Disinformation: Pathetic But Dangerous

Truth is stranger than fiction. That is what gives traction to conspiracy theories. People find patterns where none exit; they insist history be reasonably when it is not. They see unicorns in cloud formations and conspiracies in complicated events. No surprise that a majority of Muslims refuse to believe that Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks. It is a hoax perpetrated by the U.S. and Israel, they say.

According to a recent Pew poll there is not a Muslim population is the world where a majority believes Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks. The numbers range from 15% in Pakistan holding Arabs responsible to 48% among French Muslims. Let's not blame only Muslims. When I google 9/11 conspiracy, I find lots of stupid fellow Americans and others. I hope they are all taken up by UFOs and probed while flying over the Bermuda Triangle.

The weak minded are always credulous, but I find it unlikely that as much as 85% of any large population can be idiots. Rather I believe that these attitudes result from disinformation spread by our enemies and our own tolerance of such things.

I remember the first time someone told me about his idea that Jews had planned 9/11. I told him that I hope he didn’t really believe that because anyone who did was an idiot. My wife told me that I was rude. But neither this guy nor anyone else who heard about the confrontation ever brought it up in my presence again. I don't suppose I changed his mind, but I did make it more difficult for him to spread the poison.

This is not random poison. It is disinformaton.

Think of disinformation like counterfeit money. It is made by somebody. In the old days a few people with sophisticated printing operations tried to print and pass large amounts of money. Dozens of people producing thousands of dollars were relatively easy to find. With today's technologies, many people can produce and pass small amounts of counterfeit cash. Thousands of people producing each producing a few hundreds of dollar is hard to stop.

The Soviet Union had a special office that produced disinformation about the U.S.. In those days, you could often trace the linage of a particular complex of lies. It didn't make the fellow travelers change their minds, but at least you could point a source. The Soviets did excellent forgeries and had well planned operations, but we could develop counter measures.

Today we have thousands of people producing small amounts of disinformation and conspiracy theories. The centralized systems we developed to counter centrally produced Soviet disinformation doesn't work very well against a diversified group of little guys. It is up to us good little guys to counter these naughty little guys.

Not many things really piss me off. Disinformation about my country is one thing that does. It is done with malice of forethought and/or by stupid people. I implore everyone not to tolerate these sorts of things. It is not a virtue to tolerate hateful stupidity nor is it a good idea to let it spread. So, let us go among them and do the needful debunking. If you need more on disinformation follow this link. See also Debunking the 9/11 Myths.


Posted by Jack at August 9, 2006 10:48 PM
Comments
Comment #174409

Jack,

You’ve met me, we’ve broken bread together.

Do I strike you as some wild eyed, tin hatted, conspiracy theorist?

Yet as I sat stranded in the Pasco, Washington airport, watching the second plane hit the WTC on TV, my first thought was of Timothy McVeigh.
However, being a mostly reasonable person I dismissed the thought as soon as the evidence pointed elsewhere.

To this day, however, I still think there are American citizens of the wacko, lunatic, WASP, persuasion that would indeed delight in bringing our government to it’s knees.

And that’s a truly scary thought.

Posted by: Rocky at August 9, 2006 11:21 PM
Comment #174410

Rocky

It is okay to have that as your first thought. Lots of thoughts ran through my mind on that day. Tim McVeigh’s type was a logical suspect in absence of any other information. If you still believe them after so much information comes out, then it is a problem.

I agree there are Americans depraved enough to attack their own country. They did in Oklahoma; they did not on 9/11. And the Jewish conspiracy idea was always way idiotic.

Posted by: Jack at August 9, 2006 11:28 PM
Comment #174411

Geeze Jack, I’ll take your threat to heart. I wouldn’t want you to misinterpret anything I believe.

In the meantime, I think blaming the “little guys” for misinformation isn’t appropriate until you get our government to stop putting it out. That should also piss you off if what you say is true.

Bullying must be such fun and so effective, you sure stopped that one!!

Posted by: womanmarine at August 9, 2006 11:30 PM
Comment #174412

No argument here, Jack. One of my best friends insists that Bush and company planned 9/11 — something about molten metal, yadda yadda. There are genuine mysteries, of course, but that is why we have standards of evidence. We did land on the moon, terrorists did take out the towers, LBJ didn’t plot to assassinate Kennedy (ok, that one always was appealing, but entertaining a kooky theory is not the same as believing it).

It’s deeply distressing. We have enough legitimate things to debate and worry about without clouding everything with fuzzy thinking. I’ve always thought part of the appeal of conspiracy theories is that the believers can feel they are part of some elite group who knows the truth. I suppose you could make connections between conspiracy theorists, creationists, wacky guru-led cults and the like. It all comes down to screwy thinking.

Posted by: Trent at August 9, 2006 11:30 PM
Comment #174413

Trent

I am a believer that God created the heavens and the earth as recorded in the book of Genesis in the Bible. That certainly is not screwy thinking.

Posted by: tomh at August 9, 2006 11:40 PM
Comment #174416

I think the important thing to keep in mind when it comes to these theories, especially the Muslim world’s attitude towards 9/11, is the difference in available information. Most Pakistanis can’t just head into their office and google the 9/11 commission’s report. When reliable information isn’t readily available, people will tend to believe what they wish to be true. Also, the ratio of poor information to good is changed. In our new-hungry society, ill-conceived theories are quickly shouted out; but in a world where news is passed by word of mouth, it is much easier for an erroneous theory to take root. I would suggest that malicious disinformation is less to blame than gossipy nomads.

Posted by: David S at August 9, 2006 11:51 PM
Comment #174417

tomh-

Yes, it is.

Posted by: Daqvid S at August 9, 2006 11:52 PM
Comment #174419

Trent, I’m with you about the creationism, btw. I can’t get around how so many of the same people support that and try to debunk global warming as “junk science” and the potential in stem cell research as inconclusive. I suppose “evidence” is a flexible term.

Anyway, about this thread, I am certainly sympathetic to Jack’s complaint (the Jews always get blamed, don’t they?) But let’s not forget a) the number of times our own government has blatantly lied to us to serve its own purposes (from the Spanish-American war to the incident that started Vietnam—all are documented as fabrications) and b) the fact that the Pentagon has had its very own office of disinformation (I don’t know if it’s still running, however). I’ll say this again and again, and it’s a non-partisan message, but we *must* first lead by example.

So many of you love Michael Moore, I’m sure, but he makes a good point when he asks hypothetically how the world would view us if we directed some of that war money to do things like provide clean drinking water. Regardless of what you think, we have unquestioningly *lost* the hearts and minds—however much we had of them—of the Arab world. Those poll numbers are of no surprise to me. It’s our foreign policy (and I use the term loosely), first and foremost.

Posted by: DavidL at August 9, 2006 11:59 PM
Comment #174420
Think of disinformation like counterfeit money. It is made by somebody.

Oh! You mean like the Federal Reserve? They print hundreds of billions of new money every year ($135 billion per year between 1950 and 2000). How are they different than any counterfeiter? Since when did inflation (3% or higher) become acceptable? And, why is it the “In Party” and politicians want to print even more money, and no politicians want to talk about it? Never mind the man behind the curtain. No, the debt is NOT too large. Don’t worry. We can just print more money to pay it. Hmmmmm. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could pay your VISA bill with your VISA card? How about lying by omission? Why doesn’t anyone in government and the Federal Reserve want to talk honestly about too much debt, spending, borrowing, and printing money? Is that sort of like misinformation?

Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 12:06 AM
Comment #174425

Jack, your point is well taken, I think the issue is a lack of a free press in the Middle East. It should serve as a remainder to all of us how important a free press is in this Country.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 10, 2006 12:32 AM
Comment #174427

Disinformation?

9/11:
“Had I known that the enemy was going to use airplanes to strike America, to attack us. I would have used very resource, every asset, every power of this government to protect the American people.”
-President Bush (03.25.04)

Case for war:
“Evidence from intelligence sources, secret communications and statements by people now in custody reveal that Saddam Hussein aids and protects terrorists, including members of Al Qaida.”
-State of the Union Address – 1/28/2003

“The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.”
-State of the Union Address – 1/28/2003

“The Iraqi regime is a threat of unique urgency… It has developed weapons of mass death”
-President Bush (10.02.02)

“We believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons.”
-Dick Cheney March 16, 2003

“I don’t believe anyone that I know in the administration ever said that Iraq had nuclear weapons.”
-Donald Rumsfeld May 14, 2003

Katrina:
I don’t think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees. President Bush (09/01/05)

That ‘perfect storm’ of a combination of catastrophes exceeded the foresight of the planners, and maybe anybody’s foresight. Michael Chertoff (09/05/05)

Handling of Iraq war:
And I have yet to hear from our commanders on the ground that they need more troops. President Bush (11/04/04)

We are finding terrorists and bringing them to justice. We are gathering information about where the terrorists may be hiding. We are trying to disrupt their plots and plans. Anything we do … to that end in this effort, any activity we conduct, is within the law. We do not torture.” - President Bush (Nov. 7, 2005).

mission accomplished?

Posted by: ChristianLeft at August 10, 2006 12:37 AM
Comment #174428
In the meantime, I think blaming the “little guys” for misinformation isn’t appropriate until you get our government to stop putting it out. That should also piss you off if what you say is true.
Yes. Such as:
  • “We found the weapons of mass destruction; We found biological laboratories”. Did you see the so-called biological laboratory? There was nothing in it. What WMD?
  • And, how did many Americans come to believe Iraq was linked to 9/11 ?
  • How about “slam dunk”? Is that misinformation, or just careless negligence?
  • How about “Read my Lips, no new taxes”?.
  • Or “I did not have sex with that woman”?
  • And, what ever happened with Spc. Sean Baker’s case (more like coverup)?
  • Or, “You’re doing a good job, Brownie”?
  • Or ignoring numerous warnings to secure cockpit doors?

Does any of that sound like misinformation?

Seems to me, if we’re going to discuss misinformation, we ought to include some of the worst culprits, like our own irresponsible, bought-and-paid-for incumbent politicians?

Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 12:38 AM
Comment #174429

Jack,

Take a look in the mirror for once. You’ve been spreading and reinforcing misinformation about this country for a long time at this place. How are the “naughty little guys” you speak of any less harmful than any number of false ideas you have put forth and defended?

And keep your threats to yourself. If someone threatened to shoot you every time you brought up a crazy idea for discussion, you’d look like a piece of swiss cheese.

-Burt

Posted by: Burt at August 10, 2006 12:41 AM
Comment #174432

Eighty-five percent sounds right on the nose. I posted this before in another thread, here it is again:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11009379/

In another article about the same subject, the man who did the study said 85% of us will absolutly not allow facts to influence what we want to belive.

Posted by: Rene at August 10, 2006 12:57 AM
Comment #174436

Christianleft

“We believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons.”
-Dick Cheney March 16, 2003


More disinformation…

From the transcript, it seems clear that [host Tim] Russert did not even blink. This is because Cheney mis-spoke, and Russert knew it. Russert had asked whether Iraq had a nuclear program; earlier in the interview, Cheney had asserted his belief that Saddam had “reconstituted these programs since the Gulf War.”
With this response, Cheney managed to substitute “weapons” for “programs,” but it is clear from the context what he meant. Later in the show, Cheney also said this: ” … over time, given Saddam’s posture there, given the fact that he has a significant flow of cash as a result of the oil production of Iraq, it’s only a matter of time until he acquires nuclear weapons.”

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 1:13 AM
Comment #174441

These conspiracy theories are nothing more than the products of weak minds who wish to not deal with the truth. Muslims don’t want to believe that other Muslims perpetrated 9/11, so they take any innuendo they can find and make a theory blaming the Jews. Certain Americans hate Bush and want to believe that all of our problems are his fault, so they invent a theory about how he did it. Meanwhile, all they show by this is that they are weak. We are now involved in a clash of civilizations/ideology for the Muslim world. How much easier is it to just say that its all Bush & Co’s fault? All we need to do then is get rid of them and all our problems magically go away. The other traits common to conspiracy theorist other than stupidity are weakness, cowardice and denial.

Posted by: 1LT B at August 10, 2006 2:36 AM
Comment #174447

1LT B, I think you make a gross mistake in equating conspiracy theory with real conspiracy questions.

I for one don’t know what to make of the incredible links between Bush, the Sauds, 9/11, and the plan to invade Iraq before 9/11 even happened. There are an awful lot of coincidences which beg for answers, which are cloaked in secrecy by the Bush administration. Such questions are healthy, sane, rational, and deserving of an answer at some point.

I grant there are many who draw conclusions from coincident events without awareness that coincident events prove nothing but coincidence. But, I think you are tending to lump all those who inquire and have questions about the Bush Admin’s links to the House of Saud, and the 9/11 hijackers mostly having come from, or through, Saudi Arabia in with those who have made up their minds. I think you do yourself a disservice if that is the case. Democracy without vigilance, demand for accountability, and a healthy skepticism of those in power, will likely be short-lived.

Posted by: David R. Remer at August 10, 2006 4:08 AM
Comment #174448

My Name Is Roger:

To { Jack } and { Trent } and { David }

I remember a man by the name of JESEPH GOBLES saying ” THE BIGGER THE LIE, THE EASER IT IS TO GET PEOPLE TO BELIEVE IT “.

I believe the teaching of EVOLUTION is the best exampel of misinformation and disinformation that has come along in hundreds of years. It has filled our childrens minds with [ JUNK SCIENCE ], and and is being reinforced by misinformed Teachers in our public Schools.

Maybe Joseph Gobles was right ” THE BIGGER THE LIE, THE EASER IT IS TO GET PEOPLE TO BELIEVE IT”

ROGER


Posted by: ROGER at August 10, 2006 5:38 AM
Comment #174452

David,

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t look into the Bush Administration, but I don’t think you or any other sane person really believes that Bush etc actually planned the 9/11 attacks. That’s the type of conspiracy theory that I refer to. I feel it is quite possible, if not likely, that Bush used the 9/11 attacks as a justification to invade Iraq. However, the idea that Bush orchestrated the attacks, or at least the attack on the Pentagon, seems to me like nothing more than an attempt to deflect the truth that we ahve a major war that’s going to be ongoing for quite some time.

The news on today about the terrorist plot from Britain tends to show just how foolish the idea that we can blame Bush. Unless we want to believe that he got at least 21 apparently British men to decide to blow themselves up.

Posted by: 1LT B at August 10, 2006 7:02 AM
Comment #174454

Random inform and misinformation, geeez sounds like what bush did to get the US to INVADE Iraq.
bush said they have WMD, and none have been found. They were involved in 9/11, nothing shown that they were.
But I guess I must be one those idiots because I believe in UFO’s, and GOD to.

Elvis is alive and working in a grocery store..

Posted by: KT at August 10, 2006 7:24 AM
Comment #174460

Woman

Yes, it was effective. Do you really think I should have let this guy spread the lies that Jews had bombed the Towers? Some things are intolerable. I did not touch this guy or even say I was going to. I just put him down with a strong rebuke.

I have done some public speaking and advise others on it. I tell them always to try to be nice, but if someone heckles you, ridicule him if you can. I don’t hold to the notion that you have to let everyone speak his mind with impunity. Nobody on this blog lets me do that, BTW.

DaveS

What worries me more are the French Muslims, who have access to information and the conspiracy theorists among us.

Trent

I think you are right that people want to feel part of an elite group that knows the truth. I think these people should ask themselves if they are in the know about much of anything else.

You stepped into the creationist thing and now we will get a lot of that. I think creationism is scientifically wrong, but I don’t think it is disinformation. It is not designed to destroy or mislead, it is just in itself misguided.

I know. Now I will get it too. Thanks a lot, Trent, for opening the door. I will get it worse because I am a conservative.

d.a.n.

Can’t you ever just stick to the point? Disinformation is not the same as mistaken information, disagreement or even lies. It is part of an overall program designed to confuse and discredit. Sort of like a dirty political campaign except aimed at our country on a broad front.

Christian Left

Yes, we know some people think the enemy is the United States and its leaders and you feel it necessary to confess the sins of America at every opportunity. I didn’t read through them all, but thanks for the contribution. Now we can leave it alone, right.

Burt

I never put forward, much less defend, anything I know to be false. I guess you are just so much smarter that you can figure out all these things, but sometimes I suppose I make mistakes. When I defend my ideas, I try to use sources that are correct. I know that some people get annoyed when I dispel their myths.

Posted by: Jack at August 10, 2006 8:03 AM
Comment #174465

Your Name is Roger -

You believe what Gobles said? Wasn’t he a liar?

Posted by: Don at August 10, 2006 8:36 AM
Comment #174467

Your name is Roger -

“I believe the teaching of EVOLUTION is the best exampel of misinformation and disinformation that has come along in hundreds of years.”

Really? It came along that recently?

Posted by: Don at August 10, 2006 8:41 AM
Comment #174469

All this is besides the point. I know Bush planned the 911 Attack, I know he directed Katrina to hit poor black families in Louisiana, I know he himself placed explosives under the levies. I know he recruits terrorist to further his Neocon (read Jewish) agenda of taking over Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon in order to get all the oil from the Earth to enrich the Oil companies and Halliburton. Bush is so stupid and an Idiot that he can master mind many plots at the same time including denying Gore and Kerry the Presidency. My proof is Bush is Evil

Posted by: frankxcid at August 10, 2006 9:04 AM
Comment #174470

Roger said

“I believe the teaching of EVOLUTION is the best exampel of misinformation and disinformation.”

What you believe is irrelevent. But what an excellent example of how little our population knows about biological science.

Care to share some of your doubts?

Posted by: Roger at August 10, 2006 9:08 AM
Comment #174471

Jack, yeah, I wasn’t thinking. As soon as I posted and reread, I went “uh oh.”

This blog probably isn’t the proper venue to debate creationism — anyway, here’s a site that gives the scientific response to every known creationist claim. Maybe creationists can just post their own links and we can let it go at that?

Posted by: Trent at August 10, 2006 9:21 AM
Comment #174476

Jack, I agree that disinformation is a pernicious threat to civilisation. That’s why I passionately implore all good hearted people who see this post, to watch this video, to get a clear handle on disinformation.
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7828123714384920696%20&hl=en

There is a reason why human beings, yes, our kith and kin, flesh and blood, do horrific things or support horrific things, and it is our duty to understand why if we are to solve the underlying problems. This video is 80 long. Many people will shy away from it for that reason alone. But if you retreat into your own paradigm and refuse to consider other paradigms, then if yours is actually unreal, you make it impossible to solve problems which simply become intractable.

Arabs and Muslims are not a race apart. They are not inhuman automatons. They have similar ambitions to the majority of us. They want to live in peace, seek a measure of prosperity, raise and educate their families. The Nazis painted the Jews as an unspeakable sub human race, an untermensch. It was necessary for them to do so, so as to ensure they could blunt natural human horror at such treatment of fellow human beings. By doing so they ensured at least passivity in the German people which enabled them to pursue their evil project. If we, of our generation allow this same process to be practised on another people, then truly, we have forgotten the lesson of the Holocaust. And it is American dollars and weapons that not only support this massive human tragedy but without which it would not be possible. If you consider yourself to be fairminded and open to hearing the other side of the argument, then please, please watch this video in its entirety. Once you have done so, then make up your mind.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at August 10, 2006 9:46 AM
Comment #174478

Jack, your point is well taken, I think the issue is a lack of a free press in the Middle East. It should serve as a remainder to all of us how important a free press is in this Country.
Posted by: j2t2 at August 10, 2006 12:32 AM

j2t2, do you seriously believe what you’re saying? Especially where you say how important a free press is “in this country”? No, I guess you can’t be, it has to be bitter satire.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at August 10, 2006 9:50 AM
Comment #174480

Jack:

You are correct about disinformation. It is different from mistaken information in its intent. I have a problem with the use of the word ‘liar’ right now—its used virtually any time someone disagrees with information. My problem is that the word ‘liar’ connotes intent, when its often just mistaken information with no intent to mislead.

Re the creation issue: I suppose if one believes the ‘DaVinci Code’, then creation theory could be a big conspiracy with intent to deceive. I look at it rather simply. I believe God created everything. I don’t much care whether he did it through creation or by the process of evolution. That he had the power to do it makes him omnipotent. Most of the world believes in God, though there are differing versions of who God is. Atheists are in the vast minority, though they tend to be somewhat vocal.

I don’t think man came from apes. There’s no definitive proof of that. If proof emerges to definitively show that we did come from apes, then I’ll believe that God used that mechanism to create us. It’ll change the specific nature of that part of my belief, but it won’t change the basis of my belief.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at August 10, 2006 9:53 AM
Comment #174481

tomorrows headlines will read - “UK bombing plot was designed by Bush and his administration”. Just more disinformation that is propogated across the web and other media.

Someone had it right - we are in a very long and protracted war against terrorism and yes it is most definitely a clash of two civilizations. Arabs/Muslim against the west.

Posted by: Andy at August 10, 2006 9:57 AM
Comment #174483
Jack wrote: d.a.n. Can’t you ever just stick to the point? Disinformation is not the same as mistaken information, disagreement or even lies. It is part of an overall program designed to confuse and discredit. Sort of like a dirty political campaign except aimed at our country on a broad front.
SOURCE: Yahoo! dictionary: dis·in·for·ma·tion NOUN: Deliberately misleading information announced publicly or leaked by a government or especially by an intelligence agency in order to influence public opinion or the government in another nation: “He would be the unconscious channel for a piece of disinformation aimed at another country’s intelligence service” (Ken Follett). Dissemination of such misleading information.
Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary: Main Entry: dis·in·for·ma·tion Pronunciation: (“)dis-“in-f&r-‘mA-sh&n Function: noun : false information deliberately and often covertly spread (as by the planting of rumors) in order to influence public opinion or obscure the truth

Jack,
Really? Well you had better contact Websters and all other dictionary publishers right away, because they are just as confused as you are !

Hmmmmmmmmmm … So, are you saying the definitions above and everyone else are all wrong, and “lies”, “deliberately misleading” or “false information” are not the same as “disinformation” ? Interesting.

Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 10:11 AM
Comment #174484

Jack,

Thanks for the links. I’ve got a nutty acquaintance who peddles the 9/11 conspiracy c**p. Not that I’ll ever change HIS mind, but being armed with some facts next time he brings it up publically will be worthwhile.

Mostly though, any conspiracy that requires so many people to be in on it doesn’t pass my credulity test.

The 2000 & 2004 elections are another matter. Not that I KNOW anything, but I remain suspicious. Still in the US, elections have to start out being pretty close in order for fraud to succeed. That’s why I’m not giving up on booting your guys out of office. :)

Posted by: Walker Willingham at August 10, 2006 10:12 AM
Comment #174487

Paul,
I certainly do beleive a free press is esential. Disinformation would, in my opinion, only be worse with out a free press. If the media is controllled,as it is in some countries, by the government ideas like Jack mentioned are much easier to disseminate to the public, without dissenting opinions and facts to muddy the waters.
Paul I do realize that the right to a free press is under attack in this country, I do understand that the medis is by and large controlled by a few corporate entities. I do understand that W and his Administration is doing what they can to curtail this right. That being said we still have a significant amount of free speech in this country.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 10, 2006 10:14 AM
Comment #174488
I don’t think man came from apes. There’s no definitive proof of that.

You’re right. We didn’t come from apes. Instead, both humans and apes descended from ape-like creatures that are our common ancestors.

And there is definitive proof of that.

Posted by: LawnBoy at August 10, 2006 10:16 AM
Comment #174489
j2t2 wrote: Disinformation would, in my opinion, only be worse with out a free press.
Absolutely. The media makes mistakes, and is often abused, and is not perfect, but it’s overall function is very important (as long as it does not become government controlled). Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 10:18 AM
Comment #174490

I agree with you, Jack, disinformation can be scarily effective - look at how many holocaust revisionists there are, for instance. But I think there’s a lot of disinformation coming from Team Red. Why do so many people believe we found WMDs in Iraq, or Saddam was behind 9/11? why do so many believe that “intelligent design” is scientifically credible, or that global warming isn’t?

You’re mostly playing fair on this issue, Jack, but remember your comments re BigBird’s story Dirty Harry - busted:

I take not joy in saying this (well maybe I do) but it no longer matters. We won this one. Any Republican can create enough doubt about Dems to negate the culture of corruption crap. Partisans will continue to believe what they want, but I doubt most Dems will make it a central part of their strategies, as they seemed set to do only weeks ago.

By “creating enough doubt” did you mean disinformation?

Posted by: William Cohen at August 10, 2006 10:23 AM
Comment #174491

LawnBoy,
I believe the same. The evidence of evolution is MASSIVELY overwhelming. But, this is one subject (religion) where others beliefs matter not to me, as long as it is not being forced upon me or others, and we all respect each others beliefs, and recognize each others’ right to those beliefs. Also, I don’t understand why there must be a conflict at all. Evolution does not have to be a threat to people of faith.

Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 10:28 AM
Comment #174492

I do understand that W and his Administration is doing what they can to curtail this right. That being said we still have a significant amount of free speech in this country.
Posted by: j2t2 at August 10, 2006 10:14 AM

Well j2t2, at least as far as the mid east conflict is concerned, there is a large body of evidence to suggest that there is no free, or at least balanced converage of events and history there. This leads to a complete distortion of what is actually happening there. I beg you, and all of those who read this, to view the video I linked in my above posting. Don’t take my word for it. Use your God or nature (whichever you like) intelligence to examine this work and simply ask yourself, could this be true? All that can be asked of any of us is that we try as hard as we possibly can to be ready to surrender our tightly held beliefs if we find sufficient evidence to cast doubt on them. The truth will set us free.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at August 10, 2006 10:29 AM
Comment #174494

frankxcid,

Good stuff….

Jack,

I didn’t pay much attention to the conspiracy theories until I saw it on CSPAN last week. I saw a professor of physics talking about having his students time the corner of the building falling. This was suppose to prove that the buildings were fill with explosives. I got on the web and found the Popular Mechanics article. I can’t believe that there were so many “experts” involved in these theories. Aren’t they suppose to be scientists?

Posted by: JimmyRay at August 10, 2006 10:31 AM
Comment #174495

Paul in Euroland

I can’t believe that you are equating the Jews of Europe of the 30’s with the Islamofacists of today. The Jews never tried to wipe a country off the map. They did not lop off the heads of innocent civilians.

To say they want the same things is so far off the mark. If you go into an Israli school you will not see them teaching to hate all Arabs and Muslims. You will not see them training kids to be martyrs.

In the words of Golda Meir “This will stopm when they love their children as much as they hate ours.”

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 10:41 AM
Comment #174499

Paul, I haven’t looked at the video yet, but I will. Before that, though, some comments on a free press.

There is a difference between a press that is outright controlled by the government and one that is not. In the United States, it is not.

However, that doesn’t mean the press won’t reflect the culture and ideology of the people it serves. There is nothing necessarily sinsister about this; it’s just that the people who report, edit, publish etc. already buy into (in a general way) the assumptions of the culture.

Having said that, the press here is not monolithic, and is not confined to the big newspapers and broadcasters. It includes thousands of newspapers, magazines, journals, books, documentaries, etc., etc. We also have access to tons of material published in other countries.

Unfortunately, most of us do get our information from just a few sources, and they are the obvious big ones. Whose fault is that? I think it is our own fault. The information, the perspectives, are there if we seek them out.

I speak as a former journalist — no one ever (and I mean ever) told me not to follow a particular story or cut what I wrote in a meaningful way (there are always edits for clarity, etc., or an editor might tell you to further confirm something).

The single best essay I ever read about how societal institutions such as public schools, the church, and the media refinforce the dominant ideology is Althusser’s “Ideology and Independent State Appartuses.” It’s one of those essays that first appear dense and inpenetrable due to specialized jargon, but once you get the point, you get it, forever.

Posted by: Trent at August 10, 2006 10:52 AM
Comment #174502

ChristianLeft,

While it was suspected that terrorists would hijack airplanes it was not suspected they would use them as weapons the way they did. It upsets me that FBI leaders were so slow in passing the information they had to the people who needed it (concerning the Arabs who were training to fly airliners, but who didn’t care about learning how to land them).

Saddam paid the families of Palestinian murder bombers. That proves he supprted terrorists. There was also some contact between Saddam’s government and Al Qaida. I think it’s quite arrogant to think all the United States’ secrets are already in the open, though there are those who seem to think we should reveal everything in order to be fair.

The British government further investigated and still knows Saddam sought yellow cake uranium from Africa.

The Iraqi regime under Saddam used chemical weapons against Iraqis. Chemical weapons are weapons of mass death. Saddam also sought to have a nuclear weapons program.

Your quote against Cheney was taken out of context, either by the reporter or by you.

President Bush probably didn’t know about the attempts to reinforce the levees over the past few decades that were stopped by legal action of environmentalists.

Since when to commanders on the ground talk to President Bush? President Bush hears what he gets from advisors, including Donald Rumsfeld and some high generals. If we had done as Rumsfeld’s critics wanted then there would have been many thousands of dead American soldiers and many more dead Iraqis. Saddam learned and adapted from Gulf War I. War includes a battle of information, and false accusers against the United States are spinning as well as they can to make the United States look like the bad guys.

The definition of torture is subjective. Our enemies are going to feel pain. That is nothing like the sawing off of heads done on video camera that our enemies have done.

A mission was accomplished. There are many more missions that will be needed to end the deliberatly barbaric murdering of civilians by Islamofacists.

Posted by: Steve S at August 10, 2006 10:58 AM
Comment #174504

Unless you have a mental abnormality, I will argue that everyone believes in God, even so called atheist liberals. They just believe in a different god. Just in this thread, as soon as it is argued that Militant Islam is the enemy the old liberal scriptures are brought out: Evolution, Man-made Global warming, Big Oil, stolen elections, evil Jews, Katrina, no WMD’s. A liberal will be a liberal first and even deny their own eyes.
Jack I think you are preaching to the choir because those that believe the disinformation will continue to believe even if you rip out there eye lids and point their heads at the evidence. This is a good example: Video where Osama Claims resposibility for 9/11 + Video with hijackers of Arabic descent boarding planes + Audio of cockpit voices thanking Allah just prior to crashing + Video of planes crashing into towers = Bush places explosives in the Towers. Here’s another one: Picture of Dead Iraqi Civilians after being gassed + 14 U.N. Resolutions for Sadam to disarm + pictures of U.N. inspectors pointing at missiles prior to destruction + pictures of Iraqi defense minister nicknamed Chemical Ali in charge of Chemical warefare + pictures thousands of unexploded chemical wareheads found recently + transacript of State of Union address where the president said that there was intelligence of Sadam wanting to buy Uranium = Iraq never had WMD’s and was not planning on getting more because Bush is Evil

Posted by: frankxcid at August 10, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #174506

“to scare you into fighting the wrong enemy - Al Quada terror.”

is a type error - it should read

“fail to capture Bin Laden so he remains at large like the boogeyman under your beds to scare you into fighting the wrong enemy -Iraq rather than Al Quada terror.”

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #174505

Keith you could only possibly make such comments if you did not know the history of Israeli behaviour towards the Palestinians. I provided a link which will show you a different side to the argument. But of course you will only take the time and trouble to view this video if you really want to hear all sides of the debate. If you know it all already, then there is nothing to be learned. You speak of Islamofacism. Are you aware of the terrorism practised by the founders of the Israeli state? Are you aware of the terrorism practiced by that state? Are you aware of the Israeli Jewish and disapora condemnation of the illegal occupation of the palestinian territorities and the horrific oppression of those living in those territories? Are you aware of the illegal occupation of those territories in contravention of the Geneva Conventions? Are you aware of the destruction of Palestinian homes and the uprooting of crops belonging to the indigenous people so as to drive them from their lands? Are you aware that Israeli settlements sequester the resources of the west bank, specifically water, while the Palestinians have precious little of it? God in heaven, could any one of us say that we would not act as the Palestinians sometimes do, if such a vile and evil catastrophe had been visited upon us? Even your description of the Arabs as Islamofacists goes to prove my point. How can we possibly find peace with Islamofacists? They are not normal human beings, they are sub human, untermensch - OH! isn’t that how the Nazis demonised the Jews to facilitate their extermination of them? Keith, I would like to think that you are a fair minded person, and that your views are honestly held based upon the state of your knowledge of the situation. If that is the case, then please examine the evidence presented in the video I have linked. Many of the people interviewed in this work are actually Jewish Israelis, including rabbis, long term reserve officers in the IDF and Jewish peace activists. Now, if you think you know better than Jews who actually live in Israel, some of whom have been part of the machine that oppresses Palestinians and who now say, no more, we conscienciously object, not in our name. They say this is not about protecting Israel from attack, this is a denial of justice from which Israel can never have peace. If you can say that you know better, then I would love to hear your evidence. Will you respond to the challenge to view the video and then produce counter evidence? Or is it all just hot air?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at August 10, 2006 11:02 AM
Comment #174507

“to scare you into fighting the wrong enemy - Al Quada terror.”

is a type error - it should read

“fail to capture Bin Laden so he remains at large like the boogeyman under your beds to scare you into fighting the wrong enemy -Iraq rather than Al Quada terror.”

Were there “insurgents” in Iraq before the US invaded?

Now they’ve created that mess, they’ll get their permanent military bases in Iraq (and their fingers near enough the black stuff to influence what Iraq does with the Oil, including the price).

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:03 AM
Comment #174509

“Today we have thousands of people producing small amounts of disinformation and conspiracy theories. The centralized systems we developed to counter centrally produced Soviet disinformation doesn’t work very well against a diversified group of little guys. It is up to us good little guys to counter these naughty little guys.”

Really?

Do you actually think that a “diversified group of little guys” attempting to mis/disinform you pose the same threat to your understaning of world events as your own government and the most expensive (do you know how much money is spent? Or I remember - it’s “classified” right.) security aparatus in the world.

The NYTimes among others have reported that not only did US CIA et al false news reports appear in Iraqi newspapers but they also find their way into US newspapers. That’s right, you are subject to a sophisticated propaganda campaign
sourced from your own government. Of course, you knew that already, so why then are unpaid random individuals (who’s only media is the internet) the “little guys” so scary to you. What about the government sourced video reports that are making their way on to CNN? (google it) what about the government sourced “news” stories in your broadsheet “papers of record”. Well everything is “fair and balanced” if you’re fool enought to believe it.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:08 AM
Comment #174512

tomh,

Believing that “God created the heavens and the earth as recorded in the book of Genesis in the Bible.” is not necessarily screwy thinking. Thinking that such belief has any support from scientific evidence is absolutely screwy thinking.

Just to clarify.

Posted by: LawnBoy at August 10, 2006 11:11 AM
Comment #174513

Here’s a US blog where I have discussed at lenght the Israeli invasion of Lebanon.

The dicussion is between me and J. (who is of republican/conservative persusasion.)

Have a quick read.

http://ninthstate.net/2006/08/01/castro-sick-brother-raul-temporarily-in-powerb/#comment-10838

(I don’t have time to restate everything said there…writing an article on the WTO DSU for a deadline.)

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:13 AM
Comment #174515

abhcoide, Your arguements has merit until I go to jihadist websites, or look at my TV and see people who dress like islamist, cut people’s throat, kidnap people, cheer during attacks on Western nations, burn American and Isreali flags. Are you saying I was duped by the President of Iran when he said he will bring about the 14th Iman and wipe Isreal off the face of the Earth? No question that the average human being in both Islam and the west are inocent bystanders that will pay the price of this war. But where does the evil originate? Same place it has throughout human history: from tyranny and those that want power over others. The main fault of western nations is the apathy of its citizens who are too comfortable with the highest average living standard in history. Yes Isreal uses American Weapons while Hezbollah uses Chinese weapons purchased From Iran and Syria. I say the real problem is that there should be American soldiers as well as American steel killing the Hezbollah fighters.

Posted by: frankxcid at August 10, 2006 11:17 AM
Comment #174516

Here’s a video about the lack of balance (which I have observed myself on frequent trips to the US) in US news media coverage of the middle east, specifically Palestine.

Watch it, debate it.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7828123714384920696

You here a completely different “version” of events in the US than people in the rest of the world (including) Israel do. It’s quite alarming and helps to account for the radical differences of opinion/perspectives found in the US as opposed to other countries in relation to Lebanon, Palestine etc.

You must hear both sides of the argument. The Palestinians have never had a fair hearing in the US…hence they can easily be written of as crazy “untermensch” who just want to kill jews…when in fact they want their own state and they want peace with Israel.

Dehumanising them and misrepresenting their views (pretending they have no real grievances) like the demolition of over 2,000 family homes by bulldozers on their own occupied land. Settlements on their land which are give preferential access to water while indigenous people go thirsty, curfews and collective punishments in the name of “security” (which should instead read “land grab”, whicih is exactly what the wall/settlements and road builing on the land of another is intended to do. Soon there will be no hope for a viable Palestinian state and they will be a stateless minority in several countries and second class citizens on their own land.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:20 AM
Comment #174517

Paul,

Normally I agree with you but the anti-Israeli nonsense is over the top. I know many Israelis, I work with over a dozen. I know many Lebanese and others from that part of the world.
There is no “Jewish” debate since the inception of the State of Israel about the right of Israel to exist. There is intellectual debate about decisions made 60 years ago, such as the attacking of British police stations (where Moshe Dyan didn’t target for maximum civilian casualties). The relgious argument of the 40’s was that establishment of the State of Israel meant that the Messiah had arrived. There is dissent in Israel today about the right course of action in todays environment as well.
But your leftist rhetorical nonsense is unsupported by reality. It is classic anti-semitism using flamebait terms and replacing “demon Jew” with “demon Israel”. You sympathize with a disowned populace used as a pawn by their “brother” despotic neighbors. So do I. So do many of The Israeli people too, in fact more so than most arabs I know. But their debate seems pretty open albeit heated, yet the spouting of hate words like “traitor” is lacking and truth is pretty important. It still amazes me how much the Europeans still hate Jews. Is it that embedded in your culture that you can’t even see it? To the point of siding with terrorists who kill yuo?

Posted by: Dave1 at August 10, 2006 11:26 AM
Comment #174518

“Are you saying I was duped by the President of Iran when he said he will bring about the 14th Iman and wipe Isreal off the face of the Earth?”

Nope, it doesn’t seem that you agree with him. If anyone does, then they have been duped by him.

It’s not so different from those who say let’s destroy Lebanon “set it back 20 years” killing indiscriminately and then go on to start wars on multiple fronts (as planned by the Project for the New American century) bring death and destruction to young American soldiers (wrongly put in harms way on a false premise) and people who live in the middle east. They are not so different from you. Most are moderate. I do not listen to Pat Robertson calling for the assassination of Hugo Chavez, and assume that all Americans are lunatic killers (read Jihadist for a muslim equivalent).

The Iranian leader is a nut case. His attempts at duping people are less likely to prove effective than the leader of the free world who has the greatest military machine ever assembled at his disposal, not to mention a very sophisticated propaganda/disinformation aparatus.

The very fact that many in the US assume that as the “good guys” neither the US nor Israel can do no wrong/ever make mistakes/be misinformed (read J’s comments on Ninth State)is testament to the effectiveness and success of the propaganda you have been fed.

All muslims (one billion people) are islamofascists or potential islamofascists and should be wiped out/invaded….hyperbole but can you see that is what you are asked to believe and some do believe it. No number of Lebanese dead would be too much “disproportionate” to J.

Live free or die.
If you are not with us you are against us.
It’s us or them.
This is a clash of civilisations.

Time to spend billions on guns right? (money to “our base”)
Give no-bid contracts to our friends and supporters.
Tear up the middle east, build permanent military bases.

Democracy can’t be created with bombs, white phosperous, “shock and awe” and total destruction of infrastructure.

What about Lebanese democracy. Not part of the grand design?

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:35 AM
Comment #174519

abhcoide,

Terrorist were spreading false information against the United States. The military paid people to get the truth out. Are you saying now that we aren’t even allowed to speak against the lies being told about us?

What are the lies you claim we paid the Iraqi news to proclaim?

Posted by: Steve at August 10, 2006 11:36 AM
Comment #174521


Here’s the BBC documentary The Power of Nigtmares Part II

It deals with the “necessary illusion” thesis of Strauss and the Neo-Cons and Team B during the cold war - many members of the administration were members and used the same disinformation strategies that they use today. Watch it and then discuss.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7930933565201168&q=power+of+nightmares+part+II

Steve you seem to automatically assume that your government doesn’t tell lies despite all evidence to the contrary. This believe is “faith”, your faith astounds. Politics is not religion and Bush et al are false gods. The administration is not prima facie incapable of deception/misinformation.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 11:44 AM
Comment #174526

“You sympathize with a disowned populace used as a pawn by their “brother” despotic neighbors.”

This reference to the Palestinians - a disowned populace (actually they are a displaced nation - living on land occupied by somebody else).

a pawn by their “brother” despotic neighbors.”

Whatever their “despotic neighbours” may have done or not done it does not justify the manner in which they have been treated by Israel, two wrongs to not make a right…they are living in a virtual prison, subjected to collective punishment. Over 100 Palestinians have died since the invasion of Lebanon (the cameras weren’t watching then). You know the name of the Israeli soldier captured by Hezbollah no doubt but do you know the name of even one of those 100 Palestinians, what about the entire family killed on a beach in Gaza, do you know their names?

In the Amistade case (famous US Supreme Court Slavery case) it was argued that as Africans took other Africans as slaves it could not then be wrong for Europeans to do it. i.e. if the Palestinians despotic neighbours treat them poorly why should Israel have to do any better. After it’s their own people (also muslims) who mistreat them, therefore it must be ok??????

Right????????

Wrong.

I hear already vague accusations of anti-semitism and of racisims allegedy held by Europeans today against Jewish people…you are trying to end debate about the present by referring to the events in other countries over 65 years ago. This is about today. Mistreatment of any people is wrong. How many Palestinian human rights are being ignored thanks to conversation stopping innuendos about Nazis. I am not a Nazi. I believe human rights apply equally to everybody, so should you.

I suppose Ta’ayush, Neve Shalom-Wahat al Salam, Brit Shalom/Tahalof Essalam and Brit Tzedek v’Shalom are all anti-semitic/self-hating jews. What about the Israeli soldiers who refuse to serve beyond the 1967 borders? What about the israeli fighter pilots (google guardian.co.uk)who deliberately miss their targets because they do not trust the co-ordinates they are given (they know all about the numbers of Lebanaese civilian causalties).

Your arguments about Israel on serve to support the militarists within Israel not the peacemakers and not the security, safety or long term peace of Israelis.

If my friend began to act in bullying fashion endangering their own safety I would tell them so. Not hand them a gun (or $6billion a year to be spend mostly on US military hardware).

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 12:01 PM
Comment #174531

Jack,

I don’t know, I think this whole discussion is moot. Stephen Daugherty just posted this a few days ago:

“it appears Al Qaeda is no longer intent on attacking us”

So, conspiracy theory or not, sounds like were back to the Lefty mantra that the worst threat to the world is the USA. (Hello Johnny Murtha! Hello Hugo Chavez! Hello Cindy Sheehan! Hello Harry B.!) Ahhh, the bliss of ignorance and crazy conspiracy theories … it must be such an easy world to live in. I’m almost jealous.

Posted by: Ken Strong at August 10, 2006 12:18 PM
Comment #174532

abhcoide,

We ARE in a clash of civilizations. Islam’s holy scripture commands its believers to spread Islam by any means necessary, including the sword. War has been the main way Islam has spread since Muhammad started the jihad.
Islam’s holy book also commands the believers to destroy all cultures they dominate. Unless we stop them, they WILL destroy western civilization and replace it with Shari’a. Their religion demands it and it is their stated goal.
Yes, it is time to spend billions on guns if that’s what it takes. If there is to be a hegemonic civilization (there always will) it is better that it should be western civilization with its liberal tradition (none of our current problems are insurmountable; and by comparison, aren’t that bad) than Islamic with its barbaric law code.

Posted by: traveller at August 10, 2006 12:19 PM
Comment #174534

On the logic that as the Holocaust happened Israel is more entitled to security/safety/life than the Lebanese or the Palestinains….

Should the descendants of slaves be allowed to butcher any Chinese person on sight. Ok so it was the Euopeans who held slaves but anyone who says that they don’t have the right to respond to the “threat” posed by the existence of Chinese people is a racist and should go and join the Klan.

Ridiculous isn’t it!

Baseless accusations of anti-semitism, i.e. where the accused is merely pointing out that Palestinians/Lebanese have human rights and are protected (like the Israelis) by international law and the Geneva Conventions, make about as much sense as the above paragraph about the rights of african americans as compared to chinese people because of the behaviour of european/american people in the past.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 12:22 PM
Comment #174537

Speaking of disinformation.

http://www.thememoryhole.org/media/evening-standard-crowd.htm

Yep, sure is pathetic!

Posted by: 037 at August 10, 2006 12:34 PM
Comment #174538

Some ‘highly intelligent’ AMERICANS think that our govt planned 9/11. They believe that the govt shot a missile into the Pentagon and shot down Flight 91. Those people also think that the govt planted explosives on the World Trade Center towers. The Bin Laden family was here and they are demolition experts.

Others say that Cheney and Halliburton planned 9/11 for Bush to declare war so we could get oil in the Middle East. Why are our prices rising? Maybe it is because we aren’t stealing oil!

Misinformation should be illegal and treason.

This war is between 2 eras. The present day and the Middle Ages. The Jihadists may live in the modern days, but their minds and spirits are not. The believe that all Americans, regardless of religion, are Crusaders. They still ache and want revenge even though the Crusades were unsuccessful.

If somebody from Flight 92 survived and said that a radical Muslim hijacked the plane, not a govt missile, would you then believe in the cause for war? Open your eyes and see the faces of The Ayatollahs, Saddam Hussein, Kim Jong II, Hugo Chavez, Al Qaida, Hamas, and Hezbollah all plotting to eradicate us from the earth. What will it take for you to see that? Is it when they swoop down to attack us? I hope not.

Misinformation could cost us this war. We wouldn’t want that, would we?

Posted by: stubborn conservative at August 10, 2006 12:42 PM
Comment #174540

The argument stand alone with a very simple premise: That the Palestinians are not complicit in the violence of the regior nor are they guilty of some of the most heinous crimes ever:
PFLP-GC quickly earned international notoriety for daring and brutal acts of international terrorism. In February 1970, it planted a time-bomb on a Swissair flight from Zurich to Tel Aviv, killing all 47 passengers and crew.
In April 1974, for example, the PLO killed 18 at Kiryat Shimona and 20, mostly schoolgirls, at Maalot, both in northern Israel.
There have thousands of innocent Israeli civilians killed by terrorist so-called palestinians since 1920.

Don’t act all high and mighty, don’t assume you know what I know (e.g. I have no idea of the murdered soldiers names), don’t act as if you understand dissent to be evidence of your prejudice, and don’t debase yourself with ignorant analogies like Amistad.

the oft-repeated Arab claim that the Israeli ‘occupation’ is somehow to blame for the Palestinian terrorism is nothing more than an empty retort, repudiated by the facts, and disproved by a century of historical reality.

The following is a partial list of documented acts of Arab terrorism, all occurring prior to the beginning of the Israeli administration of the West Bank and Gaza in 1967:

Major Arab Terrorist Attacks against Israelis Prior to the 1967 Six-Day War

Jan 1, 1952 - Seven armed terrorists attacked and killed a nineteen year-old girl in her home, in the neighborhood of Beit Yisrael, in Jerusalem.

Apr 14, 1953 - Terrorists tried for the first time to infiltrate Israel by sea, but were unsuccessful. One of the boats was intercepted and the other boat escaped.

June 7, 1953 - A youngster was killed and three others were wounded, in shooting attacks on residential areas in southern Jerusalem.

June 9, 1953 - Terrorists attacked a farming community near Lod, and killed one of the residents. The terrorists threw hand grenades and sprayed gunfire in all directions. On the same night, another group of terrorists attacked a house in the town of Hadera. This occurred a day after Israel and Jordan signed an agreement, with UN mediation, in which Jordan undertook to prevent terrorists from crossing into Israel from Jordanian territory.

June 10, 1953 - Terrorists infiltrating from Jordan destroyed a house in the farming village of Mishmar Ayalon.

June 11, 1953 - Terrorists attacked a young couple in their home in Kfar Hess, and shot them to death.

Sept 2, 1953 - Terrorists infiltrated from Jordan, and reached the neighborhood of Katamon, in the heart of Jerusalem. They threw hand grenades in all directions. Miraculously, no one was hurt.

Mar 17, 1954 - Terrorists ambushed a bus traveling from Eilat to Tel Aviv, and opened fire at short range when the bus reached the area of Maale Akrabim in the northern Negev. In the initial ambush, the terrorists killed the driver and wounded most of the passengers. The terrorists then boarded the bus, and shot each passenger, one by one. Eleven passengers were murdered. Survivors recounted how the murderers spat on the bodies and abused them. The terrorists could clearly be traced back to the Jordanian border, some 20 km from the site of the terrorist attack.

Jan 2, 1955 - Terrorists killed two hikers in the Judean Desert.

Mar 24, 1955 - Terrorists threw hand grenades and opened fire on a crowd at a wedding in the farming community of Patish, in the Negev. A young woman was killed, and eighteen people were wounded in the attack.

Apr 7, 1956 - A resident of Ashkelon was killed in her home, when terrorists threw three hand grenades into her house.
Two members of Kibbutz Givat Chaim were killed, when terrorists opened fire on their car, on the road from Plugot Junction to Mishmar Hanegev.
There were further hand grenade and shooting attacks on homes and cars, in areas such as Nitzanim and Ketziot. One person was killed and three others wounded.

Apr 11, 1956 - Terrorists opened fire on a synagogue full of children and teenagers, in the farming community of Shafrir. Three children and a youth worker were killed on the spot, and five were wounded, including three seriously.

Apr 29, 1956 - Egyptians killed Roi Rotenberg, 21 years of age, from Nahal Oz.

Sept 12, 1956 - Terrorists killed three Druze guards at Ein Ofarim, in the Arava region.

Sept 23, 1956 - Terrorists opened fire from a Jordanian position, and killed four archaeologists, and wounded sixteen others, near Kibbutz Ramat Rachel.

Sept 24, 1956 - Terrorists killed a girl in the fields of the farming community of Aminadav, near Jerusalem.

Oct 4, 1956 - Five Israeli workers were killed in Sdom.

Oct 9, 1956 - Two workers were killed in an orchard of the youth village, Neve Hadassah, in the Sharon region.

Nov 8, 1956 - Terrorists opened fire on a train, attacked cars and blew up wells, in the North and Center of Israel. Six Israelis were wounded.

Feb 18, 1957 - Two civilians were killed by terrorist landmines, next to Nir Yitzhak, on the southern border of the Gaza Strip.

Mar 8, 1957 - A shepherd from Kibbutz Beit Govrin was killed by terrorists in a field near the Kibbutz.

Apr 16, 1957 - Terrorists infiltrated from Jordan, and killed two guards at Kibbutz Mesilot.

May 20, 1957 - A terrorist opened fire on a truck in the Arava region, killing a worker.

May 29, 1957 - A tractor driver was killed and two others wounded, when the vehicle struck a landmine, next to Kibbutz Kisufim.

June 23, 1957 - Israelis were wounded by landmines, close to the Gaza Strip.

Aug 23, 1957 - Two guards of the Israeli Mekorot water company were killed near Kibbutz Beit Govrin.

Dec 21, 1957 - A member of Kibbutz Gadot was killed in the Kibbutz fields.

Feb 11, 1958 - Terrorists killed a resident of Moshav Yanov who was on his way to Kfar Yona, in the Sharon area.

Apr 5, 1958 - Terrorists lying in ambush shot and killed two people near Tel Lachish.

Apr 22, 1958 - Jordanian soldiers shot and killed two fishermen near Aqaba.

May 26, 1958 - Four Israeli police officers were killed in a Jordanian attack on Mt. Scopus, in Jerusalem.

Nov 17, 1958 - Syrian terrorists killed the wife of the British air attache in Israel, who was staying at the guesthouse of the Italian Convent on the Mt. of the Beatitudes.

Dec 3, 1958- A shepherd was killed at Kibbutz Gonen. In the artillery attack that followed, 31 civilians were wounded.

Jan 23, 1959 - A shepherd from Kibbutz Lehavot Habashan was killed.

Feb 1, 1959 - Three civilians were killed by a terrorist landmine near Moshav Zavdiel.

Apr 15, 1959 - A guard was killed at Kibbutz Ramat Rahel.

Apr 27, 1959 - Two hikers were shot at close range and killed near Massada.

Sept 6, 1959 - Bedouin terrorists killed a paratroop reconnaissance officer near Nitzana.

Sept 8, 1959 - Bedouins opened fire on an army bivouac in the Negev, killing an IDF officer, Captain Yair Peled.

Oct 3, 1959 - A shepherd from Kibbutz Heftziba was killed near Kibbutz Yad Hana.

Apr 26, 1960 - Terrorists killed a resident of Ashkelon south of the city.

Apr 12, 1962 - Terrorists fired on an Egged bus on the way to Eilat; one passenger was wounded.

Sept 30, 1962 - Two terrorists attacked an Egged bus on the way to Eilat. No one was wounded.

Jan 1, 1965 - Palestinian terrorists attempted to bomb the National Water Carrier. This was the first attack carried out by the PLO’s Fatah faction.

May 31, 1965 - Jordanian Legionnaires fired on the neighborhood of Musrara in Jerusalem, killing two civilians and wounding four.

June 1, 1965 - Terrorists attack a house in Kibbutz Yiftach.

July 5, 1965 - A Fatah cell planted explosives at Mitzpe Massua, near Beit Guvrin; and on the railroad tracks to Jerusalem near Kafr Battir.

Aug 26, 1965 - A waterline was sabotaged at Kibbutz Manara, in the Upper Galilee.

Sept 29, 1965 - A terrorist was killed as he attempted to attack Moshav Amatzia.

Nov 7, 1965 - A Fatah cell that infiltrated from Jordan blew up a house in Moshav Givat Yeshayahu, south of Beit Shemesh. The house was destroyed, but the inhabitants were miraculously unhurt.

Apr 25, 1966 - Explosions placed by terrorists wounded two civilians and damaged three houses in Moshav Beit Yosef, in the Beit Shean Valley.

May 16, 1966 - Two Israelis were killed when their jeep hit a terrorist landmine, north of the Sea of Galilee and south of Almagor. Tracks led into Syria.

July 13, 1966 - Two soldiers and a civilian were killed near Almagor, when their truck struck a terrorist landmine.

July 14, 1966 - Terrorists attacked a house in Kfar Yuval, in the North.

July 19, 1966 - Terrorists infiltrated into Moshav Margaliot on the northern border and planted nine explosive charges.

Oct 27, 1966 - A civilian was wounded by an explosive charge on the railroad tracks to Jerusalem.
http://www.israel.org/MFA/Terrorism-%20Obstacle%20to%20Peace/Palestinian%20terror%20before%202000/Which%20Came%20First-%20Terrorism%20or%20Occupation%20-%20Major

Posted by: Dave1 at August 10, 2006 12:52 PM
Comment #174542

Flight 93, not 2. Typing error.

Posted by: stubborn conservative at August 10, 2006 12:55 PM
Comment #174544

abh,

I made a long post rebutting yours, but it got lost. In anycase, so-called Palestinian terrorism has beend killing Israelis since the 1920s. It has been going on long before the 1967 war and is the policy of the PLO, Hamas, etc… Don’t be ignorant and ignore history. Don’t debase yourself by refering to irrelevencies like Amistad. Don’t be foolish and look at dissent as justification of your prejudices. The Israelis are not the terrorists.

Posted by: Dave1 at August 10, 2006 1:02 PM
Comment #174545

abh, BTW:
These guys really sound like they want to support the terrorism of PLO and Hamas and Hezbollah, don’t they? I never said there weren’t reasonable arabs either.

Ta’ayush,
In the fall of 2000 we joined together to form “Ta’ayush” (Arabic for “life in common”), a grassroots movement of Arabs and Jews working to break down the walls of racism and segregation by constructing a true Arab-Jewish partnership. A future of equality, justice and peace begins today, between us, through concrete, daily actions of solidarity to end the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories and to achieve full civil equality for all Israeli citizens.

http://www.nswas.com/
A village, jointly established by Jewish and Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel, that is engaged in educational work for peace, equality and understanding between the two peoples

(The 2 Brit—- are the same)
http://btvshalom.org/
The mission of Brit Tzedek v’Shalom, the Jewish Alliance for Justice and Peace is to educate and mobilize American Jews in support of a negotiated two-state resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Posted by: Dave1 at August 10, 2006 1:10 PM
Comment #174549

Jack - Do you think disinformation is one sided? Your ethnocentric view of America is blinding.

I forgot who said this “Propaganda is to a democracy what violence is to a dictatorship”.

You refuse to acknowledge the whole Iraq war was sold to us on disinformation.

On the day we first invaded Iraq (yes we invaded), according to gallop 70% of the American People believed Saddam/Iraq was involved in 9/11 attacks. How can this be? Especially when the Bush administration never made that claim. But they wanted you to believe it. They didn’t dispell it. But if you listen to Cheney and Rice on the Sunday talk shows, they implied it.

The so called free press just goes along. But even the best of journalists have their view and bias.

So does the US (Bush Administration) and press giving you disinformation piss you off?

Posted by: Jerseyguy at August 10, 2006 1:28 PM
Comment #174550
The weak minded are always credulous, but I find it unlikely that as much as 85% of any large population can be idiots.

Evidently you don’t work with the general public Jack.

I haven’t read any of the comments and don’t have time right now. But really I don’t have to in order to know what both Democrats and Republicans are saying. I’ve been around here long enough to have an idea.
Well both y’all are wrong. Disinformation comes from BOTH parties.
I try to read some of the comments latter and respond to some. Right now I have some grand youngins that think I need to take them fishing. And I’m not gonna disappoint them.

Posted by: Ron Brown at August 10, 2006 1:34 PM
Comment #174554

Yo, Jersey. Enough with the Iraq crap; that is old (played out) news, it’s about the now.


And, the now is the press are a bunch of biased “yellow journalism”, mo-foes! And, that’s just putting it midly!


Disinformation is the “doctoring” of photos from the “Al-Reuters” paper. They also “staged” photos as well; they used some old, muslim hag in two different photos to garner sympathy within two weeks. Nice.

Disinformation is the continuous coverage of Israelis killing “civilians”, when we know the terrorists are hiding behind the civilians; you know, b/c they’re so brave and tough and they can’t wait for the virgins. Whatever!

Disinformation is what Hezbollah is doing (and have been doing), yet you blame Bush. Nice!

Posted by: rahdigly at August 10, 2006 2:05 PM
Comment #174555
Misinformation should be illegal and treason.
Then we’d have to arrest congress and the executive branch. Hmmmmmm…not a bad idea. Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 2:14 PM
Comment #174558

Jack-

Your previous posts have been decent. This one is over the top.

Listen you JACK ASS we are in IRAQ because of disinformation. Why are you not up in arms about that?? We are being used and lied to…suck it up big guy.

Quit your whining or do something about it. We live in a society that inundates us with misinformation. Check out Media Matters for America.

ALL we get are lies.

As for your idle threats…laughable.

good day

Posted by: (_|_) censor that at August 10, 2006 2:18 PM
Comment #174561

A weekly trip over to Memri.org will give insight into what their State owned presses are saying.

Here’s what the Syrian Deputy Minister of Religious Endowment thinks about Israel.

Posted by: George in SC at August 10, 2006 2:29 PM
Comment #174571

As to the 9/11 theories, there seems to be a new “documentary” every couple of months

He called him and even the president, whose code name was “Angel 1”… The American president was amazed that he was using the secret communications system which is saved for wartime. Cheney talked to him and said: “This is an inside job in the White House. There are (enemy) agents in the White House. He said these things. The American president slammed the phone down and said: “Air Force One is next”, and gave the order to land. He was told there is a conspiracy. These things were published, but have not been repeated since.

If we take into account who sold the communications systems - these were Israeli and Zionist companies that control the production of surveillance and communications equipment in the US… There are many of these - so many that instructions were given later, in March, not to cooperate with foreign companies. To be precise, it is Comfrance (sic) - a company specializing in the manufacture of bugging equipment, and this is an Israeli company.


- Egyptian Military Expert General Muhammad Khalaf on Al-Mihwar TV on September 11, 2005

Posted by: George in SC at August 10, 2006 2:54 PM
Comment #174576

“The Israelis are not the terrorists”.

You postulate in binary opposites, the Israelis = good guys, just like us, wars happen around them but never because of them, the only engage in “defence”. The Palestinian (untermensch) are terrorists, violence is all they know, they’re trying to destroy Israel (or they want to) etc.
Actually honey it takes two to tango. There aren’t too many one-sided wars out there (only one bad guy) usually it takes two people to really get a fight going.

How many “defensive” wars has America had, remember; Grenada, Nicaragua (fought with US equipped contras), indeed most of Central and South America has felt the hand of the US in destabilizing governments, assassinating elected leaders (Allende), proping up dictators (Pinochet), removing leaders from power (The Shah in Iran) and generally looking the otherway when innocent people get killed or tortured as a result of such interventions not to mention Vietnam and Korea and the illegal bombing of Cambodia (when Kissinger prentended to talk peace). Many of these proxy wars were part of the “cold war” and America was “defending herself” in interfering in the policies of foreign governments, were they “communist” governments…not really, no more than Chavez (the current bete noir)but resistant to interests of certain US business interests - yes, certainly many of them were - nationalisation of oil, gas, land-reform etc. all tend to prompt invasion. Invasion authorized by duped citizens afraid of some mysterious and all present “other” failing to see their fellow man among the rubble and burning debris for the benefit of corporate interests (oil, fruit companies (Nicaragua I remember correctly) gas companies etc.

Ah, if only war was as simple as good and bad guys.

You might mention WWII - boy aren’t well all glad the Nazis lost. That comes closer to being black and white than many other wars but all is not as it first appears. Hitler flew to many German cities, sometimes more than one in a day in his electoral campaign (yes, disgustingly he was actually elected). How did he afford this, when current presidential candidates in the richest democracy in the world (US) ride around in tourbusses mostly. Where did he get the money?

Well, it seems some clever folk (investor class) in many different countries (inc. the US) realised what profit could be made if this Hitler fellow got elected…the “good” fellow had promised to rebuild the German Army, buy guns, build tanks, warmachines of every kind, including planes. So some clever folk (in Germany, Britain, the US and elsewhere) gave him money…all the time thinking about armaments contracts and all the money that could be made from them.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 3:02 PM
Comment #174580

Jack, be careful what you wish for…
I am 6’7”, 225 pounds, hold two black belts and am, at this very moment, carrying a .375 magnum in a concealment holster (with proper permits, of course).

Then again, I don’t buy the 9-11 conspiracy “theories” (translated, meaning “stuff I made up”), and I think we’d get along quite well were we to meet. :-)

Posted by: John at August 10, 2006 3:15 PM
Comment #174582

Prescott Bush - Bush Jr.s grandad was a director and shareholder of UBC - United Banking Corporation. His business dealings with the Bank continued until the company’s assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act.

World War II started in 1939 - Hitler had been in power since….

Prescott Bush worked for a firm called Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH), which acted as a US base for the German industrialist, Fritz Thyssen, who helped finance Hitler in the 1930s, and was described as “Hitler’s Angel” (by the New York Herald-Tribune)Bush was the director of the New York-based Union Banking Corporation (UBC) that represented Thyssen’s US interests

Thyssen owned the largest steel and coal company in Germany and grew rich from Hitler’s efforts to re-arm between the two world wars. One of the pillars in Thyssen’s international corporate web, UBC, worked exclusively for, and was owned by, a Thyssen-controlled bank in the Netherlands. Prescott Bush was linked to the Consolidated Silesian Steel Company (CSSC), based in mineral rich Silesia on the German-Polish border. During the war, the company made use of Nazi slave labour from the concentration camps, including Auschwitz. The ownership of CSSC changed hands several times in the 1930s, but documents from the US National Archive declassified last year link Bush to CSSC, although it is not clear if he and UBC were still involved in the company when Thyssen’s American assets were seized in 1942.

How Bush’s grandfather helped Hitler’s rise to power

Rumours of a link between the US first family and the Nazi war machine have circulated for decades. Now the Guardian can reveal how repercussions of events that culminated in action under the Trading with the Enemy Act are still being felt by today’s president

George Bush’s grandfather, the late US senator Prescott Bush, was a director and shareholder of companies that profited from their involvement with the financial backers of Nazi Germany.
The Guardian has obtained confirmation from newly discovered files in the US National Archives that a firm of which Prescott Bush was a director was involved with the financial architects of Nazism.

His business dealings, which continued until his company’s assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act, has led more than 60 years later to a civil action for damages being brought in Germany against the Bush family by two former slave labourers at Auschwitz and to a hum of pre-election controversy.

The evidence has also prompted one former US Nazi war crimes prosecutor to argue that the late senator’s action should have been grounds for prosecution for giving aid and comfort to the enemy.

The debate over Prescott Bush’s behaviour has been bubbling under the surface for some time. There has been a steady internet chatter about the “Bush/Nazi” connection, much of it inaccurate and unfair. But the new documents, many of which were only declassified last year, show that even after America had entered the war and when there was already significant information about the Nazis’ plans and policies, he worked for and profited from companies closely involved with the very German businesses that financed Hitler’s rise to power. It has also been suggested that the money he made from these dealings helped to establish the Bush family fortune and set up its political dynasty.

Remarkably, little of Bush’s dealings with Germany has received public scrutiny, partly because of the secret status of the documentation involving him. But now the multibillion dollar legal action for damages by two Holocaust survivors against the Bush family, and the imminent publication of three books on the subject are threatening to make Prescott Bush’s business history an uncomfortable issue for his grandson, George W, as he seeks re-election.

The documents reveal that the firm he worked for, Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH), acted as a US base for the German industrialist, Fritz Thyssen, who helped finance Hitler in the 1930s before falling out with him at the end of the decade (my aside - when Hitler started loosing). The Guardian (UK based newspaper) has seen evidence that shows Bush was the director of the New York-based Union Banking Corporation (UBC) that represented Thyssen’s US interests and he continued to work for the bank after America entered the war.

Bush was also on the board of at least one of the companies that formed part of a multinational network of front companies to allow Thyssen to move assets around the world.

Thyssen owned the largest steel and coal company in Germany and grew rich from Hitler’s efforts to re-arm between the two world wars. One of the pillars in Thyssen’s international corporate web, UBC, worked exclusively for, and was owned by, a Thyssen-controlled bank in the Netherlands. More tantalising are Bush’s links to the Consolidated Silesian Steel Company (CSSC), based in mineral rich Silesia on the German-Polish border. During the war, the company made use of Nazi slave labour from the concentration camps, including Auschwitz. The ownership of CSSC changed hands several times in the 1930s, but documents from the US National Archive declassified last year link Bush to CSSC, although it is not clear if he and UBC were still involved in the company when Thyssen’s American assets were seized in 1942.

Three sets of archives spell out Prescott Bush’s involvement. All three are readily available, thanks to the efficient US archive system and a helpful and dedicated staff at both the Library of Congress in Washington and the National Archives at the University of Maryland.

The first set of files, the Harriman papers in the Library of Congress, show that Prescott Bush was a director and shareholder of a number of companies involved with Thyssen.

The second set of papers, which are in the National Archives, are contained in vesting order number 248 which records the seizure of the company assets. What these files show is that on October 20 1942 the alien property custodian seized the assets of the UBC, of which Prescott Bush was a director. Having gone through the books of the bank, further seizures were made against two affiliates, the Holland-American Trading Corporation and the Seamless Steel Equipment Corporation. By November, the Silesian-American Company, another of Prescott Bush’s ventures, had also been seized.

The third set of documents, also at the National Archives, are contained in the files on IG Farben, who was prosecuted for war crimes.

A report issued by the Office of Alien Property Custodian in 1942 stated of the companies that “since 1939, these (steel and mining) properties have been in possession of and have been operated by the German government and have undoubtedly been of considerable assistance to that country’s war effort”.

Source - Ben Aris in Berlin and Duncan Campbell in Washington
Saturday September 25, 2004
The Guardian

http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,12271,1312540,00.html

The Harriman business interests seized under the act in October and November 1942 included:

Union Banking Corporation (UBC) (for Thyssen and Brown Brothers Harriman)

Holland-American Trading Corporation (with Harriman)

the Seamless Steel Equipment Corporation (with Harriman)

Silesian-American Corporation (this company was partially owned by German entity; during the war the Germans tried to take the full control of Silesian-American. In response to that, American government seized German owned minority shares in the company, leaving the U.S. partners to carry on the business.)

The assets were held by the government for the duration of the war, then returned afterward. UBC was dissolved in 1951. Bush’s interest in UBC consisted of one share. For it, he was reimbursed $1,500,000. These assets were later used to launch Bush family investments in the Texas energy industry.


There will always be war so long as profits can be made from them.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 3:21 PM
Comment #174585

abh,

What the hell are you talking about? Are you that naive? I never said the Isareli’s were Angelic. I said they weren’t (the) terrorists in that they don’t go around randomly shooting missles and trying to kill as many civilians as possible. They are a democracy, they are our ally, they are surrounded by genocidal bigots who have been killing them for over 80 years (long before they took over gaza), and they make mistakes. I actually think they’re hanging on to the high ground much better than we are. They certainly have a better grasp of the reality you’ve left behind.

Posted by: Dave1 at August 10, 2006 3:26 PM
Comment #174586
My wife told me that I was rude and complained that I physically invaded the personal space of a smaller man. But neither this guy nor anyone else who heard about the confrontation ever brought it up in my presence again. I don’t suppose I changed his mind, but I did make it more difficult for him to spread the poison.

Jack,
So, how did you invade the space of this smaller man? Did you get in his face?

You must have really scared him plenty, since you say it was more difficult for him to spread his disinformation. I curious though, how would you know? Did you put him under surveillance? How do you know if it was really harder for him to spread his disinformation? Sounds like wishful thinking to me.

BTW, did you check the definition of “disinformation” (above)? It includes “lies”, even though you say:

Disinformation is not the same as mistaken information, disagreement or even lies.

Claiming disinformation does NOT include lies sounds like . . . uuhhhhmmmmmmm … more disinformation.

And, I never said mistakes or disagreements were disinformation. But, I would say that mischaracterization is an attempt at disinformation.
; )

You know, I’d love to see a hand count of who spreads the most disinformation here at watchblog. I’m certain it will be slanted by partisan leanings. But, it seems interesting that some that always spin things a certain way are now upset with disinformation, and characterize it as merely being unpatriotic, “making the U.S. look bad”, or “those that hate America”. Especially, when a good many of the facts are true.

Most don’t spread disinformation unless they have a motivation to hide something or some potential for self-gain. The “In Party” and the current administration has things to hide, and they have tried to do exactly that. When the truth finally comes out, it looks exactly the way it is. A cover-up. A number of things, were finally discovered or leaked. When was the administration going to tell us about Abu Graib, government funding of propaganda in newspapers in Iraq, the cover-up and unresolved beating of Spc. Sean Baker, war crimes and murders, leaking secrets, cover-ups and lies about fratricide, and families desparately seeking the truth about their deaths?

I’m sorry some of these things make the “U.S. look bad”, but looking bad and spreading disinformation never takes precedence over the truth.

Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 3:28 PM
Comment #174588

Dave1 re: They (Israel) are a democracy” so is Lebanon, Lebanon was also a US ally.

What happened to Lebanon - it has been destroyed.

Why?

Hezbollah - (nasty but by no means representative diverse and cosmospolitan Lebanon - Christian, Sunni, Druze and Shia.)

Let’s put the shoe on the other foot shall we.

What if extremist settlers (not representative of the Israeli people but having some support in the settlements on occupied Palestinian land and some supporter in government)captured and killed some Lebanese soldiers.

What should Lebanon do?

1. Bomb Israel, kill approx. 900 civilians in aerial bombardent invade with ground troops and tanks, blockade the ports, bomb power installations, the airport in Tel Aviv, fleeing civilians, roads, bridges etc. Vow to set Israel “back 20 years”.

2. Talk to the Israeli govt. provide them with military/intelligence assistance in tracking those reponsible for the death and capture of members of the Lebanese army. Ask for their help in tracking them down. If necessary seek assistance of other states in tracking them down, freezing their assets etc. - use interpol etc.

Ok so maybe you can’t guarantee you’ll capture those responsible…same with plan 1. - you may never get the culprits but at least all of Israel is not united behind the crazy settlers afterwards. In otherwords, at least you haven’t handed the nutters a victory.

Unfortunately, level-headed solutions are not encouraged. The US gives Israel “support” for war but not for peace. Why can’t you support Israelis who would advocate cooler heads? Why do you have to support those who call for war every time?

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 3:37 PM
Comment #174589

Tough talk like this comment …

Jack wrote: I told him that I hope he didn’t really believe that because anyone who did was an idiot. My wife told me that I was rude and complained that I physically invaded the personal space of a smaller man. But neither this guy nor anyone else who heard about the confrontation ever brought it up in my presence again. I don’t suppose I changed his mind, but I did make it more difficult for him to spread the poison.

… just beg for comments like this …

John wrote: Jack, be careful what you wish for… I am 6’7”, 225 pounds, hold two black belts and am, at this very moment, carrying a .375 magnum in a concealment holster (with proper permits, of course).

Come on Jack … I’m surprised by your comments. You must be having a bad day.

Posted by: d.a.n at August 10, 2006 3:38 PM
Comment #174591

Want to blame Lebanon for not getting rid of Hizbollah?

Remember Northern Ireland is under British rule. Britain is a military power (with a vast intelligence aparatus) formerly the epicentre of an empire upon which “the sun never sets”.

They couldn’t get rid of the IRA the UDA, the UDF, the RIRA or CIRA or any other militia that reared it’s ugly head (most have political wings, and seats in govt), with military means despite the best will in the world…

What makes you thing a fragile post-civil war Lebanese govt. could do it? Did of of Lebanon really deserve collective punishment?

By the same logic - should the UK have been flattened for it’s failure to defeat all of those indigenous terrorist groups by military means? Or congratulated for keeping a cool-head (most of the time) and allowing negotiation to lead to ceasefire.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 3:40 PM
Comment #174594

Here’s a better analogy.

Remember when the IRA bombed Canary Wharf in London?

The IRA are bad guys (duh). The have are very small amount of support within Northern Ireland and the Republic, but are generally disliked if not hated by others outside their little clique. They arose because of the very real grievances of the nationalist and republican communities in the North but they are of course parasitic criminals (bad guys) who terrorise their own communities (punishment beatings), deal in drugs and launder money (yes, they are awful) did I mention they kill people too?

When the IRA(the bad guys) bombed London did the UK respond by carpet bombing all of Ireland (both the Republic and the North) killing Unionists (pro-British), Loyalists (pro-British), southerners (moderates not pro-IRA), nationalists (moderates, anti-IRA), Chinese Irish, Black Irish, a smattering of UN personnel, milk facories roads, Dublin airport, Dublin, Cork etc?

NO!

Why not? Well because they are not war-mongering fools. You can’t bomb people into liking you and supporting your cause. If they had destroyed Ireland and set it back twenty years
they would
have achieved nothing but the destruction of their standing in the world and a people (on the whole island of Ireland) united against the UK and many undoubted converts to Sinn Fein/IRA (like Hizbollah- the IRA, UDA (loyalist), UDF (loyalist) paramilitaries (militias) all have seats in the Northern Assembley and/or UK Parliament.

If such an event had occurred the IRA would make a fortune out of all the expats suddenly lining up to send money to support the cause
and the ordinary people of Ireland (North and South) who had done nothing but despise the IRA would suffer the loss of their homes, families and livelihoods…

and they’d be very bitter and very angry…

The IRA would be virtually indestructable after that as Hizbollah will be after the destruction of Lebanon.

Fortunately people in the UK are not so dominated by war, war, war
that they can’t see the wood for the trees.


Tell me Dave1 - Should Britain have bombed all of Ireland in retaliation for one IRA attack?

Or would it have been a pointless, counterproductive slaughter resulting in more support for the IRA not less.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 3:44 PM
Comment #174605

Dave1 - It is Lebanon, not Israel, that faces a threat to its existence in this war, if you cannot see that then you haven’t been paying attention.


Ahmad Samih Khalidi
Thursday August 10, 2006
The Guardian


As Lebanon is brought to its knees, and Israeli leaders promise yet more of the same, there is something truly extraordinary about the manner in which the war on Lebanon is being portrayed as a war for Israel’s survival, as if it were the existence of the Jewish state that were at risk.

Whatever else it may be, this is a war between palpable unequals: a giant nuclear-armed power with the most advanced western military hardware and a potential ground force of up to 650,000 trained men, against a tiny third-world guerrilla force of around 5,000 fighters, armed largely with second-hand former eastern bloc hardware (the first Katyusha rockets were developed in the early 1940s) and castoffs from Iran and Syria.

The idea that the latter can pose an existential threat to the former, under any foreseeable circumstances, is risible at best and disingenuous at worst. While it can hardly be comfortable for northern Israel’s civilian population to be forced into shelters for four weeks, the physical safety of the overwhelming majority - unlike that of their counterparts in much of Lebanon - has never been seriously at stake. And while Hizbullah’s supposed targeting of Israeli civilians has yielded relatively few victims, Israel’s repeated “mistakes” in Lebanon have maintained a civilian death rate of about 100 Lebanese to every three Israelis. The opposite side of this coin is that while Israel’s hi-tech “surgical strikes” have killed hundreds more civilians than Hizbullah fighters, the Lebanese resistance’s low-tech weapons have killed about three times as many Israeli soldiers as civilians.

Aside:

That Israel has a right to defend itself is without doubt. However, is this the best way of doing it…destroying their democratic and peaceful neighbour. Hezbollah might be the enemy but it is the Lebanese people as a whole who are suffering. This means more support for Hezbollah future not less, more support means more money, more money means, more arms…and that means less security for Israel.

Why wont you give your friends (Israel and ally like Lebanon) better advice and stop empowering and arming the war-mongers. All of this foolish foreign policy, supported by the US is hurting Israel not helping it. The mistakes of today will haunt it for years to come.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 4:02 PM
Comment #174612

The most fascinating thing about those who disagree with this posts is that they take such glee in contending that the U.S. is worse. I usually do not question people’s motives, but you might check out which side you are on. (BTW - I am writing this for my fellow Americans. Those of your writing from somewhere else can read or not, but it does not apply to you.)

I don’t believe in the “for us or against us” idea. I wish the president would not use that formulation (and BTW he has not done it recently) It is very possible for someone to not be for us or against us. I do think, however, that there should be an “US” in us. I just want to know who is on my side. I don’t care much for this America bashing industry run mostly for by and to Americans. Blame America first, no matter what is their motto. Find some imperfection in our history and make it into a festering bucket of puss. This is like the spoiled teenager, whose parents feed, clothe, shelter and generally treat him well, but he still thinks they are the worst people in the world.

To that teenager and to those Americans who find their country so odious, I say that you might want to try your luck somewhere else. I have lived other places. Some were very nice and I can understand why others might prefer to live there, but for me the U.S. is best. I choose to live in the United States because I believe it is the best place for me to be. If I didn’t think so, I would be somewhere else. My belief is that any intelligent person would do the same. Judging by the comments, there are some people who think the U.S. is a truly terrible place. Do you think it is smart to hang around such a terrible place? Are you really so oppressed? Or maybe your complaint is just academic, mendacious and impotent. You know you are safe and expect oppression you can talk about with your similarly situated friends - talk being the operative word.

Some people have made a little more of my aggressive posture than I thought I conveyed. I am a non-violent person. My generally sweet nature has kept me out of physical altercations since HS. But I do believe in a vigorous rebuke of insulting statements. I have on several occasions walked out of lectures or ridiculed people for those sorts of comments. I have found it fairly effective. I don’t know what they do when I leave, but at least I have slowed their progress. I think it is possible to be too polite. Sometimes the best thing to do is ignore such statements, but it is important to make the point of ignoring it.

The written word is not the same as the spoken word or the gesture, so it is hard to explain, but it is important to noticeably flinch when someone says something preposterous, maybe drop a fork or just smile broadly and shake your head. The delivery counts. You can get away with a lot of things with the proper delivery. The goal is to counter them in such a way that they are not sure you did it until a while later.

The only time I remember really annoying a large number of people in real time was inadvertent. I was in the audience when George Soros said he was going to spend his money to try to defeat Bush. Someone asked him if it wasn’t ironic, since he had fought to get money out of politics. Soros replied (I paraphrase) that is was not ironic since he was using his money for a good purpose. I really thought it was a joke. It sure sounded like a Seinfeld quip and I started to laugh. I was the only one who thought it was funny and I got a lot of dirty looks from the surrounding true believers.

I was sorry about that. I go with Oscar Wilde’s dictum that a gentleman never insults anyone -accidentally.

Posted by: Jack at August 10, 2006 4:25 PM
Comment #174626

Jack - By your own admission you physically bully aquaintences into silence, calling them idiots, enough so that it’s an obvious risk for people to voice thier opinion around you?
Then there is this thread that is meant to spark debate, but is closed with a threat to anyone whose suspicions differ from yours?

You must have one exhausting day after another.

David S - Occaisionally, the clever use of words causes me fits of uncontrollable laughter. Today, you did it with “gossipy nomads”.
Thanks.

Posted by: DOC at August 10, 2006 4:53 PM
Comment #174629

Jack:

Very true! If Americans hate America, then they should leave! There is always Canada or France… As you said, they may hate America, but they do not want to leave the high standard of living.

abh:

There are only 2 rules in war: What you can do and what you can’t do (im talking about abilities, not UN global laws). Only Israel seems to know that.

Dave1:

Here is something we should do to other nations:

Suspicious
1. Ask for peace (Russia)
2. (If no peace) Watch them
Hostile1 (like North Korea)
1. Blow up their weapons
Hostile2 (like Al Quaida)
1. Wipe them out because they lost their chance of peace when the killed our people and cost us rebuilding money.

Posted by: stubborn conservative at August 10, 2006 4:57 PM
Comment #174632

Lawnboy

You are wrong one more time

Posted by: tomh at August 10, 2006 5:02 PM
Comment #174635

Abhcoide, I hope there’s room in here for two micks, and I thought I was the resident one! Where are you based?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at August 10, 2006 5:06 PM
Comment #174636

Jack, I have to disagree with your objections to the “Your with us or against us” formula. The fact that the US is a super power, is looked to when ever there is a problem (just look at Dave1’s post) means that we should take control of things to bring them to our collective benefits. Being a super power where there is no obstacles to finding information (like the great firewall of China), where anyone can have a voice and success (like me, a foreign born citizen); what is best for us also happens to be best for all. I say that without any of the guilt of ethnocentrism (what is the ethnicity of America? there one of every race, country, size, shape, etc) or fear of being thought of less.
People like abhcoide have chosen their side, which is the losing side. If abhcoide is a terrorist, I respect him fighting for his cause and a worthy adversary. If he is an American, I pity his fear and guilt of being in such a great country and not thinking he deserves it.

Posted by: frankxcid at August 10, 2006 5:08 PM
Comment #174641

DOC

But I smile when I say these things and there are very few things that actually annoy me enough to object. Beyond that, I usually think of nice ways to call people idiots.

But if somone believes Jews masterminded 9/11, he is an idiot, no matter how nicely I say it. I would not hire such a person to work with me nor invite him into my house.

Surely there are things that you find beyond the pale? I hope you don’t politely accept overtly racist remarks. I would expect that you would object to somone who advocated establishing a fascist state. And you should question anyone who makes ridiculous comments about your country. Unless you believe them too. In that case, you might question yourself and perhaps seek a different affiliation.

frankxcid

There are some people who just don’t care or think it is not their business. They are not for or against us in any significant way. Those caught up in a great cause often cannot understand this middle ground, but it is there. I don’t hold it against people. Although I would expect Americans to be “for” us, I understand that they could be against the current administration. I just hope they can see the lines and make the proper distinctions.

Posted by: Jack at August 10, 2006 5:27 PM
Comment #174643

Paul in euroland

So I guess I must be dense. Are you saying that both sides are equally quilty or equally in the right.

Just remember that before Jordan and Egypt lost control of the West Bank and Gaza after the 67 war there was no such thing as a Palestinian.

The reason that the “Palestinians” still live in refugee camps is because the other arab nations want them in that situation in order to keep the situation glowing without being directly involved.

You still haven’t shown any evidence that the problems would not cease if the Islamofacists stopped attacking and terrorizing Israel.

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 5:36 PM
Comment #174646

Jack,

Although I have liberal leanings, I can’t claim to speak for anyone but myself. To paraphrase Tom Bombadil, I’m not altogether on the side of the Democrats/liberals/progressives because they are not altogether on my side!

But having said that, like most of us, I truly love the ideals of my country. What amazing founding documents we have! Never before in the history of the world has there been a government that so fully invested power in the people. The Greeks paved the way, but of course only a small fraction were enfranchised. It took us until the 20th Century to enfranchise all of our citizens, but we did — the ideals, those amazing concepts from Englightment philosophy, endured.

Of course, being ideals, they are never fully realized. We are imperfect creatures fraught with base impulses, fears, and insecurities, but the ideals give us a direction, a baseline against to measure progress.

I am critical of this country when I see us abandoning or betraying our ideals, but that’s not because I hate the United States, but rather love the ideals behind it. Without our ideals, we are just another country. I am disturbed, sometimes, by patriotic rah-rahs because so often they are used to inspire actions that directly betray our ideals. I am distrubed by bans on flag burning because they elevate a symbol above the ideals it represents. I am disturbed by a president who appears to circumvent the Consitution because the ideals represented in that astounding document ARE what make us special.

Democracy on the scale represented by this country, and other countries, let us not forget that, is still an experiment. Historically speaking, this country is a youngster, and, frankly, the jury is still out whether democracy is viable in the long term. So it alarms me to know how few people vote in elections, how many people are willing to sacrifice our Constitutional protections, how willingly we let our leaders lead us with fiery but often empty rhetoric.

If democracy fails, however, it won’t be our leaders’ fault. It will be our own because we didn’t value it enough to be responsible citizens.

All this sounds cheesy, I know, but in my jaded middle age, this is one topic that still gets me misty eyed.

Posted by: Trent at August 10, 2006 5:47 PM
Comment #174649

Paul in Euroland

Well I started to watch your movie. Sorry any movie that starts with an explanation from Noam Chomsky has already lost any objectivity. Using the most self hating Jew on the planet is not going to help get whatever point they are trying to make. That’s like using Michael Moore to get you to vote Republican.

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 5:52 PM
Comment #174651

“Abhcoide, I hope there’s room in here for two micks, and I thought I was the resident one! Where are you based?”

Hi Paul. I’m in Dublin.

Contrary to insinuations made by others I quite like America and have been there many times. I have drawn attention to dubious American foreign policies in order to illustrate that even the “good guys” do bad things and the world is not so simple (or black and white) that the bombardment of Lebanon by Israel must be right simply because Israel is an ally with a majority jewish population and the current enemies of the state are Islamofascists (the existence of whom is much less widespread than those who profit making bombs want you to believe.)

Tell me, if ETA (in the Basque region of Spain) kill and capture some French soldiers would it be prudent for France to level as much of Spain as possible and “set it back 20 years”? What makes you think bombing a country (where most are not Hezbollah supporters back 20years) is going to solve anything?

Do you have any ideas that don’t end with the dead body of somebody’s mother, father, grandmother, child?

Have we not evolved since 1914?

Israel could be great. Why encourage the worst in the Israelis (and the human condition - i.e. war) when you could encourage the best. You might find the Israelis have more to offer the world than periodically invading other countries over terrorist acts by small militias (read should Britain have destroyed Ireland to stop the IRA or would this have been pointless, bloody and counterproductive). It is a truism that bombing people does not make them like you. You should show more solidarity with Israelis who recognize this fact. If you believe bombing innocent civilians can solve anything in the middle east then you are no better than Hezbollah. Instead of sitting in your armchairs talking tough why don’t you get out there and kill some innocent civilians, any Lebanese civilian or Israeli will do and then you can talk to me about the glories of warfare from the perspective of a hardline IDF soldier or a Hezbollah fighter. I personally would like to see fewer people die.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 5:56 PM
Comment #174653

My Name Is Roger

LAWNBOY: Thank you for your EVIDENCE web site.

If you are truely interested in the EVIDENCE OF DEVINE CREATION, look up the web site of [ ANSWERS IN GENESIS ], they are more then willing and able to give you the information.

I do truely believe that GOD created the heavens and the Earth, but do not have the ability to prove it scientificaly… I am just not that smart… so I am giving you information of people who can.

ROGER

Posted by: ROGER at August 10, 2006 6:02 PM
Comment #174654

Wait for it…the breathtaking arrogance.

“Sorry any movie that starts with an explanation from Noam Chomsky has already lost any objectivity. Using the most self hating Jew on the planet”.

Are you Jewish?

If not why call a Jewish person “self-hating” simply because they do not share you’re political views. Who are you to tell Jewish people what they are or are not entitled to think. Yeah, the hardline Israeli (right-wingers) are your allies just so long as they spent most of that $6 on guns.

Since you wont watch anything in which one of the protaganists does not agree with you how do you expect to learn anything? Will you ever understand anything that doesn’t come from an echo chamber? How will you ever understand fellow human beings?

From a self-interested point of view aren’t you eager to trounce his arguments? Or do you fear that a man as articulate and educated as Noam Chomsky doesn’t make arguments which can easily be trashed unlike a man who may or may not be your icon but is certainly a member of the right-wing echo chamber and a propagandist - Bill O’Reilly. The difference between the two is that Chomsky justifies what he says with reference to little things called facts.

But as Stephen Colbert has wisely observed “Facts have a well known liberal bias”.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 6:02 PM
Comment #174655

ooops type error, yes that $6 should read $6billion dollars per annum.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 6:04 PM
Comment #174657

Feel free to disagree with Chomsky and by all means back up what you say with reference to facts - pick up a book of his and have a good read of all that careful footnoting. It is important to have sources other than what you have been told on TV. Get out there and read, read things you agree, read things that you don’t but by all means never accept anybody else’s opinion (however well disguised) for a fact. No media is objective but some are better than others.

If you want to stick with Murdoch (who ownes Fox) don’t watch Fox watch Sky News International (24hr - prob. available on satellite/cable) it’s closer to “fair and balanced” on most issues, still not perfect but a big improvement…same for the BBC, Channel 4 News (UK).

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 6:08 PM
Comment #174658

abh

Yes I am

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 6:08 PM
Comment #174660

Wait did you just say to watch the BBC because they are most balanced than Fox. What do you base that on?

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 6:10 PM
Comment #174662

My Name Is Roger:

DON: I never ment to give the inpression that I believed what Gobles said was true.. [I DON’T ]

I believe that Hitler and Gobles and all of his inter circle were evil men, who were deceived by Satan.

ROGER

Posted by: ROGER at August 10, 2006 6:11 PM
Comment #174663
Lawnboy

You are wrong one more time

Really? Then say how. Then show how creationism is supported by science.

Since you won’t and can’t, then your claims are nothing more than flaccid flailing.

Posted by: LawnBoy at August 10, 2006 6:12 PM
Comment #174666

“Who is the bigger threat to Lebanon? Israel or the Syrian backed Hezbollah?”

The answer is simple. Israel. Israel has more and better guns. Israel is bombing Lebanon with the stated intent of “setting Lebanon back twenty years”.

Hezbollah are a parasite, like the IRA. The IRA may have made life impossible for people in their own communites, killed people from other communities and bombed but they are a mere terrorist organisation and can only do so much damage. Chiefly because they have limited support. They’re are not liked and recognised for the criminals that they are.

Post-destruction of Lebanon, Hezbollah will be stronger, better equipped (all money coming in), and they will pose a greater threat to Israel and by extension Lebanon.

By the way they called for the destruction of Israel not Lebanon (note: Israel is a nuclear power, armed to the teeth and supported without any reservation by the US - the sole superpower - Hezbollah might talk big but they are a fly swatting an elephant - Israel is fully entitled to defend itself against Hezbollah - however I believe bombing Lebanon indiscriminately is not the answer - terrorism is best defeated through good policing - maybe it’s less sexy to you than war but it gets the job done and fewer innocent people end up dead.

They (Hezbollah) are a nuisance to Lebanon but really only a threat to Israel (in military terms, excepting civil war). In the same fashion though the IRA are criminals and murders their big gripe was always against Britain (they didn’t bomb the South). Therefore they posed a greater threat to the UK and to Unionist/Loyalist communities in the north than Southern Irish in the Republic, having said that they made the lives of people in their own communities miserable (punishment beatings etc).

While Syria may give Hezbollah support I imagine the relationship is more complicated than that. Hezbollah do not need Syria for their existence, they are a Lebanese based organisation. They arose independently thanks to Israeli occupation of Lebanon (for over a decade) after the 1982 war. They are bad guys but all of Lebanon does not deserve to die because of them.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 6:19 PM
Comment #174667
If you are truely interested in the EVIDENCE OF DEVINE CREATION, look up the web site of [ ANSWERS IN GENESIS ], they are more then willing and able to give you the information.

I am quite familiar with that website and the tactics they use (the “logic” and tactics are both similar to what one sees on the websites of those that deny our trips to the moon). Unfortunately, they trip up many people with invalid logic, misinterpretation of findings, and intentional continued use of ideas that have been disproven.

The site Trent linked to earlier addresses most or all of the claims from that site and shows how they are not scientifically valid.

I do truely believe that GOD created the heavens and the Earth, but do not have the ability to prove it scientificaly… I am just not that smart… so I am giving you information of people who can.

Sadly, you’ve instead hitched along with people who use pseudo-science and lies to mislead people. I suggest you try checking out the other side - that’s where the actual scientific proof is. They’re the really smart ones.

Posted by: LawnBoy at August 10, 2006 6:20 PM
Comment #174670

Alleged Syrian support of Hezbollah should be put in context.

The IRA (blight that they are, murders, crooks, terrorists) were supported financially Irish Americans, who sent dollar after dollar to the IRA (sympathy money for the cause). This money was spent on guns, election campaigns etc.

The US never did much to stop the flow of money pre 9/11. Meanwhile (post-ceasefire) splinter groups used some of the same money (presumably) to blow up a down Omagh - and kill over 30 innocent people.

Would one argue that the US supported the IRA or is this as blunt, misleading and obtuse a perspective as claiming Syria is behind Hezbollah.

I’m sure Hezbollah relieve money from many different private individuals, this is not to say that all of their countries are responsible for the actions of those private individual doners.

Post-destruction of Lebanon, Hezbollah will receive more money.

You might say that Hezbollah are using weapons acquired from x country or y country. Well is Russia behind it everytime someone fires a Kalashnikov?

It’s a gross oversimplification.

Bush’s “get Syria to stop this shit” remark reveals that he only listened to (or could remember afterwards) one sentence of his entire briefing.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 6:24 PM
Comment #174671

abhcoide

“get Syria to stop this shit”

Now that’s misinformation

What he actually said was “What they need to do is to get Syria to get Hezbollah to stop doing this shit and it’s over”

Posted by: Keith at August 10, 2006 6:33 PM
Comment #174678

actually it was from memory. I didn’t have the full quote to hand. Meaning is the same - Syria is alleged to have the capacity/influence to get Hezbollah to stop doing this shit and “then it’s all over.”

Did Bush mean that all Assad (Syria) had to do was get on the phone and tell Hezbollah to call it quits?

Or was he suggesting that Syria invade Lebanon also?

Either reading, it was a naive thing to say. The world is more complex than soundbite recollections from briefings. Note how he didn’t even both to face Blair or stop chewing with his mouthful when talking to him. Glad i’m not English I would have felt as though I had been (along with my countrymen insulted). Blair is clearly closer to being Bush’s “poodle” than he thinks, one thing is clear, he is not treated with the respect a foreign leader deserves.

Posted by: abhcoide at August 10, 2006 6:55 PM
Comment #174699

Lawnboy

This is not the time nor place to debate the subject, as this is to be debating another subject.

I will say this for closure. You have absolutely no scientific proof that the heavens and the earth were not produced by one Creator of both named GOD.

Posted by: tomh at August 10, 2006 8:16 PM
Comment #174700

tomh,

You have absolutely no scientific proof that the heavens and the earth were not produced by one Creator of both named GOD.

You’re right, that’s impossible to prove or disprove. However, you initially added “as recorded in the book of Genesis in the Bible”, and the scientific record and factual analysis are in violent disagreement with a literal reading of the Genesis myth.

Posted by: LawnBoy at August 10, 2006 8:20 PM
Comment #174705

There are those that believe capitalism and freedom are interchangeable words. Some even believe that the poor choose to be poor. They are lazy and slovenly while the rich are hard working and tidy. It’s amazing what some people will believe.

Posted by: gergle at August 10, 2006 8:25 PM
Comment #174715

Jack - To be honest, I have to say I do have pet peeves that will cause potentially irrational behavior (child abuse), but having been exposed to stupidity all of my life, its not that high on the list. Years of listening to peoples issues combined with studies in comparative theology have conditioned me to be somewhat imune to hearing exceptionally odd viewpoints.

An example would be the movie “Fahrenheit 911”. While I knew the premise prior to seeing it, I wanted to experience it, in order to have a frame of reference when people discussed it. Within the first 10 minutes, I found the content to be as absurdly entertaining as the National Enquirer, but had to leave the theater because I couldn’t stomach Micheal Moore’s snarky commentary.

In short, the stupid aspect doesn’t bother me, but the attitude certainly does, I’ve found a rather usefull tool to use when a person comes to me with a bizarre and unsubstantiated theory. Rather than directly oppose them or discredit them, I simply suggest that they act on thier belief. Nine times out of ten the person will backpeddle or back down completely. I suspect that the tenth person ends up in a situation with a person of your temperment.

“Comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable”

Regards

Posted by: DOC at August 10, 2006 9:58 PM
Comment #174717

Povery is a mental condition. Are you that out of it that you believe the rich don’t work for their money? Please try and be serious. The poor continue to be poor becasue they continue to do what makes them poor. In the U.S. there is little excuse for failing except what looks back at you in the mirror.

Oh, wait “The man kept me down” 1

Posted by: Libertarian3 at August 10, 2006 10:16 PM
Comment #174723

Povery is a mental condition. Are you that out of it that you believe the rich don’t work for their money? Please try and be serious. The poor continue to be poor becasue they continue to do what makes them poor. In the U.S. there is little excuse for failing except what looks back at you in the mirror.

Posted by: Libertarian3 at August 10, 2006 10:16 PM

L3 - You make a valid point, but completly overgeneralize. My mental position in no way caused me to lose my 80K+ job. It was actually governmental deregulation of the telecom industry.
Luckily, I had a pension that I lived on for 13 months until I found a job on the other side of the country that compensated similarly.

In theory I agree with you, but before I made such broad statements, I would take into consideration the situations where legislation has changed economic status.

Posted by: DOC at August 10, 2006 10:51 PM
Comment #174742
I told him that I hope he didn’t really believe that because anyone who did was an idiot. My wife told me that I was rude and complained that I physically invaded the personal space of a smaller man. But neither this guy nor anyone else who heard about the confrontation ever brought it up in my presence again. I don’t suppose I changed his mind, but I did make it more difficult for him to spread the poison.

Wow! What a delicious circus!

When a reknowned Christian who’s messages are based on lies, mythology and blind acceptance of what other’s tell them can get away with bullying someone with a conspiracy theory, the insanity of this world rears it true face.

Posted by: Davis at August 11, 2006 1:56 AM
Comment #174745

Davis - If you have the time or inclination, read through this threads posts, they are truly interesting. Get a good idea of the reaction to the thread. Hope to hear your impressions.

Regards

Posted by: DOC at August 11, 2006 2:23 AM
Comment #174761

Disinformation or not, the fact is a great majority of American people are fooled and hypnotized by their zionist infected mainstream media to believe that Israel who killed hundreds of innocent Lebanese is weak and deserve sympathy, while Hezbollah who fought for freedom is terrorist. Wake up America, when will you realize that you have been disinformed by Jewish lobby that make your congress look like Israel occupied territory….

Posted by: Topo at August 11, 2006 5:58 AM
Comment #174775

Topo:

The media is Zionist?! That is hilarious. Most of the medial is Liberal. They condemn Israel’s actions!!!!!!!

Posted by: stubborn conservative at August 11, 2006 8:54 AM
Comment #174784

Topo, That is judging others by how you judge yourselve. You completely miss the point. I don’t pitty Israel. I think they will prevail. I cheer them on because they are the righteous in this conflict. You expect my side to pitty because that is what you hope the world does in order to improve your side’s situation. That is why photo staging is taking place there. When Hezbollah soldiers are alive they are brave Guerillas. When they are dead, they are pitiful dead civilian Lebanese. Same person, twice the pitty.
Oh wait, you are giving an example of disinformation. I get it.

Posted by: frankxcid at August 11, 2006 9:26 AM
Comment #174796

What we lack is the insight to realize that no one considers themselves the bad guy. In general, we Americans are deeply ignorant, yet we have no problem reducing very complicated issues and actors to “good” and “evil,” with “good” being us and “evil” the other guy. It’s a simple-minded, yet self-aggrandizing thinking that contributes to the world’s ills. If we were Arab, we’d hate America too, and we’d feel perfectly justified doing so.

Posted by: Trent at August 11, 2006 10:27 AM
Comment #174801

If our government doesn’t want us to believe that it cooperated in any way in carrying out 9/11, then it has a long, long, long list of questions it needs to answer satisfactorily. Until it does, there will be a great number of rational questions that remain unanswered.

I’ve still never yet seen a major accident scene where a majority of the evidence was so quickly shipped overseas for “recycling”…there’s a question!

Posted by: Lynne at August 11, 2006 10:49 AM
Comment #174806
Posted by: Davis at August 11, 2006 01:56 AM

Hey Jack! You’re “renowned” now. Congrats!

Posted by: LawnBoy at August 11, 2006 11:03 AM
Comment #174813

Jack, I’ve thought a while about how to phrase this without just trying to bait you. I think the easiest way is just to avoid the current political situation altogether. Historically, our government has been involved in disinformation campaigns. I trust I don’t need links for this assertion but of course can provide them if needed. It’s not a radical claim, anyway. My question is, do you in general condone or condemn this tactic? I realize that the answer might vary according to specific circumstances, so let’s discard specifics and just speak generally.

Here’s a link to Wiki’s propaganda entry. I don’t think a discussion of disinformation or the larger issue of propaganda has to fall along left/right lines.

Posted by: Trent at August 11, 2006 11:38 AM
Comment #174876

Trent

The line between disinformation, misinformation, advocacy or just getting things wrong is sometimes hard to find. I think of it like a gun. Guns don’t kill; people kill. Let’s go through some of the considerations.

It depends on who is doing it and why. Disinformation in time of war is often meant to trick in a specific way. We engaged in a massive disinformation campaign prior to D-Day in 1944. This is deception in war. I have no problem with that. I would expect to do it and have our enemies do it. I would not respect someone who didn’t.

Then there is the passing of possible information. Everyone (me too) is guilty of this. We tend not to be as careful about checking information that supports our positions. For example, I heard that Osama bin Laden dressed up as a woman to avoid capture. I do not think there is good evidence for that and I doubt that it is true, but I do not KNOW that it is false. I might pass that along. A difference with real disinformation is that I would not make it the central part of my argument.

The disinformation I am talking about is a systematic creation of harmful information designed to mislead and do non-specific harm. It is generally also done in a “peacetime” situation, or at least not specifically related to military operations. The non-specific part is what makes it different than the deception we used for D-Day. It also is designed not only to deceive, but also create general hate.

After the goal was achieved, the D-Day disinformation caused no further harm. It is like using Roundup on your crops. It kills the weeds to which it is applied; then it breaks down. It becomes harmless after use.

Let me give a historical example of disinformation that caused long-term, non-specific harm. The Soviet Union’s active measures division created a disinformation campaign saying that the U.S. had created AIDS as a bio-weapon aimed at African populations. This disinformation was not aimed at any particular goal except to harm the U.S. and create hatred and mistrust. It did. It also harmed lots of other people. The ripples form this campaign helped slow HIV being recognized as a problem in Africa. African leaders were affected by this campaign and resisted measures that could have mitigated the crisis. The Soviets even published a pamphlet with at title something like, AIDS: Made in America, not an Africa crisis.

Their disinformation interfered with treatment efforts and even just a few years ago literally crippled thousands of children in Nigeria when local governments refused to vaccinate them for polio for fear of AIDS being used as a weapon. This campaign, developed 25 years ago, has had a long and deadly shadow.

The Jews being responsible for 9/11 is similar in that it creates hate and makes it more difficult to find solutions.

So lying is common. All of us say things that are not true every day, even when we are trying to tell the truth. But disinformation is the difference between a headache and a brain tumor. And it has non-specific, hateful consequences.

I am not aware of any American disinformation campaigns that have met the criteria of long term, non-specific and hateful. I suppose you could argue that some of the agitating against Indian tribes was like that, but I have examined our programs aimed at the Soviets or even against the Japanese or Nazis and have not found them to be primarily of the same type. We certainly are NOT doing it against Arabs or Muslims today, nor do I think it would be appropriate.

Information campaigns against Saddam pre-war were also not disinformation. (I don’t mean to bait either) If you look at the information we were putting out, you will find that we believed or had reason to believe what we were saying. I suppose we could be accused of the sin I mentioned above (of accepting on too little evidence), but it certainly was not created out of whole cloth or at odds with what was generally accepted as truth.


Posted by: Jack at August 11, 2006 3:41 PM
Comment #174912

Isn’t disinformation the foundation of society? Gaining power by getting masses of people to believe or have faith in unprovable lies is afterall the very core of nearly every major religious movement on the planet.

It’s virtually impossible to construct an argument that a 9/11 or Aids conspiracy theory is any more detrimental to society than, religion, the very thing that has kept the world spinning, people killing one another by the millions for millenia and is considered normal and acceptable.

Sorry, I’m just not buying the sales pitch here, it’s too exclusive in it’s aim. If you want to put Islam, Judeism, Christianity, etc. on the table with 9/11 and AIDS conspiracy theories, then, yes, I would agree that disinformation is pathetic and dangerous.

Posted by: Taylor at August 11, 2006 5:57 PM
Comment #174927

JAck, thanks for the thoughtful response. I’m betraying my American bias here, but in times of war I don’t necessarily have a problem with using propaganda (in all its senses, including outright lies) against an enemy. It’s a tool of war, just as guns and bombs are.

My real concern is when our government uses propaganda against its citizens because it strikes at the very heart of the essential premise of a good democracy — that the public is informed enough to make good decisions in selecting its leaders and pressing for various policies and actions.

I am less sanguine than you about how the current administration presented information in building its case for war. You know all the arguments — the Cheney statements when he should have known better, the cherry picking evidence, the forced equivalence of Iraq with terrorism, the very words “terrorism” and “terrorists” to reduce a complicated world with a variety of hostile actors into catch-all categories that we consider without nuance, the appeals to pathos instead of logos in general.

I know we are unlikely to ever agree on these specifics, but I do appreciate your thoughtful response.

Taylor,

It’s probably not a surprise that I’m agnostic, but I do not equate religious faith with disinformation. When faith is used to blithely dismiss evidence, as in — oh man, here goes — creationsim, I have a problem. But most religious people in our country do not do that — they have a belief in a divine force that works through the laws of nature. Who am I to say they are wrong? So I limit my criticisms to those who use faith to justify atrocious behavior.

Posted by: Trent at August 11, 2006 6:37 PM
Comment #174943
So I limit my criticisms to those who use faith to justify atrocious behavior.

But then you would equally have to limit criticisms of those who propagate conspiracy theory to those who justify or condone atrocious behavior. This isn’t the spirit of the original message in this thread. The message in this thread is that disinformation is dangerous, in any kind and quantity, but the author selectively and conveniently omits the reality that religion is the most prominent offender and is indistinguishable from the other genres of thinking that perpetuate disinformation as a means toward an end.

Posted by: Taylor at August 11, 2006 7:19 PM
Comment #174970

Taylor

I am not agnostic, but I do not hold with any particular religion. But I believe that major religions, such as Judaism, Islam, Christianity and Buddhism, have been generally beneficial to mankind. Much of our arts and culture is the direct result of people’s faith. Christianity preserved Western Civilization during the dark ages and Islam saved much of ancient science and literature.

My first field of study was ancient history. Savage as Christians (or Muslims) could be, they were pikers compared with the ancients. When the ancient Greeks took a city, it was customary to kill most of the men and boy, rape the women and girls (and many of the boys) and then sell anybody left alive after all that into slavery. And the Greeks were a step above the people of ancient Middle East. The pre modern record holding killers were the Monguls, who had a very primitive belief system. And you must also recall that the biggest murderers in world history (Mao & Stalin) professed to be atheists.

Re conspiracy theories - if they don’t cause any trouble, I don’t care if people believe in them. I do limit my wrath to those who use it to justify terrible behavior. I do not care if people think there was a conspiracy in the Kennedy assassination or if they think a secret club runs the world. I think of them like habitual lottery players: stupid but harmless except to themselves.

Posted by: Jack at August 11, 2006 8:50 PM
Comment #174994

Taylor,

I suspect we all have encounters with the sublime, however they may come. With me, it can occur while reading certain poems or passages, encountering certain art, observing certain natural phenomenon, engaging in certain acts. The western mind has categorized certain varieties of the sublime — Longinus’ transport, Burke’s fear of the terrible from a safe distance, Kant’s mathematical sublime in the face of immense magnitude, etc. For me they all involve transcendence of one sort or another, and I suspect these sensations lie at the root of the religious experience. Because I am essentially a rationalist, I attribute these sensations to the workings on the mind, but the feeling involved is literally aw(e)ful.

If there is a proof of divinity, I think it lies here, in these sensations I think we all have. I do not attribute them to a supernatural entity, but I am not going to disparage those who do. Atheism to me is intellectually untenable; how does one prove the non-existence of God?

I am much much more concerned with how people behave than how they believe, and of course, if you want to talk about how specific religious beliefs can lead to atrocity, I think that is fair. IF you want to talk about how religious belief can serve the purposes of the state, that’s fair too. But I have met too many truly fine and ethical people who also happened to be religious for me to knock religious thought in toto.

I call myself an agnostic because I think it’s honest to do so. I simply don’t know.

Posted by: Trent at August 11, 2006 10:47 PM
Comment #175112

Stupidty is rampant among my fellow citizens .
Including the professororial glass .
OH , so quick we are to lose out strength and
ideals .
In fifty years we’ve lost our way . We still have our super bowl and our celebs who will lead us out of the darkness .
When were crying why, read these posts and you’ll know why !!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: paul smith at August 12, 2006 12:33 PM
Comment #175683

Good thing we live in a country where the government would never produce propaganda to make us believe the way they want us to. Oh, wait, the Bush administration has been accused of paying columnists to print columns favorable to their policies, have manufactured “news videos” that support their viewpoint and paid to have them broadcast as newscasts, has selectively presented intelligence to support their foregone conclusions, and has planted intelligence regarding “yellow-cake” with foreign intelligence services that they presented as “corroboration” of their allegations.

Never mind.

Posted by: mental wimp at August 15, 2006 4:27 PM
Comment #176844

“…the Bush administration has been accused of paying columnists to print columns favorable to their policies…”

…democrat administrations have no need to pay columnists to print favorable columns…the left-wing press (otherwise known as the ‘media wing of the democrat party’) does it for free.

Posted by: aligncare at August 21, 2006 6:36 PM
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