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Wednesday, March 12. 2014
Whatever happened to the word “sin”?
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The orgy story seemed a little sad to me. I suppose one can enjoy melancholy. Even more with lots of wine. It is interesting that right in the middle she went off on hetero white males. But it was the man's white hetero privilege that caused him to look hurt when she declined his request rather than the sting of being refused by a woman who up to that point had shown little discrimination in her sex partners.
Not having participated myself, it seems from the article that orgies are very selfish and lonely-in-a-crowd. But then, my white hetero privilege probably means I won't ever have the privilege of enjoying an orgy....wait, there's a logic flaw in there somewhere.
"61% Of Young Republicans favor marriage equality"
That statement is intentionaly dishonest. Of course what they mean is 61% Of Young Republicans favor same sex marriage and not marriage equality. This is a special exemption for a special interest not "equality". Perhaps it's the right thing to do. I have to admit I don't know. But it is hardly "equality" it is special privilage for homosexuals only. Equality would be any kind of marriage between any number of persons for any reason.
I'm not sure how delusional Rand Paul's plan is. The key component, which was ending aid to Ukraine, makes perfect sense. The money winds up in Russian (or criminal) hands anyway. So why should we be funding them when we have no money of our own?
The only part which is odd, and I can't see happening, was the implementation of the missile defenses paid for by the host nations. But this isn't really delusional, there are examples of nations paying us for our technology and protection. It's just not common. I agree with the author that it's an unlikely scenario.
The rest of it seems rather normal and acceptable to me, even if Obama has done some of it.
Obama's problem was drawing a line, allowing Putin to step over it, and conveniently forgetting he drew a line he never should have drawn.
His weakness has exacerbated the problem as has his tacit approval for the spending (and wasting) of millions to support a corrupt and unmanageable opposition.
The US, if Rand Paul's logic was played out to pre-Russian invasion, would have seen us not taking part in any kind of activities there, and thereby accepting these are issues the Russians and Ukrainians have to work out for themselves.
How angry are we with our idiotic protesting Unions, some of which were once funded by the Soviets to a degree? International meddling of this sort is what Rand Paul opposes, and I oppose. We are not making things better, we've made them worse. If Putin wants to take over Crimea, who are we to say no? It seems Crimea has wanted sovereignty for some time and has been denied it. while I oppose Russian troops moving in, and the means doesn't justify the ends, if Crimea gets what it wants, who loses? Not the U.S.
Putin is winning big time here for one reason - Obama did and said many stupid, stupid things. But I don't see Rand Paul's commentary as delusional at all.
If I had to offer any criticism of Paul, it would be his support of economic sanctions, which is at odds with his typical "Sanctions never work" (and they don't) approach. So yeah, he's probably delusional on that score - but so is the author, since he agrees with it.
What happened to the word sin? You fill more pews with honey. Then there's possibility it has morphed into the various labels thrown about in modern discourse (warmist, denier, racist, etc).
Have no doubt even though what looks like a Real Climate Scientist (tm) wrote the NYT opinion piece, the chattering class will ignore as they fill their hot tubs.
The last sin I heard of was in Wisconsin where the Walker conservatives beat the feathers out of the SINners.
The woman in the orgy article says she was invited and she knew about 10% of the people there.
I'm wondering - how does such an invitation get worded and go out in such a way that you don't alienate friends or family? Or insult/offend them so much they cut contact?
How uncomfortable must that be to attend such a party, see your boss, and then expect to think everything will be fine on Monday?
Mad Men tepidly addressed this issue when Pete Campbell ran into his father-in-law at a brothel. The uncomfortable moment passed, but the father-in-law pulled business from the company, became a thorn in the side of Pete's marriage (which was failing anyway), and yet he was just as guilty as Pete.
Standards are odd and fluctuate from person to person, but some consistency of expectation is important. That consistency is thrown out the window when you see someone naked, or doing more than you expect, simply because there's almost nothing more to consider.
"Rand Paul’s Plan for Ukraine: Bizarre and Delusional"
First of all, to call Rand Paul's ideas about Ukraine bizarre and delusional is hyperbolic. I'm not sure Rand has a really good grasp of the situation in Ukraine, but he is at least trying. I'm quite certain very few have a solid grasp of what's happening and why. Ask any fifty congressman where Ukraine is or why the Crimea is important to Russia and you will get blank stares from most of them. Further, there just aren't many experts available. Until very recently, who cared about Ukraine? Anyway, Rand should have brushed up on the topic before he offerred his somewhat confused opinions.
There are a few things we know about the Ukraine. We can be sure that despite the fact that the former government was elected, it was very corrupt and was in fact an oligarchy. Those officials stole the people blind and the people knew it. Thus, the people took to the streets in massive numbers and toppled the corrupt regime. Some may say the former government was legitimate, as Putin does, but without the consent of the governed, there is no legitimacy. Talk of rabble rousers and far right facists and American diplomats stirring up trouble are trivial points. Although the American diplomatic stunts were and are embarassing and sophomoric and moronic, they did not cause anything to happen that would not have happened. Threatening to boycott the Sochi meetings and impose travel restrictions are also trivial and even counterproductive. They are the moves of weakness and desperation. Stupid really, since it the Russians who are desperate. That is the first point.
My second point, related to the first, is that the vast majority of the people in Ukraine do not wish to be ruled by Russia. Not even the ethnic Russians. This is made clear by one major indicator; there are very few protestors in the streets supporting Putin's move. Whereas the independance movement has millions in the streets in every major city, the pro Russian marchers can only muster a few thousand. This is the single most important fact, from which all decisions and evaluations must spring. And the reason for this lack of support are plain. Ukrainians remember how they were treated by the Russians before, during and after WW2. Further, they can see that Russia today has nothing to offer in terms of jobs, investments and prosperity. The EU has all of that to offer and more. It has the working models of tranparent goverence and personal liberty. Putin, uninvited and disliked, has placed the Russian Bear's paws into a bee nest whilst trying to grab the honey. Instead of protecting Russian border areas, Putin multiplied his guerilla war/terrorism problems many times. In addition, he has sparked regional incentives to bolster military preparedness and energy independance from Russia. In a few short years, Russian gas won't be worth spit and her borders will be lined with re-armed, unfriendly nations. There is just no way Poland, Hungary, Rumania and the others would ever sit still for an aggressive Russia, They will prepare. So Putin, despite his blathering about protecting Christians, is not fooling anyone who counts. And Obama doesn't count, thank God. Thus, even if Obama continues to slow dance with Putin in a deuded, reverse logic, socialist trance, the countries that matter will not. Ukraine will not.
So, the independance movement is legitimate and popularly supported by a large majority of Ukrainians. American involvement is tertiary, whatever form it may take, stupid or smart. The Russian bear risks getting it's paws in a trap of it's own devising and risks a re-armed, hostile, western border region.
The remaining question is, what should the Americans do? Let me first address the banking issue. This is a minor point involving a few billion dollars. Let's say we don't help pay the Russian debt. It would still be OK to throw a few billion to Ukraine, maybe as direct food or investment assistance. Farming equipment purchases, etc. Let's say that Ukraine makes the minimum payments to Russia with European help. And that America helps arrange for alternate fuel deliveries from other countries. Like Lybia, Iraq, Pennsylvania and Cananda. Many and varied are the options and most of them are positive. Best case scenario, put a gag on American politicians and diplomats, let the EU big shots like Germany make some deals with Ukraine and suggest what and where Americans can help. I'm not really feeling the urge to put several army divisions back into Europe and I don't think it will be required. But, there may come a time when a small version of the old reforger military excercises could be helpful. It helps to show some steel, if you are skillful enough to manage it.
The happy ending here is to prepare to help Russia extract herself from this mess in Ukraine. There will come a time when Putin will be looking for any excuse to pull back and make concessions without losing too much face. On this, we can depend and for this we must prepare. Putin is a risk taker but the deck is stacked far too heavily against him in the mid to long term. He will see that soon. He will ask for (demand) some assurances that Russia won't be attacked and some continued use of the port at Sevastopol. And money, they always ask for money. Again, the Europeans should take point and America take a support role on this. Obama and company are not up to anything more complex than dreams and slippery speeches.
There is one country we have better relations with than when Bush was president. Iran.