Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Tryptonique

  1. Here is a link to a suberb article on this very subject: http://www.andtheylivedhappilyeverafter.com/9.htm
  2. You have to make sure that you look below where it says, "Post Options" and change "HTML off" to "HTML on." That ought to do it.
  3. From MSNBC (1999): How did they not catch on to this guy's homosexuality?
  4. Yipes. I never did provide a link to the Coheed and Cambria videos. www.coheedandcambria.com You can find the videos in the media section. I really like Coheed. You should check out their earlier album (Second Stage Turbine Blade). Their new album (Good Apollo I'm Burning Star IV: From Fear Through The Eyes of Madness Volume I) is also really really great. I really love In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth : 3.
  5. For people who like Prog Rock check out Coheed and Cambria. They are fast becoming one of my favorite bands. They are great musicians, their vocals are really great (I love Claudio's high range) , and they do concept albums. Their albums all follow a comic book story that was written by the lead singer and has been illustrated in a big graphic novel and two comic books. I HIGHLY recommend checking out Coheed and Cambria. Here are some links. 1) If you have a fast connection, I HIGHLY recommend clicking this link and watching their music videos...first "Welcome Home" and then "The Suffering." 2) If you want music only, check out http://www.myspace.com/coheedandcambria I recommend listening to "Welcome Home" and then "The Suffering." "The Suffering" is the radio friendly poppy single and it is cool, but Welcome Home is just really cool.
  6. LONDON (Reuters) - Militant Islamists will continue to attack Britain until the government pulls its troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan, one of the country's most outspoken Islamic clerics said on Friday. Speaking 15 days after bombers killed over 50 people in London and a day after a series of failed attacks on the city's transport network, Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohammed said the British capital should expect more violence. "What happened yesterday confirmed that as long as the cause and the root problem is still there ... we will see the same effect we saw on July 7," Bakri said. "If the cause is still there the effect will happen again and again," he said, adding he had no information about future attacks or contacts with people planning to carry out attacks. Bakri, a Syrian-born cleric who has been vilified in Britain since 2001 when he praised the September 11 hijackers, said he did not believe the bombings and attempted attacks on London were carried out by British Muslims. He condemned the killing of all innocent civilians but described attacks on British and U.S. troops in Muslim countries as "pro-life" and justified. In an interview with Reuters, Bakri describedOsama bin Laden, leader of the radical Islamist network al Qaeda, as "a sincere man who fights against evil forces." Bakri said he would like Britain to become an Islamic state but feared he would be deported before his dream was realized. "I would like to see the Islamic flag fly, not only over number 10 Downing Street, but over the whole world," he said. MESSAGE OF PEACE ... MESSAGE OF WAR A hate figure for the British tabloid press, the bearded and bespectacled Bakri said Islam contained "a message of peace for those who want to live with the Muslims in peace." "But Islam is a message of war for those who declare war against Muslims," he said. "I condemn any killing and any bombing against any innocent people in Britain or abroad, but I expect the British people to condemn the killing of Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan." However, asked about Islamist attacks on British and U.S. troops and on Israelis, he said: "If violence is pro-life I don't condemn it." Britain has around 1,100 troops in Afghanistan and 8,500 in Iraq. Prime Minister Tony Blair supported the United States in its respective invasions of both countries in 2001 and 2003. Bakri, a 46-year-old father of six, was born in Syria and lived in Lebanon and Saudi Arabia. When the Saudi government expelled him in 1985 he came to London. Nicknamed "The Tottenham Ayatollah" after the area of north London in which he lives, he has infuriated many Britons with his firebrand speeches and refusal to condemn suicide bombings. He founded the British branch of Hizb ut-Tahrir, which describes itself as a non-violent political party dedicated to creating an Islamic caliphate centered on the Middle East. But he split from the group in 1996 and set up al Muhajiroun, which won notoriety in 2001 for celebrating the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon which killed nearly 3,000 people. Bakri has Syrian and Lebanese citizenship and says he thinks the British government might deport him to one of those two countries in the wake of this month's bombings. "But I think that would be political suicide for the British government if they started to deport and imprison all extremists and radicals," he said. "Because if, God forbid, something happened again, they would have nobody left to blame." from -http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20050722/ts_nm/security_britain_cleric_dc
  7. Holy smokes! Was Tom Saywer really a Rush song? I heard the song in it's original version (it sounded like it had a female vocalist) and a modern band I like called Deadsy did a cover of that son on their album "Commencement." I always wondered who did that song originally, but I never bothered to check it out. Aiiiie...gotta run to class. Midterms week...
  8. Lol @ Dominique. I understand your motive...you were like "Chill out. No need to trip." I get it. I just take issues with people attacking my integrity which is why I got worked up. I'm not upset at all at the whole definition over what a rant is. I think it is the most minor thing out of all of this. Besides, saying I ranted isn't a normative statment either way...so how could I be upset by it? I just value precision in language and speech. I'm feeling under the weather right now and I will get back to this thread later.
  9. One thing I would like to say to everyone is that there appears to be a simple miscommunication/misunderstanding When I say why be Pro-American Foreign Policy I mean why be FOR American foreign policy not "Why be pro-American IN your foreign policy." Pro means "for". American foreign policy belongs to America (as evidenced by the word American). So why be for the foreign policy that belongs to America? For in this contexts means "supportive." I figured this was sort of obvious considering the title of this thread is "Why be pro-American foreign policy?" If it was why be pro-American IN your foreign policy the interpretations of me being some "anti-American" would be warranted and justified. I never titled my thread "why be pro-American IN our foreign policy or IN foreign policy" though. I think my sentiment was pretty accurately conveyed by my posts as well. I'm not for the downfall of America or The West (which is what being "anti-American" means). I'm simply for acknowledging that our foreign policy is characterized by actions that aren't "Pro-American" or "pro-American interests. I don't think you should be anti-American in our foreign policy or in any foreign policy nor do I think you should be America-neutral. I am for American foreign policy that is Pro-American. I'm not Pro-American Foreign Policy.
  10. Dominique: The only actual part of your definition I fit is "speaking in a noisy or excited manner". The post that you quote as evidence of me ranting (the post you had issue with) was in reply to an outright LIE about what I said (saying that I claimed that American foreign policy was WORSE than Islamic terrorism or morally inferior) and in response to labels of "libertarian" and "anti-American" that I was charged with in place of actual arguments by those posters. I take my integrity very seriously and do get passionate and make noise when it is attacked. I refuse to apologize for that. Lets look at the defintions here that are part of your definition (rant): bom·bast Pronunciation: 'bäm-"bast Function: noun Etymology: Middle English bombast cotton padding, from Middle French bombace, from Medieval Latin bombac-, bombax cotton, alteration of Latin bombyc-, bombyx silkworm, silk, from Greek bombyk-, bombyx : pretentious inflated speech or writing Main Entry: de·claim Pronunciation: di-'klAm, dE- Function: verb Etymology: Middle English declamen, from Latin declamare, from de- + clamare to cry out; akin to Latin calare to call -- more at LOW intransitive senses 1 : to speak rhetorically; specifically : to recite something as an exercise in elocution 2 : to speak pompously or bombastically : HARANGUE transitive senses : to deliver rhetorically; specifically : to recite in elocution - de·claim·er noun - dec·la·ma·tion /"de-kl&-'mA-sh&n/ noun (from the rhetorical part of that definition): 2 entries found for rhetoric. To select an entry, click on it. rhetoricrhetorical Main Entry: rhet·o·ric Pronunciation: 're-t&-rik Function: noun Etymology: Middle English rethorik, from Middle French rethorique, from Latin rhetorica, from Greek rhEtorikE, literally, art of oratory, from feminine of rhEtorikos of an orator, from rhEtOr orator, rhetorician, from eirein to say, speak -- more at WORD 1 : the art of speaking or writing effectively: as a : the study of principles and rules of composition formulated by critics of ancient times b : the study of writing or speaking as a means of communication or persuasion 2 a : skill in the effective use of speech b : a type or mode of language or speech; also : insincere or grandiloquent language 3 : verbal communication : DISCOURSE I'm thinking you meant insincere or graniloquent language. Correct me if I'm wrong. Main Entry: gran·dil·o·quence Pronunciation: gran-'di-l&-kw&n(t)s Function: noun Etymology: probably from Middle French, from Latin grandiloquus using lofty language, from grandis + loqui to speak : a lofty, extravagantly colorful, pompous, or bombastic style, manner, or quality especially in language - gran·dil·o·quent /-kw&nt/ adjective - gran·dil·o·quent·ly adverb Main Entry: pomp·ous Pronunciation: 'päm-p&s Function: adjective 1 : excessively elevated or ornate <pompous rhetoric> 2 : having or exhibiting self-importance : ARROGANT <a pompous politician> 3 : relating to or suggestive of pomp : MAGNIFICENT - pomp·ous·ly adverb - pomp·ous·ness noun Main Entry: ar·ro·gant Pronunciation: -g&nt Function: adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Latin arrogant-, arrogans, present participle of arrogare 1 : exaggerating or disposed to exaggerate one's own worth or importance in an overbearing manner <an arrogant official> 2 : proceeding from or characterized by arrogance <arrogant manners> synonym see PROUD - ar·ro·gant·ly adverb So here are your acusations: In my writing I'm being pretentious, overly self important (arrogant), or simply overly colorful (which seems sort of arbitrary considering the fact that I'm not using flowerly fluffed up language). If you are going to cite a definition, show how it applies. I will address the rest of you later. I have class to go to.
  11. 1) Nuking Hiroshima didn't cause a nuclear retaliation or anything of the like because Japan was already militarily being whooped daily. We had pushed back Japanese forces back to the mainland and they had no capability to retaliate in any meaninful sort of fashion We were the only people with the bomb which made it even worse that we didn't demonstrate it on a non-civilian target first or at least attack a military target. The reason we didn't try to nuke the Kremlin during the Cold War is because well..they had nukes and could have retaliated against us. The reason we aren't nuking North Korea? Because at that point they have nothing to loose and could simply fire one off at our troops in South Korea or South Korea itself. Considering how poor the security is with nuclear materials that were once protected by the USSR as well as the market for them, is it really that improbable that nuking Tehran would only make Al-Qaeda's push (and other groups) to get nukes that much more pressing? Do you honestly think that they couldn't get one? More importantly, Mussharaff is a military dictator who came to power in a coup. Do you think he would stay in power (or alive) for very long if he stood by while another Islamic nation was under attack and did nothing? Do you think someone in his government couldn't sell Al-Qaeda a nuke (kind of like how Ollie North sold weaposn to Iran?) without the support of Musharaff? 2) For Pakistan hunting down Al-Qaeda they certainly haven't turned up Bin Laden in the last 4 years. 3) Rebuilding Japan was a lot more feasible due to the fact that Japan wasn't made up of a bunch of death worshiping cultists. After Commodore Perry opening Japan to modernization, they were open to Westernization and embraced it quite wholeheartedly. 4) As far as nuclear fallout, even if there wasn't an immediate danger of fallout, it would still put more people at risk (including the Israelis) due to the fact that a) There are a large number of known terrorists who want nothing more than to kill us and are already searching for nuclear materials. A nuclear attack would give them justification in their minds to retaliate with the same force. It would also give them even less to loose because if you could be nuked at anytime, why not nuke back? Pakistan is just one example. North Korea already HAS nuclear weapons and if it felt like it was next, what would stop it from pressing the button or selling a nuclear weapon to Al-Qaeda? Nuking Iran could quite possibly create an axis of evil that was actually working together to inflict as much damage as possible. there are millions of Muslims in the United States (many whom aren't pro american) who would probably turn on this country creating quite a bit of domestic chaos as well as chaos in Europe. The question isn't whether or not we could nuke Iran but whether or not the costs would be worth it in terms of the massive loss of human life that would be incrued on all sides. 5) I think Yaron Brook's argument is bunk. The more indescriminate we become with our killing, the more insurgents you have to deal with. That fact was played out in El Salvador when the U.S sponsored right wing government started killing peasants that had nothing to do with the insurgency. At first guerilla leaders were killed as a warning that supporting the guerillas would equal death at the hands of the government but if they didn't suppor the guerillas, they would be safe. As soon as the government became an indescriminate killer, FLMN's support increased dramatically. That isn't left wing b.S, it is documented fact. Read Mason and Krane's "The Political Economy of Death Squads" to warrant that assertion. Protecting civilians is kind of important because if you just wantonly kill civilians without regard, they have nothing to loose. They are already being killed by the insurgents. If the U.S kills them indescriminately as well, what motive do they have to not join the insurgencies ranks when they will be offered protection? Why would they join the ranks of the United States? Most of the population subscribes to the death worshiping beliefs of Islam and not the free ideals of the West. Killing civilians only gives them one more reason to go hostile. After all, they are offered death by both groups, so why not go with the one you are ideologically closest to? El Salvador didn't become more stable when civilians were indescriminately killed to get to the Communist bad guys. Isreal still has been the victim of homicide bombings despite their disregard for civilian life. 6) There might be people in the Middle East who want to choose life instead of death. They are certainly the minority though and statistically insignificant. If they want to choose life, they sure do a bass ackwards job of it by embracing the most anti-life ideological system on the planet (Islam).
  12. Capitalism Forever = Excuse me, Mr. Rogers. I didn't know that being pro-American required supporting brutal regimes that indiscriminately kill and rape like the Guatemalan government that was installed after Arbenz was overthrown by the CIA. You know what happened afterwards? They (with U.S funding) went on to kill 100,000 unarmed Mayans. Since you insist on stupid ad hominems that once again have no basis in reality I'm going to remind you that I'm not anti-American. I consider "American" to be that which is moral such as laissez-fair capitalism and individualism. I consider the foreign policy initiatives in Latin America and a great deal of the middle east to be decidedly anti-American. http://www.yale.edu/gsp/guatemala/TextforDatabaseCharts.html Try reading and getting a basic grasp of what our foreign policy REALLY means abroad before you get the balls to call me "anti-American." If you think sponsoring Latin American dictators, the Shah of Iran, training and funding Pakistani intelligence (The ISI), sending a nuclear reactor to Iran, etc is "American" then I think you are one dude and I have no reason to further talk to you. Ex banana eater = Of course. Iran and Syria would have been great targets. Iraq wasn't exactly an "aggressor" but whatever. I NEVER MADE THAT CLAIM so why are you asking me to warrant it? SHEESH! I said that I wonder why given that we invaded Iraq that they think that invading Syria would be a good move. I'm positing that Syria or Iran was a bigger priority (which most people on this board agree with from what I have read) but now it is a little too late considering how stretched our resources are. Good straw man. I was talking about U.S capabilities to launch an invasion, but whatever. So we are going to nuke Syria and Iran now, huh? I guess if we want to expose our troops in Iraq and Israel to nuclear radiation poisoning, then sure. I'm talking military invasion here. We aren't ready to conduct another invasion, period. I don't need "military expertise" to say that, sorry. Open your eyes and look at exactly how stable Iraq is. We don't have enough troops for Iraq as it is. Are we going to magic some up for Syria or Iran? Not without a draft we won't and lets see how far that gets through the U.S Congress. To invade Syria or Iran requires that we withdraw troops from Iraq. Otherwise we have no invasion force. Are we going to nation build there too? If not, we will just end up with the same situation and more anti-American sentiment after the invasion when another dictator steps up to replace it. We don't have the resources to nation build (we don't even have them for Iraq) in Syria or Iran. Invading isn't an option right now. A nuclear attack means that Israel will be attacked immediately and you will start a world war with the entire Middle East. Then take Pakistan into account which actually HAS nuclear weapons. Do you think Pakistan would be content to watch it's Muslim brethren be nuked? Their ideology is one of martyrdom so getting nuked in retaliation by the U.S probably wouldn't be a deterrent. Moreover, if you were Pakistan and Iran/Syria was nuked, what would make you think that you wouldn't be next? It isn't like you would have anything to loose from launching that nuclear missile. So yeah. Way to advocate starting nuclear war. That is REALLY in our best interest....*sarcasm*. and a death wish...but whatever. If you nuke Iran you had better be prepared to nuke the entire middle east because if you don't kill every last one of them they will try even harder to hatch terrorist plots against the U.S. Never mind that you still don't solve the problem of Al-Qaeda by bombing Iran or Syria so you still have them to deal with after the ashes clear. I'm betting that NYC would be nuked faster than you can say "Pakistani nuclear weapons sale to Al-Qaeda." A is A= I will make a list for you...how about that? I will even be EXTRA nice and include a warrant proving each of these. 1) Sponsoring and funding a government that killed 100,000-200,000 unarmed Mayans. How about that? http://www.yale.edu/gsp/guatemala/TextforDatabaseCharts.html While the article doesn't talk about U.S involvement, it is common knowledge that we gave those guys tons of economic aid and orchestrated their rise to power (the CIA overthrew Arbenz who nationalized United Fruit). The CIA has documented this themselves: http://www.foia.cia.gov/guatemala.asp 2) Our U.S funded death squads in El Salvador that indiscriminately killed innocent people and deliberately targeted them. you want examples of this? Happy to accommodate. a- El Mozote : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Mozote_massacre or : http://www.markdanner.com/newyorker/120693_The_Massacre.htm b - The death squads carried out several high profile murders at this time; archbishop Óscar Romero was assassinated in 1980 after publicly urging the U.S. government not to provide military support to the El Salvadoran government, and four US nuns were also raped and murdered by members of Salvadoran death squads. <---that seems pretty indiscriminate to me. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/137381.stm 3) Al-Shifa (already explained and cited). 4) The school of Americas which gave us Manuel Noriega and a bunch of other wonderful terrorist thugs. "The SOA has been attacked for training members of governments guilty of serious human rights abuses and advocating techniques that violate accepted standards. Graduates of the SOA include men such as Hugo Banzer Suárez, Leopoldo Galtieri, Manuel Noriega,Efraín Ríos Montt, Guillermo Rodríguez, Omar Torrijos, Roberto Viola and Juan Velasco Alvarado. For this reason, the school's acronym is occasionally reparsed by its detractors as "School of Assassins". There is usually a demonstration at the gates of the SOA/WHISC in late November. The date for the annual demonstration commemorates the first Latin American massacre linked to the SOA, through its graduates. On November 16, 1989, six Salvadoran Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her teenage daughter were murdered at the University of Central America (UCA). Of the 27 soldiers cited for that massacre by a 1993 UN Truth Commission, 19 were SOA graduates. This was the first of many documented linkages between the School's graduates and atrocities." - from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/School_of_the_Americas 6)Hiroshima and Nagasaki ? We chose not to attack a military target and instead killed over 250,000 civilians including men, women, and children. Sounds pretty indiscriminate to me. I guess those deaths are also the moral responsibility of the Japanese government who gave the go ahead for Pearl Harbor right? Why is it that the civilians were the target though and not the government or the military? You can't just say "You attacked me first so anything I do from that point forward is your fault because you started it and I'm in no way responsible." That logic in practice means that because The Alamo was attacked by Mexicans we would have no moral responsibility on our shoulders if we would have gone into Mexico and raped all of their women (or killed every last one of them). You can place moral responsibility for accidental casualties on those that start wars. When we bomb factories pumping out war materials and civilians die, that isn't our moral responsibility. If terrorists hide weapons in a school or themselves...then they have those deaths on their head. Not deaths of alternative factions claiming to be better but killing The U.S deliberately targeted Hiroshima and Nagasaki during a war with the goal of killing as many civilians as possible. The argument was that if we could get a Japanese surrender from doing so that those deaths were for the "greater collective good" in terms of the prospect of a mainland Japanese invasion. The only thing was, we didn't even bother demonstrating the weapon to the Japanese government as a warning which could have quite possibly forced a surrender without innocent casualties. If the Japanese wouldn't have surrendered, those deaths would have been on their heads. The fact is, they weren't given a chance. You can't even say it was justified because of Pearl Harbor because Pear Harbor was a military attack against a military target. Bin Laden declared war on the west and our way of life and targeted a population center with the goal of killing as many people as he could for his supposed "greater collective good" as well which he sees as American surrender. Big difference? Not really. You asked for an example of indiscriminate murder...well there you go. Those atom bombs didn't discriminate "good guy" from "bad guy" and hundreds of thousands were slaughtered. It sure as hell does if he goes and sells them to Hezbollah or gasses the Kurds with them. Saddamn quashed dissent with weapons. You want to tell me he just didn't use the ones we gave them? How about Iran then? Does that rise to the level of supporting terrorism? After all, Kohmeini wasn't a big pro-U.S guy was he? He was a declared enemy of the United States. We sold him weapons and he held our embassy hostage. What the hell do you call that? You think that the U.S government's actions weren't tantamount to sponsoring terrorism against innocent Americans? Why the quotes around death squads? Squeamish about labeling them for what they were? I have provided numerous warrants for the fact that the 'labeled' targets were leftist guerillas but the real people targeted were the peasant villagers. There is a tangible difference behind what you tell everyone your target is and whom is really targeted. The actual leftist guerillas actually did pretty well and weren't really killed en masse. Despite the American government's meddling, the guerillas were pretty successful at what they did and weren't really affected by the death squads. The purpose of the death squads was the crush popular support for the leftist guerillas, not target the perpetrators (the guerillas themselves). I addressed this earlier in this post. Horse puckey. The same people (in large degree) with our Latin American blunders are now involved in Iraq. Many of GW's political team is from the Reagan era (like John Negroponte who was heavily involved in Honduras during the 1980's). Warrant the fact that the U.S broke treaties and murdered Native American women and children? Are you kidding me? Did you um...ever make it past 4th grade history? http://www.people.memphis.edu/~kenichls/2602NatAms.html Once again, my argument is going over your head here. I'm not saying that Communism wasn't a viable threat or that it was just silliness. We had VERY good reasons to be scared of the Communists. Look at China under Mao, Russia under Stalin, or the Cambodian killing fields. How much better were we when we adopted terrorist tactics and killed as many people in Latin America as the leftist guerillas ever did? Does responding to Communists or Islamic terrorists now require that we adopt their tactics? If so, how exactly are we morally superior to them in actions? Moreover, Latin America wasn't really threatened by Soviet involvement. The USSR wasn't really involved in El Salvador or most of Latin America. Where it wAS involved was Nicaragua, Cuba, and South America. Honduras, El Salvador, and Panama weren't pro Soviet. Nicaragua was a trading partner of The Soviet Union and bought arms from them, but any country is going to buy weapons for national defense purposes. It isn't like they could have bought the weapons from the U.S. So they went to the next global superpower. Doesn't mean that they were buddy buddy with the Ruskies just planning to make "Red Dawn" a reality instead of a bad Patrick Swaze movie. Uh....Objectivists still bash the USSR and the evil it represented long after the fact. Pointing out failures in our foreign policy or showing that we have a history of bad foreign policy isn't "off base." Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it. It doesn't help that another Bush is in the Whitehouse when Bush I was in the CIA during the Reagan years when all of the Latin American blunders happened. It doesn't help that we once again have John Negroponte involved in shaping our foreign policy in Iraq and now in the area of intelligence oversight. There was definitely a better strategy. Here is my proposition: 1) Kill communist guerillas 2) Don't have communist guerillas killed by death squads who are made up of brutal murderers. If you want to get a job done, do it yourself or make sure the people you are working with aren't worse than the group you are trying to suppress. 3) Don't send Iran nuclear reactors! 4) Don't give Pakistan friggin money to train Islamic nut jobs in Afghanistan. Why? Because the enemy of your enemy does NOT equal your friend. 5) Don't sell weapons to Iran and Iraq. They are known to have anti-American sentiment and are also known to be brutal regimes. I can keep going, but I don't really need to. It isn't that hard. Honestly. A is A, buddy. If the people disagreeing with me ARE ignorant don't bitch at me for calling it as I see it. It doesn't change the content of my argument. If that argument goes unrefuted and undaddressed, then that can be characterized as evasion. Don't get on my case for pointing out the fact that people ARE evading my actual arguments. You are a prime example of the evasion I'm talking about when you say I'm making unsupported assertions. Go back to my original post where I site Professor Thomas D. Tullius, chairman of the chemistry department at Boston University who categorically rejects the U.S government's assertion that there ever were chemical weapons being made at Al-Shifa before you start claiming I don't support my assertions. There were numerous studies done from western countries and independent groups (many of them credible like the Boston University one) that all came back saying that there was no way that there could have been chemical weapons being produced. You want the actual citation? Thomas D. Tullius makes his claim in a New York Times article called " Experts Find No Arms Chemicals at Bombed Sudan Plant " on February 9, 1999, Tuesday, Late Edition. The article was written by James Risen and David Johnston. If you want a whole run down of the issue (from The University of Illinois Chicago's webpage) = http://www2.math.uic.edu/~takata/WorldTrad...Sudan_1998.html No warrants? Are you kidding me? Erh...that was in response to "Rational_One" who not only has repeatedly misinterpreted me (he that I was making the claim that America was worse than the terrorist which is a lie), but went on to accuse me of context dropping when he is the one refusing to deal with my examples. The only way you can really deny historical fact (like the mining of Managua harbor) is if you are being evasive. That is why I asked him if he thought the land mines were a joke. He doesn't care to address them though they are a perfect example of our indiscriminate killing. Does he think hey just didn't happen or what? I honestly want to understand his motives for lying about what I post, misinterpreting what I post, and just being a general doofus. If you have a problem with me wanting an actual argument instead of his vague and unspecified assertion that I'm "context dropping" coupled with a blatant misinterpretation of what I said...that is your problem, not mine. Don't bother labeling it a straw man because you obviously don't even understand what that is. "As a rhetorical term, "straw man" describes a point of view that was created in order to be easily defeated in argument; the creator of a "straw man" argument does not accurately reflect the best arguments of his or her opponents, but instead sidesteps or mischaracterizes them so as to make the opposing view appear weak or ridiculous." -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man For me to mischaracterize "rational one's" argument he would have to HAVE an argument in the first place. He doesn't. You can't build a straw man from nothing. Moreover, I'm never sidestepped his claim that I was dropping the context (which was a vague assertion that wasn't ever really elaborated on, but whatever) or mischaracterized anything. Before you try using smart people talk like "Straw man" understand what the term means and what it looks like in application, ok? If you did, you would have recognized that Rational_one was the one putting the straw man up. We also had a draft in WWII well. Congrads! You ignored one more argument of mine. As I said in the post RIGHT ABOVE YOUR OWN: "Moreover, more soldiers were deployed in WWII because of the draft. We don't have that now. You are comparing apples to oranges." You say that I'm making lame arguments from intimidation. You want to understand what I'm really doing? I'm getting tired of people who can't read or comprehend simple sentences and I'm making fun of you for it while continuing to point out your bad arguments. It is getting old though. I'm not getting anything from this involvement and have actually probably lost 5 I.Q points from this whole endeavor. http://www.cnn.com/2004/ALLPOLITICS/07/09/...ence/index.html "WASHINGTON (CNN) -- In a highly critical report issued Friday, the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee found that the CIA's prewar estimates of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction were overstated and unsupported by intelligence. " Read the rest of the article. You can thank me for your elucidation later. When the Senate Intelligence Committee says that the case for war was overstated based on available evidence at the time the case was being made to the American public and Congress, I consider that pretty damning. That is going back and reviewing what we had in terms of intelligence at the time and coming to a conclusion. Kind of like a parent taking into account all the information their child had when making a decision and saying "That was stupid and illogical given what you had to work with." Not really preposterous at all. I would say it is kind of logical. Have you read the 9/11 Commission’s report which says that there aren't any WMDs and never were? How about this? " - http://www.cnn.com/2004/WORLD/meast/10/06/...port/index.html So is it or isn't it? The CIA has changed positions on this repeatedly if you haven't noticed. Since you think you are the expert on this subject, how about you address Richard Clarke or the CIA report that I just posted since you know for a fact that these non-existent WMD's existed. Go ahead. These so called WMD's might be in Syria. They might be on the moon. The truth is you can't prove they ever existed and if you think you can I would like to see you try to cite some evidence instead of blathering on. Call me stupid, but I see going to war as a pretty serious thing. I don't think it is a trivial endeavor. If you are going to put our soldiers at risk, it had better be for a REASON. If our reasons are wrong or if there is a lot of doubt about how good the intelligence is, when why the push to ramrod an invasion of Iraq into the agenda? The Senate Intelligence Committee said that based on the evidence the CIA had at the time (not what they were telling us he had...anyone up for a little Nigerian yellowcake?) they overstated the case for war and didn't have the evidence needed to make the assertions they are making (kind of like you). So most intelligence agencies agreed that they had WMD's huh? The agreed wrong. Funny how that happened to fall in line with the agenda the administration wanted to push before they were even elected. Ever heard of Project for a New American Century? It had Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz on it They argued that we should oust Saddam from power in 1998 = http://www.newamericancentury.org/iraqclintonletter.htm In 1997, Leonard Peikoff was making the argument that Iran was the real target and that Iraq was a dumb target = http://www.aynrand.org/site/News2?news_iv_...Article&id=5277 See a bit of of a descrepancy? Care to tell us all how members of a right wing think tank didn't push the agenda of the Iraq war when there is openly documented evidence tying them to an obsession over Iraq going all the way back to 1998? This is Paul Wolfowitze and Donald Rumsfeld for reason's sake. You don't think they could have possibly been warping the facts to fit their agenda? If you don't believe they had an agenda...the evidence (their PNAC membership and letter) is right before your eyes. Even though the evidence that supposedly gives us a moral right to be there doesn't exist? Come again? Last time I checked if you do the same equation twice, the answer doesn't change unless you change a variable or two. What has changed? We are engaged in another war in a crappy third world country that doesn't pose a threat to us. If military policies don't change from "then" and "now" it isn't a non-sequiter at all. It makes perfect sense. If your military policy is to attack with spears and blow darts and you loose a major battle...you probably need to change your policy or else the next time you go into battle with your blow darts you will loose AGAIN. If we take that our past military involvements have been failures (like Vietnam for example?) and our military policy hasn't changed, how is it a non-sequiter to suggest that further continuation of the same bad policy is a bad idea? You assume they value their own life enough and that the world wouldn't erupt into global terrorism and or a free for all. I think that is a pretty big stretch, but we are both speculating here. Rebuilding the regimes is the only way we can really protect our interests unless we really want to put more lives as risk from another regime springing up that is no different then the one we anhiliate. The only other tangible option is just nuking the entire region. If you break it, should you just leave it broken to repair itself? When there is a political vacuum, there WILL be someone that fills the opening. Just destroying the entire government doesn't really address the mullahs, the kurds, or a whole host of other issues. I'm willing to bet that even more blood would be wasted if we simply destroying the government, the military and their economic power. Destroying the military leaves them open to attack and conquering by another country or such political instability that even MORE terrorists would get to use Iraq as their own little Mos Eisley. Destroying their economy means that they all starve and we fill Al-Qaeda's ranks immediately. You also probably loose any motivation for American Muslims to not wage a domestic war against this country. Destroying their government = leaving them open to outside influence. Putting in a puppet government creates resenment and more terrorists because at that point we are occupying an Islamic country and subjegating them to our Western will (or some other such bull). A puppet government wouldn't probably last long. So how is just leaving them broken an option? I mean...anything is technically an "option" but it doesn't make it a GOOD option. edit = It appears that I'm not able to effectively quote (maybe a mod has disabled that ability I'm using the quote button correctly...ah well). Ah well. If no one wants to read my response, I don't really care. I got about ZERO from this debate anyways. So unless someone actually says something intelligent, I'm dropping this debate.
  13. You are the context dropper, amigo. I never said the U.S is as evil as the terrorists. The U.S involves a whole lot of things. An economic system, a political system, and the products of both sytems on a foreign and domestic scale. The U.S also includes both public and private sectors as well.So yeah...me lumping the U.S in with the terrorists...one more thing I didn't do or say. But whatever. What I DID say was that U.S foreign policy has in many cases been tantamout (equal) to terrorism in methods, practices, and events which ultimately means that people that claim that the U.S is morally superior to the terrorists are silly and out of context. Kind of like when we accused the Native Americans as being "vile scalping savages" and our U.S government lied, broke treaties, raped, killed, and pillaged. You can't claim that U.S foreign policies haven't been tantamout to terrorism unless you drop the context of reality. So no, I don't want to retract that statment one bit. I just want you to actually read it and interpret it correctly. Parts of American foreign policy are tantamout to terrorism which takes away our moral superiority that we always wave around when it comes to the terrorists. No, we don't brutally opress our people or beat up on women. However we give money and training to people who do. We don't kill anyone labeled an "infidel." However we train Latin American death squads that "disappeared" thousands supposed "communists" without a trial or any examination of fact. These death squads also killed pretty indescriminately. I'm sure Oscar Romero was a real big threat to the United States right? He was a death squad victim. Oh yeah...he was also a Catholic Priest. Our Latin American foreign policy really was tantamout to terrorism. The mining of Managua harbor? I'm sure all the kids blown up by the landmines were just unfortunate casualties right? Read some history before you tell me you are "sorry" that I equate our foreign policy with middle eastern terrorism. Do you think the landmines all over Latin America are some kind of joke? They are a remenant of indescriminate and useless killing. They sure as hell didn't stop the "red tide" because Russia wasn't all that interested in sponsoring Latin American "communists" who were just out for economic aid and not really interested in following the Politburo playbook. Read about the attack on the Al-Shifa pharmeceutical plant and get back to me, ok? Morally superior? I think not. If you care to actually address the historical facts/warrants that I'm using to make this argument, feel free to do so. Erh...except the fact that many Americans feel lied to considering that the war in Iraq was justified with the whole WMD argument which was predicated on rigged evidence to make a weak case more palatable to a public that has a weak stomach for casualities post Vietnam and Somalia. To be honest, I think many people would honestly laugh if the President tried to make another case for war. Why? Because when the boy cries wolf and there isn't one, you can't expect the townsfolk to come running a second or third time unless they are real suckers. Moreover, more soldiers were deployed in WWII because of the draft. We don't have that now. You are comparing apples to oranges. We have troops stationed in Germany because of the Cold War. In case you haven't realized, Putin is locking up oil barons and making some pretty threatening moves. You sure you wanna just pack up and leave while Russia is still highly unstable and adopting it's old Soviet ways again? The key word in your whole post is "if." Saying that the only way to protect our nation would be to kill all middle easterners assumes that all middle easterners pose credible threats to United States security. Are you making that argument? Moreover, nuclear weapons would radiate the whole planet making victims out of non-perpetrators and Americans as well. So yeah...bad plan. Warrant this assertion. What WMD's did they have? Iraqi scientists themselves have said that the WMD programs were scrapped and that they lied to Saddam claiming that they were doing things when in reality they were just trying to squeeze him for money and keep themselves alive. If it had the capability to give WMDs to terrorist, where exactly are those WMDs? I don't believe in Unicorns or God because they are based in fantasy. I don't believe in Iraqi WMDs for the same reason. If Iraq had the capability to give terrorist WMD's then did it or didn't it? If it did give them WMDs, cite your evidence and I will be a believer. If it didn't...why not? If it had WMDs why not use them when the United States was taking out the regime? It isn't like Saddam had much to loose. So am I just expected to believe that terrorists have WMDs or that they snuck away with them and left the country? I could also believe that Saddam Hussein also gave the terrorists winged sandals and a dancing reindeer, but I would kind of like to steer away from that. I believe that I mean it in the same way that Ayn Rand used it, though I might be incorrect . From what I understand, metahphysics is the branch of philosophy concerned with the nature of reality. When I said that it was a metaphysical given, I meant that it is a given part of our reality that we are already involved in Iraq. Given the context of March 6th, 2005...we all know that we invaded Iraq nearly 2 years ago. I'm wondering why in retrospect many Objectivists support the war in Iraq or our "moral right to be there" even though there are countries that actually threaten us far more. These countries are currently gathering resources to try to destroy us (like Iran for example). Erh...I didn't say that in my original post. Go back and re-read. What I actually said was: Many people on this board are Pro-Iraq War and for increased intervention in the Middle East. I have read several comments like "Lets go take down Iran" or "We should take out Saudi Arabia" or "I wish Syria was on target next." (my words in bold) Objectivists might have thought that Syria was a bigger priority and if they did, then I'm in full agreement on that one. The fact is though, that many Objectivists have said "I wish Iran was next" or "I wish Syria was next" even though we have a history of messing up our foreign excursions and we aren't exactly ready to start a war on another front at this point. Not to be an asshole here, but you it doesn't take a military genius here to figure things out. The appeal to authority is cute and all, but I think that even the slower ones in class can figure out that since America has had an extremely difficult time with even maintaining a decent level of equipment quality (like their armored personnel carriers) in Iraq as it is, that starting another war wouldn't be strategically smart. Moreover, if you haven't noticed...the government has been breaking it's contracts with it's soliders and keeping them beyond the period that they have been enlisted for. It is not been able to keep recruiting at a necessary level even for the Iraq war. What makes you think that holding down another couple thousand square miles is really a viable option? I was in JROTC for three years in high school and have studied a bit of military history. When you stretch your supply lines out or open wars on too many fronts at once (like Hitler, the Romans, and Napoleon did) you can't fight any of them well and you open yourself up to defeat. It might be a costly and well fought defeat, but it is defeat nonetheless. Moreover, if you invade Iran you will draw on the wrath of the entire middle east. Do you think fighting World War III is a strategically brilliant move at this point? Saddam Hussein was considered a secular jerkhole by most of the middle east (including Bin Laden). Iran is seen as being religiously "legitamate" with it's Mullahs and Sharia. So to attack Iran successfully means that you are going to have to be prepared to fight a war in the entire middle east. Be prepared for Lebanon, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Egypt, etc to all be massive staging grounds for insurgency that would make the Iraqi insurgency look like upstart punk kids with toy guns. If you think we are ready, then you can warrant that assertion any day. Please take into account our current supply situation in Iraq and how "secure" Iraq is despite the current occupation force. Besides, even if I grant that Iraq would be a good springboard for an Iran/Syrian war...that was never the justification for the Iraq war and cannot be an Objectivist justification because Objectivists weren't the ones making the decisions to invade Iraq. There is ZERO indication that we will invade either Syria or Iran, so using that as a potential justification is bunk. It can't be justified to invade Iraq for strategic reasons if those strategic reasons are never utilized or aren't even on the table for discussion at the time of the invasion. See above.
  14. My question was not "why go to War with Syria and Iran" in a generalized context. I'm taking the Iraq war as a metaphysical given and making the claim that a military incursion should have been into Iran or Syria FIRST instead of Iraq and at this point we don't have the military resources to even THINK of invading those countries which is why I'm so confused as to why people seem to be advocating those military engagements.
  15. I take attacks on my integrity very seriously which is why I responded to Dominique's assertion that I was "ranting" when in reality I'm not any goddamned Libertarian NOR did I EVER once say that American foreign policy was MORE evil than terrorism. If reading comprehension is a problem, try hooked on phonics before you start posting lies about what I said, ok? [this post was probably an overreaction, but I'm seriously pissed at 2 misinterpretations of what I said coupled with an accusation that I'm a libertarian and "ranting" when I'm asking a serious question based on honest motives. I'm not some damn hippie liberal, bible thumping conservative, retarded libertarian, or some pro-Muslim jerk bag. So quit labeling me without any warrant for your labels and address my question or don't bother posting. Simple as that. If intellectual conversation/debate is too much for you, then don't do it. If you think that I'm some stupid troll, then "don't feed the troll." Ok? I would rather that people hate me and shut their mouth or at least post some warranted and cogent reason why they hate me than post lies or misinterpret me.]
  16. Thanks for the reply, Tom. I appreciate you taking your time to make a cogent response. Now on to your points: 1) How does that translate into popular Objectivist support for the Iraq war or a lot of past policies that have turned into massive failures? To me (correct me if I'm wrong)...being for the national interests of the United States translates to the following: a) Full unqualified support for true laissez-fair capitalism. 100% refusal to make deals with terrorists, state sponsors of terrorists, or those that would seek to blackmail us with a nuclear stick (read = North Korea/Iran). c) responding to national security threats both domestic and abroad. I feel personally frusterated with the situation in the Middle East because it seems like such a Sisyphian (unsure of spelling) endeavor. Sometimes at my most bitter I feel like the only way to really get anything done in that hell hole would be to just nuke the crap out of everyone there and start from scratch, though that is 100% morally repugnant. There has to be some solution that allows us to protect ourselves and our national interests without sponsoring death squads and making deals with the devil. I look at Israel and wonder, "Why can't we be more like them?" in terms of their policies towards terrorists. I'm aware of that. ARI seems to be coming out with "The Iraq war was moral and justified" press releases that seem to lack quite a bit in terms of substantive content which is what partially confuses me. We were attacked on 9/11 by terrorist scum bags who hate our way of life. Why not go after them? Even liberal fat ass Mike Moore is asking the question in Playboy, "Why don't we hire the Israelis to take out Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda members?." Iraq might have had terrorist training camps in it. To be honest, I haven't seen that much in terms of compelling evidence either way. Who trained Al-Qaeda though? It seems to me that we need to start being accountable for our mistakes and cleaning them up instead of just creating new ones. ARI's Peter Schwartz says "The Iraqis have long produced despotism. But instead of being morally confident in our right to establish a government that is no longer a threat to anyone--Iraqi or American--we are deferentially asking the Iraqis for permission to proceed. Afraid to offend them, we are reluctant to defend our interests and to uphold our values. The fact is, they (along with many other countries) have been aided by America in producing those despots. Moreover, Leonard Peikoff said back in 1997 that Iraq shouldn't have been Clinton's target but rather Iran. Iraq never WAS a threat to America. As far as establishing a government that isn't a threat to Iraqis...while it may be a touching and charitable sentiment...it should not be funded by my tax money. If I had a dollar for every dictator and wanabee dictator that is out there, I would be rich. Should be be morally confident about our rights to establish governments that aren't a threat to anyone except the American taxpayers that finance their demise when those puppet governments we establish aren't asked for or wanted? Moreover, they often aren't much better. It seems like there isn't full agreement on the Iraq war even among ARI, let alone Objectivists here. Though ARI doesn't give full unqualified support to American foreign policy and actually routinely criticizes it. It just strikes me that many tout the fact that we have some moral right to be in Iraq and that is apalling to me. It wouldn't be apalling if the group I was talking about wasn't as smart and benevolent as it appears (the majority of this community). I think that we would have a moral right to be in Iraq if Saddam wasn't just full of hot air and actually posed a threat. He never did, though. I haven't once said that it was morally inferior, just often on the same level. and directly I might also add.... Easy there. Before putting words in my mouth, re-read what I actually said. I said that U.S fp has in many cases been tantamount to terrorism. I never said that we were WORSE than Muslim terrorists.
  17. 1) I wouldn't classify my posts as a rant. I would classify it as warranting my assertions and explaining exactly why I was asking the questions. I find that intellectually dishonest people are unwilling to examine their own motives or explain them when pressed which is why I took excruciating pains to explain WHY I was asking the questions I was and to rebuke CF for making an unwarranted ad hominem about my personal political beliefs that had zero basis in reality. 2) The second thread is nothing more than an analysis about a quote regarding Bush's inaugural speech. Has really nothing to do with what I'm after. The first thread is just discussing how viable Iraq is and my question wasn't really addressed in any meaninful way on that thread either. 3) The reason why I posed my questions in a whole new thread is because I don't want to wade through 25 pages of stuff that is half non-sense and half irrelevant to the specific questions I have. I want a specific answer to very specific question not a broad overarching "Is Iraq good or Iraq bad."
  18. 1) Why won't we need permission to use Iraq as a staging ground? Iraq isn't going to become the 51st state any time soon and is going to have some government independant of the U.S. Unless there is a U.S installed puppet government (like the Shah of Iran) whose power is fleeting at best...how will we have absolute rights over their airspace or land? It is THEIR property and not ours the last time I checked. Besides, what makes you think that the U.S won't switch positions about how Iraq is handled if a liberal get into the White House in '08 or even a moderate conservative? I think you are being prematurely optimistic here and if the people were thinking like this before invading Iraq they were even MORE premature. Besides, do you anticipate any other military operations in the region? If so, how do you think that is really plausible considering how over extended our military is? We also can use Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey (which is how we worked Gulf War I and II). 2) The breach of the cease fire was directed at planes flying in their airspace, not American citizens or any allies of America. North Korea broke the NPT and a whole host of other laws and we were more concerned about Iraq. What is the strategic value in that? How about Iran? Iraq shooting at military planes flying in it's air space doesn't strike me as a reasonable threat to the lives of Americans in any relevant sense. 3) Sure, Saddam paid blood money to terrorists in Isreal. So have many other state sponsors of Islamic terrorism. Why the worry about Iraq and not another country that actually posed a credible threat to the United States or one that has actually threatened the United States? Like Iran for example? 4) What an example! you too can have al-Qaeda cells in your country assasinating your leaders, killing your security forces, and indescriminately killing civilians. There ain't no such thing as a free lunch. How many middle eastern countries to you see excited and willing to pay the price of really waging war against the terrorists? A great many of them support the terrorists in spirit or in tangible ways. 5) Libya happened in part because the country was doing really damn poorly and Qadafi realized that it was much wiser strategically speaking to get American economic aid and trade than keep starving and doing poorly economically speaking. I would say that is as big of a part of the equation as anything else. Fidel Castro didn't exactly "pause" because of Arbenz, Ortega, or the numerous other Latin American pseudo Communists that America was obsessed with overthrowing. As far as understanding Pakistan's nuclear ambitions and NPT stuff...how is that really important? We haven't stopped them from getting nukes. Moreover, a giant clue that they had them came when they started launching test missles. Isn't intelligence gathering the job of the CIA? Oh wait...they fail at that routinely so I guess involvement with Pakistan has about zero beneficial uses. Except it allowed the CIA to train and fund some anti-Communist guerillas that would become Al-Qaeda. Our involvement with Pakistan has hurt us in so many ways that the benefits are marginal at best. Besides...after the massive intelligence failures that lead to 9/11 and a faulty WMD justification for Iraq, what makes you think that we could have found out anything relevant anyways? This seems tenuous at best. 6) Once again, we can protect our oil interests by staging wars from other places in the Middle East.
  19. I'm not a libertarian in any way whatsoever, so drop the ad hominems. From everything I have read TOC is a load of bunk that supports Christianity and a whole lot of of other nonsense. I never once advocated any anarcho-capitalist ideas (because they are stupid as Ayn Rand pointed out repeatedly). I believe 100% in the ideas of capitalism, government non-intervention in the lives of it's citizens unless it is to punish some coercive act, atheism, the law of non-contradiction, the supremacy of reason, etc. Everything I have read about libertarianism strikes me as warped and misguided from Rothbardian Libertarianism all the way to the other mixed bag crap that is espoused in other circles. I'm not calling Israel terrorists or any other silly crap that libertarians do. Israel actually has some balls when fighting terrorists (or it least it used to. read = Entebbe) and doesn't contribute to it's own demise by providing its enemies with weapons and training. If anything, I see Israel as being the ideal model for the U.S to follow foreign policy wise. You don't see them giving Iran light water nuclear reactors and wondering why they are now producing nuke weapons designed to hold the world hostage. I'm no Muslim apologist here. I think their philosophy is shit because it is predicated on blatant hatred of capitalism and is an anti-life philosophy that labels illogical behavior as man's philosophical ideal. Didn't we freeze Libya's assets for Pan Am 103 because they were labeled a state sponsor of terror? They didn't actually have any part of the operation, but they provided shelter to the people who funded and carried out the attack on an innocent jet liner. What about America who harbors people (government officials) who claim that they have a legitimate right to your money and a right to send it to the people who want to cut your throats like Nick Berg's?I read the indictment of Islam under the member writing of this very forum and agree 100%. Islam IS shit and I wouldn't be shedding any tears if every mullah received a bullet to their brain courtesy of the U.S government.The fact is though, I'm a big enough realist to realize that doing so would only further fuel the ranks of terrorists. What happens when you kill a Wesley Mouch? One more steps up in their place. Isn't that all we are doing here? Why aren't we shrugging and defending ourselves when there is an actual threat instead of playing the terrorist game. Why are my tax dollars going to rebuild one more crappy third world country when that money should be given straight back to the people who put it in and never taken out of our checks to begin with? Is it in my best interest to have one more unstable country for Al-Zarqawi to run free in? Is it in my best interest to fund policies that were ultimately misguided (For the love of reason, the CIA itself has admitted it's intelligence and justification for going to war was 100% wrong).I know if asked I wouldn't have sent a lightwater reactor to Iran. I also wouldn't have funded a useless excursion into Iraq to get rid of Saddam and establish democracy (which wasn't the original argument in the first place, it was WMD's that haven't turned up which is just another example of the mixed bag philosophy that is embodied in our government). Objectivism is a closed system. It has very set and defined parameters about what it is and what it isn't. The same thing with the "trendy" people like Angelina Jolie who declare their interest for Objectivism and go work with the anti-Israeli United Nations. Ayn Rand was pro reason which meant she was pro-individualist by default because individualism is a necessary byproduct of reason and the nature of our metaphysical existence. People who go with Objectivism because "everyone else is" are rejecting the reality that Ayn Rand put a premium on reason. Thus, I don't consider how one could be Objectivist and pro-American government at the same time. It strikes me as the same problem as people who take up Objectivism as a passing fad. I'm asking an honest question here that is provoked by honest motives. I love Objectivism and what it stands for. I can't stand perversions of it's truth which is why I think libertarians are evil bastards. Objectivism says that A = A...no exceptions to that rule. When A appears to be not-A you have to check your premises because contradictions can't exist. That means that reality IS what it is. I see before me some established facts. We HAVE funded terrorists and trained them. We DID topple several governments in Latin America because we thought they were all going to end up little USSR's on our back doorstep (despite the fact that the average income in Honduras was $550 per year...but whatever). We DID sent a nuclear reactor to Tehran. We ARE negotiating with blackmailing bastards (the North Korean government). If A is A and the facts are facts...then how can this be supported as something it isn't? Are these actions not the product of a mixed bag philosophy? This isn't the work of an Objectivist government. It is a product of Liberal and Conservative governments. Conservatives place a premium on laissez-fair capitalism and no premium on religious freedom/personal freedom to live an uncoerced life in the bedroomwhile Liberals place a premium on personal freedoms while denying economic rights that are necessary for things to actually work. They both suck. How can a Conservative or Liberal government be supported by Objectivists or the actions produced by such governments? Aren't they going to be as philosophically corrupted as the ideologies themselves? Look at what would happen if the libertarians were in power. It would probably be the friggin' end of the world because of their philosophical corruption. Given established facts, how can such mixed bag trip be supported? The fact that I'm asking the question doesn't make me a damn libertarian. I want a real answer to a real question. -Evan
  20. Many people on this board are Pro-Iraq War and for increased intervention in the Middle East. I have read several comments like "Lets go take down Iran" or "We should take out Saudi Arabia" or "I wish Syria was on target next." With this in mind I have two questions: 1) What makes you think that U.S intervention would make things better? 2) Why is it that Objectivists routinely uphold that American foreign policy is morally superior to Muslim terrorists? The reasons for my questions are as follows: Rreasons for question 1: Vietnam. Our intervention there killed lots and lots of people. Did things really get better? Same thing with our Latin American interventions during the 1980's. How about the installation of a puppet government in Iran that was pretty brutal (The Shah)? We know how much Iranians loved that violation of their sovereignty right? They loved it so much that it became a rallying cry used to recruit terrorists and was the reason why Ayatollah Kohmeini was able to garner so much popular support (he was a political exile of the Shah's regime). More importantly, we are currently unable to prevent terrorists from entering via the Iraq-Syria border. We are also unable to protect Iraqi politicians and civilians from the terrorists. The security forces are also getting killed quite regularly. How would extending our current involvment in the Middle East be any better? Our troops are already stretched horribly as it is. There isn't really any way to pull out of Iraq and have it NOT decend into a chaotic mess until it is stabalized which could take many years. Reasons for question 2: If one is claiming to be morally superior to brutal rapists, you can't support rapists with money and weapons can you? People would think pretty poorly of me if I said "those morally inferior Christian people are such scum philosophically speaking and with how they treat their women" and then saw that I donated $10,000 to Billy Graham’s charity drive or was hob knobbing with Pat Robertson. We claim to be superior to Muslim terrorists...but why isn't anyone pointing out the obvious fact that many of our actions support terrorism in 2 ways: a) Actual funding, training, and weapons selling. Has anyone forgotten Iran Contra? Yeah...we sold weapons to Iran. How about selling weapons to our OLD buddy Saddam Hussein. Or how training and financing the ISI which in turn passed on that training and funding to Islamic "freedom fighters" (read = Taliban) to help fight the Ruskies in Afghanistan? We are all aware that that training was quickly turned against us in the form of Al-Qaeda right? We call many of these regimes state sponsors of terror...so why are we superior as past sponsors of those states? Anyone have the answer as to where Iran got it's 5 megawatt reactor from for it's Tehran Nuclear Research Center? If you guessed the United States you would be correct. B- It seems to me that several actions of the United States could actually be equated with terrorist actions. (Gee whiz). -Almost our entire Latin American foreign policy under Ronald Reagan, John Negroponte, and George H.W Bush during the 1980's. One shining example of this would be the mining of Managua in Nicaragua. Another good one is that we were so freaked out about the Sandanistas (who were freely elected I might add) that we decided to sponsor a guerilla group to overthrow them. Turns out, those Sandanistas didn't really require that. They lost elections in Feb 25th of 1990 and peacefully stepped down. Gee golly. Or El Salvadorian/ Honduran death squads that were funded and trained by the United States that killed numerous civilians including Oscar Romero (a Catholic priest). Or the CIA backed overthrow of Arbenz in Guatemala (A communist) that thrust Guatemala into 36 years of Civil War and political unrest (100,000 casualties). -Keeping the Saudi Royal family in power which is tacit support of a pretty repressive Islamic regime. -The bombing of the al-Shifa pharmaceutical plant in Khartoum, Sudan. Claimed by Clinton to have been making chemical weapons, it was actually the countries main source of malaria drugs and thousands of Sudanese civilians died as a result. The justification was that there was EMPTA in the soil samples taken around the plant (which later turned out to be pretty blatantly false). In careful subsequent testing of the site, no Empta was found. After exhaustive and systematic analysis of samples collected from various locations at Al Shifa, professor Thomas D. Tullius, chairman of the chemistry department at Boston University, declared in The New York Times that "in those samples, to the practical limits of scientific deduction, there was no Empta, or Empa, its breakdown product." My last question of the day is quite simple : If Objectivists recognize that the American government is a mixed bag (philosophically speaking) with often mixed results (both good and bad) then why the blatant jingoism and pro-America drum beating? Is it any real surprise that such mixed bag philosophies are applied with often poor results?
  21. 1) Many artists happily confine themselves to a genre, stereotype, image, or whatever you want to call it. 2) Profits associated with images send a signal out to other businessmen indicating that there is a market. That is why you get trends and fads which ultimately flood the supply side of things and overall quality goes down. That is why people that start the trends are often the only ones who really have a shot at long term success. For example, look at the nu-metal movement. I can think of tons of bands that have been dropped such as: Adema, Crazy Town, (Papa Roach nearly was dropped), Dope, etc. Even the people who initiated the nu-metal movement haven't been able to maintain their success levels that they faced initially when they started (read = Korn and The Deftones). The only way to keep up in a homogenous market is product differentiation. 3) To answer your question, I think it is a good thing that the music industry sells what is being bought because it helps keep them in business and maintain profits. Doing so lets them expand into more risky ventures and invest in other projects that are more "out of the box." A lot of funding for sub-labels comes from either private individuals in the business who want to own a chunk or from the label's revenue. Like any forms of corruption, artistic corruption eats itself alive and wears itself out. It cannot last forever if for no other reason than fads desensitize everyone to the novelty of what someone had the balls to step up and do to begin with which means that the market moves on and music evolves just like any other market.
  22. Here is a cool band to check out: Camera Check out their songs and rate 'em if you get a chance. -Evan
  23. First off, Give us some information about Parli. 1) What is the time format? How long is your first constructive? How do you decide who goes first? If you don't have a case concerning the other team's topic, what do you do? Are you given time (like in FX or DX) to come up with a case? 2)What are the speech lengths? I think LDer knows the classic 6,3,7,3,4,6,3 for speech times in LD, but what are Parli times? 3) Is cross ex open ended? Can you tag team? Is it a free for all (like the new PFD) or is it more closed like LD? I think this information would really help in crafting topics...
  • Create New...