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Tuesday, December 8. 2015
Jihadists pose no threat to the US as a nation. To some unfortunate randomly-selected innocent people, yes. That is evil at work in this dangerous world. I have little doubt that their efforts are designed to produce hysterical overreactions to add fuel to their bluster and threats and to magnify their importance in the name of Allah. This is neither WW 2 or WW 3. Jihadists, whether Taliban. Al Quaida, ISIS - they are all basically the same thing and their only significant threat is to their fellow Middle Easterners, and perhaps secondarily to Europe to some extent. Israel, rightly, fears no one.
In their delusions, they are at war with everybody, but I do not see them as America's problem. Beating war drums and ginning up popular emotion is cheap politics, but perhaps effective politics.
I've left a lot out to keep it short. My final point is that the Middle East is a tar baby, and takes up far more American bandwidth than it deserves. There are no real nations there, just tribal and religious warfare. It is a pre-national, semi-civilized part of the world. There will be no end to that in our lifetimes. And it's not our job. The dissolution of the Ottoman Empire was a disaster.
Go ahead and argue, please. It's a topic worthy of thoughtful disputation. I am sympathetic to this piece: FEAR of Terrorism Is Much More Dangerous than Actual Terrorism
and re Trump's idea re Muslims, I am in favor of a moratorium on all immigration to the US, legal or illegal, until the nation as a whole can debate and decide what makes sense in today's world.
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Isolating the plague, polio, or ebola is not a problem for me and neither is isolating typhoid mary, third worlders of every shade, Ferguson rioters, or maniacal muslims. We can't even vet Obama...how do we vet any immigrant intending to do us harm and has the support of all the necessary leaders in his old habitat to pass vetting "muster"?
'Jihadists pose no threat to the US as a nation. To some random people, yes".
I'm left completely bewildered by the ignorance of that statement. 3000 "random people" killed on 9/11 would love to disagree with you but...they're dead.
I think I need to randomly remove you from my favorites.
The term commonly used is 'existential threat'. And NO, the 9/11 situation in no way threatened the existence of this country. Existential threat is like WWII, where thousands of sorties and probably hundreds of thousands of bombs dropped by Allied bombers were an existential threat to Germany and Japan.
This re-defining of the term to make it more scary distorts the whole picture.
It will take a LOT more than 3000 dead Americans to destroy this country (unless we do it ourselves).
Re: Existential threat
Which threats should we consider and in what time frame? I would say that Europe is quickly ceasing to be Western. In a couple of generations, it could be Muslim. I would say that qualifies as the destruction of Europe. All that is to support Barrister's halt on all immigration, which I support.
I also agree with much that is found in those links, but I have a hard time with a few points in "If We Want To Stop Terrorism, We Should Stop SUPPORTING Terrorists". For example, I don't see how "torturing" (and we all seem to have our definition of torture), a terrorist would be justification for someone to become a terrorist if he wasn't already heading that way. From what I see, these people are motivated by jihad and some number of virgins. Their religion tells them it is a blessed thing to kill infidels even (or especially) if they die in the process. Any supposed revenge seems to be just one of those Islamic lies to infidels they are allowed to make.
The author claims some other political motivation for terrorists. I reject them for the same reason - they are not motivated by political but by religious reasoning. Muslims have been aggressors in military campaigns against infidels since the 700s. I don't suggest that the West has been blameless in hanky panky in the Middle East, but it all depends on which side of things you are standing. Without arguing for or against the Iraq war, I don't see how taking out Saddam Hussein should anger Muslims politically. Are we to believe that Muslims as a whole enjoyed his regime? The torture he committed? Killing the Shia and Kurds while supporting the Sunnis? Attempting to wipe out two neighboring countries? He was not even known as a particularly devout Muslim. Even if there is a political component to terrorism, it doesn't make sense that the Iraq war would be a motivation for joining terrorists.
I think we miss a lot when we dwell on a terrorist instance or terror instances in general without looking at the most powerful motivations - religious belief that they will be blessed by their god to spend the rest of eternity in paradise. It has been that way since Mohammed died.
I was 100% in agreement until the final sentence.
I don't see any debate taking place, and the idea of a "national debate" about anything is a pipe dream. We don't have "national debates." We have accusations, blame and incendiary/inflammatory commentary.
We may want to have a debate, but it will never happen.
In some ways, having a debate is a waste of time, since the media tends to manage the agenda and promote leftist ideals.
Of course immigration is necessary. Immigration promotes growth and it always has. There is never any meaningful evidence that immigration 'takes jobs' from people here, nor is there any that immigration 'lowers wages' - both views which opponents tend to put forth.
But when it comes to Islam, that's a whole different ball of wax. I'm not inherently opposed to allowing Muslims in. But in the current societal mindset, pushing forward an agenda when there is overwhelming opposition is political suicide. Frankly, I don't feel there is anything to fear, despite San Bernadino.
If I did fear more things like San Bernadino, I'd disagree with the entire post, rather than just the final sentence.
Typical head in sand..............until the tide comes in and you drown. The tide is rising: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/12/06/us-intel-to-obama-isis-is-not-contained.html
I think you've underestimated the effects of perception. As you have indicated, even though the jihadi rank and file may envision killing all Americans, their leadership understands that the damage that they can realistically effect upon us has more to do with what we do because we (as individuals) live in fear. In terms of the damage that they can impose on our economy, it is the perception of the threat that individual perceive that is important and not simply the actual physical threat to us as a nation. As advertising pros will tell you, reality is fine, but perception sells.
In other words, "think about what the leftists have sold the American people on gun control."
Perception does sell. That's why it would be useful to have rational people making decisions in the political arena.
The problem is which rational people get to chose the "rational people" who make those decisions. Our Progressive politicians have ensured that the electorate lacks the ability to make rational or moral/religious decisions. Indoctrination in diversity, inflated self-esteem, victimhood, moral relativism and multiculturalism have replaced education.
"The cornerstone of democracy rests on the foundation of an educated electorate." - Thomas Jefferson
"Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other." - John Adams
The tangible evidence that immigration takes jobs from native Americans is the steady decline in real income among working class and middle class Americans, and the decline in labor participation rates. There hasn't been a labor shortage in the US since WWI. Moreover, a substantial fraction of new immigrants go directly to welfare, and are a drag on the economy. Then there are the H 1B holders who are being used to break down middle class salaries in tech.
Considering the huge negative impact on native blacks, which includes violent ethnic cleansing in the SW, US immigration policy is the most ant-black po
ict since Jim Crow--worthy of Woodrow Wilson.
It is clear that a moratorium on all immigration is urgently needed.
The decline in labor participation rates has nothing to do with immigration and everything to do with government intervention and tax policy.
The 'declines' in real income are actually real increases. They just haven't happened as fast as the increases at the upper end of the income scale, so the 'news' of decline isn't about real declining incomes, but the larger amount of people in lower income groupings due to the faster growth of higher incomes.
In fact, there is plenty of evidence which shows each relative income quartile and quintile with income growth that is faster than inflation. The "shrinking middle class" is a myth which people readily feed into.
There are only two industry groups in which prices have fallen in terms of the number of hours worked to purchase. Health and Education. All others have shown large decreases in hours worked to purchase.
You might then ask "why all the debt?" Indeed. Again, I'll point to education and health - but I'll also point to outsized expectations. A person at Thanksgiving this year was discussing his $200,000+ COLLEGE loan. He went to school for four years. 2 at community college, 2 at a commuter school and lived at home all 4 years. Tell me - how did he rack up even $100,000 in college loans?
Like so many people, he likes his 'stuff'. So he was able to get the loans and didn't spend it on his education. He got the education, but also now is saddled with massive debt so that he could live in a lifestyle he felt he deserved. He is not unusual.
When we look for answers to the squeeze that households are feeling, THAT is where we need to look. Outsized expectations and the desire to live beyond our means.
Immigration has NOTHING AT ALL to do with any of that. But it is the easy scapegoat for those who don't employ critical thinking.
"There are only two industry groups in which prices have fallen in terms of the number of hours worked to purchase. Health and Education. All others have shown large decreases in hours worked to purchase."
I'm not saying that I disagree, but rather that I'm unclear about your meaning. When you say that "prices have fallen in terms of the number of hours worked to purchase" I interpret that to mean one has to work fewer hours to purchase the good or service. You then apply this to health and education, but then you state that all other industries have also seen large "decreases in hours worked to purchase" as well.
I don't understand the difference.
'Jihadists pose no threat to the US as a nation. To some random people, yes"
We live in a world where Iran, the single largest supporter of terrorism, will very soon have nuclear weapons. Terrorists may be limited to AK-47s and pipe bombs now, but within a decade we may be facing a nuclear bomb floating on a barge in New York Harbor. We'll likely have some warning however. Their first move will probably be to turn Israel into a smoldering ruin.
Random people, indeed.
Do I feel threatened? Not today. But I do feel that we are on a very dangerous trajectory.
It is clear, to me, that Islam is completely and irrevocably incompatible with Western civilization. Its fundamental tenets are immutable, as they are perceived as the word of G-d himself. And, as has often been observed, it a religion with a political system and a political system with a religion. They cannot be untangled. We had better realize that Islam is at war with the West and has been since at least the early 700's AD. "Diversity" is a shibboleth. There is only one way to respond to cultural colonization and the current and impending attacks, and it involves sheer, overwhelming kinetic force. The sooner the West realizes this, the fewer dead westerners there will be and the better our chance of preserving our civilization.
"Jihadists pose no threat to the US as a nation. To some random people, yes."
Are existential threats the only threats worthy of attention? Do we have to wait until we've had a series of Paris-style attacks in New York, Chicago, LA or Boston before it becomes OK for us to engage?
Also, just because the jihadis want to provoke a war doesn't mean that it's wrong to go to war. The reason they want to provoke a war is because they believe they will win.
The second link promotes the ideas of Noam Chomsky (whom they mention) and, like Chomsky, is pretty much clueless. Muslims around the world believe this is their time. On 9/11 we asked ourselves "what did we do to make them hate us" but in our typical American self-centered way we couldn't allow the terrorists to do what they did for reasons that are entirely their own. The Russian jet, Paris, etc., it's all around the world and it isn't happening because some joker in Guantanimo got waterboarded. This began with Qutb, and it's worthwhile reading up on him.
Yes, terrorism affects me and has for years. Why? Because of the crap we all have to go through at airports, which does NOTHING to stop terrorism at all...yet, it reminds me of terrorism every time I fly.
If we didn't have to think about terrorism, then we could go back to the easy security of yore...walking through a simple metal detector. And families could meet their loved ones at the gate. Instead, we are stuck with taking off shoes, removing laptops from bags, going through the 'naked' body scanner, having to wait out by the luggage area to pick up our kids or husbands or friends.
These are all good comments.
I am glad we could elicit them.
This is a target-rich environment. Their hatred for us drives them to murder us. But, as a practical matter, it doesn't do much to harm us as a nation. Look for them to attack the grid. The grid is virtually unprotected. Blowing up grid infrastructure is a good way to do a lot of damage to a lot of people at minimal risk. When nothing happens when you flick the light switch, no water comes out of the tap, and you can't flush your toilet, society will be thrown into chaos.
BTW, there will be no "national debate" about any of this. We're way past that.
Read the links before commenting. They are more intelligent than we are, maybe.
I'm bothered by the argument in the link that we shouldn't be concerned about terrorism because we are statistically less likely to be killed in a terror attack than by [INSERT ORDINARY DAILY EVENT HERE]. The point isn't just to not be killed. It's about deciding what is and isn't acceptable in our society. Being killed in a car accident or by obesity is acceptable. Being killed by an Islamic jihadi acting out a holy war is not. We can't allow people to do that here.
It's patronizing when people talk about "fear-mongering" driving our policy towards terror. Most people are more angry than afraid. And Trump isn't playing off people's fears -- it's anger.
Islam, a religion of war, is and always will be a threat to the lives and freedoms of all non-Muslims, since Muslims are under an eternal command from Allah “to fight all men until they say, ‘There is no god but Allah.’”
We as non-Muslims do not have the ability to reform the Islamic religion, and, while we welcome any efforts by Muslims themselves to Kemalize, i.e., secularize Islamic societies, we can neither involve ourselves in such endeavors nor count on their success.
We must therefore permanently take away Islam’s ability to harm us, by steadily reducing the numbers and power of Muslims in the West and throughout the non-Muslim world until all seriously believing Muslims and the vast majority of other Muslims have been returned to the historic Muslim lands, and by isolating, containing, and policing the Muslim world.
Everyone involved on this thread should pick up "The Looming Tower" by Lawrence Wright, and discover how far back this current, modern version of Islamic hatred of the West really goes. It has nothing to do with any U.S. foreign policy. It has to do with an Egyptian educator traveling to in America in the 1950’s. It happened long ago in that swinging, hip town of Greeley, Colorado, where Sayyid Qutub discovered the gross practices of American jazz music, women dancing with men, and all those nasty disgusting habits of our pitiful culture under Eisenhower. Went back to the Nile, joined the Muslim Brotherhood, and wrote all about our decadence and how far we were from Allah’s grace, in the definitive “In The Shade of The Koran”. Tried to help oust that “secularist” Nassar, and paid at the gallows for it. Qutub is the inspiration for the current crop of Islamic peaceful religionists who want to murder the rest of us non-believers.
These Muslim scum and their accomplices have no business in our country (which they'd prefer to incinerate with a weapon of mass destruction if they could get their hands on one) which eventually they will. So I guess we’ll just hang around with our current Immigration and Security Theater, address the really horrible, terrible fact of legal gun ownership by 98.7% of American CITIZENS, and leave them to plotting over in their ISIS desert Caliphate, till they really get their shit together and pull off something big enough that gets the attention of those not to concerned today with the "random" stuff
Good plan. We’re right on course.
Not a threat to the US. Have you noticed how much the US has changed, for the worse, since 9-11? I'm sorry Barrister but they ARE at war with the US and the ARE destroying it!
I thought the overall idea of this was reasonable, but that second link really twists the words of others. I won't go back to washingtonsblog, or whatever that was.
"Jihadists pose no threat to the US as a nation."
Not true. There are any number of ways that a handful of jihadis could bring the nation to its knees. See here for just one example:
There are only two reasons this hasn't happened already. One is that jihadis prefer showy attacks over effective ones. The other is that jihadis are stupid.
The problem of radical Islam is the problem of Islam itself.
Many are afraid that if Islam is the problem there can be no solution. That terrifies them. So they do all they can to avoid engaging with the evidence that Islam is the problem.
"The problem of radical Islam is the problem of Islam itself."
I don't agree. We should not make the mistake of becoming what we oppose.
Islam has a problem.
Radical Islam is that problem. Take away the radicals, take away the commitment to jihad, and Islam is no worse (and no better) than any other major religion.
To those Muslims who are willing to live in peace with the rest of the world, we should say mi casa es su casa. But to those who are not so willing ... them I will divide into two smaller groups: those that have been properly dealt with, and those that are still alive.
Correct. Islam, itself, is the problem. And there is no solution. Might as well get on board with that right now.
I’m gonna’ go way out on a limb and suggest that nobody on Maggie’s Farm has anything close to the wisdom, experience or pure genius of Winston Churchill. Just a crazy notion of mine.
Perhaps his take on Islam and it’s practitioners could provide some clarity. Just guessing.
"No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science—the science against which it had vainly struggled—the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome."
I know it sounds crazy, but he had kind of a bead on that other retrograde force led by the Austrian corporal, too.
Or maybe he was just a wacky English politician.
I have little fear for my personal safety when it comes to terrorism. The ideology is the problem. Western people are too lazy and selfish to bother having kids or often even to believe in something. If it continues this way, Europe is in for generations of conflict, slaughters and wars. As life becomes more difficult and violent, people will become harder and more serious, so I don't assume it will stay on this track indefinitely, but it's going to be bad in Europe for a very long time. It'll get worse here too, but literalist Islam is not an existential threat to the US - for now.
I just want to be able to carry and others too, that way when the random muslim tries to kill us we can do to them what the cops do to them after we are dead.
1. People in the media ARE afraid to criticize Islam - several have already been murdered for their speech. Penn Jillette admits he has been intimidated into silence on the topic.
2. It was not a coincidence that the main target of the 9/11 attacks was the "World Trade Center". Militant Islam has always used terror AND economic warfare against it's enemies. Insured losses were $33 Billion, then we blew through a couple $ Trillion on 2 wars. Every American is poorer thanks to that attack.
I agree with almost everything you printed. Except, I think the remains of the Ottoman Empire could very easily spread their chaos and warfare into Europe, Russia, and Africa causing a WW 3.
Jihad cannot bring down the U.S. They pose no real threat and the most that they can do is kill us. They will never destroy America. That will only happen from within through decay and decadence. Socialism combined with a dwindling church attendance and an ignorance of our own history are the most serious threats to the USA.
I appreciate the fact the you use the term Jihad, rather than Terrorism. Terrorism is a neutral term. Sometimes it is a legitimate tool of war. I'm sure we struck terror into the hearts of Germans when we destroyed Dresden, civilians and all.
Afghanistan is an Islamic Republic
Iraq is an Islamic Republic
Arab Spring displaces control mechanisms "our dictators" who, like it or not, controlled the radical Islamic populations they "governed". Now the MB does...
U.S. is 14 Trillion in debt (war is expensive and will continue to be so. No existentialist threat there?)
Mass immigration costing Europe and eventually the U.S. untold amounts of capital while affording the enemy opportunity to move large numbers of military age males into formerly denied areas
USG "never let a crisis go to waste" busily usurping "inalienable rights"
The oppositions plan. Their words not mine:
Seems to me, based on their own plan, 2016 will be the year or phase of "total confrontation"
Islam is the problem. Moderates? So what? They are, have been and will always be inconsequential.
Just a random person....I reckon are war dead are only random people as well. I'll remind myself of that the next time I visit their graves. You may continue to go shopping...