Since many of us will be at the party tonight, someone suggested an open thread for follow up comments. I am not sure how many will be able to continue posting on the “party” thread once we reach 300 posts, so feel free to use this thread to continue the conversation, or start a new one!

61 thoughts on “Open Thread!

  1. Elena

    I agree with AWCheney, please don’t fall off you chair AWC 😉

    Afganastan is not the problem and we should never have diverted our recources or our collective focus to Iraq. But we are where we are, and now we need to figure how to do “less damage” in Iraq, and I’m not sure if that is possible.

  2. AWCheney,

    I agree with you Emma, with one addition…Afghanistan is not the problem with our foreign policy, Iraq is. Unfortunately, right or wrong, we’re committed there (in Iraq) and, should we pull out at the wrong time, it will just be another Vietnam.

    Ironic isn’t it? You steadfastly oppose the presence of a few lawnmowers and construction workers here in our country but have no problem supporting our military occupation of other countries and peoples. Hmmmm….

    A major problem that we have in Afghanistan, however, is the US support of the warlords…many of whom are worse than Al Qaeda and are feared as much, or more, by the Afghans. If the US had not decided to enter Iraq, perhaps they could have sent in sufficient forces to resolve BOTH problems in Afghanistan, rather that exacerbating one in order to deal with the other.

    The only thing the American military should be doing in Iraq and Afghanistan is hunting down Al Queda and killing them. The catch is that the longer we stay, the larger Al Queda grows and the job gets bigger and bigger. If we wanted to do the job right, we would need to flood both countries with troops. Perhaps a million soldiers in Iraq and 500,000 in Afghanistan. They would only be deployed for a very short amount of time until we had crippled the enemy and proven to the Islamic world that those who attack us will be hunted down and obliterated. After having made this point with extreme prejudice, we would then pack up and leave. No nation building. No remolding a culture that is not ours to remold.

    On the right, the Dick Cheneys of the world want to remold Islamic culture for the sake of cheap and steady supply of oil. On the left, the Samantha Powers of the world want to remold Islamic culture for the sake of equal rights and an end to genocide and warlords. Both perspectives are imbued with inherent bigotry against Muslims. Both of them will lead to war with Islam. Both of them strengthen Al Queda.

  3. AWCheney

    “I agree with AWCheney, please don’t fall off you chair AWC”

    You mean like I almost did when I agreed with Mackie’s comment (Mackie, 21. June 2008, 6:04)? 🙂

  4. hello

    Hi Mackie, I’ve read allot of your posts and it seems as if your contantly referring to all of the illegal immigrants in this country as “a few lawnmowers and construction workers”. I would hardly call around 12 to 20 million people “a few” and I certainly don’t think that they are all lawnmowers and construction workers.

  5. hello,

    Yes you’re right. I’m just going to call them undocumented workers although I don’t like the impersonal nature of the phrase. You’re right, they occupy all kinds of fields. I even know an undocumented worker who’s an MBA grad working at a very nice software company. As for the ‘a few’ part, I guess that comes from the fact that I automatically think this whole issue is way ridiculously overblown. I guess to me, it might as well be just a few because they’re no threat whatsoever.

    I think my new phrase will be relatively small number of undocumented workers. Keyword is relatively because compared to our national population, it’s small.

  6. Emma

    Mackie, I think we will just have to agree to disagree on parts of this issue. Whether or not one agrees with our actions in Iraq, we simply cannot just pull out right now. AWCheney is right, it will become another Vietnam, to an extent, and Al Qaeda will rise up bigger than ever. We are in it too deep and we can’t abandon the effort right now.

    As far as lessening the Middle East oil dependency, we need to dig into the strategic reserves and flood the market to lower the price, and then to drill in Alaska or to go nuclear once and for all. All of the fear-mongering about nuclear holocaust and spotted owls is holding us hostage to foreign supplies. Do away with gas-guzzling SUV’s, increase public transportation options, drill our own oil and have the courage to use nuclear power would go a long way toward ensuring our own economic stability.

  7. Censored bybvbl

    Emma, you’ve offered good suggestions about doing away with SUVs and increasing public transportation options. I’d suggest that futures speculation may be what needs to be regulated as it may play a larger part in the increase in fuel prices than a scarcity of oil.

  8. Emma,

    Yes, oil is key in disengaging from the Middle East. Our nonnegotiable need for oil and our hubris are the main drivers behind our growing war with the Islamic faith.

    Lets go back to Iraq for a second.
    What is your plan?
    What do you hope to accomplish and how?
    What have we accomplished in the last year at the cost of hundreds of American lives?

  9. Moon-howler

    Mackie has just asked Emma to win the Nobel Peace Prize, it sounds like. Emma, just say NO! It sounds like way too much responsibility.

  10. Emma

    MH, I think I might even take on global warming once I get the war all straightened out.

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