Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Max Baucus = corrupt coward

Since I believe in giving credit where credit is due, here is a great blog I found about what a stupid corrupt coward Max Baucus is.

That being said, Max Baucus is not only a corrupt coward, but a stupid corrupt coward because his actions today, or should I say inaction, that killed the public option in the health reform bill as it lurched its way through the Senate finance committee, will be the rallying call for Republicans in 2010 and 2012.

I think it was best enunciated during the Kerry v Bush battle of 2004. Why vote for Bush-lite when you can get the genuine article? By trying to appeal to conservative voters, democrats are throwing away their opportunity to show how they differ from their Republican rivals. If your campaign is based upon "hey look how conservative I can be while still calling myself a Democrat" your constituents are bound to say "well shit, why don't I just throw my hat in with the really conservative guy."

Bottom line, this will hurt you Max. And it will hurt President Obama. And it will hurt the 45 million who do not have health insurance. And it will hurt the 260 million who have our messy, complicated, and fragile health insurance. Hopefully enough other Democrats will realize this mistake and fight for a Single Payer, or at the very least, the Public Option.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Afghanistan: How many is enough?

The New York Times is reporting that Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, has said "success in Afghanistan would probably require more troops and certainly much more time". I would like him to be honest with Congress, the administration and the public and say exactly how many more troops, and how much more time he thinks it will take for "success".

Frankly, I am of the belief that matter how many more sons and daughters America and NATO decide to sacrifice in Afghanistan, there can never be "success" as I would define it, and I doubt that most people would consider what Mike Mullen is calling "success", truly successful. This brings us to the issue of what is success in Afghanistan, Iraq or Pakistan? What does it look like? Does anyone really believe that if we send another 100,000 or another 500,000 or even another 1,000,000 NATO soldiers to Afghanistan that it will transform the country into a Western style democracy where the biggest problems are which intern the President may have "not had sexual relations with"?

And if we are to have any trust in these generals, admirals and other military commanders, then they should say exactly how many more troops they need and for how long. Instead, we see them making their requests in a political framework, asking for 10-20,000 troops at a time. This is dishonest and erodes the public trust as well as prolongs these conflicts. It seems astonishing to me that all these military officials, who probably served during the Viet Nam war would still be unable to grasp the concept that America is not good at occupying other countries.

From the day American troops entered Afghanistan and Iraq it seemed to me that we were just beginning a countdown (or a countup of bodies) until the troops would have to be pulled out and the world would agree that the missions were giant failures and gross expenditures of lives and treasure.

If anyone believes that another 30,000 or even 300,000 troops in Afghanistan will truly achieve "success" then have I got some real nice shorefront property to sell you on Baffin Island.
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