Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Remember that Old Vietnam Refrain?

Pssst! Send more troops!!!


With Secretary Don Rumsfeld and gate-keeper Steve Gambone no longer keeping the gates, the Pentagon is leaking. Through the cracks in the floor and door jams, Bush's dirty little secret is seeping out. Cheney wants to do an additional 'surge' deployment of 20,000 extra troops lasting possibly six to eight months.

Sources say that the Joint Chiefs have taken a firm stand to the effect that the White House still does not have a defined mission and is latching on to the surge idea in part because of limited alternatives to the Stay The Course 'strategerey'.

It isn't that Bush is just staying the course, hoping something will turn up and save his legacy (because it's always easier to be lucky than good). It's that his Republican sponsors want him to postpone American withdrawal until his inevitable Democratic successor can be stuck 'losing Iraq'. Bush's ultimate legacy, at this point, can only be resuscitated by a renewal of Republican hegemony in 2012. If it costs even more in blood and treasure to lay the grounds for swiftboating a 'defeatocrat' administration beginning in 2008, more's the pity.

The truth is we don't need 20,000 more troops in Iraq. We need 100,000 fresh troops there. And we don't have them. The occupation is already costing $2 billion a week. So how, exactly, are we going to afford the extra 20,000 troops? Robert Reich (needing no introduction), states
. . . defense appropriations continue to raise military pay 3.1 percent a year, considerably faster than civilian pay is rising.

Cash isn’t the Pentagon’s only lure. The military is also offering signing bonuses up to $30,000 for jobs in high demand. You can get up to a $150,000 cash bonus for re-enlisting if you’re with the Special Forces. And all recruits are eligible for up to $50,000 to offset the costs of higher education and up to $65,000 to pay back college loans. Not to mention generous housing, child care, and health benefits.
The joint chiefs have taken a firm stand on this 'surge' tactic because they believe this moment in time may be the last chance to save the armed services from being 'broken' and to curb Bush's unrestrained and counterproductive militarization of the war against terror.

The question is will Congress stand up? More to the point, will We-the-People stand up?

It is time for Republicans and Democrats to stand up together and demand that we are out of Iraq and/or Bush is out of the White House by November 2008. One or the other, whichever comes first.

52 Moderated Comments:

Blogger DB Cooper said...

Didn't I see a poll where only 11% of We the People favored an increase of our troops in Iraq?

12/20/2006 09:18:00 AM  
Blogger MadMike said...

I didn't catch the numbers DB but I did hear that it was very small, most if not all neo-nuts I suspect. Regardless, it matters not to Bush. He has no intention of listening to the will of the American people or learning from the mistakes of history. He will charge forward, and the military has little choice but to follow him into hell.

12/20/2006 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger Recidivist said...

Army Gen. John P. Abizaid, commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East, is retiring in dissent of adding troops to the Iraqi pyre.

LA Times

12/20/2006 12:06:00 PM  
Blogger HILLBLOGGER & Hillblogger Jr said...

Vigilante,

I don't know whether you've included in that weekly $2B costing, the security (aka mercenary work) and technical support services groups deployed in Iraq (and Afghanistan) under direct contract with or employed by the DoD, i.e., paid for with US taxpayers' money.

That's a LOT of dough for a war with no concrete plan.

Despite US $13T GDP and the country's more than 1 million troops and marines, there comes a time when the buck has to stop somewhere.

At the rate the war on Iraq is going, without any concrete plan, no real strategy, with a confused political leadership, Bush is heading towards a war of attrition with the risk that US military and the US taxpayers' money being "attrited" rather than the enemy, not to speak of the loss of good will (I suppose he's already past that) world wide.

Bush is suffering desperately from the well-known Chinese as well as Japanese warrior syndrome, i.e., not knowing how to save face!

Well, we'll see.

Vigilante, best wishes for a happy holiday season and a great new year - to you and to yours.

(HILLS are off will be back early January 2007!)

12/20/2006 01:18:00 PM  
Blogger M.D. said...

"...will We-the-People stand up?"

No. I'm feeling very pessimistic.

I think you've nailed it. He's just stringing the whole thing out until his term is over.

12/20/2006 02:09:00 PM  
Blogger RoseCovered Glasses said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

12/20/2006 02:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rose covered glass`s these issue`s you bring up are not really appreciated here , in the sense that most of the bloggers here are actually a part of the problem , the congressional/military complex that you bring up , or rather , they are only foot soldiers of disinformation for them.
They are not aware of that though.

The people here are for the most part willing participants and believers in the current system.
Their speculation does not go much beyond gaming the current system with out understanding it though.

For the most part I seriously doubt if many here understand the dynamic you are bringing up.
As far as I can tell they do not even understand why the war happened and the great succes it has been for making many dollars for the people involved.
It has also saved our economy , as this type of economy actually desires war to grow and prosper.
A field day for special interest and a good time laughing on the way to the bank for many, particularly British petroleum , and Saudi oil , and lots of others.

12/20/2006 04:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post. I am forever hopeful that Americans are more observant than we give them credit for, and I am sure that they are tolerant. That tolerance can swing both ways--and it certainly has helped the demise of this country and our military and the lower and middle class economy under this President (whether it is he or the military that is in the leadership role). As I see it, Americans will give Democrats two years to fix this problem, and the heat is on us, whether that's fair or not--BIG TIME. Our leadership needs to remember that, and that they alone have inherited the moral authority to make decisions for this country. If no leaders and no public outrage have stepped up the pressure on Bush and the Pentagon by June of 2007, I can imagine how much more we'll be owned by special interests after Nov 2008. Personally, I think Americans will be in the streets by March (yes, I'm so hopelessly optimistic).

12/20/2006 04:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don`t think you get it Urban Pink. People like you are part of the problem. There is no difference between the party`s. That is only part of the divide and conquer strategy employed by this system to fool you.
We live in a political thug society. Legalized , organized crime.
Repubs and Demos are the same. Run by the same special interest groups. That is not going to change , unless the system is changed.
Lots of money has changed hands and will change hands with the continuing war. That is the crux of what this is about . Not the victims of the war, the money the war generates all around to special interest groups.

12/20/2006 05:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh, last two years. I'm going to work hard, Michael. I'm going to sprint to the finish, and we can get a lot done. And you're talking about legacy. Here -- I know, look, everybody is trying to write the history of this administration even before it's over. I'm reading about George Washington still. My attitude is, if they're still analyzing number 1, 43 ought not to worry about it and just do what he thinks is right, and make the tough choices necessary.

We're in the beginning stages of an ideological struggle, Michael, that's going to last a while. And I want to make sure this country is engaged in a positive and constructive way to secure the future for our children. And it's going to be a tough battle.

But the true history of any administration is not going to be written until long after the person is gone. It's just impossible for short-term history to accurately reflect what has taken place. Most historians, you know, probably had a political preference, and so their view isn't exactly objective -- most short-term historians. And it's going to take a while for people to analyze mine or any other of my predecessors until down the road when they're able to take -- watch the long march of history and determine whether or not the decisions made during the eight years I was President have affected history in a positive way.

12/20/2006 06:19:00 PM  
Anonymous pekka said...

Damn it, I just can't ignore the concerns raised by Skippy!

When a few months ago I started to follow more closely your politics, my main confusion was - what the hell is the difference between these two parties? Now, after the intensive schooling by the likes of Vigil, only one question remains - what the hell is the difference between these two parties?

However, I don't seem to have any problem in assessing your executive branch wielding way too much power. Under the special circumstances like righ now, due to the fact that the President's aspirations for the country do not mesh with those of the people, it looks clear to me, that this power can be and is used contrary to your national interests.

Despite of the fact that President's approval rates are as low as the proverbial Limbo-stick at home and that the world leaders are rolling their eyes behind his back, he remains firmly in the saddle and riding the pony over the cliff while American people are hoplessly dragged behind. Is it just me, but there is something wrong with this picture?

12/20/2006 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

As an attempt to meet Skip Sievert halfway, I want to say a few words briefly.

Leaving aside all of the grossly aberrant policies Bush has pursued in the domestic arena in the wake of 9-11, he has pursued a hydra-head of calamities in foreign policies against the national interests of the United States: (1) the incomplete pursuit of Osama bin Laden (2) a virtual declaration of war against Iran by painting it as indistinguishable from North Korea and Iraq [SOTU January 2002](3) an un-provoked, unnecessary, largely unilateral invasion and unplanned occupation of Iraq (UULUIUOI); (4) inadequate extermination of the Taliban; (5) tilting in favor of the Israeli West Bank expropriation of Palestinian lands; and (6) encouraged Israelis to mount a disastrous and destructive proxy war against democratic Lebanon.

If he had done what he had said he was going to do - get Osama dead or alive - and defeated al Qaeda's hosts, Mullah Omar's Taliban and if he had not have done Iraq?

Then would I have cared if Haliburton - poster boy of corruption - were to have enjoyed unparalleled windfall profits as part of the military-industrial complex?

No, definitely not: to quote Sievert, I would have cheered the

". . . field day for special interest and a good time laughing on the way to the bank for many, particularly British petroleum , and Saudi oil , and lots of others . . ."

Not a problem for me as long as the policy was rationally constructed to follow the interests of the United States. But, that is not what happened and is not what is happening, is it? The policies of this criminally incompetent and irresponsible junta in the White House is itself corrupt; and corruption which derives from it is unnecessary and intolerable.

If Bush and Cheney had done what they said they were going to do: avenge the deaths of 3,000 innocent Americans killed on their watch, then war-profiteering would have bothered me not at all. But Bush and Cheney, asleep at their watch before 9-11, abandoned their mission afterwards.

Consequently, the only governmental official in this sorry-ass eight-year interlude who deserves the presidential Medal of Freedom is Bunny Greenhouse.

The bottom line is Skip is partially right: had Bush and Cheney given us Osama's head and not launched this (UULUIUOI), I would have been indifferent to war profiteering.

12/20/2006 08:26:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

An absolutely superp post and an even better discussion.

vigilante is absolutely totally correct and I believe he represents the view of almost all Americans.

If the Middle Eastern "adventure" had clearly a defined goal (the capture or death of Osama bin Laden) with a clearly measurable yardstick for success and, most importantly, an honest assessment of our progress, Bush would enjoy much greater respect and support.

the Wizard.......

12/20/2006 09:59:00 PM  
Blogger Blogging4Food said...

Vigil, what a day Skip Sievert has enjoyed here! Where else can anyone struggling with a half-baked dogma ever be recognized as half-correct?

12/20/2006 10:23:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4food, given my recent exchange with Skip showing his lack of basic knowledge of the founding documents and his warmed over communist dogma which he holds to just as close as any religous zealot he complains about Vigil needs to be considered for sainthood for keeping him around.

12/21/2006 04:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Buddy said...

LMFAO!

12/21/2006 06:32:00 AM  
Blogger DB Cooper said...

How many in here have wondered if GWB's policy of escalation at this point is comparable to Nixon's bombing of Hanoi and Cambodia?

How many of you have wondered whether Cheney has decided that Bush has to withdrawal from Iraq soon but before Uncle Sam leaves, he has to dish out a lesson in terrible retribution so that he is remembered?

12/21/2006 06:42:00 AM  
Blogger Malfrat said...

Ned Lamont says we're at the decision point: ten years or ten months in Iraq, and it's immoral and cowardly not to make this decision and opt just to stay the course and allow our out-numbered men and women to be continually be picked off by snipers and I.E.D.'s
Hartford Courant

12/21/2006 07:37:00 AM  
Blogger Messenger said...

Malfrat, In my opinion, ten years would require leadership which could legitimately wear the mantle of Teddy Roosevelt or Harry Truman. And, further, anyone who was stupid and gullible enough not to oppose this Iraqi adventure at the get-go is automatically disqualified and unworthy from such consideration.

America should vote "No" against the 'Surge' as a vote of no-confidence in George Bush. If Bush and Cheney should resign - not likely - I reserve the right to reconsider.

12/21/2006 07:54:00 AM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

Regarding Truman, read No, Bush is not Harry Truman.

Anybody who believes Bush can wear Truman's shoes should order another glass of Kool-Aid.

12/21/2006 08:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bush is reminding me more and more of a certain Hitler , rather than a certain Nixon.
Toward the end of the Nazi war Hitler was more and more isolated, he went against the advice and admonitions of his generals, and became mad, it is thought. Like Bush he was an authoritarian fascist type. I can visualize a little swastika instead of the S in Bush`s last name.
Hitler and Bush seem much alike to me. I predict a similar Hubris fall for Bush. I can easily see an attempt to remove Bush by the military on the horizon. This whole situation could lead to many unexpected consequences for America in the short term.
I expect a collapsing American economy , and possibly a widening war to try to patch it up.
It only gets worse from here. Connect your seat belts and get ready for the crash test.
---------
Thanks for your honest admission Vigilante.
Our special interest price system political system is unraveling. It is always based on the wrong choices , and those wrong choices pile up over time , and create intractable problems. As resources are destroyed and population grows , we approach a crossroads shortly. We must change or be swept away into a total authoritarian/fascist society.

12/21/2006 08:37:00 AM  
Blogger Recidivist said...

For one thing, Vigilante, Harry was no CHICKENHAWK.

12/21/2006 08:53:00 AM  
Blogger LittleBill said...

Skip: I was particularly interested in your last paragraph, in which you mentioned population. That is something NO ONE in or out of government seems to be thinking much about. From either party, nada. That will take a lot of political courage, probably to be rewarded with political defeat.

Shortly after we finish the holiday diversion, I plan to repost my post specifically on this matter. Hope you will see it.

12/21/2006 11:39:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Despite of the fact that President's approval rates are as low as the proverbial Limbo-stick at home and that the world leaders are rolling their eyes behind his back, he remains firmly in the saddle and riding the pony over the cliff while American people are hoplessly dragged behind. Is it just me, but there is something wrong with this picture?

Of course it's not just you. I think what you are witnessing is how effective the American propaganda machine has been, we simply cannot believe that our country can really and truly "fall apart".

No, no, not us...we are "the Greatest Nation". We are smarter, faster, more advanced, more caring, more decent, and just generally more special in every possible way than any other nation in the world.

We really believe this, right down to the the tiptoes of our brand new Nike's. Thanks to this belief, we don't get too excited because we just "know" that these are only "commas" in the history of the world. We "know" that this is just a bump in the road and that "everything will work out" and "someone" will "fix" things sooner or later without our having to be distracted from our pursuit of happiness and the next American Idol.

I'm afraid things will have to get much worse for the average citizen here to start seeing the flaws in that theory.

12/21/2006 12:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point Not your Mama. North America is blessed with a huge amount of natural resources of which these resources are now being plundered to further Globalism , which is antithetical to the benefit of North America and its citizens. Corporatacracy/special interest controllers have no allegiance to our area except as exploiters.

Little Bill it is thought that perhaps the population currently is about 3 billion people at least over the carrying capacity of our resources that must be renewable. It has been said that we are currently using about 2 and 1/2 times the resources per year that the Earth can renew. We are doomed on this path.
The green revolution of farming , and also the areas of the U.S. that produce food is driving this overpopulation , and resource destruction. The reason simply is to make more money. Something that we do not need, and something that has no value.
While the world depends on us to keep it going , this dynamic is leading to our own destruction as well as theirs also.
It will be a terrible day of reckoning ,but the sooner we break off our negative involvement in the world , as money grubbing price system flunky`s , the better.
It is in the best interests of the world also for us to stop , as they then can find a sustainable level , with a new appreciation for their own resources.

12/21/2006 01:37:00 PM  
Blogger MadMike said...

Rose Covered Glasses makes great sense. I served a tour in Vietnam, and a number of years as a CI agent. I did not spend near the time as he in the "complex" but I spent enough to know he is absolutely right. He is also correct when he says our golden aura is diminishing and I alluded to this on a prior post.

As to you, Mr. President, you are absolutely right! It will take historians YEARS to define your presidency much less identify a legacy other than that of a failed era in the history of our great nation. You have led us down the primrose path, not just once, but twice. Your religious fanaticism has affected government at every level, and the system is showing the strain, as are the American people. Regardless, we will recover from you. One day we will wake up and we will no longer be filled with a sad and lazy despair. One day we will be happy again and damn proud to be American. I suspect that day will come toward the end of January 2009. Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!

12/21/2006 03:03:00 PM  
Anonymous pekka said...

Our friend, Skippy, gets a rough ride here based on the solutions he is offering to stop the cyclical and ever increasing problems with the obvious unsustainability on how we conduct our lifes. Skippy is worried where this all is leading as we all should.

In my mind, he has consistantly offered us near brilliant diagnosis what's ailing the Industrial World. His cure, generally speaking, leaves me somewhat skeptical. What should be clear to us by now, though, is that to keep fixing this old greedy system with sticking more bandages is not going to work, just as it hasn't worked before. Some short term and immediate improvement, after wrestling power away from the NeoCons, is given but the deep and systematic problems shall remain. A lot smarter people than me should urgently start finding ways to do some fundamental chages. They will never happen if the people don't insist upon them. The fact that the representatives on the both side's of the isle are a lot more similar to each other than to those outside, sets limitations what can be expected of them in terms of reform.

Not your mama might not be yours but she sure is mine. To be quite honest with you people, I almost didn't come here at all but I am so glad I did. My mama gave me such a lovely injection of optimism and hope that maybe more people will be able to see through the thick fogg of propaganda, myth, lies and misinformation. Thank you dear, your words are my new inspiration!

12/21/2006 03:27:00 PM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

If you see Pekka before I do, will you ask him a question for me?

12/21/2006 07:10:00 PM  
Blogger Messenger said...

On Haditha: That four United States Marines be charged for murder of 24 Iraqi civilians under the Universal Code is proof positive that Bush has broken our military. Marines are fighters; they were not intended to be occupiers.

12/22/2006 07:50:00 AM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

Good point.

The longer this occupation goes on, more bizerker incidents like this are inevitable.

Another way to look at this is the occupation will continue in order to save Bush's face at the expense of dishonoring America's armed forces.

America should choose whose honor is more sacred.

12/22/2006 08:00:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vigil,
Had to stop by and wish you a Merry Christmas. I'm entering the fallout shelter now until this maddness is over.

12/22/2006 11:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard on NPR today that of the 140,000 troops stationed in Iraq, about 70 or 80 thousand are combat troops. So, only about half the troops there are equipped for fighting. Assuming the same ratio for 20,000 more troops, the yield for additional combat troops is like 10,000.

This just seems plain crazy to me. Either Bush & co are just plain idiots or the cynicism expressed in one of the comments about getting the Dems to "lose" the war in 2008-2012 is spot on. I just can't tell which is more likely.

As to the philosophy of the ethics and efficacy of our government being discussed here - the topic merits its own blog in its entirety.

But I will say this about it - until human nature changes such that people don't do bad things, some degree of corruption and inefficiency is just going to be there. It sucks. But show me a perfect human...? Temptation and fallibility are part of being human. Ethics are often a matter of degree and context, and hopefully enough people in society stay on the "right" side of the line most of the time so that society benefits as a collective.

Which brings me to my point, and where I think Skip misses something. Yes, both parties suck. Yes, there's lots of problems that need to be fixed. But life is pretty good in the U.S. for most of us, especially relative to many other parts of the world. In large part this is due to the social compact developed by the Framers, and in fact that compact has managed to overcome horrible flaws - slavery, sufferage issues, segregation, McCarthy, absolute disdain for Lochner-era labor, etc. And the public has managed to rise and adjust each time. Here, the risk to America's safety, security and prosperity is the abandonment of the social and moral compact of the constitution by the Bush administration. Don't tell me you wouldn't rather have Al Gore as president.

This is where I think UrbanPink is onto something, and why Skip, not Pink, misses the point. Past history shows American society can rise above the dark policies enacted by the President. It does matter who is in power.

I think someone once said the only thing worse than American democracy is everything else.

12/22/2006 10:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Kenna said...

All along in his ongoing, ham-handed handling of the war he is responsible for, Bush has said he would listen to the generals and they would tell him what we should do. The Joint Chiefs have now told Bush that deploying more troops to Iraq will not help the situation, so what does he do?

I don't know how long our nation can endure the continued occupation of a country that we have plundered, the loss of American lives, the bankrupting of our assets and the isolation that this failed leader has brought upon us. The message is clear: This failed man should be removed from office.

12/23/2006 05:33:00 AM  
Blogger Vigilante said...

To Rose Colored Glasses: I have scrubbed your contribution to this discussion as not being a contribution due to its length and peripheral content. Readers interested in the general subject of military procurement may follow the link I have provided.

12/23/2006 05:41:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kenna , it is not a given , but it would seem perhaps that Bush will handpick a General that he can perhaps control if he goes ahead with a troop enhancement.
The name General Betray-us has been floated.
Things are heating up.
Is America, as we have it now reformable.? No one has seriously reformed it since it became a parody of a citizen run society in the late 1940`s , so Highly unlikely.
Also our success is not due to an inherent superiority of our system. It is because we have the largest resource base in the world. In other words. Dumb luck.
Will Congress stand up.? They are the problem. Vested special interest, they represent , not the American People.
Will the American people stand up. Possibly.
Now, will the military stand up.?
Stay tuned.
Of all the scenarios this one could prove the most likely.
This could prove to be a best case.
If Bush must be removed and Congress is to corrupt to do it, the military could use their protect and serve aspect to protect the American people , from what has every appearance of a fascist/authoritarian system which possess`s the U.S. now.

12/23/2006 10:13:00 AM  
Blogger Controversial Colin said...

FACT: You people put the same Monkey in power, TWICE!

So why cry about it now?

This isn't a hollywood movie, this is real life.

Get a grip!

12/23/2006 10:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

FACT: You people put the same Monkey in power, TWICE!

So why cry about it now?


Yes we did Colin. Not myself personally nor probably most of the posters here but roughly 50 million citizens did.

Why cry now? Well dear, a lot of us have been crying since the eve of the 2000 election, we didn't just start shedding tears yesterday. We simply have gained a few more believers for our side lately. That in itself might be good enough reason to keep crying, no?

I'm definitely open to suggestions as to what else we might do to bring a halt to this mess we are in but I don't see "shut up and quit crying" as being particularly helpful.

I'm pretty down with this not being a Hollywood movie. When ones own family is directly impacted by events it tends to make that crystal clear.

Since I like to respect the tone of other peoples' blogs I won't regale you with exactly what I would so dearly love to "get a grip" on or what I'd do with it once I did, I'll just say my proficiency with insult and profanity is fully as developed as your own. Cheers.

12/23/2006 03:32:00 PM  
Anonymous pekka said...

Schmog, don't be such a baby!:) The reference to the American democracy being the best of them all is so silly, especially right now when one insane President, his wife, and the dog are the last remaining supporters of his "foreign policy" and there seem to be nothing that anybody is able/willing to do to chance it. If this is what the best democracy can achieve, I don't want to see what the lesser ones can muster.

12/23/2006 03:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lies, all lies Pekka. The dog is a double agent.

Seriously though, I think Schmog is more or less substantiating my previous point.

The public perception here that we will always manage to rise and adjust. It's so taken for granted that we tend to be complacent and therein lies the danger.

12/23/2006 04:49:00 PM  
Anonymous pekka said...

Mama, would you be so kind and have my baby?

You being wise and informed allows you to do such anti-American activities as selfexamination and -critisism. Usually, this seems to be in short supply.( Stop grinding your teeth, Vigil!). I wonder, if you could write a bit about your background in your blog that could perhaps explain all this.

12/23/2006 08:10:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, okay, maybe the last little bit about American democracy was a bit over the top, but I can't think of another place I'd like to live.

As for Bush being crazy - that's the whole point of my post. One party GOP rule lasted six years - which, while it seemed like an eternity to most of us, isn't that long. So, despite the money, the lies, the distortion, reality finally reared its ugly head and we booted the GOP out when we could.

As they say, past performance is no guarantee of future performance. But - we've done pretty well shedding our serious problems, even if it takes awhile. Tossing out the social compact because we've had a lousy six years means we give up on the republic? Hah! I say it means it is time to rise up as Patriots (as we did in 2006) and demand change. We have this freedom, we must be VIGILant in protecting it. ;-)

12/24/2006 10:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As my husband has pointed out to me, things could STILL be worse under this administration--marshal law, arresting journalists, mass roundups, active stifling of disent (this was right after I said things couldn't be worse for our country with the FDA, the EPA, the Pentagon, etc.). But if we give up on our Republic, what have we?

It's much like when Al Gore displays the Republican graphic of gold vs. earth on a balancing scale, as if we now have to choose between a perfect union and our whole country. We are not a perfect country, no one is a perfect person, as above so below (for me, this explains a lot of the violence happening right now since our "above" power structure is bent on force and bullying as its defacto solution--I think it effects nearly everyone from the boardroom to the playground). Toppling our President and V.P. would be an awesome solution--but only if our people are behind it. Is a military solution, a good precedent for our type of government? I do not believe that the American way to transition government is like Turkey or Thailand.

Yes, its healthy to point out our country's problems and suggest solutions, its clearly fatalistic to give up on the whole experiment.

12/24/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ugh, my spelling, sorry!

12/24/2006 02:35:00 PM  
Anonymous pekka said...

Urbanpink, isn't your cherished right to bear arms exactly for the purpose of being able to counteract a bad government? Despite the stupid sounding question, I am dead serious.

12/24/2006 03:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pekka, I'll take a swing at that (hope Pink doesn't mind...). The original framework for the 2nd Amendment was a direct response to the structure of the colonies and how the resistance to British rule developed (e.g., state/colonial primacy, with the Continential Army consisting of mostly state militias). This, along with the British tendency to quarter troops in colonial homes, is a large reason for it. It has, over the years, been unfortunately mis-used to promote unlimited private weaponry in the hands of citizens in ways the Framers couldn't imagine.

The constitution provides a number of peaceful ways to change government, mostly through elective office or judicial appointments. But if things really get bad, you can either amend the constitution or scrap the whole thing together and start over if enough people get behind it. Both entirely legal and peaceful.

The Constitution ultimately contemplates peaceful means for the transfer of power and corrections to flaws in the system. It is a bit odd, isn't it? Maintaining an armed citizenry while at the same time promoting the rule of law as supreme. I don't think it is meant to overthrow the government, but rather act as a defense to tyranny.

I think this the social compact of America, that power is spread out enough to prevent true tyranny, and the 2nd Amendment represents part of that.

12/24/2006 08:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As I said in another of Vigilante's blogs, I'm all for using the master's tools to dismantle the house, if I were advocating that, which I'm not (I just want to remove the master)--so according to Schmog's expertise, we have a number of ways to peacefully and quite effectively change our government without the military (thank you, Framers).

To be clear, this is far different from a military coup as a solution--and we'd certainly have the U.S. military as a formidable foe if the citizenry took up arms against the federal government (unless they joined us/them...here's hoping we don't put our soldiers in that postion).

Besides, I think most of the gun owners are Bush supporters, not? Polls anyone?

12/24/2006 09:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Besides, I think most of the gun owners are Bush supporters, not? Polls anyone?

Much truth, yes. The entire state of Nevada is a great example. To be fair, we do own several guns...mostly old hand-me-downs that belonged to the parental units.

Primarily used to scare off the occasional coyote pack in the past, recently their care and treatment has taken a bit more serious turn. It's good for local whackjobs to know that liberals can shoot if necessary.

Pekka: I take your question seriously. That is supposedly the main reason. The sad news is that the people advocating this method of "counteracting bad government" are far more ignorant and frightening than our bad government. There is open talk of using such methods where I live and this is not a good thing.

I have to agree with the posters who wish to preserve our form of government and use all reasonable and lawful means to effect change.

It makes no sense to burn down the house to get rid of an infestation of rats.

12/25/2006 02:06:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

These ideas lead back to the question of whether or not we have a functional system of governance now. Do we.? Or has it been lost.? Does the Congress now represent special interest and is the basis of our system now flawed beyond repair, and is the military being used as a mercenary force for Corporate interest and acting contrary to their serve and protect role.?
I do not advocate violence. Hopefully our present system could be gotten rid of peacefully.
As to gun ownership , I believe the actual number of guns in the U.S. averages out to over 8 per person. It could be higher than that though.
There are well over a billion weapons and lots of ammo.
Our police , and our military are only there for one reason. To serve and protect us. If things are weird with the Dems or Repubs turning on us , as they have , then I would think the military and police would turn against the political system.
I expect this to happen , as the political system has turned against the American people , and now represents organized crime more than anything , and a political thug society.
They are the bad guys now controlled by special interest.
Big changes are on our doorstep. People get ready.

12/25/2006 09:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

These ideas lead back to the question of whether or not we have a functional system of governance now. Do we.? Or has it been lost.?

Good question, my answer would be "I'm not sure". The thing is though, it's on our heads.

The people who represent us are there because we put them there, they didn't stage a military coup.

If we've elected megalomaniacal idiots to lead us...well, you do the math. Only question left is have we learned anything from this experience?

12/25/2006 11:39:00 PM  
Blogger Messenger said...

Smog says,

"As they say, past performance is no guarantee of future performance."

I don't know about that. When it comes to Bush-Cheney, Inc. , a crowd that never has told the truth, has never admitted error, who has never punished failures with anything other promotions, presidential medals of freedom and other 'atta-boys', I say past performance does guarantee future performance, which is just another reason to retire this anti-American cabal ASAP, before their time is up. Nothing good can come from them; no benefit of the doubt is due them.

12/26/2006 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger Indicted Plagiarist said...

Desperation for more American manpower for Iraq will lead to the creation of an American Foreign Legion!

12/26/2006 06:09:00 PM  
Anonymous pekka said...

Plagiarist, this American Foreign Legion is a very interesting idea, and I sort of touched it about 4 days ago at Little Bill's. In my unrestrained enthusiasm, I might have gone too far by suggesting that Haliburton with it's global reach should do the deed.

12/27/2006 12:45:00 AM  

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