Friday, June 16, 2006

The Long Tail

Austin Bay notices that India has nominated Sashi Tharoor to replace Kofi Annan when his term ends. The traditional way of maintain checks and balances within the UN has been to rotate the Secretary General's position between internal political blocs. But commenter Liberty Dad believes this doesn't go far enough.


The real prize would be the US and India setting up a joint, democracy only club (sorry Pakistan). One that could evolve into first, a massive humanitarian org (Indian people, US guns & supplies) and later into an alternate Human Rights peacekeeping force. The UN is terrible partly because it has no competition! The US and India and Japan should start a competing org, but not leave the UN. (Though they could all reduce their funding for the UN and send that funding to the new org.) If the seat was to rotate each 4 years between Mumbai, Tokyo, and Chicago (?) (I was born there! But safest big US city), it could be a big splash.

Once the United Nations is regarded as a "service organization", whose purpose is to provide a products like humanitarian aid or technical advice to its members, efficiency would be expected of it like any other provider. Competition would be natural in that setting. The UN protects itself by subliminally portraying itself as an ideal proto-state -- the sole embodiment of not only present but future international legitimacy. Without striking that mystical chord people would expect as much from the UN as they would from their building sanitation contractors. And what building sanitation contractor could survive on the UN's record?

But maybe the real danger to the UN lies not in the possibility that countries will set up a rival organization, but that private networks will spontaneously arise to gradually take over its functions. Chris Anderson, who is studying the phenomenon of the Long Tail thinks that the impact of being able to reach multitudes of micromarkets is only now beginning. Google may be the symbol of its start, but the Global Poor is the symbol of its ultimate target.

In January I spent a week in India in part to wrap my head around C.K Prahalad's "Bottom of the Pyramid" theory, which in many ways resembles the Long Tail. Are they in fact the same? As I mentioned in an earlier post, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profits, like the Long Tail, is about finding ways to efficiently address sub-economic markets. In this case, Prahalad is talking about how to sell goods and services to the world's 4 billion poor, for mutual benefit. ...

Both theories are based on the notion that if you break the economic and physical bottlenecks of distribution you can reach a huge, previously neglected market. They both recognize that millions of small sales can, in aggregate, add up to big profits. And they're both focused on ways to lower the cost of providing goods and services so that you can offer them at lower price point while still maintaining margins.

Ed Driscoll, writing at Tech Central Station notes business models that exploit the Long Tail have "demassified" the mass media.

It's not just television entertainers and their audiences that are turned upside down by the growing "demassification" of the media. The economist Thomas Sowell noted last year that during Tom Brokaw's long tenure as NBC News anchorman, he took his show from last place among the big three broadcast networks to number one. But he had more viewers when he was in the cellar, more than 20 years ago, than he had in first place this year when he retired, because fewer people now watch NBC, ABC, or CBS News. First is not always biggest if the pie has shrunk.

The first signs of the fragmentation of mass culture were documented 25 years ago in Alvin and Heidi Toffler's seminal The Third Wave. It began with cable and satellite television's ever-growing number of narrowcasted channels, then with talk radio, and now exponentially with the Internet.

A recent post at the Belmont Club described how the Jihad 2.0 and its Internet enemies and rivals -- have created virtual insurgencies and counterinsurgencies, movements and countermovements and communities of all types over the Internet -- and threatened to similarly transform politics. The UN is now in the process of demanding billions to revamp its Turtle Bay headquarters, which is pathetic in it's way: a last century project of an ex-future world state rooted firmly in the past.

71 Comments:

Blogger Doug said...

My Indian Nominee

6/16/2006 06:24:00 PM  
Blogger The_Head_Jimmy said...

He can't be your Indian nominee, he's Canadian!

6/16/2006 07:54:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

A citizen of the World needs no Nation State.
Borders are so 20th Century.

6/16/2006 07:59:00 PM  
Blogger The_Head_Jimmy said...

Sorry, inside joke. Anyone in the Canadian Forces will probably recognise that as a variation on the hilarious punch line from a PC indoc movie that ensued after the semi infamous "Somalia-Affair" (or Scandal).

I think the actual line was when little Private Johnny Canuck finds out his Platoon Warrant is gay exclaims: "He can't be gay, he's an Indian!" As you can expect, hilarity ensued.

6/16/2006 08:01:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Humor Helps Canucks Cope
The army-issued tactical vests -- designed to carry ammunition, grenades, bayonets and other supplies -- are also inadequate, soldiers say. The vests supplied by the army, for example, carry only four magazines of rifle ammunition.

"Whose going to survive on four mags in a firefight?" asks another 1st Battalion soldier. "I carry 10 mags every time I climb out of the LAV [light armoured vehicle]. If we get into a fight with the enemy, four mags aren't going to cut it.

"The army stuff is OK in Canada, but over here your life depends on good gear," he adds.
As a result, most of the troops are wearing a mishmash of privately purchased "tac-vests," boots, rucksacks, cold-weather clothing, and other gear.
Jimmy's Place

6/16/2006 08:21:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

One other possible Indian nominee.


"Manjit - a 49-year-old Indian-Australian cab driver - is so proud of being an Aussie that he has composed a music album, singing of his love for Australia and its people. After selling over two thousand copies of his homemade CD to his cab customers and attracting considerable attention in his hometown of Brisbane, this singing cabbie has filmed a Bollywood video-clip for his most popular song "Song Australia"."

6/16/2006 08:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

It gets worse when you get down to the tents for the infantry!

6/16/2006 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

There's a transport-blogging scene out there. There's an ex cop who drives a taxi in Hawaii with a blogsite, Sydney has Man of Lettuce who interviews guys while he drives. Now this singing Indian cabdriver in Brisbane.

6/16/2006 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

"The UN is now in the process of demanding billions to revamp its Turtle Bay headquarters, which is pathetic in it's way: a last century project of an ex-future world state rooted firmly in the past."

Uh-huh. But where else can we go, ah, shopping for the occasional, all-important World Body Resolutions? Are they going to be offered by private service organizations catering to the needs of the world's poor?

I think not.

There are services, and then there are services.

6/16/2006 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger The Mad Fiddler said...

As Japan began its long painful recovery from World War II, some of the earliest manufacturing schemes were based on recycling scrap materials. I remember some toy cars made of stamped metal, with the earnest faces of the occupants printed on the surface of the front windscreen, the profile view on the side windows, and the backs of the heads on the rear windscreen. The toy was marked "Made in Japan."

By the time I was a sixth grader, I got a highly exciting transistor radio with a "Made in Japan" label, and nobody was making jokes about Japanese products.

In the 1970's when Detroit was shoveling out POS automobiles, and folks were beginning to lose jobs because of the savvy competition from Japanese manufacturers, an enterprising Japanese city adopted the name "Usa" and started shipping lots of manufactured goods with the label "Product of USA."

Take that as a starting point.

Form a new international deliberative body, staffed with normal people instead of murdering thugs, prostitutes, thieves, perverts, and on-the-take pols.

Build a replica of the existing U.N. building as a decoy, but house the new group elsewhere.

The new "UN" could be run in cyberspace, by bloggers (Hey, ANYONE can be a blogger...)

When you think of it, Clinton really is the logical successor to the moral lepers that have been running the U.N. Gutless cowards, ready to abandon whole nations to slaughter rather than lift a finger to help. Perverts ready to victimize someone in their power for the sake of a moment's lust. Liars who will steal a kidney from a donor, sell it to fifty people on the transplant waiting list, then use the money to pay for cocaine and blow jobs.

Clinton — The only Head of State to have a Chinese condom named for him.

6/16/2006 10:50:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Why settle for one head?
Have her head seen through the windshield,
and his on the window.

6/16/2006 11:55:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Looking very earnest, of course.

6/16/2006 11:57:00 PM  
Blogger hdgreene said...

"Without striking that mystical chord people would expect as much from the UN as they would from their building sanitation contractors. And what building sanitation contractor could survive on the UN's record?"

In New York, they have an answer for that: The one affiliated with the mob! The mystical cord in this case is called extortion.

After Rudy targeted the mob the fees went way down--except maybe at the UN: there the extra competition would make the kickbacks go up!

6/17/2006 06:31:00 AM  
Blogger whit said...

OT but must be brought to light. This is a ,very interesting article in Human Events regarding under the radar efforts to plan and permit a new six-lane North American, limited access highway from Mexican ports through the US and into Canada.

6/17/2006 07:00:00 AM  
Blogger Bala Ambati said...

shashi tharoor is not a good candidate because he is PC. there are other better candidates. the UN is a lost cause - we need an alliance of democracies - please check out my 1st post as a blogger at:

daylightsmark.blogspot.com

6/17/2006 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger Charles said...

whit said...

OT but must be brought to light. This is a ,very interesting article in Human Events regarding under the radar efforts to plan and permit a new six-lane North American, limited access highway from Mexican ports through the US and into Canada.
////////////
this helps explain why bush is so loathe to have actual borders with mexico. he's a bilderburger.

6/17/2006 09:27:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"..."actual borders" with mexico."
---
Borders?
We don't need no Stinking "Borders," Gringo!

6/17/2006 10:31:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I do find it interesting that so many are surprised that Mr Bush is an advocate of open borders and World Government.

Selective listening and projection of ones own ideas onto Mr Bush's limited remarks and writings must be the explanation, that or his cowboy boots fooled most everyone.

The long drawn out processes at the UN before the Iraq invasion, the refusal to secure either the northern or southern US borders, effectively, despite the 2002 State of the Union pledges to do so, as well as the Dubai port deal are just some examples of subordinating US interests to the "World's".

Max Boot describes Mr Bush as much more multilateral then Mr Truman, or Mr Clinton, for that matter.

Cowboy hats and boots will not turn an east coast frat boy into a mainstream, red state US Citizen. The third generation of professional political players will not change their stripes, regardless of the costume of the day.

Mr Bush successfully ran to the "Right" but has governed from the center of the liberal internationalist elite.

The Bush family legacy
New World Order

6/17/2006 10:35:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Whit,
In the previous thread, 'Rat refered to that, and I've got a link to GWB's interest/attitude toward "security" and "law enforcement" wrt to such.
VDH and the rest of us know where that leads, but Bush has other plans.
Sucks to be us.
In the thread before that, I think, 'Rat has the VDH link.

6/17/2006 10:38:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

10:35 AM
Mother Barbara thought the Saudi Royals were just grand people:
W thought enough of them to give them and the bin Laden Clan a free ride home while the rest of us huddled at home after they funded the most deadly attack ever against us in modern times.
How backwards it would have been to have held them as we rightly took back their means of such funding right?
Very old school.
...Your son would not have even needed to join the Marines.

6/17/2006 10:44:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Funny how the MSM gives him a free pass on that and "Immigration Issues."

6/17/2006 10:47:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

FWIW:
Bala became the world's youngest doctor.
But, as my Nominee says, they're not very good at stoop labor.
...that's why we need more Mexicans.

6/17/2006 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Red River said...

"In the 1970's when Detroit was shoveling out POS automobiles, and folks were beginning to lose jobs because of the savvy competition from Japanese manufacturers"

The world was made a smaller place by containerized shipping and the resultant breaking of the Longshoreman unions that had a chokehold on the world's ports in the developed nations.

Until then, the Japanese could make anything they wanted, but it cost too much to load and unload it.

American lower class were similar to todays vast poor. Not any longer.

The internet and the rise of electronic media has done to information what containers did to shipping - now it costs very little to load and unload ideas - and finding them is virtually free - where it would take years to generate a body of ideas and generations to push them - and the flip side - generations to defeat them - and lessons forgotten - now it just takes months - and the lessons are pasted up for all to see.

The result is a black man leading an engineering team is as likely to be from Nigeria as he is from Atlanta, a brown-skinned woman sighted at a club in Dallas may speak Hindi not Mexican, and a Filipino educated in the USA and living in Oz publishes on the internet every day and not in Foreign Affairs once a year.

The American Intellectuals, so long dormant due to the Left's lock on the collection of ideas, have now broken the chokehold on the load and unloading of ideas. Home schooling, the internet, the deep penetration of Free Markets and Free Minds into the young - all herald a shock that is just now taking hold.

America, and by assocation - the Anglosphere - from Australia to India - to Japan - were formed on Revolution.

6/17/2006 12:23:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

Bah,

I don't even live in Texas any more and I knew about the I-35 corridor upgrade. Under the radar my arse.

Texas DOT is building out the new Texas I-35 over the next 5 years. The payoff being:

*separate lanes for passenger vehicles and large trucks
*freight railways
*high-speed commuter railways
*infrastructure for utilities including water lines, oil and gas pipelines, and transmission lines for electricity, broadband and other telecommunications services

All bypassing congested city centers.

Once again, the Texas build out will be over 50 years and has NEVER been under the radar.

6/17/2006 12:36:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Kool Aid Drinkers Alert:
SEE NO EVIL, HEAR NO EVIL, "MAN" of "FAITH"
Bush snubs border sheriffs President refuses to meet coalition as lawmakers prepare hearings:
President Bush has refused to meet with border law enforcement officials from Texas for a second time. His response to their request came in the form of a letter Monday, angering both lawmakers and sheriffs.

In fact, some Republican members of Congress, upset by what they call the administration's seeming lack of concern for border security, are preparing to hold investigative hearings in San Diego and Laredo, Texas, early next month.
Members of the House subcommittee on international terrorism and nonproliferation hope to expose serious security flaws that could potentially lead to terrorist attacks in the country, said Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, who is a member of the panel and has pushed for the hearings.

"The next terrorist is not going to come in through (Transportation Security Administration) screening at Kennedy airport," Poe said. "We already have information that people from the Middle East have come through the border from Mexico. They assimilate in Mexico learning to speak Spanish and adopt customs and then they cross the border into the United States."

Poe requested the meeting for members of the Southwestern Sheriffs' Border Coalition -- a group that includes all 26 border county sheriffs from California, New Mexico, Arizona and Texas. The sheriffs wanted to speak to the president about the increasing dangers in their communities and along the border.

6/17/2006 12:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

All under Bush's "Radar"
...also

6/17/2006 12:55:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Otherwise known as "Cerebral Jamming."

6/17/2006 12:56:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

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6/17/2006 01:01:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

The Human Events article is pretty funny. The Trans-Tx corridor will cost over 140 billion alone, from what I understand. But the author includes the 'scary' part that the US DOT gave a 2.5 million grant toward the 'Super Corridor'.

Texas voted for funding on teh Trans-Tx corridor on Nov of 2001.

NASCO 'lobbied to get I-35 declared High Priority Corridor status in 1995 lobbied for the creation of two new categories under the Transportation Act of the 21st Century (TEA-21) – the National Corridor Planning & Development Program and the Coordinated Border Infrastructure Program.'

Yep, thats 1995 and 1998. Obviously the Bush/Rove mind control machine was working on FedGov even at that early time.

6/17/2006 01:16:00 PM  
Blogger The Mad Fiddler said...

(OT personal note to Red River: I visited your blog & left a couple of comments. Interesting posts and perspective you have to share. Looking forward to seeing more.)

6/17/2006 01:25:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Did you miss MY link, Smacko/Koolaido?
---
PS: Did 'Rat assert that Mr Perfect President STARTED IT?

6/17/2006 01:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

El Presidente Perfectamundo.

6/17/2006 01:32:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Townhall.com.



Jun 17, 2006
by Robert Novak

WASHINGTON, D.C. --
IMMIGRATION TURNABOUT
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1651109/posts
Within two days last week, House Majority Leader John Boehner changed from sunny optimism about prospects for passing an immigration bill this summer to a bleak, negative outlook. The reason was that Boehner got the word from House Speaker Dennis Hastert.

Boehner on Tuesday was upbeat in addressing a breakfast forum at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which supports a guest worker program. He indicated he would resolve differences between the restrictive House bill and the much more liberal Senate bill by the Fourth of July.

But at a closed luncheon Wednesday at Charlie Palmer's restaurant, attended by financial contributors to House Republicans, Boehner declared that the immigration bill was all but dead. That change followed Boehner's conversation late Tuesday with Hastert, who made clear he did not want to pursue the issue that splits the Republican Party.

6/17/2006 01:44:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Goss got his.
Will be interesting to see what the future holds for (Reginald) Denny.
Would be a shame if some new arrivals caught him in a back alley.
Not even a blip on the DC Murder "Radar," however.

6/17/2006 01:49:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

Maybe if the conferance had included the sheriffs from all the counties that border the country where they keep ACTUALLY finding terrorist, Bush might have attended.

And although I often aim at DR, this was more of a preemptive strike :).

Trying to stop the spread of WMD - Weapons of Mexican Distraction.

6/17/2006 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger The Mad Fiddler said...

esponding to the Trans-America Highway

The idea of an unbroken highway linking Canada to the Southern end of South America was being discussed when I was a kid in the 1960's; it's nothing new.

As acute as the terrorist threat is, we can't simply seal ourselves off at either border. What we MUST do is invest a hell of a lot more in MONITORING.

One incident from a few years ago illustrates the hope that we already have the means for doing this:

In 1983 scavengers tore apart an abandoned cancer radiotherapy machine, spilling pellets of Cesium-137 in a Mexican scrapyard and in the bed of their truck. One of the men carried pellets in his pocket long for several days, and in time developed an open ulcer on his hip, and other signs of radiation poisoning. Medical personnel were able to work out what had happened, but a number of people were sickened, and one died from the radiation exposure.

Meanwhile, a few radioactive Cesium pellets had gotten mixed with scrap iron that found its way to a Juarez steel plant manufacturing construction rebar. Some of the contaminated rebar was loaded onto a truck bound for Los Alamos Laboratories. Passing through the gate, the radiation from a few pellets of Cesium that had mixed with thousands of pounds of steel rebar set off a detector, triggering a camera that caught the truck's license.

The shipment was traced back to the Juarez mill, and the contamination was traced back to the scavenged radiotherapy machine.

That story can be taken a lot of ways.

One lesson is that we do have the technology to monitor gates and checkpoints, if we have the will.

The other more ominous lesson is that just a little bit of radiation contamination can cause an enormous amount of disruption. There is the real danger, from the biological effects of ionizing radiation (I have some familiarity with this, having researched & produced some films for FEMA on the subject in the 1980's.) But the greater danger, in my estimate, is the irrational fear that people have of radiation, because of their ignorance.

We have NO scale, no gauge for grasping how much radiation can be tolerated with no significant medical effects. The U.S. public tends to regard radiation energy with the same attitude as a rain forest villager might regard a spell from a shaman.

As a result, the greatest vulnerability we have to a "dirty bomb" is the panic that would likely dominate any discovery of a threat or actual release of radioactives by a terrorist.

The shame and tragedy of this is that Radiation and its effects are very thoroughly documented by a century of worldwide experience, but because of the Left's fear-mongering, people refuse to consider or study the literature, and simply shun any rational discussion.

Of course, irrationality seems to be at the root of a lot of our present predicament... Maybe you're right. There is NO HOPE!!!!!!!

6/17/2006 02:00:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Maybe if the conferance had included the sheriffs from all the counties that border the country where they keep ACTUALLY finding terrorist, Bush might have attended."
---
Another CLASSIC Case of BDDD.
(Bush Derangement/Denial Disorder)
I have posted HERE at this site numerous links to terrorist activity South of the border, and in fact the people that work there are quoted IN THAT ARTICLE refering to terrorist activity.
But Smacko, in Service to the the Myth of el Presidente Perfecto, chooses not to notice.

6/17/2006 02:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Fiddler:
Enforcement is a powerful tool, also, but is not actually a part of Bush's plan in reality.
In REALITY, he chose to virtually ABANDON workplace enforcement in 2004.
Current token raids are just that: token raids.

6/17/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

1:54 PM Comment of BS Distraction.

6/17/2006 02:34:00 PM  
Blogger The Mad Fiddler said...

Here is an active link to a detailed (and probably much more accurate) description of the radiation contamination I described:

http://www.window.state.tx.us/border/ch09/cobalto.html


(I see the active agent was Cobalt-60, not Cesium. I apologise profusely for my sloppiness.)

6/17/2006 02:47:00 PM  
Blogger The Mad Fiddler said...

Doug,

I lament the lame enforcement of immigration, and tremble with trepidation at the potential for mischief. At the same time, there are other programs.

For instance, border monitoring and aerial surveillance are technologies that are pretty darned sophisticated, if only we use'em. Here's an excerpt from the article I linked in my previous post, about the detection and location of tiny Cobalt-60 pellets, that were described as being the size of cake decorations:

" Because pellets might have fallen anywhere on the roads between Chihuahua and Juarez, officials flew over the area in a special reconnaissance helicopter on loan from the U.S. Department of Energy. They found 22 radioactive sites and actually dug eight pellets out of the highway asphalt. And to prevent any more tainted steel from entering the U.S., the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission and Customs Service officials installed radiation monitors at all border crossings."

6/17/2006 02:54:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

We already have information that people from the Middle East have come through

And we have information that terrorist have ACTUALLY been caught crossing the border from Canada. Terrorist ACTUALLY arrested in Canada. The border with Canada is 3 times the length of the border with Mexico. The border with Canada has LESS enforcement along it's lenght than the border with Mexico.

Yet still.....The demands that something be done about National Security at the southern border.

Argue your cultural assimilation issue as it stands Doug. Do not hide behind National Security to do it.

6/17/2006 02:56:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

We ACTUALLY have apprehended folks from south of the border also, Smacko, but for some reason you try to promote the LIE that we have not.
Not the first time.
There is nothing whatsoever that renders the "cultural assimilation issue" and the security issue mutually exclusive.
...and you also choose to ignore/deny 'Rat's/VDH's point about breakdown of the rule of law and the INEVITABLE disasterous negative results of that.

6/17/2006 03:06:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

VDHSocrates on Illegal Immigration
" Nevertheless, what distinguishes the U.S. from nations in the Middle East, Africa and, yes, Mexico is the sanctity of our legal system. The terrain of Mexico may be indistinguishable from the landscape across the border in the U.S. But when it comes to the law, there is a grand canyon between us.

Only on one side of the border is title to private property sacrosanct, are police held accountable and is banking conducted transparently. Public hiring in America is based on civil service law, and judges are autonomous. And the American public has a legal right to investigate and even sue its government. That maze of legality helps to explain everything from why the water is safer to drink in San Diego than in Tijuana to why a worker makes $12 an hour in Fresno but less than $1 in Oaxaca.

Yet once we as a nation choose to ignore our keystone laws of sovereignty and citizenship, the entire edifice of a once unimpeachable legal system will collapse. Ironically, we would then become no different from those nations whose citizens are now fleeing to our own shores to escape the wages of lawlessness.
"

6/17/2006 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_1 said...

I ask again, as I have in other postings.
Why is the United States still a member of the UN?

I am confident some contributor to the Belmont Club can explain the need we must have to remain a member. I don't see it.

6/17/2006 04:04:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

Doug,

I happen to agree with VDH/Rat/You on most of the immigration issue...

EXCEPT.....

I do not think the Republic will fall if we do not take care of it today.

Jorge's Iraqi neo-plan is a very bold, yet risky, play. IF it succeeds in planting the seeds of liberal democracy in Iraq (and then further into the ME) the payoffs would be enourmous.

I think it is irresponsible of the populist wing of the conservative movement to kick up such a shitstorm at this time.

6/17/2006 04:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Just Because

6/17/2006 04:07:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

also:

Besides success in Iraq being uncertain, there is also the Iranian nuke question, and Chavez in Venezuela that needs to be dealt with in the next 2 years.

I have not problem with El Presidente kicking the immigration can down the block to the next president (El or otherwise)

6/17/2006 04:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Once again you pose a Strawman Either-Or argument, Smacko.
And excuse the irresponsibility of POTUS refusing to enforce laws at pre 911 levels by accusing others of being irresponsible.
While same POTUS promises to enforce such laws in the future if we will only give away more of our heritage in the present.
Somehow those with eyes and common sense become cynical.

6/17/2006 04:12:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_1 said...

President Bush was told by a staffer that 2 Brazilion we killed in Iraq.
Looking blanched President Bush lowered his head, then looking up asked SecDef Rumfeld.
"Just how many is a Brazillion?"

6/17/2006 04:15:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The Populist Wing" did not bring up the brilliant idea of raising legal immigration of ignorant peasants into the hundreds of thousands at this time.
That was POTUS in secret collaboration with the likes of Ted Kennedy and Harry Reid.

6/17/2006 04:17:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Blanched Ivy in a Stetson.

6/17/2006 04:19:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_1 said...

By the way before we get involved in any international operation of any type, let me be the first to ask.
Gee, what's our exit strategy?

6/17/2006 04:20:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_1 said...

The UN needs a George Washington Plunkett at the helm.
Honest graft.

6/17/2006 04:26:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Same as our UN Exit Strategy.

6/17/2006 04:27:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_1 said...

Habu asks. Why is the US still in the UN.

Habu, we are still members because it is the worlds largest conduit for US and global graft under the cover of humanitarian needs. The bourgeois striving to be nouveaux riches see it as the golden highway. This includes good old American capitalists.
It's always about the money and power.

6/17/2006 04:38:00 PM  
Blogger Smacko said...

Doug,

Word from the House is that there will be no immigration bill this term. I guess, in the end, that like Children of the Corn, the strawman came alive.

Either/Or.

Least we still have Paris......

6/17/2006 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

glav er szaa nor tu esta nuevo

6/17/2006 04:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The heavenly touch of her embrace tells me no-one can take her place..."
---
From People, September, 2006
"We've Never Been Happier."
In an exclusive interview with Hillary Rodham Clinton, pictured at home with Bill in Chappaqua, the New York Senator and Presidential hopeful giggles at rumors the couple lead separate lives. "My relationship with Bill has always been...exuberant," Hillary says coyly, stroking the sleeve of Bill's fishing sweater. "But when I was elected to the Senate we entered what can only be described as a new phase of intimacy. I now better understand the stresses and strains of political life--from the candidate's view. Bill has been a rock, a booster, a shoulder to cry on, you name it. He's always there for me. I can honestly say we've never been closer or happier."

"She's one heck of a campaigner," her husband added, beaming.

6/17/2006 05:31:00 PM  
Blogger The_Head_Jimmy said...

And our present tents are worse than our past tents!

6/17/2006 06:08:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Don't mind Jimmy, he's nervous.
(not sure about hypertensive)

6/17/2006 06:40:00 PM  
Blogger The_Head_Jimmy said...

Well you started it.

6/17/2006 06:57:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

The trouble is that no one quite sees that the very best thing we could do for Mexico is to send their now well trained citizens home.

Suddenly Mexico would have a skilled workforce who knew something about how a world class country worked.

Think these folk would propel a great leap forward for Mexico?

I do.

Basically the ruling class in Mexico will not change of its own volition. But it can be forced to change.

The Mexicans in the USA have had the picture of what a well run country looks like tatooed on the back of their eyeballs. And they'll have an idea of how to get there. Send them back to Mexico and they'll get a revolution in Mexico that'll do that country some good.

The shock troops for that would be the 12 million repatriated Mexican citizens. Having seen what a well run country looks like they would not want to be stuffed back in the old wineskin.


There's something more.

I follow water desalination research pretty closely. While water desalination costs have dropped to about a third of what they were 15 years ago--the rate at which prices will drop over the next seven years will accelerate considerably. imo in even the next five years we will see desalination costs drop to 1/10th of today's costs. Or even faster than the fall the 3/4 fall that the LLNL researchers suggest.

Basically, the foundations are being laid today to make it economically feasable to to turn all the world's deserts green. (The proper way to look at this is to recall that cars, tv's and computers were at first rich men's toys but when prices came down they changed the world. Desalinised water is still relatively speaking -- a rich man's toy. But when the price drops sufficiently--desalinised water will change the world--because most deserts are right beside the ocean. Pumping the water 1000 miles inland will require that the scientists collapse the cost cracking out hydrogen from water. I think that this nut will be cracked sooner than desalination.)

imho cheap desalinised water will do for the republicans (if they can get this on their agenda or even the democrats if the pubbies drop the ball) what the great dam building projects & the tva of the 1930's & 40's did for democrats because 1/3 of the US is deserts. We would increase the habitable size of the USA by 1/3.

Dirt cheap desalinised water will also do things like make it possible to double the habitable size of Mexico.

And desalinated water in tandem with repatriation of now skilled Mexican citizens would propel Mexico into being a world class country.

6/17/2006 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The shock troops for that would be the 12 million repatriated Mexican citizens. Having seen what a well run country looks like they would not want to be stuffed back in the old wineskin."
---
Left here, their kids are sent off to liberal programing centers aka public schools, where they learn to resent Amerika, and little else.
In complete contradistiction to previous 2nd gen immigrants, on the whole they do much more poorly than the "natives."

6/17/2006 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger The Mad Fiddler said...

By the 1920's Harlem had become a magnet (I almost used the improper term of the Islamic pilgrimmage locus...) for talented, energetic, ambitious blacks from all over the U.S. as well as from other territories. It was a sprawling precinct buzzing with writers, painters, dancers, composers, publishers, doctors, teachers, schools, shops, businesses, and enterprises as varied as could be found in any city for any ethnic group. The term "Harlem Renaissance" is used by some people to capture the moment, but in fact, there were centers of black population in a great number of American cities before World War II, each fermenting with the full spectrum from poor, to middle-class, to rich, and from ignorant to academically celebrated.

This is not to deny that America had still not yet fully dealt with the legacies of slavery and racial discrimination. Just to point out that there were healthy communities that offered a wide range of experiences and opportunities.

But... One of the unintended and unforeseen effects of the integration drive from the 1950's onward was that the black professionals and much of the black middle class elected to decamp from the black urban ghettos. We use the word ghetto now in a completely different sense than it had been used before. The word used to refer simply to a neighborhood that was predominantly of one cultural or ethnic group. These days we mean it to refer to a blasted, impoverished, benighted neighborhood, whose residents are prisoners because of their lack of money, skills, or hope.

In the fullness of time, this will pass. There is no question that it's a shameful waste of potential to forcibly segregate and deny full participation to ethnic groups. But the social imperative to allow all individuals and groups to make their own choices inevitably creates temporary imbalances and distortions. Demogogues will inevitably exploit those dislocations.

National borders and trans-national migrations, though, can not be left to sort themselves out the same way. The great difference is that migrations within a country are all at least governed by or subject to the unifying principles and codes of the national will. Everyone agrees that we have no say over the laws Mexico imposes on itself. By the same token, Mexico has no right to tell America what laws to pass or how to enforce those laws. That there are American citizens who cannot accept such an elementary concept is really the underlying problem.

As with so many issues, there is a corrosive partisan aspect to the argument.

When William Jefferson Clinton held the office of President, he maintained a standing policy of intercepting Haitian refugees on the High Seas far from U.S. controlled waters, and forcibly repatriated them. To what end is not clear. The Left were strangely silent both about the interdiction, and the fate of those returned to the hands of the Ton-Ton Macoutes and the brutal factions contending for control of the country. No one questioned Clinton's authority to send those illegal immigrants back to their country of origin.

And just a few years later, the Left in America EMPHATICALLY denied the right of young Elian Gonzalez to stay in the U.S. after his mother had risked everything to cross the open ocean between Cuba and the U.S. to get her son to relatives here. Michael Moore wrote an impassioned (if utterly cynical and condescending) open letter to Elian that blasted the people trying to fight his return, and apologizing for the crappy culture of the U.S. Mr. Moore was so happy he was leaving. Again, the Left were completely supportive of Mr. Clinton's use of black-uniformed masked paramilitary INS agents armed with submachine guns, calling unexpectedly around 3 or 4 am to forcibly extricate Elian G. from his Florida- State-Court-appointed guardian.

That is the same Florida whose Democrat-dominated judiciary worked so hard to intervene a few years later in the presidential vote tally process to void the Republican victory.

So it seems over and over that the LEFT in America — and pretty much everywhere else — are ready to reverse themselves on any issue if it suits their momentary tactics. They are spoilers, without any goal beyond getting back into power. Their agenda is devoid of substance. While they claim to defend women's rights, immigrant rights, prisoner rights, children's rights, they will abandon in an instant any victim whose story does not help their pursuit of power.

The problem common all of these situations is NOT that the solutions are somehow hidden. The fundamental problem is that we have a huge population of contrary children who insist on having their way because they want to be in charge. If they can't have their way, they will make damn sure nobody else gets what they want, regardless of the cost.

I predict this will continue until the Jihadis make a demonstration that clarifies things for everyone.

6/17/2006 09:45:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

... maybe the real danger to the UN lies not in the possibility that countries will set up a rival organization, but that private networks will spontaneously arise to gradually take over its functions. - Wretchard

That's an astute observation. And, that may already be happening. It's very possible that the main movers and shakers have already formed groups that are much more focused, agile and effective than the UN body.

Certainly, the criminal element in the UN has proven effective. Hopefully the honest elements will be prove equally as effective.

I agree with hdgreene, that extortion is a big factor at the UN and it must be stopped. Maybe a tough Rudy G type could clean it up (Now, Paul Volker did a some but not much).

Trish, you are always disparaging the Administration for presenting it's case against Saddam in front of the UN assembly with the old "Shopping for Resolutions" line. That type of talk only encourages more corruption at the UN (the UN members think corruption is the only way to do business - and grows to expect it. It's a constant cycle).

Doug, the boarder problem is very real.

But, your "Kool Aid Drinker" article from the San Bernardino Sun (CA) is a little deceptive.

It states that Bush's aids turned down an invitation to talk to Southern Boarder Sheriffs. That's not unusually given Bush was just in Iraq. I would imagine it takes quite a bit of planning to arrange a Presidential meeting with that many people in such a short time frame. Here is the full letter from the assistant:

The White House

June 12, 2006

Dear Congressman Poe:

Thank you for your letter in which you requested that the President meet with border sheriffs regarding immigration policy and border security.

The President would appreciate an opportunity to visit with border sheriffs. Regrettably, it will not be possible for us to arrange such a meeting. I know you will understand that with the tremendous demands on the President's time, he must often miss special opportunities, as is the case this time.

I know that the president would want me to thank you for your request to include him in your plans and to send his very best wishes.

Sincerely,

La Rhonda M. Houston
Deputy Director
Office of Appointments and Scheduling

The Honorable Ted Poe
United states House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515-4302


see: The White House

I don't see much slapping in the letter. One other point. Scott McClean [sp] did meet with Congressman Poe's guys but that is not well publicized.

I say cut the President a little slack, and make some positive suggestions.

One tangential point: You know Wretchard is an immigrant from the Philippines to Australia. He may have a different opinion on immigration.

6/17/2006 10:24:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

charles
thanks for that snippet.
Status que wins.

Who'd have ever guessed.
No "guest workers"
No increase in visas
No employer enforcement
No fence
A few thousand Guardsmen rotating through Border assignments each month.

Saw on FOX where a guardsman said while they were in position, the cross border traffic stopped. After they had left the field, the traffic recommenced.

If an accurate report, I think it is, then mere "Presence" on the frontier is all that's needed, 24/7.
Triple the deployment to the border from 6,000 to 18,000 and the guard posts would not be abandoned for lack of manpower, when the guardsmen's shift was over.

smacko,
I'd agree that the SPP, the I-35 corridor and the NAFTA truck provisions have not been "under the radar", anything but.. According to your timeline, 1995 & '98, Mr Bush was Governor of Texas when the Corridor Plans were approved, in and by Texas, with little direct Federal support..

Mr Bush and the Republican Party are on record, their positions seem clear. You seem to concur with that assessment.
Mr Bush is a cog in the machine of State. An important cog indeed, but still just part of the machine.

6/17/2006 10:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"I say cut the President a little slack, and make some positive suggestions.

One tangential point: You know Wretchard is an immigrant from the Philippines to Australia. He may have a different opinion on immigration.
"
---
Ledger,
I'd cut him some slack if he'd enforce laws that were being better enforced prior to 9-11.
Such is not the case.
Why do new laws have to be passed before he BEGINS to enforce laws like workplace enforcement? (again)
Why is he only now talking about what will be done in the future, and how important that is, given that it has been 5 years since 9-11?

Immigration is one thing, massive immigration (300,000/yr) with no meaningful screening is quite another.

Not sure what you might be getting at wrt to fact that Wretch is an immigrant.
So is Bala Ambati, but I don't think his impact on our society is comparable to massive flows of uneducated workers who drag down the wages of the poor in this country and represent a net drain on our welfare state.

6/18/2006 04:04:00 AM  
Blogger The Machinist said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/19/2006 10:10:00 PM  
Blogger The Machinist said...

Not for nothing...did not U Thant count as the Asian rep? Perhaps we are due for an Aussie now? Frankly as long as we are rearranging deck chairs, though, will someone PLEASE take the real estate issue in hand?

I think I like Trump's idea of building the new UN at the WTC site. Certainly the midtown site is worth more as almost anything else - perhaps even as the slaughterhouses and tanneries that once were there.

I only wonder if it is wise to inflict the UN on Wall Street...then again perhaps they (the UN) would learn something.

6/19/2006 10:11:00 PM  
Blogger Tom Grey said...

I still prefer my Human Rights enforcement group

but I've heard the Canadians are pushing to put muscle into a UN based Rapid Deployment Force. Which might also be good, but I suspect will fail, too.

6/22/2006 03:20:00 AM  

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