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BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation

GUEST,guest From NW 29 Nov 03 - 03:56 AM
kendall 29 Nov 03 - 07:21 AM
InOBU 29 Nov 03 - 08:18 AM
Alaska Mike 29 Nov 03 - 09:30 AM
Little Hawk 29 Nov 03 - 09:44 AM
GUEST 29 Nov 03 - 09:48 AM
Bobert 29 Nov 03 - 10:02 AM
GUEST 29 Nov 03 - 11:11 AM
Hollowfox 29 Nov 03 - 11:24 AM
InOBU 29 Nov 03 - 11:25 AM
Thomas the Rhymer 29 Nov 03 - 11:48 AM
GUEST,guest from NW 29 Nov 03 - 02:44 PM
Bobert 29 Nov 03 - 02:57 PM
greg stephens 29 Nov 03 - 03:02 PM
Peter T. 29 Nov 03 - 03:10 PM
Peace 29 Nov 03 - 03:19 PM
GUEST,pdq 29 Nov 03 - 03:32 PM
InOBU 29 Nov 03 - 04:44 PM
InOBU 29 Nov 03 - 04:48 PM
GUEST,pdq 29 Nov 03 - 04:55 PM
Peace 29 Nov 03 - 04:56 PM
Peace 29 Nov 03 - 05:17 PM
Little Hawk 29 Nov 03 - 05:28 PM
InOBU 29 Nov 03 - 05:42 PM
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Peace 29 Nov 03 - 07:00 PM
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Subject: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,guest From NW
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 03:56 AM

i asked in a previous thread for the bushbuddies in mudcatville to list dubyas admirable qualities. didn't get too many non-humorous answers. now i'd like to know what are the good things that have resulted from our occupation of iraq. let's get this answer out right now..."nobody can argue that the world isn't better off with saddam gone!". ok, we won't argue that. other than that, can anyone suggest some positive results we're seeing?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 07:21 AM

But IS the world better off? I'll bet the dead wouldn't say so.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: InOBU
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 08:18 AM

Well Kendall:
That is a good question. Malthus would point out that one good outcome of the occupation of Iraq is that it will eventually be a way of reducing our 2.5 million inmates in jail. In stead of putting our surplus poplulation in jail, we can send them to a meaningless war to kill and be killed. In this way, the alpha males at the very top of the social pyramid will have less to fear from the alpha males they have shat upon from the top, and less to fear from an angry planit they have pillaged. Ask them, and they will tell you, "if the dead don't like it, LET THEM COMPLAIN!" I, of course, in my gentle faith, think there are better ways to act.
Cheers
Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Alaska Mike
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 09:30 AM

At least Haliburton and Bechtel are going to have nice bottom lines to show their stock holders.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 09:44 AM

I very much doubt that the World...or Iraq...are better off.

However, here's a good thing about the Iraq occupation: The USA is now so heavily engaged in policing Iraq and Afghanistan that they may not have the resources to invade anyone else for awhile...I hope.

But if I was in Iran or Syria or Saudia Arabia, I would be very nervous.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 09:48 AM

We have their oil, and in combination with the Afghanistan occupation and intimidation of other governments in the region, control access to the Caspian oil too.

If you are a an American oil man, this war and this administration has been very good to you.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 10:02 AM

I would hope, and it is my belief, that the invasion and occupation of Iraq has stopped "pre-emptive strikes" as an acceptable foriegn policy...

And I agree with Little Hawk, the US military is now spread to thin to invade anyone else...

Other than these two "good things about the Iraq occupation" one would be hard pressed to find any others. The "Saddam was a bad man" chorus just doesn't rhyme. The only government that has ever worked in Iraq is structured very much like the Saddam government. Ask the Brits... They tried this almost a century ago...

Maybe, as a possible "good things about..." will be a recognition that the world is full of bad guys and that supporting a World Court and strengthening, rather than marginalizing the UN, is a better way of dealing with bad men...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 11:11 AM

We've plowed and fertilized their fields, pruned their trees, solved their parking problems, airconditioned their homes, and helped with their overpopulation. And we've jumpstarted their funeral home industry. What more do the silly buggers want?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Hollowfox
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 11:24 AM

Saddam isn't completely gone yet, is he?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: InOBU
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 11:25 AM

Look here, Little Hawk, ya Canadian B'strd... Your damn nation is harboring the terrorists who deserted the US army, so don't be so sure George is not going to go up there and open up a can of whoop-ass on youze guys... ;-)    Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Thomas the Rhymer
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 11:48 AM

So... is Occupatio an aggressive form of Sympatico? ...or just another one of those 'adventurous' sexual techniques? ;^) ...maybe a party out on the terrace... you know, the kind of gathering that just won't leave... even though it's dawn, and the neighbors have been complaining all night...

Good things? It has profoundly displayed that the US media is beholden to corpoarte interest... It has made us all stop and wonder if maybe a world of tollerance and mutual respect might not be so bad after all (if we can ever get it back) ...It has undermined the subconscious confidence that concervatives once had for George... It has shown the US left, with numerous daily incidents, how out of touch and irresponsible our 'hard ball' business techniques really are ...It will solidify the US rally cry, around what remains of our constitutional rights, to oust once and for all time the antiquated and bloody ways of conquest, in favor of peaceful and prosperous diplomacy and trust-building... and the US will become a benign and considerate world leader, a team player, and a strong advocate for peace and wellbeing around the world... and maybe even here at home...?

Yes, IMHO... it is making us take a long hard look at this administration, and the cross referencing with the essence of what our forefathers had in mind will spur us 'beyond' GWB. I believe that the silent majority will put him out to pasture next fall, and let evolution entice the quantum leap of simple respectful prosperity all over this glorious, but very small, planet earth. ttr


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 02:44 PM

some interesting responses. but once again, when asked for a simple declarative statement about the qualities or results of dubya and his policies that doesn't reduce down to "the sky is falling", interminable statistic spewing, "yeah, whatever, you pathetic whiners" or " yeah, you're so right teribus, jed and clinton" it seems the bushbuddies don't have a lot to say.
so, one more time, bushbuds, any good results of dubyas war (other than the agreed to "nobdy can argue that the world isn't better with saddam gone"refrain)?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 02:57 PM

GUEST from NW:

Hey, these folks don't respond too quickly when they're on the wtong side of issues. It takes awhile for them to huddle up and figgure ways spin stuff that appears unspinable but fret not. They'll come out the huddle singing the "Big Lie" in perfect harmony just as soon as the PR guys teach it to 'em...

GUEST, 11:11

LOL....... (kinda.......)....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: greg stephens
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 03:02 PM

Now, i know a lot of Iraqis. I'm not going to answer for them, but I can assure you you would get an enormous numbers of favourable responses to this thread if you asked Iraqis about it. The question looks very different depending whether you have a standard western liberal reaction or an Iraqi perspective.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peter T.
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 03:10 PM

I think that it is too early to tell some things, but with luck there are all kinds of positives that are going to unfold --

I had hoped that they might do something about the hideous child mortality rate they were partly responsible for, but after the invasion the collapse of the water system, etc., probably spiked it back up again. But with luck the hospitals will recover, and they can get back to a decent health system (they had one of the Arab world's best until the late 1980's). That will be completely positive.

They have inadvertantly made it possible for the Marsh Arabs to begin to reconstruct the marshes in the south.

Getting rid of Saddam and his disgusting sons is absolutely positive.

yours,

Peter T.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 03:19 PM

InOBU: I'm another Canadian b'strd and you have to get it right. We're holding the terrorists hostage until we get the money from the Nigerians for the Marminator movie. I still haven't figured out Rapaire's code--I have got to find out what he's taking--and you can't have the terrorists until the movie is in post production. We may not be able to beat the US militarily, but the military forces of that country will get so effed up trying to read our road signs that the point is moot. You cannot get anywhere in Canada by following our signs. Let that be a warning to you. Tell 'im, Little Hawk.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdq
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 03:32 PM

They're at it again. They have formed the dreaded Axis Of Alberta and will stop at nothing to get their way. Is Lightfoot in on this? Maybe Shatner...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: InOBU
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 04:44 PM

Look here Brucie:
We didn't need no sissy road signs when we liberated you during the Revolution. If it were not for Benidict Arnold, you'd still have the Queen on your damn currency and it would be worth 75 cents to the dollar! Don't under estimate American resolve, that's right American resolve, you Canadains are allways underestimating the Americans, yup America... If you ever come to America you will see what's going on here, so get in an effing boat and cross the Mediteranian to America and see what the good old USA has to offer, you wont want your damn socialist medicine I tell you, old boy! You can join the 45 million who don't need doctors at all because they are too smart to give 300 bucks a month to the insurenece industry. So, as soon as the American army can find your third world pit stop nation, we'll be there!
Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: InOBU
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 04:48 PM

PS I know I know, you guys in South America are Americans also, well you all pay American taxes right? Because of the Monroe doctors without boarders, you can work illegally in American cities or something... and if Canada weren't wedged between Nicaragua and Argentia, and boardering on Uganda we'd have made it part of America long ago. Damn ignorent third worlders.... Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdq
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 04:55 PM

I'm still waiting for Little Hawk to explain why we are to blame for the deforrestation of Placido Domingo.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 04:56 PM

InOBU: You present many cogent points about the things you address. Undoubtedly, with resolve and determination, we can reach consensus to do with the above matters. We will Gerrymander the requisite borders to accomplish the New World Geography you suggest so persuasively. BUT, FELLA, YA STILL CAN'T FIND YER WAY AROUND CANADA. Tell 'im, Little Hawk.

(I actually got a letter from a politician I wrote to about a social issue that was occurring at the time. Jaysus, and we actually vote for these people!)


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 05:17 PM

The last thing should have included "got a similarly-worded letter from a politician". Sorry about that--on many levels.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 05:28 PM

I wasn't aware that Placido Domingo had had his trees cut off... :-) I suspect that Admiral Forrestal may have had something to do with it.

The only country I have ever feared might invade Canada is the USA, so I follow your reasoning, Larry. That's partly a matter of convenient geography, and partly a matter of national character...the Americans have attacked both of their immediate neighbours, as well as each other (in the Civil War), as well as a surprising number of other places, so there is some precedent for such aggressive moves in all available directions when something valuable is at stake.

Fortunately, we have a cadre of trained moose and beavers that will stop 'em cold at the border if they ever dare try it again!

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: InOBU
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 05:42 PM

Moose? MOOSE! Didn't you ever see rocky and Bullwinkle? Most of what most Americans know about geography and politics we learn from the gosple according to Rocky and mr. B. I don't want to correct you about your own country, but hell, that is what Americans are for... you don't have Moose and beavers in Canada... they don't live in the desert, geeze you Camel driveing nut, get off your camel and look around NO MOOSE, Moose live in Maine!
Geeze the ignorence!
Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 06:22 PM

We have heard answers on what's "good" about the war in Iraq from the Iraqi point of view. Any answers on what's good about that war from the American point of view? Excluding Halliburton, please.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Thomas the Rhymer
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 06:33 PM

been there, done that... BTW, what does pdc stand for?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 07:00 PM

Jaysus, what has Canada got that the US could want, other than lots of trees, fresh water, coal, oil, diamonds, land--OK, let me put that another way! We got a mad cow, and she don't take shit from no one. Beware, for here there be dragons. There, Little Hawk, I told 'em! Besides, the American army couldn't survive the drive on the 401. We'll stop them at Customs. Uh, do you hae anything to declare? It'll take lots of Customs guys months to read the TO+E. We got bupkis to worry about.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 08:16 PM

We tried it in 1812. Didn't work out.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 08:18 PM

We'd just have Don Cherry meet 'em at the border, wielding a hockey stick and wearing one of his knock-em-dead sports jackets. Game over.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 29 Nov 03 - 08:26 PM

I would like to say that pdc stands for something clever like pretty darned cute, but in fact, they are just my initials. (I'm so ashamed.)


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: mg
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 12:11 AM

I think of Iraq, probably incorrectly, as a nation of civil engineers..seems like every third person there is an engineer. I think they can fix the problems in their own country, helped of course with huge oil resources for the short period of time left when we actually use oil, and make all sorts of contributions to the world, in terms of urban renewal, reforestation, remarshing, etc. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 01:08 AM

Yon's a MOOSE???? Keep me awa' frae yer CATS!!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Barry Finn
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 09:22 AM

What's good about US being in Iraq?

Let's see

Nothing

Or our new understanding of the Geneva Convention.

We now know that our treatment of prisoners is in violation of the GC

We do know now that our treatment of civilians is in......

We knew that when we left cultural instructions (libraries & museums) to be looted is in ......Br>
We think that we can dance around the issue of the prisoners in Cuba & explain away our logic but again we are in .......

We found out the not keeping track of deaths & injuries of civilians is again in violation of the Geneva Convention

The world knows what the US thinks of them. It's the same way we think of the UN, we don't need or want you we can do it on our own but when we've done it we want you all to help with the clean up & the bills

WE know now that the presence of terrorists training camps with in the boundaries is cause for enough for the US to invade. But because we have the same terrorist camps here (see Pete Seeger & the protests against the training of Latin American soldiers) in the US it's ok because we will not implode & invade ourselves & none one else will invade us either with the exception of maybe some other terrorist groups or societies.

We also know but won't admit to the use of the media & how the reporting is totally one sided in favor of the invader & the right to know or the right of free speech for the press & the citizens is only a fleeting memory.

We do know for sure that the use of cluster bombs, though not yet completely outlawed, does continue to maim & kill civilians for generation's after.

We do know that we think that mass murder is acceptable if it can be covered up & that we don't have to account for it as long as we can make it go away (sorry that was Afghanistan not Iraq's prison uprising) again mass murder is in violation of the Geneva Convention, who'd of thought that up. This maybe a reason for not joining the World Court.

We also know the opinion & stance of the US when it comes to consideration of what the world human rights commission & amnesty
international has to say & claim, a bit like when the UN has a vote or something to say.

We are finding out that a repeat of Viet Nam don't work better just because we've been down the same road before.

We know now that questioning the government policy is un-American & that passing a 1 or 2 acts insures that all citizens will continue to be Patriots. I'm sure the list alot longer about the good that has come out of the invasion & occupation & that others could add far more to this than I but to get a view of the bad that has come of all this might be a bit more of a challenge.
   
Barry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Frankham
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 12:01 PM

One of the things I believe it's important to know is that Bush is a product not of the US working class but the elite and privileged.
He attended Yale and Harvard because of his parents and the Ivy League tradition and monied influence in back of him. If you don't believe that an education can be bought in this country than check out the Bush scholastic history.

You can't expect someone who employs his insider connections in business to have empathy for people who are less well off than he is.
It's very easy for him to distance himself from the outgrowth of the scourge of war. He has never been mano-a-mano in a war and probably has seen little blood and dirt in his life. He was AWOL in the Texas Air Command.   He doesn't really have the kind of courage that would enable him to lead the troops.

The Bushes have a bad track record in their business practices.
They have run repeatedly in violation of the SEC and W was never indicted for the Harken Energy scandal. Neil Bush got off easy
when he sank the Silverado Savings and Loan. It can be proven on a matter of public records that these brothers are unscrulous in their business dealings bordering if not outright illegal. It makes
Clinton's Whitewater deal seem like petty larceny although in that case nothing was proven. That was a radical right-wing vendetta.

For further info on this check out Paul Krugman's and Molly Ivin's books.

The Baghdad Caper is just another extension of the Enron, Harken and (fill-in-the-blank) corporate world.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 12:15 PM

There isn't anything consistently good about the occupation that applies to the entire country at this point. With the rise of organized resistance against the Anglo American alliance and the nations supporting it, both inside and outside Iraq, I think it safe to say the jury may remain out for quite sometime as to what is good about the Iraq occupation. As others have noted, it spiked the child mortality rate and exacerbated poverty in the region that had already taken a heavy toll because of Gulf War I sanctions.

If I were an Iraqi, or a citizen of any Arab nation in the Middle East, I might well be praying to be saved from the Anglo American barbarians coming to save us from ourselves.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: sledge
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 12:26 PM

On the UK news this morning it said 108 people have died in terrorist incidents this month alone, that alone starts to counter any good point the Bush spin machine might produce.

Sledge


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 07:49 PM

What about the fact that Bush has forbidden any pictures of coffins coming home? Where does he get the authority to do that?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: InOBU
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 10:03 PM

Little Hawhk and Brucie... I jus took the pickup truck out to the Walmart and bought me a big inflateable globe (Damn, it is real big, almost life size! Takes up mah whole desk!) And DAMN boys, you sons of bitches moved yer damn country to park right there ON TOP of our'n! Who the hell told you you could be on top! SO, Ah am writen to mah senitor and my president and demanding that we invade the north pole to be atop yer'n nation, so damn there!
Larry


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: MarkS
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 10:08 PM

Well, maybe we have put a stop to additions to the mass graves in Iraq now coming to light.
Other than that, cant say with confidence it is worth the continuing effort.
Mark


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: toadfrog
Date: 30 Nov 03 - 10:12 PM

If there was ever boredom, it was listening to folkies agree with each other! Where us Doug R, now we need him?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Teribus
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 04:38 AM

1 - UN Sanctions lifted
2 - The Iraqi's displaced by Saddam Hussein's regime are now free to return to their homelands (Marsh Arabs)
3 - No doubt now regarding any WMD and associated weapons development programmes all are now halted.
4 - For the first time in their history the people of Iraq will be given a say with regard to what the composition and form of their government will be.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 08:25 AM

4 - For the first time in their history the people of Iraq will be given a say with regard to what the composition and form of their government will be.

Sure Teribus. And I've got some marsh land in Iraq to sell you for real cheap too.

As to the sanctions--they were imposed through the UN, at the insistence of the US and Britain.

And weapons of WMD? God, you are really fucking gullible Teribus, if you think this war on the Iraqi people was EVER about WMD.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 08:26 AM

But Mark, WE were responsible for those mass graves! At the end of the first gulf war, Bush 1 told the Iraqis to rise up against Hussein. They expected our help, Bush 1 pulled out and Hussein took his revenge on those who opposed him. Many Iraqis today have the same fear that we will pull out and leave them holding the bag again.
Furthermore, we keep hearing about how Hussein gassed the Kurds, well, where did he get the gas? From the Reagan administration!!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Teribus
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 08:57 AM

GUEST 01 Dec 03 - 08:25 AM -

Pray tell what causes you to tempt me by that which is not yours to sell? When since the 1920's have the people of Iraq had any say in who governed them - They do have that chance now, and that I would say (In 1066ALT terms) is a "Good Thing".

Have sanctions been lifted, or have they not. If you want to get into the how's and why's of their application start a new thread on the subject.

On the WMD subject - enlighten me - If you come back with the usual crap about oil - you are the one that is gullible.

kendall - 01 Dec 03 - 08:26 AM

Usual hair-shirt, self-flagellating crap.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 02:19 PM

The people of Iraq are currently being governed by an occupying army, Teribus, hardly self-governing now and as to when they might be self-governing is anyone's guess.

You do remember that Saddam Hussein was kept in power by the US government--in fact, many of the current administration (Cheney, Rumsfeld, et al) did that dirty work on our behalf during their revolving door assignments back in the 1980s.

Do you think none of us Americans know the history of our own government's misdeeds in our own lifetime?

The United Nations has pulled out , and along with it international support for the occupation and the occupiers governing Iraq is largely non-existent.

As to the WMD, well--what WMD exactly? The ones that the Bush administration lied about in the Bush State of the Union speech--the claim that our own CIA has proved false, fabricated, etc. but the Bush administration chose to lie about anyway?

Of course, THOSE WMD.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 05:47 PM

And furthermore, T-Bird, if the US/UK want the Iraqis to actually rule themselves then the US/UK need to leave. Hnaging around with lots and lots of weapons is not a step toward home rule. It's supervising.

And furthermore, Part B, back in the 1020's the Brits tried to get the Iraqis to set up an elected government and we all know what happened. This is deja vu all over again... These folks ain't wired that way...

Plus, if domocracy is so great, why isn't it pracriced in the US?

Bobert


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Subject: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: Donuel
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 06:00 PM

http://www.angelfire.com/md2/customviolins/bushroomy.jpg


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Ebbie
Date: 01 Dec 03 - 06:07 PM

As our lovely president said a week or two ago, it's good news that the attacks by Iraqis are more frequent and more deadly- it means that we are winning. Things must really be looking up for the Coalition.

American military officials said today that a pair of ambushes of American forces in central Iraq on Sunday reflected a level of planning, scale and coordination not seen among guerrilla forces since the regime of Saddam Hussein was ousted last spring. "Are we looking at this one closely? Yes." Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt said today. "Is this something larger than we have seen over the past couple of months? Yes. Are we concerned about it? Yeah, we will look at it and we will take the appropriate measures." New York Times December 1, 2003


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Teribus
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 04:06 AM

GUEST 01 Dec 03 - 02:19 PM

In answer to your first point, I will transpose what you wrote slightly, then ask you a question, the year is 1945, the month is December:

"The people of Germany are currently being governed by an occupying army, Teribus, hardly self-governing now and as to when they might be self-governing is anyone's guess."

The question: Was that particular exercise (lasted more than five years) a success or not?

Regarding your second:
Period Iran/Iraq War - the end of what was known as the "Cold War". The US helped both Iraq and Iran. The aim behind it was to keep those two countries intact because it was fully realised by the US and quite a few other countries (USSR; France; Japan; Germany; UK) that that was in the best interests of that region in particular and the world in general.

Regarding your third:
I have no way of knowing whether or not you are an American, but I will take what you state at face value. As such I have no doubt that that you think you know what you perceive to be the history of your own government's misdeeds. As a non-American, from experience, my perception is that for the major part, in general, successive governments of the United States of America, have proved to have been of benefit to the world.

Regarding your fourth statement:
There are more countries actively involved in Iraq today than last March, or last May. The withdrawal by the United Nations humanitarian organisations is temporary, something they themselves stated at the time.

Regarding your fifth point:
As to the WMD, well--what WMD exactly? The ones that the UNSCOM inspection teams reported as existing to the United Nations in January 1999. Yes, THOSE WMD - but one thing Guest we can now be 100% sure of is this. That nowhere in Iraq today are there any ongoing programmes into their development, or into the development of weapons systems that can deliver them. And that is definitely a "Good Thing".

Bobert's furthermores - 01 Dec 03 - 05:47 PM

I refer you to the point regarding Germany in the aftermath of WWII. If memory serves me right the same two countries hung about for quite some time after the event, without any major negative effect.

"Back in the 1020's (1920's) the Brits tried to get the Iraqis to set up an elected government and we all know what happened. This is deja vu all over again... These folks ain't wired that way..."

Did we really Bobert? Or did we talk to those we recognised as being the leaders of those people? I believe it was the latter. The result was that Iraq was ruled (fairly briefly) by the British, then by the Hashemite rulers Britain had previously been allied to and negotiated with. Well it worked in Jordan, didn't in Iraq - you win some, you lose some - can't win 'em all. As to your patronising remark relating to your opinion that, "These folks ain't wired that way", how do you know Bobert if they haven't been given the chance? - after all way back in 1215, us Brits weren't exectly wired for the Magna Carta - biut we did end up benefiting from it.

"Plus, if domocracy is so great, why isn't it pracriced in the US?" - HUH???

Bobert are you, or are you not about to have an election in the United States of America next year? In that election who is entitled to vote? Who is entitled to stand?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 07:54 AM

Here is Teribus' argument in a nutshell:

Empires good, colonies bad.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 08:15 AM

Admitting that we have done some evil in the world as well as good is "self flagillating crap"? What the hell kind of logic is that?
We create these shitty situations, then we go in to clean them up and brag about cleaning them up.
Saddam never would have invaded Kuwait if our ambassador hadn't told him that we don't care what he does.
Dean Acheson made the same mistake regarding Korea. "The USA has no interest in Korea" (paraphrased) they took it as a green light, just as Saddam did.

How can you know where you are going if you don't know where you've been?

If Iraq is so much better off without Saddam, why is our Army and Marine corp getting the shit kicked out of them every day? Simple...they want him back.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amergin
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 08:30 AM

well yeah so many things the US government has done that benefitted the whole world....the overthrow of democratically elected governments (Chile, September 1973 for just ONE example)...the assassination of government leaders (1963 - Ngo Dinh Diem, President of South Vietnam), the training of many wonderful enlightened American loving people (1980's-Osama Bin Laden)...yes our peace loving nation of the people does so many good things to bring about peace to the unenlightened nations by bombing apirin factories (1998-Sudan).

God Bless America. God bless Bush, the man God himself appointed to rule this great nation, to bring christianity to the world!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amergin
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 08:32 AM

oh and Kendall....I am not too sure that they want him back...I think they just want us OUT.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Teribus
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 09:07 AM

Amergin - ever heard of the "Marshall Plan" ? Any idea how much the United States of America has given in aid over the years ? No recognition of the role played by the United States of America during the "Cold War" years - i.e. without their involvement it would not have been cold for long ? Ask the ethnic Albanians living in Kosovo what debt they owe the United States of America ? - Left to the "Peace at anyone else's expense" brigade (Lovely expression that courtesy of Gareth) there's barely one of them would have been left alive had Slobodan Milosevic had his way.

kendall - only problem is you NEVER mention the good. As for your rhetorical question:

"If Iraq is so much better off without Saddam, why is our Army and Marine corp getting the shit kicked out of them every day? Simple...they want him back."

Make that statement to any Iraqi living outwith the Sunni area of that country and you'd be laughed out of the country. Of course the lads round Tikrit want him back - Saddam & Co favoured them at the expense of all the others, they were after all from HIS tribe.

As for being told that he (Saddam) could do what he like with Kuwait the complete reverse is true - He was advised in no uncertain terms exactly what America, if not the world's reaction to that would be. The begger certainly did find out though - and quite rightly so.

So, Dean Acheson told the Chinese/North Koreans that. "The USA has no interest in Korea" (paraphrased) so they took it as a green light. Even paraphrased that in no way implies that it would be considered anything other than an act of unprovoked aggression if North Korea then invaded South.

More of the usual hair-shirted, self-flagellating crap.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amergin
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 09:15 AM

uh, Teribus....have you ever heard of crimes against humanity? Maybe you should tell the survivors of the tortured and murdered souls...the victims of whatever despot the US installed after overthrowing whatever democratically elected government was in place at the time, because it was to the Rich Men who hold the strings economic advantage.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 09:21 AM

Teribus:

No, we are *not* about to have an election in the United States. We are about to have yet another *selection* in the United States... Our system is so corrupted by the corporations that an honest politican *cannot* make it thru the selection process... Heck, even some of the crooks haven't figgured it out either.

An intersting read is Greg Oalist's book "Best Democracy Money can Buy" which goes into the gory (or better yet, the un-Gorey) datails of the corruption that went on in Florida with Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris doing what needed to be done to insure that George Bush would carry Florida. In spite of their valient efforts in removeing 57,000 voters, overwhemingly black, from the voting rolls, it still took millions of dollars of high priced lawyers to get Bush;s daddy's Supreme Court to stop thew recount on the grounds that if all the votes were actually counted then George Bush would "be harmed". Well, sure he would... The day of the decison the margin of victory (ha) was shrinkling by the hour...

If you want to call that democracy, T-Bird, then go ahead. I don't...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Murray City in the USA
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 01:01 PM

I really believe in that to. listen, i have a some what odd question. Who is the most recent french pop idol of your time?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 01:54 PM

Tbird, I havn't mentioned the good we have done because those things are in the majority I believe. What irritates me is people like you who need to deny our bad deeds.You have some crazy need to believe that we are lily white and Mr. Clean all in one.
Sure we put Germany back on its feet, and Japan too, but didn't we and our allies put them down in the first place? And saying they asked for it is irrelevent.What did we do for our allies?
Where did you get your spin on what the ambassador said to Hussein? According to certain news sources that were hushed up, she told him just that, "Who cares"?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 04:37 PM

Teribus, educate yourself.

A popular misconception (fostered, not just by both big business and the Bush administration, but long before they came along) has it that democracy and capitalism are the same thing. They are not. In fact, they are mutually inimical. Capitalism is an economic system, not a political system. Merriam-Webster defines capitalism as
an economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods, by investments that are determined by private decision, and by prices, production, and the distribution of goods that are determined mainly by competition in a free market
Merriam-Webster defines democracy as
1 a : government by the people; especially : rule of the majority b : a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections
2 : a political unit that has a democratic government
3 capitalized : the principles and policies of the Democratic party in the U.S.
4 : the common people especially when constituting the source of political authority
5 : the absence of hereditary or arbitrary class distinctions or privileges
For the past seventy years, the United States has had a democratic political system and an economic system of regulated capitalism. Unregulated capitalism, the system that prevailed prior to the election of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, led to unbridled competition, which, rather than improving the quality of products and driving prices down as many pro-capitalist economists argue, resulted in robber-baronism, company mergers and take-overs, the elimination of competition ("You will be absorbed! Resistance is futile!"), and the growth of monopolies. Left to its own devices, this inevitably leads to an economy dominated by a few large corporations who have a strangle-hold on the government—if not a complete co-mingling of corporations with government (which, incidentally, is Mussolini's definition of fascism—and who should know better than the man who invented it?). Under FDR, regulations were introduced that prevented this kind of corporate domination, brought the country out of the Depression (caused by Enron-style speculation and corporate corruption), and began weaving a social safety net for the protection of American citizens—such things as the "old age pension," now known as Social Security, and an alphabet soup of other programs such as the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) and the WPA (Works Projects Administration) for putting the unemployed millions back to work—the benefits of which we are still enjoying, although almost nobody realizes where they came from.

Big Business has been chafing under these regulations ever since because it prevents them from eating everybody else in the vicinity, exploiting natural resources that FDR's programs put on reserve for future generations, and turning the work force into compliant wage-slaves. And the Social Darwinists have been whining that the social safety net doesn't let people die in the gutter, this eliminating what they characterize as "welfare-cheats" and "social parasites" (the elderly, the disabled, and those who, often because of such things as "out-sourcing"—corporations laying off their work force and moving jobs overseas to take advantage of cheap laborer—find themselves jobless and/or homeless).

The Bush administration is now in the process of trying to bring about the seventy-year-old dream of the corporate community and the Social Darwinists: rescind everything that FDR accomplished (along with the accomplishments of Lyndon B. Johnson's "war on poverty," i.e. such things as Medicare and Medicaid).

But this is only the beginning. Taking advantage of the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Bush administration, dominated by neo-conservatives, are hell-bent on consolidation the position of the United States as the world's only super-power. The first step is control of the world's energy resources, which, right now, consists primarily of oil and natural gas reserves. The United States doesn't necessarily want the gas and oil for itself. Not so "crude" (so to speak). He who controls the tap, controls the world. Once this control is securely acquired, the Empire America can expand with a minimum of resistance. What "making the world safe for democracy" means is making the world a friendly and compliant place for American based multi-national corporations.

You can read all of this stuff for yourself (which, of course, you won't believe, despite that fact that it's all explained—in their own words—by members of the Bush administration). God knows, I've posted the link to the PNAC web site often enough. Look it up for yourself.

On top of this the Bush administration is pushing touch-screen voting machines made by Diebold. This kind of voting machine is remarkably easy to diddle, and as they stand now, they give you no print-out and leave on paper-trail, meaning a recount is not possible. Diebold is resisting the addition of this feature. And how's this? The head of Diebold stated that he considers it his God-given mission to see that Bush is "re-elected" in 2004. I won't even go into the Fundamentalist Christian Right influence on the Bush administration and its policies, but it's there in full force, and it's pretty damned frightening—God help us all!

No. Democracy and capitalism are not the same thing.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 05:53 PM

InOBU: Them's fightin' words. You can't invade Santa. He a f###in' institution fer crissake. You will seriously pee off kids all over the world, to say nothing of the Canadian Postal Service. We even have a Postal Code for Santa. It's HOH OHO, and that's a no-s##t statement. You wanna pee off countries with nuclear weapons, bio weapons, chemical weapons--well, go for it. But, you can't possibly be foolish enough to pee off the Canadian Postal Service. Frig the CIA, FBI, NSA and EIEIO. DO NOT--and I truly mean this--piss off the Canadian Postal Service. THEY ARE BAD NEWS!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 06:01 PM

And while I'm at it, the NRS too. I mean if you think Mafia-type organizations that don't exist can make a guy disappear, just you try messing with Canada Post. I'm talkin' cement socks and a vertical trip down the f####ng river. I mean you just cease to BE. Better rethink this thing InOBU.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: TIA
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 06:18 PM

The incessant bleating of the "occupied Iraq = occupied Germany/Japan" analogy is fatally flawed.

In occupied Iraq, between 1 and 20 occupiers are killed by hostile fire every day.

How many occupiers were killed by hostile fie in postwar Germany?

How many occupiers were killed by hostile fire in postwar Japan?

Go look it up. I did. It was ZERO.

So, if it took five years to establish a self-government in postwar Germany (with no hostilities), how long do you think it will take in Iraq?

Will it ever occur in Iraq with occupiers hunkered down in their compounds except when they go out on pacification raids that occasionally kill or wound the civilians we are trying to liberate?

Hmm, does this seem familiar?

I know, I know, it's just more hair shirt crap. Everything's going according to plan, Everything's going according to plan, Everything's going according to plan, Everything's going according to plan, Everything's going according to plan, Everything's going according to plan...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 06:26 PM

T....

That book is written by Greg Palist (not Oalist) in case you are going to take Don's suggestion to get educated seriously...

Yeah, I know you probably think its folks on the other side of the spectrum that need eductaiin'... To that, I would only respond by sayin' that we on the other side vave had a steady diet of your side's crap. 24/7 of nuthin' but the *company line*... It isn't our side with the narrow view....

Wouldn't hurt you to expand your knowledge... We know your intellegent but not too enlightened...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 02 Dec 03 - 08:11 PM

Don, right on, but remember,
"On a dead man's door, you can knock forever."


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: An Pluiméir Ceolmhar
Date: 03 Dec 03 - 03:27 PM

Been scratching my head for days over this one, before I came up with the fact that, now that Oilslick Dick and his pals have seized control over iraq's oil, they can afford to be more relaxed about the risk of an outbreak of democracy in Saudi Arabia. Stoopid me, when it was obvious that that was what the invasion was about all along.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Dec 03 - 05:09 PM

This from Teribus

"1 - UN Sanctions lifted"

They should never have been done in the first place. They wound up hurting the Iraqi people and didn't touch Saddam Hussein.

"2 - The Iraqi's displaced by Saddam Hussein's regime are now free to return to their homelands (Marsh Arabs)"

They are free also to get shot at. Or arrested is suspected as sympathetic to the Ba'ath Party. They are free to be intimidated by a conquering army.

"3 - No doubt now regarding any WMD and associated weapons development programmes all are now halted."

They never existed in the first place. Iraq was never capable of developing WMD's. The US at one time gave Saddam weapons of mass destruction but they are no where to be found in Iraq today. Probably, Saddam sold them to other countries.

"4 - For the first time in their history the people of Iraq will be given a say with regard to what the composition and form of their government will be."

Bush has no intention of having anyone in a titular head in Iraq who disagrees with his agenda. The composition and form is already being manned by Paul Brenner who reflects the rubber stamp views of the Administration.

Notice, also, that all shrines of importance in Iraq such as the National Museum were allowed to be trashed by looters except for the oil well reserves which were heavilly guarded by the US army. When Bush is done with Iraq, he will abandon it as quickly as he has Afghanistan.

As to declarative statements regarding Iraq, you can't force democracy down any country's throat. But you can impose a political agenda if you have condign power.

The people of Iraq don't want American soldiers there. That should be clear to
anyone who follows the news.

The only good that can come of this is if Americans wake up and see that they have allowed this Administration to foster another Vietnam.

If the GOP can be exposed for it's vicious attack on those who don't agree with Bush's policies as "traitors", then maybe some good might come out of this ugly war.

The sky is not falling if Americans will wake up and see what's really going on.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Frankham
Date: 03 Dec 03 - 05:26 PM

I'm following this discussion closely.

Teribus says,

" When since the 1920's have the people of Iraq had any say in who governed them - They do have that chance now, and that I would say (In 1066ALT terms) is a "Good Thing".

The problem is that there were people who supported Saddam as there were those in Germany who supported Hitler. I don't like it. But it was a choice made by some in Iraq and they were subsequently abused. They are still being abused. They don't have a real say in who and how they are governed. There is sufficient evidence historically to show that any leader who is not considered to be in the best interest of some US administrations (namely Bush and Reagan's)
will be replaced by a dictator. Arab princes. The Shah. Noriega. DuVallier. Chiang Kai Shek. Marcos.

During the WWII there was even support for "Uncle" Joe Stalin. Military juntas in Nicaragua, El Salvador, Uraguay, Colombia. One thing the US has never been able to export is democracy.

I sincerely wish that something good could come out of this boondoggle but I fear it will be only serving those in power and not the working people and citizens of America or Iraq.

I love the US and I know it can do better than what we have.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 04:27 AM

"Democracy and capitalism are not the same thing."

Don Firth 02 Dec 03 - 04:37 PM

One question Don - When have I ever said they were?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 05:24 AM

This from Teribus in reply to Frank Hamilton

C'mon Frank can't have it both ways - UN sanctions were put in place because Saddam refused to comply with stipulations made under UN Security Council resolutions, that he agreed to in order to hold onto power in Iraq. What would you have done? - shrugged your shoulders and said,"OK fair enough, at least I tried, keep your weapons, develop more if you want, 'cos freely admit I can't prevent you."

So the Ma'adan are free to get shot at - well Frank, so are you, and if you live in the US of A - you are probably more likely to get shot in the US than a Marsh Arab is in his homeland. Ba'ath Party sympathisers I believe are as rare as rocking horse shit among the Ma'adan and Shias who inhabit the Southern part of Iraq. Borne out by the number of incidents in that part of Iraq since May. They are free to be intimidated by a conquering army? Is that conquering army intimidating them? Examples please.

Regarding any WMD and associated weapons development programmes. You claim that they never existed in the first place. Your claim is not borne out by what Dr. Blix and his inspectors found.

What weapons of mass destruction did the US give to Saddam Hussein? During the Iran/Iraq war, it was very well documented what aid was given by America, France, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, China - to both sides engaged in that conflict - so you should have no trouble detailing what weapons the US gave.

So the US Administration is dictating directly the wording, form and make-up of the new Iraqi Constitution and Government? Really? Is that fact Frank, or just your opinion, your belief? All indications are at present is that the US Administration has shifted it's stance on this after consultations with IGC; UN; France & Russia.

Notice, also, that the National Museum, while a repository of that nations treasures was not regarded as a "shrine". Also note that most of the treasure looted was in fact removed for safe keeping by the curators, note that 94% of what was supposedly looted has been recovered and returned.

You find it surprising, or of great significance, that infrastructure associated with Iraq's oil and gas production were heavily guarded by the Coalition forces? Remember what Saddam Hussein did when his forces pulled out of Kuwait? He also specifically stated that he would do the same to Iraq's oilfields this March. He was prevented from doing so in part by the efforts of the Coalition forces and also by the Iraqi civilians who worked in the national oil and gas industry, they sabotaged preparations made by SRG units and the Saddam Fedayeen. Same applied to a certain dam, Saddam said it was to be blown up - that was one of the first targets secured during the invasion. Otherwise "shrines" were left severely alone, except in the instances where SRG and SF units used them as HQ's or munitions dumps.

You are perfectly correct in saying that the people of Iraq don't want American soldiers there. But one thing that is equally clear to anyone who follows the news, is that, apart from his supporters within the Sunni area of the country, the people of Iraq most certainly do not want a return of Saddam Hussein and the Ba'athist Party.

Vietnam situation - far from it. The two cannot be compared for a whole raft of reasons.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 08:31 AM

Saddam got his gas with which he killed the Kurds from the Reagan admicistration. Spin this Terribus.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 09:02 AM

I would agree with you, T-bird, that Ba'ath Party sympolthisers are rare. Unfortunately, that's not quite the way the occupiers see it. They have rounded up thousnads of folks who are presumed guilty and are imprisoned by, ahhh, the occupiers. Also, if you had anything much greater than an *entry level* position in Saddam's government, yer' toast... Forget going back to running the sewage treatment plant. If yer not killed or imprisoned you'll be lucky to find even entry level employment...

Problem is that most of the folks in Saddam's government weren't bad guys. They didn't rape women. They didn't kill anyone or even have any beaten up. Most were. like most of us, just trying to get along. If anything, they represented an upper middle class. They were educated folks... But, should the US have its way in pushing a political system onto folks who don't have a clue about, these folks will most certainly absent from experiement... Yeah, you don't read much about this because it doesn't mix with the rah, rah PR mythology that the Bush/Blair folks shout 24/7 but there have been several pieces on Democracy Now about it....

One thing is fir sure, Saddam of Bush, the prisons stay full....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 09:56 AM

Proof of that please kendall. There is some evidence to suggest that the gas used in the most notorious incident was agent captured from the Iranians.

I have noted that a number of US 'catters have referred from time to time on the time they spent in the US military. For those who served any time from the early 60's to the present day, I have a question.

Did you, or the units you were attached to, ever handle CB munitions - shells, bombs, rockets, missiles? In my entire time in the UK forces I never saw one, never heard of any stored for possible use, never met anyone who had seen or used them.

So Bobert - The occupiers have rounded up thousands of folks who are presumed guilty have they? Got some proof of that Bobert? Or is this just another one of those "word-on-the-street" things you come out with from time to time - On that subject, still haven't seen any evidence of the heads on sticks on the lawn of the White House Bobert - guess the "word-on-the-street" wasn't quite up to the mark on that occasion, like the use of nuclear weapons, like the deluge of Patriot missiles, like the millions of casualties.

As to past association with the Ba'ath Party re: imprisonment and future job prospects. In which prison is tarek Azziz held? In which prison is "Comical Ali" held? Remember him, Bobert, the Ba'athist sound piece who used to appear on our television screens umpteen times a day telling us what a hammering our forces were getting. Fact is Bobert, both were very high up in the Ba'ath Party, both were extremely high profile, both surrendered to Coalition Forces and both were released almost immediately.

Most of the new Iraqi Police Force consists of former Iraqi Policemen. Most of the Iraqi Army, oh yes Bobert one does exist, consists of former Iraqi Army officers and soldiers.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 01:21 PM

I don't recall that you ever said that, Teribus, but I just wanted to be sure that you understand that, because it has a lot to do with the real reasons the U. S. is in Iraq. Even though you are not American, you seem to be just as confused as many American citizens whose knowledge of history and politics came only from a rather anemic American school system. In the United States, the vast majority of people seem to be under the impression that democracy and capitalism are the same thing, and neither the school system (emphasizing the positive aspects of American history and de-emphasizing the negative), nor the government, nor the corporations want them to be disabused of the idea.

You seem to be fairly well up on current affairs, although you have a real penchant for missing points, getting things screwed up, and generally ignoring details that you find inconvenient, but the only reason I am bothering to try to explain things to you is that I assume that your purpose is not just to spew propaganda, but that you are actually interested in understanding what is really going on in the world. What you need is a sense of history and an overall view of things so you can see them in context, rather than just swallowing the Bush administration's latest spin or sound-bite hook, line, and sinker and trying to make it fit with all the other inconsistencies inherent in a policy that is built on lies, deception, and double-dealing.

For the past few decades at least, if not the past century or more, the U. S. government (which, in its current incarnation as the Bush administration, you seem to regard as only slightly below the Throne of God) has pandered to American business by interfering in the internal affairs of countries all over the world in an effort to make these countries conform to what U. S. corporations want. Then they attempt to justify that interference by telling everyone that they are "making the world safe for democracy." It gets to be like a mantra. Actually, what "making the world safe for democracy" amounts to is supporting (often militarily) tyrants and dictators who are friendly to American business even when their country's citizens want to overthrow them, and fomenting rebellion against even democratic leaders who object to American businesses coming into their country and exploiting its resources and citizens. This, by the way, is the primary function of the School of the Americas, the training camp for pro-American terrorists.

Over a century ago, the deposed monarch of a small principality (I don't remember which one, but as I recall, it was an island country in the South Pacific) who had the temerity to object to American business exploiting his country, commented on the way American foreign policy works: "First come the missionaries. Then come the businessmen. Then come the gunboats!"

This current junket in Iraq is merely a continuation of this long-standing American foreign policy.

By the way:

". . . what Dr. Blix and his inspectors found." Isn't it a matter of what they didn't find? Or are you having short-term memory problems?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 03:25 PM

What was that guy's name who went to Iraq before the war looking for WMD? He was a card carrying republican, but he found nothing, reported that it was a wild goose chase. and the Bushits smeared him.

Terribus, it's a matter of history. We put Saddam in power to balance the nuts in Iran. We gave him what he needed to do that.
We also propped up the Shah of Iran with weapons in exchange for oil under Nixon.

We also sold lethal gas to Hitler before the war, and we all know what he did with it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 04:51 PM

Thanks Don,

You state that:
"In the United States, the vast majority of people seem to be under the impression that democracy and capitalism are the same thing, and neither the school system (emphasizing the positive aspects of American history and de-emphasizing the negative), nor the government, nor the corporations want them to be disabused of the idea."

If that indeed is the case then it is a damning indictment of your education system.

I worry about people who use the word "real" a great deal, and it causes me to look very closely at what bill of goods they are trying to sell.

- "...the real reasons the U.S. is in Iraq
- "...a real penchant for missing points"
- "...what is really going on in the world"

I would gladly just settle for the actual reasons, and what is actually going on. "Real" always hints of a "political" slant on what ever follows.

I consider my self lucky in that I have never been a member of a political party and my thinking is not coloured by any subsequent political bias. You would have to look long and hard to find anyone as a-political.

I am avidly keen on the study of history and have been taught to look at things from many angles, taking in what ever background may affect the perspective from each particular angle.

I object when people trot out illogical, irrational opinions and report them as fact, expecting everyone to accept them as such without the slightest question. The party line far too often on this forum seems based on "Liberal-Good; Republican-Bad; mutter, mutter, Bush & Co stole the 2000 election; mutter, mutter, democracy is dead in the United States, we don't have a President, we have a Resident, mutter, mutter, I hate the bastard so every thing he does is wrong, bad, evil."

Which of course is a complete and absolute load of bollocks, things just aren't that black and white. Which makes the above attitude totally illogical - totally irrational. It is in countering that, that I may appear to regard the Bush administration as being, "only slightly below the Throne of God". They have made their fair share of mistakes, but then show me someone, or some organisation that hasn't.

Regarding the sense of history that I seem to need so badly - I have enough of a knowledge of history to realise that there has been hardly a policy in the world that hasn't been formulated on lies, deception and double-dealing. The only variables are degree and intent. Why should you expect this one to be any different.

When folks on this forum list all the misdeeds of successive U.S. administrations and denounce what evil they have inflicted upon the world in general. Running back through the years, their knowledge and sense of history conveniently forgets the "cold war" and the weird, and at times ruthless, little game of chess it caused to be played out. They blithely apply today's conditions and enlightened thinking to yesteryear's circumstances and "from the hip" condemn outright. They have obviously forgotten what a tight-rope act it was.

Your example of American perfidity, The School of the Americas, had a counter-part in Moscow, if memory serves it was called "The Patrice Lomumba (sp?) University" that's were all the foreign pro-Soviet-Communist terrorist were trained. Two wrong things don't make one right - but you have to live in the world you are born in - being pragmatic gets you through it, which means you do what you have to - that sometimes breeds strange bed-fellows. Remember Stalin's Soviet Russia and Churchill's Imperial Britain in 1941, they were our allies for damn near six months before the U.S. came in. Had that alliance not been forged through forced circumstances the Second World War might well have been lost.

Talking about, "ignoring details that you find inconvenient," :

". . . what Dr. Blix and his inspectors found." Isn't it a matter of what they didn't find? Or are you having short-term memory problems?"

- Al-Samoud II missile system under development that was proscribed by earlier UN resolution.
- CB munitions that Iraq had declared they had none of.

It's not my short-term memory that is suffering.

On this whole Iraq business, Saddam Hussein was given every opportunity to retain power. If as many say he didn't have any WMD or capability to develop, or deliver them, why didn't he just come out and say so and provide UNMOVIC with the means to verify that claim? On this the good Dr. Blix was only leaning towards the conclusion that the Iraqi's had nothing late summer this year. That would have stopped the war dead in it's tracks.

I also like to question things that appear odd - remember those "mobile labs" that were found, and the unbridled glee that rang out through this forum when it transpired that the function of those trucks was to generate hydrogen for artillery met balloons, and that joy of joys, they had been purchased from the UK.

Not one person on this forum doubted those revalations, not one person questioned where they were found (certainly not near any artillery unit), not one person questioned why they were stripped bare, yet remained almost surgically clean, not one person made comment on the similarity in requirements for generating hydrogen and applications relating to the handling of CB agents.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 08:06 PM

As a cynic I wonder why the arguments has changed from :-

(1) We know what Bio/Chemical Weapons Saddam has 'Cos we sold him them !

to

Saddam had no Bio/Chemical Weapons.

(2) The USA created Saddam therefore his brutality is our fault

to

The USA created Saddam therefore we had no right to remove him.


(3) UN Sanctions will work

to

UN sanctions were wrong.

(4) The US Oil Barons control the worlds oil production through bribary and corruption on a universal scale

to

We invaded Iraq to contol the Oil.

Hmmm ! Me thinks that when discussing Bush Jnr objectivity goes out the window.

Finally, if my memory serves the only poison gases used in Nazi Germany were used Carbon Monoxide, and Zyclon B. - Used as agents of Genocide against those classified as "sub human".

I was not aware that America sold Nazi Germany Carbon Monoxide, I thought that you produced this through the incomplete combustion of hydrocarbons.

Zyclon B is better nown as this Click 'Ere a widely used industrial chemical.

I believe that it is still sold and used (under restriction these days) as a method of pest control - Probably a more humane method of Rabbit control than myxemitosis. (SP)

No doubt some 'Catter more knowledgeble than myself will correct my very fading chemistry - But the basic facts are there.

Yup, I can see it now, that nasty facist FDR ordering shipments of Zyclon B across the Atlantic, through the teeth of the Royal Navy blockade, to the common foe and feeding the death machine.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 04 Dec 03 - 09:27 PM

Yo, T....

In these days when information is so carefully and stingyilly conrtolled by Bush and his buddies, it *impossible* to get exact fgures... I reckon that would have been the case in 1941 in Germany also, but.... Abdul Haq Al-Ani, a British attorney, who is also representing Tariq Aziz, repoted on Democracy Now on 12/3/03 that the prison outside of Baghdad is filled to capacity. He should know. He just returned...

Sure, he was arrested... Like who didn't know that would happen? Your guys change the rules at the drop of a hat. Shoot first and ask questions after.... and only if required...

Now as fir the heads on the sticks remarks of a few months back: I'm sure you were aware that I was speaking figuratively and not literally. The sight of one head on a stick in front of the White House, I think we would agree, would be a PR nightmare... What was intended was to spot light the utter glee in the face of George "Bring it on" Bush at the sound of guns a' blazin' fir "freedom and democracy"... What a total crock... If he's so danged in love with democracy then why the heck did he hyjack it????

But back to yer figures since yer a figures kinda guy... You still stickin' with the 700 to 1200 deaths of Iraqis during the Us/UK invasion? Over 30,000 bombs dropped, over a million rounds of tank, artillery and small arms fire and you are stuck on the 700 to 1200 figure? Hmmmmm? Bunch of lousy shots, I guess???

Now as fir yer buddy Gareth, I would just suggest that he spends a little time re-reading the old threads... 'cauze there's some amnesia going on in his head..... Ain't been a lot, if any, flip floppin' on out side but daily flip flopping on yer guys side...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 04:00 AM

Bobert,

With regard to the "flip-flopping" as you term it, what Gareth has pointed out is perfectly correct. He quotes four exapmles, further study I dare say would reveal more.

You are extremely keen on dividing things into one side and the other. Sometimes that is a good thing to mark out - GWB in September 2001 - "You are either with us or against us" War against Terror.

With regard to this forum, I question something you say, so automatically I am not only a Republican/Conservative but I am a Neo-Con. Anyone who disagrees with your point of view (and this is true for a few others who profess to be "green", "liberal", "lefty", radical thinkers) must automatically be at the other end of the political spectrum.

On figures, bein' a figures sort of a guy, I believe the AUSTRALIAN PRESS (Thats in capitals Bobert to try to get it through that I am referring to figures provided by someone other than myself - therefore NOT MINE) have been keeping a close eye on it


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 05:55 AM

Pedantic note: These "facists" still keep on cropping up. I don't normally comment on typos, because I'm guilty of more than enough of them. But this one is turning up a bit too frequently.

Not FACISTS, but rather FASCISTS - from the Latin Word FASCES, for the symbol of authority carried by Roman officials - see here.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 02:21 PM

Saddam Hussein was kept in power by the US. The Taliban and Al Qaida were both kept in power by the US.

When it suited the neo-con agenda, as it did at the end of the Cold War in the Reagan/Bush era, Saddam and bin Laden were our boys.

You reap what you sow.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 03:18 PM

Sorry, McG. I'm sure you were referring to my spellin' which, I'll admit, ain't good. To make matters worse, I am also lexdexic so when I reread stuff it looks fine... Man, I don't know how I ever got two danged college degrees. Okay, one was in art so that one doesn't count...

But I'll try to do better...

The "new and improved" Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 06:35 PM

No Amnesia here Bobert, just a nasty habit of reminding people of what was said...

I dont think there is any difficulty over acepting that you have a degree or two, after all Bush Jnr managed to get one. And I am confident that your intellects are on par.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 07:38 PM

Gareth, that was a low blow. No, below low. That was dastardly. No, beneath dastardly. That was way f####n' far low. Woe is me! My dog is smarter than Bush fer God sake. And I buried it last year!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 07:47 PM

Now say yer sorry, Gareth... That was down right mean spirited... Aww, jus' funnin'... I don't think Bush is stupid. Corrupt and immoral, well yeah... But not stupid...

But I gotta agree with ya' that someone cerainly has a little half-hiemerz going here but if you'll go back to the pre-invasion arguments here you'll find that most of us (if not all) were very consistent in our reasoning not to invade Iraq. Then the invasion and the post invasion rewriting of excuses to invade Iraq by Bush and Co. Hey, we weren't the revisionists here. We have been consistent. First, the invasion was wrong. Why? Because the reasons don't make sense. Where's the proof. Hey, what's the danged hurry, anyway... Let Hans Blix finish the job...

Then when things go bad and all of the reasons fir invadin' Iraq melt into *new and improved* reasons fir invading Iraq, we, on our side go, "Hey, that's a crappy reason, too"... Bottom line, the invasion was stupid foriegn policy and has not made the world a safer place. It has created a *dream-come-true* situation for bin Laden's boys. One day it will be looked upon as a major battle **lost** on the War on Terrorism. Might of fact, the entire War on Terrorism is starting much to resemeble a land grab for Bush and Co. and not a war on terrorism at all... 90% of Afganistan is now in the hands of warlords and Taliban... Who cares? Well, ahhhh, I do, thank you very much...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 08:26 PM

On a dead mans door, you can knock forever.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 08:39 PM

Well danged, Kendall, now ya' got me real depressed... I figgured that, well, being on the correct side with the correct story might count fir somethin' and then you come along and burst my poor ol' Wes Ginny bubble....

Sniff....

(Awww, screw it, Bobert! Fight with them knotheads to the end!)

Yo, Kendall, I heard that Gareth and the T-Bird are gonna be behind the bowling alley tonight. Got a little "let's rumble" left in ya there, Skipper?

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 05 Dec 03 - 09:37 PM

Indeed, Teribus, it is a damning indictment of the America educational system, especially within recent years, and especially of basic education in the grade and high schools, where the fundamentals are supposed to be taught. I graduated from high school in 1949, when education was measurably more thorough than it is now, and although I got the usual idealized picture of American history, I was something of a history buff and read widely on my own. Also, when in high school, an older friend introduced me to the writings of Philip Wylie and other social critics, so I learned early on to bring a measure of skepticism to what I read. More recent reading includes such works as The March of Folly by that late Barbara Tuchman. Highly recommended, as I think much of what she says applies directly to the current American situation, both foreign and domestic.

I could catalog details of the abysmal ignorance of history and current events of a shocking percentage of American high school graduates (and an alarming number of university graduates as well!), but suffice it to say that a huge number of them can't distinguish between the events of World War I and World War II, couldn't give you even an approximate date for the Civil War, and something like 8% of high school graduates couldn't name the current U. S. president (i.e., George W. Bush!). Is it any wonder that some 61% of the American public (nudged a bit by Bush spinmeisters) think that it was Saddam Hussein who attacked the World Trade Center on 9/11?

So much for Thomas Jefferson's "informed electorate." The future of democracy in this country looks pretty dismal.

Now. On the matter of my use of the word REAL

By "real," I mean what actually is the case, not what the aforementioned spinmeisters are trying to get us to think. As in the real reason the Bush administration wanted to invade Iraq—a matter of long-term foreign policy—is explained in considerable detail on the web site of The Project for the New American Century, a Right-wing think-tank. What lends this credibility is that 1) their Statement of Principles (note the signatories listed at the bottom of the page) was written before the Bush administration came to power, and 2) a large number of the members of this think-tank are now in the Bush administration. If one read the material that was posted on this web site prior to the "election" of George W. Bush, and then noted the list of people whom he appointed to his cabinet, one could easily predict exactly what they would do if the came into office. And lo and behold, they did! And it has nothing to do with whether or not Saddam Hussein is a nice man or a monster, or whether or not he has WMDs (or whether or not he had anything to do with the 9/11 attacks because when the Statement of Principles was written, it hadn't happened yet—that was an enabling gift, providing a flawed but, with some fine-tuning, a usable excuse to do what had long been on the drawing boards). The Bush administration had to peddle this multi-layered story to the American public (and to a Congress who should have known better—although some members did) to get them to accept the very un-American act of initiate a war against a small, second-rate country that just happened to have resources the world needed, the Bush administration wanted to control, and was strategically located geopolitically. The real reason (Merriam-Webster)
real
adjective
Etymology: Middle English, real, relating to things (in law), from Middle French, from Medieval Latin & Late Latin; Medieval Latin realis relating to things (in law), from Late Latin, real, from Latin res thing, fact; akin to Sanskrit rayi property
Date: 14th century

2 a : not artificial, fraudulent, illusory, or apparent : GENUINE <real gold>; also : being precisely what the name implies real professional> b (1) : occurring in fact real life> (2) : of or relating to practical or everyday concerns or activities real world> (3) : existing as a physical entity and having properties that deviate from an ideal, law, or standard real gas> -- compare IDEAL 3b c : having objective independent existence real>
I am not now, nor have I ever been a member of a political party. Early on, I leaned toward the conservative side. I have voted Republican. In fact, some decades ago, I was a fan of Ayn Rand—until I saw from my own experience and observations that although she makes some good metaphysical and epistemological points, much of her ethical system takes a mighty leap away from the basis of the more solid parts of her philosophical view, and the political ideas she draws from her ethical system are harsh in the extreme, amounting to little more than Social Darwinism. Let the weak (i.e., the poor, the elderly, the disabled, and others who, for whatever reason, cannot get by without a measure of assistance) die and get out from under the feet of we űbermensche! I gradually evolved into, not a democrat, but something more resembling what might be call a progressive—although, as I say, I belong to no political party.

For at least a century and a half the big battle in this country, often going on below the threshold of the general awareness, has been who is going to control the government, big business, or the people? According to the Constitution, it's supposed to be the people. But in the halls of government, it see-saws back and forth. At the present time, the government of the United States is under the control of big business much more rigidly than it has been since the early 1930s. Now, I'm not just repeating the cliché (although clichés are often true, which is why they are clichés) that the Republicans are the party of big business and the Democrats are the party of the people. A pox on both of these parties! But the Democratic Party, historically as now, is a slight bit less hostile to the people that the Republican Party. Since this is a two party system (no viable third party), I am aware that supporting the Dems is not going to solve all our problems My current support of the Dems is an attempt at damage control. Under the Dems we won't be hurtling toward the abyss quite as fast as would are under the Reps. This gives us a bit more time to try to steer the country in another direction.

The direction? A government that is more concerned with the well-being of its citizens than it is in satisfying the greed of American-based multinational corporations.

The legitimate and honorable purpose of business is to provide goods and/or services to its customers, and to provide work and a living wage for its employees. If a business does this, then all is well. It needs to make a profit to insure that it will stay in business and continue in this honorable purpose. But if its sole purpose is profit, if its raison d'être is for its owners and upper management to enrich themselves at the cost of furnishing goods and/or services of less quality than they are capable of and by treating their employees merely as resources to be exploited and discarded rather than as fellow human beings, then that business is corrupt. It is even more corrupt when it bribes the government to pass laws that give free rein to its corrupt practices. And a government that colludes in this kind of corruption is beneath contempt and deserves to be impeached, or at the very least, removed from office in the next election.

When that collusion between government and corporations (Halliburton, Bechtel, et al) extends to having the government invade other nations, not for any altruistic motives, no matter what noble motives are invented, but to add that country to the list of resources for corporations to exploit, and further, put the government in a geopolitically dominant position from which it can subject more countries to such exploitation, then what you have, my friend, is corruption as deep as has ever been achieved.

You speak as if those who oppose the Bush administration do so because they have some sort of spontaneous, causeless, pathological hatred for Bush and the Republican Party. This is not true. I, for one, hate no one. I do, however, hate that flaw of character in any human being that allows him or her to become a predator, feeding their own avarice at the expense of the welfare of other human beings. I hate the flaw of character that allows a person to order the institutionalized murder of thousands of people so that his or her friends and associates can extend their power and enrich themselves. And I hate the flaw of in the character that allows a person to look on another person less well off than himself with contempt rather than concern. And I hate the flaw in the national character that allows its government to do all of these things without rising up in outrage.

But, save in the abstract, there is no such thing as a "national character." There are many Americans who do see these things and who are outraged. And you see some of the manifestations of this outrage in many of the posts here. And I don't hate, but I do wonder about what I might consider to be the strange quirk of character in a person, particularly someone who considers himself to be a-political, who sees these manifestations of outrage, then takes issue with any comment of a liberal, progressive, or anti-Bush administration nature, seems to regard the writers of the comments with contempt, and spends an obviously inordinate amount of time nit-picking details, restating right-wing arguments that have long since been proven spurious, parsing sentences, and generally chasing mosquitoes while tigers run free.

By the way, I fully realize that I won't make a dent here at all. But this gives me an opportunity to vent a bit, and especially to write up some notes for what may very well become the basis for a few op-ed articles and several letters to "letters-to-the-editor" departments in magazines and newspapers as the 2004 presidential elections come closer and the campaigning heats up.

Thank you for your indulgence, and good night.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 06:50 AM

And, if the democrats are unable or unwilling to expose this phoney in the upcoming election, they should lose again.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 11:33 AM

Hear, hear, Don!!!!...

Well stated and if Teribus will read what you have written objectively then I believe that you have at least left a scratch, if not a dent. I suspect, as I have pointed out on many occaions, that the T-Bird will do his usual by looking fir the tiniest of detail to squabble with yoy over. It's a very effective defense and one that the Bush administration used quite effectively. I hate to quote Hitler yet again but he correctly obseved that people "will believe the big lie over the smaller ones". Perhaps that explains why so many people think that Saddam was involved in 9/11?......

And, like you, I don't think of myself as a Democrat. I have worked for and voted for Green Party candidates for a long time. Actually I did vote for Gore but it was a "brokered" vote with a Virgina voter. But this time around, I will hold my nose and knock on doors for the Democartic nominee... I hate to do it but it has come down to a fight for saving democracy and hopefully changing our nations course just enough so that it doesn't corkscrew itself into the abyss...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 12:20 PM

I don't need to hold my nose to vote democrat. That party has done a hell of a lot more for me than any other.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Ebbie
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 12:38 PM

Thanks for putting out that effort, Don. I appreciate it when I read some well-reasoned exposition on a position; I don't understand why the conservative side seems incapable of it.

Bobert, I agree with your conclusion that we *have* to support the candidate in this next election that has a chance at 'overthrowing' (and I don't use the word loosely) the current administration.

Did you see what Jimmy Carter answered in a Time Magazine interview [December 8, 2003]? Because he is friends with him and has advised him, Carter was asked if he supported Howard Dean's bid for the presidency. He said, No. I'm going to support whoever (emphasis mine) I think will have the best chance next November.

It has to do with pragmatics- first, we have to trim the bushes.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 02:22 PM

Bobert - I crave your appology. In retrospect it would be unfair to compare your intellect with that of Bush Jnr.

But now that you admit that politics is the art of the possible, i.e. supporting the one that can spray electorial "Agent Orange" on the Bush Jnr, then perchance there is some hope for the world yet.

For outside of Iraq there is much evil in Bush Jnr.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Metchosin
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 03:11 PM

Don, as always, I enjoy your posts.

I have noticed that the Marshall Plan is sometimes waved about as symbol of American governmental "economic altruism" and occasionally used as a club to put an "uppity European" in his place...."if it wasn't for us..yada yada....yada". The following paper makes for interesting reading and offers a more balanced perspective on exactly what the Plan accomplished in Western Europe.

The Plan was not, as some seem to believe an "altruistic handout" to help Europe recover from the devestation of WWII, it was an American capital ivestment gamble, with strings attatched for those countries that were the recipients.

I can't seem to make a link, maybe because it is a PDF file, but if anyone's interested, put "The Marshall Plan as a Structural Adjustment Program" in Google and you should be able to access it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 03:50 PM

Sorry, but I don't see Bush as being smart. He is surrounded by some brilliant people, but he ain't one of 'em.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 04:21 PM

Oh - I don't know Brucie, if what we read is here is correct he must have been able to pass his exams whilst his mind was otherwise engaged in the misuse of alchol, and ahem, other substances !

(GWB Jnr that is, not Bobert)

Anway judging from his recent speech in London he at least knows that Sinia (SP) is not the plural of Sinus ! (OK Old political joke)

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 04:23 PM

Metchosin, thanks for the article. I've got a busy day ahead (performance tonight), but I printed it off and I'll read it tomorrow. In the meantime, HERE's the link. Long sucker. 16 pages double-spaced, but it looks like it's pretty informative.

Thanks again.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 05:11 PM

Thanks, Gareth, fir tryin' to clear up the *who's smarter Bobert 'er Bush thing* but I ain't got a clue. Yeah, sure, Iz probably called Bush an idiot at one time 'er another but I don't think Iz ever called him a moron... He ain't as dumb as folks make him out to be nor are his advisers as smart as folks think... But one thing, irregarless of I.Q.'s, their all crooks. Powell doesn't get a pass either... He can quit, but he doesn't, so that make him part of the gang....

Now as fir alcohol and foriegn substances, in the words of Tom T. Hall, ahhhh, "I like to drink beer...". Right there in one of his songs. I believe the title is "I Like to Drink Beer". As fir the foriegn substances, if I grow my own then I don't consider it foriegn, plus.... I don't inhale. Jus' funnin'... Like why would I risk gettin' arrested if I wasn't gonna inhale... That is one thing that Bush and I have in common. But I don't do no pretzels and that's the truth...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 06:43 PM

And when he does inhale, he doesn't absorb.

OK, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being a carrot and 10 being the collective intelligence of the Mudcat Crew, where exactly does Bush fit in?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 07:17 PM

Mmmmm ! Is it a genetically modified carrot ? Or is it an organic carrot - ie one that is grown and nurtured surounded by sh*t ?

Bobert - your comments noted and I consider them reasonably objective.

Moran is a medically definable term. Not being medically qualified I could not comment on Bush Jnr.

Gareth

Oh !, Stalin wasn't stalling,
When he told the beast of Berlin...."


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,"Bugs"
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 07:28 PM

Don't you call Bush a Moran, he ain't even Irish!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 07:30 PM

Don't worry - If it's electorially advantageous Bush Jnr will claim n Irish Grandmother !

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 07:31 PM

Ah, yes, The Marshall Plan - stuffed up the European Film Industry -"You MUST show US made films - withdraw your terrible laws preventing them"

Robin


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 06 Dec 03 - 07:35 PM

Which gave us :-

Objective Burma !"

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: sledge
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 02:24 AM

I saw on The BBC's Panorama last night the famous "mobile bacteria breeding" plant. It is being stored in a open lot at the weapons inspectors base. It did not look anything close to sterile Terribus. It looked like abandoned junk, the inspectors said that none of the tests done on it showed that it had ever been used for any thing like growing bugs of any sort.
The chief inspector was shown his earlier ranting that they had found the hard evidence needed, later in an interview recorded in October for this program he squirmed and tried to twist his way out by going from the hard evidence of ongoing weapons programs to breaches of UN resolutions banning any such activity. Selective use of the UN here.
The same applied to the Nuclear bomb program, his assertion that it was ongoing was based on the use of Aluminium tubes in a Uranium enrichment centrifuge, and that they could have no other use, then in October well maybe they were small rocket bodies after all.
As for the chemical weapons, "well we have lots of dicuments to search through still", but nothing even as iffy as mystery tubes or pressure cokers.
Interspersed into this program were parts of speeches given by Bush, Rumpsfeld and Powell that ALL of these weapons existed and were ready to be used.

190 US military personnel have now died since military operations "ceased".

Sledge


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Cluin
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 08:22 AM

And here I thought this was gonna be the shortest thread in Mudcat history.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 01:28 PM

Yeah, sledge, the way the media operates in the U. S., "Saddam's WMDs Found!!!" appears in three-inch headlines on page one. A week or three later, they may or may not print a retraction, saying, "Golly gee, a slight misinterpretation of the evidence was made and what were thought to be WMDs turned out to be a showcase full of carpenter's hammers in a Baghdad hardware store. Sorry about that." And the retraction appears on page 38, somewhere between the obits and the classified ads. Fox News doesn't bother to report the retraction at all.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 04:15 PM

cluin, I bet ya right now I could post a thraed with nothing but a question mark and no hint as to what it is for and there will be at least ten posts before midnight tonight. Mudcatters are people who like to interact with other people. In fact, consider it done.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Cluin
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 04:40 PM

Oh, that's what you did. Gawd, I need a life between gigs...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 07:08 PM

I hear you, Cluin. For me, it's a life between chapters. Thought it was pretty classy of you to put the tenth post there. I was somewhat surprised to find 13 there already, and it's only 5:00 pm Alberta time. Have a good day, buddy. Bruce M


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 07 Dec 03 - 10:20 PM

Saw a documentary I think - that showed that the world's greatest expert on nuclear centrigfuges - US guy in fact - had invetigated them and told the Adminstration that those tubes were too heavy to be of any use - also they were of the wrong type of material (remember aaall that ranting about how special they were!) as they would leak far too mach. He was most upset when he saw the claims on TV and tried to contact anybody who would listen - but nobody in the US media was interesetd, let alone the White House...

Also - an Australian company was involved in the purchase of those tubes - and how this US guy (from somewhere in "The Govt") just kept on harping about how they were only suitable for use in nuclear processing - he had no qualifications other than the ear of the President...


And Now this Gem....

QUOTATION OF THE DAY NY Times
Sunday, December 7, 2003

"With a heavy dose of fear and violence, and a lot of money for projects, I think we can convince people that we are here to help them."

LT. COL. NATHAN SASSAMAN, whose unit oversees the Iraqi village of Abu Hishma.


I Luv Yanks! :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: sledge
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 01:34 AM

The US department of energy also stated that the tubes were unsuitable for Nuclear enrichment programs, the white house's pet weapons expert forgot to mention that!

Sledge


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 03:34 AM

Thanks Don,

"The legitimate and honorable purpose of business is to provide goods and/or services to its customers, and to provide work and a living wage for its employees. If a business does this, then all is well. It needs to make a profit to insure that it will stay in business and continue in this honorable purpose."

How are things in Camberwick Green these days? If anybody wanted to start a business and went looking for finance to get that business up and running and you stated your legitimate and honourable purpose - you would be laughed out of the door - and quite rightly so.

The sole purpose can only ever be profit - without it you do not have a business. The principal responsibility of any Chairman and Board of Directors, or CEO of any Company is to the shareholders of that company - they own it and the aforementioned are tasked with running it as efficiently as possible and as profitably as possible. Your idealistic picture fails to recognise the following factors and essentials needed for a business to thrive. The inevitable rising costs your outline imparts. The fact that you operate in a competitive environment. The need for research and development and onward investment.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 08:40 AM

There's profit and there's obscene profit and there is illegal profit such as what Enron pulled on California. Those who are on the receiving end should know the difference but apparently... they don't?....

And the beat goes on...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 12:14 PM

Here's a really great thing about the Iraq Occupation: More and more Iraquis are now free to participate on "The Mother of all BS Threads", because Iraq is so disorganized now that the government is no longer capable of keeping track of what the hell is going on.

What puzzles me is how few of them are availing themselves of this inestimably valuable opportunity...

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: sledge
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 12:21 PM

Too busy queing up for their McDonalds or Blockbuster video franchise.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 01:58 PM

It can be a cast-iron SOB to defeat large companies or corporations. In the late 60s (?), there was a lawsuit against PG+E in California. If I recall correctly, they had been overcharging customers. A political fellow (Brown?) took them to court and won. So, PG+E owed some incredible sum of money to its customers. They didn't have the money, so Nixon (yes, that one) allowed them to have a rate increase to pay back the customers. Gotta love it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 02:32 PM

The business principles you express are exactly the problem, Teribus. I have failed to recognize nothing. Suffice it to say that the companies that put quality of product or service and welfare of employees at the top of their list of priorities wind up with a solid and reliable customer base and a corps of loyal, hard working employees. They do very well in the marketplace year after year, decade after decade, thank you. And they provide steady, long-term growth to their shareholders. Oftentimes they don't make headlines. But they do make a steady profit.

Perhaps they are not of any great interest to those who only want a quick killing in the stock market, but then, investors like that are hit-and-run only, and are often a detriment rather than a benefit to any business that plans on still being around beyond the next quarterly report. My "idealistic picture" is one of real, existing businesses that make a steady and consistent profit and will still be around many years from now—not those that flare like a meteor and are suddenly eclipsed in a burst of headlines as their officers and some of their stockholders go to prison.

Fix your attention on the product, the service, and the people who work for you, and the profits will take care of themselves, Teribus. Many pretty wealty businessment have found that to be a good, solid business principle. Call it "idealistic" if you wish, but they call it 1) easily achieved; 2) simple decency; and 3) good business.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 04:03 PM

The World gives you back what you give the World. This is known by good, honest business people everywhere.

Aggressors need to remember it too, whether they are big fish like the USA and Britain or small fish like Saddam Hussein.

The sole purpose of business is not profit, profit is simply one useful side effect of doing a useful service. There is no sole purpose to business, but many purposes, and among them the most important may be "doing something useful and desirable that benefits both the doer and the receiver". A service that was merely a "break-even" proposition would be far more useful to society than a hugely profitable service that benefited a few and harmed many.

Profit divorced from wider consequence is an empty and ignorant concept, worthy of criminal gangs, not honest businesspeople, and it is the habit of looking at life in isolated fragments rather than as a whole experience which leads to such empty and ignorant practices. It also leads to war.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 08 Dec 03 - 05:11 PM

brucie:

Wonder why Californians aren't sueing Enron? Oh yeah, after the big heist the dough was stashed so well that no one can find it and there's not too much in the bank. Even the proceeds of the sale of their headquarters building will be turned over mostly to *other* corporate theives and buddies... Yet, the employee who lost his retirement portfolio is out a' luck...

And the beat goes on while Johnny Ashcroft is hell bent on messin' with average American citizens....

Go figgure?....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 09 Dec 03 - 01:30 PM

Hi Don,

"Suffice it to say that the companies that put quality of product or service and welfare of employees at the top of their list of priorities wind up with a solid and reliable customer base and a corps of loyal, hard working employees."

If that is what they put, "at the top of their list of priorities", they also end up as being ripe targets for a "take-over".

What you say is idealistic in every way. I am not saying that I would not prefer it to be as you say, but the plain fact of the matter is that that is not how business is run in general. Having said that, what you describe can work, provided the business you are talking about is specialised enough, privately owned, and can resist tempation to expand and stay small enough to control.

You mention "hit-and-run" investors, they have always been around, and always will be - in the main they are the pension funds for many and absolutely have to operate that way in order to cover their commitments and provide growth for the future. The ones you do not mention are the "hit-and-run" consumers, your customers. Very few people now pay more for something they know they can buy cheaper elsewhere. Unless you are keping a very close eye on your competition there will always be someone who can match you for product and beat you for price.

LH:

"The sole purpose of business is not profit, profit is simply one useful side effect of doing a useful service."

Depends upon which principle applies, whether you "work-to-live", or "live-to-work" Of course the sole purpose of business is profit, especially if you want to be in business the next year, and the year after and in the future.

"A service that was merely a "break-even" proposition would be far more useful to society"

All depends on what you mean by "break-even". If by break-even, those providing that service:
- Are committed to investing in personel development of their work-force;
- Are committed to maintaining HSE and Quality standards/certification;
- Are committed to improvement of the service they provide;
- Are committed to keeping pace with the technology require to provide that service.

Then that is not a "break-even" venture by any strech of the imagination, because all of the above, and they are all essential, come with costs that are significant. To pay for it you need to generate an equally significant profit.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 12:54 AM

Teribus: You are right; however, I think people may be referring to obscene profits. I think there is such a thing. Of course, I don't have any shares in anything. Banks are a business, and their profits are obscene. Some of this shit goes beyond having to upgrade technology; it has to do with lining pockets. I agree with those above who have said that business should come with a moral creed. Unfortunately, too many of them dump on taxpayers, depart with the money and then simply disappear. Sometimes governments help with that. Savings and loan: don't know why those words come into my mind. Age, I guess.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 01:32 PM

If this is indeed how business in general is run, then that, my friend, is the problem. You seem to be under the impression that it is impossible to be both a good businessman and a good human being. That may very well be true, but if so, it speaks volumes, doesn't it?

But I do not agree. There are plenty of businesses that do quite well simply by providing quality products and by compensating their employees with good salaries and benefits. Many of them are family owned and have not gone public, so that pretty well obviates take-overs. When they need money for any reason, they get bank loans. That way, they maintain control. They are, of course, alert to whatever the competition is doing and make adjustments, but rather than compromise, they have faith that there are a sufficient number of customers who are willing to pay a bit more for better quality and good customer service. They are in it for the long haul, not the quick kill, and customers know that. Also, there are companies that finance their own pension plans and are relatively immune to the vagaries of the stock market.

It's really quite simple, Teribus. What's more important, profit or people? If it weren't for people, where would the profit come from?

Now, as far as unbridled greed is concerned, there are also companies such as Bechtel and Halliburton, with CEOs and board members in the government (in violation of conflict of interest laws), who drum up business by getting the United States to destroy the infrastructure of another country so they can be awarded non-competitive contracts to rebuild that infrastructure at the expense of the American taxpayer. The fact that thousands of people are killed in the process of drumming up this business is incidental, of course. "You can't make an omelet without breaking eggs." Well, that makes for a pretty bitter omelet.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 02:10 PM

Well said, Don. Hear, hear!


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 03:53 PM

You're just loyal to your side of the argument, teribus, that's all...like a soldier is loyal to his side in war. But this is not a war, this is a search for understanding.

It doesn't matter who "wins".

Now, I simply cannot believe that you really think that "profit is the sole purpose of business". I think you are merely repeating a well known piece of jargon that sounds surperficially good in your ears, but without thinking about it that much.

There are so many purposes to business. Here are a few:

1. to survive in society by earning an income
2. to gain a sense of accomplishment and self-worth by doing something useful in life
3. to gain the respect of other people by not being a parasite who does nothing
4. to meet one's own expectations of a life well-lived, and the expectations of one's parents, etc....etc...(all of which is deeply ingrained in most people by the time they are 15 years old or less)
5. to make enough money to survive decently
6. if 5 has been achieved, making enough money to survive better than that, and enjoying some leisure time.
7. realizing your dreams in life! (and that has to do with a whole lot more than money...)
8. doing something you enjoy and find meaningful!
9. doing something that improves your community and your world!
10. And about a hundred other things...(sigh)

Now, if you can't admit to that, then you are just overly wedded toward winning the argument, and believe me, buddy, it doesn't matter a tinker's damn who wins the bloody argument. A month from now, who will care? It's trivial.

I have worked in the public sector and in the private sector. One thing I liked about the public sector was this: achieving the work ITSELF was the objective, rather than making a profit. This tended to produce a more idealistic viewpoint on the part of management and staff (in many cases) and a less competitive and more relaxed, friendly atmosphere. It was a service, not a search for cash.

I've also enjoyed working in the private sector, making a profit, and I appreciate the individual freedom and creativity that one finds there if one is so inclined.

Either way is fine with me.

It would be possible to run an entirely effective society without a profit motive, if one grew up with a different set of assumptions about life (such as: life depends on everyone having enough of what they need and being happy and healthy). Again, I say, either way is fine with me.

If I thought that profit was the sole purpose of business, I would probably have become a lawyer, an M.D., a drug pusher, or a pornography seller...and done something I have little or no liking or inclination for, but just go where the BIG money is.

And that would be living death to me.

How much money is enough, teribus? That is the question that people addicted to profit for profit's sake alone never seem to consider asking themselves.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 08:13 PM

I'll repeat it:

"The sole purpose (of a business) can only ever be profit - without it you do not have a business" to which I will add, "..- you have a hobby."

Intersting to note LH that the first six of your ten points relate directly to profit/success, and means of measuring it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 10:19 PM

Kendall is right. "On a dead man's door, you can knock forever."

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Metchosin
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 10:28 PM

"The sole purpose (of a business) can only ever be profit - without it you do not have a business" to which I will add,"..- you have a hobby."

Hmmm....hobby?....I think I'll pass that on to my Physician, Teribus, the next time I see him.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 10:37 PM

And I'll repeat it also, T-Bird. There's profit, then there's obsene profit and there's illegal profit. I don't think anyone here would have any problem with *profit* but most have a problem with obsene profit and probably 99% with illegal profit.

Okay, what is obsene profit? Well, a good example is what the US oil companies do routinely to the American people. Heck, they'lol use just about any reason to jack up prices over night by 30%... That is obsene.

As ifr illegal profits, all one has to do is folloe Dick Cheney. Halliburton is as fine an exampl;e as can be found. Halliburton pays Dick Cheney $1.4M a year and gets a lion's share of contracts in Iraq without having to bid against competitors. That, under any other administration, would be prosecuted by the Justice Department. But not under these guys....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amos
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 11:21 PM

FOlks, I yam here to tell you that the favorite refrain in MBA courses in our age is the notion that businesses only exist to turn a profit, and making money is the be-all and end-all, summum bonum and raison d'etre of a business.

Now it is obvious that a business needs to make money like a car needs gas. But the purpose of a car is not to take in gas, now is it? So let us not be sillyhere. Businesses must make money to continue t exist but they also have a purpose in the lives of those concerned -- to bring about better survival, improve the futures of those participating, and contribute to the civilization in some way.

These wisenheimers who preach money as the purpose of business have their tailbones wrapped around their neckbones. Thew notion that a business that makes money is by definition a successful business is just ridiculous. By this line of reasoning, a drug pusher is a successful businessman, and so is someone who kidnaps babies and sells them.

This, too, is the kind of "CEO_think" that informs the MBAs in DC just now. It is not about decency or practicality. It's about dough. This is short-sightedness incarnate.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 10 Dec 03 - 11:56 PM

Well, danged, Amos. I have to agree with everything you said but yer typin' an' spellin' is gettin' more and more Wes Ginnian evry day. Seems like that shine I mailed ya is doing it's shine thing quite nicely...

Jus' funnin'.... Good to see some folkx let their hair down....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 12:10 AM

Thanks in part for that Amos.

Business/money and the car/petrol thing is a poor analogy.

I think we were all under the impression that we were talking about legitimate business enterprises so references to drug pushers and kidnappers don't enter the equation.

All the wonderful things that Don, et al have said a business should do. Make a list of them as Little Hawk did. If your business does not make a profit you can do none of them. Therefore, it follows naturally that the sole aim of the business must be to make a profit.

Oil prices go up 30% overnight eh Bobert - incentive to use less of it then.

On Cheney you are wrong

On Halliburton and competitive tendering you are wrong. They did win a competitive tender, it was for a frame agreement contract to do work for the US military, and it was awarded in either 1997 or 1998.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 12:39 PM

You still don't get it, do you, Teribus? Is it missing synapses or a refusal to think?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 06:44 PM

Teribus, if the sole purpose of business is to make a profit, then why exclude drug pushers and kidnappers?


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 06:50 PM

Touché!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amos
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 07:14 PM

Teribus:

The fallacy here is the proposition that because profit is essential to what businesses must do , it is therefore the purpose of what businesses do.

That is illogical, and even sophomoric. "If not p, then not g" is not the same as saying "G=P" (goal and profit, respectably). You can't make a goal if you don't run, in soccer, but it is not correct to say that the team that runs the most wins.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 07:29 PM

To bad, T-Bird, that yer not watchin' the news being aired in the US tonight about how Halliburton is ripping off the governemnt, charging $2.70 a gallon for the gas used in their vehilcles in Iraq back to the American taxpayers...

And, you can pull up any danged liein' website you want to about Halliburton having to compete fir bids but you are apparently unaware that during the debates in out Congress, which were carried live in the radio, over the $87B for Iraq, that many, many congress people brought it up and the Repubs never once, that I heard, countered. And I listened to at least 2 days worth of the hearing's while rehabin' a house... Word fir word. You'd think, as you say, that if contacts had been assigned on a competitive basis, that after a PR onslaught by Dems about the issue at least one danged Repub would have said something. Buy they didn't!!!... Hmmmmm, Part 6,483....

But the real question I have fir ya, T, is why if you don't even live in the US you feel so compelled to defend every stupid thing our Resident does? Yeah, answer me that one...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 11:04 PM

Good question, Bobert. I can understand Doug (although I can't understand Doug), but I'm curious about why someone who doesn't live in the United States seems to feel compelled to jump on everything that doesn't reflect glory on Bush and his associates as if s/he's either a member of the Bush League or is running for office as a Republican. Also, where does our Disciple of Thor and Odin find the time to go through every post word by word in search of nits to pick and then write volumes in the picking of them?

Interesting to debate with, but I do sorta wonder. . . .

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 11 Dec 03 - 11:50 PM

My God, teribus... LOL! You cling to a logical absurdity like a pit bull clinging to his favourite bone.

Let me paraphrase your statement: "the sole purpose of business is profit."

Ahem***   "The sole purpose of living is injesting water."

Wrong! But it follows the same logical line. Without drinking water you will die. You cannot continue living for more than a very short time without drinking water, and you cannot continue a running a normal profit-based "business" very long without making money (unless you have a huge pile of it to waste).

What does that have to do with purpose, and how is it a "sole" reason? Well, it's only one of many purposes, and many reasons. You also need to breathe air, eat food, find shelter, stay warm, exercise your body, occupy your mind and emotions, and so on...

Here's what your original statement might better say, in order to be factual:

"One of the necessary requirements of running a successful (and let's assume, legal) business is to make money."

ONE of them. There are numerous other necessary requirements too...like learning the trade, getting an education, obeying the law, being efficient, getting up in the morning, not alienating your customers, balancing the books, being honest, communicating effectively, not running around naked in the streets on your coffee break, and so on.

So, if what they teach in an MBA course is that business has a "sole purpose" and that that purpose is profit, then what they are teaching is a fundamentalist religion, not a science, and a VERY primitive religion at that...based on nothing more than an illogical statement of blind and exclusive faith, intended to brainwash the brethren and prepare them for a life of deluded fantasy in a moral abyss of their own creation. (Sounds like the life of Dilbert, doesn't it?)

Neither life, love, art, government nor business have a sole purpose...but rather a million different purposes, and what kind of human being you are will determine what purposes you choose.

Money is a tool, teribus. It was invented to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. A tool is not a purpose in itself, it is a means toward achieving a purpose. The real purpose is to enhance, encourage, and improve life in every way possible, and become better, wiser people in so doing.

And profit? Profit is an arbitrary concept especially beloved by those in societies where many or most people are too immature to do things simply because they are, in themselves, good things to do...and must be spurred on by a "carrot" suspended in front of their nose in the form of money. It is also a very handy way of establishing a privileged few at the top, and a disadvantaged many who can be easily controlled by that few through their god, their chosen deity...money.

You're espousing a material religion, teribus, not a real thinking philosophy. I don't go to that church nor accept its Holy Writ as gospel.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 01:04 AM

""The legitimate and honorable purpose of business is to provide goods and/or services to its customers, and to provide work and a living wage for its employees."

Don Firth

That is the sentence that started this of pdc.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 01:52 AM

$2.70 a gallon delivered, lets see Bobert, taking it as read that they were selling by the US gallon. That price works out at around 71 cents a litre, which at todays exchange rate comes to 40 pence per litre. If that is the case Bobert they can come and rip me off any day - price per litre we are usually used to paying over this side of the pond $1.46.

According to reports on this Halliburton got ripped off as much as the US Government. Main client US - Prime contractor Halliburton - subsidiary of Halliburton's - supplier of fuel. Short term contract to supply fuel, the supplier did not have enough trucks of his own to deliver and had to hire in. Guys who made the killing - the fuel supplier and the guy who hired him the trucks.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 02:51 PM

Well said, Little Hawk. Very well said!

Yes, Teribus, "The legitimate and honorable purpose of business is to provide goods and/or services to its customers, and to provide work and a living wage for its employees," is what I said and I stand by it. Other than the entire concept, I don't see the exact nit you're trying to pick. Perhaps I should have added all sorts of qualifications to the statement, such as "profit, of course, is a necessary concomitant of carrying out the legitimate and honorable purpose of business, which is to provide goods. . . ." and so on, but it was assumed that any intelligent person would suss that out for themselves. If you're losing money, you aren't going to stay in business for long.

By the way, there are about five gas stations within a mile of where I live. Gas is pretty close to being as expensive as it has ever been, and the stations are charging around $1.85 per (U.S.) gallon (that works out to about $0.49 per liter). And that includes several mark-ups along the line. At $2.70 a gallon, somebody is making a helluva profit out of the American taxpayer by selling gasoline to the military. Considering that Halliburton is as close to a vertical monopoly as the law allows (actually, a bit more than the law allows, but let's face it, they have friends at Court), they would be making a lot more profit per gallon than Texaco, who supplies the nearest station to where I live. And, yes, I am factoring in transportation costs.

If you're not just trying to yank people's chains and you truly believe that "the sole purpose of business is profit," remind me never to do business with you.

Fantastic! This just coming over the radio as I type this!! —

Audit: Hallibuton Overcharged U.S. in Iraq. The Department of Defense has just completed a preliminary audit of Halliburton's charges to the military and are starting to ask some tough questions. They claim that there is substantial evidence that Halliburton has overcharged the military $61,000,000 so far for fuel. The Army Corps of Engineers did not want to accept Halliburton in the first place, and as a result of the Defense Department's preliminary audit, they are currently reviewing bids from other suppliers. Other services who ordinarily supply the military with fuel for under a dollar a gallon had been cut out, and are continuing to ask why the contract was awarded to Halliburton. Halliburton is also being audited regarding possible overcharges of $220,000,000 for operating food services for the military. Halliburton has a history of overcharging the military and has been penalized several times in the past. Question: Why were they awarded a no-bid contract with that kind of history?

Not my opinion. Fact. Explain that away, Teribus!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 02:56 PM

By the way, Turkey offered to supply the U.S. military with fuel for $1.18 a gallon, but were turned down.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Little Hawk
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 05:03 PM

Hell, my father stayed in business for almost 20 years, while losing money the whole time! He just lost it gradually. Other people have done it for even longer periods than that before the bubble finally burst. The way you do it is by:

1. consuming your inheritance and personal savings bit by bit

2. borrowing other people's money and going deeper and deeper into debt

3. losing your money slowly enough that it isn't really all that noticeable on any given day

4. using credit irresponsibly and going deeper into debt

This, in fact, is what any number of goverments have done and are doing on a regular basis...while getting their public to foot the bill through taxes and inflation...and currency that is in truth almost worthless. The whole prevailing social System encourages the ordinary public to do this too, by offering them every possible temptation to "buy now, pay later" with credit, and live at a level they cannot really afford.

It's massive irresponsibility from the top down, and it rests on a few basic assumptions:

1. the main rewards in life are material (untrue)

2. money buys happiness (untrue)

3. he who has the most toys is the happiest boy (untrue)

4. people will respect and love you if you've got a lot of expensive stuff (untrue)

5. MORE is always better (grossly untrue)

Add to that a little religious declaration like: "The sole purpose of business is profit." and you've got a population that no longer has the vaguest idea what life is really about. A population of drugged serfs. Such people will never find a way to fill their loneliness till they dump that MBA religion and find a saner one, that honours life itself instead of material wealth.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 06:34 PM

Yo, T.... You might wanta put a delay button on yer "post" key since you're swinging at one curve ball after another... The Halliburton audit reports are coming at a furious rate tonight on all the news networks... Even Bush has suggested publicly that Halliburton is going to have to give this money back.

Takes me back to our discussions of several months ago on this very subject. Seems I, and others, made the point over and over that not opening the bidding to other firms was not a good idea. Yet, you defended, as per usual, and in lockstep I might add, the Bush administartions insistence to forge ahead. Damn the torpedos. Well, one of 'em has lodged itself in in this policy...

Now, we know how much you love to argue and carry on but if you're going to stick with *yer man* on this one ya' better have a life jacket handy...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:14 PM

Hey Bobert - There is an inconsistancy in yer posts.

First of all yer claim that Haliburton has a license/agreement to rip off the US of A taxpayer with the government's permission.

And Secondly yer is claiming that the Auditors have spotted this theft, and are now taking action to recover the money concerned.

Logic

If your furst argument is true then the second falls.

If on the otherhand yer second arguement is true then yer furst is false.

May I respectfully suggest that you stop trying to logic chop Teribus and spend a tad more time dealling with yer own inconsistancies.

And if yer really wanted to impress you might spend a little time on the technicallities of organizing ter removing Bush Jnr in yer forthcoming elections.

Remember, as Joe Hill was reputed to have said, "Don't weep, Organize"

Hell Mun, it don't require a West Virgi' Slide Rule to show that.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:31 PM

Gareth: What IS a West Virginia slide rule? I'm curious. Never heard the expression before. (I haven't bought any bridges lately, so don't yank my leg too hard, OK?)


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:51 PM

Even resident Bush can no longer stand the stench. He admitted that we are being brabbed on fuel prices.
And Halliburton is providing filthy kitchens and spoiled food to the soldiers. Profiteering scumbags.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: kendall
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 07:55 PM

also, the fact that Teribus is not an American doesn't bother me. I'm a liberal, and, even though I think he is wrong, I still respect his opinion. I've never learned anything from someone who agrees with me.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 08:13 PM

Gareth, as you dump on Bobert and his West Virginny slide rule, I can't follow your line of thinking. In the meantime,

Background.

Excerpts from just released article in the Washington Post:
WASHINGTON — Defense Department auditors have discovered that a Halliburton subsidiary may have overcharged the government $61 million on a contract to supply fuel for Iraq, a Pentagon official said yesterday. In another contract to operate U.S. military mess halls, Halliburton, which was headed by Dick Cheney before he became vice president, would have been overpaid $67 million if auditors hadn't questioned the arrangement, officials said, citing findings of a draft audit.
###
On the gas contract, Halliburton subsidiary KBR (Kellogg, Brown & Root), has been charging the U.S. government $2.27 a gallon to deliver gasoline from Kuwait, while another similar contract for gas from Turkey is charging only $1.18, the official said . . . On the contract to operate mess halls, the official said that Halliburton told the Pentagon its subcontractor price would be $220 million. But auditors examining Halliburton's operations found that at that time, the company already had awarded a subcontract under which the cost was actually $67 million lower than that.
###
Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., who has taken the lead in questioning the Halliburton contracts, said in a statement that the draft report "confirms what we've known for months. Halliburton has been gouging taxpayers and the White House has been letting them get away with it."
###
Cheney was defense secretary from 1989 until 1993, and then was chief executive at Halliburton from 1995 until 2000, when he resigned to join George W. Bush on the 2000 Republican ticket. The two contracts in question are among the biggest the U.S. government has let for operations in postwar Iraq. They are open-ended arrangements under which about $5 billion has been spent so far, one of the Pentagon officials said.
Still listening to the radio. Rumsfeld just came on with a sound-bite about the Halliburton audit and he's dancing as fast as he can, but he ain't no Fred Astaire.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 12 Dec 03 - 10:25 PM

Yeah, Gareth, I can't understand yer logic, or lack thereof, either....

But, whatever yer smokin', please forward me a pinch fir my Xmas bowl...

An' further more, I never even involved the Wes Ginny Slide Rule on this one since it was a no-brainer.... Ahhhh, not that the WVSR has a brain? But, hey, ask the WVSL an' I'm sure it'd say it's me with no brain...

Bottom line, no matter, is that the Bush administration is *so*, ahhhh, *caught* that Bush ain't even gonna use the spinmasters on this one. They told him that there weren't no lies they couold come up with and that he was gonna have to tell the truth!!! Now, that's a first!!!.....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 07:14 AM

Don, Haven't you made my point again.

Bobert's Proposition 1. Haliburton is gouging the Taxpayer, with the full knowledge and approval of the White House.

Bobert's proposition No.2 Auditors etc. have caught Haliburton "bang to rights".

Logic - If No 1 is correct, then there was no irregularity to report.

Methinks there may well be a case for a "clawback".

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 01:55 PM

Gareth, the two points are totally consistent. Just because the Resident in the White House has full knowledge and approves of his buddies ripping off the taxpayers doesn't make the off-ripping legal or ethical (unless you are positing the "divine right of kings" for American presidents). What that means is that Bush was complicit. The fact that they got caught at it means the Bush et al have got to spin like tops if they're going to pull this one out of the fire.

1. They were rifling the cookie jar.
2. They got caught.

Where, exactly, is the logical inconsistency?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 02:33 PM

The inconsistancy Don, is in post after post claiming that "Boss Hogg" had perverted the law and constitution to make this grand scale theft possible and unstopable, and within the law.

Then screaming "that's proof" when they get caught.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 02:58 PM

And. . . ?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 06:58 PM

And, Part B...?

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 07:16 PM

Bobert you have been caught out - Don't duck and weave.

You can't have it both ways 0- Either Cheney et al thru Bush Jnr have set up Haliburton to rip the US of A taxpayer off legally through a contract enforcable at Law,

or

They have been called to account, by the organs of the US of A government, and will have to refund the money.

Pray, which is correct?

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Amos
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 07:40 PM

Bush is currently clawing for the high ground and distancing himself from th wrong-doing discovered. This implies he was not conscious of any such arrangement when it was originally committed.

However it is unlikely that he was as unaware as he can claim. The ability to build deniability into things is covered in the second week of Lowlife 101, according to what I have seen.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 08:05 PM

Yo, Gareth...

The only one "caught out" here is Dick Cheney's Halliburton. No me...

If you'll recall, I protested loudly and often about Halliburton being awarded contratcs as a *single bidder* and woarned that this smacked of corruption... But Teribus and other (perhaps you, I don't remember) came to Halliburton'sand Cheneny's defense.

"Well, Halliburton is the only company that can do these jobs!" was what we heard over and over.

Well, danged, Gareth, it was construction and oil line stuff. There are lots of folks doing that that ain't Halliburton...

Then I pointed out that Dick Cheney was still being compensated to the tune of $1.4M a year by Halliburton. But Teribus says some thing to the effect that "Hey, this is deferred income and doesn't matter..." 'er something very close to that... Heck, he'll be by later to say that I'm on drugs 'cause I miseed a word or two... But, bottom line, Cheney is gettin' $1.4M a year from Halliburton and Hallibutron got the contract *without* having any competition to have to bid against...

Fast forward to last week:

Auditors within the *Defense Department*, not the White House, not the G.A.O. but the *Defense Department* discovered the overcharges for fuel deliveries to the tune of at least $61M, which ain't chump change.....

Now fast forward to the *White House* being *notified* by the Defense Department of the over charges and you have Bush spin folks burning the midnight oil trying to figure out how to respond, especially given the fact that the initial contract sniffs heavily of favoritism and cronyism. Well, when at dawn, after a night's full of PR spinfolk spinning various mythological explanations so as to not reopen the original protest of Halliburton getting the contract without having to compete... And...

...ahhhh, what they came up with was a short statement that Bush would be given to deliver:

"Well, if anyone has over charged us they'll have to pay it back..."

Yeah, sometimes even the Bush folks just find the, ahhhh, truth to be the best way out and this was one of those occasions...

Why, because the Defense Department had Halliburton "dead to rights" and there was abosolutely *NO* wiggle room...

I do give credit to the Bush folks on this one in recognizing that a bigger and bettter lie isn't always the best way out of a jam...

Now, Gareth, if you can find any illogic in this explanation of events then I mean it. Send me some of what you are smokin'...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 13 Dec 03 - 11:12 PM

What a wonderful idea! From now on, anyone caught thieving, robbing, stealing, or committing any other kind of larceny in the US will simply give the money back, and that will be the end of it. No jail, no accountability, no penalties -- just return the money. Mm-hmm, a new high in public politics has just been reached.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 14 Dec 03 - 12:02 AM

Yep, that is the new Bush doctrine.... If ya got caught and they got pics, then just cop tp it.... Sad commentary.......

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 12:05 AM

The good thing about the Iraq occupation is that it will lead to the capture of Saddam Hussein, alive.

(What, that happened already? Nah, no one will check the date of this post.)

Anyway, that's MY prediction.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 01:20 AM

My prediction, now that Saddam Hussein has been caught, is not a happy one. Now that the Iraqi people need not fear his return, I believe there will be an increase in tribalism, with ancient enemies (with modern weapons) fighting for power, or land, or just to settle old blood feuds -- in other words, I predict a descent into a bloodbath that the US can't handle. When the US pulls out, it will get worse. Yugoslavia writ large. The only hope I can see for preventing that is if the US puts in another strongman, and we all know how that turned out the last time they did so.

Sorry for the bleak outlook, but it's late, I'm tired, and I have very little faith in the sanity of the human race at this moment.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 02:25 AM

Hi Don,

Thanks for the link which seems to be fairly clear that:

1. Brown & Root, latterly Halliburton and their subsidiary KBR have a long track record of doing work for the US Armed Forces through Pentagon contracts, dating back to 1940. Taking those 63 years of association, the Pentagon and the military in general have been pleased with the services provided.

2. That management, or oversight of contracts by the military is poor.

I daresay your comparison of fuel prices locally did factor in transportation costs. But I would venture to suggest that the situation is somewhat different - delivering fuel locally within the United States of America, and delivering fuel in a war zone (I think the supplier lost something like 7 trucks, one driver killed, others injured).

Reports on this over hear include comments by GAO officials confirming that they did not believe that KBR had profitted unduly from the deal, or that the deal had been brokered with the intention of making increased profit. They also reported that this particular contract was short term (less than 3 months) which was why the price quoted for fuel from Turkey could not be applied, the $1.18 price being for a minimum 12 month supply contract.

Bobert, go back and read what I said with regard to Halliburton - the contract under discussion at that time was the contract to extinguish oil-field fires and to repair war damage to Iraqi oil installations - i.e. the first contract awarded. Do not try and transfer what I specifically said about that to cover anything else.

As to having to consult web sites regarding contracts Bobert. It is a matter of record and fact that the current Frame Agreement Contract that Halliburton holds with the Pentagon was won against competitive tender. Therefore if any subsequent work that fell within the remit of that Frame Agreement came up and it was not given to Halliburton, then Halliburton would be in a position to sue the Pentagon for breach of contract.

Just quoting the figures does not portray the full picture. On that I will give you an example. This was a contract to be awarded by an integrated management organisation. On what was to be installed the manufacturer was decided by product characteristics, the manufacturer offered a supply and install proposal, which on examination contained some 57 qualifications, 39 of which had identifiable potential schedule impact that they could not quantify and 27 of which had identifiable commercial impact that they would not quantify. From our side of that integrated management organisation we stated that to award the installation contract under such circumstances would be like presenting this supplier with a blank cheque. That suppliers installation cost was rationalised at 240 million. We pressed for and got the job put out to competitive tender, the supplier came back with an installation cost of 150 million, the contract was awarded to another contractor whose price was 75 million.

When the job was finally finished, total installation cost came in at 190 million. Sounds like someone took a real bath in doing the work going by the figures. Similarly looking at the figures, it looks as though the evaluation team who awarded the contract got things badly wrong. That is what the figures suggest, but what those figures cannot do is provide reasons for the escalation in contract price.

The reasons in this particular instance related to Company (Integrated Management Organisation) delays and resultant changes, that caused the installation contractor to effectively install the items twice, forced him to change his installation spread and methodology (hence he had to re-engineer the job) and forced an installation window at a time of the year when weather would cause delay compared to the time of year for installation stipulated at time of contract award - 98% of the escalation in price was driven by the customer, purely by circumstance, 1.6% of the escalation was caused by product supplier induced changes, 0.4% was generated by the installation contractor. The installation contractor did an absolutely superb job - installation contractor was Brown & Root Energy Services (Halliburton)

From experience over this side of the pond, the Government and particularly the military, are notorious for setting specifications for work, awarding contracts for the work - then introducing changes - its the changes that escalate the costs, and they have nothing whatsoever to do with the contractor.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Peace
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 10:44 AM

Hey, pdc,

What's happ'nin? You seemed somewhat down in your post. Just the blues? Remember, the blues ain't nothin' but a good wo/man feelin' bad! Hope things are OK.

Brucie


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Don Firth
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 03:57 PM

". . . the Pentagon and the military in general have been pleased with the services provided."

Well, that's not really all that surprising, Teribus, when you consider that attempts to audit Pentagon spending within recent years have failed because of illegally incomplete and/or incredibly inept (or both) accounting practices within the Pentagon. For the past several of years, the Pentagon has been held exempt from its legally required annual financial report to Congress because of the hopelessly chaotic state of its financial record-keeping.

It seems that they can't account for one trillion, one hundred billion dollars worth of taxpayers' money and what it may or may not have been spent for. That's trillion, with a "T." Since Americans and Brits use somewhat different terms for these amounts, to avoid confusion, here is the figure written out numerically:

$1,100,000,000,000

And this does not include the trillions of dollars of taxpayers' money that they can account for.

Once again, Teribus, educate yourself.

I can't help but think of what all else that kind of money could buy . . . such as funding top-quality education, establishing universal health care, funding research into renewable energy sources, environmental programs, programs to alleviate poverty and homelessness, funding for the arts . . . all of those things that the politicians say we can't afford.

The reason the richest nation in the world can't afford the basic requirements of a civilized country is that all the money that could fund the programs that other, smaller, less wealthy countries do is winding up in individuals' bank accounts in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands. Individuals like Dick Cheney, Kenneth Lay, et al.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Frank
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 04:28 PM

"Bobert are you, or are you not about to have an election in the United States of America next year? In that election who is entitled to vote? Who is entitled to stand?"

Teribus this is a good question since we didn't really have an election in 2000. The Renquist Supreme Court decided it for us.

And....the Marshall Plan is the Bush Plan in reverse. Maybe Bush will privatize foreign aid and bring Arthur Andersen as an accountant. :)
(I hope I'm kidding.)

And are we to understand that Halliburton is crying poor? How much does Cheney make now? Is he on the payroll? And what kind of great things are they doing in Iraq right now?

The good thing about this occupatio is that maybe the sleeping Americans will wake up and find out how they've been screwed by this administration.

Frank


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 16 Dec 03 - 07:06 PM

Frank and Don got here before me, T, but I would like to add just a little bit of personal experience here... Let's rewind back to Bush I's war with Iraq.

I was workin' for my brother's firm, TradeTech, which was a procurment company. We were sellin' lots of different kind of stuff to the Kuwaiti's. Then I get this tender for "dymethal cloride" (sp) which is used in assistin' folks in finding gas leaks. Problem is, that back then there was just one company in either Denmark (or Belgium?) that was producing it and every procurment company in the world ended up there that morning... Including, I'm sure Halliburton. The point is this. Halliburton doesn't produce anything like dymethyl cloride. It's basicly a construction company that does pipe fitting and other construction related stuff. Texas must have a 1000 such companies. Seems back when I was writing proposals, I spent a lot of time with Texas firms when it came to anything related to pipes, valves, etc. But there were lots of big firms doing this stuff....

I disagree with you, Tetibus, that Halliburton is the only company that can put out oil fires or fix pipe lines. There are many... If you like, and you agree to admit you're wrong on this one, I'll dig out my old files and provide you with names of a few that we represented...

BTW, Tradeteck's gross profits in the year after the Persain Gulf War, were in the $2M range and that was achieved from the labors of just 5 of us. Three here and 2 in Kuwait...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 17 Dec 03 - 04:26 AM

Good heavens Bobert - Were you really a war profiteer!!!

"I disagree with you, Teribus, that Halliburton is the only company that can put out oil fires or fix pipe lines. There are many..."

I agree with you Bobert there are many (but not that many) companies who can put out oil fires or fix pipelines - but how many of those at the time had an existing contract with the US Government?

Don,

Thanks for that post and link very interesting, sort of falls into step perfectly with the second point in my post that you didn't quote - "2. That management, or oversight of contracts by the military is poor."

As to overspending, unaccounted for funding - not in the least bit surprised - and that is not restricted to the US armed forces. We have had some absolute howlers in the UK (RN Diving Ship HMS Challenger and Nimrod AEW aircraft being two of the most entertaining examples) "illegally incomplete, inept, chaotic", the illegally incomplete can fall into the category of someone being pressured by weight of work into signing off a pile of returns attesting to their accuracy without actually checking them. I would doubt it that it is deliberate theft. But what you said, backed up by the article on Spinney is perfectly true. What is equally true is that it is a problem that on the face of it seems very easy to rectify but which in practice is extremely complex.

In procurement for the armed forces of any country there are four distinct groups involved, those who identify the need for whatever is required, those paying for it, those who will use it and those who will maintain it. As I have better acquainted with this from a UK perspective I will try to demonstrate how the wheels tend to come of the cart.

Identifying the Requirement:
Usually done by a Joint Service Committee, the army needs a new tank, Navy a new Aircraft Carrier, RAF a new aircraft. This committee then appoints a group to define what this piece of kit has to do and where, then draw up a specification.

Those Paying:
Take this specification and go out to tender for provision of what ever is needed - they obviously want to pay as little as possible so betwen the committee above and this crowd some cheese-paring. Contract is awarded and prototype is built and trialed (not talking Aircraft Carriers here)

In the meantime the committee is asked if such and such a piece of new kit can do something outwith what was originally expected of it. The request is evaluated and an alteration is made to the specification.

Those who will use it:
Take part in trials, they come up with short-comings, specification gets changed again

Those who maintain it:
What is an essential feature for those using the kit may impose nightmares for those who have to maintain it (English Electric Lightning interceptor was a classic example of this design conflift). As they have to be maintained some form of compromise is reached and the specification is changed again.

All those changes cost an immense amount of money. A topical example in the UK at the moment is the new carrier for the RN originally 66,000 tons, size reduced to 40,000 tons to save money - that change in design cost a fortune and not one plate of steel has been cut yet. They are inherently inefficient because they a responding to a situation that is constantly changing - in other words a contractors dream.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: Bobert
Date: 17 Dec 03 - 09:14 AM

Actually, T-Bird, I was a "war profiteer" want-to-be. I didn't take any draws while I was working with Tradetech since I still owned my rental car business and could draw off of it to live. Yeah, I was hoping to get a big paycheck because we closed out our nuts and bolts procurments and invested it in a project that sunk (pun intended): the Sequoia! Oh, what a mistake! The idea was for the Kuwaitis to purchase the presidential boat from the Sequoia Foundation and present it to Bush the Elder as a way of sayin' thank you. We had contacts in the White House and Daddy Bush was receptive. We had variouys minister in Kuwait who were strong-arming various folks over there and everything looked to be in place... BTW, you can blow $2M in a heartbeat in Kuwait with 2 and 3 guys over there workin' a deal. One thing fir sure is that you have to apply lots of grease to Kuwatis ($$$) to get their attention. We had days where we'd be spendin' $20,000 to keep things going... Well, to make a long story short and less painful... The kuwaitis were just blowing smoke and after 3 months of winin' & dinin' & greasin' 'em this venture ran out of money an' I'm sure that there's a bunch of Kuwaits to this very day are still laughin' about it...

My poor brother even used his house as collateral for a loan toward the end and ended up having to sell the house to pay off the loan.

So, I'll admit to once trying to profit indirectly from the war but ended up with working fir a year for nuthin'... And the lessons learned, ahhhh, well, lots... But the one that relates to this discussion is that the bigger the company the more grease avilable to weasel one's company into the deal... i.e. Halliburton...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupatio
From: GUEST,Bill
Date: 17 Dec 03 - 09:36 AM

teribus, some GUEST is posting under your name and rambling on and on interminably to almost no purpose at all. I think you ought to do something about it. At least log in and issue an official denial. People are going to think you've totally lost it.


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 01:38 PM

If there wezre not teroorists, in other words resistance, America will alreday be in Syria putting an useful democracy ghost...In any war there is a aggressive state and an agressed state...


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: GUEST,Frankham
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 04:23 PM

The only positive that I can think of is that it enables the American public to consider what gains they have from this war.
It is becoming increasingly clear that there are really none.

If it brings into question whether democracy can be institued in a foreign land by military occupation, then maybe this is something.

The problem basically as I see it is this. The Insurgents are increasingly the Iraqi people. The common unifying "enemy" are American soldiers. Bremmer's dictates will not be followed. To enforce a government (nation building) by another country is a prescription for dictatorship. Alawi is already being called by some a "strong man". (Last use of the term was for Noriega who the US initially supported).

If this picture is made clear to Americans, then that is a positive.

Frank


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Subject: RE: BS: The Good Things about the Iraq Occupation
From: Bobert
Date: 28 Jun 04 - 06:30 PM

Ah, no, Teribus, we aren't getting ready to have an election "nexr year", or this one for that matter. We are getting ready to have a sham. The votes are to be counted electronicly with no paper trail by Diebold, whoes CEO has promised to return Bush to the White House.

Meanwhile, America is so gerimandered that 90% of the contests are predetermined...

Now if you call that democracy, you missed a few finer points of the elements needed to have a successful democracy. Throw in Tom Jefferson's warning that democracy was dependent on an informed electorate and given the manipulation of *inform*ation and I'd argue that, at least in the US, democracy is broke and it wouldn't appear that the rulers have any incentive to fix it...

Now, as fir yer "wina few, lose a few" attitude toward establishment of democracgies you argue that the British expiriement in thde 20's failed because they didn't have the right Ieaqis involved. What makes you think that the US has done any better?

Bobert


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