wi"o".

    It is not never ending, besides it was against Libya, not Arabia.

    Tripoli, not Mecca

    Tripoli no longer a terrorist sponsor. Decided so, by US.

    If you're going to hold these bizarre opinions, nothing anyone can do about that.

  43. That war ended, wi"o".
    It is not never ending, besides it was against Libya, not Arabia.Tripoli, not Mecca
    Tripoli no longer a terrorist sponsor. Decided so, by US.
    If you're going to hold these bizarre opinions, nothing anyone can do about that.

    Funny why dont you accept US policy about the USS Liberty?

    America has spoken, and has absolved Israel of all guilt.

    do you pick and choose which american policies you choose to support, while claiming to be the true american?


    your rose colored glasses are quite the amazing things..

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  45. I do support the Government, I do not claim that the US is at war with Israel. That episode is past.

    But if Israel is at war with Saudi Arabia, the Sauds being US allies before there was a modern Israel, since FDR authorized Lend-Lease to the Sauds in 1943. That position confirmed when he then met King Abdulaziz aboard the cruiser USS Quincy at Great Bitter Lake in Egypt. Egypt, another long term US ally in Arabia.

    If these nations are under attack we must rally to our allies defense. Mobilizing the US public to defeat the new enemy. If Israel chooses to take the position you advocate, there are consequences.

    The Israeli signing Peace Treaties with both Egypt and Jordan, which you deny the reality of, saying Israel is at war with all Arabians.

    If Israel takes your position, its' signature on any Treaty is worthless, not worth the paper it's written on or after the ink is dry, just as many make the same claim of mussulmen.