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I know there are millions of brave, decent conservatives. My apologies to those folks for the following. But good grief, when did the Republican Party become infested with what sound like so many loud, whining cowardly pundits?  One second Reagan is up there standing toe-to-toe with the Rooskis, negotiating cool as a cucumber with 20,000 nukes pointed at him, and the next thing I know, the likes of Limbaugh or the crew at Powerwhine and Freeperland, are all shrieking like a class full of tweaked-out, neurotic fifth-graders having a panic attack every time OBL pops up in a grainy video with a rusty AK in the background. What the hell happened to the GOP I once knew?

Death and injury are every bit as tragic as they are inevitable for human beings. Understandably, we worry about both, we all cry and mourn when either strike, especially with ourselves or those we love playing the starring role. And I have no desire to down play the loss that anyone feels when someone they love is struck down, be it by terrorism or leukemia. But ...some perspective maybe?

Heart disease and cancer will claim about 1.5 million American lives each and every year. As far as accidental deaths (~100,000/year), motor vehicle accidents far and away lead the pack (+40,000/year), with accidental poisoning and falls in place and show1. You can play with those stats all kinds of ways. But the bottom line is that over the course of a civilian lifetime, the odds of falling victim to Al Qaeda rank somewhere between falling off a ladder to your death and being struck by lightning inside your home.  

How does Al Qaeda compare with past threats?

This is a UR-100, NATO designation SS-11 "Sego". The SS-11 was one of the workhorses making up a significant portion of the land based Soviet nuclear deterrent. These weapons initially carried a single one-megaton nuclear warhead. Later versions carried up to six 300-500 kilo-ton devices in a single MIRV configuration (The atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima yielded about 15 kilotons). Between 1970 and 1985 there were well over 1000 SS-11 missiles and later, larger variants deployed throughout the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe in both silo and mobile launcher systems.

Had the SS-11s and their buddies been launched at the US during the cold war, they would have reached their targets in a few minutes and converted some 20 million US citizens into plasma. Many millions more would have died in agony over the next few weeks in ways too horrible to contemplate. A full Soviet attack would have turned every major city and military base into a smoking, glassy, radioactive crater. Let's put it in perspective by way of pictures:


H-bomb test Castle Bravo shown to rough scale behind lower Manhattan with the two World Trade Centers for reference. The skyline has actually been made larger (By maybe a factor of ten as near as we can figure) for purposes of clarity--in actual scale it would be so small you wouldn't be able to recognize it. Now multiply that by a thousand to get a handle on the cold-war. Yes, 9-11 was a shocking tragedy, as was Katrina, Oklahoma City, and the nation rightfully mourned them all and many more like them. But in even a limited nuclear exchange with the former USSR, there would have been no nation left. Photo work by Karen Wehrstein (Artist tip jar)

The Cold-war is just one of many threats we've faced that exceed the danger posed to America from Osama bin Laden by orders of magnitude.  We also survived Hitler, Imperial Japan, the Kaiser, a Civil War, and the British Empire--the latter one twice by the way--just to name a few.

In that historical context, reading or hearing a bunch of yelping GOP crybabies incessantly screeching in craven horror that Al Qaeda is the worst, gosh-darn biggest bad-ass threat we've ever faced is, frankly, an act that has grown tired and embarrassing. And when they yammer, time and time again, that it's not enough for them to be quivering under their beds, they insist the entire country crawl under there and obsess along with them, while they lay in fetal position swaddled in their faded George Bush security blanket squawking in fear, it's enough to make Burt the Turtle duck and cover in disgust.

Here's a message for both our homegrown Neoconservative, bloggy, gutless wonders and the Jihadi nutcases overseas: I grew up in the cold-war, my parents went through WW2 for crying out loud. We are not paralyzed with fear over Osama. Despite your best efforts, I'm not obsessed with terrorism. Sheesh, I barely even think about it. I face bigger statistical risks, in every way, every day, and on every scale, just driving across a set of railroad tracks and down the interstate smoking a cigarette in the rain, and I don't worry much about that either.

And if you want me to be afraid for my very nation's survival, Jebus H Christ, you damn well better be able to wave around a threat considerably more convincing than a rag-tag group of zealots who shit in caves and beg other people to put on suicide belts sporting a rip cord detonator.

Update 8:54 AM EDT: Yay! I got linked quoted on one right-wing chicken-shit site already. Redstate is whining that we must join them under the bed. How do these wimps make it through the day without a jug of Xanax? Who will be the next yellow-elephant to complain that we're not sharing in their abject cowardice enough? I'm taking bets ...

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:55 AM PDT.


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Comment Preferences

  •  Seriously (142+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SME in Seattle, Magenta, Alumbrados, Ed in Montana, aisling, assyrian64, robla, 2pt5cats, xy109e3, Blutodog, MikeHickerson, vanguardia, Debby, Fishgrease, LionelEHutz, crushinator, ChurchofBruce, rhubarb, mainely49, eeff, d3n4l1, pseudomass, grndrush, Plays in Traffic, DrSpike, HL Mungo, awnm, calipygian, Karen Wehrstein, mmacdDE, eddieb061345, maxschell, m jesse jackson, MissAnneThrope, marylrgn, odenthal, CocoaLove, avi, IM, baad, Moody Loner, annan, SleeveArmowitz, Science and Art, mcolley, Cliff Talus, RebeccaG, inclusiveheart, LayedBackGuy, bwintx, ChiGirl88, nasarius, randallt, jen, Hardhat Democrat, Aug6PDB, Irish Patti, KingPing, Marc in KS, greeseyparrot, Tirge Caps, leolabeth, Fabian, maybeeso in michigan, historys mysteries, Pokerdad, ManOnTheBench, Green Zombie, enough, Silence Do Good, Ja of Anoroc, kamarvt, wpchas, crimsonscare, Mephistopheles, zbctj52, RogueJim, John H, farmerchuck, podster, tamman2000, Joy Busey, wgard, Sevah, flernk, KOTCrum, Splicer, sodalis, sbdenmon, RainyDay, Sister Havana, scory, keefer55, chicagoblueohio, BalanceSeeker, hearthmoon, rl en france, victoria2dc, LanceBoyle, martyc35, deha, teeb, Wary, Albatross, urbannie, SherriG, UEtech, Data Pimp, Terminus, FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph, MO Blue, filmgeek83, ER Doc, blue in NC, ilyana, midwesterner, jacquirenee, katasstrophy, ebs42, bstotts, kidneystones, Friend of the court, Pandoras Box, anais, beaukitty, Chaoticfluffy, Iowa Boy, cornball, EclecticFloridian, randorider, Trim Your Bush, kmiddle, Eugene Stumpf, alicia logic, drbloodaxe, Van Buren, Mary Mike, Lochners Bakers, kitten sedaris, java4every1, phoenixdreamz, College Progressive

    I'm thinking of going into the terrified Bush voter supply business. We can sell some kind of food,water, medicine, and shelter package modeled after the old cold war bomb shelter bisness.

    Read UTI, your free thought forum

    by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:47:46 AM PDT

      •  Yes, but (24+ / 0-)

        Yes, but remember -- the goal is to convince everyone that the situation is so dire, the threat so awful, that the only way to deal with it is to use nuclear weapons against Iran.

        Do not go gentle into that good night. Blog, blog against the dying of the light. CathiefromCanada

        by CathiefromCanada on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:11:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Chicken Little? You talkin' to me? (41+ / 0-)

        Thank God for some desparately needed perspective.

        For the record, I couldn't care less about 9/11.

        I'm over it.

        I sat and watched with my wife transfixed, like everyone we know in Tokyo. We bought into a large part of the fear packaging, going so far as to liquidate some of our investments in the industrial north-east.

        Pretty soon after, I started to realize how badly Osama had blown it. He tried for 50,000 and got 3,000. The vast majority of those in the buildings got out safely.

        And that was with a sucker-punch.

        Like 80 plus percent of Canadians, I signed on big-time for the Afghanistan, let's get that son of a bitch Osama project. Pretty soon, however, it became clear that Bush was every bit as inept as I'd feared.

        And like most of the world, I'm convinced that the invasion of Iraq and the coming invasion of Iran have radicalized a number of Western Muslims in ways that 9/11 never could. That said, I also know that the chances of my family being killed or injured in a terrorist attack are about the same as being struck by lightning. Twice.

        Want some odds?  Here's a 100% safe bet: about 2.8 million folks are going to die of AIDS this year. I can remember watching the US troops sail around Africa and thinking: if only they'd disembark in Mozambique or any other African nation desparate for life-saving intervention and aid.

        I feel badly for every single person affected by 9/11. But it wasn't the worst crime committed on earth and it won't be the last.

        We need to get over this shit now and start dealing with global warming, diminishing energy supplies and getting that portion of the world that's currently starving to death some food.

        Great diary. Many thanks.

        •  Glad you're over it, but (25+ / 0-)

          as a native New Yorker, everyone I know there - every single person I know - knows someone who lost someone on 9/11. Many lost family and friends themselves, and several were there. At most, most New Yorkers are one degree removed from the tragedy. The women raising 3 kids alone ... the office worker who lost dozens of colleagues ... the immigrant survivor of a far-off war who was on her way to work and about to walk into the WTC when the planes hit ... I know such people, and I doubt they're over it. It's a lot easier to be "over it" when it's something you watched on TV and it didn't affect you personally, or anyone you know.

          That doesn't mean the government is justified by manipulating what happened in the most shameful of ways. I agree with the diary. Having lost a dear friend to drunk driving, which claims tens of thousands of lives every year, I know that the statistical danger of drunk drivers is way more serious than the terrorist threat as it's manifested itself so far.

          However, THE WAY TO DEAL EITHER WITH PEOPLE'S LEGITIMATE GRIEF OR THEIR IRRATIONAL FEARS IS NOT TO SPOUT STATISTICS AT THEM. Please believe me on this. Someone with a phobia about flying is not comforted by the "it's safer than..." spiel any more than someone who's afraid of heights becomes less so if you tell them that they're unlikely to fall off the top of a building. You don't tell someone still grieving that "it could be worse" and expect that to help them. And you don't tell someone with a disproportionate fear that statistics don't support the way they're feeling, and expect that to be effective in easing their fears.

          Based on human history, it's pretty obvious that people are susceptible to having their fears manipulated by unscrupulous leadership. Statistics and rational argument do not effectively counter this. Strong POSITIVE emotions combined with rational actions are effective. You need to channel people's fear into a different, positive action. That's why the citation of Reagan cooly negotiating with the Russians during the Cold War is effective - for Reagan supporters, it brings memories of what they believed was courage, strength and leadership and hopefully contrasts it with the purposeful manufactured hysteria that the Bush administration is using for political purposes. But citing statistics is not effective in an atmosphere like this and never will be. It is the strategy of a Mike Dukakis, a candidate who was never able to connect with enough voters and was never able to effectively counter emotional smear campaigns.

          Edward R. Murrow was ultimately effective against McCarthyism NOT by trying to spout statistics saying the Nazi threat was worse than the communist threat. It was by appealing to people's TRUE patriotism while appearing both courageous and cool.

          •  Very good points (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            assyrian64, khereva, Mary Mike

            As you said, it won't work to diminish people's fears by spouting statistics - how many people buy lottery tickets every week when the odds are astronomically against them?  As they say, reality has a liberal bias, which probably explains why the right so often resorts to fear-mongering - playing on people's irrational fear is the only way they can survive...

            I don't know why we think, just because we're mighty, that we have the right to try to substitute might for right -- Wayne Morse (D-Ore), 1964

            by John H on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:53:04 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I Can Remember (0+ / 0-)

              hiding under my desk in elementary school in the early 60's, as we dutifully practiced "air raid drills". This used to scare me. You look at the picture and the relative size of the mushroom cloud and you laugh at the idea of your desk being protection against a weapon of this nature and magnitude.

              Russia was a more credible threat back then, with the potential of making 9/11 look like a Boy Scout Jamboree. Yet we did not go crazy locking up every Russian we saw, and we lived a carefree life. This credible threat hovered way back in the American psyche. Mutual proliferation was a wonderful comfort.

              I worked across the street from the WTC for 15 years, and experienced the '93 bombing up close. Statistcally speaking, a plane hitting a building ranks up there with the probability of a coin landing on its edge.

              I drive too fast, eat the wrong foods, and I ignore the obvious empirical evidence that I am doing myself harm. My chances of blowing a gasket are quite high.

              Every time I drive through the Lincoln Tunnel, I have a vague sense of danger, but it doesn't stop me.

              I remember my father-in-law's doctor telling him he had prostate cancer. The doctor said: "Don't worry, something else will kill you."

              Don't blame me, I voted for Bill and Opus.

              by Trim Your Bush on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:43:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, and I know somebody (18+ / 0-)

            who died from AIDS, and I know somebody who was killed in an automobile wreck, and I know many people who were killed on their motorcycles (and I still ride one, statistically probably the most dangerous thing I do), and I know somebody who was murdered and I know somebody who died in an accidental drowning and my own mother died tragically and unexpectedly of a heart attack at the age of 61 while on vacation with my father.

            I am a native of New Jersey who watched the WTC towers being built. How is the death of any of the people on "9-11" (note that we've long since adopted a nice little "made for TV" nickname for it) any worse for their families and friends than any other death? Katrina victims? Victims of disease? Loss is loss, grief is grief. "Get over it" is not an appropriate rejoinder to anybody's grief over any loss, but "9-11 changed everything" isn't an appropriate thought for any American to think either.

            Osama, Al Quaeda, whoever...they want us to say - and believe - that "9-11 changed everything". In that context, B**h is their biggest cheerleader and their biggest supporter, but normal everyday people who think that way are also enabling the "evildoers".

            On another note, my only gripe with the OP (and far be it from me to criticize DarkSyde, one of my favorite FP posters) is an implicit compliment to Reagan. That phony had about as much to do with successful negotion with the Soviet Union as I did. It's a true sign of the tragic descent of "conservatives" into what Rethugs now resemble that anybody on this site has to even hint that there was anything remotely positive about scum like Reagan (for whom I voted, and about which I will feel permanent guilt)...except that compared to the B**h and neocon crowd there's some truth to it.

            •  I know this is kind of frivolous, (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              blue in NC, kidneystones

              but thank you for pointing out that damn shorthand "nickname" for Sept. 11, 2001. It's so sterile and stupid, and I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who thinks so.

              •  No, it's not frivolous (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                and you're welcome!

                I loathe that little nickname. It's simply morphed into another Rethug talking point. I never use the term. I will occasionally refer to "the attacks of September 11, 2001".

                The bigger problem is that "9-11" doesn't really mean that (the attacks that occurred on that day, I mean); in reality, I think it represents a much more abstract concept wrapped up in codepseak. It's designed to encompass the whole "war on terror" lie.

          •  Also.... (14+ / 0-)

            While I have not run the numbers myself (and won't have time to), I question the accuracy of the analysis with respect to those of us who live and work in places that really are targets.  For example, I live and work in Manhattan.  In 2001, I was living in Brooklyn and went to school in Lower Manhattan, and I smelled the stench of Ground Zero in my home for the first few days and around school for months to follow.  I take mass transit almost every day, 5-6 days a week with a child in tow.  My daily commute takes me on one of the most famous/critical lines in the system (the A/C), and right through one of the most important subway stations (although not one of the most famous ones -- 59th Street/Columbus Circle).  My husband's former office was directly above Penn Station.  As I write this, I am sitting in my office at 45th and 6th, which puts me one block from the heart of Times Square.  As you (firenze) said, we all know someone who lost someone -- in my case, the victim was close friend's cousin who I'd known directly since he was in junior high school, and who was also my sister's junior high school classmate.  Interestingly, I don't know anyone who has died falling off a ladder or being struck by lightning or anything else really weird.  While it may be a true statement with respect to a randomly chosen American, I doubt it is really true that MY odds, and my family's odds, of being directly killed by Al Qaeda are comparable to our odds of dying by falling off a ladder or being struck by lightning.  (The fact that they were trying for 50,000 and only got 3,000 is something that doesn't give me much comfort -- next time they might do it right.  In addition to the pretty successful evacuation, the 9/11 attacks were poorly timed in that they were basically before the NYC workday was in full swing -- early in the a.m. in a generally late city, on a day which was both Primary Day and the first day of school, both of which make lots of people even later for school.)

            What is interesting to me is that those of us who live in places where Al Qaeda might represent a statistically meaningful threat respond to it quite differently than the Red State nervous nellies who live in places no terrorist would be interested in anyway.  For many of them, it seems like the threat is so theoretical and up-in-the-sky mysterious that they don't seem to be prepared to think rationally about it, i.e., analyze what really happened, real causes, real weaknesses, etc. -- it seems lots of them would prefer just go kick some butt somewhere, rather than do the hard thinking and decision-making.  We New Yorkers, overwhelmingly, know (and care) that the war in Iraq is not helping us.  We know and care that Bin Ladin is still at large.  We know that American security forces can't be everywhere at once, and that they must be deployed intelligently if the very real danger to us is ever to be reduced (and that deploying them unintelligently doesn't just not help, but worsens matters).

            •  Statistically and practically speaking (12+ / 0-)

              I am far more worried about dying in a car accident on the Beltway or in I95 than I am about dying at the hands of a terrorist.

              I lived in NYC for ten years and I have lived in DC for much of the rest of my life.  I fly a ton.  I have also lived in countries that have had real trouble with terrorism.

              I don't believe that giving up my civil liberties will make us any safer.  I think it would do just the opposite.  The abuses and waste of resources in a system where there were no checks on law enforcement would result in a less efficient system of catching criminals.  A free for all approach would basically end up being ineffective.

              If this government was really serious about protecting us from terrorism, they would not spend the majority of their time trying to heighten our fear.  They would be spending their time finding smart, strategic approaches to finding terrorists and ways to prevent people from becoming terrorists.  They would not be attacking me and my civil liberties.

              Ever since 9/11, I've wondered how it is that Americans became the "bad guys" when every single hijacker was a foreign national who shouldn't have even gotten into this country in the first place.

              •  What people don't seem to understand... (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                inclusiveheart, kamarvt, RAZE, phonegery

                or at least they're not talking about it openly, is that the act of terrorism itself is far less important than our reaction to it. While the deaths of 3,000 people were a tragic loss and a shock to all of us, the bigger loss will be to our way of life if we allow ourselves to be consumed by fear to the extent that we are willing to throw it all away in an effort to "protect" ourselves. If the MSM, or our Democratic leadership, had any guts, they'd point out that every time Bush and his cronies push through another unprecedented assault on our way of life in the name of national security, it's an enormous victory for the terrorists. They're powerless to inflict the kind of damage on us that our government can inflict on us in their names. Does anyone have the guts to say it? Or the sense to even think it? We attacked and occupied a nation that was no immediate threat to us or our allies, something that we've never done IN ALL OF AMERICAN HISTORY, and which had NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with the Sept. 11 attacks, and most of this country and almost all of the MSM climbed right aboard. THAT'S what frightens me infinitely more than any terrorist possibly could.

                •  Mee toooo. (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  kamarvt, RAZE, kidneystones

                  I was blown away at the proposals to limit our freedoms after September 11th.  That would have been a whole other comment though from the one above.  Up until this President, the reaction to terrorism was to minimize their impact and to defiantly keep living as Americans in a democracy.  All of a sudden, that democracy thing was completely out the window.  I am not over it.  In fact, the core of my beliefs about this administration were born in the week after September 11th.  To me they were anything but American and certainly not good leaders by any stretch of the imagination.  They were cowards and theives not unlike the terrorists they have abetted in destroying this country.  They have only grown bolder and more brash over the years.  I have no idea if we will really stop them.  It is hard to tell.

                •  Splitting the arrow in the bullseye (3+ / 0-)

                  That is, if DarkSyde's diary hit the bullseye...

                  the act of terrorism itself is far less important than our reaction to it

                  I'm pretty sure that's why it's called "terrorism".
                  If it was about killing vast numbers of people it would be called "war" or maybe "genocide".
                  When a whole nation panics because some goatherders in Asia "hate our Freedom" so much we abandon our freedom, then um, well...

                  Ann Coulter - Living Proof of Neocon Necrophilia

                  by kamarvt on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 02:25:56 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  I'll see your 9-11, and raise you one Katrina... (0+ / 0-)

            ...and I think you hit the nail on the head with...

            ...appealing to people's TRUE patriotism while appearing both courageous and cool.


            •  Agreeing with your point and adding 2 Hurricanes (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              blue in NC

              In the past 2 hurricane seasons I've been in the eye ot two hurricanes and close to the eye of another.

              I understand that Katrina was an especially huge clusterf**k and don't claim bragging rights over those victims of FEMA incompetence.

              But, we are all victims of the injustices of nature and despots.

              My concern, the only one I have any control of, is that we do not allow a despotic rule of our nation.

              George W. is NOT an incompetent liar, he's had waaay too much practice for that. (-2.25, -2.56)

              by EclecticFloridian on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:30:13 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I Agree (21+ / 0-)

            I agree completely.  I was born and raised in New York, and I go to college in the heart of Washington, D.C.; I frequently fly between the two cities, and I frequently use public transport in both cities.

            It’s truly different when you were there; it’s different when a tragedy happens in your own backyard.  This was a point I’ve made a lot in the past— unless you lost someone personally, if you weren’t a New Yorker, if you weren’t a Washingtonian, you have an inherently different perspective on 9/11.

            I remember back during the 2004 election, the (neocon) boyfriend of a close (liberal) friend of mine had this big white button, and on it was a picture of the New York skyline and the words “NEVER FORGET” in bright red lettering.  I can’t even describe how infuriating that was to me—this guy, this upper-crust Republican from Minnesota (no offence to Minnesotans, mind you), who had only ever been to New York a few times in his entire life, who didn’t know anyone even remotely involved in 9/11, telling me to never forget.  He and his conservative ilk have been lecturing people like myself for five years now on the importance of remembering 9/11.  It’s sickening, it’s offensive, it’s infuriating.

            But look at New York.  Look at Washington.  Both of those cities voted overwhelmingly for John Kerry in 2004. Why? If we are to buy the Republican line, it’s because these cities, which were targeted by terrorists, are pro-terrorist.  That’s completely nonsensical, though, and we all know it. It’s because, even though we were targets, even though we are still targets, we understand the situation slightly better than those who experienced 9/11 as distant images on the television screen.  We know the real dangers, and we understand what does and doesn’t make us safer.  We’ve accepted the fact that we are targets, and we’ve accepted the risk we all face.  We don’t live in constant fear.  We refuse to give the terrorists power over us.  We persevere.

            The shameless exploitation of 9/11 infuriates me.  Why? Because it’s done by people who will never be targets.  It’s done by people who live hundreds, thousands of miles from anywhere that will ever be a target.  It’s done by shameless politicians and ideologues who care a thousand times more about securing their own power than protecting a single life.  These are the people who truly don’t understand 9/1— by turning it into a slogan, a commercial, a buzzword, they diminish its importance as a real-life event and twist it into an obscure, abstract concept.  

            9/11 isn’t an idea.  It’s an event that happened, one that had very real causes.  It was something that might have been prevented, that happened for a reason.  There are many, many lessons to be learned, yet these fearmongering Republicans refuse to learn a thing, because they don’t care. They don’t care about security or safety or American lives; they care about power, about their legacies, about their places in the history books.  To see their ideology collapse, to see their nonsensical  foreign policy pipe-dreams shot down simply confirms what I and millions of us have known all along—the Republicans have no idea what they’re doing, not on terrorism, not on national security.

            They give us that fallacious line “We know President Bush’s policies are working because we haven’t been attacked again!”  And they’ll be saying that right up until the next attack. Because that’s the Republican antiterrorism plan—a prayer and a dream and a hope that nobody will try hard enough again.  That’s why they live in fear—they know their policies aren’t effective, that their safety is currently guaranteed only by luck.

            But that’s why we don’t live in fear. Because fear encourages terrorism; not Lamont’s victory or a Democratic Congress.  Fear, and ignorance of how to prevent it. When we fear 9/11, we refuse to examine it, to analyze it, to understand what caused it and how we can prevent it from happening again. The terrorists wish to break our spirit, and the GOP is helping them right along by keeping everyone unsure, afraid, insecure.  

            Like it’s been said, statistics are a pretty cold comfort.  But fear is not even a comfort—it’s a crippling disability, a crutch, a way to avoid having to deal with a very real, very persistent problem.  It’s a way for immature conservatives to escape the hard work we should be doing to secure this country.  The American people have been living in fear for almost five years now—isn’t it time we move on? Isn’t it time we do the work that needs to be done? Roll up our sleeves and put some work in, some real work, not this neoconservative token-effort garbage?

            Isn’t it time we started acting like Americans again?

            (Sorry for the long comment, I just started writing and this is what came out.)

            "Whoso stoppeth his ears at the cry of the poor, he also shall cry himself, but shall not be heard." --Proverbs 21:13

            by Left Click on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:29:24 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  thank you (4+ / 0-)

              For expressing my feelings far more eloquently than I could.

              If you don't know anyone who was killed on 9/11/01, if you don't live anywhere near DC or New York...for the love of God, shut the fuck up about "Nine-Eleven".

            •  They scream NEVER FORGET... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              but appearently have forgotten who ordered the attacks.

              Are we even LOOKING for bin Laden anymore? Didn't the CIA disband the unit looking for him in December?

              If anyone's forgotten about 9/11, it's the ReThugs - they aren't even looking for OBL.

              Betcha they would if he had a boyfriend...

              "You think you've private lives / Think nothing of the kind..." Judas Priest, 1981

              by duck on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:22:48 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  NYC and DC voted overwhelmingly for John Kerry (0+ / 0-)

              Democrats need to hammer this home.  Proves that Democrats can handle Al Qaeda, and Republicans can't.

              "Excellently observed," answered Candide; "but let us cultivate our garden."

              by Simplify on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:57:23 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  See the picture (0+ / 0-)

            in the dairy that shows that had The Cold War went Hot (as it still could people believe the Cold War ended ya right russia still has it's nukes aimed at us and we have our nukes aimed at them and most of the human race can still die in less than 30 minutes.The cold war didn't end it's just that the Master Chessplayers that the Russians are have fooled America and the "Reagan ended the Cold-War so vote for us"Gop)you and everyone you know would not know any friends and family cause you all would be dead or dying and people who knew you would not be watching CNN,Fox because they to would be dead or dying and all over the world in large cities and small towns people would be dying in a flash or dying as Fall-out killed them and then the ones left would face starvation.There would be no talk or plans of building a memorial to the ones who died cause the only ones living will be living in caves and the only memorial they will make will be the cave paintings they draw from memory that might be discovered by humans (if we survive)many thousands of years from now or Aliens.

        •  Great diary, DS! (16+ / 0-)

          This really needs to be pointed out- over and over. The AQ threat does not call for us to throw away the Constitution, no matter what the chickenshit neocons say.

          And I love this line:

          And like most of the world, I'm convinced that the invasion of Iraq and the coming invasion of Iran have radicalized a number of Western Muslims in ways that 9/11 never could.

          Think how much better off we'd have been if we had never invaded Iraq.

          Dumbest. Fucking. Move. Ever.

        •  So if Mohammed Atta (0+ / 0-)

          or whoever was flying that first plane into the twin towers had aimed at the 35th floor instead of the 101st floor, and 30,000 people had been killed instead of 3,000, how would this affect your opinion of that day? Statistically still kinda irrelevent?

          While I deplore the Bush/Cheney/Rove bullshit strategy about trying to scare the crap out of everybody and recognize how cynical it can make us, I view it as incredibly foolish to pooh-pooh the potential dangers that are out there.  Let's face it - there have always been crazy people in the world (Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Chales Manson, there are right now and there always will be.  In this age of bizarro people like Kim Jong Il and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as leaders of countries, I want to feel like my government takes that threat seriously.  I also want them to be incredibly intelligent, capable people of the highest integrity.  That shouldn't be so much to ask, but Bush keeps giving us Brownie and Chertoff and other pathetic, useless cronies.  The only thing worse than the present situation would be to turn a blind eye and say Osama is useless so let's just all not worry about it, sing kumbaya and light candles.  One dirty bomb in midtown Manhattan or downtown Chicago slipped to Al Qaeda by Iran or North Korea is something that is not an impossibility and it's just beyond me to consider that any electable politician would take that threat lightly.

          Or maybe I'm just not that over 9/11 (forgive the hackneyed phraseology).

          "I thought you were gonna ask me about the pig." - George W. Bush

      •  Twin Towers are no longer in Manhattan (0+ / 0-)

        They're still there in the image, it means nothing, just a deatail.

      •  Karen, I clicked on your link, and (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AndyT, DarkSyde, jacquirenee, khereva

          I read several passages; it's really wonderful.

          There is a pure, simple power to your heart-felt words.

          Just wanted to say thanks for the art-work you've contributed to DKos, and also for sharing your travails and triumphs through your written work in your journal.  I admire that kind of courage.

          All my best !

            -- Dave.

      •  Forget Chicken Little, 'Yellow Elephant' (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        is the best term I've heard in years. Can we make that part of our rallying cry, please?

        The Common Good, Equal Opportunity, The Right to Privacy, Accountable Government, Respect Abroad.

        by flernk on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:13:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  what was it that Rummy said? (0+ / 0-)

        RUMSFELD: You know, someone comes up with an idea, runs it in a magazine or a paper; other papers pick it up and reprint it; editorialists, then, say, Oh, Henny Penny, the sky is falling, and opine on this and opine that.

        ...But it is just simply not useful to get into fantasyland.

        So basically, we shouldn't worry that our young men and women are dying in Iraq, that's okay, they're fine, we're winning the war on terror.  But as for other terrorist threats, we should be scared shitless.  How can a majority of the American public be so stupid not to know when they are being manipulated?  

        Just because you're self-righteous doesn't mean you're not a hypocrite.

        by AMcG826 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:35:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Yup (0+ / 0-)

      you could sell that at the air terminal because everyone unloading is going to need that stuff.

      "I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies; for the hardest victory is over self." --Aristotle

      by java4every1 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:07:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  you ask (5+ / 0-)

      What the hell happened to the GOP I once knew?

      It got hijacked by the far right.

      On a separate note, it seems to me that it would be very effective communication to America as a whole (and not just those that already agree with, say, the democratic party) for democrats to focus on effectively making this case.

      At the same time, as popular or appealing as it might be, to avoid the kind of unnecessarily vitriolic or polarizing language that turns a lot of people outside of the Daily Kos off, who otherwise might be connected with in terms of the real issues.

      Such as this (most particularly with respect to the Lieberman issue), which unfortunately not only received excessive mojo, but got selected for the top comments of the day.

      D Kos may be a forum for "democrats," but respect goes a long way. And it is also, most importantly, a forum to communicate ideas. This type of playing right into the far right (and, increasingly, the media's) mischaracterization of both the left, and the "Daily Kos," simply works against that.  

      •  on the fear business (3+ / 0-)

        playing into fear is a problem.

        while noting this (as you aptly do), it is also consistent to constantly emphasize that this does not mean that the threat is not legitimate, but that disagreement on how best to intelligently deal with this has been turned into something completely different than it is, even while we pursue policies that may in fact be increasing that threat.

        the problem is, unfortunately, that the above does not go without saying. But a lack of larger emphasis on it by the democratic party (perhaps thinking it to be more obvious than it is in a world of constant misinformation and spin) has led to much of the mischaracterization on this issue (i.e., democrats are "weak" on this issue). these almost constant mischaracterization's, outside of the Daily Kos, may have a lot more traction than is assumed.

        A critical part of this, has been the constant mischaracterization by the same far right (including the increasingly illogical and often factually misleading or flat out erroneous WSJ editorial page) regarding some of the key issues, such as the NSA spying issue.

        Notice how, as Greenwald points out therein, Legal spying under a warrant system by the Brits foiled the British terrorist plot. This is something that not that many Americans know. But you can be sure that if the roles were reversed, the right would make sure that every single man woman and child in America knew this fact, and, more importantly, that the "left" had been deceiving them and manipulating the issue.

        •  Ivan (20+ / 0-)

          I have to disagree with you. We can have anintelligent discussion with some conservatives. But not with neocon shills. It's like trying to placate a bully in the school yard, it will never work and it'll lead to defeat--in fact it has led to defeat.

          The only way to deal with those shitheads is to make an examnple of them-- hold up their record of utter failure to ridicule and heap the scorn and contempt on them they so richly deserve, loudly, often, daily.

          Read UTI, your free thought forum

          by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:40:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  definitely want to address this (5+ / 0-)

            The only way to deal with those shitheads is to make an examnple of them-- hold up their record of utter failure to ridicule and heap the scorn and contempt on them they so richly deserve, loudly, often, daily

            agree with this for the most part. wrote about the related issue of constantly illustrating and exposing the larger pattern here.

            take the facts, and, more importantly, the far right's own statements, and constantly make THEM the story. this is something that, in reverse, republicans do with respect to democrats, yet democrats, with far better material to work with, don't do with respect to republicans (e.g., see my suggestion below to your other question.)

            Your other suggestion

            I have to disagree with you. We can have anintelligent discussion with some conservatives. But not with neocon shills. It's like trying to placate a bully in the school yard, it will never work and it'll lead to defeat--in fact it has led to defeat.

            is not at all what I am saying.  I think this is a fairly critical point for democrats as well. very often, we don't communicate in ways that appeal to a wider cross section of voters. Im not saying to change positions, or the facts. but focus on how those who dont see things the same way or dont know the facts, may perceive things.  (the extreme example, of course, on the number one rated (and almost always "liberal" labeled and often referred to as "vitriol filled" Daily Kos) is the comment linked above that called Joe, "lieberf***."  18 checks and top comments of the day. I dont know how to get across how unncessarily destructive democrats are sometimes to themselves.)

            what's led to defeat after defeat (at the hands of easily defeatable far right wingers) has been the perpetuation of almost systemic tendencies, such as, not exposing what the far right does (that is, not focusing on it, nor illustrating and showing, as opposed to  "telling" or concluding) and not communicating in ways that have broader appeal to those who have to be reached. not talking about staunch bush admin apologists, but the tens upon tens of millions of more moderate Americans who are mislead on the issues, dont like fiscal irresponsibility, social control (or destroying the constitution but it has not been adequatly explained to them) but vote republican because the democrats are (perceived to be)"weak" on national security, and because the constant and unexposed far right rhetoric had also convinced them that the far right is actually reasonable, and that moderate democrats are "extreme."  (helped by incredibly stupid s*** like this by democrats such as the editor of Slate, or self defeating analyses like this.)  

            also, a key point that brings the above two together is this. when democrats heap "ridicule and scorn and contempt" they very often do so in a way that inadvertantly heaps the same on anyone who agrees with or voted for the subject of such scorn, and thus not only fails to reach anybody who doesn't already agree with you, but hardens their resolve and defensive mechanisms in ways to "filter" facts to protect their own perceptions.

            again, this is not to say dont make an effective and strong case. illustrate it for what it is, and focus constantly on saturating America with it (something else democrats dont tend to do).  

            summarizing it, metaphorically, in one entence, it is the difference between calling names, and powerfully showing the facts that illustrate the same without insulting the target audience (which is not just other hard core or well informed democrats, but a majority of Americans).

            •  correction (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              actually, the suggestion I linked to above, about focusing on exposing how the other side manipulated the basic facts or otherwise grievously erred, was in the post that you were responding to immediately above, and not the one I linked to (sorry bout that).

              I also want to note how your comment

              The only way to deal with those shitheads is to make an examnple of them-- hold up their record of utter failure to ridicule and heap the scorn and contempt on them they so richly deserve, loudly, often, daily.

              was far more popular than mine.

              what is popular among democrats, what gets democrats all riled is often exactly what keeps democrats from communicating an effective message outside of the staunch democrat community, despite, particularly in the past few years, having almost evey fact on their side.

              not being able to see how that message simply turns off those who dont already see it that way, is a big part of the challenge. and this suggestion is not coming from a bush apologist, but from someone who has consistently viewed the bush administration as the worst and most extreme in history.  but calling it names, rather than effectively and repeatedly making that case in ways that a majority of Americans can understand, is only counterproductive.

            •  Culture Wars (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              nasarius, jacquirenee

              The South was once solidly Democratic, and it was all because of the Civil War and Lincoln.  After the civil rights battles of the 60's and 70's, the South became solidly Republican.  Everyone knows why, but for some reason the press and media refuse to mention it.  That's the elephant in the room.  I don't believe that all people in the South or elsewhere vote Republican primarily because they think Democrats are soft on security. It's still a lot about racism and minorities and regional culture, and some people don't want any part of a political party that gets an overwhelming number of minority votes or that isn't as "American."    And there definitely are connections between racism, diversity, and the war on terror because it's so easy to demonize all those brown Islamo-fascists.  Add to this the fact that Bush has created a huge government program that puts the faith-based community on the federal payroll.  This is how Bush hopes to create a permanent Republican majority.  These problems certainly aren't limited to the solid South, but the history probably makes them less obvious elsewhere, and they're really difficult to talk about and accept as true.  Our hope is that new generations will not be so tied to these past battles.  We're just beginning to make inroads because of the new generations and because of Bush's failed foreign policy.  We need to keep working on it.  Change is coming.  Yes, fear is a powerful Republican tool, but why hasn't it worked in New York?  Maybe because most Americans know that national security is something we all want.  Yesterday, Howard Dean said that it's "ridiculous" to suggest otherwise.  Maybe he's right?

            •  Ridicule (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              trillian, hhex65, trinite, anais

              is a powerful weapon against folly. Even Dick Cheney was cut down to size after a week of media snark about his marksmanship.  

              Bill Kristol, Douglas Feith, Michael Ledeen et al. have been spectacularly wrong on almost every important strategic issue for years now, yet very few Americans have even heard of them. They too need to be made household words, synonyms for idiocy.

              We waste too much time focussing our sarcasm aganist Coulter, O'Reilly, and other TV "celebrities" who deliberately aim at over-the-top outrageousness because they thrive on attention, positive or negative. But Kristol and his ilk are more dangerous because they actually shape policy, and they're more vulnerable to attack because they're thin-skinned wannabe "intellectuals." It's time to pour a little salt of ridicule on these snails.

            •  Self defeating? (0+ / 0-)

              Unless I'm mistaking what you're suggesting, I think I have to disagree with you on that link.  Having read through the linked article, I don't find it self-defeating, I find it a clarion call for Democrats to communicate more concisely and pragmatically in a way the Republicans seem to have down.

              The linked author doesn't just say Dems can't talk to people so they're gonna lose.  He explains how he believes Dems are screwing things up and then provides specific remedies for staying on message and communicating with the greater majority of the country to whom Repub. smear tactics aren't as obvious as they are to you and I.

              That's called constructive criticism, not self-defeating analyses in my books.

              •  which link are you talking about? (0+ / 0-)

                the one where weisberg spins a victory by a more staunch, traditional democrat -- at a time when change is desperately needed, when congress' ratings are in the 20's, when congress is tilted far to the right, against a status quo incumbent from a democratic state who in some ways has come to support a far right wing if not extreme republican administration  - into something bad for the democratic party?

                where he echoes the far right wing  spin and mischaracterization of the race?:   This is a signal event that will have a huge and
                lasting negative impact on the Democratic Party.
                The result suggests that instead of capitalizing on
                the massive failures of the Bush administration,
                Democrats are poised to re-enact a version of the
                Vietnam-era drama

                that one?  the only thing that turns it into that is spinning it into it, which here weisberg assists with in a big way. (remember that "protest" was against a war that most historians agree was a huge mistake, and a president who later resigned in disgrace. yet those on the correct side of those issues were made into the extremists, mainly because they did not characterize things correctly.  throughough this site, I have been focused on the importance of characterizing such things correctly (including in some of the comments immediately above in this side thread.))

                but weisberg spinning it into that only substantiates it.  he can make the same point by illustrating how the republicans are mischaracterizizing it this way, and illustrating what democrats need to communicate, by saying that, and communicating it; the opposite of what he does. and the first part of that is that lamont's victory, was good for balance, good for democracy, and good for the democratic party, and good for the idea that democrats, whether they are moderate, extremely moderate, or more liberal, need to stand up for some principles in a way that resonates with the American -- and understand that disagreement and different opinions are what makes America, America, and what makes democracy work.

                sure something can be gotten out of it -- how to focus on communicating more effectively -- just like it can, and should be, by every other right wing bit of spin. but this bit of right wing spin is particularly dehabilitating, and he is simply reinforcing it (as well as giving it breadth of appeal to America, given where it comes from. ) it is horrendously self destructive to the democratic party, and to commmunicating an effective message.

                the other link?   not as horrendously destructive. and yes, likewise, by engaging in it as well, it is doubly illustrative of what not to do (and what not to let the republicans spin it into, even while Hart here manages to spin it into precisely that).  but also counterproductive, for the many reasons discussed in the link therein.

                •  the second link, not the weisberg one n/t (0+ / 0-)
                  •  clarification (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    and, btw, thanks for letting me know which one.

                    to clarify (and I guess in the original reference this might have been unclear) the article itself was not the destructrive analysis, but the statements/analysis cited therein by democratic strategist peter hart, as discussed.  

                    the article itself was a good analysis, and one which I think the DNC and democratic strategists should read and consider.

                    sorry about the confusion there.

          •  DS... who are the neocon shills? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Pearle, Gingrich and etc?

            They are the ones who need to be destroyed.  Bill Krystal outta just jump off the Empire State Building.  They are destroying this country and screwing up the world.

            Do we have any Chinese 007 agents with some special chemicals?  LOL... just kidding, but they should be totally exposed to the American population and then the people should force them out of the Pentagon, the White House, the State Department, the CIA and wherever the hell else they are.

      •  Who are the people you call 'the right' (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I call them the CHURCHIES.  They seem to be thrilled for all of this war.  They are waiting for their Jesus to take them away.  

        This is sickness. While Bush is one of them, I'd like to know to what extent his damn belief system impacts his decision-making process.  Did I say that?  I don't think he really has a decision=making process, but perhaps the extent of it is that he decides to turn it over to Cheney for the decision and then to Rummie to be friggin' jacked up!

        There are two things that might save Iran from his idiocy:

        • Our troops are right there
        • Dropping a nuke is done by air (duh).  So the reason I think he won't do it (I hope) is because they don't need troops to invade Iran so ONLY if there is a sudden movement of troops out of there, we're safe for a little while.

        I read somewhere this weekend that Israelis are pissed at him for getting them into this mess.  If that's true (like Rummie says... "Who knows.") then they won't do it.  Hopefully someone in Israel can see what will happen to them if they do it.  The WILL without doubt be destroyed if they do such a thing on behalf of G.W. @%$%&** Bush.

        •  omg you are so right (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          The far right 'churchies' as you call them, share the same basic goal as the president of Iran.. to usher in the end of the world as we know it. Who would have believed that the Gospel's warning would be taken as a directive? Unbelievable

          •  Remember that this is mostly the corporate church (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            and not Christians.  Just calling yourself a Christian isn't enough.  For people who take their faith seriously and follow the teachings of Christ, this war is folly, as is the notion that somehow we get to or should try to incite the end of the world.

            Real Christians care about people, try to stop suffering and do good works.  The Corporate Christians care about tax breaks and are essentially worshipping Mammon.

            A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow.

            by Webster on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:01:57 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Darnit (0+ / 0-)

        This is a site for democrats?  I assumed it was for everyone.

        Are we socialists allowed to play too?

    •  No ICBMs, no tanks, no bases, no planes.... (24+ / 0-)

      I think this very thought almost every day: we won the Cold War against the largest military machine in human history but we cant beat a bunch of random freaks who have no training base, no sympathy among the American people, no ICBMs, no planes, no tanks, no supply, no permanent presence anywhere on the planet that we cannot destory completely in five minutes. Yes, wer're suposed to be SCARED?

      I am dumbfounded as to why the Democrats do not point out OVER AND OVER AGAIN that we beat the Soviet Empire without:

      1. Killing lots of Russians and Eastern Europeans
      1. Shredding the constitution
      1. Creating intense and ever increasing diviseness at home

      Thanks again...

      McGovern. Democrat. For the People.

      by m jesse jackson on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:13:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The land of the FREE (38+ / 0-)

      and the home of the BRAVE.

      (Now that should be the Democratic Party slogan for 2006.  Beats the shit out of "Together, we can do better.")

      "Excellently observed," answered Candide; "but let us cultivate our garden."

      by Simplify on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:17:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I confess to having a pre-9/11 mindset (21+ / 0-)

      I wasn't paralyzed with fear by homicidal goatherders before 9/11, and I'm not paralyzed by them now.

      Republicans, on the other hand ...

    •  you other suggestion (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      April Follies, victoria2dc

      And if you want me to be afraid for my very nation's survival, Jebus H Christ, you damn well better be able to wave around a threat considerably more convincing than a rag-tag group of zealots that shit in caves and beg other people to put on suicide belts and pull a rip cord detonator

      has already been taken. By labeing this equivalent to WWII, calling it WWIII, using the unnecessarily offensive and demarginalizing term "islamo fascists," and by making it about religion, current far right wing leadership may be doing more to exacarbate and broaden the threat and appeal of what is otherwise a fringe cultural pathology terrorist network, than marginalize and minimize it.  

    •  OK this just shows (4+ / 0-)

      you are completely unserious about the war on terror. DON'T YOU KNOW THIS IS THE GREATEST THREAT THE US HAS EVER FACED!!!!! GOOD GOD MAN WAKE UP TO THE NEW REALITY!!!!! I will now go back to cowering under my bed....

    •  This is really important to talk about. (8+ / 0-)

      I diaried it a long time ago, based on a Joesph Ellis piece in the Times.

      We seem to be losing our heads over what is really a very small threat.

      But that is by design: the Republicans get to play with the fear without really risking the collapse of the republic.  

      Meanwhile, they're quietly unmaking it...

    •  You are right, mostly (5+ / 0-)

      But we are still facing the most ungodly, inhuman and evil threats that we have ever seen in this country. And I don't mean Usama and his band of fanatics. I refer to Cheney-Bush and their band of fanatics.

    •  Those white graham crackers. Mmmmmm! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
    •  Sangfroid (0+ / 0-)

      used to be considered a virtue. When did Americans turn into such wimps?

      Je suis Marxiste, tendence Groucho.

      by gracchus on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:29:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Right. on. (0+ / 0-)

      For years I've been asking people to put their personal or family "risk" of terrorism in perspective.  

      Any American has a much higher chance of dying from heart disease than terrorism.

      Same with Cancer.

      And yet, we are not spending anywhere near the amount on cures for these diseases that we spend on Iraq.

      It was entirely irrational and outrageous even before the most recent "fear" campaign/fundraiser was initiated.

      Now it is absurd.  These Rethugs will stop at nothing.  It is time everyone realized it and faced their fear.

      We beat a massive Soviet Union nuclear threat that would have annihilated all of us.  

      And they expect us to get anxious over 19 guys with some liquid.  WTF?

      Screw these pansies.  It's time for a change.

  •  This whole liquid thingy smells fishy! (21+ / 0-)

    Liquid explosives are very tricky, and not so powerful unless you have relatively large quantity. The government and media are busy telling people it can be done with chemicals in your kitchen and smuggled on board in toothpaste tubes. This is BUSHIT. If you want to cause any meaningful damage to a jetliner with a few toothpaste tubes' worth of liquid, you need hi-tech to make it. If you cook up some shit in your kitchen, then you can't do it with a few tubes.

    Fear. It's the best ladder for tyrany's ascension.

    I expect people to wake up and see through this crap soon. It's 2001 no more.

    •  Kitchen chemicals (18+ / 0-)

      I keep waiting for someone to say, "If we can blow up 747's with stuff under my sink, why the hell didn't we ban liquids a long time ago???  Isn't this proof that Bush and the TSA have no fucking clue whatsoever about how to do their job?"

      •  Isn't it mind boggling they could terrorize us (5+ / 0-)

        just like that? Face it, we're being screwed by both the terrorists and BushCo.

        This post hit it on the nail. We the people need to get a grip and stop the hysteria. The mass hysteria is the lever for them -- both the terrorists and BushCo. Once we clam down and regain our sanity and rationality, they both lose.

        •  is there a difference between the two groups? (0+ / 0-)

          "I would say the best moment of all was when I caught a 7.5lb perch in my lake" -gwb describing his greatest moment since becoming president in 2001.

          by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:31:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Culture of Fear (0+ / 0-)

          If you haven't read it, you should, everyone should.  I hope Barry Glassner does an updated version with a preface specific to the fear that has been thrown at us for the last five years since 9/11.

          Just because you're self-righteous doesn't mean you're not a hypocrite.

          by AMcG826 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:45:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  The War On Liquids is heating up... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RebeccaG, continuum

        ...and since global warming is going to cause ocean levels to rise, and oceans are liquid, maybe we can finally get some action on global warming!

      •  Say it (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        paradox, leolabeth

        Goodness, I should have blown up my house years ago with all the different solvents stored under my kitchen sink. It hasn't happened yet, nor will it. Why isn't a scientist pointed this out in the myriad chicken little newscasts over the last week?

        Oh, wait. Dubya attempts to silence the science community every chance he gets, so reporters aren't calling them.


        -7.38, -5.23 One day we ALL will know the truth about the 2000 presidential election. God help us all.

        by CocoaLove on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:31:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Depends on what 'their job' is (0+ / 0-)

        I say 'their job' is to undo the Constitution--Chertoff and the Repubs are using this event to call for expansive police powers--step up from UnPatriot Act--which is too slow--right--to being able to search, listen to, everything they do--talking point is 'new tools' for our police.  They hit the air yesterday calling for it-- and right away shot down by the Dems for what it is:

        The British ``have an easier time getting electronic surveillance, and they also can detain people for up to, I think, 28 days without charging them," Chertoff said on ``Fox News Sunday." ``And those are very useful tools when you're trying to intercept an ongoing and very dynamic plot when you may not have collected all the evidence." snip

        ``The Bush administration wants to poke holes in the Constitution instead of plugging holes in our homeland security system," said Representative Edward J. Markey, a Malden Democrat and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee."

        The Repubs want to divert attention away from all the diversion of funds towards 'security' Rep DeFazio now speaking on CNN is discussing just this right now.

        FEAR and SMEAR is the only issue the Repubs have for this election--

        •  Hrmmm (0+ / 0-)

          The British do, do they....
          It's so good we want to do everything the British way now,
          how about a stamp tax again for the Queen Mum?

          (Of course, Scalia would violently oppose that, he's stated absolute opposition to taking any foreign power's legislation into account when making decisions on US law, no matter how rational or relevant.)

    •  Maybe they're thinking people will believe the (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sagra, keefer55

      stuff in that 'V for Vendetta' movie, where the government said that V's explosives were made of over the counter, readily available stuff.  

      Don't be so afraid of dying that you forget to live.

      by LionelEHutz on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:50:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Re: liquid thingy, check this... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      out. I think you'll really get a kick out of the fun these folks have lampooning the whole silly construct.

      Behold the Lambs of Kos

      by greeseyparrot on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:25:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think it's all bull shit. (0+ / 0-)

      I don't believe anything the Bush administration tells us.  That's a sad thing.  We have to impeach him and Cheney now!

    •  As a former chemist ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TJ, continuum

      (I'm now in IT), I know that liquid and/or binary bombs come in two classes:

      1. Home-made and low yield
      1. Hi-tech (i.e., military) and high yield

      When I first heard about the "Liquid Bomb" caper, I had a couple of paranoid thoughts:

      1. Are they just trying to make mountains out of molehills, in order to destroy even more civil rights (both in the US and the UK)? This was followed by:
      1. If they are hi-tech bombs, who has been supplying them with the know-how/materials? In quick succession, the CIA, MI6 and Mossad flitted through my mind as possible answers, making this yet another possible black-op.

      BTW, has anyone heard anything about trials and/or convictions for people supposed to be responsible for the 7/7 attack in London last year? Or was that just another case of political smoke and mirrors?

    •  I agree completely, but... (0+ / 0-)

      ...there is a difference if you don't care about being blown up in the process.

      The trickiest part is dealing safely with the unstable mixtures. If you don't care about the "safely" part, some things become easier.

      There are a lot of hypergolic combinations and most rely on coal-era chemistry.

      But it's still hard to get a big bang just when and where you want it.

      "What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the wish to find out, which is the exact opposite." - Bertrand Russell

      by Mad Dog Rackham on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:43:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thinking like that will let the terr'ists win! (21+ / 0-)

    Don't you understand, that's exactly WHAT THEY WANT: for us to be calm ,address the situation rationally and not sacrifice any of our rights!

    Oh, wait.... might be the other way round...

    "In America fundamentalist Christians believe the world was created 6,000 years ago - in England people drink in bars that are older than that." - Steve Aylett

    by Mephistopheles on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:51:44 AM PDT

  •  AMEN! (25+ / 0-)

    As I keep reminding people at work, we didn't piss our pants during the Cold War, and TO THIS DAY, the Russians are STILL the only entity on Earth that can still turn out our lights for good.  To give you an idea of what the Russians still have pointed at us, check this out:

    In January 2006 the Russian strategic forces included 771 strategic delivery platforms, which can carry up to 3319 nuclear warheads.

    The Strategic Rocket Forces have 512 operational missile systems that include missiles that can carry 1808 warheads. These include 74 R-36MUTTH and R-36M2 (SS-18) missiles, 126 UR-100NUTTH (SS-19) missiles, 270 road-mobile Topol (SS-25) systems, and 42 silo-based Topol-M (SS-27) systems.

    [Strategic Rocket Forces...]
    The Russian strategic fleet includes 12 strategic missile submarines. Their missiles can carry 639 nuclear warheads. Bases of the Northern Fleet host six 667BDRM (Delta IV) operational submarines, which carry 96 R-29RM (SS-N-23) launchers and two 667BDR (Delta III) submarines with 29 R-29R (SS-N-18) missiles. The only remaining Pacific Fleet base hosts four 667BDR (Delta III) submarines, which carry 56 R-29R (SS-N-18) missiles.

    [Strategic fleet...]
    The Russian strategic aviation consists of 78 bombers that can carry up to 872 long-range cruise missiles. The bombers are 14 Tu-160 (Blackjack) and 64 Tu-95MS (Bear H). All bombers carry various modifications of the Kh-55 (AS-15) cruise missile.

    Of course, this pales in comparison to what WE have, but still, including the Chinese strategic force (which is smaller than England or France), the Russians are the only ones that can do us real harm.  A bomb in the middle of LA or NYC or Washington, while terrible, WILL NOT END OUR CIVILIZATION.  Its time to call Freepers and Rush and Hannity et al. what they are - pee in their pants jack-offs who crave dictatorship.

    You cant get hummous without mashing some chickpeas....

    by calipygian on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:56:15 AM PDT

    •  Here is the link for the site (6+ / 0-)

      Russian, as well as an interesting little factoid.  

      Missiles of the R-36M/SS-18 family have never been deployed with more than ten warheads. But given their large throw-weight (8.8 tonnes is the official START number), it is easy to see that they can be made to carry much more than that. That was something that the United States worried quite a bit in the 1970s. And, as it turns out, rightly so.

      Among the projects that the Soviet Union considered in the mid-1970s was that of a 15A17 missile – a follow-on to the R-36MUTTH (15A18). The missile would have had even larger throw-weight – 9.5 tonnes – and would be able to carry quite a few warheads. Five different versions of the missile were considered. Three of these would carry regular warheads – 38 (yes, it’s thirty eight!) with the yield of 250kt each, 24 500kt warheads, or 15 to 17 1Mt ones. Two modifications were supposed to carry guided warheads (“upravlyaemaya golovnaya chast”) – 28x250kt or 19x500kt.

      This missile is still in service.  One of them has the potential to kill the twenty-five biggest cities in our country.  The Russians keep 74 of them at varying stages of alert to this day.

      You cant get hummous without mashing some chickpeas....

      by calipygian on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:59:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Remember the 2004 Presidential Debate? (12+ / 0-)

      The moderator (I think it was Jim Lehrer) asked Kerry what was the single most pressing issue.  Without hesitation, Kerry said nuclear nonproliferation.  Bush was forced to stammer out an agreement, because he knew Kerry was right.  And the press hasn't mentioned it since.

      "Excellently observed," answered Candide; "but let us cultivate our garden."

      by Simplify on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:22:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  While listing nuclear weapons ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      don't forget to include Israel (200-500 warheads of various yields, delivery systems to include bombers and submarine launched ballistic missles; India (100 warheads, bombers and ballistic missiles), and Pakistan  (less than 100 warheads, bombers and ballistic missiles.) South Africa had 20 plus warheads, but destroyed them at the transition from the apartheid to a modern South Africa.

  •  Very,very good Susan (3+ / 0-)

    I often wondered in the lead up to Iraq what all the fuss was about. I can't recall a single time when all the threat talk was going on, sitting up in bed at night thinking ' OMG,the Iraqis are coming!!!
    We spend over $400 billion a year on defense not counting the $300 billion for Iraq so far. For that kind of money, I don't even want to hear the word "threat".

    "I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies; for the hardest victory is over self." --Aristotle

    by java4every1 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:59:09 AM PDT

  •  thank you (20+ / 0-)

    I have never fully understood America's reaction to 9-11. Yes, 3,000 died. But that's only 1/1000th of the entire U.S. population. Think of cities like Hiroshima or Dresden that literally disappeared in a flash. Think of the Holocaust. Think of Stalin's purges. Perhaps it's because America lacks all historical perspective about what constitutes true tragedy that we've allowed our leaders to lash out out of all proportion. I don't know.

    As for as I'm only concerned, I don't fear those who, like bin Laden, can only take my life. Hell, we're all going to die someday. I only fear those who would take away my liberty, like Bush and the Republican Party. Would that the majority of Americans shared my belief.

    •  oops (5+ / 0-)

      that should read "1/1000th of 1% of the entire U.S. population"

    •  I have friends who (19+ / 0-)

      were in Japan, teaching ESL for a year, when 9/11 happened.  One of them said to me, "The way the Japanese media reacted was so weird... they made such a small deal of it... it was as if it were on the other side of the world."

      And I thought, first -- it WAS on the other side of the world!  But further, and perhaps more cogently: this is a country that bears the living memory of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.  214,000 people were killed, if not instantly, then in a way that made them wish it had been instantly.  9/11 was tiny by comparison.  Why would they make a big deal of it?

      But for about a year after 9/11, I got in trouble all over the place for saying this sort of thing.

      GOPunditocracy: "But we're different!  Pain hurts us!"

      •  Good for you (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sagra, drbloodaxe

        On 9/11, I was driving to a doctor's appointment (having a miscarriage, so I was definitely preoccupied) and my GOP sister called me on the cell phone.

        "Oh. My. God.  I think it's bin Laden."

        "Sounds plausible."

        "We're under attack.  They've hit the Pentagon."

        "With planes?"  (I was truly clueless).

        The first thing I remember saying after that was that they had played their big card, then, and it wouldn't escalate.  If they had had nukes, they would have used them.  I couldn't believe how flipped out she was.  But she and her husband have a FOX newsfeed up their butts.  And as I recall, FOX' coverage of the event turned out to be a useless perseveration of fear.  That plus plenty of survivor pathos.

      •  Interesting, that's not how I remember it (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I've nothing to compare it too, however. Literally everybody I know (Japanese folks) sat up all night and watched. Everyone.

        My wife and I turned on the news after watching a video at about 11:00 pm Tokyo time. I thought it was a promo, at first, for some new movie.

        Then it hit us. We watched both towers come down. We watched the hit on the Pentagon. We went to bed about 5:00 am exhausted and very freaked out.

        Twenty-four hours later coverage did tail off radically. But during the time of the attack and for a few days later, it was all anyone talked about.

    •  Are you channeling Robert Heinlein? :-) n/t (0+ / 0-)
    •  Well.... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      zeke L, sagra

      I figure that if George Bush isn't concerned about Osama bin Laden, there's no reason for me to be concerned. Everything else is just the obligatory production number at the end of act 2 - flashy, well choreographed, and totally Ziegfeld. I give it one and a half stars. §;o)

      Satan himself had a 33% approval rating even as he was booted out of heaven.

      by Joy Busey on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:49:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Likewise, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Joy Busey, kidneystones

        why all the frenzy to destroy Iran's nuclear program, when Bush and Cheney have done nothing to punish Pakistan for building nuclear weapons?

        Nuclear proliferation is certainly undesirable, but Bush and Cheney were uninterested in doing anything about it until now. If Iran joins the nuclear club it will be unfortunate, but we can live with it, relying on our own nuclear deterrent (AND pursuing detente) as we did during the Cold War.

        Repug conventional wisdom is that Iran can't be allowed to develop nuclear weapons because they might share materials and technology with terrorists.
        But Pakistan has already been caught aiding proliferaton, and all it got was a slap on the wrist.

        I see plenty of reason for serious diplomatic engagement with Iran. I see no reason for a preemptive strike on Iran, especially now that Israel's failure in south Lebanon suggests such a strike would accomplish nothing.

        •  They're doomed... (0+ / 0-)

          I see plenty of reason for serious diplomatic engagement with Iran. I see no reason for a preemptive strike on Iran, especially now that Israel's failure in south Lebanon suggests such a strike would accomplish nothing.

          Serious diplomatic engagement presumes that Iran wishes to seriously engage diplomatically. Or that Bush/Condi wish to do so. I see no indication from either end that such wishes are present. If Iranian nuclear facilities threaten proliferation, let Israel take 'em out. Or ignore it, like we did with Pakistan (where Osama's hanging out these days).

          There's lots of things that might kill me today or tomorrow. Al Queda is not high on the list. It's 100% certain that something will kill me someday, but Al Queda doesn't factor big on those possibilities either. Bush's desire to instill fear in Americans is shameful, and denies the very courage he relies upon to fight the dirty little wars he told us were all about Al Queda. Now that we know he lied, the public has turned against him.

          This doesn't mean we're suddenly too scared to fight if need be. It just means we've identified the operative target and it's right here at home. We'll take 'em out with our very own blue-dyed voting fingers come November [writing on the wall...], and the rest will be history.

          Satan himself had a 33% approval rating even as he was booted out of heaven.

          by Joy Busey on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:17:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  230,000 people died in the December 2004 tsunami. (4+ / 0-)

      Imagine the world's disgust with our continued whining over 3,000.  

      Pumped and ready for "the rough and tumble competition of the memetic marketplace."

      by sagra on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:53:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I do fear for our nation's survival. (16+ / 0-)

    I seriously think that one the GREATEST threats we have ever faced...which includes all that you have listed, is this administration, their supporters, and the neocons.  IMO, they have done NOTHING to make us a better country or the world a better place.  Virtually every policy they have instituted has been extremely destructive.

    •  My LTE (20+ / 0-)

      I sent it yesterday in response to a column about how serious the threat from international terrorism is:

      To the Editor:

      In his column on Saturday, Dolph Simons Jr. presents his readers with a false dilemma: either we must allow illegal wiretaps of American citizens, or we must severely weaken our defense against the threat posed by international terrorism.

      This is absurd.  There is no government, no organization, no power on earth that threatens the United States of America.  Certainly there are those who wish us ill and threaten "deadly initiatives against U.S. citizens," but they do not threaten the survival of the republic.  The  real threat to our nation is from a fearful and short-sighted voiding of long-held Constitutional protections and the rule of law.  

      Against all odds, we have survived as a nation with the Bill of Rights intact since 1789.  We have triumphed in the face of invading armies, the burning of Washington, the Civil War, WWII, and the threat of nuclear annihilation -- not in spite of, but because of rights and freedoms guaranteed to us under the Constitution.  For us to now declare those freedoms and rights inimical to our survival, or to fearfully unmake what hundreds of thousands of servicemen have bled and died for, is foolishness.

      To forgo our constitutional protections in the name of defense against terrorism is to give power to the terrorists, a power they do not have.   If we remake America into a country where individuals in the government are considered above the law, then the terrorist will have won -- but we will have destroyed America where they could not.

      Diaried it a bit here and here.

    •  Check out McCarthyism (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mainely49, flumptytail

      I live through the last part of that. The constitution back then was also under attack by the Republican McCarty--blacklists, people pulled before the committee with the question "Have you now or have you ever been a Communist"

      And given the demand to 'name names or else"

      People 'blacklisted' from working, young Ronald Reagan pointing fingers are writers in the screen writers guild as suspected 'communists'

      We survived that, we will survive this!

      We had Edward R Murrow back then, now we have Sy Hirsh!

      Screw these chicken hawk neo cons! Screw them!

  •  Exactly! n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fabian, teeb, Pandoras Box
  •  Bravo! (8+ / 0-)

    When 9/11/2001, a woman turned to me in panic, and said, "What will I tell my children about the world they live in?"

    I told her that my whole generation lived with the possibility of the entire world ending, and we coped with it.

    I was trying to let her know her panic wouldn't help, and that children had, frankly, lived through worse possible dangers.

    But she was too caught up in the panic and I don't think what I said even registered. Maybe never did.

    It's time people in Flyspeck took a lesson from people in our large cities who aren't succumbing to panic.

    It's shown to be a terrible long-term strategy.

    I try to live by the Three Reality Principles.

    by proudlattedrinker on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:02:20 AM PDT

    •  This exact point (6+ / 0-)

      is why I'm so freaked out that my parents, who raised me and my siblings during the cold war, have been turned into quivering masses of jelly by the way this "terrist threat" has been sold. My mom in particular is often reduced to tears just talking about it. Unbelievable. The neocons have really done a masterful job in selling this fear to previously stalwart people.

      •  Too much television. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        chemicalresult, flumptytail

        I wish I was kidding.

        NYC, before the Guliani scrub down, was legitimately dangerous (yes, I know it still is in many places). I was a NYU student and read a study, which sadly I haven't been able to reproduce this morning, that showed the number of hours one watches television has a direct correlation with levels of fear of crime and strangers. At the time I didn't have a television and felt safe nearly everywhere because I believed I had taken all the precautions I could.

        There are plenty of exceptions to this, my 82 year-old father watches hours of court t.v while he reads his four newspapers a day and he's madly liberal, but I think the growth of the ubiquitous blathering 24/7 news channel in all public spaces has a greater effect than we might imagine.

        We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be. Kurt Vonnegut

        by leolabeth on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:56:51 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I just turned on CNN (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          At the top of the hour they introduced all of their correspondents in their various locations covering different angles of terror. There were about 6 or 7 of them, two in Canada alone (one to cover the recent plot there, the other to cover border security issues. They've got terror covered from every angle imaginable. I became instantly furious and turned to MSNBC. I think CNN might need some calls or letters about their 24/7 fear mongering.

      •  Too much television. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        zeke L, KOTCrum

        I wish I was kidding.

        NYC, before the Guliani scrub down, was legitimately dangerous (yes, I know it still is in many places). I was a NYU student and read a study, which sadly I haven't been able to reproduce this morning, that showed the number of hours one watches television has a direct correlation with levels of fear of crime and strangers. At the time I didn't have a television and felt safe nearly everywhere because I believed I had taken all the precautions I could.

        There are plenty of exceptions to this, my 82 year-old father watches hours of court t.v while he reads his four newspapers a day and he's madly liberal, but I think the growth of the ubiquitous blathering 24/7 news channel in all public spaces has a greater effect than we might imagine.

        We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be. Kurt Vonnegut

        by leolabeth on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:56:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Growing up with trips to the shelter (7+ / 0-)

    Thanks for putting some of this in perspective. I grew up during duck and cover drills in elementary school. The backyard fallout shelter business was brisk and my parents lived in constant fear. Me and my pals just thought it was normal and the shelter was the coolest place to beat the west Texas heat.

  •  Excellent perspective piece Dark (13+ / 0-)

    The Bush administration's Paranoia Platform success, rooted in and fueled by propaganda, has worked for other dictators too. Oops, did I say that?

  •  Thank You! (7+ / 0-)

    I've been getting more and more upset about the absolutely moronic stuff we're asked to swallow.  How is the nation that defeated communism afraid of some suicidal idiots with bombs?

    whoring my blog like it's my job!

    by jjhare on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:03:01 AM PDT

  •  Alas, tying AQ with images of mushroom clouds (8+ / 0-)

    Is exactly what the Republicans have been doing for the past six years.

    The only thing a kool-aid fan is going to see in that fine image above is a redoubled faith in George W. Bush, on account he's stopped that very image from happening.

    Yep. It's that insane. That's why they call them crazy people.

    Forget peak oil. Peak beer is coming!

    by cskendrick on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:03:10 AM PDT

  •  Run! Run for your lives! (11+ / 0-)

    The GOP is falling. The GOP is falling!

    Hehe. Great diary.

    Phillybits - A Showcase Of Political News And Thought

    by Stand Strong on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:04:30 AM PDT

  •  No Bigger thrat than the FUCKING GOP (14+ / 0-)

    Those bastards ARE the single biggest and most realistic threat that faces ME, to be entirely selfish.

    Aspirin kills more people than al Qeada.

    Pharmaceutical meds kill more than Osama. Big Pharma contributes heavily to and is hugely protected by the GOP. The GOP needs Big Pharma AND Osama. Osama is little more than a tool of the GOP.

    Al Queda and Osama and the President of Iran are no threat to the US Constituition - but the GOP sure is.

    How would Hezbollah have responded to a Katrina-style incident in Lebanon? Would tens of thousands of poor lebanese been simply abandonded while Hezbollah and Lebanse leaders ate cake and clowned around at a hashish bar?

    I so seriously doubt that.

    But we know how it went down here in America.

    No.. Team Bush and their hijacked GOP are the single biggest, most direct threat to my immedicate and long-term future life.

    Nothing more than a bunch of preverted criminal losers who have wet dreams of fascist control over this country, I have no motivation to extend some sort of peace offering to these clowns. Fuck them.

    The top tier of Team Bush - you know the names - must be arrested - there's a kaleidescope of indictments just waiting for the Judge or lawyer (whoever is supposed to write up such stuff) to do their fucking job, but who are likely supporters of this criminal milieu.

    Osama and al Queda are criminals, not "boogeymen" as we are expected to react.

    Americans are being played like a whorehouse piano and the GOP is doing the playing.

  •  Boils down to what's more important in life (14+ / 0-)

    Quantity or quality? Because the terrorists offer quick and horrific death, but the Bush administration provides long-term, spectacular misery.

  •  Will not discuss military weapons,... (7+ / 0-)

    Nor liquid explosives, as others do so readily (some knowledgeably and realistically, others less so),  But you hit it on the head, mate.  The fear of terror is nothing but futility having little or no value whatsoever -- except to Commander Codpiece, his cabal and party, and some other pols.  And that fear, which is so wantonly magnified by certain pols and the MSM, has little to do with reality, at all.  

    Good analysis and thoughts.  Hope people take your 'expose' to heart and start really examining the 'threat' objectively and in detail.


    Life is not a 'dress rehearsal'!

    by wgard on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:06:12 AM PDT

  •  Finally (3+ / 0-)

    Someone said it.
    Thank you. Now I can start telling people "LET THEM TRY!!" when they talk about how the terrorists might hurt us any time. How we have to be... cautious. (Terrified and letting other people protect us) And all that shit.

  •  Count on DarkSyde for clarity of (6+ / 0-)


    Bushco may be much smarter than we have been thinking---   look how this slow slide into chickenlittleness has been crafted.  Goebels?  something about - you can always get people to do what you want, just tell them they are in danger.

    If you really want to crawl under the bed and whimper, spend some time thinking about bird flu's becoming easily transmissable between humans with a 4-5 day lag while its communicable but no serious symptoms.   Or, if the food chain in the oceans becomes disrupted because of global warming.  Or if the whole Amazon valley starts dying from drought and changes in its ecosystem from the dying of the upper layer trees.

    Thank you, DarkSyde.   Another great one

    Rule number one of Republican economic pundits. Lie your ass off and hope no one notices. bonddad

    by maybeeso in michigan on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:10:02 AM PDT

    •  The worst immediate threat is (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      that Bushco will succeed in changing our country into the fascist state they seem to want.  Or maybe feudalism with the rich owning everybody else.   That makes me whimper some too.

      Elections coming up.  NOW is the time to challenge people on their fears and to get the right (left) people pumped up and to the polls.

      Rule number one of Republican economic pundits. Lie your ass off and hope no one notices. bonddad

      by maybeeso in michigan on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:19:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's not physsical danger, it's ego danger (14+ / 0-)

    Listen to the neocons and their Rs supporters..  They don’t talk about our physical danger.  They talk about us appearing weak, as in leaving Iraq will make us look weak.  They don’t argue we need better ways to do security.  They don’t argue we need to get al Qaeda.  They argue we can’t look weak in our response.  

    Do the right thing 'casue it feels better.

    by John Boy on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:10:05 AM PDT

    •  So we ban shampoo on airplanes? (0+ / 0-)

      That makes us look real strong...

      Bush has caved in to them - he's let them see how scared we are.

      We're TERRIFIED of them. They might hurt us. However, so could a hurricane, tornado, tidal wave, earthquake - and they'd hurt a lot more.

      I'm not scared of the terrorists. I'm not scared of the boogeyman either. Or ghosts. The terrorists are as likely to get me as they are.

    •  Absolutely right. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      They're also obsessed about what terrorists want to do.  If you aren't 100% focused on terrorism they get upset and start screaming "don't you realize they want to kill us?"  Some of them seriously want the military to kill every single person on the planet who doesn't worship America.

      Pumped and ready for "the rough and tumble competition of the memetic marketplace."

      by sagra on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:10:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The imperial 'WE' . n/t (0+ / 0-)
  •  The enemy is within this time (7+ / 0-)

    where we confront the whining titty-baby fascist wannabees

    The GOP is up way past its bed time and is going to have one more tantrum before it goes nighty night

  •  Unimaginable.... (12+ / 0-)

    I think that is what allowed most Americans to get through the day.  Nuclear weapons were vastly scarier than terrorists on a plane, but we can far more easily imagine the risk of being blown out of the skies at 20,000 feet or trapped in a buring tall building.  I am afraid of heights, so I can really imagine it.

    Does anyone remember the TV miniseries "The Day After?"  It was released in 1983, deep Reagan administration.  Lots of people were worried about his refusal to disarm and even then, Afghanistan was at war.  The premise was that WWIII started with the Soviets and American was a nuclear wasteland.  I was a graduate student in Lawrence Kansas when it was filmed.  I wasn't willing to shave my head to be an extra, although some I knew did and had a blast.

    The movie was controversial because it scared people.  It made nuclear war believable.  

    "The Day After" debuted on Nov. 20, 1983, to a maelstrom of publicity and controversy. Nearly 100 million viewers tuned in -- a record audience for a made-for-TV movie.

    Immediately after the broadcast, Ted Koppel hosted a live panel discussion to help viewers cope with what they'd witnessed. Dr. Carl Sagan, Henry Kissinger, Robert McNamara, William F. Buckley and George Shultz were among those who participated.

    Representing the Ronald Reagan administration, Secretary of State Shultz was in full-damage control mode, making comments such as, "The only reason we have for keeping nuclear weapons is to see to it that they are not used."

     link to Lawrence Journal World article

    The movie affected Ronald Reagan's attitudes on nuclear war.  The Larerence Journal World article continues....

    "The making of the film was to date the most worthwhile thing I ever got to do in my life," Meyer asserts. "Any movie that the President of the United States winds up saying changed his mind about the idea of a winnable nuclear war is not an insignificant achievement. The Reagan administration came in thinking about ‘acceptable numbers' of nuclear casualties. (Reagan's memoirs reveal) what he had to say about the effects of what ‘The Day After' had on his thinking.

    "When he signed the Intermediate Range Weapons Agreement at Reykjavik (in 1986) with Gorbachev, I got a telegram from his administration that said, ‘Don't think your movie didn't have any part of this, because it did.'"

    I think there should be a TV movie based on RiverBend and her war blogs.  That might make the tragedy of the war in Iraq believable to Americans.  

    You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you mad. Aldous Huxley

    by murrayewv on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:10:26 AM PDT

    •  Figures (4+ / 0-)

      Reagan had to get it in the form of a movie to get it through his skull  ;-)

    •  Well... (3+ / 0-)

      On the flip side, I heard that Nixon watched Patton the day before he decided to escalate the war in Vietnam.

      •  Patton.... (0+ / 0-)

        now there was a scary egomaniac.  I bet Bush watched it sometime during the Baghdad invasion.  Thing is, they never left Patton in charge of the occupation and the Germans were well armed and competent.

        You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you mad. Aldous Huxley

        by murrayewv on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:27:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Lest we forget (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      under Article VI of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which the U.S. signed and ratified, we are legally bound to work toward eliminating all nuclear weapons.

      "Excellently observed," answered Candide; "but let us cultivate our garden."

      by Simplify on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:30:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Emphasised in the preamble to the START (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        and in Article One of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty -

        The United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, hereinafter referred to as the Parties,

        Conscious that nuclear war would have devastating consequences for all humanity, that it cannot be won and must never be fought,

        Convinced that the measures for the reduction and limitation of strategic offensive arms and the other obligations set forth in this Treaty will help to reduce the risk of outbreak of nuclear war and strengthen international peace and security,

        Recognizing that the interests of the Parties and the interests of international security require the strengthening of strategic stability,

        Mindful of their undertakings with regard to strategic offensive arms in Article VI of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons of July 1, 1968; Article XI of the Treaty on the Limitation of Anti-Ballistic Missile Systems of May 26, 1972; and the Washington Summit Joint Statement of June 1, 1990,

        Have agreed as follows:

        ARTICLE I

        Each Party shall reduce and limit its strategic offensive arms in accordance with the provisions of this Treaty, and shall carry out the other obligations set forth in this Treaty and its Annexes, Protocols, and Memorandum of Understanding.

        That is the full text of Article I of the treaty.

        You cant get hummous without mashing some chickpeas....

        by calipygian on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:53:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Most presidents are overcome with awe and fear (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      when they realize they have the button to push. Reagan said "It was fun."

  •  They don't call 'em chickenhawks for nothing (7+ / 0-)

      Nice exposition on what is wrong with America today ... well, one of many things :-)

      I am much, much, much more worried about my children's future being sold out by the current crop of sleazebag legislators we have than the possibility that one or more arab men might blow them up. Arabs are rare here, easily identified at the border, and ought to not be such a big problem, just as soon as we get over the fact that we have to profile those entering the country rather than being fair by wasting all traveler's time equally.

     I guess I have a benefit that many Americans lack; I've never owned a T.V. My news comes from my Economist subscription, my Foreign Affairs subscription, their associated web sites ... and DailyKos. I don't read DailyKos ... daily ... because I have only so  much outrage and the mean time from clicking that link to writing letters to my Senators is all of fifteen minutes.

     OK, I'm not paralyzed with fear, but I'll be paralyzed with annoyance if I read much more here this AM :-)

    "Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise" - U.S. Constitution author and fourth President James Madison

    by Iowa Boy on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:11:17 AM PDT

  •  Darksyde is right... (2+ / 0-)

    ...I am not afraid of Osama!

  •  This is a very good meme (3+ / 0-)

    We need our Fighting Dems front and center talking about this.  We have to say that we are not goign to be scared into going to war everywhere when what we have is a very small irritant group that only one time made a big hit - and something that could have easily been thwarted with tight security.

  •  I love Stephen Colbert's joke: (10+ / 0-)

    The Colbert Terrorist Threat Level has been raised to brown.



    spilled coffee on the chart.

    Feminism is the radical notion that women are people. - Cheris Kramerae

    by Monique Radevu on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:12:56 AM PDT

  •  Good old fashion fear (3+ / 0-)

    I'm more afraid of some crazy driver here in Japan backing out of a car park without looking than I'm of Osama. I'm more afraid of Japanese television: Which broadcasts such wonderful fair as SAMPxSAMP and Hey Hey Hey Music Champ than I'm of Osama. I'm really frightened of American television: Especially those programs I've only read about but have never seen like American Idol, Next American Super Model, Sunday morning interview programs than I'm of Osama. But, what  really frightens me are all those right wing pundits and the people who listen to them.

  •  It's not about the threat posed by Terrorism.. (12+ / 0-)'s about the opportunities it presents!

    The GOP believes that you can never have too much money or too much power (unless, of course, you work for a living or you're a Democrat).  

    The fastest route to money and power is down the yellow brick road of fear.

    -5.75 -4.72 3.14159 2.71828

    by xynz on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:17:57 AM PDT

  •  If Ronald Reagan were alive today (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    calipygian, Iowa Boy

    he'd put a megaton or two of steel in the spines of these panicky conservatives, by God. As it is, they've managed to bring a shabby, wretched end to his legacy. This is truly a national loss. I hope that some honest Republicans themselves may, in a limited way, be coming to understand the importance of freedom.

    D) all of the above

    by hhex65 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:20:20 AM PDT

  •  Yes! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eddieb061345, althea in il

    There are many, many things in the world of which to be afraid:  not having access to clean water or medical care; lack of constant employment ensuring the financial well-being of your family; an inconsistent and arbitrary educational system; a judicial system that doesn't ensure due process of law.  But fearing random death from angry men really isn't very productive.

    We will all die.  How we choose to live defines us as human beings.

    Since September 11th, Americans have let a created fear rule their lives, a fear carefully manipulated and tended by the MSM and the Republican Party. Most of the people here at dKos have choosen to reject that fear.  I know I have.

    Thanks for helping to frame the fearmongers, Dark.

  •  The DCDemocrat To Defeat Terror: (3+ / 0-)

    I refuse to be afraid.  Guess what.  It is foolproof.  Al Qaeda cannot terrorize someone who will not be afraid.

    Bad policy, poorly implemented: nothing you want from a president and a little bit less.

    by DCDemocrat on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:21:33 AM PDT

  •  Yes, and No (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DarkSyde, Simplify, scory, SherriG

    True, the Soviets did have thousands of nukes, but they wanted to live as much as we did.
    Is there doubt in anyones mind that the nut jobs in the middle east WILL use a nuclear weapon the moment they get their hands on one?
    I just had a thought that sent chills down my spine. As someone who lived through the cold war, I can't imagine our current Dufus 'n Chief being in the middle of even one of those tense moments.  

    •  What (5+ / 0-)

      middle east nutjobs are you talking about? Iran, Egypt,. Syria? Because I think they're pretty focused on living, yeah. Having a country has a tendency to make one thoughtful about ending it. I pity the people of any nation that gets fingered for setting one off here. They're going to need a lot more than one, or a dozen, or even a hundred, to even think about fucking with us.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:26:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rapture-anticipating nut jobs are my choice (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sagra, bwintx, chemicalresult

        for using nuclear weapons.  People who truly believe that God has something special in store for them.  Unlike the popular belief that all fundamentalists are Muslim, we have a lot of Rapture-believing fundamentalists in our country.  And I don't have a whole lot of faith that they can't get control of nuclear weapons and delievery systems.

        Think for a moment about the recent issues regarding religion at the Air Force Academy.  Then think which service controls most of the nuclear weapons in the U.S. arsenal.

        •  Yeah, but the rapture (0+ / 0-)

          people want to nuke the middle east, not the US.  They need to make sure there's something of them left to rapture, and after a nuclear explosion, all there'd be left would be atoms.

          We should be very afraid they'll spark a wider war in the ME, but we needn't worry about nukes falling on our heads from the Rapture people.

    •  Yeah I doubt it. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brian B

      The nut jobs in Israel have had the bomb for 40 years and they haven't used it yet.

      Outside of the Middle East, Pakistan has had the bomb for 17 years and hasn't used it either. Nor has it given it to any of the groups it harbors within its borders or supports outside of its borders.

      The whole point of a nation getting a nuclear weapon is to keep other nations from attacking them - not to attack other nations. As for a non-state group to get one I can't see how it would happen.

      As for Iran - they most likely already have the bomb. Otherwise we would have already attacked their facilities. All of this posturing is just that - posturing.

      What should really put a scare into you is not the nut jobs in the middle east but the nut jobs in this country that are dreaming about the coming apocalypse.

    •  Suicide Attackers Represent Just Another... (0+ / 0-)

      aspect of a good soldier's mentality. A good soldier knows that he is risking life an limb for a cause. I don't know if there is much difference between the mentality of a soldier who knows he is going to be engaging in a front line first wave attack and a suicide bomber.

      I've heard this way of differentiating us from them (the first mission of a propagandist) repeated often by wingnuts. These are the same people who value the miltary and the bravery of it's soldiers.

      Suicide attacks have a long history. Even beyond the Kamikaze. The biblical story of Samson ends with his suicidal sacrifice. From Wikipedia:

      One day the Philistine leaders assemble in a temple for a religious sacrifice to their god Dagon for having delivered Samson into their hands. They summon Samson so that he may entertain them. Three thousand more men and women gather on the roof to watch. Once inside the temple, Samson asks the servant who is leading him to the temple's central pillars if he may lean against them.


      "Then Samson prayed to the LORD, 'O Sovereign LORD, remember me. O God, please strengthen me just once more, and let me with one blow get revenge on the Philistines for my two eyes' (Judges 16:28)." "Samson said, 'Let me die with the Philistines!' (Judges 16:30) Down came the temple on the rulers and all the people in it. Thus he killed many more as he died than while he lived." (Judges 16:30).

      After his death, Samson's family recovers his body from the rubble and buries him near the tomb of his father Manoah.

      Good Government. Traffic Lights Aren't All That Weird. Vote Democratic!

      by HL Mungo on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:06:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  a return to classical liberalism (0+ / 0-)

    is the only course of action that will solve our problems.collectivism is really slavery.

  •  Excellent Perspective (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eddieb061345, DarkSyde

    At the hands of the neocons, each new terror threat brings our constitutional rights - not our lives - closer to an end.  That is the real danger here.

  •  Thanks... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eddieb061345, kitten sedaris

    I needed that!

    Perspective is an important thing.  How do we get it out on a mass level?

  •  waaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh. (5+ / 0-)


    just wanted to see what it felt like.

    ok, carry on...

    Bohemia has no banner. It survives by discretion. - Tennessee Williams

    by kitten sedaris on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:33:27 AM PDT

  •  But this time it's A M E R I C A N S (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    at home that are at threat.

    We're so much more important than anyone else in the world, that makes our loss 10 times more devastating.  Even more important than our kids being killed in our name...after all, they volunteersed to die!

  •  Read this a couple of days ago (6+ / 0-)

    Kung Fu Monkey had this to say

    Maybe it's just, I cast my eyes back on the last century ...

    FDR: Oh, I'm sorry, was wiping out our entire Pacific fleet supposed to intimidate us? We have nothing to fear but fear itself, and right now we're coming to kick your ass with brand new destroyers riveted by waitresses. How's that going to feel?

    CHURCHILL: Yeah, you keep bombing us. We'll be in the pub, flipping you off. I'm slapping Rolls-Royce engines into untested flying coffins to knock you out of the skies, and then I'm sending angry Welshmen to burn your country from the Rhine to the Polish border.

    US. NOW: BE AFRAID!! Oh God, the Brown Bad people could strike any moment! They could strike ... NOW!! AHHHH. Okay, how about .. NOW!! AAGAGAHAHAHHAG! Quick, do whatever we tell you, and believe whatever we tell you, or YOU WILL BE KILLED BY BROWN PEOPLE!! PUT DOWN THAT SIPPY CUP!!

    ... and I'm just a little tired of being on the wrong side of that historical arc.

    By the way the nothing to fear quote is about the depression

    Someone once asked me if I had learned anything from going to war so many times. My reply: Yes, I learned how to cry.
    Joe Galloway

    by BOHICA on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:35:20 AM PDT

  •  Most power ever v. weakest threat ever. (4+ / 0-)

    I seriously believe that Bush is using the most power ever wielded by a human being against one of the weakest threats ever posed by other human beings against the country.  Loosly organized individuals with ill intent v. all of America's Might.

    •  A-fucking-men (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      This whole thread is much needed, and it is something the dems need to start pounding the media shows with.

      They can begin with something like:

      "Just what kind of chicken-shit country has the U.S. turned into...."  They can recall our brave, heroic past...a time when civilians UNDERSTOOD there was an inherent threat with living in the USA and there was nothing they could do about it, and that was okay.  If the Russians launched a bomb or thirty that would be it...THE END OF THE WORLD.  People were afraid, sure, but their fear was overcome by a confidence in leadership, by remembering our forefathers legacy of success at overcoming difficulties, by a military that carried out appropriately planned, strategically designed missions.

      The Dems need to ask people what they're afraid's not Osama, it's not terrorism...they are afraid of what this country is becoming.  Many have been j too caught up in what wass being spoon fedto them, but that is changing...

    •  Exactly (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      johanus, SherriG, kidneystones

      he's used a shotgun to kill a fly.

      The fly's still buzzing around, but the house is a total wreck.

  •  A new movie (7+ / 0-)

    Y'all just wait.  Within the next 6-12 months there'll be a remake of the make-your-skin-crawl-it's-so-hokey movie anti-classic:  "Red Islamofascist Dawn.

    Yup, if we don't WATCH OUT, Iranian, Syrian, and "Hezbos" (Limbaugh's favorite word to "tweak" all the Mid-East Muslims who listen to him) will parachute in to Anytown, U.S.A., along with every other part of the nation (in cooperation with the Venezuelans) and either kill all the scoffers, or put them into "re-education" camps.

    Of course, it'll be up to the local football teams and those who slap the patriotic magnets on the butt-ends of their H2's to save us.

    God Bless Lee Greenwood.


    We're working on many levels here. Ken Kesey

    by BenGoshi on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:39:00 AM PDT

  •  BRAVO!!!! (2+ / 0-)

    Capital letters, and if you were here I'd give you a big, grateful hug.

    You can make it if you focus on connections, not on differences.
    -7.00, -6.77

    by sunflight on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:45:55 AM PDT

  •  Well Said, that's a great message to hammer into (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the electorate's consciousness through November.  

    Don't be so afraid of dying that you forget to live.

    by LionelEHutz on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:46:07 AM PDT

  •  The cons will always (2+ / 0-)

    exaggerate the threat from our enemies just as they exaggerate the threat from fellow citizens (liberal menace) that only want more rights and freedoms for all of us.

    Its not that the cons really believe their own screeching words its about keeping power and getting reelected, and when all you have to retail is fear and conflict it is in your best interests to exaggerate your only advantage.

    The way to stop this wailing is to demand that the cons be responsible and help defend America against these monsters at our doorstep, then, believe me, the shrieking will stop instantly.

    •  'the cons' ...I like the phrase (0+ / 0-)

      These fakers, confidence-men, addicted gamblers and trust-your-gut illluminated high-rollers are the opposite of conservative. Totally unsuited to be helmsmen of the ship of state. My conservative grandparents must be vomiting in their graves.
      Mr. Bush, Let the dead sleep peacefully, please!

      •  ABSOLUTELY (0+ / 0-)

        thats what the conservatives are con men and women, always have been always will be, they rely on faith over info and facts, intelligence and education are the silver bullet to their religious agenda.

        •  One of the reasons (0+ / 0-)

          that I like "the cons" or ("the Cons"):
          it helps distinguish between the fakirs and perfectly legitimate everday attitudes and concerns that people may have when change is proposed. The word "conservative", especially as an adjective, has been around a long time and is not going to go away, and we can use it to to show up the cons. I've been having an exchange with Dash888 on this, below.

  •  Nice entry, Dark Syde.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    perro amarillo, eddieb061345

    ... I recovered from the initial shock and tried to sell my fear on eBay, but nobody was buying. I guess the fear market collapsed by Spring '06, but that doesn't mean the Republicans aren't still introducing New Products in the fall.

  •  No truer words have ever been said. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    perro amarillo, eddieb061345, DrWolfy

    Stunningly well done, DS.  Highly recommened.  Thank you so much!

    "If you can't stand behind our troops, then, please, feel free to stand in front of them."

    by panicbean on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:52:23 AM PDT

  •  The biggest threat to Americans is THIS (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eddieb061345, hhex65, annan, SherriG, DrWolfy

    Republican government and president.

  •  Blame the neocons (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mmacdDE, eddieb061345, hhex65, DrWolfy

    To a person, not one of the PNAC/Neocons served in Vietnam, yet all supported the war. Since none of them served, it's one of two things. Either they were too selfish or they didn't have the balls to fight.

    Either way, they're a bunch of pussies. Of course they're gonna shit a brick over a boogeyman in a cave halfwy around the world.

    Karl (Rove) is a shameless bastard. Small wonder his mother killed herself. -Larry Johnson

    by McGirk on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:55:27 AM PDT

  •  I often muse (9+ / 0-)

    at our Coward in Chief and his Vice Pussy. Probably it was their very first time they had to face their mortality and it really really scared them shitless! 9/11 did change everything for them As a former Vietnam Vet I and many of my peers fought our way through the valley of Death and came out the other side change forever also. Only the difference for us was, we left our fear of death in the Valley. I now attend PTSD meetings and the funny thing none of these men, including myself felt any fear during or after the attack on Sept 11th. We felt rage, anger patriotism and a solid determination to get those who attacked us. I told my wife to be prepared for more attacks and we must continue on as normal. If we live in fear I surmised, they, the Terrorist would win. I'm not really surprised at the Yellow ele-phanties Repiglicans and their sycphant cronies. The preznet and those close to him showed us their true Banana streak backs in the Vietnam era. The cowardly always tend to be bullies they talk tough, they puff up and threaten and always project their quivering impish souls on others. This is why they work so hard at maintaining their assertion of exclusive toughness over the war on terrer. The lion Character in the wizard of OZ should be nominated for the Repiglican parties Mascot. But I guess that would do a desservice to the reputation of the Lion.

    Disabled Viet Vet ret. My snark is worse than my bite

    by eddieb061345 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 04:58:19 AM PDT

  •  Good article (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mmacdDE, bree, Friend of the court

    in Reason on a similar theme this month by Ronald Bailey, who I usually disagree with on most things, but not this: Don't be Terrorized

    Growing up in London during the IRA bombings, we were told by the earlier generation to get a grip because that was nothing compared to the Blitz.  So through respect for people who had lived bravely through real danger, we were too ashamed to be afraid.

    I don't get why we Americans aren't too ashamed to be afraid today.  Don't we mind looking cowardly anymore?  Do we have any dignity left?

  •  DarkSyde, you nailed it! (4+ / 0-)

    I have been in shock and awe at the logic that makes 9/11 (bad as it was) more of a traumatic event that the Civil War, the First and Second World Wars, or the Cold War.  As noted in this diary, a nuclear exchange with the Soviets would have meant nearly total destruction for civilization.  Just how can that compare with the admittedly tragic loss of 3,000 lives during an attack by deranged terrorists?  Not only that but there was no assurance that we would win World War II.  How would we have liked Nazi troops in New York City and the Japanese Imperial Army in Seattle? Is anybody going to tell me that we have NEVER faced a threat comparable to or worse than we do now?  Yes- the current crop of so-called conservatives are not really conservative in any real sense of the word.  Much as I disagreed about his foreign policy and the Watergate scandal, Nixon must be spinning in his grave.  

    With a real conservative I could find common ground.  These people in power now are neo-fascist, theocratic, anti-constitutional, take the profit and run, self-righteous credit card reactionaries!  They mix the worst of Real Politik with the worst of fuzzy thinking nation-building utopian thought, but this is just a cover for their real reason d’art – that is profit and power at whatever expense to their fellow man.

  •  Great diary, DarkSyde (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eddieb061345, bree, hhex65, kidneystones

    I couldn't agree with you more about maintaining perspective. However, I have a hunch that what a lot of these neocons are really afraid of is losing their jobs. And that may truly be frightening to them.

    As socially conscious Democrats, we shouldn't just leave these folks behind if they lose out in November. Perhaps the new Congress could swing a deal with WalMart and get them placed as greeters. This way they could finally make good use of their 'talking skills'. And I hear that the pay is pretty good, too.

  •  Amen! About damn time! (4+ / 0-)

    My GOP sister mentioned to me the other day that there is supposed to be some kind of juxtaposition of the crescent moon and a star this month, and when it happened, the Islamofascists were striking big time.

    "Let'em," I said.  

    Which I hope sank in.

  •  Thanks as always (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bree, DarkSyde, Friend of the court

    My 1st 2 years skydiving, I went through a series of mini-crises as I settled out true risk in my life. One of the first things I did: I started wearing a seat-belt religiously, instead of lacadiasically. In the two following years, I was in 2 auto accidents, either of which would've most likely killed me had I not be belted in (b4 the days of airbag airbag airbag). I've eventually gave up drinking, and even smoking (tobacco).

    And, er, careful, DarkSyde - let's not trash everyone who wears a ripcord.  ;)


    Where are we going? And why are we going this fast in something as shoddy as a handbasket?

    by grndrush on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:13:46 AM PDT

    •  hey (0+ / 0-)

      I have nothing against ripcords for recent AFF grads. Funny story, after I graduated to a PD-180 and then a Monarch 135, I went back and used a training rig when I forget to bring my own. I pulled that ripcord and reflexively tossed it like a pud. Took a little shit over that from the DZ denizens ...

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:19:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Fear of Cancer vs. Fear of Terrorism (0+ / 0-)

    Let me first say that I was in NYC on 9/11, and a former classmate was on the plane that hit the WTC.

    One of the major differences is that with many 'fears' we can believe, and to some degree be right, that we can control out destiny. We can not smoke, we can drink green tea, we can stay away from heroin, etc. In a more general way, safety can involve wearing a bike helmet or making sure to change the batteries in the smoke detector. These things can give us some real control over out well being.

    With terrorism, that control simply ceases to exist. The 3000 that perished on 9/11 just went to work that day. Or got on an airplane. The fear of terrorism is to a large degree more than a fear, but a realization that there are some 'bad things' over which we have no control.

    Many of us recall when Christopher Reeves's wife Dana announced she had lung cancer and wasn't a smoker. Was that not somehow more sad then somebody who'd smoked where you could say "Well, you smoked, you knew it was a carcinogen, you got cancer" But how much worse to be made aware that you could do everything right and still have it happen to you.

    •  We experience Death's breath every day. (3+ / 0-)

      We could spend volumes of time discussing examples of innocence falling victim to a cruel, senseless Death. Just about the same number of folks living from day to day fall victim to deliberate cruel, merciless insurgent's warrantless deadly assaults in Iraq as did our people on 9/11! Yet our President and his lackies talk about our 9/11 as if it was the worlds greatest horror ever' while at the same time glibly ignore the monthly 9/11 style carnage in Iraq. It's hard to keep one's fear of death subdued when so many are creating and inciting fearfullness in others to attain their nefarious ends.

      Disabled Viet Vet ret. My snark is worse than my bite

      by eddieb061345 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:46:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Of course (0+ / 0-)

        all i really meant was they were two different types of fear, and it is difficult to compare the two.

        It's like saying finding out about somebody else's problems 'puts your in perspective.' It really doesn't.

        I used to work with a woman who suffered from terrible allergies. She had to get allergy shots, carry an epi-pen with her, and had to be vigilent about food in restaurants. She was one of those unlucky few for whom peanuts or shellfish were truly potentially deadly. She had once been in a situation where she ordered a bowl of soup and took one spoonful and realized immediately that the server had used the same ladle on her bowl as had been used in the lobster bisque. She literally had second to get a Benadryl down her throat as her windpipe was closing up and she would have simply gone into anencyphalic shock.

        Now, I also knew a young man that was HIV+. He faced certain death. An epi-pen wouldn't stop the virus. But his HIV didn't make 'allergy suffering' any better.

    •  This is life (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      It can end in an instant, and you have no control over it.

      You can be hit by lightning, caught in an earthquake, tidal wave, tornado. You can be shot by mistake, hit by a car, a bus, a truck. A balcony can give way. You can fall down the stairs, slip in the bathtub. You can have a sudden heart attack, or a stroke.

      All we can do is live the best we can, because it can be over in an instant. It doesn't matter how old you are, or how healthy you appear to be.

      We have gotten so risk adverse that we forget to live. We will all die someday. Some just have more time to prepare than others.

      •  True, but that doesn't mean you don't try. (0+ / 0-)

        You don't say "Well, Mrs. Reeve got lung cancer without smoking, so why bother not smoking?"

        You don't say "I could have a sudden stroke or heart attack anyway, so the heck with drinking green tea or following a healthy diet."

        You try to achieve a balance between living your life and being smart. The world is, in fact the same as it was before 9/11. I always get annoyed when I read about the 'post 9/11 this or that.' The only difference between those terrorists and the ones in London were the ones in London got caught.

        Eternal vigilence is the price of liberty.

      •  a/k/a 'eat right, exercise, die anyway.' (0+ / 0-)
    •  One of the biggest problems we have ... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Is that Americans have been convinced that if they just do the right thing they'll never die; they'll never be poor; they'll never be ill; and they'll always have fresh breath. It's this freaking fantasy people have bought into that makes them such freaking cowards.

      You can do everything right and be hit by a bus. If we hadn't pushed death off into hospitals and funeral homes and pretended it doesn't exist and marketed good health from Madison Avenue while selling unhealthy products right along side, we would all be better off.

      •  Brings to mind the old saying: (0+ / 0-)

        It may not be that the race is always to the swift nor the victory to the strong, but that's the way to bet.

        In other words, it is true you can do everything 'right' and still get hit by a bus. Or in the words of the immortal Homer Simpson "People die all the time, you could wake up dead tomorrow."

        However, that's no reason to not take reasonable precautions against being harmed. To use the example of Mrs. Reeve getting lung cancer, should teenagers be encouraged to take up smoking because after all, you can always get hit by a bus, or get lung cancer anyway?

        Yes it's true that Bill Gates dropped out of college and is one of the richest men in the world, yes it's true that some people win the lottery, it's true that some people smoke, tan, and eat red meat for decades and never get cancer. But anecdotal evidence doesn't ever outweigh statistical.

        •  My husband is a statistician. (0+ / 0-)

          Statistics say we're all going to die.

          Now, no, that doesn't mean that people should be encouraged to engage in fool-hardy behavior. However, it does mean that we need to accept that to live is to have risk. Americans are frightened beyond all imagination at remarkably small risks while they engage in incredibly risky behavior all the time.

      •  I wish I could give you several recommends (0+ / 0-)

        You comment goes straight to the heart of the disease in this country.

  •  Viva la resistance! (2+ / 0-)

    Great diary to wake up to. I couldn't agree more heartily.

    Let's take this great country back ... bravely, with compassion, honor and courage.


  •  From old Dugout Doug (5+ / 0-)

    The powers in charge keep us in a perpetual state of fear: Keep us in a continuous stampede of patriotic fervor with the cry of grave national emergency. Always there has been some terrible evil to gobble us up if we did not blindly rally behind it by furnishing the exorbitant sums demanded. Yet in retrospect, these disasters seem never to have happened, seem never to have been quite real...."
    ---General Douglas MacArthur

    Truer words...

    Someone once asked me if I had learned anything from going to war so many times. My reply: Yes, I learned how to cry.
    Joe Galloway

    by BOHICA on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:15:11 AM PDT

  •  Our soldiers (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mmacdDE, eddieb061345, rabel, bree, hhex65

    put their lives on the line in war zones protecting our civil liberties and our way of life. The Republicans want us to hand over our civil liberties because we're afraid for our skins sitting tight here in good old USA. Who's dishonoring our soldiers now? If I were a soldier I'd be damn pissed off that civvies were tossing away what I'd pledged my life to protect. If our soldiers can make the ultimate sacrifice, I'd hope civilians could grow a set over what is, statistically speaking, a minor chance of being attacked.

  •  If you're not terrorized (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rabel, bree, flumptytail

    then the terrorists win.

    Or something.

  •  The Cold War didn't scare me (4+ / 0-)

    In 1977 or thereabouts, a professor of mine, Roger Cobb, explained why he had no fear that the Soviets would launch an attack on the U.S.  The Soviets believed that communism would take over eventually because it was in the right.  A nuclear war would jeopardize that gradual takeover.  The thing to worry about, he said, was if a nutcase (paraphrasing here) like Kaddafi got hold of a nuke.

    While nukes were only in the hands of superpowers, it was fairly safe for the world.  None dared to use them because they had so much to lose. Not so Libya.

    Not so al-Qaida or North Korea.  In terms of the potential of a nuclear bomb going off somewhere, the world is less safe now than it was 30 years ago.  As soon as a nutcase has a working, live nuke - look out, world.

    I realize the above doesn't explain BushCo's interest in using nukes of any size, except maybe for the nutcase part.

    •  Naw (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mmacdDE, SherriG, Desert Biologist

      North Korea is not a threat to us. If they even had and fired a conventionally armed missile that could reach us, at us, assuming it made it off the pad and through the stratosphere, they'd be annihilated and they know it, much less a nuke. Kimmy may be a thug, but he's not stupid, and in the event he has a brain fart, I'd bet there are dozens of cronies who would be happy to put a bullet through his noggin.

      Point of fact: AQ does not have a nuke, they don't have the means to make them or the means to deliver them to us enmasse if they did, as best we know, nor does Iran or Hizbollah or anyone else in the middle east outside of Israel. If and when one of those nations manages to develop about a thousand of them and build some delivery system to get them here, AND for some incomprehensible reason hands the keys to the entire arsenol over to Al Qaeda, THEN I'll be as worried about them as I was about the USSR, which didn't include wetting myself in panic every time Breshnev was on TV btw.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:38:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree re: North Korea (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Largely because Kim's desire is to be recognized on the world stage and be part of it.  Firing on the U.S. wouldn't help achieve that.  (I disagree somewhat re: Kim's mental stability.)

        Al-Qaida is another matter.  I realize they have no nukes - as Kaddafi had none - but if they acquire any, I'm far more frightened of that than I ever was of the USSR.  It's not that I think AQ could do more than deliver a suitcase nuke in the US. They might well use a nuke on Israel, and that would trigger more nukes.  And really by then I think the planet is well and truly fucked.

    •  Well, we both came close during the Cuban .... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bree, Henry from New Jersey

      Missle Crisis!  Yes the superpowers did not want to unleash WW III, but events could push their hands and there was no assurance that the next Soviet leader might not be deranged.  Both Kennedy's and Kruchev's advisors counciled nuclear attack at the time. Fortunately cooler heads prevailed, but we had no certainty of that.

      Admittedly fanatic religiosity is pretty scary-  after all it was religious extremists under the Mahde that slaughtered Gordon and his troops at Kartoum (even if they represented European imperialism they probably did not deserve that!)  King Gustavus Adolphus for the Protestants and the various Catholic armies left much of Europe in ruin because (at least in part) of religious extremism, although most of this was probably simple self-serving.Missile Crisis!  Yes the superpowers did not want to unleash WW III, but events could push their hands and there was no assurance that the next Soviet leader might not be deranged.  Both Kennedy's and Khrushchev’s advisors counseled nuclear attack at the time. Fortunately cooler heads prevailed, but we had no certainty of that.

      Admittedly fanatic religiosity is pretty scary- after all it was religious extremists under the Mahdi that slaughtered Gordon and his troops at Khartoum (even if the British under Gordon represented European imperialism they probably did not deserve that!)  King Gustavus Adolphus for the Protestants and the various Catholic armies left much of Europe in ruin because (at least in part) of religious extremism, although most of this was probably simple self-serving – a common cover for ambitious politicians to this very day!

      •  1977 was of course post-Cuban missile crisis (0+ / 0-)

        But it was certainly on my mind as I wrote my post.  We came far closer than we should have to launching nukes, and I have to admit, in JFK's shoes, I might have done much as he did to keep nuclear weapons out of Cuba.  But by 1977 I was no longer worried.

        As for the next Soviet leader being deranged, no, that wasn't a worry.  As Darksyde mentioned above about Kim Jong-Il, even if he goes totally mental, someone else in the power structure will put a bullet through his noggin.  The same would have happened in the Soviet Union.  All the communist believers thought their way would prevail, so they would not have permitted one maniac to ruin that for them.

    •  Always been the case (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The chance that a nutcase would get their hands on a nuclear bomb has always been a problem as long as there's been nuclear weapons.

      The bedwetters keep cowering in fear about the chance that a maniac like Osama bin Laden would get their hands on a nuke but it really is extremely hard to acquire one and much, much harder to build one.  Should we be prudent in keeping tabs on Iran and any other states with nuclear ambitions?  Of course, nobody is saying anything different.

      But that fear does not justify setting up "free speech zones" whenever the president is in town, or kicking out dissenters from political rallies, or government intrusion into my private communications and business transactions, or setting up super-double-secret "no-fly" lists without any oversight, or torturing people in our state's custody, or bombing civilians.  

      It's sad and pathetic that there are losers out there that cheer this sort of thing on simply because their so frightened of their own shadows.

      •  No justification (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rabel, chemicalresult

        Right.  I'd be scared if AQ had nukes, but it STILL would be NO reason for the way Bushco has tried to dismantle the Constitution.  If we do that, we're not free anymore and Bush might as well shut his ugly trap about freedom because he has no idea what the word means.

        Being scared wouldn't make me want to live in a police state that would "protect" me, it would make me work even harder to elect someone who understands that real diplomacy is the way to keep the world safe.

  •  This guy wants racial profiling: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Iowa Boy
    •  'Duh!' is a suitable response (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

        Sucks to be arab, male, and traveling by air, but the situation is what it is, and harrasing people at random doesn't really work for me, and I suspect I'm not alone in this opinion.

      "Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise" - U.S. Constitution author and fourth President James Madison

      by Iowa Boy on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:45:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Define 'Arab' (0+ / 0-)

        and define who you'd stop.

        Not women? There have been women suicide bombers. Not anybody who looks white? Not all 'Arabs' are brown. Not American citizens? The British bombers were all CITIZENS, born in the UK.

        So you stop some poor Indian Sikh, because he's brown and has a strange name. Or you stop some Eqyptian Christian. And you don't stop the Palestinean with the Israeli passport.

        Dumb. Very dumb.

      •  Err.. (0+ / 0-)
        You realize of course that some of these "suspects" detained by the Brits were WASP converts to Islam? Or what about the Timothy McVeighs of the world? What about these women sucicide vest wearing freaks from Chechnya and Palestine? Racial profiling is as much bullshit as many other of these "genius" policies, such as the ban of the doomsday nail clippers and apocalypse paperback books that are being implemented as we speak.
        •  How many (0+ / 0-)

          of them?

          Give me some percentages.

          It's bad enough our administration totally ignores statistics and science, why should we immediately ignore them as well, in the name of being liberal?  (And what Chechnyan has ever tried to attack US soil?  Did I miss something?)

          Timothy McVeighs are also profiled, and you can bet the FBI keeps tabs on as many TMV's nutjob organizations as they can.

          I don't care if a guy is white, black, red, blue, or green.
          But once again, if over 75% of the guys (arbitrarily chosen %age) commiting acts of terrorism fit a single profile, then you'll stop more terrorists if you specifically target that profile than if you go after random samples.  It's simple math.

          It's not a happy shiny PC thought, but it is realistic.

          •  What do you mean (0+ / 0-)
            Your racial profiling idea was based upon an unscientific presumption that somehow singling out people who "look" Arab would produce any anti-terror results. The onus of proof of thus is on you, not me. All I have to do is to provide examples where your approach would fail.

            As to the statistics of how many of the would-be terrorists are not Arab "looking" and male, they are unavailable and will never be. No one runs a census amongst terrorists. But just in the most recent case, that of the British "foiling" this "major" attack, no less then two (out of 23) were WASP males who converted to Islam and at least one was a woman.

            And what Chechnyan has ever tried to attack US soil?  Did I miss something?

            Yes you did. You missed proof positive that women, not just men, are airplane suicide bombers.

            Timothy McVeighs are also profiled, and you can bet the FBI keeps tabs on as many TMV's nutjob organizations as they can.

            And socialist activists and communists and born-again rapture freaks and ... and pretty soon everyone fits the "profile", including toddlers and grandmothers who can be used as proxies and dupes by the actual terrorists.

            I don't care if a guy is white, black, red, blue, or green.
            But once again, if over 75% of the guys (arbitrarily chosen %age) commiting acts of terrorism fit a single profile,

            Ah yes. I have a profile for you: homo sapiens, age 0-110.

            then you'll stop more terrorists if you specifically target that profile than if you go after random samples.  It's simple math.

            No you wont because the terrorists adapt. They are not some sort of physical, mindless force which can be reliably stopped by a selective barrier. If you target Arab males, they will use females. If you target all Arabs, they will use male WASP converts. If you target all males, they will use female WASP converts (such as was the case with the French woman recently detained there). If you target all males and females in a particular age group, they will strap bombs to toddlers and grandmothers. And so on.

            •  Error (0+ / 0-)
              If you target all males, they will use female WASP converts (such as was the case with the French woman recently detained there).

              That is of course not what I meant, a French woman could not be a White Anglo-Saxon Protestant. A slip of the tongue, but you get the idea: White, Female and outwardly indistiguishable from any beltway soccer mom.

            •  Well, (0+ / 0-)

              First, it wasn't my idea to start with, but for the sake of this argument I'll claim it as mine.

              There never will be a census among terrorists?  I'd think it would be pretty simple with most of them, given that we seem to find out every little detail of their lives in the investigations after they've exploded/attacked whatever.

              Sure, there's no 'census' of all the ones who haven't done anything, but there's reams of data about the ones who have already committed some act or other.  I'd think it simple enough to abstract name, age, gender, ethic affiliations, religious affiliations, etc, etc ad nauseum.

              And I used the term 'guy' generically.  I know full well that women have been suicide bombers as well, and am not just saying that after the fact.  I'm just sloppy in my speaking/writing.  And as a matter of fact, I've been profiled in the past myself, resulting in my having to write a depostion about my whereabouts on the night of a supposed rape.  Did I like it?   No.  Did I start whining about being profiled?   Again, no, because the police are SUPPOSED to look more closely at people who fit the 'profile' of those who commit a given crime.  That's one of those little tools they use to solve crimes.  It's why they don't waste thousands of manhours investigating 90 yr old grannies when a girl is raped and tells them the perp was a very large person with male genitalia.

              And I'd really like to see your hypothetical terrorist 'adapt' into having a 109 yr old scottish grandma become a suicide bomber.

              I never said profiling would catch EVERY bomber.  I said you'll statistically catch MORE of them if you look more closely IN AIRPORTS at people who fit the profiles of previous bombers.  Heck, you yourself just gave me stats on the British plot that suggested that profiling the latest batch of perps would have resulted in 87% of those arrested being carefully scrutinized.  Yes, they should use other tools to stop terrorists, but I'd certainly be glad to see them start out by examining closely the 87% who DID fit the profile.

              (Ok, 20/23 = 86.9something %, I'm rounding)

              I'm a major proponent of almost all civil liberties, but this is one of the few I think is just wrong.  I don't hold the Founding Fathers as perfect beings, but I think they would have just possibly not considered this sort of thing when they were drafting up 'search and seizure' laws.

              I'm also against hate crime laws, because I think the acts speak for themselves.  You murder somebody, who gives a crap why you did it?  You committed murder, and should be punished accordingly.  We really do not need 'Thought Crimes' to be added to our already overzealous law enforcement.

              •  What you seem to get behind (0+ / 0-)
                is simply a way to fool ourselves more efficiently and give the terrorists an obvious opportunity to circumnavigate the checks. Also while some crimes have quickly identifiable group of suspects due to certain abilities/anatomy required, terrorism is not one of those, and so your rape analogy is completely irrelevant. All you do by pretending otherwise is to open doors for a well organized attack to evade your counter-measures with certainty.

                In other words, one should focus on technological measures covering 100% of the traffic at the airports, combined with intelligence and crime fighting employed to stop terrorists in advance of their getting close enough to try to execute their schemes. But that stopping has to follow the basic principles of a democratic, constitutional society, otherwise you might as well declare Al-Queda victorious. That is you do not institute racial, ethnic, religious fobias ... err ... "profiling", nor some other idiotic name-based "no-fly" lists, but instead arrest all the suspects for whom you have collected enough substantial evidence and leave everyone else be.

                •  last post from me (0+ / 0-)

                  I don't think we're getting anywhere at convincing each other on our stances, so I won't reply again, as it's going circular.

                  I'm still not advocating abandoning other methods, I'm saying use this in addition.  I don't believe most current acts of terrorism are committed by random people - I think they're committed by very specific groups for very specific reasons.
                  Therefore, if you can isolate traits common to a specific group then you should be very likely to identify potential members of that group.  Non-french speakers with German ancestry are highly unlikely to be Quebec separatists.

                  If I were an undercover police officer who'd been tipped that French separatists were planning to bomb a railroad station, then I'd be paying more attention to people I overheard speaking French at that station.  Maybe this would help, maybe it wouldn't but I'd still do it.

                  There are many democratic societies out there that do not share all of America's 'basic principles', and I suspect some of them use profiling for terrorism.  And finally, how can you 'collect substantial evidence' on people you don't already have suspicions about?  Did you profile them outside the airport?  Did you listen to tips provided anonymously by somebody else who was mentally profiling the suspect?  Somehow you or someone else became suspicious, resulting in an investigation.  I suspect 99% of those tips turn up bogus - the suspect (profiled by someone somewhere in all likelihood, whether by ethnicity, behaviour, or outright racism) may never know they were investigated.  I really think profiling is going on anyway, whether the TSA types admit it or not.  

                  And I am slightly annoyed how you tie my argument to an Al Quaeda victory.  I think you've been listening a little too closely to the Repubs of late - I don't think al Quaeda is over in Pakistan saying how wonderful it would be if America would scrutinize the movements of people who bear a resemblance to OBL more carefully.  If you really want to debate this more, let's quit wasting boardspace.  I'm avail at bloodaxe at bonsaiforge dot com.

                  As I said in another thread, please don't troll me without discussing your concerns with me first by email.  I'm not trying to get in flame fests on here, I'm just being honest about my own personal opinions, and I think in this subthread we've wandered way far away from the original message of the original DarkSyde post, on which I imagine we both agree.

                  •  And that would have been a grave error... (0+ / 0-)
                    If I were an undercover police officer who'd been tipped that French separatists were planning to bomb a railroad station, then I'd be paying more attention to people I overheard speaking French at that station.  Maybe this would help, maybe it wouldn't but I'd still do it.

                    Because knowing this, the serparatists would have gotten a homeless granny to lug their bomb in her shopping cart, or paid a teenager to deliver a "package" for a hurried "businessman" in exchange for an ipod. Or better yet, made an ipod into a bomb and left it somewhere so a greedy teen can "find" it before he heads into the subway. And so on.

                    You assumed that because your target group fits some criteria that means that their delivery vector will have their signature all over it. And thus handed them a hole to drive dumpster trucks trough. Your focus on these "expected" red flags allows them to use your own self-misdirection for their own purpose, to effectively blind you to all the other vectors of attack.

                    We have been exceedingly fortunate that most of the terrorists in the West are by far not the A-list material, and so they can be matched by the D-grade students running the oposing security aparatus.

                    Maybe this would help, maybe it wouldn't but I'd still do it.

                    That is the whole point. You seem to be for doing things without any thought as to their results, just for the hell of it, in hopes that something sticks, and not without a suspiciously prominent element of isolating and singling-out of some broadly painted "undesirable elements" in the society.

                    And finally, how can you 'collect substantial evidence' on people you don't already have suspicions about?

                    You do it by their actions. You start with known terrorists and follow their contacts, people they interact with and so on. Just as you would do with any crime. You do not lock up or randomly search all blacks who drive fancy cars, on the premise that these are likely to be stolen vehicles. You do go to chop-shops and do stakeouts there and follow those leads. This is a fundamental difference from the civil liberties point of view.

                    Did you listen to tips provided anonymously by somebody else who was mentally profiling the suspect?

                    No. Or else you end up with the worst excesses of the Soviet-style society where kids are expected to and rewarded for reporting their parents in for "crimes against the Republic".

                    And I am slightly annoyed how you tie my argument to an Al Quaeda victory.

                    If pointing out the obvious annoys you, I do not think it is my fault.

                    I think you've been listening a little too closely to the Repubs of late - I don't think al Quaeda is over in Pakistan saying how wonderful it would be if America would scrutinize the movements of people who bear a resemblance to OBL more carefully.

                    The Repubs idea of "helping" Al-Queida is to do exactly what Bin Laden does not want: to maintain free and open society in the West, unafraid of the various gnats of "terrorism" and treating them with contempt and dealing with them without destroying the liberal foundations of the society in the process.

                    As for scrutinizing these actions, not only do they think of them fondly, Osama has even featured these things prominently in his video tapes. He finds the destruction of civil liberties here very amusing and quite a "just reward" to the citizens of the Great Satan. To him many such liberties are "corruption", very much as Repubs see extra-martial sex or abortions, and he gleefuly expects Allah to bring about great pain to those who dare to do such unholy things. Etc and so on.

                    As I said in another thread, please don't troll me without discussing your concerns with me first by email.

                    Troll you? Excuse me?

                    As to email exchanges, those are by their nature closed and run contrary the the whole idea of open fora, such as the DailyKos. It is not my habit of conducting such exchanges outside of the public places where they were originally initiated.

                    I'm not trying to get in flame fests on here, I'm just being honest about my own personal opinions, and I think in this subthread we've wandered way far away from the original message of the original DarkSyde post, on which I imagine we both agree.

                    Fair enough.

      •  What does an 'Arab male' look like? (0+ / 0-)

        Or do we need to give them little crescents to wear?

    •  well, ya know... (0+ / 0-)

      If 99.95% of the 'terrists' we're so threatened by are, visually of one easily identifiable subset of humanity, then really, why not?

      If just about every single one (of the 'terrists') had a bright purple nose or metal studs in their left temple, would we be safer if we randomly stopped and search 30 people boarding a plane, or just the 10 who had bright purple noses or metal studs in the left temple?

      While I decry the abuses of civil liberties perpetuated by the administration, that one really should be a no-brainer.

      I'm not saying call them names, harass them, or round them all up for internment camps.  I'm just saying quit being so PC whiny about deliberately searching purple nosed (or star-bellied) or whatever people if they share an extremely distinctive characteristic with the very specific people you're fighting.

      That having been said, as soon as even 20% of terrorist attackers no longer fit such a profile, then sure, abandon it.

  •  I agree 1000% (0+ / 0-)

    the Repubs do seem to be a bunch of cowards now

    not ALL of them...but way too many

    I went out to dinner with a Repub friend recently who said torture is OK because if someone is going to destroy us with nuclear bombs we need to get them to talk, etc etc etc

    •  He's been watching too much '24'... (0+ / 0-)

      A REAL terrorist wouldn't divulge plans under torture. He'd provide false information. Because dying for the cause is worthy...

      Keifer Sutherland is NOT an effective intelligence agent...

      The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it -- GB Shaw

      by kmiddle on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:22:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I LOVE THIS DIARY!!!! (0+ / 0-)

    Thanks for putting into words the thoughts that have been bouncing around in my head since I first saw that Bitch OBL in a cave.

    You will never win an argument with conformists to a culture of fear.

    by DABush on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:50:26 AM PDT

  •  DarkSyde thank YOU! (0+ / 0-)

    hee hee, so old Red state wants us to be very afraid--No thank you!

    Good to see this much needed diary this morning!  Few can say it like you do!

    •  The (3+ / 0-)

      chicken-shits are going to be very conflicted over this. They know it's a bad idea to give it any press because it tears down their carefully crafted fearmongering-- which is the basis of their entire tenuous hold on power. OTOH, calling a coward a coward tends to jump start the projection process and bypasses what little judgement and dignity they have.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 05:58:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Amen, DarkSyde (0+ / 0-)

    If Bush and Bill O'Reilly have their way, America will be a nation of thumb-sucking bed wetters.  Rugged individualists? Hah!

  •  Tighter Security is all we need (0+ / 0-)

    I am not afraid either, but the Republicans will use that against us. The media is portraying the Repubs as the only ones that know how to keep our country secure.  So we need to come up with ideas on tighter security in this country.

    Bushites spent a fortune on homeland security and we found the southern states didn't have any security when Katrina came. The land emergency communications were so bad authorities couldn't communicate with firemen, police or first responders from them.

    The terrorists could have had a field day if they wanted to do some killing, during the Katrina debacle. (It is really our government and business owners they are after.) Or it was until America lost her mind. With the Bushite believers, now they probably want to kill us all.

    Many don't want the Mexican border that touches our country closed. They apparently want the drugs and the Mexican labor coming in.

    If we can't control the Mexican border, then we should secure the other borders that surround Mexico.  Do that so no "terrorist" can slip into Mexico, then cross our border.  

    We need tight Airline Security.  There is liquid bomb detection, but the airlines don't use it because they would have to buy it overseas and it is expensive. They are researching our own detection or so I hear.

    We should have treated 911 as a criminal offense and tracked down those who trained them and got the group. We would still have 3000 soldiers and thousands overseas would still be living. Also our coffers would be fuller.

    Bushites have created a lot more terrorists by the unfair invasion of Iraq.

  •  Terrorism and Danger (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Great article Darksyde, adding much needed perspective.
    Still, I think reading the entire thread that something is missing.
    Of course the threat of terrorism is being use by governments all around the globe (not only in the US believe me) to pass measures inconceivable for democracies.
    But the hatred of the West is real due to centuries of aggressive imperialism, and of course the Current Middle East situation only makes the problem worse.
    While the Bush administration uses the problem to promote its own despicable agenda  it  makes, as you well know, through its terrible handling of the Iraqi occupation the problem even greater.  
    The only reason we think that this is not such a great problem compared to the Cold War, is because we assume that Islamic Radicals(Iran) and or terrorists (Al Qaeda) will never get a hold of Nuclear Weapons.

    The more the West randomly bombs middle eastern countries the closer we come to the day that this will actually happen. The more radicalized the Muslim  world, the greater the Danger.  

    And if (and i know its a big if)a terrorist group gets a hold of nuclear weapons it is worse than anything else, for they would be far more inclined to use them than ANY country. Why? Not only because of their radicalism.

    Remember, During the Cold War nukes were never used due to the fear of retaliation. But a non state entity has less to fear from that, for it is not geographically delimited and therefore retaliation against it cannot happen so easily.

    Please view all the above as a rational argument and not mere fearmongering :D

    PS After months of reading , this is my first comment ever posted on DailyKos :)

  •  Tough crowd (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    crimsonscare, Monique Radevu

    You're either bright, or a naive moron, according to RS.

    If only We.  Just.  Got.  It.


  •  Ah Dark, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Monique Radevu

    You didn't get linked over at redstate. They only quoted you. Nobody over there will see your whole argument, just the part that can be construed to make you look like a liberal pussy, not the part that makes them look like submissive cowards.

    •  Well (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Monique Radevu

      that's fair enough, I didn't link them either. I actually kinda like a few of the RS guys, they're not all bad, and I empathize with the position they're in. I just care about America way more and they brought it on themselves anyway. Ty for the tip.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:03:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  We should let God decide who will die (0+ / 0-)

    Our soldiers are dying daily and our country is going bankrupt fighting wars with “terrorists“  It is clear to everyone we are creating more terrorists than we are killing.  In fact we have been told by the hand picked Bush leadership in Iraq, that the Iraqi “terrorists” are attacking because they don’t want us in their country.

    It won’t be long until we have lost as many soldiers in war, as we have lost due to terrorism.  There comes a time when it may be a consideration to tighten home security, bring our soldiers home and take our chances and let God decide who will die.
    We can set a timetable to come home from Iraq, but we don’t have to tell when it is.

  •  Consider this a standing ovation! (0+ / 0-)

    DarkSyde, you've boiled it down to its essence.  The neocons are the terrorists.  The exact definition of terrorists describes them to a T!  They are using fear to manipulate us into giving them power -- and it's time to take that power away.  It's time for America to return to being the home of the brave.

    Our troops won the war. Bush lost the peace.

    by snazzzybird on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:03:42 AM PDT

  •  Getting back to America's roots (0+ / 0-)

    This is a fantastic article, and is something I've been thinking about a lot lately.

    I've also been quite annoyed by the Republican catch-phrase comparing Lieberman to Democratic heroes such as FDR, JFK and Truman.  If anyone ever needs information with which to counter this false claim, this excellent Taylor Marsh article should serve you well:

    The threats of today pale in comparison to those faced by our forefathers.  Yet somehow, we seem unable to muster even a fraction of their courage.  Have we become so soft, so complacent?  We owe it to them, and to ourselves, to take back this country.  We must be bold, fearless, and never shy away from the truth.  It is now or never.

  •  I hate to have to keep writing this, but... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Every time I see a diary like this, I make the same comment, which is this:  the Democrats MUST take terror seriously.  If we don't, we will see whatever gains we make this fall blunted and then reversed in an election cycle or two.  There's a lot not to like about Peter Beinart, but he is absolutely right about this.  And "more people die of cancer" comments, which I see often here on DailyKos, WILL be interpreted--rightly or wrongly, fairly or unfairly--as not taking terrorism and the threat it poses seriously.

    Does this mean that we have to agree with every last thing that Bush and Cheney have ever said or done in the name of fighting terror?  Not at all.  In fact, a great case can be made (and it is made, both by many Democratic politicians and by many diarists on DailyKos and other bloggers) that the Bush administration has failed to protect us from terror, and that we would do a better job of it, and our approach, unlike theirs, won't alienate the whole world and end American civil liberties.  THAT is the message that we should be endlessly drumbeating to everyone in earshot.  

    The bottom line is this--we don't have to agree with Cheney that 9/11 changed everything, but we cannot pretend that it changed nothing.

    Bush: The Peter Principle President.

    by lungfish on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:05:30 AM PDT

  •  no one ever lost an election... (0+ / 0-)

    ... underestimating the american public's tendency to vote their anxieties. i think it's a bad idea to have a front page diary that diminishes anyone's right to be anxious in this day and age. it only provides fodder for the right.

    if everywhere you go smells like dogsh*t, you should probably check your own shoes.

    by monsterofNone on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:10:26 AM PDT

    •  I'm (0+ / 0-)

      not afraid of 'the right' punditacracy either. They don't seem to have any problems finding 'fodder'-- or making it up. And if they want to drive traffic to this post, by all means, I invite them to do so. But in answer to your fair concern, I sense the American public is close to played out on the necon obsession with terrorism.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:15:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  ultimately... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ... the only way to defeat terrorism is to educate the public in order to eliminate their terror.

        i understand that the public is suffering from "terror burn-out" to some degree. but i think the better argument, in that case, is to show how poorly the current administration is battling the terrorists, diminishing their base of support, and providing the american people with an opportunity to resolve their fear through some sort of community service.

        to simply say that the gas-bags on the right are whiners ignore the fact that they speak for and to a broad swath of american voters.

        if everywhere you go smells like dogsh*t, you should probably check your own shoes.

        by monsterofNone on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:33:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I (0+ / 0-)

          don't see us making inroads into that base of voters and I'm not sure we should even bother trying. Better imo to spend our resources on the larger swath of potential voters who don't vote or who are moderate than chasing after some crazed or easily misled minority.

          Read UTI, your free thought forum

          by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:51:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Ultimately it's not about voting (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rabel, sam07, OpherGopher

      In many ways I personally could give two squirts about the upcoming election.  I crave oversight and democratic leadership, but your point (I think) misses the point of the original post.  It's not saying we shouldn't be anxious, it seems more geared towards saying there are SO MANY MUCH MORE DEADLY THINGS OUT THERE....trying to get us right now, waiting to snuff out our accidents, heart attacks, all things we can't control...hiding (like the evildoers), waiting to strike.

      You can make choices in your according to this fear, have this fear dictate your actions, or overcome the fear and do your best to prevent whatever it is you are afraid of from happening.  With Bushco...we are doing the first, we let the fear dictate our actions, while ENCOURAGING  the fear....our leadership is not leading us...leaders tell us whey we shouldn't be afraid.

      I have yet to hear this administration tell us that.  Everything we do "emboldens the terrorists" God, what a bunch of shits...

  •  Not enough superlatives in the Unabridged (0+ / 0-)

    to do justice to this rant!

    I'm in awe.

    "If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear." George Orwell

    by witchamakallit on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:11:17 AM PDT

  •  Avian flu and global warming... (0+ / 0-)

    ... have a much bigger probability of killing someone in the U.S. in the next five years than terrorism.  Yet somehow the righties aren't worried about them.  (Probably because there's no money in it)

    •  Republican interests (0+ / 0-)

      They figure they will be able to buy whatever vaccine they need to survive a flu pandemic, and so it will only be the "excess population" that gets killed off - far from fearing the flu, they are hoping for it.  As for global warming they want to squeeze as much out of their investments in oil as they can, and then they will profit from the dislocations caused by climate change - people in need will buy from them at any price.  That is the same reason they hype terrorism - it is not disruptive enough for their purposes unless they can get people to fear it so much that they will give up anything to be protected from it.

  •  Fear is your only God...... (0+ / 0-)

    that is all.  FU Redstate.....

    Frames not Names!!!!

    by bikko100 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:16:36 AM PDT

  •  love your BS (0+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Hidden by:

    when the left fringe (me and you) make such good sence it is wonderful.

  •  I've wanted to write this diary myself (0+ / 0-)

    How about extending it a bit--Tokyo was burned in large part and two of its cities nuked--are the Japanese "survivors" living in the trees? No. Germany was almost obliterated in World War II, then cut in half with 50% of it run by one of the most inefficient totalitarian government in European history for 40 years. Is Germany a wasteland? NO.

    How about Merrie Olde Aingland, which was in peril from Napoleon in the 19th Century, fought two 20th Century World Wars on the Continent and was the target of constant Nazi bombardment of its capital. Still standing?  GODDAMN RIGHT IT IS.

    Or Israel--and put all thoughts about Lebanon aside--which fought a war against six nations when it was ONE DAY OLD and survived this, other wars, and almost "routine" terrorist bombings to become the reigning military power in that part of the world. Russia survived Napolenon, the depredations of the USSR and, don't forget, is itself a Cold War "survivor." Look further east--can anyone even imagine what China has endured for 1,000 years--a country that now evidently keeps the U.S. afloat by financing our debt?

    None of this is to say that terrorism and death on a large scale is anything to take lightly, but the greatest threat to the continuity of the United States is simply allowing what makes it such a unique place, the Constitution, fall to cowardice.

    It's not about safety for the Right, it's all about control. Without fear there is no thrall.

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (Who will watch the watchers?)

    by The Crusty Bunker on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:23:00 AM PDT

  •  *** (0+ / 0-)

    Tip o' the hat to me...

    There are no issues when the election is rigged. There is no debate when the election is rigged. -- Kujo AAR

    by Mehitabel9 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:27:28 AM PDT

  •  Best quote of the day (0+ / 0-)

    I got linked quoted on one right-wing chicken-shit site already. Redstate is whining that we must join them under the bed. How do these pussies make it through the day without a jug of Xanax?

    I agree. Repugs have to stop freaking out.

    A New Zealand friend of my wife's was shocked watching BBC and Fox after the plot was discovered. BBC covered the plot and other news (politics other diasters etc.). Fox was all plot, all the time.

    And while Israel is not a model I wish to emulate, I remember seeing a poll where Israelis rated the economy as a bigger problem than terrorism.

    The problem is time and time again the Repubs see this as a WAR, when it is most properly a police action.

    Get partisan, get local. NH-02 Progressive supports Paul Hodes.

    by keener on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:28:32 AM PDT

    •  I was watching via satellite TV (0+ / 0-)

      Another difference I noticed was in the use of words: Fox kept talking about "terrorist attacks" and BBC kept mentioning "alleged terrorist plot." The one was presenting it as a fait accompli, something that had happened, the other was saying that no one was sure what exactly was going on.

      I travelled from Spain to Switzerland yesterday, and noticed that the Europeans on the mainland were treating the threat as "yeah, yeah, you saw a wolf."

  •  i am not afraid (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    i live 0.6 miles from the white house, and work 0.5 miles from the white house. i ride on the city bus often. i use the metro. i am not afraid. i was more alarmed during the sniper attacks in 2002 than i have ever been about terrorism. fuck the terrorists, i've got other things to worry about.

  •  I thought (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    we were allowed to relax now that they caught Saddam.

    What did I miss?

  •  I hear ya... (0+ / 0-)

    as Lewis Black riffed a few years back, making the same comparison you made.

    I don't understand how anyone can call this the 'scariest time ever'.  Recalling duck and cover drills, THAT time was pretty fucking scary, too!

    Growing up in the 70s and 80s - I remember the threat of all out nuclear war.

    Count me among those that very much recognize the threat of terrorism, but believe wholeheartedly that it pales before the threat of global nuclear way and the extinction of mankind beneath a shroud of mushroom clouds.

    I guess everyone's got their own blog now.

    by zonk on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:33:00 AM PDT

  •  You make a very valid point (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    because unless there is something to fear these jerks are out of business!

    They don't go after women, gays, racial minorities, Muslims, druggies, criminals, commies and "axis of evil empires" because they have a moralistic verve for justice in the world. Ha!

    They do it because unless and until they can define for all of us exactly who the enemy is -- clearly, concisely, distinctly -- they can no longer peddle what has given them power for the past 50 years.

    Fear. Nothing but fear.

    "Fool me once, shame on -- shame on you. Fool me -- you can't get fooled again." --George W. Bush

    by RevJoe on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:33:09 AM PDT

  •  Ask Paul Wolfowitz and Bill Krystol. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    They started this shit.

  •  You're going to die in a hospital bed, (4+ / 0-)

    not on a plane, in a subway, or any other permutation of mass murder our enemies devise.  I work in healthcare and it is amazing how little is mentioned about what's killing America.  It ain't OBL.  It's lifestyle diseases, heart disease and diatbetes.

  •  what about faith? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RichM, sam07, Friend of the court

    the right wing faction that so strongly believes in God seems to have very little faith in his/her/its ability to protect them.

    The way that the terrorists are going to truly succeed is by letting the fear convince us to give up our liberty.

  •  Oh PLEEEESE (6+ / 0-)

    Come on Dark, I almost ralphed when I saw your little sentence glorifying Reagan "standing toe to toe" with the Russians. What has happened to all the "honorable" conservatives? They were never there old bean.

    In the 1960's the Republicans made the conscious decision to exploit the biases in the South and ever since then it has been a downward spiral. Go read Dean's new book and spare us "the good old days" rhetoric about how there used to be good Republicans. Yes Bush is the worst, but they all have been bad...

    I'll be happy to take you on a memory tour of the horrible things that crew did in the 1980's... ketchup as a vegetable, James Watt, Iran Contra etc etc etc.

    •  Speak (0+ / 0-)

      for yourself. I'd take Bush 1 or Reagan over these neocon clowns any day.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:43:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ditto... (0+ / 0-)

        n/t - Exposing the Soft White Underbelly of Psychiatry

        by paul minot on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:24:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Great.... (0+ / 0-)

        That awesome - you'll take Reagan over this team anyday. Well that makes me feel a lot better. So Reagan, the one who largely put us on the horrible track we are now seeing the full fruition of, is your hero now. Christ.

        Listen, Reagan was a racist creep (remember where he kicked off his campaign???) and did a lot of damage to this country.  We were just starting to recover from it all when Clinton left office. There is nothing to glorify about his arms race with Russia either - that easily could have gone wrong and we would all be glowing green now. The fact that trillions were spent to accelerate the death of an already dying system is nothing to crow about. Where might we be if all that had been spent elsewhere??

        All you guys who look back through rose colored glasses at "uncle Joe's" days of power are the silliest of all and do us all a disservice by enabling the current conservatives in their fantasy spin about that era.

        I can see it now - twenty years hence you will be gloryfying Bush for "standing toe to toe" against the terrorists...

        And I do speak for myself  - who else??

      •  Not that either of them were (0+ / 0-)

        any great shakes.  They too were busy violating the Constitution (Iran-Contra?  Ollie North?).

        But that's not to argue that the current crop of asshats isn't worse.

        "I desire what is good. Therefore, everyone who does not agree with me is a traitor." King George III

        by ogre on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:02:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  This thread is a much needed point (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RichM, bree, kidneystones, cornball

    The fact of the matter is that the GOP has become the coward party despite their endless drumbeat of juvenile declarations to the contrary.

    They have become so hysterically terrified of so much that they are largely unable to make sound decisions.  And the results have been disastrous.

    In 1933, FDR spoke for the American Left when he declared: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."  It was a bold clarion call for big idea leadership at home and abroad.  

    It took the American Right 68 years to finally come up with their response: "The only thing we have to fear is a lack of fear."

    They've mistaken cynicism for clarity.  Rigidity for conviction.  Arrogance for confidence.  Fundamentalism for character.  And bluster for courage.  And the end result is a state of weakness.

    They have created a vacuum.  They've created a void for a political party who will come in and act on the substance of courage as opposition to their false veneer of courage.  They've created a necessity for a party with some clarity and spine to stand as opposition to their litany of juvenile macho sloganeering.

    There is a historic opportunity for the Democrats to step in and take the reigns as the party of courage.  There is a historic opportunity for the Democrats to step in and renew the clarion call of FDR.  "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

    Remember, Progressives, you can be humanists and still be strong.  

    Clark/Sebelius 2008

    by nocore on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:42:45 AM PDT

  •  Yuppies (0+ / 0-)

    What happened to the Republican Party?

    Watergate and Yuppies ensured that about half the voters would consume anything shiny, no matter how evil and self-destructive. Because "everyone's doing it".

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:44:58 AM PDT

  •  I'm 2 subway stops from the WTC, and (8+ / 0-)


    What I really notice is that people in the New York area think about the fall of the WTC towers all the time, and a little bit about possible future acts of terrorism, but they talk about it the way people in the Midwest would talk about tornadoes. Almost as if terrorism were just another weird act of nature. Which, in a way, I guess it is.

    I think it's reasonable to take a lot of security measures to prevent needless deaths, but destroying democracy to prevent terrorism is like putting someone in jail to keep him from getting pneumonia. To some extent, maybe that preventive measure might work, but the preventive measure seems to be worse than the disease.

    •  Good call (0+ / 0-)

      We have tornado touchdowns all around out here, but we don't really worry about it much, just make sure we've got insurance.  Had one touch down a couple weeks ago about 2 miles from me, and another 3-4 in a 20 mile radius.

      It happens, it's less than happy, but you don't need politicians constantly playing on your fears about it.

  •  It's like it is in the air or something (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Southern Mouth

    I can't believe you posted this today.  I spent all weekend trying to frame this topic in my head.  I think that the nonsense with the bottled water was the last straw.  All I could think was "you know, I grew up in a time when we thought that any minute the world would literally end in a nuclear fireball, now that's an existential threat.  But we didn't let the government run amok to protect us from that threat did we?"

    Sure we wasted trillions of dollars on an endless arms race but somehow that seems like the "good old days" compared to what has been happening for the last five years.  I really think that the country is approaching the "tipping point" where the endless drumbeat of the right wing echo machine is winding down. It just doesn't make sense anymore, and more and more people "get" that every day.  

    How can you react to the statistically remote threat of being killed by terrorists with the threat of a Nuclear Winter?  The terrorists can't hurt us nearly as much with their suicide bombs as we can hurt ourselves by abandoning common sense and reacting to threats in artless and counterproductive ways.    

  •  Thank yuh, darlin' (4+ / 0-)

    That's been my feeling about the "War on Terra" since the beginning.  This is a small band of thugs that has no hope of destroying America.  If we allocate our resources intelligently (i.e. under Democratic leadership), we can minimize their effect.

    Go about your business.  Look both ways before you cross the street.  And eat your veggies.

    "Something is going on out there that can't be quieted." --George McGovern, 8/11/06

    by Bill in Portland Maine on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 06:53:50 AM PDT

  •  Reality is that alot of folks are scared.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I know it is hard to believe, but alot of folks in the least likely places are scared of terrorist attacks. You will find people less obsessed about terrorism in New York City than in Iowa City. Don;t under estimate how good a job the Bushies do trying to scare people. Today on CNN it's Terror Monday. Fox News its is terror by the hour.

    Let's face it. Without terror as a backdrop for the last five years, this country would be in open revolt against this administration and this Congress, Republicans and Democrats alike.

    I know too many people who are otherwise sane, fine, humorous folks, who think terrorism is a major concern and are worried about it striking their little town.

    I explain the to them that it is propaganda, but the media, pundits and politicos milk not only the occasional overseas attack, but also the "alleged schemes." Yet, everyone has lost track of Osama Vib Laden. No one is holding Bush responsible for NOT catching him. No one is holding him responsible for ordering UK troops to stand down in Tora Bora when they had him trapped, so US troops could claim the capture. Of course, we didn't and he's gone.

    The real "terrorism" is coming from our government which encourages us to be scared and "vigilant."  Even Rudy Giuliani, who I am no fan of, told New Yorkers to get back to work and focus on living following 9/11. Bush can't do that.

    On the Dem side of the aisle we have Lieberman, Clinton and other DLC corporate whores trying to keep us equally frozen.

    It's chicken little. It's the bogeyman. It's the monster under the bed. It's the faust of everyone but those actually trying to scare us. The politicians nd the media.

  •  E-mailed around: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Excellent psot I just sent it around to my mailing list. I'll be interested to see how a few of my more conservative buddies react to it?

    "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

    by Blutodog on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:04:13 AM PDT

  •  bravo Darksyde bravo ...n/t (0+ / 0-)

    O world,no world,but mass of public wrongs,confused and filled with murder and misdeeds

    by Brian B on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:11:10 AM PDT

  •  excellent (1+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Hidden by:
    dailykos needs more posts like this - it is persuasive without offending moderates to whom all this might not be so obvious.  democrats, for all their ire, would do well to take note.  no one who writes like this can get labelled as a crazy left wing blogger, and that's one of the only thing the blogging community suffers these days.  it is unnecessarily pushing mainstream ideas far into the political left solely by virtue of the hostility used in expressing them.

    this is a complaint i have with a lot of the democratic party right now, and certainly elements of the kos crowd.  you all do great work, but it might eventually become more mainstream if it turns from a collective scream into a more civilized discourse. voters aren't stupid, they recognize when they're being condescended to, and they recognize when people are trying to argue complicated issues with three word sound bites.  the problem is that neither party nor punditry is doing enough to sell the democratic ticket to people who are sick of the cutandrunstaythecourse debate.  

    anyway, now i'm on a rant.  kudos on this post, i think it's pointed in the right direction.

  •  Ghosts stories around the campfire no longer (0+ / 0-)

    Yes yes and more yes.

    Our parents and grandparents would be ashamed of us.
    first for our  gullibility and 2nd for our needless shaking in our boots for absolutely nothing.

    WW2 is still real for a lot of americans.  How did those americans behave through that worldwide war?
    A lot Braver than we are behaving right now.

    Just think,during the 80s when the British were being attacked by the IRA terrorists, what did they do as a matter of policy?

    They cleaned up the mess and went right doing what they were doing.  They did not give in to the terrorists.

    Incidentially that fight was resolved by diplomacy.

    Behind these GOP  threats is the shreading of our rights in the name of security.  

  •  Cold War Didn't Seem Cold (0+ / 0-)

    I grew up 8 miles "as the crow flies" from the #12 SAC base in the nation.  If the US got hit with a nuke, we felt assured that the base was on the hit list even in a minimized attack.

    I was in school, my mother and brother and sister worked even closer to the base.  My father was at home.  I had one other brother and he was on the USS Enterprise.

    In school, we had evac practices.  We didn't play "get under the desk and put your head down".  We filed out and got on a bus to go further north.

    I can remember thinking:  if we get hit and if I DO make it north in time to survive and if the nukes get shut down in time to save the world, I will likely be the only member of my family to survive.  I was scared of being completely alone, scared of thinking how my folks died, scared of dying.

    I had nightmares about the mushroom cloud and the heat blast.  I wouldn't and won't watch any movies about nuclear war.  I accidentally turned on "The Day After" (I think that's the name) and saw all the missiles rising out of the ground from Kansas and the mushroom cloud.

    My husband is several years older and he doesn't have those fears AT ALL.  Different people and different time and different situation.

    These are grievous times for many people and I grieve for those who lost their loved ones and their way of life and their innocence.  I do not minimize the loss or their losses.  No way can I think of the present situation as anywhere close to the Cold War days.  

  •  I don't know why the word 'coward' isn't used in (6+ / 0-)

    every Democrat's speech. It is so apt, so right on target. It is the perfect reply to every one of the Republican talking points. Republicans are afraid of everything. They seem, for example, to actually be afraid of gay marriage, as if it's going to sneak into their houses and sprinkle gay dust on everything. They're afraid of taxes as much as they're afraid of death. They are afraid of everything. They're not tough on security; they're cowardly on security, swatting at every insignificant gnat with a great public flourish and a heaping of unearned self-congratulations. We're supposedly the greatest superpower in the world; why don't we act like it?

    "Cowards" is right. They should be called cowards every day of the week for the rest of their lives. Every time they bring up 9/11, we should tell them that 3,000 Americans didn't die only to leave us with a legacy of cowardice. Every time they they use the word "fear", we need to remind them that cowardliness is un-American.

    •  yep (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      They will be swatting at flies chasing them all over the place, meanwhile the trojan horse colored in red, white and blue is parading down the street with gop'rs waving flags at it getting all watery eyed.  

      Of course the trojan horse will be driven by cheney via a hobby type remote control box in his bunker...he'll be muttering to himself "I'll get those dems scared now..hahahah ..damn it"

      "I would say the best moment of all was when I caught a 7.5lb perch in my lake" -gwb describing his greatest moment since becoming president in 2001.

      by FreeTradeIsYourEpitaph on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:46:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  the cold war is so yesterday (0+ / 0-)

    but whenever i bring up the communists everyone nods off. like the cold war is so yesterday. i postulate that george bush has handed over the reins of freedom faster than neville chamberlain, but no one really cares. that american companies are duplicitious in helpin the thugs in bejing oppress the chinese people. its that we cry about democracy and hand them taiwan and say thank you for being the worlds leading manufacturer of worthless crap that is bankrupting us. its not that the terrorists are so small, its that all this crap you mention is still very real. and what we are doing now will determine the next 1000 years of human history, do you want your children to be socialist worker bees for the state, or free citizens who will be relieved of their many many duties as indentured servants and allowed to participate in the fruits of human invention.

    "Everything is chrome in the future..." Sponge Bob Square Pants

    by agent double o soul on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:27:19 AM PDT

    •  Hey now (0+ / 0-)

      Let's not start insulting socialism.

      Socialism is many things to many people.  To me, it means I share my home with someone who isn't paid enough to have her own place, and spend about half my income helping out other people who are also getting screwed over economically by the capitalist drive to concentrate wealth in the hands of the few by exploiting the many.

      I'm hardly a 'worker bee', nor is socialism inherently drone producing.  It's about realizing there are limits to just how much wealth a few individuals need when thousands of others are living below the poverty line - in opposing the pampered few who got rich paying minimum wage and forcing them to help pay for the social services needed by the masses.  There's no call for indentured servitude in there.

      •  W is the number one socialist (0+ / 0-)

        there's a great article at i think, about the growing economic war that is being fought on socialist economic principles. the energy wars are really the tip of the iceberg. national economies are squaring off against each other, in a competition for resources, in the end you work for the state, not yourself, and when GDP passes 50% government spending you are well on your way. this is why W was not defeated in the last election, the man (and his congressional vigilante appropriations committees in congress) hold you life in the balance, they sign your paycheck. socialism is political extortion.

        "Everything is chrome in the future..." Sponge Bob Square Pants

        by agent double o soul on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 03:30:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  It's what I refer to... (0+ / 0-) the "Loser syndrome".

    Republicans consider the Republican Party the "winning" team.

    Those with the "Loser syndrome" must have a winning team to pull for.  USA, Dallas Cowboys, Dale Earnhardt, Carolina Tarheels, Republican Party. etc.  

    We liberals tend to pull for the underdogs.  We feel good about our lives and want to help the little guys win.

    I don't know when they'll (republicans) ever realize that there's no republican strategy to win against the terrorists but I think they're happy enough just to have their team in a fight.  If they lose, it's the fault of those damn liberals.....what else could it be?....Jeff spun out Dale, Damn Refs made bad calls....damn bunch of losers.  

    ....the future's uncertain and the end is always near....

    by suspiciousmind on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:36:05 AM PDT

    •  I'd (0+ / 0-)

      be more convinced if the "winning party" actually won something besides an election every now and then.

      Read UTI, your free thought forum

      by DarkSyde on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:42:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They're of simple mind..... (0+ / 0-)

        winning the election is much like hitting the lottery to them.

        He won't raise their taxes (forget high gas prices, stagnant wages, inflation, deficit) and he'll (send somebody else to) stand up to the bad guys.

        That's also why they love this president, he's of simple mind just like themselves.

        ....the future's uncertain and the end is always near....

        by suspiciousmind on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:38:40 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Die, Hate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The right isn't scared. It's a calculated attempt to shore up their base by punching the mortal fear button. You're gonna die, hate the liberals. Die, hate. Die, hate.

    Terrify, reassure. Only WE can save you. It's psychological manipulation. Akin to the Christian cross: terrify, reassure.

  •  Just who/whom are the weak minded fools??? (0+ / 0-)

    Limbag, Coulter, Malkin...

    They all work for Al Qaeda, and the Taliban...They just don't know it!

    No more gooper LITE!

    by krwada on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:37:09 AM PDT

    •  It's more like Al Qaeda... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      works for them. They are the only force keeping this turd of an administration from getting flushed all the way down the crapper.

      We have all seen it, a weak flushing toilet that won't get that last piece of floaty poop to finally go down. Without Al Queda working for Bush, public opinion would have flushed these turds down the crapper a long time ago.

      •  Didn't I read somewhere (0+ / 0-)

        Al Qaeda was originally created by the CIA to help against the USSR in Afghanistan? If so, it is yet another case of the USA creating a Frankenstein monster....

        •  The irony (0+ / 0-)

          is that you are quite correct. Al Qaeda is largely a construct of our intervention in Afghanistan...(fighting the ol' commie thing), and our policies in South Asia, and the Middle East.

          What is also ironic...(I watched 60 minutes interview with Ahmenidjad last night), and this guy, (who is very intelligent by the way) is ...

          1. Very scary!
          1. Very extremist!
          1. Very capable!
          1. Unfortunately, a product of our times!

          History has shown us that confronting violence, and extremist views with like and kind only gets more of the same...Many of our religious leaders kept reminding us of this...(Jesus, Hillel, Ghandi, Martin Luther King etc.)

          The better bet is to, (in the near term), turn the other cheek so to speak, and to defeat the other point of view from the inside out!

          The extremists on both sides desparately do not want this! Over and over again, they remind us that this is not what they want, (Right wing pundits, and Islamic extremists)...

          No more gooper LITE!

          by krwada on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:15:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  aid & comfort (0+ / 0-)

            We have done far more to aid Al Qaeda over the last 5 years by selling fear, killing civilians, and allowing US soldiers to abuse Arabs than we could have ever hoped to by supplying them with guns and training in the 80s.

  •  The extra irony is... (0+ / 0-)

    they are able to rationalize that they are actually being tough because they are standing strong and advocating that OTHERS fight their wars.

    Before the 2004 primary: Rove was overheard telling a companion, "That's the one we want..." After: "The good news for us is that Dean is not the nominee."

    by erik28com on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 07:40:56 AM PDT

  •  AHHHH (0+ / 0-)

    God what breath of fresh air you and Susan G are today. FINALLY some perspective on this. Makes me wonder why this conversation wasn't happening before. When did the Repubs become the biggest chickenshits on the planet?

  •  Different generations have different histories (0+ / 0-)

    My personal appreciation of American history includes having parents that grew up during the Great Depression and WWII. Both events made a big impression on them and  I learned a little of that living with them.

    I lived through the Cuban Missle Crisis, I was 9 yrs old, and remember seing a lot of adults trying to buy all the canned food they could from the grocery store. Everyone was afraid that day, but my parents didn't cry and whimper, they held onto their emotions and functioned in the face of the REAL threat that the world as we know it would come to an end over the period of a few hours.

    I lived through Vietnam, was lucky enough to get a good draft number toward the end of the war and draft. Many other kids in my neighborhood were not so lucky. I was freightened but not freaked on draft day.

    I work in the health care biz and know people die every day because of medical error and alergic reactions to medication. I'm not afraid to get medical treatment for me or my family, I'm just appropriately observant and I question anything that seems wrong.

    I work in the information technology side of healthcare now and am one of the older people in my section. Most of the people I work with do not have any personal connection to a history of facing real national threats with confident resolve. I don't know many people my age who are seriously worried about ebing killed in a terrorist attack, even though most people assume some will not be preventable.

    911 was and is their only personal connection with real national risk. It is my experience that for these people sharing my experience of history sometimes helps put discussion of the actual level of risk we face in better perspective.

    I think that one of the audiences that Bush is appealing to is the younger audience. Particularly military age males and the people already serving in the military. Keeping this gorup pumped up is critically important to executing the Bush adgenda. I don't think he cares how it plays with the generally reasonable voter. They think they can establish the facts on the ground via military action and that is what they are going to try to do.

    Getting the potential troops ready for Iran and Syria is one of the serious things the Bush admin is doing. Although it is politically risky I think we need to start undermining the motivation of the potential troops by calling the PNAC adgenda for what it is and saying it isn't worth sacraficing our young people to the god of oil supply and oil company profits.

    Don't volunteer to fight for higher oil company profits, you are worth more than that. It's not about protecting America, it's about protecting oil company profits. Big oil wants to spend your blood instead of a few extra cents of profit from their precious bottom line.

    •  flashback: (0+ / 0-) kids were required to wear government-issue dog-tags in my public school district when I was growing up during WW-2 in the S.F. Bay Area

      What would you do for a Klondike Bar?

      by Sybil Liberty on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:20:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My history doesn't go back that far (0+ / 0-)

        but I remember my dad openly talking about how disapointed he was to get 4f'd, terrible vision, out of being able to serve in WWII.

        That was a different time and a different war. I loved the documentary "Why do we fight", it's out on video now and worth a look. One of the cnetral themes was Eisenhower's sppech warning about the dangers of the military industrial complex. How acute his insight was.   Where would he be placed on our current left/right political map?

        •  There's the Q... (0+ / 0-)

          I believe that Ike still would be to the right of General Wes Clark who agrees 100% with Ike about the MIC, at least on social and domestic issues.


          "Some of us are still eating hotdogs...and that's an astonishing thing." -- Wes Clark

 dad was 4-f'd becuz he was installing the "all-new" radar technology on transports (I still have his radar installation manual)

          What would you do for a Klondike Bar?

          by Sybil Liberty on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:53:05 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The two big tests (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            for our era are whether we can get the MIC back under control and whether we can change our economy to be an environmentally sustainable one.

            I see the two issues tied at the hip. I would like to see a steady transfer of military spending into the great project of creating a non polluting sustainable enegry infrastructure for the future.

            If my dad were still around I know he would be disgusted with the Bush admin fear and war mongering.

            •  sustaining the environment (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              IS national security. Agree, tied at the hip.

              Dad would be livid, mom would be more so and "pardner", a Korean war vet, is frenetically spinning in his grave

              (I can feel their rage, uh huh, yes I can)

              What would you do for a Klondike Bar?

              by Sybil Liberty on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:39:57 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Spot on! (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Bob Guyer

              That shift would satisfy the terrorists and thus win the war.  

              They basically hate us because we're over there stealing their resources (though bush sez it's because of our beliefs). If we had the alternative resources, we wouldn't be there at all.

              ....the future's uncertain and the end is always near....

              by suspiciousmind on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:02:59 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for this (0+ / 0-)

    Another way that I've always thought of it is that 9/11 was nothing compared to say, the 6,000 Bosnian men who entered Brcko standing in rail cars and left it, their bodies stacked like cordwood;  or the hundreds of thousands who died cowering in their huts in Rwanda.

    Only a tremendous coward would justify the loss of our freedoms, the haphazard attacks against real enemies and ghosts, because of 9/11.  It was an horrendous outrage, but an outrage on the scale of other outrages which we and other nations have dealt with using ordinary methods of measured military action and international justice.

  •  Duck and Cover!!! (0+ / 0-)

    My diary, today, is a good post-script to this post--even though I penned it last week (pre-script?).

    It's Duck and Cover vs. The Day After.   We can all jump under our desks as the dittoheads suggest, or we can stop escalating the violence.  

    I say let's just build stronger desks!  

    •  Do you have a good preemptive frame for (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jeffrey Feldman, relentless

      undermining the next move of the Bush admin when they try to leverage some incident and start bombing Iran and or Syria? I'm going to start thinking about how to do this, but I bet you already have and I was curious about what you are thinking.

      It seems we should be getting preemptive as opposed to reactive if we don't want to be simply protesting in the street as the bombers are dropping their "smart" weapons on the super evil, world threatening, islamo-fascists over there.

      •  They may just do it anyway (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        They are so committed to the idea that they create reality--we may not be able to stop Bush from ordering this kind of attack.  

        I am thinking about possible ways to pre-empt this stuff and will keep postsing as the ideas come out.

        •  Thanks Jeffrey (0+ / 0-)

          I worry that we won't be able to stop them either but figure we better start trying real soon because our slim chances get slimmer the longer they are a step ahead.

          If anything comes to mind I will let you know as grist for your mill. I appreciate the good work you are doing.

          •  Seems like they have a notebook filled with plans (0+ / 0-)

            If XXX happens, quickly do BBB.  
            If AAA happens, then do PPP

            Their list is probably endless. The way they get by with it is the Media covering for them and by them moving fast.

            If people had had more debate before Iraq was bombed it wouldn't have happened. Instead those opinion makers on TV and radio beat the drums of war. Dissent was squelched.  

            Remember how they treated Tom Daschle? Dixie Chicks?

  •  Mailer, on living w/anxiety... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    crimsonscare, earthmissinglink

    "Suppose ten people are killed by a small bomb on a street corner in some city in America. The first thing to understand is that there are 285 million Americans. So, there's one chance in 28.5 million you're going to be one of those people. By such heartless means of calculation, the 3,000 deaths in the Twin Towers came approximately to one mortality for every 90,000 Americans. Your chances of dying if you drive a car are one in 7,000 each year. We seem perfectly ready to put up with automobile statistics.

    There is a tolerable level to terror, I am ready to say. Let's relieve ourselves of the idea that we have to remove all terror. Let's learn to live with the anxiety." -- Norman Mailer

    What would you do for a Klondike Bar?

    by Sybil Liberty on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:07:24 AM PDT

  •  Thank you thank you (0+ / 0-)

    For those who have not heard this, even 9/11 could have been a much bigger tragedy as up to 50,000 could have died in those towers.  A lot of folks escaped it and a lot of folks escaped the pentagon hit.  We should be celebrating those folks that made it out, not whining that we are scared.  We could be celebrating that we take care of each other, but the repubs have made that celebration damn hard!

  •  Thank you!! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    earthmissinglink, ERyd

    I've been saying this for years.  Not only are conservative pundits chickenshits, but they're trying to turn us all into chickenshits.  I call it "the chickenshitting of America".  Nice job, you yellow-bellied conservative cowards.

  •  A f-ing men (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The GOP leadership and those who parrot this fear factor crap are cowards, liars and cheats. I laugh at their cowardice. This is a great talking point to pound them with every time they bring up the terrorism bogey man.

    Impossible is nothing

    by DrSpike on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 08:54:21 AM PDT

  •  Memo from the Ghetto: (3+ / 0-)

    I've said it before, but it bears repeating - Dude - if you live in the typical inner-city neighborhood, you've been on "red alert" for decades now. I spent many many years going to sleep to the sound of gunfire. I had a loaded pistol in the bed table. All night long my doorknob would twist because crackheads roamed the streets looking for unlocked doors. If I forgot to get something from the store - it had to wait till morning. No law-abiding citizen was on those streets after a certain time. If you were out there, you were either up to no good, or fair game.

    No-one ever worried about us - they still don't. Nobody ever tore up the constitution to protect us. Bush says his number one job is to "protect the American people" - oh really? Been to Compton lately? South Chicago? The "south side" of just about any city? Puh-lease.

    See that fella on the corner slinging rock? He could give a shit about Al-Quaida. Or Bin Laden. All he looks out for is Five-Oh.

    In any case - like DarkSyde says, we dealt with it. People live their life, go to work, raise families, have block parties - we deal, dig? I scratch my head at the fear that the suburbanites feel. Whatever, man.

  •  IMO (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Since you live until you die and no one is guaranteed a tomorrow the quality/style of the life one leads is one's major option. Every moment one spends obsessively worrying what might be their fate is just another lost segment of their life. Each of us really has only the here and now and to obsess with fear about one’s future or dwell in past which is a bucket of ashes in water downstream that will never return is a wasting of one's life. Ergo what count's is living one's in real time with as many options as one can manage sensibly.

    That, IMO, is freedom and a concept GW Bush and his minions don't understand or value as they live in a future surrounded by wealth and it's twin, power; while they waste and don't enjoy what the actual time they have day by day. It's too bad they are in a position to cause others so much grief in their out of time pursuit of what might be but isn't. Removing them, or any such people who limit the freedom of the many for the power and wealth of a few, from public trust positions is what political freedom is all about. Ideally an open, peaceful and democratic process does this; but the objective in this case is a rare instance where more a favorable outcome is more important the method used to achieve it. Making a harder choice if necessary is the price of political freedom.

    Integrity is the doing what is right in the absence of witnesses and with no other gain in mind.

    by Bobjack23 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:24:01 AM PDT

  •  I'll go a step further. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mainely49, ERyd

    As horrible as it was, September 11th itself wasn't among the worst things to happen to Americans in the last two centuries. Even those events--and not to be callous--were grossly overblown and would have been treated somewhat more proportinately if they hadn't happened in the NYC and DC media markest.

    It is time to be upfront and honest about everything. DarkSyde has made a great and irrefutable start here.

  •  My thoughts exactly (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    earthmissinglink, ERyd

    I've been bleating on here since Day One of the "War on Terra" that it was all about modern day chickenshit conservatives too embarassed to admit that their first response to 9/11 was the feeling of warm piss dribbling down their leg, while those gay-lovin', labor supportin', immigrant huggin' , women libber Noo Yawkers first instinct was to stick up a collective middle finger aimed OBL's way and get on with their lives.

    "Power concedes nothing without a demand; it never has and it never will." - Frederick Douglass

    by goblue72 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:05:04 AM PDT

  •  It is fairly obvious what has happened (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dash888, drbloodaxe

    to your Da's GOP.  Honestly, the entire point of all this is included in Orwell's 1984 as well as included in the quote of Hermann Goering at the Nuremberg trials:

    "Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders.  That is easy.  All you have to do is tell them  they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger."

    It is about (literally) undermining our democratic system, centralizing more and more power and wealth into fewer and fewer hands, all with the initial appearance of being the "will of the people".

    Always start from this premise, no matter what the GOP and/or the Administration (in particular the Administration) propose or champion, the impetus for it is consolidation of power and wealth with the concomitant destruction of our democracy.  The latter is necessary because it is the only way to ensure continuation of the former but it takes time.  While the Admin/GOP have been busy destroying the core of what this country has always stood for and its Constitutional underpinnings, for it to truly bear the fruit they seek requires a delicate dance and balancing act.  They have needed to suppress information, criminalize information, make an enemy of the very idea of "checks and balances",  to pull off what they seek but the balancing act is too delicate a thing for them.  They have overstepped and finally many people, a majority thus far, are seeing through their machinations.

    Much like a very ambitious political party/movement and its leader back in the late 20's through the mid-40's back in "Old Europe", they have bitten off more than they can chew and it is now going pearshaped on them.  Unless they can pull off a miracle (like ignore warnings of an impending terrorist attack so that the aftermath can be taken political advantage of, Reichstag-fire like) then they are looking to lose virtually everything they've gained with many facing probable indictment and imprisonment shortly after losing power.  Note:  expect a series of "retirements" to "spend time with families" if/when the Dems take back the House in the fall.  The senate may also see similar "retirements" because investigations in the House can easily suck in criminals in the Senate as well.

    They're trapped and flailing now.  This is when they are at their most dangerous and least inhibited.

    The reason for all this is quite clear if one is willing to look over the lessons of history from J. Caesar on up to, oh, Germany of the 30s and 40s (and perhaps today's Iran)?  

  •  I'm sorry, but you lost me at -- (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "I know there are millions of brave, decent conservatives."  Your first sentence.

    Perhaps, there may be, stretching it, a million brave conservatives.  And maybe, really stretching it here, a million decent conservatives.  But no way, no how are there millions of brave and decent conservatives.

    Truly brave and decent conservatives would realize that the conservative movement has turned into something truly ugly and despicable that in no way bodes well for the health, goodwill and future for Americans and the United States.

    Conservatives own every branch of the US government now and what have they wrought: war, misery, increased poverty, reduced standards of living, failing federal agencies, an about face on our advances in science, an acceptance of torture and an election system so unreliable I'm not even sure we still live in a true democracy.

    No, beg to differ, I do not believe there are millions of brave, decent conservatives.  If there were, they would quit that disgusting party and start another one.

    •  'conservative' is not a bad word (shouldn't be) (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Hey, it's going to take real majority rule and imagination and effort to keep planet and nation in any kind of shape over the next couple of generations.
      Just because these freako-civilizationdrestroyers describe themselves as "Conservatives" doesn't mean we should take them at their word.
      We need to put that in "", add self-described, or supposed, or in any way throw doubt on the imagined conserving virtues of this crowd.  

      •  majority rule can be achieved with a 3rd party. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Conservatives still support Bush/GOP and enable these "freako-civilizationdrestroyers" to continue the damage due to their "end-times" tomorrow doesn't matter, take it all now before we die mindset.

        Conservatism has progressed to a disease, of a highly acute nature.  As a former conservative myself, I find it far from respectable.  

        I'm sorry, it is indeed a bad word.

        •  No! Apt description, wrong conclusion. (0+ / 0-)

          The "end-times, tomorrow doesn't matter, take it all now before we die mindset" (well put, by the way) is the opposite of conservative, if the word means anything at all in terms of real life.
          Show me such ideas in the classics of conservatism...Edmund Burke ... Russel Kirk, whoever.
          The genius of today's GOP mountebanks lies in taking an established slogan and a legitimate set of concerns -- widely held, even universal (tradition, continuity, stability, respnsibility for one's actions, handing down the good life to the kids, etc.)-- and turning it on it's head, making it into what you have described.

          Of course conservativism has always appealed to people who are worried that they have something to lose, whether it be property, security, or traditional life-ways ... often people of privilege, or who think they are. Simply put, that is the interest behind the ideal of conservatism. The application can be discriminatory, impede progress, no doubt. But that's not all there is to the ideal, and it's certainly not the side that has traditionally held up with some success as universal.
          To accept a conservative-is-a-bad-word dichotomy of ideals is to concede too much. Much too much.
          We can and should own the the basic traditional conservative ideals and be ready to explain why, if necessary, when we speak to voters. We have the concerns, the vision, and we'll bring constructive solutions to the big problems (e.g. energy/ecology crises, security, "foreign" policy) whereas the GOP is driving out any but blind wreckers.

          It won't be central to our argument, but we need to be able to show any old-fashioned conservative that the GOP is not where they need to be.
          I know this is a contrarian argument for most folks.
          P.S. Apoligy: I got started on this without reading your comment carefully to the end. As a person who once called himself a conservative, you will know all this better than I. All I can say is that the word shouldn't be confused with the ideal.

          •  the word not confused with ideal, but the (0+ / 0-)

            ideal no longer applies.  I agree that Dems can and should own all the traditions once held by conservatism, but I believe the conservative movement is in fact dying hard, or at the very least, fracturing.

            This should be exploited.  Again, conservatism has become a disease and hopefully, disaffected conservatives will look beyond "self-help" for a possible cure.

            •  'conservative' is an opportunity (0+ / 0-)

              We agree on Conservatism with a big "C", a more or less organized political movement that has become hard-line reactionary and is dying hard, or at the very least, fracturing.

              I think you'll also agree that the word "conservative" is not going to go away from everyday speech. It exists in every language (European at least), alluding to caution, moderation, adhering to tradition, with overtones of prudence. That's often without political implications, but even when it has them, they don't necessarily refer to divisions of party, but often to practical matters of how fast to go in some practical matter, how unreservedly to commit to a given policy at a given moment.
              The word is in the language, and in the everyday sense expresses legitimate concerns. And in this sense there's a more or less broad conservative mentality among many people, which is in reality at odds with the disastrous policies and doctrines that are now being wrapped in the big "C". Yet these folks are vulnerable to the shape-changers who preach about traditional values.
              In facing this, I think its good to ask such people questions like: "What are these so-called Conservatives actually trying to conserve (and what are they trying to destroy)? What is really going to be conserved (or destroyed) as a result of their policies? Is this going to work? No it isn't.

              We're not going to purge the word from everyday vocabulary, so why not use it to show these fakirs up?
              I think it's too bad that some of our kossaks react to "conservative" like they'd been stung by a jellyfish. The word isn't blasphemous, it's an opportunity that we shouldn't overlook.

  •  RedState piece de resistance... (0+ / 0-)

    So after jumping all over DarkSyde's argument--well, half of it, because if they even acknowledge the other half, it makes them look like the cowardly imbeciles they are...

    they post another piece about the elections, which proposes:

    The Influence Peddler thinks nationalizing the elections might be one way the GOP can mitigate its losses in November.

    Oh please.  Please?  Throw us in that briar patch, Br'er RedState.  Please.

    Not being a duplicitous prick like the maroons trying to pick away at DS's point that the current GOP is afraid of a miniscule risk, I'll lay it out here--the only hope that GOP candidates have, by and large, of winning in districts that aren't completely gerrymandered to protect them is to run away from the White House, away from Bush's War, away from the national GOP program of hate, fear and national bankruptcy.  Those who can get enough distance might not be sucked under when the GOP Titanic goes down.

    A warning to my fellow Democrats:
    The survivors won't be the women and children.  We ARE talking about the GOP here.  The lifeboats that get away will be full of their worst, most duplicitous....

    "I desire what is good. Therefore, everyone who does not agree with me is a traitor." King George III

    by ogre on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:12:21 AM PDT

  •  Onward. Eyes on the prize. n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Monique Radevu

    "How did we steal 2000, 2002, 2004 and 2006? We controlled the voting machines, and they didn't pay attention until too late." --Rove

    by Enough Talk Lets Get Busy on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:15:43 AM PDT

  •  But, we don't need Bush making the problem worse. (0+ / 0-)

    Terrorism may not rival cancer, but 5 airplanes disappearing over the Atlantic is not in our national interest.  And we don't need Bush stumbling through life adding fuel to the Jihad fire.  

    Part of what makes terrorism a threat is due to the reaction it provokes.  It's our reaction that will be the greatest threat.  I know the RedStaters don't have a clue about what I mean, but I am talking about them.

    I have perspective, I want Bush to stop making things worse.

    ...the train's got its brakes on and the whistle is screaming.

    by themank on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:37:08 AM PDT

  •  Thank you. (0+ / 0-)

    That's what infuriates me. Who are these cowards to give away the civil rights of me and my children because they're too afraid to admit they're going to die someday?

    Reminds me of an exchange from "The Lion in Winter:"

    Geoffrey: "What does it matter how a man falls down?"

    Richard: "When the fall is all that's left, it matters."

    •  Dylan (0+ / 0-)

      There's always been people that have to cause fear
      They've been talking of the war now for many long years
      I have read all their statements and I've not said a word
      But now Lawd God, let my poor voice be heard.
      Let me die in my footsteps
      Before I go down under the ground.

  •  I was born in '55 (0+ / 0-)

    so I have lived my whole life knowing that I along with the human race could be died or dying within 30 minutes so I never got to worried about Terrorist they can kill and everyone talks about it and worries and frits about it while what I grew up with (and still live with cause the nukes are still pointed each at other an I will still see the end of Dr.Strangelove)is a nuke war that kills and no one is left alive to talk about it.

  •  Thank you, (0+ / 0-)

    thank you, thank you
    Tell everyone you know to stop listening to these pantswetting chickhawk cowards.
    It's  what you should expect from a bunch of draft-dodgers.

    God save king George, George W that is, our new American dictator

    by ERyd on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:38:52 AM PDT

  •  That (0+ / 0-)

    Is exactly the truth and exactly the right additude.  Thanks, that was a great pep talk.

    Most people are idiots... But don't tell them. It'll spoil all the fun for those of us who aren't.

    by d3n4l1 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 12:00:05 PM PDT

  •  Lest the redstaters bring up that old canard... (0+ / 0-)

    The redstate counterclaim is that we are in far more danger now, because the terrists have the will to use WMD's, if they could only get ahold of them. Personally, I think it is that will to use them that is largely preventing them from getting ahold of them, because even arms dealers aren't that insane (just greedy), but anyway I digress.

    The reason the Ruskies having nukes aimed at us was just as dangerous as nutjobs wanting nukes now, is that either way, there is a small risk of us being blown up by nukes. In the case of Ruskies, it almost happened once, as we now know, because of faulty early-warning systems indicating an imminent attack. We also had a couple of bona-fide close calls where leaders on both ends had itchy trigger fingers. So far, we've been lucky not to have an incident with terrists, but I didn't lose sleep over it then, and I don't now, because I have a grip.

  •  nuke in manhattan (0+ / 0-)

    It would just be very unfortunate if, for example a country like Iran that has demonstrated considerable support for non-state terrorist causes continued to do so after it made nuclear weapons.  A nuke in manhattan is still a frightening and real possibility.

  •  Attacks by Terrorists Less Likely than Disease (0+ / 0-)

    Your comment on the fact that residents of the U.S. have a much greater probability of contracting cancer or cardiovascular disease than being attacked by terrorists almost exactly expresses a concept that has been prominent in my mind for some time.

    Specifically, obesity is the greatest life-shortening threat in the country. Frequently, obesity occasions or exacerbates cardiovascular disease, as well as pathologies in skeletal, endocrine, and immune systems, and can increase the risk of contracting cancer. Diabetes has skyrocketed due to obesity. Obesity is a much greater threat to Americans than terrorism.

    Leading democrats have not dared to make such a statement.

    During the last Presidental election campaign, Karl Rove's principal strategy was to keep the nation in fear. Frightening suburban women was a specific goal. The 9-11 attacks were portrayed by Republicans as the worst event to ever happen in the U.S., and the largest threat that the country has faced.

    Democrats did not have the sand to quote Franklin Delano Roosevelt's First Inaugural address wherein he stated "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

    Democrats should have stated that the 9-11 events were horrible and despicable, which they were, but not nearly as devastating an event as the Civil War, in which a significant fraction of the entire country's population was killed, and was not as large a threat as the peril of possible nuclear war during the era of the Soviet Union.

    Democrats should have emphasized again and again that Rove had determined that if conservatives could keep the country in fear, Bush would likely be re-elected.

    Democrats should have asserted that one's relinquishment to fear is capitulation. The terrorists win when American citizens live in fear.

    Unfortunately, leading Democrats cowered, and enabled the Republican strategy. Many even agreed with the Republican warmongers.

    The persona of Bush as being a brave, courageous president was a well crafted myth. Evidence of that was his reaction to being notified of the 1st attack to the twin towers. He seemed to be paralyzed.

    Democrats were afraid to declare the aforementioned facts to the public. We need more Democratic senators and respresentatives with grit.

    Republican fear mongering should not be allowed to succeed in the future.

  •  If Bin-Laden wants to bring us 'to our knees' (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    all he has to is attack natural gas infrastructure, oil tankers, oil terminals and the distribution networks. I'm amazed he hasn't done so already; as a political force, he's just as incompetent as Bush.  

    But the 'concept of terror' works, when you have a willing group of participants, like the Red Staters. It works when you have a mindnumbingly stupid moron as 'President'; a man who cannot begin to understand how to lead a nation.

    It takes two to tango; bin-Laden has found his dance partner in GW Bush, and by extension those knuckle draggers that drink the Kool-Aid.

    Doesn't eveyone understand that the biggest threat to the military industrial complex is peace? That without the cold war and an active threat, there's no justification to have tens of thousands of nukes and those fancy accoutrements that go with them, the billions and billions pumped into an industry that brings nothing  to the benefit of human beings?

    Bin-Laden filled the vacuum.


    'the only we have to fear, is fear itself' .. and that fear is crystallized in the faces of those who survived Hurricane Katrina, the fear of people who can no longer trust their government to stay the hell out of their personal lives, who would trample on our rights at the drop of a hat.

    We SHOULD be afraid. But not of third rate reilgious fanatics. We should be afraid that our government is so incompetent that they have no plan to respond to even natural disasters, refuse to accept science based facts as proof of the real threat to our planet, and fumble around in the dark with a lit match in the gas-filled MidEast.  

  •  Long response at Liberal Values Blog (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    After seeing this on Memeorandum, as well as a rather distorted commentary at Right Wing News, I wrote a long response at Liberal Values:

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