Torture obviously is not about thumbscrews and other medieval devices. The Soviets back in the day perfected 'invisible' torture like sleep deprivation, hunger etc. Works like a charm with most people. We didn't resort to those techniques back then facing a real threat. Why should we change now with a bunch of religious fanatics?Comment Posted By funny man On 25.04.2009 @ 22:37
This is certainly not a traditionally conservative position. Part can be explained by 9/11. However, part of this 'muscular' approach to foreign policy was due to the neocon mindset. Cheered on by the Coulter brigades they happily threw all international conventions aside to change the make up of the Middle East. Sounds like from a Marxist playbook? Well that's the background of a few of them and it's time for us to get back to conservative basics and that's a no to torture, end of story.
I think there are two different things at play. One is the brutal smear tactic employed for political gain. Been around forever and has nothing to do with any political stance (remember John McCain's black child in the SC primary). It's just a tool to hurt your adversary.Comment Posted By funny man On 24.04.2009 @ 15:13
The other is the desire by a part of the gay community to shove their ideas on sexuality and society down everyone's throat and they don't take any prisoners. It shouldn't matter what people do or don't do behind closed doors but who am I kidding. Sad.
Stevegg,Comment Posted By funny man On 22.04.2009 @ 14:09
since I'm German and also knew the former East Germany first hand, I'm puzzled as to the connection to 'Environmentalists'. I can assure you they did not care about the environment at all.
I'm glad that all of us (liberals, moderates and conservatives) see the need for a sustainable. Of course, the devil is in the detail. Honestly, I think a lot of the 'ill-will' stems from 70s and 80s identity policies (environmental protectors or long haired hippies versus 'real' Americans or rednecks). I think (hope) we have grown out of this!Comment Posted By funny man On 21.04.2009 @ 21:25
BTW, nukes have a lot of advantages but then there is the obvious disadvantage: Iron Mountain? As a nation we can pull this off. Don't always get sidetracked by these wedge issues, please. I just insulated my house; saves money, energy and the environment.
I have to agree a little with Micheal here (to many Michaels here; last post). Not necessarily for reasons of 'enduring moral order' (kind of squishy term) but looking ahead to the vitality of our society. I have no problems defending ones individual right to choose whoever we want to be with and homosexual unions should also have some degree of legal protection. I'm more worried about the fragmentation of our society; what is it we would rally around if need be.Comment Posted By funny man On 18.04.2009 @ 17:11
I know for a fact that countless American lives were saved because German soldiers knew the Americans would treat them humanely. I'm German BTW and I know that from my relatives. We tortured and the Russians too but as you can see the American 'system' prevailed in the long run and I'm proud to live in a country that in principle does not torture.Comment Posted By funny man On 17.04.2009 @ 19:34
If you want an in-depth account on torture and confessions I'd recommend 'Gulag Archipelago'. Most of the torture as also 'invisible', just sleep deprivation, hunger etc. Broke most people then and will also today. Nothing we should ever emulate! Thanks Rick.
Is it just me but I don't understand half the comments here. Maybe old age is setting in..Comment Posted By funny man On 13.04.2009 @ 16:10
Mike, what you describe actually happened in part. I used to live in Detroit and heard a guy speak who graduated from Wayne State University. Wayne State actually has a really good Medical School as part of Detroit Medical Center. So this guy just went to the different medical departments and asked the doctors what would be really helpful to them. He then asked some scientists and engineers if they could come up with a device or procedure to do that task. If they said yes he would approach some venture capitalists for some seed money etc. You get the picture. This guy actually founded many of the biomedical companies in San Diego (moved there from Detroit). So all this sounds like picture perfect capitalism (and it's great). However, it doesn't work without the scientists and engineers from the university. So again, all I'm saying is that this is an example of a good symbiosis. I would also add that most of the best and most innovative research in the biomedical field came from NIH or NSF funded research (so give those people some respect too). That is my two cents.Comment Posted By funny man On 17.04.2009 @ 22:56
Mike,Comment Posted By funny man On 14.04.2009 @ 19:23
ok, not all research would dry up. However, consider this: as a pharmaceutical company you have to make a profit otherwise you go under. Naturally, you would like to develop drugs for chronic conditions e.g. rheumatism, blood pressure. In contrast, antibiotics is (hopefully) a one week thing. So these companies don't put a lot of effort into developing new drugs but since we have plenty of multidrug resistant bacteria we really need them. So what do you do? Trust me if you go into a hospital with a Staph infection and they tell you it is MRSA (methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus), you are glad vancomycin is still there (but resistance is increasing).
So even though the need is there and the problem is getting bigger, it is just not doable by a private company (and I don't blame them). So the research into new antibiotics is often funded by the government. What is the alternative?
As you can see, I like sticking to practical problems not some lofty philosophical discussion (couldn't resist the swipe at your website so don't take offense at my last comment; smile).
retire05,Comment Posted By funny man On 14.04.2009 @ 13:37
thanks for the long answer. Lot's of books to read but little time. However, I give you one area where I would differ with you and my reasons. Based on your political tenets you would be against taxing citizens to fund research. In my opinion that would put the United States in a serious competitive disadvantage in the long run. That would apply to the military, manufacturing and medical care.
In short, I just believe that times and societies have changed and you have to adapt to stay competitive. It doesn't mean I don't understand your concerns. However, even as a conservative you have to find a middle ground between individual rights and collective interests.