“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."

Friday, April 18, 2008

Here's a Question for You

The Yearning For Zion sect, 10,000-strong, dominates the towns of Colorado City in Arizona, and Hildale, Utah. The YFZ sect split from the mainstream Mormon church more than a century ago. Members believe a man must marry at least three wives in order to ascend to heaven. Women are meanwhile taught that their path to heaven depends on being subservient to their husband.

If two people of the same sex can be married, why can't polygamists?


  1. Another question:
    If Waco was not exactly a proud day in American History, weren't there lessons to be learned?
    Forcibly removing children from their parents before any formal charges have been lodged seems like dangerous territory, indeed.

    An interim solution that comes to mind would have been to remove the males from the community, leaving the kids with their mothers, at least for the duration of preliminary legal proceedings.

  2. That is too logical and obvious for anyone in government to have figured that one out.

  3. If two people of the same sex can be married, why can't polygamists?

    I answer that,

    Marriage is an exclusive arrangement. When people marry, they take each other out of the meat market. Polygamy introduces an imbalance in this because one man locks up two or more women for his own use while births remain, always, roughly 1:1 male to female. So you end up with a situation like we see at the FLDS compound where the beta males are excommunicated for sneezing wrong so they won't compete for a dwindling pool of females. If same-sex marriage was limited to lesbians only, this would result in the same situation. Two women would be taken out of the meat market for each marriage. However, this is balanced because gay men also marry.

  4. Wait, I think you are on to something. If I marry two women and we all live in a nice cozy way... Are my two wives married to each other as well? This is all in theory of course since one rarely meets two women that can get along with each other for more than a day or two much less the time required for a marriage to be considered successful. Just saying. And no I am not bitter or gay.

  5. jeez I love the way you express things Miss T.

    But my point of view is basically from my upbringing. I was raised by free women. My mom, my aunt, free women both. Mom had one man, aunt Agnes none. I have known what upbringing love is. The main women in my life, wouldn't give a thought to this polygamy shit, they are American women.

    Since my dad was a lawyer, I have tried to think of the legal aspects of this. I hate state power. It's hard to see real abuse here, of the kids. Up until sexual age. The women ,a different story. Wife worked in Idaho Health and Welfare. As a practical matter, where you gonna put all these kids, now you've grabbed them? A real problem.

    I don't know what is best here. I hate state power, I feel for kids, I am for women's rights. It's a tough call, really.

    The state's duty is the welfare of the kids. I agree with that. The state can take the kids if they are in danger. But what is danger?

    Well, the good thing is, the lawyers are lined up around the block.

  6. If two people of the same sex can be married, why can't polygamists?

    That's it, a damned good question, which I didn't address, thinking of the kids.

    We are on a hell of a slippery slope.

    Well, I'll tell you what my answer is, as a matter of social policy. Polygamy by and large ends in the exploitation of women, even if some of them are happy. Or think they are happy. There are greater things to worry about, but, these ladies, they may think they are free, but they are dominated.

    My answer is, the law has to look to the welfare of the children, and the ability of the women to walk away.

    I'd have arrested the men, kept mom and child together, if I was the state, and intent on getting involved.

    But I hate state power, so it's a real problem.

  7. And I mean, a real problem. What you gonna do with all these nitwits, and abide by the Constituiton, too?

    As dad said, many a time, Robert, some problems don't have good answers, some don't even have any answers.

  8. I'd have arrested the men

    Well, Bob, has anyone filed a complaint? Someone did, I quess, in one instance. How, then, though Bob, how are you rounding up the whole lot of them?

    This is one hell of a can of worms.

  9. This is one interesting situation, when you really begin thinking about it.

    The Heaven Of Lawyers.

  10. If the kids have been sexually abused, or beaten up, then that's a whole other matter. In that case, send in the police.

  11. Idiocy. It's no business of the state, Period.

  12. I see we were trying to stick it to the secret squirrels again early this morning, Doug.

    It's hard to know what to make of the bolded and hyper-linked criticism of the Central Intelligence Agency on the part of one who has numerous times identified its chief executive as a "fucking traitor."

    The Agency has "always been a liberal" organization...except that liberals despise it as a death-squad running, coup-facilitating - might I add waterboarding - instrument of unchecked executive power.

    That's called Can't Win For Losing.

    Bah Humbug.

  13. Doug: Forcibly removing children from their parents before any formal charges have been lodged seems like dangerous territory, indeed.

    So it's okay to let fifteen year-old girls get stuck in some guy's harem, but God forbid someone should write a story about what the girls in that harem do with each other when their husband is away rounding up more women, that's kiddie porn. Got it.

  14. Trish: It's hard to know what to make of the bolded and hyper-linked criticism of the Central Intelligence Agency on the part of one who has numerous times identified its chief executive as a "fucking traitor."

    And when George W. Bush awarded former CIA director George Tenet a Medal of Freedom that really threw 'em for a loop, especially when it was George Tenet himself who said, four years before 9-11, the original mission of the Agency was to "prevent another Pearl Harbor".

  15. Idiocy. It's no business of the state, Period.

    Fri Apr 18, 10:35:00 AM EDT

    I'm close to being with you there, Ruf. But not quite. If they are screwing the under 16 years olds, which is where I put the limit, kind of picking a number out of the air, a limit having to be set somewheres, then I say, send in the police.

  16. Am hearing that the initial call about abuse was a prank by a known prankster. Prankster allegedly made a similar call in Colorado. Has been arrested and posted $25K bond. Perhaps she has been reading too much teen lesbo angst internet.

  17. Statutory Rape is Statutory Rape, Bob. Polygamy is polygamy. One should be prosecuted in a court of law; the other is nobody's business, but the Adults involved.

  18. Personally I don't care if you want to have multiple wives or husbands or, heck, marry your dog if you want to. Basically marriage is a contractual relationship between the partners. The problem with the group in question appears to be the pedophilia. Kids, by definition, are unable to give consent and if they are a sect humping the young then the law should intervene. Now if the allegations are true can we tarnish all Christians with the pedophilia brush? Or just the Mormons? We do it with Islam, why not the Christians now?

  19. ...on further though, I don't think a dog could give consent, so scratch the dog part ;)

  20. Ash be careful how you scratch your dog.

    from fox news:
    By evening, only three witnesses had testified, including state child welfare investigator Angie Voss, who said women may have had children when they were minors, some as young as age 13.

    At least five girls who are younger than 18 are now pregnant or have children, Voss said.

    No decisions had been made on the fate of any of the youngsters, and the hearing was to continue Friday.

    Additional details on life at the ranch began to emerge as Voss testified.

    She said that if one of the men fell out of favor with the FLDS, his wives and children would be reassigned to other men. The children would then identify the new man as their father. Voss said that contributed to the problem of identifying children's family links and their ages.

    Texas District Judge Barbara Walther struggled to keep order as she faced 100 lawyers in her 80-year-old Tom Green County courtroom and several hundred more participating over a grainy video feed from an ornate City Hall auditorium two blocks away.

    The hearing disintegrated quickly into a barrage of shouted objections and attempts to file motions, with lawyers for the children objecting to objections made by the parents' attorneys. When the judge sustained an objection to the prolonged questioning of the state trooper, the lawyers cheered.

    Upon another objection about the proper admission of medical records of the children, the judge threw up her hands.

    "I assume most of you want to make the same objection. Can I have a universal, `Yes, Judge'?" she said.

    In both buildings, the hundreds of lawyers stood and responded in unison: "Yes, Judge."

    But she added to the chaos as well.

    Walther refused to put medical records and other evidence in electronic form, which could be e-mailed among the lawyers, because it contained personal information. A courier had to run from the courthouse to the auditorium delivering one document at a time.

  21. Rufus: Statutory Rape is Statutory Rape, Bob. Polygamy is polygamy. One should be prosecuted in a court of law; the other is nobody's business, but the Adults involved.

    Bigamy is a crime under the law of every state in the United States, with the exception of Utah, and then it is only legal if all of the parties to the
    marriage reside in the state of Utah. If you wish to decriminalize bigamy, it is your right to petition the government for a redress of your grievance.

  22. Third season of Big Love should be starting this spring, though delayed by the writer's strike.

    It's not Deadwood, but it's compelling enough.

  23. The age of consent is a problem. 18 is ridiculous. For instance, if a 13 year old girl who has had voluntary sex with several other 13,14,15 year old boys, how could it be a crime if she has sex with an 18 year old?
    What ever you call it, it is not rape. If a 14 year old can consent to sex with another teen, she establishes the right to consent.

    The laws are intrusions into family and personal morality matters and not the business of poiliticians and the state.

  24. The laws are intrusions into family and personal morality matters and not the business of poiliticians and the state.

    Fri Apr 18, 12:00:00 PM EDT

    Is that a conservative statement...or a libertarian one?

  25. Can I be both? Do I have to choose? Freedom to choose... but then that would make me a liberal. how did that happen?

  26. Bigamy should not be a crime for an obvious reason. Anyone, who enters into bigamy, should have their head examined and is not fit to stand trial.

  27. Duece, at what age do you draw the line, or is there no line? 9 year olds with 14 year olds ok? I agree there is an absurdity when a 16 year old gets nailed for having sex with a 15 year old but we do want to prevent 40 year olds from preying upon 9 year olds.

  28. Sure you can be both, dear host. Or one can be a qualifier for the other. It just occurred to me once again in asking that question that conservatives are readily (though often unreasonably) associated with a belief in free markets, but not necessarily free people (as in MYOFB). The latter is understood to be libertarian or even, yes, liberal.

    That's a mess over there at Belmont.

  29. ...the other is nobody's business, but the Adults involved.

    Fri Apr 18, 11:10:00 AM EDT

    I think this is manifestly true. Statutory rape is thornier, however. When used by parents to punish boys engaged with their quite willing daughters, it is misguided and even cruel.

  30. By comparison, this sort of nanny state-ism seems trifling:

    April 16, 2008, 3:01 pm
    Judge: NYC Can Force Chain Restaurants to Post Calorie Counts
    Posted by Jacob Goldstein

    If you tell somebody how many calories are in that bacon double cheeseburger he’s about to order, might he order the grilled chicken sandwich instead?

    New York City’s Health Department thinks so, and a federal judge just greenlighted the city’s plan to force chain restaurants to post calorie counts.

    The New York State Restaurant Association had sued to block the rule, arguing among other things that it violated the First Amendment free speech rights of restaurant owners.

    But Judge Richard Holwell of the Southern District of New York concluded that the requirement “is reasonably related to the government’s interest in providing consumers with accurate nutritional information and therefore does not unduly infringe on the First Amendment rights of NYSRA members.” (The full ruling is here.)


  31. Ash, you love to take a logical argument through the reasonably accepted boundaries towards absurdity with the intent of destroying the reasonable part.

    No it is not the same as a nine year old. A nine year old would normally not consider entering into sex with anyone. It is an age that presages sexual indulgence. A thirteen or fourteen year old is quite another matter. I am sure you remember. I am correct Ash, am I not?

    And Trish, the BC is reminiscent of the summer of 2006.

  32. I think Slow Hand wanted to cleanse the blog of Habu and Habu has morphed into something more toxic. It does not seem that Slow will be getting his $10k. Habu seems to be a sore loser.

  33. Well you got to draw the line somewhere. But where? We can't have old men humping young girls, or boys, like in moslem countries.

  34. If it were up to me I'd make it 25, but then I'm older, grouchy and have a daughter.

  35. With regard to the previous thread:

    Michael Scheuer is effectively Pat Buchanan if he'd become an intelligence officer, albeit a bit more pissed off.

  36. And Trish, the BC is reminiscent of the summer of 2006.

    Fri Apr 18, 01:44:00 PM EDT

    Actually it reminds me of habu's last days regularly posting here.

    I said he wouldn't be there long. I'm waiting for a thread shutdown.

    I don't think slow hand had just one blog in mind.

  37. Minus, so far as I could tell, the economic protectionism.

  38. deuce,

    One must draw the line somewhere, no? The logic I invoke is not absurd and it goes right to the heart of the matter. You concede that a 9 year old should be protected but...not a 13 year old? Old enough to bleed old enough to breed in your books? Like I said, prosecuting a 16 year old for having sex with a 15 is absurd. Prosecuting a 16 year old for having sex with a 9 year old does not strike me as absurd. A 16 year old on a 13 year old? I would waiver on that one. A 40 year old on a 13 year old I think warrants a prosecution. I think some sort of formula that specifies an age separation that slides about an age of consent (16 for sex seems reasonable to me) would be much better then the current hard line which resides at 16 (I think).

    On a somewhat related note I saw a piece in my local rag about a move in the US to lower the drinking age so that returning soldiers can drink after returning from Iraq. 21 as a minimum age for drinking strikes me as pretty absurd especially when an 18 year old can join the military. Seems to me 19 is a good age, or 18, whatever ages that keeps the average high school senior as underage.

  39. Scheuer kind of reminds me of Lang, politics and religion-wise. Only more pissed off.

    He IS very much a CIA-center-of-the-universe guy and rather blind or outright bigoted when it comes to (hehehe) OGA.

  40. I think some sort of formula that specifies an age separation that slides about an age of consent (16 for sex seems reasonable to me) would be much better

    You might be on to something there, Ash, that sounds like a good idea. I'd push the age upwards, but then like I said I'm aging, grumpy and have a daughter.

    There is too, a real distinction in my mind between the older exploiting the younger, and Romeo running off with Juliet.

    I don't know how to deal with some of these questions. With compassion for the young, severity towards the old, I quess.

  41. OGA, OTOH, is quite content to be off the radar.

  42. Ash, we can agree. I have to think about Lolita.

  43. How to separate out Lolita from Juliet, there's a rub.

  44. Older men should be explorers of the next world, not gross bodies trying to hang on to this one.

  45. I'll explain traitor if you explain "OGA," Trish.

  46. American Nightmare:
    California Dreamin about dumbed-down, brainwashed, students.
    Tryin to spark Trish's memories of what she wrote about her mom's views.

  47. hmmm, I wonder what Bernie Ward is up to these days? The fellow that went even deeper into the bucket than Lolita, and used to lecture us on all things good and true.

  48. Lord Almighty, they call them college students.

  49. The young, in one another's arms, commend all summer long, whatever is begotten, born, and dies....but old men should sail to Byzantium....

  50. Rather, scary, al-Bobal, right?
    Almost every 16 yr old farmboy in WWII had a better education, and a HELL of a lot more useful knowledge, and common sense.

  51. "Deficit spending is also a transfer of wealth from the future to the present. Instead of paying as we go, we get our stuff now, and hand our grandchildren a big nut in the form of hundreds of billions of dollars in annual interest payments to service the national debt. So if we treat capital gains income the same as other income, perhaps we can pay down more of that big nut right now. That would be the honorable thing to do. Every parent wants their progeny to do better."
    So, after EVERYONE agrees receipts increased when cap gains taxes were lowered, Hyeana assumes the opposite to be true!

    Barry is more logically consistent arguing for "fairness."

  52. THAT is no country for old men. The young
    In one another's arms, birds in the trees
    - Those dying generations - at their song,
    The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
    Fish, flesh, or fowl, commend all summer long
    Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
    Caught in that sensual music all neglect
    Monuments of unageing intellect.

    An aged man is but a paltry thing,
    A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
    Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
    For every tatter in its mortal dress,
    Nor is there singing school but studying
    Monuments of its own magnificence;
    And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
    To the holy city of Byzantium.

    O sages standing in God's holy fire
    As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
    Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
    And be the singing-masters of my soul.
    Consume my heart away; sick with desire
    And fastened to a dying animal
    It knows not what it is; and gather me
    Into the artifice of eternity.

    Once out of nature I shall never take
    My bodily form from any natural thing,
    But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
    Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
    To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
    Or set upon a golden bough to sing
    To lords and ladies of Byzantium
    Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

  53. Anyone else consider it amazing, and a little scary, that some of us have been interacting for over five years?

    Obvious, but I never thought about it til last night.

    "Brave New World."

  54. Cutler, someone should recommend you for a new button.

  55. I here do nominate Cutler for Oak Leaf Cluster.

  56. Doug: So, after EVERYONE agrees receipts increased when cap gains taxes were lowered, Hyeana assumes the opposite to be true!

    Coincidental Correlation (post hoc ergo propter hoc). An author commits the fallacy when it is assumed that because one thing follows another that the one thing was caused by the other.

    In other words, increased revenues may have been due to the Internet bubble or the Housing bubble causing a general increase in economic activity. You assume that the cut in capital gains tax was the sole cause of increased revenues. One economist estimates that the peak of the Laffer Curve actually occurs at a rate of 65%.

  57. And, in another more controversial nomination--

    I do here nominate Ash for Oak Leaf Cluster.

    We don't have to all agree on stuff.

  58. Ash can get the first boost. He does not qualify for a double bump at this time. Board membership has nothing to do with what you say or how you say it. It is for those who are consistent contributors.

    -A director has immunity from expulsion from the bar.
    -Expulsion can only happen by a unanimous vote of the board.
    -Barkeeps do not get to vote. Whit and I do not make decisions as to who is in or who is out. That is a board decision.
    _Directors can resign at any time and for any reason.

  59. Bob needs a second for Ash to go up.

  60. I'd nominate Ash for a purple heart.

    He may be clueless on any number of things, but his endurance in sticking around is somewhat admirable.

  61. 2164th: It is for those who are consistent contributors.

    I plan to be a consistent contributor despite...everything.

  62. We are always open to those that wish to blog above the fold.

  63. Withdraw your resignation and you will be restored with Bobal's second.

  64. Yes, you, and if I remember correctly, Trish too, threw a big hissy fit, long ago.

    I'm happy to nominate 'em both, or second, or whatever I have to do. We need some broads on the board, I always seez.

  65. Seconded, third-ed, or whatever.

  66. I withdraw my resignation. Thanks Bobal for your 2 week noti...I mean vote of confidence!

  67. Upon withdrawal of resignation, I second both Trish and aenea/catholic woman/ teresita back on the board.

  68. ah, ships passing in cyberspace...

  69. The chairman has noticed that it is getting perilously close to cocktail hour...

  70. Teresita, give Ash a second.

    These moments of opportunity don't last forever.

    Go, girl.

  71. I'll nominate Ash, even I get tomatoes thrown at me.

  72. I agree with you, deuce, and while I don't drink much, I've had a hard week.
    Signing off--cheers!

  73. I hear a second from Cutler. Ash gets his button. I'm buying the tomatoes, for salsa of course. Congrats to the new members.

  74. Coincidentally, I just looked at that Iraq video one of you guys sent me in the mail.

    "Brave New World," indeed.

  75. "you guys" being 2164th or whit.

  76. Someone might find this interesting.

    I'm lucky enough to have known Collins. One of the nicest guys you'll ever meet. Conservative, but not intensely ideological and willing to admit mistakes.

    For that reason, hard to point out just what position he held prior to the invasion. Then again, also hard to know how much influence he had...Cobra II at least mentions him as someone who was trying to remind people of the scale of the effort they were getting into.

  77. hmmmm, I'm flattered but will it come back to haunt me some day? You know, like sitting on the board with Ayers. Sitting on a board with Mats...shudder!

    Question: Should one take the high road and refuse if you don't support fellow board members opinions, or the low and strut about vainly?

  78. Ash: Question: Should one take the high road and refuse if you don't support fellow board members opinions, or the low and strut about vainly?

    Opinions are one thing, but its only when the higher-ups resort to abuse that I have to think about the high road.

  79. Keeping it real:

    Look to Trish for guidance. She is pure in her criticism and support or lack thereof. There is no flow where she will go.

  80. I know what you mean by traitor, Doug. Thanks.

    As to my mother's views, she is a Democrat who is also more of a nativist than Pat Buchanan.

    I second the Purple Heart for Ash and the promotions of T and Cutler to Knights of the Holy Order of the Bar.

    I prefer to continue in my role as Untitled and Off in the Corner.

  81. How Obama Fell to Earth

    Furiously courting Democratic primary voters and apparently exhausted, Obama has emerged as a more conventional politician and a more orthodox liberal.

    He sprinkled his debate performance Wednesday night with the sorts of fibs, evasions and hypocrisies that are the stuff of conventional politics.

    He claimed falsely that his handwriting wasn’t on a questionnaire about gun control.

    He claimed that he had never attacked Clinton for her exaggerations about the Tuzla airport, though his campaign was all over it.

    Obama piously condemned the practice of lifting other candidates’ words out of context, but he has been doing exactly the same thing to John McCain, especially over his 100 years in Iraq comment.

    Obama also made a pair of grand and cynical promises that are the sign of someone who is thinking more about campaigning than governing...
    Consorts w/terrorists, racists, and America haters?
    Big Deal!

  82. This comment has been removed by the author.

  83. But I still don't know what "OGA," is.
    I'll take nativists over those so willing to give everything away, including other people's taxes, jobs, hospitals, schools, safety, and life itself.
    50% graduation rates bode ill for the future of this once great nation.

  84. humph, when I went to school over there in Seattle, I always thought, "These rubes don't even know how to drive in snow"--and they didn't. humph.

  85. Dog sure knows how to enjoy it,
    bitter liberal master, or not.

  86. I always thought, "These peckerwoods don't even know how to drive in snow."


  87. David Galula, writing in the early 1960s about the French in Algeria:

    “On the international front, the situation was favorable to the insurgents from the beginning. While France had no ally, the rebels benefited from the material, financial, diplomatic, propaganda, and moral support of the communist bloc and Arab countries, and particularly from the sanctuary they found in Tunisia. They also had more or less open and active sympathy of the rest of the world. Even in neutral Switzerland, rebel agents could operate with total impunity, not only as propagandists but as organizers of sabotage and terrorist action, without even bothering to camouflage their activity.”

  88. Some more:

    "They were aware, on the other hand, that their co-operation with the French authorities rendered them conspicuous, and that their future security hinged on the continued presence and firmness of the French. Hence, every cabinet crisis in Paris that put the Algerian policy in question had an adverse psychological effect on them, just as it gave heart to the insurgents even in the face of many setbacks. This continual uncertainty of the Moslems set definite limits to what a local pacification effort could achieve."

  89. Around here, there's no strutting around vainly Ash, but watch out for the tomatoes!

  90. Would someone please tell me what OGA is?

  91. Doug, I don't know. I wonder too.

  92. Other Government Agencies, sorry.

  93. My real estate agent just got back from Here, the land of the knot language.

  94. Those folks that live almost their whole lives in trees are the ones that blow my mind.

  95. Doug, I am going to my grave, in awe, of the mysterious universe.

    I was going to post, the other day, another picture of that poor fellow in India, the fellow whose body had turned into bark, basically, but I didn't do so, as it was so nauseating a picture. But the story has a happy ending, thanks be to science, and medicine, and he may be getting married soon, can you believe that?

  96. Tree Man and medicine has saved him. He is ok now, and he's just like us. Like that fellow from Notre Dame

  97. I quess he was from Indonesia, not India.

  98. I always assumed it was fake, or if not, too ugly to look at.
    What did they decide it was?
    Superantibiotics the cure?
    Don't tell me that cute babe in the picture is now his wife, or I'll revert back to self-mutilation for a late-life hail Mary attempt.


  99. Son of Dutch defense chief is killed in Afghanistan

    Van Uhm's father, Gen. Peter van Uhm, was installed only Thursday as the Netherlands' defense chief.

    The prime minister called Van Uhm's death "an unprecedented tragedy," and the weekly meeting of the Dutch Cabinet was briefly stopped so ministers could reflect privately.

    Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi claimed that the militants knew in advance about Van Uhm's movements and planted a mine that killed him, but the Dutch government rejected the claim.

    "Our information is that there is no indication of any link between this cowardly deed and the fact that it was the son of the defense chief," Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende told reporters in The Hague.

  100. "Dog sure knows how to enjoy it, bitter liberal master, or not."

    I think I missed something thread-wise.

  101. To late to second, but join in the chorus of affirmation.

    If abortion is between a woman and a doctor, the choice being the womans', it being her body.

    Why then can she not rent out its' use, in most States. Why are certain functions, totally natural and normal, legal for free, but a crime if done for money?

    That amigos is an absurdity.
    Abortion is legal, but sex for cash is a crime.

    Nothing to brave about the new world.

  102. Nothing heavy, Trish:
    Just loved the smiley dog pic.
    Plus an attempted jab at the presumably liberal Seattlite.

  103. The site that is supported largely by donations from its readers ...
    ... will move to a new site. There'll be announcement when the move is imminent.

  104. DR: That amigos is an absurdity.
    Abortion is legal, but sex for cash is a crime.

    Here's another one. If a woman advertises for Johns on Craigslist, she get busted for prostitution. But if she advertises for male models on Craigslist and has a camera in her bedroom, that's just making naughty videos.

  105. From the Collins paper, cutler:


    Adding to the confusion, after the conventional fighting, the original
    headquarters for Phase IV, the large and powerful land component command
    headquarters, was told to return home, and the Phase IV mission
    was given to the newly promoted Lieutenant General Rick Sanchez, USA,
    and his much smaller, tactically oriented V Corps staff. Sadly, this switch
    in headquarters in late spring 2003 (which has never been fully explained)
    came at the same time that the national plan for postwar Iraq was scrapped
    and replaced by more than a year of formal occupation under Ambassador
    L. Paul (Jerry) Bremer. In one turn of the screw, plans and management
    schemes were disrupted on both civil and military levels.


    There are two things here which have never been fully explained, but there is the suggestion that Rumsfeld, Cheney, and later the President saw the scrapping of the national plan and the introduction of occupation as a way to cover for State, which was not prepared for, and did not have the infrastructure for, its central role in an extremely unstable postconflict Iraq. Its chief implementing agency, however, the CPA, entailed the creation of an ambassadorship on an equal footing with the SECDEF; ambassadors are subordinate only to the president. In that particular situation, this was at least as bad as the situation that prevailed under ORHA. In any event, by the time of the scrapping of the national plan, Rumsfeld and Cheney and Bush had some idea of the difficulty we were in for as well as State's inability to cope, and this was one of the reasons for the decision.

    Then there's this:


    Sixth, for the State Department and USAID to become more
    operational, they must be better funded across the board. Today,
    State and USAID spend (on all of their functions, including security
    assistance) less than one-tenth of what the Pentagon does on its many
    missions. There are fewer than 8,000 Foreign Service Officers in both
    State and USAID combined. With this small force, our diplomats and
    choosin g war 35
    development specialists have to cover their extensive Washington
    headquarters, as well as over 120 countries and 265 diplomatic and
    consular locations. The systematic underfunding of State and USAID
    is the single greatest impediment to the effective planning and execution
    of developmental assistance, reconstruction, and stabilization.
    State cannot be equipped only with good ideas while Defense has all
    the money and most of the deployable assets. This is a prescription for
    an unbalanced national security policy, one in which State will not be
    a mature player or will have to savage its worldwide diplomacy to keep
    up with operations in conflict areas.
    If we want to fix planning and execution for complex contingencies,
    we must fund State and USAID as major players and not poor relations of
    the Pentagon. At a minimum, over the next 5 years, the Foreign Service
    personnel strength of State and USAID should be raised by 50 percent
    and the entire budget of State and USAID should be doubled across the
    board.71 Priorities for new spending should be given to public diplomacy,
    stabilization and reconstruction activities, and development assistance
    focused on preventing state failure. The transfer of monies from Defense
    to State should be loosened, but we may well need to spend more money
    on defense and foreign operations at the same time. Foggy Bottom should
    not overly rely on drawing-down money appropriated to the Pentagon.
    Congress too will have to play its part and overcome its aversion to funding
    nonmilitary operations overseas and to the creation of peacetime contingency
    funds at State.


    Roger that.

  106. I really enjoyed it, cutler, thanks.

  107. BTW, Cutler:
    People that link to Pdf files w/o labeling them as such are EVIL!

  108. DR: The site that is supported largely by donations from its readers ... will move to a new site. There'll be announcement when the move is imminent.

    He's probably moving to a site with hit meters and pop-up ads to better facilitate the support of the site from reader donations. The existence of the Elephant Bar is testament to the fact that although Wretchard is an insightful diarist, it is the social element of the commentary that makes his site popular.

  109. Se dovessi rispondere d'istinto ,direi che sono contraria, dicendo, posso capire ma non condividere.
    Ma per me e' facile, non mi sono mai posta il problema,,,,,,,
    Se invece non avessi scelta,cioe' appartenessi ad un'altra cultura ,mi porrei la domanda se amo o meno l'uomo in oggetto
    Se la risposta fosse si, all├Čora comincerei con l'avvelenargli il mangiare dicendoglielo, fino a che lui non mi dica basta enon si metta a discutere sul tavolo delle trattative affinche si accorga di me.........
    Se invece non lo amassi,
    la risposta sarebbe ovvia , gli direi che tanto non lo amo e quindi non sento niente...........
    se lui ne ha una o cento, che differenza puo' fare????????????
    A questo punto mi chiedo, chi sarebbe il piu' sottomesso,
    Io ,umiliandolo dicendogli che non lo amo
    O lui , dovendo fingere con chi gli sta intorno ma in cuor suo sapere che non lo amo????????????????

  110. Questo era ieri ma oggi io sono l'uomo ovvero la donna ... signori ...