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PoliGAF 2014 |OT| Kay Hagan and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad News

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JesseEwiak

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No. I could care less if Reagan gets credit. Its more the fact that it was the Fed policy not tax policy that spurred growth. I don't want that myth perpetuated. Its not based in fact, its was a coincidence.

Volcker fought inflation during Carter and early Reagan (remember Reagan wasn't looking good in early 83) by jacking up interest rates to fight the inflation which caused a recession, then when he lowered the rates the economy came back. It happened to coincide with the tax cuts.

Also, he hired a lot of government employees (mostly in defense, but still, shiftless government workers!) and oil prices dropped at an opportune time as well. As with most successful President's, Reagan was lucky.

Oh, and last night's Real Time was pretty horrible. In the Israel segment, you had Jane Harman, who almost lost a Democratic primary due to her hawkishness, a Washington Examiner guy, and Maher all circle jerking about how Israel were the real victims while Nate Silver just sat there.
 

RustyNails

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The difference between Maher and most liberals is that he doesn't parrot that lazy line of bullshit "it's just a few bad apples in the Muslim community that are causing all the trouble". It's one of the things I like about him, although he has taken it a bit too far with his latest comments, and it doesn't really apply to the Palestinian situation anyway. The bottom line is though, the number of extremists + Muslims who at least sympathize with the extremists is a larger demographic than we'd like to admit, and there is no sense lying to ourselves about it.

I think Obama's inaction in the Middle East has acknowledged he feels the same way. A lot of these people want it this way, so just let them fight it out and we'll go after potential threats later if we have to. I mean, a city of nearly 2 million people in Iraq just rolled over and let itself be conquered by an extremist militia numbering in the few thousands. That doesn't happen to a population that is dominated by moderates who just want peace and democracy.
Yeah sorry THIS is oversimplified, lazy bullshit.

Watch Greenwald laying the smack down on this line of thinking.

This is actually what made me ask this question. I was watching Maher's latest episode and I turned it off. It was my last straw as his comments toward Palestine and Snowden are ridiculous. I'm just glad that other pundits on the left (even Jewish ones) aren't cutting Israel any slack. I applauded Stewart's segment on the 14th.

EDIT - Sorry to edit but what the fuck did the phrase "israel uses shelters to protect their people against bombs, while Hamas uses their people to protect their bombs" even mean? Heard that on Maher's show last night.
Jon Stewart is the only honest man in American media. Not ONCE did Maher's panel utter the word "occupation" in the segment. Palestinians have been occupied for the last 6 decades and their land is slowly being stolen from under their noses in the form of settlements, all with considerable help from America. Our tax dollars. That is the underlying fact of this conflict and the source of much hatred towards US in that part of the region. Everyone overlooks this underlying fact and only focuses on rockets flying from Gaza.
 

zero shift

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Nov 17, 2012
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The occupation and land grabs are ALWAYS the thing pro-Israel supporters never mention. That is like not talking about Jim Crow and similar policies during the black protests of the 60s.
 

Wilsongt

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The occupation and land grabs are ALWAYS the thing pro-Israel supporters never mention. That is like not talking about Jim Crow and similar policies during the black protests of the 60s.

Which, ironically, is a fact that many of the GOP fail to remember today when they talk abou anything dealing with legislature obama passed.
 

ICKE

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Mar 14, 2012
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Bill Maher lives in his own little bubble with all that "I'm for whatever gets the freeway moving, it's too crowded, we need to promote death, Muslims are a scourge" - nonsense.

He will always get a pass though as he ridicules conservative politicians.
 

NYCmetsfan

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The difference between Maher and most liberals is that he doesn't parrot that lazy line of bullshit "it's just a few bad apples in the Muslim community that are causing all the trouble". It's one of the things I like about him, although he has taken it a bit too far with his latest comments, and it doesn't really apply to the Palestinian situation anyway. The bottom line is though, the number of extremists + Muslims who at least sympathize with the extremists is a larger demographic than we'd like to admit, and there is no sense lying to ourselves about it.

I think Obama's inaction in the Middle East has acknowledged he feels the same way. A lot of these people want it this way, so just let them fight it out and we'll go after potential threats later if we have to. I mean, a city of nearly 2 million people in Iraq just rolled over and let itself be conquered by an extremist militia numbering in the few thousands. That doesn't happen to a population that is dominated by moderates who just want peace and democracy.
Your first paragraph I think is somewhat accurate (If extremely simplified and completely glosss over that different groups of people sympathize with in certain situations and its not "muslims" as a group, its not the religion but more ethnic and cultural), you lose it when you get to your second. Though yes the left does ignore that many 'moderates' aren't moderate in any real sense, they're just not pro extrajudicial intentional civilian murder (at least in theory it can be justified as an act of resistance when it fits though)

And I think Glen's comments here kind of prove this.


As said above Glen kind of proves the thesis that there are a lot of sympathizers or justifiers. Glen embodies it. All rage and bad things in the world have a cause, the US. The US is bad and everything bad is the US's fault. Nothing is ever a product of the arabs/muslims/palestinians/iranians/AQ's own actions. If the US were to change (never minding the fact that it constantly changes its actions) the 'mindless other' would rationally act the way liberal way, because 'everybody is the same' or 'everyone wants the same thing' or something

And why they're not cheering on the worst of that area they treat is as some cosmic karma where 'you get whats coming to you'. There's a lot of this justification, or as justifiers claim it 'understanding' of heinous crimes because the 'scorecard' still makes the US a bigger bad guy. This is found everywhere from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Palestine, Ukriane, the line of thinking goes the West can't be mad about crimes because it brought it on itself (again ignoring all other actions from non-western sources which aren't always 'mindless responses')

The radical left (a description not slur) has a very firm schema through which all is processed. The US and the west is an oppressive force (it goes back to Marx's history is capital vs. proletariat) which always is in the wrong or trying to undermine democracy of leftist or non-US approved policy. It takes all agency and sense of understanding the 'other' out of the equation (not to mention intent). I very really see people like glen actually seeking to understand the middle east or other areas in any real sense. Its about furthering his self-righteous mission rather than listening to them and fighting for them (because this would lead often times to the people acknowledge the people who their fighting on behalf of often have horrible views or views which are directly contrary to what people like glen espouse). He can find a history which tells his tale but fails to grasp the complexity and multiple tales history tells
 

RustyNails

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As said above Glen kind of proves the thesis that there are a lot of sympathizers or justifiers. Glen embodies it. All rage and bad things in the world have a cause, the US. The US is bad and everything bad is the US's fault. Nothing is ever a product of the arabs/muslims/palestinians/iranians/AQ's own actions. If the US were to change (never minding the fact that it always changes its actions) the 'mindless other' would rationally act the way liberal way, because everybody is the same.


And why they're not cheering on the worst of that area they treat is as some cosmic karma where 'you get whats coming to you'. There's all the justification, or as justifiers claim it 'understanding' of heinous crimes because the 'scorecard' still makes the US a bigger bad guy. This is found every where from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Palestine, Ukriane, the line of thinking goes the West can't be mad about crimes because it brought it on itself (again ignoring all other actions from non-western sources which aren't always 'mindless responses')

The radical left (a description not slur) has a very firm schema through which all is processed. The US and the west is an oppressive force which always is in the wrong or trying to undermine democracy of leftist or non-US approved policy. It takes all agency and sense of understanding the 'other' out of the equation (not to mention intent). I very really see people like glen actually seeking to understand the middle east in any real sense. Its about furthering his self-righteous mission rather than listening to them and fighting for them. He can find a history which tells his tale but fails to grasp the complexity and multiple tales history tells
Yeah sure. The Arabs suddenly woke up one day and told themselves "lets hate americans". The first nation to recognize America's independence was Morocco. Your post is ridiculous in downplaying US' actions both covert and military in the middle east, including the effects of colonization from France, Britain, Italy etc, and America's oil geopolitics. We have un-needed presence in middle east. You mention Iran and Al Qaida, both are direct results of our actions. We overthrew democratically elected Iranian leader in a shameless coup, and opened military bases in Saudi Arabia much to dismay of Bin Ladin. We even tried to overthrow Hamas, a democratically elected government of Palestinian people, and we were successful in a different way.
In the April 2008 the journalist David Rose suggested that the United States collaborated with the Palestinian Authority and Israel to attempt a coup on Hamas, and Hamas pre-empted the coup.[146] Hamas Foreign Minister Dr. Mahmoud al-Zahar has echoed this view, and called the arming of Fatah by the United States an "American coup d'état".[147] Hamas is listed as a terrorist organization by many Western nations.

Yes, there are criminals who want to kill torture and maim such as Boko Haram. Yet mostly there are other terrorist groups and their sympathizers, who are driven by basic geopolitics. Read this UC study on terrorism and suicide bombing
The central problem is that leaders in the United States have constructed a narrative that identified the threat as coming from Islamic extremists who hate the United States. That explanation led to the invasions, occupations and eventual efforts to establish democratic regimes, something that requires a heavy military presence, the authors explained.
I'll save the study's details and jump to the conclusion:
The research found that in each of the countries where suicide terrorism flourished, it was used to combat an occupying force. While occupation may sometimes be necessary to achieve immediate foreign policy goals, it does so at the risk of stimulating a suicide terrorist campaign against the occupier's homeland. This is the dilemma an occupier faces, Feldman noted, since when the threat of occupation was removed, suicide terrorism largely stopped. After Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon in 2000, for instance, Lebanese suicide terrorist attacks against Israel ended, Pape pointed out. Since Israel withdrew militarily from Gaza and portions of the West Bank, suicide attacks have been down 90 percent.

Lets not forget our arming of Mujahideen and Saddam during the 80s.
The occupation and land grabs are ALWAYS the thing pro-Israel supporters never mention. That is like not talking about Jim Crow and similar policies during the black protests of the 60s.
"Why are black people beating us with billy clubs? No country on earth will tolerate such terrorism"
 

Giant Panda

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I personally don't see the problem of trying to overthrow Hamas; they are a terrorist organization and they aren't helping the Palestinian cause at all.
 

NYCmetsfan

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Yeah sure. The Arabs suddenly woke up one day and told themselves "lets hate americans". The first nation to recognize America's independence was Morocco. Your post is ridiculous in downplaying US' actions both covert and military in the middle east, including the effects of colonization from France, Britain, Italy etc, and America's oil geopolitics. We have un-needed presence in middle east. You mention Iran and Al Qaida, both are direct results of our actions. We overthrew democratically elected Iranian leader in a shameless coup, and opened military bases in Saudi Arabia much to dismay of Bin Ladin. We even tried to overthrow Hamas, a democratically elected government of Palestinian people, and we were successful in a different way.


Yes, there are criminals who want to kill torture and maim such as Boko Haram. Yet mostly there are other terrorist groups and their sympathizers, who are driven by basic geopolitics. Read this UC study on terrorism and suicide bombing

I'll save the study's details and jump to the conclusion:


Lets not forget our arming of Mujahideen and Saddam during the 80s.

Do I never claimed that. But there are other actions beyond the US's actions. I'm not downplaying or ignoring them. Just saying you can't ignore the actions, thoughts and ideology of others. Which the left is far to often prone to do and which you do when you say 'is a direct result of our actions' in such absolute terms. The same examples are always brought up which to me suggest a common orthodoxy. The US is bad so lets find a bad thing the US did in the past and draw a straight line ignoring everything in between that doesn't go directly west -> bad thing.

And to your suicide bombing comments your again proving my point, your justifying them as responses to occupation. Never mind the fact that suicide bombing has not been a common tactic in other oppressed regions, its modern form almost exclusively comes from islamic extremists (tamil tigers were the only other group I'm familiar that did similar things). ETA, IRA and East Timor were occupied but did not respond the same way. The idea that it can be explained but pure geopolitics is missing the point many people are drawing. And even those terrorist groups didn't respond the way that more peaceful response to 'oppression'. The idea this is natural or justifiable responses to oppression (the slaughter of innocents unrelated) is bizarre because I know the people think its wrong.
 

Crisco

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Oct 26, 2007
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It's not like suicide bombing was something they started doing from the jump. That started out attacking their military directly but that didn't go so well for them. They would basically die before they could get a shot off. So they started shooting civilians instead, but eventually the same became true of that due to more and more security. The gunmen figured, if I'm going to die anyway, may as well take the most number of people possible with me. Then Israel built a wall to keep out the suicide bombers, so now all they can do is shoot rockets over it. I'm not defending it as a valid military tactic, it's clearly just murderous rage lashing out at this point, but the anger and desperation that lead to it is pretty valid.
 

B-Dubs

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I personally don't see the problem of trying to overthrow Hamas; they are a terrorist organization and they aren't helping the Palestinian cause at all.

There's a difference between the people overthrowing them and us doing it, we don't exactly have the best track record in the Middle East when it comes to overthrowing guys. The situation in Iran is almost entirely our fault. There a reason we aren't trusted a whole lot over there.
 

NYCmetsfan

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There's a difference between the people overthrowing them and us doing it, we don't exactly have the best track record in the Middle East when it comes to overthrowing guys. The situation in Iran is almost entirely our fault. There a reason we aren't trusted a whole lot over there.

Where does this come from? We over through a leftist government in 1950s and supported an oppressive shah, so we are to blame for a radical Islamist leader?

Why is Vietnam friendly with us? Why are we not moral enemies with Russia today? Why did our oppression of the Filipino not provoke the same reaction so far from the fact? Why are we friendly with Chile? It doesn't follow that a interference in others affairs means they turn into something like Iran.

Where did the radical theology come from? Where did the oppression of women come from? Where did the antagonism towards Sunnis come from? There are things besides the US at play for the current structure of Iran. Its not downplaying or discounting the US's actions just that actions of others don't provoke automatic responses. People and nations aren't mindless automatons.
 

B-Dubs

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Mar 19, 2012
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Where does this come from? We over through a leftist government in 1950s and supported an oppressive shah, so we are to blame for a radical Islamist leader?

Why is Vietnam friendly with us? Why are we not moral enemies with Russia today? Why did our oppression of the Filipino not provoke the same reaction so far from the fact? Why are we friendly with Chile? It doesn't follow that a interference in others affairs means they turn into something like Iran.

Where did the radical theology come from? Where did the oppression of women come from? Where did the antagonism towards Sunnis come from? There are things besides the US at play for the current structure of Iran. Its not downplaying or discounting the US's actions just that actions of others don't provoke automatic responses. People and nations aren't mindless automatons.

We overthrew a democratically elected government, put in place a horrible dictator who did unspeakable things to his people, all in the name of western oil companies making money, and you're surprised that when they overthrew him that they went in the opposite direction?
 

NYCmetsfan

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We overthrew a democratically elected government, put in place a horrible dictator who did unspeakable things to his people and you're surprised that when they overthrew him that they went in the opposite direction?

That's not what I said

I said we did something, helped overthrow their government and supported a guy who wasn't that nice.

I don't see how that without other reasons leads directly and without other factors to the current Iran. Other countries haven't followed in that path. I think its silly to dismiss the will, desires, and actions of Iranians in explaining why Iran is the way it is. But instead we get 'we're both the same'. Which I think is clearly not true. (This is not an attempt to say they want war)
 

NYCmetsfan

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Are you implying that the reason Iran went a different way is because it is muslim?

Also, apk, you really have a problem with greenwald.

Because its Muslim? That seems to sound like Islam automatically leads certain ways, has no diversity of beliefs, etc. But I think its fair to say Islam had a large part to play in the way Iran went, it did become an Islamic Republic. Would you cast doubt that Christianity played a role in the US's choices or Europe's?

I think its fairly silly to discuss "islam" or "christianity" as they mean different things to different people and are widely disputed belief systems with a changing history over time. When people discuss Islam as its used politically in the middle east its 8/10 times talking about a regressive fundamentalists system that is at odds with modern liberal values. This is of course not the entirety of it and shouldn't be seen as such. (For example, both Turkey and ISIS follow Islam, they clearly are talking about two different things)

Mostly, I'm saying Iran's own actions and beliefs had a role to play in how things played out, how Iran responded, their choices. And just to say 'of course' they responded this way is disingenuous and lazy thinking and not consistent with other examples.

And no, I don't like greenwald and the chomskys of the world. Any one who has a clear schema of the world where new information is always molded to fit the existing ideas rather than to open new ideas and shuts out any attempt to introduce nuance and subtly isn't something I'm too found of. Its why I hate the bill kristols of the world too, the same reason. I often focus on Greenwald because his style is so repulsive and self-rightous and presented so often as some authoritative truth speaker that and he's everywere. That and I despise him and others attempts to characterize their enemies as such one-dimensional villains reading the worst intents everywhere.
 

B-Dubs

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Mar 19, 2012
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Because its Muslim? That seems to sound like Islam automatically leads certain ways, has no diversity of beliefs, etc. But I think its fair to say Islam had a large part to play in the way Iran went, it did become an Islamic Republic. Would you cast doubt that Christianity played a role in the US's choices or Europe's?

I think its fairly silly to discuss "islam" or "christianity" as they mean different things to different people and are widely disputed belief systems with a changing history over time. When people discuss Islam as its used politically in the middle east its 8/10 times talking about a regressive fundamentalists system that is at odds with modern liberal values. This is of course not the entirety of it and shouldn't be seen as such. (For example, both Turkey and ISIS follow Islam, they clearly are talking about two different things)

Mostly, I'm saying Iran's own actions and beliefs had a role to play in how things played out, how Iran responded, their choices. And just to say 'of course' they responded this way is disingenuous and lazy thinking and not consistent with other examples.

And no, I don't like greenwald and the chomskys of the world. Any one who has a clear schema of the world where new information is always molded to fit the existing ideas rather than to open new ideas and shuts out any attempt to introduce nuance and subtly isn't something I'm too found of. Its why I hate the bill kristols of the world too, the same reason. I often focus on Greenwald because his style is so repulsive and self-rightous and presented so often as some authoritative truth speaker that and he's everywere. That and I despise him and others attempts to characterize their enemies as such one-dimensional villains reading the worst intents everywhere.

They went in the direction they did partly as a result of the fact that the dictator fucking their lives up was the very definition of a decadent western guy. Dude flew in food from Paris for lunch like every day. Their movie theaters played more porn than actual movies. Their country had been turned into everything the Christian right said Hollywood and liberals were trying to do in the 90's. It's no wonder that they went very conservative when they overthrew him. When you push too far in one direction, you'll get a push back from the other. It's like that for motion and politics. Had they been a nation where Christianity was the major religion they would have made the tea party look like a bunch of atheists.
 

PhoenixDark

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Sep 25, 2005
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Where does this come from? We over through a leftist government in 1950s and supported an oppressive shah, so we are to blame for a radical Islamist leader?

Why is Vietnam friendly with us? Why are we not moral enemies with Russia today? Why did our oppression of the Filipino not provoke the same reaction so far from the fact? Why are we friendly with Chile? It doesn't follow that a interference in others affairs means they turn into something like Iran.

Where did the radical theology come from? Where did the oppression of women come from? Where did the antagonism towards Sunnis come from? There are things besides the US at play for the current structure of Iran. Its not downplaying or discounting the US's actions just that actions of others don't provoke automatic responses. People and nations aren't mindless automatons.

Your view is incredibly naive on this. Yes, we are indeed to blame for Iran's lurch to extremism due to putting said extremism in power. Which we have done throughout the middle east. Comparisons to Vietnam and Chile are irrelevant given the religious extremism differences. Yes there are things beyond the US at play, but to deny that the US played a major role in antagonizing violence in the middle east for the last 60 years is to deny reality.

I notice a lot of liberals focus on Greenwald the person instead of his arguments and/or stories, which is convenient. Greenwald does indeed strike me as a prissy asshole but that has no bearing on the fact that he's right. And I'd imagine if McCain or Romney were president, Greenwald the person wouldn't prevent liberals from being more receptive to his work. But since it's aimed at Obama it triggers a defense mechanism.
 

thepotatoman

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I think APK has a point here. When Greenwald and people like him saying things like the "US has generated more violence than anyone in the world and the only reason the middle east is so violent is because we meddle in things there", that really oversimplifies things and puts far too much blame on the US. And yes, even saying "not all the blame but a lot of the blame" is still over simplifying it.

Maher is being a racist asshole when he attributes absolutely everything to Islam itself, and acting like every single muslim agrees with extremists simply because of their religion, but that also doesn't mean religion has zero role in this either, and that's for both sides.

Beyond that, there's the simple history going back to WW2, and how the State of Israel was founded in the first place, and the common pattern of reactions and counter reactions that escalate things to violence which plague all of human history.

As cliche as it may be, this time reality is somewhere in the middle, particularly when talking about the causes for why things are the way they are over there.

That said, I still believe the US, as a very active ally to Israel, needs to start being far more critical towards Israel, and at least try to get them to take an honest shot at peace, which means very simple things like keeping the water running, and not overreacting to attacks (still react but not overreact). At this point it doesn't even matter which side is better or worse than the other. The only thing that should matter is de-escalating instead of escalating, and as far as the US is concerned the only side that will listen to them is Israel.

EDIT: I guess to clarify it better, I know that everyone knows there's not just one cause, it's just obvious. But even still the tendency of almost everyone seems to be to blame it 90% on one reason, which is practically the same thing. I'm not just saying there's just multiple causes, I'm saying there's multiple HUGE causes which absolutely can't be ignored, but usually are. You can probably take any one of those huge causes out of the equation and still end up very close to where we are now because of the other reasons.
 

RustyNails

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Do I never claimed that. But there are other actions beyond the US's actions. I'm not downplaying or ignoring them. Just saying you can't ignore the actions, thoughts and ideology of others. Which the left is far to often prone to do and which you do when you say 'is a direct result of our actions' in such absolute terms. The same examples are always brought up which to me suggest a common orthodoxy. The US is bad so lets find a bad thing the US did in the past and draw a straight line ignoring everything in between that doesn't go directly west -> bad thing.
Sorry but I'm not sure I understand this response, when I already addressed it. Let me address it in another way. Yes the bad guys have agency. Yes there are zealot asshole pricks out there and yes they act of their own volition without America's input. They are just power hungry zealots piggybacking off the grand disillusionment with Americana among the middle eastern population. You can very well draw an extremely straight line with what's happening in middle east, especially Iran, Iraq and Gaza, the three central flashpoints with our intervention and policy. The 1979 revolution was a political earthquake in the Islamic world, which showed people that they can actually reject what "The Order" wants. Many of the groups have violent rejection of America in it's creed because of this. Israel is seen as just another extension of America's imperial designs on the region. It's like arguing who should get the credit for Bin Laden's death, Obama or the Seal Team 6. Answer is both, but Obama should get more credit because he moved the chess piece.
And to your suicide bombing comments your again proving my point, your justifying them as responses to occupation. Never mind the fact that suicide bombing has not been a common tactic in other oppressed regions, its modern form almost exclusively comes from islamic extremists (tamil tigers were the only other group I'm familiar that did similar things). ETA, IRA and East Timor were occupied but did not respond the same way. The idea that it can be explained but pure geopolitics is missing the point many people are drawing. And even those terrorist groups didn't respond the way that more peaceful response to 'oppression'. The idea this is natural or justifiable responses to oppression (the slaughter of innocents unrelated) is bizarre because I know the people think its wrong.
I am not sure what bringing up other resistance movements has to do with suicide bombing, when in the end the UC study proves that such bombing is carried out for geopolitical reasons. Who knows why Basque didn't use it. May be the tech wasn't there, or maybe they found a better method of achieving their goals. Maybe its more effective in dense rural areas like in Sri Lanka or Afghanistan. The point is, it's related to occupation and politics.

America did put it's dick inside middle east's pussy. The result is STD in the form of religious extremism. Live with it.
 

Duji

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You mention Iran and Al Qaida, both are direct results of our actions. We overthrew democratically elected Iranian leader in a shameless coup, and opened military bases in Saudi Arabia much to dismay of Bin Ladin.
So al-Qaeda's existence is America's fault because they made the mistake of establishing a couple military bases in Saudi Arabia... which then pissed off Bin Laden -- causing him to go ape shit and kill thousands of people? Yeah I'm sure Bin Laden himself, his insane Qutbist ideology, and his ragtag pack of zealots aren't as important.
Maher is being a racist asshole when he attributes absolutely everything to Islam itself, and acting like every single muslim agrees with extremists simply because of their religion, but that also doesn't mean religion has zero role in this either, and that's for both sides.
I didn't know "muslim" was a race. Islam is an ideology/religion and Muslims come from all nations and ethnic groups. Also the actual ethnic groups you probably think belong to the "muslim race" are quite often Christian/Zoroastrian/etc. There is no connection between race and religion here. Now Bill Maher would actually be racist if he said discriminatory things towards all members of a specific ethnic group (perhaps Arabs).

And the UC study is very outdated. It doesn't seem to include the hundreds of suicide bombings carried out by Muslims targeting other Muslims in recent years. You speak out against the Taliban? Dead. You're in the Afghan military? Dead. You speak out against ISIS? Dead. You're in the Iraqi military? Dead. You're a Shia? Dead. You're an Alawite? Dead. Mosques/markets/women/children? All fair game.

The data show that the best way to reduce suicide bombings in Afghanistan or Iraq is not to condemn Islamic extremism, but to end foreign occupations as quickly as possible, Pape claims.
The US left Iraq in '11 and the suicide bombings live on. Perhaps even worse now. If only the US didn't piss off Bin Laden by setting up base in Saudi back in the 90s! Too late now, welp.

The truth is Islamic extremism is perhaps the biggest problem here. Does anyone honestly think the suicide bombings would continue to a similar extent if the terrorists adopted a different religion -- perhaps Jainism where the core dogma is nonviolence? Also where are the Christian Arab suicide bombers?
 
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The US left Iraq in '11 and the suicide bombings live on. Perhaps even worse now. If only the US didn't piss off Bin Laden by setting up base in Saudi back in the 90s! Too late now, welp.

The truth is Islamic extremism is perhaps the biggest problem here. Does anyone honestly think the suicide bombings would continue to a similar extent if the terrorists adopted a different religion -- perhaps Jainism where the core dogma is nonviolence? Also where are the Christian Arab suicide bombers?

There were suicide bombings because there was (and still today) the unfair domination of one group (shi'i) over another group (sunni). I think "causual" violence is as destructive as suicide bombing, our western sensibility just play a role here.
And yes, there is may be a particular point of view regarding martyr in Islam, more than with christianity. But let's not forget the diversity that comes with islam.
 

NYCmetsfan

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They went in the direction they did partly as a result of the fact that the dictator fucking their lives up was the very definition of a decadent western guy. Dude flew in food from Paris for lunch like every day. Their movie theaters played more porn than actual movies. Their country had been turned into everything the Christian right said Hollywood and liberals were trying to do in the 90's. It's no wonder that they went very conservative when they overthrew him. When you push too far in one direction, you'll get a push back from the other. It's like that for motion and politics. Had they been a nation where Christianity was the major religion they would have made the tea party look like a bunch of atheists.
I'm not disputing our actions have consequences. I'm disputing the fact that you think actions have direct outcomes that one can isolate. And I think your kind of proving my point.

You point to the fact they viewed him as western and had Islam as reasons they went the way they did, how do any of the actions that followed rationally follow from that. Not everybody rejects western systems when the West interferes and oppresses them. What caused Iran to go one way but not India and Africa to follow in the same way? Is there not a exploration of the differences warranted?

Which is my point the US's actions aren't in isolation. On many criticisms It seems these are forgotten and the only reason Iran is they way it is because of US action. As if Iranians didn't choose to kill the leftist opposition, as if the masses of people weren't free to choose between who they supported, as if it was an automatic response to capture hostages in an embassy. These aren't automatic response. They're chosen. And while the US's actions (which also don't happen in a vacuum and are response to others actions look at egypt over the past few years and how US policy changes in response to egyptian developments)
can help set the stage you still need the script to be written.

Your view is incredibly naive on this. Yes, we are indeed to blame for Iran's lurch to extremism due to putting said extremism in power. Which we have done throughout the middle east. Comparisons to Vietnam and Chile are irrelevant given the religious extremism differences. Yes there are things beyond the US at play, but to deny that the US played a major role in antagonizing violence in the middle east for the last 60 years is to deny reality.

I notice a lot of liberals focus on Greenwald the person instead of his arguments and/or stories, which is convenient. Greenwald does indeed strike me as a prissy asshole but that has no bearing on the fact that he's right. And I'd imagine if McCain or Romney were president, Greenwald the person wouldn't prevent liberals from being more receptive to his work. But since it's aimed at Obama it triggers a defense mechanism.
Naive? Maybe if you misread my posts which you last sentence of the first paragraph clearly shows. I've never denied the US's actions have consequences. I'm denying the culpability (or at least exclusive culpability) of the extremism. Its absurd and ironically quite 'imperialistic' to claim the countries which the west interfered in 'had' to act in a certain way or respond as they did. The entire point of other countries is to show there are different responses. And your highlighting of the religious reasons is exactly part of my point!!! The US didn't create these ideologies they don't direct how people must react. They don't choose the actions of other nations. These need to be understood just as much as the US's role. Otherwise your ignoring a lot of people and saying their actions don't matter.

And you paragraph about greenwald is something you've repeated before. I think its clear this isn't an Obama defense but a general dislike of his ideology, which I've attacked. Its not ad hominem, at least in my case.

Sorry but I'm not sure I understand this response, when I already addressed it. Let me address it in another way. Yes the bad guys have agency. Yes there are zealot asshole pricks out there and yes they act of their own volition without America's input. They are just power hungry zealots piggybacking off the grand disillusionment with Americana among the middle eastern population. You can very well draw an extremely straight line with what's happening in middle east, especially Iran, Iraq and Gaza, the three central flashpoints with our intervention and policy. The 1979 revolution was a political earthquake in the Islamic world, which showed people that they can actually reject what "The Order" wants. Many of the groups have violent rejection of America in it's creed because of this. Israel is seen as just another extension of America's imperial designs on the region. It's like arguing who should get the credit for Bin Laden's death, Obama or the Seal Team 6. Answer is both, but Obama should get more credit because he moved the chess piece.

I think its profoundly disrespectful to say that people automatically respond one way or are just 'responding to disillusionment' or 'of course they would do this' when mentioning specific actions like support for suicide bombings, support for repressive theocracies, lack of equality for women, etc. The masses have agency and their support for certain actions isn't automatic or always a rational response to US policy. This doesn't make them evil or bad it just makes things complicated and finding causes difficult. My problem is the radical left (socialist left) seems to gloss over any kind of understanding and jumps to 'west's faults' and works backwards trying to find the line from some past action to the current situation.

If one thinks they can draw a straight line with not millions of other lines drawing into the main one I really don't know what to say. Its just not accurate.

People keep wanting me to say something I'm not saying. I'm not saying the US is innocent of everything.


There were suicide bombings because there was (and still today) the unfair domination of one group (shi'i) over another group (sunni). I think "causual" violence is as destructive as suicide bombing, our western sensibility just play a role here.
And yes, there is may be a particular point of view regarding martyr in Islam, more than with christianity. But let's not forget the diversity that comes with islam.
I think that's the point. And of course one shouldn't ignore the diversity in Islam. But its often pushed aside as if the underlying world view has no role to play. No Islam doesn't lead to suicide bombing, but to ignore branches of islam and certain ideas that have popped up and attached themselves to many aspects of the present day islam in the middle east is a recipe for never understanding them.

You have to look at economics, politics, health, narratives, and yes islam as a whole to begin to understand these attacks, political movements and terrorist groups. Sometimes it seems people want to wipe the last from the conversation.
 

Coriolanus

Banned
Jul 24, 2013
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Brazil.
*prolly nonsense*

Shame hitchens died. Put both on a table, set Islam as the topic, and see what happens. Oxford rules. NPR.

I'd pay good money for it.
 

Ecotic

Member
Sep 30, 2006
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1,010
Democrats are looking good here in Georgia according to new Landmark polls. Kingston looks to win the runoff, and he's the weaker opponent. Nunn is up +8 over Kingston, which is the margin she needs right now after the runoff ends and the endless barrage of intraparty negative ads stop on the local news.

She might just save the Senate in the fall. The same poll shows Carter up over Deal.
 

Oblivion

Fetishing muscular manly men in skintight hosery
Jul 17, 2005
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Random comment: The idea of suicide bombers is itself baffling to me cause I was always taught that suicide was a sin in Islam.
 

Plinko

Wildcard berths that can't beat teams without a winning record should have homefield advantage
Jul 31, 2007
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So Sheldon Adelson is looking at giving $100 million to support GOP Senate races and take back the Senate.

The fact that one man can give that much to influence political races is absolutely insane.
 

PhoenixDark

Banned
Sep 25, 2005
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So Sheldon Adelson is looking at giving $100 million to support GOP Senate races and take back the Senate.

The fact that one man can give that much to influence political races is absolutely insane.

I'd imagine not much of that will be going into Karl Rove's pockets this time.

I don't understand why they don't just flood state elections. The return is much better, and you don't have to worry about state-wide electorates. They're dumping money into Michigan right now yet Peters is still ahead, and he'll almost certainly overperform polls due to Wayne County (Detroit). Money isn't drowning Pryor in Arkansas either, surprisingly. Ultimately it should work in NC and I think Iowa will go red as well, but overall Sheldon's indiscriminate spending seems very inefficient.
 

Chumly

Member
Apr 3, 2007
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So to get around the Supreme Courts decision's to dump unlimited money into the politcal process could we at least get around this by taxing it? Like for every dollar given for political reasons above 100k its taxed at 100% so Sheldon Adelson would be saddled with a 100 million dollar tax bill for dumping all of his money into the races.
 

thepotatoman

Member
Jul 17, 2006
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Denver, CO
So to get around the Supreme Courts decision's to dump unlimited money into the politcal process could we at least get around this by taxing it? Like for every dollar given for political reasons above 100k its taxed at 100% so Sheldon Adelson would be saddled with a 100 million dollar tax bill for dumping all of his money into the races.

No, it would be just be considered unconstitutional by the current supreme court as well.

But it might help to acknowledge income inequality, realizing that at a certain level, money stops being a tool to buy goods and starts being a tool to buy political and economic power, and put in some form of brakes to make it harder for people to even get to the point where they can throw away money on things like this.
 

RustyNails

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Aug 31, 2009
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Is Rick Scott up for reelection this year? I cannot believe this guy is a governor. (saw the bit on Last Week Tonight's on Rick Scott's fundraiser at the CEO that runs a deplorable prison).
 

B-Dubs

No Scrubs
Mar 19, 2012
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Is Rick Scott up for reelection this year? I cannot believe this guy is a governor. (saw the bit on Last Week Tonight's on Rick Scott's fundraiser at the CEO that runs a deplorable prison).

He got lucky, the other two candidates split the majority of the vote and he slid in under them. Had he gone up against either of them in a 1 on 1 he would have lost.
 

thepotatoman

Member
Jul 17, 2006
11,518
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0
Denver, CO
Is Rick Scott up for reelection this year? I cannot believe this guy is a governor. (saw the bit on Last Week Tonight's on Rick Scott's fundraiser at the CEO that runs a deplorable prison).

Yep, and the democrat that's trying to beat him, Charlie Crist, was the republican governor of florida until he decided to become a senator instead, where he then lost to Marco Rubio in the republican primaries in 2010. It's clear to democrats his time as governor was better than Scott's and simply running as a democrat has forced him to turn more liberal, but I'd still personally have to wonder how far my limits of "lesser of two evils" goes when thinking about voting for him.

Democrats cleared the way for him in the primaries, thinking that he'd be an easy win, but it looks like a real close race according to the most recent SurveyUSA and PPP polls, which are typically fairly accurate.
 

B-Dubs

No Scrubs
Mar 19, 2012
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Yep, and the democrat that's trying to beat him, Charlie Crist, was the republican governor of florida until he decided to become a senator instead, where he then lost to Marco Rubio in the republican primaries in 2010. It's clear to democrats his time as governor was better than Scott's and simply running as a democrat has forced him to turn more liberal, but I'd still personally have to wonder how far my limits of "lesser of two evils" goes when thinking about voting for him.

Democrats cleared the way for him in the primaries, thinking that he'd be an easy win, but it looks like a real close race according to the most recent SurveyUSA and PPP polls, which are typically fairly accurate.

Well, we'll see as we get closer to the deadline. I can't imagine Voldemort winning again, he's just been such garbage.
 
Feb 23, 2012
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Well, we'll see as we get closer to the deadline. I can't imagine Voldemort winning again, he's just been such garbage.

Yeah there's basically been no love for Rick Scott here in a lot of parts of Southern Florida. He's been getting criticized quite sharply for his fast pivots on education funding. His track record is especially worrying on higher education. As college student attending the University of Southern Florida this fall I worry about the cost of education in Florida as long as he remains governor. Tuition costs rising is already a hot enough topic as is.

And he's basically slogging his feet when it comes to global warming-something that's going to have a very significant impact on the state of Florida as a whole.
 

speculawyer

Member
Sep 8, 2006
70,038
2
0
Silicon Valley, California
Last night I had to switch off Bill Maher. The guy is absolutely insufferable racist, misogynist dickwad.

Yeah, that is odd. He was just making an analogy, no woman was actually slapped. And his point was that he doesn't want to slap a woman.

I think you just don't like his view and thus write him off.
 

RustyNails

Member
Aug 31, 2009
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Yeah, that is odd. He was just making an analogy, no woman was actually slapped. And his point was that he doesn't want to slap a woman.

I think you just don't like his view and thus write him off.
Well, I think I am justified in doing so, and I'm not the only one.

Washington Post: Bill Maher gets slap-happy with tweet comparing Hamas to a ‘crazy woman’
Second, no. Just no. Violence against women, as a hilarious joke premise, went out of style somewhere between the passenger pigeon and the Pole joke.
Slate: Bill Maher is Gross
So much sexism packed into one tweet! As others have already pointed out, Maher is making light of the serious problem of domestic violence. But he’s also trading on the tired stereotype of women as irrational children who need to be brought in line by more stable men.
Salon: Someone keep this man off Twitter: Bill Maher’s latest gross jab at women
Why does Hamas have to be like a crazy woman and not, say, just a crazy person? Why is slapping her a sensible gambit – wouldn’t escaping someone bent on murder require stronger tactics? Logistically, is it even possible to hold someone’s wrists and slap her at the same time? Is Maher writing from personal experience here? Finally, and most pressingly, what in the actual what is he talking about?
Jezebel: Bill Maher Tweets Hamas is Like Dealing With a 'Crazy Woman'
But 'crazy woman'? Dude. First of all, that's an unoriginal joke that stopped being funny in 1993. Secondly, "crazy woman" is a loaded term with a fuckton of implications for women. Making a joke about hitting a woman to make a point about a country where people are being killed is just gross.
Examiner: Left-leaning Twitter apparently just discovered that Bill Maher says really stupid things
The comparison obviously didn't go over well as the Twitter outrage machine came to life and dozens of users moved to condemn the ill-conceived joke, proudly announcing that -- unlike Maher -- they don't believe Hamas is like a “crazy woman.”
 

PhoenixDark

Banned
Sep 25, 2005
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I tend to find outrage and hand wringing over comedian's comments to be weak, so I really don't care about Maher's woman slapping nonsense. What I do care about is his Zionist bullshit, which he isn't joking about. I like Maher most of the time but he's a dumbass.
 
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