Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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July 25, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

RETREAT FROM REALITY....Results from a new Harris poll:

Half of Americans now say Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the United States invaded the country in 2003 up from 36 percent last year....In addition, 64 percent say Saddam had "strong links" with al Qaeda....Fifty-five percent said that "history will give the U.S. credit for bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq."....American confidence in the Iraqis has improved: 37 percent said Iraq would succeed in creating a stable democracy, up five points since November.

Amazing, isn't it? As the prewar facts become clearer and Iraq spirals further into civil war, the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality. Even if complaints from us shrill liberal bloggers are dismissed, surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on.

Kevin Drum 1:43 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (391)

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Comments

This is as it should be, and the media should rejoice: if half of the people believe in false assertions, it means that media is doing a spectacular job of not being biased for the truth.

Posted by: nut on July 25, 2006 at 1:47 PM | PERMALINK

American exceptionalism demands a steady diet of fairy tales.

Posted by: Scot on July 25, 2006 at 1:48 PM | PERMALINK

This is the work entirely of Fox news, Hannity's trumpeting ofSantorum's and Hoekstra's lies. I mean, some 14 percent of the country gets its news from Fox, right?

Posted by: david mizner on July 25, 2006 at 1:49 PM | PERMALINK

This is good! In the future, when all media is filtered through the military-industrial-corporate-jesus complex through automated vetting of content, americans will all think identically about all issues. This will be in accordance with our corporate mind-control masters' wishes, and our compulsive spending habits will be sold to the media blitz which buys the most mind-space time. Then we will truly achieve our corporate-fascist nirvana that so many of us are already dreaming about.

Posted by: Snorri Sturluson on July 25, 2006 at 1:49 PM | PERMALINK

This simply boggles my mind.

Posted by: mmy on July 25, 2006 at 1:49 PM | PERMALINK

I attribute it to Global Warming. Being from L.A., my brain has definitely been fried this Summer. Karl Rove is a motherfucking genius.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 1:51 PM | PERMALINK

I don't see why its surprising. The right wing shills have been repeating the lies on and on, and they haven't been attacked on them the way they should be in highly visible fora.

Of course the myths are going to solidify into common knowledge.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 25, 2006 at 1:53 PM | PERMALINK

This is one poll and I really question how accurate it is. Given Bush's poll numbers it doesn't seem correct to me...

If anything, this story may help set the facts straight for some people...the ones who are confused, not just ideologically blind.

Posted by: Stranahan on July 25, 2006 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

Or, Saddam had ties / WMD that no one has discovered yet.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

The most plausible explanation for the increase in the number believing this is that it continues to be poorly covered by the media, while disinformation is peddled by right wing "news" sites.

See, e.g. http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewNation.asp?Page=/Nation/archive/200607/NAT20060725a.html

The Washington Times article you link to doesnt help either since it mentions the 500 canisters but leaves out the most important information - that they were old and useless:


You should link to Editor & Publisher which although shorter provides the relevant facts:

In early summer, there were reports that 500 shells once containing mustard or sarin gas nerve agents were found buried long ago in Iraq but they were judged by experts and military officials as decrepit and useless by 2003.

http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/news/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1002878773

Posted by: Catch22 on July 25, 2006 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK
Even if complaints from us shrill liberal bloggers are dismissed, surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on.

The media is largely a form of commercial entertainment. Their job is not "reporting what's really going on", instead it is securing a valuable demographic as an audience to facilitate the sale of advertising.

So, no, the media isn't going to be provoked by this poll to seriously investigate that question; they might tie some fluffy stories relating to that question around the poll results (if they don't largely ignore it), but they aren't going to seriously investigate it for the purpose of changing their own approach, because it starts with a false premise as to their purpose.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 25, 2006 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

Read "Stumbling on Happiness" by Daniel Gilbert. Very funny and interesting. He observes that our memory works by reconstructing the past from bits and pieces, not by reading off a tape or hard drive. The result is that we fix the past to be more consistent with the present (something like Orwell's 1984). That's what's operating here.

Posted by: Bill on July 25, 2006 at 1:58 PM | PERMALINK

I'm a bit dizzy from beating my head on the desk, but one quibble:

Given that we have found small, scattered probablt forgotten caches of degraded pre-Gulf War chemical munitions, how many folks are unconvinced by previous propaganda and Santorum/Hoekstra spin, but nevertheless answer "yes" to the WMD question? In other words, how many would answer yes to a poll question asking about if Iraq had WMDs that posed a significant threat, or if knowing what we know now, were WMDs a good reason to go to war?

Granted, probably a similar number, given the other figures, if accurate . . .


Posted by: Dan S. on July 25, 2006 at 2:02 PM | PERMALINK

surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on

If the media considered its job to be "reporting what's really going on," you'd be right. However, there's less and less evidence that such is the case. Indeed, the poll you cite is evidence against.

Posted by: Gregory on July 25, 2006 at 2:05 PM | PERMALINK

The "news" of the collapse of Iraq has been driven off the front pages by Israeli vengence in Lebanon. I saw the other day -- I wish I could remember where -- the comment that the Admin has essentially moved on from Iraq. Dwelling on their failure in Iraq mustn't be forgotten, but neither should we ignore the fact that the "intelligence" and "mission" of the people who gave us the horror of Iraq have now moved on to other things.

Heaven help us all.

Posted by: Jeffrey Davis on July 25, 2006 at 2:06 PM | PERMALINK

Part of it might be rationaization. Millions of Americans don't want to admit to themselves that they enthusiastically supported such an incredibly stupid policy. Millions don't want to admit that they were suckered.

And of course, the steadfast refusal of the Democrats to actually talk about the War in Iraq - why we made the mistakes we did, what our options are, etc., has left the field open for the right wing propagandists to keep spewing out their lies.

When I look back before the Iraq War, I think only one thing might have worked to stop it. Not demonstrations, not posturing, but instead a national advertising campaign showing the twin towers, and reminding everyone that none of the hijackers were Iraqi, that the UN had said that Iraq didn't have any weapons that threatened the US, and another ad just saying that Osama and Saddam were bitter enemies. In other words, a simple laying out of the facts.

Oh well.

Posted by: Samuel Knight on July 25, 2006 at 2:06 PM | PERMALINK

It's called brainwashing, which is what talk radio, fox news, etc., are topnotch at.

Posted by: Mazurka on July 25, 2006 at 2:07 PM | PERMALINK

People believe what they want to believe.

After 9/11, Americans wanted retaliation, and Saddam was the only major Middle Eastern villain they knew (besides bin Laden himself). Led by their president, they convinced themselves he was behind it.

Al Qaeda was a nebulous, slippery organization, best fought with painstaking, under-the-covers police work rather than big, conventional armies. Saddam was the opposite, somebody who could be fought and defeated in the traditional, grandiose way. Removing him gave Americans a sense of closure, a release to the emotional shock of 9/11. The Afghanistan war wasn't enough; it was too small, fought mostly by foreign troops.

That is why conservative propaganda was so effective - it told people something they wanted to hear. It is why attempts to tell the real story fall on deaf ears. People don't want to believe the truth.

Posted by: tyronen on July 25, 2006 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

I the most interesting thing isn't that people are stupid and gullible, the interesting this seeing this in light of the Bush poll numbers. Obviously they're not about the fact that we went to war. My feeling is more of Bush's poor numbers than we think is due to him not delivering for the Christian right. Bush didn't deliver the Christian theocracy he promised and they feel used. On top of it many of the rural blue collar fundies are feeling the economic pinch of Bush's new economic order.

Posted by: Adventuregeek on July 25, 2006 at 2:14 PM | PERMALINK

I asked my business partner who responded that they did find chemical weapons.

He was talking about the pile of old junk that was uncovered recently - but he said, that means the answer to your question is yes, they found WMDs!

I'm guessing that is what's driving the latest stupidity. Ain't propaganda a wonderful thing!

Posted by: Mark-NC on July 25, 2006 at 2:15 PM | PERMALINK

Why is it when the polls favor the positions of liberals, they hail the public for their wisdom and insight but when a certain poll refutes the "conventional thinking" of the left, something's wrong?

Could it be they are doing their own homework and not swallowing the garbage the left spews out daily?

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 2:16 PM | PERMALINK

So, now you know what to expect when the reality becomes that a military dictatorship in the US is full blown...they will remember that military dictatorships are good things....

This public isn't capable of being a responsible democracy...it will accordingly suffer terribly for its stupidity. As my brother says, nuclear war is just what the doctor ordered for America.

Posted by: christine on July 25, 2006 at 2:18 PM | PERMALINK

I would say the results of this poll demonstrate the MSM is doing an excellent job. An excellent job withdrawing Americans from reality.

The farther Iraq slides into civil war, the farther Americans will retreat from reality. It is the only defense they have to protect their delicate psyches from massive guilt.

Posted by: Hostile on July 25, 2006 at 2:18 PM | PERMALINK

It depends on what your definition of "WMD" is.

It depends on what your definition of "had" is.

Most of all, it depends on what your definition of "infallible, decisive leader" is. If that is George W Bush, then there is no need to discuss anything further.

Posted by: Alan on July 25, 2006 at 2:19 PM | PERMALINK

You don't know for a fact that Iraq didn't have WMD, nd you have no idea how Iraq will turn out. Is it really so wrong if other Americans reach different conclusions than liberal bloggers?

Posted by: American Hawk on July 25, 2006 at 2:20 PM | PERMALINK

Army Group Steiner will break the Russian offensive and lead us to total victory!

Posted by: In Der Bunker on July 25, 2006 at 2:22 PM | PERMALINK

Liberals have the habit of making up their minds on an issue early and never revisting it.

Parody or the GOP base? My guess is this fool is "Hanitized."

Posted by: Mike S on July 25, 2006 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

tyronen's post of 2:09PM: pay attention to it and re-read it.

Thanks, tyronen.

Posted by: Jeffrey Davis on July 25, 2006 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

As the prewar facts become clearer and Iraq spirals further into civil war, the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality.

"Those whom the gods would destroy, they first drive mad."

Posted by: Thinker on July 25, 2006 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

Yesterday I had an appointment at my local hospital, and was processed in by two nice young women, I would guess late 20's, early 30's. They were efficient, seemingly competent, dressed well, and friendly. There was nothing about them that suggested 'clueless bozo here.'

Having a few spare minutes to chat, our conversation turned to movies, and I indicated that I was planning to see Al Gore's movie on global warming sometime soon. They looked at me with puzzled faces-- What is global warming, they asked? Neither of them had heard the term before, and so I was left trying to explain the issue the best I could.

The experience left me feeling sort of disoriented and depressed. How is possible that people in this day and age haven't even heard of global warming? We must be living in different information streams, with some people getting a very different version of reality than others.

What to do about a nation this clueless?

Posted by: elrod on July 25, 2006 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

where the hell is Al???

Posted by: jay on July 25, 2006 at 2:30 PM | PERMALINK

The experience left me feeling sort of disoriented and depressed. How is possible that people in this day and age haven't even heard of global warming? We must be living in different information streams, with some people getting a very different version of reality than others.

Man, I've had some fuckin' horror stories along that line. A particular favorite was arguing with someone who claimed that the war in Iraq wouldn't destabilize the Middle East because Iraq "wasn't central to the Middle East." I had to pull out a map to convince him, and even then I'm not sure he believed me -- it was almost as if he thought I'd had the map specially printed to fool him.

Posted by: Stefan on July 25, 2006 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK

You don't know for a fact that Iraq didn't have WMD

ok. i give up. where are they? please use the figures from Bush's 2003 SOTU as your target.

nd you have no idea how Iraq will turn out

nor do you.

Posted by: cleek on July 25, 2006 at 2:36 PM | PERMALINK

I did pay attention to the drivel of tyronen, Jeffrey.

"The Afghanistan war wasn't enough; it was too small, fought mostly by foreign troops."

That's a lie. The US was the overwhelming force in Afghanistan. And I thought the liberal line was that we were acting unilaterally?

"Al Qaeda was a nebulous, slippery organization, best fought with painstaking, under-the-covers police work rather than big, conventional armies."

Is that why Clinton refused Sudan's offer for UBL, to keep up the great police work? Is that why Clinton lobbed missles into the aspirin factory, I didn't know police did that?

That was one of the more brain dead posts of the day.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 2:38 PM | PERMALINK

surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on.

This kind of data has been around for awhile, albeit without the negative trend line. The media refuses to take repsonsibility for informing the audience.

The media presents misleading, but technically correct (if you read the weasel words) stories. As long as the media can say "technically correct" it then reverts to evaluating coverage based on complaints from the Right or the Left.

But the factual accuracy or the soundness of the logic in the complaints is not considered.

Kevin, do you really believe "centrist" corporate media types will be moved by polling that shows their audiences to be getting more ignorant and wrong? Who do you think will care in the media establishment? Fox? CNN? Disney? GE?

To the extent they even reflect on this I'll bet they blame the blogs for presenting info the audience wants to hear/read.

Posted by: Carl Nyberg on July 25, 2006 at 2:41 PM | PERMALINK

I would like to know why Americans more strongly believe this nonsense at the same that they also seem to more strongly believe that we ought to be getting out of Iraq. If someone could explain that to me, I'd be much obliged.

Posted by: Alexander Wolfe on July 25, 2006 at 2:45 PM | PERMALINK

Has anyone here taken multiple choice exams?

The question is, "Did Iraq have WMDs", Since we now know that they had some old, degraded WMDs, the correct answer is "Yes."

Now, if the question were, "Did Iraq have new WMDs?" or "Did Iraq have effective WMDs?", or "Did Iraq have a lot of WMDs?", that would be a different story.

In short, a larger percentage of the public believes Iraq had WMDs because we finally found some.

Posted by: ex-liberal on July 25, 2006 at 2:48 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin,

Actually this has nothing to do with media reporting, but the continued hype and false propaganda of the rightwing media machine. Look Rush,Hannity, Malkin and all the other usual characters and how their emphasis has changed to bring about this perception.

Also this poll while indicating some increase is deeply flawed. Do more polling on this and you will find the true numbers are lower than what the Times reports but higher than the last low. As soon as the right wing machine stops re-emphasizing these lies awareness will again drop to bare bones levels.

Posted by: pateince on July 25, 2006 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK

.In addition, 64 percent say Saddam had "strong links" with al Qaeda..

The links between the Baathist regime and al Qaeda were like spider webs: exceedingly thin, almost invisible, and very strong -- quite sufficient for trapping unwary prey.

Posted by: republicrat on July 25, 2006 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK

Samuel Knight 2:06 PM:

Part of it might be rationaization. Millions of Americans don't want to admit to themselves that they enthusiastically supported such an incredibly stupid policy. Millions don't want to admit that they were suckered.

And of course, the steadfast refusal of the Democrats to actually talk about the War in Iraq - why we made the mistakes we did, what our options are, etc., has left the field open for the right wing propagandists to keep spewing out their lies.


tyronen 2:09 PM:

People believe what they want to believe.

Posted by: Carl Nyberg on July 25, 2006 at 2:50 PM | PERMALINK

Don't 90% + of us believe in God?

Posted by: nut on July 25, 2006 at 2:50 PM | PERMALINK

nut:

And well over 70% of "us" believe in the literal existence of angels and demons.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 2:52 PM | PERMALINK

its all about quilt. helps them sleep at, surely itw worth it cause...
america land of fleeced.

Posted by: mestizO on July 25, 2006 at 2:53 PM | PERMALINK

Establishment Media response:

"Well, I get criticized by the right and the left, so I must be getting it just right! {self-satisfied chuckle}"

Though actually, last night on Fresh Air, one of the LA Times WH correspondants effectively admitted that the Press Corps was badgered into timidity after 9/11.

Posted by: Jim on July 25, 2006 at 2:54 PM | PERMALINK

In short, a larger percentage of the public believes Iraq had WMDs because we finally found some.

a "WMD" that is incapable of any D, let alone mass D, isn't much of a W - MD or not.

Posted by: cleek on July 25, 2006 at 2:56 PM | PERMALINK

And well over 70% of "us" believe in the literal existence of angels and demons

i eagerly await the replies of "but a consensus doesn't make it a fact" from the same people who couldn't stop saying it yesterday.

Posted by: cleek on July 25, 2006 at 2:58 PM | PERMALINK

This ignorance reminds me of the piece Walter Pincus wrote recently suggesting that the media stop reporting administration pronouncements that serve only as public relations; in other words, when they keep repeating lies so as to make them indelible in the public's minds.

An example is whenever aWol or his side-kick declares that progress is being made in Iraq. Instead of the media parroting these remarks, a "liar's gong" should loudly sound. Or, someone's nose would be noted to be growing.

Posted by: Hedley Lamarr on July 25, 2006 at 2:59 PM | PERMALINK

Gotta love the Troll responses, which fall into two categories:

1) How do we know these (currently unsupported) beliefs won't be proven true tomorrow?

2) Well, Iraq did have WMD, even though it was a small amount of forgotten, degraded, and unuseable munitions from the 80's. So it's technically true.

Mind you, by the latter rationale we should invade Belgium. I'll bet if we dig enough we can find some forgotten, degraded, and unuseable mustard gas rounds from WWI in the fields of Flanders. Plus, we can free the Flemish from the Walloons. Or vice-versa; I'm not picky.

Posted by: Warren Terra on July 25, 2006 at 3:03 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin;
Ever hear of the term; "zeitgeist"?

Posted by: Osama_Been_Forgotten on July 25, 2006 at 3:04 PM | PERMALINK

"unwary prey"

Great definition of liberals.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 3:05 PM | PERMALINK

You don't know for a fact that Iraq didn't have WMD, nd you have no idea how Iraq will turn out. Is it really so wrong if other Americans reach different conclusions than liberal bloggers?

This is yet another example of that peculiar magical thinking so popular today which is driven by a nihilistic epistemology that says we can't ever really "know" anything for sure, so it's only what we "believe" that counts.

The underlying principle is that even if all the facts in evidence utterly contradict one's beliefs on a given issue, one day new facts may come in -- so it's OK to believe anything at all, no matter how ridiculous, unsubstantiated, or insane.

Think Flat Earthers or Young Earthers.

And it's usually accompanied by a dusting of self-pity for believing in something that's contradicted by all the current facts and therefore unpopular, as well as tender sympathy for others who believe the same crazy shit.

And then finally you're often challenged to prove a negative, which of course you can't -- with the notable exception of Iraq, where hundreds of troops thorooughly searching full time for years couldn't even find evidence of a single banned weapons program, much less the weapons themselves.

Posted by: Windhorse on July 25, 2006 at 3:05 PM | PERMALINK

And well over 70% of "us" believe in the literal existence of angels and demons.

I can't tell you how sad that makes me....

Posted by: Stefan on July 25, 2006 at 3:05 PM | PERMALINK

Sad, and wrong, Stefan.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 3:10 PM | PERMALINK

I guess the popcorn kernals aren't close enough for Warren Terra.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 3:10 PM | PERMALINK

its all about quilt. helps them sleep at, surely itw worth it cause...
america land of fleeced.

I'm not sure about this. It's pretty hot this summer. I have no problem sleeping without a quilt.

Posted by: sc on July 25, 2006 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

And well over 70% of "us" believe in the literal existence of angels and demons.

This is harmless of course, that is until Cheney declares that the demons have terrorist ties and WMD.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 3:15 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe the simplest reason is: your arguments haven't been very effective?

Posted by: Freedom Fighter on July 25, 2006 at 3:15 PM | PERMALINK

Lucky then that truth is not democratic.

In the end the USA will leave one way or the other. And when the history books are written for the next generations it'll be based on the facts. Unfortuneatly nobody in the west will care anymore.

Posted by: Ernst on July 25, 2006 at 3:17 PM | PERMALINK

Reality has America on the run! Or is it the other way around?

Posted by: Viserys on July 25, 2006 at 3:18 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe the simplest reason is: your arguments haven't been very effective?

Isn't that what the rabble said to every prophet right before they were hanged/burned/drowned?

Shouldn't reality trump perception?

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 3:20 PM | PERMALINK

Americans: an incredibly stupid breed of animal, with an IQ falling somewhere between a one-celled amoeba and a four-legged jackass. No fucking excuse for this, not even the big bad media. What this poll shows, unfortunately, is that we have the leadership we deserve.

Posted by: JJF on July 25, 2006 at 3:21 PM | PERMALINK

JJF:

No "fucking" excuse unless, of course, Saddam had al Qaeda ties / WMD, right?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 3:23 PM | PERMALINK

"Americans: an incredibly stupid breed of animal, with an IQ falling somewhere between a one-celled amoeba and a four-legged jackass. No fucking excuse for this, not even the big bad media. What this poll shows, unfortunately, is that we have the leadership we deserve."

I agree completely, Howard Dean should be fired.

What optimist club do you belong to?

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 3:24 PM | PERMALINK

Saddam had NO al Qaeda ties or weapons of MASS destruction, you right-wing idiot!

Posted by: JJF on July 25, 2006 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

I really just wanted to lurk today, but I just saw the following:

Did Hussein have WMD's? I believe he did but I cannot prove it. And if evidence ever emerges that he did not have them, I will accept that as the truth. As of now nobody knows with certainty.

I could not help but comment on the sheer motherfucking stupidity of this remark. Isn't it obvious, even to a Bush-bot, that a negative can never be proven? Isn't it enough that the overwhelming evidence would lead one to conclude, to a moral certainty, that Hussein did not have WMDs?

I really shouldn't go on like this, but stupidity of this astonishing magnitude really has to be admired publicly, otherwise it may hide in the shadows and corrupt the ability of people to reason at all.


Posted by: Baldrick on July 25, 2006 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

Windhorse:

Excellent post, my man.

"Nihilistic epistemology," indeed.

There is nothing quite so hallucinatory as radical relativism out of the mouths of "moral clarity" conservatives.

And all for the sake of being able to shout at any contradicting fact set "well that's just YOUR opinion."

I swear to fucking christ this is the self-satisfied villagers who Zarathustra confronts.

The Last Men ... *sigh*

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 3:29 PM | PERMALINK

The question is, "Did Iraq have WMDs", Since we now know that they had some old, degraded WMDs, the correct answer is "Yes."

The actual statement tested in the poll is:

1. "Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded."

It was coupled with the following three statements (presumably asked in random order):

2. "The Iraqis are better off now than they were under Saddam Hussein."

3. "Saddam Hussein had strong links with Al Qaeda."

4. "History will give the U.S. credit for bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq."

In short, the question of the truth value of statement (1) is not an isolated abstract logical question whether or not WMDs of any kind -- even those expired, disassembled, or found on blueprints -- existed in Iraq; in concert with the other questions it is testing the *justifications* GWB gave for going to war in Iraq.

So, unless you are prepared to argue that USAmericans believe that GWB took us to war because of useless, empty WMD canisters, they are indeed stating that WMDs sufficient to be a threat and a casus belli were in Iraq during the invasion.

Posted by: Disputo on July 25, 2006 at 3:31 PM | PERMALINK

Given the condition of the shells we found, the media should have called them WID's, Weapons Incapable of Destruction. The headlines calling them WMD's was just pandering to Bushco.

Posted by: tomeck on July 25, 2006 at 3:32 PM | PERMALINK

Hey, have any of you all seen the Earth from Space? Thought not? The fucker is flat, I'm sure of it. At least until it's proven otherwise anyway.

And since were being technical about the facts. Can one technically call old Sarin gas a weapon of mass destruction. Wouldn't a WMD have to actually be capable of causing mass destruction before it could be called such? Since chemical weapons can cause no more mass destruction than a typical bomb, I think our technical friends like ex-liberal have some splainin' to do.

Posted by: kj on July 25, 2006 at 3:34 PM | PERMALINK

Mayse the redeployment of troops in throesville will lead to an actual reality check for the 50.4% citizens of the scared states of ameica who elected this goat of a leader.

Posted by: American Idiot on July 25, 2006 at 3:34 PM | PERMALINK

"I swear to fucking christ....."

A lot of class demonstrated here.

I didn't realize liberals were so religious.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 3:36 PM | PERMALINK

What optimist club do you belong to?

The William F. Buckley Optimist Club. This week's newsletter quote on Bush's failure in Iraq:

"If you had a European prime minister who experienced what we've experienced it would be expected that he would retire or resign."

Posted by: optimist on July 25, 2006 at 3:37 PM | PERMALINK

"Military-industrial-corporate-Jesus complex." Love that. Snorri, if you don't mind, I'd like to use that...

Bill--yeah, but the difference here is that the Am. public isn't reconstructing the past to be more consistent with the present--it's becoming LESS so. At least, less consistent with the facts.

Posted by: Mark J. Harris on July 25, 2006 at 3:39 PM | PERMALINK

"And since were being technical about the facts. Can one technically call old Sarin gas a weapon of mass destruction. Wouldn't a WMD have to actually be capable of causing mass destruction before it could be called such? Since chemical weapons can cause no more mass destruction than a typical bomb, I think our technical friends like ex-liberal have some splainin' to do."

You might want to ask the Kurds how much destruction chemical gas can do.

"Mayse the redeployment of troops in throesville will lead to an actual reality check for the 50.4% citizens of the scared states of ameica who elected this goat of a leader."

Well at least you picked the right handle.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 3:40 PM | PERMALINK

And in other news, George W Bush freed the slaves. Film at 11.

Posted by: craigie on July 25, 2006 at 3:41 PM | PERMALINK

However tempting it may be to thwart Righty mind games with facts, it isn't going to work. Jay and Henry are playing with you guys. They don't even say that they believe the WMD crap anymore.

They are just being cheeky cause it aint their kids dying over there. They won the argument. They fooled everybody. They won. The fact that they won the booby prize of the century doesn't seem to phase them.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 3:42 PM | PERMALINK

You might want to ask the Kurds how much destruction chemical gas can do.

Shaver, as a Bush supporter and a Republican, you probably shouldn't bring up the gassing of the Kurds. It might just remind some of us who sold Saddam his weaponry and on whose watch he used it.

Posted by: Alek Hidell on July 25, 2006 at 3:43 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin wrote: ... poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on.

Poll results like this tell the media that they are doing an excellent job of propagandizing the American people on behalf of the media's owners, America's ultra-rich, increasingly hereditary, neo-fascist, corporate-feudalist ruling class, who are also the owners of the Bush administration and the beneficiaries of the Bush administration's project to establish American military dominance of Middle Eastern oil supplies.

I'm sure that the media will get an approving pat on the head from their owners as a result of this poll.

Posted by: SecularAnimist on July 25, 2006 at 3:44 PM | PERMALINK

OK maybe 50.3999999%

Posted by: American Idiot on July 25, 2006 at 3:44 PM | PERMALINK

"Amazing, isn't it?"

Not really.

This is because the RightWing Fake Media, like 'Fox News', the 'Washington Times', the 'New York Post', the 'Wall Street Journal Editorial Page', the 'Weekly Standard', the 'National Review', and RightWing radio, are treated as if they are real news outlets, instead of part of the RightWing propaganda machine.

How are the couch potatoes supposed to know the propaganda they are watching, reading, and listening to is gibberish, if it's allowed to be presented next to legitimate news outlets and given the same weight ?
.

Posted by: VJ on July 25, 2006 at 3:45 PM | PERMALINK

rmck1: And well over 70% of "us" believe in the literal existence of angels and demons.

for what its worth...

Percent of Americans who believe aliens have contacted humans: 64%

Percent of Americans who believe George W. Bush: 37%

Posted by: thisspaceavailable on July 25, 2006 at 3:46 PM | PERMALINK

By all reporting, WMD's are evident everywhere, ie. whenever there is a bomb blast. Folks read about the bombs going off in Iraq daily, so they conclude, rightfully, that there are large weapons that kill many (WMD).

As for Hussein and Al Qaeda, well, AQ is now a large contingent in Iraq, according to unbiased observers like Juan Cole. They have been drawn to the quagmire like flies to dog poop.

So, a reasonable man, having read and watched the news reports over the past year, would conclude, yes there are big weapons wreaking havoc on the population, and yes, Al Qaeda is alive and well and looking to encourage civil war in Iraq.

I think the pollsters are now capturing reasonable conclusions from reasonably aware Americans, as distinct from the ignorant knee-jerk responses provided at the start of the invasion of Iraq.

Posted by: HowdyDoody on July 25, 2006 at 3:47 PM | PERMALINK

"But you don't understand. We want to believe! (It's easier than thinking.)"

Posted by: Vincent on July 25, 2006 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

Jay:

>> "I swear to fucking christ....."

> A lot of class demonstrated here.

Actually, the class was demonstrated by the reference
to Fredreich Nietszche's Also Sprach Zarathustra.

I don't think that's come out in a Classic Comics edition yet.

Although Nietsczhe *did* give us the original notion of Superman :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 3:50 PM | PERMALINK

Wow! I didn't realize Go Fuck Yourself Cheney was such a class act. And what a classy president who says "shit" to his man, Tony, and called that there reporter guy an "asshole." Dignity and honor has so been restored to the Oval Office.

What would Dick Cheney say if he saw Jesus in the sky? Bob knows.

Posted by: ex-gop on July 25, 2006 at 3:52 PM | PERMALINK

It's called cognitive dissonance. We're "at war" so there must be some reason why we're at war. And that reason is...

Posted by: puffin on July 25, 2006 at 3:52 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, it's worse than it appears. Not only do people believe factually incorrect facts, but as Michael Steele shows, Republicans are going to run (probably successfully) on what should be the Democratic Platform. And if a Democrat runs on that platform, he will be swiftboated into oblivion.

And frankly, yes, I do blame Scared, Greedy, Corrupt Incumbent Democrats for this problem.

Posted by: jerry on July 25, 2006 at 3:57 PM | PERMALINK

"In short, a larger percentage of the public believes Iraq had WMDs because we finally found some." - ex-liberal

"a "WMD" that is incapable of any D, let alone mass D, isn't much of a W - MD or not." - cleek

And this, of course, gets to another important aspect of this story. cleek is right, of course, chemical munitions are not "weapons of mass destruction." They're battlefield munitions - bad ones, yes, but not an existential threat to the continental United States, unless Saddam had developed an Intercontinental Howitzer.

But most people are either not interested enough or informed enough to make this distinction. Bush and Company told everyone that Saddam had big, bad WMDs and spooked everyone with images of mushroom clouds.

We should have been focusing on the nukes issue all along, but if we had, there would have been no war. So chemicals and biologicals got conflated with "WMDs" and most people were either unwilling or unable to make a distinction.

Posted by: Wonderin on July 25, 2006 at 4:00 PM | PERMALINK

You might want to ask the Kurds how much destruction chemical gas can do.

At the time the CIA, DIA, and State Department were pretty sure the Iranians did it.

Are you telling me that the Reagan administration couldn't be trusted to tell us the truth. What would their motive be for lying.

And why, pray tell, would the current administration get the DIA and CIA to revise their findings in 2003. What possible motive?

It couldn't be domestic propoganda for political purposes. The way I figue, W has a plan for us all. It's just sometimes too easy to get bogged down in the details and fail to see the higher purpose.

Posted by: Al is dead on July 25, 2006 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

"They are just being cheeky cause it aint their kids dying over there."

Why the sudden concern for life from liberals?

"Shaver, as a Bush supporter and a Republican, you probably shouldn't bring up the gassing of the Kurds. It might just remind some of us who sold Saddam his weaponry and on whose watch he used it."

Much like the nuclear technology obtained by Kim Jung. I wonder who supplied him with that knowledge? Hmmm...............


Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

republicrat wrote: The links between the Baathist regime and al Qaeda were like spider webs: exceedingly thin, almost invisible, and very strong -- quite sufficient for trapping unwary prey.

And your evidence for this assertion would be...?

As for "ex-liberal," even leaving aside the inherent dishoensty of the "WMD" phrase -- the intent to conflate nuclear weapons, which are an existential threat, with chemical weapons, which are not -- the ancient, rusting shells with degraded, useless chemical weapons, left over and quite literally forgotten, may have been "chemical" but they were in no sense "weapons."

Incidentally, I for one never claimed Saddam had no chemical weapons -- simply that he had no weapons that were a threat to the United States (recall, as well, that Bush had to posit an entirely imaginary additional scenario of Saddam providing whatever weapons he might have to terrorists). The notion that Saddam had no WMDs is a perception that arose, frankly, from the fact that we invaded and found that he did, in fact, have none.

Posted by: Gregory on July 25, 2006 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

Here's an odd thing: While I'd like everyone to be better informed about facts and expert consensus, it strikes me that the news media is not necessarily best suited to do this, in the sense that when things are happening, it's news, but afterwards, it's history. What's newsworthy is that so many people are being deceived by interest groups, but when this becomes noticeable, it's a bit late. Should we expect the newspapers to run monthly issues with headlines like "Evolution still supported by scientific research, 150 years later", "WMDs still nonexistent in Iraq", or "Presence of angels, aliens on Earth still unproven"? Unfortunately, this may be needed, what with so much misinformation going around. . .

Posted by: RSA on July 25, 2006 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

It looks like you guys are losing this battle for the hearts and minds.

Posted by: Al on July 25, 2006 at 4:03 PM | PERMALINK

I swear to fucking christ this is the self-satisfied villagers who Zarathustra confronts.

Perfect literary reference for this phenomenon.

Although Nietsczhe *did* give us the original notion of Superman :)

Not only that, it's as if he were presciently aware of the coming of George W. Bush:

When Zarathustra had spoken these words, he again looked at the people, and was silent. "There they stand," said he to his heart; "there they laugh: they understand me not; I am not the mouth for these ears.

Must one first batter their ears, that they may learn to hear with
their eyes? Must one clatter like kettledrums and penitential
preachers? Or do they only believe the stammerer?

Spooky.

Posted by: Windhorse on July 25, 2006 at 4:03 PM | PERMALINK

Wonderin':

Well, I wouldn't go quite as far with bioweapons -- which are very scary and actually IIRC haven't been deployed in modern combat. Closest I can think of to biowarfare is our miserable dishonor with the smallpox blankets to Native Americans -- and, oh, bombing civilian water and sanitation infrastructure so that cholera and typhus run rampant in the civilian population.

But weaponized germs -- we haven't gone there, and the potential is quite scary and indeed massive if the diseases caused are infectious in themselves (like smallpox) and thus spread well beyond their initial application.

I do think, though, that the problem with the poll has to do with a very slippery definition of "WMD" -- which unfortunately has become a content-free buzzword to most of the American public.

People hear it now and just think "real bad weapons."

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 4:06 PM | PERMALINK

In short, the question of the truth value of ["Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded."] is not an isolated abstract logical question whether or not WMDs of any kind -- even those expired, disassembled, or found on blueprints -- existed in Iraq; in concert with the other questions it is testing the *justifications* GWB gave for going to war in Iraq.

So, unless you are prepared to argue that USAmericans believe that GWB took us to war because of useless, empty WMD canisters, they are indeed stating that WMDs sufficient to be a threat and a casus belli were in Iraq during the invasion.

Disputo has a good argument that the right answer is there were no WMDs. However, not everyone would read the question her/his way. ISTM it was an ambiguous question. Some responders would take the question literally, while others would agree with Disputo's interpretation. Given the ambiguity, I'm unwilling to criticize either answer. I'll reserve my criticism for the pollster who designed the ambiguous question.

Posted by: ex-liberal on July 25, 2006 at 4:08 PM | PERMALINK

The end result of everything being spun for political purposes. Or, the fact that half of the U.S. population has less than average IQ?

We report, you decide indeed.

Posted by: MLuther on July 25, 2006 at 4:14 PM | PERMALINK

It looks like you guys are losing this battle for the hearts and minds.

The AP-Ipsos survey asked 789 registered voters if the election for the House were held today, would they vote for the Democratic or Republican candidate in their district. Democrats were favored 51 percent to 40 percent.

Posted by: cleek on July 25, 2006 at 4:16 PM | PERMALINK

Rest assured that Jay and his ilk will pleasure the many glans of penis for all eternity

Posted by: Lucifer on July 25, 2006 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

just who did harris poll? the one in three who still believe w is doing a great job? either that or mluther is right on the money. oh and al, you don't have a mind. you don't exist.

Posted by: mudwall jackson on July 25, 2006 at 4:33 PM | PERMALINK

"Rest assured that Jay and his ilk will pleasure the many glans of penis for all eternity"

"Proof again that most liberals are unable to critique absent sexual innuendo


"...asked 789 registered voters if the election for the House were held today, would they vote for the Democratic or Republican candidate in their district. Democrats were favored 51 percent to 40 percent."

Now this is a poll the liberals will buy hook, line and sinker. They also can't seem to figure
that the election is not today.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 4:36 PM | PERMALINK

Jay -- that wasn't sexual innuendo, my poor benighted little arthropod -- that was *satire*.

And what you do with your Mistress is pure exhibitionism.

*wicked grin -- while holding a lead truncheon in one fist while thumping it rhythmically into her other hand*

See you when my fancy craves a little swollen-buttocked penetration ... dahhhlink.

*wink*

Posted by: Ann Coulter's 12-speed dildo on July 25, 2006 at 4:43 PM | PERMALINK

Disinfomation...

This poll doesn't pass the smell test.

Posted by: Horace Greeley on July 25, 2006 at 4:47 PM | PERMALINK

Don't you libs see yet? It's not about facts! It about impression management directed at the low information voter.

Posted by: Sean Smith on July 25, 2006 at 4:47 PM | PERMALINK

Yours, of course, Jay, my squishable arachnid.

My new custom sis-polybudtadiene Dick Cheney-headed strap-on will be finished any day now ...

Posted by: Ann Coulter's 12-speed dildo on July 25, 2006 at 4:50 PM | PERMALINK

I want to get a T-shirt that says Low Information Voter.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 4:52 PM | PERMALINK

Don't you libs see yet? It's not about facts! It about impression management directed at the low information voter.
Posted by: Sean Smith

No they see just fine. It's the fundies who have yet to realize the corporate socialists aka the neo-liberals they have empowered.

low information voter means fundie. The fundies know that bushco screwed them, the fundies will back the war democrats and the repubs will be looking at some jail time. Fundies, hate to be lie too, and they hate to be ripped off.

Posted by: Horace Greeley on July 25, 2006 at 4:52 PM | PERMALINK

'We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness.'

Posted by: O'Brien on July 25, 2006 at 4:54 PM | PERMALINK

"Yours, of course, Jay, my squishable arachnid.

My new custom sis-polybudtadiene Dick Cheney-headed strap-on will be finished any day now ..."

It doesn't take much to unhinge some of the posters here.

You know it's not so much that Rove is a genious, it's that you guys are really that stupid. You just have to press the right buttons.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 4:54 PM | PERMALINK

Jay:

I can't believe you quoted that, man ...

*snickering helplessly*

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 4:55 PM | PERMALINK

So Horace, do you consider many in Louisiana high information voters? Afterall, it's a democratically controlled state and they just recently re-elected Nagin.

High information voter indeed.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 4:56 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe people are just in denial, who knows?

How could Hitler get away with it all and people could say, they did not know? There was a time when I did not believe they did not know, but I do have doubts now. There was no free press, no TV.
We claim we have a free press, we do have the internet, there are books, 7/24 cabel news and still people don't know?

Posted by: Renate on July 25, 2006 at 4:58 PM | PERMALINK

You know it's not so much that Rove is a genious,
----------------------------
It doesn't take a genius to lie,many of the best liars are con-men and sociopaths.

Maybe if rove solved some monumental problem facing mankind, he might deserve the name 'genius', he is nothing more than a clever and crooked hack.

Only a republican could call that 'genius'

Posted by: Horace Greeley on July 25, 2006 at 4:59 PM | PERMALINK

Jay and his ilk are truly my ball-less, soul-less, discorporate little bitches.

Posted by: Lucifer on July 25, 2006 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK

when you headline a story about a poll such as this one, should you not provide a link to the poll itself, rather than to a report about it? especially one in the washington times?

Posted by: patronzo on July 25, 2006 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK

So Horace, do you consider many in Louisiana high information voters?

About as many as I do in Washington....

Posted by: Horace Greeley on July 25, 2006 at 5:03 PM | PERMALINK

...surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on...

WAKE UP, KD!!! Don't put any faith in any mainstream media.

Big Media (basically corporate owned TEE-VEE and large newspapers) in the chase for ratings and advertising cash are merely public relations/propaganda conduits of the wealthy elites who -- in global pursuit of money and power -- have made a devil's pact with the worst strains of American life, i.e., white trash of all colors (religious nut cases, crypto-racists, xenophobes, etc). The result: a disengaged, delusional, and increasingly mean-spirited population.

Watch "Fox and Friends" in the morning to get an laughable and bone-chilling example of how the mechanics of this new fascism works in practice. But Fox is merely the most debased. VIACOM-CBS, GE-NBC, DISNEY-ABC are simply watered down versions of the same agenda.

We will either become radicalized or enslaved.

Posted by: The Owl of Minerva on July 25, 2006 at 5:05 PM | PERMALINK

"Jay and his ilk are truly my ball-less, soul-less, discorporate little bitches"

High information voters indeed.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 5:05 PM | PERMALINK

Jay, in my dominion there is no vote. I will relish the taste of your wormy flesh!

Posted by: Lucifer on July 25, 2006 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

we aren't talking about 'states' here, we are talking about propaganda, as you said impression management accomplished thru the boob tube.

What state it is hardly matters, the low infos work in many different jobs, many are educated folks whom watch that crap.

"Low information" is the current mainstream media trend and has been. Low Brow Fux News

Posted by: Horace Greeley on July 25, 2006 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

Owl of Minerva and Horace:

I take it you haven't seen the pro-Arab Sheppard Smith broadcasting lately?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 5:09 PM | PERMALINK

"Jay, in my dominion there is no vote. I will relish the taste of your wormy flesh"

I just had no idea how religious liberals were. No wonder you sympathize with the theocratic jihadist movement.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 5:17 PM | PERMALINK

Washington is actually a great example of someone "stealing" an election.

Democrat Christine Gregoire petitioned the recount to have it halted after the first one deemed her the winner by a hair. That one seems to be forgotten. Hmmmm............

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 5:19 PM | PERMALINK

I imagine the history books are written by the same ilk as those that pass for heads of media these days?

If so, Bush will be our generations George Washington. Portraits of him standing leader-like in a boat, crossing some water, oars manned by the last bastions of his GOP supporters will hang in our schools and public places in the dusty squares where the 10 commandments used to be.

History is working itself up to immortalizing Monkey Boy as evidenced by the paper trail Fox News is leaving in its wake.

Posted by: Quack and Quill on July 25, 2006 at 5:32 PM | PERMALINK

More people believe the bullshit now than last year because more US kids have died in Iraq. It's the retroactive need to justify the sacrifice.

Posted by: reason, t on July 25, 2006 at 5:36 PM | PERMALINK

JJF:

We shall see.

enozinho:

I am not just being cheeky because "it ain't my kids dying over there". Since you are the one who cannot prove a negative, that's why we've won the argument. I also don't think that "fool[ing] everybody" or the "booby prize of the century".

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 6:00 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, I am changing political parties from L to R so I can magically and suddenly know everything about domestic AND global politics like Jay and Sean Smith. You guys are amazing, with your dazzling whiplash comebacks and your in situ world view. Too many Republicans know all, speak all, and feel they know what is best for the rest of humanity, like they have some extra GOP gland that gives them an intellectual edge. Gack! Sorry, hair ball.

Posted by: Sandy Tellemoff on July 25, 2006 at 6:02 PM | PERMALINK

Jerry
"And frankly, yes, I do blame Scared, Greedy, Corrupt Incumbent Democrats for this problem..."

as opposed to Un-scared, Un-greedy, Un-corrupt Incumbent Republicans?

Posted by: Pill on July 25, 2006 at 6:04 PM | PERMALINK

Jay : "Much like the nuclear technology obtained by Kim Jung. I wonder who supplied him with that knowledge? Hmmm..............."

Actually, it was AQ Kahn.

http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/dprk/khan-dprk.htm

Your point?

Posted by: chaunceyatrest on July 25, 2006 at 6:07 PM | PERMALINK

Jay: You don't seem to have understood my point. The Afghan war was a much smaller effort than the Iraq war. It was not large enough to satisfy Americans' emotional need to strike back. American involvement in the fall of 2001 was mostly from the air and Special Forces behind the scenes - most of the ground fighting was done by the Northern Alliance.

That was why Americans convinced themselves of Saddam's role in 9/11, because they wanted an enemy who could be defeated by familiar, conventional warfare.

Not sure what you are trying to say about Clinton, whom I didn't even mention in my original post.

Posted by: tyronen on July 25, 2006 at 6:08 PM | PERMALINK

Scot: "American exceptionalism demands a steady diet of fairy tales."

And a touch of personal scandal, too, preferably when it involves a Democrat's sex life.

But if it's a Republican's sexual perversity that comes to a sorry light, well, you just need to move on -- nothing to see here!

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on July 25, 2006 at 6:10 PM | PERMALINK

Since you are the one who cannot prove a negative, that's why we've won the argument.

Ok, I've gone through this thread and read all of the comments from Henry and Jay. There is a lot of snark, but not once do either one of you guys actually claim to believe the WMD claims held by 50% of Americans.

So, what is your position exactly? Because it seems like you guys are just playing around, willing to perpetuate something you don't even believe because helps you win an argument. Talk about mental masturbation.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 6:22 PM | PERMALINK

Denial's not just a river in Egypt.

Maybe 230 years just isn't enough experience to create a thoughtful body politic. Instead Americans are akin to children who shut their eye, stomp their feet, and chant "Don't want to, don't want to, don't want to ..."

Don't want to admit they were afraid.

Don't want to admit they were duped.

Don't want to admit they voted for a war-mongering, voice-listening, addlepated bully--twice.

Posted by: Cal Gal on July 25, 2006 at 6:24 PM | PERMALINK

"American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality."

This is a direct result of the LYING JEWS who infest blogs like this one, not for reasoned debate, but to make you believe LIES.

Lies like: Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the United States invaded the country in 2003.

Jews are ORGANIZED LIARS.

Jews push these lies on you through their press and by their use of blogs like this one (among other things).

Watch,... you can see it happening all around you.

Posted by: Jews are ORGANIZED LIARS on July 25, 2006 at 6:24 PM | PERMALINK

I got your point tyronen, I just don't agree with it. The claim that "Americans convinced themselves of Saddam's role in 9/11", is another lie. Just like your claim that the vast majority of fighters in Afghanistan were from the Northern Alliance, whatever that is. btw, I didn't think there was much of an alliance according to the left. The US armed forces took out the Taliban essentially by themselves.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 6:25 PM | PERMALINK

I could not care less if Saddam had WMD's. He proved that he did have them at one time, and used them, that's enough for me. Secondly, Saddam violated every UN resolution stemming from his invasion of Kuwait over a twelve year period, again enough for me. Anyone who denies this conflict has had their head in the sand for over thirty years. Extreme Islam has been at war with the west since Munich (or possibly earlier) and we're just now figuring that out.

Saddam, UBL, Ahmendijad, Zarqawi, Assad, Hezbollah, Hamas, etc. etc. are all indirectly linked together in the global jihad against the west and they will not stop. They continue to kill whether we're in the middle of diplomacy or in the middle of war. They don't care.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 6:36 PM | PERMALINK

Wonderin on July 25, 2006 at 4:00 PM had it right, I believe.

The term "WMD" was created in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq to lump chemical weapons (which Iraq clearly had at one time) with biological weapons (worse) and nuclear weapons (bad big-time). So, the thinking goes, we'll scare everyone with the WMD mushroom cloud and say we found the WMD when we find the old chemical weapons.

Worked, didn't it?

Posted by: Cal Gal on July 25, 2006 at 6:40 PM | PERMALINK

Jay

Very weak channelling of Michael Savage. You know you can do better.

Posted by: nut on July 25, 2006 at 6:46 PM | PERMALINK

enozinho:

My "position exactly" is that we may never know for sure if Saddam had stockpiles of, or programs for producing WMD -- at the time, the best public guess of every intelligence agency in the world was that he did -- the evidence to date does not disprove that assessment.

Cal Gal:

Are you claiming that the phrase "Weapons of Mass Destruction" was never uttered in public before 9/11/01?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 6:56 PM | PERMALINK

A very, very large percentage of the American people see the press as engaged in rooting for failure rather than constructive criticism. The more they harp on talking points like of course Saddam had nothing to do with al Qaida, and then they look at the facts they are starting to go in directions you don't approve of.

Posted by: minion of rove on July 25, 2006 at 7:06 PM | PERMALINK

at the time, the best public guess of every intelligence agency in the world was that he did

OK, Henry--er, Charlie--I see you used the qualifier "public" to dodge the fact that the Bush administration successfully kept out of public view the consensus position of the US intelligence community, that the evidence for Saddam's WMD was shaky in the extreme.

You're a half-wit and a liar.

Posted by: obscure on July 25, 2006 at 7:06 PM | PERMALINK

"...Saddam, UBL, Ahmendijad, Zarqawi, Assad, Hezbollah, Hamas, etc. etc. are all indirectly linked together in the global jihad against the west and they will not stop. They continue to kill whether we're in the middle of diplomacy or in the middle of war. They don't care..."

Yes, the vast Jihadist conspiracy...

Maybe you should ask watcher for a date. You two have a lot in common.

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 7:07 PM | PERMALINK

So over thirty years of mayhem, chaos and violence at the hands of those who ascribe to the perverted interpretation of Islam are all unrelated?

It's that head in the sand thing.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 7:11 PM | PERMALINK

Saddam the jihadist? Right.

It's that head up your ass thing...

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 7:14 PM | PERMALINK

Well considering that Abu Nidal and Zarqawi, among others, have had safe passage and accomodations in Iraq, I'd say there is some empathy there, no?

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 7:24 PM | PERMALINK

"Saddam, UBL, Ahmendijad, Zarqawi, Assad, Hezbollah, Hamas, etc. etc. are all indirectly linked together in the global jihad against the west and they will not stop. They continue to kill whether we're in the middle of diplomacy or in the middle of war. They don't care."

So what are you going to do about it tough guy ?
Hang around your keyboard and hope George Bush makes everything alright or are you finally going to take some personal responsibility and dial 1-800-MARINES...

Come on tough guy - lets see what you got....

Posted by: Xmarine on July 25, 2006 at 7:26 PM | PERMALINK

MY ENEMIES ALL WANT TO KILL ME!!!

they hate me they hate me
they're coming to ate me
i don't know why they loathe me so
except i'm an ass and a clod and a shmoe

Posted by: Jay-for-brains on July 25, 2006 at 7:26 PM | PERMALINK

obscure:

I may be a half-wit, but I am not a liar -- I also don't have a security clearance -- the only information I have re: WMD to make an assessment on is the PUBLIC information.

Whack a NeoCon for Christ:

The vast Jihadist conspiracy ("VJC") is on more solid ground than Hillary blaming the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy for causing Bill's affairs. BTW: I thought Watcher was PART of the the VJC?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 7:33 PM | PERMALINK

"Come on tough guy - lets see what you got...."

Thanks for the laugh. I am glad to see that you agree though.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 7:34 PM | PERMALINK

at the hands of those who ascribe to the perverted interpretation of Islam

Jay:
As opposed to the really cool interpretation of Islam that you love so much right?

Henry:
Ugh!!!

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 7:38 PM | PERMALINK

A very, very large percentage of the American people see the press as engaged in rooting for failure rather than constructive criticism. The more they harp on talking points like of course Saddam had nothing to do with al Qaida, and then they look at the facts they are starting to go in directions you don't approve of.

What facts were you referring to, minion of rove?

I can't speak for "the press" but as a rule what liberals are 'rooting' for are the values and ideals expressed by our Founders. In a word, we're rooting for the Open Society.

Dick Cheney believes in Secrecy and George Bush believes Decidership. Dialogue? Checks & Balances? Consensus? The Rule of Law? Not so much.

Posted by: obscure on July 25, 2006 at 7:38 PM | PERMALINK

LOL, Jay -- so far, we have proven that the only ones making a "retreat from reality" are those contending Saddam did not have any WMD or, even better, that the phrase WMD was not around before the Bush Administration ; )

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 7:40 PM | PERMALINK

Sorry, enozinho, but wouldn't the very definition of the VJC include those who think "JEWS ARE EVIL" (always in BOLD) and want Israel pushed into the sea?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 7:42 PM | PERMALINK

Yes, and this is coming from the self professed "reality based community".

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 7:42 PM | PERMALINK

Charlie/Henry,

You're very much a liar. Especially when it comes to who is behind your many and various aliases.

Liar. That's you.

Posted by: obscure on July 25, 2006 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

Posted less than 1/2 hour apart by Cal Gal above:

Denial's not just a river in Egypt. at 6:24 PM

AND

The term "WMD" was created in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq . . . at 6:40 PM

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

What's VJC? I left my Islamo-Fascist handbook at Laundry.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

obscure:

VJC = the Vast Jihadist Conspiracy. My name is Henry, and I have no aliases.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 7:47 PM | PERMALINK

If anyone is lying, above, I will note that someone believes that Jews are ORGANIZED LIARS. For the record, I am not a Jew.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 7:49 PM | PERMALINK

My name is Henry, and I have no aliases.

Like I said, Charlie.

Liar. That's you.

Posted by: obscure on July 25, 2006 at 7:51 PM | PERMALINK

Still not able to address the fact that Iraq was a secular state?

Still clutching at Clinton's penis when all else fails?

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 7:51 PM | PERMALINK

Muqtada Al Sadr is secular?

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 7:56 PM | PERMALINK

"Still clutching at Clinton's penis when all else fails?"

That was Monica.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 7:57 PM | PERMALINK

we may never know for sure if Saddam had stockpiles

Holy shit Henry. You're the fucking Owl from the Tootsie Pop commercial, "The world may never know".

What I said before stands. Cheeky.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 8:01 PM | PERMALINK

LOL, Jay -- the VJC sure seems a more plausible explanation than the VRWC ever was!

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 8:01 PM | PERMALINK

"Come on tough guy - lets see what you got...."

"Thanks for the laugh. I am glad to see that you agree though."

Civilian Jay - Just more cowards talk.. You ain't nothin... Like we use to say in the barracks....You talk like a man with a paper asshole....
Dial the number tough guy....


Posted by: Xmarine on July 25, 2006 at 8:02 PM | PERMALINK
Still not able to address the fact that Iraq was a secular state?

Muqtada Al Sadr is secular?

Muqtada al-Sadr wasn't a particularly large influence on how the Iraqi state was run prior to the US invasion.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 25, 2006 at 8:03 PM | PERMALINK

enozinho:

Unless you are posting from an undisclosed jail cell in Bahgdad, you don't "know" either. The only "Owl" here is The Owl of Minerva.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 8:03 PM | PERMALINK

"...surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on."

Yeah, they're really going to wonder that. Kevin, you are getting more sarcastic by the day.

whr, you are insane.

Posted by: Kenji on July 25, 2006 at 8:08 PM | PERMALINK

"Muqtada al-Sadr wasn't a particularly large influence on how the Iraqi state was run prior to the US invasion."

But he did live there right? And Abu Nidal and Zarqawi received safe haven because they were secular?

"Civilian Jay - Just more cowards talk.. You ain't nothin... Like we use to say in the barracks....You talk like a man with a paper asshole....
Dial the number tough guy...."

Do manly men like you want more "paper assholes" around? Wait, don't answer that.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:09 PM | PERMALINK

Charlie/Henry,

You're very much a liar. Especially when it comes to who is behind your many and various aliases.

Not to mention lying about serving in the military during Desert Storm (it doesn't get much lower than that) and denying his outburst in March wherein he said that we need "federal Constitutional amendments outlawing divorce, homosexuality, and abortion" and "the death penalty for doctors AND mothers who abort babies."

Well, denying one's professed Christian values -- I guess that is lower than pretending to have served in the military during wartime.

Posted by: trex on July 25, 2006 at 8:11 PM | PERMALINK

Zarqawi received "safe haven" in the territory of Saddam's enemy the Kurds under the protection of a U.S. enforced no-fly zone, you fucking nitwit.

Posted by: trex on July 25, 2006 at 8:14 PM | PERMALINK

Oh that's not part of Iraq?

Could the Iraqi National Guard drive through the no-fly zone? Yes, I guess they could. But they must have been afraid of the Kurds right?

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:16 PM | PERMALINK

obscure, trex:

Don't be so hard on him. Maybe he doesn't "know" who he is either. Or "know" his head from his ass. He seems to "know" a hell of a lot about something called a "VJC", which as far as I can tell is a figment of his imagination.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 8:17 PM | PERMALINK

Actually, Zarqawi ended up in Iraq to be treated for his injuries sustained in Afghanistan. And he was treated in BAGHDAD!

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:17 PM | PERMALINK

Xmarine wrote:
Civilian Jay - Just more cowards talk.. You ain't nothin... Like we use to say in the barracks....You talk like a man with a paper asshole....
Dial the number tough guy....

Impersonating an ex-Marine is low, even for a liberal.

I wonder why 95% of the armed forces votes Republican??

Posted by: sportsfan79 on July 25, 2006 at 8:18 PM | PERMALINK

Its not that IQs are lower than they used to be, or that the percentage of critical thinkers has declined. It's just that when you had 3 major networks and no cable TV or Internet, Walter Cronkite and his counterparts on the other 2 stations at least tried to provide accurate information. Their job description and mission wasnt the same as it was for Pravda-- or is for Fox News. . .to deliver a party line and trick people into believing it.

So in the 1950s or 60s, even some of the people who listened to Walter Winchell or Fulton Lewis Jr. probably understood that Cronkite was the more reliable choice. If Cronkite said there were no WMDs, they figured that was pretty definitive and looked no further for an informed source.

Today I have a choice. If ABC network news doesnt match my preconceived notions, I can switch to the Fair and Balanced 24-hour news networkand have it my wayprovided my way is creationism and Dubya-as-the-new-Winston Churchill.

In the 1960s, news at 6 and news at 11 may have been lacking in depth, international scope and context, but the big 3 commentators didnt deliberately lie or promote a political agendaleft or right. How times have changedand not for the better in this regard.

Also, does anybody know if theres a regional breakdown for this Harris poll? Are New Yorkers and Californians just as dumb as the rest of the country?

Posted by: sylny on July 25, 2006 at 8:20 PM | PERMALINK

"...Zarqawi received "safe haven" in the territory of Saddam's enemy the Kurds under the protection of a U.S. enforced no-fly zone, you fucking nitwit..."

Nitwits can not be convinced by facts. But, you may get their heads to explode.

So, go for it!

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 8:21 PM | PERMALINK

"So in the 1950s or 60s, even some of the people who listened to Walter Winchell or Fulton Lewis Jr. probably understood that Cronkite was the more reliable choice. If Cronkite said there were no WMDs, they figured that was pretty definitive and looked no further for an informed source."

Are you actually saying that less choice is better? Why not just have one state run agency?

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:26 PM | PERMALINK

Actually, Zarqawi ended up in Iraq to be treated for his injuries sustained in Afghanistan. And he was treated in BAGHDAD!

You mean that leg he had amputated and that was miraculously still attached to his body when he was killed?

Before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, President Bush, Secretary of State Colin Powell and other administration officials pointed to intelligence that they said suggested al-Zarqawi had had his leg amputated in Baghdad.

A CIA report in late 2004 concluded that it had no evidence Saddam's government was involved in, or aware of, his Baghdad medical treatment, and that "Theres no conclusive evidence the Saddam Hussein regime had harbored Zarqawi."[16] [17] One U.S. official summarized the report: "The evidence is that Saddam never gave Zarqawi anything."[18]

You're so goddammed stupid it hurts.

Posted by: trex on July 25, 2006 at 8:27 PM | PERMALINK

"...Zarqawi received "safe haven" in the territory of Saddam's enemy the Kurds under the protection of a U.S. enforced no-fly zone, you fucking nitwit..."

"Nitwits can not be convinced by facts. But, you may get their heads to explode."


That's not a fact.

hahahahahahahahahahahahha, you guys are hysterical.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:28 PM | PERMALINK

Before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, President Bush, Secretary of State Colin Powell and other administration officials pointed to intelligence that they said suggested al-Zarqawi had had his leg amputated in Baghdad.
"A CIA report in late 2004 concluded that it had no evidence Saddam's government was involved in, or aware of, his Baghdad medical treatment, and that "Theres no conclusive evidence the Saddam Hussein regime had harbored Zarqawi."[16] [17] One U.S. official summarized the report: "The evidence is that Saddam never gave Zarqawi anything."[18] "

Well that seals it. I mean the CIA had bullet proof intel on Iraq prior to the war right? Oh wait...............

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:30 PM | PERMALINK

I wonder why 95% of the armed forces votes Republican??

They don't.

Posted by: trex on July 25, 2006 at 8:33 PM | PERMALINK

hahahahahahahahahahahahha, you guys are hysterical.

The sound of Jay's head exploding?

Posted by: MLuther on July 25, 2006 at 8:34 PM | PERMALINK

Former weapons inspector David Kay declared on Oct. 2, 2003, that U.S. personnel discovered a vial of live C. botulinum Okra B. from which a biological agent can be produced.

In January 2004, according to a New York Sun editorial published that June 1, a block of cyanide salt popped up in Abu Musab al-Zarqawis Baghdad safe house.

On May 2, 2004, U.S. forces in Iraq found a mustard-gas shell, rigged as an improvised explosive device. The Iraq Survey Group sent in by coalition forces to find WMD dismissed this as ineffective due to improper storage. Of course, the effectiveness of Saddams weapons was not the issue.

The Iraqi Survey Group confirmed today that a 155-millimeter artillery round containing sarin nerve agent had been found, also reworked as an explosive device, Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt told reporters that May 15. Two soldiers exposed to the device displayed classic symptoms of sarin exposure, Fox News reported.

Weapons sleuth Charles Duelfer told Fox News on June 24, 2004: We found, you know, 10 or 12 sarin and mustard rounds.

That July 6, the Department of Energy announced that a joint effort with the Pentagon removed 1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium from Iraq that could potentially be used in a radiological dispersal device or diverted to support a nuclear weapons program.

Major Gaps

Posted by: Fitz on July 25, 2006 at 8:36 PM | PERMALINK

Saddam, UBL, Ahmendijad, Zarqawi, Assad, Hezbollah, Hamas, etc. etc. are all indirectly linked together in the global jihad against the west and they will not stop. They continue to kill whether we're in the middle of diplomacy or in the middle of war. They don't care.

And this is a fact? Are you on the "VJC" mailing list or something? Honorary member?

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 8:37 PM | PERMALINK

Fitz,

You have convinced me. Saddam had miniscule amount of WMD. Certainly it was enough to justify the premptive war.

Or not.

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 8:43 PM | PERMALINK

trex:

I've never lied about serving in the military and never said that we need "federal Constitutional amendments outlawing divorce, homosexuality, and abortion" and "the death penalty for doctors AND mothers who abort babies." As for an overwhelmingly large percentage of military votes being GOP, I will get you the 2000 stats (proving exactly why Al Gore wanted to invalidate those votes).

enozinho:

Actually, it's not MY figment this time. Whack a NeoCon for Christ was the one who brought up the Vast Jihadist Conspiracy, somehow claiming that Jay was part of it (above). I pointed out that said VJC is on more solid ground than Hillary blaming the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy for causing Bill's affairs. He (I hope not a "she") has yet to answer whether Watcher is PART of the the VJC . . .

Fitz:

Don't waste your time with the "reality-based" crowd.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 8:46 PM | PERMALINK

the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality


Indeed, yesterday two people called me a rightist.

Posted by: cld on July 25, 2006 at 8:49 PM | PERMALINK

I've never lied about serving in the military

Yes you have, under the nom de loon "Doug M." (thanks to Stefan for coining that great phrase).

and never said that we need "federal Constitutional amendments outlawing divorce, homosexuality, and abortion" and "the death penalty for doctors AND mothers who abort babies."

Yes you did, under the "Cheney" handle, and you know it. Don't lie, it's not Christian.

As for an overwhelmingly large percentage of military votes being GOP

The claim was "95%" vote Republican, not "an overwhelmingly large percentage."

But nice try.

Posted by: trex on July 25, 2006 at 8:57 PM | PERMALINK

And 80% believe Elvis was kidnapped by Sasquatch in a UFO and is hiding out in the Bermuda Triangle - Who gives a ripped tit?

If Americans are stupid enough to elect an ambulatory pile of feces like George W. Bush - twice - they deserve everything bad that happens to them. I am so headed for Canuckland...

Posted by: Fred Flintrock on July 25, 2006 at 9:02 PM | PERMALINK

Funny, supposedly '95% of military people vote GOP' according to some, but the overwhelming majority of Iraqi/Afghan war vets are running as Democrats in the 06 elections.

Can't wait to hear the spin on that one.

Posted by: Frame on July 25, 2006 at 9:05 PM | PERMALINK

I recently flew from Florida to Iowa through Atlanta, and my impression of the average summer traveler through the commercial flying system is that THE AVERAGE AMERICAN IS A (MOSTLY FAT) IGNORANT SLOB WHO WOULDN'T KNOW REALITY IF IT BIT HIM IN THE ASS. I couldn't believe it. They're just pathetic. Their clothes are embarassing, they whine and complain about everything, eat the nastiest food, and they put up with an aesthetic that most other citizens of civilized countries would flee from.

I've traveled throughout Europe, Canada, and the U.S., and I don't remember it being this bad. Some of the most talented, accomplished, educated people on earth live and work in America, but the average American is a waste of time and space and resources. No wonder they are completely ignorant of reality. Hell, they're not good enough for reality.

Sorry, but I really feel this way. Travel around a bit and you'll see.

Posted by: retrogrouch on July 25, 2006 at 9:06 PM | PERMALINK

Or, Saddam had ties / WMD that no one has discovered yet.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

Like your brain.

Posted by: Pat on July 25, 2006 at 9:07 PM | PERMALINK

Frame:

Given the total active and recently retired miltary in the U.S., isn't 5% still a large chunk of voters? There's approximately 150,000 troops currently deployed in Iraq, so 5% of that are 7,500.

trex:

I am neither Doug nor Charlie. My name is Henry. I have no idea what you (or Stefan) are referring to. Lastly, back on topic, I'm sure you are aware that some military bases vote almost 100% GOP -- perhaps that was what Jay was referring to "95%". Why else would Al Gore have tried to throw out their votes in 2000? Perhaps you forgot about that Democrat Memo on "How to Disqualify Military Votes"?

http://www.papillonsartpalace.com/algores.htm

And, here are some stats on how the armed forces vote broke down in 2000 in Florida -- of the 469 overseas ballots declared valid, more than twice as many went to Bush than Gore -- unfortunately no record was made of how many of the overseas absentee total were military ballots. But experts say that since the advent of the all-volunteer armed services 31 years ago, recent veterans - same as current active-duty members - tend to be much more conservative than those from the military draft era.

"If you are military now, you are more likely to be Republican and conservative than your civilian counterpart," said Peter D. Feaver, director of the Triangle Institute for Security Studies at Duke University. "If you are black and in the military, you are also more likely to be conservative and Republican than blacks not in the military."

http://washingtontimes.com/national/20040709-121020-3190r.htm

Even after the invasion of Iraq and all the false press, one informal survey of the armed forces and their family members still showed over 72 percent of respondents favoring Bush over Kerry:

http://www.suntimes.com/output/elect/cst-nws-iraqvote31.html

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 9:08 PM | PERMALINK

Pat:

Perhaps you can explain how you KNOW that the following was the complete universe of WMD in Iraq then?

David Kay declared on Oct. 2, 2003, that U.S. personnel discovered a vial of live C. botulinum Okra B. from which a biological agent can be produced.

In January 2004, according to a New York Sun editorial published that June 1, a block of cyanide salt popped up in Abu Musab al-Zarqawis Baghdad safe house.

On May 2, 2004, U.S. forces in Iraq found a mustard-gas shell, rigged as an improvised explosive device. The Iraq Survey Group sent in by coalition forces to find WMD dismissed this as ineffective due to improper storage. Of course, the effectiveness of Saddams weapons was not the issue.

The Iraqi Survey Group confirmed today that a 155-millimeter artillery round containing sarin nerve agent had been found, also reworked as an explosive device, Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt told reporters that May 15. Two soldiers exposed to the device displayed classic symptoms of sarin exposure, Fox News reported.

Weapons sleuth Charles Duelfer told Fox News on June 24, 2004: We found, you know, 10 or 12 sarin and mustard rounds.

That July 6, the Department of Energy announced that a joint effort with the Pentagon removed 1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium from Iraq that could potentially be used in a radiological dispersal device or diverted to support a nuclear weapons program.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 9:10 PM | PERMALINK

Even "Whack a NeoCon for Christ" admits Saddam had WMD; he simply disagrees whether it was enough to justify the pre-emptive war.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 9:12 PM | PERMALINK

Apparently the results of the Harris poll cited are fairly moot, given the brutal numbers in every single other poll for Bush approval, right track/wrong track, and generic congressional ballot.

It could just be that the Harris poll rings a different set of bells in the same kind of respondents.

It may or not be indicative of their voting mood.

Posted by: Jim J on July 25, 2006 at 9:16 PM | PERMALINK

"Are you claiming that the phrase "Weapons of Mass Destruction" was never uttered in public before 9/11/01?"

OK, maybe I should have said "popularized" rather than "created" but my point is still valid--that the Bush administration used a formerly obsure term and pounded it into public consciousness in order to conflate chemical weapons with nuclear weapons. Their case on chemical weapons was "they had them when they gassed the Kurds." Their case on nuclear weapons was created pretty much out of whole cloth. And it was the mushroom cloud of nuclear weapons they used to cloud the minds of Americans still in shock over 9/11.

Posted by: Cal Gal on July 25, 2006 at 9:23 PM | PERMALINK

Great reasoning, there, Charlie. We don't positively know there isn't WMD in Equador either. But we haven't invaded there.

I totally understnad your confusion, though. See, Charlie, people usually make important policy decisions like starting a war that results in the death of over 2,500 Americans and the expenditure of hundreds of billions of dollars based on a little thing we like to call "evidence," not on wild assumptions derived from the a lack of evidence.

I realize this is hard for someone like you to grasp, so I'm going to bust out a few examples. For one, this idea is why the vast majority of people here have concluded you are a douche. Evidence. In every post.

Now, it may just be that no one has discovered that you are a human being yet, Charlie. We can't entirely rule it out. But the evidence says you are a douche. Get it?

Posted by: Pat on July 25, 2006 at 9:24 PM | PERMALINK

Henry --

I really don't care if "100 percent of some military bases voted for Bush" (how the fuck could you possibly know that anyway?).

I really don't care if 99.98 percent of Americans believe your bullshit about Saddam having WMDs and ties to Al Qaeda.

It still doesn't make them right, and it still won't make you win in Iraq.

Believe what you want -- your team lost the war. It's over -- you lost.

I guess that includes the "100 percent" of the losers on those military bases that voted for Bush. Too bad.

Posted by: Jim J on July 25, 2006 at 9:24 PM | PERMALINK

Jay:

Abu Nidal did indeed live in Saddam's Iraq until he mysteriously committed suicide by shooting himself several times with an automatic weapon--well before the US invasion. Guess he outlived his usefulness (or he tried to freelance).

The Northern Alliance provided the ground forces, the US provided air power and special forces to coordinate the two.

Posted by: Wombat on July 25, 2006 at 9:25 PM | PERMALINK

Jay belched:

Well considering that Abu Nidal and Zarqawi, among others, have had safe passage and accomodations in Iraq

As others have said, Zarqawi was not under Saddam's protection but instead out of his reach in the Kurdish north. Even more hilariously wrong is your assertion about Abu Nidal, who was *assasinated* on orders from Saddam. Some "safe passage"!

You should really just admit you're a moron and move on.

Posted by: Disputo on July 25, 2006 at 9:39 PM | PERMALINK

"THE AVERAGE AMERICAN IS A (MOSTLY FAT) IGNORANT SLOB WHO WOULDN'T KNOW REALITY IF IT BIT HIM IN THE ASS."

".... but the average American is a waste of time and space and resources. No wonder they are completely ignorant of reality. Hell, they're not good enough for reality."

It's a mystery the left keeps losing elections.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 9:40 PM | PERMALINK

Jim J:

There are people who don't want to admit who they are voting for to exit or even regular pollers. Are they all "Charlie" too?

Cal Gal:

LOL - now you are saying "WMD" was a "formerly obsure term"? You weren't born before 1973, were you? what about "M.A.D." (mutually assured destruction), have you ever heard of that term?

Pat:

Some military bases are pretty tight-knit. They know who you voted for, as well as what you ate for breakfast and when your last bowel movement was.

Disputo:

Stalin ordered former close associates murdered too, so?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 9:41 PM | PERMALINK

Wombat is correct disputo, Nidal killed himself.

"As others have said, Zarqawi was not under Saddam's protection but instead out of his reach in the Kurdish north."

Out of his reach? Saddam had no problem invading Kuwait to his south but the northern part of his country was out of reach? Or was he afraid of the Kurds? Wait, he gassed them right? How did he get there?

Just trying to follow the "reality based community" on this one.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 9:45 PM | PERMALINK

Jews are ORGANIZED LIARS.

Here is an example of organized lying by Jews, namely, the establishment of some unknown patent clerk as the "greatest" scientist the world has ever known.

"H. Poincare had already completely solved the problem of time several years before the appearance of Einstein's first work (1905)", H. Thirring, 1927.

"Einstein simply postulates what we have deduced, with some difficulty and not altogether satisfactorily, from the fundamental equations of the electromagnetic field." Lorentz in his book "The Theory of Electrons" (1906)

"... While Lorentz must be considered as the first to have found the mathematical content of the relativity principle, Einstein succeeded in reducing it to a simple principle...." Wilhelm Wien (1911 Nobel Prize in Physics).

"No unprejudiced person can deny that, in the absence of direct and incontrovertible proofs establishing his innocence, Einstein must, in view of the circumstantial evidence previously presented, stand convicted before the world as a plagiarist." Prof. Arvid Reuterdahl

"almost every idea and formula of the theory (of relativity) had been anticipated (often actually published previously) by others. For example, Voigt formally derived the Lorentz transformations in 1887 based on general considerations of the wave equation. In the context of electro-dynamics, Fitzgerald, Larmor, and Lorentz had all, by 1892, arrived at the Lorentz transformations, including all the peculiar "time dilation" and "length contraction" effects (with respect to the transformed coordinates) associated with Einstein's special relativity. By 1905, Poincare had clearly articulated the principle of relativity and many of its consequences, had pointed out the lack of empirical basis for absolute simultaneity, had challenged the ontological significance of the ether, and had even demonstrated that the Lorentz transformations constitute a group in the same sense as do Galilean transformations." Kevin Brown in "Reflections on Relativity" (believe it or not, Brown is an Einstein supporter).

"It is easily proven that Albert Einstein did not originate the special theory of relativity in its entirety, or even in its majority. The historic record is readily available. Ludwig Gustav Lange, Woldemar Voigt, George Francis FitzGerald, Joseph Larmor, Hendrik Antoon Lorentz, Jules Henri Poincar, Paul Drude, Paul Langevin, and many others, slowly developed the theory, step by step, and based it on thousands of years of recorded thought and research." Christopher Bjerknes in "Albert Einstein: The Incorrigible Plagiarist"

Albert Einstein: Plagiarist of the Century
Albert Einstein: The Incorrigible Plagiarist
Test Your Knowledge of the History of the Theory of Relativity.

Posted by: watcher on July 25, 2006 at 9:45 PM | PERMALINK

I had gym class with a Jewish boy when I was little, and in the shower I saw his weiner. It looked funny and it made me feel warm and excited inside, and my face got all hot and something was squishy all down in my belly. I told my daddy about it and he got mad and beat me. Bad Jews! Jews! Jews! Jews!

Posted by: watcher on July 25, 2006 at 9:55 PM | PERMALINK

Pat:

Some military bases are pretty tight-knit. They know who you voted for, as well as what you ate for breakfast and when your last bowel movement was.
Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 9:41 PM | PERMALINK

Charlie: Please do a better job of keeping track of things. I never mentioned miltary bases, so it makes no sense at all to reply to me about them as if I had. That was another poster, not me. I'm the guy who said all the evidence pointed to you being a douche. Okay? Please try to keep these posts straight in your little head.

Posted by: Pat on July 25, 2006 at 9:58 PM | PERMALINK

I could not care less if Saddam had WMD's.

Well, okay then. Any flimsy excuse is good enough to kill a few tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians, tear their society apart, and leave a civil war raging in your wake. Right? 'Cause they're A-rabs! Moos-lims!

Secondly, Saddam violated every UN resolution stemming from his invasion of Kuwait over a twelve year period, again enough for me.

That is false. He dismantled his WMD - he appears to have missed a small store, clearly forgotten about, in the judgment of US gov't inspectors - and he never set foot in Kurdistan. He was successfully contained.


Extreme Islam has been at war with the west since Munich (or possibly earlier)

Munich is a city, not an event. What event are you referring to? 1938? 1972? The kidnapping and killing of Israeli athletes in '72 was hardly the first act of Palestinian terrorism against Israel, and the terrorists involved were not 'extreme Islam'. Some may even have been Communist atheists, given the tenor of the times. This is the sort of stupid error which those who lump all terrorists together are prone to.

Saddam, UBL, Ahmendijad, Zarqawi, Assad, Hezbollah, Hamas, etc. etc. are all indirectly linked together in the global jihad against the west and they will not stop.

You keep expanding the list of enemies. It now includes virtually the entire Muslim world. Ultimately, you will end up advocating genocide. Maybe you already do.

The organizations you have listed are "indirectly linked" only by you, who put them together on a list. They are all hostile to the United States. But all the people who dislike you are not working together, plotting in some secret room, working constantly for your destruction. They are different organizations with different interests which sometimes coincide - much like the US and its European allies, who are not, contrary to Al-Qaeda propaganda, constantly working to destroy Islam.

Current US strategy over the Lebanon situation involves driving a wedge between Syria and Iran. According to you, this is impossible - these terrorists are all "indirectly linked" and they "won't stop". You are a stupid and violent person, and you are harming your country and bringing violence down on your own head and those of your children, if you have any.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 25, 2006 at 9:58 PM | PERMALINK

ALL ARE TRUE, WHY WOULD PEOPLE NOT THINK THAT.

The question should be this: when will shrill regressive blogs and reality-bending "journalists" finally get it: that weird sensation that there is something on your heads is a tin-foil-hat!

TOH

Posted by: The Objective Historian on July 25, 2006 at 9:59 PM | PERMALINK

Out of his reach? Saddam had no problem invading Kuwait to his south but the northern part of his country was out of reach? Or was he afraid of the Kurds? Wait, he gassed them right? How did he get there?

Jay, you stupid ignoramus. The gassing of the Kurds occurred in 1988. Saddam invaded Kuwait in 1990. We kicked him out in 1991 and established a no-fly zone and autonomous Kurdish protected zone in the north of the country. Saddam's armed forces never entered the north of the country after 1992. That's why the Kurdish peshmerga are the strongest and most professional fighting forces in Iraq today, and that's why Kurdistan is quiet and peaceful and pro-American, in contrast to the rest of the country, where death squads on all sides are slaughtering dozens of civilians every day.

You stupid, stupid freak. Read a fucking book.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 25, 2006 at 10:03 PM | PERMALINK

Watcher:

What does Albert Einstein have to do with the topic?

Pat:

You are right (except that I am not Charlie). Since you did not post anything worth responding to, that comment to you should have been directed toward Jim J. Luckily, you only have to respond to one person at a time.

brooksfoe:

Did you believe Hillary Clinton blaming her husband's woes on the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy?

The Objective Historian:

Why? Because they are denying REALITY (back on topic finally ; )

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 10:04 PM | PERMALINK

Wombat is correct disputo, Nidal killed himself.

LMAO. It is hilarous which things Saddam said that you choose to believe. Regardless, how Abu Nidal died is orthogonal to the question of whether he was buds with Saddam, who claims he was having AN arrested when AN died. But I guess that that is something you choose *not* to believe, and will instead insist that Saddam was inviting AN over for tea.

Like I said, admit you're a moron and be done with it.

Posted by: Disputo on July 25, 2006 at 10:07 PM | PERMALINK

Jay farted:

Saddam had no problem invading Kuwait to his south but the northern part of his country was out of reach?

LMAO. Yes, in Jay's moronic world Saddam had the same freedom of movement in 1990 that he had in 1998.

Whatever the RNC is paying you to troll, it is way too much.

Posted by: Disputo on July 25, 2006 at 10:10 PM | PERMALINK

Over the last few years Charley has changed his nick often, but never his style. He is a legend in his own mind.

Jay, on the other hand, suffers from Islamo-Phobia. Remember Jay, "Just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they are not out to get you." - Henry Kissinger

Posted by: MLuther on July 25, 2006 at 10:11 PM | PERMALINK

"He was successfully contained."

With an acceptable rate of death according to Madeline Albright. What's an acceptable death rate by "containment" for you, brooky? If you call that successful, then you definitely have blood on your hnds.

"...and the terrorists involved were not 'extreme Islam'"

Geez, I thought killing people was pretty extreme. Who knew?

"It now includes virtually the entire Muslim world."

There are 26 million people who live in Iraq. There are an estimated 10,000 insurgents. And considering Jordan, Egypt, UAE, Turkey, Pakistan and Afghanistan, I think "the entire Muslim world is a bit of a reach. Don't you?

"Current US strategy over the Lebanon situation involves driving a wedge between Syria and Iran."

That's not true at all. The US strategy is to get the moderate Arab states to help condemn and control radical Islam, hence Codi going to Rome. Secondly the US is hoping to get a UN presence, isn't that what liberals love.

Go to bed.


Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 10:15 PM | PERMALINK

As the prewar facts become clearer and Iraq spirals further into civil war, the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality.

Never under estimate the power of talk radio...

Posted by: e. nonee moose on July 25, 2006 at 10:15 PM | PERMALINK

"You stupid, stupid freak. Read a fucking book."

I am just fucking around with you guys brooky, don't get your panties in a bunch. I am familiar with the restrictions at that time in Iraq, but you know full well that Saddam knew Zarqawi was there and allowed it. The Kurds aren't that strong and not the "pro-America" as you conveniently claim.

Wait, a "pro-American" province in Iraq? But you guys keep telling us that's impossible.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 10:22 PM | PERMALINK

"...Jay, you stupid ignoramus. The gassing of the Kurds occurred in 1988. Saddam invaded Kuwait in 1990. We kicked him out in 1991 and established a no-fly zone and autonomous Kurdish protected zone in the north of the country. Saddam's armed forces never entered the north of the country after 1992. That's why the Kurdish peshmerga are the strongest and most professional fighting forces in Iraq today, and that's why Kurdistan is quiet and peaceful and pro-American, in contrast to the rest of the country, where death squads on all sides are slaughtering dozens of civilians every day..."

Jay is currently busy building his bunker to survive the rain of Hezbollah rockets with nuclear tipped weapons (that Saddam gave them in return for joining the Vast Jihadist Conspiracy). Either that, or he is cleaning his room before Mommy says it's bedtime.

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 10:25 PM | PERMALINK

e. nonee moose:

The following FACTS are not just available via talk radio -- look them up yourself on theis great invention of Al Gore's:

Oct. 2, 2003 -- U.S. personnel discovered a vial of live C. botulinum Okra B. from which a biological agent can be produced.

January 2004 -- a block of cyanide salt popped up in Abu Musab al-Zarqawis Baghdad safe house.

May 2, 2004 -- U.S. forces in Iraq found a mustard-gas shell, rigged as an improvised explosive device.

June 24, 2004 -- Charles Duelfer explained total they had found 10 or 12 sarin and mustard rounds.

July 6, 2004 -- Department of Energy announced that a joint effort with the Pentagon had removed 1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium from Iraq that could potentially be used in a radiological dispersal device or diverted to support a nuclear weapons program.

Sorry if you still think those FACTS are not real. Do you also believe Al Gore won the election in 2000?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 10:27 PM | PERMALINK

Whack a NeoCon for Christ:

Thanks for finally admitting Saddam had WMD. Now, do you think Watcher was part of the VJC or not?

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 10:30 PM | PERMALINK
considering Jordan, Egypt, UAE, Turkey, Pakistan and Afghanistan, I think "the entire Muslim world is a bit of a reachJay 10:15 PM
Jordan, Egypt, Pakistan, UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are all pro-American dictatorships, some bought and paid for. Pakistan is hiding bin Laden and Afghanistan is undergoing a resurgence of the Taliban. In some of those countries, a free election would install an Islamist government especially Egypt, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. None of the populations are pro-American which causes immense frustration among the people because their governments are responsive to popular opinion.
You are right (except that I am not Charlie)Henry 10:04 PM
You really should try this.
when will shrill regressive blogs and reality-bending "journalists" finally get it:The Objective Historian 9:59 PM
It speaks to the success of Republican's Big Lie Technique. Where did they learn it? Posted by: Mike on July 25, 2006 at 10:34 PM | PERMALINK

For the last time, I am not lying.

Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 10:39 PM | PERMALINK

"Jordan, Egypt, Pakistan, UAE, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are all pro-American dictatorships, some bought and paid for. Pakistan is hiding bin Laden and Afghanistan is undergoing a resurgence of the Taliban. In some of those countries, a free election would install an Islamist government especially Egypt, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. None of the populations are pro-American which causes immense frustration among the people because their governments are responsive to popular opinion."

Once again, thank you mike for the Extreme Islam point of view.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 10:41 PM | PERMALINK

"...Thanks for finally admitting Saddam had WMD. Now, do you think Watcher was part of the VJC or not?..."

You overlooked the word miniscule. We could also argue if your miniscule funcitioning brain cells constitutes a fully developed brain. I suspect it it more like a brain-related program.

Watcher is just your mirror image...In more ways than one.

Posted by: Whack a NeoCon for Christ on July 25, 2006 at 10:45 PM | PERMALINK

the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality


Something else involved may be that Americans have got the idea that 'counter-intuitive' is smart, so reality is actually the opposite of what it seems to be.

Posted by: cld on July 25, 2006 at 10:56 PM | PERMALINK

Wait, a "pro-American" province in Iraq? But you guys keep telling us that's impossible.

another strawman from an impotent retard.

Posted by: haha on July 25, 2006 at 11:13 PM | PERMALINK

Actually it was brooksfoe who made that "strawman", I was merely mocking it.

Woops.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 11:17 PM | PERMALINK

"He was successfully contained." With an acceptable rate of death according to Madeline Albright. What's an acceptable death rate by "containment" for you, brooky?

Your invasion of Iraq has led to a civil war. Death squads in Iraq are currently slaughtering up to a 100 civilians per day in Baghdad alone. 5,000 died just through June - and that's just the death squad activity, not deaths of civilians due to "collateral damage" in US or Iraqi armed forces activity.

Furthermore, child mortality and excess adult mortality in Iraq have gotten WORSE since the invasion, not better. When people claim that the sanctions led to deaths, what they are claiming is that illness-related deaths were higher than would be expected according to some baseline figure. But the baseline figure they are measuring is the baseline with Saddam in power, before the sanctions. To return to that baseline, one would have had to lift the sanctions but leave Saddam in power. Because removing Saddam from power, and lifting the sanctions, has not improved mortality; it has worsened illness-related mortality, AND added horrendous violent death due to civil war.

If you were interested in thinking, rather than coming up with idiotic justifications for your puerile, stupid and suicidal war, I would give you a metaphor that would make this easier for you to understand. But you're not interested in thinking. You're just a stupid fascist brownshirt, or perhaps a religious fanatic Al-Qaeda clone. The only point in continuing the conversation is to refuse to concede the territory of Political Animal to unthinking, ignorant slugs like you.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 25, 2006 at 11:17 PM | PERMALINK

brooksfoe:

Actually, according to the recent figures, it was 100+ a civilians a day last month for the whole country, not just Baghdad.

Not that this detracts much from your overall point.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 11:21 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, there's never been any violence in Iraq, or in the broad middle east, prior to the war.

I also don't understand your sudden concern for life considering the Democrats pet program is responsible for over 1 million dead babies a year.

Go fuck yourself.

Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 11:24 PM | PERMALINK

Whack a NeoCon for Christ:

"brain-related program."

OMG, that's the funniest thing I read all day :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 11:25 PM | PERMALINK

I've rarely seen a thread get this stupidified, and that's saying something.

IP/email blocking is definitely the way to go for the intentionally disruptive idiots.

Or maybe while the rest of us hang out here and enjoy constructive discusssions, blissfully free of all the mania and compulsive acting out Kevin could open a "Blog for the Utterly Delusional" where trolls like Jay and Charlie could hang out and get their fill of mutually masturbationg to each other's tales of wishful revisionist history and homoerotic authoritarian fantasies.

Wait, Little Green Footballs and RedState already exist for that purpose. My bad.

Posted by: trex on July 25, 2006 at 11:28 PM | PERMALINK

Jay:

So over thirty years of mayhem, chaos and violence at the hands of those who ascribe to the perverted interpretation of Islam are all unrelated?

I agree that there has been mayhem, chaos and violence from those who subscribe to a particular version of Islam, and that version is perverted. However, does that lead ineluctably to invading Iraq which had been secular prior to our war? I submit to you that rather than killing those with the perverted version of Islam, we have killed thousands of innocent men, women, and children, and unleashed a Pandoras box of ethnic strife. That strife shows no signs of diminishing. And future violent people are being born and raised as I type this.

Henry:

I recall the term WMDs being used from time to time during the 80s-90s, but I dont remember it being used to any great degree until the Bush administration started using it in Septermber 2002 to market (Andrew Cards term) going to war with Iraq.

LOL - now you are saying "WMD" was a "formerly obsure term"? You weren't born before 1973, were you? what about "M.A.D." (mutually assured destruction), have you ever heard of that term?

Hello? You consider that a rebuttal? I well remember M.A.D. and it is NOT the same term nor is it remotely synonymous. Mutually Assured Destruction was understood both by the United States and the Soviet Union to enforce a de facto agreement to not use those weapons, as their use could lead to assured destruction, and both sides were capable of inflicting destruction on the other. The term was also predicated on the assumption of relative parity.

There is NO country in the Mideast currently capable of truly destroying the United States. Our firepower is so assymetrical compared to any other country ON THIS PLANET and yet people are running scared. Sheesh!

If anyone is lying, above, I will note that someone believes that Jews are ORGANIZED LIARS. For the record, I am not a Jew.

If you are saying this to prove that we liberals are anti-Jewish, you havent been paying attention. Several people on this blog have asked Watcher to cease with his idiotic propaganda, and I fully concur. Watcher only makes himself look ridiculous. And again, Watcher, Im not Jewish.

Actually, it's not MY figment this time. Whack a NeoCon for Christ was the one who brought up the Vast Jihadist Conspiracy, somehow claiming that Jay was part of it (above). I pointed out that said VJC is on more solid ground than Hillary blaming the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy for causing Bill's affairs. He (I hope not a "she") has yet to answer whether Watcher is PART of the the VJC . . .

Hillary did not say that the VRWC was causing Bills affairs. She talked about it because huge attention was paid to all sorts of minor mistakes in the Clinton administration, and many allegations were made that were completely baseless, like the whole Vince Foster thing, tragic as that was. And how many millions of dollars were spent investigating the Clintons? The only thing they were actually able to prove was lying about a blow job, resulting in that farcical impeachment.

I may be a half-wit, but I am not a liar -- I also don't have a security clearance -- the only information I have re: WMD to make an assessment on is the PUBLIC information.

I, too, dont have a clearance, and am a nobody. Yet I KNEW before we went into Iraq that there were no weapons of any consequence, based upon reports coming out from the UN, the IAEA, the testimony that almost all weapons had been found or deactivated by 1998, when Clinton asked the inspectors to leave so he could do some bombing. The Duelfer report confirmed what I already knew.

Moreover, the Bush administration was talking out of both sides of its mouth. On the one hand, they were alleging that there was such a threat that Saddam could, in a short time if not stopped, unleash a mushroom-shaped cloud. On the other hand, there were saying that the invasion would be a cakewalk. Rumsfeld and Cheney, in public speeches, said that the war would last no longer than six months, and probably more like two months. If the WMDs Saddam supposedly possessed were such a threat, how could the invasion also be a cakewalk? Do you not see the contradiction there?

In September 2002 I wrote to Arizonas 7 congressmen pleading with them not to authorize going to war in Iraq, based up what I just said above. I also predicted that an invasion would cause the Iraqis to rise up against us and that it would unleash strife between the Sunnis and the Shiites.

Again, Im a nobody. But I dont labor under the mistaken premise of American exceptionalism (nor do I think were worse than other countries, but we sure as hell can do more damage because of our overwhelming superiority of fire power). I know that all people on this earth are fellow human beings with much the same desires, hopes, and fears. I can put myself in their place and envision what I would do if I faced their circumstances.

You are arguing based upon assumptions. We are arguing based upon observed facts and preponderance of evidence. I dont expect to convince you, but if there are people lurking on this board who might be swayed by your arguments, please note whose posts are full of logical fallacies, and it isnt CMDicely or Stefan or Bob or WhackaNeocon, among others.

Posted by: Wolfdaughter on July 25, 2006 at 11:32 PM | PERMALINK

brooksfoe:

These guys have made it abundantly clear that they don't care whether or not WMD was a sufficient reason to invade Iraq. All there dancing around the truth is intended to cover for the fact that they would have been for a war with Saddam, no matter the evidence, and no matter the cost in lives and treasure. You can see how funny they find it that Americans continue to believe things that they couldn't give two shits about.

Posted by: enozinho on July 25, 2006 at 11:36 PM | PERMALINK

I also don't understand your sudden concern for life considering the Democrats pet program is responsible for over 1 million dead babies a year.

You have this backwards, Jay, as usual. First of all, the GOP has not moved to ban abortion, and will not; the right to choose is supported by a bipartisan majority, and if you try to eliminate it, you will lose election after election ad infinitum. Second, what's hard to understand is your horror at the idea of dead clumps of amoebas, coupled with your complete unconcern at the fact that American and Israeli troops are killing dozens of perfectly innocent Lebanese and Iraqi human beings every single fucking day.

You do not live in reality. You see the bodies of dead Lebanese children, but these deaths are assumed for some reason to be justified. You do not see any dead clumps of cells, but because of some insane theological conviction, the latter horrifies you, while you wish the former out of existence. Are the results you see in Iraq worth the actual, very real, horribly painful deaths of 40,000 innocent Iraqis? Are they? Do you understand that as an American who voted for Bush, the deaths of those Iraqis result from your choices? That you are responsible for their deaths in a real and concrete sense? That you will be called to answer for your support of this war by St. Peter at the gates of heaven when you die? Do you really understand this? You should be on your fucking knees begging for forgiveness.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 25, 2006 at 11:45 PM | PERMALINK

Bad information results, more often than not, in bad decisions. Everything is going on well in Iraq and they had WMD are examples of bad information. Decisions? Just read the facts from the impartial people in Iraq. There isn't a person on the planet with any brains that thinks that is going to turn out well. I'd like to think we are doing the right thing and in a generation that part of the world will be better, but my guess is that it won't. What is it that thinks suddently everything will improve. Generally, the law of unintended consequences results in things getting worse.

Posted by: William Jensen on July 25, 2006 at 11:46 PM | PERMALINK

Why you believe what you believe,... because,...

Jews are ORGANIZED LIARS.

Another famous example of an outrageous LIE pushed by the Jews is the HolyCo$t.

If you do not think that Jews have lied to you about the HolyCo$t for the last 60 years, consider just this small topic:

Why Precisely Zyklon B?

One might wonder why the SS are supposed to have used Zyklon B for mass murder, after all the Jewish led Soviets, killed countless millions either simply by shooting them in the back of the neck or allowing them to die in camps under miserable conditions.

Theoretically, one could, at that time, have chosen nitrogen (N2), carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), phosgene (COCl2), chlorine (Cl2), hydrogen cyanide (HCN), nerve gases such as Tabun and Sarin, Diesel engine exhaust, internal combustion engine exhaust, producer gas, coke or city gas, or process gas.

At the end of the war, Germany had over 12,000 tons of the nerve gases Tabun and Sarin stockpiled (the main storage area was at Krappitz, now Krapowice, about a hundred miles from Auschwitz).

Hitler had ordered that it not be used, except in retaliation to a gas attack, and it never was used. Such an attack, however, was ordered by the mad-man Churchill, in a drunken outburst, on July 6, 1944. In a rare display of steadfastness, his chiefs of staff overruled him.

The poison gas CO (lethal above 0.1%) was available in limitless quantities and in lethal concentrations at giveaway prices, substantially cheaper than Zyklon B, on almost every street corner in the Third Reich: hundreds of thousands of vehicles all over German-occupied Europe had been equipped with producer gas generators (produces up to 35% by volume CO), since it was necessary to convert to alternate fuels due to the Allied oil blockade.

No need to transport people thousands of miles by train just to kill them (this was always a load of crap anyway, no one transports people thousands of miles just to kill them), just use a car/truck equipped with a producer gas generator, and an old barn to kill em on the spot.

So why use the expensive insecticide Zyklon B when essentially costless producer gas (carbon monoxide) generators were already present in their hundreds of thousands.

Because they didn't. The whole HolyCo$t story is a total fabrication, that's all.

Posted by: watcher on July 25, 2006 at 11:46 PM | PERMALINK

We are not safer because the invasion of Iraq did nothing to:

- Take a stab at those who attacked us on 9/11 (AQ, mostly in Pakistan, but around the world in thousands in many countries, cells independent from the leadership, becoming even more splintered after 9/11). We did this in Afghanistan. Instead, an entire rebuilding of a country; public utilities, armed forces, police, hospitals, schools, government, solving years old sectarian, ethnic & tribal rifts, in a Muslim Arab land that did not attack us is now our responsibility. We did this in response to getting attacked on 9/11 by individuals who's warped reasons for hating us is that we wage war, occupation and exploitation on Muslims, especially Arabs. Thanks, Mr. President.

- Preventing them from committing additional attacks (more attacks, though not here in the US due to our fine law enforcement, sometimes locally knowing things that our own Federal DHS doesn't know). The FBI & local law enforcement (including the NYPD) have prevented several attacks. All planned here. All having nothing to do with Iraq. Great Britain is certainly not safer.

- And taking the larger stab at the violent beliefs of islamic extremism, which it has not. It has only become more popular and widespread. This will not change for sometime, because modernity is needed. Unless you're supporting forced modernity. But then you must believe that the stab can and must only be done with the knife.

Not Islam as a whole. But in many cultures and societies in the world that are embracing extremism. Extremism of any sort is never good, whether it's Christian, Muslim or Jew.

That's the real threat. And how does an invasion of Iraq stimulate that thought pattern? Does it scare them into not attacking? Or does it embolden and increase recruiting? It's much bigger than any one invaded and reformed country, that's why the Germany/Japan comparison is misplaced.

Specifically, though, AQ and every single member should have been our sole focus, in the near term. The impotent Sadam should have been farther down the list.


It's time Dems took their heads out of their asses and focused!


Posted by: D-Vega on July 25, 2006 at 11:55 PM | PERMALINK

second that emmotion, trex. but in some ways, this has been a fascinating thread. we now know Al limits himself to being a rabid, partisan bigot. Jay, however, is a truly delusional no-life timewaster who would probably even insist that his hero Duh-bya is an alien if a "liberal" said otherwise.

Posted by: george 3rd on July 25, 2006 at 11:58 PM | PERMALINK

thewatcher:

> hydrogen cyanide (HCN),

Idiot. Can't you read? As I posted from Wikipedia
above, Zyklon B is essentially an HCN delivery system.

> Diesel engine exhaust, internal combustion engine exhaust,

And, as the article stated, *most* of the
death camps used internal combustion exhaust.

> So why use the expensive insecticide Zyklon B

Zyklon A was the insecticide, boy genius.

> when essentially costless producer gas (carbon monoxide)
> generators were already present in their hundreds of thousands.

The Nazis liked to experiment. Zyklon B was originally used
as a de-lousing agent, and they doubtless had some stockpiled.

So they got creative with some overly effective bug spray.

> Because they didn't. The whole HolyCo$t
> story is a total fabrication, that's why.

And there you are, reduced to shouting an unsupported assertion.

See Wikipedia on Zyklon B for the forensic research documentation.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 25, 2006 at 11:59 PM | PERMALINK

watcher:

Hope you enjoyed your Zyklon B enema every bit as much as I enjoyed giving it to you :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 12:00 AM | PERMALINK

Interesting point, watcher. In fact, many of the "Einsatzgruppen" responsible for exterminating the Jews of Eastern Europe were equipped with mobile carbon monoxide death vans. The exhaust of the engine was funneled into the rear cabin of the van, and the Jewish victims were locked in.

Only a minority of the Jews killed during the Holocaust were gassed to death in concentration camps like Auschwitz. Most were simply shot or gassed in or near the villages they lived in, in Poland, Ukraine and so on. You can read Chris Brown's excellent "Ordinary Men" for the details of one of the German units responsible for this horrible work. They were ordinary policemen. At first they found the work repugnant, and some refused to do it, but eventually everyone got used to it.

Of course, if all the Jews of Eastern Europe had in fact been sent to Palestine, as you claim, instead of killed, then Israel would have had an overwhelming Jewish majority of some 5 million to 500,000 at its inception, instead of a narrow Jewish majority of 700,000 or so. And then none of this conflict would have been necessary. It's all Britain's fault for refusing to let Hitler ship his Jews to British Palestine! Oh well.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 26, 2006 at 12:04 AM | PERMALINK

This is a fascinating little comment by Kevin because it shows how even he, a pretty honest fellow, can only see things through his eyes. Since he does not think history will credit us for bringing decmocracy and freedom to Iraq or that matters have improved, then the people disagreeing with him must be stupid or uninformed. Liberals has such a know it all character.

On WMD, Iraq had them, but nothing like we expected. So technically, the answer should be yes, but it is a bad question. The "strong links" wiht Aqaeda response is surprising since that has not been proven at this point, but again the phrasing of the question is not good. I think a lot of Americans feel Iraq's links/sympathies with Aqaeda were close enough to be a danger, again a view that liberals disagree with so the people with that view must be stupid.

Posted by: brian on July 26, 2006 at 12:04 AM | PERMALINK

Bobby boy, I couldn't actually find a correct statement in your reply:

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zyklon_B

Zyklon B,... cyanide-based insecticide,....

Posted by: watcher on July 26, 2006 at 12:11 AM | PERMALINK

Republicrat blathered:

"The links between the Baathist regime and al Qaeda were like spider webs: exceedingly thin, almost invisible, and very strong -- quite sufficient for trapping unwary prey."

Yep, the Baathists and al Qaeda used super-duper-secret telepathic communications through the 7th involuted layer of the Vulcan subspace dimension to collaborate in their hyper-evil schemes and send ultra-secret America-hating messages to each other that only they could read. Those wily bastards.

Meanwhile, back in the Real World of 2003-2006 Planet Earth, the politico-religious fanatic al-Qaeda and the secular Baathists continue to utterly hate each other's guts and Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein continue stewing in their mutual and very deep-rooted antipathy for each other. (While Osama, of course, laughs his evil guffaw at the monumental stupidity of the United States at diverting their attention to Saddam Hussein, who had heretofore been one of Osama's most bitter enemies.)

Dude, look, here's a purple Reality Pill for you-- Saddam and al-Qaeda were not colluding since the two were raging enemies of each other. Osama's political philosophy and his hatred of the Middle East's secular leaders made Saddam and his secular Baathists just about Public Enemy Numero Uno, aside from Osama chief bete noire, the Saudi royal family members themselves. Saddam collaborating with Osama would be tantamount to JFK giving the map of the Texas Schoolhouse Depository to Lee Harvey Oswald, or Abe Lincoln giving a free gun and free movie ticket passes to John Wilkes Booth. They were *not* collaborating.

What I find so bothersome about this, is that it really does represent a salient threat to the very survival of our democracy. Even if the reasoning is occasionally flawed, multiplicity of opinion and debate are without doubt a net plus for democracy in the US or elsewhere, even if messy at times. OTOH, uh, "multiplicity" of facts-- is a disaster. There are innumerable "correct" opinions-- there's only one correct fact. 2+2 = 4. Period. It doesn't equal 5 or 6 if somebody has an opinion that it should. If you pay $10.00 for groceries that cost $7.00, you get $3.00 back, even if you'd be much happier getting $30 or $40 back in your pocket, since 10-7 = 3. Period. The sky above is blue, not black or brown or green. If a liberal says the sky is blue, or a conservative says that Mt. Everest is the tallest mountain, each is right, and that's the end of the argument-- those are ironclad facts, not opinions to be debated, and if you get facts wrong, you royally screw things up.

This in fact is one big reason why we're so hosed in Iraq, and why we may be blundering into an even bigger fiasco (the very appropriate title of Thomas E. Ricks's latest book about the Iraq disaster) in Iran-- the Bush Administration, and frankly quite a few hawkish DLC Democrats as well, have been trying to run mission-critical operations on fairy tales and wishful thinking, rather than facts, however uncomfortable they may be.

It's funny, because I've been basically out of the loop for 2 weeks, too busy to really follow much of the news, when I just happened to turn on the network news tonight. The experience was something comparable to Rip Van Winkle waking up from a 20-day (rather than 20-year) catnap, looking around him, and wondering, "How did things get this utterly f***ed up so quickly?" I have a sense that this way of governing the country by ideology, loyalty, and fairy tale may have a lot to do with it. Obsession with ideology rather than reality wrecked the Soviet Union and quite a few other once-powerful nations before it. It will do the same thing to the United States pretty soon. As soon as a country, especially its governing class, becomes more fixated on ideology and loyalty than fundamental facts and cold yet accurate logic, it's on a straight and headlong path to disaster.

Posted by: Wes Ulm on July 26, 2006 at 12:15 AM | PERMALINK

brian:

These things are not matters of opinion.

Gahh, nothing's so repulsive than listening to conservatives arguing like radical relativists. "Teach the controversy!" my left butt cheek.

Saddam had no *usable* WMD and he had no *functional* al Qaeda connections.

End of story -- or are you some sort of decontructionist who doubts the very possibility of objective truth?

If you are, then you're not a conservative -- you're a nihilist.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 12:16 AM | PERMALINK

watcher:

What makes you think a rabid anti-semite Holocaust denier like yourself is equipped to judge the accuracy of historical documentation?

You have an axe to grind. You manipulate facts to fit a fixed agenda.

That ain't exactly scholarship, pukebreath.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 12:20 AM | PERMALINK

"In fact, many of the "Einsatzgruppen" responsible for exterminating the Jews of Eastern Europe were equipped with mobile carbon monoxide death vans. The exhaust of the engine was funneled into the rear cabin of the van, and the Jewish victims were locked in."

What he is not telling you is that Jews claim that the exhaust gas was from DIESEL engines (there are other tales in the Nuremberg transcript that describe people being steamed to death, thousand being electrified hundreds at a time, and a magic weapon (never fully described) that evaporated ten thousand Jews all at once).

Sorry but you Jews stuffed up. Your ignorance of science meant that you chose to use DIESEL engines in your fable.

Unfortunately for you DIESEL engines do not produce enough carbon monoxide to kill. The will make you quite sick though.

If you had chosen internal combustion engines, or producer gas generators, your fable would have been believable, but you didn't (not that you would know what your clans fable is anyway).

Answer this question: Why transport people hundreds/thousands of miles just to kill them?

Posted by: watcher on July 26, 2006 at 12:22 AM | PERMALINK

watcher:

You're arguing with inference, not fact.

The Nazis were anal-retentive bureacracy freaks.

Why do we have centralized DMVs when we could register our cars online and pick up the authorized license plates at the local Home Depot?

But you don't need to rebut this with inference.

The evidence was documented by the Nazis themselves. Literally tons of paper they never got around to destroying.

Wikipedia *owns* your ass, punk.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 12:27 AM | PERMALINK

Kevin, my brother, I will register if it will save me from this crazy fuck. Please, help us! And yes, Henry/Charlie/Chuckles/Alice/Jay/Brian/Tbroz/FF/nut, I'm the Islamofascist begging Kevin to get rid of the Holocaust denier.

Posted by: enozinho on July 26, 2006 at 12:29 AM | PERMALINK

enozinho:

You're one of my favorite posters on here, I just want you to know that.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 12:31 AM | PERMALINK

Thanks Bob, you too!

Posted by: enozinho on July 26, 2006 at 12:33 AM | PERMALINK

Thank you, Wes.

It's instructive to compare wingnut rhetoric to some of the remaining verifiably fascist rhetoric emanating from government propaganda units around the world - China's, say. One thing they have in common is the elevation of minor exceptional quibbles that have nothing to do with the main point of an argument into supposedly vast discrepancies which prove the dishonesty of the accuser. Say, China:

"We categorically deny the US State Department's accusations that freedom of expression in China is restricted. In fact China has over 4,000 television stations and 50,000 newspapers! So we can see that these accusations are completely false and are launched by certain foreign forces with an ulterior motive of harming China."

Compare wingnuts:

"The dhimmicrats who claim Saddam had no WMD are again shown to be full of crap. In fact one cache of almost 500 shells with mustard or sarin gas was discovered near the Syrian border! Obviously the dhimmicrats are just blame America first multiculti pussies who want to coddle the terrorists cause they're too afraid to fight."

The susceptibility to hate propaganda and to what Glenn Greenwald calls an authoritarian conservative personality cult is one of the central tensions in modern politics. It seems to have been hovering in the US since the '60s. And now we're in the thick of the battle.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 26, 2006 at 12:34 AM | PERMALINK

brooksfoe:

Word

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 12:39 AM | PERMALINK

Pill, if you are reading this, I consider Republicans to be the scum of the earth.

My complaint is that my so-called Democratic Leaders are for the most part gutless wonders more interested in reelection than in doing the right thing.

I think if some of the bothered to do the right thing we would all sleep better at night, AND they would get reelected.

For the record, I am a yellow dog Democrat.

Posted by: jerry on July 26, 2006 at 12:51 AM | PERMALINK

brooksfoe:

Your post encompasses wingnuts like Al and Freedom Fighter extremely well, but it doesn't account for the likes of Henry(Charlie?) and Jay who have been all over this thread.

They seem to relish the idea of "winning" a false argument, and putting forward ideas that they don't even believe. They seem to prefer bullshit over bluster. I'm not sure what you would call them. Maybe Greenwald can coin a phrase?

Posted by: enozinho on July 26, 2006 at 12:55 AM | PERMALINK

Why is anyone bothering to respond to watcher? Arguing with a Holocaust denier, or any hardcore bigot in general, is like trying to convince a heroin addict that even if they think they see a giant pink dragon speaking Aramaic, it is not actually there. You cannot expect logic to work on someone caught in their own neurotic mobius strip.

Also, why does anyone bother responding to Jay or ex-liberal anymore? They aren't exactly someone you can have a reasonable debate with like George Will. They seem to have replaced partisanship for having a worldview. You can't expect to win an argument against someone who keeps on moving the goalposts and builds their worldview on false facts and strawman arguments driven by domestic political partisanship.

Posted by: Reality Man on July 26, 2006 at 12:55 AM | PERMALINK

"If Americans are stupid enough to elect an ambulatory pile of feces like George W. Bush - twice - they deserve everything bad that happens to them. I am so headed for Canuckland..."

That's interesting, this is about the 10th time in the past month I've encountered a bright, educated USAian en route to emigrating from the US-- usually to Europe (Italian, German, French, Spanish language tapes are selling like gangbusters), Canada, even South America.

On the one hand, I have to admit I'm not surprised: millions of educated, critical-thinking, and often rather underpaid American engineers and professionals are forced to endure the torment of being led by a moron named George W. Bush who thinks God told him to invade Iraq and now thinks the voices in his head are pushing him to spread the war further. It must get to be intolerable-- in Europe, Canuckstan and even in much of stereotypically backward South America, people actually have that stubborn tendency to use facts rather than myths and just-so-stories to make fundamentally important decisions of state. Imagine that.

OTOH, this suggests that the US will be even more miserable very soon since millions of the best-educated, most critical individuals we have left are throwing up their hands and emigrating. Maybe it's just one of those painful but necessary "adjustment" sorts of things that a nation has no choice but to suffer when it goes off the collective deep end like this.

Posted by: Braddock on July 26, 2006 at 12:56 AM | PERMALINK

Another thing: Why is it that this site seems to draw more batshit crazy right-wingers to it than the average liberal blog? I would say the more frequent conservative commentator at, say, TPM Cafe isn't this weird and insane.

Posted by: Reality Man on July 26, 2006 at 12:58 AM | PERMALINK

OTOH, this suggests that the US will be even more miserable very soon since millions of the best-educated, most critical individuals we have left are throwing up their hands and emigrating. Maybe it's just one of those painful but necessary "adjustment" sorts of things that a nation has no choice but to suffer when it goes off the collective deep end like this.
Posted by: Braddock on July 26, 2006 at 12:56 AM | PERMALINK

Think how ironic it would be if Bush ends up being responsible for America's version of China's Communist Revolution, sending most of those with the higher social capital and financial resources abroad. We are already experiencing a net loss of highly-educated immigrant professionals to other nations for the first time in years. Really, if this is what human history has led to, the most powerful nation in history making Bush the most powerful man in history, humanity is either going to have to wake up and get its shit together or maybe just hand the world to the monkeys or dolphins or something.

Posted by: Reality Man on July 26, 2006 at 1:03 AM | PERMALINK

I'm betting on the dolphins. Rising sea levels.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 26, 2006 at 1:11 AM | PERMALINK

Reality Man and Braddock,

Your comments reminded me of one of these little Federalist-Papers-ish anthropo-geopolitical mental exercises I've been having lately (great for those idle moments on the LA freeways). Namely: I wonder if the US now essentially has the worst of both worlds-- for us and the world at large-- in that we have a specialized technical class with a high-tech economy and high-tech weapons, yet the apparent utter and absolute failure for these critical thinking skills to permeate into the all-important realm of foreign and domestic government policy.

Think about it. There seems to a sort of "natural check-and-balance" at work to prevent any given country from doing too much damage to the rest of the world, in that 1. the capacity in the modern era to build big, bad, powerful weapons tends to mesh with the need for a large, capable, and very "reality-based" technical class, which in turn tends to plant root best in a country where critical thinking in general is respected and a government is led by wise and cool-headed, peace-preferring officials and technocrats. Thus, high-tech societies and high-tech weapons-- at least on a large scale-- tend to go hand-in-hand with societies in which the critical thinking required for that technology spills over into political and social debates, especially for foreign policy.
2. Countries that move in the direction of dogmatic, belligerent, intolerant theocracies also tend to be behind technologically and also, in turn, less of a military threat, since their anti-science and anti-critical thinking attitudes in the political realm tend to translate into an environment that is hostile to technical fields.

It seems like the US is in Group 3, with the worst possible combination. We have a very competent and reality-based technical class, capable of manufacturing and deploying thousands of incredibly deadly weapons that are actively used against the world. Yet somehow, professionals with such critical-thinking skills are forced to "stick to their knitting," and these abilities don't seem to filter much into the realm of policy-- leaving our policy to be decided by among the most ideological, doctrinaire, dogmatic among us.

So policy in the USA is basically led by a coterie of folks who sincerely believe that starting a big, bloody Middle Eastern War is their Express Ticket to a Rapture up to the clouds, that stem cells are the Boogeyman incarnate, and for all practical purposes believe that Saddam was best buddies with Osama bin Laden-- which is the practical equivalent of, "Saddam likes to hold big birthday bashes in his palaces with Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy as his special invited guests." Normally, a penchant for such auto-stultification in the political class would be coupled with a generalized anti-science and anti-critical attitude that would deprive a nation of its technological edge and its big, bad weapons. But in the US, these anti-science, anti-reality, anti-logic policymakers are availed of the most advanced, reality-based weapons that money can buy from a very capable technical class-- whose critical thinking skills are nonetheless isolated increasingly from the policy arena. This strikes me as an utter clusterf*** in the making, since it seems as though the natural correctives are somehow being bypassed.

Or maybe they aren't. I too have been encountering some old college pals, mostly techies, who are packing up and emigrating to Western Europe (Austria and Spain seem to be the destinations du jour). I thought it was just a quirky data blip among an unusual sample of incredibly smart but slightly embittered whiz kids who were ticked off at the way the tech industry here has gone south.

But this is real, huh? Our technical/professional class in the US really is heading for warmer (and moderately less lobotomized) climes abroad? I guess it had to happen sometime-- there's only so much unadultered policy BS you can take. At one point, you come to realize that these policy decisions among the bigwigs do affect us, and it feels like being on the Titanic and seeing the iceberg ahead, while the captain and most of the crew and passengers are stupidly and drunkenly ignoring you as they steam full speed ahead.

Posted by: Wes on July 26, 2006 at 1:37 AM | PERMALINK

Saddam had no *usable* WMD and he had no *functional* al Qaeda connections.

Bob,

You are changing the debate in an attempt to salvage some kind of 'gain'. The core fact is Saddam was extremely dangerous and in a post 9/11 environment could not be tolerated unless he changed his act and clearly cooperated in every way, every time.

He made a mockery of the weapons inspectors, the UN, the EU and the USA. The only reason we now know what we know is because we invaded. The guessing is over. We also know our intelligence was pitiful. It could just as easily been worse (as it was with Kaddafy). The critics are merely armchair toadies. We're all brilliant in hindsight.

The good news here is a majority of Americans are capable of applying perspective in spite of the MSM onslaught. It isn't necessary that Saddam planned 9/11 but that he supported terrorists in general and cooperated with Al Qaeda. It isn't necessary that he had nuclear bombs. It was enough that he was determined to get WMDs and too risky to let him try.

The liberals in the MSM have been thoroughly repudiated. It's even worse when you consider the Gallup polls showing deep and widespread support for Israel. They've been dedicated toward Israel's enemies and so anti-Iraq for 4 years they have to be devasted at these results. Few people get their news from ABCNews.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 2:07 AM | PERMALINK

Wes,

I have some random thoughts along those lines, but I have not seen them put together coherently like that before. I don't know if your theory it true, but it seems interesting. On the one hand, we have immigration policies that kept out many of the minds behind the internet boom and sent them back to their home countries, primarily India. On the other hand, countries like you have dynamic, growing democracies like India, Ireland and Taiwan and opening autocracies like China and Vietnam becoming more attractive to the brains they've lost to the US so that they return even after intially planning to stay permanently here. Our middle class has not seen real wages grow in 30 years, it now takes 6 generations to move from the bottom to the top of the socioeconomic ladder while in Europe it takes much less time, but Europe is starting to rot due to their own ethnic-cultural essentialism. We move closer to European views on national identity every day as our fears of Latinos and Arabs grow. We just may end up seeing what we considered American dynamism better practice in various Asian countries, Chile, Brazil, Ireland, South Africa, etc. while our allies like Australia, Korea and Thailand nudge closer to China and away from us. That doesn't even take into account the fact that until our leadership takes renewable and sustainable energy seriously, we are going to be dependent on countries like Iran, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela for our energy resources while competing for scarce supplies with countries like China that know how to work with those regimes to get what they want. Bush is probably going to go down as the man who wasted grand opportunities more than any leader in history. Our only chance is for the American people to realize that anti-intellectualism is self-defeating, that our power is both grand and finite, that dynamic countries that adapt to change and engage the world will lead the world, that to be considered a great nation you have to hold yourself to a higher standard and recognize your own faults, that acting in fear is not the same as strength, that confidence and pigheadedness are not the same things and that to build the world of your ideals you have to set an example and hold yourself to the same standards you hold others. The exceptional are not exceptional for any tautological reason, but because they surpass the standards that are applied to all but do not complain about being held to such standards. Can the American people do this? If we can help make a better, more liberal world by acting intelligently, history will judge us well. However, it will not just be a matter of acting better than the Soviets or the Nazis. It will also mean setting the standard for all great powers, especially the democracies in both absolute and relative terms. However, the current leadership and political talking heads are more concerned with provincial squabbles over machismo. Neoconservatism is proving itself to be just another form of overcompensation.

Posted by: Reality Man on July 26, 2006 at 2:08 AM | PERMALINK

Another thing: Why is it that this site seems to draw more batshit crazy right-wingers to it than the average liberal blog? I would say the more frequent conservative commentator at, say, TPM Cafe isn't this weird and insane.

Oh, that's probably a good thing. I love TPM, TPM Cafe, and TPM Muck, but the forums are pretty uninteresting. I love Atrios, but his forum is 100% Cliff, Carla, Norm, and Frasier. Much too full of in-jokes.

I have been banned on plenty of right wing sites that are trying to control their message.

For all of Kevin's many faults, too numerous to discuss here, he actually has a nice balance of commenters. Interesting, fun, and no banninations.

The only posts I can't stand on Kevin's forum are the Chinese ones.

Posted by: jerry on July 26, 2006 at 2:08 AM | PERMALINK

As the prewar facts become clearer and Iraq spirals further into civil war, the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality.

Morgana Seawalker at http://www.astroworld.us writes:
European cities are posting all time high records, and American people are still questioning if Global Warming is a reality. That nasty national delusional bugger is t. Neptune p. (parallel acts like a conjunction) US n. Moon. It is a fourteen year transit that wont clear its fog and smog till March 2009 when of course the new Rez is faced with the mess Bush created and exacerbated.

It's an astrological interpretation; one explanation that's as good as any other.

As of this past Saturday night, in the US natal chart, Mars went retrograde by progression. The first time ever. In the history of the country, Mars has been direct. It will remain retrograde by progression for the next 80 years. It means that Americans are going to slowly rethink our whole way of being in the world (by choice or necessity), and reconsider war, empire, domination.

That would not be a bad thing.

Posted by: Rachel on July 26, 2006 at 2:38 AM | PERMALINK

"Half of Americans now say Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the United States invaded the country in 2003 up from 36 percent last year"

Pls note that this poll will be mentioned in news all over the world. It won't change much in the prevailing opinion about US americans, though. Most of the world already believes that yankees are too dumb to understand anything. You're the laughingstock of the planet!

Grrrrr. It's hopeless.

Posted by: Gray on July 26, 2006 at 5:25 AM | PERMALINK

This makes me think about Kevin's previous post:
"The gold standard of IQ research has long been studies of identical twins adopted into different homes."

Kevin, are there any studies about twins adopted into homes in different countries, say, the US and France, for instance?

There must be a reason for this spreading desease of idiocy!

Posted by: Gray on July 26, 2006 at 5:35 AM | PERMALINK

Mars went retrograde by progression! This is great. Pithiest description of the history of Bush foreign policy I've heard yet.

Posted by: brooksfoe on July 26, 2006 at 5:38 AM | PERMALINK

Amazing, isn't it? As the prewar facts become clearer and Iraq spirals further into civil war, the American public becomes ever more withdrawn from reality. Even if complaints from us shrill liberal bloggers are dismissed, surely poll results like this should get the media pondering the question of whether they're doing a very good job of reporting what's really going on.

As much as I enjoy piling on the media, I think the answer is simpler than that.


"You can lead a whore to culture, but you can't make her think."

~Dorothy Parker

Posted by: Maeven on July 26, 2006 at 5:50 AM | PERMALINK

"Still clutching at Clinton's penis when all else fails?"

jay: That was Monica.

but the difference with the current president?...

its america that is wearing the blue dress..

Posted by: thisspaceavailable on July 26, 2006 at 6:07 AM | PERMALINK


sportsfan79: I wonder why 95% of the armed forces votes Republican??


i wonder why....

For the 2nd straight year, The U.S. Army has raised its maximum enlistment age in order to make its recruiting goals amid the Iraq war. Now you can be 42 and still volunteer. - 6/21/06

and...

why...

"The Army spent approximately $426 million on reenlistment bonuses in fiscal year 2005 or almost 8 times more than its budgeted amount to meet its retention goals." - gao.gov

Posted by: thisspaceavailable on July 26, 2006 at 6:11 AM | PERMALINK

UnReality Man said: "Why is anyone bothering to respond to watcher? Arguing with a HolyCo$t denier,........ "

Typical Jew, telling others not to discuss things on the basis of his "experience" when he himself has never bothered to discuss anything at all about the subject.

Typical, crazy, hypocrite Jew.

UnReality Man has never even made an attempt to argue even one point of contention. What does this say about UnReality Man?

Let me try it,.... Why is anyone bothering to respond to Reality Man? Arguing with a nutcase Jew is,........

Posted by: watcher on July 26, 2006 at 6:25 AM | PERMALINK

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Posted by: dd on July 26, 2006 at 6:30 AM | PERMALINK

"The more I debated with them the more familiar I became with their argumentative tactics.

At the outset they counted upon the stupidity of their opponents, but when they got so entangled that they could not find a way out they played the trick of acting as innocent simpletons.

Should they fail, in spite of their tricks of logic, they acted as if they could not understand the counter arguments and bolted away to another field of discussion.

They would lay down truisms and platitudes; and, if you accepted these, then they were applied to other problems and matters of an essentially different nature from the original theme.

If you faced them with this point they would escape again, and you could not bring them to make any precise statement.

Whenever one tried to get a firm grip on any of these apostles ones hand grasped only jelly and slime which slipped through the fingers and combined again into a solid mass a moment afterwards.

If your adversary felt forced to give in to your argument, on account of the observers present, and if you then thought that at last you had gained ground, a surprise was in store for you on the following day. The Jew would be utterly oblivious to what had happened the day before, and he would start once again by repeating his former absurdities, as if nothing had happened.

Should you become indignant and remind him of yesterdays defeat, he pretended astonishment and could not remember anything, except that on the previous day he had proved that his statements were correct. Sometimes I was dumbfounded.

I do not know what amazed me the more the abundance of their verbiage or the artful way in which they dressed up their falsehoods. I gradually came to hate them."

A. Hitler (on the subject of arguing with Jews).

Posted by: watcher on July 26, 2006 at 9:03 AM | PERMALINK

it's a sad moment of self-realization, but I think I've just arrived at the tipping point where I deeply feel that the world would be better off with American power in the world on the wane. We suck, and we deserve to loose power and BTW, Bush and Co. have set the conditions so we are and will). I hope whatever mix fills the gaps does a better job than we have so far this millenium. RIP good old You Ess of Ayy.

Posted by: Trypticon on July 26, 2006 at 10:36 AM | PERMALINK

I think Watcher is Don P.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 10:43 AM | PERMALINK

Trypticon:

May I suggest moving to a "better" country then?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 10:45 AM | PERMALINK

Another thing: Why is it that this site seems to draw more batshit crazy right-wingers to it than the average liberal blog?

We've got paid rightwing commentaters. It is part of a PR campaign giving college republicans money to tide them over until they can hold office in Iran after we invade.

Seriously, though, some of the frequent right wing commenters are paid. Most of the nuts are simply nuts.

Posted by: Tripp on July 26, 2006 at 10:48 AM | PERMALINK

thisspaceavailable:

At least with Monica, Ken Starr had DNA proof of said ejaculation. The only proof you have are the sporadic ravings on Huffington Post. As for the military's "creative" methods to meet recruiting goals, would you rather have a draft?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 10:51 AM | PERMALINK

As for the military's "creative" methods to meet recruiting goals, would you rather
have a draft?

The point is rather about the reasons the Army is struggling to meet its recruiting goals - namely that people are unwilling to sign up for an unpopular, disastrous war that they don't support - you dork.

BTW, how come you're not over there fighting for the very survival of the GOP? Still worn out from pretending to have served in Desert Storm? Or just suffering from PTSD at getting caught lying about it?

Posted by: trex on July 26, 2006 at 11:18 AM | PERMALINK

Actually I take it back. Folks that troll with hate speech should be a) banned, and b) have their posts, IP addresses, and any other like information posted in a sidebar.

Posted by: jerry on July 26, 2006 at 11:24 AM | PERMALINK

trex: BTW, how come you're not over there fighting for the very survival of the GOP? Still worn out from pretending to have served in Desert Storm? Or just suffering from PTSD at getting caught lying about it?

Back when Charlie/Doug M./Thomas was "Paul" about a year or two back he was claiming to be an Annapolis grad and former Navy officer. I caught him at that too when it turned out that for a sailor he seemed to have a shocking lack of knowledge of military protocol and tactics. It seems that, like Jeff Gannon nee Guckert, he has a fetish for lying about his past service.

Posted by: Stefan on July 26, 2006 at 11:51 AM | PERMALINK

trex (and Stefan now too):

Regardless of the reasons, would you rather see the draft return than those other "creative" methods of recruitment? And, just to show you how easy it is to answer a question, here you go: I am too old to go "over there" but have never pretended to have served in Desert Storm, so I can't very well suffer from PTSD or get caught lying about it.

jerry:

I agree with you.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 12:02 PM | PERMALINK

Reality Man wrote:
Also, why does anyone bother responding to Jay or ex-liberal anymore? They aren't exactly someone you can have a reasonable debate with like George Will.

I'll field that question, RM. The reason is that the thoughtful progressives on this site comprise approximately 10% of posters. The conservatives comprise about 5%, and the loony libs comprise 85%.

That's why they respond to ex-liberal and Jay (and myself also). They aren't here to debate. They are here to spew vitriol.

It is also interesting to note that ex-liberal, Jay, American Hawk, and Al are 100% more respectful in their use of language than those they are supposedly "trolling" (read Hostile, Advocate for God, and about a hundred others).

Posted by: sportsfan79 on July 26, 2006 at 12:06 PM | PERMALINK

I am too old to go "over there" but have never pretended to have served in Desert Storm, so I can't very well suffer from PTSD or get caught lying about it.

You're not too old, Charlie/Cheney/DougM/Henry/Thomas/etc.

But you are a lousy liar which I guess goes with the territory in the world of a half-wit.

Jesus doesn't like liars, Charlie. It isn't the Christian thing to do, and neither is the vast majority of what Bush has done in office.

But, please, keep boring us with your wisdom.

Posted by: obscure on July 26, 2006 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

Wolfdaughter -
wonderful post, and an excellent example of informed, responsible citizenship. We need more of you!

Kevin, is there any chance you could do something about watcher? I mean, I'm as big a fan as anyone of a wide-open marketplace of ideas, but in this case . . .

Posted by: Dan S. on July 26, 2006 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

Most of the world already believes that yankees are too dumb to understand anything. You're the laughingstock of the planet

Do you really want to post this on a liberal website? They're already miserable. We know they're having trouble reproducing while the religious folk reproduce in abundance. Nothing is worse to a lib than to got through life knowing the French are upset with them. They'll never have kids now. The world is just too unfriendly a place.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 1:01 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

I thought your post of 2:07a.m. was great stuff. Nobody replied to it, but you nailed it.

Posted by: sportsfan79 on July 26, 2006 at 1:04 PM | PERMALINK

obscure:

Last I checked, 67 is indeed too old for active military service, and I am not Charlie/Cheney/ DougM/Henry. Since when have any of them EVER trashed this Administration over Iraq? I have repeatedly posted that our military was, and remains, under-resourced for this mission. I just don't happen to disagree with most of the left's other criticisms, that's all. But, if you'd rather not discuss those disagreements in a rational manner, fine by me.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 1:22 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

> Saddam had no *usable* WMD and he had no
> *functional* al Qaeda connections.

> You are changing the debate in an attempt
> to salvage some kind of 'gain'.

Wooten, that's pure projection. You know, in your own way you're
every bit as as odious a propagandist as watcher. You don't argue
with logic. You don't care a whit about values. At the end of the
day it's a pure Machiavellian calculation. You're a nihilist, bro.

I am the one who is stating the simple, unchallengable facts.

> The core fact is Saddam was extremely dangerous and in a post
> 9/11 environment could not be tolerated unless he changed his
> act and clearly cooperated in every way, every time.

Wooten ... *rolling eyes* ... that isn't a "fact," core or otherwise.
That's an evaluation. I know you'd never dream of taking a philosophy
class -- but I'd suggest you look into the difference between them.

> He made a mockery of the weapons inspectors, the UN, the EU and the
> USA. The only reason we now know what we know is because we invaded.

That's bullshit, Wooten. Read Blix and ElBaradei's final reports.
The only way you try rebut them is to personally attack these men.

> The guessing is over. We also know our intelligence was
> pitiful. It could just as easily been worse (as it was
> with Kaddafy). The critics are merely armchair toadies.

The only toadies in this picture are people like yourself, my friend.

> We're all brilliant in hindsight.

Wooten, sound intelligence is not contingent on the quality of data.
If that were the case, there'd be no need for intelligence. We'd just
look out the window and act accordingly. Sound intelligence is the
evaluative judgments we make on a necessarily incomplete fact set.

People knew *at the time* that the intelligence was bullshit.

Just ask Colin Powell; he should know better than most.

(And we can all recite the rant you'll launch into about how Colin,
bless his heart, was so "useful" to the Bush team. You're not
only a heartless nihilist, you're as predictable as Barry Manilow.)

> The good news here is a majority of Americans are capable
> of applying perspective in spite of the MSM onslaught.

The "MSM onslaught" these days is comprised of right-wing media
outlets. Even wingnut commentators acknowledge where media hegemony
lies today. "Liberal mainstream media" is old hat. And, you know,
you gleefully acknowledge this in *other* places -- when you go on
about how many people watch Fox and listen to ClearChannel.

Well, you can't have it both ways, Wooten. If that's the case,
then it's the wingnuts who comprise the "MSM onslaught," not us.

> It isn't necessary that Saddam planned 9/11 but
> that he supported terrorists in general

"Terrorists in general" didn't attack us. The Saudis and Pakistanis
are in bed up to their Mohammedean facial hair in "terrorists in
general," and yet they're our biggest allies in the region.

> and cooperated with Al Qaeda.

He did like hell. At very best, he allowed Ansar al Islam (an
indigenous group not affiliated with al Q) to operate in the north
to harrass the Kurds. You ever hear Osama on Saddam's regime?

> It isn't necessary that he had nuclear bombs. It was enough that
> he was determined to get WMDs and too risky to let him try.

And that's why we had the sanctions regime. And all the European
hand-wringing in creation could never prevent a US veto on the
Security Council to keep them operative. "Oh the babies killed,
the babies killed." Yeah, well -- the babies killed in balls-out
civil war are even worse -- because their parents are dead, too.

> The liberals in the MSM have been thoroughly repudiated.

We've been *vindicated*, Wooten. Iraq is already de-facto
partitioned; federalism is in its death throes. Democracy
in the Mideast and so-called preventive war in Iraq led
*directly* to Hamas in Palestine, Hezbollah in Lebanon and
Ahmadinejad in Iran, all duly elected popular representatives.

Oh and the civil war in Iraq, too -- but who's counting.

> It's even worse when you consider the Gallup polls
> showing deep and widespread support for Israel.

Support for Israel is a no-brainer. They're under a Blitz-like rocket
barrage and Hezbollah has rockets that can reach Tel Aviv. Nobody
denies their right to defend themselves -- despite how critical it
is possible to be of their tactical approach. And there's not a whole
lot of cognitive dissonance about it. You'll be hard-pressed to find
as staunch a defender of Israel as brooksfoe -- and yet he stands
toe-to-toe with us on the neocons and the bombardment of Lebanon.

> They've been dedicated toward Israel's enemies

Support for a settlement in Palestine is not
"dedicated toward Israel's enemies," asswipe.

> and so anti-Iraq for 4 years they
> have to be devasted at these results.

They were solidly *pro*-Iraq in the first year
of the invasion. Mission Accomplished, dingbat?

So Fox parades some idiots who claim they've "found the WMDs!"
that anybody paying attention recalls we *already* found in
'03 (not that it mattered) and the people who don't think
much about news buy into it because they don't fucking
remember at this point what "WMD" even *stands for* anymore.

> Few people get their news from ABCNews.

Which drives a stake through your entire argument.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 1:24 PM | PERMALINK

Bob:

Had the Harris poll asked about "usable" WMD or "functional" ties to al Qaeda, you would have a point.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 1:31 PM | PERMALINK

For the record, as critical as I am about this war, even I would have to agree with the majority of Americans the way these poll questions were asked.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 1:35 PM | PERMALINK

obscure:

Sorry for the double negative. That sentence above should read "I just happen to disagree with most of the left's other criticisms, that's all." Here's just one disagreement I have with the current Administration, posted on the Schoomaker thread:

"I thought it was an honest answer. In fact, Gen. Schoomaker did something extraordinary within the realm of Beltway politics he told the truth about our Armys readiness. Have any of you actually read his testimony, other than Kevin's two sentence quote, via none other than George Stephanopoulos?

Five years after 9-11 and the U.S. Army, the service that bears the largest burden in this conflict, is still struggling to build a force capable of conducting a long-term global war within established budget constraints. I still think Rumsfeld made a bold move of recalling Gen. Schoomaker out of retirement to lead the Army in a momentous time in our history. As evidenced by his candor and courage in his Congressional testimony, the General did not disappoint.

He realizes that our country is in a war of national survival, and as the Armys top leader, he is willing to drop all political niceties in order to field a fully capable Army. His sobering assessment comes at a critical time. We are in the third year of a massive reconstruction effort in Iraq that is too slowly coming to fruition. Diplomatic options are going nowhere concerning Iran and North Koreas nuclear programs; perhaps we are not yet capable of conducting any meaningful military action. I sincerely hope this is not the case. And now, both the western and eastern anchors of our strategic maneuver in the Central Region have come under attack.

Under the Presidents watch, the so-called pro-defense Republican executive branch and the Republican controlled Congress have lost a lot of credibility by not confronting Clinton holdovers in the defense establishment and the intelligence community. The Army is now paying the price for not dealing with our internal enemies and for continuing to kowtow to both defense and non-defense special interests. Hopefully, this tide has turned."

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 1:55 PM | PERMALINK

Last I checked, 67 is indeed too old for active military service, and I am not Charlie/Cheney/ DougM/Henry. Since when have any of them EVER trashed this Administration over Iraq?

If you're not any of them and are unfamiliar with their body of posts...how would you know that none of them have ever trashed this administration over Iraq???

I rest my case.

Also, you're not 67 and even if you were I'm sure there's at least an administrative role you could fulfill over there. Heck, you could drive a fuel truck! That's easy.

Posted by: trex on July 26, 2006 at 2:15 PM | PERMALINK

That's bullshit, Wooten. Read Blix and ElBaradei's final reports.
The only way you try rebut them is to personally attack these men.

And there's some problem with that?

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 2:18 PM | PERMALINK

Of course the Republicans and the media deserve most of the blame for America's delusions re WMD and Hussein/al Qaeda, but you know who else deserves part of it? The Democrats in Congress and most Democratic opinion leaders.

If they had not been such a bunch of frightened losers in the run up to the war, they could have voiced the other side of the argument just as the lefty bloggers did. And once it became clear after the war that Bush had perpetrated a hoax upon the American people, if the Democrats had expressed the appropriate outrage and acted upon it by calling, appropriately, for his impeachment, things might be very different.

Most people operate heuristically. One heurisitic in any fight/debate is how are people reacting emotionally? If you get raped but you're not extremely pissed off at your rapist, people will conclude that you weren't really raped. Bush and the Republicans have been raping us for years and we never put up much of a fight, never expressed the kind of outrage that would make sense if we really believed we had been raped. Therefore people conclude we weren't raped and Bush could well be right.

Posted by: The Fool on July 26, 2006 at 2:19 PM | PERMALINK

trex:

Who said I am unfamiliar with their body of posts? I've been reading Kevin Drum since his CalPundit days. And, whether you want to believe how old I am or not is entirely up to you.

The Fool:

Have you even read the Harris poll questions?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

You don't care a whit about values. At the end of the day it's a pure Machiavellian calculation. You're a nihilist, bro.

Not at all. Conservatives are all about ideology. Liberals meanwhile are merely a collection of special interest groups.

It might appear I am somewhat calculating because I refer to results so often. This is only to bring you elitists back to earth. I am endlessly fascinated by people who see themselves are morally and intellectually superior talk down to people who constantly outsmart them politically.

Just consider the events in the Middle East since Sharon and GWB took office. How perfect is it that Ariel Sharons leadership was made possible entirely to the failures of the smartest man in the world. Slick Willie and the European elites were played for total saps by Yasir Arafat. You created Ariel Sharon. You put one of the histories most despised (by liberals and elitists everywhere) war criminals in power in israel. He didn't just in offcie he won in a historic landslide.

And look at he did. He totally ignored liberal conventional wisdom. He invaded the West Bank and Gaza and started assasinations. He humiliated Yasir Arafat in the worst possible war. The man had to live in his own sh*t. And GWB cheered him on. No American President has been as supportive of Israel ever.

GWB didn't make a political calculation although we now know it was smart politics. GWB did what was correct ignoring liberal pressures for appeasement every step of the way.

I stress these results, and this is just one example, to mock your intellectual and moral superiority. You are a legend in your own mind and only in your own mind. We have a series of elections to prove it.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK

We've been *vindicated*, Wooten. Iraq is already de-facto
partitioned; federalism is in its death throes. Democracy
in the Mideast and so-called preventive war in Iraq led
*directly* to Hamas in Palestine, Hezbollah in Lebanon and
Ahmadinejad in Iran, all duly elected popular representatives.

You are not even close to vindicated. Hamas and Hezbollah have been terror organizations long before Iraq and long before GWB was even Governor. Hezbollah killed 260+ Marines in Lebanon in1983. Each organization was created by the radicals in Iran who were in turn created by Jimmy Carter. Ahmadinejad was right in the middle of the 444 day hostage crises.

As far as Iraq splitting that just might happen. Why the Sunni would want to do so it a mystery. The Oil is with the Kurds and the Shite. I don't see any problem here as long as the Kurds remain free and they most certainly will remain free.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 2:54 PM | PERMALINK

I've been reading Kevin Drum since his CalPundit days.

Of course you have, Charlie. ;)

And: I just knew this thread would draw rdw to spew his lunatic assertions, like a moth to a flame.

Posted by: Gregory on July 26, 2006 at 4:23 PM | PERMALINK

Well, Gregory, whatever you want to believe is entirely up to you as well.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 4:39 PM | PERMALINK

I'd sincerely like to invite "watcher/JAOL" to attend a Passover Seder with me and my family. It will permanently put to rest all his illusions about Jews being "organized".

On the other hand, since I know Holocaust survivors personally, have heard their stories first-hand, have seen the tattoos on their arms -- and whereas "watcher/JAOL" is just some rabid, multi-pseudonymous hate-spewing internet troll -- I'm willing to go out on a limb here and say the Holocaust is historical fact, but "watcher" is actually a hoax and a "total fabrication"!!!!!!

Posted by: SomeNYGuy on July 26, 2006 at 4:39 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

> Had the Harris poll asked about "usable" WMD or
> "functional" ties to al Qaeda, you would have a point.

I'm entirely uninterested in the Harris poll.
I'm entirely interested in what people *believe*.

I'm interested in the uncontrovertable facts.

I thought conservatives were all for clarity in things like that.

rdw:

>> That's bullshit, Wooten. Read Blix and ElBaradei's final reports.
>> The only way you try rebut them is to personally attack these men.

> And there's some problem with that?

Oh heavens no, Wooten. There's *never* a problem in attacking a
person when you can't refute their conclusions by objective methods.

That's why I'm curious why you don't simply
take a machine gun to the Democrats on Capitol
Hill while your buddies mount a military coup :)

The Fool:

Agreed. The Democratic leadership tends to exist in some
peculiar form of Stockholm Syndrome. Listen to them waste their
time tut-tutting al-Maliki for not condeming Hezbollah (see, we're
more anti-terrorism than the GOP!) -- as if he could get away with
such a thing in a Shi'ite country which overwhelmingly identifies
with Hezbollah as freedom fighters rather than terrorists ...

Pure political theater.

rdw:

>> You don't care a whit about values. At the end of the day it's
>> a pure Machiavellian calculation. You're a nihilist, bro.

> Not at all.

Heh :)

> Conservatives are all about ideology.

Hitler was all about ideology. Stalin was all about ideology.
Osama bin Laden is all about ideology. 'Splains a lot, huh :)

> Liberals meanwhile are merely a
> collection of special interest groups.

Spoken like a true ideologist mouthing the Party Line :)

> It might appear I am somewhat calculating

Oh Wooten that is fucking hysterical. It's like listening to
Charles Manson say "It might appear I am somewhat of a psychopath."

Right :)

> because I refer to results so often. This is only to bring you
> elitists back to earth. I am endlessly fascinated by people who
> see themselves are morally and intellectually superior talk down
> to people who constantly outsmart them politically.

So IOW, you say things with clearly immoral implications just
so you can call us elitists for reacting with moral indignation.

Which is like standing on a hot street corner and catcalling women
in weather-appropriate clothing so that when they turn around and
give you the finger, you can call them bitchy man-hating feminazis.

You being an oaf, Wooten, only makes us elitists by comparison :)

Which is a label which any normal person would be proud to wear :)

> Just consider the events in the Middle East since
> Sharon and GWB took office. How perfect is it that
> Ariel Sharons leadership was made possible entirely
> to the failures of the smartest man in the world.

Sharon also turned out to be a changed man. You know, people evolve.
Qaddafi was once the leader of a terrorism-exporting rogue state, too.

> And look at he did. He totally ignored liberal conventional wisdom.

Quite the reverse. He totally ignored *right wing* conventional
wisdom by effectuating a historic pullout from Gaza and announced
a pending withdrawal from large settlements in the West Bank.

It's a distinct possibility, too, that if Sharon had been PM instead
of in a coma, the incursions into Lebanon and the West Bank would
have been handled with more nuance. Arik needn't have proven to
anybody his security bona fides unlike Olmert & his defense minister.

> GWB didn't make a political calculation although we now
> know it was smart politics. GWB did what was correct

And this is why you're an ideologist. The facts contradict
this. "Democracy" through destabilization is in fact spreading
terrorism around the world like wildfire. Those freedom-loving
Iraqis just *adore* Hamas and Hezbollah -- Sunni and Shi'ite, Arab
and Kurd alike. One of the few issues that Iraqis can agree on :)

This will, however, work politically for you in the short term.

Which is only further proof of your value-free nihilism.

> ignoring liberal pressures for appeasement every step of the way.

And sanity, too. Don't forget the sanity :)

> I stress these results, and this is just one example,
> to mock your intellectual and moral superiority.

Wooten, you're not even close to *cognizing* the results.

> You are a legend in your own mind and only in your own mind.

And that's projection.

> We have a series of elections to prove it.

Nobody's denying that the right wing
can skillfully manipulate public opinion.

>> We've been *vindicated*, Wooten. Iraq is already de-facto
>> partitioned; federalism is in its death throes. Democracy
>> in the Mideast and so-called preventive war in Iraq led
>> *directly* to Hamas in Palestine, Hezbollah in Lebanon and
>> Ahmadinejad in Iran, all duly elected popular representatives.

> You are not even close to vindicated.

That's quite true -- if you get your news from Fox.

So congratulations, Wooten. You've created your
very own conservative-safe artificial reality.

> Hamas and Hezbollah have been terror organizations
> long before Iraq and long before GWB was even Governor.

But they weren't *enfranchised in the governments*, either.

> Hezbollah killed 260+ Marines in Lebanon in 1983.

And St. Ronnie cut and run :)

> Each organization was created by the radicals in Iran

What a *doofus* you are. Hamas is a *Sunni* offshoot of the Egyptian
Muslim Brotherhood which *Israel* sponsored at one time to serve as
a counterweight to the secular PLO. You know -- divide and conquer?

Hezbollah is a *Shi'ite* group that came into power in Lebanon
as a resistance movement against the '83 Israeli occupation.

Iran aids Hezbollah but to a much lesser extent Hamas -- who is
supported by the same Sunni governments (Egypt, Jordan and Saudi,
oh my!) who were condemning Hezbollah last week. Didn't hear
them say a word against the capturing of Shalit, did you ...

> who were in turn created by Jimmy Carter.

Who was acting out of humanitarian kindness to a longtime American
ally (who in any other circumstance you would firmly support, because
he was pro-West, anti-Communist and secular) by inviting the Shah
to America to have his cancer treated by the best in the field.

> Ahmadinejad was right in the middle of the 444 day hostage crises.

And he was elected as a hardline nationalist because the Iranians
were quite understandably nervous about the occupation next door.

> As far as Iraq splitting that just might happen.

It already happened. Shi'ite religious militias control the south.
Kurdistan is a done deal; it doesn't allow the Iraqi flag to be flown.
And some of the Sunni hardliners are asking us to stay, because the
ISF is comprised of Shi'ites whose attempt to police Anbar is seen
-- not without justification -- as an invasion by a hostile force.

> Why the Sunni would want to do so it a mystery.

They don't. They simply have no choice in the matter. They're the
last holdouts for federalism and a relatively secular constitution.

> The Oil is with the Kurds and the Shite. I don't see
> any problem here as long as the Kurds remain free
> and they most certainly will remain free.

And no longer part of Iraq. Ask our staunch allies the Turks how
they feel about the Kurdish terrorists crossing their border ...

The cogent technical term here, Wooten, is clusterfuck.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 4:44 PM | PERMALINK

You always know when someone's been "Hannitized" - like poster Jay. No matter how succinct the comment, they always manage to throw in a Clinton reference or two.

I haven't yet checked out how the questions were phrased, but if they weren't loaded then I'm appalled by the results. How could 50% of Americans be that dumb???

Posted by: Squeaky McCrinkle on July 26, 2006 at 4:48 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

That should have read: I am entirely *un*interested in what people *believe*.

In case you didn't catch my meaning in context.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 4:55 PM | PERMALINK

LOL, SomeNYGuy!

Bob/ rmck1 and Squeaky McCrinkle:

The actual statement tested in the poll (the thread topic last I checked) is:

1. "Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded."

It was coupled with the following three statements (presumably asked in random order):

2. "The Iraqis are better off now than they were under Saddam Hussein."

3. "Saddam Hussein had strong links with Al Qaeda."

4. "History will give the U.S. credit for bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq."

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 4:56 PM | PERMALINK

I got your meaning, Bob. Perhaps you should be posting on another thread because this one is about the Harris poll and what Americans believe (of course, since Iraq indeed had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded, it is also based on uncontrovertable facts).

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 4:59 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

I'll post on whatever thread I feel like and I'll talk about *Slovenian folk music* if the spirit happens to move me, thank you very much.

Take it up with Kevin next time you feel moved to serve as Topic Police.

And you're flat-out wrong, Thomas.

500 shells of over-a-decade-old chemical weapons cannot massively destroy anything. They were *degraded*; about as toxic as a case of poison ivy.

The only way you're "right" is if you attempt to twist the definition of "weapons of mass destruction" beyond all cogent recognition.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 5:05 PM | PERMALINK

Well, that's your opinion (and yes, of course, you can post off-topic all you desire -- I am not the "Topic Police" -- but, I will continue to post on-topic thank YOU very much). Perhaps you missed above where the Department of Energy announced that a joint effort with the Pentagon had removed 1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium from Iraq that could potentially be used in a radiological dispersal device or diverted to support a nuclear weapons program. If that material had instead killed 3,000 people in NYC, there's no doubt it would be classified as WMD. Even more info re: WMD in Iraq remains classified.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 5:17 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

Jesus, these aren't *facts* -- it's all inferential faith-based wanna-believe speculation on that as-yet-untranslated treasure trove of docs from the Iraqi Intelligence Ministry that are sitting in a warehouse in Qatar.

When it's not out-and-out bullshit, that is.

That "1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium" is *yellowcake*, bro. There were piles and piles of it lying around from Iraq's former civilian nuclear program -- you know, the one that the Israelis put an end to in '81 when they bombed the Osirak reactor complex.

That's why it was so fucking absurd that they'd need to import more from Niger ...

Yellowcake -- in case you're unfamiliar with the physics of it -- is U 307. Though you can use it to power a CANDU-style heavy-water reactor, as a form of highly impure uranium ore it isn't very radioactive. Certainly much less so than the low-level radwaste created every day by medical radiology labs. So it's not exactly suitable for a dirty bomb.

Everything else in your post is speculation, not fact.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 5:30 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

Correction -- I just wiki'ed yellowcake. It's not accurate to call it a highly impure form of uranium ore. It's a processed intermediary that can be further processed into fuel rods or used directly in heavy-water reactors.

It's still not suitable for dirty bombs.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 5:40 PM | PERMALINK

Yellowcake also may also be enriched, by being converted to uranium hexafluoride gas, by isotope separation though gaseous diffusion or in a gas centrifuge to produce enriched uranium suitable for use in such weapons. And, whether yellowcake is "ideal" for a dirty-bomb or is just an intermediate step, wasn't yellowcake specifically prohibited under the UN Security Council Resolutions? If the material was used to kill 3,000 Americans in NYC, would THAT at least qualify as WMD for you?

More importantly, I guess, how is "more info re: WMD in Iraq remains classified" not a fact?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 5:57 PM | PERMALINK
And, whether yellowcake is "ideal" for a dirty-bomb or is just an intermediate step, wasn't yellowcake specifically prohibited under the UN Security Council Resolutions?

The yellowcake was, IIRC, was the yellowcake identified by UN inspectors in the 1990s, put under IAEA seal, was still under IAEA seal when the inspectors pulled out immediately prior to the 2003 war. If it remotely qualified as WMD in Saddam's hands at any point, it was a direct result of the war, not a pre-existing justification for it.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 26, 2006 at 6:05 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, please, next you are going to maintain that Iraq was allowed to have mustard gas and nerve agents too, or the substances which are solely used as precursor chemicals in their manufacture: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Schedule_1_substances_%28CWC%29

Remember that the actual statement tested in the poll is:

1. "Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded."

It now depends on what the definition of "had" was?!

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 6:08 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

Geez, you really need to appreciate the difference between fact and speculation.

First, ElBaradei pointed out the piles of yellowcake in his ongoing reports. If that had been a UNSC violation in itself, the world would have known about it. Instead, he simply reported it as part of the remnants of Iraq's thoroughly decrepit nuclear infrastructure. Can't do much with yellowcake if you don't have the equipment to process it into uranium hexaflouride ...

Secondly, yellowcake isn't suitable for a dirty bomb for the same reason that plutonium isn't suitable for a dirty bomb -- they're both alpha emitters only, and alpha radiation is blocked by skin. Sure, if you pulverize either one and inhale the dust, you're guaranteed liver and kidney problems and no doubt cancer sometime down the road. But the effects aren't immediate. A bomb is pretty useless if it only makes people sick at some indeterminate time in the future.

Third, if Hostess Twinkies turned out to have killed 3000 Americans in one day -- then sure, call it a WMD. But that, in itself, says absolutely nothing about the *suitability* of making a WMD out of Hostess Twinkies :)

Fourth, you have no idea if they're any more information about Iraq's WMDs in that trove of documents unless you *read* them. So saying that "more info on the Iraqi WMD program remains classified" or untranslated or un-whatever is a misnomer.

You can't call something indeterminate a fact -- kind of by definition, if you think about it.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 6:18 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

No, it depends on the definition of "weapons of mass destruction."

Iraq had none that we knew of then and know of now.

End of story.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 6:23 PM | PERMALINK

Well, Bob, I guess it does depend on your definition of "weapons of mass destruction" and whether those calling for the declassification of WMD info are lying or not too. Good luck though trying to convince people what already has been found in Iraq was not "usable" WMD . . .

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 6:34 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

So what you're saying is that it doesn't matter what the facts are -- only what people believe.

If a majority of people believe that Iraq had WMD even though it didn't -- then that means that they're right and the minority is wrong.

I thought that was relativism, and relativism was a liberal sickness?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 6:38 PM | PERMALINK

That's why I'm curious why you don't simply
take a machine gun to the Democrats on Capitol
Hill while your buddies mount a military coup :)

Are we having a bad day?

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 6:46 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

Put your thinking cap on for a minute ...

Ask yourself what motive the Bush admin could possibly have for keeping evidence for a bona-fide Iraqi WMD threat secret. Hmmm .... The Bush admin has been deeply discredited in the eyes of vast numbers of people here and worldwide because it seems like Iraq didn't have any WMD after all ... The whole original rationale for the Iraqi invasion has *collapsed*. Now it's going to be that much more difficult to get other people to believe us if we have intelligence about Iran's WMD program -- as Bush himself has admitted.

I'm not calling the people who want to see "Iraqi WMD info" declassified liars. I think they're doing something even more disingenuous than simply outright lying ...

By even mentioning "classified Iraqi WMD info," they're implying that such a thing exists. And if such a thing does or does not exist -- the US is certainly not going to either confirm or deny anything about classified information.

So the US instantly looks like it's hiding something when it's only maintaining its perogatives to classify information.

And because people don't *think through* the logical train of inference about this stuff -- they then automatically assume that there *is* "classified Iraqi WMD info," which *then* implies (again, without thinking it through), that if there's info we don't know about, there *must* be *weapons* we don't know about, either.

And this is how a myth gets leveraged into existence by a group of people who have *every political reason in the world* to plant the idea of real Iraqi WMDs into the heads of voters.

This is quite an evil game these people are playing. Much more evil and manipulative than simply lying about something.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 6:53 PM | PERMALINK

Bob:

No, what I'm saying is that a majority of people believe it because it is true -- there were WMD in Iraq when the U.S. invaded -- your whole argument goes to whether those WMD were "usable" or not. Even I agree that is arguable, but that is NOT what the Harris poll asked.

Take it out of the heated political context, and let's say there's a car parked on the street. Everyone agrees it is a "car" even if the starter and motor won't work, right?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 6:54 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

Your sense of the sardonic is once again tuned to a high pitch, I see :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

You're making a category mistake.

If a car doesn't work and further more *can't* work, it is no longer a "car" in any meaningful sense of the term.

It's junk. Scrap metal. Spare parts to cannibalize. A traffic hazard. Take your pick.

That's why a tow truck comes and halls it to a "junkyard."

That's why they don't call junkyards "car lots."

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:00 PM | PERMALINK

halls = hauls

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:01 PM | PERMALINK

If a car doesn't work and further more *can't* work, it is no longer a "car" in any meaningful sense of the term.

We'll have to agree to disagree on the definition of "car" then too. You are not one of those Eskimos with 37 different words for "snow" are you?

Ask yourself what motive the Bush admin could possibly have for keeping evidence for a bona-fide Iraqi WMD threat secret.

Didn't you answer your own question with: "the US is certainly not going to either confirm or deny anything about classified information"?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 7:03 PM | PERMALINK

That's quite true -- if you get your news from Fox.

So congratulations, Wooten. You've created your very own conservative-safe artificial reality.

I'v got to admit I never get tired of liberals venting over the evil Fox News. The facts are your problems are much worse than Fox. They are but one cog in a finely tuned machine. Conservatives have talk radio stars on virtually every hour of the say and often more than two at the same time. It's interesting that Bill Bennett started at the same time as Al Franken and that Bill's ratings demolish Franken's who is all but off the air.

Most larger cities have at least two 24-hr talk radio stations while Air America can't find an audience anywhere outside Oregon. Rush, Hannity and Glenn Beck to name just 3 each have audiences 2x's the size of the top news anchor but 20x's the influence. The talk radio audience is informed, intelligent and very sophisticated politically as well as engaged.

Just as important is the internet, especially the blogs. It provides a fantastic platform to follow the writers of the National Review, Weekly Standard, The Heritage foundation as well as the most popular cpservative minds such as Charles Krautenhammer, Victor Davis Hanson and who could forget Ann Coulter. It's also a terrific place for discussion and the transfer of information and the circulation of idea's. Dan Rathers descent into hell started on Powerline.

A 4th and 5th tier here is the book-writers / speakers curcuit which takes advantage of each of these outlets to sustain a very profitable cottage industry for Conservative thinkers and speakers more powerful than the Mew York Times and the rest of the MSM.

I can understand the reaction to Fox but they are merely the tip of the iceberg. Vent away.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:08 PM | PERMALINK

IIRC, the actual answer as to "how many Eskimo words for snow are there?" depends on how we define Eskimo (there are a number of languages), how we define snow, and how we count numbers of words in languages that have quite different grammatical structures than English.

The first citation dealing with multiple Eskimo words for snow is found in the introduction to The Handbook of North American Indians, the 1911 work of linguist and anthropologist Franz Boas. Boas mentions that Eskimos have four separate words for snow: aput ("snow on the ground"), gana ("falling snow"), piqsirpoq ("drifting snow"), and qimuqsuq ("snowdrift"), where English has only one. It is, of course, inaccurate to say that speakers of the English language have only one word for snow. Boas' intent was to connect differences in culture with differences in language.

Benjamin Whorf's theory of linguistic relativism holds that the language we speak both affects and reflects our view of the world. In a popular 1940 article on the subject, he referred to Eskimo languages having seven distinct words for snow. Later writers inflated the figure. By 1978, the number quoted had reached 50. On February 9, 1984 the New York Times gave the number as one hundred in an editorial.

The idea that Eskimos had hundreds of words for snow indeed, hundreds of unique and fairly unrelated words has given rise to the idea that Eskimos viewed snow very differently than people of other cultures. For example, when it snows, others see snow, but they could see any manifestation of their great and varied vocabulary. Vulgarized versions of Whorf's views hold not only that Eskimo speakers can choose among several snow words, but further, that they were unable to understand categorizing all seven (or however many) as "snow". To them, each word is supposedly a separate concept. Thus language is thought to impose a particular view of the world not just for Eskimo languages, but for all groups. Whorf himself, a well-informed and respectful student of Native American cultures, held more sophisticated views than this caricature would suggest.

There is no one Eskimo language. A number of cultures are referred to as Eskimo, and a number of different languages are termed Eskimo-Aleut languages.

Like English, Eskimo languages have more than one word to describe snow. Yup'ik, for example, has been estimated to have around 24. This may seem impressive until one realizes that English has at least 40, including "berg", "frost", "glacier", "hail", "ice", "slush", "flurry", and "sleet".

Of course, it is perfectly possible that some Eskimo languages would have several extra words to describe snow, which is specifically the point of Boas's theory. This is because they deal with snow more than other cultures, just as artists have more words to describe the various details of their hobby. Where someone without artistic experience would simply identify a particular item as "paint", the artist calls it "oil paint", "acrylic paint", or "watercolor". This does not mean that these two individuals see two different things, nor does it mean that the artist would be confused by the idea that oil paint and acrylic paint are related.

The actual number of Eskimo words for snow is not hundreds it is, in fact, limitless. This is because Eskimo languages (like many native North American languages) are polysynthetic; that is, a word can be composed of a large number of morphemes, such that a single word can express the equivalent of a sentence in a language like English. There is a system of derivational suffixes for word formation to which speakers can recursively add snow-referring roots. As in English, there is a handful of these snow-referring roots, words for "snowflake", "blizzard", "drift", and so on. This means that where an English speaker would describe what he or she is seeing as "soft, easily-packed snow", a speaker of an Eskimo language could describe the same thing in one word. And when the snow began to melt, she could change a few suffixes and describe, once again in one word, "soft, melting snow that is not easily-packed". If the snow became dirty, she could add a suffix and say, "soft, dirty, melting snow that is not easily-packed." All this in one word, where an English-speaker would need an entire phrase. And yet, the concept is the same in both languages.

Posted by: cmdicely on July 26, 2006 at 7:10 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

No, you are making a category mistake -- end of story.

A four-wheeled piece of scrap waiting for a towtruck is not a "car" in any meaningful sense -- no matter what it *used* to be when it was functional.

Next subject: But ask yourself *this* then: What possible *motive* would the Bush admin have to *keep* the information classified?

Sure, they could keep the info classified if they wanted to -- just to keep it classified. But what purpose would it serve, compared to the overarching salutory purpose of not only justifying the Iraqi invasion, but restoring the credibility of US intelligence?

Sure seems rational that they'd declassify any hard data about Iraqi WMDs if they had any to declassify, doesn't it ...

Sure seems *irrational* to keep that info secret -- especially since the Duelfur Report is public information.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:13 PM | PERMALINK

Not if declassifying it would threaten sources and methods of intelligence gathering -- who knows, maybe Bush has some principles after all?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 7:18 PM | PERMALINK

And no longer part of Iraq. Ask our staunch allies the Turks how
they feel about the Kurdish terrorists crossing their border ...

The cogent technical term here, Wooten, is clusterfuck.

Not at all. It is an issue but you greatly exagerate. The Turks and Kurds have spent a lot more time talking about trade than terrorism. The Kurds have their own state now and will not take the risk of a Turkish invasion. The obvious smart move here is for them to take control of their border and that they will do. Turkey has a larger problem with iran.

There is a more likely upside. The Kurdish North has water as well as oil and mineral wealth. They can easily absorb a large number of Kurds from Turkey to releive the pressure.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:19 PM | PERMALINK

I have a doppelgnger, too. Great...

At least mine seems to be somewhat funny, though. (Though I suspect that was quoted without attribution from another source, it seems rather familiar.)

Posted by: cmdicely on July 26, 2006 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

Who was acting out of humanitarian kindness to a longtime American
ally (who in any other circumstance you would firmly support, because
he was pro-West, anti-Communist and secular) by inviting the Shah
to America to have his cancer treated by the best in the field.

And what a lucky coincidence for the Shah. A plane ride to the clinic just as the allytolla was getting ready to have his throat slit.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

cmdicely:

I was beginning to wonder .... although truthfully it isn't so out-of-the-question to imagine that you had written an undergrad paper on this subject for a cultural anthro or linguistics class ...

And the point is quite in line, I think, to how you'd (we'd) respond to Thomas.

The difference between a functional automobile and a piece of scrap is so significant that calling them both "cars" is simply not sufficient :)

And damn ... what do *I* have to do around here to get myself a doppelganger :(

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:27 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, you two are the life of the party (if there are no chicks and beer around, that is ; )

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 7:30 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

Why was the Duelfer Report public, then?

That explanation might have flown when Iraq was still Saddam's state and we had in-country moles to protect.

It hardly makes sense *now*, though, with Saddam's regime completely overthrown.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:31 PM | PERMALINK

Because the CIA has different sources and methods than Charles Duelfer?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 7:34 PM | PERMALINK

And this is why you're an ideologist. The facts contradict
this. "Democracy" through destabilization is in fact spreading
terrorism around the world like wildfire. Those freedom-loving
Iraqis just *adore* Hamas and Hezbollah -- Sunni and Shi'ite, Arab
and Kurd alike. One of the few issues that Iraqis can agree on :)

This is a perfect example of why the conservative media is so powerful. Liberals love to tout the theory that by fighting terror we only create more terrorists. The conservastive media exposes this for exactly what it is, intellectual cowardice and rank stupidity. Neville Chamberlain would be proud. You repeat his argument for massive unrelenting appeasement.

I can guarrantee you in conservative circles this 'position' it met with total contempt. Despite what Michael Moore told you Iraq wasn't a peaceful paradise before 2003. According to the liberals own data the casualty rate is well below Saddam levels. Liberals will believe terrorism didn't exist before we invaded Iraq. Sane people laugh at these braindead arguments.

You are the minority party on merit!

There IS a GWOT and you are losing. The USA doesn't create terrorists. That can only happen in a culture of cockroaches. It is their responsibility and their's alone.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:34 PM | PERMALINK

They don't. They simply have no choice in the matter. They're the
last holdouts for federalism and a relatively secular constitution.

They are not looking for a secular constitution. They are looking for more power than their numbers deserve. They will lose here. They have given the Shite govt no choice but to crush them.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:37 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

100 people a day weren't dying under Saddam, dunderhead.

And you haven't a prayer of contradicting that with sourced material, either.

Don't confuse moral jugments about culpability with practical judgments about behavioral cause and effect.

If I catch you in the act of making love to my wife I just might beat you to death.

That has nothing whatsoever to do with wrong or right -- only a reasonble prediction of likely behavior.

It's also why some states make allowances in their criminal code for crimes of passion. I wouldn't get the death penalty in Georgia, for sure.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:39 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

With power tools and acid.

You're a piece of work, Wooten ...

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:40 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

See the second part of that response.

You're really grasping at straws here, aren't you ...

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:43 PM | PERMALINK

Not at all. If I don't have access to said classified information in the first place, how can I make a judgement whether: "It hardly makes sense *now*, though, with Saddam's regime completely overthrown"?

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, you two are the life of the party (if there are no chicks and beer around, that is ; )

Now THAT'S funny. Nice work, Thomas.

Posted by: sportsfan79 on July 26, 2006 at 7:48 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

You can't. That was precisely the point.

You can only speculate -- either reasonbly or unreasonably.

Your line of speculation does not appear to be the reasonable one.

Mine does.

A matter of opinion? Sure.

The *facts*, however, still do not support an Iraqi WMD threat.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:49 PM | PERMALINK

So IOW, you say things with clearly immoral implications just
so you can call us elitists for reacting with moral indignation.

I've made no immoral implications. I don't imply. My reference to your elitism had zero to do with your indignation. It has to do with your pretensions of intellectual superiority. Smart people don't keep on losing elections. It's seems it's now a requirement to call oneself a liberal one must believe GWB is as dumb as a post.

He's the guy running the world. He's the decider. He kicked your butt is 4 consecutive elections leading the GOP in Congress to it's strongest position in 80 years. More than winning elections he's directed dramatic foreign policy changes while making the opposition invisible.

If he's dumb what's that make the fools he keeps on beating? Betcha Tom Daschle doesn't think Bush is as dumb as a post.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:50 PM | PERMALINK

sportsfan79:

Too bad he's having his ass handed to him on the merits of the debate, eh?

Oh well ... take what little victories you can and try to make the best of it, I always say :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:51 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

You were just advocating genocide against the Sunnis a minute ago ...

Your response, once again, is to change the subject to "if he's so dumb, how come he's president?"

Which is a non-sequitur :)

I understand you're envious, Wooten. Don't take it too hard; you've got much better investment portfolio than I do :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 7:56 PM | PERMALINK

The *facts*, however, still do not support an Iraqi WMD threat.

Sure they do. Liberals work at missing the point. It was never about Saddam having a supply of A-Bombs at his inmediate diaposable. It was about his willingness to renounce terrorism and prove he wouold never be a threat by cooperating with weapons inspectors. He was constantly jerking them around.

Our choice was to try and contain him knowing an intelligence mistake on our part could have grave consequences. Saddam had already proven he would give WMDs away if he had them and was certai they'd be used against the USA.

Saddam was toying with us. He was too dangerous and had to go. Moamar Kadaffi is the model for how to cooperate. If Saddam was as smart he's still be running Iraq.

It wasn't about what he had. It was about what he's do if he got it.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 7:59 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

Not what either Blix or ElBaradei thought.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:02 PM | PERMALINK

You were just advocating genocide against the Sunnis a minute ago ...

Not true. What I advocate is for the Sunni to embrace peace and share in the wealth of Iraq. What I am predicting, but not advocating, is that the Shite will have little choice but to start crushing the insurgents and all those who support them. liberals believe war never solves anything. That's nonsense. There are times War is the only solution.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:04 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

I could fantasize all day long about ... umm ... drilling holes in your head with a Craftsman cordless and splashing your face with acid -- you know, like the Shi'ite death squads in the Interior Ministry.

Wouldn't make me guilty of any crime, though.

Intent is meaningless without action.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:05 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks, sportsfan79

Bob:

I guess it is matter of opinion then. But, then how can we even start to discuss whether the *facts" support an Iraqi WMD threat, if we can't even agree whether there were WMD?

rdw:

One tiny disagreement: if Saddam had had to PROVE to the region he had no WMD, I don't know how long would have been running Iraq.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 8:06 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

You forgot the ponies.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:06 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

It doesn't matter whether or not we agree whether or not Iraq had WMD.

You are simply objectively wrong until proven otherwise.

I can't prove a negative.

You, however, can prove a positive -- and you have not done so.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:09 PM | PERMALINK

Your response, once again, is to change the subject to "if he's so dumb, how come he's president?"

Which is a non-sequitur :)


I changed nothing. One of the obvious threads across this post has been the stupidity of conservatives in believing Saddam has WMDs, among other things. The quintessential liberal condescention leaps off the page.

The obvious silliness of such a thought jumps right with it.

I understand you're envious

Of what? Am I tired of winning elections and controlling the house? Appointments like Roberts? Alito? Bolton?

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:10 PM | PERMALINK

That's right, I can't even prove a "car" parked outside my street really is a car. Have a good night.

Posted by: Thomas on July 26, 2006 at 8:11 PM | PERMALINK

Thomas:

If it doesn't start and can't be fixed -- it's no longer a car, it's a piece of junk.

Sorry if you find that little bit of common sense so exasperating ...

rdw:

The entire modus operandi of your posting is based on envy that libs are more intelligent and cultured than you are.

Have you ever seen the movie Mr. Roberts? You're like the captain -- James Cagney -- when it's ranting about "college boys" to Henry Fonda ...

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:15 PM | PERMALINK

what either Blix or ElBaradei thought.

It was never about what they thought. It ws about what our elected leadership thought.

I can't really think of a situation where the USA would ever rely on the UN for something serious. Conservatives, by far the dominant political bloc, share contempt for the UN. They're inept. We would never rely on the UN and absolutely not those two.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:15 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

Well then gee, why did we bother with the UN inspection regime in the first place, eh?

Wooten -- your only response when you've been factually eviscerated is to blame the messenger.

Don't you ever get tired of arguing in rhetorical fallacies?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:18 PM | PERMALINK

100 people a day weren't dying under Saddam, dunderhead.

And you haven't a prayer of contradicting that with sourced material, either.

Liberals were complaining more than 50,000 children were dying in Iraq each year sue to the sanctions. That's more.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:19 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

I've certainly never seen those figures. Care to back them up with a citation?

If you don't, I have no choice but to assume that you pulled that nice, round figure out of your butt.

Since nice, round figures are much less hard coming out on the ol' sphincter :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:24 PM | PERMALINK

One tiny disagreement: if Saddam had had to PROVE to the region he had no WMD, I don't know how long would have been running Iraq.

I understand that's the conventional wisdom as to why Saddam acted as if he had them and was so resistant to the inspectors. He did not want anyone to know he didn't have them. But even if they did know, who could have attacked Iraq? Iran suffered huge losses and clearly didn't have the means to defeat him. They had no other territorial threats.

The fact is Saddam was a paranoid whackjob. If he did as Moamar did we would not have invaded.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:25 PM | PERMALINK

Well then gee, why did we bother with the UN inspection regime in the first place, eh?

This isn't even remotely complex. It was never about the UN or Hans. It was always about Saddam. Somewhat later we had a textbook example of cooperation from kaddafi. He showed the inspectors around to where he had everything. He gave them a lot more than we knew he had. He also gave them carte blanche to go anywhere they wanted, whenever they wanted with no interference from him and full cooperation from his govt.

I believe South Africa was the prior model. Saddam is the model of what not to do.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:30 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

Saddam wasn't resistant to the inspectors in a way that meaningfully impeded the inspections process.

Funny how you trash Blix and ElBaradei as being ineffectual instruments of the UN until you need to allege resistance to them. If they were so full of shit, it would be *irrelevant* whether or not there was Iraqi resistance to them.

You just can't get enough of bad logic and factual misstatement, can you ...

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:31 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

It's not up to *you* to decide whether or not Iraq resisted the inspections process.

It's up to the inspectors.

If the final report disagrees with your preordained conclusion, you have no call to rip it up and say it was never about the inspections process to begin with.

You're trapped in a logical box, rdw.

Bottom line is, you're trying to justify an invasion that was going to happen in any case.

You can at least be gentleman enough to admit this.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:35 PM | PERMALINK

The entire modus operandi of your posting is based on envy that libs are more intelligent and cultured than you are.

I am one with my cracker cousins and damn proud of it.


Have you ever seen the movie Mr. Roberts? You're like the captain -- James Cagney -- when it's ranting about "college boys" to Henry Fonda ...


I am a college boy. Like your President I also have an MBA and more than one professional certification. And from all that I learned to believe in Forest Gump's motto. "Stupid is as stupid does". For example, only in the Democratic party could Al Gore be considered an intellectual. Now that's stupid.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:35 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

It's dumb to base a political ideology on envy, Wooten.

I think it's time for your college educated self to embrace your Inner Democrat :)

LOL !

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:39 PM | PERMALINK

It's not up to *you* to decide whether or not Iraq resisted the inspections process.

That would explain why I didn't order the invasion.

It's up to the inspectors.

No, it was up to GWB. We didn't elect Hans. We didn't elect the UN.

If the final report disagrees with your preordained conclusion, you have no call to rip it up and say it was never about the inspections process to begin with.

There was no pre-ordained conclusion. There was a pre-ordained requirement. Saddam had to cooperate fully. Not 99%. It had to be 100%. To think for one second Hans could adequately inspect a country the size of California is absurd. It's not a serious proposition. It's obvious nonsense the type only the UN and liberals could even consider taking seriously.


You're trapped in a logical box, rdw.


This is really beyond silly. We beat this horse to death 3 years ago. For all of the liberal outrage GWB was relected easily and added seats in both houses of congress. The voters have spoken quite clearly and enphatically. And you think I'm trapped? Hardly. Saddam is trapped.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:46 PM | PERMALINK

You can at least be gentleman enough to admit this.

There's no doubt in my mind if Saddam cooperated as Moamar did he'd be in control in iraq.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 8:49 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

Like I said, you're operating on a preordained conclusion supported by the logical fallacy of proving a negative.

You can't explain why the UN inspection process needed to happen in the first place -- if it never had a chance of proving a negative to begin with.

You're trapped, Wooten. Ranting about election victories only looks like another pathetic attempt to change the subject.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:52 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

How do you know he *didn't* cooperate the way Moamar did?

You don't know, because you don't bother to give Blix and ElBaradei's final reports on Iraq any credence.

They're UN stooges when they inspect Iraq -- they're good guys when they inspect Libya.

Gee ... what do think the source of that contradiction is, Wooten?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 8:56 PM | PERMALINK

Jay:
Are you saying that you don't know who the northern alliance was? Maybe you've forgotten the term mujahideen, too? Just to refresh your memory, the U.S. government, the western media, the Taliban and Al-Qaeda used the term "northern alliance" (or a direct translation) to refer to the coalition of Afghan groups that fought the Taliban. It was their ground troops, with assistance from U.S. Special Forces and with air support, that retook most of Afghanistan in early 2002. See wikipedia reference here.

The claim ... is another lie. Just like your claim that the vast majority of fighters in Afghanistan were from the Northern Alliance, whatever that is.... The US armed forces took out the Taliban essentially by themselves.
Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 6:25 PM |


In addition, it doesn't really matter that Muqtada al-Sadr lived in Iraq at a time when he wasn't a threat to the U.S. or U.S. interests. He lived there right after he was born, and when he was one year old, and when he was two, etc. None of that is particularly interesting or germane. We certainly don't know that Abu Nidal received "safe haven" in Iraq -- it certainly appears not to have been the case -- and Zarqawi spent most of his time in a part of the country that was not under Saddam Hussein's control (unless you think that Saddam offered him the hospital care that allowed him to have a leg amputated... the leg that was still attached to his body when he was killed recently).

Muqtada al-Sadr wasn't a particularly large influence on how the Iraqi state was run prior to the US invasion.
But he did live there right? And Abu Nidal and Zarqawi received safe haven because they were secular? Posted by: Jay on July 25, 2006 at 8:09 PM | Posted by: keith on July 26, 2006 at 9:02 PM | PERMALINK

I hope Jay comes back to revisit this thread 'n' see how soundly I kicked his hero rdw's ass :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 9:12 PM | PERMALINK

Henry:
Are you claiming that Hillary Clinton said that the VRWC caused Bill Clinton's affairs? That's a new one to me! AFAIK, she said that the VRWC was responsible for creating and maintaining a succession of "scandals" in an effort to discredit him and his presidency. Please show me exactly where this is incorrect. In any case, if the VJC maintains that there's a monolithic effort that links the Black Septembrists, Hezbollah and Hamas, al-Qaeda, the Taliban, secular Baathist regimes in Syria and Iraq, the Islamic Republic in Iran, the PLO and whoever else is attributed membership, then I don't see how that can possibly be on "more solid ground" than a claim that right-wing groups, operating in secrecy, sought to undermine the Clinton presidency by highlighting his scandals. I'd say they were on ground just about as solid as that underlying anyone who claims that the VRWC caused Bill Clinton's affairs...

I pointed out that said VJC is on more solid ground than Hillary blaming the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy for causing Bill's affairs. He (I hope not a "she") has yet to answer whether Watcher is PART of the the VJC . . .
Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 8:46 PM |

In addition, the "facts" in your 10:27 post (and in two earlier posts -- thanks for triple posting!), don't actually show the presence of WMDs (I won't deal with the canard that Al Gore said he invented the internet.) The fact that things "can be produced" from botulinum, from cynade salt, or from low-enriched uranium doesn't make those things weapons of mass destruction; at best, it indicates the possible presence of WMD-related program activities. And that just isn't the same thing at all.

Mustard-gas is not all that difficult to produce, which is why it is often manufactured in large quantities. Unfortunately, this means that it (like land mines and other mass-produced weaponry) is often incompletely disposed of. For example fishermen continue to find mustard gas bombs in the Baltic Sea, but we don't claim that this is evidence that Germany possesses WMDs. In fact, if a mustard gas shell was rigged as an explosive device, than it was no longer a chemical weapon at all.

The same is true of scattered rounds of sarin and mustard gas, all of which were degraded to the point where they'd cause more danger by bonking you on the head than by exposing you to toxins. The fact that a few of these things were found indicates that Saddam Hussein produced them at one time or another, but not that he had them available as weapons at the time of the U.S. invasion. As WMD apologists never tired of pointing out in the months following the invasion, Iraq is a pretty big country (unsurprisingly, rdw does exactly this right upthread), and it can be difficult to account for everything that's within its borders. The fact that Saddam's army missed a few useless shells when they (apparently) disposed of their chemical weapons doesn't mean that he still had weapons of mass destruction and more than the fact that my kids and I did an imperfect job of painting their bedroom walls sky blue means that the room still has white walls. There are still a couple of dots of white here and there, but we complied with the wife's directive to paint the walls blue.

What's next, are you going to bring up the mobile biolabs?


Oct. 2, 2003 -- U.S. personnel discovered a vial of live C. botulinum Okra B. from which a biological agent can be produced.
January 2004 -- a block of cyanide salt popped up in Abu Musab al-Zarqawis Baghdad safe house.
May 2, 2004 -- U.S. forces in Iraq found a mustard-gas shell, rigged as an improvised explosive device.
June 24, 2004 -- Charles Duelfer explained total they had found 10 or 12 sarin and mustard rounds.
July 6, 2004 -- Department of Energy announced that a joint effort with the Pentagon had removed 1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium from Iraq that could potentially be used in a radiological dispersal device or diverted to support a nuclear weapons program.
Sorry if you still think those FACTS are not real.
Posted by: Henry on July 25, 2006 at 10:27 PM |

Posted by: keith on July 26, 2006 at 9:12 PM | PERMALINK

Saddam wasn't resistant to the inspectors in a way that meaningfully impeded the inspections process.

This wasn't a game.

To even suggest Hans Blix or anyone could find WMDs in an area the size of California if the Govt decided to hide them is utterly preposterous.

This had nothing to do with Hans Blix. He didn't matter. Either Iraq was going to cooperate fully without hesitation or they were done.

How do you know he *didn't* cooperate the way Moamar did?

From reading the papers and just from the restrictions Saddam tried to place. He had no intention of cooperating.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 9:13 PM | PERMALINK

You can't explain why the UN inspection process needed to happen in the first place -- if it never had a chance of proving a negative to begin with.

You really are having a hard day.

The UN inspections were to see if Saddam was going to cooperate fully and without hesitation. It was his last chance to put USA fears to rest. He blew it.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 9:17 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

I read the same papers. I also read the final reports. There was some initial resistance, but by the second round of inspections, the Iraqis began bending over backwards to give the inspectors full cooperation.

They drove them to a cache of rockets with bigger engines than allowed by the sanctions; they instantly destroyed them. The "minders" stopped following the inspectors around. According to the final reports, everybody was bending over backwards to be as cooperative as possible -- because it was quite clear to everybody our military was massing for an invasion.

Once again, read the final reports. The Iraqis were as cooperative as they could possibly be.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 9:18 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

He only "blew it" because the inspections process was a charade implemented to placate Tony Blair.

Bush had no intent of honoring it if it gave Saddam a clean bill of health.

That's why he kinda ordered them out of the country before they were entirely finished.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 9:21 PM | PERMALINK

That's why he kinda ordered them out of the country before they were entirely finished.

If you knew he 'kinda' ordered them to leave before they were done what was with the prior charade of pretending Saddam was cooperating?

Saddam blew it. Think of how much money he and Chirac and the boys at the UN would be pocketing with these oil prices. Instead he told the judge today he'd rather be shot than hung. What a difference a GWB makes.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 9:48 PM | PERMALINK

but by the second round of inspections, the Iraqis began bending over backwards to give the inspectors full cooperation.

That's why he kinda ordered them out of the country before they were entirely finished.

You are having an exceptionally wacky day. You wrote the above two sentences in consecutive posts. How do you reconcile these obviously opposite 'facts'?

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 9:52 PM | PERMALINK

Bob,

You and CMdicely have a rough road ahead. You have far too much confidence in the UN, EU and liberal intellectuals. over at the Huffigton Post on of the libs is spitting mad Fox is able to cover international news. She if course accused them of distorting Irael like they distorted Dan Rather.

Princess probably doesn't realize Fox doesn't just cover int'l events but they broadcast all over the world. Fox is firmly entrenched in canada now and spreading throughout Europe. They are in Israel and Australia. I don't know their ratings but suspect they're kicking ass everywhere.

Liberals have not been serious for quite some time and this means you have not bottomed yet. Be afraid. It's going to get worse before it gets better.

Posted by: rdw on July 26, 2006 at 10:02 PM | PERMALINK

rdw:

The whole country was cooperating with the inspectors.

Bush didn't give a shit; he needed to invade during spring weather.

So out the inspectors went.

Just what part of this don't you understand?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on July 26, 2006 at 10:09 PM | PERMALINK

"On the other hand, since I know Holocaust survivors personally, have heard their stories first-hand, have seen the tattoos on their arms,...."

It is important to look at the holocaust evidence, or lack thereof, for yourself, but one indication that the story you have been told is a fable is this:

These are photos of plaques at Auschwitz (click on the links to have a look):

Plaque from Auschwitz showing 4 million "victims".

This plaque was on display at Auschwitz from 1948 until about 1990 (note the "4 million" victims).

Plaque from Auschwitz showing 1.5 million "victims".
Plaque from Auschwitz showing 1.5 million "victims" (Deutsch).

These plaques are currently on display at Auschwitz (English and German).

Note the dramatically reduced number of victims, now only 1.5 million (anderthalb millionen).

A casual reduction in the number of deaths by some 2.5 million.

Deaths at Auschwitz drop by a whopping 2.5 million, but 6,000,000 dead Jews, remains the same.

Why did you never hear about the Jew reduction of deaths at Auschwitz. I mean a reduction from 4 million to 1.5 million is quite significant, you must agree.

If Jews can reduce the number of dead from 4 million to 1.5 million, then why do they jail people like David Irving for just questioning the numbers who died.

There are many, many more problems with the HolyCo$t fable, but one must take one small step at a time.

Posted by: watcher on July 26, 2006 at 11:31 PM | PERMALINK

watcher:

From Wikipedia:

Methods used by Holocaust deniers

Much of the controversy surrounding the claims of deniers centers upon
the methods used to present arguments that the Holocaust allegedly
never happened. Numerous accounts have been given (including evidence
presented in court cases) of claimed "facts" and "evidence"; however,
independent research has shown these claims to be based upon flawed
research, biased statements, and even deliberately falsified evidence.
Opponents of Holocaust denial have compiled detailed accounts of
numerous instances where this evidence has been altered or
manufactured (see below, also see Nizkor Project). Evidence presented
by Holocaust deniers has also failed to stand up to scrutiny in courts
of law (see Fred A. Leuchter and David Irving), as well as never
meeting the standards of independent peer-reviewed journals.

Ken McVay, an activist who works to counter such claims on the
Internet, described the modus operandi of Holocaust deniers in a 1994
interview:

"They'll cite a historical text: 'K.K. Campbell says on page 82 of
his famous book that nobody died at Auschwitz.' Then you go to the
Library of Congress and look up K.K. Campbell, page 82, and what
you find he really said was, 'It was a nice day at Dachau.' They
get away with this because they know goddamn well most people don't
have time to rush off to the Library of Congress. But people read
that and say to themselves, 'Who would lie about such a thing when
it's so easy to prove them wrong? They must be telling the truth.'"
-- Eye magazine (online Web-based magazine), November 10, 1994

In some cases, while some facts presented are sound, the application
of those facts to specific arguments is meaningless or distorted. For
example, a plaque placed by the Soviet authorities at Auschwitz read
that that 4 million people had been killed at the death camp. Western
historians never believed that figure, as estimates of the number of
people killed at Auschwitz were consistently estimated at 1-1.5
million people. After the fall of the Communist government of Poland,
the plaque was changed to 1.1 million victims. Holocaust deniers
frequently argue that this proves that the numbers of the Holocaust
were exaggerated, when the plaque was never part of any historian's
calculations of victims at Auschwitz.[1]

In other cases, conflation of facts is used to mislead. A
frequently-used photo shows a fairly flimsy gas chamber door. The
intent is to confuse the reader into believing that gas chambers could
not be practically used for extermination, because the victims would
break down the door rather than be executed. While the photo is a real
gas chamber door, it is not a door that was known to be used on an
extermination gas chamber; it is a door likely used on a de-lousing
gas chamber.
[edit]

Denial as anti-Semitism

Many publications and statements by Holocaust deniers have been marked
by anti-Semitism. Critics of Holocaust denial have cited many examples
where the arguments and proffered evidence have moved from neutral,
scholarly presentations to blatant promotion of anti-semitic ideas and
conspiracy theories. As a brief search of the Internet for such terms
will reveal, Holocaust deniers have frequently used terms such as
"Zionist Collaborator" or "Jew-lover" to describe their opponents.

The continuing, persistent efforts by Holocaust deniers to portray
mass killings as a mere fiction in the face of overwhelming evidence
has led scholars and authorities to question their motives. "Why," it
has been asked, "do people deny the Holocaust?" On July 24, 1996, a
missive by Harold Covington (the leader of the National Socialist
White People's Party) was sent via email to a number of neo-Nazi
supporters (many of whom were Holocaust deniers). In this message,
Covington explained Holocaust denial in a manner that has been used by
its opponents and critics as a definitive answer to the question of
why:

"Take away the Holocaust and what do you have left? Without their
precious Holocaust, what are the Jews? Just a grubby little bunch
of international bandits and assassins and squatters who have
perpetrated the most massive, cynical fraud in human history...I
recall seeing a television program on revisionism a few years ago
which closed with Deborah Lipstadt making some statement to the
effect that: the real purpose of Holocaust revisionism is to make
National Socialism an acceptable political alternative again. I
normally don't agree with anything a Jew says, but I recall
exclaiming, 'Bingo! Got it in one! Give that lady a cigar!'" -- "On
Revisionism" by Harold Covington (writing under the pseudonym
Winston Smith), NSNet Bulletin #5, July 24, 1996

Burden of proof

Holocaust denial is widely viewed as unreasonable because it fails to
adhere to rules for the treatment of evidence, rules that are
recognized as basic to rational inquiry.

To support a proposition or allegation, a claimant must offer
evidence. The merits of this evidence, and the conclusion it can
support, will depend on its nature; for example, hearsay would not
normally be considered good evidence, but an eyewitness account would
be. A second-hand story would not, but an official, dated and signed
document testifying to the alleged incident would be. After evidence
has been adduced, the claimant's case is then considered to have been
made, and the evidence can be evaluated. The claimant's burden of
proof has been carried. If an interlocutor would then like to call the
claimant's evidence into question, that interlocutor will have to make
a claim of his own -- for example, that this or that piece of evidence
is a forgery. The burden of proof then shifts to the interlocutor, and
the standard of proof will be commensurate with the surety with which
the original claim was established. The claimant's evidence has, prima
facie, whatever force it has in virtue of its merit as evidence. The
interlocutor can't simply continue demanding more proof to answer any
conceivable skeptical conjecture or hypothetical possibility he can
invent to challenge the claimant; this raises the claimant's burden of
proof to an unreasonable level.

In the case of the Holocaust, the survivors, eye witnesses, and
historians may collectively be considered the claimants. The
prevailing consensus among the informed is that their evidence is
overwhelming, and that it proves beyond a reasonable doubt that the
Holocaust occurred, and that it occurred as they say it occurred. It
is unreasonable to ask the claimants to prove that their evidence is
"really real" any more than they already have, unless there is some
particular demonstrably credible reason for thinking that it is
suspect. If Holocaust deniers would like to cast doubt on this
evidence, the burden of proof shifts to them, and they will have a
very high standard to meet. They would have to prove, at least with a
balance of probabilities, that the greater part of the entire body of
evidence attesting to the Holocaust has been fabricated,
misrepresented, or misconstrued by thousands upon thousands of
critical evaluators. Until they can do that, they have not satisfied
the rules for the treatment of evidence recognized to be integral to
reason. In the meantime, Holocaust denial will continue to be
recognized as an unreasonable position.

All of this makes Holocaust denial different from conspiracy theories
generally speaking, since the latter aspire to play by the rules of
evidence, but the evidence they adduce is judged poor. Holocaust
deniers attempt to set unreasonable standards for evidence, so that
they can judge the historian's evidence as poor. This is why Holocaust
deniers portray Holocaust scholarship as a conspiracy theory. Still,
Holocaust denial is often accompanied by a conspiracy theory of a
different sort, namely that Holocaust scholars are conspiring to
depict what they allege to be a fictional event as if it were fact.
[edit]

Evidence of the Holocaust

Among the voluminous evidence for the Holocaust are many photographs.
Here, an Einsatzgruppen member prepares to murder the last Jew in
Vinnitsa, Ukraine, seen kneeling before a filled mass grave, on the
Jewish New Year in September, 1941. Picture from an Einsatzgruppen
soldier's personal album, labelled "Last Jew of Vinnitsa," all 28,000
Jews from Vinnitsa and its surrounding areas were massacred.

Among the voluminous evidence for the Holocaust are many photographs.
Here, an Einsatzgruppen member prepares to murder the last Jew in
Vinnitsa, Ukraine, seen kneeling before a filled mass grave, on the
Jewish New Year in September, 1941. Picture from an Einsatzgruppen
soldier's personal album, labelled "Last Jew of Vinnitsa," all 28,000
Jews from Vinnitsa and its surrounding areas were massacred.

Evidence of the existence of the Holocaust was well documented by the
heavily bureaucratic German government itself. It was further well
documented by the Allied forces who entered Germany and its associated
Axis states towards the end of World War II. Among the evidence
produced was film and stills of the existence of prisoner camps, as
well as the testimony of those freed when the camps were entered.

The Holocaust was a massive undertaking that lasted for years across
several countries, with its own command and control infrastructure.
Although the Nazis made attempts to destroy the evidence of the
Holocaust when they could see that their defeat was imminent, they
left many tons of documents relating to the Holocaust. Due to the
extremely rapid collapse of the Nazi forces at the end of the war,
attempts to destroy evidence in Germany were for the most part
unsuccessful.

After their defeat, many tons of documents were recovered, and many
thousands of bodies were found not yet completely decomposed, in mass
graves near many concentration camps. The physical evidence and the
documentary proof included records of train shipments of Jews to the
camps, orders for tons of cyanide and other poisons, and the remaining
concentration camp structures. Interviews with survivors completed the
picture.

As a result of the records produced, all mainstream historians agree
that Holocaust denial is contrary to the facts of history.

Evidence for Hitler's complicity in the Holocaust

Argument: There was no specific order by Adolf Hitler or other
top Nazi officials to exterminate the Jews.

Holocaust deniers cite the fact that there was never a blatant,
unquestionable order written or signed by Adolf Hitler that
specifically ordered the death of the Jewish populations of Germany or
Poland. Critics counter this argument by noting that very few Nazi
documents used such obvious terms as "murder" or "death" when
addressing their actions. Almost always, they spoke and wrote with
suggestive phrases such as "the final solution to the Jewish question"
rather than "the destruction of the Jewish people." The most
often-cited quotation from Hitler regarding the intention to eliminate
the European Jewry comes from his January 30, 1939 speech to the
Reichstag, where he is quoted as saying:

"Today I want to be a prophet once more: If international
Jewish financiers inside and outside Europe again succeed in
plunging the nations into a world war, the result will not be
the Bolshevization of the earth and with it the victory of
Jewry, but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe."
(Source: [2])

Provided here is a photographic image of a report from Himmler to
Hitler regarding the executions of prisoners in Nazi-occupied
Bialystok, Poland. This was presented as evidence during the Trials of
War Criminals Before the N|rnberg Military Tribunals, of Hitler's
knowledge and approval of the executions of Jews and other targeted
groups. A translation of the report can be found by clicking on the
image.
[edit]

Evidence that gas chambers were used for killing

Argument: Nazis did not use gas chambers to mass murder Jews.
Small chambers did exist for delousing and Zyklon-B was used in
this process.

There have been claims by Holocaust deniers that the gas chambers
built to massacre civilians never existed, and the structures
identified as gas chambers actually served other purposes. However,
the more common argument has been to claim that gas was not used to
murder Jews and other victims, and that many gas chambers were also
built after the war just for show. An often-quoted document advancing
this theory is the "Leuchter Report" by Fred A. Leuchter, a paper
stating that no traces of cyanide were found when he examined samples
taken from one of the Auschwitz gas chambers in 1988. This paper is
used to further a common debating tactic, namely the suggestion that
because no traces of cyanide were found in 1988, then no cyanide was
used at all in Auschwitz, over forty years earlier. Even with the
difficulty of finding traces of this material 50 years later, in
February of 1990, Professor Jan Markiewicz, Director of the Institute
of Forensic Research in Kraksw, redid the analysis.[3] Markiewicz and
his team used microdiffusion techniques to test for cyanide in samples
from the suspected gas chambers, from delousing chambers, and from
control areas elsewhere within Auschwitz. The control samples tested
negative, while cyanide residue was found in both the delousing
chambers and the gas chambers. The amount of cyanide found had a great
variability (possibly due to 50 years of exposure to the elements to
varying degrees[4]), but even so, the categorical results were that
cyanide was found where expected, and not in the control samples.

The cyanide used in Auschwitz and other extermination camps was
created through activation of the pesticide Zyklon-B, which was used
to exterminate prisoners by the thousands. Further investigation into
the death camps revealed that the most difficult part of the operation
was the disposal of thousands of corpses after the executions had
taken place; this required the construction of huge ovens to cremate
the corpses.

Another claim made by Holocaust deniers is that there were no vents in
the gas chambers through which Zyklon B could be inserted, in the
words of Leuchter, "No holes - no Holocaust." The BBC offers a
response showing that this requires disregard of much documentation:

Deniers have said for years that physical evidence is lacking
because they have seen no holes in the roof of the Birkenau gas
chamber where the Zyklon was poured in. (In some of the gas
chambers the Zyklon B was poured in through the roof, while in
others it was thrown in through the windows.) The roof was
dynamited at war's end, and today lies broken in pieces, but three
of the four original holes were positively identified in a recent
paper. Their location in the concrete matches with eyewitness
testimony, aerial photos from 1944, and a ground photo from 1943.
The physical evidence shows unmistakably that the Zyklon holes were
cast into the concrete when the building was constructed.[5]

Another piece of evidence Holocaust deniers frequently question is
what happened to the ash after the bodies were cremated (see, for
example the IHR's list of questions about the Holocaust). The amount
of ash produced in the cremation of a person is about a shoebox full,
and disposing of it was not difficult. Aerial photographs of Auschwitz
indicate that some ash was piled into the nearby river and marsh, and
there is well-documented evidence that other ash was used as
fertilizer in nearby fields. Photographs of Treblinka taken by the
camp commandant show ash piles being distributed by steam shovels.

A number of other common Holocaust denial claims about gas chambers
rely on misdirection, similar to the Auschwitz plaque example given
above. For example, the Institute for Historical Review has claimed
that Holocaust testimony on gas chambers is unreliable, because, in
the words of the IHR: "Hoss said in his confession that his men would
smoke cigarettes as they pulled the dead Jews out of the gas chambers
ten minutes after gassing. Isn't Zyklon-B explosive? Highly so. The
Hoss confession is obviously false." This claim is clearly false, as
the Nizkor Project and other sources has pointed out, the minimal
concentration of Zyklon-B to be explosive 56,000 parts per million,
while the amount used to kill a human is 300 parts per million, as is
evidenced in any common reference guide to chemicals, such as the "The
Merck Index" and the "CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics". In fact,
the Nazis' own documentation stated "Danger of explosion: 75 grams of
HCN in 1 cubic meter of air. Normal application approx. 8-10 grams per
cubic meter, therefore not explosive." (Nuremberg document NI-9912)

Another example is the claim that "at Birkenau (part of Auschwitz), on
the site of the so-called gas chamber and incinerator, there is not
nearly enough rubble to represent the remains of a building that
size." Historians point out that after liberation the local Polish
farming population returned, and, needing materials to rebuild houses
before winter, removed large amounts of re-usable bricks from the
ruins. There is by the crematorium site a big pile of waste that the
salvagers threw aside as they searched for usable bricks.

The Institute for Historical Review publicly offered a reward of
$50,000 for verifiable "proof that gas chambers for the purpose of
killing human beings existed at or in Auschwitz." Mel Mermelstein, a
survivor of Auschwitz, submitted proof, which was then ignored. He
then sued IHR and won the $50,000 reward, plus $40,000 in damages for
personal suffering as well as having the court declare the occurrence
of the Holocaust a legally indisputable fact.

External Link: Gassing as a "remedy" for Jews
External Link: A detailed refutation of the Leuchter-Report

Argument: The figure of six million Jewish deaths is an
irresponsible exaggeration, and many Jews who actually
emigrated to Russia, Britain, Israel and the United States are
included in the number.

Six million figure

The figure "six million" (which refers only to Jewish victims, and may
be larger when counting the other ethnic, religious, and minority
groups targeted for extinction) is often downgraded by claims to a
figure of only one million deaths, or only three hundred thousand
"casualties." Numerous documents archived and discovered after the war
gave meticulous accounts of the exterminations that took place at the
"death camps" (such as Auschwitz and Treblinka). Deniers claim that
these documents are based on Soviet propaganda, primarily from Ilya
Ehrenburg's Soviet anti-Fascist League, and are therefore unreliable.

Complicating the matter is that various instances have been reported
where the death tolls of particular death camps were claimed to be
overstated. Any possible ambiguity in death toll figures has been
seized upon by deniers as evidence for their position. Nevertheless,
the evidence for the large death figures quoted by mainstream sources
is overwhelming.

A much-quoted instance of disputing the toll is the "Breitbard
Document" (actually a paper by Aaron Breitbart), [6] which describes a
commemorative plaque at Auschwitz to the victims that died there,
which read, Four million people suffered and died here at the hands of
the Nazi murderers between the years 1940 and 1945. In 1990, a new
plaque replaced the old one. It now says, May this place where the
Nazis assassinated 1,500,000 men, women and children, a majority of
them Jews from diverse European countries, be forever for mankind a
cry of despair and of warning. The lower numbers are due to the fact
that the Soviets "purposely overstated the number of non-Jewish
casualties at Auschwitz-Birkenau," according to the Simon Wiesenthal
Center. Holocaust Deniers seize on this discrepancy and insist that
the number of Jews killed must be immediately brought down at least
2.5 million. If their presumption that Historians had used this
statistic to reach their overall estimate was correct they would be
partly right, however, they ignore the facts that
* the 4 million figure of the Soviets included almost 2 million
non-Jews, and
* historians in any event did not use the 4 million figure in
calculating the total number of Jews killed.

Jewish population

Deniers consider one of their stronger arguments to be the population
of Jews before and after the Holocaust. They claim that the 1940 World
Almanac gives the world Jewish population as 15,319,359, while the
1949 World Almanac gives the world Jewish population as 15,713,638. In
their view this makes it impossible that 6 million Jews died, even
given an extremely high birth rate. They therefore claim that either
the figures are wrong, or the Holocaust, meaning the deliberate
extermination of millions of Jews, cannot have happened.

However, as is typically the case, the evidence given by Holocaust
deniers does not stand up to closer scrutiny. In fact, the 1949 World
Almanac gives the world Jewish population as 11,266,600. Moreover, it
revises its estimate of the World Jewish population in 1939 upwards,
to 16,643,120. Thus, according to the 1949 World Almanac the
difference between the pre and post war populations is over 5.4
million.

In addition, rather than using more accurate census figures and other
records, Holocaust deniers rely on a popular compendium whose
methodology of assessment is unknown, and whose estimates have varied
significantly. For example, the 1982 World Almanac gives the world
Jewish population as 14,318,000, while the 1990 World Almanac gives
the world Jewish population as 18,169,000, and the 1996 World Almanac
gives the world Jewish population as 13,451,000. Either 3.7 million
Jews appeared unnoticed between 1982 and 1990, and then 4.5 million
Jews disappeared equally unnoticed between 1990 and 1996, or the World
Almanac is not a particularly reliable source for accurate estimates
of worldwide Jewish population.

Finally, Holocaust deniers can be very selective when citing sources;
other sources give very different figures for the Jewish population
before and after the war. For example, the 1932 American Jewish
yearbook estimate the total number of Jews in the world at 15,192,218,
of whom 9,418,248 resided in Europe. However, the 1947 yearbook
states: "Estimates of the world Jewish population have been assembled
by the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (except for the
United States and Canada) and are probably the most authentic
available at the present time. The figures reveal that the total
Jewish population of the world has decreased by one-third from about
16,600,000 in 1939 to about 11,000,000 in 1946 as the result of the
annihilation by the Nazis of more than five and a half million
European Jews. In Europe only an estimated 3,642,000 remain of the
total Jewish pre-war population of approximately 9,740,000."

This selectivity means that Holocaust deniers often ignore the
documents produced by the Nazis themselves, who used figures of
between 9 and 11 million for the Jewish population of Europe, as
evidenced in the notes of the Wannsee Conference. In fact, the Nazis
methodically recorded the ongoing reduction of the Jewish population,
as in the Korherr Report, which gave the status of the Final Solution
through December, 1942:

The total number of Jews in the world in 1937 is generally
estimated at around 17 million, thereof more than 10 million in
Europe... From 1937 to the beginning of 1943 the number of Jews,
partially due to the excess mortality of the Jews in Central and
Western Europe, partially due to the evacuations especially in the
more strongly populated Eastern Territories which are here counted
as off-going, should have diminished by an estimated 4 million. It
must not be overlooked in this respect that of the deaths of Soviet
Russian Jews in the occupied Eastern territories only a part was
recorded, whereas deaths in the rest of European Russia and at the
front are not included at all.... On the whole European Jewry
should since 1933, i.e. in the first decade of National Socialist
German power, have lost almost half of its population.

The Hvfle Telegram.

The Nazis themselves documented many of their crimes. For example, the
Hvfle Telegram sent by SS-Sturmbannf|hrer Hermann Hvfle on January 11,
1943 to SS-Obersturmbannf|hrer Adolf Eichmann in Berlin listed
1,274,166 Jews killed in the four camps of Aktion Reinhard during 1942
alone, while the Korherr Report compiled by an SS statistician, gave a
conservative total of 2,454,000 Jews deported to extermination camps
or killed by the Einsatzgruppen. The complete status reports of the
Einsatzgruppen death squads were found in the archives of the Gestapo
when it was searched by the U.S. Army, and the accuracy attested to by
the former Einsatzgruppen members who testified during war crime
trials and at other times. These reports alone list an additional
1,500,000 or so murders during mass shootings, the vast majority of
these victims were Jews. Further, surviving Nazi documentation spells
out their plans to murder the Jews of Europe (see the Wannsee
Conference), recorded the trains arriving at various death camps, and
included photographs and films of many atrocities.

Testimonies

The most telling evidence is the testimony of thousands of survivors
of the Holocaust, as well the testimony of captured Nazi officers at
the Nuremberg Trials and other times. Holocaust deniers discount these
testimonies claiming that these witnesses were tortured, or that
Rudolf Hoess allegedly signed a "blood stained confession" written in
a language he did not understand (English) or that the Nuremberg Trial
did not follow proper judicial procedures. This argument again ignores
publicly available material, including the fact that Hoess's testimony
did not consist of merely a signed confession; he also wrote two
volumes of memoirs before being brought to trial and gave extensive
testimony outside of the Nuremberg proceedings. Further, his testimony
agrees with that of other contemporary written accounts by Auschwitz
officials, such as Pery Broad, an SS man stationed at Auschwitz while
Hvss was the commandant and the diary kept by SS physician at
Auschwitz Johann Kremer, as well as the testimony of hundreds of camp
guards and victims.[7]. The result is that Holocaust deniers have
needed to construct an elaborate conspiracy theory involving a massive
"Jewish plan" to plant forged documents across the continent of
Europe, aided by the torture and forced confession of every captured
Nazi officer, soldier, and worker who testified at the war crimes
tribunal.


References

* Deborah Lipstadt, Denying the Holocaust: The Growing Assault on
Truth and Memory, Plume (The Penguin Group), 1994.
* Richard J. Evans, Lying About Hitler: History, Holocaust, and the
David Irving Trial, Basic Books, 2002 (ISBN 0465021530).

Posted by: rmck1 on July 27, 2006 at 12:09 AM | PERMALINK

That's why he kinda ordered them out of the country before they were entirely finished.

Bob,

Saddam was jerking liberals off and everyone knows it. Part of the reason is he had Chirac and Schroeder whispering in his ear, "Not too worry, we'll be protecting our cash flow, we'll make sure George doesn't attack".

Let's agree to move on since this discussion was made pointless by the last election. In was pointless before the election actually and if the left had any clue they may have been able to win a few seats.

As you can see from the polling data your views are in the minority. Further, when the history is written it will NOT be about Hans Blick. If mentioned he'll be portrayed as a flunky to Saddam.

Think of the dilemma for the Historian. They would love to write in Hans as a hero but even academic Historians have to stick with facts. This is critical in this age of search engines. Even excusing Hans as a minor player and an obvious pawn we know all about Saddams treachery. Politically speaking Saddam simply cannot be defended. Historians see Ward Churchhill and what happens to those who fudge the data. Hans was a putz. Write anything else and the Conservative Media will have your job for fraud.

The problem with the poll isn't just that 50% think Saddam had WMDs but the direction of the poll and the strength of that direction. We both know we're going to find out a lot more about what Saddam had stashed. We'll have a continuous stream of news releases of another shell of some gas or some chemical weapon. Even the Wilson story works to your political disadvantage. It just reminds everyone Joe DID find evidence Saddam was looking for yellowcake.

Your party needs to stay away from Saddam. It just reminds voters of your fecklessness.

Posted by: rdw on July 27, 2006 at 8:59 AM | PERMALINK

Bob,

What do you think of what is happening in Western Europe?

I ask because of the role Chirac and Schroeder played in counciling Saddam and the fact Schroeder has been banished and French voters would like to banish Jacques. It's intersting that while Jacques could run for another term there isn't a single person suggesting he do so. It's also clear this is Sarkozy's job to lose and he's much more conservative than Jacques.

If you look at Western Germany and Canada you can't miss the significant shift to the right in foreign policy. Both Merkel and Harper have been belligerent compared to their presessors and have taken the exact opposite position on the GWOT with aggressive positions in Afghanistan and on Hezbollah and Hamas.

The UK is even more interesting. Blair has paid a price for his position on Iraq but it's much more complicated than just Iraq and their is a real possibility the left's fury at Blair is going to cost the left control of the government.

How's that for irony?

Blairs problems are also economic as he's pretty much reversed Thatchers changes and made the UK even less dynamic than France. Moreover France has been far, far more aggressive in dealing wiht it's islamic problems. The longer Blair holds on the better for the Tories. They are far less EU oriented and will pull back from intergration, dead for the next many years anyway. The Tory Govt will not be as strong as Blair on Iraq but will be more conservative in every other way.

It's clear in 2008 we are going to have subtantially more conservative governments in Canada, UK, France and Germany than in 2000. Futher, because GWB has put these nations on notice the US defense unmbrella no longer extends to them they will need to dramatically increase spending on their security if they wish to defend their cultures.

They are on their own. They will stand or fall on their own. This has been brilliant policy implemented exceedingly well by GWB and it only follows what he did in Asia with Japan and South Korea.

What do you think Bob of Germany reconstituted as a military power?


Posted by: rdw on July 27, 2006 at 9:23 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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