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January 11, 2007 04:16 PM UTC

Thursday Open Thread

  • 75 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

Gold on the outside, blue on the inside.

Comments

75 thoughts on “Thursday Open Thread

  1. Last night Bush invaded Irans diplomatic post in Northern Iraq, took prisoners and stole records and computer equipment. He’s more interested in the Rapture than Democracy. The man is crazy. I hope someone can stop him. He’s making America incredibly less safe.

    1. http://www.knowledge

      I agree with his statement that Bush has “substituted a commitment to ideology and religion for knowledge, study and analysis”.

      Electing a born-again Christian make vital decisions for our country has turned out to be a huge mistake.

      1. Electing a born-again Christian make vital decisions for our country has turned out to be a huge mistake.

        No, electing a multiple-failure, anti-intellectual dry-drunk who had never successfully run anything (including Texas) to make vital decisions for our country has turned out to be a huge mistake.

        We’ve had good, bad, and mediocre presidents in the past with varying degrees of religious belief.  Bush is much better at reality-avoidance than all of them.

    2. From this point forward, you are not allowed to use the phrase ‘support our troops’.  Would you feel better if the Iranians were allowed to plan attacks on our servicemen unimpeded?

        1. It’s not an embassy; the consulate in Arbil is set up as a diplomatic outpost to the Iraqi autonomous zone of Kurdish Iraq.  Still, it’s the sovereign territory of Iran; all things considered, Iran is playing this very calmly.

      1. of this foreign policy debacle and illegal war puts more troops in harms way and will result in the deaths of more of our troops….Is that supporting them? Peace suports our troops. Justice and the rule of law supports our troops. Iran has approximately 513,000 armed soldiers. Is goading them into pouring over Iraq’s borders protecting our troops?

        1. Take a guess at what would happen to a conventional army invading Iraq right now with the air power we have in the region. You have zero interest or concern for our military men and women. That’s ok, just please don’t have the gaul to pretend you do.

          1. Using air strength alone. On top of that you clearly lack any understanding of the mindset of the Iranian people, especially the Republican Gaurd. This would not be a conventional war; it no longer exists. So you need to stop pretending that we can mow down any army because, hey! we’re america and we’re the best. If you want a historical context look at the Iran-Iraq war.

            Bush is willfully disregarding troops lives, and american national security by his words and actions. It is ignorant and dangerous. Just because sir robin doesnt want us to be in Iraq does not meant that he hates the troops. You saying so is as disingenuous as Bush saying that a small boost will change anything. Just because we have air superiority does not mean anything. We may take out infrastructure, but bodies on the ground make the difference.

            1. Actually, you’re wrong. I’m well-versed in things Iranian, which is why I know that they would never be so stupid as to send a huge wave of conventional forces over the border, which is what the aptly-named Sir Robin was referring to in his original post.

              I didn’t say he hates the troops because they’re in Iraq.  I said he’s full of it for spewing the typical ‘support the troops not the mission blah blah..’. If you don’t want the troops to have the utmost operational security (even if you don’t believe in the war itself) then you don’t ‘support the troops’.

              BTW, the ‘Republican Guard’ was an Iraqi military unit.  Maybe you confused it with the Iranian Revolutionary guard (since you know so much about Iran).

              1. Why *wouldn’t* they send a wave of troops over the border?

                They don’t have the Republican Guard there to push them back.  American forces are dispersed throughout the country and having enough problems with the native population.  Our tanks are no longer in place to defend the ground, I don’t think.

                And their Air Force might not be the best in the world, but they’re probably good enough to keep ours busy during the initial phase of an invasion.

                A straight-forward invasion could gain them a lot of territory, and Shi’a natives might support them…

                So I’m guessing the reason has more to do with diplomacy and/or Iranian strategic policy than with scenario-based issues.

                Of course, a ground invasion of Iraq would shortly thereafter lead to a carpet-bombing of Tehran and general downgrading of Iranian infrastructure to the Stone Age…

              2. I confused the two: republican v. revolutionary. You are also correct in saying that they would not utilize conventional, en masse over the border attack. But you also must realize that the borders are extremely porous, and that can lead to cross border raids and other insurgency tactics that the Iranians are probably well versed.

                If you are so well versed in Iranian politics you must also reliaze that Amadinejad (sp?) just got his ass handed to him the most recent election. Not him personally, of course, but his coalition. Moderates have retaken many positions that they lost, and american saber rattling will not help the situation. In fact, Amadinejad’s anti-american stances enhanced by Bush’s anti-Iranian comments probably helped push him to victory.

                Are you saying that increasing american troop strength by 21,500 troops is going to increase operational security? You realize that we have had that level in Iraq prior to this so-called surge and it really did nothing to increase operational security?

          2. The shah’s air force has more than 450 modern combat aircraft, including top-of-the-line F-14 Tomcat fighters and about 5,000 well-trained pilots. The air force, numbers close to 100,000 personnel, by far the most advanced of the three services and among the most impressive air forces in the developing world. The U.S. Generals are saying we don’t have the 21,500 servicemen Bush is ordering up.

            Do you actually espouse an escalation of a war in the region to include Russia and Chinese SAM missiles sold to Iran?

            Warmongers are plain crazy!

            1. ..state of the art F-14s that we decommissioned? Look, I don’t want war with Iran, I just think it’s ludicrous for you to act like you give one fig about our troops.  I also don’t think we should walk on eggshells around the Iranians when it’s clear they are aiding in the murder of our servicemen.

              1. “it’s ludicrous for you to act like you give one fig about our troops”

                over and over, and it’s not sticking.  One thing Sir Robin clearly does do is care.

            2. were delivered just before the fall of the Shah and are not a real threat even if any can be put in the air.  Replacement parts are difficult for the Iranians to get with the arms embargo. 

              They do have Mig-29’s  and Mirage F1’s which are a capable fighters, and reports of possibly Mig-31’s, but their pilots have been trained in the old Soviet “central control” air tactics.  These are the same tactics and the same training that Saddam’s pilots had when they engaged the Coalition air forces in ’91.  All of the pilots on those carriers have been trained how to counter those tactics, if they aren’t veterans of the ’91 war. 

              The SAM defenses are, with a couple of possible exceptions, upgraded versions of the same systems faced in Desert Storm and familiar in either training or experience to our pilots.  And if the flight mission is to stop an invading army from Iran, rather than strikes into Iran, then most of those SAM systems don’t factor in.

              What I find really interesting is that I haven’t heard or seen any protests on the consular invasion from Iran.  Of course I’ve been busy.  Has anyone else heard anything on this?

              1. The Iranians apparently summoned envoys from Switzerland and Iraq – both of whom represent U.S. interests to Iran (since we won’t talk to them directly) – to discuss the incident.

                There’s really not much the Iranians can do directly unless they want to try firing off a surface missile at our fleet, or rockets at our Iraqi positions.  They’re not dumb enough to fall for that.

    3.   Was it just me or did anyone else notice that when Shrub spoke about cutting off the terrorist routes from Syria and Iran into Iraq, he sounded alot like Nixon talking about cutting off the supply routes from Laos and Cambodia circa 1970?
        I was relieved, however, that he did not announce that we were turning yet “another corner.”

      1. If he’d announced we had turned another corner, he’d basically be admitting he was staring up his own ass, we’ve turned so many of them.

        What part of Bush’s “strategy” doesn’t sound like the Vietnam conflict all over again?  Just a few more troops; cutting off routes; faked reason to enter a war in the first place; re-re-taking (enter location here)…  The longer this kind of stuff goes on, the more I’m convinced someone’s whispering in Bush’s ear, “We need to prove that staying in Vietnam would have worked.”

      1. You’ve stated that you never come to Denver except when you’re passing through on your way to Sturgis… If the liberals don’t see it, does it matter?

        1. but just knowing there are so many in this state leads me to show my appreciation, you know, in case I had a lapse and drove to Denver for some strange reason.

      2. A lot of money will come into the local economy, and even if you don’t work on a direct project, someone else will be flush and need remodeling or something. 

        We are all connected…..

          1.   I had only been to that place two or three times and didn’t stay long.  It always seemed they had a drag show going, and I’m not really into watching that.

      3. Here’s a book that you ought to love:

        Crunchy Cons: How Birkenstocked Burkeans, gun-loving organic gardeners, evangelical free-range farmers, hip homeschooling mamas, right-wing nature lovers, and their diverse tribe of countercultural conservatives plan to save America (or at least the Republican Party)

        http://www.amazon.co

  2. Getting well buried in a prior post were comments made by me on the origins of “drinking the Kool Aid” and then from Lester Government.

    First, Lester, I apologize for sounding demeaning.  I honestly read your prior comment as not understanding what the phrase was about.  Mea culpa, but in innocence. 

    Second, and here is where I disagree, it is NOT applicable to lefties.  Here’s why:  It takes an anuthoritarian figure and people following that figure without question to “drink the Kool Aid.”  Lefties/Dems tend to be fragmented and critical.  Recall the old Will Rogers joke, “I’m not a member of any poliical party, I’m a Democrat.”

    As Lakoff pretty well supports, Righties tend to the “strong father” model of the world, just the kind of pattern needed for a Jim Jones and followers.

    Lefties tend to the “nurturing mother” model, which just doesn’t have the pshychological framework leading to authoritarianism.

    I”m not saying that we lefties don’t have our psychological propensities, but drinking Kool Aid ain’t one of them. 

    1. But I disagree with the notion that it is only the wingnuts on the Right are Kool-Aide drinkers.  I believe Will Rogers made his comment in the 1930’s.  This ain’t your grandfathers Democratic Party anymore!

      If these guys arn’t drinking Kool-Aide, I don’t know who is!

        http://www.wanttokno

      And please, call me Less.

      1. Hitler, Mussolini, Franco.

        All these men had the support of the masses.

        Lenin, Mao.  These men seized power w/o the support of the masses.

        Castro, a leftie authoritarian that STILL has the support of the masses.

        Rogers’ comment is still valid, despite being uttered over 60 years ago.  That is one of the reasons that the R’s have been so successful in the last twenty years, and the D’s. Not.  We haven’t had a Grover Norquist.

        I think the Dem’s won the last elections more by people fed up with the R’s than an outstandingly organized system, although it was closer to one that in previous years. 

        And how come we have no leftie fundie religions/sects?  Because they are incompatible.  Whehter one IS the authority, or kow-towing to alleged authority, be it the preacher or God, one must have the mindset.  Such a mindset totally escapes me and most of my friends. Power from the top vs. power from the bottom.

        A good, local example of Leftie disorganization was the last Iraq War protest rally in March.  I left way before the end because it devolved into a bitch session about every leftie cause out there (and it was ALL the fault of white men.)  We came to protest war, not rail about Indian issues, feminism, the sins of Columbus, etc.

        Ah, love my lefties!

    2. Jim Jones was definitely a Father/God figure for some, but you could still consider him, in his humble beginnings, a leftist (see beginning of):

      http://en.wikipedia….

      Actually, I think it’s possible for this sort of character to arise on either side of the political spectrum.

      There is a recent documentary that’s been released about Jonestown:

      http://movies2.nytim

      1. But being a proponent of equality doesn’t a leftie make.  Looking at the whole bio, it’s almost all about religious leadership and authority.

        An alternative is Denver’s own Rev. Bob Woolfolk at Agape Christian Church.  I haven’t seen Bob in five or six years, but I respect him greatly.  It’s not about him, it’s about doing “the Lord’s” work.  It’s about helping, not saving souls. The programs he has set up, the people he has helped, are beyond my count.  All the while driving an old car. 

        1. Specifically using the term “apostolic socialism” and borrowing the phrase “revolutionary suicide” from Huey Newton might lead some, at least, to consider him a leftist. Plus, his belief that he was an incarnation of Lenin as well as Christ.

  3. Let’s hope this is the real deal!!!!

    January 11, 2007
    Breaking: Dean Chooses Denver
    The labor pains were hard, but the DNC finally has its 2008 convention city locked down: Denver.

    A Democrat who was briefed said that chairman Howard Dean made the final decision yesterday, weeks later than planned. DNC comm. dir. Karen Finney declined to confirm the choice.

    Colorado is a marquee states for Democrats, who have, in the past two years, gobbled up the governor’s mansion, control of the state legislature, and two congressional seats.

    But Denver’s bid was shot through with holes from the start. The first technical submission was greeted with dismay by party regulars; revised bids were better. Labor unions threatened to balk unless Denver began to unionize its hotels; others wanted to extract compromises from the DNC and the state about union participation. The DNC worried about whether Denver could raise the $50 million necessary to stage the marquee event for the ’08 Dem nominee. Promises by out of state governors to raise millions were greeted skeptically.

    It was not immediately clear what made Dean comfortable that Denver had settled these issues.

    NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg was once enthusiastic about the prospect of a DNC convention, even opening City Hall for meetings of top Democratic financiers. But Bloomberg turned soured about the prospect the more he dealt with the DNC.

    New York City would have been the safe choice, logistically and financially. But it would have been a political nightmare and set Dean apart from his Netroots allies and virtually every strategist, presidential candidate and office holder in the party. But Dean aides have said that he was not prepared to risk holding a convention in a city that was not prepared to handle it. [MARC AMBINDER]

    Posted at 11:03 AM | Comments (0)

    1. And won’t that Light Rail be awesome?  Not just looking to the future, but people can stay in outlying hotels without major inconvenience.  Stay in Centennial and be dropped right off in the convention Center.

      1. The Sheriff has standing orders to stop Dems at Belleview!  Cindy Sheehan can stay at the DTC Marriott but she’ll have to catch the Light Rail at the Soutmoor station.

  4. Also getting well buried and with my promise to get back to the Pols community, is the topic of whether or not Johnson’s War On Poverty did any good. 

    Before I get into specifics, let me say that I am well aware of the arguements about the validity and methodology of poverty statistics.  But as long as we are using the same yardstick, especially in a relatively short term, it’s as good as we have.  (I’ve always been irked by if I make, say, $8,488 dollars I might be in poverty, but if I make one dollar more, I’m not!)

    Anyway, the Wikipedia article http://en.wikipedia…. states that poverty rates were in the 25% category, nationally at the time of Johnson declaring “war.”

    Quote: “In the decade following the 1964 introduction of the war on poverty, poverty rates in the U.S. dropped to 11.1% and has remained between 11 and 15% ever since. Since 1973 poverty has remained well below the historical U.S. averages in the range of 20-25%.[2]”

    So, unless the stats are in total error, the “war” cut poverty in half or better.  This is way too big to be a margin of error, or due to an improving economy.

    And I agree that the best anti-poverty program is a job, but not everyone can get a job in a given location with a given set of skills.  Or nowadays, a full time job. And as Gecko inadvertently pointed out, monies spent on people and programs like this get recycled within our economy.

    As any statistician will point out, the initial changes are the easiest and greatest.  Will we always have the poor amongst us?  Jesus said we would and the evidence seems to support him.  Compared to pre-1964 people are not only less likely to be in poverty, but fewer people remain so for any length of time.

    1. We will always have war and poor among us;  just as we have left and right and right and wrong or two sides to a coin … we are at war with ourselves, conflicted between a thought of faith, and a faith in thought.

    1. Thanks, Artemis for posting those links.  I hadn’t seen them yet.  This story about Nancy Hunter fraudulently trying to remove a member of the central committee is really just the tip of the iceberg.  Hunter runs the party like she’s Stalin or something.  This “ideological cleansing” has been going for years.  Someone could write a book about all the corruption and underhanded behavior going on with Hunter and her lackeys.

      1. All that gossip on the Coloradoans website is kind of entertaining, but unless they’re a tabloid rag, they can’t print any of it. Libel is an ugly word.

  5. It had been posted before that the new Dem leadership had already gone back on its word to hold 5-day work weeks.  I responded that it appeared to be a request by GOP Minority Leader Boehner.

    Neither, apparently, were correct.

    According to liberal blogger Digby, Friday was a mandatory House orientation for freshmen Reps, and Monday was “bill-reading day”, for all the legislation the Dems planned to pass during their first 100 hours.

    1. There is no such thing as a “mandatory House orientation.” Party leadership controls the schedule-period. If they make it “mandatory” that is their choice. Besides, Hoyer said it on the floor of the House. So what if Boehner wanted it, of course he would, he gets to go to the game at the Dems expense. Who’s in charge anyway.

  6. Someone earlier said the DNC was coming to Denver in August?
    When in August? Anyone know?

    If it is in the first couple of weeks my annual ride to Sturgis will be greatly affected.
    Ain’t no way I’m riding through that shit hole of a town with the likes of Cindy Sheehan stinking the place up……

    I’ll have to go to South Dakota and back via friggin Nebraska.

    I wonder if there are any bars in Nebraska?

    Damm it again.
    I just remembered. Nebraska has a helmet law.
    Oh well. I’d still rather wear a brain bucket than be surrounded by tree hugging, oil hating, tax loving, welfare pushing, capitalist hating, socialist wannabee, ex hippy, pro abortion, liberals…….

    Whew.

    1. “Ain’t no way I’m riding through that shit hole of a town with the likes of Cindy Sheehan stinking the place up……”

      Obviously Gecko has never lost a beloved son to an ill begotten, ill conceived, poorly executed, illegal war started with lies by his right wing lying thieving immoral conservative friends. Fucking asshole.

    2. Oh my God. Just like, “You’re doing a heck of a job, Brownie!”

      “I’m no expert on Iraq.”

      Bush’s new Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, just said this today testifying before the House Armed Services Committee (I just saw the clip on ABC). He’s no expert on Iraq? Funny, that’s not what the White House claimed just two months ago – and I quote from the White House Web site:
      Dr. Gates Understands The Threats We Currently Face And The Nature Of Our Enemies In Iraq And Around The World. He has served as an intelligence advisor to six presidents representing both parties during his 27-year career at the CIA and National Security Council…..

      Dr. Gates Understands The Challenges Facing Our Nation In Iraq. While in the private sector, he has continued to serve his country as a member of the Iraq Study Group – a distinguished independent panel of Republicans and Democrats led by former Secretary of State James Baker and former Congressman Lee Hamilton. As a member of the Iraq Study Group, Dr. Gates has traveled to Iraq, where he’s met with Iraq’s leaders and our military commanders on the ground.

      * Dr. Gates Spent Nine Years At The National Security Council, Including Serving As The Deputy National Security Advisor For President George H. W. Bush During Operation Desert Storm.

      The man was a member of the Iraq Study Group, yet he’s still not an expert on Iraq even today? He’s a 27 year veteran of the CIA and the NSC. He was the number 2 guy at the NSC during the first Iraq war. He’s received countless briefings about the situation in Iraq, since he is after all the Secretary of Defense, the guy running the war. Yet he’s still not an expert on the country or the war.

      Then what the hell is Robert Gates doing running the Department of Defense when we’re at war in Iraq?

      It’s because Bush and Gecko want a disaster. They’re going to get it, too. Thanks a lot Gecko. You’re doing a heck of a job.

    3. It’s going to be during the last week of August.

      Besides, even if it were happening during Sturgis you could just ride around town on E-470. Sure, it’s something like $7 worth of tolls but it’s always wide open.

  7. Or is that a redundancy? (sp?)

    In today’s RMN, he is quoted, “Success remains the only option.”

    Hello, Doug.  Success is an outcome, not a strategy.  Oh, you say that you learned such things from GW?  That explains everything.

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