Saturday, September 16, 2006

geneva

This is pretty simple: Bush has fucked up every single thing he's touched.

Geneva has worked for over 60 years.

Do the math.

12 Comments:

Blogger Naila J. said...

Bush + "insert variable here" = HUGE MISTAKE!

2:12 PM  
Blogger wayne said...

Geneva would work here...

If it applied.

And if they followed it.

Which it doesn't.

And they don't.

1:39 AM  
Blogger wayne said...

Thomas Sowell summed up this issue well:

"When you enter a boxing ring, you agree to abide by the rules of boxing. But when you are attacked from behind in a dark alley, you would be a fool to abide by the Marquis of Queensbury rules. If you do, you can end up being a dead fool."

8:39 AM  
Blogger Naila J. said...

To further this analogy though, if it weren't for Bush, we'd never walk through dark alleys...

5:08 PM  
Blogger wayne said...

The problem is not that we walk down dark alleys, but that there are people there who wish us ill. Those people are in the wrong, not the people who want to walk in the alleys on their own legitimate business.

If someone wants to lead a force to clean out the alleys, why is this a problem? It doesn't matter who "owns" the alley, only that the criminals there are dangerous.

If an owner of an alley wishes to permit criminal behavior, other people may legitimately demand that this be stopped, by force if necessary. Their power is the police, who are charged with going in and cleaning it out. The ethical authority for this comes from the same societal right to security in our persons that is recognized in our 4th amendment.

To take the analogy to painful extremes, you might notice that when people do not venture into the alleys, the criminals will then stand at the mouths of the alleys and accost people on the sidewalk, and drag them in. The fact that you will not go to them only means that they will eventually come to you.

To try to deal fairly with someone who has no conscience and who will not hesitate to violate you will only end badly for you, and eventually, other people as well.

6:24 AM  
Blogger Naila J. said...

Very good arguments!!!

/me is impressed

However, the people have nothing against what you refer to as "us". They have problems with the ideologies of the West, or the way those ideologies are being carried out. They have problems with the ego of the West, this whole capitalistic better-than-thou feel that exists in the West, especially towards thrid world countries, or countries that have problems and political instability. Countries "you" should be helping evolve rather than stemming their growth.

And yes, there is ignorance, on both sides. And neither side is right or wrong. Both sides are "fighting" for what they believe, and what they believe is right and just.

So while it is easy to sit in our chairs and criticize (yes, I do this as well), we're not out there, politically speaking, creating laws, policies, or aid programs. We're just bystanders really, watching as these policies get made without our consent or knowledge, even.

Well, looks like I started rambling. Thanks for making me think!! :)

2:52 PM  
Blogger leathej1 said...

OK - Wayne. Now, you are exactly the kind of person who needs to listen closely. You are obviously very intelligent and compassionate, but you have gotten off on the wrong track somewhere in your life in thinking that the U.S. has some 'global policing role', when it does not. This is probably a result of incorrectly mapping a superpower role to a superHERO role. I think if I can get you over this hump, we might be OK.

So you say "If someone wants to lead a force to clean out the alleys, why is this a problem? It doesn't matter who "owns" the alley, only that the criminals there are dangerous." And yet, YES it does matter who owns the alley! No matter how many big guns you own, you cannot, CANNOT, barge into a sovereign nation with no permission to conduct 'clean up' maneuvers!

Sorry, but I'm going to have to involve Hollywood here. It is pretty obvious that the hawks of our day (the ones under 45) have spent too much time watching Knight Rider or Hunter. You CANNOT in real life drive all over hell, knocking cars out of your way just to catch the bad guy! The U.S. is not the "decider" of who is the culprit dangerous enough to go after, even after you turned in your badge to the Sarge.

Look, I'm sorry but I am going to have to trump with the bullshit card this time. If Iraq had no strategic importance, we wouldn't be there. I don't remember the U.S. having to 'clean out the alleys' in Rwanda. So DON'T try to rationalize this war by declaring the U.S "defender of the universe". Just be honest and say that the U.S. wanted to stabalize the Middle East by occupying a sovereign nation by force. See how nice the truth is?

7:53 AM  
Blogger wayne said...

leathej1:
There is no "hump." Super-heroes run in to save other people from whatever. I don't want us to save everyone else in the world; let the free market loose and it will do that by itself. The reason it hasn't done it so far is that business will not invest where it will lose money. There is little to no investment in (for example) Africa because the governments there are generally unstable, and they tend to rob everyone blind inside of their borders, and sometimes beyond.

Every time the US tries to step in "rescue" people in places like this we spend huge amounts of money which goes into a black hole and the people for whom the aid is intended never see it.

Humanitarianism is a good thing, but pissing away money with no effect is just stupid.

So, no "super hero" act is really warranted in places like this, but using our "super power" status can be effective.... If the people who live in these places want it, and are willing to finish the job themselves, once we've started it sufficiently that they have a chance to succeed. The people in Iraq and Afghanistan are willing; witness the celebration when hussein was ousted! (And who would want to live under the taliban? those guys make the puritans look like party animals.)

The second-to-last thing I want is for us to become a "global police." Aside from moral arguments, it would be ruinously expensive.

The last thing I want is for us to sit idly by and ignore a situation that can become dangerous threat - fatal even - to Americans here at home. Ignoring bin-laden was fatal to a lot of people on more than one occasion.

The situation in Rwanda did not have the potential to evolve into a domestic threat to us on our own soil. So, no. We didn't have to go in there and "clean out the alleys."

On the other hand, Iraq was run by a megalomaniac madman who wanted to rule the world. (I'm not going into WMD arguments here and now; they're not important to the point.) He saw himself as a modern-day Nebuchadnezzar, and he hated the US. He was a threat, whether directly or by supporting those who were direct threats.

Sometimes defending the US is best accomplished by taking out the threats before they come here, sometimes by keeping the threats occupied "over there" until we can wear them down and finally destroy them.

The point you seem to have missed (or ignored) is that the criminals eventually come out of the alleys. Cleaning them out is good policy. The second point you missed is that if the people who own the alleys where criminals breed don't want us forcing our way in and cleaning up, they should either get rid of the criminals themselves or keep them from coming out to bother us. "Soveriegnty" does not give a nation the right to allow a situation that is dangerous to us, any more than being a landowner gives me the right to store large amounts of explosives on my land. If I were presenting such a threat, any reasonable person would expect the authorities to come remove the danger, no matter how loud my protests. Like concerned neighbors, a nation has to protect itself. The only power larger than a nation's sovreignty is God, (The U.N.? Puh-leez.) and since God isn't answering his phone lately, the affected nation will just have to go in on its own and take care of the threat. If it sits and chews its nails and worries about being "nice" and refuses to act, then it deserves to be attacked.

< /soap box>

3:01 PM  
Blogger wayne said...

naila j:
Sorry for responding out of order.

What's this about our "ego"? maybe we are better -than-them. If we weren't, why would so many people from countries like theirs be coming here to live?

Ego, boasting, whatever you call it, there is a point where it is more than just hot air. It may be crass to "rub it in," but you have to admit that we have built ourselves a better standard of living than they have. All of the best modern technology has come from the west. If we look down on them, maybe it is because they are still in a dark age, with rulers keeping their people in the dust and mud, without any chance to improve their circumstances.

If you are a student of history, you might know that the situation has turned 180 degrees: circa 1000 AD, for hundreds of years, Europe was ruled by lords who kept their serfs in religious bondage. Education was only allowed to the nobility, and the peasants had no chance at all to make anything of themselves. In the east, the Islamic world was thriving; they had the best educational systems, their people were the inventors and businessmen... The west was in a dark age and the east was enlightened.

To say that neither side is right or wrong is suspect. Can your value system be right if it promotes killing people who are not any threat to you? I believe I am on firm moral ground when I say that any system that straps bombs onto people and blows up buses full of commuters - or hijacks aircraft and flies them into occupied office buildings - is flat wrong. True, they're fighting for what they believe, but some people believe that the moon is made of green cheese. Belief doesn't make it right.

As for criticizing, I criticize plenty. Here, in letters to the newspaper, and in letters to various public officials. I also encourage other people to criticize to public officials. Often.

Rambling is not bad. Bandwidth is cheap!

3:22 PM  
Blogger leathej1 said...

Sorry Wayne, I think you'll find that in the long run, your Saturday morning good vs. evil view is going to have to be modified. I'm not sure, but I think you wanted to follow up "Iraq was run by a megalomaniac madman who wanted to rule the world" with a rousing chorus of "He'll never give up, he'll stay till the fight's won - GI Joe will dare! GI JOOOOOOOOOE!"

And while I'm picking that out, let's take a few other phrases and analyze them:

"The people in Iraq and Afghanistan are willing; witness the celebration when hussein was ousted!"
- What do you suppose they are celebrating now?

"Sometimes defending the US is best accomplished by taking out the threats before they come here"
- That might be true. Can you tell me when we actually accomplished that? The only threat was al-Qaeda.

Let me skip to your next post:
"Can your value system be right if it promotes killing people who are not any threat to you?"
- That's a good point. So, why are killing people in Iraq again? Especially civilians?

""Soveriegnty" does not give a nation the right to allow a situation that is dangerous to us, any more than being a landowner gives me the right to store large amounts of explosives on my land."
- That may be true. Tell me again what was the dangerous situation in Iraq?

"If it sits and chews its nails and worries about being "nice" and refuses to act, then it deserves to be attacked."
- Oh, I see. So the U.S. deserved 9/11. Swell.

Look Wayne, I'm only trying to give you a leg up on history. You are going to have to rexamine your beliefs pretty soon, as this whole thing is put into perspective. So, it's not that I'm saying you're wrong - it's just that you will be forever wrong.

12:11 PM  
Blogger wayne said...

Can you tell me when we actually accomplished that?
- Adolph Hitler, Hirohito...

So, why are killing people in Iraq again?
- People get killed in war. Otherwise, it's not war, but vandalism, on however vast a scale.
Especially civilians?
- War is hell. They kill civilians, and hide behind them so we have no choice if we want to win. If they would stand and fight on a battlefield, we could kill them without harming civilians.

Tell me again what was the dangerous situation in Iraq?
A speech by the President of the United States says it all:

Quote:

Earlier today, I ordered America's armed forces to strike military and security targets in Iraq. They are joined by British forces. Their mission is to attack Iraq's nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs and its military capacity to threaten its neighbors.

Their purpose is to protect the national interest of the United States, and indeed the interests of people throughout the Middle East and around the world.

Saddam Hussein must not be allowed to threaten his neighbors or the world with nuclear arms, poison gas or biological weapons.

I want to explain why I have decided, with the unanimous recommendation of my national security team, to use force in Iraq; why we have acted now; and what we aim to accomplish.

Six weeks ago, Saddam Hussein announced that he would no longer cooperate with the United Nations weapons inspectors called UNSCOM. They are highly professional experts from dozens of countries. Their job is to oversee the elimination of Iraq's capability to retain, create and use weapons of mass destruction, and to verify that Iraq does not attempt to rebuild that capability.

The inspectors undertook this mission first 7.5 years ago at the end of the Gulf War when Iraq agreed to declare and destroy its arsenal as a condition of the ceasefire.

The international community had good reason to set this requirement. Other countries possess weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles. With Saddam, there is one big difference: He has used them. Not once, but repeatedly. Unleashing chemical weapons against Iranian troops during a decade-long war. Not only against soldiers, but against civilians, firing Scud missiles at the citizens of Israel, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Iran. And not only against a foreign enemy, but even against his own people, gassing Kurdish civilians in Northern Iraq.

The international community had little doubt then, and I have no doubt today, that left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will use these terrible weapons again.

End quote

3:42 AM  
Blogger leathej1 said...

I have no place to start this time because (and this I never thought I'd see) EVERY statement you just made was whacked. Historically inaccurate, callously trite, and dangerously naive, in that order. I'm sorry, but I can't continue an intelligent discussion with you. Talk to me again in 40 years when you get things figured out in your head.

7:35 AM  

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