Generational Dynamics
Fourth Turning Forum Archive


Popular links:
Generational Dynamics Web Site
Generational Dynamics Forum
Fourth Turning Archive home page
New Fourth Turning Forum

Thread: Bush Rebrands Irak - Page 31







Post#751 at 11-30-2006 01:54 PM by Finch [at In the belly of the Beast joined Feb 2004 #posts 1,734]
---
11-30-2006, 01:54 PM #751
Join Date
Feb 2004
Location
In the belly of the Beast
Posts
1,734

Quote Originally Posted by Bob Butler 54 View Post
But that is just wrong from a Keynesian perspective. One wants to make low risk capitol available and stimulate spending. Borrow and spend is right in down times.

But not always.
Thus Keynesism has the seeds of its own downfall: it's always a "down time" for somebody.
Yes we did!







Post#752 at 11-30-2006 03:17 PM by Zarathustra [at Where the Northwest meets the Southwest joined Mar 2003 #posts 9,198]
---
11-30-2006, 03:17 PM #752
Join Date
Mar 2003
Location
Where the Northwest meets the Southwest
Posts
9,198

Quote Originally Posted by Finch View Post
Thus Keynesism has the seeds of its own downfall.
I agree. Mercantilism, the successful policy of an earlier age, was part and parcel of the collapse of the transatlantic union during our Revolutionary Crisis. The eventual obsolescence of it's replacement, a combined Industrial Age/Agricultural Age economy, was the main reason for the collapse of the Union in 1861. In turn, it's replacement, a Mass Production Economy, failed in 1929. What we have come to know and love for the past saeculum, the supercharged Keynesian Mass Consumption machine, is now showing signs of titantic strain, and will very, very likely be a central player in the collapse this institutional order we live in now.

It's ironic how the "pump priming" that saved us a lifetime ago (deficit spending, credit creation, inflated monetary volume) is what is driving us to the brink now. Around and around we go.
Americans have had enough of glitz and roar . . Foreboding has deepened, and spiritual currents have darkened . . .
THE FOURTH TURNING IS AT HAND.
See T4T, p. 253.







Post#753 at 11-30-2006 03:32 PM by salsabob [at Washington DC joined Jan 2005 #posts 746]
---
11-30-2006, 03:32 PM #753
Join Date
Jan 2005
Location
Washington DC
Posts
746

Quote Originally Posted by Bob Butler 54 View Post
A while ago, while I didn't attribute Al Quaida with a working knowledge of cycle theory, I felt they knew they had to provoke a crisis. Their primary objective is to overthrow Saudi Arabia's Oil Monarchy, replace it with more traditional religious government, and in the process remove western influences in the region. In short, they wished to overthrow the Establishment. This requires total upheaval. Thus, anything they could do to weaken and disrupt the status quo and create a 4T crisis atmosphere might be construed as advancing their cause.

By this sort of logic, it might make sense to blow up Shiite mosques. Sure, it gets a lot of locals mad at one. At the same time, it disables the social order, and thus makes a different social order at least in theory plausible.

Someone on this site argued that this wasn't what they were doing because it would be stupid. Creating chaos by making someone mad at you who has more guns and more people isn't a bright move.

At this point, I'm ready to say we were both right. AQ was trying to create chaos. They succeeded. However, they are now but one of many players attempting to harness a whirlwind. They were trying to create a 4T scale crisis anarchy environment, and it seems right now this was not a good idea.

Anyway, I think saying everything is going AQ's way is an exaggeration. They are not in control of the situation. At this point, no one is in control of the situation. They have created enough chaos that significant change is likely, plausible inevitable. They are still in play. Saddam is not in play. Dubya is tottering.

But Iran and several flavors of local Shiite influence are also in play. I don't know that AQ has dealt themselves the strongest hand.
Yes, I agree that it could be an exaggeration to say everything is going AQ's way for it is hard for me to see how they will come to 'harness the whirlwind.' But in terms of only the first step of their 2-part Manufactured Heroism Strategy (noted in above post), they have certainly succeeded enormously in facilitating chaos, savagery and barbarism (with a lot of help from us and others). But, yes, where do they go from here?

There are now two or three generations of AQ-linked Jihadist; perhaps they know nothing else other than to foment savagery. And surely there must be a number of them who would agree with Naji's that "the most abominable of the levels of savagery is (still) less than stability under the order of unbelief [nizām al-kufr] by (several) degrees," meaning that they will fight to foment chaos long after it would be secularly considered to be irrational. With AQ no longer a hierarchical organization, even if geopolitical rationalists were sitting on top and decided to limit the savagery, they likely cannot influence these two types of Jihadist to cease.

But what if the orientations of these speculated two implacable AQ sub-groups did align with geopolitically-rational AQ top leadership? Would not the chessboard of all-out war between Sunni and Shia be interesting to the AQ rationalist? Would history of the Shia and Persian defeat at the hands of Sunnis and Arabs (and Turks) be expected to repeat itself particularly with the inevitable involvement of the US? And would the resulting carnage likely lead to overwhelming global demand (including America's own electorate) for US withdrawal from further involvement in the region? Would the ME Muslims then be in dire need for a "better way," perhaps the AQ version of the Sharia way? How could a true Salafi Jihadist not be tempted to pursue this possible scenario, even if rationally determined to have a low probability of outcome? His alternatives are what? Would those alternatives be as honorable for a true Salafi Jihadist?
"Che l'uomo il suo destin fugge di raro [For rarely man escapes his destiny]" - Ludovico Ariosto







Post#754 at 11-30-2006 04:05 PM by salsabob [at Washington DC joined Jan 2005 #posts 746]
---
11-30-2006, 04:05 PM #754
Join Date
Jan 2005
Location
Washington DC
Posts
746

Quote Originally Posted by Mikebert View Post
They don't. The Iraq war isn't what they wanted. Bin Laden wanted a jihad in Afghanistan. Given war in Iraq what else could a weak player like al Qaeda do in Iraq but try to create chaos?

Now, if the Americans would just act in their own interest and get the hell out, the al Qaeda trap will be set. I, like a fool, supported this war, expecting that the administration was going to leave the existing government in place, install a strongman and get out. But if the Bush administration didn't do what I wanted, the war would still achieve the objective I wanted anyways. I figured if chaos occurred, Iran would gain control over most of Iraq and this would start a new Shia-Sunni war like the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980's, but further to the west. The US would still have ended the embargo against Iraq and withdrawn troops from Saudi Arabia, which to me was the whole point of the war.

Although the US would still be supporting Israel, creating Arab animosity, Arab attentions would be focused on the conflict in Iraq. With a wider war that pulls in Saudi Arabia, plus private Syrian and Jordanian citizens on the Sunni side, will Israel continue to be the focus of (largely Sunni) Islamic anger? My thinking is the Islamofascists would all stream to Iraq to fight the Shiites and leave us alone.

Granted, massive turmoil in the Mideast will not be in the interests of America's elites (particularly oil companies) but I don't care about them. I just want AQ tied up for the foreseeable future--with the US standing on the sidelines. Recall the Bush mantra: better America fights them in Iraq than in Manhatten. I want to go them one better: better Iran fights them in Iraq.
Mike as we've discussed several times before, I too supported the war for much of the same assumptions (primary faulty one being we had an Administration with some brains and a military leadership willing to sacrifice career for their troops) and reasons as you. Further, I too have supported the notion of Shia/Sunni-Persian/Arab let-them-fight-it-out scenario, but one that was contained, again, to Iran and Iraq. However, I believe now that containment will be extremely unlikely (the House of Saud recently made that clear to Cheney). AQ will be actively seeking breakout of the conflict, (particularly to S.A.) and the current alignment of our leadership still havenít developed the brain power to get a grip on what will confront them. The conflict will embroil the entire Gulf with Syria, Jordan and perhaps even Egypt unable to stand apart; and do not rest assured that one or more players will not decide to let 'the Zionists' escape the carnage. The US will not stay out of it and China, India, Russia, Pakistan, Turkey, and the EU will all have difficult choices that may, at best, not exactly align with our interests.

But, for argument's sake, letís pretend that the US will stay out of it. I highly respect your economic work, but I stand in awe of what seems to be a cavalier or perhaps fatalistic viewpoint you have towards the socioeconomic consequences to our Nation and culture from a Persian Gulf shutdown. How do you see that this could play out other than a calamity that would make the Depression and perhaps our Civil War seem like cakewalks?
"Che l'uomo il suo destin fugge di raro [For rarely man escapes his destiny]" - Ludovico Ariosto







Post#755 at 11-30-2006 04:51 PM by Virgil K. Saari [at '49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains joined Jun 2001 #posts 7,835]
---
11-30-2006, 04:51 PM #755
Join Date
Jun 2001
Location
'49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains
Posts
7,835

Question Why should we believe? Who ought be Bozo-ed?

Dear Mr. Salsabob, Mr. Alexander, et al.,

<sincerity*>Why should that minority which was "right" about the Irak expedition taken your current policy perscriptions to heart?</sincerity>


I have stopped heeding those who would "stay the course", and the Romantic Idealists (neo-Conservatives, democratists) I found wanting from the start. But, what of those "fooled me once/ don't get fooled again" T4T war advocates who have come to another view?

And, what do my fellow T4T anti-"Not-War"riors, the non-interventionists, the Irak was the wrong place and the wrong timers, (the Great Astrologer, the recently to Russia, the Bookminder in Dairyland, Yo. Ob. Sv., etc.) do with the opinions of those who still hold to the True Faith of Irak the Model and those who have become heretics to that view? Do you welcome midnight conversions? Is a stopped clock accurate enough for T4T timing?

Yo. For-once-in-a-great-while sincere Sv.
VKS



________

*In the previous century, a Millennial (I think it was Mr. Loyd) asked how he could tell if I was serious. I told him to treat all my posts as seriously as he could; but, the ones that sounded sincere were probably sarcasm; and the sarcasticly styled posts were sincere.




________

2nd edit: Peccavi for the portmanteau construction of perscriptions which I carpented from perceptions and prescriptions. Also, the errors in punctuation, etc. due to using two browsers, MSIE and Opera, to post and read T4T respectively.
Last edited by Virgil K. Saari; 12-01-2006 at 10:14 AM. Reason: Pure whiggery, 2nd: progressive, nay Liberal, wordsmithing







Post#756 at 11-30-2006 06:28 PM by salsabob [at Washington DC joined Jan 2005 #posts 746]
---
11-30-2006, 06:28 PM #756
Join Date
Jan 2005
Location
Washington DC
Posts
746

Quote Originally Posted by Virgil K. Saari View Post
Dear Mr. Salsabob, Mr. Alexander, et al.,

<sincerity*>Why should that minority which was "right" about the Irak expedition taken your current policy perscriptions to heart?</sincerity>


I have stopped heeding those who would "stay the course", and the Romantic Idealists (neo-Conservatives, democratists) I found wanting from the start. But, what of those "fooled my once/ don't get fooled again" T4T war advocates who have come to another view?

And, what do my fellow T4T anti-"Not-War"riors, the non-interventionists, the Irak was the wrong place and the wrong timers, {the Great Astrologer, the recently to Russia, the Bookminder in Dairyland, Yo. Ob. Sv., etc.) do with the opinions of those who still hold to the True Faith of Irak the Model and those who have become heretics to that view? Do you welcome midnight conversions? Is a stopped clock accurate enough for T4T timing?

Yo. For-once-in-a-great-while sincere Sv.
VKS



________

*In the previous century, a Millennial (I think it was Mr. Loyd) asked how he could tell if I was serious. I told him to treat all my posts as seriously as he could; but, the one's that sounded sincere were probably sarcasm; and the sarcasticly styled posts were sincere.

I offer no policy prescription, only considerations.

And, I will remain always humbled (and hopefully wiser) by my now obviously-incorrect assumption of some basic level of intelligence, wisdom and motivations in those we elect to our highest office and the 'team' that they bring along.

However, does it necessarily follow that the one who chooses the raft that proved to be inadequately pitched also makes a faulty assessment that the flood waters continue to rise? Perhaps these are different skills altogether, and in the specific case, exorbitantly more complex.

Perhaps my worst fear of incompetent response to the threats arrayed against us has come to pass. However, a close second to that fear would be having our actions or inactions based on the naive notion that such threats, with grave consequences to our basic values and way of life, are unlikely or even nonexistent.
"Che l'uomo il suo destin fugge di raro [For rarely man escapes his destiny]" - Ludovico Ariosto







Post#757 at 11-30-2006 07:42 PM by Cynic Hero '86 [at Upstate New York joined Jul 2006 #posts 1,285]
---
11-30-2006, 07:42 PM #757
Join Date
Jul 2006
Location
Upstate New York
Posts
1,285

Quote Originally Posted by salsabob View Post
I offer no policy prescription, only considerations.

And, I will remain always humbled (and hopefully wiser) by my now obviously-incorrect assumption of some basic level of intelligence, wisdom and motivations in those we elect to our highest office and the 'team' that they bring along.

However, does it necessarily follow that the one who chooses the raft that proved to be inadequately pitched also makes a faulty assessment that the flood waters continue to rise? Perhaps these are different skills altogether, and in the specific case, exorbitantly more complex.

Perhaps my worst fear of incompetent response to the threats arrayed against us has come to pass. However, a close second to that fear would be having our actions or inactions based on the naive notion that such threats, with grave consequences to our basic values and way of life, are unlikely or even nonexistent.
The main reason our current foreign policy is failing dramatically is because it is guided by the ideological fixation on the struggle between democracy and dictatorship; with such a policy, pragmatic diplomacy and playing rivals against each other becomes impossible.







Post#758 at 11-30-2006 09:15 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
---
11-30-2006, 09:15 PM #758
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
'47 cohort still lost in Falwelland
Posts
16,709

Quote Originally Posted by Virgil K. Saari View Post
Dear Mr. Salsabob, Mr. Alexander, et al.,

<sincerity*>Why should that minority which was "right" about the Irak expedition taken your current policy prescriptions to heart?</sincerity>


I have stopped heeding those who would "stay the course", and the Romantic Idealists (neo-Conservatives, democratists) I found wanting from the start. But, what of those "fooled my once/ don't get fooled again" T4T war advocates who have come to another view?

And, what do my fellow T4T anti-"Not-War"riors, the non-interventionists, the Irak was the wrong place and the wrong timers, {the Great Astrologer, the recently to Russia, the Bookminder in Dairyland, Yo. Ob. Sv., etc.) do with the opinions of those who still hold to the True Faith of Irak the Model and those who have become heretics to that view? Do you welcome midnight conversions? Is a stopped clock accurate enough for T4T timing?

Yo. For-once-in-a-great-while sincere Sv.
VKS

Quote Originally Posted by salsabob View Post
I offer no policy prescription, only considerations.

And, I will remain always humbled (and hopefully wiser) by my now obviously-incorrect assumption of some basic level of intelligence, wisdom and motivations in those we elect to our highest office and the 'team' that they bring along.

However, does it necessarily follow that the one who chooses the raft that proved to be inadequately pitched also makes a faulty assessment that the flood waters continue to rise? Perhaps these are different skills altogether, and in the specific case, exorbitantly more complex.

Perhaps my worst fear of incompetent response to the threats arrayed against us has come to pass. However, a close second to that fear would be having our actions or inactions based on the naive notion that such threats, with grave consequences to our basic values and way of life, are unlikely or even nonexistent.
How about Ethical Realism from a pair of honest brokers - one from each side of the spectrum and the pond. Left and right, both agree that we've been stupid, and needed to avoid stupidity in the future
Last edited by Marx & Lennon; 11-30-2006 at 09:18 PM.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#759 at 11-30-2006 09:31 PM by Zarathustra [at Where the Northwest meets the Southwest joined Mar 2003 #posts 9,198]
---
11-30-2006, 09:31 PM #759
Join Date
Mar 2003
Location
Where the Northwest meets the Southwest
Posts
9,198

Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
How about Ethical Realism from a pair of honest brokers - one from each side of the spectrum and the pond. Left and right, both agree that we've been stupid, and needed to avoid stupidity in the future
There basic thoughts seem to line up well with Michael Lind's proposed synthesis of international liberalism and realism in his recent book, The American Way of Strategy. And Lind is one of the founding members of the New America Foundation, the think tank Anatol Lieven is credited belonging to in the article.

I really like the New America Foundation. Lind and Halstead helped start it so that the Radical Center could have an intellectual nexus.
Americans have had enough of glitz and roar . . Foreboding has deepened, and spiritual currents have darkened . . .
THE FOURTH TURNING IS AT HAND.
See T4T, p. 253.







Post#760 at 12-01-2006 04:44 AM by Justin '77 [at Meh. joined Sep 2001 #posts 12,182]
---
12-01-2006, 04:44 AM #760
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Meh.
Posts
12,182

Quote Originally Posted by Bob Butler 54 View Post
Well, wrong. The goal is to stabilize as much as possible an inherently unstable system.
So you haven't read Keynes, then. I see. The "inherently unstable system" he aimed to stabilize was the political one, not the economic. The ruling class doesn't like having their position threatened, and Keynes developed a way to secure it. Borrow-and-spend is the end result that puts the elites outside the grasp of the 'animal spirits of the masses.
Last edited by Justin '77; 12-01-2006 at 04:47 AM.







Post#761 at 12-01-2006 04:49 AM by Justin '77 [at Meh. joined Sep 2001 #posts 12,182]
---
12-01-2006, 04:49 AM #761
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Meh.
Posts
12,182

Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
It's ironic how the "pump priming" that saved us a lifetime ago (deficit spending, credit creation, inflated monetary volume) is what is driving us to the brink now. Around and around we go.
What 'saved us' last time wasn't the pump priming, but the fact that we had some sort of stock seed to loot in the first place. Now that it's long gone, we get to see just what 'pump priming' itself is good for. Hold on tight.







Post#762 at 12-01-2006 05:12 AM by Justin '77 [at Meh. joined Sep 2001 #posts 12,182]
---
12-01-2006, 05:12 AM #762
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Meh.
Posts
12,182

Quote Originally Posted by Virgil K. Saari View Post
And, what do my fellow T4T anti-"Not-War"riors, the non-interventionists, the Irak was the wrong place and the wrong timers, {the Great Astrologer, the recently to Russia, the Bookminder in Dairyland, Yo. Ob. Sv., etc.) do with the opinions of those who still hold to the True Faith of Irak the Model and those who have become heretics to that view? Do you welcome midnight conversions? Is a stopped clock accurate enough for T4T timing?
F-k 'em. We were right without their advice the first time, I see no great need to consult them (on matters related or similar to that on which they so clearly showed themselves to be defective) going forward.

If your stopped clock showed the right time all of a sudden, would you begin to give it the same credence as the wristwatch that was right all along? I think not. And for those such as we, there is always* the sun to allow us at least an indication whether we have gotten unforgiveably far off the track of rightness.

It might also be worth noting that, if great attention is paid to the interstices and nuances of the heretics, one can see that the vast majority have still not embraced righfulness as you understand it. They have not transformed into fellow travellers; rather their roads have taken a vector which superficially resembles ours at the present time. I have yet to encounter a single one who is fundamentally changed.

------

*As both the sunset out my window and lunchtime inside simultaneously draw to a close, I realize the need for a ymmvdol (.....dependent on latitude)







Post#763 at 12-01-2006 09:09 AM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
---
12-01-2006, 09:09 AM #763
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
'47 cohort still lost in Falwelland
Posts
16,709

Quote Originally Posted by Virgil K. Saari View Post
... And, what do my fellow T4T anti-"Not-War"riors, the non-interventionists, the Irak was the wrong place and the wrong timers, {the Great Astrologer, the recently to Russia, the Bookminder in Dairyland, Yo. Ob. Sv., etc.) do with the opinions of those who still hold to the True Faith of Irak the Model and those who have become heretics to that view? Do you welcome midnight conversions? Is a stopped clock accurate enough for T4T timing?
Quote Originally Posted by Justin '77 View Post
F-k 'em. We were right without their advice the first time, I see no great need to consult them (on matters related or similar to that on which they so clearly showed themselves to be defective) going forward.

If your stopped clock showed the right time all of a sudden, would you begin to give it the same credence as the wristwatch that was right all along? I think not. And for those such as we, there is always* the sun to allow us at least an indication whether we have gotten unforgiveably far off the track of rightness.

It might also be worth noting that, if great attention is paid to the interstices and nuances of the heretics, one can see that the vast majority have still not embraced righfulness as you understand it. They have not transformed into fellow travellers; rather their roads have taken a vector which superficially resembles ours at the present time. I have yet to encounter a single one who is fundamentally changed.
That seems a bit harsh. Those of us that found the idea of the Iraq War inane, did so for many differing reasons. We need to be cautious about being too smug in our correctness. When we review other topics, especially those related to the economy, we, of the right-on-Iraq clique, are all over the map. Likewise, on social policy.

If any of us is ever validated in all things, let them tell the rest to piss off.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#764 at 12-01-2006 09:56 AM by Justin '77 [at Meh. joined Sep 2001 #posts 12,182]
---
12-01-2006, 09:56 AM #764
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Meh.
Posts
12,182

Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
When we review other topics, especially those related to the economy, we, of the right-on-Iraq clique, are all over the map. Likewise, on social policy.
Indeed. That's why I cavate (cav + p.t. of 'eat': my invention for past-verbifying the word 'caveat') thusly:
(on matters related or similar to that on which they so clearly showed themselves to be defective)
The world is much to wide and varied for any of us to be considered by any other of us an absolute idiot. Judgment on that must be passed on a case-by-case basis.







Post#765 at 12-01-2006 10:20 AM by Virgil K. Saari [at '49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains joined Jun 2001 #posts 7,835]
---
12-01-2006, 10:20 AM #765
Join Date
Jun 2001
Location
'49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains
Posts
7,835

Thumbs up The higher latitudinarianism

Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
That seems a bit harsh. Those of us that found the idea of the Iraq War inane, did so for many differing reasons. We need to be cautious about being too smug in our correctness. When we review other topics, especially those related to the economy, we, of the right-on-Iraq clique, are all over the map. Likewise, on social policy.

If any of us is ever validated in all things, let them tell the rest to piss off.
The heart agrees with this stance; the head reasons with the more northerly degree-d poster.







Post#766 at 12-01-2006 11:13 AM by Virgil K. Saari [at '49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains joined Jun 2001 #posts 7,835]
---
12-01-2006, 11:13 AM #766
Join Date
Jun 2001
Location
'49er, north of the Mesabi Mountains
Posts
7,835

Question Why were "we" "right" on Irak?

We few, we unhappy few.


I ask as if, in truth and in time, those T4Ters who thought the Irak expedition would be proved to be a folly are proved to be correct.

"We" were "a mile wide and an inch deep" a few years ago. But, as has been pointed out "we" were in some portion Green, Progressive, Democrat, whig, Paleo-(L & C), Libertarian and Anarchic. It was not a narrow portion of the body politic that saw something terribly wrong from the beginning.

Why did we see things differently?

I also ask those who didn't see and those still don't see it "our" way to accept for argument's sake that "we" are/were "right" on Irak. Why do you think it was so? And, perhaps more hurtfully why were you in error in part or whole?







Post#767 at 12-01-2006 11:20 AM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
---
12-01-2006, 11:20 AM #767
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
'47 cohort still lost in Falwelland
Posts
16,709

Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
... When we review other topics, especially those related to the economy, we, of the right-on-Iraq clique, are all over the map. Likewise, on social policy. If any of us is ever validated in all things, let them tell the rest to piss off.
Quote Originally Posted by Justin '77 View Post
Indeed. That's why I cavate (cav + p.t. of 'eat': my invention for past-verbifying the word 'caveat') thusly:
(on matters related or similar to that on which they so clearly showed themselves to be defective)
The world is much to wide and varied for any of us to be considered by any other of us an absolute idiot. Judgment on that must be passed on a case-by-case basis.
Sadly, I must disagree. There are "absolute idiots" in this world.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#768 at 12-01-2006 12:18 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
---
12-01-2006, 12:18 PM #768
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
'47 cohort still lost in Falwelland
Posts
16,709

Quote Originally Posted by Virgil K. Saari View Post
We few, we unhappy few.

I ask as if, in truth and in time, those T4Ters who thought the Irak expedition would be proved to be a folly are proved to be correct.

"We" were "a mile wide and an inch deep" a few years ago. But, as has been pointed out "we" were in some portion Green, Progressive, Democrat, whig, Paleo-(L & C), Libertarian and Anarchic. It was not a narrow portion of the body politic that saw something terribly wrong from the beginning.

Why did we see things differently?
This is an important question. My sense of impending doom came from my own experience with the Vietnam War, and the perception versus reality of that debacle. There were too many parallels. First and foremost, a rush to judgement.

I lost any sympathy with the entire endeavour, not that I had much to lose, when the UN inspectors were ignored and hustled out of the country. Although I suspected it was done deal before, I knew then for sure. This was a planned incursion, and facts be damned.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.







Post#769 at 12-01-2006 12:42 PM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
---
12-01-2006, 12:42 PM #769
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort
Posts
14,092

Quote Originally Posted by Virgil K. Saari View Post
And, what do my fellow T4T anti-"Not-War"riors, the non-interventionists, the Irak was the wrong place and the wrong timers, (the Great Astrologer, the recently to Russia, the Bookminder in Dairyland, Yo. Ob. Sv., etc.) do with the opinions of those who still hold to the True Faith of Irak the Model and those who have become heretics to that view? Do you welcome midnight conversions? Is a stopped clock accurate enough for T4T timing?
Mr. Saari:

I find that it helps to take the words of Mr. Alexander Pope to heart:

"To err is human, to forgive divine."







Post#770 at 12-01-2006 12:46 PM by Bob Butler 54 [at Cove Hold, Carver, MA joined Jul 2001 #posts 6,431]
---
12-01-2006, 12:46 PM #770
Join Date
Jul 2001
Location
Cove Hold, Carver, MA
Posts
6,431

Idiocy

Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon
... When we review other topics, especially those related to the economy, we, of the right-on-Iraq clique, are all over the map. Likewise, on social policy. If any of us is ever validated in all things, let them tell the rest to piss off.
Piss off. (Kidding. Never could resist a straight line...)

How does one get accredited as a member of the right-on-Iraq clique? I was in favor of containing dictators, even if they have WMDs. It was stateless terrorist groups with WMDs that worried me. I've also been long concerned that WMDs and insurgencies have changed the balance of power between the 1st and 3rd Worlds, but the 1st World hadn't woken up to this yet.

Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
Sadly, I must disagree. There are "absolute idiots" in this world.
It is so tempting to say this isn't necessarily true if one excludes the current inhabitants of the White House...

But one must be careful of the distinction between an idiot and someone whose values and world views are either in conflict with one's own or hopelessly out of synch with reality.

A while ago, one of our conservative contributors asserted absolute values are necessary, relative values worthless. Thing is, if one has a locked in, rigid and unchangeable perspective on how things work, and it is out of step with reality, it gets hard to change course, doesn't it? Thus, the recently popular phrase 'reality based community.' There is a place for idealism and abstract ideas, but if one cannot cross check them against the real world and change course if there is a disconnect, disaster follows.

We rate Saddam as a madman. It is easy to label a dictator depending on secret police terror to maintain control a madman. Still, he knew how to manipulate the old Agricultural Age autocratic system of values to maintain control of Iraq. His own values and methods were in sync with his people's, while ours aren't. While our values might be in many ways preferable and lead to stronger nations in the long run, it is not clear that we can rule Iraq in the short term according to the pattern set by our values.

Saddam was not an idiot. He misjudged Dubya's willingness to launch a preemptive unilateral invasion, but it isn't clear whether Saddam was the larger idiot for not anticipating invasion, or Dubya the bigger idiot for launching it. One might argue that both are idiots, or that neither understood the other's values and environment. It is easy to misunderstand the values of other cultures and the high ego maniacs who rule them.

Sorry. I'm rambling. Again, distinguish between idiocy and having a world view that might work well within the context of one culture, but which falls apart in a broader or different environment.







Post#771 at 12-01-2006 12:47 PM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
---
12-01-2006, 12:47 PM #771
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort
Posts
14,092

Quote Originally Posted by Marx & Lennon View Post
How about Ethical Realism from a pair of honest brokers - one from each side of the spectrum and the pond. Left and right, both agree that we've been stupid, and needed to avoid stupidity in the future
I heard those two guys on NPR the other day, and they made a lot of sense to me.







Post#772 at 12-01-2006 12:56 PM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
---
12-01-2006, 12:56 PM #772
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort
Posts
14,092

Quote Originally Posted by Justin '77 View Post
F-k 'em. We were right without their advice the first time, I see no great need to consult them (on matters related or similar to that on which they so clearly showed themselves to be defective) going forward.

If your stopped clock showed the right time all of a sudden, would you begin to give it the same credence as the wristwatch that was right all along? I think not. And for those such as we, there is always* the sun to allow us at least an indication whether we have gotten unforgiveably far off the track of rightness.

It might also be worth noting that, if great attention is paid to the interstices and nuances of the heretics, one can see that the vast majority have still not embraced righfulness as you understand it. They have not transformed into fellow travellers; rather their roads have taken a vector which superficially resembles ours at the present time. I have yet to encounter a single one who is fundamentally changed.

------

*As both the sunset out my window and lunchtime inside simultaneously draw to a close, I realize the need for a ymmvdol (.....dependent on latitude)

Justin,

I came very, very close to being on the other side in this matter, and it was only through the efforts of folks like you, Seadog, Brian Rush, Eric Meece, and Mr. Saari that I didn't end up there. Had I not listened to the discussion on this site, I may not have reached that epiphany.

I used to be a well-intentioned interventionist and still am at heart. It's just that now I don't think that intervention at the point of a gun is the best approach.







Post#773 at 12-01-2006 01:50 PM by cbailey [at B. 1950 joined Sep 2001 #posts 1,559]
---
12-01-2006, 01:50 PM #773
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
B. 1950
Posts
1,559

Hello from Pleasantville

I think you folks must live in a much more elevated intellectual world than I.
Out here in the world of red...red-neck...republican....sheep..I asked these questions of my fellow citizens:

Huh?
Did you not SEE "Lawrence of Arabia?"
You thought Colin Powell's UN presentation was anything but crap!?
Do you REMEMBER Vietnam?
Ok, then where's Osama Bin Laden?
Isn't this all about oil?

I think the most common reply was, "Let's not talk about it. You are such a dooms-dayer. Let's shop."

Higher level foreign policy discussion is admirable. But don't you worry about those glazed-eyed Americans who just want it all to go away? It seems to me they are truly a national security threat. There are a lot of them, and sometimes the sound of a loud "F-k'em" is the only thing that will wake them up.
"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." -- Theodore Roosevelt







Post#774 at 12-01-2006 03:09 PM by Cynic Hero '86 [at Upstate New York joined Jul 2006 #posts 1,285]
---
12-01-2006, 03:09 PM #774
Join Date
Jul 2006
Location
Upstate New York
Posts
1,285

The solution to our foreign policy problems is not merely a reevaluation of our strategy in iraq, or even that of the entire war on terror; but the complete transformation of our worldview. Instead of assuming that everyone loves democracy and wants to have it; instead we must come to the recognition that their are only two important groups: the predators and the prey. I ask you should we wait and allow ourselves become the prey, or should we commit ourselves to the logical course of action and show the world why one should fear angering america.







Post#775 at 12-01-2006 04:56 PM by Marx & Lennon [at '47 cohort still lost in Falwelland joined Sep 2001 #posts 16,709]
---
12-01-2006, 04:56 PM #775
Join Date
Sep 2001
Location
'47 cohort still lost in Falwelland
Posts
16,709

Predators can be prey, too

Quote Originally Posted by Cynic Hero '86 View Post
The solution to our foreign policy problems is not merely a reevaluation of our strategy in iraq, or even that of the entire war on terror; but the complete transformation of our worldview. Instead of assuming that everyone loves democracy and wants to have it; instead we must come to the recognition that their are only two important groups: the predators and the prey. I ask you should we wait and allow ourselves become the prey, or should we commit ourselves to the logical course of action and show the world why one should fear angering america.
H-m-m-m. From my experience, which is about 40 years more than yours, the fastest way to become prey is to act the predator role just once too often. Even a rabbit will attack if it's cornered, and who expects to be attacked by a rabbit?

Right now, the Iraqis are rabbits, they're attacking, and we're not able to stop them. If you think you can handle this is a more productive manner, I recommend enlistment at your soonest opportunity. Ask for Special Ops; they're always in the action. Let us know how it goes.
Marx: Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.
Lennon: You either get tired fighting for peace, or you die.
-----------------------------------------