Friday, August 18, 2006

American Values

Here is a hypothetical, and I sincerely ask readers to think about this and give me a straight answer. This has nothing to do with anything in the past, any theories and such. It simply has to do with the next election.

So here goes:

In November 2008 there is a presidential election. The Democratic candidate is, say, John Edwards. The Republican candidate is, for the sake of argument, John McCain. The election is close 51% to 49%, but Pennsylvania and Minnesota carry the day for John McCain, and the networks declare McCain the winner.

Two days before Congress certifies the 2008 election, INCONTROVERTIBLE PROOF surfaces that electronic voting machine tallies were manipulated in both Minnesota and Pennsylvania and votes for Edwards were flipped to McCain by persons associated with the Republican party. The count of the flipped votes was more than enough to reverse the McCain wins in both states and give the Electoral Vote count to Edwards.

Should the original result be certified or should the proved correct result be certified?

In other words, which is more important, Republicans retain the White House, or the election is fair and accurate?

The above setup is just for dressing. The point of this post is this question.

Any difference if the candidates are Giuliani and Clinton? What if the proof was discovered on January 22, 2009?

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Oh, yes. Liberals do indeed "get it"

Supporters of the current administration and its "war on terror" continue to espouse the false idea that "liberals don't get it" and "Democrats are soft on national security" and incapable of waging an effective battle against those who use terror tactics against the US.

I honestly don’t think that I or any other informed person (read liberal) would disagree with the premise that their are "evil-doers out there" who want to kill us. And I think we would also agree that there are some radical Muslims who "hate us for who we are". We even agree that there are those who want to "reinstate the Caliphate" and turn back the calendar 1300 years. (Heck, there are people in America who pretty much want to do the same thing, but that's another post.) However, most of us also realize that these radicals succeed in spreading their hate and recruiting more Muslims by getting them to "hate us for what we do."

Where most liberals disagree with the Bush administration is not that there is a radical Islam movement, not that many of those involved in the movement are rabid killers, not that they want to force their radical Islam beliefs on the rest of the world, and not that they should be eradicated. Most informed people disagree with this administration’s APPROACH to fighting and eradicating the radicals.

There are something like 1.5 billion Muslims today. Some of them, the radicals, are a very serious danger to the world. All informed people, including liberals, recognize that. Many Muslims recognize that, too, for radical Muslims have killed more Muslims than Christians or Jews.

But the danger of radical Muslim's terror tactics is more than just killing Christians and Jews. They use terrorist tactics against the West NOT SIMPLY to kill westerners, but to get the West to react. Why? Because it is the reaction of the West that recruits many more of those 1.5 billion to join the radicals in their movement.

Some people apparently think that the attacks of 911 were carried out merely to kill masses of Americans and make the survivors crouch in fear? I think that is a very simplistic view of the event. And as such, that event would have been a massive failure. I’m not trying to minimize the tragedy of the death and destruction of 911, but only 3,000 out of 300,000,000 Americans were killed and only a few buildings were destroyed and damaged. And only a few Americans, like our friend the Game, are crouching in fear. The rest of us go about our daily business with a heightened awareness of danger, but with little fear.

On the other hand, as a means of getting the US to react, the 911 attacks were a massive success. The invasion of Iraq has recruited many more Muslims to the support of the radicals than we could ever hope to kill. Are we to think that al-Qaeda is so stupid that they didn’t know that the US would react to a homeland attack by invading Iraq? The neocons were writing about it and pushing it for at least a decade before 911. And PNAC virtually assured the world that Iraq would be invaded should a new Pearl Harbor-like attack occur. Should we not think that Bin Laden prayed every day to Allah that George W. Bush would become president of the United States? And did everything in his power to ensure his re-election in 2004?

I don’t believe that 1.5 billion people in this world get born hating civilization and wanting to kill westerners. They have to be taught that, and they have to have a reason to believe in it. You will NEVER stop people from using terror tactics as long as there is a 1.5 billion and growing supply of people to incite and recruit. And the best way to incite and recruit them is to get the West to do the job for them.

You can’t stop terrorism by bombing one fourth of the worlds population into vapor.

So, “understanding” your enemy or "understanding" terrorists has nothing to do with sympathy and has nothing to do with being soft on terrorism. It has to do with knowing what their goals are, what their strategy is, and figuring out how to thwart both through intelligent policies, effective strategies, and competent execution, none of which the Bush administration has been able to offer or demonstrate. The Bush administration has shown no desire nor capability to provide the kind of leadership that would ever give us hope of success against the threat of radical Islam.

That’s why those who truly understand what the “war on terror” is all about are against the war in Iraq, are against the policies of the Bush administration, and are obviously more capable of waging an effective fight to preserve our country, our rights, and our way of life.