Wednesday Morning Open Thread

The top recommended diary at Daily Kos:

You have raised your flag in protest against a troop increase in a war the President, as a candidate, called a "war of necessity." The President didn't hide his feelings from you.

I knew my time alone in support of "finishing the job" in Afghanistan would be shortlived. Welcome to the bandwagon, Obama fans.

This is an Open Thread.

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    Obama must PAY for his war.... (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by NealB on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:44:35 AM EST
    ...in Afghanistan. Raise taxes to pay for it.

    I don't understand the mission in Afghanistan. Rooting out evil is all I can gather, but it's far from clear that Afghanistan is where the roots of evil are buried. US interest in the middle east  is irrational, and the $35 billion per year expense of Obama's Afghanistan escalation is unjustifiable. Let Obama call on America's wealthy, the only ones that really benefit from these gambits, to pay for it with a tax increase on their prodigious incomes.

    Obama has insisted that health reform be "paid for," by cost saving and new revenues. He must apply the same standard to his wars.

    The belief by Obama and (5.00 / 8) (#9)
    by dk on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:56:42 AM EST
    war supporters that the "job" can be "finished" in Afghanistan shows a profound ignorance of history, which, of course, is a trait as American as apple pie.  Alas the march into more pointless bloodshed is as inevitable as it is insane.

    If it is going to happen, however, you are absolutely right that at the very least it should be paid for by those who can afford to do so.


    Hmmm. (none / 0) (#46)
    by ChiTownDenny on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:51:01 AM EST
    Germany, Japan, South Korea come to mind for some reason.  If America invests in Afghanistan, well, the history is written.
    And, out of respect for the rest of this community, I will leave this subject moving forward.

    For some reason (none / 0) (#65)
    by gyrfalcon on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:51:46 PM EST
    Maybe the reason is because you're stuck on parallels that don't exist?  There's nothing even remotely comparable to Afghanistan in Germany, Japan and South Korea.

    Of course not. (none / 0) (#77)
    by ChiTownDenny on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:33:13 PM EST
    Why you're absolutely right.  As always.  Whatever....

    If the job can be finished, we should (none / 0) (#47)
    by KeysDan on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:53:46 AM EST
    have some idea about why it was started.   But, alas,  the past is prologue.  It is a little like the final scene in Sunset Boulevard, when the fading star, Norma Desmond, tells Mr. DeMille that she is ready for her close up.  I think we are ready for that close-up, to be given before West Point cadets.  A good audience, but I would prefer hearing all about it in Mr. Obama's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech.  

    Tax everyone to pay for it. (5.00 / 5) (#32)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:20:10 AM EST
    LBJ imposed a phone tax surcharge to pay for his misbegotten war. If this one is to continue, we should follow suit, and clearly label the line AFGHANISTAN WAR TAX.

    This would ensure a wave of monthly "Get the hell out" calls to the President and Congress.


    And Johnson only got (none / 0) (#98)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:55:39 PM EST
    his requested surtax for the war in the final 6 mos of his presidency, though he'd asked for one 18 mos earlier.   Congress, and one powerful House Dem, dragged their feet because Lyndon wouldn't play ball in cutting back on some of his GS spending.

    No amount of arm-twisting seemed to work for LBJ in that case either.  


    LBJ wasn't in the second major depression (none / 0) (#102)
    by Inspector Gadget on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:14:39 PM EST
    put a tax on telephones, and it will just mean that besides a home, medical insurance, and jobs, millions of people will also have to go without a telephone.

    Aaron and his diary (5.00 / 6) (#5)
    by lentinel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:47:00 AM EST
    Aaronedge writes: "But in the big things, Kossacks, health care, climate change, the economy, improving infrastructure, creating jobs, forestalling the foreclosure crisis, and addressing renewable energy, you have ignored that this President has done more than any other president in our history in less than a year."

    He provides no documentation for this assertion - and I would welcome some. All he could answer to someone asking him to document what he said was that we have never been "this close" to healthcare reform. I wonder if he has studied the bills floating around. The last I heard about climate change is that the big polluters, including us, agreed not to do anything about it for awhile. Infrastructure? Has he taken public transportation lately?And "creating jobs"? Where are they?

    And the big one: To those among us revolted by the prospect of sending more people to fight in Afghanistan he regurgitates the standard response of the more bellicose Obama apologists: It was no secret that Obama was gung-ho for this war. This comeback is so ridiculous it is laughable. Many of us never bought into the Obama as "rock star" image. Many of us were left incredulous at the descriptions of Obama's speeches as being great oratory. Many of us were in a state of disbelief as Obama's supporters portrayed him as a peace candidate.  His choice of Biden was appalling. His paling around with the likes of McClurkin and Warren was creepy. So, many of us didn't vote for the guy. Others among us, took a deep breath, a couple of drinks, and did vote for him hoping for the best.

    And on the other side, you had McCain and Palin - a combination that did not present much of an alternative.

    The people who held their noses, hoped for change and cast their ballots for Obama are now being characterized as fools by those who encourage Obama's march to war. I find this to be reprehensible.

    People can be for or against (5.00 / 4) (#8)
    by Steve M on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:56:41 AM EST
    but acting like this is some big surprise and disappointment from Obama is pretty lame, when he's actually doing what he said he'd do ("for once," a cynic might say).  Jerome Armstrong, for one, has spent the last month or so in complete denial that Obama ever talked about a troop increase during the campaign.

    By the way, BTD, I hope you feel at least a pang of self-doubt when you take the exact opposite position from Wes Clark!

    I believe the campaign statements (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by KeysDan on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:07:10 PM EST
    about Afghanistan, were couched in the language of transfer of all combat troops from the "dumb war", Iraq, to Afganistan. The timeline for drawdown in Iraq is not in alignment with the planned troop increases in Afghanistan. The dates have moved, at least at this point, from February 2010 to December 2011, assuming all goes well. Moreover, 50,000 combat troops are to stay in Iraq.  But, yes,it was just a campaign promise and it is not a surprise.  

    I agree (none / 0) (#10)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:05:48 AM EST
    But the approval of that policy is coming late for some of these "policy" supporters. Indeed, I feel confident they criticized Hillary clinton for hewing to the exact same policy (and vice versa for Hillary Bots, some of whom comment at this site on occasion).

    There are people who would not support (5.00 / 4) (#17)
    by MO Blue on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:59:52 AM EST
    the escalation in Afghanistan no matter who was president.

    IMO if a long term military presence is needed, then the government needs to pay for it by raising taxes and not by reducing much needed domestic services here at home. This whole theme of Obama wanting to reduce all domestic spending while increasing the amount spent on wars does not sit well with me.


    hillbot here (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by jedimom on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:16:53 AM EST
    hillbot reporting for duty!

    glad Obama has stopped dithering and is ready to support the General he appointed and win the war he called necessary

    I am sure the women of Afghanistan are pretty damned happy too

    I think it is ridiculous Obey wants to tax everyone for this war, we have to stop the Taliban AQ connection in its tracks before it rolls into Pakistan and India has to defend itself

    take the money from TARP

    and the KosObot needs a reality check himself since he thinks Obama did more than FDR for housing

    HOLC anyone?

    I use obot since BTD used Hillbot


    Hillary has to (5.00 / 3) (#33)
    by TeresaInPa on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:20:32 AM EST
    support Obama, it is her job.  The difference is that Hillary never ran as the anti war candidate and with her you see what you get.  She's honest.  In addition, I am confident that if she said she had a secret plan to end the war she actually would have one and it would have a chance of working.
    I'd like to know exactly what Obama thinks finishing the job looks like?

    I criticized both Obama and Clinton on Afghanistan (none / 0) (#35)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:23:23 AM EST
    One of the 3 reasons I voted for Mike Gravel.

    (The others were the 2 Senators votes for PATRIOT ACT renewal in 2005, and failure to repudiate our failed DrugWar.)


    Offthread... (none / 0) (#49)
    by ChiTownDenny on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:58:14 AM EST
    Is Jerome back?  What happened to that place?  I wish Jerome well (he front paged me), but I don't miss it.

    On second thought, (none / 0) (#51)
    by ChiTownDenny on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:03:46 PM EST
    I can tell you what happened to that place; lack of moderation and Todd Beeton.  Death knell.

    Another criticism (5.00 / 5) (#12)
    by lilburro on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:30:02 AM EST
    Still, I have stood back and watched as you have taken every opportunity to attack a President for behaving in the ways he told us he would behave as our candidate.

    Something tells me the people that are saying this now are the same people that have said "LEAVE THE PRESIDENT ALONE!!!" when it comes to him not keeping his gay rights promises, or civil liberties promises, etc.

    Why diaries with that over the top "Friends, Romans, Countrymen" tone get recommended in the first place, I have no idea.

    It's a Bots thing (none / 0) (#13)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:32:15 AM EST
    Of course all pols or public figures have them, but Obama more than most.

    Yep (5.00 / 3) (#18)
    by lilburro on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:06:25 AM EST
    I mean, I agree, we should not be too surprised by Obama's decision to escalate.  But instead of writing a diary about how much non-Obots suck, write one that says if you can keep that promise, then keep the public option promise, keep the DADT promise, etc.  Oh well.  

    Points to lilburro! (none / 0) (#27)
    by Fabian on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:46:00 AM EST
    As I used to say for choice bits of dialogue on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

    Let's hear it for.... (5.00 / 2) (#15)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:34:50 AM EST
    Judge Spinner...sticking it to the bank for a change.  Boy I wish there were more like him.

    These bailed-out sharks are un-be-freakin-lievable (5.00 / 3) (#28)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:00:15 AM EST
    You'd think there'd be some small window of grace before they went back to feasting on their customers.

    Evidently none of that massive bailout appears to have trickled down to people who are STILL being driven into the streets.

    The bank was so intransigent that he [the judge] decided to punish them," Greg Horoski, 55, said about Spinner's scathing ruling last Thursday against OneWest and its IndyMac mortgage division.

    It erased up to $291,000 in principal and $235,000 in interest and penalties.

    The Horoskis -- who had been paying only interest on their mortgage -- had no equity in the home.

    Horoski, who had begged the bankers to let him restructure the loan, said, "I think the judge felt it was almost a personal vendetta." Dealing with the bank, he said, was "like dealing with organized crime." [...]

    Like? No, I think the Horoskis were actually dealing with organized crime.


    you would think that (5.00 / 3) (#94)
    by TeresaInPa on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:43:09 PM EST
    when the money was passed out to the banks etc... that there would have been some rules about them having to do certain things to help their clients.  But nope, when Obama said he admired Reagan he really meant it.  
    In the 80s we used to call it voodoo economics.

    I hear that Ellie... (none / 0) (#38)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:32:31 AM EST
    and that crime family they were foolish enough to get in bed with have connections Don Corleone could only dream of.

    At least there are at least a few judges who believe in fair play and a fair deal.


    And you get a decent calzone at the 'Bing at least (none / 0) (#42)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:43:25 AM EST
    ... before Paully Walnuts comes in to smack you silly. Maybe even a halfway decent espresso afterwards before you reel home.

    You don't even get that from the banksters at their places of business. They're on high suck mode from start to finish.


    I've always said... (none / 0) (#44)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:47:31 AM EST
    at least the black market mafia offers services I'm interested in...tax-free cigs, gambling, dope...ya know, fun stuff:)

    The banksters ain't sellin' nuthin' on my shopping list:)


    BTD, I may have missed it, but (5.00 / 5) (#22)
    by NYShooter on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:28:03 AM EST
    I'd be interested to hear your understanding of a "successful Afgan-mission." What is the goal, that if achieved, would make this endeavor worthwhile?  

    Filling out you enlistmwent forms, BTD? (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:16:21 AM EST

    I'm boldly going where no (wo)man has gone before (5.00 / 5) (#34)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:21:24 AM EST
    ... thanks to GoGirl!

    I can think of dozens of scenarios that this gizmo improves, not the least of which is having something nastier to toss in the face of some harassing j@ckwad than my drink.

    Plus, those dreary pee-cup check-ins with my parole officer will just whiz by.

    Now that is something useful! (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:43:46 PM EST
    Perfect for those NJ HS coeds heading into NYC on a Friday night and stuck in traffic in the Lincoln Tunnel with a case of beer and nowhere to Go...

    LOL.... (none / 0) (#40)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:41:53 AM EST
    I can see the men's room getting a lot more crowded at the pub if that dohickey catches on...is no male priveledge sacred?...:)

    Already printed out the logo for my office door (none / 0) (#43)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:46:26 AM EST
    The world is just so ready for this.

    It is... (none / 0) (#45)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:49:01 AM EST
    an ingenius little product.

    Sh*t I've seen some desperate tipsy gals using urinals without it in my time!


    So we HAVE met before! :-D n/t (5.00 / 3) (#48)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:56:58 AM EST
    Ohhhhhh (none / 0) (#50)
    by lilburro on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:03:31 PM EST
    my God.

    On line demo isn't much of a demo. (none / 0) (#56)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:30:24 PM EST
    Cowardly.  Wonder if thing works for the squat contraptions--ceramic surround w/hole and directions as to where to put feet.  

    Get up, stand up ... stand up for your right (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:57:38 PM EST
    GoGirl looks malleable enough to direct manually if the user needs to do some writing on the wall or draw someone a picture.

    But it also looks stable enough to use standing up or squatting, with or without the container. I'll let you know when I get one.

    Have you met mah new peeps yet? (My new project is to crack the top six as LookMaNoHandsGirl.)

    Also, their blog has some cool stories, like these GoGirls in Afghanistan.


    LOL!!! (5.00 / 2) (#75)
    by lilburro on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:21:31 PM EST
    "With GoGirl, the world is your toilet."  Ahh thanks for the laugh GlobalGirl.

    I like the GoGirl motto ... (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by Ellie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:12:30 PM EST
    "Don't take life sitting down!"

    As mentioned upstream (no pun intended), I already printed out the logo for my office door. (It's in the downloads section with wallpapers etc.)

    Honest to Gee, I'm not a shill, but I can't think of a girl or woman who wouldn't find this useful. It just might be the Best. Stocking stuffer. Ever.

    And imagine how many lives this would improve therapeutically! Pregnant women, sick or recovering women, leaky women who might find this option more dignified than pads or other assists ...


    Not as bizarre (none / 0) (#89)
    by jbindc on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:55:59 PM EST
    as this.

    No words are necessary.


    In fact, the Kos poster is quite right (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by lambert on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:30:00 PM EST
    The fans who thought that Obama was a progressive or a liberal were delusional. Obama, if you look at what he actually said on the campaign trail, gave no grounds for that belief, and in fact constantly disparaged progressives and liberals, which he has continued to do, to this very day.

    The poster simply points that out. Hilarity!

    He says more than that of course (none / 0) (#61)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:44:21 PM EST
    All or Something (5.00 / 6) (#57)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:36:05 PM EST
    All or Something
    "In the face of a multimillion-dollar budget deficit, Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Ramon Cortines ordered an immediate hiring freeze Monday," reports the Los Angeles Daily News:

    The only exceptions to the hiring freeze will be for classroom teachers, principals, assistant principals, cafeteria managers, school police officers, bus drivers teachers' assistants, education aides, special education assistants and plant managers.

    Inspired by Cortines's example, we've decided to quit drinking. The only exceptions will be beer, red wine, white wine, vodka, gin, rum, scotch, bourbon, Irish whiskey, Canadian whiskey, rye whiskey, Jägermeister, Kahlúa and schnapps.

    Office closing early today (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by CST on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:10:42 PM EST
    off to the bah' - it's 5:00 in my head :)

    Happy thanksgiving everyone!  Thanks for the potato(e) advice, I will definitely try some of it out.

    Back at ya pal... (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:16:21 PM EST
    have fun at the watering hole, don't forget your GoGirl!...:)

    Same to you Pally. (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by desertswine on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:29:40 PM EST
    Stupidest Idea Imaginable (4.83 / 6) (#11)
    by pluege on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:11:30 AM EST
    "finishing the job", and its indecent. Its only possible outcome: unnecessarily wasted lives and wasted wealth. There is no such thing as "finishing the job" regarding forreign occupations (Afghanistan or anywhere else) into tribal so-called "nations" where the people don't want you on their land. There are two and only two conditions possible at this juncture:

     1) staying there continuing to kill innocent lives and increasingly angering the population until you become the major recruiting tool of the ones you are fighting (US is just about there). This continues until the population rises up and throws you out.

     2) leaving because there is no humanly way possible to do anything productive, to "win", or "finish the job" as a foreign invader and occupier in an ancient tribal nation. It was never possible to "win" or "finish the job" and never will be. Knowing this is maturity the most Americans don't have.

    Afghans have been fighting for thousands of years. Anyone who thinks for one second that they can't wait out the attention deficit Americans for years, or even decades, happy to pick off US soldiers and bleed the nation's wealth on a complete waste of money with no beneficial outcome to anyone is deluding themselves.

    Since obama was always going to pick escalation (for the same reasons bush always invaded and escalated - because his penis is too small, and because obama can't stand up to cheney - funny how cheney is still running the country), we'll see you back here in 4/5 years when the US is leaving in disgrace having achieved nothing, murdered thousands of innocents, and squandered billions to achieve nothing of value - just like Iraq and Vietnam.

    The mission is bankrupt, the population do not want us there - no positive outcome is possible.

    There is one positive outcome (5.00 / 3) (#26)
    by Fabian on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:43:52 AM EST
    Bush was an abject failure at foreign policy, so much so that I was sincerely astonished to learn about the nuclear treaty with India.

    But Obama/Clinton/others have convinced India to pull troops away from the Pakistan border, for Pakistan to follow suit, thus freeing Pakistani troops to deal with their insurgents.

    That's a real positive in my opinion.  It won't make a huge difference in Afghanistan, but anything that steps down the India-Pakistan conflict is a step in the right direction.


    What does Afghan escalation (none / 0) (#60)
    by pluege on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:43:37 PM EST
    have to do with pressuring India and Pakistan to defuse their border?

    There is no failure to diplomacy. That is the only course for potential positive outcomes.

    Using the US military for foreign policy problems and initiatives, even the threat of the military is the road to failure - always.


    I'm not even sure (none / 0) (#90)
    by Fabian on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:09:45 PM EST
    it's an escalation.  We send more troops - to do what?  For how long?

    I'm sure Obama will have a brilliant speech.  If he also has a brilliant political strategist, the draw down will start in the spring of 2012 at the latest.

    That's what I would do if I wanted to win a second term.  Start the election year by declaring victory (hopefully with the support of the international community) and get our troops out of there.   The time to Stay The Course is over.  Now is the time to cement what gains we can and put the best face we can on our withdrawal.


    Well, if there's one time (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:44:18 PM EST
    I might cheer a Dem taking a page from the Nixon playbook, it might be for that substantial withdrawal no later than re-elect year.  Tricky managed to get all or nearly all combat units out of VN by the time Nov rolled around, and thereby neatly took the war issue away from McGovern and the Demos.

    Of course, Nixon had aggressively prosecuted and widened the war before that, so he couldn't be accused of quickly cutting and running.  

    And he had that nifty IOKIYAR thing working for him as to charges he was cynically playing electoral politics with serious matters of war.  Obama, even with 35k more troops, still won't be as naturally shielded from the incoming charges of softness on terrorism from the Repubs and the MSM as Nixon was.  So, he'll have to hope he gets an election opponent as easily beatable and inept as McGovern was.


    "Finish the job" is straight out of the (5.00 / 3) (#36)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:25:30 AM EST
    Nixon script.

    Next comes (5.00 / 4) (#37)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:27:25 AM EST
    "He has more information than we do."

    Ah, Ben, you are so spot on (none / 0) (#53)
    by Cream City on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:20:06 PM EST
    and it is good to see you commenting on this.

    So what is the parallel year, do you think, for this from what you saw in Madison then?  Are we at 1964, when LBJ really started to ramp up our presence in Vietnam?  Are the first massive demonstrations on campuses just two years away?  (If I'm recalling correctly the year of the protests against DuPont on campus.)

    That would be 2011 -- not good timing for a Democratic incumbency, again.


    The Dow riots (not Dupont) (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:45:57 PM EST
    weren't until October 1967. 1965 saw the first anti[war protests, pickets at the bus depot where inductees were shipped off. (recently torn down for condos.)

    Thanks so much (none / 0) (#70)
    by Cream City on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:05:20 PM EST
    for the corrections to my recall of the details -- I have to go watch the War at Home documentary again, as art imitates life again.  And, of course, I have to go check into other and more detailed records of the reasons for those protests.

    I well remember reading about them and talking about them with reporters in Madison then.

    Btw, I saw that the bus depot recently was moved to a new location, at the last minute, but did not realize it was the historic bus depot of the protests.  Thanks also for that detail, Ben.


    When you watch War at Home (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Ben Masel on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:15:52 PM EST
    look for the shot of me (at 17) as we're running along Park Sat. at the foot of Bacom Hill. Another member of my 'affinity group" picks up a gas grenade and throws it back at the cops. I'm right behind.

    Shot in spring '72, but they used the clip twice, once misattributing it to the 1970 Cambodia invasion actions.


    Excellent! I know so many faces (none / 0) (#78)
    by Cream City on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:41:16 PM EST
    in those films -- and I still see them today, too, as one was a family member and another is a neighbor now . . . and others are bloggers I still read as well as you, the blog commenter.  Of course, thee and me still can see the young faces behind the aged faces (and some loss of hair) around us even now.:-)

    Thanks also for the good detail that serves as a reminder, when showing this to students, that even a good documentary, as documentaries go, can make mistakes vs. the more reliable records for research.


    No draft=no campus demonstrations. (none / 0) (#63)
    by oldpro on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:46:06 PM EST
    Unless they're about tuition.

    Yes, CC...I think we're in '64 territory...it hit me when I (again) heard the LBJ tapes reprised last week on Moyers show.  And as a Clarkie, I'm backed up by my general who sees the same damn parallels...and he oughtta know.


    When I was in college (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by Steve M on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:54:12 PM EST
    we had anti-Gulf War protests that were actually pretty substantial!  I recall being kind of baffled myself.  But I don't think anyone will be re-creating Vietnam or the 1968 Democratic convention this time around.

    I certainly recall (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by CST on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:19:49 PM EST
    a number of anti-iraq war protests on campus - I remember being in one.  I don't see there being too many anti-afghanistan protests.

    For people my age, we knew why we were going into afghanistan, iraq, not so much.  There was a lot more of a reason to protest there.  I don't know if an escalation will be enough to anger the college kids, but probably not.  That being said, I am feeling a bit removed from it all these days... it's been a little while since I was in college, and 9/11 was a lot more recent and real to us than I think it is for students today, so afghanistan was a lot more relevant for us.


    It was bewildering to me (none / 0) (#88)
    by Steve M on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:48:36 PM EST
    as a college student to see people getting so fired up about the Gulf War, "no blood for oil," all that.  It wasn't that I was gung ho about the war or anything, but it just seemed so obviously to be a much smaller deal than Vietnam (which, of course, I have no memory of).  In fact, it sort of seemed to me that in the wake of the Cold War people of my generation were really stretching hard to find some Cause to get all hyped up about.

    I remember one of my professors solemnly intoning, "For the first time in many years, this class meets under the shadow of war."  Well, a shadow that lasted about a week, as it turned out...


    I don't recall any major (none / 0) (#97)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:51:48 PM EST
    antiwar demonstrations for the First Gulf War.  Perhaps there were some small protests on several campuses.  

    What I remember from GWI was the kind of scary conformity to go along with the program, especially the near-requirement that seemed to be in the air that every house in every neighborhood and every person going out in public have some sort of yellow ribbon display lest he be deemed insufficiently patriotic.


    You're right (none / 0) (#99)
    by Steve M on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 04:14:46 PM EST
    Maybe I'm making the whole thing up.

    Didn't mean to imply (none / 0) (#100)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 04:25:06 PM EST
    you were making it up.  But just to note how far apart we are as to what we take away from that event.  You recall protests from where you were, I recall quiet scary conformity.  Both can be true however.

    Now, Junior's War in 2003 -- that one I do recall major massive public protests.


    Not w/o a draft. (none / 0) (#67)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:55:24 PM EST
    Again, not only that but also (none / 0) (#79)
    by Cream City on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:43:17 PM EST
    it will again depend on whether there is a college deferment.  The draft alone did not bring on the massive campus protests (although its role is not sufficiently recognized in the frustrations that led to widespread urban riots in the years before -- when the urban poor were drafted, while the college kids still could get out of the draft).

    Not widespread protests, no -- but (none / 0) (#69)
    by Cream City on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:01:48 PM EST
    there were protests at some campuses years before the proposed change in the draft (it was the proposed change in the college deferment that really instigated the widespread campus protests).

    That's why I was asking Ben about the Madison campus protests years before -- see above.  There and at a few other campuses, the protests were about, as Ike called it (although it is not stated correctly, fully, in too many textbooks), the involvement of higher education in government funding of military research and recruitment.


    Yes. "Two Days in October" (none / 0) (#73)
    by oldpro on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:18:21 PM EST
    on PBS's "American Experience" tracked it pretty well (available online).  Dow Chemical was the main target, recruiting on campuses... '66. '67.  Madison's demonstration was one of the first - if not the first - to turn violent...

    Ah, thanks for the reminder (none / 0) (#80)
    by Cream City on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:43:43 PM EST
    of that one, too. . . .

    AND (none / 0) (#96)
    by TeresaInPa on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:49:38 PM EST
    he has a secret plan to end the war.....

    Bush used exactly the same trope (none / 0) (#58)
    by lambert on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:36:15 PM EST
    See here.

    Are you suggesting Mr. Favreau is a (none / 0) (#59)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:40:15 PM EST

    Since you said I was an ObamaBot, I feel a need (none / 0) (#1)
    by steviez314 on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:26:09 AM EST
    to comment on this.

    I too, like you, felt for years that we so screwed up our priorities--by going into Iraq, we only strengthed Iran, and by not emphasizing AfPak, we strengthened A.Q. and the Taliban and dangerous elements in Pakistan.

    Yet, I am very pessimistic about Afghanistan now, and am just really uneasy with this commitment.  I really await Obama's definitions of job, success, victory, exit, and mission.

    At least he is smarter, more realistic and less bombastic than his predecessor, so I have hope he can explain this all successfully next week.

    I just think it might be too late, and I mean by years, not weeks.

    I expressed surprise (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:30:53 AM EST
    at your seeming reversion to being an O-bot on an issue that I can not remember at this time.

    Never have I thought of you as an O-bot.

    Quite the contrary. I always enjoyed your comments (especially arguing for PPIP and Geithner) BECAUSE they came from reason and analysis as opposed to knee jerk Obama fandom.

    My point is I do abhor people that support policies because they are Obama's (or anyone's) policies.

    You are not one of those people.


    It's funny you mention Geithner, since I am of (5.00 / 2) (#7)
    by steviez314 on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:52:15 AM EST
    two minds about him.

    I know there have been a lot of calls the last few days for him to resign/be fired, but I'm really not sure where I come down on that.

    I honestly cannot hold AIG against him.  I can't imagine what it was like in Sept 08--Lehman goes bankrupt over the weekend and a few days later you have to make an instant decision about AIG.  It's easy now to criticize on reflection, but it really was a freefall then.

    As to PPIP, the funny thing is, without implementing it, it seems to have fulfilled its function (for now, at least).  And say what you will about the stress tests, but they did provide the needed stabilization.

    I do fault him on not going after the regulations, bonuses, etc. NOW, when things are a bit calmer.  He needs to pivot, and fast.

    As to replacing him, I think people forget that the Treasury Secretary is kind of a Mr. Outside--he's the face of economic policy to the creditors, G20, G7, China, etc.  We may hate Wall Street, but historically Treasury secretaries with a background there are much better than ones from industry (see O'Neill, Snow, Wm Miller).  For domestic policy, its more important to have  progressive economic advisors.


    Geithner = economic paradigms... (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by Dadler on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:34:01 AM EST
    ...that must die and quickly. That he isn't pushing for forceful and incomparable regulation is proof enough to me that he is, in operating fact, incompetent for the job that needs to be done.

    The entire Obama economic team, IMO, is a disaster of inexcusable proportion. They only care about themselves, their fat wallets and tiny d*cks. If they care about the have-nots, it is only to the degree they fear those have-nots are armed and angry and may come after them. And even then, they can't bring themselves to act in the best interests of ALL the country. Only their narrow band of crooks.


    Geithner's head looks lop-sided. (none / 0) (#54)
    by desertswine on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:23:12 PM EST
    there is no definition (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by pitachips on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:49:40 AM EST
    whether he admits it or not, i think it comes down to not wanting to be remembered as the president who "lost" afghanistan.



    Yep (5.00 / 3) (#14)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:33:50 AM EST
    you got it. It's all about kicking the can further down the road unless he gives us some SPECIFIC goals and some timelines for the commitment. I'm seeing Nixon Vietnam again.

    Paul Krugman points (none / 0) (#2)
    by andgarden on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 08:27:00 AM EST
    to the failure of the Ramsay MacDonald Labor Government in the 1920s. Of course, what the UK had then, and eventually made stronger, was the Parliament Act, which made it impossible for the Upper House (Lords) to wield an effective veto over all legislation.

    But because we have a written Constitution here, that kind of reform would be much more difficult to achieve.

    Polanski gets bail. (none / 0) (#16)
    by scribe on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 09:46:39 AM EST
    According to German radio at 1030AM ET, Roman Polanski has been granted the opportunity to make bail and be released from custody in the Swiss jail where he's been for a while.  The report states the bail is supposed to be in the amont of 4.5 million Swiss Francs and additional conditions, which the report did not spell out.  

    More, I'm sure, to follow.

    More on Polanski and his getting bail (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by scribe on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:16:34 AM EST
     From German radio at 5 PM their time (11 AM ET):

    Polanski out of jail.

    The film director Roman Polanski, incarcerated because of sexual misconduct, will be released from jail on bail. The Swiss federal court in Lausanne imposed a bail of about 3 million Euros. Polanski must turn over all passports and will be placed under house arrest. Additionally, the court may require him to wear an electronic ankle bracelet. The Swiss police had arrested the director at the end of September on an arrest warrant out of the USA. Polanski is alleged to have abused a 13 y/o girl in 1977 after giving her alcohol and drugs.

    The original German article, in case you want to check...

    Polanski auf freiem Fuß

    Der wegen eines Sexualdelikts verhaftete Filmemacher Roman Polanski wird gegen eine Kaution aus dem Gefängnis entlassen. Das Schweizerische Bundesgericht in Lausanne legte die Kautionssumme auf umgerechnet rund drei Millionen Euro fest. Polanski muss alle Ausweispapiere abgeben und wird unter Hausarrest gestellt. Dem Gericht zufolge könnte ihm dafür eine elektronische Fußfessel angelegt werden. Die Schweizer Polizei hatte den Regisseur Ende September aufgrund eines Haftbefehls in den USA festgenommen. Polanski soll 1977 ein damals 13-jährigen Mädchen missbraucht haben, nachdem er ihm Alkohol und Drogen gegeben hatte.


    Scoop. Good work, scribe. (5.00 / 2) (#21)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:27:46 AM EST
    Thanks, oc! (none / 0) (#23)
    by scribe on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:30:46 AM EST
    Pays to listen to furrin' radio.  You get better, more timely news....

    He's on free feet. Lucky him. (none / 0) (#25)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 10:41:58 AM EST
    That's the colloquial German for you (none / 0) (#29)
    by scribe on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:01:19 AM EST
    Don't you just love the imagery?

    I do and he does. (none / 0) (#30)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:02:08 AM EST
    But Swiss justice ministry (none / 0) (#39)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:36:34 AM EST
    may appeal:  LAT

    Per Swiss justice minister, no reason to (none / 0) (#41)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 11:43:03 AM EST
    appeal.  link

    Hopefully (none / 0) (#64)
    by jbindc on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 12:50:31 PM EST
    That bandwagon doesn't have as many fumes as being under the bus does!

    Fed predicts... (none / 0) (#71)
    by jbindc on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:09:00 PM EST
    Jobless rate will stay higher than normal through 2012

    Federal Reserve officials predict unemployment will hover around 7 percent well into 2012 -- lower than the nation's current rate of more than 10 percent, but still higher than is normal for a healthy economy.

    Minutes from a previous Fed meeting also released on Tuesday further reveal its officials remain concerned the country could be entering a jobless recovery phase, a period in which the economy in general grows faster than the labor market.

    While the board did slightly adjust its unemployment predictions for 2010 and 2011 downward -- good news for the economy and its workers -- the country's job situation "remained an important concern to meeting participants," according to those meeting minutes.

    Wait till PETA... (none / 0) (#76)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 01:27:30 PM EST
    gets a load of this...250k animals to be scarificed in Hindu religous ceremony in Nepal, the Ghadimai Festival.

    I was a appalled myself until I read this bit from the article...

    The dead beasts will be sold to companies who will profit from the sale of the meat, bones and hide. Organisers will funnel the proceeds into development of the area, including the temple upkeep.

    As long as the meat, hides, and bones ain't going to waste...that would be a terrible sin.

    Party on Ghadimai-goers!  

    Why should the companies (none / 0) (#85)
    by nycstray on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:21:46 PM EST
    get the profits and not the animal owners?

    I always wonder how "traditions" continue when this prob doesn't happen for a majority:

    "If we want anything, and we come here with an offering to the goddess, within five years all our dreams will be fulfilled." .

    Good question... (none / 0) (#86)
    by kdog on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 02:26:21 PM EST
    I was more concerned about the animals being slaughtered for no purpose other than superstition...and relieved to hear they are being slaughtered for a tangible purpose.

    Now you've got me thinking its just another religous racket to part the poor from their property.


    Yeah, I had a prob with the slaughter (none / 0) (#101)
    by nycstray on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 04:59:26 PM EST
    also. Decided not to wrap my brain around it. Way too many innocent animals . . .

    I have to wonder how many are slaughtering animals they can ill afford to. I obviously will never get certain things about religions . . .


    Every Single Time (none / 0) (#91)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:27:29 PM EST
    I go to Orange, I guess it's my special for me advertising that says '500 Governors say we can't afford another Ft Hood'.  Well no duh!  We are broke.  And if you built another Ft Hood how would people know they were reporting to the correct Ft Hood when they were supposed to report there?  What a no brainer :)

    Oops....it's 500 Mayors (none / 0) (#92)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:34:57 PM EST
    We don't have 500 Governors.  I guess the advertisement didn't take root with me and neither did those government classes that were required.  I crack myself up

    Ha. Maybe Obama distracted you (5.00 / 1) (#93)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:36:08 PM EST
    with that comment about more than 50 states.