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Palin

Started by AstroMart, 04/07/2018 03:51PM

Poll Results:


0 Total Votes
Posted 09/02/2008 01:06PM #50
I ask everyone who clicked "Wow great" to consider this. What if Obama has picked some newbie governor of Vermont who previously had been the mayor of one of those hamlets which voted to secede from the USA, and that was it for his experience? Would you have been able to take such a nomination seriously? What would you have thought if you heard us say "Hey, great to have this refreshing outsider in the race, those dumb Republicans won't know what hit 'em!"

Such a selection would have been a big slap in the face to you. It would have been a declaration that Obama doesn't give one damn about you or your positions, that you are nothing to him. It would have been taking the idea of reconciliation and setting it on fire. He might as well just give you all the finger and be done with it. And I wouldn't have blamed you for thinking so. Even I would have been embarrassed by the selection of a candidate like that.

Now you know how we Democrats feel about this Palin woman.

Joe Bergeron

Moderator, Astro-Physics Forum
Posted 09/02/2008 05:06PM #51
Terry, you cover a lot of ground and for the sake of brevity, I'll just offer a couple observations.

First, I'm heartened that we share common ground on a couple issues. That's good. Now, where we disagree. You, the right, the priviledged class ect. constantly fault the left for taxation. The U.S. has one of the lowest rate of taxation in the 1st or 2nd world. And it shows, the U.S. lags behind Europe in just about every measure of societal health from universal health care, leisure time and retirement benefits. Europe has a higher college graduation rates and longer life spans. The lower taxed US has a falling life spans, and crumbling infrastructure ranging from highway bridges to city water and sewer systems. With taxes, like everything else, you get what you pay for.

Iran and Korea. Didn't you notice that the progress you mention came only AFTER the Bush administration softened its neocon approach and tried diplomacy? If GW and Dick C. had listened to Collin Powell and Condolesa Rice in 2002 and 2004 both situations may have been avoided completely. As for Georgia/Russia. That dance ain't over yet and if you get your news from anywhere but FOX you may have heard that Putin claims that it was the US that instigated the Georgians to help McCain's election chances. BS you say? The EU believed enough of it to abandon sanctions against Russia.


Safety net/Universal health care. Why can't we afford it? We "afford" $10B a month in Iraq. Its not a question of "affording" but of priorities. Countries throughout Europe that have a fraction of the GNP the US does, manage to provide at least some level of health care for all their citizens.
If Portugal or Greece can provide health coverage, why not US?



wars that costs 100,000 lives and counting,

Wars are not the exclusive province of the right. Don't forget that it was a pair of Democratic presidents that got us into Vietnam, ****

You are right to an extent. Neither party owns wars. And the "major" wars of the 20th century did take place on democratic watches. But, what about all the "forgotten" wars? The US incursion into the Russian Revolution, 1918-1922. (Wilson D, Harding R), Nicaragua "intervention" 1909-1833. Teddy R. (R), Taft (R), Wilson, Harding,(R) Coolridge (R) , Hoover (R).

Rather than bore you with details of US involvments everywhere from the Phillipines to Iran and even China, check out this site:http://academic.evergreen.edu/g/grossmaz/interventions.html

Crosschecking the 125 times the US has used military force from 1900 to 2007, you will observe that the vast majority of the interventions took place under the watch of republican presidents. In fact, WWI and WWII are noteworthy b/c they took place under Democrats. Blood baths like Nicaragua, Phillipines,Korea, and Viet Nam were all brought to you by the GOP and its big business masters, be they sugar growers, rubber companies or, dare we say it? Oil?

continued subjugation to the oil barons

What risks do the oil companies take? They didn't create the oil or put it in the ground. The oil was located by U.S. Geologic surveys/ They simply by a right to extract it and then sell it to a captive market at a profit of Billions of dollars a QUARTER! Oh poor, poor Exxon.

QUOTE:
We're sending massive amounts of money overseas to buy oil from other countries, and the liberal left can't even spot the fact that a bunch of that money could STAY HOME if we drilled our *own* oil; they keep making specious excuses for NOT doing so. THAT form of "subjugation" somehow doesn't seem so bad to them.

Thats BS but that horse has already been beaten to glue. Wreck the environment to extract the last drop of oil and it might last US 10 years. What then? In the meantime, we've continued to borrow trillions of dollars from China to pay for oil from Shieks in the Middle East who use the money to fund our demise.


... and record levels of national debt.

Again we agree. But Bill Clinton cleared the national debt and left office with a surplus of billions of dollars. It was the "fiscally conservative" Republicans who dug the hole we're in now.


Les
Posted 09/02/2008 07:01PM #52
I appreciate your ability to disagree with us without feeling the need to call us sissies, traitors, etc.

Les has addressed several of your points to my satisfaction already. I'll just add a couple more observations:

I'm sure you're right that much of the world wants US involvement, but I'm pretty sure a lot of it wishes for a different kind of involvement than what they've been getting. When the President can leave a G8 summit with the words "Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter!", a puerile grin, and a triumphant fist-punch, those leaders might well wish for a higher quality of US involvement, as might anyone whose heroes aren't Beevis and Butthead.

As for the war, I'm sure we'd all be a lot less ambivalent about it if it actually had something to do with the defense of the USA. If I see my best friend walk up to some weakling and start pounding on him while shouting slogans about how evil he is, I'd have a hard time deciding how to feel about that, too. Our tribe is not always right, and I'm not going to pretend that we are. My support of the troops in Iraq takes the form of wanting them to come home where they won't be blown up to achieve...I don't know what.

Vietnam: what an insane, pointless debacle that was. I had hoped we had learned our lesson about insane, pointless debacles, but it seems every generation needs to get one out of its system.

Detention camps: Vile then, vile now. We should have learned that lesson too. It's highly debatable how many of our "combatant" prisoners are really combatants. I sure don't expect their jailers to tell us.

Education: my guess is that Les was talking about college.

Joe Bergeron

Moderator, Astro-Physics Forum
Posted 09/02/2008 11:06PM #53

Les:

With taxes, like everything else, you get what you pay for.

Not really, IMHO. When it comes to taxes, you get considerably *less* than what you pay for.

But the fundamental difference between us in this area is that what you want to pay for is not what I am willing to pay for. Resolving such differences is what elections are for.


Les:

Safety net/Universal health care. Why can't we afford it? We "afford" $10B a month in Iraq. Its not a question of "affording" but of priorities.

But in the next breath you rightfully complain about the national debt ... it's not going to go down unless we *stop* huge amounts of spending. Shifting it around isn't going to do the job.

And as to priorities: universal health care isn't going to do the country much good if we allow countries that openly wish for our destruction to gain nuclear weapons or threaten us in more subtle but just as deadly ways.


Joe:

As for the war, I'm sure we'd all be a lot less ambivalent about it if it actually had something to do with the defense of the USA.

And there, of course, is one of the fundamental left-right differences. I say getting rid of a dangerous military dictator who had used nerve gas on his own people, overrun a tiny neighbor and threatened others in the region, IS an action in defense of the USA. Unopposed, who's to say he wouldn't have decided to start gassing his neighbors or even taken his attacks to the West? A well-funded gang like al Qaeda has international reach in this day and age; how much the more so a man with an entire nation and huge oil reserves?

I think that invading Iraq to depose Saddam Hussein was exactly the correct thing to do.

I would also argue that the unintended consequence of having al Qaeda move heavily into Iraq to oppose us was, in the long run, a fortuitous circumstance. Initially, it created difficulties for our military, to the point where the left was ready to give up; but in the end, we've prevailed and dealt a HUGE blow to al Qaeda, a sworn enemy of the U. S.


Joe:

If I see my best friend walk up to some weakling and start pounding on him while shouting slogans about how evil he is, I'd have a hard time deciding how to feel about that, too.

What you're missing in this analogy is that the "weakling" was a mass murderer who killed tens of thousands of people, and was UNDENIABLY evil. And that everybody *knew* that before your friend started pounding on him.


Les:

... if you get your news from anywhere but FOX you may have heard that Putin claims that it was the US that instigated the Georgians to help McCain's election chances. BS you say? The EU believed enough of it to abandon sanctions against Russia.

The left sure likes to believe that Fox isn't a real news organization, just because they don't spout the liberal line (vice CBS, NBC, MSNBC, various newspapers). As a matter of fact, I did hear this story ... ON FOX. And yeah, I think it's BS; I'm quite certain that the truth is that we told Georgia NOT to provoke Russia. The EU may have had reasons for declining to saction Russia, but I doubt that taking Putin's babbling seriously was one of them.


Les:

Blood baths like Nicaragua, Phillipines,Korea, and Viet Nam were all brought to you by the GOP and its big business masters,

You'll have to be more specific here; I don't know what "blood bath" you're referring to in Nicaragua or the Philippines (outside of World War II). Korea? Truman was a Democrat. Viet Nam? Kennedy and Johnson were Democrats; Nixon inherited a bad situation and took far too long to decide to just get out.

"big business masters" can be safely ignored as standard left-wing ideologue claptrap.


Joe:

Detention camps: Vile then, vile now.

But the alternative in Iraq and Afghanistan was what? Let 'em go so they can shoot at us some more? Or just shoot 'em rather than take them prisoner at all? The only way to avoid detention camps is to not bother detaining anybody, one way or the other.


Joe:

t's highly debatable how many of our "combatant" prisoners are really combatants. I sure don't expect their jailers to tell us.

So your alternative thesis is that we just rounded up a few thousand people at random and hauled them to Guantanamo? Why, when actual enemy combatants were thick on the ground? The idea that these prisoners are poor innocent victims is just plain fantasy.


Les:

Thats BS but that horse has already been beaten to glue. Wreck the environment to extract the last drop of oil and it might last US 10 years. What then?

No, it's *not* BS. A trillion dollars worth of oil in ANWR is a trillion dollars in *our* pockets rather than some foreign government's. Ten years of oil is ten years we don't have to ship money overseas to buy the stuff; the money stays here in our own economy.

Nobody's talking about "wrecking the environment". A few oil wells aren't going to "wreck" ANWR. If the oil's pumped out after 10 years, the wells disappear. Soon you'd never know they were there.

The pipeline to the north slope of Alaska was supposed to be a monstrous environmental disaster, too -- didn't happen, despite all of the left-wing hysteria. And they were so *sure*, too ...

What then? Well, that buys us ten years to get a lot better at alternative fuels, which is an absolute necessity, but can't be done overnight.

Oh, and as for "Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter!". It's easy to spin that, if you want. But were I the President, listening to folks loudly proclaiming that the U. S. is the world's biggest polluter day after day, it's exactly the departing line I might deliver myself, intending it purely as humor. Your "puerile grin" is my sarcastic-humor smirk. It all depends on just how humor-challenged you are.


Joe:

... as might anyone whose heroes aren't Beevis and Butthead.

This is another reason why I generally just refuse to get involved in debating the liberal left. They seem to have this fundamental inability to accept the fact that other people might simply disagree with their opinions. If you disagree with a left-winger, or don't take the action that a left-winger deems correct, it's most often taken as evidence that you are ignorant or idiotic, and responds with denigration and name-calling rather than serious debate.

By the way, this "Grossman" guy that Les is citing is hardly a dispassionate observer. His "briefing" is loaded with distortion, innuendo, and negative spin. As a historian, he's not worth listening to.
Posted 09/03/2008 09:44PM #54
From the AP:

"Sep 3rd, 2008 | ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and her Republican supporters held back little Wednesday as they issued dismissive attacks on Barack Obama and flattering praise on her credentials to be vice president. In some cases, the reproach and the praise stretched the truth.

Some examples:

PALIN: "I have protected the taxpayers by vetoing wasteful spending ... and championed reform to end the abuses of earmark spending by Congress. I told the Congress 'thanks but no thanks' for that Bridge to Nowhere."

THE FACTS: As mayor of Wasilla, Palin hired a lobbyist and traveled to Washington annually to support earmarks for the town totaling $27 million. In her two years as governor, Alaska has requested nearly $750 million in special federal spending, by far the largest per-capita request in the nation. While Palin notes she rejected plans to build a $398 million bridge from Ketchikan to an island with 50 residents and an airport, that opposition came only after the plan was ridiculed nationally as a "bridge to nowhere."

PALIN: "There is much to like and admire about our opponent. But listening to him speak, it's easy to forget that this is a man who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform — not even in the state senate."

THE FACTS: Compared to McCain and his two decades in the Senate, Obama does have a more meager record. But he has worked with Republicans to pass legislation that expanded efforts to intercept illegal shipments of weapons of mass destruction and to help destroy conventional weapons stockpiles. The legislation became law last year. To demean that accomplishment would be to also demean the work of Republican Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, a respected foreign policy voice in the Senate. In Illinois, he was the leader on two big, contentious measures in Illinois: studying racial profiling by police and requiring recordings of interrogations in potential death penalty cases. He also successfully co-sponsored major ethics reform legislation.

PALIN: "The Democratic nominee for president supports plans to raise income taxes, raise payroll taxes, raise investment income taxes, raise the death tax, raise business taxes, and increase the tax burden on the American people by hundreds of billions of dollars."

THE FACTS: The Tax Policy Center, a think tank run jointly by the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute, concluded that Obama's plan would increase after-tax income for middle-income taxpayers by about 5 percent by 2012, or nearly $2,200 annually. McCain's plan, which cuts taxes across all income levels, would raise after tax-income for middle-income taxpayers by 3 percent, the center concluded.

Obama would provide $80 billion in tax breaks, mainly for poor workers and the elderly, including tripling the Earned Income Tax Credit for minimum-wage workers and higher credits for larger families.

He also would raise income taxes, capital gains and dividend taxes on the wealthiest. He would raise payroll taxes on taxpayers with incomes above $250,000, and he would raise corporate taxes. Small businesses that make more than $250,000 a year would see taxes rise.

MCCAIN: "She's been governor of our largest state, in charge of 20 percent of America's energy supply ... She's responsible for 20 percent of the nation's energy supply. I'm entertained by the comparison and I hope we can keep making that comparison that running a political campaign is somehow comparable to being the executive of the largest state in America," he said in an interview with ABC News' Charles Gibson.

THE FACTS: McCain's phrasing exaggerates both claims. Palin is governor of a state that ranks second nationally in crude oil production, but she's no more "responsible" for that resource than President Bush was when he was governor of Texas, another oil-producing state. In fact, her primary power is the ability to tax oil, which she did in concert with the Alaska Legislature. And where Alaska is the largest state in America, McCain could as easily have called it the 47th largest state — by population.

MCCAIN: "She's the commander of the Alaska National Guard. ... She has been in charge, and she has had national security as one of her primary responsibilities," he said on ABC.

THE FACTS: While governors are in charge of their state guard units, that authority ends whenever those units are called to actual military service. When guard units are deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, for example, they assume those duties under "federal status," which means they report to the Defense Department, not their governors. Alaska's national guard units have a total of about 4,200 personnel, among the smallest of state guard organizations.

FORMER ARKANSAS GOV. MIKE HUCKABEE: Palin "got more votes running for mayor of Wasilla, Alaska than Joe Biden got running for president of the United States."

THE FACTS: A whopper. Palin got 616 votes in the 1996 mayor's election, and got 909 in her 1999 re-election race, for a total of 1,525. Biden dropped out of the race after the Iowa caucuses, but he still got 76,165 votes in 23 states and the District of Columbia where he was on the ballot during the 2008 presidential primaries.

Joe Bergeron

Moderator, Astro-Physics Forum
Posted 09/03/2008 11:01PM #55
"And there, of course, is one of the fundamental left-right differences. I say getting rid of a dangerous military dictator who had used nerve gas on his own people, overrun a tiny neighbor and threatened others in the region, IS an action in defense of the USA. Unopposed, who's to say he wouldn't have decided to start gassing his neighbors or even taken his attacks to the West? A well-funded gang like al Qaeda has international reach in this day and age; how much the more so a man with an entire nation and huge oil reserves?

I think that invading Iraq to depose Saddam Hussein was exactly the correct thing to do."

Here we have a bunch of reasoning which is dubious at best.

Dangerous military dictator: pretty common in the world. Why him in particular? Which one will we pick off next? Will we keep going until they're all deposed? Can we start on the ones in Africa next? Some of those guys are really despotic.

Nerve gasses his own people: using chemicals supplied to him by the USA, back when Saddam was still our guy and it wasn't convenient for us to demonize him. And we didn't say a word about it at the time. Oh, he did gas his neighbors, those in Iran, with our help and tacit approval.

Overruns his tiny neighbor: yes, after Republican appointed US ambassador April Glaspie told him: "But we have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait. I was in the American Embassy in Kuwait during the late '60s. The instruction we had during this period was that we should express no opinion on this issue and that the issue is not associated with America. " An ambiguous statement at best.

The idea that Saddam might have chosen to attack us is ludicrous. Even if he could have managed it, what could he possibly have hoped to achieve other than his own immediate destruction? He wasn't insane, he was a secular thug, not a zealot, and he was already thoroughly beaten. I remind you how thoroughly he was boxed up and contained, unable to so much as fly his few remaining fighters, let alone launch any attack on the USA. Being afraid of an attack from him is like King Arthur worrying that the Black Knight might still come after him when all his limbs had been chopped off.

I note that Saddam only became evil after his invasion of Kuwait. Overnight he went from being our main bulwark against Iran in the middle east to Hitler. I'm sure you know that the first thing you do in war is demonize the enemy. I'm not saying that Saddam was a swell guy or anything, but I don't trust the government enough to necessarily believe every claim of his demonic evil, especially following all the other lies used as excuses for the war, such as Iraq's imaginary weapons of mass destruction. If at all possible, the government will lie about anything that suits its purposes.

Detention camps: I seem to recall back in the "good old days", when wars were actually declared by Congress as per the Constitution, enemy soldiers were kept in POW camps which were governed by certain rules of openness and treatment, not sent into oblivion with no charges, no recourse, and no communication. This was back when we fought wars with enemies who actually presented serious threats to the nation, too. Yes, I believe some of those prisoners are being detained for spurious reasons. I think that's part of the reason for the intense secrecy involved. Here's one good example:

http://www.theage.com.au/news/world/free-after-6-years-in-guantanamo/2008/05/02/1209235154395.html

Bush and his juvenile mockery: how do you know his fellow leaders were taunting him as you suggest? Do you really think a world summit is the place for "sarcastic humor" on the part of the supposed leader of the free world? What if he'd dropped his pants and mooned them, would that have cracked you up as well? You really think that was appropriate? Ah, but if we see buffoonery where you see humor, then we're humor challenged.

Alaskan oil: any money coming from there goes into the pockets of the oil companies and their investors (okay, also as government checks to the citizens of Alaska). Not "our pockets", unless your version of "we" is limited to those groups. The oil would not be set aside for our use, unless you're suggesting creating some kind of nationalized operation, which might be appropriate since this is after all public land we're talking about (until Palin gets her way and it's all turned over to the "people of Alaska", of course). It would be sold worldwide the same way any oil is, producing a trivial reduction in world oil prices and a brief extension of oil availability. Any fees the oil companies pay to lease these lands for drilling would be trivial compared to their profits.

Soon you'll never know oil wells were even there? Nonsense. Take a look at this:

http://www.audubon.org/campaign/arctic_report/toxic_drilling.html

or this, if Audubon is too liberal for you:

http://arcticcircle.uconn.edu/ANWR/anwr_fws.htm

Or this: http://www.nrdc.org/land/wilderness/arcticrefuge/facts2.asp

Okay, I'm too sleepy to continue with this.


Joe Bergeron

Moderator, Astro-Physics Forum
Posted 09/04/2008 07:46AM | Edited 09/04/2008 07:48AM #56
And here's another question which is so obvious it didn't even occur to me to ask it earlier. When did it become okay to attack countries because some of us think they might do something to us someday? Is that okay for all countries, or only for us? Should we all lash out at our potential enemies now, before they get us first?

Is that morality? Is that honorable?

I'm leaving for the weekend. Have fun stargazing.

Joe Bergeron

Moderator, Astro-Physics Forum
Posted 09/04/2008 11:08PM #57
Wow; I hardly know where to begin. This is a world view through a kaleidoscope rather than a telescope.

1) We shouldn't have deposed Saddam Hussein because we aren't prepared to depose *all* dictators; it should be all or nothing

2) It's OK for Saddam to use nerve gas because we gave it to him

3) "no opinion in the border disagreement" is clearance to attack

4) al Qaeda finds a way to kill 3,000 people in New York, but there's no way Saddam could think of any way to do so

5) we used to support Saddam, so we're not allowed to change our minds

6) etc. in the same vein

Let me say this just one more time; you've read the words before, but they just don't seem to sink in:

Every major western intelligence service *believed* Saddam Hussein had WMDs. Saddam was actively engaged in a campaign to foster and encourage this belief; he said so himself. There's no possible way to fairly and honestly construe the WMD issue as a "lie".

> I don't trust the government enough to necessarily believe every claim of his demonic evil

How many more claims than the ones you *do* believe do you need to have?

> Alaskan oil: any money coming from there goes into the pockets of the oil companies and their investors

This astounding statement completely ignores the fact that the money goes to pay the salaries of the oil company employees, gets reinvested in finding new sources of oil and developing technology to recover more oil from existing fields (among lots of other things), and is invested by the oil companies in stocks and bonds, which helps other sections of the economy grow.

You seem to believe that the oil companies just stuff their cash into coffee cans underneath the back parking lot.

> When did it become okay to attack countries because some of us think they might do something to us someday?

That's the wrong question; this isn't the reason we deposed Saddam Hussein. He claimed to have WMDs, thwarted the efforts of weapons inspectors, ignored a grand total of 17 U. N. resolutions ordering his compliance, had a proven track record of *using* WMDs, attacked a helpless neighbor, and threatened other neighbors with attack. And all of that is to say nothing of the horrific things he was doing internally to his own people.

As much as the liberals try to spin this into something bad, getting rid of Saddam was a Good Thing. But you ignore that simple fact and spend all of your time hand-wringing instead.

Terry (astrotrf)
Posted 09/05/2008 08:11AM #58
I was too busy last night to do the fact-checking, but here's where the nerve gas *really* came from:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/article400177.ece

A Dutch businessman supplied the raw materials; Iraq manufactured the nerve gas themselves.

Terry (astrotrf)