Thursday, July 13, 2006

Friday Open Thread

I've done a lot of writing over the past few days. You're probably getting tired of my keyboard. Sooooo, here's where I open the floor to the readership. What is on your mind this morning?


RightOnPeachtree said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
RightOnPeachtree said...

Sounds like a joke, but I'm not kidding on this -- I finally found a celebrity I can truly respect: Mr. T.

Dante said...

Here is a clickable link for rightonpeachtree's story.

S.A.W.B. said...

The fine people over at the Georgia Sports Blog have the new Auburn scandal covred nicely. If you're at all a UGA fan, you owe it to yourself to hit their page daily.

That said, I'll probably drag something up about the voter ID law that was struck down earlier this week, along with a blurb about cheating plainsmen...

Buzzzbee said...

I have to say, I'm totally on board with the Voter ID thing. I think the state gov't has to go the extra mile and make sure people are able to get cards. If you don't have a Driver's License, you probably have trouble getting to and from places. Like, wherever you get voter ID cards.

All right...I'm going to say this with knowledge that most people probably won't like it, but I've just got to say it. I feel my years of pushing this point of view have earned it.

We Told You So!!!

Three years ago, there was a group of people who said going to war is a mistake. Not because all war is bad and we should never do it(I know there is a very vocal group of people who believe that in my party), but because it looked like a tactical error. At the time, Iraq was contained, and Iran was going nuclear, North Korea was already nuclear, and Afghanistan needed our attention.

Here we are in 2006 and Iran is trying to start WWIII out in the middle east, North Korea is perfecting it capability send it's nuclear weapons to the U.S. and it's allies, Afghanistan is crumbling, and Iraq is a mess. Now, at a time when we really need to be carrying that "big stick", its stuck in the Iraqi sand.

I know some would say that instead of saying "I told you so" we should be building bridges and such, but I disagree. I think its important to point out that these guys may talk a good game, but when it comes down to it, they just don't know how to run things. If we don't point out that we were right, people will forget. Then, when a similar situation comes up in the future, they'll make the same mistake.

I can't count the times I've heard people say "yeah, Clinton had a great economy but aren't you glad the Democrats weren't in charge when 9/11 happened". I hope this fiasco ends this kind of thought.

Patrick Armstrong said...

The reason I don't get into the 'i told you so game' is because whoever told whoever doesn't really matter until the issue is resolved. Far more important than assigning blame is actually coming up with a strategic end point, a finish line that everyone can see and know we are working towards. I'd save the 'I told you so's for history to figure out, and make work on a way out of the current situation the absolute priority.

On another note that you brought up, every time I hear about "Democrats not being in charge on 9/11," I simply remind people of history.

-Oklahoma City: terrorists caught jailed or executed.

-WTC 1993: terrorists caught, jailed.

-Haiti: terrorist violence quelled by the international community led by Americans, work still underway.

-Bosnia/Kosovo: terrorists bombed, fired upon and made to skedaddle. Head terrorist - died awaiting trial.

-Eric Rudolph: finally caught, jailed.

-The Unabomber: finally caught, jailed.

Remember, folks, the United States of America has been waging a war on terrorism since about 1865: The Cowboy gang, the Lincoln County War, the Klan, Capone, the Mob, rioters, the Klan (again), militants of all stripes, Pablo Escobar & the Cartels, the Crips & Bloods (before the truce), and now foreign terrorism from the Middle East (which we've actually been fighting since at least 1983). Add to this list if you so desire.

The war on terror isn't a 'new kind of war,' it is the oldest kind of war. Only the jingo is new.

As far as Iraq goes, the War in Iraq didn't start in 2002 or 2003 or any time the 'decider' decided that he would now go to war in Iraq. The War in Iraq has been a shooting war since 1991 and may outlast 3 Presidential Administrations. Again, not a new war, a new phase of an old one (remind you of any other wars America has engaged in?), repackaged as a new idea.

That's why I'm not worried about 'I told you so's. What I'm worried about is defending history. There are a lot of folks that are trying to rewrite it right now, and they aren't nanny state academics.

I am reminded that losing true history is our greatest danger every time I get an email from someone that says "the US went to war with Germany in WWII, Germany didn't attack us (just like Iraq didn't attack us!!), but WWII was worth it!"

RightOnPeachtree said...

I agree with Patrick in that history will be the arbiter of whether Iraq (or anything else) was a wise move or not. You can dance around and say "I told you so" and then you look silly if/when things work out. I'm still hopeful that they will. We all should be (instead of seeking the optimal time to pull out any premature I-told-you-so's).

I can agree that Bush and Rumsfeld have not done that good of a job with Iraq, though. There have been a ton of huge, strategic mistakes in Iraq. I think that we could have already wrapped that up and been (essentially) out of there if only Rumsfeld/Cheney/etc. had listened to the military experts who already had blueprints for a successful Iraq war strategy. Rumsfeld wanted to do it his way and he has been wrong on almost all accounts (strategically speaking). I blame him and I blame Bush for not firing him. This is all just my opinion, though. Hindsight's 20/20, but foresight should be better than 20/200, for pete's sake. Still, Rumsfeld insisted on doing it his way.

Clinton's record as a defense or military president is a joke, though. He balanced the budget in large part by gutting the military and the intelligence networks. He was handed OBL/UBL on a silver platter and didn't jump on it -- despite the fact that OBL/UBL and Al Qaeda declared war on us and despite the fact that they had already targeted the WTC once. All Clinton did was kick the can down the road -- and the can exploded on 9/11.

I don't think either the Reps or Dems are inherently stronger on defense -- it just depends on the candidate.

Personally, I think it should be a requirement that any president should have active military service in his/her background. I think that's only right if that president is deciding whether or not to send troops into war. I'm sure a lot of folks would disagree, but I just think we have too many privileged Hah-vud elites making defense policy. But that's a discussion for another day.