“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, September 25, 2009

Obama Talks Tough - Admadenijad responds, "Oooh, I'm scared."

This week, Benjamin Netanyahu chided much of the UN as shameless and a disgrace. I agree. The UN is a worthless talking shop but our leaders aren't much better.

President Barack Obama declared Friday that Iran is on a path to confrontation with world powers unless it agrees to "come clean" and disclose all its nuclear activities. He said he would not rule out military action.

Obama joined the leaders of Britain and France in accusing the Islamic republic of clandestinely building an underground plant to make nuclear fuel that could be used to build an atomic bomb. Iranian officials acknowledged the facility but insisted it had been reported to nuclear authorities as required.

"Iran's action raised grave doubts" about its promise to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes only, Obama told a news conference at the conclusion of a G-20 summit whose focus on world economic recovery was overshadowed by disclosure of the Iranian plant .

Obama seemed to hold out limited hope that a meeting next week between Iran, the U.S. and other world powers would lead to resolution of the nuclear standoff.

"When we find that diplomacy does not work, we will be in a much stronger position to, for example, apply sanctions that have bite," he said. "That's not the preferred course of action. I would love nothing more than to see Iran choose the responsible path."

When we find that diplomacy does not work? How long have we been trying diplomacy? How many years ago did George Bush back off and let the Europeans resolve the issue? This 2005 article, IRAN: Nuclear Negotiations shows how ridiculous and hollow President Obama's statement really is:

What is the status of Europe's nuclear negotiations with Iran?

They are in trouble. Since October 2003, Iran and three members of the European Union (EU)--Britain, France, and Germany--have engaged in negotiations to ensure that Iran will not develop nuclear weapons. The Europeans have asked Iran to relinquish its uranium-enrichment program because the technology can easily be adapted for military uses. Iranians, however, say they will not give up what they see as their sovereign right to enrich uranium as part of a peaceful nuclear program. In recent weeks, the stances of both sides have toughened. A last-ditch attempt at reviving the talks will take place in Geneva May 25.

For years we have stamped our feet, wagged our fingers, pitched our fits and made one hollow threat after another while the Iranians shook their fists at us, threatened Israel with annihilation and forged ahead with their nuclear program. Now, our fearless leader declares that when we "find that diplomacy does not work", we'll apply sanctions with a bite. Please!

We are lead by spineless, prevaricating metrosexuals. Men with the barks and bites of chihuahuas. A pox on all their houses.


  1. Well, what action should we be taking?

    Tanking the whirled economy with military action that shuts down the Chinese and Indian economies?

    Pursuing a diplomatic solution has shown that the US's rhetorical position is not viable. The whirled community is not afraid of a nuclear Iran, nor Pakistan, India or Isreal, for that matter.

    We speak loudly, but carry no stick. The rest of the whirled, our inter-connected whirled, does not believe that the Iranian capacity in their midst represents a real threat.

    While we, half a world away, cackle like hens. Continuing to fund World Bank developments, in Iran.

    Even the Europeon missile shield defense, that is portrayed as a "Russian" win, when in reality it examplifies that the Europeons that will not fund their own defense against the supposed Iranian threat. A threat they do not consider viable or worthy of defense expenditures to counter.

    The Iranians, with whatever capabilities they do have, threaten those Europeons, more so than they do US.

    What is the alternative option proposed?

  2. We at the EB are not advocating for military action, against Iran, while we continue to fund water development projects in Iran, are we?

    Should we not take the economic and diplomatic steps available to US, before advocating military action?

    At least advocate for tougher economic and political steps, first? The Bar stood with the US for the last eight years, while the Europeons talked, why be afraid of direct discussions with Iranians, now?

  3. What are you going to speak with them about Chief?

    Pssst... keep talking = still developing, until developed

    The EB anxiously awaits your diplomatic thesis

  4. I think we should have a very direct discussion with the Mullahs in Iran while at the same time we have a direct discussion with the people of Iran. We should tell the Mullahs that we will help them usher in their Mahdi. We should tell the Iranian people that the Mullahs are leading them on a path to destruction but it's not too late for their own "hope and change."

  5. For starters, I think we ought to leave Europe, South Korea and the UN.

  6. Whit articulates the obvious US position, in the 21st century.

    Withdraw, militarily to the Americas, leaving force projection to the Air Force, Navy and the base we keep in Diego Garcia.

  7. Rat

    I havent agreed with you much on anything lately, but I think you are right on the mark. Let Europe defend themselves.

    "ooh, I'm scared." Whit that's hilarious....I agree with you also, let's moon walk back to the states.

  8. And what, elijah, do you propose?

    That was the original question, the one you avoided.

    Articulate the proper US response, as you see it, please.

  9. whit wrote:

    "We are lead by spineless, prevaricating metrosexuals. Men with the barks and bites of chihuahuas. A pox on all their houses."

    jeeeze, so, whit, and I presume the rest here, are all for asserting their MANHOOD, marshaling the troops and attacking the silly buggers. Fuck'em - they fuck with US well, we'll FUCK THEM GOOD! launch them missiles, loft the bombers, deploy the ground forces - LOOKOOUT IRAN 'cause the metrosexuals are sidellined - the REAL MEN are in charge!!!

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. doesn't mean squat what I think or propose

    the more appropriate question chief...
    what is the Obama administration going to do?

    my guess is that Israel will act, Iran will retaliate against the U.S., and the administration will have to make some very difficult decisions

    probably very difficult days ahead

  12. We'll splash the Isreali, in transit to the Iranian targets.

    You can count on that, from President Obama.

  13. T said:
    "Didn't our grandparents fight the National Socialists in Germany?"
    Yours may have, it was our parents!

  14. "We'll splash the Isreali, in transit to the Iranian targets."
    Hewitt says that would spell the end of his Presidency.

  15. 'Rat uses the CNN spelling.
    Must be a conspiracy.

  16. When you make friends with someone that has a lot of enemies, you make a lot of enemies.

    What price has the US paid for its obsession with the Middle East? When does it end? Talk about mission creep and nation building. Look at it with dispassion and it is illogical beyond belief.

    If Israel wishes to go to war, that is Israel's choice. The US Constitution demands that the US Congress has the obligation to declare war. That power has been usurped by the President and congress let them get away with it.

    That power has not been delegated to the Israeli Knesset.

    The population of the entire state of Israel is about the same as the population of Lima, Peru. Where is our national perspective? We are not lemmings that have to follow politicians of foreign countries over the cliff. What nonsense.

    Israel would not destroy its economy for the US. Why would it? Israel is a rational player. The United States should make it very clear to Israel, what it will or not do vs. Iran. If the crazies in pakistan with one hundred plus nuclear weapons are not an immediate threat to the US, then Iran is far less so.

    If Iran is an immediate threat to the US, then that is the business of the US Congress not Israel.

    Should the US be automatically dragged into a conflict by a small foreign power, then the US is no longer a sovereign power.

    Assuredly, Israel is a sovereign power that does as she pleases. The US should heed her example and not be a lesser amongst equals. The thought is contemptible.

  17. US politicians better get something straight. Their concern should be getting the US back on track as a great manufacturer, a formidable power to be feared and an economic power to be envied.

    India, China, Brazil, Korea and Japan have all become economic powers because of manufacturing or extraction industries.

    The US has frittered away that power with the misuse of military assets and the discredited belief that a financial hire wire act will trump all else. That high wire act was possible because US consumers were over-spending with credit freely given to them by surplus economies, not burdened with regulations and high taxes.

    It is obvious that the dollar has fallen from grace and probably permanently. Our ability to import cheap goods by exporting green printed paper is declining.

    The US economy cannot tolerate another collapse because of an absurd minor power like Iran, whose reactions to a military strike by Israel, would send oil above $200 a barrel.

  18. CNN following my lead, doug.

    I've always been ahead of the communication curve. You should have taken note, by now.

    Hewitt has not been right, yet.
    Doubt if he is about the political effects of stopping another Ireali war induced by their internal insecurities.

  19. Rufus will come along now and assert we manufacture more now than ever.
    Hope he links his cite, I intend to read it this time.
    Otherwise I'll continue to believe my lying eyes along w/you, Deuce.

  20. oil is headed to 200 a barrel, not because of israel..

    but because of a weak US dollar...

    which also is good for US exports.

    the weak dollar? is also good as a punch in china's teeth..

    as for israel's attack on iran?

    what was the real impact of israel's attack on syria's (read iran, north korea too) nuke reactor now almost 2 years ago? nothing...

    remember all those predictions of American deaths when we were going into iraq, 40,000 body bags?

    i suspect the FEAR factor is greater than the reality..

    remember hezbollah and their threat to burn 1/2 of israel?

    yep. time for persian and arab threats to be met with tempted western steel..

    I suggest a nice EMP over Iran, followed by targeted cruise missiles, with not one flight over iraq...

  21. Sadly, Trish is back.

    A couple of very generous double whiskey sours in the departure lounge and some criminally priced beer in flight helped dull the pain of return. God only knows what will be required to fortify her in the remaining months. She may have to empty her own bar of every impressive bottle technically acquired for other purposes.

    Perhaps the Mothership will take pity and find reason to reel us in a few weeks early. Let us pray.

    And the person responsible for scheduling the monstrously loud tail end of Key West Bike Week during my vacation? Buddy, I will hunt you down and have you for breakfast.

  22. Looks like the Israelis are going to have to enforce the Begin Doctrine themselves. Again.

    Quite a piece of work this time around. But where there's no steep challenge, there's no fun. Or something to that effect.

    The Israelis have some very attractive young gal working Key West while her husband's up at SouthCom, I shit you not. Extremely prickly and defensive about the Lebanon kerfuffle and IDF hardship generally, but I got a nice discount on a sundress.

  23. Key West seems to be Jimmy Buffet's main HQ.
    Did you patronize any of his businesses?

  24. No. We really endeavored to stay away from the t-shirt establishments, and I mean no offense to Parrot Heads or t-shirt seekers anywhere.

    Among the most interesting conversations I had while back were with the Cuban hotel workers. (I had time to spare due to one of us having an urgent intestinal disturbance for the first two days - oh, the irony.)

    A more financially exploited bunch of ex-pats there probably isn't.

    And then there were the conversations with local marine business owners, banking on an opening with Cuba. I personally wouldn't, so politically contentious is it, but I'm not going to sneer at their invested, ah, hope.

    In any event they are literally ready to hit the ground running. And I'm a'for it.

  25. If Israel has had enough provocation from Iran and is willing to pay the price on her own, mazel tov. Iran has been telling the world that it will destroy Israel and has been supporting Israel's enemies.

    It would be an impressive piece of work. The Saudis and Russians will be quietly pleased, and perplexed as to what to do with their oil revenues.

    But if it turns out to be a fiasco a la Lebanon, it is Israel's fiasco. Just keep the US out of it, and it is fine with me.

  26. Wonderful isn't it Red, the entire planet is hell bent on getting rich and we are discussing the wonderful opportunity of a third war.

    As if our military and financial debilitation is currently inadequate.

  27. "Wonderful isn't it Red, the entire planet is hell bent on getting rich..."

    Or just making, and keeping, a little more of their own. But, yeah. And it's out there (and down here) to be made. In surprising ways. As exemplified by the young Swedish businessman who engaged us for the four hours home. "Home."

  28. Lest we forget what underlies the problems in the middle east, south Asia, and Africa here's a snippet from Netanyahu's speech before the UN.

    This Iranian regime is fueled by an extreme fundamentalism that burst onto the world scene three decades ago after lying dormant for centuries.

    In the past thirty years, this fanaticism has swept the globe with a murderous violence and cold-blooded impartiality in its choice of victims. It has callously slaughtered Moslems and Christians, Jews and Hindus, and many others. Though it is comprised of different offshoots, the adherents of this unforgiving creed seek to return humanity to medieval times. Wherever they can, they impose a backward regimented society where women, minorities, gays or anyone not deemed to be a true believer is brutally subjugated.

    The struggle against this fanaticism does not pit faith against faith nor civilization against civilization. It pits civilization against barbarism, the 21st century against the 9th century, those who sanctify life against those who glorify death. The primitivism of the 9th century ought to be no match for the progress of the 21st century. The allure of freedom, the power of technology, the reach of communications should surely win the day.

  29. Doug:"We'll splash the Isreali, in transit to the Iranian targets." Hewitt says that would spell the end of his Presidency.

    First US President to resort to the Final Solution. US Jews would probably re-elect him in 2012, though, because in the voting booth they see a "D" after his name. American Jews would not hesitate to vote for Alois Brunner if he ran as a Democrat.

  30. A nuclear Iran is not a threat...the radical Islamic Iranian Mullahs with nuclear weapons are. The issue is not whether the Iranians are a threat to the US although that is debatable. The issue is what a radical, nuclear armed Islamic nation represents to the Islamic fundamentalists around the whirled.

  31. Ignore a cancer at your own peril.

  32. The answer to that, whit, lies in the Muslim reaction to Pakistan. That is where Islamic fundamentalists have control of nuclear weapons, already.

    Where nuclear proliferation is a national past time.

    If you are worried about the impact of an armed Muslin state, the Pakistani are the true cause for concern. They are Wahabbist influenced in Pakistan, not Iran. The Wahabbists attacked US, not the Shia.
    The Shia we watched die, in Iraq, standing by and doing nothing to assist them in their revolt against Saddam, back in the day.

    You've been caught in the spin cycle, whit.

  33. It is an Ireali influenced spin cycle.

    Ask Mr Redstone how they do it, he certainly knows the ins and outs of media manipulation, along with Mr Crown.

  34. Imagine what the whirled would be like today if someone with Jimmy Carter's or Barack Obama's worldview had been President instead of Ronald Reagan.

    I believe the whirled would be an even more dangerous place than it is now. Appeasing evil does not bring peace and prosperity.

  35. You are the one caught in "spin cycle" which you embrace because it confirms your bias.

  36. Threats come from the Arab whirled and the Persian.

  37. Rat still thinks that the "iranian" issue is some protocols of zion spun farce...

    Iran's mullahs are an important issue...

    (as is north korea, pakistan & arabian issues)

    iran IS (with russia arms) restocking and arming hamas, hezbollah, syria, it'sself, and other islamic terror groups (hezbollah iraq, sadr, and islamic terror groups in afghanistan and britian)

    regardless of rat's nonsense... iran is the issue..

    and America is really doing nothing to stop her...

  38. The government of Pakistan has been detestable but has not presented itself as the leader of the Islamic evolution.

  39. According to the spin miesters, the rest of the Muslim whirled is united in opposition to the Shia dominated Iranian government.

    The reaction of the Sauds and the Arabs, to import that Pakistani technology. If they feel threatened.

    The nuclear genie is out of the bottle, it is not going back in.
    No one here advocates the total nuclear disarmament of the US.

    Not many in Iran support that for Iran, either. A reasonable position, for them to take. Surrounded as they are by enemies and adversaries, all of whom are nuked up or have easy access to the capacity.

  40. That is not an accurate statement, whit.

    The Pakistani Army is self identifying as Jihadist.

    The General-President of Pakistan the one that first had the weapons developed, promised them to the entire Muslim whirled. I do not have the quote easily accessible, but it is out on the web.

    That is the true nature of the spin cycle that you are trapped in. That the Wahabbists have manipulated the US media message, along with the Isreali, to influence our perceptions.

    The "bad" Muslims are the Shia in Iran, the "good" Muslims are in Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. It is a crock of shit, but one that the US has bought into.
    Lock, stock and barrel.

  41. ...and what is the plan for a nuclear Venezuela an Brazil?

    I thought a missile shield was a good idea, but we have trashed so much money in Iraq and Afghanistan, that we cannot afford a defense system that can deter a real threat.

  42. Talk about irony. We pissed away hundreds of billions in Iraq and hanged Sadaam, who went down like a man cursing the only enemy he cared about as he died, the Iranians!

    Talk about the gang that can't shoot straight.

  43. "You are the one caught in "spin cycle" which you embrace because it confirms your bias"

    whatever rat has done in the past that he uses to lay claim to him being an "an ultra American" has truely only been for his own self I believe. he strikes me as truely unamerican at least the most on this site. America has interests but also a soul, and comments like "It only pays to fight the US" shows how much he really cares for our country. When we lose our soul we will only have interests left, like a rat.

  44. Obama Hails Renewal of 'American Leadership'
    President Obama declared Saturday that his administration has "renewed American leadership" in the world by forging international agreements to reform the global financial system, pursue clean energy, secure loose nuclear weapons and face down the threat of a nuclear Iran.

    Speaking in his weekly radio and Internet address after a series of meetings with world leaders at the United Nations and at an international summit in Pittsburgh, Obama reiterated that his offer of "serious, meaningful dialogue" to resolve the Iran nuclear problem remains open.

  45. It will be interesting to see what the Russians do. I doubt they thought they would actually have to do anything meaningful with Iran.

    Sorry about that.

  46. If you didn't click on the link the first 3 times, Doug, you won't click on it this time, either. It's easy to find.

    We've got Big problems ahead, but they don't have much to do with manufacturing.

    They're all about 1/3 of our citizens going non-productive due to $6.00, or $7.00 gasoline.

    And, that's coming in two short years. Better get prepared.

  47. So I just look back over the last 100 posts and try to find it?'re a tougher hard-ass than Trish!

  48. Here's some good news:
    WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama may not be able to meet his stated goal of closing the much-criticized Guantanamo Bay prison by January as his administration runs into daunting legal and logistical hurdles to moving the more than 220 detainees still there.

    Senior administration officials acknowledged for the first time Friday that difficulties in completing the lengthy review of detainee files and resolving other thorny questions mean the president's promised January deadline may slip.

  49. Just google, manufacturing rank U.S., Doug. That's what I'd have to do.

  50. The Federal Government's job is to maintain law and order, not health care. And that's why Obama thinks a national health care law is in order.

  51. Rufus, your assertion that the US is still number one in manufacturing completely misses the point. Our current position is based on where we started from and on the tremendous inreases we have seen in productivity. Even so it's now estimated that in the next ten years China will pass us to take the number one spot in manufacturing.

    The gross manufacturing numbers are mere factoids thrown out by clowns like Tom Friedman and the financial elites on the east and west coasts who would be content for the US to turn into the next Dubai, a financial services paradise. However, what's important is the percentage of GPD that manufacturing represents. It has gone from over 25% 50 years ago to around 10% today. Employment in manufacturing has dropped from about 50% of total employment to less than 10%. We have lost about 3 million manufacturing jobs in the last decade.

    This effects everything from middle class jobs to GDP to national security. It's been estimated that every $1 of manufactured sales price supports about $1.40 in other economic activity. This compares to about $.50 for the wholesale and finance industries. That's almost a 3:1 multiplier advantage for manufacturing jobs.

    Likewise the middle class in this country was built on manufacturing jobs. Early on they shared in the benefit of the productivity increases. Now real median income has been flat for the past 30 years. Without an industrial base and a vibrant middle class the US will decline. And all these clowns in Washington and New York will stop laughing when their financial services jobs are shipped overseas because it can be done cheaper.

    Most important though is that we need a strong industrial base for national security reasons. Critical industries such as tool making are being exported in the name of globalization. You'll remember that as soon as we entered WWII, the auto factories shut down and the next day started building vehicles, motors, planes, etc. to support the war effort. Can't happen again if the manufacturing base is located in China.

    It was interesting to note that after 9/11 GM and Ford donated $millions towards the relief effort in NY. Toyota sent a sympathy card.


  53. You're stretching a little bit, Q. China doesn't build B2's, and F22's, and F35's. We do. They don't build missiles that can shoot down missiles. We do. They don't build artillery systems that can, literally, shoot around corners. We do. They don't build M1A2 Tanks, and Global Hawks. We do.

    They Don't build build Boeing 777's. We do. They don't build advance desalination systems. We do. They don't build advanced MRI units. We do.

    They build cheap microwaves, and weedeaters. We build John Deere Harvestors, and Caterpillars.

    They pick their corn by hand (honest.) You folks need to lighten up a bit. They have to have some jobs.

  54. That's good to know, Trish.

  55. Everything Quirk says about what has happened to manufacturing jobs and income IN THIS COUNTRY remains true, however, Rufus.
    ...although I doubt that 50 cent figure on financial services, given that that sector has been about 50 percent fraud for the last decade.

    Boeing, Caterpillar, and Northrup hardly match our industrial base at it's peak.
    ...and our education system is now in Mexico's league.

  56. One year to finish the Empire State Building, and 8 years to the moon level efforts are no longer possible in our hogtied and overregulated economy.

  57. No, they don't match. Our manufacturing base is SO Much Bigger now, than it was at time of peak "employment."

    Students travel from all around the world to go to Engineering, Research, Medical, . . . schools in What . . . . . . Country?

  58. Your google suggestion led me to learn that we're still number two in railroad car production, however!
    Never would have guessed that one.

  59. "Students travel from all around the world to go to Engineering, Research, Medical, . . . schools in What . . . . . . Country?"
    And you advocate following the others to Medicare Hell!

  60. You, whit, would have thoroughly enjoyed that conversation. And I mean that in a good way.

  61. "employment" is a trivial matter?

  62. We were number 1 in K-12 in the sixties, now we're next to Mexico way down the line.
    ...if we didn't have Indians in our Universities, we'd graduate far fewer Mathematicians.

  63. Boeing shipped the 787 Jobs around the World, including China.
    Hope the Nightmareliner Experience means they won't repeat that disasterous plan.

  64. Yeah, I imagine Boeing will be studying the results of that scheme for a long time.