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Posts posted by gags

  1. I like seeing crap blow up (I was a Combat Engineer )as much as the next guy.....


    Since you're ex-military, what do you think about this claim that we don't have any boots on the ground in Libya? I would assume that to do any kind of close air support, you would need spotters to coordinate the strikes. Sounds like another big lie from President Hope and Change.

  2. All over the region, we have not (in this current uprising, anyway) removed a single bad actor. Ben Ali, Mubarak, Abdallah Salih, and Assad's government were removed without western intervention, and it looks very possible that Qaddhafi will not be going anywhere.

    We certainly encouraged Mubarak to leave and both Saleh in Yemen and Assad in Syria are still in power, so I'm not sure what you're talking about.

  3. Now that we've established potential humanitarian crises as valid excuses for foreign military intervention, are we going to attack Syria?

    I doubt it. At least with Syria you could make the case that such an attack would be in our national interest. Our president is the crown prince of multilateral altruism, so anything that might benefit the US is a non-starter for him.

  4. This is absolutely incredible. We are now begging our NATO allies to take over command of the operation. Of course, most of the men and military assets (or should I call them "kinetic assets"?) doing the heavy lifting will be Americans, but Obama will now have the political cover of being able to say that this is not a US led operation. The idea that a French general might be giving orders to our pilots during wartime makes me nauseous.

  5. If you are talking about the cruise missiles sent from that ship early on, I believe those were targeting the surface to air missiles that needed to be taken out so that we could bring fighters in. At least that is what I have read and also heard on the news.

    Early on we attacked his fortified personal compound with cruise missiles and we just did it again the other night after he gave a speech there for a couple of minutes.

    By the way, according to the Deputy National Security Advisor, this isn't really a war, it's a "kinetic military action".... just in case anyone is confused.

  6. No worries guys, the White House says we're not at war...

    Yep, that's right up there with the White House claim we're not trying to kill Gaddafi. If we're not trying to kill him, lobbing all those cruise missiles into his compound kinda seems like a waste of taxpayer money.:rolleyes:

  7. I'm still undecided as to the proper course of action in this matter. However, for those who want to do this to preserve the free flow of oil, I don't see any evidence that oil would not begin flowing again after things settle down. If Kaddafi stays in power, he will need to sell oil in order to maintain power and to rebuild. If the rebels (whoever the hell they are) take over, they will need to sell oil for the same reasons. In any event, the oil in Libya will eventually make its way back into the international markets after the situation cools. The oil piece of this equation really shouldn't be a reason for our intervention, as any disruption is likely just temporary.

    On the other hand, it is disturbing to watch the slaughter of civillians and fighters attempting to depose an insane, scumbag dicatator who undeniably has American blood on his hands. As usual, Obama looks indecisive and timid. Now, while Kaddafi has publicly agreed to the cease fire, his soldiers continue to attack and will likely have taken over Benghazi before the UN can get the necessary resources in place to establish a no-fly zone. Lets face it, America is impotent by choice in this matter.

  8. I have heard the argument that states don't have the right to abrogate contracts, even though that is what they are doing in Wisconsin and other states. Any thoughts on the constitutionality/legality of this? I'm not really sure how to argue it.

    I don't see how taking away collective bargaining is an abrogation of any contract. There is no contract in place that says states have to continue to collectively bargain with their workers. Once a union contract expires, the state and the union are free to negotiate. In this case, some states are saying we will only allow collective bargaining on certain issues and not others.

    On the other hand, if a state is welching on retirement obligations made previouisly, then I would be against that. Having said that, the specific wording in the contract would be very important. All union contracts that I'm aware of are for a specific time period or term. Once the contract expires, all provisions related to employment and compensation should be fair game.

    One should also consider that many states are constitutionally prohibited from running budget deficits. If they have entered into contracts that are causing deficits, then the people of the state have a few limited options. They can raise revenue through taxation or they can reduce expenses by laying off or firing state employees. Given that tax increases are unlikely in the current economy, I would prefer to pay for some of my healthcare and retirement rather than losing my job altogether.


  9. Over the years, Michigan has designed, manufactured and "exported" a lot of things, some of them pretty good and some of them fairly bad. I'd say that arguably the biggest piece of crap we've ever produced is Michael Moore. The man is a disgrace. He's a walking, talking, contradiction who can't be taken seriously on any issue, whether he's babbling about union contracts or where he's going to find his next extra large pizza. If the pro-union people ever had any credibility, they lost it all when Moore came before them and they enthusiastically cheered his rubbish.

  10. If the Democrats were voting to take away the 1st and 2cd Amendments, the Republicans would be right in leaving - right to the closest and best organized group arming themselves to defend the Republic. :ninja:

    Agreed, that's when the torches and pitch forks come out!

  11. I would argue that the tactic, in and of itself, is not illegitimate. It's not like this is used every time people oppose a particular bill. Occasional use of obstructionist tactics can be effective. I don't think it should have been used in this particular case, because I support the new legislation. But imagine that the tables are turned...imagine that a Democratic majority is trying to vote massive new powers to the public sector unions, and the Republicans fled the state to avoid a quorum. Would you still consider it illegitimate?

    Yes, I would still consider it illegitimate. If a Democrat majority were voting to give massive new powers to the public sector unions, then it would be up to the Republicans to win a majority in the next election and reverse that legislation. However, if the Democrats were voting to restrict free speech or take away the right to keep and bear arms, then this would be a legitimate tactic as far as I'm concerned. For me, it's a matter of the degree of the rights violation being legislated. Of course, taking collective bargaining away from public sector unions isn't a rights violation at all, so this tactic is particularly illegitimate in this situation.

  12. People seem to oppose obstructionist tactics when they are used against legislation they support, but support them when they are used against legislation they oppose. Recall, for instance, how Democrats pissed and moaned about the potential for a Republican filibuster of Obamacare, when they engaged in the exact same tactics against numerous judicial appointments under Bush.

    There is something to be said for consistency in your approach to democratic government. Though I am firmly with the Republicans on this particular bill, the tactic that the Democrats used was a perfectly legitimate attempt at being a check on majority rule. If I oppose it now, how can I support it when the tables are turned, and someone is trying to filibuster a bill that I oppose?

    Isn't there a significant distinction between using a fillibuster (a legitimate legislative tactic permitted by Senate rules) and fleeing the state to avoid a vote? The members of the Wisconsin senate were elected to debate and vote on issues that come before their legislative body. They weren't elected to engage in any and every tactic, including illegitimate ones, to prevent voting on legislation that they don't support.

  13. There are two issues involved:

    • how much public sector employees are paid (salary plus benefits, including retirement benefits)
    • whether public sector employees should have unions negotiating for them

    If the governor can get rid of unions for public sector employees and make that stick, that will be a far more important change in the long run. Of course, the government cannot and should not stop people from forming associations. However, the government can claim immunity from having to negotiate with such unions, thus rendering them useless in their traditional roles.

    I would like to see more state governments refuse to bargain with unions and also eliminate closed shop laws that force workers to join unions. When it comes to collective bargaining, government entities are unique for a number of reasons. There are no market forces in place to hold governments accountable. It's quite easy for politicians to make long term committments for pay and benefits, while they move on to other careers and leave the taxpayers with a ticking timebomb. Unlike businesses, governments typically don't go bankrupt (although that may be the only solution for states like California and some cities). Without the possibility of bankruptcy, there really isn't any sort of market discipline to be exercised when pay and benefits are out of line.

    As far as I'm concerned, what is happening in Wisconsin is a good thing and I hope the governor sticks to his guns so that this trend spreads to other states.

  14. I claim that this example puts alimony laws on VERY SHAKY moral ground.

    How do you come to this conclusion? Certainly every divorce situation isn't like the one you describe. There are plenty of long-term marriages where one spouse is the primary bread-winner and the other stays at home and/or raises children, etc... In those situations, in order for there to be an equitable resolution of the marriage, alimony would be quite moral. I believe that most states give enough discretion to judges in divorce matters to weigh all of the facts and circumstances and to then come up with an equitable settlement. That doesn't sound like shaky moral ground to me.

  15. Surprise surprise, Obama's "bipartisan" deficit commision has taken up the fight for a VAT. One thing is for certain, if they get a VAT through claiming it is temporary or for deficit reduction, it will be a tax that NEVER goes away.

    "Seven months after the Senate knocked down the idea of a value-added tax, the VAT is back on the table -- one of a host of familiar proposals that has been recycled as a proposed answer to the nation's financial problems.

    Entitlement cuts, military spending cuts and new taxes such as the VAT are among the back-to-the-future options that members of President Obama's deficit commission have proposed as the 18-member panel meets to try to hash out a final report to the White House and Congress.

    In April, the Senate passed a resolution on a 85-13 vote that said such a national sales tax would "cripple families on fixed income and only further push back America's economic recovery."


    This tax needs to be fought against just as hard as people opposed Obama-Care. It is another part of this President's plans to fundamentally reshape America in the image of a Euro-style social democracy.

  16. If you actually listen to them, politicians will usually tell you what they are going to do. Obama was no different. He planned to socialize America and he told us just that. Unfortunately, he has been pretty successful in getting a big chunk of his agenda through Congress. Those who didn't hear him or chose to ignore his obvious intentions back in 2008 were guilty of denying reality.

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