Next Right
"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing happened." - Winston Churchill


HRC at the DLC
Watched Hillary Rodham Clinton on C-Span, giving a speech at the DLC Annual Meeting.
One word - BORING!
Sorry, the woman has no charisma, and is boring when she speaks. If she wins the nomination in 2008 the Dems will be introuble. Mark Warner is the Democrats best chance at getting back into the White House.

posted by Sean McCray | 7:35 PM |


Response to DevP of

Sean, I'm writing up a response and will have it up at soon, but I wanted to make one side point for now. A big reason that you're seeing "conflicting" claims is that you're amalgamating all antiwar advocates as one, unified, mixedup "Left". In reality, the Democrats represent a lot of diverse interests, and each having their own "solution". (For example, isolationist "just get out" sentiments vs. internationalist "UN 4EVAR" sentiments.)

Really? I have found very little diversity in the antiwar bunch's comments or reasoning. Maybe there are some differences regarding when to withdraw from Iraq, but outside of that there is great uniformity in their comments. The problem is not mixed answers, but inconsistent logic and anti-Bush hatred. The answers to the questions by DevP follow the exact same logic and wording that I have heard from every anti-war person. Now to the questions.

1. Do acts of violence prove we are losing?
His answer was, no. I just want to expand on why I asked this question. Everytime there is a suicide bombing I hear the screed "see, it's a catastrophe!" from the anti-war left.

2. Should we send more troops, or begin withdrawing?
"...A big drawback of this war (and blowing off allies) is that our manpower resources are totally tapped, weakening our response power elsewhere in the world. "
So, do we start withdrawing? Honestly, not right away - an abrupt withdrawal will only create blowback. However, I most certainly do not favor the neo-con idea of setting up permanent forward stations in Iraq, either.

Where has our response been weakened? Not theoretically, but actually.
Once again an anti-war response that is more reactive than pro-active. The comment attempts to define itself more by what it does not think, in comparison to the "neo-cons", instead of on its on logic. (Please, do not use neo-con so loosely)

3. If we need to stay, then what should we do differently?
Get allies. Seriously. I know it's hard, and it's been done, but there have been some obvious diplomatic blunders that have cost us the presence of foreign manpower. Frankly, we just need more resources, and we shouldn't have to shoulder the burden. Getting foreign support means some compromises, but that is what diplomacy is all about. It diplomatic compromise free up enough resources to be more flexible and better defend our homeland, that's certainly worth it.

Not an answer. Thats like telling someone filing for bankruptcy, to get money. The assumption of this comment is that "but for Bush our allies would run to our side". It ignores their own intentions, and they did not run to Clinton on Kosovo. Maybe, you need to realize it is a weakness of those countries not our President. What compromise would bring in an ally that is not already there? what ally will run in, while we are leaving? Same oversimplified answer.

Allow gradual FDI into the country, integrating into local concerns, so that a strong local economy takes root. I'm not against foreign businesses working alongside Iraqis, but I'm concerned about our no-bid sweetheart deals to larger US businesses. Also, make sure the oil rights stay with Iraqis. They'll be hella pissed otherwise. (Maybe put an Alaskan model in place?)

FDI is already allowed. They already have control over their oil.

4. What does winning look like?
Iraq as a busy, noisy, squabbling civil democracy. Middle-class Iraqis sitting in Baghdad cafes, complaining about Iraqi politicians, rather than American ones.
Troops back home, getting well deserved time with their families.

Non answer again. The entire point of asking the questions is to make those who oppose the war actually have to think about answers, not just slogans.
All troops home? Those circumstances already exist in Iraq. They will probably always find a reason to complaina bout American politicians. No details, no real answer. If the present situation is failure, then what is success?

5. Did you support Kosovo? If so, explain how that is morally and legally different from Iraq?
Genocide: it's a big deal.
Similarly, I would support principled intervention in Darfur. There have been war crimes committed by the Baath regime in Iraq, but they are, frankly, at a different scale, which matters when we have only limited resources.
That all said: they same kinds of burdens apply in both cases. Clinton's approach to Kosovo would have benefitted from being more transnational rather than unilateral. (NATO is better than nothing, but still.) Also, note that we didn't have long-term designs on staying in the Balkan region.

There was no genocide in Iraq??? How many have to be killed in a genocide in order for it to reach the "scale" you feel is needed to qualify for American military action? We dont have long term designs on staying in Iraq. Yet, we are still in the Balkan region, so was that a failure?

6. Was Iraq a greater or lesser threat than Afghanistan before 9/11? After 9/11?
(Sidenote: we're already in some fallacy by assuming that there is some magical world-change before and after 9/11. In fact, the same trends in the world, and the same violent fundamentalists, were all around and building pre-911 and post-911. What changed then was our response, and some of the climate, but I think that for security's sake we need to be taking a longer view of these dangerous trends.)

I am not assuming anything magical happened after 9/11, i am asking for clarity.
For example. would the US have been wrong to attack afghanistan, if it knew of the 9/11 plans? we had evidence that Osama was involved in other terrorists attacks on America territory. Did they become some military threat after 9/11? Although his comment does show the idea that many anti-war people hold, that there is nothing really different after 9/11. That is like saying there was nothing different after Pearl Harbor except for America's response. There was already a war, we just joined in the battle. It is a way of minimizing any post 9/11 actions.

So, Afghanistan was explicitly harboring Al Qaeda, and strongly suspected to contain bin Laden. They were, as a nation, broken (and taking down the Taliban was a good thing, but not directly related

They were broken as a nation? what does that mean? But no genocide, right? why not just attack Al Queada? why take out an entire nation? You admit the Taliban was not directly related, then why approve of it?

7. Why are you still arguing about WMD and why the war started?
So, WMDs were, really, a big part of making the case for war when we were deciding to go to war. We had other reasons retroactively, like liberating Iraq and that wacky "buglamp" theory", but this is crucial: when we, as a civil society, were debating going to war, the greatest impetus to approving of the war was that we were under imminent danger from an Iraq containing WMDs. This deliberative process is absolutely vital for democracy.

None of those "wacky" reasons are retroactive. Just because those on the left who never supported the war, did not know all the reasons, does not mean they did not exist. You guys need to admit, that you never supported the war, therefore are not sure about the reasons why most people supported the war. You can only assume why.
There you go with the "imminent threat" comment again. (Which at this point is a lie). How many times will you on the left keep repeating something so blatantly false. Bush never claimed it was imminent, he never claimed Iraq was on the verge of creating nuclear weapons.
Also, it would not have changed your opinion about supporting the war. So why do you suddenly find it important? If it was not important enough to change your mind, why do you assume it was THE issue for those who supported the war? (Hint: it wasn't)

If the claims were honestly "misstated", but by accident, then this is a case of gross negligence, and even if it was an error in good faith, it was still a great error that deserve rebuke. This is a game with friends were you forgive the nice guy: this is about the security of the country, and we deserve only excellent security. So if the very claim that defended and entire war operation was incorrect, that reflects very poorly on the Administration's ability to use their resources to keep us secure. (And to be fair: it reflects poorly on the Senate for uncritically going along with it.)

So was Clinton negligent with the Sudan intelligence when he bombed an aspirin factory? (I have never accused Clinton of lying- about that issue). Intelligence is never 100%, you are always acting in partial darkness. when EVERY intelligence agency on earth, says that something exists. And the one person (Saddam) who can prove otherwise refuses to do that. Then how is it a lie?
The humanitarian organizations inclusding the UN claimed there would be hundreds of thousands of refugees created by the war. That turned out to be completely untrue. Does that make them liars?
The Senate was not uncritical, they read the same intelligence, and came to the same conclusions. Just because the information turned out to be partially untrue, does not automatically mean they were uncritical. Your comments suggest that more questions, would have magically made the intelligence look different. It is another oversimplified answer, that attempts to appear like a bi-partisan critique.

If the claims were purposefully misleading, to use an erroneous WMD case when this was not the core justification, then this is much, much worse. This is effectively subverting the deliberative process and taking advantage of the great trust we put into our chief executive. If we are purposefully being fed bogus data from our leadership, it makes the entire deliberative process moot, and is a strong condemnation of the Administration. (And to be fair: it reflects poorly on the Senate for uncritically going along with it.)

Let me point out, the IF in the answer is exactly the problem. There is no IF involved. We know that we were not purposefully given misleading or bogus information. There has been absolutely no evidence to the contrary. Yet, the anti-war side likes to present their attack as a question, to somehow give an impression of being open to reasoning.

Unfortunately DevP just repeated most of the same answers I have already heard from the left.

posted by Sean McCray | 8:41 AM |


Iraq Questions II:

Did you support Kosovo? If so, explain how that is morally and legally different from Iraq?

How is the Iraq War illegal? According to what statute and what legal authority?
What makes that legal authority a higher authority than the US Constitution?

Was Iraq a greater or lesser threat than Afghanistan before 9/11? After 9/11?
Please explain. Since Afghanistan had no real military, no advanced weapons, a much worse economic situation, no funds to buy or build real weapons. The Taliban protected Al Queada operatives, but the Afghanistan government never threatened the US.

Why are you still arguing about WMD and why the war started?
It is like the left is determined to make those who supported the war cry out "uncle!". The intensity that they are determined to make others admit Bush lied about WMD is as bad as any cult. They never admit that even if the case for nuclear weapons was overstated, that does not equal a lie. There is also no context regarding the illegal weapons we know Saddam had, and the fact that chemical weapons are considered WMD. (I always felt that chemical weapons threat should have been emphasized more than the nuclear.)

posted by Sean McCray | 3:43 PM |


A Few Questions for the Anti-War Faction (Part 1):
I keep hearing over and over only complaints from the left. They seem to attack everything regardless of the lack of logic or facts. Whenever I have asked for solutions, they either start name calling, accuse me of defending Bush, or go silent. That is not what patriotic real self criticism is about. Complaining is easy, being responsible and offering real answers is difficult.
I will post a few questions each day of this week, feel free to email me your response. So here are the first few questions: (Please, also tell me where my assumptions are wrong)

Do acts of violence prove we are losing?
The left seems to point to every single suicide bombing and act of violence as proof that things are going badly. Last time I checked, violent things happen in war. The very nature of war, means you are dealing with a violent conflict with the high likelihood of death.

Should we send more troops, or begin withdrawing?
I keep hearing the two contradictory ideas.

If we need to stay, then what should we do differently?
The question is what should the US do, not what the Europeans should do. We cannot make them do anything more than what they are already doing. To keep saying "get the allies involved" is really not a solution at all. It assumes that the only reason our allies are not sending troops is because we have not asked nicely enough. It ignores the internal politics of those countries and their bad economic situation.

What does winning look like?
The left seems adept at finding any and every kernel of info that might suggest we are losing, but they never put it into any context. You cannot proclaim that we are losing, without a baseline that defines in some way what winning looks like.

posted by Sean McCray | 4:57 PM |


Kanye West: Blood Diamonds
This is another celebrity thinking they are more intelligent than they really are. Wanting to prove their street credibility, since they now drive Rolls Royces.
If he was serious he would call for a boycott of all diamonds. The blood diamonds are almost impossible to track, and to keep off of the market.

posted by Sean McCray | 2:20 AM |


No Tornado Deaths in April-May-June

For the first time since record-keeping started in 1950
no one was killed by a tornado in April, May or June. Normally those
are the top months for tornadoes with an average of 52 fatalities,
sometimes many more.

"That is prime tornado time, so it's amazing," said Joe Schaefer,
director of NOAA's Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla.
Do you ever wander why positive weather news is never attributed to "global warming"?
I think it is also important to notice that records have only been kept since 1950! We only have 55 years of accurate records on the frequency of tornadoes. This shows how little we know about our climate and weather. The amount of information that we have is just too limited.

posted by Sean McCray | 1:21 PM |


Global Climate Change Coming! Take Heed!
This Newsweek article lays out the coming climate crises the world faces.

"There are ominous signs that the Earth's weather patterns have
begun to change dramatically and that these changes may portend a
drastic decline in food productionÂ? with serious political
implications for just about every nation on Earth. The drop in food
output could begin quite soon, perhaps only 10 years from now. "

"The evidence in support of these predictions has now begun to
accumulate so massively that meteorologists are hard-pressed to keep
up with it. In England, farmers have seen their growing season decline
by about two weeks since 1950, with a resultant overall loss in grain
production estimated at up to 100,000 tons annually. During the same
time, the average temperature around the equator has risen by a
fraction of a degree Â? a fraction that in some areas can mean drought
and desolation. Last April, in the most devastating outbreak of
tornadoes ever recorded, 148 twisters killed more than 300 people and
caused half a billion dollars' worth of damage in 13 U.S. states."

"Climatologists are pessimistic that political leaders will take any
positive action to compensate for the climatic change, or even to
allay its effects."
Oh yeah, the Newsweek article was published April 28, 1975. Yes, 1975. When it was predicted that within ten years the crises would begin having an impact in agriculture. Look at the FACTS that are stated regarding the temperature trends:
"A survey completed last year by Dr. Murray Mitchell of the National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reveals a drop of half a degree
in average ground temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere between 1945
and 1968. According to George Kukla of Columbia University, satellite
photos indicated a sudden, large increase in Northern Hemisphere snow
cover in the winter of 1971-72. And a study released last month by two
NOAA scientists notes that the amount of sunshine reaching the ground
in the continental U.S. diminished by 1.3% between 1964 and 1972."
Have those facts changed, or is the global warming crises really based on looking at short term trends? Those facts have not changed. At least the scientist were a little more honest about the definiteness of their views.
Just what causes the onset of major and minor ice ages remains a
mystery. "Our knowledge of the mechanisms of climatic change is at
least as fragmentary as our data," concedes the National Academy of
Sciences report. "Not only are the basic scientific questions largely
unanswered, but in many cases we do not yet know enough to pose the
key questions."
But, that does not stop them from making extreme recommendations to the politicians.
They concede that some of the more spectacular
solutions proposed, such as melting the Arctic ice cap by covering it
with black soot or diverting arctic rivers, might create problems far
greater than those they solve.
Nor does it stop them from promoting the doom of inaction.
The longer the planners delay, the more difficult will they
find it to cope with climatic change once the results become grim
I guess since the coming ice age crises never materialized, they had to find another crises. Seems they decided that the coming ice age was reversed, and we are now headed towards a warming disaster. Which means if we had done what scientists recommended in 1975, we would have made things even worse! This is what happens when people use partial scientific information to make a political point. No legitimate scientist would look at only 20 years of temperatures, and declare them a climate trend. Scientist today get research funds when they can generate headlines. This has created a very bad alliance between political interest groups, the media and money chasing scientist.

Shouldn't something with as large an impact, and as high a cost as the global warming crises claims, have more solid evidence to back it up? Considering that Kyoto admits that it will not actually stop the effects of global warming; Shouldn't the emphasis be on how to deal with climate change, and limit it's negative economic impact. Does it make sense to spend billions dollarsars trying to slow down something that cannot be slowed in any significant way; or to invest in ways to deal with how to adjust our agriculture and economy to be able to handle the oncoming change.

It is clear the present global warming crises is more political than scientific. Science is clear that IF there is global warming, there is really nothing we can do to stop it. Therefore, even if the environmentalists are correct about the coming global warming crises; we should be debating how to deal with that reality. It is irresponsible to just throw money at false solutions, just to "feel" like we are doing something.

posted by Sean McCray | 12:48 PM |


34 MILLION : The number of foreign-born residents in the United States in 2004; they accounted for 12 percent of the nation’s total population. Another 30 million Americans were “second-generation,” meaning that at least one of their parents was born abroad.

posted by Sean McCray | 6:42 PM |
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