Bush vs Walker on Iran Deal

Scott Walker has said that he would terminate the recently completed agreement with Iran on his first day in office, a promise sure to fire up the ignorant voters he must appeal to. Jeb Bush said the other day that this is not a good idea, that he should at least wait to have people in place to evaluate the situation:

“One thing that I won’t do is just say, as a candidate, ‘I’m going to tear up the agreement on the first day,’” Bush said in Nevada on Thursday. First, said Bush, he needs to have his team in place. “That’s great, that sounds great but maybe you ought to check in with your allies first, maybe you ought to appoint a secretary of state, maybe secretary of defense, you might want to have your team in place, before you take an act like that.”

A perfectly reasonable, even thoughtful, position. Naturally, Walker tried to change the subject to avoid engaging the argument:

“He may have his opinion. I believe that a president shouldn’t wait to act until they put a cabinet together or an extended period of time, I believe they should be prepared to act on the very first day they take office,” he said. “It’s very possible, God forbid that this would happen, but very possible, that the next president could be called to take aggressive actions, including military actions, on their very first day in office.”

Yes, that’s certainly possible, but it has nothing to do with this situation. There is no rational reason why it would be important to cancel that agreement on the very first day, as opposed to some weeks later when you’ve had time to evaluate whether it’s working or not. A thoughtful, reasonable person would want to consult with our intelligence agencies, with the International Atomic Energy Agency and others to determine whether there is any evidence that Iran has violated the agreement or whether the goal of preventing them from building nuclear weapons has actually worked. A simpleton trying to appeal to simpletons predetermines their course of action without regard to the facts. This tells us nothing at all about Walker that we didn’t already know.

Bush is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party. I don’t know if that’s good political strategy, but it’s much more intelligent.

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  • busterggi

    “it’s much more intelligent.”

    Yes, it is. I wonderwho told him to say it.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    Bush is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party.

    1) He hasn’t been consistent in saying intelligent things.

    2) All the grownups have left the Republican Party.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Bush Jeb! is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party his corporate donor base.

    I suspect Wall St, the oil industry, etc understand war with Iran would not work out well for them.

  • eric

    Bush is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party

    Maybe. But an alternate possibility is that Walker is wholly focused on winning the primary while Bush is thinking about how to win the general as well as the primary; how to appeal to non-Republicans

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Yes, that’s certainly possible, but it has nothing to do with this situation.

    Wrong. Taking his first step in to the Oval Office and immediately having to go to war has everything to do with this situation.

     

    Bush is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party. I don’t know if that’s good political strategy, but it’s much more intelligent.

    Yes. He’s the grown up. He’ll wait up to a week before war.

  • raven

    I can’t imagine why anyone would vote for Scott Walker except his owners and paymasters, the Koches.

    He has a record. Of wrecking Wisconsin. Wisconsin ranks first in the shrinking of the middle class. They did not come out of Bush’s Great Recession very well. Last I saw, after cutting services, they were still looking at a deficit of $2 billion for two years.

    After wrecking Wisconsin, I’m sure he would try to wreck the USA. This matters because…I live here. So do 319 million other people.

  • StevoR

    Wait isn’t Jeb! (BUSH!!!)’es foreign policy adviser his brother and ex-POTUS George the Second? / Lesser / Dubya? Hmm.. maybe he did learn something from Iraq after all.. ?

  • colnago80

    Walker’s statement is the total bullshit, as Bush pointed out. However, the fact that Walker is an ignorant asshole does not in any way, shape, form, or regard alter the fact that this agreement is appeasement worthy of Neville Chamberlain. Neville Obama gave away the store. He’s just hoping that the ayatollahs don’t set off a nuke while he still in office.

    http://goo.gl/cO0r7P

  • StevoR

    @6. raven : Also because the USA is a superpower, a nuclear power and hugely influential over the rest of the world incl & especially Australia – which is where I live.

    Also, whilst you’re right about Walker wrecking the USA I’m not so sure that differentiates him from many, (almost all even?) of his Republican alternatives.

  • jimmiraybob

    A thoughtful, reasonable person would…

    Arrrrrrr, that be the rub. The base be lookin’ for a man of action; a man of the gut. In other words, a bold and fearless Captain to lead the pirate ship of state, especially if its course be set to the past. A man not afraid to fly the Jolly Roger and navigate by the seat of his breeches and one who don’t take no weak-kneed sass from his subordinates and crew. A man not shackled by the complications of thinking and reasoning.

    [I was kind of hoping this was talk like a pirate day.]

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    colnago, kindly take your tired old chickenhawk whinery and shove it back where it came from. Calling Walker an ignorant asshole doesn’t exactly say much when you then go on to repeat, in even stupider terms, the same brand if ignorant assholery. (Oh, and since when was a “famed lawyer” a more credible source on diplomatic and military matters than actual diplomats? You really can’t do better than Alan Derschowitz and the Isreali diplomats who lost all their allies and got themselves an underclass they can’t manage by any means other than ghettoization and repeated bombings?)

  • dingojack

    jimmiraybob – sadly for Mr Walker that’s not how a pirate ship actually operated…

    [sad ‘arrrrrr’]

    Dingo

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Raging Bee “better than Alan Derschowitz”

    Dibs on band name!

     

    “the Isreali diplomats”

    Also!

     

    “Alan Derschowitz and the Isreali diplomats”

    Too!

  • colnago80

    Re Raging Bee @ #11

    Hey, how about criticizing what Dersh had to say before bad mouthing him. I find his objections to be well taken.

  • Knight in Sour Armor

    Is there really any point in trying to appeal to non-Republicans anymore? Don’t most of the non-party affiliated people just vote with along straight party lines anyways (at least in presidential races)?

    Getting more of your overall voter base to the polls would seem to work a lot better than trying to pander to an imaginary group of centrists.

  • jimmiraybob

    Dingo – “sadly for Mr Walker that’s not how a pirate ship actually operated…”

    There ya go with all your fancy smarty pants book knowing and thinking. I was, of course, alluding to the movement conservative doctrine of creative reality. :)

  • velociraptor
  • moarscienceplz

    Bush is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party.

    All three of them.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @colnago80

    Like, are you against any and all diplomacy with Iran? What would be acceptable to you? The deal looks pretty good to me.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #19

    No, and neither is Dershowitz. is complaint is that Neville Obama caved in when he actually had all the cards. The president should have held out for more intrusive inspections, any time, any place which was initial position. He also should have demanded that Iran cease its terrorist activities, namely supporting Hizbollah and Hamas and cease meddling in Syria.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    Quoting colnago:

    The president should have held out for more intrusive inspections, any time, any place which was initial position.

    All of the other sources I can find disagree with you. For example, the BBC:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/07/15/us-iran-nuclear-military-sites-analysis-idUSKCN0PP2TG20150715

    One of the most controversial issues in the negotiations was whether the U.N.’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) would be able to visit military sites if they had questions about suspected nuclear activities or facilities within them.

    The matter became even harder to resolve, diplomats said, after Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, on June 23 said granting access to Iran’s military sites was a “red line.”

    Under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty’s “Additional Protocol,” the IAEA may ask for “managed access” to any site, including military, but a country can legitimately bar access by tying the U.N. nuclear watchdog up in endless negotiations.

    This deal aims to close such loopholes with a process under which Iran would give access or otherwise allay IAEA concerns within 24 days, a time frame experts say is tight enough to keep it from sanitizing unauthorized nuclear work.

    Do you believe that the inspections will be insufficient to prevent uranium enrichment, bomb plutonium creation, and atomic bomb research? Do you disagree with the expert opinions of the unnamed experts cited by the BBC?

  • colnago80

    This deal aims to close such loopholes with a process under which Iran would give access or otherwise allay IAEA concerns within 24 days, a time frame experts say is tight enough to keep it from sanitizing unauthorized nuclear work.

    And just how is it expected that Iran could allay IAEA concerns without inspections. This is a crock. Furthermore, 24 days is plenty of time for Iran to hide violations of the the terms of the agreement.

  • Lady Mondegreen

    Bush is trying to appeal here to the grownups in the Republican party

    And they appreciate it. Both of them.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    Furthermore, 24 days is plenty of time for Iran to hide violations of the the terms of the agreement.

    So, you disagree with the uncited expert opinions quoted in the BBC article. Ok.

  • howardhershey

    If your first act as President is to spit in the face of the five other non-Iranian parties to the agreement (including three important allies and Russia and China), you are essentially saying that no agreement with Iran to limit their nukes is worth anything and the only weapon we have is massive retaliation if we even suspect (as we did claim to suspect in Iraq) that Iran has or is working on getting WMDs, I would hope that you would make all this perfectly clear before the election.

  • colnago80

    Re #24

    I would take anything said on the BBC, the most anti-Israel media outlet in Great Britain, with several barrels of salt.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    colnago80, as long as you’re being irrational about this.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @colnago80

    I personally don’t think it’s all that related, but let me ask: Remind me why I should give a rat’s ass about Israel when they’re effectively the new apartheid?

    If I had my way, I would give a big “fuck you” to the rest of the world and especially the middle east, as I go much more isolationist, and so I have no more reason to care about the fuckers that are the Palestinians and the fuckers that are the Israelies as they continue to kill each other.

    If Israel wants to impress me, they need to immediately recognize the dilemma that they are in. They can go for a 1 state solution, but then it cannot be a Jewish state because that would be unfair to the Palestinians. Or they can go for a 2 state solution, and that means stopping settlements, destroying a lot of settlements that are in place, and making Jerusalem a sort of independent city-state that is shared by all. Israel needs to admit that one of those two are the end-game they are going for.

    If Israel decide to go for the 2 state solution, they need to immediately stop settlements and the systematic eviction of Palestinians from Jerusalem, and they need to immediately start pulling back the illegal settlements.

    If Israel decide to go for the 1 state solution, they need to start cleaning house and removing all of the laws and systematic bias that discriminates against Palestinians in Israel. At the very least, pass a law that their supreme court can use to rule which more or less is like the United States first amendment separation of church and state.

    But we know Israel will never do that, because they’re inhabited by too many religious crazies, and because the United States is supporting them because of our religious crazies.

    If I was in control of the US, here are several points of my plan:

    * Scrap most of the free trade agreements of the US. Some trade agreements can be made, but free trade is a loser for both countries and a winner for the rich that exploit both countries.

    * Get back some of our manufacturing for national security and independence,

    * Raise income tax rates on the filthy rich (e.g. let’s say 10 million USD per year is a bare minimum of what I mean by “filthy rich”) to staggering proportions,

    * Put in place so-called death taxes for the filthy rich that are staggeringly high, such as 90%+ or even 99% for billion USD+,

    * Several other proposals that are expressly aimed at blatant wealth redistribution programs, including better function of education and health care.

    * With the free trade agreements scrapped, put into place other precautions to ensure that people cannot move overseas to dodge the wealth redistribution programs that I’m doing,

    * Build nuclear reactors like candy to remove dependence on foreign countries for our energy and national security, starting with AP 1000s, and soon after IFRs and/or LFTRs.

    * Massively fund research into the US Navy program that may be able to produce gasoline from seawater (and lots of electricity), and massively fund research into batteries, and anything else that can solve the problem of energy for transportation. With nuclear and one of these, no more need of fossil fuels. At all. Energy independence and national security woo!

    All of these points are eminently doable. With that, the US can become isolation again, like it should be, and back in the hands of the people instead of the filthy rich fuckers, again like it should be .

    Sorry. I guess I just felt like ranting.

    But yeah. Fuck Israel. And fuck the Palestinians. I have similar demands from Hamas and the Palestinians at large: They need to recognize that there are only two solutions, and they need to embrace one or the other or both, and both include explicit recognition of the continued existence of Israel as a state. Until Hamas changes their charter / constitution / whatever to reflect this reality, then they’re fuckers too.

  • Holms

    #14 War Crimes Advocate colnago80

    Hey, how about criticizing what Dersh had to say before bad mouthing him.

    You mean, the sort of measured response you never ever give?

    #26

    I would take anything said on the BBC, the most anti-Israel media outlet in Great Britain, with several barrels of salt.

    Oh look, here you are throwing out an entire channel – hundreds of individual journalists – without addressing anything that they’ve said. You shamlessly dishonest shit.

    Also, if you think 24 days is enough to fundamentally change the nature of e.g. a nuclear reactor, you are an idiot. People that are actually knowledgeable on this topic – the entire IAEA for example – disagree with you.

  • colnago80

    Re Holms @ #29

    It’s certainly enough time to hide centrifuges.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    It’s certainly enough time to hide centrifuges.

    Yeah, centrifuges and other high-tech nuclear-bomb-making facilities are easy to build, rebuild, move around on trailers, and hide under rocks or sofas whenever an inspector is seen driving close by.

    Once again, our resident war-happy Likudnik racist chickenhawk shows his utter lack of common sense.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    If I had my way, I would give a big “fuck you” to the rest of the world and especially the middle east, as I go much more isolationist, and so I have no more reason to care about the fuckers that are the Palestinians and the fuckers that are the Israelies as they continue to kill each other.

    Once again, the libertard proves how indiscriminate his willful ignorance and indifference really is. So tell us, “Enlightenment” “liberal,” why should anyone give a rat’s ass what you have to say, after you’ve promised to ignore the rest of the planet? Go back to your safe little gated “community” and jerk off in front of a mirror — that seems to be all you’re good for.

  • colnago80

    Re Raging Bee @ 32

    Yeah, centrifuges and other high-tech nuclear-bomb-making facilities are easy to build, rebuild, move around on trailers, and hide under rocks or sofas whenever an inspector is seen driving close by.

    They can certainly be made mobile enough to be moved to another location within the 24 day time period that the inspectors have to give between their request to inspect a location and the date at which the actual inspection will take place.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #28

    Gee, get in a hole and pull the hole in after us. How did that work out during the 1930s?

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Gee, get in a hole and pull the hole in after us. How did that work out during the 1930s?

    Actually, with EL, it’s more like sticking his head up his ass and inviting the rest of us to follow him there and enjoy the view.

    They can certainly be made mobile enough to be moved to another location within the 24 day time period…

    Are they small enough not to be seen by satellite recon?

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    And, in answer to your question, it worked out really really well for the rich and powerful, and for the fascist and other reactionary interest-groups they supported, pretty much all over the planet. Ask any of them, and they’ll tell you everything was awesome till that commie Roosevelt started screwing things up.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    Re EL @ #28

    Gee, get in a hole and pull the hole in after us. How did that work out during the 1930s?

    It would have worked really well in the 1910s.

    I am not advocating appeasement. I am advocating that we stop our military adventurism and conquest and control of foreign nations for purported national security interests, oil, etc.

    @Raging Bee

    Once again, the libertard proves how indiscriminate his willful ignorance and indifference really is. So tell us, “Enlightenment” “liberal,” why should anyone give a rat’s ass what you have to say, after you’ve promised to ignore the rest of the planet? Go back to your safe little gated “community” and jerk off in front of a mirror — that seems to be all you’re good for.

    Apparently I misspoke. “Isolationist” might mean certain things to you that it doesn’t mean to me. There’s a communication issue going on. What would you like to do which you think I would be unwilling to do?

    For example, I’m still generally supportive of so-called peacekeeping actions.

    However, in terms of our use of military power, it’s hard to find a justified use of the US military power in a war since World War 2, and if we exclude World War 2, then it’s hard to find a justified use of the US military in a war for a very long time.

    When I used the word “isolationist”, I meant it as a contrast against the conqueror of the world that the US is now.

    I think you need to read more Noam Chomsky.

    But I think there’s some definite misconceptions going on.

    Regarding Israel and Palestine in particular. The political leadership of Israel is not ready for peace and is actively preventing peace. At least half of the political leadership of Palestine has the official position that Israel should not exist and the Jews should not be there, itself an impossible demand. What would you propose the US do? Use our military power again? Invade Israel and Palestine?

    With regard to Israel and Palestine, I think I’m merely advocating the mainstream Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions position.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boycott,_Divestment_and_Sanctions

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    However, in terms of our use of military power, it’s hard to find a justified use of the US military power in a war since World War 2, and if we exclude World War 2, then it’s hard to find a justified use of the US military in a war for a very long time.

    Even then, during the best case example of justified war of the last hundred years IMHO, the US committed massive warcrimes during WW2, such as the firebombing of Dresden which killed a number of innocent civilians comparable to the atomic bombs on Japan. The atomic bombs on Japan themselves are IMHO another example which are very probably gross warcrimes.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #37

    However, in terms of our use of military power, it’s hard to find a justified use of the US military power in a war since World War 2, and if we exclude World War 2, then it’s hard to find a justified use of the US military in a war for a very long time.

    So the US should have done nothing about the invasion of South Korea by North Korea in 1950, despite being authorized to use force by a UN resolution? I would suggest that that action turned out pretty well for the good guys.

    It would have worked really well in the 1910s.

    Actually, it did work out pretty well until 1917. However, IMHO, a good argument could be made against our intervention that year. General Fuller suggested in his history of WW1 that Wilson should have put forward his 14 Points in that year to the warring sides with the threat that if one of the two sides accepted the proposal and the other rejected it, the US would intervene on the side that accepted it. He wasn’t quite so clear as to what would be done if both sides rejected it. If Germany accepted, it is doubtful that Britain would reject it as the US navy, in conjunction with the High Seas Fleet would have had the capability of lifting the blockade of Germany by force. Britain’s 2 navy policy was no longer feasible because of the rapid buildup of US naval power as a part of Wilson’s navy second to none policy.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #38

    Even then, during the best case example of justified war of the last hundred years IMHO, the US committed massive warcrimes during WW2, such as the firebombing of Dresden which killed a number of innocent civilians comparable to the atomic bombs on Japan. The atomic bombs on Japan themselves are IMHO another example which are very probably gross warcrimes.

    Evidently, EL considers strategic bombing a war crime. Well, there is ample precedent for it. Consider Sherman’s march through Georgia, although very few civilians were actually killed during its duration. Also consider the actions of the Duke of Marlborough and Prince Eugene during the run up to the Battle of Blenheim in which they ravished Bavaria for the purpose of forcing the opposition to battle. These were the antecedents to the theory of strategic bombing. How about the British naval blockade of Germany during WW1 the purpose of which was to starve Germany out of the war by causing starvation to the civilian population of that country?

    As Vince Lombardi once said referring to football, but it also applies to war, winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Apparently I misspoke…There’s a communication issue going on.

    Yeah, the issue is you being a fucking idiot, saying something colossally stupid, and then trying to walk it back and “clarify” your original crap and pretend you were saying something worthy of our attention. And it’s your issue, not ours. Go to bed and come back when you’ve managed to resolve it.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #37

    Even some BDS supporters are criticizing the organization for refusing to respond to questions as to why the intent of their boycott appears to be to force the State of Israel to go out of business. Even Norman Finkelstein, a one time BDS supporter has called them out on this, as has Noam Chomsky.

    Finkelstein and Chomsky can hardly be smeared as Zionist shills.

    http://www.newrepublic.com/article/122257/unpopular-man-norman-finkelstein-comes-out-against-bds-movement

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @Raging Bee

    So the US should have done nothing about the invasion of South Korea by North Korea in 1950, despite being authorized to use force by a UN resolution? I would suggest that that action turned out pretty well for the good guys.

    Please learn your history rather than the white-washing done by the United States government.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8_kg75N3_k

    So no, I do think that the US actions in South Korea were not justifiable in the sense that there were probably better things we could have done. Not to mention again the plethora of warcrimes done by the United States in that war.

    I would rather that the United States did not install a brutal dictatorship in South Korea – standard operating procedure for the United States. I would rather than the United States entered talks for a unification of Korea as wanted by a vast majority of all Koreans at the time.

    despite being authorized to use force by a UN resolution?

    Because that’s the good measure of the justness of an action? Lol.

    Oh wait, you’re serious? Let me laugh harder.

    Again, I really think you should read more Noam Chomsky.

    @colnago

    Evidently, EL considers strategic bombing a war crime.

    The indiscriminate bombing of civilian population centers, as opposed to industry? Hell yes.

    Well, there is ample precedent for it.

    Precedent doesn’t make it right.

    Even some BDS supporters are criticizing the organization for refusing to respond to questions as to why the intent of their boycott appears to be to force the State of Israel to go out of business. Even Norman Finkelstein, a one time BDS supporter has called them out on this, as has Noam Chomsky.

    I just read what Chomsky wrote in the linked to matter here:

    http://www.thenation.com/article/israel-palestine-and-bds/

    I don’t see Chomsky saying what you and the first article says Chomsky is saying.

    I do see Chomsky saying that it would be hypocritical to boycott an Israeli university not in a settlement, and the Israeli government at large as opposed to just the settlements, products of the settlements, and funding of the settlements.

    I agree with Chomsky that any plans must be created with specific goals in mind and evaluated to see how well they will achieve those goals. Currently, I think boycotts and divestment from settlements in particular is a good idea. I am undecided – I do not know about boycotts and divestment from Israel at large.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #43

    In you first sentence, you cited Raging Bee. You should have cited me. However, in response to the claims of Prof. Chomsky, who is not a historian, I raise the simple question. Is it not a fact that the North Korean Army invaded South Korea and overran the entire country, except for an enclave at Pusan. South Korea did not invade North Korea. Had it not been for UN intervention, the aggression would have stood and South Korea would now be part of a united Korea under the dictatorship of the Kim Jong family, probably the most repressive such regime on the fact of the earth, which probably would not have troubled the sleep of pantywaists like you. Clearly, MacArthur made a strategic mistake of giant proportions by approaching the Yalu River. Had he stopped, say 60 miles short, it is possible that the war would have been over in 1950 as China probably would not have felt threatened and intervened. Truman has some responsibility here as he should have put the handcuffs on MacArthur and made him stop well short of the Yalu but he was so in awe of the success of MacArthur’s brilliant Inchon plan that he allowed himself to believe what MacArthur told him relative to the likelihood of Chinese intervention (MacArthur assured him that the Chinese would not intervene).

    As to strategic bombing, I would agree that attacking purely civilian targets is mistaken, not because of any moral considerations as I agree with General Sherman that there is no morality in war, but because it is ineffective in achieving the desired result, namely victory. In addition, it is a waste of aircraft and pilots who are shot down for no gain.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    Regarding the specifics of Korean history. The enemy of my enemy is not my friend, and the lesser of two evils is still evil. The evil of the Soviet Union, North Korea, and the Kim family does not excuse the needless evil that the US did in that part of the world in that era of history.

    As to strategic bombing, I would agree that attacking purely civilian targets is mistaken, not because of any moral considerations as I agree with General Sherman that there is no morality in war, but because it is ineffective in achieving the desired result, namely victory. In addition, it is a waste of aircraft and pilots who are shot down for no gain.

    “There is no morality in war”.

    This is behind asinine, evil, and unconscionable.

    I know what you mean, and I consider it unlikely that you actually meant what you said. However, that kind of thinking can and does cause gross amounts of human suffering for no purpose.

    What should you have said is something like: Sometimes war is the least evil option. Sometimes collateral damage is the least evil option. Sometimes you have to do illegal things to win a win, and all alternatives are worse.

    That at least is morally defensible.

    To put it another way, why go to the war in the first place? Ideally, to make the world into a better place. That’s morality. Again, perhaps the least evil path open to you involves lots of suffering and evil, but that’s the least evil path, and the moral thing to do is to take it.

    Once we put the discussion into the proper terms, then we can do proper moral analysis. Was it necessary for the US install a repressive puppet government? No. Was it necessary for the US to avoid any and all talks at Korean unification? No. Was it necessary to target literally every building (more or less) inside North Korea, including civilian infrastructure like dams? No. What purpose did these activities serve? To increase human suffering without a morally sufficient justification or excuse.

    Still, let’s get back to you. Why shouldn’t we boycott and divest from all illegal Israeli settlements? Sounds like a great idea to me. Further, it seems to me that as long as Israel is going to continue to act in an incredibly unjustifiable manner w.r.t. Palestine, it’s also IMHO readily apparent that the correct path forward for the US to stop being the sole veto on the UN security counsel against proper resolutions, and to step supplying Israel with free money and weapons.

    As soon as one of the sides embraces reality and peace, and specifically agrees to the points I made above for each side, then the US might be morally justified IMHO in picking a side, using its UN veto powers for aid, and giving money and weapons for aid.

    Rather, the US Is being complicit with the horrible actions of the Israeli government, and I’d rather not be a part of it, and I’d rather my government not be a part of it.

    As for sanctions, boycotts, and divestments from Israel at large? I am currently undecided. I would prefer to clean house first in my own country before going after Israel, a point which Chomsky made.

    Finally, I laugh at your ad hom that Chomsky is not a historian, and I laugh at your insinuation that you know the relevant history better than him.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    Oh, I guess I did wrongly attribute stuff to Raging Bee.

    To Raging Bee:

    I’m still not sure what precipitated this recent outburst. I’m really at a loss. Again, what sort of thing do you think “isolationist” means, and why do you disagree with that? Is your complaint military or economic?

    Again, I might have misspoke, because I do support many peacekeeping operations that don’t make the daily news, but I am against almost all of the US military operations that do make the daily news. I probably should have used the term “much more isolationist” instead.

    Regarding economic isolationism, again, it probably would have been more accurate to say “much more isolationist economically”. We definitely need to break almost all of our free trade agreements because that is a necessary step to enact the tax plans that I want to see, such as stupidly heavy progressive income taxes, and even stupidly heavier death taxes on the filthy rich. With the free trade agreements in place, if we merely enacting those taxes, the rich could flee to other countries and continue to extract wealth from the poor and middle class in the US – that’s why the free trade agreements need to go. If and when certain other countries adopts a similar tax structure for wealth redistribution comparable to the US, then that’s when free trade agreements can come back.

    Of course, without free trade agreements, we can continue to negotiate trade agreements. AFAIK, the big difference is that we could put in place tariffs and such, and conditions on income taxation for foreign and multi-national corporations.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    I’ve read the thread a few more times, and it’s pretty amusing. I think Raging Bee thinks I’m a fascist or something and someone who is opposed to communism and socialism. That’s pretty impressive considering it’s the polar opposite of everything I stand for and everything I say, in this thread and elsewhere. Whereas, back in the real world, I made these points as part of a specified plan to become less fascist and colonialistic, and to become more socialistic and communistic.

    Once again, Raging Bee is a fucking asshat who cannot be bothered to check their own ill-conceived notions. It seems that once someone makes Bee’s shit list, Bee just falsely attribute shit to them. Can’t have anything breaking their precious and phony world view now can we?

    Seriously Raging Bee – stop being a fool.

  • StevoR

    @45. EnlightenmentLiberal :

    Finally, I laugh at your ad hom that Chomsky is not a historian, and I laugh at your insinuation that you know the relevant history better than him.

    Actually, Chomksy’s wikipedia page seems to disagree with you there :

    (Chomsky ) ..is an American linguist, philosopher,[21][22] cognitive scientist, logician,[23][24][25] political commentator, social justice activist, and anarcho-syndicalist advocate. Sometimes described as the “father of modern linguistics”,[26][27] Chomsky is also a major figure in analytic philosophy.

    Scanning through the page, it seems history is NOT in fact one of Chomsky’s strengths r things he is noted for and he is NOT listed as a historian.

    Perhaps that explains part of why he was so keen to write a forward for a book denying the Shoah written by a known Holocaust denier and why he’s known to defend Holocaust Denial along with anti-Semitism in the guise of Israel bashing?

    See :

    http://www.countercontempt.com/archives/1185

    A fact that you’d think, in a sane world, would forever remove Chomsky from being considered a credible source of anything and lead to his dismissal from all decent universities.

  • colnago80

    Re EL

    Once again, EL dodges the question as to whether the North Korean naked aggression against South Korea justifies the US intervention there. Apparently, EL thinks not. I think otherwise.

    Re SteveoR @ #48

    It is my information that Chomsky is a distinguished researcher in the field of linguistics. Based on this, I would have to take issue as to whether he should have been fired from his job as a professor of same at MIT. The fact that his views on other subjects are, to say the least, objectionable, is insufficient to justify such action. There are a number of professors who have or had objectionable views on subjects outside their area of expertise. For example, Arthur Butz, an engineering professor at Northwestern, is a Holocaust revisionist. The late William Shockley was a professor of physics, and a Nobel Prize winner in that field, at Stanford and also a racist who wrote nonsense about alleged intelligence differences between Caucasian and Afro-Americans. The late Richard Herrnstein was a professor of psychology at Harvard who made notable contributions to that field. He was also the author of numerous articles, some published in the notorious racist journal Mankind Quarterly, purporting to demonstrate the alleged intelligence inferiority of Afro-Americans and co-author of the discredited book, The Bell Curve, along with co-author Charles Murray, a far right wing whackjob.

    As the late Martin Gardner once wrote, in reference to psychologist Wilhelm Reich, a researcher who comments on a field outside his area of expertise ofter writes nonsense.

  • Nick Gotts

    Neville Obama gave away the store. He’s just hoping that the ayatollahs don’t set off a nuke while he still in office. – colnago80@8

    Why would he be bothered about that, when as you warned us they would, Iran exploded a nuke last year?

  • dingojack

    SLC – just a point of clarification:

    “Arthur Butz, an engineering professor at Northwestern, is a Holocaust revisionist.”

    Why not just call Butz a Holocaust Denier? What’s the difference, in practical terms, between ‘revising’ and ‘denying’ in this context?

    Dingo

  • colnago80

    Re dingojack @ #51

    As I understand the good professor’s opinion, he claims that the numbers quoted are inflated, as opposed to deniers who claim that the Holocaust never happened. I suppose that it is a distinction without a difference.

  • colnago80

    Re Gotts @ #50

    Maybe they did and the government is suppressing the information. End snark.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @colnago80

    Once again, EL dodges the question as to whether the North Korean naked aggression against South Korea justifies the US intervention there. Apparently, EL thinks not. I think otherwise.

    I disagree with the description of “naked aggression”. I think a better description was that Korea was caught up in a proxy war between the Soviet Union and the United States.

    Let me try to answer your question. I didn’t mean to dodge. Sorry. Consider the first gulf war. I might be wrong, but everything I know offhand about that war was that it was a naked war of aggression, and had the defender country been a properly functioning democracy, then I think a very good argument can be made of the moral justifiability of a war of defense. Further, I think I good argument could be made that this hypothetical war would be morally obligatory.

    @StevoR

    http://www.countercontempt.com/archives/1185

    That alone is not enough for me. I thoroughly appreciate Chomsky signing the petition for free speech. His purported views on holocaust denial are irrelevant. I would be proud to sign a petition defending the right of speech of a holocaust denier.

    The rest is a smear campaign by association AFAIK. Rather than attacking points that Chomsky has actually made, they’re trying to say he’s actually a holocaust denier by showing associations and private knowledge. I see this kind of shit from the Republicans against Obama all the time.

    I don’t care enough to research this further.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #54

    So the bottom line is that according to you, the US should have done nothing about Korea.

    Actually, the US has considerable responsibility for the attack by North Korea on South Korea. Our Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, left South Korea out of our sphere of influence, signalling, the other side that we would not interfere if an attempt was made to unify the two Koreas by North Korea. Had he included South Korea, it is possible that the Korean War could have been avoided.

    You have indicated that you had qualms about intervening in Kuwait in 1991 because it had a repressive government. OK, fair enough, how do you feel about the US and Great Britain essentially allied with Joe Stalin and Soviet Russia in WW2? Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia were pretty equal in terms of repression.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @colnago

    You’re reading pretty far into things I haven’t actually said. I’m being cagey, because I do not know enough to stake out firm positions. I am not against all military intervention. I am not a pacifist. In fact, I think that strict pacifism is morally unjustifiable. However, my rudimentary knowledge of history of Korea still says that calling it a “naked war of aggression by North Korea” is flagrantly ridiculous, and again a much more accurate description is “Korea was the battleground of a proxy war between two imperialist colonialist nations – the United States and the Soviet Union”.

    I’m not quite prepared to say that the United States intervention vs the Soviet’s intervention is the primary cause between the good situation that is South Korea today vs the bad situation that is North Korea today. Our past imperialist military interventions don’t all have that same nice effect, and a large part – maybe a majority, maybe not – of the cause for South Korea’s good situation and North Korea’s bad situation is just luck and accidents of history. I barely know anything of Korea’s history, including before the occupation by Japan, during the occupation by the United States and the Soviet Union, and after. I’m not prepared to go further into it.

  • StevoR

    @54. EnlightenmentLiberal :

    That alone is not enough for me. I thoroughly appreciate Chomsky signing the petition for free speech. His purported views on holocaust denial are irrelevant. I would be proud to sign a petition defending the right of speech of a holocaust denier.

    Okay, I wouldn’t go that far but okay.

    But would you then support the Holocaust deniers by writing a forward for their book and pal around proudly with them?

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    But would you then support the Holocaust deniers by writing a forward for their book and pal around proudly with them?

    Almost certainly not knowingly.

    What’s your point? I don’t have the time or energy to delve into this guilty by association bullshit. Find me something that Chomsky actually said that is objectionable, or give up.

    Okay, I wouldn’t go that far but okay.

    I politely request you reconsider. It’s easy to object when they’re stopping speech you like. It’s hard when they are censoring speech you do not like.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #58

    Hey, writing a forward to a book written by a Holocaust and being called on it is a lot more then guilt by association. However, to be honest here, I was unaware that Chomsky had written a forward to Faurisson’s book. Apparently he wrote a letter supporting Faurisson’s right to publish such a book which appeared in later editions of the book as a forward. Chomsky admitted he was unfamiliar with Faurisson and his works. It would seem fair comment that one might familiarize oneself with someone before getting into bed with him. AFAIK, Chomsky has never denounced Faurisson or his book as a tissue of lies, which it is. Like it or not, Holocaust denial is a crime in France and Germany.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    @colnago

    I just looked it up on wikipedia (yes I know wikipedia).

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faurisson_affair

    Assuming this is a reasonably accurate portrayal of what has happened, StevoR’s description is not reasonable nor accurate. I quote from wikipedia:

    Chomsky granted permission for the essay to be used for any purpose. Serge Thion and Pierre Guillaume then used it as a preface when publishing a book by Faurisson, without Chomsky’s knowledge.

    It seems that several people have a need to discredit the great person that is Chomsky. It’s just irritating.

  • colnago80

    Re EL @ #60

    Calling Chomsky a great person is rather an exaggeration. At 86, he is probably relatively harmless these days but he was certainly not so 40 years go. In fact, back then, IMHO, he was something of an asshole.