Skip to main content

Tom Englehardt at TomDispatch.com writes:

The surge was always, in a sense, a gamble for time, a pacification program directed at the "home front" in the President's Global War on Terror as well as at Iraq itself. And if this is what you mean by "success" in Iraq, Bush has indeed succeeded admirably. As in the Vietnam era, when President Richard Nixon began "Vietnamizing" that war, a reduction of American casualties has had the effect of turning media attention elsewhere.

So another year has now passed in a country that we plunged into an unimaginable charnel-house state. Whether civilian dead between the invasion of 2003 and mid-2006 (before the worst year of civil-war level violence even hit) was in the range of 600,000 as a study in the British medical journal, The Lancet reported or 150,000 as a recent World Health Organization study suggests, whether two million or 2.5 million Iraqis have fled the country, whether 1.1 million or more than two million have been displaced internally, whether electricity blackouts and water shortages have marginally increased or decreased, whether the country's health-care system is beyond resuscitation or could still be revived, whether Iraqi oil production has nearly crept back to the low point of the Saddam Hussein-era or not, whether fields of opium poppies are, for the first time, spreading across the country's agricultural lands or still relatively localized, Iraq is a continuing disaster zone on a catastrophic scale hard to match in recent memory.

What Bush has done with his surge, however, is buy himself that year-plus of free time, while he negotiates with Iraq's inside-the-Green-Zone government to cement in place an endless American presence there.

Check out the Overnight News Digest.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:38 PM PST.

Poll

I believe the United States will

8%539 votes
8%539 votes
1%123 votes
2%171 votes
16%1052 votes
18%1139 votes
38%2427 votes
4%261 votes

| 6252 votes | Vote | Results

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  The fix is in. (4+ / 0-)

    And if we'll ever undo it now...

    I am endlessly vindicated by the unfolding of history.

    by Rob Cole on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:39:28 PM PST

    •  20 of 24 votes on a purportedly liberal site (7+ / 0-)

      cast for permanent bases in Iraq! Sweet Jesus.

      "Nations, like individuals, are punished for their transgressions." U.S.Grant

      by shigeru on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:41:38 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  We must all think Hillary or McCain will win :) (8+ / 0-)

        Heh.

        So this is how liberty dies -- with thunderous applause.

        by MJB on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:43:25 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, that poll seems to have tapped into (9+ / 0-)

          a pretty rich vein of cynicism (realism, call it whatever) around here.

        •  Exactly, although I would add (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          koNko, Gregory Wonderwheel

          one more dem to your list. We'll be in Iraq for a long time, the way things are going.

        •  it's my pessimism speaking... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Gregory Wonderwheel

          it's all about the oil. . . .

          It's true though, I could really use some sleep.

          Freedom is a choice you have to make everyday.

          by papicek on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 02:23:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  No. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tgs1952

          There is no path to getting out, and none of the democratic candidates have proposed such a path.  

          Right now there is no Iraqi national defense capability in a region where it is surrounded by mutually hostile neighbors.  It's not possible to just pack up and go without making complex security arrangements that the US will not make.  This means that the plan for the foreseeable future is permanent occupation with no sovereign Iraqi government.  By "no sovereign government" I mean one that has no monopoly on the use of force, no control of the deployment of the occupying  or its own military forces, no ability to enforce its laws wrt the actions of armed expatriate civilians, and which takes its legislative and government direction from a foreign power.

          There is no intention to change that situation. If it were to change, the US would not be welcome in Iraq, because there would be widespread opposition, outside of Kurdistan, to a military force placed in support of Israel and in opposition to Iran.

          The reason that the anointed two and the other candidate speak with such opacity about what they would do is because there is little they can do, other than reduce the size of the deployment some.

          The only alternative is negotiating a security arrangement with the surrounding countries, something that will take quite some time, permit the formation of a government hostile to the idea of American occupation, and then permit that government to arm itself with air, armor and logistical capability.

          This is not going to happen.  The purpose of the invasion was the occupation.  The policy object was the construction and occupation of those bases.  I happen to believe that there is strong Beltway Consensus by the Serious People that this occupation is necessary and good, and that consensus crosses both party lines, and lines between elected/politically appointed officials and the civil servants in State and DoD.

          This is so despite the widespread, deep and persistent opposition to the occupation among the American people.

          Come see Juan Cole on January 31st at. Virtually Speaking

          by JayAckroyd on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 05:16:02 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  They don't call it a quagmire for nothing. n/t (10+ / 0-)

        I am endlessly vindicated by the unfolding of history.

        by Rob Cole on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:44:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  2012? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bensdad

        Iraq will be our 51st state!

        (add a saber to our flag, please)

        Inquiry that does not achieve coordination of behaviour is not inquiry but simply wordplay - Richard Rorty

        by BuckMulligan on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:44:47 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Its not what we WANT (21+ / 0-)

        to have happen, its what we THINK will end up happening.... just because we're 'purportedly liberal' doesn't mean that we can't see what this situation has lent itself to: the U.S.'s involvement in Iraq and the region for some time to come.  Its a tragedy.

        "Be the change that you want to see in the world."- Gandhi

        by hopefulcanadian on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:45:31 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Do You See Any Candidate - (7+ / 0-)

        Dem or GOP who proposes otherwise?

        And Obama's Catch 22:

        He will keep some troops in Iraq to protect our embassy and diplomats; if al Qaeda attempts to build a base within Iraq, he will keep troops in Iraq or elsewhere in the region to carry out targeted strikes on al Qaeda.

        •  Here's the glorious thing: (3+ / 0-)

          If he breaks this promise in office, who's going to attack him for it?  The vast majority of Americans want this over with, so he can make promises like this with impunity and then break them with equal impunity.  Meanwhile he's avoiding what I consider to be RFK's fatal mistake - openly campaigning for immediate withdrawal instead of winning first.

          Freedom is in the fight.

          by Troubadour on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:05:17 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Obama and Clinton are banking on that. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            hopefulcanadian

            You're quite correct.

            When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

            by koNko on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:40:55 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Indeed. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Heart of the Rockies, koNko

              If Hillary promised immediate, unquivocal withdrawal, certain institutional alignments would shift against her and accelerate the defection of insiders.  Were Obama to promise it, he would end up having to fight a lot harder to win the nomination, and if his ultimate victory began to seem likely he would probably be in much greater personal danger than racism could ever present.  There aren't even meaningful ways to express the amount of money the Iraq occupation represents - the sheer volume of it is literally beyond human comprehension, denoted with a shrug as "trillions."  I think Obama understands this intuitively, and won't make any aggressive moves on the Iraq issue until he's in office (FSM willing).

              Freedom is in the fight.

              by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:14:49 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  Yes - Edwards (3+ / 0-)

          Edwards said out by end of 10 months.  Any training of Iraqi forces would take place outside the country. Forces to guard the embassy only.

          That's the best we'll get from anyone.

          If and when Iraq stabilizes or splits up or whatever there could be a drawdown of embassy forces to the level of our other embassies.

          I don't believe this is unreasonable.   We should work toward extending recognition to all nations.

          The days when we withheld recognition until OUR conditions are met should come to an end as part of a new direction in foreign policy.

          That would be an important first step in repairing the damage that the Bush administration has inflicted on our moral standing in the world.

          Extending recognition without condition is a demonstration of respect for the right of any nation to choose its own destiny.

          Rip into that if you want.  Demand that totalitarian or authoritarian regimes yield before recognition if you want, but recognize that cutting off the capability for formal, respectful discussion eliminates chances for reconciliation and INFLUENCE and increases chances for conflict.

          We should have exchanged ambassadors with Iran years ago and should have had normal relations with Iraq soon after Gulf War I.

          •  How Does Edwards propose to pay for the war? (0+ / 0-)

            The estimated total cost (including incidentals) is $2.4 Trillion.

            I'd like all candidates to explain how they will accomplish that, particularly in a recession. The next Administration will inherit that problem too.

            When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

            by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 07:29:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Ask Everyone, Not Just Edwards (0+ / 0-)

              You're right of course that no one has addressed this issue.  

              It would be especially interesting to ask those candidates who wish to continue to pursue our role in the war, or are vague about withdrawal, exactly how they intend to pay for what will become, like it or not, their policy.

              It's interesting that politicians are frequently asked how they would finance social, economic or infrastructure investment but seldom asked for a plan to raise the extra lucre to pursue a war.

              As the interest on the debt continues to grow as a percentage of the budget, a choice will have to be made.  Either cut spending or raise taxes.

              Cutting spending (really reduced investment in public goods) is, in my opinion, counterproductive with grave long term negative consequences. Raising taxes on high incomes is the only practical solution.

              Consider for example that it would cost somewhere between $5 and $10 billion to equip all of our commercial airliners with devices to protect against lower tech SAMs.  Isn't it costing us about that much per month to continue operations in Iraq. And that's only the immediate expense in Iraq.  Not included is the long term cost of the aftermath of any given month in Iraq.

              Any action we take as a nation, whether going to war or investing in our future requires adequate tax revenue, despite what Grover Norquist says.

      •  i had a sudden and uncontrollable (5+ / 0-)

        flash of cynicism.  

        i'm all for getting every single troop home asap.  

      •  This reflects probable outcome not desire (10+ / 0-)

        The question asked what we believe, not what we want.

        I certianly was against this war from the begining and think it an even greater misadventure than Vietnam. Absolutely I favor American withdrawal and turning the country back to the Iraqi people with a UN Peackeeping Force should they so desire.

        However, I voted the choice of at least one or more bases since I beleive this war was and remains about oil and money. The next administration faces not just how to disengage American from Iraq militaraly, but far more difficult, to disengage economically.

        The American people and State are now economic prisoners of war.

        America carries a war debt it has no means to pay except with Iraqi oil, one way or another.

        Am I mistaken?

        When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

        by koNko on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:02:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It'll be paid for by the next generations n/t (3+ / 0-)

          "He not busy being born is busy dying." R. Zimmerman

          by RUKind on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:10:22 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Of the USA and Iraq (5+ / 0-)

            In every way imaginable.

            This is a shameful tragedy.

            Americans should prosecute the perpertrators as war criminals and economic criminals.

            Because they are and failing to punish them will invite more crime.

            I realize few people see it that way but I do.

            The Nurenberg trials saved Germany. The People's Revolution and trials that followed saved China. Nurenberg is a better model. Please do it. Please save your country.

            When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

            by koNko on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:36:48 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Wait till they're out of office... (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              third Party please, koNko, RUKind

              I highly doubt the US will ever prosecute their own, but I'm quite confident that there will be several places in the world where culpable officials and politicians will be unable to go due to outstanding warrants.  Kissinger is quite constricted in his travel now, and so will these be.  We should also work for domestic prosecution, but I'm pessimistic.  

              As an Iraqi-American academic born and raised in New Orleans, this voter is not pleased.

              by naltikriti on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:11:43 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  You are probably right. (0+ / 0-)

                The failure of Impeachment proceedings to even progress to the point of floor debate suggests political leaders lack the desire or will to hold the Administration accountable.

                However, this does not rule-out Aemrican citizens from persuing legal accountability imside or outside the USA.

                As you suggest, some key players might soon be inconvenienced by travel restrictions, but a concerted effort by the legal community to press charges on the basis that the Administration violated US law which recognises US treaty obligations as the law of the land would be a method to persue prosecutions.

                When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

                by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 11:26:45 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  By "People's Revolution and trials", do you mean (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              koNko

              ... the hundreds of thousands of folks who spontaneously showed up at demonstrations honoring Zhou Enlai, eventually leading to the downfall of the Gang of Four?

              The Dutch children's chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen (= “kids for kids”): is a world cultural treasure.

              by lotlizard on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 02:10:34 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  No, that was later. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                lotlizard

                The trial of the Gang of Four ended the The Great Prolitarian Cultural Revolution.

                By "People's Revolution" I mean the revolutionary wars 1911~1949, a popular movement to overthrow Dynastic Chinese and Colonial Foreign rulers.

                By "trials" I mean the trials of the wealthy business owners, landloards and former government officials that followed. It was, in some cases, a chaotic, ad hoc, extra-legal process resulting in the persecution of innocent people and occasionally, sentances counter to the principle of reform through labour. This can happen when downtrodden people face their oppressors.

                That is why I suggest the Nurenberg Trials as a better model since it was an orderly legal process presenting evidance and arguement to define and examine the nature and extent of the crimes. I think this is more productive since it gets to root.

                The Cultural Revolution is another case entirely. Some leaders tend not to relinquish power willingly.

                When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

                by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 08:27:57 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Thanks. A refreshing perspective, and I agree. (0+ / 0-)

                  Many if not most folks in the West have been conditioned to view Mao as purely evil, completely forgetting how bad preceding regimes were. China was way overdue for revolution.

                  The Dutch children's chorus Kinderen voor Kinderen (= “kids for kids”): is a world cultural treasure.

                  by lotlizard on Sun Jan 20, 2008 at 03:55:44 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

      •  Just facing the facts (4+ / 0-)

        Pottery Barn Real-Politics: we totally fucked it up and now they'll be on nation welfare for a generation or two or three. We pump money into their corrupt system. They maintain a sufficient level of violence to keep us feeling badly about the mess we made. And our children's children will be spilling their blood for Dick Cheney's greed, arrogance, ignorance and incompetence.

        "He not busy being born is busy dying." R. Zimmerman

        by RUKind on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:06:58 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  FTR, the poll is about whether people believe ... (11+ / 0-)

        ...there will be permanent bases, not whether they want them.

        "Just remember, boys, this is America. Just because you get more votes doesn't mean you win." - Special Agent Fox Mulder

        by Meteor Blades on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:16:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Not Advocacy (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko

        Those were predictions not a prefered course.

        I'd wager that very few people who read this site want permanent bases in Iraq.

        But, if the same people support Clinton or Obama that may be the result.

      •  Not cast "for" but "fear". (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko, DaNorr

        The poll results show that the liberal Democrats here don't believe that either the next Democratic or Republican president will withdraw the troops. We know the Repubs are promising to keep the troops there for 100 years, but isn't it interesting that Kossacks don't believe either Hillary's or Barack's or John's promisses to not have permanent military bases with thousands of troops?

    •  It was never broken in the first place n/t (0+ / 0-)

      "He not busy being born is busy dying." R. Zimmerman

      by RUKind on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:08:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  And More than Half the American Public - (5+ / 0-)

    Cannot understand why militants the world over
    use the American flag for target practice.

    I guess they just must be crazy, eh?

  •  I saw that this thread was up (5+ / 0-)

    and thought it must be later than it is.  Thank goodness.  Though it's late enough there's some stuff I should be finishing up.

  •  I expended all of my wit for today (10+ / 0-)

    here.

    I am now officially witless and must sleep to rejuvenate.

    Fight the Democratic Culture of Capitulation!

    by Endangered Alaskan Dem on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:47:22 PM PST

  •  Saw "There Will Be Blood" today. (6+ / 0-)

    Wow.  Just...wow.  Two and a half hours of watching Daniel Day Lewis seethe, building up a fathomless basin of hatred and animosity toward all mankind, and then finally going Jack Nicholson gonzo on an entirely deserving victim - the most morbidly hilarious ending I've seen in years, and a complete surprise given the quiet tone of every part before it.

    Freedom is in the fight.

    by Troubadour on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:52:31 PM PST

  •  My kid (6+ / 0-)

    will alomst certainly be patrolling in Waziristan.

    I will make them have it. I will stuff their mouths with Gold!--Aneurin Bevan (on the NHS)

    by Salo on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:52:32 PM PST

  •  The strategic value of $1Billion of concrete (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    subtropolis, lotlizard, koNko

    runways to land our largest cargo planes will make any president unable to leave them behind in that area of the world.

    Very depressing! poll results for progressive thinkers on this site to think we will still be there for a long time. That is how I voted though.

    •  Other (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      koNko, jlms qkw, RUKind

      should include something about Pakistan.

      I will make them have it. I will stuff their mouths with Gold!--Aneurin Bevan (on the NHS)

      by Salo on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:54:33 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Here's a question: (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lotlizard, koNko

      Why do we ask fatalistic poll questions instead of asking what should happen?

      Freedom is in the fight.

      by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:25:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think we have both here. (0+ / 0-)

        Sometimes it useful to bracket the solution with the problem.

        But you're correct, the other question that should be asked is "How can we solve these problems?"

        It's a more difficult and problematic question.

        The situation is so complex I'd start with "What are the problems we face?".

        When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

        by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 08:35:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  No Kossacks Under 35 this week? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, tecampbell, jlms qkw, DaNorr

    I have searched and can't find a Kossacks Under 35 post from Thursday night.

  •  2010 (6+ / 0-)

    If Obama is President he'll call a regional peace conference and get out of dodge. He understands our presence is a cause of strife, not a solution. IMHO his caveats exist to be bargained away. Saving face is part of diplomacy and putting lipstick on the pig that is Brand America under George W. Bush is part of the next President's job.

    If Clinton is President then we're in for the long run. Hillary is a hawk.

    If McCain/Huckabee is President I'll be filing for my Italian citizenship based on grandparents emigration. Have fun with the decay of your empire, suckers!

    •  Why run? Revolution can be fun. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lotlizard, koNko, Cavalry

      Freedom is in the fight.

      by Troubadour on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:23:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ciao (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko

        I'll have dual citizenship.

        I really love the US and the US Constitution but if Congress keeps acting like they have been (both parties) then the Constitution isn't the what this country is all about anymore -- it's about salesmenship and power. I didn't sign on for that and I'll have to rethink how to bring about change. I may as well do my thinking someplace without a high murder rate, massive incarciration rates, and with national health care.

        •  Before you go .. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Existentialist, Cavalry

          Teach a few kossaks how to deal with leaders like Mussolini, then you may be excused.

          When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

          by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:02:12 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  That's your choice, (3+ / 0-)

          but all you're talking about is what this country does or fails to do for you.  Perhaps you don't realize that you're talking like a consumer debating brands.  Also, however frustrated you are trying to change things here, do you believe you'll be able to affect more change from another country (or in another country for that matter)?  It's the same fallacy that makes people in big cities think small towns are better places to live - less crime, fresh air, people know your name...but nothing changes.  You have to take risks and accept numerous failures to achieve anything of consequence, and that's what this country encourages.  Most others are pretty conservative when it comes to things like that - cohesion is rated more highly than radical innovation.  We accept the turbulence that comes from always chasing the future, in exchange for the epiphanies that come from occasionally catching it (e.g., the internet).

          Freedom is in the fight.

          by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:16:37 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's not like that at all (4+ / 0-)

            If you define your community as larger than your country then there are A LOT bigger problems to tackle than those inside the US. The United States has done a ton for me and I've taken very seriously every bit of civics and government I learned since I was a child. I just sometimes think that things are going the wrong way in the US on a historic basis.

            Jared Diamond on Easter Island:

            As we try to imagine the decline of Easter's civilization, we ask ourselves, "Why didn't they look around, realize what they were doing, and stop before it was too late? What were they thinking when they cut down the last palm tree?"

            I suspect, though, that the disaster happened not with a bang but with a whimper. After all, there are those hundreds of abandoned statues to consider. The forest the islanders depended on for rollers and rope didn't simply disappear one day-it vanished slowly, over decades. Perhaps war interrupted the moving teams; perhaps by the time the carvers had finished their work, the last rope snapped. In the meantime, any islander who tried to warn about the dangers of progressive deforestation would have been overridden by vested interests of carvers, bureaucrats, and chiefs, whose jobs depended on continued deforestation. Our Pacific Northwest loggers are only the latest in a long line of loggers to cry, "Jobs over trees!" The changes in forest cover from year to year would have been hard to detect: yes, this year we cleared those woods over there, but trees are starting to grow back again on this abandoned garden site here. Only older people, recollecting their childhoods decades earlier, could have recognized a difference. Their children could no more have comprehended their parents' tales than my eight-year-old sons today can comprehend my wife's and my tales of what Los Angeles was like 30 years ago.

            If the next few Congresses leave in place the secret wiretaps, provisions for detention without charge, and the doctrine of pre-emption intact --- then I'll be living in a different country than the one I was born into without ever having moved. I don't put a lot of stock in the afterlife so why should I spend the better part of my life fighting battles on a field and on terms that I did nothing to choose? If the left party in a two party system nominates a candidate who voted for a pre-emptive war not once but TWICE in a row how much room is there for change within the system?

            •  If you could choose the terms of a fight, (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              third Party please, koNko

              it wouldn't be a fight.  The fact is, whatever it is you do, wherever you live, however much or little authority you have, you have extraordinary power because you are a free citizen with the unambiguous word and spirit of the law on your side.  These people can't even get librarians to turn over records, but they look powerful because we can't easily stop them from torturing foreigners on an an extra-territorial island fortress.  There's a world of difference between a government that's out of control and a government that's in control of us.  So you tell me: If tomorrow the Bush regime announced that all people who wear blue shirts will be carted off to Gitmo, do you doubt there would be tens of millions of people in the streets deliberately wearing blue shirts just to show the bastards what's what?  Yes, it'll be a real chess game wresting back control of our government, but those putzes can never and will never wield it against us.

              Freedom is in the fight.

              by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 03:26:56 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Last best hope (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Heart of the Rockies

                While it may have been true when Lincoln called the US "the last best hope of earth" in 1862 it doesn't make it true forever. The same Lincoln said in 1855:

                We began by declaring that all men are created equal. We now practically read it, all men are created equal except negroes. When the Know-nothings get control, it will read, all men are created equal except negroes and foreigners and Catholics. When it comes to this, I shall prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretense of loving liberty -- to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, without the base alloy of hypocrisy.

                What I'm saying is that 60 years of trying and failing to end the military-industrial complex and provide health care is enough of a chance for any nation. If THREE GENERATIONS of Americans try and fail to provide for their own people and avoid wars of choice then reasonable people can and will choose other fights.

                •  The M.I.C. only been completely obsolete (3+ / 0-)

                  and parasitic since 1992, and I'm not aware of any serious movement to end it that's been around since then.  As for universal health care, just because people talk about it for three generations doesn't mean there's ever been a serious effort to achieve it.  Liberals talked about ending slavery every single year from the founding until the Civil War, and talked about civil rights for decades before it became a law.  How long did it take the suffragettes to get women the right to vote in this country?  Things move even slower today, because this is a big fucking country with the world's third highest population.  We'll get our healthcare, and we'll end this empire, but America has a lot of inertia - it takes time for us to get serious about something, and then it takes time for that to translate into results.

                  Freedom is in the fight.

                  by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 04:34:04 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

      •  Preach on Brother (0+ / 0-)
    •  Obama will call a regional... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lotlizard

      ...peace conference and ask the regional representatives how to solve the occupation of Iraq and they will look at him like he's an idiot and they'll tell him the he has to withdraw US troops from Iraq and he'll do what?

      The president of a country who illegally invaded and is illegally occupying another country is going to call a peace conference?

      What?

      •  It's cover (6+ / 0-)

        The US doesn't need permission to leave but you do need cover to get the best exit terms possible. I said we're leaving. It's just a matter of how to leave. It's in Iraq's neighbors interests to see the US out of Iraq with as little bad blood as possible.

        Iran is tired of sanctions. Turkey is tired of unrest on their border. Most of the Arab League is tired of internal conflict that comes from the alliance with an occupier US. So cut a grand bargain and exit.

        Obama has already said he's going to withdraw a brigade or so a month. He'll keep to the timetable but it can't be seen to be linked to pressure in the region. Just like JFK agreed to removed the missiles from Turkey in exchange for concessions in the Cuban Missile Crisis but worked it so there was no linkage Obama has lots of carrots to give out to ease the US out of Iraq.

        China and Russia will tell Iran to keep quiet and let the US exit. It makes sense all around. Nations have rational self-interest. A rich country like the US can put our thumb on the scale sufficiently to get out of trouble in Iraq.

    •  Have fun in your already decayed Empire (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      koNko

      Unless you think thee Romans are going to become a superpower again?

      •  The last bit was snark (4+ / 0-)

        I'm not trying to be down on the US. The opposite in fact. I just don't think the window of opportunity for fixing what's broken in the US is endless. I think the country will either tip towards a European-style safety net in the next decade or tip towards having massive income disparities like India, China, Brazil.

        One scenario I want to live in. One I do not.

        At a certain point things become broken and don't get fixed. It's been 47 years since Eisenhower warned of the military-industrial complex. How long do you think  a nation can live with that kind of sickness and thrive? The kind of struggle that the US is in right now isn't like civil rights. It's a fight against self-inflicted greed and stupidity. The stupidity is going to lose in the long run but I'm not sure I want to be around to have it crash down on me. It's not like people are going to be freed. They'll just wake up in a place that has been trashed.

  •  Free Lunch (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, yoduuuh do or do not

    With Bill Moyers DK Johnston said: Bill Clinton gave the super richest 400 bigger tax cut than George Bush gave them-------------

    David Cay Johnston's New Book, Free Lunch
    David Cay Johnston's next book, Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and StickYou with the Bill), will be released on December 27, 2007.  Here is the publisher's description:

    How does a strong and growing economy lend itself to job uncertainty, debt, bankruptcy, and economic fear for a vast number of Americans? Free Lunch provides answers to this great economic mystery of our time, revealing how today’s government policies and spending reach deep into the wallets of the many for the benefit of the wealthy few.

    Johnston cuts through the official version of events and shows how, under the guise of deregulation, a whole new set of regulations quietly went into effect—regulations that thwart competition, depress wages, and reward misconduct. From how George W. Bush got rich off a tax increase to a $100 million taxpayer gift to Warren Buffett, Johnston puts a face on all of the dirty little tricks that business and government pull. A lot of people appear to be getting free lunches—but of course there’s no such thing as a free lunch, and someone (you, the taxpayer) is picking up the bill.

    Johnston’s many revelations include:

    How we ended up with the most expensive yet inefficient health-care system in the world
    How homeowners’ title insurance became a costly, deceitful, yet almost invisible oligopoly
    How our government gives hidden subsidies for posh golf courses
    How Paris Hilton’s grandfather schemed to retake the family fortune from a charity for poor children
    How the Yankees and Mets owners will collect more than $1.3 billion in public funds
    In these instances and many more, Free Lunch shows how the lobbyists and lawyers representing the most powerful 0.1% of Americans manipulated our government at the expense of the other 99.9%. With his extraordinary reporting, vivid stories, and sharp analysis, Johnston reveals the forces that shape our everyday economic lives—and shows us how we can finally make things better.

    I've never seen a governor before propose cuts to child welfare - Will Lightbourne Santa Clara County social services

    by pollwatch on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 10:57:57 PM PST

  •  Realpolitick (6+ / 0-)

    Nice to see that everybody understands the situation. It will be a miracle if we can get out soon.

    Every day's another chance to stick it to The Man. - dls.

    by The Raven on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:10:01 PM PST

  •  The poll question will depend on (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, Cavalry, deMemedeMedia, ginnyh532

    whos president, if it's McCain, eeek!, we would be there for a VERY long time, all the repugs really...

  •  Saudi's & Israel need our guns there (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotlizard

    Assuming our next president really wants to get out, the Saudi's and Israel want a counterforce to Iran and the tyranny of oil and AIPAC get what they want.

  •  I won't be surprised (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    naltikriti, koNko, tecampbell

    if we have troops in permanent bases for decades to come; I hope and pray that we do not, but have no faith that our country will come to it senses on this issue any time soon.

    I'm also trying to decide if this headache I am getting is going to be a migraine ... I've a funny feeling that it is. Drugs, ho!

    -8.00, -7.08

    It isn't easy being green.

    Come see our sucky stuff! No, really.

    by emeraldmaiden on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:20:05 PM PST

  •  The prospect of a permanent military base (9+ / 0-)

    in the heart of the Middle East is far too attractive to those spoonfed Realpolitik.

    I fear we will be stuck there until the natives chase us out with sticks and stones.

    We may prove that the French in Algeria were pikers when it comes to arrogance.

    Noone knows arrogance like Texas oil.

    We are beginning to wipe out the line that divides the practical from the ideal... FDR, via Dallasdoc

    by tecampbell on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:25:08 PM PST

    •  No Guff (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      yoduuuh do or do not

      Unpopularity and risk of being thrown out of office hasn't scared these clowns straight.  This is one of many reasons I am seeking input on future civil disobedience.

      http://www.dailykos.com/...

      •  ATM I'm for electing the bestest and brightest. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MajorFlaw, koNko

        I'll be sure to keep civil disobedience in mind though.

        The link in your sig line is dead btw.

        We are beginning to wipe out the line that divides the practical from the ideal... FDR, via Dallasdoc

        by tecampbell on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:53:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Advice on civil disobedience: (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko, tecampbell
        1. Nonviolent.
        1. Not destructive.
        1. Don't frighten people.  If an average person can look at what you've done and call it terrorism, it is terrorism.
        1. If feasible, don't break the law: Provoke your enemies into breaking the law.
        1. Deliberately pick the most vindictive people to mess with.  You want your name on their Enemies List: You are bait.
        1. Make them take you seriously.  Find precious ways to fuck with their money, image, and logistics.
        1. Don't conceal what you're doing or your identity: Open yourself completely to retaliation, and be prepared to the umpteenth degree to record and exploit it.
        1. Be clever.  One vicious sense of humor cuts more sharply than a hundred idiotic acts of vandalism.
        1. Be unfair.  If you can do something that makes what they do look much worse than it really is, do it.  Agitprop is your friend.
        1. Limit their options.  If you can put them in a catch-22, you've won the round.
        1. Hire a good lawyer and become fluent in the law.

        Unfortunately, the environment is sort of tough for civil disobedience right now.  If I wanted to stand up to the Bush regime on behalf of the constitution, there's nothing I could just walk outside tomorrow and do that would achieve that.  They're very careful to violate average Americans' rights only in abstract, institutional ways rather than directly.  In other words, what does one disobey?  This is where provocation comes in - as a provocateur, one can engage them and provoke demands that can then be subject to civil disobedience.  For instance, if DOJ were to make totally illegal demands, don't sue them - just say no.  Let them enforce their demands.  They've made such demands before, but we (ineptly, IMHO) simply fought them off in the courts.  We should have just told them to fuck themselves and seen what happened.

        Freedom is in the fight.

        by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 03:04:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Further Advice (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tecampbell
          1. Be persistent - plan for the long haul because only sustained resistance has an effect.
          1. Know your opponent better than he knows you - be objective and question your own assumptions.
          1. Be strategic - plan ahead because tactics alone do not a movement make. Consider all opportunities and outcomes;  be prepared for the worst.
          1. Be creative - use the unexpected to gain strategic advantage and re-frame the picture; flip the table on the status quo.
          1. Be fast and flexible - speed and agility trump size
          1. Stick to simple principes - avoid self-defeating complexity and do not allow the struggle to co-opt the goals.
          1. Negotiate - long and hard, never be the first to walk away from the table.

          When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

          by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 04:30:21 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  A few minor quibbles. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            koNko

            Know your opponent better than he knows you - be objective and question your own assumptions.

            Unlikely to be feasible with government institutions, especially when they engage in warrantless surveillance and hide their activities with promiscuous classification.  I would say "Either render their knowledge about you useless, anticipate how it could be used against you, or simply choose not to give a fuck."

            Negotiate - long and hard, never be the first to walk away from the table.

            Negotiation is an unrealistic objective in this case - it would be like Dick Cheney sitting down at the table with Cindy Sheehan.  The point is basically political sabotage: What they've done is taken control of our government away from us, so we simply thwart the criminal uses they try to put it to until Democrats can retake it.  This doesn't create a functioning, helpful government for us, but it does stop them from murdering and torturing people if approached right.

            Freedom is in the fight.

            by Troubadour on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 05:05:07 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Depends on Case/Situation (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              tecampbell

              Rules are to be learned, understood, practiced and broken, in that order.

              The rules may be applied by either side so there's no implied advantage but disapline is it's own advantage and if you question yourself as your opponent would you are one step ahead.

              True, in many situations your oppenent may know more about you than you them, making you vulnerable. But what you can know is worth seeking and analyzing; you can be watching them when they aren't watching you.

              The most importiant things to know are motivations, objectives and abilities/resources.

              motivation = desire = strength/weakness
              objectives = plans = direction
              abilities/resources = potentials = threats/opportunities

              Negotiation depends on if you have that goal and get that far. It's suggests 2 or more parties have agreed to dance. Often negotiations are conducted not by leaders but by seconds which is strategically advantagous since it prolongs the process and enlarges the space bringing order and objectivity often lacking when leaders face each other. Lawyers are negotiators - and MB's advice is "hire a lawyer" - I agree.

              Mr Cheney is not a negotiator - he's an unrelenting actor who avoids negotiation at all costs. Bush is uncapable of being an effective negotiator - his rigid, defensive personality makes this so.

              Civil disobediants rarely get to the negotiationg table unless they represent a large group, otherwise, they are ignored to the greatenst extent possible by the status quo.

              You do it to get attention to a cause or lead a group in a direction.

              Practical Examples:

              Photobucket

              2007 - Non-violent Civil Disobediants of a popular democratic movement prepared to face the concequences of their actions and struggle

              Photobucket

              2007 - Fascist Agent Provocateurs preparing for violence to supress opposing political demonstrations

              When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

              by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 06:43:09 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Other (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotlizard

    MB, you are assuming there will still be someplace called "Iraq" in the near future. :)

  •  Time for Action (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    third Party please

    The democrats won't block the funds.  They won't even do something that would end an illegal and unpopular war for fear of contraversy.  This means they'll never truly stand up for the rest of our rights.  They'll never go after corporate militias, corporate entitlement, free trade, or corporate citizenship.  They'll never try and reclaim the public services that have already fallen to privatization.  They are in a word useless unless we do something to make them useful.

    Its time bring attention to the decline of our country; time to get noticed.  I'm going to take action but I need ideas.

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

  •  The cynic in me says thousands and decades (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Heart of the Rockies, koNko

    The pragmatic in me says we're out of there by 2013, since we can't afford it and the potential for blowback is enormous if we don't get out. And the idealist in me says even before then. But I don't trust the idealist in me. Been burned too many time to go with it at this point. So I'm going with my pragmatic side and saying 2013 (although I voted "other").

    A bit of a humorous aside for some of the long-time members here. I just got banned for the day from BTD's new site, TalkLeft, for calling out as an idiot someone who called Obama a Republican who threatened to destroy the Democratic party. Surreally ironic, being banned by someone who was himself banned from this site for, well, calling pretty much everyone here who disagreed with him an idiot. Oh the madness of primary season...

    If you don't know the background here, trust me, it's not that interesting.

    0101011101100101 010101000110100001100101 010100000110010101101111011100000110110001100101

    by kovie on Fri Jan 18, 2008 at 11:36:46 PM PST

  •  If anyone besides Edwards wins, look for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    third Party please

    permanent bases for a long time.

    Save the Democratic Party, support John Edwards for president.

    by ichibon on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:08:16 AM PST

    •  Oh fer Christ's sake! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JayAckroyd, koNko

      Can you guys just stop the hagiographic St. John lovefest for just ONE NIGHT and realize that like every presidential candidate he is NOT whom he pretends to be and is NOT going to just waltz, wave a magic wand and make the ouch go away?

      The man voted FOR the war, in case you don't remember. Thus any pledge that he makes regarding it must therefore necessarily and unavoidably be suspect. Anyone who does not grasp this is living in a cloud and not a serious voter.

      0101011101100101 010101000110100001100101 010100000110010101101111011100000110110001100101

      by kovie on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:23:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Let me guess, you're for the One. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko

        You do know he has constantly voted to fund that war, don't you?

        Save the Democratic Party, support John Edwards for president.

        by ichibon on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:47:04 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Which exculpates Edwards exactly how? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JayAckroyd, koNko

          Nothing sadder than observing people who cannot handle losing and wrap it up in self-righteous martyrdom: my guy lost because he was too pure for this world.

          Here's a question to keep you busy: name one candidate who didn't vote to authorize or fund the war. Yeah, I didn't think so either. But the guy who voted for it and hasn't been in a position to be tested on whether he'd fund it gets a pass because he makes a bunch of pretty speeches that true believers are too desperate to question.

          Here's another question: how do you KNOW that Edwards will do, or merely try to do, that which you assume that he will do? How do you KNOW?

          Show me the pure candidate whose hands are totally clean who stands a chance of winning and who can be guaranteed to end the war, and I will gladly support them.

          Edwards is not that man. Nor is Obama. Nor is Hillary. And yet we still have to pick one of them. Isn't it better to do so on what we know of them, than on what we want to believe of them? I'm not telling you not to support Edwards. But if you do so, do so for rational and evidence-based reasons, not blind faith or because you just "know". And do so positively, and not by attacking their opponents on matters that you can only speculate on, and which your own guy can be accused of himself.

          0101011101100101 010101000110100001100101 010100000110010101101111011100000110110001100101

          by kovie on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:13:52 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Kucinich (0+ / 0-)

            eom

            When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

            by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 04:32:48 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Kucinich has no chance of winning (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              koNko

              Which was a condition I posed above. Furthermore, as Kos and others have amply shown, he's not what he seems to be. Not only is he Mr. Bizarro, but he's flipped-flopped on quite a few issues, e.g. abortion.

              I stand by my assertion that there is no flawless Democrat. Let alone one who can get elected. We're stuck with the imperfect candidates that we have, like it or not, and will have to make the most of them and work to get the winner elected president.

              0101011101100101 010101000110100001100101 010100000110010101101111011100000110110001100101

              by kovie on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 04:40:08 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Not Quite. (0+ / 0-)

                You said:

                Here's a question to keep you busy: name one candidate who didn't vote to authorize or fund the war. Yeah, I didn't think so either. But the guy who voted for it and hasn't been in a position to be tested on whether he'd fund it gets a pass because he makes a bunch of pretty speeches that true believers are too desperate to question.

                I said:

                Kucinich

                You said (following a second question):

                Here's another question: how do you KNOW that Edwards will do, or merely try to do, that which you assume that he will do? How do you KNOW?

                Show me the pure candidate whose hands are totally clean who stands a chance of winning and who can be guaranteed to end the war, and I will gladly support them.

                That's not a question, it's a statement.

                Meanwhile ....

                I said (elsewhere in reference to Kucinich):

                I Agree

                It's a pity he has virtually no chance despite the fact he actually acts on what people claim to want and is mocked for doing so.

                You said (afterward):

                Kucinich has no chance of winning

                [bla, bla, bla ....some garbage about Kucinich's imperfections, etc.]

                We're not far apart. You asked 2 questions and made several statements, I answered the first question.

                The really interesting thing is your unfavorable bias against Kucinich's "imperfections" and acceptance of Clinton's, Edwards' and Obama's.

                So I'll stand on my assertions too. So there!

                You're electable candidates are rubbish and my unelectable one is great!

                heh.

                When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

                by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 07:17:28 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Correction (0+ / 0-)

                  ... you're your ....

                  Free English Lessons accepted.

                  When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

                  by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 07:23:02 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

          •  He also has not been any clearer (0+ / 0-)

            This is a non-trivial problem. A candidate seriously committed to withdrawal would 1) state his position more clearly and 2) explain how the process would work.

            For example, a simple withdrawal plan is to rotate troops out without rotating replacements back in, as is expected to happen over the next six months until the deployment is back to pre-surge levels.

            So in about 12-15 months, everyone would be back.  

            But then what? Iraq has no national defense capability. A serious candidate would explain how he was going to deal with that problem, given that Iraq is surrounded by mutually hostile neighbors. The only attempt at such an explanation was Richardson's claim that he would negotiate a security agreement with Syria, Turkey, Iran and Saudi Arabia.  I assumed that would be just before he settles the Palestinian problem.

            As I've said elsewhere, I believe there is a clear consensus in Washington among the Serious People that a permanent occupation is Good Thing, even a Necessary Thing.   This is not a policy discussion they are interested in making public. Our challenge is forcing them to come clean with these plans.

            Come see Juan Cole on January 31st at. Virtually Speaking

            by JayAckroyd on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 07:02:29 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Oh no (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        koNko

        I thought I would make it through an interesting diary without candidate he said/she said, he voted/she voted injections.

        Just as idealistic as my hopes for getting out of Iraq!

  •  Constitutional Gov't Does Not Have Practical (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lotlizard, koNko

    authority to make empire change course.

    We pulled out of Korea.

    Next war termination required a combined mutiny of the draft pool and troops in the field before gov't would pull us out.

    This war, the empire is an order of magnitude or more stronger.

    In your dreams.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:30:55 AM PST

  •  Meteor Blades, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Existentialist

    what do you think about the whole Hillary-hate thing going on here?

    Hillary/Clark in 08 - unbeatable

    by Gabriele Droz on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:46:20 AM PST

    •  Framing it as hate promotes it. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Heart of the Rockies

      No doubt some people hate Clinton but it's a grossly inaccurate characterization of the debates here as hate-mongering.

      I often grow tired of the rampant partisianship of some Diaries here and the innane remarks they attract, but suggesting the majority of criticizms leveled at Clinton on this site constitute hate for the woman herself is absurd.

      I stronngly disagree with some of the positions Clinton takes and the questionable tactics of her campaign, but I don't hate her and would reject anyone saying my criticizms constitute that.

      The most common remark I read here is that regardless of which candidate a person now supports "... I will vote for whoever the Democratic nominee is ...". I hope you agree.

      When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

      by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 02:09:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  PWNED........ (0+ / 0-)

    Please Sen. Obama, More of this please!

    Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth. ..John F. Kennedy

    by irishamerican on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:47:32 AM PST

  •  Interjecting some fine music here: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    naltikriti, irishamerican

    Hillary/Clark in 08 - unbeatable

    by Gabriele Droz on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 12:51:11 AM PST

    •  Meteor Blades, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      koNko

      what are your thoughts on John Trudell and AIM?  Leonard Pertrier and Russel Means, if I may politely ask.  No answer expected, but just asking in case you have thoughts willing to share on these matters.

      Hillary/Clark in 08 - unbeatable

      by Gabriele Droz on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:03:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Have you become so carefully political (0+ / 0-)

        that you can no longer speak from your heart?

        Hillary/Clark in 08 - unbeatable

        by Gabriele Droz on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:14:35 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I've always though Jon was a great ... (4+ / 0-)

        ...guy. I left AIM after 16 years because of too much in-fighting. That makes me sad. There was a time when AIM held great promise in the pan-Indian movement and did some good actions in its first five years of existence. Now it's a phantom with too much baggage to be effective at much of anything. Means, unfortunately, bears some considerable responsibility for this. But so does the federal government, which targeted the organization and individuals within it, helping cause splits, some of which led to internecine violence.

        I know many Indians who believe Leonard did kill the two FBI agents in 1975, and others who say he didn't. I have not personally spoken with him for 11 years, but he has always denied he did the killings. But previously he has denied things that he later admitted. Whether he participated in the killings or not, the situation on Pine Ridge in 1975 was a hellish one, much of it caused by federal policy and racist attitudes. The FBI's role was hardly benign. Two others charged with the killings were acquitted on grounds of self-defense, and I think Leonard should have been, as well. He has been in prison now for 30 years and he'll be 64 this year. In my opinion, he should be freed, but I am solidly convinced that he never will be.

        "Just remember, boys, this is America. Just because you get more votes doesn't mean you win." - Special Agent Fox Mulder

        by Meteor Blades on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 01:40:34 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks, (0+ / 0-)

          I feel the same way.  The infighting is really bad wherever I go, and I hold our government responsible for it.  When I worked with the Dine and traditional Hopis on the Big Mountain situation with Bechtel and Peabody Coal and Public Law #whatever it was the same way.

          Also, my other comment was really stupid.  I apologize (wine head - trying to quit, started going to AA lately).

          Hillary/Clark in 08 - unbeatable

          by Gabriele Droz on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 08:23:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Liars and the People who tell them... (0+ / 0-)

    The only way to stay sane when thinking of what we've done in Iraq, or thinking about this adminstration or what we've shit upon this earth...the only way...is to wholeheartedly believe that everything you hear or read is a lie.................including this very comment!
    Good luck, Amerika!!! It's time to scurry back across the border, take care of my own, dig a bunker, buy some cans of corn and hope for the best. I'm serious, and I'm a liar!

  •  Checking in (0+ / 0-)

    Just thought I'd punch the clock, late person who hasn't read the diary but wants to register on the Owl O' Meter.

    I flopped trips, he rivered gutshot.

    by Trips on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 02:01:04 AM PST

  •  Shrug .. I'm not sure I understand anything (4+ / 0-)

    anymore.

    I do sort of imagine, in my own tiny way, as all these things being interconnected in some ephemeral way.

    None of the candidates, to me, is talking about anything that will make any difference in the long run.

    Human rights (the evisceration of), the rise of the military industrial complex, the rise of militancy (religious militancy being only the first step) .. they are all of a piece.  

    Yes, we may withdraw from Iraq, if enough people demand same.  

    I am becoming inured to and distanced from American politics.  

    The pragmatists are talking about bullshit.  The insane are running the asylum.  

    The pragmatists are the insane.  Maybe the consequences aren't big and omnipresent enough, but they are getting that way.

    If we are in Iraq ten years from now, or even five, then we will have failed as a people and as a country, beyond any redemption.  Change has to happen now.  Not vague, hypocritical promises of change, but real change.  

    Populist firestorm. Sweep the right from power. It's the only way. (-6.62, -6.26)

    by AndyS In Colorado on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 02:06:11 AM PST

  •  developers artists & creative types (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko

    needed for an ongoing project meant to assist the netroots with new tools, graphics and technical advice.

    A small team of up to 10 people would be good.  If you are interested please write to thefuture @ inbox dot com and I'll explain more about the purpose and goals.

    The site will be free of ads and free to use with no registration required.  This means it will be less of a community site and more of a resource for community sites.  The basics are up here.

    It is low key, you put in as much time as you can personally afford and develop projects at your own pace.

    Thanks for your consideration.

    typos are often serendipitously appropriate + HowOd

    by lightnessofbeing on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 02:24:37 AM PST

  •  Last helicopter leaves the embasy roof (0+ / 0-)
    some time in 2017.
  •  It is said that they let Bin Laden (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko

    escape at Tora Bora... I caught the last in NPR series "Iraq: What next for the U.S." the guest (Lawrence Wright,)was asked about "the surge" in relation to the history of Al Quaida and the blowback from things that were done wrong.

    He said that after the battle at Tora Bora in 2001, the Taliban and AQ were toast. They had been decimated with 80% of their members either captured or killed. We had won the "War on Terror."  It was the invasion of Iraq which "...breathed life back into that monster and now it has a sanctuary there –now it has a place to operate." FreshAir series on Iraq

    I have since listened to the series of programs. They're well done.

  •  this was always the real agenda (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JayAckroyd

    One reason all the excuses for invasion were shown to be BS, is because they were lies to disguise the fact that the US Govt. simply wanted a permanent military presence in the heart of the Middle East, and Saddam was someone they knew no one would lift a finger to help. Reminds me a lot of the land grab known as the Spanish American War, and we still have bases in all those countries, too.

    •  Phillipines (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      koNko, philboy1

      A prominent Iraqi (Allawi?) had an op-ed in the NYT where he said that the comparisons to Germany and Japan were wrong--that the right parallel is the Phillipines, conquered and occupied.

      Come see Juan Cole on January 31st at. Virtually Speaking

      by JayAckroyd on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 06:50:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Allawi? (0+ / 0-)

        OK, he's entitled to his opinion but he's notoriously unreliable and always selling uniquely original history so you might be careful about quoting him.

        Do you mind elaborating his analogy? I'm genuinely curious about the logic since I fail to see much similarity.

        Does "conquered and occupied" mean by Spain, Japan or the USA?

        When harmonious relationships dissolve, respect and devotion arise; when a nation falls to chaos, loyalty and patriotism are born - Daodejing (paraphrased)

        by koNko on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 08:19:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  in the context of his quote (0+ / 0-)

          He was obviously referring to the USA. The Spanish American war was a trumped up land grab where the US Govt intentionally lied about the sinking of the USS Maine off the coast of Cuba, blaming it on the Spanish, in cahoots with the media juggernaut of the day, the Hearst newspapers. The US seized Cuba, Guam, the Philippines, and Puerto Rico. That was in the 1890's. The US military is still there.  

  •  Internet Traffic Cop (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko

    Two seemingly coincidental bits of news, Wall Street Journal contains excerpts of an interview with Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell in which he outlines a vast new initiative to police Internet traffic "for abuse."

    Meanwhile, AT&T announced that it plans to extend its initiative to examine packets of information on its network for illegally traded content, becoming, in effect, the Internet’s traffic cop.

    The world’s largest telecom company states it’s in negotiations with major entertainment conglomerate to police the Internet on their behalf, on the same day the DNI announces the government wants more eyes on Internet traffic?

    Mike McConnell is an old friend to the major telecom companies, having most recently stumped on their behalf to grant them retroactive immunity from prosecution in the NSA’s illegal surveillance program. He’s also a big fan of privatizing national security functions, favoring everything from outsourcing background checks to enlisting credit bureaus to handle the work of verifying identities.

    January 13, 2008
    Dancing Spychief Wants to Tap Into Cyberspace

    Excerpt

    http://blogs.wsj.com/...

    Spychief Mike McConnell is drafting a plan to protect America’s cyberspace that will raise privacy issues and make the current debate over surveillance law look like "a walk in the park," McConnell tells The New Yorker in the issue set to hit newsstands Monday. "This is going to be a goat rope on the Hill. My prediction is that we’re going to screw around with this until something horrendous happens."

    At issue, McConnell acknowledges, is that in order to accomplish his plan, the government must have the ability to read all the information crossing the Internet in the United States in order to protect it from abuse. Congressional aides tell The Journal that they, too, are also anticipating a fight over civil liberties that will rival the battles over the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

    Part of the lawmakers’ ire, they have said, is the paltry information the administration has provided. The cyberspace security initiative was first reported in September by The Baltimore Sun, and some congressional aides say that lawmakers have still learned more from the media than they did from the few Top Secret briefings they have received hours before the administration requested money in November to jump start the program.

    http://www.news.com/...

    EXCERPT

    A decade after the government said that AT&T and other service providers don't have to police their networks for pirated content, the telecommunications giant is voluntarily looking for ways to play traffic cop.

    For the past several months, AT&T executives have said the company is testing technology to filter traffic on its network to look for copyrighted material that is being illegally distributed. James Cicconi, senior executive vice president for external and legislative affairs for AT&T, reiterated the carrier's plans last week during a panel discussion at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

    "We are very interested in a technology-based solution and we think a network-based solution is the optimal way to approach this," Cicconi said in a New York Times article. "We recognize we are not there yet but there are a lot of promising technologies. But we are having an open discussion with a number of content companies, including NBC Universal, to try to explore various technologies that are out there."

    I've never seen a governor before propose cuts to child welfare - Will Lightbourne Santa Clara County social services

    by pollwatch on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 08:10:35 AM PST

  •  other (0+ / 0-)

    the US Armed Forces will be nuked if they don't leave. So, guess what happens then?

  •  The US will leave (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gamma

    when the oil runs out.

    Not one second before.

    Editor, Red and Black Publishers http://www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

    by Lenny Flank on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 09:10:40 AM PST

  •  We will be in Iraq until the last drop of oil (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gamma
    is drained from every Middle East country and then we'll leave them to their sand piles and permanent poverty for all but the sheiks, who will continue to live in opulence and luxury, while the common people starve in the streets.

    The ignorance of one voter in a democracy impairs the security of all - JFK- 5/18/63-Vanderbilt Univ.

    by oibme on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 10:22:51 AM PST

  •  Poll problem (0+ / 0-)

    Why don't people understand: the permanent super-bases are all ready in place? Bought, paid for and built? They're there and every politician regardless of political stripe knows this.

    "A time comes when silence is betrayal." Martin Luther King on the Vietnam war.

    by iSenseChange on Sat Jan 19, 2008 at 03:16:04 PM PST

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site