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The Republicans and Islamic Terrorists: Mortal Enemies Facing a Common Threat

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The airwaves and the internet are filled with hatred and spite against the President of the United States, and not just by hard-line conservatives. Islamic terrorist groups across the Muslim world are also spewing vitriolic accusations against President Obama, despite the assurance by American conservatives during the presidential election campaign that Obama was on the terrorists’ side!

But the hard-line American conservatives and the Islamic terrorists both hate President Obama for the same reason, his sheer popularity is costing them both dearly where it hurts the most: in the roll call, and in the coffers. Logistically speaking, President Obama's worldwide popularity has been equally disastrous for the Republican party as it has for al-Qaeda.  Hard-line Islamists, at least, acknowledge the threat Obama poses, as illustrated in this AP story, datelined from Cairo, about reactions to the speech posted to a militant Islamic website and published in Pakistan's Daily Times:

The man (Obama) is manipulating the emotions of the people the same as a lute player does… He is undoubtedly a wise enemy compared with George Bush, the enemy known for his stupidity. Shehab said, “Obama is more capable of persuading Muslims than others because of his Muslim origin, yet this does not mean he is closer to Muslims or he loves them more than other leaders of infidelity… he is a renegade Muslim.”

So Obama is called a ‘wise enemy’ – a compliment indeed when it comes from the other side, but an enemy nonetheless. It is truly ironic that, while there is only hatred between American hard-line conservatives and Islamic terrorists, they both now face the same problem: fewer new people are joining their cause, and the donations are significantly diminishing.

Does this not exemplify the time-tested military maxim, “amateurs discuss firepower, but professionals discuss logistics”? In other words, the wise general does that which improves his own logistical position, while harming the enemy’s logistical position to the point where they are much less effective. Add to that Sun Tzu’s rule that “the acme of generalship is to defeat the enemy without resorting to combat,” and one has two of the greatest reasons that the asymmetrical warfare waged by the terrorists has cost us over four thousand troops and more than a half trillion dollars. For example, the 9/11 attacks cost the terrorists no more than half a million dollars, whereas the cost to New York’s economy alone was pegged at over a billion dollars – a return of over a thousand to one! Colin Powell also understands the importance of logistics: “For money is the oxygen of terrorism. Without the means to raise and move money around the world, terrorists cannot function." The RAND Corporation dissertation from which Powell’s quote was drawn makes another very interesting statement, that three crucial variables in one’s decision to donate to a terrorist group are, “risk, level of wealth, or sympathy for the terrorists’ cause. Unfortunately, the author of the article never addressed how to undercut the last of that triad of factors.

 

Matthew Alexander (not his real name), who conducted and supervised the interrogations in Iraq, has repeatedly stated that  the enhanced interrogation techniques were a prime recruitment tool for the terrorists (as John McCain agreed) – recruits poured in to fight against the ‘crusaders’. As a result, more American troops died, and died needlessly. Our cruelty, our reliance on shoot-first-ask-no-questions-later policy only helped our enemy grow and prosper in the four years that followed our invasion of Iraq.

Fortunately for America and the world, President Obama apparently understands that the one true test of a leader is to know when not to use one’s power.

One must wonder, though, how many realize the masterstroke that was President Obama’s speech in Cairo. Not only is much of the Muslim world seeing that the dream that is America is alive once more, that the majority of our nation is not comprised of those who want a war against all of Islam, and that  the world’s Islamic terrorist groups are facing a significant decline in their logistical support.  In a single speech our president has not only gotten the attention of most of the Islamic world and given them hope that the most powerful country in the world really does give a tinker‘s damn about them, but, and this is the really cool thing, now the sizable Muslim minorities in Russia and China will be more likely to be more pro-American (and more anti-Russia/China) than ever before.

We finally have a president who realizes that, when used at the right time and place, oratory skill, like the lowly ball-point pen, is far more powerful than the sword; that diplomacy is a crucial part of the defense of the nation. Could any other serious presidential candidate, even Hillary, for whom I was an alternate state delegate, have accomplished the same? I think not. Doggone, but I’m inordinately proud of this President Obama, for once more the world is waking to the promise of the American Dream.

On a side note, in an interview with one of the millions of Akbar-on-the-street Muslims who watched Obama’s speech, one young man, no older than thirty, said this was the greatest speech by an American president since Kennedy’s “ich bin ein Berliner!” speech; and it occurred to me that this was a clear indictment of our educational system, for how many American high-school graduates would have a clue as to what this young Egyptian man was talking about?

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About Glenn Contrarian

White. Male. Raised in the deepest of the Deep South. Retired Navy. Strong Christian. Proud Liberal. Thus, Contrarian!
  • Glenn Contrarian

    Dave and Clavos –

    Thank you both for the edits – when I went back to the original this morning, I saw the several spelling and grammar mistakes I had made. While writers are supposed to hate editors, most of us understand how important your job is, and to do so even when the article you’re editing is anathema to your own beliefs is an example of professionalism for all to follow.

    Well done to both of you!

  • zingzing

    very nice article glenn, although the way the pages are split is kinda silly (editors?). the kennedy line at the end is a bit… i dunno. i’d bet most high school graduates know what that guy was talking about, but i’d bet fewer would be able to reference it in that way.

    anyway, can’t wait for the right wing attack dogs to come out on this one. “we’re not falling apart, nooooo…”

  • http://fraudwar.blogspot.com ed dickson

    Thoughtful article.

  • Clavos

    Thanks for the attaboy, Glenn. Except for a change in the title by the Executive Editor, this one is mine, and I really appreciate your kind words.

    zing, the page breaks are automatic; editors don’t set ‘em, but I’ll pass your observation along to the techies.

  • Zedd

    Great article.

    What is interesting about Obama is that he articulates simple common sense. What distinguishes him is the courage that he has in stating it.

    It’s not that what he said hasn’t already been thought or said by most thinking people (who have a rational, non biased view of the world). Its that he says this stuff out loud, on camera and right on the world’s stage. Nervy! He cant be naive. He articulates all of the complexities that are involved much too well to be that. He is simply a man with determination, on a mission to stamp out absurdity. The sort that diminishes the worth of other individuals.

    Some of us are annoyed by the ridiculous, make a few comments about it and end up rolling our eyes in exasperation. This guy believes that if he says it plainly enough that people will get it and come along.

    Regan was naive and idealistic. He was passionate but very narrow minded. He was a great orator but his narrow scope precluded him from being as affective as he could have been. As a result, he caused a lot of collateral damage along the way, most of which he was oblivious to.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Hi, I hope you’re not sore. I know I was obstinate. A peace pipe?

  • Zedd

    Clavos

    You must be in nirvana. Big time Editor. Wow…. I’m sure your home right now on your big pipe organ cackling and howling “muwahhahahaaaa” over your new found power. “The world shall finally know the I -ninito- can spell and punctuate really well, MUWAHAHAHAHA”!!!!

  • Zedd

    Roger,

    If that was addressed to me, no, not sore at all. Thought nothing of it after the dialouge.

    No peace pipe needed. We’re cool. Let’s find someone double team on for old time sakes. Joking.

  • Clavos

    Actually, zedd, I’ve been an editor the whole time you’ve been flitting on and off the site, but since you’ve never written anything to be edited, you wouldn’t know that, would you?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    By the way, Zedd, a great new addition to BC site – Jeannie Danna. And she writes like a dream. I am envious.

    You can check her out in the Culture section. I’m certain you’ll love it too.

  • Clavos

    Speaking of spelling and punctuation, zedd, I notice yours hasn’t improved.

    The word is effective.

  • Zedd

    I left that nugget just for you and wondered how long it would take for you to get on it. Good job. There are a couple more morsels for you that are scattered about. Tick tick tick go fetch! Oh how I’ve missed you.

    By the way there was a short piece on you, and your kind on “Fresh Air”, the Terri Gross show Wednesday. Made me proud. Linguist and frequent FA contributor Geoff Nunberg had some interesting things to say about folks who do what you do. Bless your heart. Listen to the broadcast your claim to fame is at around 17:56.

  • Clavos

    I left that nugget just for you…

    Sure you did, zedd…

  • Zedd

    I missed you to.

  • Jeannie Danna

    I like this article! President Obama is not being run into the ground. Why do terrorists and people in other countries see what Conservatives and Republicans in America refuse to see? We have a great President! :)

  • Arch Conservative

    “What is interesting about Obama is that he articulates simple common sense. What distinguishes him is the courage that he has in stating it.”

    I see, common sense dictates that if you’re already drowning in debt you should spend a few trillion dollars to solve the problem?

    And do you really want to talk about irrational, unhinged hatred of a president? As I recall the left proved they were world class at that just a few short years ago when W. was in office.

    It’s really quite creepy how some of you are still falling all over this hack with praise and all but annointing him as humanity’s savior. Oh well I guess in a little under four years you’ll feel right at home when you guys have to go back to be the angry ones when the joke ends.

  • http://www.EurocriticsMagazine.com Christopher Rose

    Arch, you may well have a point but I don’t understand why you always just slag off your President and those who support him, as opposed to actually making constructive criticism or even, you know, a positive suggestion or two.

    I think it is really quite creepy that you keep coming back to Blogcritics and making essentially the same remarks over and over again. Don’t you get as bored as I do with that?

  • Arch Conservative

    You want a positive suggestion?

    OK…instead of spending trillions of dollars more howzabout we make huge cuts in both spending and taxes to get our economy back on it’s feet….

    How can any person not understand that the more you tax business the more business will either pass that cost onto the consumer and/or just stop doing as much business because they can’t affford to. That leads to less supply and and demand which leads to less job creation hich leads to higher unemployment which makes everyone miserable.

    But oh no….can’t stop spending, no way no how, the tax dollars we American citizens pay is like heroin to both parties in Washington. It’s what they live for and for some reason they feel entitled to keep taking more and more of it.

    Now that we have this leftist fuck in office the uber liberal mantra of everyone’s a victim and big brother must take care of everyone……….entitlements, handouts and taxes……….hip hip hooray.

    I’m sorry Christopher, I know you’re a cheeky socialist pom but frankly I find that leftish view of the world to be complete horseshit. If there’s nothing wrong with you mentally or physically, get off your fucking ass and make your own way in the world!

    BC is my therapy Christopher. It allows me to vent my frustrations in a safe, peaceful manner. Otherwise you might see me turn up on the six O’clock news. And it’s free. You can’t beat it with a stick!

  • Jordan Richardson

    Arch, there are some flaws with your reasoning.

    First of all, businesses respond to higher taxes by laying off low-level workers and cutting corners. The CEOs are usually the last to take pay cuts, if they take pay cuts at all. They, by all rights, have more than enough money to survive (especially big businesses) and, in fact, thrive. Oil and energy companies are making record profits, for instance, and other companies are still paying out massive bonuses despite job losses at the bottom rung of the ladder.

    When those job losses reach out into the markets, unemployment boosts considerably. Money poured into the system and not just blindly granted to companies in the form of tax breaks, cuts, or bailouts creates more jobs by providing more opportunities for companies and individuals to prove they can “get off their fucking asses,” in your words, and operate in what is quickly becoming a new economy.

    An infusion of money into the infrastructure is not uncommon in these situations. In fact, our Canadian Conservative government has responded to the recession by “spending,” as they put it. It isn’t that a government spends its way out of a recession that presents bad results; it’s how a government does it.

    When government money is given to generate new jobs, improve infrastructure, improve transportation, and so forth, that can help stimulate local economies and put people back to work. But it takes time and effort from society as a whole.

    In order for a society operating in such an economic system to properly and efficiently generate more income and more jobs, there must be cash flow. Sometimes governments need to stimulate that cash flow in order to save jobs and economic opportunities.

    A lot of the problem with why America is where it is (and a lot of the rest of us by default) relates to the consumerist culture. There is a lack of production in America’s cities and states, for instance, and jobs are outsourced while products are imported by the crateload. America has stopped being a producer and started being open-mouthed consumers. A cash infusion can help boost production, especially when it is directed towards industry and job creation. Putting people back to work and putting people to work in new vocations, like green jobs, is how America gets back on its economic feet.

    Simply providing blankets of tax cuts for those already churning out money is only going to boost their profit margin and put into effect the faulty economic theory known hilariously as “trickle down.”

    Why not sponsor a plan that gets more people back to work and renews the creative, productive spirit in America? Why not help one another out? Why not support the ability of everyone to make their own way in the world?

    The leftist view of the world has nothing to do with a lack of personal responsibility or “making your own way in the world.”

    It has to do with people actually getting what they worked for instead of people having to shovel that off to the boss, the CEO, and those who sit around all day in suits at the top of the corporate ladder. It has to do with taking care of others and those less fortunate with the realization that we’re all in this together. A society with support structures, health care, good and fair wages, and less corporate control isn’t a bad thing.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Cool assessment, Jordan. Unfortunately, even among the more reasonable left and the moderates, there is this growing apprehension that the much heralded stimulus package may not have worked.

    Only last night, I was listening to George Noory (you must be able to get him too – it’s a Coast-to-Coast AM program); a cool guy, really, if you don’t know him, fair-minded and thoughtful.

    He was reflecting on how all that money has already been dumped into big business – and it’s gone. Pissed in the wind. Interestingly, he said if, say, a $25,000.00 check were to be send to each and every tax payer, it would not only stimulate the economy, boost consumption, avert business closures and layoffs, but most importantly perhaps – prevent mortgage defaults, instill hope in people and change lives. As it is, this money is as good and done. And it’s in billions.

    I’m not certain whether this thinking is air-tight and all those results would come about if the package were directed at the people, but it sure sound a helluva lot better than bailing our Morgan Stanley, BofA or GM.

    And the funny part, Noory wasn’t responding to any particular guest on his show (like Alex Jones or Jerome Corsi). There were his own reflections, unprompted and impromptu.

    Instead, we just rushed into into it, and the sooner the better, because the impression that we’re doing something was deemed more important than saving the country and the people.

    For reasons like this, I’m not exactly unsympathetic with those who argue that we’re entering the era of corporate statism. Notice, it’s not the small or mid-size businesses that were helped but giants – too big to fail, was the mantra.

    So what has changed?

  • Jordan Richardson

    I’ve been looking through a few resources like StimulusWatch, the Stimulus Wiki (they have a spreadsheet and some other documents that discuss where the money is going), and and others like it in order to get a sense for how things are working out. The main consensus appears to be that it may be too early to tell how effective the bill is or will be. It’s also probably too early to say that the money’s “gone” or whatever.

    There’s no question that the bill was far from perfect, but I’m not sure there’s ever been a perfect bill. I do think that it is preferable to provide money to upgrade and revitalize industry, infrastructure, and the like. I do know that the science and tech investments are good, for instance.

    I’d say you could be entering the area of corporate nationalism as opposed to corporate statism, but I’d be lying if I didn’t think all of us in the Wild West were basically there already.

  • http://www.EurocriticsMagazine.com Christopher Rose

    Arch, I think you’re fundamentally mistaken about your notion to cut taxes and spending. That is akin to companies that cut spending in a recession when innumerable studies have shown that keeping going as normally as possible is a more effective recovery strategy. Slashing and burning just leaves a wilderness in its wake.

    I suspect that if you took the time to research the matter, you’d find that taxation is always oscillating around roughly the same levels regardless of the party in power. It is a bit of a lazy stereotype to say that the right is more efficient and the left not.

    Higher taxation doesn’t particularly reduce entrepreneurial activity, but it does stimulate tax evasion efforts so governments usually have no realistic choice but to keep taxation within certain levels.

    As to myself, whilst I may be both cheeky and a pom, I am also a business person running several diverse and profitable businesses, so I would reject your lazy socialist tag.

    I wpould in fact go so far as to say that your political views, polarized as they are along the hugely dated left-right spectrum, are simply old-fashioned and out of date.

    In the real world, it is a matter of involving all interested parties around a particular issue, stakeholders is the fairly clunky term used, and then working towards a solution that works for everybody, rather than a top down command process that both the right and the left wings of politics often seem to prefer.

  • Jeannie Danna

    Saturday morning funnies-(Oh well I guess in a little under four years you’ll feel right at home when you guys have to go back to be the angry ones when the joke ends.) Keep laughing Arch Because President Obama is serving TWO count em TWO terms….:)

  • Jeannie Danna

    Ouch-(In the real world, it is a matter of involving all interested parties around a particular issue, stakeholders is the fairly clunky term used, and then working towards a solution that works for everybody, rather than a top down command process that both the right and the left wings of politics often seem to prefer.)

    Chris is right here! I guess I do rely on our government to help bring us back to prosperity. Not by trickling down on us but by offering us opportunities to prosper such as universal health care, better public education and jobs in a green environment.
    Why don’t we actually implement this plan instead of blowing it all to hell…:)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “In the real world, it is a matter of involving all interested parties around a particular issue, stakeholders is the fairly clunky term used, and then working towards a solution that works for everybody, rather than a top down command process that both the right and the left wings of politics often seem to prefer.”

    Nice thought, Chris. I’m not optimistic, however, that we’ve reached that stage.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Jeannie. You and I are on the same wavelength. Notice near-simultaneous postings.

  • Arch Conservative

    Typical libs.

    Government is the answer.

    Some never learn.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Notice, Arch, how often you resort to labels. Is it because you’re incapable of original thinking? I don’t believe I ever called you a fat fascist, pig or a rightie. If you’ve got something to say to Jeannie, say it to her directly and pull no punches. But this constant hiding behind labels and name-calling really reduces the quality of your thinking to the level of verbal ejaculations. Besides, you wouldn’t want us to think that you lack balls to confront whomever you want to confront – mano a mano.
    Be a mensch, not a mouse.

  • Jeannie Danna

    Arch-(Typical libs.)Thanks for the compliment I try hard to be called that…:)

  • Jeannie Danna

    Roger, Be nice :)

  • Jeannie Danna

    Well I have to leave now. When my “manifesto” posts please remember I wrote it for all of you…My new friends…:)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Why, Jeannie. I’m only appealing to Arch’s sense of honor and intelligence.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Well, I see you all managed to move away from the speech Obama gave to arguing how the American government should or shouldn’t get you all out the mess its gotten you into. I’m sure it’s an interesting topic, but I want to move back to the speech the Blessed of Hussein gave at al-Azhar University in al-Qahir (’bout time you guys heard the real names instead of the phony ones you all use).

    Al-Azhar University is where the Jew-hating Wahhabi push their propaganda, and al-Qahir is where “Mein Kampf” is a best seller. The Prince of the Land of the Setting Sun, the Blessed of Hussein based, “his reconciliation with Islam” on throwing Israel under the bus, by erecting a terror state in what is now a relatively peaceful Judea and Samaria, making it judenrein – Jew-clean. The method proposed is outlined in this 2 minute Youtube clip that basically calls for invading Israel.

    This comes as no surprise to me. I’ve been warning that the United States will sell us down the river and invade Israel for quite some time now. And anybody who figures out the logistics will see that a strong American force can be brought here by driving across Jordan (Eastern Mandate Palestine, stolen from the Jewish people by the British in 1922) while evacuating Iraq at the same time. Ain’t that sweet?

    Now in all truth, I have to tell you that if I have to raise a rifle to defend my home and homeland against invaders and destroyers, I would much rather shoot at and kill Americans than fellow Jews. And there are a whole bunch of ‘Nam vets who would find the experience of shooting at Americans interesting, to say the least, if not exhiliarating (sp?).

    Right now, Jews are squealing like stuck pigs over Obama’s open moving of America to the dark side. They will have very quickly get used to viewing America with a new word – “ENEMY”.

  • Arch Conservative

    Ruvy, here in America we don’t refer to him as “the Blessed of Hussein”

    Some acceptable nicknames would include

    King Barry
    Captain Teleprompter
    Eight Ball Barry
    Ol’ Jug Ears
    The Chicago Charlatan
    The Kenyan Kid

  • Jeannie Danna

    # 37-An acceptable nickname for Arch would be

    jealous…

  • zingzing

    everything means so much more when you write it like this.

  • zingzing

    ruvy: “Now in all truth, I have to tell you that if I have to raise a rifle to defend my home and homeland against invaders and destroyers, I would much rather shoot at and kill Americans than fellow Jews. And there are a whole bunch of ‘Nam vets who would find the experience of shooting at Americans interesting, to say the least, if not exhiliarating (sp?).”

    such glee you show for killing the invading americans. nevermind that they are not invading, and in all likelihood, never will. nevermind that we’re your biggest ally. nevermind that we gave you those very weapons you really, really want to shoot us with. nevermind the fact that WE WOULD NEVER HAVE TO INVADE YOU, and that simply by saying, “you’re on your own,” you would be at the mercy of the very, very angry islamic world that surrounds you. we’re the biggest obstacle standing in the way of your destruction, and you’re over there peeing on our leg.

    ruvy, i hate to say it, but if you were to even vaguely represent your people, you’d deserve everything you got. you are the most paranoid, antagonistic, blood thirsty, hypocritical, cracked out old man i’ve ever had the pleasure to talk to. and it is a pleasure. if only for the endless cascade of comedy you provide.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    everything means so much more when you write it like this.

    Once upon a time the comment editors would have fixed an open HTML tag left by a sick system. Those days have passed, I see.

    Ruvy, here in America we don’t refer to him as “the Blessed of Hussein”

    Barak Hussein, is Arabic, Bing, and means “Blessed of Hussein”. I use the term to remind you all of an ugly fact that you would all rather forget. In the eyes of Moslems round the world, Barack Hussein Obama is a fellow Moslem, even if he commits apostasy (in their eyes) by identifying with Christians.

    nevermind that they are not invading, and in all likelihood, never will. nevermind that we’re your biggest ally……

    blah blah blah…. Zing, if I relied on your expertise in foreign affairs I’d be no better off than a wino staggering around on East 41st St. on a Friday night

  • Zedd

    Folks,

    The truth is no one knows what to do. Lets all simply acknowledge that. Applying fantasy scenarios cant patch up the problem. Chanting your pet ideology, one that has never been applied to any situation that remotely resembles this one is silly and fantasy driven. There will be false starts and lots of mistakes. There will be lots of negative ramifications even if the best solution was employed. That is what is supposed to happen.

    Example:

    If you are a female of child bearing age, and having lots of unprotected sex you will more than likely either get pregnant or end up with some sort of STD. Whatever happens after that wont be great. There are psychological ramifications that are sure to come, shame, guilt, etc. There are physical challenges that are sure to come and economic consequences as well along with a slew of other not so fun stuff. Whatever solution that you employ, the negative results will remain or fester and perhaps expand with time. It’s just the way of the universe. Which is why unprotected sex is discouraged in the first place. Are we all on the same page?

    The moral of the story is, if you do the wrong thing, more than likely something bad will come of it. Whatever you do to correct it, there will still be negative ramifications. If the wrong could be fixed without the negative aftermath then society wouldn’t consider it to be a wrong in the first place. Are we all on board with that?

    The key at this point is to learn from it and don’t do it again.

    I have not heard the Republicans, who need to take the blame for most of this fiasco, express any sentiments that would express “lesson learned”. That to me is annoying and insulting. Like putridly spoiled children, they feel that they have the right to stand in the public square and critique, tisk tisking, when they have behaved so ridiculously irresponsibly. It means that they will continue to do selfish, mindless things which will impact the world and justify them based on some half baked ideology which doesn’t work in the 3D world that we Earthlings live in; ideas that don’t account for human nature and the overwhelming preponderance of historical data which support their strong improbability.

    We have to entertain them by responding to their silly jabs so that they feel like they are part of the democratic process when in actuality they are nuisances who are occupying space that could be filled by more forward thinking individuals who will actually impact the world positively and pose a true challenge to the Dems by forcing them to up their game.

  • Zedd

    Ruvy,

    Why is the proposition that Obama’s name is Muslim an ugly fact. Remember we live in America. We actually pride ourselves in things like that being irrelevant. You are hoping that we are indeed bigoted (at least against Muslims) and that we have a consensus on how we feel about THEM. Since you are no longer in these parts, Yes the kooks, racists, and crack pots among us did make a big deal (snicker) about the name thing. However that didn’t go anywhere. It fell flat because its a weird point or a none point. His Dad gave him that name….. So. It is Islamic…. So. His Dad also gave him that tan ….. oh my! AND that fro… eek! And that brain….. YIKES!! His mom bleached his skin …. lawdy me!!! AND that long chin…. Ahhhhhhh.

    In other words. What’s your point?

    Your hatred makes you a weak person and worst of all a weak man. You can’t get a grip on things. You are drunk with hate for what has never existed. You were enticed as a young man and are now addicted to the notion of your possible superiority and preferred state by the ruler of the universe. You can’t let go of the anger and hatred because you are afraid that by doing so, you will just be one simple old man of multitudes. If you stop the hatefest, you will be left with nothing but just you to live with and to live for. So you spew on, fighting for morsels to hate; tiny crimes and specs of “done me wrongs” in order to perpetuate the thing which keeps you from facing life as just a simple guy living the in the desert.

    Have at it.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    As, usual, Zedd, you haven’t been paying attention to reality. So you miss the subtle points that create reality for you and fall for the media bullshit.

    What are these subtle points? Let’s outline them for you in a desperate hope that you might understand (I’m not holding my breath).

    Obama was anti-Israel before he became a US senator in 2005. He didn’t get these attitudes from school in Indonesia but from his Moslem running buddies during his late teens and early twenties, the life-long friends who helped propel him where he is now. These attitudes didn’t matter in the Illinois legislature. But Obama was smart enough not to let them show in the US senate.

    You forget that Obama brings to the table a certain loyalty to people he feels mean something to him. There is his loyalty to his friends, mentioned above. In addition, he did what he could to help the Luo tribe in Kenya (his tribe) when he was senator, and wound up helping the Moslems there impose Sharia law in that country.

    Now we see that the Moslems he so downplayed when running for president mean an awful lot to him. The closest the Moslems have to a khalíf these days is the Guardian of the Two Holy Cities, Mecca and Medina – presently, the king of Saudi Arabia. He bowed to that king to show respect as best as he was able.

    The Moslems regard him as one of their own – and they matter to him – a lot more than he will admit to the yokels who supported him in the States – yokels like you. That isn’t a matter of bigotry – that is a matter of reality. You overlook the basic loyalties of the “Blessed of Hussein” at your own peril, Zedd. And you, determined not to let the facts get in the way of your politically correct vision, manage to ignore reality very well….

    Your call, young lady. And your funeral, too.

  • zingzing

    ruvy: “Zing, if I relied on your expertise in foreign affairs I’d be no better off than a wino staggering around on East 41st St. on a Friday night”

    at least i know what the day of the week it is when i stagger. and if anyone relied on your expertise in foreign affairs, we’d all be dead.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    The truth is no one knows what to do. Lets all simply acknowledge that.

    The truth is Zedd, you do know what to do. Or rather, you all do know what to do, and find it painful to face.

    You are broke: you are bankrupt. Paying your creditors (largely the Chinese) means letting them take your assets and your asses as well. The other option, created by the fact that you are the leading nuclear power on the planet, is to kill off the creditor. Those are both very painful choices, but that is all that is really available. All the rest is shit and shinola.

  • zingzing

    no one would think about that but you, ruvy. what does that say?

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    no one would think about that but you, ruvy. what does that say?

    I don’t have patience for boozers who can’t think straight, zing. If you have something to say, make it clear for those of us not drinking with you….

  • http://www.EurocriticsMagazine.com Christopher Rose

    If you don’t have patience with people who can’t think straight, Ruvy, how ever do you manage to live with yourself? Your thinking has got more kinks in it than almost everybody else I have ever met and you’re so proud of it too.

    It would be comedic if it weren’t so serious too, but at least there is some consolation in that you are so successfully undermining all the things you believe in. Keep up the good work and maybe the Jewish-Islamist-Christian god deception/fraud will end even more quickly.

  • zingzing

    it’s funny that i admit to ruvy once, years ago, that, at that time, i was drunk as i wrote, and every time since that, when he’s pissed at me, he uses my one-time drunken state as some excuse, while he is consistently in a state of dogma/religious drunkeness himself and he can’t recognize it.

    oh, hypocrisy, you do not know your ends. of course…

    you want it clear, ruvy?

    Y
    O
    U

    A
    R
    E

    C
    R
    A
    Z
    Y
    ,

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Ah Chris, so long as I have money to cover the bills, I have no trouble living with myself. On the other hand, if I do not, I’m a regular bear. I do not require “straight thinking” to get by, just “clear thinking” – something else entirely.

    Clear thinking usually involves plenty of kinks in it – the road of life is not straight at all, but windy and curvy – more so at times than a hairpin. But, Chris, your thinking is as straight as a stick – and contains as much sophistication to it as well.

    My problem with zing – aside from his pathetic views – is that he colors them with alcohol. That is never a help to clear thinking at all…. He displayed erudition and intelligence but once on these boards that I remember. His discussion of the play, “The Merchant of Venice” displayed knowledge that subsequent investigation has shown to be very deep indeed. When he discusses Shakespeare and similar subjects, I’ll listen – with respect for one who truly knows whereof he speaks – otherwise, well….

  • zingzing

    chris, i don’t think ruvy’s style of thought will quickly end the nightmare we all have to live through. unfortunately (fuck manchester united), i think that (red blows) ruvy represents a real problem for progress in the world, and we’re going to have to (oh, you like the winning team) deal with forever and ever. if there is an answer to ruvy’s militarism–and the fact that ruvy doesn’t even realize that he’s a murderous little prick gets in the way of this answer–i think it’s going to end this sentence on a manchester sucks, asshole. EVERTON!

  • zingzing

    oh shit.

    ruvy, you knocked my knowledge of merchant as some sort of anti-jewish thing. (which, of course, it is not.)

    did you actually look it up? and did you come to a different conclusion?

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    zing, blurting out, “you’re crazy”, or “fuck you” does not explain your thoughts – and leads to the impression that you are indeed drunk when you write – even if you are cold sober.

  • zingzing

    yeah, but the bits of it above that does explain my thoughts. they just end in the idea that you’re crazy.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    If you know something, zing, I’ll be the first to give you credit for it, if I see that it is so…. You evidently did know something, and I’m crediting you with having been right. No, I did not look it up, but I did read a bio of Shakespeare recently that I didn’t realize I had, and what you had said was laid out in the book in spades….

  • zingzing

    really? well, i’m glad. at least your literary mind is sound. i will congratulate you on that. learn something from him: he meant well to all people, and saw good in everyone. a grand liberal, i’d say.

    really, my faith is restored in you because of this. go twins.

  • http://www.EurocriticsMagazine.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, as it was you that used the phrase “straight thinking” in the first place, I responded to you on that point. You then switched to “clear thinking” as if that was actually a meaningful difference, which, of course, it isn’t. You are still not capable of doing it though, whatever you want to call it.

    The arrogance you display towards zingzing and everyone else that doesn’t agree with you, which would be over 99% of the world’s population by the way, is as breathtaking as it is laughable. Ooh, look everyone, the mouse is roaring again!

    Way to go on undermining both Israel and Judaism though; you’re doing a great job on both counts.

  • zingzing

    hey, six months ago, or whenever, ruvy declared shakespeare his sworn enemy. and now he’s backed off. that’s one man. he only has (by all estimates) 6 billion, 784 million, 954 thousand, 582 hundred and 998 people to go.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    zing,

    I envy your patience, or perhaps your form of expression. I’m afraid I can’t emulate it – not when it comes to Ruvy’s militaristic attitudes. I did confront him more than once, head-on, with you know what disastrous results, so I’m not going to try again. I consider it a lost cause. You are a better man than I am.

    This, however, I will say. First, his apparent hatred of America and wish that we go under is, to say the least, unreasonable. Where would the state of Israel be, and the rest of the world, if these wishes came true? And second, now we see Ruvy extending the same notion of a “solution,” restricted at first to solving the Middle East problem, to the world at large: nuking China. I’m not going to comment on the merit of such an idea. I think it’s best to let it stand.

    Zedd,

    Love your #39 (and I’d include #40 as well, but I shan’t: don’t want to antagonize Ruvy.) Great content and what’s just as important, the literary expression of it. Your writing style does remind me of Irene’s. Have you noticed it?

    You really should consider making a contribution to BC now and then.

  • Mark

    Nothing like waking to another dose of Ruvy’s bigoted murderous nonsense…truly refreshing.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Accept it as facts of life, Mark, just as the proposition that the sun rises in the East.

  • Zedd

    Thanks Roger,

    My thoughts are a lot clearer than the ridiculous posts. I’m just a really LAZY editor. I will change a sentence but forget to delete all of the previous so I end up with mish mosh on the board. One of my laptops has a jumpy cursor. I’ll be writhing a line and next thing you know my cursor is three lines back and I’m typing in the middle of a perfectly good word or sentence. When I go back to edit it – off course I’m lazy- I miss a lot of things. After I’ve posted I’m often shocked at the errors and fantasize that there is a conspiracy to change my posts (cause I’m Black) to make them sound far less intelligent and thoughtful :o)

    Alas its just lazy me. I think I’ll keep the conspiracy theory and bask in my delusion that my posts are pristine. :o) And we’ve got to keep Clav busy in his senior years… the dear.

  • http://ruvysroost.blogspot.com Ruvy

    Roger,

    I raise the issue of killing the creditor, not to plug it, but to show you your untenable position. We can afford to nuke Tehran – but you cannot afford to nuke China. China is a multi-centered country with 1.5 billion or more people – attempting to effectively defang her would be a task your nation could not manage.

    This is opposed to nuking Tehran and possibly one other city in Persia to cut out the command and control systems there. The issue would not be to destroy a multi-centered society, but to make it impossible for the military to launch (or more to the point control) a missile launching against Israel.

    There is a distinct difference in the two operations.

    So, the final analysis is that you will have to fork over your assets (and your asses) to the Chinese. Have fun, guys!

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Great article, Glenn. It was indeed a brilliant speech, a masterstroke. The very fact that bin Laden tried to preempt it by releasing a video of his own only testifies to the possibilities inherent in the idea of bridging the conflict between the two civilizations.

    I was of the mind to write a piece on it too, in the context provided by Sean Hannity’s most deplorable analysis of Obama’s speech: it was the lowest of the low, the cheapest kind of propaganda you could possibly imagine – not to mentions Hannity’s emblematic by now all-whining style. And I did try to get a transcript of Hannity’s radio show when goes with his tirades for a good part of two hours – but couldn’t.

    Perhaps you might have a better luck with it, because it’s a “gem.” And to expose it would put a nice finishing touch to this article.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, I’m glad, Ruvy, that you brought up the idea only for illustration purposes. And yes, I definitely think we can’t afford to do that, but perhaps for a whole bunch of reasons which go beyond military might or logistics.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, Zedd. If you’re thoughts are much clearer than what we see here as mere pixels on the computer screen, then I’d say that you’ve already joined the ranks of the immortals. Or perhaps a rightful place at Plato’s Symposium. And I’d find it intimidating if not scary.

    Mind you, I don’t make such admissions readily.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Wouldn’t it be “way cool” if we could all live in a world full of happiness, flowers, zero calorie treats to eat without guilt and only truly good people? A world with no juvenile suicide bombers, no crazy guys with lots of power, like DPRK’s glorious leader, Saddam Hussein and Chemical Ali, with no other truly bad/crazy people such as Hamas, with whom discussions based on sweet reason don’t work?

    Alas, we can only live in such a place in our dreams. Sadly,it may be necessary on occasion to experience some of the bad guys close up and personally in order to separate that beautiful dream world from reality. That’s unfortunate because, no matter how much we may wish it were otherwise, reality does exist; really.

    Dan(Miller)

  • Ma rk

    I’d add Ruvy to your list of bad crazies devoid of reason, Parenthetical Dan.

    ymmv

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Is Paranthetical Dan suggesting, therefore, that Ruvy’s Middle East solution is realistic? That’s the one part I didn’t get.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    I haven’t been to the Middle East and so have not experienced the situation there “up close and personal.” I have no solution(s) to the problems there.

    My point was that many people seem to live in a very pretty and otherwise tranquil dream world, and that sticking one’s head in the sand generally produces nothing more useful than sandy ears. It seems quite unlikely that effective solutions will emerge from a dream world, and that very unpleasant ideas must be considered along with whatever more pleasant ones may be raised. It strikes me as silly to reject the former out-of-hand simply on the ground that “we don’t want to do that” because all violence is bad.

    Dan(Miller)

  • Clavos

    Occasionally (very occasionally) a rational voice manages to pierce the fog of the touchy-feely, we-are-all-brothers BS and point out that there are evil, truly evil forces about in the world.

    Maybe, just maybe, someday they will be heard.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I never argued that point. I’m still uncertain, though, whether you’d consider the nuking Tehran as one of the acceptable solutions – not in some distant and unforeseen future but here and now.

    In addition, I’d say that notion of self-defense on the individual, personal level and self-defense of a nation are not exactly parallel concepts – and they’re certainly not the same as a preemptive strike.

    To take this analogy further, perhaps you should start killing the outlaws, who do represent a menace to your life and homestead, one by one, so as to minimize their chances of success.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I’m curious, though, about the concept of evil as held by agnostics or atheists. In this particular respect, Ruvy’s view of the world is much more justifiable and convincing than that which issues from the mouth of unbelievers. Somehow, it comes across as shallow or hollow – as mere form (of words) and devoid of content.

  • Clavos

    @ #39:

    Applying fantasy scenarios cant patch up the problem. Chanting your pet ideology, one that has never been applied to any situation that remotely resembles this one is silly and fantasy driven.

    Good point!!

    Someone should tell the Messiah…

  • Clavos

    @ #70:

    I wasn’t referring to Ruvy.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I think there’s a misunderstanding here. #70 was directed at Dan.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Roger, re # 71

    As you know, I do not share Ruvy’s theological beliefs; I can’t explain what God considers good or evil, because She and I are not on speaking terms. Nor can I offer air-tight definitions of good and evil from an Agnostic/Atheist perspective. They are rather like obscenity in that they are nearly impossible to define, but we often recognize them when we see them.

    You might want to read (or, probably, re-read) Bertrand Russell’s Individual and Social Ethics which, I think, offers some pretty valid ideas.

    If forced to provide my own definitions, I suppose that “good” is that which advances human freedom and happiness without diminishing the happiness and freedom of others; “evil” is that which diminishes human freedom and happiness while producing no countervailing “good.” Between “good” and “evil,” there exists a fairly broad spectrum of things which are neither completely good nor completely evil. We might classify them as “necessary evils.” War, while rarely “good,” is not, per se “evil;” the participation of the U.S. in WWII falls into the intermediate “necessary evil” category.

    There is probably still another (rather large) category, “fuck ups,” into which many things initially classified as “good,” “evil” or “necessary evils” fall after the fact. The banning of the insecticide DDT seemed like a good idea at the time; unfortunately, the resultant proliferation of mosquitoes caused a resurgence of malaria and other diseases. The freeing of the prisoner of Chillon probably falls into the same category. Germany’s invasion of neutral Belgium in 1914 — thought (by Germany) to be a “necessary evil” which would result in a short and successful war to bless all of Europe with the benefits of Germanic culture and order, did not work out that way; in retrospect many Germans came to realize, once WWI had become an unexpectedly prolonged mess, that it had been a world class “fuck up.”

    There are obviously problems with my attempted definitions; still, I can’t think off hand of better ones.

    Dan(Miller)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I understand all that, Dan. My point rather was that when removed from its, I believe, original, religious/theological context, the term is seriously defanged. It’s not even quite at home in the context of moral language. Good vs. bad are more properly the terms.

    What I’m saying I guess that in the absence of theology, we’re back to the Greek vision of cosmos, whereby “freak of nature” was a way of accounting for deviant personalities. And so, Hitler, or Stalin, or Mao might earn that epithet; in more modern terms, we have legal and/or psychological accounts of deviance – in terms of insanity, sociopathology and the like. But with respect to acts as such, we’re stuck with moral framework and moral language (again, in a secular society). And even that language is restricted more or less non-pathological cases.

    In short, not quite the force that “evil” is associated with by a religious mind.

  • mark

    Occasionally (very occasionally) a rational voice manages to pierce the fog of the touchy-feely, we-are-all-brothers BS and point out that there are evil, truly evil forces about in the world.

    Of course there are evil, truly evil people (not forces) about in this world. The trick is not becoming one of them.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    You mean bad, real bad people, Mark, no? Because a good Marxist that you are, you surely believe that God is dead.

  • mar k

    I am agnostic on both counts and won’t quibble about word choice.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I knew you wouldn’t. Just don’t want to mix up the language games.
    Of course, you failed to mention the greatest point of contention: what you regard as “evil people” may well be lauded by others.
    So how do we get around this little inconvenience?

  • ma rk

    I’m not hopeful that there is a way around this, Rog.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    68 – Dan(Miller)

    …no matter how much we may wish it were otherwise, reality does exist; really.

    Reality is very much, in certain ways, and on a variety of levels, what we make it. (semi-delusional thinking, as found in certain western ‘fast-food’, ‘results-oriented’ Buddhist ideas aside)

    The US (and it’s allies) worked to remove Prime Minister Mohammed Mosaddeq in Iran and Abd al Karim Qassim in Iraq, who acted in interests of the people, and made sure that oppressive madmen reigned who would serve the interests of the US.

    I am amazed but never surprised when otherwise intelligent grown-ups live in such a fantasy world where the actions of their favored players apparently don’t have consequences. In order to avoid understanding how these, in addition to similar maneuvers, would eventually lead to hatred of the US and terrorist attacks, one would have to pretend the whole populations of middle-east countries are not really live humans with brains and memories, but inert lumps of plastic who aren’t expected to react when the US (and it’s cohorts) manipulate the game board.

    What one considers a deficient or naive viewpoint seems to be correlated with the breadth of the vista one is able to take in.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Correct, Mark. And I think that was the real point of your original remark.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    My goodness. Cindy just invoked the concept of karma – what goes around, comes around. So now America is to blame for giving rise to some of the terrorist activities against her.

    It’s the oddest idea indeed. Who would have thought?

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    Karma? I am talking about cause and effect. Careful about interpreting.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    It’s not so much, to me, what goes around comes around, as it is–if you beat your child daily don’t be surprised when he murders you in your bed.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    That’s part of karma – and not not in the immediate present or future but in an extended sense as well. Do you think I was criticizing you?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Never mind! I’m withdrawing from this discussion.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    Nope, I don’t think you were criticizing me. I think you were misunderstanding my point. Of course, maybe it’s because I think of karma, as some people conceive of it, to be superstition–unrelated to real things done by real people. So that if I accidentally squash a bug, something bad might happen to me later due to some mystical imbalance or something I have created.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    (I am not sure why I get misinterpreted so often when I think I am just clarifying or making an observation. Like when I said ‘cooperating’, two people’ at least, acted like their mother was talking to them. I’d better be more careful. I forget how sensitive men can be.)
    :-)

  • ma rk

    It must be your karma, Cindy. And Rog, if you don’t deal with it this time, you’ll just have to come back and take it on next time.

  • ma rk

    oh yeah…wink

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    rofl Mark

    (*thinks Mark won’t use emoticons because of–you know–the coolness factor*)

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    ooops, I forgot to put a (smile) on the end.
    :-)

  • m a rk

    With a badly brutalized and bruised ego, I must now go take solace in planting some watermelons.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Lilith (the destroyer)

    lol :-)

  • Zedd

    Dan(M), Clavos,

    The problem lies in determining who gets to issue the “evil” badges.

    The challenge is that we are all finite and our scope is extremely limited. Our labels come from our experiences. Since we haven’t acquired the ability to know all, its impossible for us to make the calculations that would render us qualified to judge who is indeed evil. We can deem acts as more destructive than others (sorta) but even then, we have no idea what the residual affect over time of an act will be. So we cant gauge how much worse a bad judgement is than another. I think that is where the concepts of grace, “judge not..”, “there is no sin that is less than another”, etc, come to play. That is where the notion (for example) that it is wrong to drive a person to anger AND it is wrong to respond with thoughtless anger. Everyone is culpable. Both subjects are WRONG -If you want to say evil, then I suppose that is fine. But apply the label to both parties.

    The concept of an entity that does have the long view and is the only “thing” that can make such calls comes from these complexities. Most call “it” God but some call “it” Truth, etc.

    This view is actually the opposite of reductionism. Don’t have the intellectual capacity to go into it right now or I don’t feel like it actually cause I’d have to read a bunch of stuff to check myself before posting. Lazy off course.

    What we do know is that we are responsible for ourselves, are accountable for our own actions and for making sure that we don’t stand back and allow others to be mistreated.

  • Zedd

    What I find interesting is that Ruvy totally ignores that fact that according to their documented history (the scriptures), they were attacked and persecuted because God was punishing them for THEIR misdeeds; their own bad behavior. I’ve not heard an analysis from him as to what he thinks the “evil” is that they are conducting that would cause their Jehovah to cause their “enemies” to attack them.

    Just an observation…. Off course one MUST always qualify anything that is said about the state of Israel by stating that “I not anti semitic”. So here goes the unexplained but definitely obligatory kiss up…. I’m not an anti semite.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Zedd, The problem lies in determining who gets to issue the “evil” badges. I don’t see that as a problem. Each of us, according to his respective lights, gets to issue the “good,” “evil” and other badges. I am fairly confident that we agree on some and disagree on others. In a reasonably democratic society, each of us also gets to decide for whom and for what to vote; preferably on the basis of what we see as good, evil, etc. I think that is “good.” In other societies, that is not permitted or the votes are ignored. I think that is “evil.”

    Dan(Miller)

  • Zedd

    Dan(M)

    How can that be evil if the right to vote is a new concept for human beings?

    Help me out.

    Again, it’s your experiences that would cause you to make that call. The vote, is not a universal mandate. It’s just a really good idea that we’ve come up with. Five thousand years ago, you would have been deemed nutty or definitely thought to be suspect. Considering that various societies all over the globe are at different phases of development (that notion is even arrogant actually) or on different paths. Perhaps your MANDATE is what is evil.

    Get the point?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Zedd,

    I am not sure it is actually a new concept. Be that as it may, I think that being able to cast a meaningful vote is good and that not being allowed to do so is evil. Bottom line, I think so because I think so; in the final analysis, that’s pretty much the way that all subjective value judgments are made. The phrase “objective value judgments” may well be an oxymoron.

    Dan(Miller)

  • Zedd

    Oh Roger,

    Cut it out. But do keep be delusional please.

  • Zedd

    Dan(M)

    That is also what fundamentalism is.

  • Zedd

    Roger,

    That was- keep ME delusional. Wanted to clear that up. Important you know. :o)

  • Zedd

    Dan (M)

    The question then becomes, what are you willing to do about your fundamentalist beliefs. How do your beliefs impact how you treat others? Are you less patient or tolerant with the OTHERS. What effect does that have in the long run? Does it contribute to an evil?

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Zedd, That is also what fundamentalism is. Gee, I guess we can also coin our own definitions. Silly me, I had thought that fundamentalism had something to do with strict adherence to the perceived dictates of Zeus or one (or more) of the other gods.

    Dan(Miller)

    I shall now go and pray*.
    ______________

    *The verb “to pray” means having a tot of rum. That is also the meaning of another theological verb, “to commune with the spirit.”

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Lilith (the destroyer)

    The question is, then…If a democratically oriented society removes a democratically elected leader from another society and installs an oppressive monster who gasses people. Can they still wear the ‘good guy’ badge? If so, who’ll be pinning it on at the award ceremony?

    Oh, never mind, sure they can be, it’s done all the time…I don’t know what got into me.

    Don’t mind me…being sent to the end of the earth to copulate with demons and bear hundreds of children a day, just because one doesn’t like the missionary position, tends to dampen one’s wits a tad.

  • Clavos

    tends to dampen one’s wits a tad.

    How can you tell, Cindy?*

    *Sorry. It was just too tempting. :>)

    Still my BFF?

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Lilith (the destroyer)

    lmao @ Clav

    Still my BFF?

    Always… :-)

  • zingzing

    “Occasionally (very occasionally) a rational voice manages to pierce the fog of the touchy-feely, we-are-all-brothers BS and point out that there are evil, truly evil forces about in the world.”

    captain obvious bursts through the doors and lays it all out like it obviously is. all throughout the room, people are neither shocked nor amazed, and nothing changes. the temperature of the room stays the same, despite the lack of bone-chilling nothingness. the wall paper stays in place and there is a distinct lack of distinction as to what just didn’t happen. the world goes on as if nothing happened, because nothing happened.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Life! Don’t talk to me about Life*

    Oh! I’m so depressed.

    Marvin
    _____________
    *Yes you were. Don’t deny it, please. If I weren’t already terminally depressed, that would be sooooo depressing that I couldn’t even breathe, which of course I can’t anyway. I’m sooooooooo depressed.

  • Ruvy

    Zedd,

    What I find interesting is that Ruvy totally ignores that fact that according to their documented history (the scriptures), they were attacked and persecuted because G-d was punishing them for THEIR misdeeds; their own bad behavior. I’ve not heard an analysis from him as to what he thinks the “evil” is that they are conducting that would cause their G-d to cause their “enemies” to attack them.

    Your question – if it indeed a question at all – is not worth my effort to answer. The vast majority of my articles deal with the wrong-doing of the government of Israel – which is the reason we in Israel suffer as we do. It is a basic Jewish concept that the people suffer for the sins of the rulers.

    If you bother to actually READ my articles, rather than making stupid and condescending comments, you will see the answer to your question in painful detail. Until I see evidence of that, all that you say to me is just another version of Jew-hatred – contempt. I assure you, the feeling is mutual.

  • Clavos

    If you bother to actually READ my articles,

    She can’t yet, but she’s working on it — A for effort.

    …rather than making stupid and condescending comments…

    That’s going to be a lot harder. She’ll never learn that.

  • Bliffle

    Excellent article, Glenn. Very insightful, and proposes a new paradigm: that Obama is outflanking the Jihadhists and, at the same time, the republicans (that is, the corrupt stinking decrepit carcass that remains of that one-principled party before it sold it’s soul for A Few Dollars More).

  • http://blogcritics.org/writer/dan_miller Dan(Miller)

    Bliffle, re # 114 — where do I go to claim my share? Even a modest part of the Few Dollars More would be a big help.

    I seem to recall a general who, when forced to retreat after the debacle which followed the successful Inchon invasion, proclaimed “Retreat Hell! We’re advancing to the rear!”

    Dan(Miller)

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Lilith (the destroyer)

    110

    zing, i hate that have to ask this when your comment features one of your fabulous poetic formations…but,

    …the forces of evil?…aren’t they like something spiderman* fights?

    there are forces of evil about in the world?** by the power of grayscull, i had better grab my lightsaber, before any of them enter through one of the holes in my head. have you people been watching too much tv?

    *feel free to substitute your favorite…superman, flash gordon, wonder woman, fearless fly, mr. t, captain obvious…or even my favorite…particle man, whatever.

    **yes sorry, i know, it’s all clav’s fault…

    it usually is…
    :-)

  • Clavos

    Ah, but think how dull it would be without me, Lilith.

    “Forces of Evil.” noun.

    1. Anything unfortunate enough to come into Clavos’ sights.

    2. Everything else.

  • Zedd

    Ruvy

    Hello -by the way.

    IF you realize that the issue is with the government of Israel and that God is punishing you for your own misdeeds, then drop the Muslim bashing. Focus on the cause of your issues. Everything that has happened to you should be perceived to be by design; the will of the All Mighty to get you and yours to pay attention. Right? Cussin’ folks out who are not the cause of your misery is pointless. It only says that you are not prepared to deal with your real issue. Done.

  • Zedd

    Dan(M),

    What makes the term “Fundamentalist” relevant is not the entity that you believe holds the ultimate power, its the idea that your interpretation of the truth is THE Truth.

    Also, a person such as yourself has to believe that they are their own God. So yep, based on what you stated, you’re a fundamentalist.

    I had to join you in your sixth grade pointless tag you’re it response. I think you got what i meant and just brought the cheesy definition into play just to be silly or a male.

  • Zedd

    Lilith,

    Conversely, are those (“good guys”) who put the person who gassed the multitudes in power evil?

    If those who were gassed retaliate against those “good guys”, are they evil?

    What if they only say they want to retaliate against the “good guys” who caused the gassing of their people. Are they evil?

    Are the “good guys” evil for thinking that they are the “good guys”?

    Are they evil for labeling the angry gassed people evil?

    Perhaps we should ask Clavos and Dan(M) they seem to possess that rare evil detecting gene. Wait, we have found our heros for your Gotham City. Those rare powers will save mankind. Perhaps they can explain the tights thing too…. Although Clavos can easily be over taken. Just show him a comma that’s out of place and its kryptonite-city.

    Clavos where are you, Chime in. You are needed!!! ,

  • Clavos

    Ah, yes. The old Truth is relative (along with everything else) gambit.

    “And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?”

  • Zedd

    Ah yes, the old “The old Truth is relative” scapegoat of the world’s closet control freaks, fait thwarted dictators, demagogs and megalomaniacs.

    I’m pretty sure that all of the world’s dictators would make the same statement and use that same reasoning as the foundation for their actions. They have the Truth off course and someone has to implement it. They are brave enough to carry it out.

  • Zedd

    I believe that the conclusions that we all have sinned is applicable here. Relax boys I’m not talking about religion, I’m talking about a philosophical conclusion. It’s not that everything is relative. It’s that we have to be more concerned as individuals about our own impact on the universe. Because of our finite nature, there is no possible way to evaluate good and evil. There are far too many elements at play. The complexities that come with every action; the physiological, evolutionary, history based, nurture based, psychologically based, information/disinformation based factors are far to extensive for us to be able to compute an evil quotient. What we can do is search ourselves to ensure that we care enough to do the right thing (seek righteousness), as much of the time as we can.

    As to what the best way for nation-states to rule and to interact with one another, it is a tough one. What we know is, when the people are ready, they will form the government that they want (not hope for). They will also collaborate with people of other lands who believe as they do, to help them have that government. A la America and France, Cuba or the Soviet Union. Whether what they want is best, only time will tell (or maybe not). Conversely, people of other lands will partner with the people of other lands to support their desire to live as they do, regardless of philosophy or whether they really do posses the Truth.

  • Clavos

    there is no possible way to evaluate good and evil…

    What we can do is search ourselves to ensure that we care enough to do the right thing (seek righteousness), as much of the time as we can.

    If we can’t evaluate good and evil, how can we know the “right thing?”

  • Ruvy

    IF you realize that the issue is with the government of Israel and that God is punishing you for your own misdeeds, then drop the Muslim bashing

    You’re slower than molasses in January, Zedd.

    I’ll repeat this one more time for you: If you bother to actually READ my articles, rather than making stupid and condescending comments, you will see the answer to your question in painful detail. Until I see evidence of that, all that you say to me is just another version of Jew-hatred – contempt. I assure you, the feeling is mutual.

    And now, I’m done….

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    #90,

    Not sensitive – simply don’t care for the attack dog style.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Zedd,

    What do you mean “Keep me delusional” (#102, #104).

    I like your thinking processes. A few minor points of disagreement, but you’re on the right track. I would stress more the distinction between our practices and our ideals if I were you. I think your analysis is too much grounded in what we do, not enough in what’s possible.

    So if you care to pursue it a bit further, I’m game.

  • Zedd

    Roger,

    You may be right. That approach is based on the type of forum that we find ourselves in. Republicans of late wont understand that sort of dialogue. They have been taught that it represents the fanciful, dream state of liberals. I cant see how we can discuss possibilities on BC. Perhaps you can help me out with that.

    I thoroughly enjoy collaboration and solutions oriented thinking emmensely. I believe myself to be a big picture thinker meaning, my processes often are geared towards the goal.

    On this forum the goal is often “how do we create a society/world where everyone in it feels the most content”. Most of my comments speak to that. Off course if someone suggests that we blow our enemies up, I would have to explore just how they’ve come to that in order to move the discussion passed that diversion. In the end, we don’t solve anything. It simply ends up being a fun mental exercise for me and an opportunity to throw a jab at Clav my bud.

  • Zedd

    Ruvy,

    I don’t see Jews as a single entity so I cant hate Jews. I know a lot of people who are of Jewish heritage and they are not in the state of Israel so my contention doesn’t apply to them. I also know that there are many Jews in Israel who are against your Zionist ideas so I have no disagreement with them. As for the ones who I disagree with, I don’t hate them. I don’t know them. I just think they are wrong and highly selfish and distructive.

    You can stop hiding behind millions of innocent bystanders who happen to be Jewish. They don’t support your sick ideas. In a way, they too are your enemies.

    Sorry to disappoint, I don’t hate a single Jew.

    You are correct I don’t read your articles all the way through. However when I have read your critique of Israel it still lacks the adequate ownership of your misdeeds and wrongs towards others. You speak about Jews being disloyal to the faith or “Jewness” but you don’t speak about Jews being wrong in their actions towards others. Huge problem. Huge problem for anyone.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Zedd,

    #128: Now I see I have to refer you to my piece: Start with this; and there are Part II and III in which I conclude my argument.

    I believe it addresses the question you’re raising – which is whether there’s such a thing as progress, and if so, how it happens.

    I do hope you’ll give it a quick once-over so we can continue this discussion.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    Roger,

    Honestly and truly, cross my heart and hope to die, I wasn’t attacking. You, yourself, have said intonation can be difficult read on a chatboard. If you look back at what I said and read it without attributing harshness and put it in a gentler voice, you might see that it does not automatically call for a harsh voice. I was merely correcting what I saw as being misconstrued.

    It is a sign of respect where I think a person capable of understanding that words mean different things to people and treat them as able to accept direct feedback about my meaning without having to couch things delicately.

    ‘Karma’ is a word from eastern philosophy used with various meanings by westerners. Having seen my reaction to being subject to Somik’s ‘pop Buddhist’ or ‘guru-style’ advice, you may understand that I have reservations about certain people who claim to have wisdom that they don’t really have. Partly demonstrated by his dispensing one-size-fits-all ‘universal truth’ fixes to people he’s never even had discourse with.

    I therefore admit my response to the word ‘karma’ is reactionary. I don’t prefer eastern philosophical words and I am unlikely to agree I am bringing any such thing up in what I say. But–it was reaction to a word is not a reaction to you. I was only trying to clarify. I’ll try to be more careful.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Cindy,

    I’m not saying you were. I can only go by form of words. I did not disagree with your earlier comment and there was no need for my to amplify it because you expressed your ideas clearly enough.

    All I have done was to enlarge on it – in my own way – with no intent or misinterpreting it. And even if you don’t believe in the concept I brought to bear, it is intelligible enough to some people in the cause-effect type of sense in order to be able to discern the implications of your remark beyond the original context.

  • Zedd

    Roger,

    I believe that there is such a thing as progress and that it does occur. Towards what end, who knows. However I believe that the experience (and the choices) of the individual is/are far more powerful. Whatever discussion that we have, it will rest upon the individual’s choices to drive whatever end result. What forces progress is the courage of the individual.

    I don’t know if this is the forum to accomplish meaningful results. I think that this forum allows us to understand one another’s positions and it also enables us to see each other as multidimensional individuals. In a large way, that is progress. Many will not be willing to surrender to that reality because it feels better (or safer) to draw sweeping conclusions about people or groups. But for the most part one gets to see individuals and not just members of political parties or Lefties and Wing-nuts in such a space, they inevitably grow from that realization and that is fantastic.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    I’ll try to see that next time.

    (p.s. Do you think Mark is a Marxist?)

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    “But for the most part one gets to see individuals and not just members of political parties or Lefties and Wing-nuts in such a space, they inevitably grow from that realization and that is fantastic.”

    I wish I was as optimistic about these prospects, given the present format, as you are, Zedd. Personally, I’m quickly coming to the conclusion that most bloggers are megalomaniancs.

    It’s crazy to begin with to be writing pieces for other bloggers? At best, it comes across as some kind of writer’s retreat or seminar.

    We should be addressing the people at large, not just the other writers. Where is the sense in that?

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I’m just kidding him about it, but so far he hasn’t denied it.

  • Zedd

    I don’t know about them being megalomaniacs… but the potential to be a megalomaniac may be a human trait. Look at toddlers for goodness sake. :o) I think most people if not checked would exhibit such tendencies. I believe that people who live an unexamined life and are oblivious about the world around them would be even more apt to exhibit those traits.

    I think most humans have the capability of becoming Sadam Husein. I think that most dictators start off with the most noble of intentions (whether their ideas are good or smart or well thought through is another story) but they become faced with the inevitable obstacle of getting people to cooperate and go along. What they end up doing is making the fruition of their vision much more important than the journey it will take to get to it. Off course what happens is more descent and they have to clamp down even further. In the end, the vision is forgotten or distorted and the clamp down becomes the status quo.

    I will take time to read your piece soon. Perhaps we will strike up a great and legnthy discussion with a few hot pockets. No fun if we agree on everything.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Hot pockets is fine with me. And you know where to find be. For the time being, I’m stuck here.

  • http://twitter.com/tolstoyscat Cindy

    Yeah, well, he’s like that–restrained and subtle.

  • Ruvy

    You are correct I don’t read your articles all the way through.

    Then you don’t really know what I’m talking about – and probably don’t give a damn either. That’s okay, Zedd. You can admit the truth. I won’t get mad at you.

    But, if you shikker up a bunch of AMERICAN Jews in Jerusalem, you find out what they really think of the Blessed of Hussein. And they make fools of themselves – like most drunks tend to do.

    I’m not going to make excuses for them. The saving grace they have in my eyes is that they came to visit Israel at all – unlike so many many Jews in America who just don’t give a fuck.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    It’s not because they’re racist. Is that what you’re saying?

  • Ruvy

    Roger,

    They’re American racists. These are not Israelis talking, but American racists, drunk in a bar. And even the Obama supporters in the bunch have become disgusted by the obvious pro-Arab tilt of American policy in the Middle East.

    Israeli Jews are a whole different kettle of fish and respond differently entirely. This video is a bunch of university students who reflect the leftist tilt of the Hebrew media. Their ass-kissing is sickening – but they reflect the leftist bullshit hustled here. They very much reflect the bullshit that the Jerusalem Post hustles as well.

    On the other hand,Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Temple Institute gives much of the answer that I would give – though he whines somewhat too much for my taste. Remember his final words, his quote from the Book of Isaiah. It is my warning to you.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    But that goes counter to the conventional wisdom that Jews (especially American Jews) are not racists? You do know the support of the Jewish community for Civil Right.

    They’re living a double life then. Shame.

  • Ruvy

    Remember his final words, his quote from the Book of Isaiah. It is my warning to you.

    Make that: Remember his final words, his quote from the Book of Jeremiah. It is my warning to you.

    And it doesn’t mean anything to me if you believe me or not. If America tries to destroy Israel, disaster will befall her and she will surely fall and be destroyed herself.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Just watched the video. Quite informative about certain misrepresentations of Obama’s speech. The status of Jerusalem, in particular, as though the fulcrum of Muslim interest and attention, is one gross misrepresentation.

    My only problem – the grounding of the state of Israel in religious writings. I fully realize that this is an integral part of your religious beliefs. So I can only say that this is not a view that is recognized by the rest of the world. And I think therein lies the crux of the matter.

    I’m not clear enough about “the settlements” issue. What particular territory is concerns?

    As I’ve stated time and again, I do believe there ought to be considerable “buffer zone” between Israel and the would-be Palestinian state to prevent acts of aggression.

  • Ruvy

    Roger,

    I ground MY beliefs in the Torah. What you believe in is your business. But, for the same essential argument, without the Biblical underpinnings, you can read The Legal Foundation and Borders of Israel under International Law, by Howard Grief. This $49 tome summarizes the legal case for the country’s sovereignty as grounded in international law as opposed to the Covenants of the Torah. Don’t let Stan Denham at this book, though. It’ll piss him off no end. ;o))

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    Well, that’s something different then, because it offers a kind of perspective that might be shared by all and all alike.

    After all, I’m certain that neither you nor I would want the world to come to an end if other principles of attaining a relative peace in the region were not to be tried.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    I can’t afford it, Ruvy. But why don’t you write a book summary (since you’re obviously familiar with the content).

    I realize that in part at least, you might be compromising what you regard as a “stronger case”; nonetheless, it is something that some of the more astute and less biased members of the BC community would be receptive to.