Monday, June 27, 2005

Oh Say Can You See

Michael Ignatieff writes in the New York Times about a mission whose outcome is not yet known. It is the American mission to spread the Jeffersonian dream of freedom to the world. He asks two questions: first, whether any set of flawed human beings can set out upon a such a missionary enterprise without being guilty of self-righteousness; second, whether the Americans are willing to pay the high price for this endeavor. (Hat tip: MW)

John F. Kennedy echoed Jefferson when, in a speech in 1961, he said that the spread of freedom abroad was powered by ''the force of right and reason''; but, he went on, in a sober and pragmatic vein, ''reason does not always appeal to unreasonable men.'' The contrast between Kennedy and the current incumbent of the White House is striking. Until George W. Bush, no American president -- not even Franklin Roosevelt or Woodrow Wilson -- actually risked his presidency on the premise that Jefferson might be right. But this gambler from Texas has bet his place in history on the proposition ... If democracy plants itself in Iraq and spreads throughout the Middle East, Bush will be remembered as a plain-speaking visionary. If Iraq fails, it will be his Vietnam, and nothing else will matter much about his time in office.

Although Ignatieff plainly wants to see freedom spread, one of the sources of his unease is the role of God, or something like it, in the missionary endeavor. How much better it would be, he seems to ask, if any claims to universality or transcendence could be kept out it. Then we could bring the Europeans and the Canadians in on it.

From the era of F.D.R. to the era of John Kennedy, liberal and progressive foreigners used to look to America for inspiration. ... For a complex set of reasons, American democracy has ceased to be the inspiration it was. This is partly because of the religious turn in American conservatism, which awakens incomprehension in the largely secular politics of America's democratic allies. ... Ask the Canadians why they aren't joining the American crusade to spread democracy, and you get this from their government's recent foreign-policy review: ''Canadians hold their values dear, but are not keen to see them imposed on others. This is not the Canadian way.'' One reason it is not the Canadian way is that when American presidents speak of liberty as God's plan for mankind, even God-fearing Canadians wonder when God began disclosing his plan to presidents. ...

Yet for all of that, Ignatieff recognizes the power of the idea that Liberals have ceded to the Conservatives. But he fails to ask himself what precisely it was about the Conservative embrace of the Jeffersonian proclamation that sets it apart from the Liberal acceptance at arms-length as exemplified by John Kennedy. He doesn't convincingly explain why Reagan should discover in liberty something which John Kennedy had missed; why George W. Bush should find in it something which Bill Clinton did not.

It was Reagan who began the realignment of American politics, making the Republicans into internationalist Jeffersonians ...  Faced with the Republican embrace of Jeffersonian ambitions for America abroad, liberals chose retreat or scorn. Bill Clinton -- who took reluctant risks to defend freedom in Bosnia and Kosovo -- partly arrested this retreat, yet since his administration, the withdrawal of American liberalism from the defense and promotion of freedom overseas has been startling. The Michael Moore-style left conquered the Democratic Party's heart; now the view was that America's only guiding interest overseas was furthering the interests of Halliburton and Exxon. The relentless emphasis on the hidden role of oil makes the promotion of democracy seem like a devious cover or lame excuse. The unseen cost of this pseudo-Marxist realism is that it disconnected the Democratic Party from the patriotic idealism of the very electorate it sought to persuade.

One possibility is that Reagan and Bush possessed a faith in the universality of human liberty that Kennedy and Clinton did not. It was one thing to coldly deduce that China could be reached by sailing westward from Europe, but it took Columbus to stake one's fate on it. Ignatieff sees this, but cannot bring himself to admit it. Missionary endeavors require a kind of faith. A kind of action in advance of the result. The Canadians and Europeans would not come on those terms and so we should not be surprised that they have not come at all.

John Kerry's presidential campaign could not overcome liberal America's fatal incapacity to connect to the common faith of the American electorate in the Jeffersonian ideal. Instead he ran as the prudent, risk-avoiding realist in 2004 -- despite, or perhaps because of, the fact that he had fought in Vietnam. Kerry's caution was bred in the Mekong. The danger and death he encountered gave him some good reasons to prefer realism to idealism, and risk avoidance to hubris. Faced with a rival who proclaimed that freedom was not just America's gift to mankind but God's gift to the world, it was understandable that Kerry would seek to emphasize how complex reality was, how resistant to American purposes it might be and how high the price of American dreams could prove. As it turned out, the American electorate seemed to know only too well how high the price was in Iraq, and it still chose the gambler over the realist. In 2004, the Jefferson dream won decisively over American prudence.

Ignatieff's oddest choice of words is to characterize Kerry as a realist and George Bush as a gambler, as if there were any certainty to be derived from sitting back passively, as he accuses the Liberals of doing; as if there were any recklessness to warring on enemies who had warred on you. "The real truth about Iraq is that we just don't know -- yet -- whether the dream will do its work this time. This is the somber question that hangs unanswered as Americans approach this Fourth of July." But that's what freedom is: the ability to ask a question and not be afraid of the answer. 

266 Comments:

Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

Leftists just can not see the Christian roots of the founding of this nation. The first people who fled from Europe to America did so for religious freedom.

This religious inspiration served as the founding motivations of our nation. The left tries hard to suppress that and poison the roots of our nation but they can not totally kill it out.

This inspiration has always had an evangelical nature to it. Sometimes though it is more suppressed than it is at other times.

Canada was not founded on the same mindset. In fact Canada was founded by those who wanted to be both in Europe and in the New World at the same time. So it is going to be fairly natural for Canada to more closely resemble Europe than America.

6/27/2005 05:18:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Perhaps it was "missionary zeal" or perhaps not, but using the same logic as that which casts doubt on the “Zeal Factor" it certainly is not clear why we fought WWII as we did. The prudent, realistic thing to do would have been to negotiate with Japan after the Pearl Harbor attack; after all we planned to give up the Philippines in a few years in any case, and nothing else out there was ours anyway. Ask the Japanese and they would tell you it was "all about China" and Asians being able to exploit their own resources. Negotiations with Germany and Italy certainly could have assured England's safety and probably even limited the Axis intrusion into Africa. As for the Soviets, everyone except the American Communists could see it would be better for the Nazis and the Commies to kill each other off, so let them go at it without our involvement.
So it much have been Missionary Zeal that led us to go after our enemies with unbelievable ferocity and eventually awe-inspiring skill, covering the sea with ships, filling the sky with airplanes (over 100,000 fighter planes alone) and passing the nuclear threshold without as much as a pause.
Yeah, that must have been it. It certainly was not logical.
But boy, oh boy, was it right.

6/27/2005 05:49:00 AM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

It seems to me that a FAR bigger gamble would have been to sit back in 2002 and let the world situation progress as it was, hoping that everything would turn out OK.

6/27/2005 05:50:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Great subject for a post, Wretch. So now liberals embody realism and are being led by realists? How is publicly sacrificing our national character on the altar of political cynicism and an arrested morality (i.e., a vague socialism; see Russia, 1860) evidence of realism? And, finally, WHAT IS THE GODDAMN ALTERNATIVE ALREADY.

6/27/2005 05:57:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Exhelo: It seems to me that a FAR bigger gamble would have been to sit back in 2002 and let the world situation progress as it was, hoping that everything would turn out OK.

We already tried that, it was called the '90's.

Our recent history proves W's point: ...as if there were any certainty to be derived from sitting back passively, as he accuses the Liberals of doing; as if there were any recklessness to warring on enemies who had warred on you.

6/27/2005 06:26:00 AM  
Blogger Marlin said...

Great post. Thanks!

6/27/2005 06:36:00 AM  
Blogger F said...

Dan's got it right: there's no realism in the hype being sold by the left -- from Biden's foreign vision to Hillary's health care vision or Shroeder's nuclear sales to Iran. And the irony is, if W had said his vision was based on Scientology or Buddhism, the left would not be criticizing it on religious grounds. Where's their sanity? Good post, W; I'm only sorry (as always) that it is not mandatory reading for the entire U.S. population -- or at least our intellectual elite.

6/27/2005 06:38:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Victory in Germany in WWII was the defeat of Hitler and his cohorts. When the German's manuver combat power was defeated, the war was over. In the Pacific, the Japanese surrender came after hundreds of thousands of civilians were inciderated.
In niether case was Victory in war defined by the results of post war reconstruction.
Now, in Iraq, the enemies combat power has been destroyed. Major combat operations have been over for more than a year.
Current military operations like Matador, while dangerous to those involved, are not major military operations. They utilize battalion sized units, operating against dispersed insurgents.

In Vietnam, when JFK was unhappy with the performance of the Indig Government, he had their President removed. Replacing Diem with a series of Generals was just one more nail in the coffin of freedom and the spread of democracy.

Historical revisionism has changed our view of JFK. We read his words, but they do not match his performance. He has become an icon of sorts for the Left. For his failure at the Bay of Pigs, blamed is placed on Ike, in 'Nam his failure shifts to Johnson and Nixon. The Cuban missle crisis, which left a despot in control of Cuba for over forty years, is held up as a success.
No telling, at this point, what the final outcome of the Battle of Iraq and the WoT will be, or how history will view either the attempt or the results.

6/27/2005 07:06:00 AM  
Blogger reliapundit said...

post-modernism infected the academt and thereby the Elft.

post-modernism holds that cultures and values ands morals are relative/local; therefore they - and the Left - must reject universalism.

in addition, post-modernism is anti-West, essentially buying into the Leftist propaganda that Third Workd poverty is a result of First World colonialism.

i addition, post-modernism is atheistic - though NON-WESTERN religions are okay.

these post-modernist tenets are the reason liberals became anti-Jeffersonian/anti-universalists.

Marx's universalities have all been proven wrong - not merely by logivians, but by history.

To be relevant, the Left must give up Marxism and post-modernism. But then... they wouldn't be Left.

Which is why so many of the Left are driftng toward Jihadism: in it they find the elitism, socialism, and hatred of the USA/West they crave. So it's a comfortable and familiar milieu for them.

6/27/2005 07:06:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

The big problem with self-government is that it only works when the majority are ethical, honorable, productive, and brave.

Otherwise, it devolves into three wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. Or one wolf telling three sheep to pick one to serve as dinner, or else.

An unethical and dishonorable people cannot govern themselves -- they will split into corrupt factions, each trying to steal as much as possible before another faction does.

An unproductive people cannot govern themselves -- they will inevitably become the puppets of those they are dependent upon for their daily bread handouts.

A cowardly people cannot govern themselves -- if a violent faction among them chooses to ignore the majority vote, and threatens violence if they don't get their way, what are they going to do?

6/27/2005 07:13:00 AM  
Blogger Meme chose said...

America has from the beginning been an enterprise, in exactly the sense of your post.

It's an interesting measure of the cultural gap that America can name its most powerful naval vessel 'Enterprise' and any citizen can instantly comprehend what is meant by the name, what it represents about America.

By contrast, even in the UK, having that name for a capital ship (if they still possess any) would today seem to most of the country's subjects puzzling, its meaning and relevance unclear.

6/27/2005 07:17:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

Expanding a bit on what I said earlier, and it's relation to religion: where religion creates a moral code which people can adhere to, they can be ethical and honorable. When a man decides that his earthly life is not as important as how he will explain his actions after its end, then he will be brave. And when his status in society is determined by how well he provides for his family and his community, rather than how many heads he's accumulated, then he will be productive.

6/27/2005 07:21:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Can't one be an idealist, activist visionary and NOT be a Christian? It really bothers me that the rest of the world seem to see what America and Bush are trying to accomplish as some kind of Christian crusade when it's my experience that most Americans don't talk about their religion and certainly don't foist it on the people around them.

Besides, why is it any more of a Christian crusade than a Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish, Catholic and/or Druid crusade, when America's armies, America's Congress and probably Bush's staff are made up of all those entities?

I think by focusing on the word "Christian" and excluding things like human philosophy, sociology, political science and, most importantly, history, pundits are playing right into the hands of the Democractic left who are looking for a peg to hang their rejection on -- not to mention the shrieking imam's of Islam who are busily warning their flocks that "the Crusaders are coming! the Crusaders are coming!"

6/27/2005 07:32:00 AM  
Blogger Bill_H said...

Great Post as usual Wretchard.

Desert Rat-I do believe that the Marines who are fighting in operations such as Matador are participating in major combat operations. Very few adversaries are going to be foolish enough to fight large, set piece battles against us. These are the type of operations we'll have to fight and continue to win in order to win wars in many of the places in which we'll be fighting.

Nahncee-Catholics are Christians, though not all Christians are Catholic.

6/27/2005 07:52:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

reliapundit: You bring up a point I was discussing with a older friend of mine the other day. What is an Evangelical Christian? To us, both raised in the South, it meant those guys that put up tents at the fairgrounds and conducted what basically were high energy church meetings. We also realized that is not what the term means today. It now means people whose view of religion is basically what the "norm" was for most of the country before the rise of post-modernism. By today's standards, the country that won WWI and WWII, fought in Korea and built the nuclear forces that stared down the Soviets - and went to the Moon, by the way - was ALL Evangelical Christian. There were nothing but Red States then, to put it in modern political parlance. "Evangelical Christian" translates into "Normal in America for the 1940's"
Ignatieff's article has one basic, glaring error: Conservatism did not suddenly embrace religion. It never let go of it.

6/27/2005 08:20:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

bill,
The counter insurgency operations are almost exclusivly small unit operations. They are dangerous and very serious things. They are not, however, major combat operations. I agree with you that the Opfor will not mass and engage US. Exactly the point.
Our present military structure is designed for majr set piece battles. We agree that in the near future we will be fighting a series of small unit conflicts. We should redesign our military to fit the CURRENT threat, while not ignoring the Chinese on the horizon.
If the problem is not recognized and discussed, publicly, we will not improve our forces to meet the current challenges.

6/27/2005 08:26:00 AM  
Blogger Leo said...

RWE - America did not win World War One. The American contribution was minimal. The threat of their involvement caused the Germans to launch their 1918 Spring Offensive which was borne by the French and English, before the tide was turned by the Canadians and Australians.

6/27/2005 08:34:00 AM  
Blogger Leo said...

And furthermore, if there was any country that won WWII in Europe, it was the Soviet Union. All other contributions pale in comparison.

6/27/2005 08:35:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmo said...

Building on RWE and RELIAPUNDIT's comments:

Ignatieff can invent all the straw reasons he wants for the squeamishness of European, Canadian, and U.S. secular elites toward the spread of democracy.

In this case, he taps a popular bogeyman: the religious conviction of George Bush and the Americans who voted for him. ANd liberals used to chide conservative for seeing communists under the bad.

But all he's really doing is intellectualizing the loss of faith in democractic ideals which is widespread among Western elites.

This is a variation of the 'can't-impose-democracy-at-the-barrel-of-a-gun' canard. IMposing democracy upon Continental Europe -- particualry Germany -- and Japan worked because those in charge of the enterprise, as well as the public paying its price in blood and treasure, truly believed in what they were doing.

Sadly, so-called 'progressives' don't really believe in democracy all that much anymore.

6/27/2005 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

Meme Chose,
There have been more ships called the Enterprise than one can shake a stick at,

6/27/2005 08:45:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The real difference is in how one sees the pie.
The Left tends to see the world as a zero sum game. For one to gain, another has to lose.
The Reagan Right sees the pie as ever growing, so everyone can and no one has to lose.
This diversion of world views occurs on the local, regional, national and international levels.

6/27/2005 08:47:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmo said...

Come on, Leo, Belmont Club is probably the worst place you could choose to engage in revisionist military history.

Not only was the United States fighting a two-front war (the Soviets being MIA in the Japanses theatre until the closing moments of the war). But the U.S. was providing the Soviets with considerable amounts of materiel (see: Archangel).

The least one could expect of the Russians, after treating with the Nazis over Poland and getting sucker-punched by Barbarossa, would be a defense of their own country. Boy, talk about 'root causes' and 'roosting chickens' (HT: Ward Churchill).

All of the fighting between the Russian border and Berlin aided Soviet subjugation of Eastern Europe, with an eye toward gobbling up the rest later.

And by your own admission, America's entry was decisive enough to trigger the German Spring offensive. Seems the mere arrival of fresh-faced doughboys was enough to tip the battle.

6/27/2005 08:59:00 AM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

I would only note that "Do justice and love mercy" existed as moral concepts far before Christianity came into being. Judeo roots is a much more accurate descriptive phrasing than Christian roots. Judeo-Christian is accurate as long as Judeo retains the lead.

6/27/2005 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

LEO: relative to WW1, I meant that we fought in it but were not on the losing side. There are in fact some analysts who say that the American involvement in WWI was the key to victory, but I am not capable of making that assesssment. Not until I read the John Keegan book I have on the shelf, anyway.
As for WWII, the USSR would not have without masssive aid from the U.S. and to a lesser extent, the U.K., as well as the USAAF and RAF bleeding the Luftwafee to death while ripping the guts out of German cities.
And as Cosmo points out, the USSR was AWOL for the entire war in the Pacific unless you count their seizing B-25's and B-29's and refusing to return them to us. In fact, the Soviets were out of it for the entire war when it came to seapower against the Axis.
Finally, of course, they also aided, abetted and participated in the Nazi invasion of Poland - so they helped to start it all - which negates their entire contribution, in my mind.
But this is all beside the point. Getting back to the point of our host's original fine post and Reliapundit's key point: Acting in the Post-modern mode we would have trashed Europe and Asia and left, and then nuked the USSR into ashes and went home to party. Empty bomb racks in the B-29's and B-50's and multiple mushroom clouds on the horizon. "It's Miller Time!

6/27/2005 09:21:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

The USA had more casualties in WWI than it did in Vietnam. Our sacrifice was not in same league with the Brits and French, but we did make a huge and telling effort. John Keegan--a British historian who along with VDH is writing the comprehensive 20th century story--does iondeed credit the 'tipping point' being the burst of Allied morale attendant with USA entry.

USSR would not likely have retaken even their own pre-war borders without western aid. Detroit--and the Royal Navy--alone moblized their infantry, and freed them to build T-34s. The P-39 & P40 allowed them to stay in the fight while skipping a generation of fighters to go straight to an ME-109 competitor.

6/27/2005 09:46:00 AM  
Blogger husker_met said...

Thanks W.

Every Independence Day I get out my copies of the Founding Documents and read them over.

I have always been impressed with the vision of the DoI. Freedom and liberty are the natural state of man, "endowed" to them by One who is greater than them. Man then "institutes" government to protect his interests. Power flows Creator –> Man –> Government.

Nowhere does it suggest that this arrangement ends at our borders. In fact ALL men are created equal. Thus Iraqis and Afghans have the same claim on liberty as us, albeit derived from a creator called by a different name.

So to me, very little "faith" in the Jeffersonian principle is required for action. Our natural state of being is equality and freedom. As long as our national motives are toward that ideal, we are simply catalysts in restoring the pre-ordained balance.

The Left assaults belief in Diety (by whom equality and freedom are granted to Men), then concurrently inflates the influence of Government over Men (a reversal of the relationship). By nibbling away at both ends of the equation, the Left erodes the basic logic for the argument upon which the U.S. was founded.

I've always thought that every American should have a copy of the Founding Documents (provided free of charge). Just a cursory reading exposes the ignobility of the Left, and might go a long ways toward restoring "missionary zeal", which we could use a healthy dose of right about now.

Imagine the groundswell if just one in ten Americans realized that the old Leftist saws of the Separation Clause, equal protection, or the Left's definition of the Enumeration and Separation of Powers is bunkus.

Imagine the change if just one in ten of those acted on their newfound wisdom.

But in the end, I fear that even as we dispose of the totalitarians in the ME, the internal totalitarians on the Left will never be dealt with.

6/27/2005 09:48:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Oh yeah Husker--I think from the grand perspective of the historical future America's actions will be regarded as emanating directly from those revolutionary documents.

The great cultural peril, it strikes me, is that the revolution is clearly beginning to turn cannabal, as all revolutions do. Simultaneously, we here of a general anti-Americanism rising in the world, largely the result of strategic and cultural reorientation following the end of the USSR and de-Commifiying of China. America is in a slow, but deep, civil conflict--not positive it is a crisis yet.

Germany, Japan, South Korea, Philipines--all these represent an extension of the American revolution, as the socialist democracies of Europe and Communist dictatorships of the Third World are extensions of the French. Tell me, however, that you can read Condorcet, Voltaire, de Maistre, and that whole crew, and the Federalist papers, and not know who it was who hit the nail on the head. Our system of government is superior largely because our philosophy is superior. But now the revolution, for some seemingly unavoidable reason, has turned inward. One hopes we will be able to sublimate it in ways other countries have not, for with a "volk" soul it's hard to imagine what that introversion may come to. These ideologies, with the exception of ours (as opposed to aspects of our history), are so freaking unsatisfying to the soul of man.

By the way, I'd call 27 million Russian dead and the rest a pretty Pyrrhic victory. It's sort of senseless to push the question to that extremity, however, given the obvious sacrifice and nobility of the men and women who actually fought the war. It's also sort of inconceivable to me that Russians, following the Mongol catastrophe, would ever allow anyone to truly conquer them unless they were all dead. Seems as though that war bears that out pretty clearly.

6/27/2005 10:06:00 AM  
Blogger 74 said...

Having been a former shipmate of John Kerry and knowing a lot of other Navy personnel who were in Vietnam, I am inclined to belived that the experience did not change his attitude so much as reinforce the attitudes he already had. Just what specific information does Ignatieff have to support that contention, or is he manufacturing a rational for Kerry's behavior in order to support his thesis?

6/27/2005 10:14:00 AM  
Blogger Fred said...

The idea that the Europeans and Canadians oppose our actions in Iraq has to do with Bush's religion is, well, just a bit reductionist. And stupid.

f

6/27/2005 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Right, Dan--I shouldn't have minimized the Red army. Just trying to make the point that '41-'43 was mighty dicey for them and without western aid rifle-shot at their breaking points USSR would've been in a truly grave situation. It's worth mentioning to folks like Leo who've bought into a deliberate leftist disdain for USA performance in general throughout our history.

6/27/2005 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

husker met: You raise a key philosophical point, one that seems to confuse people quite a bit nowadays.
The Declaration of Independence asserts that ALL MEN have certain INALIENABLE RIGHTS. This seems to be used as a reason for all sorts of things, such as letting the people at Gitmo go.
But the U.S. Constitution says "WE THE PEOPLE...". unlike the Declaration, it does not indicate that it applies to everyone. It does not even imply that we are going to Germany and Japan and ram the same concepts down their throats. But when push came to shove - their pushing, our shoving back - we effectively applied the ideas behind the Declaration of Independence - but not the Constitution - to them, too.
It appears that the Liberals seem to be saying that we have to open our borders to the "masses yearning to breath free" outside our country and let them all in but that we cannot go over there in order to realize the spirit of the Declaration.
The Constitution has borders; the Declaration does not. That is the essence of the Bush Doctrine.

6/27/2005 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

The Results of the War:

"The United States had been impelled into war at last by attacks upon the lives of its citizens. But it had been deeply moved, too, by what we at least believed to be wanton wrongs inflicted by the Central Powers upon small European peoples. Woodrow Wilson had seized upon this second fact and had striven mightily and successfully to make our final decision for war to turn, not upon revengeful or selfish motives, but upon a desire to make it possible for oppressed peoples to achieve our own traditional ideals of freedom and peace.

"The results of the War, it is quite true, fell short of our hopes, to a ghastly degree. Some of the ardent crusaders of that day have come to feel that it was absurd to have entertained those lofty hopes from any war - since such fruits do not grow on the tree of violence. In the disillusionment, and in the revulsion of feeling, many have been so shamed by memory of enthusiasms of the war years as to deny them altogether and to claim that from the first we fought only in self-defense. But the fact stands that the force which drew our finest youth by the hundreds of thousands into the filth of the trenches, and which made mothers ready to see their sons march forth to die 'in a quarrel not their own,' was an ideal - the conviction that America was fighting, above all else, in defense of free government and of civilization and of humanity, - 'to win a war that should end war.'"

The American People
Willis Mason West
Norwood Press, 1928

6/27/2005 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Leo said...

Leftist disdain, uh-huh... America had around 120,000 deaths in the First World War, of which roughly 65,000 were due to the Spanish Influenza. Canada and Australia had more battlefield deaths than America. And they did far more to rout the German armies than did America. This is not historical revisionism, this is a fact.

The British Empire took 700,000 killed, the French twice that many, and the Russians about 4 times that many. America certainly showed up in 1918 and they did have some impressive victories, but the German Army was a defeated force by mid-summer 1918. They had simply run out of men.

In World War Two, the German military was crushed in the East – there’s no doubt that the Battle of Normandy, for example, was an outstanding military success. However, the vast majority of German military casualties were against the Russians. It was the Soviets, not the Americans, that sacrificed a generation to destroy the Nazis.

6/27/2005 10:41:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"Sacrificed a generation"? No--the Germans Killed them. That wasn't some active decision by the Soviets. Tragic? Of course. They brought it upon themselve, however, and made major contributions toward bringing it upon us all. There's no overlooking that determinative fact.

Secondly are you Canadian or something Leo? How could the Americans have borne anything like the brunt of the fighting the other nations--who'd been in the war for 3 years before we showed up--took? We didn't "win" the First World War, but our entry and the performance of our troops certainly decisively contributed to the German decision that the war was lost--even though they surrounded well within French territory and didn't really surrender at all in the East, excpet within the Versailles stipulations.

Besides how does this relate in any deep way to the topic at hand?

6/27/2005 10:55:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Fred you don't read the papers much do you? Bush's religiosity is consistently invoked as a basis for Europeans' and Canadians' aversion to, opposition to or hatred of Bush, the administration, and often, rather plainly, the country. It does SOUND reductionist, but that's the character of their intellectual perspective, not a failure of W's analysis.

6/27/2005 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Much better statement, Leo. Sorry for the 'disdain' word. I didn't realize I was arguing against the other nations' contributions--didn't mean to, for sure.

6/27/2005 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

"We are glad...to fight thus for the ultimate peace of the world and for the liberation of its peoples, the German people included...The world must be made safe for democracy...We have no selfish end to serve. We desire no conquest, no dominion. We seek no indemnities for ourselves, no material compensatin for the sacrifices we shall freely make..."

From Woodrow Wilson's war message, April 2, 1917.

Willis Mason West:

"The United States formed no alliance with with England or France or Italy, but our government 'associated' itself with theirs as a co-worker. We entered the struggle late, and our borders were remote from the conflict. Comparatively, we were called upon for small sacrifice. Still, 120,000 American youths gave their lives [for the first time in our history the deaths from disease in the army were fewer than those in the field] and as many more were irreparably maimed.

"As to mony cost, we spent almost 22 billions (or about a million dollars an hour) besides lending 9 billions more to the Allies. That is, in a year and a half of war we spent more than all our government expenditures previously from George Washington to Woodrow Wilson."

6/27/2005 11:04:00 AM  
Blogger Jrod said...

Leo,
You seem to be good with casualty numbers. After adjusting for cold and flu deaths, what number of American casualities would it have taken to legitimize our contribution to both WWI and WWII in your opinion? I think I know the answer.

6/27/2005 11:07:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Title of NY Times piece should have been:
Who is Abraham Lincoln?

6/27/2005 11:10:00 AM  
Blogger husker_met said...

Dan:

When I think of proto-revolutionaries from France who were seminal to the American Revolution, I think more of Rousseau. The ones you mentioned laid certain foundations, but Rousseau almost directly inspired (at least to my reading) Thomas Paine, the most rabid Revolutionary of them all, and Jefferson.

In the end, I think it would be difficult to point to any true revolutionary from any period who did not at least pay lip service the basic equality of Man, and the basic moral terpitude of subjegation.

Even Marx had some concept of egalitarianism (in its former, proper, context) and liberating Man from bondage. Where Socialism strays from the Democratic ideal is to misinterpret the proper relationship of Government to Man to secure that liberation, and to misinterpret that Man's natural liberty is fundamentally a gift from his Creator.

This concept in particular illustrates the dangers inherent in Nahncee's thoughts. If man derives his liberty simply from being, rather than from being Created, it becomes difficult to make the moral argument in the Declaration. It opens the gate for moral relativism not only in matters of strict morality (murder, theft, etc.) but in the morality of our own liberty as well.

Not that an American has to believe in a specific "Creator", but IMO, it is incumbent that you must believe in some "Creator" to truly understand your own liberty. Because that's where liberty, as defined in the Founding Documents, comes from.

So circling back to W.'s original post, "missionary zeal" as used by the Left suggests overbearing Christian proselytizing and moral judgement. Sort of a holy-rolling John Brown nationalism.

It has nothing to do with that. "Missionary zeal" should mean that we understand from where our liberty comes from and that it is innate, and are prepared to help others do the same. Whether that is through diplomacy, war, or Radio Free Jihadistan.


RWE:

Exactly. The Constitution is the exclusionary legal document (the slogan "Membership has its privileges" comes to mind), and the Declaration is the inclusive underlying philosophical document.

In other words, the Declaration shows the ideal, whereas the Constitution demonstrates how we apply the ideal to ourselves.

So wars for freedom are derived not from Constitutional mandate, but from Declarational morality.

An Iraqi or Afghan government differing in structure from our own (but still adhering to the ideal), or for that matter how we treat illegal combatants, are matters relative to philosophy rather than our own Constitution. They are super-legal, so to speak, as they transcend the constructs of the Constitution and go directly to the higher ideals of the Declaration.

When you can compress that notion into a thirty-second sound bite, you will have just reversed the tide of public opinion regarding Iraq.

6/27/2005 11:16:00 AM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

Leo,

Who saved Europe from The USSR?

6/27/2005 11:16:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Yes, training and sending a million-plus doughboys created an entirely different set of facts for the German High Command. They didn't have to all get killed to have an effect.

As Dan says, USSR never had much of a choice to fight for a principle or not. Germans were killing them already. But there IS one indisputable cold fact that removews all that speculation--the Hitler-Stalin Pact of 1939, which preceded the dual, allied Nazi/Soviet invasion and partition of Poland, is a FACT and tells precisely where the USSR (prior to June 1941) stood on the "lofty principles" question.

6/27/2005 11:20:00 AM  
Blogger Leo said...

Jrod - Legitimize your contribution? Huh?

Dan – why am I talking about it? Because somebody earlier wrote that America was “the country that won WWI”. This sort of attitude is prevalent amongst Americans, and it is usually based on bad assumptions and an ignorance of history.

I’ve never disputed the performance of the American soldier in the First World War. They did quite well in the battles they fought in – even though their casualties were unnecessarily high at times. General Pershing’s performance oftentimes bordered on incompetence. He pointedly refused to adopt many proven tactics from other Allied armies.

The German Army was on the verge of collapse by the beginning of October 1918 – the Canadians and Australians had broken their lines in August, putting the whole German Army into retreat back to their winter defensive lines. The switch of this line was broken by the British and Canadians at the Canal du Nord. Once the switch was broken the German line was utterly breached and the Germans sued for peace.

6/27/2005 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Wretchard hits the nail on the head; where is the revolutionary zeal that will lead us to victory in Iraq? Now there is no shortage of tough rhetoric, just last weekend, the terror-hating College Republicans held their national convention in suburban Virginia. There was much zeal in their words; to a person they supported victory in Iraq. But, alas, as the patriotic groups of Americans who supplied “Tikrit Taxis” (minivans with banners proclaiming "College Republican Courtesy Shuttle to Army Recruitment Center") were to find out to their deep chagrin, not a single terror-hater signed up to go Haji-hunting in Iraq.

We are indeed a Christian nation. We know the Iraqi fundamentalists are fully engaged in the war in Iraq, but where are the American fundamentalists hiding? James Dobson, God bless his soul, is quick to rally his followers when faced with the existential threat of gay marriage; when was the last time he told his flock that God was ordering them on an immediate march to the nearest recruiting station where they could sign up for the war in Iraq?

War bloggers also “get it”, they are eloquent in their intrepid articulation of the Islamo-Fascist threat our great nation is facing. But do they ever encourage their readers to enlist? One is far more likely to find a Michael Moore link on a war blog than a Go Army enlistment link. Now most war bloggers have very valid reasons for not themselves enlisting: obesity, club foot, severe acne, rampant homosexuality; and while we all understand that many of their readers share these same afflictions, surely a patriotic call to military service would hit occasionally hit pay dirt with their reading public. Only the Gitmo-hating Leftist-realist Phil Carter at Intel Dump is man enough to go to Iraq, and he isn’t even a war blogger.

Luckily all this will end tomorrow night as George W Bush will outdo the Leftist FDR and make a stirring speech, calling our nation’s elite families to military service. He will thank all the Johnny WalMarts who have carried us so far in this war, and he will call on the many Johnny McMasions of our nation to grab the terror-hating baton from their economically less-fortunate brethren; to give up their senior years and important positions with the Dartmouth Review and immediately go sign up to serve in Iraq. Only then will victory by ours.

6/27/2005 11:31:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Buddy--I like how you rendered those observations! Not sure the Creator/Created foundation is strictly necessary though--could you flesh that out a bit?

And hey isn't it well settled at this point that, aside from other difficulties re: giving more than material aid, it was Churchill's dear hope that a delayed Allied military intervention in the Russo-German front would lead Hitler and Stalin to effectively destroy one another? Or was that just an afterthought?

I hesitate to say it for obvious reasons, but that was a pretty good idea. Germany is now merely a fallow field; its traditional fear of encirclement allayed by the decay of both its Eastern and Western rivals, and the strong, benign performance of Poland. The German-Russian-Chinese front over the next 25 years will be an interesting dynamic to watch, though. I hope we can find some way of convincing the Germans not to be so obtuse and paranoid about the nature of the US and its intentions: they're still the power in that trio. We'll see what repraochement Schroeder's successor will provide. France will remain moribund, riven by its disappointment with the general poverty of its own revolutionary preoccupations. Burke is still amazingly relevant on that subject, I think. Hopefully Sarkozy will run and win in the next elections there.

6/27/2005 11:43:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Leo,
Are Wars one and lost based on body counts or the destruction of the enemy's ability to wage war?
---
(Not counting current affairs, [or Vietnam] where if the left has it's way, it WILL be based on our body count.)

6/27/2005 11:47:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

husker met: It looks to me like the Leftists have it ass-backwards:
1. They seem to think that the Constitution - and its deritative laws - applies to the people locked up in Gitmo, or Abu Grabe, or Osama Bin Laden himself. In other words, to non-Americans. I guess that we should Mirandize people before we open the bomb bay doors on the B-52's.
2. On the other hand, operating strategically and philosophicaly on the basis that "All Men are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights" is a case of imposing our morality on others - and who do we think we are to go around doing that?

6/27/2005 11:49:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"Now most war bloggers have very valid reasons for not themselves enlisting: obesity, club foot, severe acne, rampant homosexuality..."

HA. Nice one.

Do we need more soldiers in Iraq though? Doesn't seem like it to me, but I know nothing about these things. What's the going warblogger sentiment on this score? What do the military guys say?

6/27/2005 11:49:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"This is partly because of the religious turn in American conservatism, which awakens incomprehension in the largely secular politics of America's democratic allies. ..."

Europe turns secular, means conservatism has turned religious!
NY Times Newspeak.

And as Cosmo more politely put it:

"But all he's really doing is intellectualizing the loss of faith in democratic ideals which is widespread among Western elites."
...and Europe, in general, but not America

6/27/2005 11:53:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

desert rat said...
"The real difference is in how one sees the pie.
The Left tends to see the world as a zero sum game. For one to gain, another has to lose.
The Reagan Right sees the pie as ever growing, so everyone can and no one has to lose.

This diversion of world views occurs on the local, regional, national and international levels.
"
Amen

6/27/2005 11:56:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Dan,
Kevin is the typing equivalent of a leftist TV Pundit's soundbites for the nite.

6/27/2005 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Cute, but lacking substance.

6/27/2005 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

I dunno Leo--having just read Keegan's book a couple months ago I seem to remember the Germans pursuing real peace negotiations at a high level in 1916-17. Reducing the German decision to concede because of that one maneuvor strikes me as absurdly reductionist, don't you think? Sounds suspiciously like a piece of mild patriotic mythology of the kind you blame "ignorant Americans" for indulging in, which by the way I can't really seem the harm in....

If anyone won WWI, I'd say it was the British.

6/27/2005 12:06:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Ignatieff understands the need to act on the intuition that freedom is, if not the natural, then at least the desirable condition of man. But his mind is taking him to a place temperamentally unsuited to liberalism and so his every legitimate deduction is hedged about with doubt.

6/27/2005 12:06:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I was still waking up with that Lincoln post.
...but his gamble makes most all others pale, even if we were not yet saving the world.

6/27/2005 12:09:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

I can think of no war in memory where we been able to fight without a draft. We may indeed mock the left in the form of Kevin who laugh at College Republicans for not going to the recruitment center but there is a seed of truth in his attack.

This attack will be extremely effective in changing the tone of this war. The only effective way to answer this tone will be for some very public figures children to enlist and serve. It was done in all of our previous wars. And if some are already serving then much should be made of their service.

There is rhyme to the madness of the MSM not talking about our hero's in the war on terror. There is rhyme to the reason that no movies of 9/11 have been made. Do not inspire anyone to defend this country, do not inspire anyone to accept the call of President Bush to change this world.

We are indeed in trouble if even the college republicans will not enlist in the face of our obvious need. This may be a terrible attack on us but it is accurate and no amount of rationalization will make it go away. Why have we failed to make the case adequately enough that our most famous children will not enlist to defend their beliefs.

Pierre

6/27/2005 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger Leo said...

Dan - Lundendorff called the Amiens offensive launched by the Canadians and Anzacs the "Black Day of the German Army". It was the largest Allied advance of the war - 15 miles in 2 days. It ended the German's last-chance offensive, turned their line and put them on a permanent retreat.

The breaching of the Canal du Nord switch ended the static nature of the war - the last 6 weeks of the war in the north were mobile. The German Army no longer had a coherent line to fall back to and it was in constant retreat, being pursued by the British, Canadians and Anzacs.

6/27/2005 12:32:00 PM  
Blogger david bennett said...

>Do we need more soldiers in Iraq >though? Doesn't seem like it to me, >but I know nothing about these >things. What's the going warblogger >sentiment on this score? What do the >military guys say?

You can debate the need for more troops in Iraq, those at the top say there is plenty. A number of field commanders would clearly like more, they would like to be better able to hold certain regions.

But that aside how can anyone debate the need for more troops in general? Several years ago we were already getting reports on the effected repeated deployments were having on our reserves. Unless one gets their news solely from blogs like this which ignores the major facts, it would be impossible not to know recruiters are under a lot of pressure and are creating questionable pressures in their methods. The army and Marines are under numbers in recruitment and have been for a while.

Though he is probably considered a traitor leftist whiner for doing so, Rumsfeld (and other national leaders) have suggested that we should expect at least several more years of major committments, committments which will strain an already strained military further.

Dire warnings have cropped up from some retired officers that we are in danger of crippling the land forces in the same way that SE Asia did. One can debate whether the situation is this serious, but there is no question the troops are being put under a lot of pressure, forced to rotate in and out again and again.
There is no question that incentives are being increased to encourage enlistment, that enlisdtment still remains below goals and standards are being lowered, there is no question that we are losing good people and there is no question that if young patriots joined it would help the effort.

6/27/2005 12:32:00 PM  
Blogger foxenburg said...

my ten cents worth.

ww1 was won by french infantry.

ww2 was won by russian infantry.

i have to admit that i am biased in favour of infantry, having been an infanteer myself. thoroughbreds of the battlefield. jack russells, even!

6/27/2005 12:58:00 PM  
Blogger gm said...

Wretchard,

You're far too kind to Ignatieff.

6/27/2005 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

DOD Announces Monthly Recruiting/Retention Numbers, June 10, 2005

"Active duty recruiting. The Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force met or exceeded their recruiting goals in May. The Navy’s recruiting goal was 1,939, and it enlisted 1,947 (100 percent). The Marine Corps’ goal was 1,843, and it recruited 1,904 (103 percent). The Air Force goal was 1,037, and it recruited 1,049 (101 percent). The Army missed its May recruiting goal of 6,700 by 1,661 recruits (75 percent)."

6/27/2005 01:33:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

One possibility is that Reagan and Bush possessed a faith in the universality of human liberty that Kennedy and Clinton did not... Ignatieff sees this, but cannot bring himself to admit it. Missionary endeavors require a kind of faith. A kind of action in advance of the result. The Canadians and Europeans would not come on those terms and so we should not be surprised that they have not come at all.

-Right on, brother wretch. And what kind of a fool can write this:

One reason it is not the Canadian way is that when American presidents speak of liberty as God's plan for mankind, even God-fearing Canadians wonder when God began disclosing his plan to presidents.

What kind of dumbass Canadian is Ignatieff anyway? Obviously, one who has spent his life with dumbass, over-bred liberals who politely patronize religious belief as ok for those who want it, but who, in their supercillious intellectual faux superiority, don't have a clue what they are patronizing: what kind of religion is it if you *don't* believe God wants us to be free? What religious Canadians don't believe God wants us to be free? Are the Canucks all Satanists? (Heh, now that you mention it...) Or just forget about the religious dress, for a moment. In simple, secular, anthropological terms, have you not noticed, Mikey, that every act of speech implies a desire for freedom? It's a human universal, dude. Think about it.

johnny canuck

6/27/2005 01:38:00 PM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

Shouldn't that be:

johnny canuck/jean canuque

according to Canadian law?

6/27/2005 01:52:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Canada was not founded on the same mindset. In fact Canada was founded by those who wanted to be both in Europe and in the New World at the same time. So it is going to be fairly natural for Canada to more closely resemble Europe than America.

-With respect, this is a dubious statement. The development of French Canada in the 17th and 18th centuries was constrained by a France and French people who didn't want to support a new world settlement - which numbered only 60 000 at the time of the British conquest. But that small number of French Canadians had among them some very adventurous explorers of the continent; and the peasants of New France were freedom lovers who broke away from the French model of living together in villages, and developed New France by carving out family homesteads along the river banks, with an isolated house on each lot - iow, they were the first to set up what would be the model for the settlement of the American west.

As for the British Canadians, the first of whom were the losers in the first American civil war, note that word British. If you unpack what it has meant historically, you will have a tough time equating it with any other European models. The Brits have never seen themselves as European. The kind of nationalism Americans enjoy today is modelled on the nationalisms of the British Isles and on the uber-national imperialism of Britishness. It was the refusal of the English to accomodate AMericans in their parliamentary system that was perhaps the prime cause of the American revolution - i.e. an English-first nationalism that is not unlike American nationalism. The civil war that divided our two nations was an unfortunate business that should not blind us to our common difference vis a vis the Europeans and the rest of the world. Canadian anti-Americanism is a great sin I continually denounce. But it is a sin born of the need of a little brother to distinguish himself from the older sibling with whom he shares much. There is a reason Ignatieff is at home at Harvard, and why I want to visit Texas!

johnny canuck

6/27/2005 01:59:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

What Ignatieff does not get, Norman Podhoretz gets

Some of us were America lovers before 9/11, many of us remembered we loved America on 9/11, and for some of us, we will never forget.

Here's Podhoretz speaking of that feeling after 9/11:

"As a "founding father" of neoconservatism who had broken ranks with the Left precisely because I was repelled by its "negative faith in America the ugly," I naturally welcomed this new patriotic mood with open arms. In the years since making that break, I had been growing more and more impressed with the virtues of American society. I now saw that America was a country in which more liberty and more prosperity abounded than human beings had ever enjoyed in any other country or any other time. I now recognized that these blessings were also more widely shared than even the most visionary utopians had ever imagined possible. And I now understood that this was an immense achievement, entitling the United States of America to an honored place on the roster of the greatest civilizations the world had ever known.

The new patriotic mood therefore seemed to me a sign of greater intellectual sanity and moral health, and I fervently hoped that it would last. But I could not fully share the confidence of some of my younger political friends that the change was permanent—that, as they exulted, nothing in American politics and American culture would ever be the same again. As a veteran of the political and cultural wars of the 1960’s, I knew from my own scars how ephemeral such a mood might well turn out to be, and how vulnerable it was to seemingly insignificant forces."

6/27/2005 02:12:00 PM  
Blogger Red River said...

"Not only was the United States fighting a two-front war (the Soviets being MIA in the Japanses theatre until the closing moments of the war). "

This is wrong - wrong - wrong.

The defeat of the Japanese by the Russians at Halhin Gol in 1939 led directly to Pearl Harbor. And Soviet Espionage was very active in Japan during WWII.

http://www.answers.com/topic/battle-of-halhin-gol

6/27/2005 02:22:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/27/2005 03:00:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

Another thing I mentioned before.

Not only did people enlist after Pearl for patriotism, but because they were -pissed-. Egged on by demonization of the enemy (an enemy that was altogether as awful, even more awful than we portrayed it as). This time, the press has done everything to assuage American anger. 3 years later, I fear there might not even be any remaining reserve of anger to call upon. When was the last time most Americans have even seen a picture from 9-11?

6/27/2005 03:04:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

Kevin:
"Luckily all this will end tomorrow night as George W Bush will outdo the Leftist FDR and make a stirring speech, calling our nation’s elite families to military service. He will thank all the Johnny WalMarts who have carried us so far in this war, and he will call on the many Johnny McMasions of our nation to grab the terror-hating baton from their economically less-fortunate brethren; to give up their senior years and important positions with the Dartmouth Review and immediately go sign up to serve in Iraq. Only then will victory by ours."

Setting aside the class warfare, we certainly need some sort of call for military volunteers. It is the parents, counselors, and teachers that are killing recruiting numbers, spurred on by horrible news coverage and selfishness. Honestly, even my own parents and professors do everything they can convince me of the futility and "waste" of enlisting.

Something needs to wake those people up to sacrifice.

6/27/2005 03:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Podhoretz said,
"nothing in American politics and American culture would ever be the same again."
---
Funny, I, and I think many others weren't even thinking about politics when saying
"nothing will ever be the same again."
After an attack on New York and the Pentagon, the anthrax scare, the moonlike atmosphere on the empty streets here, the grounded airlines, the shocked economy...
etc and etc
It was more an observation about how different the world (and, as a result, we) would be for the rest of our lives.
Due to the incredible resilience of the American people and the capitalist economy under adult stewardship however, and with undreamed of success in eliminating up to the present all further major attacks on the homeland, the left was presented their opening to rewrite history more quickly than many of us thought they would get away with.
Who would have thought that less than 4 years later, they would already have surpassed their pre 911 standards for anti Americanism?

---
But they do have good cause:
Bush lied to suck us into a phoney WAR FOR OIL (and Halliburton) and got us into another
INTRACTIBLE QUAGMIRE just like
VIETNAM!

6/27/2005 03:16:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Cutler said,
"It is the parents, counselors, and teachers that are killing recruiting numbers, spurred on by horrible news coverage and selfishness."
---
But few try harder to do that than Kevin does, Cutler!
...and that average parent has fewer of the leftist lies committed to memory for such use as does Kevin.
But then, they have more useful things to do.

6/27/2005 03:20:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Egged on by demonization of the enemy "
We are more "moral" and "sophisticated" than that now.

And as a consequence conduct ourselves in more suicidal and much LESS moral ways.

6/27/2005 03:24:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rudy was one of the few politicians to use the non pc term "anger."
Says something about us, him, and being there.

6/27/2005 03:26:00 PM  
Blogger Brian H said...

jc;
"As for the British Canadians, the first of whom were the losers in the first American civil war" -- Duh?

There were lots of Brits living in Upper Canada before the US Civil War; the Loyalist emigrants to Canada were never the majority of English-speakers there.

Wretchard;
I think I agree with the thrust of your comment about Ignatieff. And the value statement that liberty is the preferable state of mankind is, IMO, adequate description and justification for pursuing it as a goal and policy. Such value judgments are inevitable and so are the actions following from them, whether to hold back from or vigorously prosecute any particular choice or plan.

So, all references to God aside, it is fine, and honest, to say, "We would prefer to see all men free and prosperous and are going to do our damnedest to see that happens. Are you with us, or against us?" The objection that this is "imposing" values is thus defanged, because you are admitting up front that, having considered the alternatives, you have decided that that is exactly what you intend to do, damn the torpedoes.

6/27/2005 03:28:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Brian H;
Note that he said "the first American Civil War"; the Revolutionary War is referred to at times as "the first American Civil War." (1/3 of the people supported the rebels, 1/3 were Loyalists, 1/3 didn't care, and Mel Gibson was all three.)

6/27/2005 04:19:00 PM  
Blogger PresbyPoet said...

WW1 won when the Allies introduced the tank. Remember by 1918, Russia was out of the war. They signed a peace treaty that gave up large sections of The Ukraine.

Perhaps the best outcome would have been a negotiated peace in 1917, where Germany agreed to pull out of France. The stupid attempt to blame Germany and enforce sanctions after the war were a big reason Hitler was able to get followers.

WW2 was won by the American Aircraft Carriers & the U.S. Marines. If the U.S. Navy doesn't stop Japan, by 1943 they link up with the Germans and supply the oil and rubber Hitler needs. Without the 1st Division Marines on Guadalcanal, and the Enterprise, we don't have the ability to send carriers to stop the subs in the Atlantic, and supplies don't get to England and Russia.
In 1942, the Wasp flies plans to Malta, without them it has no air power.

Hitler did a lot to lose the war, at Stalingrad, the numbers of German and Soviet troops was about equal. Hitler was lured to the wrong battle, with all the troops fighting for a useless city instead of heading for Iran.

Evangelical Christians do serve. What do you think the stink in the Air Force Academy is about? It is an effort to stifle born again Christians.

6/27/2005 04:19:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

In my opnion the biggest negative impact on recruiting is the vicious nonsense where that Lt Col got in trouble for shooting a gun near a prisoner, where that Marine was threatened with court martial when he shot a terrorist who he thought might be faking, where people raise hell because someone might not have worn gloves when handling some dumb religious book. I never cared whether the guys I was serving with were sons of millionaires or went to Harvard. When the mission got tough and I had airplanes stuck on the ground or rockets we needed to launch, I did not care how many hours I had to work. But when I got told I had to give up my weekend or just a good night's sleep in order to do some idiot extra duty like Ops Duty Officer, then I thought about getting out - and being acousted and threatened for the dumb PC-inspired trivia we see every day is a thousand times worse. Want to boost recruiting? Put the publishers of the fake stories out of business, get rid of Pelosi, Durbin, Reid, and Ted Kennedy and openly ridicule the people who raise such ridiculous concerns. And take the gloves off in dealing with the enemy. That will show the troops you are serious and care.

6/27/2005 04:28:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"openly ridicule the people who raise such ridiculous concerns. "
Daily.
Without Fail.
Without Surrender.

6/27/2005 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger N. O'Brain said...

Who the heck is this James Dobson that reactionary leftist try to use to club conservatives with?

6/27/2005 04:44:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

well, well, well.

When my son enlisted in the USMC it was after 9-11-01. As a family, we were certain that he would be deployed overseas. First to Okinawa, and then off to Iraq. Camp Fallujah was home to Jr. during the assault there.
We are a successful entrepreneurial family with multiple opportunities available to Jr. beyond being a Safeway checkout bagger or Marine radio man...
His Grandfather fought in Korea and I served the US in Korea, Europe and Central America. Now Jr. has carried the flag to Iraq.
We believe in the promise of America, my favorite Washington site is Jefferson's Memorial. I also have

“sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man”

I support the Military and want it to be more effective. That deploying 130,000+/- troops is debilitating to our Force of over 1,5000,000 is cause for concern. The military seems to have become more of a jobs program than a fighting force.
I'd hate to think Ms. Albright was right

6/27/2005 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger Rick Ballard said...

n. o'brain,

Here is the website for Dobson's organization. A quick perusal will explain why he is anathema to secular humanists.

6/27/2005 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Doug: Who would have thought that less than 4 years later, they would already have surpassed their pre 911 standards for anti Americanism?

Roger that!

And the heart of what I meant to cite from N.P. was the following, all the rest was simple context: I now saw that America was a country in which more liberty and more prosperity abounded than human beings had ever enjoyed in any other country or any other time. I now recognized that these blessings were also more widely shared than even the most visionary utopians had ever imagined possible. And I now understood that this was an immense achievement, entitling the United States of America to an honored place on the roster of the greatest civilizations the world had ever known.

And if any of you sorry sumbitgs out there want to counter that, please provide citations.

This is what we are fighting for.

And for those that feel the need to inject their personal infection of loser-ism into this blog, bon chance.

6/27/2005 05:07:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Thank you for your families service Desert Rat. I can say that I envy you and your son, my father came over from France and served in the 101st. I did not.

When Kevin says why aren't you serving it strikes to the core though I realize that not all of us can serve. So I do what I can to support the troops with money, time and thanks when I can. So very little compared to what they sacrifice.

In regards to our services being under stress when only 150,000 are actually in theatre makes a bit of sense to me considering how long the tail is behind our armies.

Pierre

6/27/2005 05:20:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I have never believed that the tail should wag the dog.
The military seems to have become more than a bit BLOATED.
Support of Rummy's reorginization and the Base closings is of the utmost importance if we are going to remain serious. There is not much chance of enlarging the force by another 1,000,000 or so bodies just to get another 120,000 deployable combat troops.
Use what we have more effectively, buy what we need, not what is new and cool, like the F22.

6/27/2005 05:32:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

desert rat, did you ever read "Albion's Seed"? Partly concerns the core of Celtics who form the backbone of the nation's military. Lots of 'em in Virginia, which helps explain how Lee held on so long.

6/27/2005 06:01:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

F22 is supersonic without afterburners...said to be (do-ably) pilot-friendly to base in the USA and reach the mideast.

6/27/2005 06:05:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Then I'm 'sposed to say the Chicoms only have Mig 15's and always will, so what's to worry?

We need more money for welfare programs which grow much more quickly than military budgets!
Free Viagra, keep those B52's flyin!

6/27/2005 06:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

...and the KC-135's C5's and other relics from mid 20th century.
(even if, like the C5, they cost many times more to fly than modern jets)

6/27/2005 06:20:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

...and the DC-10 tankers even tho it is mid century tec and the commercials are 4 generations ahead with safer, fuel efficient craft to do the job right.

6/27/2005 06:23:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I guess the only thing I'd agree with 'Rat on on this is the 22 is a bit pricey, and we need the other systems more.
(But buy enough to advance the technology, and hopefully not give it all away right away. ...unless the chicoms bid high enough, or the WTC demands it.)

6/27/2005 06:27:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The military seems to have become more of a jobs program than a fighting force.
"
'Rat, any chance the current war/admin will change that?

6/27/2005 06:31:00 PM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

"One reason it is not the Canadian way is that when American presidents speak of liberty as God's plan for mankind, even God-fearing Canadians wonder when God began disclosing his plan to presidents.

Wonderful retoric, but false. Presidents are elected for four years by the people. Should they misinterpret disclosures, they're out on their ear.

Candians may be confusing Presidents with Popes. Popes are elected by an unelected group for the rest of their natural life. This, of course, makes them 'infallible' - and should they get it wrong, the duped flock will have to leave in droves. Such is the price you pay for basing institutions on human perfectibility.

So the Canadians are wrong.

They are also wrong in their cause-effect relationship: Gods grow from culture, not the other way around.

Which brings me to Papa Bear's point: What should the culture be? I think he answered it best:
"The big problem with self-government is that it only works when the majority are ethical, honorable, productive, and brave.


Looking at the ME, I think four of these characteristics are missing.

It's going to be long and painful.

ADE

6/27/2005 06:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Pierre,
Kerry served, Rush Limbaugh did not.
Rush has to my knowledge (and what I know of his father and what he had to teach his kids, I say this with confidence) NEVER denigrated the military.
Kerry served and...
...well we all know the rest there.
I served, but I don't think I've done nearly as much to advance the cause of freedom as have Rush, Cheney, and any number of others.
...but Pat Tillman was a dumb loser that needed work.

6/27/2005 06:35:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Speaking of the F22, I really only meant to cite:

Norman Podhoretz

I suppose the parsimonious among us would argue that we're already generations ahead, so why bother pushing the envelope with the F22 (it's not like the B2 needs an escort). To that I'd respond:

I now saw that America was a country in which more liberty and more prosperity abounded than human beings had ever enjoyed in any other country or any other time.

6/27/2005 06:58:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

I suppose the parsimonious among us would argue that we're already generations ahead, so why bother pushing the envelope with the F22 (it's not like the B2 needs an escort). To that I'd respond:
///////////////////
I'd kind of like to have the border defended myself so the big birds can have a place to call home. No use being sentimental about mere humans.

6/27/2005 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger StoutFellow said...

ade said:

"The big problem with self-government is that it only works when the majority are ethical, honorable, productive, and brave.


Looking at the ME, I think four of these characteristics are missing."


LOL at your dark humor. However, they're may be some hope. I tried without success to find the link, but there was a description on the web of a member of Al Sadr's Militia who was miffed at an Iraqi soldier who would not let him enter a government building while carrying his AK. Along came a US soldier carrying his weapon and the Iraqi allowed him to enter without challenge. The Sadr man protested wanting to know why he allowed the armed American to enter but not him. To which the Iraqi replied, "He is honorable and you are not."

This is very close to the exact exchange. Maybe there is more hope than is sometimes apparent.

OT: There has been new activity wrt the IFC at World Trade Center site. I posted it at the end of the previous thread (Memory Slam the Door).

6/27/2005 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Charles: No use being sentimental about mere humans.

We have met the humans, and they is us.

6/27/2005 07:46:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

John Walton Killed in Airplane Crash .

The REAL "Johnny Walmart:"

"Walton served in the U.S. Army Green Berets as a medic during the Vietnam War. He was awarded the Silver Star for saving the lives of several members of his unit while under intense enemy fire.

Walton pursued a variety of business interests throughout his life, including work as a crop duster in the 1970s and as a boat builder in the 1980s and 1990s. More recently, Walton formed the holding company True North, which is composed of businesses ranging from advanced composites to boat building to venture capital investments.

As a board member of the Walton Family Foundation, Walton played a leading role in guiding the Foundation's contributions to elementary and high school education, including scholarship programs to provide parents with greater choice in education."
Now THAT is sacrilege to the Soros Worshipers!

Your hubris and condescension is sophomoric and disgusting, Kevin, but no doubt fits right in with your EuroCommie Colleagues.

6/27/2005 07:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"He is honorable and you are not."
---
Yeah, I saw that one also, Stoutfellow.
Heard a report today about one of the networks approaching a General for an interview:
He said he would if they could talk about reconstruction, schools, etc.
THEY REFUSED TO DO THE INTERVIEW.

Another report from a soldier said the day is 23 hours and 45 minutes of good news, 15 bad, but guess which gets reported?

6/27/2005 07:56:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Doug, you remember, the same effort was made during Vietnam, to demoralize servicemen & women with the class-warfare "Johnny Walmart" type of shit. Being a meritocracy, the military "story" must be neutralized; all successful organizations are to be cast as exploitation mechanisms of the oligarchy.

6/27/2005 08:42:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

Pierre,

We all have purposes in life. My Grandfather went to the recruiter in Two Rivers to join the fight in WWII. He was turned away, the recruiter told him the plywood he makes is every bit as valuable a contribution to the effort as toting a gun (probably more so, that plywood was used to make Mosquitos).

Yes, we could institute a draft or institute a war tax, but why don't we wait until things get much nastier.

6/27/2005 08:42:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

and PT boats. Plywood.

6/27/2005 08:52:00 PM  
Blogger subpatre said...

Leo - America won WWI. <--That's a period. There is nothing else to say; despite a couple boneheaded Germans who swear that the Allies were on the ropes, or the couple of equally boneheaded English swearing that the Axis was on the ropes.

Europe in WWI was a couple of boxers who'd exhausted themselves; now leaning on each other and spastically giving ineffectual jabs. Eventually one would have toppled, the other declared the "winner".

WWI was a fight to the exhaustion of the European countries involved. They'd completely wiped out their armies, ironically only the top staff (schooled in mass bayonet charges) survived to order more of the devastation. They'd squandered their resources, all were deep in hock. With their soldiers gone, drafts forced their entire populations into the grindstone of war.

By the time the US entered, conditions on the Front were similar to the Confederate Armies at The End: underaged draftees and overage pensioners with no training, no uniforms, and little food. Even small arms ammunition was hard to get. Disease was rampant, corpses routinely used to pave the trench floors. Insubordination was common; over a dozen division-size mutinies occurred.

It was unfortunate that the US ever even considered entry, it was only hope of outside intervention that had kept the mindless waste going as long as it did. Like the two boxers, so tired a teenaged could have knocked them both over; US entry on either side would have tipped the scales. But enter it did, and decided the victor. What would have been a negotiated peace, a settlement, became a surrender.

The US service's contribution was small, especially in relative losses. [A good thing, since sheer institutional lunacy was the hallmark of the Europeans. Remind me again, what was the objective of WWI?]

If someone wants to rail at the US for it's part in WWI, don't rail about its 'small contribution' or 'late entry'. The US made all the difference in the world --literally. The US should be derided for enabling European hate via the Treaty of Versailles to create the conditions for Germany's national Socialists.

Wilson was naive and thought ending what appeared to be voluntary mutual genocide would be a humanitarian act. We've had stupid and misguided presidents before, since, and undoubtably will have more in the future. But Wilson bears the most responsibility for the rise of the European nationalists and their Final Solution. Probably no other American has been responsible for so much horror.

6/27/2005 09:01:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Rick Ballard,

getting back, belatedly, to your question about "jean canuque". In de old days, our friends and brothers/nos amis et freres, les canadiens francais, were, well, canadiens, canucks, like de rest of us. Recently, the madness of les sixties hit particularly hard in our frozen and repressed land. The canucks francais became, according to certain supercillious faux intellectuels, les Quebecois(es). In other words, Quebec nationalism meant adios, adieu, to the other French Canadians, les brotherly freres dans le rest o' canada.

Now as you can imagine, this created a dilemma for the PC bureaucracy in Ottawa, and for uberPC academie, which remained, despite its PCness, strongly nationaliste O’Canadien. So, dey had to ask themselves, Do we still speak of de (French) Canadians? or do we now, as it were, speak just about Quebecers and Canadians like de good Quebecois peuple's leaders/freedom fighters tell us to? Malheureusement (means “unfortunately”, but literally=bad timing; also note, malheur=wretch, therefore Wretchard is probably referred to in Ottawa briefings as Malheurard, but I digress, lost in a bureaucratic fantasy...), the PC cannot dis de separatiste, whether you are for or against dem renegades, and so the elite liberale have settled on Quebecois(es) and Canadians, except for a certain Jean Chretien kind of diehard liberale, who is too much the anachronistic, populist homme du vieux peuple - he remains, indubitably, a Jean Canuq. Which would explain, among other things, Maurice (!) Strong (!) and Power (!) Corp. and the Nations Unies, n'est-ce-pas?

Sometimes, it would seem easier if we could just go back to King Canute, if anyone knows where his decendants are...

6/27/2005 09:29:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

I don't think he had any, he drowned.

6/27/2005 09:38:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Sorry for that I am indeed.

6/27/2005 10:07:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Yoda's still around somewhere, though.

The "honorable American soldier" vs. Sadr quote was initially posted by Mohammad and Omar on "Iraq the Model" blog, when they were talking about corrupt Ministers (and Sadr's men) being stoned by ordinary citizens. I reposted it here.

6/27/2005 10:22:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

He is, isn't he, the guy who got so tired of the sycophants in his court singing of his great power, he had them set his throne on the beach and then as the tide came in over them he commanded--to no avail--the sea to go back. A tale oft told wrong, getting the King completely wrong, 180 degrees wrong.

Ain't that Kanute? King somebody for sure. Wish i still had a a thing that remembers stuff. BRAIN!

6/27/2005 10:26:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

I appreciate the fact that we all have a part to play and indeed since it appears that this war will turn on public opinion it is also true that we who stay behind might indeed have yet a very important part to play. But if I were drafted it would allow me to fulfill my debt to this wonderful country filled with such great people without getting the divorce that would follow my declaring to my wife that I had to go to Iraq. Course at 49 with one ACL surgery and another one due not likely I would get anything but a laugh at the induction center. hehe...

I completely understood Kevin's ploy but I merely wondered aloud whether it might have struck a bit closer to home since the left broadened their targets beyond the administration. It was always bogus when applied to the administration since I would not want to ever be in the position of President Bush where his entire family is at risk because of his policies and that indeed Presidents are not immune to being attacked and even murdered. Which makes his service a bit more difficult than your average Marine who merely risks his extremely valuable person instead of his entire family.

This fight for the opinion of the American Public must not be underestimated by the Administration. They must do a better job of winning this fight. All the armies and F-22's in the world do no one any good without the will to use them. We must not underestimate the ability of our opponents to deal debilitating blows to our ability to stay focused on the war. Some of them want us to lose.

6/27/2005 10:46:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

"Some of them want us to lose."

Somebody should fictionalize some scenarios of what would in truth then ensue. That might sober those people a bit. They have no clue, none whatsoever.

6/27/2005 10:57:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Buddy, bloody old Canute had sons, but you are right on about the story of the tides.

Someone should fictionalize some stories.... well, I've thought about it. The thing is, anti-American resentment is not to be underestimated and one day terrorists may well succeed in a WMD attack. But how likely? No one really knows. How capable are they really? It still seems otherworldly, scaremongering, if you attempt to push horrific scenarios, until, of course, it happens.

Lots of little wars and terrorism going on in all the marginal places few pay any attention to. If that remains the norm until slowly more and more join up with the global economy, then what the ignorant on our side are complicit in is just an unknowable quantum of deaths caused in the kind of marginal conflicts that have been going on since time immemorial. Tough to paint a cold sweat story from all that. It can only be really condemned in calm analyses of our relationships.

What do you really think is likely? the big nightmare, or more bungling along with innocents dropping only in tens and twenties? If we write nightmare stories, all the usual suspects will just jump up in joy that they have conservative scaremongering to deconstruct. Why feed them? Why not just stay with the sober analysis for those responsible enough to care?

6/27/2005 11:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

What's the point of staying sober?
I need a heart, a brain, and some oil, too, but in the meantime, sauce will have to do.

6/27/2005 11:44:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Doug's not half as think as we drunk he is.

6/27/2005 11:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Pierre said,
"I would not want to ever be in the position of President Bush where his entire family is at risk because of his policies and that indeed Presidents are not immune to being attacked and even murdered."

If you want to try dreaming up something really fantastic, think about the communal orgasm with eternal aftershocks and repercussions that would have occurred had blobby Bill Clinton been on the mound that night in Yankee Stadium and thrown a strike!

Even if he, Maddie and the boys figured out a(nother) way for us to be humiliated on the battlefield, we'd still be having TV specials of that magical presence and limitless courage that night.
(how many days after 911?)
Instead, it's forgotten.
Along w/Afghanistan, Libya, Lebanon, Ukraine, and etc.
Unless, utilizing some phoney story, civil unrest w/violence can be stirred up.

6/28/2005 12:02:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

I think more in terms of severe economic decline, extortion being accpted at our highest policy levels, a demoralization of the whole populace as the nation;s physical plant runs down, fewer and fewer kids having the resources for college, goods becoming more scarce and expensive, rolling recessions and inflations, Hamas and Hezbollah with storefront charities on every city block, companies encouraging their employees to contribute and perhaps try to act a little more respectful toward the new immigrants, slow erosion of law and order, intimidated judiciary, radicals being elected to more and more offices. Things like that, little-by-little, over the years, as oil under the control of AQ is doled out for treasure and per behavior. Rashes of bombs going off in cities improperly accommodating. it's not like that sceario isn't the historical norm for a culture breaking down under pressure from another (hell, look at "Vietnam Syndrome"). And it starts when we are accepted to have given up and retreated from the terror war being won, for cryin' out loud, in Iraq.

6/28/2005 12:06:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"therefore Wretchard is probably referred to in Ottawa briefings as Malheurard"
LOL
So it would be M. Malheurard?

6/28/2005 12:06:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hey, you had to have that waiting, right?
Or do we have another Verc on our hands?

6/28/2005 12:07:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Things like that, little-by-little, over the years, as oil under the control of AQ is doled out for treasure and per behavior."
---
That's exactly what they want, for however long it takes to run Bush out of office.

6/28/2005 12:10:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"intimidated judiciary"
That might be preferable to an intimidating judiciary:

Those guys are out of control.
Listening to Irwin Chemerinsky, he does everything but say the Constitution is whatever is the flavor of the day as long as it's approved by the Supreme 9.

6/28/2005 12:14:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Unemployment at 20% and attendant concentration of federal power, policed harshly and with erosion of the Bill of Rights, a dhimmified FBI & CIA working against "Right Wing Nationalists" who no longer have the right of assembly, a big 911-type incident pretexting a permanent declaration of martial law. On and on. Society and civilization and the social compact are an immense but very fragile achievement. Our little American lefties do not know enough world history to even begin to imagine what the world is really like.

6/28/2005 12:15:00 AM  
Blogger Karridine said...

ExHelo has an insight: I live in BKK where I'm immersed in good people *raised to believe its better to do nothing, than step up and do something WRONG* !

Looking back in history, we can find myriad examples of sniping and criticism AFTER THE FACT, of people DOING something.

We can find obstructionist backbiting and undermining and foot-dragging and calumny WHENEVER America pursued good...

But to sit, wringing our hands and saying, Golly, Gee, What'll we do? I dunno, wow! Golly, Gee!

Gets us nowhere, fast. Better a missionary zeal, informed of the directives given to humankind by Baha'u'llah, the Lord of Hosts!

6/28/2005 12:18:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Try to find Scalia's opinion on the religion decision. Boy, does he light into the libs--BAD.

6/28/2005 12:19:00 AM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Le Malheurard, perhaps.

I allowed myself the indulgence of calling our gracious host, "brother wretch" earlier. And then it was my freres/brothers canadiens... so frere malheur, etc. I'm not up to Verc's lead; I'm just having a day of undisciplined imaginings. I apologize to all for dat.

6/28/2005 12:22:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Carradine, i've gotta hand it to you, you stick to your guns! ;-)

6/28/2005 12:23:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Our little American lefties do not know enough world history to even begin to imagine what the world is really like"
But as long as they could be allies, the world you describe would be acceptable.
Look at that coalition in the UK.

6/28/2005 12:25:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

But--word to the wise--the Prophet--blessed be his name--is going to have to drop some of those apostraphes out of His name, if to open western ears.

6/28/2005 12:25:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Taliban Fighter breaks for a shower.

6/28/2005 12:26:00 AM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Buddy, you may be right. Every generation has many who decry our decadence. Occasionally they are right. That's the problem, when to know we're really on fire? I see a good amount of decline and corruption about, but I know it's always been about. I know I have to accept a certain level, and forget about it, so that I can aspire to make a positive contribution in my little way. We just have to keep living so that the good marginally outweighs the bad overall. I'm sure that's what most ordinary people sooner or later commit to. And we progress in fits and starts. The world needs optimists and pessimists. BOth are right and I just try to avoid being either for too long. BUt you see where this is going all this generalized hooey. Hard to commit to a story. But you have given me many worthy ideas. WHo knows, maybe I will return to my long lost habits and write a story. But I have a lot of hope and faith in AMericans and Canadians. THe elites, however, are largely hopeless with only occasional bright lights. So my hope is that we can learn to rely less and less on all the smoke and mirrors of the elite celebrity culture and just learn to take care of our local business and starve as many of the corrupt elites of the attention and money they thrive on. It's not such a big task, it's not so much to hope that many will find integrity - we are, quite literally, called to it by the very nature of our humanity. Wider perturbances in the system, political, environmental or financial, may well happen. When they do, we can only hope it will be a stimulus to more integrity than craziness though we have a right to be worried, given the historical record.

6/28/2005 12:37:00 AM  
Blogger truepeers said...

I believe we are living through a major paradigm shift in culture and ideas, of a type that hasn't happened for 300 years since the rise of Romanticism. Again, members of every generation think some such thing, but when I look at the unsustainable demographics and the intellectual discord of our times - not so much sharp debate, as inability to even share a sense that you share some common sense with the other side even though they are people in the same social class and family even, e.g. to my mind the sheer craziness of those who desperately stick to once good but now entirely exhausted "progressive" ideas being spun into lunacy, I have to think maybe we are going to have to serve as midwives to some rather new models for society and culture. This may all be a good thing in the long run, but better if we dive into it with faith and confidence. The longer we let this unspeaking divide between old and new ideologies fester, the worse it will be. We need a way to marginalize a lot of the stupidity that is out there now. It can be a mistake to focus too much on certain enemies just because they have the attentions of many who live in the limited realities of western romanticism. Just an undiscipline, unfocussed last thought for the night. I could be dead wrong; the grip of Romanticism could be unbeatable. But sometimes walking away is the best attack; only really worry about those both evil and realistic enough to do more than shout and cry against false demons.

6/28/2005 01:22:00 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Back in 1942, after the US had been attacked at Pearl Harbor, George H.W. Bush, using his elite Republican family connection, cheated his way into being the youngest fighter pilot in the Navy ever. In the late sixties, his son used the same family connections to stay out of Vietnam. Just a few years after the September 11th attacks, I am accused of engaging in “class warfare” for suggesting that perhaps some of our wealthier citizens could help the war effort out, and the spread of Jeffersonian ambitions, if they would kindly volunteer for military service. Can you image that? Here at the Belmont Club, some commenters actually consider it an act of violence – they use the metaphor of war - to defend themselves and the elite of this nation, holed up all safe and sound in their gated communities, from even the slightest suggestion that perhaps they should serve. Now to be fair, many others have seen the seriousness of the issue I am raising. But some others call service to our nation, “a jobs program”, which sounds almost as if it were a welfare handout or something.

Army 1st Lt. Louis E. Allen, 34 recently was killed in Tikrit defending his country. He is survived by his wife Barbara and his four sons, aged one to six. Mr. Allen was a public school teacher and a liberal, or as it is known a round here, a Leftist. Just days after his death, his wife needed to explain to her sons why Karl Rove, who speaks for the President, was calling their dead father a coward. Now, Ms. Rove’s closest brush with service was passing out Seabreazes at his annual J. Edgar Hoover memorial Glitzy Gown Gala, but that didn’t stop him from calling at least one third of our troops in Iraq cowards. Now, if Mrs. Allen stops by to read the Belmont Club, I’m sure she will be stunned to found out that not only was her dead husband a coward, he was also a welfare cheat.

Jeffersonian ambitions indeed. Cheerleaders over soldiers.

6/28/2005 02:00:00 AM  
Blogger Hucbald said...

Without God, man has no "inalienable rights". The factuality of that truth simply dissolves into some nebulous fantasy of some particular school of thought or other at the point that God is removed from the equation. Then, any moral imperitive to recognize those rights becomes subject to interpretation and reinterpretation, and finally those rights operate on a sliding scale that inevitably descends to zero when it becomes optional to recognize them at all.

Without God you get tyrrany as men trade in their rights one by one for the ease and security promised by a socialist utopia that those who know God understand is not only impossible to achieve, but is also inherantly unfair, unrighteous, and totalitarian since the citizen must be compelled by threat of inprisonment to participate, least the inevitable majority or significant minority reject it and fail to contribute, and the socialist model fails to function in it's income redistribution scheme.

The Founding Fathers understood this, and so they shook off the last remnants of English feudalism, in which the King owned all the property, and vested us with the rights we have that can only be granted by God, not a man or any man. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and PROPERTY.

Just as Christ was a libertarian revolutionary in religion - "It is between you, Me, and God, and no other man." - the American revolution was a libertarian revolution in government. Men were recognized to be essentially free: An essence that was inherantly granted to them by the God who created them, and no mere man had any right to interfere with their freedom, the boundaries of which were defined by the rights of his fellows.

Unfortunately, these rights have been and continue to be eroded by the Godless and ignorant among us. Now the average citizen has to contend with nanny-state ridiculousness like motorcycle helmet laws, seatbelt laws, open container laws, blood alcohol level laws, anti-smoking ordinances, and the like. Not to mention the confiscatory income taxes necessary to support all the government subsidized income redistribution schemes. And why not? The Almighty State has promised us safety and security. Freedom is far to messy and uncertain for the Godless. The irony is, of course, that only those who believe in God and live by faith have any security at all, no matter which form of government they suffer under.

6/28/2005 02:12:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Your factual backup always has the depth of a layer of water adhering to a surface by molecular attraction, Kevin.
If you would take the time to inform yourself, and actually try to UNDERSTAND, instead of just gleaning everything for your factoids to make your predetermined point, you might learn something useful.
You use Desert Rat's assertion totally out of context in multiple ways:
You appear not to even be aware of his and his family's record of service, and the fact that the son he loves has served and will serve again in Iraq.
The statement you try to malign had to do with his views on the composition of the military, based on his considerable experience, his perspective and his judgment.
My opinion differs slightly, but mostly I defer to his superior knowledge and experience.
You seemingly have close to none, or at least when you are exposed to knowledge, you miss the message in your quest to mine out ammunition for your arguments.
Whatever merit your points sometimes have is drowned out by your relentless prejudice about the enterprise as a whole, which leads you to fudge and exaggerate everything else, just like your MoveOn buddies.
Mr. Rove made no such assertions about "liberals" serving in the military.
Just as "moderate" Hillary took offense even though Mr. Rove never said the word "Democrat" once, you choose to transfer Mr. Rove's clear, obvious, and TRUE assertion from what any competent adult knows he was referring to and act as though he was referring to people serving in the military.

In this war you lefties are all concerned about everybody ELSE'S military record even though in the Clinton years you not only took the opposite position but now try to equate Bill's stated and demonstrated loathing of the military with W's service flying (very dangerous first gen supersonic aircraft) for the TANG.
But why should I go on?
You claim to be what you are not, simple as that.
In our little Horowitz dustup you swore how very important the truth is to you, and I took you at your word.
Next thing I know you were slandering GWB about oil for food in a post that showed unambiguously that you didn't know any more about OFF before coming to your prejudiced conclusions than you knew about Horowitz before slandering him as a racist.
Now you make the absurd assertion that although he is one of the very FEW well known leftists to speak honestly of his past, THAT serves as yet another "reason" to slander him, even though he has and is spending the rest of his life doing whatever he can to atone for those sins.
It'll pass in Brussels and at MoveOn and Kos, but it doesn't cut it here.

6/28/2005 02:50:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmo said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/28/2005 04:23:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmo said...

Red River:

Whaaa?

This makes no sense: "The defeat of the Japanese by the Russians at Halhin Gol in 1939 led directly to Pearl Harbor. And Soviet Espionage was very active in Japan during WWII."

If the Japanese were "defeat(ed)" by the Russians in 1939, what were all those fireworks in the Pacific between 1941 and 1945? And how did this "defeat" lead "directly" to Pearl Harbor?

"Wrong, wrong, wrong?" Hardly.

As for Soviet espionage? Well, elevating the art of spycraft was, perhaps, the pinnacle achievement of the Soviet state. Tell me something new.

6/28/2005 04:24:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Carradine I agree wholeheartedly, up to the last phrase. No worries, I elect my Gods.

Buddy That's a great idea. But when you're biased, you're biased. Afterall, the silence of The Sisters on women's conditions in Arabic culture must mean they think it's OK? So we'll have to shout loudly.

Truepeers. You're right. Perfection costs the earth.

As for your next post - deep, deep. I've made up my mind to do my bit for the West in my own patch. Now I stand up to any lunacy. Lost some 'friends'. But I feel if the boys from the midwest can put their life on the line, its the least I can do. An example from two days ago; dinner party in our house, guest 1 says 'Wasn't it terrible about 9/11'. Guest 2: 'Well only 300 would have been lost if the WTC had been built to standards'. My statement: 'Are you saying that 2,700 died because of bad architects and builders?' The dinner party went down from there.

hucbald The problem is not God. The problem is which one.

Doug Nothing wrong with sauce, except perhaps in one of Buddy's scenarios.

ADE

6/28/2005 05:47:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Kevin
Where have you served the Republic?
When did you risk life and limb?
How have you sacrificed for Freedom

The many Military bases that are unneeded by the Military, but that remain open because of the political wants and needs of Congress, are part of a Jobs Program.
When these bases are identified the howling of pain can be heard from all sides of the political spectrum.
Even here at Belmont, we hear calls to save this or that particular base from Closure. Usually because of Jobs or Political motivations.
Aircraft are chosen and procured in a very political way, the tanker episode is just the newest dust up.
We spend HUGH amounts of cash on Military preparedness and capability, I'd like to see higher levels of each for my dollar. This does not disparage those that serve. If deploying upward of 13% of our Force is debilitating to the entire Force we need to redesign the Force.
We have long been told that the US could wage a two front war, that seems to have been an exaggeration.

Doug
I had to go out and do some work to pay for all this fun. Thanks for the timely defense

6/28/2005 06:04:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

OT, but pretty sweet--

http://wid.ap.org/scotus/pdf/03-1693P.ZD.pdf

Scalia's dissent to the no-Commandments-hanging decision yesterday.

6/28/2005 06:07:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

dan
A terrible decision, now we have to discern the Motivation not the Action. That is not law, I'm not sure what it is.

6/28/2005 06:23:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

"Back in 1942, after the US had been attacked at Pearl Harbor, George H.W. Bush, using his elite Republican family connection, cheated his way into being the youngest fighter pilot in the Navy ever."

Ha ha ha...cheated his way into air-combat over the wide airman-swallowing Pacific...ha ha ha...in 1942 when the Japanese were routinely shooting our navy out of the sky...ha ha ha...what an absurd, bent human being you are, Kevin. Sorry, I couldn't read past the quote...it was PLENTY.

6/28/2005 07:05:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Who was Karl Rove talking about?

Methinks the Dems Protesteth Too Much, Posted by GayPatriot

Exhibit B: It was in fact liberals/Democrats who said the following: (Hat tip: Captain's Quarters, HughHewitt)

US Senator Patty Murray (D-WA): "He's [Osama bin Ladin] been out in these countries for decades, building schools, building roads, building infrastructure, building day-care facilities, building health-care facilities, and the people are extremely grateful. We haven't done that," Murray said.

"How would they look at us today if we had been there helping them with some of that rather than just being the people who are going to bomb in Iraq and go to Afghanistan?" (GP Ed. Note: Yes, let's help the terrorists build Islamists schools, Senator Murray....)


Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-HI), 10/1/01, Roll Call: "I truly believe if we had a Department of Peace, we could have seen [9/11] coming." Al Sharpton, 12/1/02, New York Times, on the 9/11 attacks: "America is beginning to reap what it has sown."

Rep. Marcy Kaptur, 3/1/2003, Toledo Blade: "One could say that Osama bin Laden and these non-nation-state fighters with religious purpose are very similar to those kind of atypical revolutionaries that helped cast off the British crown."

Senator Joe Biden, 10/22/01 (on AFGHANISTAN campaign): ‘How much longer does the bombing campaign continue?’ Biden asked during an Oct. 22 speech at the Council on Foreign Relations. ‘We’re going to pay every single hour, every single day it continues.’ (Miles A. Pomper, "Building Anti-Terrorism Coalition Vaults Ahead Of Other Priorities," Congressional Quarterly Weekly, 10/26/01, no link)

Senator Joe Biden, 10/22/01: “The Bombing Campaign, [Biden] Said, Reinforced Existing Stereotypes Of The United States As A ‘High-Tech Bully …’” (Ibid.)

Representative Dennis Kucinich, 9/30/01: Sitting In His Capitol Hill Office Last Week, Near A Window Where He Could See The Smoke Rising From The Pentagon On Sept. 11, Kucinich Insisted He Is More Optimistic Than Ever That People Worldwide Are Ready To Embrace The Cause Of Nonviolence.” ... “Afghanistan May Be An Incubator Of Terrorism But It Doesn’t Follow That We Bomb Afghanistan …” (Elizabeth Auster, “Offer The Hand Of Peace,” [Cleveland, OH] Plain Dealer, 9/30/01)

Liberal Third Party Groups Urged Restraint, Blamed America: Immediately After 9/11, MoveOn.Org Petition Urged “Moderation And Restraint” And Use Of “International Judicial Institutions.”

• “We, The Undersigned, Citizens And Residents Of The United States Of America … Appeal To The President Of The United States, George W. Bush … And To All Leaders Internationally To Use Moderation And Restraint In Responding To The Recent Terrorist Attacks Against The United States.” (MoveOn.Org Website)

Just After 9/11, Liberal Filmmaker Michael Moore Derided “Terror And Bloodshed” Committed By Americans. (David Brooks, Op-Ed, “All Hail Moore,” The New York Times, 6/26/04)

Michael Moore Said U.S. Should Not Have Removed Taliban After 9/11. Moore: “Likewise, to bomb Afghanistan – I mean, I’ve never understood this, Tim.” (CNBC’s “Tim Russert,” 10/19/02)

John Kerry: "That is precisely what this administration has ignored. They looked to force before exhausting diplomacy. They bullied when they should have persuaded. They've gone it alone when they should have assembled a whole team. They have hoped for the best when they should have prepared for the worst. They've made America less safe than it should be in a dangerous world." (Hat tip: AnkleBitingPundits)

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA): “I Am Convinced That Military Action Will Not Prevent Further Acts Of International Terrorism Against The United States.” (Eddy Ramirez, “Calif. Congresswoman Alone In Vote Against War Powers Resolution,” [University Of California-Berkeley] Daily Californian, 9/17/01) (GP Editor's Note: There hasn't been an attack on America since 9/11.)

Since all these quotes are well-known and documented....I also label this as "Karl Rove Brilliant Trap #2." The Democrats have fallen for the trap and this is now what the Sunday morning TV talk shows will be about.

Exhibit C: You have heard liberals/Democrats talk ad nauseum about their "support for the troops" though the oppose the War on Terror's Iraq Theatre. Really? Then why are elected Democrats wildly exaggerating the abuses at Abu Grahib and Gitmo which, ironically, are the stories Al-Qaeda encourages its members to use in its own "terrorism handbook."

"US Senator Dick Durbin: "If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control. You would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime -- Pol Pot or others -- that had no concern for human beings."

US Senator Ted Kennedy: “Shamefully, we now learn that Saddam’s torture chambers reopened under new management: US management”. (GP Ed. Note: Kennedy also marked the 1st Anniversary of the revelations of the handful of abuses at the prison. Patriotic Americans celebrated the first anniversary of the toppling of Saddam's statue.)

US Senator Pat Leahy: "Guantanamo Bay is an international embarrassment to our nation, to our ideals, and it remains a festering threat to our security," Leahy said. "Our great country, America, was once viewed as a leader in human rights and the rule of law, and justly so. Guantanamo has undermined our leadership, has damaged our credibility, has drained the world's goodwill for America at an alarming rate," Leahy added.

And former DNC Terry McAuliffe spent millions of dollars and too much time demeaning the service of National Guard troops in his attempts to prop up the phony CBS documents questioning President Bush's Vietnam-era service.

Just yesterday....Sen. Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.) told Rumsfeld to "get off your high horse" and stop answering questions "with a sneer." (GP Ed. Note: Can you imagine if a Republican Senator had treated FDR's War Secretary with this kind of disdain and disrespect during WWII? It is an outrage and demeaning to our troops.)

Also yesterday...."The United States needs to tell the Iraqis and the world that if that deadline is not met, we will review our position with all options open, including but not limited to, setting a timetable for withdrawal," said Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), the senior Democrat on the Armed Services Committee. (GP Ed. Note: That's the message in a time of war.. let's leave when the going gets tough. Imagine if a Republican Senator had suggested getting out of Europe during the Battle of the Bulge? Hey, Senator Levin.. we are AMERICANS, not the French.)

6/28/2005 07:06:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Perfect, perfect leftist thinking. Guy learns to fly a TBF, ships out and fights Tojo, gets shot down into the sharky Pacific, rescued by a sub, and all this dodo can think is, "he cheated".

Cheated, for the privilege of laying down his life for his country (and being lucky as hell not to get it picked up).

I see a triumphal parade, the returning heros, and among the grateful crowds lining the streets are the Kevins, furtive, dirty, muttering, sizing up "marks", picking the people's pockets. And I ask, Kevin, can't you at LEAST be grateful for, you know, the wallets you're picking, the people who created those wallets, the freedom and trust of the crowds, the streets the crowds are in, the cities where the streets are, the nations with the cities?

All things brought to you by the folks who do things like cheat their way into air combat.

Without them, what would a nice pickpocket DO?

6/28/2005 07:32:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Can't the Left at least be a nice parasite?

6/28/2005 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Hey Sen. Byrd, if ya don't like getting sneered at, you could try being less contemptible.

6/28/2005 07:44:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Grand Kagles of the KKK deserved to be sneered at.

6/28/2005 07:47:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Yeah what's with this prevailing petulent, bitchy attitude?

No manners, man. Byrd is among the worst, a demagogue.

I still can't believe the Dems can utter the line that what's wrong is that people--and especially the Senate and House--didn't ask Bush the tough questions, that no one does.

Well, I listened to the entirety of the proceedings carried live over NPR and that is just false. The papers since 9/12? Ringing with this petulence, impudence even.

It is astounding. The Lefties are so damn GULLIBLE when it comes to these personalities. Depressing.

6/28/2005 08:02:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Yeah desert--I agree with you. That decision really is a great example of the strange revolutionary mood of the institutional left--that, the takings decision and, depending on you view the drug war (i'm generally for it, having a younger brother who is a recovering heroin addict, and being generally of the sense that people will pretty readily enslave themselves for even less pleasurable reasons), the Gonzales v. Raich decision.

By the way, Carradine--what's BKK? Sorry, I'm barely used to recognizing Saudi Arabia as KSA.

6/28/2005 08:09:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Yeah, I like it when people like Kerry say there was not enough discussion before OIF. What about that year of haggling with the thieves in the UN? What about all those anti-war protests? What about the fierce debates that I suspect many of us had with our friends?

The thing that really frosts me is when they blithely state "there was no connection between Iraq and Al Qaeda" as if this means Saddam was an innocent bystander that we chose to pick on. We had been in combat with Iraq since 1991. They had admitted to manufacturing tons and tons of WMD's and no one knew their final disposition. We had applied this same pansy legalistic approach to Al Qaeda in Afghanistan, even after they declared war on us and blew up our embassies, the USS Cole, and on and on. Why would we ever repeat the mistakes of the Clinton administration?

6/28/2005 08:12:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Hey Kevin!

I build these, bitch.

6/28/2005 08:26:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

nathan,
Got any high res pictures?
(gets back in sack relishing tommorrow's BC reading.)

6/28/2005 08:35:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

but first, a question,
What class boat is that in foreground?

6/28/2005 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

That's the Ronald Reagan. Doing the right thing, thank the Lord. Be the shitz in the bad guys had one a dem tings.

6/28/2005 08:46:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

This site contains this pic of her, moored alongside the Arizona, last January.

6/28/2005 08:53:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Grand Kagles..."
I thought that was some kind of sexual or reproductive exercise.
(supposed to be sleeping, reads instead)

6/28/2005 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Doug,

It's USS Rainer, AOE-7, Supply class Fast Combat Support ship.

From fas.org:

The fast combat support ship (AOE) is the Navy's largest combat logistics ship. The AOE has the speed and armament to keep up with the carrier battle groups. It rapidly replenishes Navy task forces and can carry more than 177,000 barrels of oil, 2,150 tons of ammunition, 500 tons of dry stores and 250 tons of refrigerated stores.

Supply class was built in the late 1980's and early 1990's by National Steel and Shipbuilding (not my company).

6/28/2005 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Bud,
As long as we have a French Missile Defense (sic) for our friends the Chicoms.

6/28/2005 08:59:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

yeah,
I thought maybe it was the telephoto effect.
...but it's still a pretty big boat.

6/28/2005 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

...and I STILL think carriers are our most economic weapon.

6/28/2005 09:02:00 AM  
Blogger Hucbald said...

Anointiata Delenda Est said...

"hucbald The problem is not God. The problem is which one"

There's a great phrase in the Old Testament that was beautifully translated in the King James, which nonetheless is removed of a vast amount of it's contextual dimension by it's rendering into "Olde English":

"The fool hath said in his heart, 'There is no God.'"

The old Hebrew word translated as "fool" means, "One who is morally deficient", and carries the connotation that the person in question is incapable of percieving the spiritual realm. In the actual fact of it's common employment at the time - circa 3,000 years BC - it was a gross put-down that indicated the person so described was SPIRITUALLY RETARDED in the exact same manner as someone afflicted with Down's Syndrome is mentally or intellectually retarded.

So, the problem is not "which one" (God), the problem is you.

I have a good friend who has one of the most successful positive attitudes of anyone I've ever met. In his home he has a sign below every mirror that reads, "You're Looking at the Problem!"

You may consider "Looking Into That" particular idea.

6/28/2005 09:04:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Dan says,
"By the way, Carradine--what's BKK? "
Dan, Thanks.
Bangkock? Byrde? Where are we, Virginia?

6/28/2005 09:08:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Trying to get away from grand kagels with that, and Bang!
...another misspell.

6/28/2005 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"You're Looking at the Problem!"
...I may do that.
But still,
Rush Limbaugh had a .pdf to print out to cut and paste onto your tv screens back in the clinton years that said something like,
"This man has been convicted of serial perjury."
(creative license steps in where memory fails.)

6/28/2005 09:16:00 AM  
Blogger 74 said...

Kevin, My dad became a Naval Aviator in 1942 as did Bush. He was one of only four men in his class at Pensacola to survive the war. Bushes class probably had similar statistics. I wish more people would use their influence in that way. I've known a lot of military pilots during my own Navy career. All of their bravado tends to hide the fact that it is one dangerous profession -- even in peacetime.

6/28/2005 09:16:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Bud,
Saw the pic.
Then there's the BIG boat.

6/28/2005 09:19:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

74 said...
"My dad became a Naval Aviator in 1942 as did Bush. He was one of only four men in his class at Pensacola to survive the war."
How little we can understand.

6/28/2005 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Espesh when you think of that big waddling 3-man TBF flying off carriers that would've fit inside the USS Ronald Reagan. Hell, who need Mitsubishis and anti-aircraft arty, to get themselves killed?

6/28/2005 09:25:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

He probably selfishly abandoned his mates,
Typical BUSH.
(more putrid hatred oozes out or pores.)

6/28/2005 09:32:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Jeez, I remember that--he bailed out with plane on fire. the other two were shot up and didn't get out. The TBF had three individual seats, the pilot, rear-turret, and bottom turret. They couldn't even see each other, communication was by intercom. All the pilot could do is holler into the intercom that it was time to bail, give all the time you could, hope that they got out, and jump at the last minute. Which he did. Common sequence with the TBF, BTW. But some assholes from the other party--with no knowledge of the action or the equipment, tried to make advantage of his sole-survivorship. As if, "Gotcha! You're a coward who was only ACTING like a hero, so you could be president in forty or fifty years!"

Feh...no way around a fool, a fool is a fool.

6/28/2005 09:44:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Bill Clinton is the only true American Hero in our times.

6/28/2005 09:49:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

What is this anyway? Do y'all notice that Cederford and Kevin both take something no one actually said and build a whole attack around it?
Do these guys go to school on this technique? Does the DNC or Move On hold seminars on the topic?
It sure sounds like to me that the former teacher who was killed got disgusted with the antics of the teacher's union and enlisted in the Army instead. At best a patriot who gave up on one profession for another when he was needed. At worst another liberal mugged by reality who became a conservative. Admirable in either case.
And Karl Rove was talking about him?
Not sure if this approach it is more on the weird side or leaning more to the pathetic one.

6/28/2005 10:25:00 AM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

Buddy--

What I know about WWII engagements you could put in a thimble and have plenty of room left for Hillary's integrity, but it just happens that I'm familiar with Bush I's engagment with the enemy near Chichi Jima. Like the others, he was there trying to take out the main Japanese communications island.

When his plane was hit he delayed bailing out and banked the plane going down so that if the other two were alive they might be able to bail with a little help from gravity. It didn't work, but he risked his life to give it a try.

And when the sub picked him up and he stood those lonely mid-night watches, he decided he'd been given a gift of life in order to serve. Such are the events which give meaning to our lives.

One of the Japanese soldiers on Chichi who watched the American sub surface to pick up that lone aviator turned to the captured American with him and correctly identified the reason America would prevail. He said sadly that had it been a Japanese aviator no Japanese sub would have surfaced to save just one man.

6/28/2005 10:39:00 AM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

And as for Kerry's father, google "The Star-Spangled Mirror" by Richard Kerry. You'll know where all that nuance and disgruntlement came from.

"Blood will tell" -- or so my Irish mamma claimed.

6/28/2005 10:47:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Thanks, Dymphna. elder bush is a great human being. Even now he tries to bring the country together, on the personal plane where people can see each other's humanity, through his hanging out with someone (Bubba) he knows is so highly symbolic that he can be yet made to do good. Even if not on a net basis, as going forward is all we can do.

6/28/2005 11:09:00 AM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Buddy while I laud attempts to reestablish some sort of rational dialog with the otherside. I don't believe that it is our side that needs to accomadate, matter of fact I believe that what has gotten us this far gone has been all the accomadation with the otherside.

My way would be to have constructive debates with those who have something to say based on the facts. But the moment they started wondering about the possibity of a 9/11 Conspiracy that Senator or Congressman or Reporter would be permanently cut off from information. I would simply refuse to deal with that sort of nonsense.

I am not sure where the next step would lead but Im sure something creative could be found.

This article by Barbara Lerner on Iraq and Syria on National Review Online was absolutely brilliant.

Pierre Legrand

6/28/2005 11:36:00 AM  
Blogger reliapundit said...

"NOBLE DREAMS" : Ignatieff, Vietnam and Iraq
Libs just can't help themselves: they MUST mention Vietnam every time they discuss Iraq.

Michael Ignatieff (Carr professor of human rights at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard is no exception) - and like most libs, even contemporary lib-hawks (many of whom seem to be getting wobbly lately -- "when the going gets tough the Left gets packing!") - and in his NYTIMES article he writes the following:

It would be a noble thing if one day 26 million Iraqis could live their lives without fear in a country of their own. But it would also have been a noble dream if the South Vietnamese had been able to resist the armored divisions of North Vietnam and to maintain such freedom as they had. Lyndon Johnson said the reason Americans were there was the ''principle for which our ancestors fought in the valleys of Pennsylvania,'' the right of people to choose their own path to change. Noble dream or not, the price turned out to be just too high.
Well, well, well: Ignatieff may not have intended it, but he has revealed the one and only true connection between Vietnam and what the Left is trying to do now. HOW? Well, by ADMITTING that Vietnam "WOULD HAVE BEEN" a NOBLE DREAM but foe the fact that the SVG failed to hold off the North Vietnamese totalitarians.


BUT, Ignatieff elides the CRUCIAL FACT: that the SVG ONLY FELL AFTER THE DEM/LIB CONTROLLED CONGRESS CUT OFF FINANCING FOR THEIR FLEDGLING DEMOCRACY. AND THIS WAS 1975, A YEAR AFTER MOST US TROOPS HAD ALREADY BEEN WITHDRAWN! It was the LEFT-WINGwhcih forced the US to CUT & RUN, and then shamelessly cut off our allies at the knees - condemning the Vietnamese people to 30 years of tyrnanny and poverty! (Not to mention giving rise to Pol Pot and theBoat People!)


And the Left wants to do the SAME EXACT THING TO THE IRAQI PEOPLE. THIS IS THE TRUE VIETNAM/IRAQ PARALLEL!


The Left does NOT have a NOBLE DREAM - and even if they did, they do not have the COURAGE to stay the course. Proof od this is the fact that so many lib-hawks have gone wobbly on Iraq just as we are entering a new and great AND NOBLE PHASE. And just as the Sunnis are entering into the political process.


Ignatieff argues that the price of Vietnam was too high. HE IS WRONG. The cost was not too high; there were just too many appeasing liberals in Congress. If Bush had the same immoral liberal-Democrat Congress today GERALD FORD HAD IN 1975, then he'd be unable to override a bill to cut-off funding to Iraq. And we'd have the same type of disaster.


Which is why we should never EVER trust the Left with the defense of the USA or the free world.


The sad thing is that uber Dem-lib FDR would've endorsed what Bush is doing; by today's standards FDR WOULD BE A NEOCON! (Just check out his FOUR FREEDOMS speech if you doubt me!) Which illustrates again how the Left has become the focus of reactionary ideology in the Western politics.

6/28/2005 11:36:00 AM  
Blogger cwynne said...

This is a tangential comment. I find it disappointing to see phrases like 'Jeffersonian dream of freedom' repeatedly used.

Thomas Jefferson, as governor of Virginia, was so wedded to America's freedom that he deserted his post and fled to the woods during the Revolution.

Thomas Jefferson, as a private man, was so concerned about freeing slaves that he lamented how terrible it was that he simply could not afford to manumit his slaves. You see, he had run up such a debt buying French art and furniture in his ambassadorial stay in France that he required the economic production of his slaves to stave off creditors. Oh, and he kept racking up more debt after he got back, fostering his continued dependence on his slaves.

Thomas Jefferson was so moved by liberty and freedom that he utterly ignored the real facts of the terror in France, because he was blinded by the mere concept of Revolution. Not only did he espouse the ideological purity in Paris as its streets ran red with blood, he also believed that such Revolutionary zeal was needed in the United States, even after the founding of a Constitutional federal government.

The fathers of freedom and liberty in the United States were George Washington and Alexander Hamilton. Jefferson and Madison were the fathers of unhinged self-interest and willful denial.

6/28/2005 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger iotm said...

It has nothing to do with religion.
The problem is that what the US calls democracy and liberty, is known outside of American Reality, by those living in the global reality, as destruction, death, violence, terrorism, anti-justice, etc.

The US has no interest in democracy in the least, it happened to fit their propaganda needs with Iraq as Saddam Hussein was a dictator, if he was a popular leader in a democratic Iraq, he'd have been invaded anyway. They've overthrown a boatload of governments that could be considered as democratic as the US, and just as free.

When people like those on this blog and the cited author stop living in a fantasy land of lollipops and puppy dogs where US foreign policy is beneficient instead of ultra-violence, Canadians and Europeans will be much more likely to be supportive of the American people as a whole, and such foreign policy interventions.

That being said, if Thomas Jefferson were to rise from the dead, I suspect one of the first things he'd do is start formenting a revolution against the current political and economic order which evokes religious nonesense.

Jefferson was a deist, not a Christian theocrat like the Republicans/Democrats. The Declaration of Independence was not based on Christianity, references to God are not the Christian god. References to "Jesus Christ" were proposed, but rejected.

The US has no Christian foundation, and Jefferson himself would be appalled at being associated with such a thing. Here are a few of Jefferson's thoughts on Christianity and religion:

"History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes."

"In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own."

"All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately, by the grace of God."

6/28/2005 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Sorry about the misunderstanding, but I was in a hurry to get to a meeting. I meant to contrast George H.W. Bush's patriotism and eagerness to volunteer with our current elite's eagerness to hide from military service. I in no way meant to insult George H.W Bush, quite the opposite, he is the example Young Republicans should emulate.

6/28/2005 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Kevin, maybe it was the word "cheated" that led to the "misunderstanding." There's also another insult in that post--using Lt. Allen's death in action the way you did--to score points against a misrepresented Rove, is contemptible exploitation of a man who gave his life fighting for what you are using him--now that he can no longer speak for himself--as an argument against.

At least with a case like Iotm, there's no doubt where he/she stands (have a nice life, Iotm), but you, Kevin, in the year or so I've been reading you, have degraded noticably in quality of discourse. Try arguing the concepts instead of settling for ankle-biting.

6/28/2005 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Buddy,

My argument is not that we should stop fighting the war, my argument is, in fact, that Young Republicans should start fighting it.

You are right about my use of the word cheating.

6/28/2005 12:29:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

And don't forget that unless you want our soldiers to fight with sticks and stones, someone has to build the ships, planes, trucks, tanks, missiles, guns, bombs, and bullets; the radios, radars, guidance systems, and satellites. Someone has to make the armor, the uniforms, the canteens. Someone has to make the food.

Don't dare denigrate those of us who are proud to serve as a part of the military-industrial complex. You don't even want to imagine what the United States of America would be like without us.

6/28/2005 12:34:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Nor the rest of the world.

6/28/2005 12:36:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Re Jefferson:
I shall need, too, the favor of that Being in whose hands we are, who led our fathers, as Israel of old, from their native land and planted them in a country flowing with all the necessaries and comforts of life; who has covered our infancy with His providence and
our riper years with His wisdom and power and to whose goodness I ask you to join in supplications with me that He will so enlighten the minds of your servants, guide their councils, and prosper their measures that whatsoever they do shall result in your good, and shall secure to you the peace, friendship, and approbation of all nations.” Inaugural Addresses
of the Presidents of the United States, at 18, 22–23.

And as to Jefferson: the notoriously self-contradicting Jefferson did not choose to have his nonauthorship of a Thanksgiving Proclamation inscribed
on his tombstone. What he did have inscribed was his authorship of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, a governmental act which begins "Whereas Almighty God
hath created the mind free . . . ."


Not the words of a person who believed there was no Christian Foundation to the United States. Lets not go into what Washington said at various times.

Pierre

6/28/2005 12:41:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

A-freaking-men, Nathan.

And Kevin, "Young Republicans should fight the war"--3 out of 4 servicemen and women ARE republicans--or if not technically, then Bush/OIF supporters. My 22 yr old daughter, graduating the University of Texas/Austin (with a 3.7)in two weeks, is interviewing with the services as we speak. She's tall, slim, knockout gorgeous, has every option in the world (including going on to a Master's on daddy's $), but wants to get out there and more directly serve her country. I know--just an anecdote. But, you know how anecdotes are.

6/28/2005 12:47:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Nice post, Reliapundit. The same line about if only the South Vietnamese could have held off the armored invasion. Of course, if we had kept our end of the peace agreement, we would have run Linebacker III and there would have been no massive invasion of the South.

Btw, our last troops left on 3/29/73, over two years before the 4/21/75 invasion.

Another small detail struck me, Ignatieff says: "Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. once said that ''to fight out a war, you must believe something and want something with all your might.'' He had survived Antietam and the annihilating horror of the Battle of the Wilderness, so he knew of what he spoke." If anything, Antietam, 9/17/1862, was "the annihilating horror" with 23,000 casualties, the bloodiest single day in American history.

Moving right along, speaking of Vietnam and losing, John Kerry has a tried and true plan for our loss of both Iraq and the GWoT in today's NYT. Thank God for Americans' common sense in defeating that pompous fool.

6/28/2005 01:00:00 PM  
Blogger Kyda Sylvester said...

Frankly, I don't understand why so much attention is being paid to this banal piece of tripe. Really. "The Carr professor of human rights at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard" should be embarrassed by the shallowness of thought reflected therein.

6/28/2005 01:08:00 PM  
Blogger iotm said...

Pierre, contrary to popular belief, Christians don't have a monopoly on the word God. As I said, Jefferson was a deist, not a Christian theist.

6/28/2005 01:16:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Tony, I can hear the top echelons of the jihad--from Afghan caves to Persian palaces to offices in DC and Manhattan, all wishing and hoping for just one more, just one itty-bitty more, Uncle Walter Cronkite.

6/28/2005 01:20:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Iotm, can you cite anyone anywhere anytime making that assertion--besides you, that is?

6/28/2005 01:22:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

This assertion, I mean: "...contrary to popular belief, Christians don't have a monopoly on the word God."

6/28/2005 01:24:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Find me one Christian--a non-KKK-ish fake christian--making that claim. I know you can find plenty of people making the claim that "they all make the claim".

6/28/2005 01:28:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

You're knocking over straw-men that aren't even real straw-men...publicly wrestling with your own imagination.

6/28/2005 01:32:00 PM  
Blogger Old Dad said...

iotm,

You want to conflate religion and Christianity. Hence, you argue that "religion has nothing to do with it" but then somehow find solace in the fact that Jefferson apparently was a species of Deist, Deism being a religion (fyi).

It's an historical fact that many of our founders were deeply religious Christians, and by modern standards, even Jefferson and Franklin would be considered hyper religious, if not orthodox. It's simply not possible or helpful to try to extricate our Judaeo-Christian heritage from our founding. Moreover, one can recognize that our founders were strongly influenced by their various faiths without repealing the First Amendment. One would need to rethink the current and ridiculous First Amendment jurisprudence, though.

6/28/2005 01:34:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Yup Old Dad thats exactly what Scalia said in his scathing dissent.

Pierre

6/28/2005 01:41:00 PM  
Blogger truepeers said...

Other nonsense in Ignatieff's oh so correct liberalism:

What is exceptional about the Jefferson dream is that it is the last imperial ideology left standing in the world, the sole survivor of national claims to universal significance. All the others -- the Soviet, the French and the British -- have been consigned to the ash heap of history.

-nonsense: all nations, as distinct from ethnicities and empires (a distinction Ignatieff doesn't get - the Soviet Union was an empire, not a nation), necessarily understand themselves in universal terms. Their high cultural and intellectual life is entirely concerned with human universals - just listen to the discourse of the Canadian, Michael Ignatieff, for example. That's not so say that because you aspire to fundamental knowledge about humanity, you apire to one world government or wish to forget the particular defining qualities of your own history - we each discover universal truths in our own time in our own way and these historical particulars may be institutionalized as the basis for our religious and national communions. THe universalist visions of nations need be no more compatible than the universalism of Christianity and Islam - their comparable but, on the ground, clashing beliefs that all humanity and the world are the creation of one true god.

Nonetheless, you should not forget that you can learn fundamental human truths through a concentrated study of, say, Canadian literature. Nor that every nation and monotheism asserts its own particular learning of these truths in everything it does and says.

As the Harvard ethicist Arthur Applbaum likes to put it, ''All foundings are forced.'' Just remember how much America itself needed the assistance of France to free itself of the British.

-nonsense: this is the fundamental error of Jacques Derrida's and Michel Foucault's philosophies, which have now apparently achieved Harvard respectability. Human foundings cannot be understood in terms of power/knowledge conspiracies. The shared faith that is the basis of any real human foundation cannot be imposed by the will of any individual or special interest but rather depends on the paradox of most people in said community simultaneously agreeing to share in a faith-based understanding of a sacred and transcendent order as an alternative to the meaningless chaos of conflict among our competing worldly desires. If you want to know how this works, study the anthropologies of Rene Girard and Eric Gans, the real intellectual leaders of our times. Or just consider the American Revolution for a moment: timing is everything. At a certain moment, enough people say we cannot live with the present (dis)order which has eroded through a myriad of colonial resentments. We must agree to transcend it in a new order. Sure they have to fight to get it, with a little French help, but their victory in arms cannot explain the new founding vision they put at the center of the new nation, a vision that worked, when some would not. Nor can you explain it by simply saying the founders were wealthy, white males, ergo the constitution - that's just mindless scapegoating. It must, at the most basic level, be explained in terms of a historical unfolding of human self-understanding of which the founders were a part, an understanding founded in relation to the sacred and sacrificial means by which we must inevitably organize ourselves.

Freedom is the recognition of this necessity. The founders recognized it and thus made their contribution to expanding the degree of freedom in the human system of which they were a part. Sure they could benefit more from this freedom than many, but that doesn't explain how they knew successfully to go about expanding freedom. Harvard wants to be free, just like the rest of us, but they don't seem to be doing a good job lately of recognizing the necessary basis for it.

6/28/2005 01:49:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Yes--that's the case, alright. No holes in that.

6/28/2005 02:16:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Club Gitmo Shirt .
My gut is with Pierre, my hope is with Buddy and the gentleman from the Northeast.

6/28/2005 02:20:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

The Union of Canadian Socialist Republics, eh?

6/28/2005 02:24:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

What a species where a man in his 80's can be in better health than someone in their 50's.

6/28/2005 02:25:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

just kidding, Truepeers.
;-)

6/28/2005 02:25:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

hey, bud, that picture came up fine, now it is blank, same there?

6/28/2005 02:27:00 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home


Powered by Blogger