Splain to us how this isnt an example of you engaging in dishonest argumentation. It is abundently clear from Malloch Brown's statement, and from obvious common sense, that he is taking the Bush administration to task for not making clear to the American public the extent to which this adminsitration, as well as all others for the past half century, have used the UN and worked together with the UN for much positive things around the world.
Rather, the Bush administration seems if anything to encourage, or to at least leave the field open for their political supporters to carry on the mindless, dishonest, nativist UN bashing that is so common on the right, including here. The result is that the Congress sees no political benefit to acting like grownups on UN related issues, and this undermines not only the UN, but American foreign policy objectives.
It is ludicrous to claim that Malloch Brown is asking for a "crackdown", or a silencing of the critics. He is asking, quite rightly, for the administration to stop playing political games and admit to their knuckleheaded base the value that the UN is to American foreign policy.
But of course, speaking honestly about a complex reality, and stepping away from redmeat political game playing is outside the comprehension of the modern Republican party, isn't it now?Comment Posted By Tano On 8.06.2006 @ 00:29
"Ted Rall makes Coulter look like a boy scout "
Nice try Rick. But the fact is that Coulter and Rall are two peas on the opposite side of the same pod.
The relevant differences are:
Rall is a very minor figure on the left, whereas Coulter is a RW superstar. That tells you something about the RW. Y'all get together and feed her millions of dollars to do her number, whereas Rall labors on in obscurity.
And of course, it isnt just Coulter on the right. You got Savage, Ingrahma, Limbaugh, and jeez, just countless number of people who use this aggressive, over-the-top disgusting rhetoric as their shtick. And MANY of them make millions of bucks from this gig. Besides Rall, there really arent that many on the left who are anywhere near that level of slime, and the ones that are certainly dont get rewarded for it the way the right feeds and nurtures its crazys.
Even people like you, who seem to spend half their time trying to sound reasonable, routinely spend the other half of their time sounding like little Coulter-wannabes.
I appreciate that you are willing to take a stand against her truly revolting comments, but I do wonder if it doesnt come from a certain sense of embarrasment - seeing in her a pure version of your own dark side.Comment Posted By Tano On 7.06.2006 @ 12:22
As I was just thinking....this is exactly what the world needs....
more red meat ranting
NOTComment Posted By Tano On 6.06.2006 @ 10:02
You are not very persuasive. We all hope your version is the truth. But that remains to be seen. Simply because someone affiliated with the military gives a certain version of a story, that does not mean that the original report is "debunked".
The BBC video shows dead bodies, and standing walls. It confirms the original Iraqi report of civilians being killed first, then the building being destroyed later. And that "debunks" the military version that the civilians died when the building came down.
If the situation were in any way as clear as you pretend, then there would be nothing for the miliarty to investigate. You've already "solved" the case. Don't they read RWNH? Given that they ARE investigating, why not just see what comes of it?
Oh, btw here is a clue for you. When someone says "orignal reports were the baby was four months old, later reports say six months old, therefore there is a pattern of lying here and you cant believe any of it", you should sense that they are straining for a certain result, not giving you an accurate rendition.Comment Posted By Tano On 2.06.2006 @ 12:08
One potential reform seems pretty obvious.
It should simply not be allowed that the state official overseeing an election be someone who is, at the same time, the chairman of one of the candidates campaigns.
Rick seems to inject some fairness and rationality in this piece, especially when he notes the long history in this country of electoral shenanigans on both sides. No doubt it would be impossible to have a perfect system, so long as human beings are involved. But to have a manager of a campaign, who we acknowledge will be pushing the envelope for his party, to concurrently serve as the overseer of the electoral process, the guarantor of fairness for the process, seems absolutely ludicrous.Comment Posted By Tano On 2.06.2006 @ 11:54
Y'know Rick, I've been trying to come up with a good word to describe one of your great pathologies - one you share with so many others who share your views.
Its always - the "left" thinks this, the "left" wants that, the "left" blah blah blah. And then it comes down to - one person. Usually someone obscure. Are you just incapable of dealing with the diversity and individuality of human beings? I mean, we all come with names, so it shouldnt be that hard.
You've shared with us today the views of one Ms. Eskow. Personally, I never heard of her. I am sure some people agree with her. Others dont. Others sorta do, sorta dont. Why not address her as what she is? One person with an opinion. Is it that people of your ilk are so wrapped up in the project of being ideologically pure that you cant wrap your mind around the concept of people having uniques opinions?
Ms. Eskow speaks for no one but herself, and of all people, it aint you that gets to appoint someone as the spokesperson of "the left".
Do you really think anyone takes you seriously when you try to do so?
Can't quite come up with the right word for this tactic. Lets just call it - stupid.Comment Posted By Tano On 1.06.2006 @ 23:58
Yes Rick, the "left" was all saying....something or other.
And I am sure that everyone on the "left" will take their cues from their moral superiors on the "right" when it comes to figuring out when it is appropriate to "take back" things that are said.Comment Posted By Tano On 31.05.2006 @ 17:04
Apologies Rick, for not understanding your position on bombing. I do read your site, but not exhaustivly, and I read many other sites, so that point escaped me.
I think too much is made of Amahdinejad's craziness. Of course his rhetoric is loony, but I don't really see him acting irrationally so far. He is aggressivly pushing Iranian interests on this issue - which is a highly rational thing to do, from the perspective of an Iranian government. If he had been pliable, and "rational", he would simply have acceeded to our concerns and abandonded his nuclear program. What would be the benefit to Iran of that? Hell, he wouldnt even get a "safe" reactor out of the deal if he didn't play tough to some extent.
A rational actor will seek to maximize the benefit for his country. That is what he is doing so far. By drawing a red line over enrichment, we have constructed a paper tiger front, and he probably realizes it. There is little we can practically do to prevent further enrichment, especially since other nations would not support sanctions over an issue where Iran is acting within its rights. The danger for us is that when we draw lines that we cannot defend, it reduces our ability to mobilize support for defending lines that we really should defend. (nuclear weapon acquisition).
I agree with Andy regarding them understanding our intentions. We have communicated to them a firm position that we probably cannot and will not defend, and they know it. So no, I dont think they have a clear understanding of what our real red line is (I mean really real). That is the problem that arises when you conduct diplomacy through tough sounding public pronouncements rather than through face to face discusssion. To put it crudely, we have been bullshitting, and they sense it.
Time to get serious and forget the nonsense attitude that talking to people is some kind of honor that you are bestowing upon them (and thus one cannot talk to anyone who doesnt deserve to be so honored). You solve problems through diplomacy or through war. If you wish to avoid the latter, you better be serious about the former.Comment Posted By Tano On 31.05.2006 @ 16:37
You talking to me?
What is with this "assume the best"? Who the hell said anything about assuming anything?
I was trying to discuss the issue seriously. If the only intent here is to facilitate a rant, then sure, lets assume the worse, move directly to an advocacy of pre-emptive bombing, and feel all warm and fuzzy about our manliness.
To be serious though, we need to confront reality. The reality is that Iran has every right to pursue nuclear power, and will probably do so. The Iranian people are probably fully onboard with that, and would not respect their own government if it were scared off of that by a belligerent superpower. Every other country in the world would also resent the notion that their own domestic political programs should be held hostage to the fears that the superpower might have. The US telling soverign nations that they cannot do something because we are afraid of the consequences is not a viable foreign policy.
Most of the world, on the other hand, could fully understand our concerns about nuclear weapons in Iran, and perhaps the Iranian people as well would prefer not to see their own government with such weapons. Holding a firm line against WEAPONS is a rational policy. Building a red line against enrichment is foolish, and self-defeating.
Finding a way in which to allow the latter while foreclosing the possibility of the former is precisely what we pay the big bucks to our political leaders for.Comment Posted By Tano On 31.05.2006 @ 15:44
I realize that what I am asking is that the Bush administration do the hard work of effective and wise policy formulation and implementation - a pretty absurd dream. But for the next two and half years, they are the only administration we got.
What is so hard to figure out, Rick? Of course Iran has a right to nuclear technology. Not only are they are soverign nation - thus not in need of permission from some other country to pursue their own energy policy, but they are also signatories to the non-proliferation treaty that makes explicit their right to nuclear technology.
Trying to prevent them from peaceful nuclear technology is laughable, and a non-starter. There may well be reason for concern as to what it may lead to, and thus there may be reason for us to negotiate an agreement with them that entails having them voluntarily forgo that track, but there is no way we can force them to do so.
We can, however, force them not to develop nuclear weapons. That is the only valid red line that we are in any legal or practical position to enforce. And it has been rather foolish of us to try to hold the line on the no-enrichment red line.Comment Posted By Tano On 31.05.2006 @ 14:25