“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."

Thursday, September 11, 2008

US to Rest of World: "Mind Your Own Business."

"The world's verdict will be harsh if the US rejects the man it yearns for an America that disdains Obama for his global support risks turning current anti-Bush feeling into something far worse."

-Jonathan Freedland
The Guardian, Wednesday September 10 2008

The feeling is familiar. I had it four years ago and four years before that: a sinking feeling in the stomach. It's a kind of physical pessimism which says: "It's happening again. The Democrats are about to lose an election they should win - and it could not matter more."

In my head, I'm not as anxious for Barack Obama's chances as I was for John Kerry's in 2004 or Al Gore's in 2000. He is a better candidate than both put together, and all the empirical evidence says this year favours Democrats more than any since 1976. But still, I can't shake off the gloom.

Look at yesterday's opinion polls, which have John McCain either in a dead heat with Obama or narrowly ahead. Given the well-documented tendency of African-American candidates to perform better in polls than in elections - thanks to people who say they will vote for a black man but don't - this suggests Obama is now trailing badly. More troubling was the ABC News-Washington Post survey which found McCain ahead among white women by 53% to 41%. Two weeks ago, Obama had a 15% lead among women. There is only one explanation for that turnaround, and it was not McCain's tranquilliser of a convention speech: Obama's lead has been crushed by the Palin bounce.

So you can understand my pessimism. But it's now combined with a rising frustration. I watch as the Democrats stumble, uncertain how to take on Sarah Palin. Fight too hard, and the Republican machine, echoed by the ditto-heads in the conservative commentariat on talk radio and cable TV, will brand Democrats sexist, elitist snobs, patronising a small-town woman. Do nothing, and Palin's rise will continue unchecked, her novelty making even Obama look stale, her star power energising and motivating the Republican base.

So somehow Palin slips out of reach, no revelation - no matter how jaw-dropping or career-ending were it applied to a normal candidate - doing sufficient damage to slow her apparent march to power, dragging the charisma-deprived McCain behind her.

We know one of Palin's first acts as mayor of tiny Wasilla, Alaska was to ask the librarian the procedure for banning books. Oh, but that was a "rhetorical" question, says the McCain-Palin campaign. We know Palin is not telling the truth when she says she was against the notorious $400m "Bridge to Nowhere" project in Alaska - in fact, she campaigned for it - but she keeps repeating the claim anyway. She denounces the dipping of snouts in the Washington trough - but hired costly lobbyists to make sure Alaska got a bigger helping of federal dollars than any other state.

She claims to be a fiscal conservative, but left Wasilla saddled with debts it had never had before. She even seems to have claimed "per diem" allowances - taxpayers' money meant for out-of-town travel - when she was staying in her own house.

Yet somehow none of this is yet leaving a dent. The result is that a politician who conservative blogger Andrew Sullivan calls a "Christianist" - seeking to politicise Christianity the way Islamists politicise Islam - could soon be a heartbeat away from the presidency. Remember, this is a woman who once addressed a church congregation, saying of her work as governor - transport, policing and education - "really all of that stuff doesn't do any good if the people of Alaska's heart isn't right with God".

If Sarah Palin defies the conventional wisdom that says elections are determined by the top of the ticket, and somehow wins this for McCain, what will be the reaction? Yes, blue-state America will go into mourning once again, feeling estranged in its own country. A generation of young Americans - who back Obama in big numbers - will turn cynical, concluding that politics doesn't work after all. And, most depressing, many African-Americans will decide that if even Barack Obama - with all his conspicuous gifts - could not win, then no black man can ever be elected president.

But what of the rest of the world? This is the reaction I fear most. For Obama has stirred an excitement around the globe unmatched by any American politician in living memory. Polling in Germany, France, Britain and Russia shows that Obama would win by whopping majorities, with the pattern repeated in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America. If November 4 were a global ballot, Obama would win it handsomely. If the free world could choose its leader, it would be Barack Obama.

The crowd of 200,000 that rallied to hear him in Berlin in July did so not only because of his charisma, but also because they know he, like the majority of the world's population, opposed the Iraq war. McCain supported it, peddling the lie that Saddam was linked to 9/11. Non-Americans sense that Obama will not ride roughshod over the international system but will treat alliances and global institutions seriously: McCain wants to bypass the United Nations in favour of a US-friendly League of Democracies. McCain might talk a good game on climate change, but a repeated floor chant at the Republican convention was "Drill, baby, drill!", as if the solution to global warming were not a radical rethink of the US's entire energy system but more offshore oil rigs.

If Americans choose McCain, they will be turning their back on the rest of the world, choosing to show us four more years of the Bush-Cheney finger. And I predict a deeply unpleasant shift.

Until now, anti-Americanism has been exaggerated and much misunderstood: outside a leftist hardcore, it has mostly been anti-Bushism, opposition to this specific administration. But if McCain wins in November, that might well change. Suddenly Europeans and others will conclude that their dispute is with not only one ruling clique, but Americans themselves. For it will have been the American people, not the politicians, who will have passed up a once-in-a-generation chance for a fresh start - a fresh start the world is yearning for.

And the manner of that decision will matter, too. If it is deemed to have been about race - that Obama was rejected because of his colour - the world's verdict will be harsh. In that circumstance, Slate's Jacob Weisberg wrote recently, international opinion would conclude that "the United States had its day, but in the end couldn't put its own self-interest ahead of its crazy irrationality over race".

Even if it's not ethnic prejudice, but some other aspect of the culture wars, that proves decisive, the point still holds. For America to make a decision as grave as this one - while the planet boils and with the US fighting two wars - on the trivial basis that a hockey mom is likable and seems down to earth, would be to convey a lack of seriousness, a fleeing from reality, that does indeed suggest a nation in, to quote Weisberg, "historical decline". Let's not forget, McCain's campaign manager boasts that this election is "not about the issues."

Of course I know that even to mention Obama's support around the world is to hurt him. Incredibly, that large Berlin crowd damaged Obama at home, branding him the "candidate of Europe" and making him seem less of a patriotic American. But what does that say about today's America, that the world's esteem is now unwanted? If Americans reject Obama, they will be sending the clearest possible message to the rest of us - and, make no mistake, we shall hear it.



  1. OMG, the same "we are the world crowd" that elected leaders like Jacques Chirac, Gerhard Schroeder,Vladimir Putin, Gordon Brown, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, and Hugo Chavez will be upset if the US does not vote for Barack Obama. Really?

    Now will we cope?

    I sincerely hope we don't upset the Canadians and Mexicans as well.

  2. I can't sleep fretting about upsetting Jonathon.

  3. I know the feeling, deuce, you're not alone.

    The world's verdict will be harsh, deuce. What we gonna do? These people are our betters, we're only a little over two hundred years old, these folks go back a long way. The old countries, the wise countries. They'll force us into some kind of isolationism, I fear. They won't like us, make us go home.

    I'm having existencial angst. Maybe we can hang on in New Europe. Poland, the Baltic states. They still like us. If we had Poland, the Baltic states, Israel, we'd only need two more, to get to Obama's 57 states. Pick a couple more, ask them to join the union(Poland almost is the 51st state now), then say to hell with rest. We could flip 'em off, with an Obama style middle finger. Such a gesture might buck us up, allow us to reach down into our inner resources, allow us to grow. Maybe, even,we'd find we'd be better off without 'em.

  4. :) All our adversaries, the news says, are hoping for Obama. Russia, the muzzies, Chavez, the Castro Brothers, the whole darned bunch of them. I wonder why this would be.

    The Chinese though, seem to be staying out of it. Haven't heard about them taking sides.

    Ash too takes sides, right along with Russia, Hamas, Hezbollah, the Castro Brothers, Chavez. Famous company to run with, one must admit.

  5. Some commentator, Fred Barnes I think, pointed out today that Sarah Palin always seems joyous, happy.

    I'd noticed that too.

  6. There is no doubt that Obama's sexist attitude will go down well with publicly-declared Islamic supporters such as Hamas' political guru Ahmed Yousef ("we hope he will win the election"), Louis Farrakhan ("this young man is the hope of the entire world"), and Libyan President Muamar Khadafi who said in his endorsement speech that "all the people in the Arab and Islamic world and in Africa applauded this man. They welcomed him and prayed for his success."

    from an American Thinker article

    Good company indeed, a priviledge to associate with such fine folks.

  7. Mat, you can listen to Dr. Bill Wattenberg on KGO radio on your computor. Just go the KGO website, and somewhere there you can find Dr. Bill, and also the schedulings. Listening to Dr. Bill for a few weeks should bring you up to speed on all these energy issues. :)

    Only difference I noticed was Obama, marching to the drum of the democratic leadership, didn't mention the only way out, New Clear Energy, nuclear energy.

    You'll be able to charge that electric car up so hot you'll lay rubber!

  8. Bob,

    I see the issue as atomic weapons proliferation. I think the whole industry should be killed. Nothing will dissuade me of that.

  9. Plus, I don't believe for second that there's an economic argument to be made in favor of nukes.

  10. Canada PM: Troops home from Afghanistan in 2011

    TORONTO (AP) — Canada's prime minister vowed Wednesday to pull troops from Afghanistan in 2011, the first time he has said Canadian forces will leave the country.

    Prime Minister Stephen Harper said that Canadians do not want to keep soldiers in Afghanistan beyond then and that 10 years of war is enough.

    "You have to put an end date on these things," Harper told reporters during a breakfast briefing. "We intend to end it."
    Click Here to read the entire story by Rob Gillies

    Taliban urges next Canadian prime minister to pull troops out of Afghanistan

    KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — The Taliban say they know that an election campaign is underway in Canada and that's why they have stepped up attacks against Canadians in Afghanistan.

    Taliban spokesman Qari Muhammad Yussef said Tuesday the insurgent movement wants Canada's next prime minister to pull Canadian troops out of Afghanistan."Yes, I know that the election is being held in Canada.

    That is why our attacks on Canadians are increased," Yussef said through a translator."One of the Canadian soldiers, who has won a medal as well, was killed in our recent attacks." Click Here to read the entire story in The Canadian Press.

    - Shift in forces to Afghanistan less than requested -

    The modest shift in US forces to Afganistan announced Tuesday by President George W. Bush falls short of his commanders' requests despite signs the seven year-old US-NATO project there is at risk.While conditions have improved in Iraq, Bush admitted that things have not gone so well in Afghanistan, shaken by an increasingly bloody insurgency fueled from safe havens in Pakistan.

  11. Anthony Cordesman, a military expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, observed that the Taliban and other insurgent groups have dramatically expanded their presence in Afghanistan since 2004.

    Declassified US intelligence and UN maps show that the area of Taliban and insurgent influence or presence doubled between 2004 and 2005, quadrupled between 2005 and 2006, and rose sharply again between 2006 and 2007, Cordesman said.

    "At this point in time, US-NATO/ISAF-Afghan forces are simply too weak to deal with a multi-faceted insurgency with a de facto sanctuary along the entire Afghan-Pakistan border," Cordesman wrote in a paper posted on the CSIS website.

    Schloesser said there were areas of his sector of eastern Afghanistan where he had "very low numbers of troops."

    "I can come in and I can clobber the enemy, but then I can't hold it and stay with the people," he said.

  12. Unbelieveable incompetence in Washington.

  13. Not incompetence, Doug; Prioritization.

    The Main thing is to remember that the Main thing is the Main Thing.

    Iraq sits in the middle of 40% of the World's Oil. Afghanistan is a box of rocks in the middle of a field of rocks containing a few poppy plants.

  14. Yeah, them 147 training camps ain't nuthin.
    Nuclear Pakistan unglued is irrelevant.
    Give me a break, Rufus.

  15. 9-11 was partially blamed on Clinton for leaving ONE training camp, but letting them mushroom to 147 is fine.
    Don't add up.

  16. Then there's his refusal to secure the border, kicking and screaming and Lying for 7 years instead of doing what he was sworn to do.

  17. You said it, Doug; NUCLEAR Pakistan. It was Nuclear when Dubya took office. "Nuclear" is a Game-Changer.

  18. Let me ask you this: Is it better to have a few Talibs wandering around Afghanistan, kicking over a few rocks, or "Running Pakistan?"

  19. Speaking of such things; did you know that we're losing about 120 young men a year Drilling for Oil in Texas?

    Our casualties in the Oil Patch are starting to match our casualties in Iraq.

  20. US to Rest of World: "Mind Your Own Business."

    That is really rich coming from a Nation with a zillion military bases all over the world which has no qualms about invading and occupying sovereign nations, is actively working to over-throw the Iranian regime and explicitly funds political groups in other countries (i.e. Georgia).

    Little bit of hypocrisy there? Mind your own business when it comes to our election but f@ck you when it comes to your domestic politics for the USA has interests.

  21. Doug,

    On Harper's pledge to withdraw from Afghanistan:

    ""I think that we have to say to the government of Afghanistan: 'We have an expectation that you are going to be responsible for your own security. We're not there to permanently manage your security,' " Mr. Harper told reporters yesterday."

    That actually makes sense no?

  22. I thought you folks might like this article about the US ally Saudi Arabia:

    Terrorists 'cured' with cash, cars and counselling

    Controversial Saudi rehab program aims to reform jihadists returning from U.S. prisons


    From Thursday's Globe and Mail

    September 11, 2008 at 3:45 AM EDT

    JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia — He fought with Osama bin Laden in Tora Bora, lived with Abu Zubaydah in Peshawar and trained with Sheikh al-Libi in Afghanistan.

    So when Khalid Al Hubayshi returned home to Saudi Arabia in 2006 after three hard years at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, he thought his punishment would continue.

    Instead, he was treated to a private audience with the Prince, given a brand new Toyota Corolla and thousands of dollars in cash. The government helped him land a job at a state electrical company, financed his wedding and sponsored psychological counselling sessions aimed at dissolving any lingering jihadist tendencies.

    Mr. Al Hubayshi, now 33, is one of the first graduates of a controversial Saudi program designed to rehabilitate hard-core militants who have begun to trickle back home after serving time in U.S. detention.
    Young Saudi men released from the US Guantanamo Bay detention-centre as well as prisons in Iraq and Saudi Arabia leave after a religious class at an interior ministry rehabilitation centre, 80 kms north of the capital Riyadh, 03 November 2007. Saudi prisoners, released after years in detention, are usually taken to this centre to facilitate their reintegration in society. The former prisoners follow social and religious courses and practice sports activities for a period of time before they can go back home.

    The soft approach of the jihadist rehabilitation program is remarkable in a country ruled strictly by sharia law, where justice can involve public beheading and amputation.

    Prisoners are treated at the Hayar Care Center, a sprawling compound on the outskirts of Riyadh where perks include PlayStations, table tennis and art therapy."

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. The Business of the United States, is that of the World.
    The World's business revolves around the United States.

    Of course the foreigners have an interest in US elections, just as the US has an interest in Iraqi and Iranian and Israeli elections.

    Not forgetting to mention Georgia and Ukraine, where the US has been meddling for a decade.

    Just as the Sauds and Chinese meddle in the US, funding Republicans and Democrats, both.

    If the US is justified in maintaining 130,000 troops in Iraq, to guarentee free and fair elections, and sends observers to verify "fairness" in other country's elections, why should the US be excempt from a reciprical arrangement.

    That some feel that foreigners should mind their own business, a not very reasonable position, in a Global Village, the world is interconnected by trade and security concerns. The US leads the way in minding the business of others, those others follow and emulate US.

    What goes around, come around.

  25. That we allow "Nuclear" to be a game changer is absurd, in regards Pakistan.

    There is no Pakistani MAD capacity.
    Excempt at their end, as a target.

    That we allow them to dictate tactical and strategic policies to the US, is criminal.
    The Pakistani are the responsible country for the 9-11 attacks of SEVEN years ago, for which there has been no justice served.

    The Pakistani are the nuclear proliferators of record, throughout the world. To both Iran and NorK. Letting that cess pool fester is no "good thing".

    The Pakistani should disarm those nukes, volunteerily, or be forced to.

  26. If that course were followed, it would show the Iranians that there is NOTHING to be gained by arming up, but destruction of the capacity to project power.

  27. If the US is justified in maintaining 130,000 troops in Iraq, to guarentee free and fair elections, and sends observers to verify "fairness" in other country's elections, why should the US be excempt from a reciprical arrangement.

    Because WE Haven't Been CONQUERED, Yet?

  28. But we have been, conquered, amigo.

    That the northward migration continues is proof emough of that.

    20 million Mexicans have conquered the US.

    Learn it, Live it, Love it
    McCain '08

  29. Ah, Crap, Rat; you're just looking for something to bitch about. What would you have had us do? Bomb the Pakistani Missile Silos? What if the "nukes" aren't there?

    You've just put a nuclear-armed Al Queda in charge of Pakistan. Don't sound like much of a "plan" to me.

  30. Hell, they ain't even "conquered" N. Mexico, yet. Rasmussen has McCain up by two in the land of enchantment.

  31. When the Romans were ascending, they controlled migrations of peoples in Europe, It is how Caesar made his bones.

    When Rome was in decline, that decline was exemplified when they no longer could control those migrations. Then Rome was conquered, by those very migrants.

    So, one can either see the United States conquered and in decline or America ascendent.
    Both are accurate realities.

    The Republicans see an America ascendent.

  32. Burn the silos, the airports, the cities, if need be, rufus.

    It is a War, remember?

    Or come home, to Fortress America.

  33. Make Pakistan uninhabitable.

    They'll sue for Peace before that occurs, or not.

    It'd be up to them.

  34. Rufus, I heard the figure was over 600, across the whole of our country in the oil fields last year. If we had 600 dead in the nuclear industry, there would be a hue and cry. But even the environmentalists have to drive to work.

  35. This comment has been removed by the author.

  36. New Mexico
    RCP Average 08/13 - 09/08 --
    Obama 47.0, McCain 44.7
    Obama +2.3

  37. If the only two options are blast them to uninhabitability, or come home, do the former.

    If there were easy answers, it would be easy.

  38. Renewables/Nuclear Works, Bob.

    Fossil Fuels "Kill."

  39. Not to mention all that "unsafe sex" between MMS officials, and Oil Company "employees."


  40. The Presidential race in Pennsylvania has tightened since the conclusion of the party conventions last week. The latest Fox News/Rasmussen Reports telephone survey in the state finds Barack Obama leading John McCain 47% to 45% in the Keystone state (demographic crosstabs available for Premium Members).

    The latest Fox News/Rasmussen Reports telephone survey in Ohio, finds John McCain out in front of Barack Obama 51% to 44% (crosstabs available for Premium Members).

    Former Governor Mark Warner was the Keynote Speaker at the Democratic National Convention, but the presidential race in Virginia is still as close as it was in August. The latest Fox News/Rasmussen Reports telephone in the state shows John McCain with 49% of the vote while Barack Obama earns 47% (crosstabs available for Premium Members).

    The Presidential race in Florida is now tied. The latest Fox News/Rasmussen Reports telephone survey in the Sunshine State finds John McCain and Barack Obama each earning support from 48% of voters (crosstabs available for Premium Members).

    The latest Fox News/Rasmussen Reports telephone survey in Colorado shows Obama attracting 49% of the vote while McCain earns 46% (Demographic crosstabs are available for Premium Members.)

  41. The other options, bob, have failed, over the past SEVEN years.

    Performance, more than platitudes, counts.

    The performance of the US, versus border bandits, has been disgracefully bad.

    We have not taken, held & built, as is the new doctrine.

    We've just taken ground and then left it. It is back to the future, back to the 'Nam.

    Having local tribal leaders ally themselves with US, then having them killed by the jihadi, a sign of success, the militaries collective's spokes person told US, here.

  42. "Let me ask you this: Is it better to have a few Talibs wandering around Afghanistan, kicking over a few rocks, or "Running Pakistan?""
    What does that have to do with ONE HUNDRED FORTY SEVEN al-queda training camps in Pakistan?
    al-Queda training camp was a threat when there was ONE in Afghanistan, but 147 in Pakistan are not?

  43. We do not have, and will not build a bigger Army, bob.

    The military cannot find the additional 75,000 troops that have already been approved by Congress for an expanded force structure.

    The professional military does not want draftees on board.

    Realities and priorities.

    "We are all Georgians, now!"

  44. "An Iraqi plan to award six no-bid contracts to Western oil companies, which came under sharp criticism from several United States senators this summer, has been withdrawn, participants in the negotiations said on Wednesday.

    Iraq’s oil minister, Hussain al-Shahristani, told reporters at an OPEC summit meeting in Vienna on Tuesday that talks with Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Shell, Total, BP and several smaller companies for one-year deals, which were announced in June and subsequently delayed, had dragged on for so long that the companies could not now fulfill the work within that time frame. The companies confirmed on Wednesday that the deals had been canceled.

    While not particularly lucrative by industry standards, the contracts were valued for providing a foothold in Iraq at a time when oil companies are being shut out of energy-rich countries around the world. The companies will still be eligible to compete in open bidding in Iraq.


    Since that time, however, Iraq’s central government has moved on with other energy deals. The Oil Ministry last month signed its first major post-Hussein contract with the China National Petroleum Corporation. On Sunday, the Iraqi cabinet approved a deal with Shell to process natural gas in southern Iraq."

    h/t ballon-juice

  45. If the US, through its' CIA, was responsible for installing the Shah of Iran, if that is taken as a given.

    Then Pakistan, through the ISI, was responsilble for 9-11-01.

    By the Goose and Gander standard.

  46. No:
    Carter/Clinton = Bad
    Bush = Good

  47. I know, Rat. That Rory Stewart, guy that wrote the book about walking across Afghanistan, says have no illusions, these people are primatives. They'll fight on forever like they always have. He didn't really have any answer either. We maybe shouldn't have helped them against the Soviets. But, if we leave, they win, eventually.

    Bomb them to extinction is ok by me. They want to do it to us, and life will always be hell for 50% or the population there anyway. Much over 50% really. Wipe the board clean, sans islam, and start over.

    Or send Ash to negotiate with them.

  48. We gave them 10 Billion.
    They mostly used it as they pleased.

  49. For the first time in my life, I almost want someone with a twitchy finger on the nuclear trigger.

  50. If Pakistani nuclear capacity intimidate the US, then those Georgians, they're all Russians, now.

    And Maverick is really, really "out there" beyond the edge of sanity, for telling US otherwise.

    If the Pakistani are "to much" for US to deal with.

  51. Ash, Biden, and Obama negotiate Whirled Peas!

  52. Remember when everybody scoffed @ left's claim that Iraq was sapping resources from Afhanistan?

    Now the General on the ground says it is so.

  53. The man, who had waited three days to have his say, blurted out a comment that stunned the courtroom.

    "I feel the case down in Los Angeles—if someone got away with that, you would keep yourself clean and you wouldn't come back and commit another crime,"

    he said.
    That was Me.

  54. Bob,
    The wife and her French Wench friend are going to Vegas in a week or two?

    Any tips or suggestions?

  55. There isn't any answer to Afghanistan with the numbers we have there. Not in the sense of trying to build a civil society. We can control parts of it. I don't know what I'd do, if I were boss, about Afghanistan.

  56. Yes, Doug, I do have one. We always stay in the Motel 6 that's right by the strip there. Give me a minute, I'll look it up. Cheap(relatively) and you can walk right to the action.

  57. Did you ever take the Monorail, or whatever it is?

  58. (It might be "just" a train)

  59. It's a momorail, doug.

    From one gambling house to another.

  60. ESPN Zone: 1/2 mi
    Excalibur: 1/2 mi
    Gameworks: 1 mi
    Hard Rock Hotel and Cafe: 1/2 mi
    Hooters: 1 mi
    Walking distance to:

    Las Vegas Convention Center: 2.6 mi
    Las Vegas Outlet Mall : 3 mi
    Luxor: 1/2 mi
    M & M Factory: 1 mi
    Mandalay Bay Casino: 1.0 mi
    MGM Grand Las Vegas: 1/2 mi
    New York New York: 1/2 mi
    Planet Hollywood: 1/2 mi

    UNLV Thomas and Mack Center : 1/2 mi

    I always wander over to the MFM Grand.

    Place has an outdoor pool too.

    Downside, not fancy. And no motel/hotel security really. I never have felt threatened though.

  61. Yeah, we rode it.

    Another thing, the odds on the slots are said to be better downtown, and I think that's true.

    Dad took me into the old Golden Nugget in the fifties. There was no strip at all then. Just the tiny beginnings of one.

    We felt the hotel shack once, from a bomb test.

    Yeah, we'
    ve taken the monorail. Ride along from Casino to Casino as I recall.

  62. Tropicana Avenue:

    Was a private Dorm/Condo for girls in Isla Vista, bedroom for UCSB students, bank burners, and etc.
    Wifey was there for a while.

  63. You remind me:
    Some guy took a cross country trip and stayed in a concrete Tipi in AZ.
    Know about that, 'Rat?
    ...I'll try to find it.

  64. And, there's no place to eat at the Motel 6.

    Once in awhile, you might see something that looks suspiciously like a hooker round and about, too.

    But, then, you can see that in the Governor's Mansion.

  65. Who was it that "Numbered" those 147 Training Camps, anyway?

    Did he give a "map," or, at least, coordinates to the Air Force?

    Iraq was "job one," Doug. It's winding down; now, the military has "discovered a problem" in Afghanistan. Whatever.

    Personally, I don't much care. There ain't no oil in Afghanistan (or Pakistan.)

  66. AZ also has a cool retro campground w/50's era Trailers to rent.

  67. It will be a good place to work on the new UAV's, though. And, maybe, the laser gun.

  68. I found some store in Vegas that carried all sorts of home security stuff. And there, I found this potent stink bomb, advertised as the perfect thing to get back at your neighbors. Just flip it in his car some night, renders it unusable.

    Bought one, but have never used it:)

  69. "Who was it that "Numbered" those 147 Training Camps, anyway?"
    Previously classified govt info.
    I think I left a link in this thread, or the last one.

  70. Does sound like a great place to test that lazer gun, Rufus. Work all the kinks out of it, sending jihadis to Paradise:)

  71. Unilaterally Assured Destruction!

  72. was in that Cordesman link.

  73. Las Vegas, Nevada isn't the only Vegas around--

    Motel 6 Locations

    We found more than one possible match.
    Select one of the suggested matches below or search again. Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
    Las Vegas, New Mexico, United States
    Las Vegas, Baja California, Mexico
    Las Vegas, Sinaloa, Mexico
    Las Vegas, Veracruz, Mexico
    Las Vegas, Durango, Mexico
    Las Vegas, Guanajuato, Mexico
    Las Vegas, Sinaloa, Mexico
    Las Vegas, Puerto Rico
    Las Vegas, Puerto Rico
    Las Vegas, Dimmit, Texas, United States

  74. "UNLV Thomas and Mack Center : 1/2 mi"
    What's there?

  75. There used to be some of those teepees in Tempe, near the University, but they are long gone.

  76. Bill Roggio reports

    The Taliban and al Qaeda have expanded their network of training camps and support networks throughout northwestern Pakistan, beyond the lawless tribal agencies, senior intelligence officials tell The Long War Journal on the condition they remain anonymous.

    There are currently 157 training camps and "more than 400 support locations" spread throughout the tribal areas and the settled districts of the Northwest Frontier Province, senior intelligence officials speaking on the condition of anonymity told The Long War Journal. This number does not include Taliban camps and support locations in Baluchistan province.

    Other officials refused to give an exact number, only saying there are "well over 100 camps in northwestern Pakistan." Earlier this year, US intelligence sources told The Long War Journal that there were more than 100 camps inside northwestern Pakistan.

    The camps vary in size and specialty, and some are temporary. An estimated 25 to 50 camps are considered "permanent," meaning they are at a fixed location, with buildings, and sometimes a barracks and a headquarters.

    Some camps are devoted to training the Taliban's military arm, some train suicide bombers for attacks in Pakistan and Afghanistan, some focus on training the various Kashmiri terror groups, some train al Qaeda operatives for attacks in the West, and one serves as a training ground the Black Guard, the elite bodyguard for Osama bin Laden.

  77. I'm not sure what that is. UNLV isn't far away. There was an IANDS conference there I almost went to once.

    They've got some well funded Institute for the Study of Consciousness, or some such there now too. Can't think of the right name of it.

    Raymond Moody was the chair for awhile. Got a year or two appointment. Said, shit, being from Alabama, I never knew anything like this existed.

    Whole place is a cess pool, if you ask me. It's ok for a week or two. A year would be an eternity.

    Traffic is terrible these days, too. On them boulevards, people drive like they're in the Indy 500.

  78. There's a Howard Hughes Industries and Flight Museum, or some such, there, I think. That might be interesting. The Desert Inn, where he went hermit, got torn down long ago. It was small by the standards we're talking now.

    I know the real estate is cheap right now. You could get a condo or something, probably do well a few years down the line.


  79. A long time amigo has built some condos, right there on the Strip.

    He'll sell 'em for around $300,000 a piece, now.

    He brings Pam Anderson in to party with clients and shill 'em

    Let me know if you'd like one.

  80. Terrorists 'cured' with cash, cars and counselling

    Ashley, so what was wrong with cutting their heads off?

  81. Art Bell used to live 60 miles away over at Pahrumps, before he remarried.

    The desert round about is filled with the bones of dead men.

    An exciting activity is to tour the unclaimed section at the Vegas morgue. That's always exciting, always something new.

    hmmm, what else can I tell him...

    Whoring is legal outside the city limits, but you're too old and dignified for that anyway, and besides, it's your wife going.

    Let's see, you can drive up to the top of Mt. Charleston, is it, big mountain in the background. Good view. You can go see the dam, boat on the reservoir lake.

    If a terrorist attack occurs, head north this way, not to LA.

    That's about it, enjoy.

  82. The Sauds only do that to folk they consider criminals, mat

  83. Interesting link in case any of you havent seen it:

    Still seems to be a lot of Hillary supporters out there.

  84. Saddam had it right. Just run 'em through the wood chopper.

    I wonder if he actually did that, or if that was just American war propaganda.

    Sounds fairly efficient anyway.

  85. So, amigos, is First Dude really a Secessionist?

    I have heard no denials of that claim.

    Worse than Michelle Obama not being proud of the US, to advocate the demolition of the United States through secession, why that is treason.
    By Lincoln's definition of the word.

    Is the head of the Palin family a treasonous secessionist?

  86. feeling a little ornery there today Bobal? You seem keen to nuke 'em or put 'em through a wood chopper. Murder and Mayhem keep ya happy I guess?

  87. Can Todd Palin recite the Pledge and not lie?

    "I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands: one nation under God,
    with liberty and justice for all."

  88. It's called Reality Humour, Ash. A new concept to you.

  89. I maintain, despite the Civil War, it's still constitutionally undecided whether a state can say we want out, or no.

  90. The Sauds only do that to folk they consider criminals, mat

    Maybe they need a lesson in moral equivalence. Actually, no maybe about it.

  91. More US citizens were killed by Secessionists than by all the Jihadi and Commie/Marxists combined.

    A true threat to the Republic.

    And one could be living at the Naval Observatory?

    Have we lost our collective minds?

  92. So what's your plan, Ash?

    I know, just leave, and all will be well.

    For a little while.

  93. 600,000 US citizens died, to settle that Constitutional question, bob.

    There is no "out", once yor're in.

  94. Kinda like the Costra Nostra, in that way.

  95. Where are the threads savaging Todd Palin, a traitor to the Republic, while Ms Michelle is raked over the coals because she was not always proud of America?

    Why, if Mrs Palin has always been proud of the United States, did she not divorce her spouse for his traitourous beliefs and Secessionist Party membership?

    Did her love of the First Dude trump her patriotism and love of Country?
    Why did she not put Country First in her own life?

  96. Mrs Palin having been with the traitor for longer than Onbama was part of Rev Wright's church.

    Infecting her children with unpatriotic secessionist thoughts.

    Where is the outrage.

    Todd Palin did more than calling on God to damn the US, he joined a group that advocated its destruction.

  97. Agreed, they settled it de facto for sure. Least for awhile. But, where does it say in the Constituiton you can't get out?

    The Montana Constitution has some clause about guns being a prerequisite for joining. Some of them were threatening to leave, if the US Supreme Court ruled the other way on the 2nd Amendment.

  98. Just the other way. The sensible woman talked her husband out of a foolish idea. Lots of those salmon fishermen talk wild, once in a while.

    He may be a Libertarian now, wouldn't surprise me. I think maybe I read that, but not sure.

    Were you Arizonans part of the old Sage Brush Rebellion, as it was called up this way, some years back? Wanted all the Federal land given to the states.

    My wife and I have a bet, she saying Todd Palin will get corrupted by D.C., have an affair sometime during her term(s) in office. I said he'll stay true. She thinks he's a real hunk.

  99. This comment has been removed by the author.

  100. Rat, you're always talking about American manifest destiny, taking in Mexico etc. The New America.

    I'd think you'd appreciate a little secessionist talk :)

  101. Some of our Representitives were, bob.

    The Constituion does not give authority for the Federals to hold property, outside the Federal District, in actuality.

    But the de facto facts are that they do.

  102. The Constituion does not give permission for the Federals to hold property, outside the Federal District, in actuality

    Hadn't thought about that, but I'm glad it is the way it is. I don't want all that forest and desert land owned by the rich, which is what would end up happening. Eastern Congressmen would never vote to change it.

    Part of what makes America good is the national forests.

  103. I do, on occassion, bob.

    But not in the families of the Federal officals elected to preserve and protect the Constitution.

    An oath and responsiblity that McCain has already reneged upon.

  104. The land should have been transfered to the States, bob.

    But that never happened.

    Look to Texas, and the East, where there are no tracts of Federal Land.
    The "rich" do not own it all.

  105. Granny Obama

    Thieves try to steal solar panel off her tin roof.

    Where's Barry?

    It's his own grandmother.

    Where are his Christian convictins?
    Where is his compassion?
    Where is his sense of shame?

    Hides them off in a corner, cause they'd look foreign to the American voter.

    That's a liberal for you.

  106. I have looked to the east. Like it here a lot better here.

    Well, we'll disagree on this one.

    In Idaho, if the federal land went to Idaho, it wouldn't be long before it was auctioned off to the highest bidder, which wouldn't be me.

    Why should the State of Idaho control this land, the arguement would be.

    Private industry can manage it better.

    Government can't even manage the schools, etc. etc.

    Then the no trespassing signs.

  107. Most likely true, bob.

    Capitalism vs Socialism.

    Private ownership vs collective ownership.

  108. You opt for the collective, like the Socialists the Obama's are thought to be.

  109. Granny Obama is said to have claimed bouncing Barry was born right there in Kenya, she knows, she is reported to have said, cause she was there---

    From an article by Jeff Schreiber, see the link below.

    More breaking news, bad news that is, for Obama

    Phillip Berg filed a motion for extensive and expedited discovery in the Philadelphia federal courts as part of his suit contesting Illinois Senator Barack Obama's constitutional eligibility for the presidency.

    This motion filed by Berg on September 9, 2008 would require Obama to turn over the following records within ten days.

    * A "Genuine Certified Copy" of his "vault version" of his Birth Certificate.

    * Any and all certificates or other registrations of birth from Canada, Kenya, the British Isles and the United States in the name of Barack Hussein Obama, Barry Soetoro, and others.

    * A "Certified Copy" of the U.S. Oath of Allegiance required to be taken in order to regain any U.S. Citizenship status.

    * Any and all passport records including applications and travel logs connected with passports issued to Obama--or any previously used names--in Indonesia, Kenya, the United States and more.

    * Any and all adoption records, including records detailing the adoption of Obama by his presumed Indonesian stepfather, Lolo Soetoro, as well as his grandparents, the Dunhams.

    * A copy of his FBI background check used in the vetting process.

    * A copy of the "vault" version of his Birth Certificate from Kenya.

    * Any and all applications for a social security number and replacement social security cards.

    * Any and all applications and court documents detailing a name change.

    Within 20 days of the court order, should the motion be granted, Berg is also seeking other records which would provide a window into Barack Obama's past, including but not limited to college applications and records from Occidental College, Harvard and Harvard Law School, Columbia University, the University of Chicago and any other schools to which Obama applied, as well as any applications for college grants and loans, copies of any college thesis papers or other essays written which could shed light on his life, background, heritage and childhood.

    Go here to read this article by Jeff Schreiber:

  110. I opt for my traditional access to our common heritage, your national forests, and mine.

    I'll die to defend your rights to fish those lakes behind McCall, Idaho, Rat!

    Some things should be beyond private ownership.

  111. Like the pristine wilderness of ANWAR coastal plain.

  112. One fellows pristine wilderness, is always anothers exploitable resource.

  113. This Phillip Berg, the lawyer in the suit, seems like kind of a whacko, yet he is, or was, an assistant US district attorney. He has a bunch of looney cases in his background, and this one is really poorly writen.

    Be interesting to see what the judge does. I don't think he can just dismiss it, without any discovery.

  114. Barry Goldwater was willing to dam the Grand Canyon, to supply water and power to the US.

    He thought that even that prisitne area should be exploited for the public good.

    Cannot say I agree, but I do understand the perspective.

  115. Used in a rational manner, such as the sustained yield doctrine, used here these days, no more board feet out than grows each year, for the good of all of us.

    I don't think they are logging up to that sustained yield level now, though I may be wrong.

    The management of the forests has gotten better not worse over the years, excepting maybe fire policy, I think.

    They used to really make a mess, doze roads right by the streams, etc. clearcut everything, but have been sued into rationality. I support some of those lawsuits. Better than the old ways, the lobbyists, timber companies, the forest manager told to play the game.

  116. Sure the Judge can dismiss it, bob.
    The fellow has no standing to make his claims.

  117. We had all those dams built on the Snake and Columbia. Did a lot of people a lot of good, no doubt. But, enough is enough.

    On the Snake, there's only maybe two places left that are good candidates for dams now anyway.

  118. Exactly, bob.

    As we took the Forest Service to Federal Court, so they'd obey the Federal Laws.

    The Forests will not be dismantled or turned private, not any time soon.

    But the Federal Forest Service, as stewards of the land, have done a poor, poor job.
    Just blowin' in the political winds.

  119. Why not, he's an American citizen. A rational man might well think Obama is hiding something. Lots of people do.

    Discovery is the way to find out.

    It should be an easy matter for Team Obama to put the matter to rest, and make the lawyer look like a publicity seeking fool.

  120. He'd have to wait for Obama to be elected, then prove that Obama was not qualified to serve.

    The case that Obama is not qualified, to be made before hand, would have to be made in each State, the defendent being the State, not Obama.
    In an effort to keep his name off the ballot.

  121. I agree they've done a poor job. But, you've shown they can be fought.

    It is getting better around here though. These timber sales now have to jump through a lot of hoops. Environmental impact statements, Endangered Species Act, public imput, hearings, threat of being sued. The works.

    There's some lawyer at Coeur d Alene, that's all he does, just for that region alone, and he's really good at it.

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  123. The US State Department has validated Obama's Birth Certificate

    They are the deciders on matters of citizenship. They and the individual States.

    It is a settled matter, bob.

  124. Well, maybe, but as far as I know, the judge didn't dismiss it. Now he's asking for an expedited discovery.

    Maybe Obama hasn't moved to have it dismissed yet. I don't know.

    He's sued the Democratic Party too, I think, or Democratic National Committee, whatever.

    It's not a settled matter in Berg's mind. He's alleging fraud on Obama's part.

  125. I admit Berg is likely to lose.

    gotta run

  126. This comment has been removed by the author.

  127. Ashley, you can buzz off!


    World of the Sages: Buzzing flies
    Sep. 11, 2008
    Levi Cooper

    Our sages seek to explain the nature of the yetzer hara, the evil inclination that diverts us from the path of righteousness. According to one view the yetzer hara is comparable to a fly that sits between the two gateways of the heart (B. Brachot 61a). To buttress this image, a proof text is offered: Flies of death fester and putrefy perfumed oil (Ecclesiastes 10:1).

    Commenting on this verse, Rashi (11th century, France) explains that a single fly which falls into a container of perfumed oil can spoil the entire contents. Thus the talmudic passage seems to be suggesting that the yetzer hara is not a large monster; it is a small annoying fly buzzing around our heart and distracting us from our destiny. Such a seemingly inconsequential creature can ruin that which is essentially good.

    Perhaps following on from this talmudic passage, the midrash likens Amalek, the arch-enemy of the Jewish people for all generations, to a fly (Yalkut Shimoni). In the Bible, Amalek is the first to attack the fledgling Jewish nation after its liberation from Egypt (Exodus 17:8-16). Amalek becomes the scourge of our people in every generation and we are commanded to eradicate Amalek (Deuteronomy 25:17-19).

    In what way is Amalek like a fly? The midrash explains that just like a fly, Amalek was excited by an open wound. The Jewish people had just left years of slavery; they were tired, frail and scared, and had yet to coalesce into a nation. Perceiving this weakness, Amalek attacked, beginning the assault on the most fragile elements of the people, the stragglers.

    It is well known that since biblical times we do not identify Amalek with one specific nation, and we do not seek to eradicate any group of people. Amalek today is a concept, the idea of ultimate evil: Nations that prey on weaknesses, godlessly and unsympathetically seeking to harm, are compared to Amalek. Amalek, however, is not just the other; Amalek can also be inside of us: That voice that chirps in when we are most feeble, striking at our core by picking at tender wounds. In this context Amalek is identified with the yetzer hara, the evil inside of us that constantly seeks to undermine and destabilize, thus stunting spiritual growth. It is these Amaleks that are the bane of our existence, and it is against them that we battle.

    One of the biblical commentators - Rabbi Shlomo Ephraim Luntschitz (Kli Yakar, 1550-1619, Lenczyk-Lublin-Prague) - explains the fly analogy further. A fly is powerless to bore a hole in a piece of flesh. Only once the fly finds a lesion or an open cut does it have the ability to further the damage. Thus - says Rabbi Luntschitz - Amalek has no power against a righteous person. It is only when there is an open wound, a fault or weakness, that the Amalek fly can further maim us.

    In light of the commandment to rid ourselves of Amalek by wiping out the name of this maggot-like enemy that feeds on our open wounds, there is a strange annotation in the Talmud (B. Bava Batra 46b). Occasionally, the talmudic text contains a mnemonic device, a word or phrase where each letter or word hints at a passage in the ensuing text. These annotations are accompanied by the word siman (sign) to indicate that they are not part of the talmudic discussion but an aide-mémoire. Probably the most surprising siman in the entire Talmud is the use of the word Amalek as such an annotation!

    How could it be that the very name we are instructed to wipe out is given such a prominent place in one of our dearest and most studied texts? Moreover, placing it in the Talmud essentially means that it will never be fully wiped out, for who would dare to erase the text of the Talmud? Most commentators do not relate to this strange siman. Rabbi Ya'acov Emden (1697-1776, Altona), however, notes how surprising it is to find this mnemonic device. He offers a number of tentative answers. First, he notes that while we are instructed to erase any trace of Amalek, we are simultaneously enjoined to remember and never to forget Amalek's heinous actions. This siman ensures that we recall Amalek's foul deeds, in a manner similar to the annual obligatory public reading of the biblical censure of Amalek.

    Rabbi Emden offers a further innovative direction by referencing another talmudic passage: "If that despicable character [the yetzer hara] attempts to harm you, drag it to the beit midrash. If the yetzer hara is like a stone, the Torah will wear it away; if the yetzer hara is like iron, the Torah will smash it to smithereens" (B. Kiddushin 30b). By placing Amalek's name in the middle of the Talmud, Amalek has been forcibly dragged into the beit midrash. Furthermore, anyone learning this passage encounters his name and uses his name for recalling four cases detailed in the Talmud.

    Rabbi Emden further comments that by bringing Amalek into the beit midrash and disarming him, we can then extract whatever positive forces are hidden within.

    In light of Rabbi Luntschitz's comment we can add that bringing Amalek into the beit midrash is akin to bringing him into the fortress of our tradition. In this consecrated space Amalek is powerless, for when we delve into our tradition we are at our strongest; there are no festering wounds in the beit midrash.

    Rabbi Emden's explanation offers a plan for the ongoing battle against Amalek: By reaffirming our fidelity to the hallowed texts of our tradition, we strengthen ourselves and immunize our souls against foreign, harmful distractions. Perhaps it is even significant that the word Amalek is used as a mnemonic tool, suggesting that the best way to combat Amalek is to remember who we are. The buzzing fly of Amalek may not just be an annoying background sound, waiting to infect an open wound. The buzzing fly is there to remind us to be loyal to our true identity.

    The writer is on the faculty of Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies and is a rabbi in Tzur Hadassah.

  128. September 10, 2008
    Pinch Sulzberger, union-buster
    Thomas Lifson

    The New York Times destroys the jobs of 550 union members, replacing them with non-union labor. And not for the first time is the very wealthy Pinch Sulzberger squeezing money out of workers who weren't born to a hereditary fortune.

    via: American Thinker Blog

  129. Contemplating Amalek, Rabbi Bobb ben Al (Bobalm), he of revered memory, reached for his swatter, thinking to smash Amalek to ash.

    Canadian Abortion Doctors Buzz Like Heat Maddened Summer Flies About Palin--

    Canadian Doctors Group Worried Palin Example Will Lower Down's Abortion Rate

    By Thaddeus M. Baklinski

    TORONTO, September 10, 2008 ( - U.S. vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin's loving and highly-publicized acceptance of her Down's syndrome child Trig has some Canadian doctors worried that her example may lead to mothers shunning abortion after diagnosis of Down's syndrome.

    Dr. Andre Lalonde, executive vice-president of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada (SOGC), told the Globe and Mail yesterday, "Palin's decision to keep her baby, knowing he would be born with the condition, may inadvertently influence other women who may lack the necessary emotional and financial support to do the same."

    "The worry is that this will have an implication for abortion issues in Canada," he said.

    Under the facade of "freedom to choose", Lalonde said that "popular messages" about women like Palin, who choose not to kill their unborn children, "could have detrimental effects on women and their families."

    Those docs are worried about their bottom line.

  130. RCP moves FL to leaning McCain, but that does not change the "No Leaners" map, which still has it Obama 273, McCain 265
    with 270 Needed to win.
    Tie goes to Obama.

  131. In short, Canada has gotten into eugenics.

    Falling Man Revisited

  132. If New Hampshire switched to McCain, they'd be tied in electoral votes.

  133. Keep reading how the Dems are repeating the mantra "no one votes for VP"

    That does not square with the ladies I spoke to, last night, at the bowling alley.

    None thought much of McCain, but they were going to vote for Palin.
    A woman after their own hearts.

    That's here in AZ, where McCain is a known entity. Perhaps in other locales it would not be seen the same way.

  134. no Bobal, they are not worried about their bottom line but rather the emotional and financial toll experience through trying to raise a Down's syndrome child.

  135. So has the United States, bob.
    Gotten into eugenics.

    400,000 Black babies are aborted annually.

  136. Michigan and Pennslyvania are in play, so 'tis said.

  137. Especially in Canada, bob, where the State picks up the medical costs.

    If those Docs were really concerned with "the bottom line" they'd encourage the birth of those more medically dependent children.

  138. Right, those docs taking on the emotion pain and frustration of all the women, like Christ the sins of the world.


    Once a doc has specialized, it's hard to switch. The abortionists need the babies. Many middle ages abortionists to old to switch.

  139. Lots of studies on abortion have shown that women suffer emotion problems from that, not giving birth.

    I know all about special needs kids, it was my wife's line of work. They come in all spectrums, from the utterly hopeless to the joyful to around.

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  141. Obama is up by 2 points in both of those, bob.

    But VA is close, too, with McCain up by 2 points, there.

    If one believes Bob Beckel ...

    Blacks are registering to vote at historic rates in 2008 and turnout will soar above 2004 levels. Some examples:

    • In Colorado there are 110,000 eligible black voters. Only 50,000 voted in 2004.

    • In Ohio there are 860,000 eligible black voters. Only 380,000 voted in 2004. (Remember Kerry lost by only 120,000 votes).

    • In Virginia, 945,000 eligible black voters, 465,000 voted in 2004

    • Florida; 1,750,000 eligible blacks, 770,000 voted in 2004.

    None of those folk would be counted, even if polled.

    The polls have discounted Obama, throughout the Primaries.

    Only time will tell

  142. On the other side of the equation is the Bradley Effect.

    Really hard to tell what's going on.

  143. Maybe the great good God's purpose in bringing special needs kids into the world was to teach compassion and patience, Ash.

  144. Fools say so. In their heart too, Scripture says.

    What's God got to do with human rights, Ash?

    Some here, if they had been given the 'choice', without all this foolishness about God, would gladly have aborted you.

  145. But what does that say about today's America, that the world's esteem is now unwanted? If Americans reject Obama, they will be sending the clearest possible message to the rest of us - and, make no mistake, we shall hear it.

    "...we shall hear it."

    What does that mean? Does it mean that we're flipping them the bird or does it mean that they will take the message to heart? The left, domestic and internacionale doesn't understand traditional America. They don't understand our religious belief. They think we bitterly cling to our guns and religion. Even some here at the EB do not know that traditional, God fearing Christians and Jews are not the radicals. For most of our country's history, religious Bible believing people were the mainstream. It is only since WWII that a creeping liberalism has turned our culture upside down and inside out. Now, more people than not do not acknowledge "sin" or are able to recognize that the value and sanctity of life. Why would those of us who cling to our Bibles and Guns seek the approval of a world which has turned its back on God?

  146. It is hard to dominate them in the American way, whit, witout their approval.

    This is seen today, with the transfer of $700 billion annually, to those that no longer approve of US.

    Those exporters now dominate the US.

    So while it's well and good to talk of guns and bibles, neither of those will solve the country's current challenges.

    And we must put Country First,
    not our guns or bibles.

  147. I don't see how the traditional churches in the United States could have hit on a better spokeswoman than Sarah Palin. My friend Dale says she is a gift from God.

  148. If one stands with Maverick, it's Country before Constitution.

    He believing the US a land of men, not of Laws.
    But then he asks God's blessing for America, not the United States.

    His field of vision is larger than the Constitution, it's Continental.

  149. Look, our foreign relations aren't as bad as the left makes them out to be these days. Canada, France, Germany have moved to the right and it looks like Tories are set to take over in Great Britain.

  150. That business of "America" versus the "United States" is bogus unless you're from south of the border. Other than you Rat, they seem to be the only ones who get bent when someone refers to the U.S. as America. Most people understand the reference.

  151. The tree of liberty grows only when watered by the blood of tyrants. [Fr., L'arbre de la liberte ne croit qu'arrose par le sang des tyrans.]
    Author: Bertrand Barere
    Source: Speech in the Convention Nationale

    Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)
    QUOTATION: The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is it’s natural manure.
    ATTRIBUTION: THOMAS JEFFERSON, letter to William Stephens Smith, November 13, 1787.—The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Julian P. Boyd, vol. 12, p. 356 (1955).

    A related idea was later expressed by Bertrand Barère de Vieuzac in a speech to the French national assembly, January 16, 1793: “L’arbre de la liberté… croît lorsqu’il est arrosé du sang de toute espèce de tyrans (The tree of liberty grows only when watered by the blood of tyrants),” Archives Parliamentaires de 1787 à 1860, vol. 57, p. 368 (1900).

    And much earlier Tertullian had said: “Plures efficimur quotiens metimur a vobis; semen est sanguis Christianorum (We multiply whenever we are mown down by you; the blood of Christians is seed),” Apology, trans. T. R. Glover, pp. 226–27 (1931).

    Alas, The Tree of Tyranny is often watered with the blood of the people, too.

    Considering islamic martyrdom, and all the other martyrdoms around, one almost comes to the conclusion the human race likes to die for an idea, no matter how implausible.

    Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

  152. What I was trying to say was, it's one thing to die for a good idea, another thing to die for one that's nuts.

  153. After 21 months, in the style of St. Simeon Stylites, Tree Sitters in Berkeley Brought Low

    Episode in pictures.

    Sam and I coulda cleaned 'em out fast with that John Deere super automatic tree faller and log cutter.

  154. The current talk is that the US population , mostly from immigration will be heading for 400,000,000. I think some serious thought ought to be given to ask if the American people want to have a country of 400 million because of immigration.

    I am beginning to believe that we may need to consider devolution of the union. The states that want unlimited population growth can have it if they so choose and the others not.

  155. Words have meaning, whit.

    That the US public is so poorly educated with regards to the English language and the meanings of the words, as well as geography, in the Global Village of Western Civilization, is just another reason we are poorly recieved.

    Domesticly it is easy to dismiss the "so called Rights" of citizens if one easily dismisses the the name of the Country, as well.

  156. Interesting idea, duece, but not about to happen.

    Certainly not to be entertained by Team Maverick. Nor the Republican Party establishment.

    The migratiion is well under way and there is not a National politico that stands agaist it.

    Some locally elected politicos gain traction with the migration issue, but none on the National level even discuss it, as a problem. Those that do, they are slated for political oblivion.

  157. You guys all support the man that believes "Good" Government trumps Constitutional Government.

    With the definition of "Good" to be open to discussion, based upon the virtue of the victorious.

  158. must be the will of the people then

  159. The current talk is that the US population , mostly from immigration will be heading for 400,000,000.

    It's a nightmare. I was surprised recently at the latest census figures from S. Idaho. Nearly 20% Hispanic, I think it was. At least in some areas.

    We're nuts, letting this go on.

    You'd have to break the country up, deuce. How are we in Idaho to defend out borders? Our borders are much longer than the Mexican border. If it's going to be stopped it's got to be down there.

    I think it's the biggest problem we have, not even addressed in this campaign. I have no idea what Palin thinks about immigration. Ike had Operation Wetback, way back in th fifties, when LA was still a recoginizably American town.

  160. Certainly seems that way, ash.

    Though many protest the idea, there is nothing, nada, zero being done to stem the tide of migration in America, continental America.

    If that is not the "will of the people" as represented by our elected politicos, what is it?

  161. Ash, put your idealism to work. Go live with the unwashed millions for awhile, give something back to the third world community. You've spent enough time sailing and golfing! Time to get morally serious!

    I noticed in the recent church bulletin for instance. The church took the high school kids to Seattle to work in the soup kitchens for a week this summer.

    Sign up with the community organizers in south Chicago, Obama's got the deal all in hand. Casualties only two or three times that of Iraq.

  162. Having local tribal leaders ally themselves with US, then having them killed by the jihadi, a sign of success, the militaries collective's spokes person told US, here.

    Thu Sep 11, 10:58:00 AM EDT

    What I said is that Afghan tribal leaders were being targeted because of our success in wooing them.

    It's one thing to be a full blown nut job, Rat. Another thing to be a sneering jackass.

  163. That 20%, bob, they're Americans.
    Documented by the Government, or not. They still are Americans.

    The border is as open as ever.

    With some eye wash applied for consumer contentment.

    Take back the Federal Government, but that means taking out the elite special interests, as exemplified by Obama and McCain.

    Vote Barr '08 ;)

  164. It's the will of the paid politicians, you know all that, Rat. 70-80% of the people want the borders closed. Our democracy is disfunctional.

    The will of shits like Senator
    Craig. Who always sold out the American worker, for the business interests. And he was one of the good guys, supported the 2nd Amendment, low taxes, energy.

  165. Sometimes I wish we'd have a depression, if it would help get them outta here.

    How's the border fence coming? Slow, I imagine. If Obama gets in, it'll be stopped.

  166. Their not being protected, after allying themselves with US, a sure sign of success. Not.

    That they are being targeted and killed, after allying with US, that is a sign of failure.

    Pitifully poor performance, to not protect those that ally themselves with US. Especially if those local alliances are an important part of US strategic planning

  167. From what I can tell from the bits and pieces, Sarah Palin seems to have held up ok in the first part of her interview with the ABC reported, to be aired tonight.

    Stood up strong for Israel, as to be expected.

  168. Doug,

    You might be interested in the CSIS survey of Pakistani opinion done back in April. (They are more optimistic about the country's future than at any time previously.) Definitely a worthwhile read. Avail at the website.

    Now who went and pissed off the Russians again? Because, brother, they are hell bent on poking us with a sharp stick.

  169. Their not being protected, after allying themselves with US, a sure sign of success. Not.

    - Rat

    I do not recall identifying the murder of tribal leaders as a suscess in any way, shape, or form. Of course, neither do you recall that I did so. You're just determined to be juvenile.

    Remember back when warlords were a bad thing? Well, a lot of them were disarmed in the nation building pursuit of a monopoly on the use of force. At one time that was a favorite theme of yours down in Iraq. Substitute "warlord" for "militia." Ring a bell?

  170. Hell, trish, last time you said the Russians were nervous, this time they are poking US.

    Are they nervous, or nervy

  171. Bob.

    The adulation of Sarah Palin is gettin' a little creepy. A little.

    Just sayin'.

  172. Are they nervous, or nervy

    Thu Sep 11, 07:59:00 PM EDT

    They *were* nervous.

    Now they're nervy.

    Apparently we went and did something contrary to what we indicated.

  173. Your guess is as good as mine; feel free to speculate.

  174. Contemplating Amalek, Rabbi Bobb ben Al (Bobalm), he of revered memory, reached for his swatter, thinking to smash Amalek to ash.
    Contemplating Rabbi Bobb ben Al (Bobalm), he of revered memory, reaching for his swatter, thinking to smash Amalek to ash, Rabbi metuselah ben haifa (חי-פה also read "hai-po", meaning "lives here"), he of eternal accommodation on the mount surrounded by a sea and pine, reached for his words of sword thinking to actualize the thought into action.



    So says Tony Blair's sister in law TRAPPED in the horror of Darfur LIKE gaza..

    British journalist and peace activist Lauren Booth, sister-in-law of former British premier Tony Blair who is now an international Middle East peace envoy, shops at a grocery store in Gaza City on September 3, 2008. Booth said today she is trapped in Gaza as Israel refuses to let her leave the Palestinian territory she entered aboard a protest boat.

  176. The current talk is that the US population , mostly from immigration will be heading for 400,000,000.

    That's a given, but it will happen about forty years from now, according to the US census bureau. It took about forty years to go from 200 million to 300 million. which according to a little simple 'rithmatic is a 0.7% annualized net growth rate. That estimate of 40 years to the next milestone assumes a full percent of annual net increase. And it's better to be growing than imploding, like Russia. Our little brown Americans play baseball, France's little brown French people burn cars.

  177. I'll try to tone it back a bit, to please you, dear.

  178. So Obama after the obligatory vigil at Ground Zero heads off to a Machiavellian meeting with HillandBill at Harlemlibrary. Wonder what the discussion is about.

  179. McCain's offered Obama a cabinet post as head of community organizers or National Service--

    This is one promise that Senator John McCain might struggle to keep if he does win in November. When asked by Time's Rick Stengel, moderating the 9/11 anniversary forum on national service here at Columbia University in uptown New York city, whether he would give Barack Obama a cabinet job, he responded that he would.

    "Governor Schwarzenegger has made the service czar a cabinet-level appointment," Stengel said. "Would you, as president, do the same and would you name Senator Obama to your cabinet for National Service?" McCain paused for a beat before replying with a smile: "Yes!" Cue laughter and applause.

    He also praised Senator Obama for his "outstanding" work as a community organiser - a profession derided by Rudy Giuliani and Sarah Palin at the Republican convention in St Paul last week. "Of course I respect community organisers," he said. "Of course I respect people who serve their communities. Sentaor Obama's service in that area is outstanding,"

  180. Here's a Libertarian that thinks Sarah Palin Is A Great Choice for VP, or for President

    Libertarians for Palin.

    Everybody loves that wonderful accomplished woman.

  181. DOOM DOOM DOOM haunts the democrats--

    Democrats on Capitol Hill fear Obama fallout
    By Andrew Ward in Washington

    Published: September 11 2008 23:30 | Last updated: September 11 2008 23:30

    Democratic jitters about the US presidential race have spread to Capitol Hill, where some members of Congress are worried that Barack Obama’s faltering campaign could hurt their chances of re-election.

    Party leaders have been hoping to strengthen Democratic control of the House and Senate in November, but John McCain’s jump in the polls has stoked fears of a Republican resurgence.

    In depth: US campaign 2008 - Sep-10Analysis: How the internet drives the US campaign - Sep-11Philip Stephens: A new president and a wake-up call for the west - Sep-11Candidate truce for anniversary - Sep-11Civility jettisoned in race for votes - Sep-10McCain camp mocks PM over Obama - Sep-11A Democratic fundraiser for Congressional candidates said some planned to distance themselves from Mr Obama and not attack Mr McCain.

    “If people are voting for McCain it could help Republicans all the way down the ticket, even in a year when the Democrats should be sweeping all before us,” said the fundraiser, a former Hillary Clinton supporter.

    “There is a growing sense of doom among Democrats I have spoken to . . . People are going crazy, telling the campaign ‘you’ve got to do something’.”