Folks,Comment Posted By funny man On 27.09.2009 @ 00:31
why is it always Obama this, Bush that? The world is not only about America. The problem is obviously that they are no easy solutions. There are a couple of different issues that are not necessarily tied together. What do you do with nations who don't want to adhere to the non-proliferation treaty. Is bombing Iran really going to solve the problem. The weapons factories in Germany in WWII were still working to some degree despite massive bombings. So you could have a massive destabilization of the region which could be positive or negative. However, nobody really knows. Whatever Israel will do she will do. Fine. However, that is not necessarily in the American interests. A further antagonizing the Islamic world is not in our interests. How should it be? I think the United States has an obligation to protect Israel. However, it has to be understood there is a junior and a senior partner here. I mean, Israel is how big? New Jersey?
sota,Comment Posted By funny man On 25.09.2009 @ 17:40
yeah, sure, France is the enemy. What kind of allies do you think of when excluding France? Just because some conservatives make it a habit of hating France I don't really see the alternatives. I'm German and I think all Europeans have their own interest (that's normal by the way) but France, Germany, Great Britain, Canada etc. that's the core of the 'West'. Similar culture, similar interests, natural allies. Saudi Arabia, China, Russia? Just a thought.
I thought this is about Bibi. Undoubtedly, deniers of the holocaust want some justification for future killing of Jews (however, let's not forget 1.5 million gypsies were also murdered and plenty of others too). No reasonable person can deny it happened. What I fault Bibi and his coalition with is that they have no real plan for the future. Now it is true that the Palestinians have a knack of slamming the door on almost ready peace deals. In fairness, it wasn't they who killed the the Jews but us the German people. So what does Bibi want from the Palestinians? Annex the West Bank? That should never be the American position and in the long run it is questionable if a Jewish state is sustainable in a constant state of antagonism. It isn't that the Israelis don't know that and our role should be that of an honest broker.Comment Posted By funny man On 25.09.2009 @ 16:12
Moltenorb.Comment Posted By funny man On 24.09.2009 @ 16:50
why so generous? Only a book? 'I know that I don't know' like the old Greeks used to say.
Jackson1234,Comment Posted By funny man On 24.09.2009 @ 14:57
sure the Russians like to play chess and they are pretty good at it. That is how they approach foreign policy. You think they feared Bush more than Obama? Based on what? Their 'careful' handling of Georgia? They will obviously try to gain the most be there Bush or Obama in the WH.
As a German I can honestly say that the vast majority of Germans like Obama a lot better than Bush. Sure, there is always a slight undercurrent of Anti-American sentiment present in both the left and the right (for slightly different reasons). The vitriol and nasty comments by the likes of Rumsfeld didn't exactly go over very well. However, Germany has and will be a reliable ally with a pretty sizable economy and because America was gracious in helping to rebuild Germany after WWII a lot of people longed for the day they could admire the United States again like they did with Kennedy. Remember, the comments when Obama went to Berlin during the campaign and some commentators on the right here were making comparisons to Hitler of all people. That didn't exactly endear American conservatives to the Germans (and I'm just pointing out facts as a fellow conservative) and was a really stupid comparison. Do perceptions matter? They certainly do. Are people just rational beings that live their lives according to what makes most sense. No! They buy Levi Strauss jeans for an exorbitant price in Europe because of the image, more students might go to an American University for a year etc etc. To make a long story short, a superpower should and cannot impose it's will by raw power but by admiration and moral guidance, That's just my opinion. So a better relation does matter economically, militarily and culturally.Comment Posted By funny man On 24.09.2009 @ 00:31
Finally, do I actually think Obama's foreign policy is dramatically different than Bush's second term policy? No. Fortunately, after the disastrous neocon episode (just remember Wolfowitz's crazy prediction of flowers on the road to Baghdad) 'normal' foreign policy was reinstated.
BTW, I also have a lot of Chinese friends and none of them thought Obama is a joke.
Anyway, I don't want to come off as if I agree with all of Obama's foreign policy initiatives but I for one am glad we are getting out of Iraq. I know that neither Iraq nor Afghanistan will ever become a real democracy (at least not in my lifetime) and as long as extreme Islamists don't rule these places I'm fine with it.
Thanks for all the good times I had here. There is a German saying 'Humor ist wenn man trotzdem lacht'. It kind of means 'humor is laughing in spite of it'. Difficult to translate the joke. Hope you know what I mean. Don't leave us with all the crazies!Comment Posted By funny man On 24.09.2009 @ 23:19
There are good conservative blogs, newspapers etc out there. So it isn't that Glen Beck is 'needed'. However, you could ask was the Jerry Springer show ever needed; people loved watching it. Perhaps you can even go back to Roman times with 'bread and games'. Somehow the appealing to lower instincts has always and will always have a following. I'm just not sure it's worth loosing that much sleep over it. We will have our day again so the time in the wilderness could be a time worth having if we can adjust conservatism to a rapidly changing world.Comment Posted By funny man On 22.09.2009 @ 21:47
I would agree with most of the analysis of Shaun. To some who apparently have nothing but glee regarding the demise of print publications. Newspapers are not just propaganda but valuable part of the civil society. I'm talking about well researched articles, investigative journalism with actual reporters on the ground. Of course it is cheaper to just have talking heads giving their opinions. I for one like the quality of many articles in the Economist but also the NYT. You don't have to agree but when it is well crafted it is a piece of art in a way.
Heh - Shaun would have a thing or two to say about a "well crafted article" being "art" I'm sure. In a way, that's the problem. Journalism is a profession and a craft. Too many creative writers want to be journalists. Give me the hard bitten beat reporter who can knock out 750 words in 20 minutes and gets the essence of the story. The editor can massage it or pump it up but the essence of who, what, when, why , and where are all there in the first 3 or 4 graphs.
There are a few reporters like that but not many. Today, they're are a lot of Dana Milbanks who can be amusing but who is not much of a journalist.
ed.Comment Posted By funny man On 21.09.2009 @ 15:26
Civic disagreements and civil discourse is always the counterweight to over the top rhetoric in any democracy. I think you will always have the two, maybe we need them but I always thought the ability to tolerate the political opponent was America's great strength. I guess I mellowed with age but I liked your analogy of the ying and yang when looking at democrats and republicans in American politics. To all the folks saying but the left/right did this and now we strike back without mercy etc I ask you this: of all the countries in the world would you rather live in Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Russia etc or in bad, bad Massachusetts/Texas (depending on your political leanings). I mean, Come on...the world isn't going to end.Comment Posted By funny man On 19.09.2009 @ 23:29