June 3, 2006
Teaching Remedial Decency
By MAUREEN DOWD
Before the war, America railed against the Iraqi leader for slaughtering innocent Iraqis. Now the Iraqi leader is railing against America for slaughtering innocent Iraqis.
Iraq is blustering about sending away American troops to make life better for Iraqis, after American troops were sent in to make life better for Iraqis.
With fury swirling over the Haditha massacre and the shooting on Wednesday of two women, one of whom might have been pregnant and on the way to a hospital, Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki laced into the American military, accusing it of regular attacks on civilians that were "completely unacceptable" and pledging his own inquiry on Haditha.
"They crush them with their vehicles and kill them just on suspicion," he said, adding that some in the military "do not respect the Iraqi people," and that assaults on unarmed civilians will help determine how long American troops are welcome in Iraq.
Bold talk from a tenuous government dependent on U.S. forces to prop it up during a sectarian bloodfest.
It's a bitter irony. And not even a terribly illuminating irony, since Saddam truly had a regime of butchery and the American military is not in the business of atrocity, even if an undeniable atrocity was committed and even if the war has become something of an atrocity.
"It's one of those things where we have become the enemy," John Murtha said ruefully on CNN.
American troops are under spectacular emotional pressure. They go out every day, not knowing Arabic, not understanding the culture, not knowing who the insurgents are, not knowing when they can go home or which of their buddies will be blown up before their eyes by an unseen enemy.
The troops were not trained for a counterinsurgency, because Bush hawks ignored the intelligence reports that predicted an insurgency and civil war. These kids were turned into sitting ducks because the neocon con to sell the war needed a gauzy prediction of Iraqi gratitude and a quick exit.
It is admirable that the Marine commanders want to morally sensitize the troops while they are in such a hostile environment, but it also seems a bit absurd, sending them to summer school in "core values."
There's no way to teach someone not to shoot an unarmed woman or child. If somebody doesn't already know why they shouldn't murder a baby, it's not clear that a refresher course will help.
Teaching Remidial Honesty
(Or: Outhouses are a Failed Concept)
>>U.S. annual consumption of crude oil has not increased by a single drop since President Bush took office.<<
>>Steady strong U.S. Dollar for last 6 years<<
Not a single terrorist attack in this country since 9/11.
With an approval rating of less than 35%, I guess many people are realizing that they're being lied to...
>>The U.S. annual consumption of crude oil has not increased by a single drop since President Bush took office.<<
Not counting military usuage and thanks to two hurricanes and high prices. It certainly didn't have anything to do with his support (NOT) of the CAFE standards!
"The vast majority of the energy of the USA's economic engine is all wasted on paying interest on the national debt."
Everything is relative,,the U.S. could sell off 25% of federal land and pay off the national debt completely. Zero annual interest.
The U.S. annual consumption of crude oil has not increased by a single drop since President Bush took office.
The BUSH administration has increased the national debt by 2.34 TRILLION dollars to date.
The vast majority of the energy of the USA's economic engine is all wasted on paying interest on the national debt.
Why does our government spend more than is takes in?
Where was/is all this money being spent?
The answer is two wars (is either justified? I say NO!) and FEMA for the most part. As you point out 10 Billion per moonth still being spent on IRAQ.
If one studies the history of the national debt, it always increases during times of war.
The only time in USA history we had a surplus in the treasury (Federal Reserve today) was in 1836. President Andrew Jackson, infuriated by the tactics of the bankers who were attempting to persuade him to renew the charter of the Second Bank of the United States, said, "You are a den of vipers. I intend to rout you out and by the Eternal God I will rout you out. If the people only understood the rank injustice of our money and banking system, there would be a revolution before morning."
After the veto of the 2nd bank of the USA, President Jackson promptly withdrew government funds from the Second Bank of the United States, but he deposited these funds, $10 million, in state banks. The immediate result, Henry Clews (28 years in Wall Street) tells us, is that the country began to enjoy great prosperity. This sudden flow of cash caused an immediate expansion of the national economy, and the government paid off the entire national debt, leaving a surplus of $50 million in the Treasury. The European financiers had the answer to this situation. Clews further states, "The Panic of 1837 was aggravated by the Bank of England when it in one day threw out all the paper connected with the United States."
The Federal Reserve should really be called the 3rd "Bank of the United States". Its name was chosen to deceive the people.
Here is the really story:
or if you prefer an audio archived speech by Edward griffin:
http://www.arcticbeacon.com/...click on the ICON in the right hand column called the "TRUTH ABOUT THE FEDERAL RESERVE". You need Realplayer to listen!
The truth is the USA should be Trillion of dollars surplus instead of in debt.
I never get responses to this MOST important financial matter. Gay marriage, terrorism and illegal immigration are more important in our media.
Wake up and smell the coffee America!
The problem with brushing up on core values is that if you don't know them by a certain point you can't learn them. You can't teach remedial decency, any more than you can teach remedial ethics to White House officials who vindictively leak information about critics of the war after vowing not to leak.
As Norman Schwarzkopf said, in a quote that is part of the military's slide show on core warrior values: "The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it."
From Reverend Dimmesdale to Bill Bennett to President Bush, people who righteously preach values and aspire to be moral exemplars often get bitten in the end.
The world is now looking askance at American values, even though W. ran on a platform of restoring values to the Oval Office and was propelled to victory by "values voters."
Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld engineered the invasion of Iraq in part to revive what they saw as lost American values. They wanted to stiffen the squishiness about using force left over from Vietnam and the moral ambivalence left over from the do-what-feels-good 60's.
In their worry about a spineless America, they made America all spine � overly vertebrate. They started thinking with their spine.
They wanted everyone to be afraid of us, and now nobody's afraid. Certainly not the nutty president of Iran, whom the administration is forced to kowtow to, now that the American military is not a fearsome force in potentia, but a depleted, demoralized and disparaged force trapped in Iraq trying to police a civil war.
The invasion that was supposed to help terrorism has made it worse. The invasion that was supposed to make America more feared and beloved has made us more hated. The invasion that was supposed to banish post-Vietnam syndrome has revived it.
The virtuecrats of the right thought they would demonstrate American virtue to the world as they imposed American democracy. But now, with murder charges expected against some marines, and a cover-up investigation under way, the values president is running a war that requires a refresher course on values. A bitter irony.