"First off, I`d rather you call it the War in Iraq specifically"
That`s all I meant for the purposes of this post, and past ones. Unless otherwise specifically talking about Libya or Afghanistan.
"If we wanted to take Saddam out, then fine, but do it while we aren`t also fighting another front in another country. We aren`t the World Police - and if we want to be all over the place then we can`t do it during an existing War where we`re thinning troops where we need them the most."
We should separate (1) the invasion from (2) the occupation, because you can support (1) while rejecting (2). And when I say the arguments for war I mean only the invasion, not the occupation.
The invasion of Iraq went incredibly well, the occupation, not so much for a while.
Just to be clear, are you saying we would have "won" (or whatever you might want to call it) in Afghanistan if we hadn`t invaded Iraq? I don`t believe invading Iraq changed the outcome in Afghanistan. Afghanistan was doomed to be Afghanistan filled with Afghans(and bordered by Pakistan), no matter how much we wished it differently.
"If we wanted to take Saddam out, then fine... I realize that this is going to open a can of worms, but I was highly appeased by the show of International Support by a few large nations/UN and am hoping that there is a plan for moving forward with the new change in leadership."
Iraq coalition: 20-35 countries (limited UN support) Bush received authorization from a co-equal branch of government.
Libya: 5 (full UN support) Obama has not.
Yeah, this doesn`t seem very clear to me which wins.
"Could you show me a list of arguments used to go to Iraq? "
But here are just a few of the arguments outlined (I`m not saying they are all good arguments):
Liberating the Iraqi`s from Saddam. Preventing harm to neighboring countries. Bringing justice to Saddam for atrocities. Disarming Saddam.
A compelling argument for not attacking a country was made by Obama himself. If a country poses no threat to the US, the US should not invade it. Do you agree? I agree.
This article does a great job of explaining what I mean towards the end:
"Let me give an example. Suppose I believe in humanitarian intervention (as liberals once did). I believe, say, that the United States should intervene in other countries to prevent -- and perhaps to punish -- atrocities (understood as widespread, systematic human-rights violations). Suppose I reject intervention on other grounds, such as the acquisition of territory or resources. Now suppose I`m convinced that President Bush`s motive in going to war in Iraq was the latter rather than the former. Should it matter to me? No. What I should say is that the war is justified (by my own principles). It is justified not because of the president`s stated reasons for going to war, which I reject, but in spite of them. I will think, and say, that the president did the right thing for the wrong reason."
"However, you`ll need to provide a link to me to prove that George W. Bush had a specific goal in mind to oust Saddam because he was murdering citizens who were attempting to protest. "
It doesn`t matter what Bush said. It`s hilarious that you accuse me of "Follow the President regardless of truth." You justify things morally based on your own morals, not President Bush`s morals, or what he said, or anyone else. Think for yourself. What are YOUR values, and does any possible strong argument YOU could make support going to war in Iraq. That is the standard. The fact that you don`t already do this is mind boggling to me. It doesn`t matter what Obama says about Libya to me, the question is do I support it, based on my own arguments, or arguments others make that I accept.
"Right. Anything specific you`re referencing or do you just not understand that the relationship between torturing a subject and receiving valuable, life-saving information isn`t causal."
This specifically: "Torture is never worth it and it lowers us to the level of our enemies. If we cannot hold our head high and hold ourselves to a higher standard, why the fuck should the rest of the World do so as well?"
It still leaves me wondering how killing people allows us to hold our heads up high. And you said "never". Never being an indicator of an absolutist belief. Do you belief torture is never, not in a single instance, justified?
Yes, torture does not always work, never mind that I don`t believe enhanced interrogation as practiced by the Bush Admin, and including water boarding, amounts to "torture". I`m playing devil`s advocate that actual torture might be justified, if it were reasonable to believe the person had information that could save innocent lives (for example, the captured person is a known terrorist leader) and interrogation was not working.
"I`m sorry you live in a such a simple life where choice for abortion === okay to torture === killing osama bin laden."
Huh? The only one who is being simple here is you. I didn`t say "abortion === okay to torture === killing osama bin laden" whatever that means. I wrote a series of mostly questions to you, which you can agree or disagree with.
Here`s how it might look if a person answered the questions:
Isn`t killing the innocent absolutely morally wrong? --Yes
Doesn`t it lower your morality? --Yes
Why don`t you support a ban on abortion? -- Because blah, blah...
There is nothing more innocent than a fetus. -- A fetus is not an innocent life, followed by explanation of why fetus is not innocent life.
"I have no problems with another child not being forced into an underprivileged situation that may become drastically worse."
A mother can give the baby up for adoption which seems a better solution than abortion.
Wow, I can`t believe you are objecting so strongly to my point here.
All I`m saying is this: The President made many arguments for going to war. You, an individual with a mind of your own, can decide, for yourself, which of those reasons you choose to accept or reject, as you wish.
You reject them when made by President Bush, but accept them when made by President Obama. That seems like a contradiction.
Never did I come close to saying follow the president. The ridiculous ice cream example is only to show a point. No matter if the president or anyone close to him makes one or many bad arguments, any of the other arguments are still viable to accept or reject on their own terms.
"You`re comparing two very different conflicts that do not share very many commonalities"
I am not. I am comparing the arguments for going to war in each case. The arguments for going to war in one country can and are used to go to war in other countries. Either you agree with those arguments or you don`t. You don`t pick and choose based on whose making them.
"That`s quite a big if to make right before you completely dehumanize yourself and your prisoner.... Torture is never worth it and it lowers us to the level of our enemies."
That`s how conditionals work. They are true only when what`s contained with the `if` part is true.
And since when did you become a moral absolutist? Or is it only when it suits your topic? Once again you pick and choose your views like a buffet. There seems to be no consistency here.
Isn`t killing the innocent absolutely morally wrong? Doesn`t it lower your morality? Why don`t you support a ban on abortion? There is nothing more innocent than a fetus. Or how about, did you support the killing of Osama Bin Laden? How is killing a person better than torturing them for information which might save lives. Shouldn`t we have captured him and brought him to court rather than killed him? Doesn`t killing a person lower us to their level? It seems to me killing people is worse than torture, but what do I know.
So you don`t agree to removing a dictator from power and putting the people in charge? You reject the humanitarian arguments for going to war in Iraq. Isn`t that the exact reason we are at war with Libya?
Also, your reluctance to put Americans at risk is understandable, but innocent people are dying in Libya every day. It`s war. Also, the winners (rebels) are rounding up the losers (black africans) and killing them, because rebels believe black africans are mercs for the regime.
"Are you a firm believer than the ends justify the means?"
No. I`m a moderate deontologist. Although the wrongness of something can be outweighed by it`s benefits. For example: If torturing 1 person (wrong) could save the lives of 1,209 people (yay!) the wrongness of torture could be overridden.
"without the public, or even those in charge knowing exactly what the hell was going on."
If you don`t know why we went to war you haven`t been looking. Bush spoke to and sent a transcript of his reasons for going to war, of which, there were many reasons listed. If you don`t agree with them fine.
"I wanted to change the situation in Iraq because I believed people were being suppressed and murdered. However, while we appeared to exhaust all avenues for changing this, I am not going to approve of an all-out invasion just because I believed something needed to be done if the reasons behind it were deliberately misleading."
Like I said, Bush Administration makes people irrational. Go back to my ice cream arguments. It doesn`t matter if Bush lied, made false arguments, or made a mistake, or was truthful. Either you agree with the arguments or you don`t. Each argument for war stands on its own merits, they are not connected to what Bush said, Ice cream, or any other thing but what is in the argument itself.
Your hangup of not invading a country with troops is a little strange. I fail to see what`s so much better with invading it with bombs, and funding other people to attack the government the country wants to remove. If you don`t like nation building, that makes sense, but nation building and troop invasions are not the same thing. Posted: September 9th, 2011 @ 6:45AM
"If the same exact reason was used in Iraq as was used in Libya, I would have been 100% behind us going into Iraq."
I don`t understand why this matters. If Bush had said Iraq has ice cream and the US is invading Iraq for more ice cream, it has no bearing on whether I justify the invasion of Iraq. Bush might have been wrong in his reasoning, but it doesn`t mean invading Iraq was wrong. It only means that argument (for ice cream) is wrong.
There might be other ways to justify it, depending on your own beliefs. I think Bush makes people irrational. There is nothing stopping you from applying the same reasoning, except Bush. Posted: September 7th, 2011 @ 3:19AM
I bought a Planar 27 inch PX 2710MW on newegg for $260, it goes on sale every once in a while if you can wait around for it. It`s an amazing monitor. The only complaints, it doesn`t go over 1080 res, which doesn`t bother me, and slight light leakage at the top which is only noticable when the screen is black. Colors, response, etc are great. Would buy again. Posted: September 7th, 2011 @ 3:06AM
Haha jdlordhelmut, I did a google search for muslim support for terror and this is the first link that came up, your CSMonitor link came up second....
"Most notably, the survey finds that terrorism is not a monolithic concept--support for terrorist activity depends importantly on its type and on the location in which it occurs. For example, Moroccans overwhelmingly disapprove of suicide bombings against civilians, but, among respondents in the six predominantly Muslim countries surveyed, they are the most likely to see it as a justifiable tactic against Americans and other westerners in Iraq. Opinions about the United States, its attitudes in dealing with the larger world and the Iraq war are also powerful factors in shaping support for terrorism, as are perceptions that Islam is under threat. With the exception of gender, demographic differences, including income, explain little if anything about attitudes toward terrorism in the Muslim world, but country-specific differences are significant, suggesting the importance of local social, political and religious conditions."
Yeah, if Muslims are increasingly getting attacked by terror groups then of course their support for "terrorism" will drop. This is what happened in Iraq.
Here is part of his writing. This was the only positive beliefs I could see:
"A majority of so called agnostics and atheists in Europe are cultural conservative Christians without even knowing it. So what is the difference between cultural Christians and religious Christians?
If you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and God then you are a religious Christian. Myself and many more like me do not necessarily have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and God. We do however believe in Christianity as a cultural, social, identity and moral platform. This makes us Christian (p. 1307)."
This hardly makes him a fundamentalist Christian.Here`s more:
It is indeed well-known that Christianity has been guilty of
numerous temple destructions and persecutions. But the reason for this fanaticism is
found in the common theological foundation of both religions: exclusivist prophetic
monotheism. The case against Christianity is at once a case against Islam.(p45)
Finally, Christianity is, by and large, facing the facts of its own
history, though it’s still struggling with the need to own up the responsibility for these
Gold mine. He doesn`t smear Christian fundamentalists in the US when mentioning them. Surely that makes him a Christian fundamentalist:
In the U.S., Christian fundamentalists and
Islamic organisations are increasingly creating common platforms to speak out
against trends of moral decay (abortion, pornography, etc.). Some of these
phenomena of traditionalist alliance-building are quite respectable, but they are
nevertheless conducive to Islam negationism.
He`s quite rational and even-handed here:
"Many nominal Muslims have outgrown Islamic values and developed a
commitment to modern values, but their sentimental attachment to the religion
imbibed in their childhood prevents them from formally breaking with Islam and
makes them paint a rosy picture of it."
His political views are best described as conservative: "I believe Europe should strive for:
A cultural conservative approach where monoculturalism, moral, the nuclear family, a
free market, support for Israel and our Christian cousins of the east, law and order and
Christendom itself must be central aspects (unlike now). Islam must be re-classified as a
political ideology and the Quran and the Hadith banned as the genocidal political tools
I can practically feel the fundamentalism leaping off the screen!:
"The goal must obviously not be to create a new theocracy. Europe will still remain
predominantly secular. However, the Churches primary role will be to contribute to unity
by offering cultural and spiritual opportunities. The Church will once again be allowed to
do what it was intended to do; to propagate and maintain cultural unity through pre
defined rituals and celebrations. Christendom is after all the primary factor that unites all
Europeans. We should therefore strive to create a united Church through reforming it,
which ends up as a Church worthy of our respect."
What`s scary is how competent and rational this guy was compared to the muslim fanatics that abuse their religion. I still haven`t seen any evidence that this guy believed he was doing God`s work, maybe it`s there maybe not, I just haven`t seen it. It`s clear when someone is shouting ALLAH AKBAR that they think they are caring out God`s work, what has this white guy said?
This guy was also a steroids abuser, and used steroids to keep his morale up for killing people.
"Scandinavian countries kick ass for crime reduction and rehabilitating prisoners into useful citizens."
Scandinavian countries also kick ass at having a large white populations. Nalcolm be careful when favorably comparing a near all white society vs a diverse population. I thought diversity was the highest good, not whiteness. Posted: July 27th, 2011 @ 3:39AM
"I think it has something to do with the Wars we`re fighting in the area. Are people really this surprised?
This kind of example reminds me of how badly people wanted to go into Iraq, and then were completely surprised that civilians and our troops were getting killed."
It has to do with the people in the area. Germany and Japan were relatively tame compared to Iraq & Afghanistan, but those countries are filled with Germans and Japanese.
The problem with neo-cons is they have false beliefs in human nature (along with many libertarians, progressives, and main stream republicans). Will the wars make neo-cons rethink their positions? Probably not. Posted: July 27th, 2011 @ 3:00AM
Not a big surprise considering how the trains were built.
The trains are now a huge financial burden that doesn`t pay for itself because no one is riding them. This will only get worse as China lowers the speeds to conventional speeds so they are safer, but people will still see them as unsafe because of these crashes. Might as well drive your car if its not a whole lot faster. Posted: July 27th, 2011 @ 2:41AM
"What a load. It is lowering taxes that has us in this mess."
Simply look at any graph that shows revenue vs spending for the last 10-20 years. It shows that A) spending has far outpaced revenue. B} Bush tax cuts brought in more or the same amount of revenue as before they were enacted. C) The US is in a bad recession with no recovery which is the main reason revenues are down.
BiVRiP, Pop density, isn`t the only thing to think about. Say you have 5 people in a square mile. In country A they are all in the same location, in country B they are spread out all over the place (as Americans tend to do). You see how America builds up along highways/freeways, but you rarely see it here in Southwest Germany for instance. Everything is in a town with stretches of roads winding through forests or fields. Posted: July 12th, 2011 @ 3:09AM
"The Finance Ministry said last week that the Railways Ministry continued to lose money in the first quarter of this year. The ministry’s debt stands at $276 billion, almost all borrowed from Chinese banks."
“In China, we will have a debt crisis — a high-speed rail debt crisis,” he said. “I think it is more serious than your subprime mortgage crisis. You can always leave a house or use it. The rail system is there. It’s a burden. You must operate the rail system, and when you operate it, the cost is very high.”
I don`t understand the obsession with trains. Posted: July 12th, 2011 @ 2:45AM
"They commit abortions everyday and the only thing different is that this child had a name.."
I think what he`s getting as is there is no moral difference between a fetus and a child. Science doesn`t tell us a single thing about the morality of a thing. If scientist prove the races are different, does that in any way inform us about how to morally decide about race discrimination? Compare, if a fetus is scientifically different from a child, does that make abortion ok? No it says nothing about morality. Posted: July 8th, 2011 @ 12:40PM
undreaming, so the US and it`s more gun-ho allies get into a shooting war with Gadhafi, and you think the objectives will/actually are still about imposing a no-fly zone? They are already hitting tanks, which as far as I know don`t fly. They will soon or already are shooting supply trucks to starve out government held cities.
Gadhafi will just sit out the allies if all they do is impose a no-fly zone. The mission must expand because Obama doesn`t want to `lose` a war to Gadhafi.
To all the people sniping at Charkoth changing his views. Did you the opposed the Bush war on Iraq? Do you also oppose the Obama war on Libya? If you answered yes to both congrats, you aren`t a hypocrite. If you answered yes, and no, please explain what is the relevant difference between the humanitarian missions in Iraq and Libya.
Don`t snipe at others views while not revealing your own. My views are pretty mixed as they were on Iraq, although I was a strong supporter of the surge in Iraq. Gadhafi should be brought to justice as Saddam was, I don`t feel we have any obligation or reason to occupy the country of Libya.
The fact is that almost everything said about libya in this thread could be said on the eve of attack in Iraq pre-Saddam. See:
"At least in [Iraq] the goals are clear: don`t let any mofos to get more than 10 feet into the air, and keep [Saddam] from killing civilians.
WTF are we doing in [Libya] where the enemy`s [hiding in cities] and the finals goals are a blur?"
Things like didn`t plan anything before getting involved, rush to war, war for oil, the presidents craven or supposed bad motivations for attacking/winning the war (re-election), wasting money, the war will turn out much worse than we imagine, the different factions will fight (ethnic cleansing has already begun in libya is already happening with blacks being suspected of being mercs). I am not endorsing any of these arguments, just pointing out how they were used before and have suddenly been forgotten now that their guy is in office. Remember, for progressives, the end justifies the means.
If you read between the lines of the NYTimes article I linked it`s a little startling how little thought seems to have gone into the war before it was begun. At least that is the picture the NYTimes article is painting. Posted: March 25th, 2011 @ 9:06PM
It is not a problem of personal responsibility. It`s because politicians have been stealing money from social security for decades.
"then perhaps we should seriously consider scrapping it."
You must not understand the politics on this issue. This will never happen. See: Bush 2004.
"These word games work both ways. By your same reasoning, it still discriminates based on gender. A man cannot marry a certain man because he is a man. If he were a woman, he could marry that man."
Huh? You act like I haven`t been saying the law discriminates this whole time. I`ve been quite clear that the law discriminates, properly. Do you know how to read? Let me paste the relevant text: "Discriminating based on the ability to procreate is a perfectly valid reason to discriminate". When a mommy and a daddy get together and wrestle then procreation happens.
"Here`s another one: Anyone can marry a person of the same race, your race doesn`t matter. There is no discrimination by race."
How is race relevant to marriage? It isn`t, therefore it is a morally irrelevant distinction.
"The biggest flaw in your statement is that you say "opposite sex," then say "your sexual orientation doesn`t matter." Of course, "opposite sex" is the literal definition of a sexual orientation."
Sex is not the same as sexual orientation. How you can conflate the two is beyond me. You understand that sex means male or female right? You understand that sexual orientation means you like to have sex with the same sex vs opposite sex. So a male can be sexually oriented towards females or males. They are two distinct concepts.
Any male, be he oriented towards males or females can marry a person of the opposite sex (for the slow people that means females). Everyone has the same right. Nobody has different rights. Nobody has the right to marry just any person(s), animal, or child they are sexually oriented towards.
Should marriage be redefined to include same sex couples but not polygamy or any other forms of marriage? It`s a slightly different question than banging your head against the wall and screaming equality.
"There is a sizable portion of the populace that presently does not have access to these benefits simply because of their sexual orientation."
Not quite true.
Many of the benefits are already available to homosexuals. You get them individually which must be a headache compared to getting them all in marriage. Hospital visitation rights could be changed by hospital policy. It`s just that some hospitals have not changed their policy and still rely on marriage. I have said I would favor two adults, regardless of their having sex, being able to enter into a civil union and getting the benefits. Part of the problem is homosexual activists also reject civil unions, and prefer an all or nothing marriage solution.
Two men or two women are being discriminated against in marriage because marriage is not designed for two men or two women. Anyone can marry a person of the opposite sex, your sexual orientation doesn`t matter. There is no discrimination by sexual orientation. It should also be said that couples don`t possess rights, individuals do. All individuals, including heterosexuals, are being blocked from marrying a person of the same sex. Once again, no difference in sexual orientation.
The attempt by progressives to cast this issue as one of equality has been a failure (0-40 streak or whatever its up to now). I think progressives might have more success trying to argue for homosexual marriage for its own sake, that it will have, on average, positive benefits for society at large. I don`t think this case is persuasive, but at least it stops trying to shove a square peg down a round hole.
"If you can`t afford to be with someone and potentially have kids, I as a taxpayer shouldn`t have to foot the bill. If money is an issue, then go back to the old days where we had dowries, dowers, and bridal prices. I shouldn`t be penalized because I choose to be single. That said, I would still be in favor of tax payer money going towards public schools, but that`s about it."
It isn`t so easy. Social security is going bankrupt, so we need people to have more kids than ever. Even if I were to be single for the rest of my life, I want other people having lots of kids so they can pay for my social security which might not even be there for me by the time I`m that old. I want them to become my doctors, lawyers, plumbers, and trashmen. Looking at the demographics of the US, taking away incentives to having kids is crazy.