We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Friday, September 11. 2015
Homeless by Choice' in New York
News about the lady's orgasm
Don’t Expect Health Benefits from NYC’s New Salt Law
The more inept you are, the smarter you think you are
There is ... day by day in America, a growing tolerance of intolerance.
I am tolerant of intolerance, which makes me piously tolerant across the board
The 2016 election is essentially about whether America will remain a country.
Dem Activists to Release “We’re All Mexicans” Song to Combat Donald Trump
This guy loves Hillary
Donald Trump is irreverent and amusing
New Poll Shows Why Palestinians Have No Interest in Peace
Fred Reed: Why They Hate Us
The rest of the world is not a 51st State
Tracked: Sep 13, 09:52
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Trump vulgar? Yeah, oh well!
Better to have a sharp-crease-in-his-pant-leg, cool, smooth-talking (prompter-reading, I mean), faux-Ivy League, traitorous Muslim running the country than a vulgar, "Take Charge, Let's Make America Great Again" sort of guy.
Form over substance every time, particularly when its "Ivy League"!!! Why, just look at that Ivy Leaguer's appointments! Top notch traitors, socialists and grifters in their own right, EVERYONE!
In Budowsky's piece about the Big Truths about Hillary -
I liked the part where he says that the media are giving Trump a pass for his vulgar comments about women, but Hillary is being treated like a pinata. Yes, we've all seen that.
I'm trying to decde if it is a Dunning-Kruger effect, or simply a narcissism that cannot bear to see anything critical about one's own tribe. The two may be related, certainly.
The 2016 election is essentially about whether America will remain a country.
Commenting seems to be broken over at Zman...
Lazarus Long waited it out on the Martian Colonies during the "Time of Troubles" on Earth. Lucky man.
The point being we have no where else to go if we don't fix what is wrong here. And when our backs are against the wall ALL the 'bad' options will go back on top of the table.
"...the centuries-long belief that all peoples everywhere are embryonic Westerners..."
I don't think that is a "centuries-long belief" at all (not least because centuries ago there was no such thing as a "Westerner" as we would identify ourselves today).
My guess is that it dates from not much further back than the post-WWI era, possibly back to Wilson's woolly self-determination-of-peoples fixation that meant every lousy little squabbling tribe and clan had the right to declare itself a state.
Prior to that, civilizing was an imperial project, the "White Man's Burden" - by jingo, we'll hammer those inferior peoples into a facsimile of ourselves for their own good!
And the basic leitmotif of all immigration was: become one of us if you want to succeed. That expectation of immigrants, obviously softened in tone somewhat from the days when, say, hapless Irishmen were excoriated, is still a valid one, in my view.
President Obama and his administration will be gone forever in just 496 days.
In terms of the speed at which most government bureaucracies work, his administration is pretty much toast already since there are few areas in which he can hope to advance major policy projects to fruition before 20 January 2017.
"Fred Reed: Why they hate us"
Fred is typically over the top. He out did himself on this one. Maybe there was a valid point somewhere in there but it was lost in the vitriol. Does Fred really believe that JFK started the Vietnam war with the intent to kill innocent women and children? He seems to believe that and that is the theme that linked all his examples together. One of America parachuting into some innocent country to kill thousands of civilians and then leaving them to their misery. I disagreed with the Vietnam war and never thought it was a good idea. But I don't think JFK intended to destroy the country for sport. I believe it was a combination of naivete and compassion with a sprinkling of wanting to stop the communist terror machine that launched the Vietnam war. The naivete made him believe that we could save the country and bring peace if we simply used enough force. Well, we all know how that turned out, or do we? Fred seems to think it was the Americans who killed all those civilians. Indeed we killed thousands of civilians and hundreds of thousands of NVA soldiers. But the NVA had the opposite goal and they killed hundreds of thousands of civilians and thousands of American soldiers. The difference was that the NVA intended to kill the civilians while using them as shields. The U.S. intended to kill the NVA to free the civilians but could not prevent the collateral damage. In retrospect we and the South Vietnamese, would have been better off if we had stayed home. The communist intended to kill or reprogram all the civilians anyway and all we did was draw out the inevitable and put it all on TV. But I think Fred was wrong and JFK was not bad just not that smart.
A great read from Wretch at Belmont Club
"Bin Laden knew that the weakness of the West lay, not in it’s armed forces, technology or economy, but in the alienation of its own elites. Attempting to explain the complete capitulation of the Western decision makers to the refugee flood rushing at their borders Peggy Noonan notes in her Wall Street Journal article that the political and cultural elites no longer even regard territorial integrity as an existential issue. It was something well enough to have, but certainly nothing worth defending to the point of inconvenience; and most assuredly not unto the death.
Like the barons of yesteryear, they were secure in castles rising above the squalid countryside, safe from pestilence, hunger and even war. Noonan describes the modern aristocracy as a law unto themselves, living in a world unto itself, with more in common with foreign princes, other elite classes than with the commoners who surround them.
Rules on immigration and refugees are made by safe people. These are the people who help run countries, who have nice homes in nice neighborhoods and are protected by their status. Those who live with the effects of immigration and asylum law are those who are less safe, who see a less beautiful face in it because they are daily confronted with a less beautiful reality—normal human roughness, human tensions. Decision-makers fear things like harsh words from the writers of editorials; normal human beings fear things like street crime. Decision-makers have the luxury of seeing life in the abstract. Normal people feel the implications of their decisions in the particular.
The decision-makers feel disdain for the anxieties of normal people, and ascribe them to small-minded bigotries, often religious and racial, and ignorant antagonisms. But normal people prize order because they can’t buy their way out of disorder.
People in gated communities of the mind, who glide by in Ubers, have bought their way out and are safe. Not to mention those in government-maintained mansions who glide by in SUVs followed by security details. Rulers can afford to see national-security threats as an abstraction—yes, yes, we must better integrate our new populations. But the unprotected, the vulnerable, have a right and a reason to worry."
I think that is spot on. This "people of the west" idea is mostly Anglospheric, with some bleed-through to NW continental Europe and Scandinavia. It is recent and incomplete even here.
"Fred is typically over the top." Yes. I don't read him anymore.
Yeh? What can he do? Just add 10,000 "refugees" from Islamic countries to the countless others sneaking over our borders, sign a "deal" with Iran while lifting sanctions and further sacrificing former allies to a nuclear threat, spend us into another billion-or-so of debt that can only be paid off by destroying the middle class, again offer more low-down mortgages to those unable to meet such obligations and again disrupt the housing market (then, the rest of the economy), ignore the slow march of consolidation in the healthcare corporate market bringing us to just one more "too big to fail" sector of our economy, tromp all over law enforcement and the military to leave us exposed to endless disruptions on the domestic front…shall I go on?
A mere 10,000 refugees?
In other words just a little more than 0.0031 percent of your population.
Wow! That wicked Obama fellow is really risking a demographic tsunami, isn't he?
"The rest of the world is not a 51st State"
A successful global power will inevitably be the object of envy, jealousy, loathing and distrust.
The pursuit of your national interests will inevitably conflict with those of other countries.
It cannot always be happy-clappy and choruses of "It's A Small World After All".
Hey, JJM, correct me if I'm wrong, but don't you live in a country other than the one I've been living in, the U.S., for over sixty years?
Am I wrong about that? if I am...disregard my post.
If not, just who the f@ck are you to be telling us what does and doesn't work here?
GoneWithTheWind: Does Fred really believe that JFK started the Vietnam war with the intent to kill innocent women and children?
That's exactly contrary to the position he outlines in the essay. Rather, he states how many non-Americans view the U.S., even when that view is exaggerated or simply wrong.
From the Vietnamese point of view, for instance, they were promised free elections in 1956, but those elections were scuttled when it became clear that Ho would win overwhelming, Eisenhower saying "a possible 80 per cent of the population would have voted for the communist Ho Chi Minh as their leader.”
Why? Why any? It is illogical unless it is a political/bias thing. And why should our politicians inflict this on us because of THEIR politics or bias? It makes no sense. If it is such a "good" thing please send us your address and we will ship the 10,000 to you.
"Rather, he states how many non-Americans view the U.S."
A distinction without a difference. If you read the essay you must understand Fred is agreeing with the arguement. Fred is making the arguement. Fred believes the arguement.
"If not, just who the f@ck are you to be telling us what does and doesn't work here?"
Oh, you charmer you! You certainly have a way with words!
"If it is such a 'good' thing please send us your address and we will ship the 10,000 to you."
Nice try. But, nope, those 10,000 are yours, friend. We're already taking 13,000 ourselves.
Not a lot more than you're taking except in our case that represents not 0.0031 percent but 0.036 percent of our population. In other words, you'd have to be taking just over 100,000 to match us proportionately.
And that's on top of 20,000 Iraqis we've already taken.
So? B.F.D. You don't like my language.
Are you a citizen of the United States? What's your stake in what happens here?
You seem to have an awful lot to say about how we live in the US, and what we should be doing about it. SO… where do you live that you have so much f@cking time on you hands, you can reel off suggestions on how we should be running our country in you spare time?
Why don't you take care of the crap in your own house,wherever that is, before you start organizing our shit for us?
"Why don't you take care of the crap in your own house, wherever that is, before you start organizing our shit for us?"
Isn't that what foreigners say about Americans too?
Why does that Fred Reed article come to mind?
First of all, why don't you tell us what country you're posting from (you seem not want to get to that part of the question) 'cause you sure as shit aren't an American.
And then, I'll help you figure out just in which ways we've probably already saved your ass a couple of times, and sorted out your crap for you.
So if I tell you what country I'm in, you'll reward me with a patronizing lecture?
Proud of your people and who you are, right?
Fuck off, and keep you bullshit opinions about my G.Damn country to yourself.
There. That worked for me.
I hear they'll be letting in Jews and Catholics next. what is this country coming to?
But you can't answer WHY? We don't need more poor non-English speaking welfare bums who hate us we already have too many. Why accept any immigrants? Why? Why? Why?
Trump is making comments that would give the Left half of the Internet the vapors, if they weren't directed at Fox News anchors and GOP candidates.
Hillary's problem is her private email server scandal has started to move in the direction of a national security issue. The increasing scrutiny .s going to be a lot harder to blame on a VWRC.
Gloria Estafan, Shakira, Carlos Santana, and other Hispanic activists will title their song–“We’re all Mexicans.”
For me to take them seriously, I expect them to renounce US citizenship and self-deport to Mexico. Otherwise they're just rich hypocrite entertainers.
Obama should tax entertainment earnings at 95%.
GoneWithTheWind: If you read the essay you must understand Fred is agreeing with the arguement. Fred is making the arguement. Fred believes the arguement.
You had falsely claimed that the author was arguing that Kennedy started the Vietnam War to kill innocent people. That is certainly not the author's position. Rather, America saw Vietnam as a pawn in a larger struggle; however, most Vietnamese certainly saw the Americans as just another in a long line of foreign invaders.
That was clearly the implication. You cannot claim that the U.S. goes to war and kills hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians and then use Vietnam as an example but then deny you meant JFK started the war to kill civilians. What Fred was saying is that the U.S. injects itself into fights around the world and then kills civilians. This has been the mantra since the 60's anti-war demonstrations; our returnng soldiers were called baby killers (ironic when you understand that the NVA did in fact intentionally kill babies and children).
My advice to you would be to be honest and not hide behind weasel words. If you agree with Fred (and you must because you are defending him) then AGREE with him. Don't try to parse the words so that you can still throw crap at the U.S. but somehow deny that is what you meant. Stand up for what you believe in. If you truely thinks the U.S. sucks don't be afraid to say so.
GoneWithTheWind: You cannot claim that the U.S. goes to war and kills hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians and then use Vietnam as an example but then deny you meant JFK started the war to kill civilians.
That's silly Of course you can. The obvious motive was to prevent the spread of communism in the larger geopolitical struggle, wherein Vietnam was a pawn.
GoneWithTheWind: What Fred was saying is that the U.S. injects itself into fights around the world and then kills civilians.
That is fairly well undeniable.
GoneWithTheWind: My advice to you would be to be honest
Our position — for the third time — is that you falsely claimed that the author was arguing that Kennedy started the Vietnam War in order to kill innocent people.
GoneWithTheWind: If you agree with Fred (and you must because you are defending him) then AGREE with him.
The author's point is that other countries often see the actions of the U.S. as less than altruistic, but often destructive to the aspirations of the people in those other countries.
"People remember slights."
How many Americans understand that the U.S. overthrew the democratically-elected government of Iran and installed a pro-Western dictator? Or that the U.S. scuttled democratic elections in Vietnam when they realized that Ho Chi Minh would win by a landslide? Or that the U.S. invaded Mexico in order to take their lands? Or that the Americans supported death squads in Latin America? While Americans have forgotten, the people of those countries have not.
Why any immigration? We are a country of 330,000,000 people moe or less we are not running out of people. We cannot employ all our people (mostly due to stupid politicians but that's another story) so why bring in more? We don't need legal immigrants, illegal immigrants, or refugees. Until we can get our own people employed and off of welfare why in the worl would we bring more people here EVEN IF they were good people which most of our immigrants are not?
Send home all who are not citizens, legal and illegal. Stop all immigration, legal and llegal. Stop allowing the UN to tell us waht to do. There is no legitimate case to be made for allowing imigration.
So there it is. You believe that the U.S. injects itself into fights around the world to kill innocent civilians. And yet for reasons you will not fess up to you don’t believe that JFK did the same thing in Vietnam. Sounds politically motivated to me.
“you falsely claimed that the author was arguing that Kennedy started the Vietnam War in order to kill innocent people.”
Falsely! That’s what he said. Is English your second language? Reread Fred and tell me that isn’t what was said/implied.
“other countries often see the actions of the U.S. as less than altruistic”
That’s true. France still has great difficulty admitting we saved their ass in WW II. It offends them so much they do exactly what you and Fred said; they blame us for everything that goes wrong in the world. So where is the truth?
“the U.S. overthrew the democratically-elected government of Iran and installed a pro-Western dictator”
That is what you think is the truth. In fact the country of Iran was in turmoil and the election you cite was fraudulent. That “dictator” you refer to was IRAN’S NOT OURS. That ‘dictator’ presided over Iran’s enlightened period where the citizens were free and women were not persecuted. What the ‘elected’ dictator wanted to do was create a repressive Islamic state. As to the U.S. over throwing it I think you got your history from the internet. The U.S. did NOT overthrow their ‘elected’ dictator the Iranians did. The U.S. had an opinion about it and some try to inflate that as though we somehow forced Iran to pick the second choice but that is pure fantasy. The Muslim Brotherhood stole the election and the Iranian people took it back. Simple as that.
I do agree that it could be construed as the U.S. invaded Mexico to take their lands. That was after Spain invaded Northern America to take the lands that Mexico subsequently claimed as theirs. So who did it rightly belong to? Some would say the Indians. Legally it was a handful or Spanish elite who owned those lands. Then Mexico took those legally owned lands from those Spanish elite by force. So who owned them? Some would say that the people living there owned them. Who lived there? A handful of Mexicans, Spanish and quite a few Americans. Yet you toss it all off as the U.S. taking it.
GoneWithTheWind: So there it is. You believe that the U.S. injects itself into fights around the world to kill innocent civilians.
You are really working hard beating up on that strawman. The U.S. does interject itself into fights around the world, and civilians are inevitably killed. That's quite a different statement than saying the U.S. intervenes in order to kill civilians.
GoneWithTheWind: That’s what he said.
This is where you provide an actual argument, such as by quoting the text. Then again, you can't properly represent our own views, so we don't have a lot of hope for your reading of the text.
GoneWithTheWind: France still has great difficulty admitting we saved their ass in WW II.
That's hardly the case. France has long acknowledged their debt to the U.S.
GoneWithTheWind: In fact the country of Iran was in turmoil and the election you cite was fraudulent.
In 1951, Mosaddiq was voted prime minister by a wide margin in the democratically-elected Persian parliament, the Majlis.
GoneWithTheWind: The U.S. did NOT overthrow their ‘elected’ dictator the Iranians did.
The CIA has admitted to involvement in the coup d'état after decades of denial. As usual, the only people fooled by American denials were the American public. Every Iranian school child already knows what the CIA only recently admitted.
GoneWithTheWind: The Muslim Brotherhood stole the election and the Iranian people took it back.
Huh? The Muslim Brotherhood is a Sunni group, and has never been active in Iran.
GoneWithTheWind: I do agree that it could be construed as the U.S. invaded Mexico to take their lands.
Construed? It was explicit.
Ulysses S. Grant: The Mexican War "was one of the most unjust wars ever waged by a stronger against a weaker nation."
“The CIA has admitted to involvement”
Not true. An individual wrote a book claiming he worked for the CIA and claiming he lobbied (not overthrew) the Iranians. He was one man!!! How did he pull off a coup?
“it could be construed as the U.S. invaded Mexico to take their lands.”
The point was that Mexico never had a real claim to the land that was what was construed. There were more Americans on those lands than Mexicans. Mexico’s “claim” to the land was Spanish land grants that Spain awarded to Spanish nobles. Spain took those lands by force so if you believe someone who takes land by force owns the land it is clear that the U.S. owns the land!! The war was less unjust than was Mexico’s treatment of American’s who lived there and owned their lands. Mexico was the thug in that conflict.
GoneWithTheWind: Not true.
As we said, like always, the only ones fooled were the American public. Sad, really.
That is the official version. But I have the advantage of having looked into this prior to Obama's election AND I personally knew officers in the Iranian military in the early 60's who talked openly about this situation. There was a lone (possibly) CIA agent in Tehran who was indeed sympathetic to the Shah. Did he single handedly overthrow the government? No! That was done by a couple million Iranians who were angry with the fake election that put Mossadegh in power.
The real question is why did the Obama administration create this phony story and who does it benefit?
GoneWithTheWind: The real question is why did the Obama administration create this phony story and who does it benefit?
Obama must have a time machine then. Many of the documents date to the 1950s, and the CIA history confirming their involvement was compiled during the 1970s.
The official story is that these documents date to the 1950's but do they? They came out after Obama took office, why? The CIA din't have to release these (if they are real) the Obama administration choose to do it, why? Than, as if on cue, Obama gives away the farm to Iran. Have you no curiosity at all? IF the official story is true (which it is not) than WHY would the administration just open the files and help sabotage the negotiations?
GoneWithTheWind: The official story is that these documents date to the 1950's but do they?
The New York Times published articles based on leaks in the 1970s. The recent release by the CIA confirms those articles. There's no way to avoid the truth any longer. U.S. was complicit in overthrowing the elected government of Iran. When Iranian militants claimed that the U.S. was subverting their country, they were telling the truth, while the U.S. was lying.
GoneWithTheWind: WHY would the administration just open the files
Because the only people who were in the dark were the American people — as usual.
"U.S. was complicit in overthrowing the elected government of Iran."
Complicit! Because there was one American there who later claimed to actively aided the "rebels".
In fact you could argue that the British were the primary foriegn party that was complicit in over throwing the puppet government of Iran but not the U.S. For some reason the Obama administration decided to release real or phony CIA records to inflame the Iran situation. WHY? They didn't need to. There is no FOIA that can require them to do this. They choose to do it and used the Democrat surrogate NYTimes to do it.
But the real thing about this that bugs you is that when the Iranians threw out Moseddegh and his communist cronies they choose a moderate leader, Pahlavi, to rule benevolently for 25 years. That was 25 years of freedom, fair treatment of women, education and trade. That really gripes you doesn't it?
GoneWithTheWind: Because there was one American there who later claimed to actively aided the "rebels".
The U.S. actively brought about the coup. The CIA did extensive planning, determining in April 1953, that a coup was possible. In May, they began a propaganda campaign. Eisenhower gave approval to the plan on July 11, 1953. After installing Zahedi, the government arrested hundreds of political opponents. Mossadegh was arrested and sentenced to death. The minister of foreign affairs was sentenced to death and executed. In 1954, the British oil company resumes operations.
The only people fooled were the American and British people. Everyone else has known for decades. You still won't admit it even after the CIA has released the memos authorizing the CIA to overthrow the Iranian government.
Q: Why has there never been a military coup in the United States?
A: Because there's no U.S. embassy in the U.S.