February 28, 2006

Jihad Video - Or, how many infidels have you killed lately?

Look at all that blood. Look at the Jihad Cartoon riot. It's like their own Mardi Gras. We celebrate life, they celebrate death.

Death is their language, and no diplomay will work without speaking their language, the language of death.

VDH Archive Cric key

For some reason Cri key doesn't have the article, but I found it using the search function. I wonder if they wanted to delete this article for some reason, but missed the printer friendly one.

Western nations are slow to anger, but lethal in their fury

Victor Hanson .
Military Historian

This interesting piece from military historian Victor Hanson explains why the West - specifically the Americans - will prevail over whoever they take on.

Yet Osama bin Laden has made a fatal miscalculation. Like everybody who scoffs at the perceived laxity of Western democracies, these murderers have woken an enormous power from its slumber, and retribution will shortly be both decisive and terrible. The bloody wages of this ignorance of the power of a free people aroused are age-old and unmistakable - Xerxes's 60,000 washed ashore at Salamis, 80,000 of the Sultan's best floating in the waters off Lepanto, 100,000 lost in the streets of Tokyo.

Western nations at war, from the Greeks to the present, are not weak but enormously lethal - far out of proportion to their relatively small population and territories. This power is not an accident of geography, much less attributable to natural resources or genes, but rather found in its very ideas and values. The foundations of Western culture - freedom, civic militarism, capitalism, individualism, constitutional government and secular rationalism - when applied to the battlefield have always resulted in carnage for their adversaries.

Such ideals were apparent almost immediately this time aroung - with the decision of doomed airline passengers to storm their hijackers; with Congress freely voting vast sums of capital for military operations; individual rescue workers, aided by sophisticated and huge machines, on their own initiative devising ad hoc methods of saving victims and restoring calm to a devastated city.

Neither the genius of Hannibal nor the diseases of Africa nor the fanaticism of the Mahdists have stopped Western armies. Occasional lapses such as last week's have prompted not capitulation, but responses far more deadly than their enemies' temporary victories.

In our peace and affluence, and in awe at the suicidal fanaticism of our enemies, we Americans of this complacent age have forgotten these iron laws of the Western way of war - Alexander the Great destroying an empire of 70 million with an army of 40,000, Cortes wrecking an imperial people of two million in less than two years, or a small band of British redcoats ending the power of Cetshwayo and his Zulus for good in less than a year.

The arsenal at tiny 16th-century Venice - based on principles of market capitalism and republican audit - launched far better and more numerous galleys than those of the entire Ottoman navy. At Midway, American code breakers - the products of free universities, nursed on egalitarianism and able to investigate without political and religious censure - helped to win the battle before it had even begun.

In the months to come, American ground and air forces, with better weapons, better supplies, better discipline and more imaginative commanders - audited constantly by an elected Congress and President, criticised by a free press - will shatter the very foundations of Islamic fundamentalism.

Indeed, the check on the great power of Western armies through the ages has rarely been enemy spears or bullets, but the very voices of internal dissent - a Bernardino de Sahagun aghast at his people's cruelty in Mexico, a Bishop Colenso remonstrating against the British government about the destruction of Zululand or an American co-ed marching to end the war in Vietnam.

The Taliban and other hosts of murderers at bases in Pakistan, Iraq and Syria may find reprieve from Western clergy and academics, but they shall not from the American military.

America is not only the inheritor of the European military tradition, but in many ways also its most powerful incarnation. Our multiracial and radically egalitarian society has taken the concepts of freedom and market capitalism to their theoretical limits. While our critics often ridicule the crassness of our culture and the collective amnesia of our masses, they often underestimate the lethal power that accrues from such an energetic and restless citizenry, where past background means little in comparison with present ambition, drive and ingenuity.

Our creed is not class, breeding or propriety, but machines, brutal competition and unchecked audacity. These are intimidating assets when we turn, as we shall shortly, from the arts of production to those of destruction.

The world, much less the blinkered fundamentalists, has not seen a United States unleashed for a long time and so has forgotten all this. Americans are kind, and they are a generous people. But when wronged, held in contempt and attacked in peace, they define victory as the absolute annihilation of their adversaries.

So we are a schizophrenic people of sorts, a nation of amateurs that can almost magically transform itself into a culture of professional killers. In 1860, Grant was a clerk and Sherman a failed banker and then teamster; in 1865, they were cruel masters in the art of unmitigated carnage, their huge armies the most deadly of the age.

My father was a peaceful farm boy in 1941. Within a mere 24 months, he had been turned into a brutal agent of the apocalypse as he and other tyros in thousands of monstrous new B-29s rained death upon the cities of Japan - without guilt or apology, proud that their napalm was ridding the world of Japanese militarism.

When we, as smug students of the 1970s, remonstrated against him for his past vengeance, he scoffed at our naivety: "I'd be proud and ready to do it again." And so he would, and so we may now as well.

Victor Davis Hanson is a military historian and most recently the author of Why the West Has Won, Carnage and Culture From Salamis to Vietnam, which will be published shortly by Faber

Tom Clancy on Terror - Or What did people talk about after 9/11

What the field intelligence officers do is no different from what Special Agent Joe Pistone of the FBI did when he infiltrated the mafia under the cover name of Donnie Brasco. The purpose of these operations is to find out what people are thinking and talking about. However good your satellites are, they cannot see inside a human head. Only people can go and do that.

But America, and especially the American news media, does not love the CIA in general and the field spooks in particular. As recently as two weeks ago, CBS's "60 Minutes" regaled us with the hoary old chestnut about how the CIA undermined the leftist government of Chile three decades ago. The effect of this media coverage, always solicitous to leftist governments, is to brand the CIA an antiprogressive agency that does Bad Things.

In fact, the CIA is a government agency, subject to the political whims of whoever sits in the White House and Congress. The CIA does what the government of which it is a part tells it to do. Whatever evil the CIA may have done was the result of orders from above.

The Chilean event and others (for example, attempts to remove Fidel Castro from the land of the living, undertaken during the presidency of JFK, rather more rarely reported because only good came from Camelot) caused the late Sen. Frank Church to help gut the CIA's Directorate of Operations in the 1970s. What he carelessly left undisturbed then fell afoul of the Carter administration's hit man, Stansfield Turner. That capability has never been replaced.

It is a lamentably common practice in Washington and elsewhere to shoot people in the back and then complain when they fail to win the race. The loss of so many lives in New York and Washington is now called an "intelligence failure," mostly by those who crippled the CIA in the first place, and by those who celebrated the loss of its invaluable capabilities.

What a pity that they cannot stand up like adults now and say: "See, we gutted our intelligence agencies because we don't much like them, and now we can bury thousands of American citizens as an indirect result." This, of course, will not happen, because those who inflict their aesthetic on the rest of us are never around to clean up the resulting mess, though they seem to enjoy further assaulting those whom they crippled to begin with.

We don't do God, we do Palestine

Amir Taheri article.

A look into the past - Or reading history the 21st century way

When the military prepares for action, the public debate is usually a simple either/or: Will there be peace, or will there be war? Not so now. Fresh from the bloody assaults on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, there are at least six choices before us, each with its own subgenres and mutant variations. None is perfect, and one is actually insane. But each is worth examining, if only to understand what people actually mean when they call for war, peace, or some other path they can't quite articulate.

Here, then, are our choices, beginning with the least violent and ending with the most:

1. The Gandhi Option

Some favor no military response to the attacks at all. In its flaky form, this position involves wishing really hard, perhaps while holding someone's hand, that hatred and violence will disappear from the world. Not every pacifist is so naive, though, and there is a more sophisticated case for military inaction.

This argument points out that terrorists do not come from nowhere. They respond to particular policies of the country under attack. If, as the evidence suggests, the assault was masterminded by Osama bin Laden or his allies, then it may well be easier to adjust our foreign policy than to hunt down every terrorist in the Middle East, especially since that hunt might inspire yet more Middle Easterners to turn to terrorism. Wouldn't it make more sense just to stop these clumsy interventions into other people's battles? Why make ourselves a target for every tin-pot maniac in the Third World?

A variation on this argument notes that many of our present foes--including Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein--were originally built up by the United States to fight the enemies of an earlier day. One can only wonder what our allies in a new war might do to us several years later.

There are two problems with the Gandhi option. The first relates not so much to the position itself as to some of the people who have been advancing it. Obsessed with finding what "we" might have done to "deserve" this--as though anyone deserves to die this way--the hairshirt faction has conjured a list of sins far removed from anything that could have inspired the attacks. When the filmmaker Michael Moore speculated about the terrorists' motives, for example, his rambling ruminations touched on missile defense, America's withdrawal from the Durban conference on racism, and even our rejection of the Kyoto accords on global warming. Evidently, Moore believes that we are being attacked by European diplomats.

In the real world, we are being attacked by a group that--judging from the fatwah issued by Osama bin Laden in 1998--objects to America's military presence in Saudi Arabia, to its sanctions against Iraq, and to its support for Israel. The point of reexamining U.S. foreign policy in the wake of the attacks is not to find everything about it that you might want to change, from Star Wars to Kyoto. It is to find the parts that might be putting us in danger, even if you've supported them until now. In the next few months, a lot of Israel's American supporters will be wrestling with a difficult choice: Israel's security, or their own? Many will choose the latter.

The other problem with Gandhianism goes deeper. Watching the World Trade Center towers collapse last week, desperately aware that thousands of people were inside them, most Americans did not merely crave greater security. They wanted justice. If nothing is done to capture the people responsible for that atrocity, it will be hard to claim that justice has been done.

I do not truly think that after the Madrid bombings, the bombings in July in Britain or the Cartoon riots that anyone can seriously say that "Ghandism" is an option that would bring security. Please, get real before you die. For the predictions made here, were not correct.

2. The Kojak Option

And so we come to option two. A terrible crime has been committed. The immediate perps are now dead, but the conspirators behind them are alive and free. They may be plotting further, even worse assaults. We still aren't sure who they are or where they are, but we have some significant leads. So it's time for some expert policework, to track down and capture the people who did this.

The advantage to this approach is that it meets the demand for a response while keeping that response targeted at the criminals. As such, it upholds justice in two ways: by meting it out to the murderers who killed 5,000 people in one day, and by refusing to replicate their crime by killing anyone unfortunate enough to live in the same country as the terrorists.

There are two disadvantages. One of them I'll describe later, as it undermines the next two alternatives as well. The other is that, in tracking terrorists through the mountains of central Asia, it won't be easy to stick to all the legal niceties that policemen are supposed to observe. And if it comes down to letting the likely culprits escape or abandoning due process, most Americans will choose the latter. At the very least, they will say, let us consider response three:

Why don't you google Sami Al-Arian. Al as in Al-Jazeera, Al-Zarqawi, and Al-Sadr. Then tell me about this perfect policework that will bring the United States both justice and security.

It seems apparent that police powers neither bring terroists to justice nor prevents people from being bombed, if police powers are not allowed to go beyond normal civil liberties. And normal civil liberties are cherished too much by the author, to ever give it up for a complete Kojak Option, which is called Fortress America and the elimination of all human rights in this nation. Because when the police fail to stop and jail terroists, the people will demand that the police protect the citizens, and the police will say "what about the human rights that prevent us from preventing crime rather than arresting the criminals after the fact?" And people will say with an immediate applause, "we care more about our lives than arresting them after we are dead".

For a Libertarian, the reasoning of the author has not thought through. Perhaps we may excuse that lack since it was soon after 9/11. But of course, the Libertarian Party has not gotten any better. They still get it wrong in many ways.

3. The Bronson Option

If we cannot be policemen, let us be vigilantes. We could still limit ourselves to hunting the perpetrators, taking care to leave innocent civilians out of the fight. But we won't have to prove their guilt to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt. In other words, we could combine the goals of a policeman with rules more akin to those of war. (Some libertarian variations on this idea call for literal vigilantism, with privateers rather than soldiers leading the fight.)

If a foreign government turns out to be involved in plotting the attack, then it isn't merely the rules of war that might be invoked. A violent attack on the U.S. by another state would land us in response four:

This is otherwise known as guerrila warfare using Spec Ops operators and Navy SEALs, independent of the rules of war and international treaties through black on black ops.

It works, but you can't win wars with only Spec Ops. You need a real army, real diplomacy, and massive pyschological operations and eliminations of enemy logistics.

4. The Bugs Bunny Option

This one's named for the great American who, when attacked, routinely remarks, "Of course you realize this means war."

This would be a limited war, aimed not at "rooting out terrorism" but at treating those terrorists who are affiliated with foreign governments the same as those who are independent agents. As with Bronsonism and Kojakism, it limits its fire to the conspirators and their henchmen, leaving civilians spared. If you're looking to bomb cities or occupy Afghanistan, you'll have to go well beyond Bugs.

These last three responses share a problem. If the Gandhi option addresses the question of security while leaving justice undone, the others aim for justice but leave us insecure. Arrest or kill Osama bin Laden, and his lieutenants will take over his war. Capture them, and other branches of his very loose network will step into the breach. Bring down a government, and heaven knows what might take its place.

And that brings us to the biggest decision. Do we defend ourselves against this attack, whatever that entails, and then withdraw from the Middle East, fusing a rigorous and vigorous self-defense with non-intervention in other nations' affairs? Or do we dig in for a long fight against the social landscape of the Mideast? Do we, in the words of The New York Times' Thomas Friedman, fight "a long, long war" against "all the super-empowered angry men and women out there"?

Many people thought that Afghanistan was the perfect limited war. But of course, Afghanistan is far beyond option 4. This brings into play the option many people have thought about, cut and run. Start a war but never finish it. Join a war in Vietnam but never finish it, cut and run.

5. The Caesar Option

If you prefer this alternative--if you favor a long war against a ubiquitous enemy--then be aware of the likely consequences:

• The war will not merely be long. It will be perpetual. We will not be fighting an army, after all, but a tactic--terrorism--that can be adopted by small cells anywhere in the world. More: We will be fighting a mindset, one which will probably be inflamed still further by the battle against it. We will never know when the war is over, or when we're finally safe. Innocent civilians will die--not just abroad, but here (as if we needed to be reminded) in America.

• The U.S. will become a garrison state. When you're fighting a perpetual war against an enemy that operates without borders, citizens will become suspects. Privacy, due process, freedom of association, and freedom of movement will be curtailed. Given politicians' predilections, the same fate will likely befall free speech and the right to bear arms.

• Whatever authoritarian measures afflict us domestically will be meted out several times over to states abroad, since that will be where most of the actual terrorists live. Dictatorship, of course, is nothing new in the Middle East. But now the governments will be answering to the United States, which can scarcely trust the Taliban to do its terrorist-hunting for it. America will have to act forthrightly as an empire.

In short, the Caesar option will probably fail to bring us security or justice. The only way around this would be not just to dominate the potential terrorists of the Middle East, but to wipe them out. Incredibly, there are those who are proposing just this.

Those who criticize Bush often times said that Bush didn't prepare us for a long war. But even for a Libertarian, the author saw the long war occupation hazard after 9/11. Check the date of the article.

Don't tell me Libertarians, in favor of cut and run and perfect Kojak police work, were smarter on September 21, 2001 than the critics of Bush is right now. Because if you do, I just might agree.

In short, the Caesar option is both just and it secures America, something which Ghandism and policework are incapable of doing. To deter terroists, one must deter the state sponsors of terror, and the only way to do that is to speak in their own language, military force. Invade Iraq, and you will frighten Syria, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and various other countries like Libya to tell the Al-Qaeda terroists not to attack America for fear that their country will themselves be the target of American wrath. The Middle East understands the sleeping giant, if you just wait us out, we will fall asleep and you can do whatever you want, like Iran reconstituting their WMD programs. This is part of the reason why Al-Qaeda has not launched a successful attack on US soil, their foreign nation backers have pulled the plug so to speak and told Al-Qaeda to attack Iraq, not the US. Because the danger is now in their backyard, they are no longer free to launch offensives against US children, women, and men living and working in civilian buildings.

The fanatics may not fear dieing, but the state sponsors in the form of totalitarian dictators will always feel for their own lives and fortunes. They are human after all.

By detering state sponsors, this removes the pressure from the police inside the United States to drastically cut human rights in return for safety. It removes the Catch 22 from people's minds, no longer are American civilians forced to choose their life over their human rights, now they can have both. Regardless of how spoiled it will make them.

In addition to that, the Caesar option allows US troops a super opportunity to kill and capture terroists. The Libertarian seems to think in a guerrila war you are supposed to kill all the terroists. Why would you do that when you can capture them and drain them of information that could save American lives?

Obviously the author's bias against Empire building and Empires in general or any "long war" has caused him to see reality with blinders on, check your premises as Ayn Rand once said.

As it has been said in the past, fighting a guerrila war against terrorism or terroists or state sponsors, is like eating soup with a fork. If you have enough will and determination, you will eat it to the dredges. If you don't eat it, you will go hungry. Catch 22.

Other Catch 22s are the Kojak Option. Either police will stop terroist attacks through a great increase in police powers over human rights, or police will not stop attacks which will cause the people to cry for more power to the police. Catch 22.

6. The Strangelove Option

Not long after the attacks, Sam Donaldson asked the Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, whether we can "rule out" the use of nuclear weapons. He received this response:

"We have an amazing accomplishment that's been achieved on the part of human beings. We've had this unbelievably powerful weapon, nuclear weapons, since, what, 55 years now plus, and it's not been fired in anger since 1945. That's an amazing accomplishment. I think it reflects a sensitivity on the part of successive presidents that they ought to find as many other ways to deal with problems as is possible."

"I'll have to think about your answer," said Donaldson. "I don't think the answer was no."

"The answer was that that we ought to be very proud of the record of humanity that we have not used those weapons for 55 years," replied Rumsfeld. "And we have to find as many ways possible to deal with this serious problem of terrorism."

Where Rumsfeld weasels, others step boldly. "At a bare minimum, tactical nuclear capabilities should be used against the bin Laden camps in the desert of Afghanistan," Thomas Woodrow, formerly of the Defense Intelligence Agency, declared in The Washington Times. In the pundit class the talk is even nastier, with Col. David Hackworth among others suggesting that portions of the Middle East should "glow" with radiation.

Maybe they're just bluffing. Maybe they're just trying to convince the world that Americans are batshit crazy when we're mad, and that the terrorists damn well better be scared. The trouble is, they're scaring me too.

Nuclear weapons always were a good psychological weapon, regardless of how many it killed. Because it is the ultimate barometer of national will and the will of the leadership. Iran knows this very well, it has always wanted to be strong.

If you don't convince Iran that America is batshit crazy when you piss us off, then Iran is going to stop because.... they like us? Is that why they invaded sovereign US territory and took our embassy staff hostage, because they liked us?

Don't be a fool, 9/11 wasn't that far off from your time in history even if the Iran nuclear confrontation is.

Talk to the Japanese about if Americans are bluffing or not. The Japanese understand the will to power, in ways the Libertarians do not and never will.

So which path do we take?

I've long opposed American intervention abroad. Self-defense, however, is an entirely different matter. Obviously, the Kojak model is ideal, but I can live with Bronson or Bugs. The important point is to aim our fire at the murderers, not at civilians or at anyone who merely happens to be a usual suspect--and to limit ourselves to a well-defined mission, rather than a vague, all-encompassing "war on terrorism." The Caesar option would lead to further tragedy; the Strangelove path, to utter disaster.

Oh, and pray tell, how will you aim it at the terroists when they dress like civilians, get help from civilians, are civilians, and use civilian shields? You can limit yourselves to a well-defined mission but human nature has no limits you may impose upon it.

That's what you people said about MaD in the Cold War, "utter disaster". You people have never understood human nature or human psychology, please don't act as if you do after 9/11.

At the same time, we will have to take a hard look at what the pacifists are saying, even if we reject absolute nonviolence.

Do you really want me to take a hard look at what pacifists are saying? Okay, I will.

But if there's a principle underpinning other liberal principles such as free speech, or perhaps a proviso that qualifies liberal freedoms, it's the principle of not causing harm by our actions. The cartoons, as intentionally provocative, cause harm. This weakens any claims for protecting freedom of speech against encroaching "self-censorship."

The pacifists aren't saying much for freedom of speech, want to bet freedom to life and the pursuit of happiness is next?

UPDATE Put the link in the title, since I discovered by help from a Tom, that somehow the link couldn't be found.

February 27, 2006

Leo Strauss - Father of Neoconservatism

But the problem with the neoconservative version of liberalism is that it is not really liberal at all. Classical Anglo-American liberalism was emphatically not a "fighting faith." It was sceptical of all extreme faiths, religious and political. And although it fought when it had to, against aggressors such as Napoleon and Hitler, its preferred means of promulgation were trade, enlightenment and international law. The new liberalism is quite different. It is no longer cosmopolitan, but nationalist; no longer pacific, but warlike; no longer sceptical, but zealous. Its model is Israel, that artefact of political and military will. What this new liberalism offers is not peace or prosperity, but redemption from the banality of commercial civilisation. Writing recently in the Telegraph, the Conservative researcher Danny Kruger—initially a supporter of the Iraq war, now a sceptic—found his former motives well expressed in a passage from Evelyn Waugh's Unconditional Surrender: "Even good men thought their private honour would be satisfied by war. They could assert their manhood by killing and being killed. They would accept hardships to recompense for having been selfish and lazy."

The spiritual elite Strauss refered to is better known today as American patriots and the military core of values.

Classical Anglo-American liberalism was dominated by an ethnic group called the Scots and Irish. They formed the backbone of what is now known as Jacksonianism, and they were very very violent.

If cosmopolitan means a greater understanding of cultures, then neoconservatism is very cosmopolitan. If cosmopolitanism means a defunct ideology centered around adolescent multilateralism, then no, neoconservatism is not very cosmopolitan.

People that believe Israel is warlike does not know what war is. Their bias and ignorance is starting to show with such remarks.

But the Bush administration's patriotic and martial tone, and its apparent indifference to the fate of nations touched by its democratising zeal, speaks strongly in its favour.

It is a deep cynicism to believe that neoconservatism cares so little for the martial military that we would sacrifice thousands of our own in Iraq, for domestic purposes of unity. Iraq has not unified America, it has divided her, as chaos theory would have foretold. The more freedom, the greater the chaos and the greater the chance of disunity and entropy.

The author is correct to say that neoconservative's liberalism isn't really liberal. Not in the Jeffersonian or Wilsonian sense. To American patriots and tough Marines on the front lines, liberty comes from sacrifices of blood and treasure. To us, it is the pure distillation of the 2nd Ammendment. For liberty to survive, one must have military force and violence to ensure the survival of freedom. Or else a few Arab street demonstrations will witness your prostration to their demands.

It is two sides of the same coin. Leo Strauss wrote about the decadent morality that democracies breed, producing such effects as the voting of Socrates' suicide and the Athenian's gross incompetence and delays. Leo Strauss knew Chaos Theory and entropy before the physicists found out themselves. Because Leo Strauss had studied human nature, and realized that human nature could either decay into destruction or grow to become a beautiful crystaline structure unrivaled in the creation of man.

There are many different aspects and variables occuring here. The Cartoon Riots, Islamic Jihad, the weakness of Western civilization, and the evidence that the veneer of Western freedoms are pulled away so easily.

Strauss's own response to this predicament was, as we have seen, to cultivate pockets of wisdom in the interstices of mass society, hoping that they would, over time, impart their "tone" to the republic as a whole. But his solution was too subtle, too elitist for modern tastes. His neoconservative descendants realised that the goal of awakening civic virtue could more easily be achieved by transforming liberal democracy itself into a fighting faith, into an object of worldwide struggle and sacrifice. They sought to pull outwards, not upwards. The collapse of the Soviet Union gave them their chance. Many became fierce champions of the same liberal democracy that Strauss himself had viewed with such scepticism.

The American military is the transformation of liberal democracy into a Spartan State with a Roman citizenry. Every patriot educated by the internet is the "pocket of wisdom". Leo Strauss strived to find the solution to our culture wars even before he realized that there would be a war.

It is the military virtues that sustain civilization and protect it from the ravages of barbarian hordes. It is the civic virtues that grow a civilization into greatness and power.

Those two dichotomies, the military and the civilian, are necessary to keep each other alive in a symbiotic relationship. Strauss saw the decay that liberty would bring. Where would there be the discipline necessary to protect America? The discipline comes from the military. It comes from the liberty Americans have in volunteering or not volunteering for the military. It creates a select few, an elite, called "veterans" that are upheld as honest, brave, and intelligent.

It was not the neoconservatives that made America what they were. But the people, which when given liberty, used it to fullfill their greatest potential. Engineers became engineers, killers became Marines, and thus we have the sheepdog and the sheep.

There is no moral connotation to killer, sheep, sheepdog, engineer, doctor, lawyer (ok, skip lawyer), or judge. It takes all kinds of people to make a world work, and there is a place for everyone.

But Strauss's most important bequest to neoconservatism was his revival of moral language. He wrote robust, classical English, full of epithets such as "honourable," "noble," "mercenary" and "vulgar." One word he did not use was "evil." No doubt he considered it unsuited to the secular discourse of politics. But that has not stopped his successors. The routine attribution of evil to political enemies is one of the less pleasant traits of today's neoconservatism.

I would ask that the author not remind us that it is the Democrats that yelled that Bush was Hitler, Evil, and so were the Republikkans.

The worst that the Republicans can be said to say, is that Democrats support evil.

Atheism is a religion all on its own, and so is Leftism. That bears to be said, given that evil and good are religious vocabulary and not political vocabulary.

When Dick Durbin says that GitMo is a Gulag, he believes that GitMo is Evil. When Ted Kennedy says you are a racist, he believes that you are an evil person. (Link goes to how Ted murdered a woman he wanted to have sex with)

I take issue with the fact that the author did not mention President Bush using the word "honor" in his speech blitz last winter.

But the neoconservative cure is, alas, worse than the disease. For the sad fact is that historical guilt is now all that remains of the political conscience of the west. In unburdening ourselves of it, we are in danger of unburdening ourselves of any inhibition whatsoever. The Victorians were restrained in their imperial zeal by a long tradition of prudent statesmanship, as well as by a Christian sense of the corrupting effects of power. Strauss himself, if not a believer, had a sincere respect for religious faith. He understood the sacred awe before the limits of human power that the Bible calls "fear of God" and the Greeks expressed in the concept of dike, or cosmic justice. What restraints now remain? What is to prevent Strauss's heirs, inheritors of a vulgarised version of their master's teaching and confronted by no internal or external obstacles, from inflicting their fierce love upon the whole of humanity?

What are the neoconservatives and America constrained by? That is easy to answer.

We are constrained by the virtues of honor, duty, sacrifice, loyalty, compassion, independence, patriotism, courage, and determination.

Discipline and loyalty from the military. Compassion from all. And independence, courage, and sacrifice by the civilians backing our military to the hilt.

You ask us what contrains us in our human endeavours, and I say, the nobility of the human spirit. You ask what obstacles stops us from inflicting the tough love of honor and liberty, and we say the vices of corruption, hate, and superstition.

Arguments for why propaganda is important

if it hadn't been accompanied by a curious charge about who had done it: the Mossad. The Jews.

Their propaganda is very good and has had generations to filter into people's consciousnesses. It is very strange to believe that so many people can be fooled, but indeed technically it is not only possible, but easy.

Prayers for the Assassin delves into this topic in rather more depth, and imagines an Islamic States of America after the Jews dropped nukes on Washington DC and New York.

But he was clearly a crackpot, with some unusual ideas.

I once used a link to Steven Den Beste to argue for why Bush wasn't as open as he could have been leading up to the Iraq War, and my debate opponent called Den Beste a crackpot as well. Which lead me to believe that there are crackpots and then there are crackpots.

I would rather term it was anti-Zionism rather than anti-Semitism because the foundation seems to heavily rest upon the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. I know they have their own reasons for divorcing the two, but to me it was always the Zionist conspiracy people refered to.

I would go one step further. The terroists know what the likely results would be. So the terroists attack people for the precise purpose of using it as propaganda in order to make people believe the worst of America and the best of them. Sadr and Abu Musab probably were in league with each other in the bombing of the Golden Dome Shrine. Sadr had the infiltration support necessary to remove and get info on the Shia militia guarding the shrine. Abu had the operational knowledge, the training, the muscle, and the bloodthirsty fanaticism to carry the operation out.

They all knew that the actual physical damage is minimal to the damage that they could cook up through their lies, distortions, and inciting of Civil War.

Like Rumsfield said, our enemies are experts and total masters of digital propaganda, armed propaganda teams, and even more astutely, the human psychology and how to manipulate it to create power and violence.

That ability almost completely offsets our superior technology.

Because as Napoleon said, in war, the morale is to the physical as is 3 is to 1. He was perfectly correct.

One of the problems in an asymmetrical warfare is that you have to bring symmetry to it. Counter violence with violence. Counter propaganda with propaganda. If you try and counter propaganda with violence or violence with propaganda, a Quagmire will result.

The logic is very weird. Because if the Jews did 9/11... why would America and the jews be reluctant to wipe out the Middle East with our nukes, if we were willing to blow up 3,000 of our own citizens?

It is amazing what their propaganda can do to bypass human logic. Just amazing.

The entire WMD thing was, in effect, a conspiracy theory.

I suppose we are to believe that the conspiracy theory saying that Saddam killed the Sheat and the Kurds with chem weaps was false, that in actuality the Jews were behind it, eh?

No need to go round and round on different interps of conspiracy theory, as long as we know they are ubiquitous, not found only among Muslims.

And why exactly is that important to know?

Your thoery on anti-americanism sounds like a conspiracy theory itself!

As you can see, good propaganda can destroy bad propaganda. As powerful violence can destroy weak violence.

The aim of propaganda is to convince, to persuade, and in some cases to coerce. The side that is able to do that the best, will own the battlespace of men's minds. And anything else will be destroyed for the intruding idea that it is and never integrated into a person's mind.

It is as if you are going to take a fortress and once taken, you can use it to defend against your enemy's invading armies.

This is the true battle between winning hearts and minds.

It is as real as the battlefields the Marines fight on in Iraq. And perhaps even more important.

Links Delta

Sexual aggression and Muslim males.

Leo Strauss the Father of Neoconservatism- Source

Plan B - Details

The Making of Mt. Rushmore

Multilateralism - Or What does Feisty Think

Uranium-enriching Iranian president Mahmoud "Wipe Israel Off the Map" Ahmadinejad told journalists at a press conference in Kuwait that 'his country supports calls for making the Middle East a nuclear arms-free zone, but he also urged the United States and Russia to give up all their atomic weapons as a threat to the region's stability.'

The world is laughing at you, dude, not with you. Who do you think we are, a bunch of chumps?

He thinks we're all a bunch of Jimmy Carters, hence holding us hostage is easy.

Iran already has a bomb, they just don't have the nuclear infrastructure to make more of them. They need uranium enrichment systems and more radioactive material.

Having one or two bombs doesn't do you any good, if you intend to actually use them. Cause if you give them to a terroist and he uses them, what do you have left to protect your own arse from American fury?

You got to be like NK. If nobody knows how many bombs you got, then you're safe. So long as you don't use them.

If Iran really is trying to get enough materials for 3 to 5 to 10 bombs, then they are intending to use them. NK only needs like 2 bombs, which is the current estimate, because NK doesn't want to use the bombs so much as use it to threaten in order to get stuff so they can keep the masses oppressed.

As I said before when the Democrats were calling Bush a unilateralist, the Democrats were lying. Bush isn't a unilateralist, he is a multilateralist, and God save America from multilateralism.

Multilateralism didn't get Theodore Roosevelt's Face on Mount Rushmore btw.

If George Washington had been a multilateralist, we'd still be British. We'd have gotten our independence around the time Canada did. Multilateralism is a very flawed philosophy. What do you expect out of an adolescent based foundation for policy making?

"We believe the dimensions of national heartbeats are greater than village impulses, greater than city demands, greater than state dreams or ambitions. Therefore, we believe a nation's memorial should, like Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Roosevelt, have a serenity, a nobility, a power that reflects the gods who inspired them and suggests the gods they have become."

Woah, we have God inspired leaders? Man, better tell the Jihadist in Iran that, I don't think they got the memo.

If Bush told Iran that our God inspired nuclear weapons and our God like leaders in the military will obliterate Iran... would not Iran have to take such rhetoric seriously?

Diplomacy should be about speaking the other guy's language, not about trying to teach him your own. In such cases, the problem is always, multiculturalism and multilateralism never were based upon true diplomacy.


February 25, 2006

Prayers to the Assassin - On Terrorism

HH: All right. So you're like most Americans, except you spent the last year and a half researching Islam. Tell people your reaction when you saw this unfold yesterday.

RB: Well, my reaction was that it was a brilliant move on the part of our enemies, a devastatingly intelligent attack at the weakest link in the Iraqi government, which is the fragmented nature of the problems between the Shiites, the Sunnis, and to some lesser extent, the Kurds. It exacerbates the problem, and it must have taken all of ten minutes of course for the president of Iran to blame Israel and the United States for the bombing.

HH: I told Mark Steyn in the last segment, who by the way, didn't know you were coming on, but brought up the fact about your book again. So obviously, it's got all of us captivated.

RF: He reviewed the book, and it's an astounding review.

HH: Oh, is it posted over at Steynonline?

RF: I got if off a Canadian newspaper, McLeans. And I would imagine it's probably up soon.

HH: I'll have to go get that. Now that's an amazing thing, because Steyn's people will buy books that Steyn recommends, because Mark knows what he's talking about. But the fact of the matter is, I said it's the Reichstag fire. Hitler's people sent it, Goebbles comes out and Gehring comes out, and they blame the Jews for it, and the Communists, and immediately, they have Germany in the palm of their hand. And when the Iranian president walked out and blamed America for this shrine bombing, there's no denying that they have a nasty, nasty end game in mind. They're not just being nutty, they're being provocateurs.

RF: It also, to me, there's a clear linkage between this and the cartoon furor. I mean, the Muslim world is already in a high state of excitment, fury over the cartoon furor, which I think, and many other people think, was largely orchestrated. And now this follows it up, and it's just, like I say, if you're on the outside, and if you're an observer without any interest other than intellectual, it's brilliant. But I also think there is an opportunity for the United States in this, to turn the game against them, personally.

HH: Let's expand that. Tell us what you think the opportunity is.

RF: Well, the opportunity is the same kind of...first of all, the President should resist the urge, which he's already said that we are going to step in, we're going to help to rebuild this Mosque, and we're going to...this is exactly the wrong thing. This is the last thing that the Iraqi government needs to see the United States in any way involved in rebuilding one of the holiest shrines in the country. We handled things really intelligently in October of 2004. This Mosque, the Golden Mosque, was occupied by the terrorists. And to root them out, the Americans wanted to go in. And we wisely waited until Iraqi commandos could do it. In other words, we didn't want to see images on Al Jazeera, and probably ABC, CBS, of American "storm troopers," barreling into this holy Mosque. Iraqi commandos did it. The opportunity here is the same opportunity as existed in the South during the Civil Rights Era. When black Churches used to be burned to the ground and bombed, the impetus was for the government to step in and help people out. It was so much more effective when white Church people and black Church people, white and black Christians together, would rebuild these Churches. The opportunity for us is that hopefully, somebody is at this moment talking to the Ayatollah al-Sistani, who is the most revered Shiite leader in Iraq, and have him work with the Sunnis...I mean, can you imagine the powerful images it would be if Sunnis and Shiites and Kurds were involved in rebuilding this, brick by brick, to show that we are, we have religious differences, but we are all Iraqis. I think it could turn the tables, and it will be extremely difficult to get that kind of cooperation. The Sunnis are already not even wanting to meet about the problem. But if someone, or if cooler minds could prevail, I think it would be an overwhelmingly powerful image to the people of Iraq, and to Muslims around the world, that the differences between these factions are important, but overall, they are all still Muslims.

It really is a grand propaganda coup, an excellent example of organization and psychological operation. War in the 21st century doesn't stop just because you aren't on the battlefield in Iraq.


Audio interview.

Mark Steyn - National press faces cowardice and hypocrisy

It's easy to be tough about nothing. The press corps that noisily champions "the public's right to know" about a minor hunting accident simultaneously assures the public that they've no need to see these Danish cartoons that have caused riots, arson and death around the world. On CNN, out of "sensitivity" to Islam, they show the cartoons but with the Prophet's face pixilated so that he looks as if Cheney's ventilated him with birdshot and it turned puffy and gangrenous. C'mon, guys, these are interesting times. Anyone can unload the umpteenth round of blanks into the bulletproof Chimpy Hallibushitler, but why not take a shot at something that matters?

Or perhaps it would just be easier to change the term ''free press'' to the ''Roses of the Prophet Muhammed press.''

Author of Imperial Grunts - On Dubai Port Deal

HH: Now Robert Kaplan, you spent a lot of time in Yemen, and in fact, one of the harrowing parts of Imperial Grunts is your tour of the inland. I'm not really sure many people knew you were doing that, or would want you to do that, but you did it. And now I want to ask you to apply the lessons that you learned there to the Emirates, which now are poised to take over control of six of America's ports. Are the Emirates different from Yemen? Or are they the same?

RK: It's much, much different. Going from Yemen to the Emirates is going from one side of the moon to the other. Yemen is a poor country with a shabby airport, where the government controls only 50% of the territory. It's a vast desert hinterland, full of all kind of armed tribal groups. The Emirates is a small country with almost no hinterland. It has a first world standard of living. It's become a middle class holiday destination for Europeans who feel uncomfortable traveling in too exotic places. It's the kind of a place where everything is totally efficient. It's like a combination of Singapore and Las Vegas, and the highest standards of globalization.

HH: I remember your saying you hated to go from the hotels of Dubai to deploy to Afghanistan or somewhere else, because you went from the highest standard of living down to...

RK: It was so efficient in the United Arab Emirates in Dubai, and operates like such clockwork. It's that when you come back to the United States, like the United States is a third world country.

HH: Now with that background, does the control of the ports issue, the sale of these ports operations, not security, to United World Ports of Dubai, does it concern you?

RK: I mean, to the degree that the U.S. can still be in control of personnel working there, and security, I have no problem with Dubai's competence at running a port as well or better than we do. And it's part of the process of globalization, and at this point, if you tell them no, simply because they're Arabs, you're going to lose a lot more in the Arab world than you'd ever gain by a marginal improvement in security. And I think the security issue can probably be gotten around without tearing up the contract.

HH: What is that security issue in your mind, Robert Kaplan?

RK: It's about control of who the personnel are who have access to the port, and to the security procedures that govern the port, and have access to the people who control who goes in and out of the secure areas.

HH: So there is a security issue. You just view the cost of killing the deal as too high?

RK: Yes. Absolutely.

HH: Well, that's the argument the administration...

RK: If the security issue is manageable...

HH: Go ahead.

RK: The security issue is manageable, and the people...and there's very few countries in the world who've done as much so impressively as the Maktoum family in Dubai.

HH: Tell me a little bit about al Qaeda and Dubai. Is it there?

RK: Well, it has to be there, because it's an...Dubai has an open financial system, which is why it's so efficient in the first place. And one of the costs of having an open, free banking system in the heart of the Middle East, is you're going to have some bad apples.

HH: And do those bad apples pose a threat of penetrating Dubai World Ports, and that position?

RK: I don't think so. I don't think so, and the key thing here is that the Dubai government has always been totally helpful to us, in terms of penetrating those bad apples.

HH: I hope you'll write something about this, Robert Kaplan, on your return flight.

RK: Yes, also, something else. We have United Arab Emirates Special Forces in Afghanistan. It's called SOTF, a combined joint Special Operations Force in Afghanistan when I was there. The word combined was there, because there were other countries other than our own, including Laxia and the United Arab Emirates.

HH: When you get back, expect a phone call from the administration asking you to appear, because you just did in seven minutes a lot more than they have in seven days.

Mark Steyn on Port Deal

HH: Now Mark, I know you're a supporter of the ports deal, right?

MS: Well, I wouldn't say I was a supporter. I do think the opposition to it has, with respect to you, Hugh, has slightly gone off the rail. You know, one thing is clear. The United Arab Emirates...for example, if Emirates Airways decided to buy United and Northwest and Delta and TWA, and every other U.S. airline, I would rejoice, because they run a much better airline that any of the U.S. airlines. If the issue is they're an Arab company, well, PNO, who they're buying out, which presently has the rights to this deal, PNO, a British company, actually, more British jihadis have been involved on the wrong side of the War On Terror, in the London Tube bombing, the shoe bombing on a U.S. airplane, Zaq Moussaoui, the 20th hijacker, lived on welfare in Britain. There have been British jihadis...there's actually more British involved on the wrong side of the War On Terror, more British subjects, than there are citizens of the United Arab Emirates.

HH: But Mark Steyn, do you think that the penetration of Dubai World Ports would be easier by an al Qaeda sleeper than the penetration of the British company would be?

MS: No, I don't actually think...I don't think it would be easier. I mean, I think there are national security implications for anything. But I certainly don't think that simply a change of ownership from British PNO, which is an illustrious name, admittedly. But I don't think the change from PNO to Dubai is in itself reason to doubt them. And I think at a certain level, we have to say to ourselves well, wait a minute. Are all Muslims bad? Because if even...

HH: Of course not. Right.

MS: If even a company from the United Arab Emirates is unacceptable, then basically what we're saying this is a clash of civilizations. And before I'm prepared to...and I'm as gung ho for that as most people. But before I'm prepared to ban Arab companies from doing business in the United States, I think we should ban Saudi propagandists from funding and running medrasas and think tanks in the United States.

HH: But of course, we're not suggesting, those of us opposed to the port deal, I'm not suggesting banning Arab operations in the United States, just this company in this situation, until and unless it's been thoroughly vetted. That's very different, right?

MS: Yes, I think you're right on that, Hugh. But you know, this is actually the kind of company...when we say to ourselves what's wrong with the Arab world, the problem is it can't cope...it hasn't been able to cope with modernity. Well, actually, Dubai, which is this glittering city, it's like a sort of Hong Kong of the Middle East in some ways, it's this glittering city-state, or a Singapore...it's the closest to Singapore. And if this is exactly the kind of global company you would like to see the Arab world producing, instead of just being mired in jihad. Now do some crazy people from the United Arab Emirates, and from Dubai say crazy things? Yes, they do. But I think you want to be pretty sure that there are real national security implications in the exchange of ownership...

Neo is concocting a counter-insurgency - Or otherwise known as, war on war action

Mega post, references to Tom, Neo, Grackle, Stryp [...]

The thing about the phraseology is just that Republicans are honest, they say what they mean and they mean what they say. So when they saw a new conservative, they mean just that, a new conservative. While liberals tend to redefine words, leading to their inability to say neo-liberal. As in pseudo-liberal. Rather than a conservative of the old school, this is of the new school. As opposed to liberals, who still wonder why liberal is a bad word and can't understand that when you become something that a word doesn't describe, then that word becomes a bad word.

There's this secrecy about the philosophy of socialism and Democrats. In Europe, they call it democratic socialism, a new name for an old game, in an environment that likes socialism. Here in the US, the Democrats can hold the language in stasis, in the hopes that nobody reads the history texts and finds out the inconsistencies in the liberal of today's world and the liberal of 2 centuries ago. They have to hold language hostage, otherwise the truth would get out, and people would be able to think through the fog of unclear definitions and purposefully obscure ideologies.

Is there an outcome in Iraq that would suffice for this event?

People need to stop asking non-helpful questions and get a clue.

Here's a clue, what kind of an event would suffice for you to committ suicide?

What kind of event would suffice for you to betray all that you have known, will ever know, and always held dear to your heart?

What event would suffice for you to turn on your family and have them murdered?

What kind of event would suffice for you to kill a million people just for the kick of it?

I can just see it now, "what kind of event would make you give up the belief that your life is important".

These are un-helpful questions because the responses do not solve the problem. It's all relative. Each person decides for himself what he will believe and to what limits his actions and conscience will carry him. They tell more about the questioner than the answerer.

The longer answer: they underestimated the problem of the aftermath, and made some mistakes in going about the reconstruction.

When you don't play the Empire game, then it's kind of hard to be prepared to occupy and take over a country from top to bottom. The inconsistency is that people think this is an adventure, yet quote the very exact details as criticism, that actually supports more of the same actions. Many criticize actions after the invasion as proof that the choice to invade was wrong, but the fact is that the only thing that that proves is that the US needs more experience occupying and rebuilding nations, which can only be fullfilled by more of these "adventures" people seem to talk about.

People really can't have it both ways. Either they don't want go anywhere or do anything, in which they should see failures in security and reconstruction as supporting their position. Or they think the neo-cons want to empire build, and therefore they should cut the neo-cons some slack in beginning the process of learning.

As I said before, if people don't like the policies of this nation, they can either offer alternatives or they can wait for Bush to die/get out of office. Anything else is a childish temper tantrum.

They didn't get what they want and they feel helpless in the process, oh boohoo, tell it to the mirror. The rest of us don't want to be dragged into the misery of others.

The only way to effectively convince most Americans that going to Iraq was a good thing, requires Bush to turn on and destroy the United Nations. The propaganda apparatus and human psychology of Americans, would demand nothing less. Without the destruction of the United Nations, Bush cannot justify Iraq in light of the many criticisms he gets. 50% will still disagree. 22% is hopeless, and 40% is strongly in the President's camp. The 36% left, would easily be convinced, if Bush was willing to sacrifice the UN. But he never was, and so we have people attacking neo-cons instead of defending their own distorted reality and predictions.

the writer calls the war an "elective military adventure" that "aggravat[ed]...existing problems."

If some guy got shot by an arrow, I really don't want to see people saying that breaking off the arrow and taking it out would "aggravate existing problems". You can't solve current ones, if you afraid all the time of new ones cropping up. This fear is not only ridiculous, it is inherently cowardly. The inability to make decisive decisions and to take the consequences, good or bad, after the fact.

Because the truth is that the forces leading to unrest in the Middle East are not necessarily stoppable, but the creation of a functioning democracy, if successful, would constitute a counterforce of some magnitude.

The issue can be framed in different ways, democracy is only one variation on the advertisement. The other variation is really psychological, and that is almost never raised. It should be however. Cause a lot of Americans feel democracy is too weak to make the right decisions, a lot of Americans want to go on the offensive, they want a strong heirarchy, a strong leader, to do what needs to be done. Democracy, does not sell that point to many Jacksonians. It is a selling point for Wilsonians and perhaps Jeffersonians, but not Jacksonians. But then again, most Jacksonians don't care what it is called, so long as we win.

Finally, I'm perpetually amused by the "you only have complaints -- offer some suggestions" argument; it's as if military conflict is something that should be avoided only of something else is proposed.

This is a good look into the warped stupidities people tend to believe is called "thought".

It is as if military conflict is something that should be avoided only if something else is proposed, it is as if WWII could have been avoided if someone suggested Munich or giving the Rhineland to the Germans.

There are too many dumb ideologies around, because I cannot believe even someone thinking that war is the last option, can believe that war does not become the first option if nothing is ahead of war in the line.

Score one for liberal reeducation. When people can't think, I can get them to believe anything, regardless of the logic.

I thought it should be clear that I was referring to a certain subset of war-opposers, a group that I think I described rather well.

One of the ways propaganda works is that it shortcuts logic, and basically makes people see what they want to see... in a way that makes them see what I want them to see. Someone with a clear head and thinking logically, would obviously see Neo's point and agree in the context of the sentence she was refering to. But, that does not mean other things don't happen. Other things, in which people see what they want to see. Those kind of people, are grist for the propaganda mill. It would be much better if Bush would just crank up the propaganda machine, cause these people are annoying. It's like Al-Qaeda, if you don't bother them, it just means they are going to bother you faster and harder.

Get on the offensive, and everything solves itself in the end.

Fukuyama is not only not worth debating, he can be reduced to ridiculousness inside of a few paragraphs. It is simply that his arguments are both old and obsolete, it's already been countered.

After all, it's not like it's difficult; one doesn't even have to register with Blogger.

Yes, but you do have to be literate. I think some anon's have a problem with that.

(not to mention the same writing style, quoting style, same talking points, same everything. After you read pages and pages of someone you get to reconise thier writing)

What if someone's writing style is to reflect the weaknesses inherent in their opponent?

Well, in light of Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, maybe all war supporters should ask themselves what the war has done to the USA.

I got them. The rule of law is not what the judges, the lawyers, and the ACLU says. We didn't fight a Revolutionary War so you fake liberals in the Democratic party can get rich, powerful, and become an aristocracy over the rest of us. Don't even try it. Your "KELO Act" victories are simply failures to win in a fair fight, and will become failures soon enough.

Winston Churchill, Nov. 21, 1943

Churchill also told you guys to stop being pacifists, isolationists, Communists, and Socialists. Since when did you guys start listening to WC? Whenever you feel like it, I'd thought so.

I think the war has shown that the US is a country of justice meted out.

You don't mete out justice by treating criminals as if they benefit from the laws they broke. You don't mete out justice by showing compassion to rapists, murderers, and people who would run over a woman just for the kicks of it. You don't mete out justice by treating terroists as soldiers or soldiers as terroists.

Don't confuse justice with the arbitrariness of George W. Bush.

There is a simmering rage beneath the veneer of civilization, and Bush seeks to keep the lid on it. It has nothing to do with justice.

Tom has some good points but puts too much faith in the UN for my taste.

It isn't that Tom puts too much faith in the UN, it is just that Tom seems to believe that if you punish bad actions, they will stop. Most people might agree with that.

The US should be in the UN because it is a gathering of nations & the US needs to attend to US interests & goals that such a gathering may consider, so the US can’t afford to totally ignore this discredited & corrupt body.

We can't ignore it, but we can destroy it to fuel our war machine. How many Americans would protest the destruction of the UN, leading the way to the salvation of America and the saving of American soldiers? Not many at all. More people care about the Dubai port deal than they do about the UN going kaput.

If the US can get the member nations to go along with what must be done, fine, but a hard & fast 3 resolution rule, given the make-up of the organization, could be used against the US.

The US is like the primary stock holder in a company, that always gets shouted down and told to shut up. We're the ones that made the company what it is today, yet everyone else is stealing shit off of our successes, and it is getting annoying. We might have to liquidate the company and start all over again.

America has never been perfect but is way better than those that America is fighting.

America should never be perfect, so saying America isn't perfect isn't really telling much. Good thing, wohoo, lack of perfection, I like that.

Americans are constantly defended while Americans are always trashed by the anti-warriors.

If a judge can say that a guy being executed by lethal injection would feel pain, and that this is a cruel and unusual punishment, why would it be surprising that people defend terrorism but not Americanism? After the guy scheduled for execution raped a woman and ran her over with a car just for the kick of it, putting him to sleep and having him "pass away" is a cruel and unusual punishment. GIven that logic, the terroists are freedom fighters. Some people prefer the rule of judges, I prefer the rule of law, and hence the rule of justice.

They'll never convince me that their brand of "aristocracy" is justice. They'll have to kill me first. Which tends to be their strategy if you think about it.

There was never much post-War analysis done because of their faith in democracy.

When people don't know how to fiight an insurgency or what an insurgency is, it is kind of hard for them to plan anything about it. When your primary military advisor is an Air Force guy specializing in Star Wars and SDI and Nuclear Technology, you might have a tinny little problem dealing with a Special Forces kind of war.

Sadly, the neocon position was overly optimistic and faith-based.

It wasn't the over-optimism of neocons that had the mainstream media showing pictures of statues falling and shit like that. Get your propaganda straight.

Neocons are not foreigners in America, they are Americans, as hard as that seems to be to believe, and all America was fooled by the glorious victory dances in the street that the media showed to us on purpose.

It's not neocon's fault they believed the media was truthful and honest.

We are at the whim of the vagueries of a religiously-charged culture.

And they are at the whim of our nuclear weapons, nuclear subs, air craft carriers, stealth bombers, Marine warriors, Special Forces assassins and saboteurs, Navy and Army counter-terroist hit squads. The side that can get there the firstest with the mostest, and lasts the longest, usually wins.

Just because the Muslims are willing to do what needs to do for them to win, and we aren't, doesn't mean that this will always be so.

As for future heads of Iraq, whatever stripe they may be, they need to know that they are doomed if they try to screw the US like Saddam did.

But They are trying to screw us like Vietnam did, and that is something else entirely.

"I am obliged to write it (this book)because I have, except for a few comic moments, always been pleased to be a Jew. The gift deserves to be defended."

Do you realize that you can be an American and an anti-American at the same time, or does this simple logic escape you?

Is Dick (Five Deferments) Cheney reaping any consequences?

Aren't his enemies dieing in droves? So yes, he is reaping the consequences.


Cheney, Clinton et al: I don't respect those who avoid the horrors of war but push others into them.
If it walks and talks like a chickenhawk...(No matter what party colors it wears.)
Your father is another story.

An ignorant dude is an ignorant dude, regardless of how he walks. Public opinion and only public opinion decides when and where a democracy goes to war. Unlike the oligarchs and those for aristocracy, Cheney, Bush, Clinton doesn't decide if they will war or not war.

Reading comprehension 101:

I don't understand, what is reading comprehension and why do you have a number after it?

Hypocrisy is where you want to look for it.

How right that is, hypocrisy, like propaganda, is whatever you want it to be.

He just returned from Iraq and he is a democrat, yet somewhat conservative.

A Democrat? That's pretty hilarious. VDH is a classical liberal, and that's it.

But I stand corrected; it seems you are determined to "misunderstand" me.

Wait, wait, the last time the United States got misunderestimated, 2 cities got nuked. Are we going for round 2 here?

Do you really think my response to you means I don't regret those deaths?

I think he's talking about me, in that I don't regret the deaths of Iraq insurgents or Al-Qaeda terroists killed in iraq, one single iota.

I've seen too much of that sort of thing, and it's starting to really, really annoy me.

Bad propaganda always annoys me. So does dumb arguments and stupid logic, but that's just the trick of the trade.

The real world can be big and scary and sometimes hard decisions have to be made. maybe you should let the big boys handle this while you go do pottery, or whatever sensitive type thing you guys do with your day.

Metrosexuals usually do their hair, their nails, their face, their skin, and their lips in a salon.

1. Democratizing Iraq, and perhaps via a domino theory, other countries in the neighborhood?

Maybe if people all used Google Earth, they might just know where Lebanon was. Maybe not.

3. Ending terror and bloodshed in Iraq? Or, did our intervention merely exchange one reign of bloodshed for another kind?

Of course it did. We exchanged stupidity for ignorance, and a good trade it was too. Just like back in American history in which the neocon Founding Fathers traded a war for taxation without representation.

4. Improving the relationship between the West and Islam?

The more they fear Americans, the more the relationship is improved.

Or, did our invasion fuel the already flammable mood?

You can't burn wood after the tears of fear have made it wet.

Saddam was a threat to no one.

That's like saying Hitler was a threat to no one. After the US removed him from power with tanks and grunts.

And if someone does nuke us, what exactly are we going to do? We can't just start dropping nukes indiscriminately all over the Muslim world. That's ridiculous.

No, it isn't ridiculous at all. Because even if you don't kill anyone with a nuclear weapon, just dropping it on a nation produces intense psychological impact, it shows a lot of will on your part, and it warns people not to piss us off.

It's not ridiculous at all. You just have to think outside the box. Not every weapon of war is best used to kill people. Anyone studying Napoleonic war tactics and weaponry would understand that perfectly, others might not.

It is a matter of Life or Death for the West.

What is East of the Moon and West of the Sun?

February 23, 2006

Kiss of Death - US Ports

The kiss of death for the port deal.

"The overall threat to the United States and security, I don't think it's exists," Carter told CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

"My belief is that the president and his secretary of state, the Defense Department and others have adequately cleared the Dubai government or organization to manage their ports," Carter added. "I don't think there's any particular threat to our security."

When Jimmy Carter is on your side, you need to get off the boat, fast.

February 22, 2006



The British has a problem. They don't get it. For example, the panelists seem to think that "tax incentives" mean diverting tax payer money to married couples.

Then they say that "tax incentives" is somehow the government producing motivation for people to marry, produce children, and raise wealth. They just don't get it. The power is not in the government, but in the people. All you have to do to motivate the people is to not punish them and allow them the benefits of their rewards.

Very enlightening.

February 20, 2006

Islamic Jihad strategic map

This unclassified Al-Qaeda Intelligence and Planning documents combined with this map of their grass roots organization centers presents a good snap shot of the Islamic Jihad's organization on a geographic scale.


I was zooming in on Israel's borders, and I noticed the wall. Then I noticed how raggedy the West Bank settlements were compared to the neat and tidy farm plots of Israel. I also noticed that Israel had a lot of forests or "green stuff", compared to the West Bank and that white strip bordering them in Egypt. That was amazing.

It really backs up the history, that Israel was given a desert and made it green with hard work. Hard work that most Americans probably understand, should not be stolen by terroists and arabs. Yet it does not change the reality.

As you can notice, Al-Qaeda and Islamic Jihad has a lot of grass roots support in the mountaneous regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan. No surprise there.

The organization is also centered around European capitals, which makes sense. And the amount in the Palestine West Bank also makes sense, you need grass roots organizations to fund and produce suicide bombings. So there should be a lot of high density concentrations of supporters there.

Karachi (Pakistan): On thursday Feb. 17th, at least 50000 protesters demonstrated against the Mohammed Cartoons in a peaceful demonstration heavily controlled by Army and police.

Bhopal (India): At least 10000 protested against Muhammad cartoons on Friday Feb. 10th.

The good news is that India with far more population than Pakistan, only produced 10,000. Compared to 50,000 in Pakistan.

Iran is a weird spot, it should have all the funds but there isn't a lot of grass roots rioting. Maybe because Iran believes that there is no need, since they already control Iran, but perhaps they just don't have it organized in Iran. Can't really know. They're keeping their hards close to their chest in Iran.

Diyarbakir (Turkey): At least 50000 protesters demonstrated in this Kurdish city in Turkey near Iraqi border
That's probably a big indication that people in the Kurdish city in Turkey are NOT happy at something. Possible future problem, but infiltration by Al-Qaeda and Iran might be a little bit difficult. The price of not supporting the Kurds against TUrkey, when Turkey told us to pock off in 2003.


Michelle has some nice anagrams. Amazing.

Japanese letters from the Kamikaze Special Attack Forces

All of this is sourced from this site, which gives an excellent analysis of the motivations, feelings, and thoughts that were behind the historical events so many of us have come to know about.

These letters provide some perspective. That Americans aren't the only people that love their country, it just seems that some people cannot understand that.

Dearest Mother: I trust that you are in good health. I am a member of the Shichisei Unit of the Special Attack Corps. Half of our unit flew to Okinawa today to dive against enemy ships. The rest of us will sortie in two or three days. It may be that our attack will be made on 8 April, the birthday of Buddha. ……………….. Please do not grieve for me, mother. It will be glorious to die in action. I am grateful to be able to die in a battle to determine the destiny of our country. ……………….. On our last sortie we will be given a package of bean curd and rice [Shinto ritual for luck]. It is reassuring to depart with such good luncheon fare. I think I'll also take along the charm and the dried bonito from Mr. Tateishi. The bonito will help me rise from the ocean, mother, and swim back to you. At our next meeting we shall have many things to talk about which are difficult to discuss in writing. But then we have lived together so congenially that many things may now be left unsaid. 'I am living in a dream which will transport me from the earth tomorrow.' ……………….. We live in the spirit of Jesus Christ, and we die in that spirit. This thought stays with me. It is gratifying to live in this world, but living has a spirit of futility about it now. It is time to die. I do not seek reasons for dying. My only search is for an enemy target against which to dive. ……………….. There is nothing more for me to say, however, by way of farewell. I will precede you now, mother, in the approach to Heaven. Please pray for my admittance. I should regret being barred from the Heaven to which you will surely be admitted. Pray for me, mother. Farewell, Ichizo

You slept in my arms very well. You had the very eyes of your mother and the hair of your aunt, I remember them clearly. I picked your name in hope of you becoming a peaceful woman (the character 'Yasu' has the meaning of peace in Japanese). It will be perplexed if you don't know in your future, so I am letting you know.

The doll that you slept with, I fly with as an amulet. I die with you, so I am not afraid. You should not be either, as I will always be with you. If you wonder what I look like in your future, tell your mother so and ask to come to Yasukuni Shrine in Kudan. There, I will be. You should not be ashamed of not having a father, for I will always live in your heart. Remember that your father died in honor and for the country. You live long. Be good to your mother and aunt.
Your father, Masashi (pseudonym)

Dear Father:
As death approaches, my only regret is that I have never been able to do anything good for you in my life.

I was selected quite unexpectedly to be a special attack pilot and will be leaving for Okinawa today. Once the order was given for my one-way mission it became my sincere wish to achieve success in fulfilling this duty. Even so, I cannot help feeling a strong attachment to this beautiful land of Japan. Is that a weakness of my part? On learning that my time had come I closed my eyes and saw visions of your face, mother's grandmother's and the faces of my close friends. It was bracing and heartening to realize that each of you wants me to be brave. I will do that! I will!

My life in the service has not been filled with sweet memories. It is a life of resignation and self-denial, certainly not comfortable. As a raison d'être for service life, I can see only that it gives me a chance to die for my country. If this seems bitter it probably is because I had experienced the sweetness of life before joining the service.

The other day I received Lieutenant Otsubo's philosophy on life and death which you so kindly sent. It seems to me that while he appears to have hit on some truth, he was concerned mostly with superficial thoughts on the service. It is of no avail to express it now, but in my 23 years of life, I have worked out my own philosophy.

It leaves a bad taste in my mouth when I think of the deceits being played on innocent citizens by some of our wily politicians. But I am willing to take orders from the high command, and even from the politicians, because I believe in the polity of Japan.

The Japanese way of life is indeed beautiful, and I am proud of it, as I am of Japanese history and mythology which reflect the purity of our ancestors and their believe in the past—whether or not those beliefs are true. That way of life is the product of all the best things which our ancestors have handed down to us. And the living embodiment of all wonderful things out of our past is the Imperial Family which, too, is the crystallization of the splendour and beauty of Japan and its people. It is an honour to be able to give my life in defence [sic] of these beautiful and lofty things.

Okinawa is much a part of Japan as Goto Island. An inner voice keeps saying that I must smite the foe who violates our homeland. My grave will be the sea around Okinawa, and I will see my mother and grandmother again. I have neither regret nor fear about death. I only pray for the happiness of you and all my fellow countrymen.

My greatest regret is this life is the failure to call you 'chichiue' (revered father). I regret not having given any demonstration of the respect which I have always had for you. During my final plunge, though you will not hear it, you may be sure that I will be saying 'chichiue' to you and thinking of all you have done for me.

I have not asked you to come to see me at the base because I know that you are comfortable at Amakusa. It is a good place to live. The mountains north of the base remind me of Sugiyama and Magarisaka on Goto Island, and I have often thought of the days when you took Akira and me on picnics to Matsuyama near the powder magazine. I also recall riding with you to the crematorium at Magarisaka as a youngster, without clearly understanding then that mother had died.

I leave everything to you. Please take good care of my sisters.

One setback in its history does not mean the destruction of a nation. I pray that you will live long. I am confident that a new Japan will emerge. Our people must not be rash in their desire for death.

Fondest regards.
Just before departure,

Dear Parents: Please congratulate me. I have been given a splendid opportunity to die. This is my last day. The destiny of our homeland hinges on the decisive battle in the seas to the south where I shall fall like a blossom from a radiant cherry tree. I shall be a shield for His Majesty [the emperor] and die cleanly along with my squadron leader and other friends. I wish that I could be born seven times, each time to smite the enemy. How I appreciate this chance to die like a man! I am grateful from the depths of my heart to the parents who have reared me with their constant prayers and tender love. And I am grateful as well to my squadron leader and superior officers who have looked after me as if I were their own son and given me such careful training. Thank you, my parents, for the twenty-three years during which you have cared for me and inspired me. I hope that my present deed will in some small way repay what you have done for me. Think well of me and know that your Isao died for our country. This is my last wish, and there is nothing else that I desire. I shall return in spirit and look forward to your visit at the Yasukuni Shrine. Please take good care of yourselves. How glorious is the Special Attack Corps' Giretsu Unit [Isao Matsuo's unit] whose Suisei bombers will attack the enemy. Our goal is to dive against the aircraft carriers of the enemy. Movie cameramen have been here to take our pictures. It is possible that you may see us in newsreels at the theatre. We are sixteen warriors manning the bombers. May our death be as sudden and clean as the shattering of crystal. Written at Manila on the eve of our sortie. Isao Soaring into the sky of the southern seas, it is our glorious mission to die as the shields of His Majesty. Cherry blossoms glisten as they open and fall. (Inoguchi, Nakajima and Pineau 1959: 183-184).

February 18, 2006

World War II all over again - Peace in our time

This must have been how Winston Churchil and Roosevelt felt in the years leading up to WWII and Pearl Harbor.

...the day before a planned mass demonstration against the cartoons – Norway’s Minister of Labor and Social Inclusion, Bjarne Håkon Hanssen, hastily called a press conference at a major government office building in Oslo. There, to the astonishment of his supporters, Selbekk issued an abject apology for reprinting the cartoons. At his side, accepting his act of contrition on behalf of 46 Muslim organizations and asking that all threats now be withdrawn, was Mohammed Hamdan, head of Norway’s Islamic Council. In attendance were members of the Norwegian cabinet and the largest assemblage of imams in Norway's history. It was a picture right out of a sharia courtroom: the dhimmi prostrating himself before the Muslim leader, and the leader pardoning him – and, for good measure, declaring Selbekk to be henceforth under his protection, as if it were he, Hamdan, and not the Norwegian police, that held in his hands the security of citizens in Norway.

...On Tuesday, as if Norway hadn't already been disgraced enough, an official Norwegian delegation met in Qatar with Muslim leader Yusuf al Qaradawi (who has defended suicide bombers and the murder of Jewish women and children) and implored him to accept Selbekk's apology for the cartoons. Lucky them: he did. ‘To meet Yusuf al-Qaradawi under the present circumstances,’ the Norwegian-Iraqi writer Walid al-Kubaisi told Aftenposten yesterday, ‘is tantamount to granting extreme Islamists and defenders of terror a right of joint consultation regarding how Norway should be governed.’

...Among the European leaders who have insisted firmly in recent days that their nations enjoyed free speech – only to insist even more firmly that that right must be exercised "responsibly" – was Swedish foreign minister Laila Freivalds, who, responding on February 9 to a Muhammed cartoon in the newspaper of the right-wing Swedish Democratic Party, didn’t just call for "responsibility" but enforced it, sending the Security Police to close down the party website. "It is frightful," she sniffed, "that a small group of Swedish extremists can expose Swedes to a clear danger" – as if it were the Swedish Democrats, and not Islamic extremists, who were threatening violence.

...On February 9, Franco Frattini, EU Commissioner of Justice, Freedom, and Security, promised to take steps to "regulate" speech (though he later denied this); Kofi Annan, in a February 12 interview on Danish TV, said "You don’t joke about other people’s religion, and you must respect what is holy for other people." Since when do the EU and UN tell supposedly free people what to respect and what not to respect? Since now, apparently. Many Islamists do not hide the fact that their long-term goal is to turn Europe, step by step, into a Muslim caliphate ruled by sharia law. Alas, it looks at present as if the cartoon controversy may turn out to have been a significant step on the way to that goal.

Prayers for the Assassin - With New website

A new book out with an interesting interview with the author.

Site's pretty cool, a very good marketing move.

Second Steyn Link.

Links Gamma


Cheney's on the Hunt

Dick Cheney game

A comment I found about blogs and liberal perspective changes.

I think the polarized atmosphere is a result of the information revolution rather than religion-based.

Maybe we are polarized because half the population continues to fully invest their trust in an out-dated, monolithic and tightly-controlled mainstream press who purposefully omit valuabe information in order to support an agenda or politician while the other half have moved into the 21st century's information revolution.

Before weblogging I was a 'liberal' who went along with the idols of information like Dan Rather then along came 9/11 and for me, the discovery of weblogging, a revolutionary means of gathering my own information. In the blackout days of the 90's I had no idea about William Buckely, Thomas Sowell, Victor Davis Hanson, David Horowitz are any other 'conservative' thinkers.
My support today of the Republican party has nothing to do with religion but everything to do with with my access to information I was previously denied.

For example, I am a 44 year od female who once supported a 'women's right to choose' but after the last five years of reading from the perspective of 'the other side' I discovered that the other side makes a better argument as to why abortion is a bad policy not only for the female but for our culture in general. Back in the 90's I do remember the phase 'dumbing down of America' which I now understand that meaning. I was one of those dumbed-down Americans who was freed by the revolution of the information age. When I was a pro-choicer I never thought about the illogical premise made by the abortionists that on the one hand 'it's just a clump of cells' then in the same breath I would hear that we females are entitled to taxpayer funded monies for pre-natal care. Now, if it's been deemed just a clump of cells why then does the females need taxpayer monies to care for just a clump of cells? There are so many other illogical and inconsistant arguments made by the liberal side that I found myself unable to support the Democrat Party.

At this point, I consider Liberalism a fraud in today's political environment because everything it has done, everything I was lead to believe it was over these past three decades turns out to be meaningless nothing used as a guise to cover those who wish to achieve socialist Marxism in America.

It could be said that Mr Reynolds (godfather of the blog) is the source and cause of polarization we are experiencing. Since he is basing his argument on religion I do hope however, he does not feel I am implying he is God or anything but I will acknowledge that he was responsible for liberating me from the deceptive culture I once lived under.

Posted by: syn at February 17, 2006 07:11 AM

February 17, 2006

Links Beta

A weird article about America.

An article by Totten on Kurdistan that makes a bit more sense.

February 16, 2006

Links Alpha

Chinese espionage. Reminds me of the Drakas and the Western Alliance.

Why Congress has not declared war.

The New Baath.

Ashore in Basra, British troops are running into problems with police corruption. The local government has been unwilling to control the police force, which has been infiltrated members of Shia militias and criminal gangs. As the British began to arrest police for stealing and murder, the provincial government protested, and said they would no longer cooperate with British. The local politicians have more to fear from the Shia militias and gangsters, than they do from the British. This despite demonstrations against British brutality (as seen in a newly released video showing British soldiers beating up some Iraqi men.) There have also been demonstrations against the Danish cartoons. There are rarely demonstrations against the depredations of the militias and gangsters, for the very simple reason that these thugs will kill or beat anyone who openly opposes them. This unwillingness to confront corruption and crime is the main reason for Iraq's economic and political problems. The Iraqis are too easily terrorized, and not willing to take responsibility for defending freedom and democracy.
Nobody who is smart is scared of the British. Precisely because they understand propaganda and political considerations in their home islands. American forces ourselves have had trouble making others afraid, in order to deter them from doing things they shouldn't do. And we had Fallujah on our side, on our list of kills and victories. The Brits got nothing but air, and their attempts to airbrush the corruption away from the eyes of Americans and Iraqis are unsuccessful.

THe British should be fighting against Al-Sadr and the criminals. But I suppose it is too much to expect the British to crack down on criminals and thugs, it is not like they do it in their own home or use the army for that purpose.

That is sad, to have the Shia see the Coalition in our worst light just because the British don't have the guts to go into these thug's homes, arrest them, hunt them down, and actually Do. Their. Job.

That isn't too much to ask of Britain, in return for us going to the UN and getting hit there because Britain needed the UN, now is it?

VDH writes about the threat to Civil Liberties.

The ACLU is there when they want to persecute you, but where is the ACLU when others need them to fight against persecution?

February 15, 2006

Archives in the Blogosphere

Bill O'Reilly has some interesting things to say. It is a triumverate dialogue, between Buzzmachine, Jay Rosen, and O'Reilly. Or maybe a crippled leg joining two healthy ones.

Buzz's piece is the one I agree with. Jay Rosen's piece is not spot on, I cannot say so. While it comes closer to the truth than the common perception, it has many many different flaws.

"Suppose—to move to another front—the New York Times reviewed his latest, chart-topping book, Who’s Looking Out for You? If the Times is true to itself, the review would almost certainly be negative, and O’Reilly could scream liberal bias. “But somehow the Times has not gotten around to reviewing any of my books, while tomes by the liberal ‘satirists’ are given major exposure,” he writes. Which is another example of liberal bias. Either way he gets the W."

I think all propaganda that is based upon the truth, has that kind of axiomatic result. The terroists use it quite effectively. If you invade us and kill Muslims, you justify being killed for revenge. If you don't invade us and kill Muslims, you make yourself weak and therefore justify our execution of you.

Catch-22 as they say. A reality that you cannot break away from, except to unmake and mold that reality.

On the whole, we don’t have political anchormen and women, if we mean by “political” the understanding of yourself as an actor engaged in the general struggle for what’s just, what’s fair, and in “our” interests as a society. Take four figures for comparison. Dan Rather (CBS), Peter Jennings (ABC), Tom Brokaw (NBC) and Jim Lehrer (PBS) have all been on the best seller list, and they have a kind of cultural weight extending beyond their broadcasts— like O’Reilly does. Let’s call it power. But what have the anchorman with their cultural power tried to say? Can anyone paraphrase the arguments in their books?

Each one is a consummate and intelligent broadcast pro, with that elusive television thing, a gravitas that filters through the dots, combined with a lighter and more fluid on-air command, which becomes grace under pressure in emergencies. But which one of them ever employed these gifts upon a career in social commentary? Which of our anchorman even tried to cut a political figure? They simply couldn’t within the press think of the era when they were crowned. O’Reilly has done that, cut a political figure, and he’s the public face of Fox News Channel, just as Jennings is the face of ABC News and Lehrer the embodiment of PBS."

Rosen is forgetting cBS anchor Dan Rather. Or given the red highlights, maybe he did remember them, but thinks it doesn't matter. Fake but accurate. It is untrue that these anchors like Jennings have not tried to cut a political figure. The thing is, they were already political figures, but they tried to deceive the American people into believing otherwise. Some were more successful than others.

But the picture of things pre-Oreilly definitely is being mismanaged.

Cronkite cut a political figure, Rather cut a political figure. The decision not to be a part of something is still a decision. Things are not so much different in the latter day than they are in today's world, the internet just makes things too obvious and glaring for age old arrogance to cover up.

Rosen's point is self-contradicting even. If Bill O'Reilly is spontaneous and down to the heart, then he is not using counter-spin or planning how to ramp up the anger and the resentment. Those who feel the same emotions as their audience cannot manipulate their audience without also manipulating their own emotions. That is why Dan Rather's spew of journalism was more harmful by all accounts. You cannot manipulate a target audience without an "objective standard" to fall back on personally.

"Network journalism had long ago decided it didn’t need that kind of tension—anchormen who join the national argument—and so it promoted to the top spot only masters of the “cooler” style, which became the standard."

Jay Rosen is good at leaving out crucial details that create a better context for the facts. For his purported intentions to get a more complex truth than the typical Left vs Right Wing media bias story, he is curiously lacking in perceptibility in some ways.

I'll give him the benefit of the doubt, but regardless of how he frames the issues in a new paragon, things have not really changed all that much.