Idle thought

Gotta run, and this is it for the day, but I leave with some thoughts for those in the Left-ward side of the world:  Why is it that, the more the jihadists kill or maim us, the more you get apologetic, not angry?  Aren't we the victims here? 

I thought of that in connection with poor Kimberley Dozier (whom I wish a speedy recovery).  The press should be outraged at what happened to one of their own, especially because two of her crew were killed outright.  But there's just silence on the subject.  It seems like a pretty masochistic — and life-defeating — way to live.

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Comments

  1. dagon says

    bookworm,

    i leave you with a question and hopefully that will prompt you to finally apply some thought:

    “Why is it that, the more the jihadists kill or maim us, the more you get apologetic, not angry?”

    –exactly WHO are you referring to? who are all of these apologetic leftists that you are referring to? since i’ve been coming here, don’t i sound just a wee bit outraged? the difference is imo, that i am not content to simply paint a straw man on the wall and hurl nonsense it’s way.

    and what SHOULD be the proper outlet for this righteous rage? should we kill all of the jihadist? do you believe that is possible? or, would it be better to approach this situation from a more ‘evolved’ perspective?

    i don’t know…i’m asking you on this one because you seem to have stared into the heart of the left and found it wanting. i mean gee golly…wouldn’t it be great if the right was in control of all branches of government and could direct the full force of their rightness at those jihadists?

    they’d solve this problem of jihadist right quick they would!

    oh……maybe not.

    peace

  2. Paul says

    Not long ago, we got treated to non-stop blathering about how the US was ‘targeting journalists’.

    And now, on the subject of these terrorists targeting journalists, we hear… nothing.

  3. dagon says

    hey paul,

    apples….oranges?

    –here’s a newsflash (pun intended). the media is not ‘supposed’ to be in the business of editorializing. outrage? i’m sure you’ll hear plenty of it in the opinion pages where it belongs. but do you really want your news readers to go off script and issue incendiary screeds about their ‘outrage’ du jour?

    i don’t know what’s wrong with you people. you’ve heard ‘nothing’ about the terrorists targeting journalists? here man, i’ll help you out. it’s called google. it’s like magic:

    http://www.google.com

    peace

  4. Danny Lemieux says

    So, Dagon…let’s hear/read your theory on how to deal with jihadis! Don’t keep us waiting…we’re standing by breathlessly awaiting your deep insights and tangible solutions.

  5. says

    Okay, Dagon, you’ve got a talent with words, especially in using them to display attitude. But this forum is about ideas, not attitude. You suggest that we approach the issue from a more evolved perspective, but you give no hint of what that might be. I welcome your posts to this forum, but how about actually engaging in the dialogue instead of just showing attitude. What is your solution? Assume the left was in control of all the branches of government. How would you deal with jihadists who have declared war on the west and seek to blow us all up? If you are unwilling to let them blow us up (which I assume you are) and you don’t believe we should strike back (which your comments tend to indicate) what would you have us do? The problem is that the jihadists don’t have a more evolved perspective. So what is your solution?

  6. dagon says

    Don,

    it’s interesting that this thread started off with a top level post asserting that those on the left are ‘apologists’ and not expressing the requisite outrage over jihadist attacks and when i respond with a challenge to name those on the left that the poster was referring to (a request not yet met btw), then the onus suddenly shifts to me to detail a way out of this republican led mess?

    whatever, i’m game:

    “Okay, Dagon, you’ve got a talent with words, especially in using them to display attitude. But this forum is about ideas, not attitude.”

    –i’ve yet to see any examples of that.

    “You suggest that we approach the issue from a more evolved perspective, but you give no hint of what that might be. I welcome your posts to this forum, but how about actually engaging in the dialogue instead of just showing attitude. What is your solution? Assume the left was in control of all the branches of government. How would you deal with jihadists who have declared war on the west and seek to blow us all up?”

    –while much of what you’ve written is vastly overstated, i will concede that there is a small, yet virulent group of wahabist muslims who do indeed seek to do harm to the west. i think we should first engage the seed bed of this radicalism and cease enabling the systems that create and nourish it. and the seed bed for wahabist terrorism isn’t iraq….it’s saudi arabia! a country with a human rights record that rivals the worst accusations leveled at hussein. combine that with state sanctioned radicalism and schools that preach jihad and you’ve gone a long way towards understanding the source of the jihadists madness.

    YET, we are in bed with the leaders of saudi arabia. we have done nothing to pressure the saudis into accepting the sort of basic reforms that would ameliorate the oppression of their people or to encourage the more moderate voices in their society to reject the teachings of violent retribution. we have done exactly the opposite in fact by coddling to the house of saud and even allowing a man who vacations and has business dealings with these men to be elected to the hightest office in our land. if we start practicing what we preach re the saudi’s, our ’cause’ would gain a LOT more credibility in the eyes of our allies and in the muslim world in particular.

    “If you are unwilling to let them blow us up (which I assume you are) and you don’t believe we should strike back (which your comments tend to indicate)”

    –look, terrorism is a TACTIC! there’s no way to have a war against a tactic. of course we should retaliate when attacked but we should also be wise enought to make sure we get the right people and to understand that other human beings have the same impulses. sure there is an al qaeda element in iraq (now) but much of it is enabled by the fact that WE attacked and killed them…unprovoked. reference haditha. iraq was largely secular prior to our invasion and many of their citizenry want a little payback. wouldn’t you?

    “what would you have us do? The problem is that the jihadists don’t have a more evolved perspective. So what is your solution?”

    –complete independence from middle-east oil; a consistent foreign policy which advocates human rights everywhere and not just where it’s financially or politically expedient; a cessation of the subsizing of american companies which employ slave labor abroad in places like indonesia and malaysia; reppelation of the policy of preemption; and a mandate to secure our infrastructure via port security, border stability and immigration reform.

    peace

  7. zhombre says

    Dagon – to ask a follow up question on just one of your points — what precisely should we do to stop coddling the Saudis? Sever commercial and diplomatic relations? Rescind all visas granted to Saudi citizens and/or students now in the U.S.? Provide funding — overtly or covertly — to any moderate or dissident saudis?

    And what does “reppelation” mean? Were you tryiing to say “repudiate”?

  8. dagon says

    zombre

    “what precisely should we do to stop coddling the Saudis? Sever commercial and diplomatic relations? Rescind all visas granted to Saudi citizens and/or students now in the U.S.? Provide funding — overtly or covertly — to any moderate or dissident saudis?

    –i’d suggest all of the above save for the rescind all visas part.

    the bottom line is that we need to pressure them to take another look at themselves. we can’t go around talking about freedom, democracy and liberty while out of the other side of our mouths, we’re eating caviar with people who support the stoning of women, public executions and allow schools which preach hatred and intolerance against differing religions and peoples.

    and the best way to pressure the saudis is to decrease our demand for their oil. hit the house of saud in their pocketbooks and they would be forced to moderate. but then again, that would mean that we would have to stop electing oil men whose personal wealth is enriched by their dealings with these people.

    oh, and repellation is merely a derivative of ‘to repeal’.

    peace

  9. says

    If people want to see an example of leftist philosophy and behavior, just go to this link at nncon and read the comments.

    http://neo-neocon.blogspot.com/2006/05/whole-world-isnt-watching-rioting-in.html

    The problem with the “lets lower our dependence on oil” bit is that Ted Kennedy derived his wealth from oil and will write legislation that punishes the oil competition but not his own assets. The Left also says you shouldn’t drill in Anwar because it “increases dependence” on oil. This is where the mind starts to part ways with the railing of reality. One group of people believe the above, others believe that you increase demand and reliance by lowering the supply.

    The “lower our dependence on oil” bit could be translated as “Blood for Oil or Oil for Blood”, but that would be another one of those ongoing inconsistencies that appear.

  10. dagon says

    ymarsakar

    “The problem with the “lets lower our dependence on oil” bit is that Ted Kennedy derived his wealth from oil and will write legislation that punishes the oil competition but not his own assets.”

    –hunh? first of all, the kennedy family made most of it’s money during prohibiton. if you’re talking about citizen’s oil, that’s largely benign and independint from the mid-east oil cartels:

    [Citizens energy is a non profit company formed in 1979 by Joe Kennedy II with the following Mission : MISSION STATEMENT
    Citizens Energy Corporation exists to help make life's basic needs more accessible and affordable. Beginning in 1979 with oil-trading ventures in Latin America and Africa, Citizens has used revenues from commercial enterprises to channel millions of dollars into charitable programs in the U.S. and abroad.]

    also, last time i checked ted kennedy wasn’t ‘the left’.

    “The Left also says you shouldn’t drill in Anwar because it “increases dependence” on oil. This is where the mind starts to part ways with the railing of reality. One group of people believe the above, others believe that you increase demand and reliance by lowering the supply.”

    –i’m talking about TOTAL independence from mid-east oil akin to the system that brazil has set up. the best estimates of the oil reserves in ANWR have it having little effect on the demand for mid-east oil at present consumption levels.

    there is much resistance to alternative resources primarily because the existing infrastructure would have to be radically changed and that would drastically impact the profit potential for the carlyle group, haliburton, EXXON/MOBILE etc. and their benefactors in the highest tiers of our government. but that doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be done as it would benefit virtually everyone else in the nation; not to mention environmental concerns.

    and the bottom line is that it would spare us foreign adventures which fuel the fires of radicalism in the mid-east.

    peace

  11. says

    Ted Kenndy isn’t the Left, that is true. He is one of the Left.

    As people can see, when people say that they want to remove dependence on oil, it isn’t as clear cut as just moderate conservation or anything that even resembles American national interest. Changing the entire industrial-complex and combustion engine infrastructure of the United States, would set the United States technologically backwards more than 100 years. Which is fine, if you don’t care about how much power there is to protect Americans, focusing instead on oil companies.

  12. dagon says

    ymarsakar

    “Changing the entire industrial-complex and combustion engine infrastructure of the United States, would set the United States technologically backwards more than 100 years.”

    –and exactly what are you basing this on?

    also fyi, brazil’s engine infrastructure is STILL based on the combustion engine. they just use ethanol. simple an cost-effective modifications are all that are required for internal-combustion engines to run on PURE ethanol. so please back up your claims.

    peace

  13. Danny Lemieux says

    Dagon – nice try, but no cigar. I agree with your assessment of Saudi Arabia (and there will be a grand reckoning, some day) but you misunderstand how the oil market works. Even if the U.S. absolutely cut off its imports from Saudi Arabia (which we could do if we drilled off the coast of Florida, California, ANWAR/Arctic Ocean, the lost sales of Saudi crude to the U.S. would be snapped up by Europe and Asia. The main difference is that we would then have absolutely zero influence on Saudi Arabia…which would hardly help the cause. As current events in Iran demonstrate, simply getting rid of the royal family a la Jimmy Carter doesn’t guarantee that the alternative will be better. Biofuels are interesting but only marginally energy- and cost-competitive at this time. Finally, you have to get over the fact that U.S. actions have very little if anything to do with Islamic/Wahabi radicalism in the world. Wahabi radicalism slaughtered in-excess of 100,000 Algerian Muslims in the 1990s and it had nothing to do with America. The root causes are in the Koranic texts and madrassas, not in State Dept. policies. It’s not for naught that the edge of the Islamic world is called “the Ring of Fire”. If you really want to learn more about Islam in the world, I suggest reading the following speech by Prof. Bernard Lewis – http://pewforum.org/events/index.php?EventID=107 (credits via drsanity.blogspot.com). Wrapping ourselves tightly into little foetal positions behind our national borders wouldn’t change a thing, except condemn a very large portion of the world to blood and terror. But, in all fairness to you, you did reply to the question. My bet was that you wouldn’t.

  14. says

    –and exactly what are you basing this on?

    Let’s call it reasoning and common sense, and leave it at that. Infrastructure is not reshaped on demand, and neither are people and society. Change will always require energy and time, you can rely on physics and chemistry for that if you don’t buy reasoning and common sense.

    also fyi, brazil’s engine infrastructure is STILL based on the combustion engine. they just use ethanol. simple an cost-effective modifications are all that are required for internal-combustion engines to run on PURE ethanol. so please back up your claims.

    Brazil doesn’t have a first class Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine military structure that requires advanced performance and logistics. It’s one thing for an M1A1 Abrams to use ethanol as a fuel, it is another thing to convert the multi-trillion dollar economy of the world’s lone hyperpower retroactively into the mold of a few visionary people.

    So if the deal dagon is offering is oil independence but with Brazil’s military power and economy, I think I’d prefer oil indepedence with several carriers and nuclear submarines in tow.

  15. dagon says

    danny,

    –i’ve got the feeling that you would lose a lot of bets with me.

    moving on. we have virtually no influence on saudi arabia as it stands right now…or we choose simply not to flex it. either way it’s troubling. what weaning ourselves from mid-east oil WILL do is get us out of the region, which if you would study the genesis of the fuel for wahabist strikes against the west, is a major driver for their hostilities towards the united states. they see a decadent encrouchment of western values in their nations as represented by ‘western’ tropes such as fast food restaurants, our ‘loose’ women and rampant materialism.

    there are other markets and i say leave them to their madness. they hardly represent a military threat to us domestically; particularly if we not only remove the incentive but take the long needed steps to secure our land.

    “Wrapping ourselves tightly into little foetal positions behind our national borders wouldn’t change a thing, except condemn a very large portion of the world to blood and terror.”

    –no one is advocating that but what exactly are you inferring? wipe them all out? how would you accomplish that? is this a policy that you would own up to?

    –are we to occupy all of the lands where people are subject to zealotry? i answered your question now answer mine. what exactly IS the strategy re containing or eradicating wahabism as it relates to our national security?

    war without end doesn’t seem like a very prudent strategy to me. unless you’re one of those ‘come the rapture’ folks. if so, i guess this conversation is over.

    peace

  16. dagon says

    ymarsakar

    “Let’s call it reasoning and common sense, and leave it at that.”

    –figures. you have demonstrated neither so why on earth would that be sufficient for me? sources? experts?

    “So if the deal dagon is offering is oil independence but with Brazil’s military power and economy, I think I’d prefer oil indepedence with several carriers and nuclear submarines in tow.”

    –one doesn’t have a thing to do with the other. err, nuclear submarines run on NUCLEAR fuel and we could convert to an ethanol/hydrogen system within a few short years if our political will was there with zero impact on our preparedness.

    i’ll spell it out for you because it appears that that’s what’s needed. brazil has NEVER had the military power that we possess yet they certainly haven’t recorded any drop off due to this conversion. we are the united states and it would be much the same.

    “So if the deal dagon is offering is oil independence but with Brazil’s military power and economy, I think I’d prefer oil indepedence with several carriers and nuclear submarines in tow.”

    –sorry, but i’m still digesting that one. no offense but that has to seriously be one of the more ignorant analogies that i’ve ever encountered.

    peace

  17. dagon says

    ymarsakar

    “Let’s call it reasoning and common sense, and leave it at that.”

    –figures. you have demonstrated neither so why on earth would that be sufficient for me? sources? experts?

    “So if the deal dagon is offering is oil independence but with Brazil’s military power and economy, I think I’d prefer oil indepedence with several carriers and nuclear submarines in tow.”

    –one doesn’t have a thing to do with the other. err, nuclear submarines run on NUCLEAR fuel and we could convert to an ethanol/hydrogen system within a few short years if our political will was there with zero impact on our preparedness.

    i’ll spell it out for you because it appears that that’s what’s needed. brazil has NEVER had the military power that we possess yet they certainly haven’t recorded any drop off due to this conversion. we are the united states and it would be much the same.

    “So if the deal dagon is offering is oil independence but with Brazil’s military power and economy, I think I’d prefer oil indepedence with several carriers and nuclear submarines in tow.”

    –sorry, but i’m still digesting that one. no offense but that has to seriously be one of the more ignorant analogies that i’ve ever encountered.

    “Btw, as clarification. I am most definitely not in bed with Saudi Arabia, but Jimmy Carter is. Given who donated to his interests.”

    –uhhhh…so? carter is a marginal ex-president who now spends his time building houses for the underpriviledged, which is more than marginal. what’s your point?

    peace

  18. says

    The strategy seems very simple, although not easy in execution, to me. There is benefit to acquiring a counter-weight to an enemy. Thus we have Japan to counter-weight North Korea, we have India to counter-weight Japan. However, America works best with democracies as counter-weights, through various reasons, so the first step to creating counter-weights and proxy fighters is to bring democracy to the region. But that’s not where it stops.

    –figures. you have demonstrated neither so why on earth would that be sufficient for me? sources? experts?

    reasoning and common sense you disagree does not mean a priori that they did not exist. That is rather too solipsistic to stand. Experts and sources with made up reasoning and invalid logic will not be provided by me. I’m sorry to say that all my principles and beliefs come from my own reasoning, and is not crafted by the hand of puppetmasters.

    The gas pipelines of the continental United States took years to build. This is what brings gas to gas stations, it ain’t all stored there or moved by trucks. I have to consider whether it is economically feasible to spend resources retooling gasoline refineries to produce ethanol, or whether it would be better to rebuild the gas pipelines from the ground up using ethanol refineries in the heart of America. Then there is the problem of what to do with natural gas if the gasoline refineries are removed, since natural gas is a byproduct of refining petroleum. If natural gas production is affected because of economic costs, debts, and time spent on retooling, I have to wonder what becomes of the natural gas lines in US cities.

    Excuse me if I don’t believe Dagon when he says in a few short years he can have us running things his way smooth as frictionless fabric.

    As common sense would tell us, it takes longer to turn 100 kiloliters of acid to neutral than it takes to turn 1 miligram of acid to neutral Ph. Brazil’s economy, living standard, and industrial capacity are a joke compared to the size of the United States multi-trillion dollar economy.

    I should make the correction that I would prefer oil dependence with an undisrupted military and economic infrastructure to a promise of oil independence with a disrupted military and economic infrastructure. To clear up the analogy, of course.

    The point is about clarification, as it is perhaps always. I myself don’t see the point of reposting your entire previous comment, Dagon, just to add a few lines to the end.

  19. says

    Thus we have Japan to counter-weight North Korea, we have India to counter-weight Japan.

    Iwas still thinking of Japan when I should have wrote China. India counter-weights China. I blame hunger.

  20. says

    Wow! This is like watching a high speed sword fight. I threw out the provocation, and the interesting comments began. Thanks to all of you, from all points of view, for your thoughtful comments and your respect for my desire that all engagement here be polite.

  21. says

    India has 1.1 billion people, last time I checked, China has 1.3 to 1.5 billion people. (checked, was 1.3)

    Their populations match, and their militaries match as well since China’s just only now rebuilding their military. You can learn a lot from going to strategy.com and reading about Chinese and Indian military force allocations.

    Amateur militarists and amateur political scientists look at China, and they see a great power. That is understandable. Unfortunately, the amateurs don’t really understand how hard it is to convert potential power to actual power. There is no doubt 1.3 billion people are a great potential power base and infrastructure base. But that does not mean the future is set in stone, or even that the transformation is instantaneous.

    Pakistan has around 200 million people, or maybe it was 150 (checked, was 160 mil). India is checking Pakistan about the same as the US is checking iraq and afghanistan with their 50 mil combined population compared to the US 300 million population. The US pop is six times as much as Afghanistan and Iraq’s 50 million combined pop. Six times pakistan’s pop is 900 million, 200 million less than India’s population.

    Combined with the actual GDP of India and Pakistan. It is quite obvious that Pakistan is as much a competing power to India as Russia, Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan are a competing power with the United States.

    (purchasing power parity):
    Definition Field Listing Rank Order
    $3.699 trillion (2005 est.)
    India

    Pakistan

    (purchasing power parity):
    Definition Field Listing Rank Order
    $384.9 billion (2005 est.)

    India’s PPP is 9 times Pakistan’s. That means India only uses about a finger and a half to take care of Pakistan’s entire hand.

    Iran and Iraq’s combined PPP is about 650 billion. 12.4 trillion dollars a year. People seem to think Iran is a competitor to the United States, so let’s see how many times Iran’s PPP can go into 12.4 trillion. 19 times, 19 times does Iran and Iraq’s combined PPP fit into 12.4 trill. So let’s combine Russia’s PPP.

    Russia ppp.

    (purchasing power parity):
    Definition Field Listing Rank Order
    $1.539 trillion (2005 est.)

    2.1 trillion goes into 12.4 tril, about 6 times. If the US has 6 times the leverage weighting against 3 strategic countries, while India has 9 times the strategic leverage against Pakistan, means that India is counter-weighting China not Pakistan.

    Who is counter-weighting the US? Not many, that is for sure. They try, but you would have to combine about 10 or so nations before their PPP even equals the United State’s. There is no counter-weight, especially since even if you combined the world’s 7 largest navies, it would not equal the United States’ navy in tonnage only.

    A counter-weight is something that offsets the weight of another object. It doesn’t have to be exact,but it does have to be close.

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