Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Minnesota's Exports Soar 19% in QII

STAR TRIBUNE -- "Minnesota manufacturers reported a 19 percent year-over-year jump in exports in the second quarter, enough to nearly match the state's record high exports of two years ago.  The performance provided another sign the anemic economic recovery may be gaining traction."

HT: J. Howe

96 Comments:

At 9/22/2010 11:17 AM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Die, recession, duie, die, die!
Some AEI scholars are calling on the Fed to engage in more stimulus.
I agree.

 
At 9/22/2010 11:40 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Please get a grip. Michigan is dying because of is big government obsession. A blip will not change the trend very much.

 
At 9/22/2010 11:44 AM, Blogger Mark J. Perry said...

Vangel:

Please note that the story is about the state of Minnesota, not Michigan.

 
At 9/22/2010 12:39 PM, Blogger Andy said...

It's all the people on food stamps buying Lutefisk :-)

 
At 9/22/2010 1:17 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Please note that the story is about the state of Minnesota, not Michigan.

Sorry. It serves me right to post from a Starbucks. But the argument does not change. Minnesota, is also dying because of America's obsession with big government. Until you end foreign occupations and bring back the troops home, stop spending on military installations in more than 100 countries, stop wasting billions in wars against drugs, illiteracy, obesity, energy efficiency, poverty, etc., etc., etc., the real economy cannot recover because it cannot support the spending.

The US is in a serious decline because it has turned away from the idea of personal liberty (and the responsibility that comes with it) and has chosen instead to adopt a progressive ideology that leads to serfdom. Little blips will not change the trend. If you step back far enough you will see that the currency and the real economy are in decline.

 
At 9/22/2010 1:38 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Right on Vange!

You should also mention the gigantic and ongoing sudsidies to rural America for roads, water and power systems, telephones, airports, postal service, rail stops, and crop production. Rural America is kept artificially alive by federal subsidy, and they are the most mollycoddled, knock-kneed, enfeebled economic weaklings on earth.

Now, if you could just get off the gold standard.

Side question: Okay, let's say gold goes to $2k an ounce. People start digging lot mor eof it up--or find a way to extract it from ore much more eaisly. The gold supply skyrockets...does it make sense to stay on the gold standard?

What is gold can be made artificially?

Lastly, why are you in a Starbucks?

 
At 9/22/2010 2:09 PM, Blogger juandos said...

pseudo benny wails: "Rural America is kept artificially alive by federal subsidy, and they are the most mollycoddled, knock-kneed, enfeebled economic weaklings on earth"...

Yeah, sort of reminds me of Californians...

 
At 9/22/2010 2:11 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

"You should also mention the gigantic and ongoing sudsidies to rural America for roads, water and power systems, telephones, airports, postal service, rail stops, and crop production. Rural America is kept artificially alive by federal subsidy, and they are the most mollycoddled, knock-kneed, enfeebled economic weaklings on earth."

You are partially right. Clearly rural America gets a large number of subsidies. But many rural Americans are net contributors and lose from the arrangement when all of the costs and benefits are accounted for.

Now, if you could just get off the gold standard.

On the advice of Paul Volker, Richard Nixon closed the gold window at the NY Fed on August 15, 1971. Since than the USD has been losing purchasing power rapidly and is now buying a fraction of what it used to.

Side question: Okay, let's say gold goes to $2k an ounce. People start digging lot mor eof it up--or find a way to extract it from ore much more eaisly. The gold supply skyrockets...does it make sense to stay on the gold standard?

I am not advocating a gold, silver or a copper standard. All I am advocating is ending the Fed's monopoly on money creation and going back to a market based monetary system.

What is gold can be made artificially?

It would not matter. The market would devalue gold and move on to another medium of exchange. Gold only works as long as it is a store of value and makes it impossible to rob savers and workers via inflation by fiat.

Lastly, why are you in a Starbucks?

I am over 50 and have been retired for about a decade now. Sadly, I have gotten too out of shape and need to hit the gym. After my workouts I like to cool off at Starbucks where I do my reading and check my e-mail.

I had just finished my copy of the Anti-Capitalist Mentality and just got through three chapters of Motford's great book, The Hockey Stick Illusion. That got me even more hyped up than my workout so I decided to check this blog. Sadly, my fingers sometimes get way ahead of my thoughts and I made an error.

 
At 9/22/2010 2:34 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Vange-
Congrats on retiring at 40. I will have to wait until 57, and even then I will operate a working farm (sort of).

Actually, if you go to The Tax Foundation website, you will find that rural states and zip codes are huge net beneficiaries of federal taxes and spending. States such as Alaska, Montana, Kentucky get back more than $1.50 for every dollar sent to DC. Urbanized states are gypped.

If you care, the short history is that when LBJ was a US Congressman, he pioneered with FDR the federal funding of rural infrastructure programs. These have grown (like all federal lard) over the decades, only getting bigger, never smaller.
In the intervening years, rural areas became Republican, but still wedded and dependent on federal lard. Military bases and equipment purchases are of course often just patronage in rural areas.

We have created the current rural welfare state, or the Red State Socialist Empire, over decades.

Bush Jr. was loyal to the Crown of Saudi Arabia and Red State Socialist Empire.

Obama? Remains to be seen. Seems like he is not clued in.

 
At 9/22/2010 2:42 PM, Blogger Buddy R Pacifico said...

Great news for Minnesota and the U.S.

What is Minnesota's leading manufactured non-food product? Orthopedic body parts and accesories!

 
At 9/22/2010 2:43 PM, Blogger morganovich said...

benji-

you sure rail about subsidies a lot for someone who has been begging for one.

using deliberate high inflation to erode debt is worse than a subsidy. it has all the negative effects, but with tons of side effects as well.

it also destroys much more wealth than it preserves.

you need to pick a side of the street and live in it.

your welfare to me but not for thee attitude is untenable.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:02 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Congrats on retiring at 40. I will have to wait until 57, and even then I will operate a working farm (sort of).

It is better to keep busy. Fortunately I have two kids and a huge pile of 'must read books' to take up a lot of my time.

Actually, if you go to The Tax Foundation website, you will find that rural states and zip codes are huge net beneficiaries of federal taxes and spending. States such as Alaska, Montana, Kentucky get back more than $1.50 for every dollar sent to DC. Urbanized states are gypped.

I hear you. But I wonder how much of the money goes to large agricultural interests and what the real story is with the regular individual. I have never been big into looking at the general picture when it comes to government reporting because it often obscures some important information that tells a slightly different story.

If you care, the short history is that when LBJ was a US Congressman, he pioneered with FDR the federal funding of rural infrastructure programs. These have grown (like all federal lard) over the decades, only getting bigger, never smaller.
In the intervening years, rural areas became Republican, but still wedded and dependent on federal lard. Military bases and equipment purchases are of course often just patronage in rural areas.


I agree with your assessment. But as I argued above, it is interesting to figure out who is getting most of cash. I am willing to bet that a disproportionate amount goes to a few well connected individuals and institutions.

We have created the current rural welfare state, or the Red State Socialist Empire, over decades.

Again I agree. Let the market work and things will be much better for the average person.

Bush Jr. was loyal to the Crown of Saudi Arabia and Red State Socialist Empire.

Bush was one of the worst president ever and his loyalty was to his own power base and his friends just as it is with all politicians.

Obama? Remains to be seen. Seems like he is not clued in.

He is likely to be even worse than Bush, something I did not think was possible. Sadly for the US, Obama is an ideologue who is more interested in politics and power than in the voters.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:23 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Obama worse than Bush?

Maybe. Domestically, possibly.

On wars? No. We will spend $3 trillion on Iraqistan before all is said and done, every dollar borrowed.

What is the upside?

30,000 Americans die every year in auto accidents. 18,000 in gunshots. Every year.

3,000 in the best year ever for terrorists, in 9/11, and that happened on Bush jr's watch.

Terrorism is really just a heinous PR stunt. not truly a threat to the USA.

But we spent $3 trillion and counting...

Hard to say which Prezzy is the worst.

Obama is getting us out of Iraqistan, and he doesn't seem to care if we "lose" or not. Good news for taxpayers. We can't leave sson enough.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:27 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Actually, if you go to The Tax Foundation website, you will find that rural states and zip codes are huge net beneficiaries of federal taxes and spending. States such as Alaska, Montana, Kentucky get back more than $1.50 for every dollar sent to DC. Urbanized states are gypped."

And if you read further, as Benji doesn't want you to do, you find out the reason for the disparity is mostly the progressive income tax.

Hey Benji, it's going to get even worse when your boyfriend raises taxes on the most productive class.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:28 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Obama worse than Bush?
Maybe. Domestically, possibly."

You got to love how Benji hems and haws when it comes to his boyfriend's economic wrecking ball.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:39 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"What is gold can be made artificially?"

How can you possibly be worried about something as unlikely as that? Money is created now with just a few keystrokes. How could anything be more troublesome than that?

By the way, benji, in case you've forgotten gold is a chemical element that can only be created in nuclear reactions involving unimaginable amounts of energy. Think supernova. The cost of such production would almost certainly be far greater than the value of any gold produced.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:50 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Ron H.

I know that about gold--why alchemists had such a tough time.

But the puzzle remains--if you like a gold standardm what if extraction methods become radically improved, leading to a large increase in supply?

And if the gold supply does not increase, we will have chronic deflation--see Japan for how that works out.

 
At 9/22/2010 3:51 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

Many people don't seem to realize the U.S. has an empire to run. Foreigners have been financing most of the U.S. military, since the U.S. consumes more than it produces each year and it'll continue, although we may overconsume by $500 billion a year instead of $800 billion a year for a while.

The Cold War is over and we don't need as many troops in Europe anymore. The U.S. and our allies will be in the Middle East for the "long haul." So, the sooner everyone gets use to it, the better.

 
At 9/22/2010 4:26 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Obama worse than Bush?

Maybe. Domestically, possibly.


He meddles with the affairs of other countries just as Bush did so he won't be much better on that front either.

On wars? No. We will spend $3 trillion on Iraqistan before all is said and done, every dollar borrowed.

He broke his word and did what Bush was doing. He followed Bush's Iraq withdrawal plan and escalated Afghanistan where you will lose just as the Russians did.

What is the upside?

There is no upside.

30,000 Americans die every year in auto accidents. 18,000 in gunshots. Every year.

The auto deaths will increase because of the fuel regulations as smaller vehicles are forced on the roads. But auto safety is very good and the per mile death rate has been falling for a very long time.

You can blame a number of the gun deaths on the war on drugs but even with that there are only around 8,000 homicides in the US per year. Most gun deaths are suicides and not exactly preventable. If a gun was not used you would have seen the use of carbon monoxide, drug overdoses, hangings, and other means. There are less accidental shootings than there are accidental drownings in backyard pools.

3,000 in the best year ever for terrorists, in 9/11, and that happened on Bush jr's watch.

Sorry but you can't blame that one on Bush. Madeline Albright's, remark about how the half a million dead Iraqi children were worth it if America's political goals could be advanced generated a lot of anger. So did the stationing of troops in Saudi Arabia and meddling with the affairs of other countries.

Terrorism is really just a heinous PR stunt. not truly a threat to the USA.

Agreed.

But we spent $3 trillion and counting...

And gave up your personal liberties.

Hard to say which Prezzy is the worst.

Not that hard at all. The worst is the one that creates the most debt, the most inflation, and limits individual freedom.

Obama is getting us out of Iraqistan, and he doesn't seem to care if we "lose" or not. Good news for taxpayers. We can't leave sson enough.

The timetable he is following is not very different than what Bush came up with so let us not get too excited. Both occupations were a bad idea and a loss. The faster they end the better off you will be.

 
At 9/22/2010 4:30 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"Obama worse than Bush?"

benj, you need to get out more often. Your boyfriend is Bush on steroids. He has continued every terrible Bush policy, added some of his own, and wants to eliminate the only good one, the tax cuts. He has expanded government and spent money at rates never before seen, and there's no end in sight.

Obama's foreign policy consists of apologizing and kissing up to every Muslim and Socialist tyrant he can find. He doesn't seem to notice that they respond by slapping his extended hand and telling him to be more respectful.

Gotten us out of Iraqistan? You're kidding, right? there will still be 50,000 American troops in Iraq for the forseeable future. How is that "getting us out"?

After 20 months as President it is really lame to still be blaming Bush for anything. Those 2 foreign wars you don't like belong to your boyfriend now. By keeping them running for so long he has signaled his approval, no matter what drivel you hear issue from his as...I mean mouth.

 
At 9/22/2010 4:33 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

But the puzzle remains--if you like a gold standardm what if extraction methods become radically improved, leading to a large increase in supply?

That is not easy. The heap leach process allowed low concentration ores to become economic but the easy deposits have already been developed. Gold miners now face a depletion problem and are a long way from being able to increase production materially. But even if they could, they would not change the supply by much because most of the gold that has ever been mined is still in existence and in use as a monetary reserve. Even if you grew new production faster than population not much would change.

And if the gold supply does not increase, we will have chronic deflation--see Japan for how that works out.

This is not a problem. The USD and British Pound gained purchasing power for more than 100 years while both nations grew rapidly. The mild deflation was good for production, investment, and savings.

Clearly you need to do some research because you are worried about the wrong thing and have an incomplete understanding of what we mean by medium of exchange and store of value and how they fit into a market economy.

 
At 9/22/2010 5:04 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Vange-

There were any number of economic busts, regional and national, before the paper money era.

In the United States,

1807-1814
1837-1844
1873-1879
1893-1898

Were depression years, and of course,the biggie, the 1930s.


Speaking globally, the last 30 years have been economically golden (ha-ha). But we are off the gold standard. Not so bad in the USA either, until Bush Jr. became president.

My question about extracting gold is meant to provoke thought--what is about a physical supply of metal that captivates you? Why not a silver standard? Palladium? Platinum? Diamonds?

Is it not wasteful to have men tunneling like moles (Friedman's description of what gold standards lead to).

In the end, mild inflation is a good thing. Paper money is a medium of exchange. It is a claim on output. You get claims on output by working for them (or getting subsidies from Uncle Sam, ala military contractors and farmers).

 
At 9/22/2010 5:20 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"I know that about gold--why alchemists had such a tough time."

Well then, if you know it's impossible, why did you even bring it up?

I can't imagine a sudden major breakthrough in gold extraction methods. I would imagine people are continually looking for improvements, and after thousands of years, I don't expect any miracles. And, as VangelV said, people would discount gold and move on to something else.

"And if the gold supply does not increase..."

Gold supplies constantly increase as more is discovered and mined. In fact when demand is high more is produce just as with any other commodity. It's a self regulating process.

The beauty of any commodity money is that it can't be created out of thin air like fiat money, and thus keeps governments from easily financing expensive wars. Something I believe you favor. On the other hand, you can't inflate away your debts.

 
At 9/22/2010 5:51 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Ron H.

Two interesting stories out there today that the right-wing will totally ignore.

1. $55 billion annually of Department of Defense contracts are one-bid. No competition. WSJ

2. Utah National Guardsman, firing machine guns, started a raging fire, threatening 1400 homes. LA times.

Now, if this was left-wing waste, it would be cited as examples why the federal government doesn't work, can't work, and all federal spending is wasteful.

But, it is right-wing boobery and waste, so it gets a pass. Like the $8 billion in annual rural telephone subsidies.

Remember the one-time $2 billion auto clunkers program? Oh, the sniveling and crying about that.

But an $8 billion annual rural telephone subsidy? Next topic!

The Republican Party is just confederacy of feckless poltroons, a gang of grifters and strumpets in search of a gullible public to filch money from.

 
At 9/22/2010 6:02 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"$55 billion annually of Department of Defense contracts are one-bid. No competition."

Hey Benji, are you even vaguely aware of which party controlled the Congress and the White House? Who chairs the committees where this type of waste is overlooked?

Any clue?

"But an $8 billion annual rural telephone subsidy? Next topic!"

And let's make the next topic your boyfriend's mega-billion dollar rural broadband initiative.

 
At 9/22/2010 6:21 PM, Blogger Craig said...

Are these exports to other states or other countries? Does it matter?

 
At 9/22/2010 6:23 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

Only the U.S. can win two wars decisively, and successfully turn two ancient countries into new democracies quickly, while sending opponents to Allah.

That's another reason why Western Europe, Japan, Saudi Arabia, and many other U.S. allies support the "world order."

 
At 9/22/2010 6:27 PM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Vange and Ron H--

Take a look--

According to this chart, the US economy was in recession or depression about one-half of the years before the gold standard was eliminated.

http://66.147.242.158/~papolicy/?p=1007

 
At 9/22/2010 6:37 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

The Cold War is over and we don't need as many troops in Europe anymore. The U.S. and our allies will be in the Middle East for the "long haul." So, the sooner everyone gets use to it, the better.

Bankruptcy and running an empire are not compatible. The latter usually causes the former and when it does the game is over. For the record, I would like to thank the US military for providing an opportunity for me to invest in Iraq. While I am going to make a few bucks I doubt that the American taxpayer will be able to make the same claim.

 
At 9/22/2010 6:43 PM, Blogger Craig said...

the US economy was in recession or depression about one-half of the years before the gold standard was eliminated

The gold standard was ignored when it was convenient and politically-possible for the government -- the Civil War years leap to mind. A gold standard isn't magic, it still must be followed in order to work.

 
At 9/22/2010 7:10 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

VangeIV says: "Bankruptcy and running an empire are not compatible. The latter usually causes the former and when it does the game is over."

Fortunately, the global economy pays the U.S. for its empire, because it can't afford to lose "the game." Yet, the U.S. needs to print more money.

 
At 9/22/2010 7:38 PM, Blogger Paul said...

Hey Benji,

Who is "totally ignoring" now?

Cat got your tongue?

Next topic?

 
At 9/22/2010 9:31 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"Bush was one of the worst president ever and his loyalty was to his own power base and his friends just as it is with all politicians"...

Really?

Hmmm, take a look at the unemployment numbers then and now...

Look at the debt and deficit then and now...

I mean George W had some major progressive flaws (i.e. medicare part d) but worse than Clinton, George H.W., Carter, Nixon, or LBJ?

I think you need to look at history a bit closer...

 
At 9/22/2010 9:34 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"Cat got your tongue?"...

LOL! Outstanding Paul!

Maybe pseudo benny can serenade us with some more Stiglitz fiction...

 
At 9/22/2010 9:50 PM, Blogger Mark J. Perry said...

Craig:

If you check the article, I think it's clear that exports are the sales of Minnesota products to foreign countries, e.g. Candada, China, etc.

Mark

 
At 9/22/2010 9:52 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

There were any number of economic busts, regional and national, before the paper money era.

In the United States,

1807-1814
1837-1844
1873-1879
1893-1898


As I wrote, you really should do some reading on the subject because you are somewhat confused. It is not sufficient to tie your money to gold to avoid major crises. You have to ensure that credit creation is kept in check.

If you had read your American history you would know that in the 1770s there was a move to have a central bank in the United States.

The Continental Congress allowed Robert Morris to create the Bank of North America in the spring of 1781. Morris was a wealthy merchant and a Federalist member of the Congress who gained a huge amount of financial power during the Revolutionary War. He diverted millions from the public treasury into projects that benefited his shipping company as well as companies of his pals.

Morris and his friends tried to push for a strong central government run by a powerful chief executive and supported by high taxes and extensive public borrowing. The government would protect manufacturing interests by imposing huge tariff barriers and would build a large navy to pry open foreign markets.

A big part of the Morris plan was to create a central bank to fill the role of the Bank of England. That bank would give him and his friends cheap credit and would be accommodative when required. The idea was to pyramid credit on a base of specie held as reserves.

The bank was granted monopoly privileges and allowed to print notes that could be used to settle debts and pay taxes. It printed notes, lent them to the federal government and collected interest from the taxpayers. But the market had no confidence in the bank's notes and after the year the bank became an ordinary commercial bank as the federal government's stock was sold to private individuals.

By 1788 the Federalists had staged a quiet coup and the Constitution replaced the Articles of Confederation. In 1791 the prominent Federalist and Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton pushed through Congress the First Bank of the United States, a privately owned central bank. Hamilton argued that inflation was prudent because of a 'scarcity' of specie that limited lending. Hamilton's central bank would issue paper money that would be used to purchase public debt and to provide a cheap source of credit to manufacturers.

Congress did not renew the charter of the First Bank of the United States and it went out of business in 1811, one year before Mr. Madison's very unpopular war. To finance the war Congress allowed a massive expansion of the banking system and many new loans with notes not fully backed by specie. By 1814 the fact that most of the new banks were insolvent was not lost on the markets and many banks saw the value of their notes collapse.

I just covered the explanation for the 1807-1814 financial turmoil, was relatively minor and is easily explained particularly when we add to the picture Jefferson's embargo and the War of 1812.

The first great crisis for the US economy came in 1819 and lasted for three years. This incident is what we would think of as a depression. You can read about this in Rothbard's great book on the subject, The Panic of 1819. If you are interested I will find a link to the free PDF copy of it.

The point is not to just have money backed by gold but to ensure that the issuance of notes is fully backed by the reserves that are claimed at the proper ratio.

 
At 9/22/2010 10:05 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Take a look--

According to this chart, the US economy was in recession or depression about one-half of the years before the gold standard was eliminated.

http://66.147.242.158/~papolicy/?p=1007


As I pointed out above, you need to look at your history. Gold does not save you if the federal or state governments are pushing for easy credit, guaranteeing loans for railway and canal ventures, or borrowing to fight wars. Gold only protects workers and savers from confiscation by inflation. It allows those workers and savers to ride out the bad times because they will see their savings increase in purchasing power.

What you are missing is the fact that the period in question saw the greatest increase in American productivity and the standard of living even though it involved a war against England and a domestic war of aggression that wound up killing a huge percentage of able bodied men and destroyed massive amounts of capital in the South.

Compare the period under the gold standard to what happened to the purchasing power of the USD after the Fed was created.

http://tinyurl.com/25essvz

Or alternative compare the CPI changes during the two periods.

http://static.safehaven.com/authors/saxena/15493_b.png

While I am at it let me remind you of something else. An agrarian economy, as the US was in the 19th century, is much more vulnerable to factors like changes in precipitation, late/early frosts, changes in temperature, and transportation disruptions.

 
At 9/22/2010 10:48 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

BenjiI can't take your reference seriously when they go on to say something like this:

"While policy makers are far from perfect, the Federal Reserve which sets Monetary Policy and Congress and the President who oversee Fiscal Policy, often guided by the lessons learned during the Great Depression, have broadly speaking succeeded in last the 78 years in at least containing (but not eliminating) the business cycle."

Lessons learned? What learning has occurred? They are doing all the same wrong things now.

Contained the business cycle? What a joke. Are we in a "contained" condition now, Benji?

Find better references.

 
At 9/23/2010 2:11 AM, Blogger James said...

In all, Minnesota's computer, electronics, machine and other manufacturers exported $4.3 billion in goods for the quarter ending in June. That is up from $3.6 billion for the second quarter of 2009 and nearly the same as the state's all time high of $4.4 billion in the second quarter of 2008.

Oh boy! Talk about rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic! Once again free traders stick their heads in the sand and pretend that that this is important while the July trade deficit of $42.8 billion does not matter.

 
At 9/23/2010 3:32 AM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

The Fed doesn't necessarily need to print more money. The Administration and Congress could free-up trillions of dollars locked-in banks and businesses.

 
At 9/23/2010 7:12 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"Once again free traders stick their heads in the sand and pretend that that this is important while the July trade deficit of $42.8 billion does not matter"...

Well james who are these 'free traders' you're alluding to? Can you quote any of them?

Is the trade deficit larger than the debt and deficit being cranked out by this Congress and this Administration?

 
At 9/23/2010 7:35 AM, Blogger Paul said...

Benji sees himself bravely speaking truth to right-wing power, but then usually runs away after he lays down his usual blather about ethanol and whatnot.

I'd love to meet these mythical conservatives who turn white as ghosts at the mere mention of the telephone subsidy.

 
At 9/23/2010 7:37 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

I mean George W had some major progressive flaws (i.e. medicare part d) but worse than Clinton, George H.W., Carter, Nixon, or LBJ?

Yes, worse than all of them. He was supposed to be a small government conservative but under his watch government spending exploded. He was supposedly for a modest foreign policy but oversaw two foreign occupations that cost more than a trillion and killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians plus several thousand Americans. The major beneficiary of his actions so far has been Iran, which got to see its proxies gain power in Iraq and gain control of the country without having to go to war itself.

Then we have the biggest sin, the loss of freedom for Americans and the expansion of the police state.

I think you need to look at history a bit closer...

I have. I think that you need to take your ideological blinders off and look at things as they are.

 
At 9/23/2010 7:39 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

The Fed doesn't necessarily need to print more money. The Administration and Congress could free-up trillions of dollars locked-in banks and businesses.

You are confused. What money is locked in banks?

 
At 9/23/2010 8:08 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"He was supposed to be a small government conservative......

According to whom vangeIV?

"but under his watch government spending exploded"...

Again compared to who? LBJ? Obama?

"He was supposedly for a modest foreign policy"...

Are you making this up as you go along or are you going to name some 'credible sources' for these supposed judgements of George W?

"cost more than a trillion and killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians plus several thousand Americans"...

Hmmm, vangeIV it seems to me that part of your argument are the questionable numbers from Stiglitz and Bilmes, am I wrong?

Maybe you should've done so more homework on those numbers: Discussion of the Costs of the Iraq War - Testimony before the Finance Committee United States Senate June 16, 2008

"killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians"...

It also seems you were sucked in by the shoddy studies by Lancet and John Hopkins without any skeptical thought at all...

Almost a nice try though vangeIV...:-)

 
At 9/23/2010 8:10 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"I have. I think that you need to take your ideological blinders off and look at things as they are"...

Well vangeIV I posted a reply to your bizzare comment but its lost somewhere in the blogger ether...

 
At 9/23/2010 8:11 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"He was supposed to be a small government conservative......

According to whom vangeIV?

"but under his watch government spending exploded"...

Again compared to who? LBJ? Obama?

"He was supposedly for a modest foreign policy"...

Are you making this up as you go along or are you going to name some 'credible sources' for these supposed judgements of George W?

"cost more than a trillion and killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians plus several thousand Americans"...

Hmmm, vangeIV it seems to me that part of your argument are the questionable numbers from Stiglitz and Bilmes, am I wrong?

Maybe you should've done so more homework on those numbers: Discussion of the Costs of the Iraq War - Testimony before the Finance Committee United States Senate June 16, 2008

"killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians"...

It also seems you were sucked in by the shoddy studies by Lancet and John Hopkins without any skeptical thought at all...

Almost a nice try though vangeIV...:-)

 
At 9/23/2010 8:39 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"The major beneficiary of his actions so far has been Iran, which got to see its proxies gain power in Iraq and gain control of the country without having to go to war itself."

I think you overstate, but the Liberals never explain how the status quo in Iraq could have held. More Iraqis were dying and would have died by keeping the sanctions in place. Dropping the sanctions (something the French, Chinese, and Germans were starting to agitate for) would have let Saddam out of his box to resume his doomsday weapons pursuit. (Can you imagine Saddam sitting back just watching his archenemies in Tehran pursue nukes?)Something had to give , there were no good options.

And if it's true that Iran has been somewhat strengthened, then I submit the job is not done yet. Iran needs to be dealt with sooner, not later, before they gain a nuclear shield that makes retaliation for terror nearly unthinkable. Too bad we have such a feckless, incompetent loser like Obama as our Commander-in-Chief.



"Then we have the biggest sin, the loss of freedom for Americans and the expansion of the police state. "

Really, Vangel? How so? You would think I would have noticed I'm living in a police state, guess I haven't been paying attention.

 
At 9/23/2010 9:12 AM, Blogger juandos said...

Let me try this one more time for vangeIV's sake...

"He was supposed to be a small government conservative......

According to whom vangeIV?

"but under his watch government spending exploded"...

Again compared to who? LBJ? Obama?

"He was supposedly for a modest foreign policy"...

Are you making this up as you go along or are you going to name some 'credible sources' for these supposed judgements of George W?

"cost more than a trillion and killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians plus several thousand Americans"...

Hmmm, vangeIV it seems to me that part of your argument are the questionable numbers from Stiglitz and Bilmes, am I wrong?

Maybe you should've done so more homework on those numbers: Discussion of the Costs of the Iraq War - Testimony before the Finance Committee United States Senate June 16, 2008

 
At 9/23/2010 9:13 AM, Blogger juandos said...

Second part of the reply to vangeIV...

"killed hundreds of thousands innocent civilians"...

It also seems you were sucked in by the shoddy studies by Lancet and John Hopkins without any skeptical thought at all...

Almost a nice try though vangeIV...:-)

 
At 9/23/2010 9:38 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

According to whom vangeIV?

According to GWB and the Republican Party. As a candidate he promised not to engage in the "nation building" of his predecessor and promised a "humble foreign policy." In his debates with Gore he used the rhetoric of a limited-government conservative, who promised to cut overall federal spending, including military spending. He turned the surpluses generated by the tax revenues coming from the Greenspan IT bubble into massive deficits because he increased domestic discretionary spending at a faster rate than any President since JBJ.
The unfunded liabilities exploded under his watch as he increased SS and Medicare entitlements and introduced the Medicare prescription drug program.

Again compared to who? LBJ? Obama?

I have already made the case that Obama is worse. GWB does better on spending increases than JBJ or Nixon/Ford but does so from a much higher base and a much worse financial position. Nixon and Carter had a much larger margin of error than GWB did and their recklessness could not push the US totally over the edge. Bush could and did. Obama is making things worse.

Are you making this up as you go along or are you going to name some 'credible sources' for these supposed judgements of George W?

Are you an absolute idiot? You don't remember GWB talking about a 'humble foreign policy,' not using troops for nation building, etc., etc., etc. Well, here you go:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9SOVzMV2bc

and

http://www.republicansforhumility.com/conservative.html


Hmmm, vangeIV it seems to me that part of your argument are the questionable numbers from Stiglitz and Bilmes, am I wrong?


As usual, you are wrong. Congress admits that the wars have cost more than a trillion and I do not believe that the accounting includes the very expensive medical treatment for soldiers hurt on the field of battle or the full depreciation for equipment used in operations.

http://tinyurl.com/2bx59md

It also seems you were sucked in by the shoddy studies by Lancet and John Hopkins

without any skeptical thought at all...


The numbers you get depend on what you choose to ignore and what you attribute to the war. You don't have to rely on the Lancet and John Hopkins study because there are other studies that place the death count over 100,000 even though they ignore indirect deaths due to the conflict. You can use the Brookings index, the WHO study, AP, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/, ORB Survey, etc.

If we do not count indirect or excess deaths due to the war and stuck to strictly violent deaths we should get somewhere between 100K and 200K deaths. But if we count things like people dying from dehydration or dysentery because the US military bombed the water treatment facilities, babies dying because the military blew up a hospital or killed doctors that were needed to look after those babies than the number comes out much higher.

It is interesting that the only peer reviewed reports come from the Lancet and from ORB and both of those are significantly higher than the numbers that the US government likes to report.

Bottom line is that you have refused to see things as they are. You conveniently forgot what GWB said he was and would do in his debates with Gore and you conveniently forget the magnitude of the spending and the actual cost when the bodies are counted.

 
At 9/23/2010 9:44 AM, Blogger Paul said...

Juandos,

Why is it the Lancet study advocates never consider the sanctions body count, most of the dead being children? What is their magical solution that would have ended the deaths and kept Saddam in check at the same time?

 
At 9/23/2010 9:45 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

For those that are still cheering the GWB/Obama decisions of Afghanistan here is a story about where the idiocy leads.

http://tinyurl.com/2vv2up5

We read:

...According to The Post, the unprovoked attack on January 15 was the start of a months-long shooting spree against Afghan civilians that resulted in some of the grisliest allegations against American soldiers since the US invasion in 2001.

Members of the platoon have been charged with dismembering and photographing corpses, as well as hoarding a skull and other human bones, the report said."


and

"..But a review of military court documents and interviews with people familiar with the investigation suggest the killings were committed essentially for sport by soldiers who had a fondness for hashish and alcohol, The Post said.

The accused soldiers deny wrongdoing, the paper noted."


If this is true the reputation of the US as a just and moral country will take another big hit. War makes people a bit nuts and tends to encourage the worst by removing many of the restrictions that civil society places on them.

 
At 9/23/2010 9:54 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

I think you overstate, but the Liberals never explain how the status quo in Iraq could have held.

The liberals were nearly as bad as Bush was. Albright told CBS that the deaths of 500K children was worth it if American political goals to oust Saddam could be realized.

More Iraqis were dying and would have died by keeping the sanctions in place.

I doubt it. Dropping bombs on them is a more effective way of killing people. But I have never argued for sanctions that denied kids medicine and food. That is what the liberals wanted and I am certainly not a liberal.

Dropping the sanctions (something the French, Chinese, and Germans were starting to agitate for) would have let Saddam out of his box to resume his doomsday weapons pursuit.

What pursuit? The only weapons of mass destruction that Saddam ever got came from the US in the first place.

(Can you imagine Saddam sitting back just watching his archenemies in Tehran pursue nukes?)Something had to give , there were no good options.

Nonsense. Saddam was an old man who was allergic to bullets. His party was put into power by the CIA and could not hold on to power for very long without a sponsor.

And if it's true that Iran has been somewhat strengthened, then I submit the job is not done yet. Iran needs to be dealt with sooner, not later, before they gain a nuclear shield that makes retaliation for terror nearly unthinkable.

Great. Start another war and drive the country to bankruptcy. If you go after Iran most of your fleet will be at the bottom of the Persian Gulf very quickly and most of the Saudi oil terminals will be in flames. If you could not win in Afghanistan and Iraq what makes you confident that you will do better in a country that is larger, better armed, and much more sophisticated?

Too bad we have such a feckless, incompetent loser like Obama as our Commander-in-Chief.

Yes, he is a loser. But he is only in power because you elected a very big loser before him. It was that loser who pushed the economy over the edge and gave Iran a huge gift as its proxies were allowed to gain control of Iraq. Obama was elected to get the US out of Iraq and Afghanistan, not to start new wars.

 
At 9/23/2010 9:57 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"The unfunded liabilities exploded under his watch as he increased SS and Medicare entitlements and introduced the Medicare prescription drug program."

Vangel, I'll never disagree that Bush spent waaay too much money. However, you need to add a little context. Consider Bill Clinton was agitating for a prescription drug benefit towards the end of his Admin. Al Gore repeatedly hectored Bush about the prescription drug benefit during the debates. And the Democrats in Congress had their own competing plan that was about twice as expensive and not paid for either. The GOP ended up doing their historical thing where they try to split the difference, but government still grows.

As for SS, you may remember he tried to tackle it with a partial, voluntary privatization but even that was too much for the collectivists.

Again, Bush didn't exactly cover himself in glory, but the opposing side was much worse.

 
At 9/23/2010 10:05 AM, Blogger juandos said...

Per his sethstorm like style vangeIV makes it up as he goes along: "According to GWB and the Republican Party"...

Oh really?!?! Show me!

"The unfunded liabilities exploded under his watch as he increased SS and Medicare entitlements and introduced the Medicare prescription drug program"...

I've noted that previously on this site on several occassions...

To bad this The George Bush You Forgot happened before 9-11, eh?

"You can use the Brookings index, the WHO study, AP, http://www.iraqbodycount.org/, ORB Survey, etc"...

Gotta love those unbiased 'anti-war' sites...ROFLMAO!

All of them proven to be as fraudulent as Lancet and John Hopkins... Google it sir!

"But if we count things like people dying from dehydration or dysentery because the US military bombed the water treatment facilities, babies dying because the military blew up a hospital or killed doctors that were needed to look after those babies than the number comes out much higher"...

Oh please stop! I might just shed a teardrop or two... ha! ha! ha!

"It is interesting that the only peer reviewed reports come from the Lancet and from ORB"...

Yeah, so did the leftist 'global warming scam' get peer reviewed by other lefties, what's your point?

"Congress admits that the wars have cost more than a trillion"....

This Congress?!?!... LOL!

"Eight Years of Iraq War Cost Less Than Stimulus Act"...

Google it!

Why did you think a site like R.I.N.O.s are us would somehow be considered convincing?

 
At 9/23/2010 10:09 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Really, Vangel? How so? You would think I would have noticed I'm living in a police state, guess I haven't been paying attention.

I guess that you have not been paying attention. Here you go.

http://epic.org/privacy/terrorism/usapatriot/default.html

Just a few points that you may not be familiar with.

First, let us look at the repeal of habeas corpus. You can now be held in jail indefinitely without being able to face your accusers. That is a major loss of liberty.

Second, the president can order your assassination even though you are a US citizen. No trial is required. That is a major loss of liberty.

Third, your forth amendment rights are violated by The Patriot Act, which allows the government to search and seize American citizens and their property without a warrant issued by an independent court.

Forth, as Ron Paul reminded Congress, Patriot Act powers have already been used in cases that have nothing to do with terrorism. That is a loss of liberty.

I could go on but it evident that a smart guy like you could only fail to notice the loss of liberty only if he willingly turned a blind eye to it. As such, more examples would be pointless.

 
At 9/23/2010 10:19 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Why is it the Lancet study advocates never consider the sanctions body count, most of the dead being children? What is their magical solution that would have ended the deaths and kept Saddam in check at the same time?

The deaths due to sanctions were also caused by the US government so it does not matter if they would have continued because the President would still be responsible for them. The numbers from the Lancet are pretty good and the authors of the study make sure that readers understand the large uncertainties. (Too bad the climate alarmists do not but that is a point for another thread.) The bottom line is that hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have died because of US actions.

 
At 9/23/2010 10:27 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Vangel, I'll never disagree that Bush spent waaay too much money. However, you need to add a little context. Consider Bill Clinton was agitating for a prescription drug benefit towards the end of his Admin. Al Gore repeatedly hectored Bush about the prescription drug benefit during the debates. And the Democrats in Congress had their own competing plan that was about twice as expensive and not paid for either. The GOP ended up doing their historical thing where they try to split the difference, but government still grows.

That is my point. There is not much of a difference between the GOP and the Democrats. As long as they are in power the US will keep sliding towards the abyss. The solution comes from rejecting both parties and supporting candidates that would shrink the size of government and obey the Constitution.

As for SS, you may remember he tried to tackle it with a partial, voluntary privatization but even that was too much for the collectivists.

Yes it was. But it was also too much for the libertarians who understood that Bush was trying to legitimize government meddling in areas where it was not authorized to.

Again, Bush didn't exactly cover himself in glory, but the opposing side was much worse.

It is a lot like that Biggest Loser show. Pick the best of a bad lot. My point is that the US deserves better and that it can be the great country that it used to if its voters have the courage to elect someone that will stop robbing them of their savings and use the proceeds to win another election.

The voters had their chance and could have picked Ron Paul, who called the housing bubble, opposed the nation building of Bush and Clinton, and called for the troops to be brought back home. He was rejected by the 'pragmatists' in the GOP who expected that morn McCain to provide a coherent and attractive message. Now the GOP is under attack by the Tea Party, whose members wrongly see an opportunity to turn the clock back. I suggest that they will fail and many of their candidates will be seduced by the power in Washington and turn their back on principles.

 
At 9/23/2010 10:29 AM, Blogger juandos said...

"The bottom line is that hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have died because of US actions"...

Hmmm, keep away from the facts if it makes you feel good...

"Forth, as Ron Paul reminded Congress, Patriot Act powers have already been used in cases that have nothing to do with terrorism"...

Are we talking about the same Ron Paul of earmark fame?

 
At 9/23/2010 10:36 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"I doubt it. Dropping bombs on them is a more effective way of killing people."

Not according to the people who were screaming for an end to the sanctions. Wikipedia estimates somewhere between 170,000 to 1.5 million up to the Iraq war. That was 7 years ago. Imagine the same trendline going into the future.

But I have never argued for sanctions that denied kids medicine and food. That is what the liberals wanted and I am certainly not a liberal."

Again, according to Wiki, "The sanctions banned all trade and financial resources except for medicine and "in humanitarian circumstances" foodstuffs."
We had a rather large scandal called "oil for food" that came from an attempt to address the hunger issue. Saddam stored food and medicine in warehouses and UN officials and connected businessmen grew rich. Kids still starved to death anyway.

"What pursuit? The only weapons of mass destruction that Saddam ever got came from the US in the first place."

Not true, but you haven't heard of Osirak? FYI, "Raid on the Sun" is an excellent book. You're way off on this one, Vangel.

"Nonsense. Saddam was an old man who was allergic to bullets. His party was put into power by the CIA and could not hold on to power for very long without a sponsor."

Everyone is allergic to bullets. He held onto power for several years without a sponsor. He had two psychopath sons to succeed him.
Saddam feared the Iranians more than the US, there's no way he wouldn't have resumed his nuclear program to match them once let out of his box.

"If you go after Iran most of your fleet will be at the bottom of the Persian Gulf very quickly and most of the Saudi oil terminals will be in flames."

There will be blowback. There will be much more blowback from doing nothing and letting Achmadinejad unleash doomsday. The Arabs are even pushing us to do something about it. The Israelis may end up doing it for us.

 
At 9/23/2010 10:41 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

To bad this The George Bush You Forgot happened before 9-11, eh?

The principles were just as valid. He attacked Iraq even though Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. He engaged in nation building and began to try to dictate to other nations what they should do. His actions proved that he lied in the debates and presented a picture that was never true just to get elected.

Gotta love those unbiased 'anti-war' sites...ROFLMAO!

All of them proven to be as fraudulent as Lancet and John Hopkins... Google it sir!


There is nothing fraudulent about the studies. They show the data and can back up their claims with actual bodies. The figures you cite never claim to count all deaths caused by the conflict but make it clear that such deaths are hard to attribute correctly so are better left out of the reports. That means that you are understating the real damage and refusing to look for the truth.

Oh please stop! I might just shed a teardrop or two... ha! ha! ha!

While you may see the death of Arab children funny many do not. You may choose to ignore those deaths and not count them as victims of the war but there are people who do and will choose to exact another payment from the US. Your leaders know this and have done what they could by limiting civil liberties and increase the power of the police state.

Yeah, so did the leftist 'global warming scam' get peer reviewed by other lefties, what's your point?

My point is that these studies include their methodology and their data and clearly show their uncertainty bands. The lefty AGW scam papers do not. The Lancet's results can be replicated from the data independently while the AGW results cannot. That is a big difference.

Yeah, so did the leftist 'global warming scam' get peer reviewed by other lefties, what's your point?

It agreed with the study that you cited. There is no dispute that the costs of these conflicts run over $1 trillion from either party.

"Eight Years of Iraq War Cost Less Than Stimulus Act"...

Google it!


But it isn't. The accrued liabilities of the conflict are not being counted. Those maimed soldiers that will need years of therapy, new skin grafts, new mechanical arms and legs, medication, disability payments, etc., have to be counted as a cost. Your sources ignore them or underestimate their true costs to the system.

Why did you think a site like R.I.N.O.s are us would somehow be considered convincing?

Very few Republicans are convincing. They had their chance and proved themselves to be as incompetent and as dangerous as the Democrats. Both sides are losers and very harmful to liberty.

 
At 9/23/2010 10:55 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"If you could not win in Afghanistan and Iraq what makes you confident that you will do better in a country that is larger, better armed, and much more sophisticated?"

As you pointed out, the Iranians are one of the biggest reasons we have had a hard time in Iraq and Afghanistan. Cut them out and the long run is easier.
But I haven't heard even the blood thirstiest neocon say we should mount an actual invasion. There are other options like cutting off their gasoline imports, arming the opposition, relentless bombing. Bottom line is the Iranians aren't going to go away if we just ignore them. Achmadinejad reminds us of that on a daily basis.

 
At 9/23/2010 11:04 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"First, let us look at the repeal of habeas corpus. You can now be held in jail indefinitely without being able to face your accusers. That is a major loss of liberty."

And exactly how many innocent people have had this happen to them? I live here, Vangel, I would recognize the change to a police state if it were as dire as you say. I would at least have heard some whispers in the hallway.

No sale.

"The deaths due to sanctions were also caused by the US government so it does not matter if they would have continued because the President would still be responsible for them."

Really, because I thought the sanctions were there due to UN Security Resolution 661. I'm pretty sure Canada is a member so I guess you have blood on your hands also.

"That is my point. There is not much of a difference between the GOP and the Democrats. As long as they are in power the US will keep sliding towards the abyss."

No, you need to tweak that. There are lots of bad Republicans. There are no good Democrats. The only hope we have is a viable GOP with a strong enough conservative representation to overpower the RINO's.

"The solution comes from rejecting both parties and supporting candidates that would shrink the size of government and obey the Constitution. "

I hear that alot. Can you give me one Democrat as an example who would hold up?

 
At 9/23/2010 11:09 AM, Blogger Paul said...

"The voters had their chance and could have picked Ron Paul, who called the housing bubble, opposed the nation building of Bush and Clinton, and called for the troops to be brought back home. He was rejected by the 'pragmatists' in the GOP who expected that morn McCain to provide a coherent and attractive message."

Oh, please. Ron Paul is a nutjob. The only people who support him here are flakes like Benji, college students who haven't met the real world yet, and survivalist weirdos.

"Now the GOP is under attack by the Tea Party, whose members wrongly see an opportunity to turn the clock back."

I don't even know what that means.

 
At 9/23/2010 11:10 AM, Blogger Benjamin said...

Guys-

I would have defended my views, but I was working,
We'll take up the cudgels at a later date.

Vange-
I like your intellect.

 
At 9/23/2010 2:10 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"Vange-
I like your intellect
"...

Well there you go! LOL!

Remember that old saying: "birds of a feather..."?

"There is no dispute that the costs of these conflicts run over $1 trillion from either party"...

vangeIV obviously didn't read the Senate Finance committee testimony...

From another source: According to CBO numbers in its Budget and Economic Outlook published this month the cost of Operation Iraqi Freedom was $709 billion for military and related activities, including training of Iraqi forces and diplomatic operations...

"Very few Republicans are convincing. They had their chance and proved themselves to be as incompetent and as dangerous as the Democrats"...

Well dang! Now there's something we sort of agree on (its a matter of degree)...

From FAS: Table 5. U.S. Active Duty Military Deaths, 1980 Through 2008, Part II, Cause of Death (as of April 22, 2009)

 
At 9/23/2010 2:19 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"I would have defended my views, but I was working,
We'll take up the cudgels at a later date."

Yes, Benji, let's test my courage and discuss the telephone subsidy. I'll try not to soil myself.

 
At 9/23/2010 2:22 PM, Blogger Paul said...

Juandos,

"Remember that old saying: "birds of a feather..."?

I wouldn't say that. Vangel is pretty awesome on alot of subjects, just not everything. Benji is purified knucklehead.

 
At 9/23/2010 2:43 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"Vangel is pretty awesome on alot of subjects, just not everything"...

Well Paul for someone who 'seems' bent somewhat towards the Keynesian thought processes maybe you have a valid point...

But geez! That pseudo benny comment was, well just flooring!

 
At 9/23/2010 3:03 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

vangeIV obviously didn't read the Senate Finance committee testimony...

From another source: According to CBO numbers in its Budget and Economic Outlook published this month the cost of Operation Iraqi Freedom was $709 billion for military and related activities, including training of Iraqi forces and diplomatic operations.


There are a few problems here. First, it does not look at the cost of the Afghan conflict. Second, the analysis does not fully account for the accrued liabilities. If you have people who have been shot up, hand their limbs blown off, had major burn damage to their bodies you have to spend money to try to repair that damage. Ignoring the liabilities will not make the costs disappear. This is the same trick that Democrats use when they want to ignore the Medicare and SS problems coming your way.

From FAS: Table 5. U.S. Active Duty Military Deaths, 1980 Through 2008, Part II, Cause of Death (as of April 22, 2009)

Nice table. It supports the point that the French and the Russians have made about just how few people America has lost in war. Your entire history has about as many losses as the French managed in WWI when so many brave and stupid young men died for nothing. No wonder so many Americans are supportive of war; they have not suffered the losses that others have and don't know any better.

 
At 9/23/2010 3:07 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Oh, please. Ron Paul is a nutjob. The only people who support him here are flakes like Benji, college students who haven't met the real world yet, and survivalist weirdos.

Nonsense. Dr. Paul is one of the most respected voices in the libertarian movement, which does not compromise on principle to gain power as the real nutjobs who run the GOP do.

"Now the GOP is under attack by the Tea Party, whose members wrongly see an opportunity to turn the clock back."

I don't even know what that means.


It means that the GOP leadership is being assailed by the Tea Party, which is getting its own candidates elected in primaries and defeating the candidates chosen by the party. While many of the candidates will run under the Republican banner they are not going to pay attention to the Republican leadership, which is why the neocons and the GOP insiders are attacking them even after they win the nomination.

 
At 9/23/2010 3:41 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

And exactly how many innocent people have had this happen to them?

It is a meaningless question. If you can't confront your accusers and are not tried you can be innocent and still stay in captivity. That is why habeas corpus is part of the foundation for a free society.

I live here, Vangel, I would recognize the change to a police state if it were as dire as you say. I would at least have heard some whispers in the hallway.

You would? Do you know how many of your e-mails have been read and how many of your calls have been recorded? If you don't than how can you know if innocent people were detained?

No sale.

Freedom should never be for sale.

Really, because I thought the sanctions were there due to UN Security Resolution 661. I'm pretty sure Canada is a member so I guess you have blood on your hands also.

Sorry but you can't blame this on others. Without Bush/Clinton the Resolution would not have passed and lasted for long. It wasn't the UN but your Secretary of State that told CBS that American policy objectives were worth the deaths of half a million Arab children.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4PgpbQfxgo

No, you need to tweak that. There are lots of bad Republicans. There are no good Democrats. The only hope we have is a viable GOP with a strong enough conservative representation to overpower the RINO's.

Name the good Republicans that are now in office or running for office. Name the good Republicans in leadership positions last good Republican President who actually cut the size of government, reduced the deficit, and repealed regulations to increase individual liberty.

The way I see it many Democrats mean well but are ignorant idiots who cause far too damage to the economy. Republicans are usually worse because they do not mean well and are just as stupid and ignorant when it comes to economics. As I said, the one guy who got it right was Ron Paul. He predicted the problems that were being created by the Fed, predicted the crash of the housing market, predicted the voters would reject a long occupation and that you would lose in Iraq and Afghanistan.

He pointed out that the Fed was destroying the gold and that much of what is claimed to be in reserves may have been swapped in transactions with foreign governments. His prediction that gold would rise to over $1,500 and show that the USD and USTs were vulnerable was right on the money. He was right on TARP when Bush and the Republican leadership backed it. He was right on the Patriot Act. He was right on Cap and Trade and on Obamacare when many in the party supported them.

From what I can tell the Republican leadership is now in turmoil and scrambling to change their previous positions and coming around to Dr. Paul's views on most issues. The leadership did not do this willingly but because it was hoping to hang on to power by changing its positions when it became convenient to do so.

I hear that alot. Can you give me one Democrat as an example who would hold up?

Many Democrats are OK on social issues. From what I can tell very few if any have a clue about economic issues. But as I wrote above, that makes them pretty much the same as Republicans. Both are idiots.

 
At 9/23/2010 3:47 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

"The bottom line is that hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have died because of US actions"...

Hmmm, keep away from the facts if it makes you feel good...


As I wrote, the studies that try to look at all deaths attributable to the war find that close to half a million people have died because of it. Even the studies that ignore indirect deaths show more than 100,000 fatalities. The fact that you don't want to count indirect deaths does not mean that they did not happen or should not be accounted for.

Are we talking about the same Ron Paul of earmark fame?

What is wrong with earmarks? Every line in the budget should be earmarked because the spending power is in Congress, not with the Executive.

Dr. Paul has promised to vote for any budget that is not balanced so I doubt that you can find a single vote where he has voted for one.

 
At 9/23/2010 3:51 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Not according to the people who were screaming for an end to the sanctions. Wikipedia estimates somewhere between 170,000 to 1.5 million up to the Iraq war. That was 7 years ago. Imagine the same trendline going into the future.

The fact that your sanctions killed many Iraqis before the war does not mean that you should not count Iraqi deaths due to the war. It is still your country killing them. As I wrote before it does not matter if it is the State Department that is killing them or the Department of Offense that is doing it; they are still dying because of you.

But I have never argued for sanctions that denied kids medicine and food. That is what the liberals wanted and I am certainly not a liberal.

The fact that you did not like sanctions does not make your position on the war a just one. As I said, your country is still killing lots of Iraqis and the last time I looked the killing of innocent people was a bad thing.

Again, according to Wiki, "The sanctions banned all trade and financial resources except for medicine and "in humanitarian circumstances" foodstuffs."
We had a rather large scandal called "oil for food" that came from an attempt to address the hunger issue. Saddam stored food and medicine in warehouses and UN officials and connected businessmen grew rich. Kids still starved to death anyway.


You are diverting attention from the deaths. As I said, it does not matter which part of your government is doing the killing because the civilians are just as dead and their deaths are just as bad.

 
At 9/23/2010 3:59 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Not true, but you haven't heard of Osirak? FYI, "Raid on the Sun" is an excellent book. You're way off on this one, Vangel.

There were no WMDs found. End of story. No need for spin and diversions.

Everyone is allergic to bullets. He held onto power for several years without a sponsor. He had two psychopath sons to succeed him.

As I said, your government put him in power. Your government sold him poison gas, tanks and automatic weapons.

Saddam feared the Iranians more than the US, there's no way he wouldn't have resumed his nuclear program to match them once let out of his box.

Again we have spin and excuses. The simple fact is that anyone can buy weapons a lot easier than he can develop them. We heard all of the scare stories before to justify the invasion and they all fell apart when they were examined even superficially.

There will be blowback. There will be much more blowback from doing nothing and letting Achmadinejad unleash doomsday. The Arabs are even pushing us to do something about it. The Israelis may end up doing it for us.

LOL...The only thing keeping Achmadinejad in power is American opposition to him. He is an idiot that would be overthrown just as the Shah was. Unlike Americans the Persians are somewhat sophisticated and have a good sense of history. They know that the type of Islamic extremism represented by the Mullahs is a dead end and want to get rid of it as soon as possible. But they can't put together a coherent opposition as long as there is an external enemy against the motherland.

If you want the Iranian government to fall all you have to do is step aside and let the Iranians do what they want to do.

 
At 9/23/2010 4:42 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Dr. Paul is one of the most respected voices in the libertarian movement, which does not compromise on principle to gain power as the real nutjobs who run the GOP do."

He's respected in some circles of the libertarian movement, especially the anti-American Lew Rockwell cretins. He's also highly respected in Stormfront circles. He has ties to the white supremacists who are huge on the Ron Paul bandwagon here in Texas. As for principle, yeah, Paul likes to load up spending bills with earmarks and then vote against them out of "principle." He also proposes to catch terrorists with super scary letters of Marque and Reprisal.

He's a nutjob.

"While many of the candidates will run under the Republican banner they are not going to pay attention to the Republican leadership, which is why the neocons and the GOP insiders are attacking them even after they win the nomination."

Gibberish, Vangel. Christine O'Donnell has been assailed because of her baggage. I defend her, but she makes even me wince. On the other hand, Rand Paul, Sharon Anngle, and now Carl Paladino are getting all the support from "GOP insiders." There's no conspiracy, it just depends mostly on perceived electability.

"It is a meaningless question."

No it isn't, you just don't want to admit the number is somewhere around zero.

"That is why habeas corpus is part of the foundation for a free society."

And if anyone gets riled up about it, they won't extend the temporary act next year when it's set to expire. So, big deal.

"You would? Do you know how many of your e-mails have been read and how many of your calls have been recorded? If you don't than how can you know if innocent people were detained?"

Oh, God. You sound like someone who lives in the woods and listens to Alex Jones. You aren't going to convince anyone spouting paranoia.

"Sorry but you can't blame this on others. Without Bush/Clinton the Resolution would not have passed and lasted for long."

No, sorry. Pretty much the entire world went along with it regardless of whether the US led the delegation. Canada voted in favor. Canuck murderers!!!

"It wasn't the UN but your Secretary of State that told CBS that American policy objectives were worth the deaths of half a million Arab children."

Madeline Albright is a dipshit, I agree with that.

"Name the good Republicans that are now in office or running for office."

Chris Christie, Allen West, Paul Ryan, Jeff Flake, Mike Pence. Off the top of my head. If you want more examples you can go here.

"He predicted the problems that were being created by the Fed, predicted the crash of the housing market, predicted the voters would reject a long occupation and that you would lose in Iraq and Afghanistan."

Whoopie doo on most of that. I saw the housing bust coming too and sold at the top of the market. That was hardly prescient. We haven't lost in Iraq and Afghanistan as far as I know. Did Obama sign the surrender papers while I was working today?

More later..

 
At 9/23/2010 4:47 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"He was right on Cap and Trade and on Obamacare when many in the party supported them."

Many. Care to name the "many?" How many GOP supported Obamacare? Name them.

"Many Democrats are OK on social issues. From what I can tell very few if any have a clue about economic issues. But as I wrote above, that makes them pretty much the same as Republicans."

Oh, so now you're bringing social issues up to somehow equalize them against the GOP. What exactly does "ok on social issues" mean? I guess it means "mostly agrees with Vangel."

More later..

 
At 9/23/2010 5:32 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:22 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Unlike Americans the Persians are somewhat sophisticated and have a good sense of history."

Nice attack on my country. Did you learn about the sophisticated Iranians/dumb Americans from the same source who told you the only WMD's, tanks, and automatic weapons that Saddam had were the ones the US sold him?

"If you want the Iranian government to fall all you have to do is step aside and let the Iranians do what they want to do."

Oh, it's just that easy. Nobody believes that horseshit, Vangel. It's just you working backwards from an isolationist point-of view. And the Iranian protesters last year seem to think otherwise.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:23 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

He's respected in some circles of the libertarian movement, especially the anti-American Lew Rockwell cretins. He's also highly respected in Stormfront circles. He has ties to the white supremacists who are huge on the Ron Paul bandwagon here in Texas. As for principle, yeah, Paul likes to load up spending bills with earmarks and then vote against them out of "principle." He also proposes to catch terrorists with super scary letters of Marque and Reprisal.

He's a nutjob.


Dr. Paul is not a white supremacist and has shown himself to be very colourblind. For him what is important are your ideas, beliefs, and actions.

As for the budgets, Ron Paul is very consistent. He will not vote for any budget that is not balanced by revenues. But he is also very clear that each expense in each budget should be earmarked by Congress, not the federal bureaucrats in Washington. I know that someone like you, who likes central control by a federal administration finds that inconsistent but it isn't.

Gibberish, Vangel. Christine O'Donnell has been assailed because of her baggage. I defend her, but she makes even me wince. On the other hand, Rand Paul, Sharon Anngle, and now Carl Paladino are getting all the support from "GOP insiders." There's no conspiracy, it just depends mostly on perceived electability.

I suggest that you are not paying attention. You have the usual mouthpieces for the GOP (people like Krauthammer, Frum, Rove, etc.) taking shots at Tea Party supported candidates who beat the GOP's hand picked candidates by warning of a Goldwater type of disaster.

What is lost on the GOP leadership is that citizens are tired of being 'governed' and told what they must do by 'public servants' who somehow managed to transform their jobs into being the public's master. As usual, the GOP leadership is driven by the same thing as the Democratic leadership, the quest for power and the rewards that come with being able to wield the state apparatus to enrich themselves and their friends. From what I can see voters are upset and want that to end.

No it isn't, you just don't want to admit the number is somewhere around zero.

We already know that it is far greater than zero. Your government is holding many people in Cuba, American jails, and in other countries without charging them with a crime. You even has a president that has ordered the assassination of a US citizen without a trial. Note exactly what one would expect of a free society.

And if anyone gets riled up about it, they won't extend the temporary act next year when it's set to expire. So, big deal.

That is simply not true. There was opposition before and the Act got extended. Most politicians are too scared to stand up for liberty. The GOP even tried to run a candidate against Ron Paul for opposing the Iraq War by accusing him of being anti-American for supporting the Constitution over the Bush power grab. Obama is no more likely to give up that power than Bush.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:25 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"The fact that you did not like sanctions does not make your position on the war a just one."

The fact that you thought the sanctions prohibited food and medicine does not make your position on sanctions an informed one. You made clear you were for sanctions, just not including food and medicine. In other words, the sanctions that existed. So you were amusingly complicit by accident.

"As I said, your country is still killing lots of Iraqis and the last time I looked the killing of innocent people was a bad thing."

And again, your country and most of the rest of the world signed off on and supported the sanctions. You can't just pretend otherwise because the US did most of the heavy lifting like we do pretty much everywhere else.

"There were no WMDs found. End of story. No need for spin and diversions."

Heh, you're like Obama when called on his bullshit. Speaking of spin and diversions, your original response was, "The only weapons of mass destruction that Saddam ever got came from the US in the first place." You remarkably weren't aware of Saddam's nuclear facilities built by the French and thankfully put out of business by the Israelis. You also didn't know Saddam received help with his WMD program from other countries like the French, Germans, Russians, Dutch, and Spain. This really calls into question your knowledge about the subject at hand. It definitely reveals your cliche animus towards the US.

"As I said, your government put him in power. Your government sold him poison gas, tanks and automatic weapons."

Again, you are revealing here your limitations. I was in the first gulf war and I assure you the only Iraqi tanks and weapons I saw were German, but especially Russian. And I saw scores of them. I have never heard the US sold Saddam tanks and automatic weapons. Where is your proof?

"Again we have spin and excuses. The simple fact is that anyone can buy weapons a lot easier than he can develop them."

Really??? Where's your source for that? If that were true then why does Iran bother building their facilities?

"We heard all of the scare stories before to justify the invasion and they all fell apart when they were examined even superficially."

Oh, please. ALmost, everyone thought Saddam had WMD's. Even the Egyptians and Jordanians warned Gen Franks Saddam would use them if we invaded. I guess they didn't have access to your intelligence sources. I saw WMD's myself in the first Gulf War so I figured it was a no-brainer he'd still have them. Oh, but there was Vangel out thinking the UN, Israelis, French, Germans, etc..


"The only thing keeping Achmadinejad in power is American opposition to him."

And there we have the shining, idiotic jewel of the Blame America First school of thought. No proof required, just heap the blame on us. That's so pathetic and contrary to the historical evidence. Achmadinejad is in power because the Mullahs have all the guns and have no qualms about using them. You may have heard about the Iranian peoples' uprising last year. Obama, who until then and since offered the Iranians the most pathetic appeasement, provided the perfect test for your hypothesis. He kept his mouth shut for days while the Mullahs and their Baseej shock troops slaughtered civilians. Guess what? Achmadinejad is still threatening holocaust on regular schedule. Guess it isn't quite so easy.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:26 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"The fact that you did not like sanctions does not make your position on the war a just one."

The fact that you thought the sanctions prohibited food and medicine does not make your position on sanctions an informed one. You made clear you were for sanctions, just not including food and medicine. In other words, the sanctions that existed. So you were amusingly complicit by accident.

"As I said, your country is still killing lots of Iraqis and the last time I looked the killing of innocent people was a bad thing."

And again, your country and most of the rest of the world signed off on and supported the sanctions. You can't just pretend otherwise because the US did most of the heavy lifting like we do pretty much everywhere else.

"There were no WMDs found. End of story. No need for spin and diversions."

Heh, you're like Obama when called on his bullshit. Speaking of spin and diversions, your original response was, "The only weapons of mass destruction that Saddam ever got came from the US in the first place." You remarkably weren't aware of Saddam's nuclear facilities built by the French and thankfully put out of business by the Israelis. You also didn't know Saddam received help with his WMD program from other countries like the French, Germans, Russians, Dutch, and Spain. This really calls into question your knowledge about the subject at hand. It definitely reveals your cliche animus towards the US.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:27 PM, Blogger Paul said...

As I said, your government put him in power. Your government sold him poison gas, tanks and automatic weapons."

Again, you are revealing here your limitations. I was in the first gulf war and I assure you the only Iraqi tanks and weapons I saw were German, but especially Russian. And I saw scores of them. I have never heard the US sold Saddam tanks and automatic weapons. Where is your proof?

"Again we have spin and excuses. The simple fact is that anyone can buy weapons a lot easier than he can develop them."

Really??? Where's your source for that? If that were true then why does Iran bother building their facilities?

"We heard all of the scare stories before to justify the invasion and they all fell apart when they were examined even superficially."

Oh, please. ALmost, everyone thought Saddam had WMD's. Even the Egyptians and Jordanians warned Gen Franks Saddam would use them if we invaded. I guess they didn't have access to your intelligence sources. I saw WMD's myself in the first Gulf War so I figured it was a no-brainer he'd still have them. Oh, but there was Vangel out thinking the UN, Israelis, French, Germans, etc..


"The only thing keeping Achmadinejad in power is American opposition to him."

And there we have the shining, idiotic jewel of the Blame America First school of thought. No proof required, just heap the blame on us. That's so pathetic and contrary to the historical evidence. Achmadinejad is in power because the Mullahs have all the guns and have no qualms about using them. You may have heard about the Iranian peoples' uprising last year. Obama, who until then and since offered the Iranians the most pathetic appeasement, provided the perfect test for your hypothesis. He kept his mouth shut for days while the Mullahs and their Baseej shock troops slaughtered civilians. Guess what? Achmadinejad is still threatening holocaust on regular schedule. Guess it isn't quite so easy.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:40 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Dr. Paul is not a white supremacist and has shown himself to be very colourblind. For him what is important are your ideas, beliefs, and actions."

Dr Paul has shown himself to be very cozy with White Supremacists. His associations and newsletters from the '90's made that perfectly clear.

"But he is also very clear that each expense in each budget should be earmarked by Congress, not the federal bureaucrats in Washington."

He's very clear he likes to load up the pork for his district while lecturing everybody else.

"I know that someone like you, who likes central control by a federal administration finds that inconsistent but it isn't."

Yeah, you got me. I'm a closet collectivist.

"I suggest that you are not paying attention. You have the usual mouthpieces for the GOP (people like Krauthammer, Frum, Rove, etc.) taking shots at Tea Party supported candidates who beat the GOP's hand picked candidates by warning of a Goldwater type of disaster."

Krauthammer and Rove(who I disdain) argued for a tactical vote for Castle. His ACU rating was a meh 50% but much better than the probable 0% Coons would earn, and Castle would have won in a walk without needing scarce resources from the RNC. You can disagree, but to suggest there was some insider conspiracy is lunacy. Krauthammer supports every Tea Party candidate who can win, like Marco Rubio. David Frum is just a douchebag. So, no, Rove and Krauthammer aren't "taking shots at Tea Party candidates." They argued against one candidate
who is currently getting crushed in the polls, as they predicted.

"We already know that it is far greater than zero. Your government is holding many people in Cuba, American jails, and in other countries without charging them with a crime."

Perhaps you missed it but the key word is "innocent." Scores of vicious terrorists are being held in Gitmo, and a good thing.

"That is simply not true. There was opposition before and the Act got extended. Most politicians are too scared to stand up for liberty."

Yeah, plenty of opposition from the Ron Paul kooks and anti-American turds on the Left. Nobody else gives a shit.

"The GOP even tried to run a candidate against Ron Paul for opposing the Iraq War by accusing him of being anti-American for supporting the Constitution over the Bush power grab."

Oh my! Somebody dared to oppose Saint Ron Paul!

 
At 9/23/2010 8:41 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"Dr. Paul is not a white supremacist and has shown himself to be very colourblind. For him what is important are your ideas, beliefs, and actions."

Dr Paul has shown himself to be very cozy with White Supremacists. His associations and newsletters from the '90's made that perfectly clear.

"But he is also very clear that each expense in each budget should be earmarked by Congress, not the federal bureaucrats in Washington."

He's very clear he likes to load up the pork for his district while lecturing everybody else.

"I know that someone like you, who likes central control by a federal administration finds that inconsistent but it isn't."

Yeah, you got me. I'm a closet collectivist.

"I suggest that you are not paying attention. You have the usual mouthpieces for the GOP (people like Krauthammer, Frum, Rove, etc.) taking shots at Tea Party supported candidates who beat the GOP's hand picked candidates by warning of a Goldwater type of disaster."

Krauthammer and Rove(who I disdain) argued for a tactical vote for Castle. His ACU rating was a meh 50% but much better than the probable 0% Coons would earn, and Castle would have won in a walk without needing scarce resources from the RNC. You can disagree, but to suggest there was some insider conspiracy is lunacy. Krauthammer supports every Tea Party candidate who can win, like Marco Rubio. David Frum is just a douchebag. So, no, Rove and Krauthammer aren't "taking shots at Tea Party candidates." They argued against one candidate
who is currently getting crushed in the polls, as they predicted.

"We already know that it is far greater than zero. Your government is holding many people in Cuba, American jails, and in other countries without charging them with a crime."

Perhaps you missed it but the key word is "innocent." Scores of vicious terrorists are being held in Gitmo, and a good thing.

 
At 9/23/2010 8:41 PM, Blogger Paul said...

"That is simply not true. There was opposition before and the Act got extended. Most politicians are too scared to stand up for liberty."

Yeah, plenty of opposition from the Ron Paul kooks and anti-American turds on the Left. Nobody else gives a shit.

"The GOP even tried to run a candidate against Ron Paul for opposing the Iraq War by accusing him of being anti-American for supporting the Constitution over the Bush power grab."

Oh my! Somebody dared to oppose Saint Ron Paul!

 
At 9/23/2010 9:07 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Oh, God. You sound like someone who lives in the woods and listens to Alex Jones. You aren't going to convince anyone spouting paranoia.

It is not exactly a secret. The ACLU has already complained to Congress about this and even Wikipedia has a page on the issue.

http://tinyurl.com/3ac8fc2

http://tinyurl.com/hdvkh

Why are you so ignorant of this that you have to have a Canadian who has no idea what Alex Jones is saying explain it to you?

No, sorry. Pretty much the entire world went along with it regardless of whether the US led the delegation. Canada voted in favor. Canuck murderers!!!

Please. Nothing happens in the Security Council without American approval. Other countries go along because they can see opportunities to allow the US to shoot itself in the foot and to elevate their own interests.

Madeline Albright is a dipshit, I agree with that.

She is not the exception but the rule. All your bureaucrats are immoral dipshits. Powell never stepped up and argued that the US should drop the embargo to stop the deaths of innocent Arab children.

Chris Christie, Allen West, Paul Ryan, Jeff Flake, Mike Pence. Off the top of my head.

Chris Christie was not exactly a GOP insider. The party preferred the much more conservative Steve Lonegan but threw its support to Christie because he was more moderate and could beat Corzine, who was in big trouble in the polls.

Allen West has been supported by the Tea Party and is not exactly the typical GOP candidate. He is also not exactly a GOP favourite son or an insider.

Paul Ryan has attacked the previous GOP positions. He is clearly upset at the GOP's silence on entitlements and wants to do a lot more than the leadership is proposing. He may turn out to be the next President but is clearly not an insider or well loved among the GOP leadership.


Jeff Flake is an outsider and has the reputation of being one the more libertarian Republicans. Along with Ron Paul, he usually opposes many of the bills that the GOP leadership has been supporting. A perfect example was the Medicare Prescription Drug and Modernization Act of 2003, which Bush wanted but Flake voted against.

As for Pence, he has already admitted that the GOP lost its way and abandoned its principles as it ignored regulatory reform and fiscal responsibility. He is also not exactly a party insider or connected to the GOP leadership.

So what you have done is admitted that the good Republicans are those that believe in fiscal discipline and individual liberty and by omitting the leadership you also admit that they are not exactly what one would call good Republicans. But if the GOP wins it will be the leadership that will decide who gets to do what and which committees will get which representatives. How does that business as usual approach help the nation in any way?

 
At 9/23/2010 9:28 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Whoopie doo on most of that. I saw the housing bust coming too and sold at the top of the market.

But you are not in Congress. And the job of Congress is not to market time the market but to make sure that bubbles do not develop in the first place. While the housing bubble began on Clinton's watch, Bush pushed it just as hard as Clinton did and his people ignored Dr. Paul's warnings because they do not understand the danger of the Fed's activities.

That was hardly prescient.

It was obvious to anyone who understands Mises, Rothbard, or Hayek but that does not include anyone in the GOP leadership, which is mainly made up of ignorant Keynesians and Monetarists.

We haven't lost in Iraq and Afghanistan as far as I know. Did Obama sign the surrender papers while I was working today?

Of course you lost. The country is in tatters. Foreign oil companies are getting a lot of the exploration and development leases and Iran has control of the government. Four thousand soldiers are dead and more than ten thousand seriously wounded. Half the troops have been withdrawn and the other half are mainly hiding behind walls and barriers. Other than a dead Saddam and some of his idiot followers you have little to show for the $900 billion plus that has been spent looking for WMDs that did not exist.

Afghanistan will turn out to be worse. After nearly 170 years Bush and Obama are about to make William Elphinstone look good.

 
At 9/23/2010 9:47 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

Many. Care to name the "many?" How many GOP supported Obamacare? Name them.

I was talking about Cap and Trade. Many Republicans supported it in the beginning but were pushed to oppose it by angry voters. Some cut deals and supported it. One of them was the candidate that you and the GOP leadership preferred over Christine O’Donnell. Mike Castle votes for Cap & Trade and you think that O’Donnell has more serious baggage?

Sorry but you seem like one of the people who would sacrifice principle for power and influence. Castle was a RINO type yet you would rather have him because you expected him to do better.

Oh, so now you're bringing social issues up to somehow equalize them against the GOP. What exactly does "ok on social issues" mean? I guess it means "mostly agrees with Vangel."

Sorry, I keep thinking that people understand what I mean by social issues. I am only dealing with personal liberty. Many Democrats would agree with the following:

1. Government should not censor speech, press, media, or internet.

2. Military service should be voluntary. There should be no draft

3. There should be no laws regarding sex for consenting adults.

4. Repeal laws prohibiting adult possession and use of drugs.

5. There should be no National ID card.

Most Republicans would disagree. The GOP is usually a bit better on the economic liberty issues.

1. End "corporate welfare." No government handouts to business.

2. End government barriers to international free trade.

3. Let people control their own retirement; privatize Social Security.

4. Replace government welfare with private charity.

5. Cut taxes and government spending by 50% or more.

You can take the quiz below. My guess is that if you answer the questions accurately you wind up in the authoritarian quadrant. I am in the self governance quadrant with a 100% score on both personal and economic liberty. That makes me on the opposite side of the argument from most on this thread.

http://www.theadvocates.org/quiz

 
At 9/23/2010 9:56 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

The money not being lent to increase the money supply fast enough.

Why would it be lent? Most people are broke. The states are broke. Most of the solvent companies do not need loans because they have no interest in capital investment as long as there is uncertainty about taxes, labour regulations, health care, cap & trade, etc.

Fed Balance Sheet Rises to $2.31 Trillion on Treasury Purchases
Sep 23, 2010


That is because the Fed printed a lot of money and used it to buy impaired MBS paper from insolvent banks.

The Fed said last month that as housing debt matures it will buy Treasury securities to maintain its total securities holdings at $2.05 trillion. The plan is aimed at preventing money from being drained out of the financial system.

Good luck on that plan. Much of its holdings will not 'mature' because the borrowers will default. To buy more USTs the Fed will need to print more money. To do that foreign lenders will have to agree to roll over their maturing holdings at low rates. I don't see that ending well because someone will hedge their bets and that will cause an external shock to the bond market.

Most of your statements make no sense. How do you know things like "Saddam feared the Iranians more than the US."

That was Paul, not me. For what it is worth, his statement makes sense because the Iranians were close and had already fought a war that killed many Iraqis and nearly drove the country to bankruptcy. Iraq has a large Shiite population that hated Saddam and the Ba'ath Party.

 
At 9/23/2010 11:27 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

The fact that you thought the sanctions prohibited food and medicine does not make your position on sanctions an informed one.

But they did. The shortage of critical medicine is why so many kids died.

You made clear you were for sanctions, just not including food and medicine.

Where did I say that? I am for full commercial engagement with everyone as would be the typical libertarian.

In other words, the sanctions that existed. So you were amusingly complicit by accident.

You are deluded. As I said, I am with George Washington on this issue. Commercial relations with all, treaties and alliances with none.

And again, your country and most of the rest of the world signed off on and supported the sanctions. You can't just pretend otherwise because the US did most of the heavy lifting like we do pretty much everywhere else.

Canada does not have a veto and does not call the shots at the Security Council. The US does if it can bribe the Russians and Chinese.

Heh, you're like Obama when called on his bullshit. Speaking of spin and diversions, your original response was, "The only weapons of mass destruction that Saddam ever got came from the US in the first place."

I disagree with Obama as much as I did with his idiot predecessor. Both are useless as leaders and dangerous to liberty.

 
At 9/23/2010 11:27 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

You remarkably weren't aware of Saddam's nuclear facilities built by the French and thankfully put out of business by the Israelis.

What the hell is wrong with nuclear energy? We need more reactors, not less.

You also didn't know Saddam received help with his WMD program from other countries like the French, Germans, Russians, Dutch, and Spain. This really calls into question your knowledge about the subject at hand. It definitely reveals your cliche animus towards the US.

Nice spin but you spent billions looking for WMDs without finding any.

Again, you are revealing here your limitations. I was in the first gulf war and I assure you the only Iraqi tanks and weapons I saw were German, but especially Russian. And I saw scores of them. I have never heard the US sold Saddam tanks and automatic weapons. Where is your proof?

In the early 1980s Hughes Aircraft sent helicopters to Saddam. The Reagan Administration allowed Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Kuwait, and other nations in the region to transfer American supplied weapons to Saddam. Reagan sent chemical weapons and when the Security Council tried to pass resolutions condemning Iraq for using chemical weapons the US blocked it. Reagan's sales of arms to Iran, Iraq, and Nicaragua are well known. The fact that you are ignorant of what happened is your problem.

http://www.counterpunch.org/dixon06172004.html

http://altnews.com.au/drop/node/129

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/1992/11/02/1992_11_02_064_TNY_CARDS_000359993

Really??? Where's your source for that? If that were true then why does Iran bother building their facilities?

The same reason why Canada, Argentina, Czech Republic, Serbia, Croatia, Egypt, Bulgaria, Bangladesh, England, Brazil, Finland, South Korea, Hungary, etc., are building them or have them. To generate electricity.

Oh, please. ALmost, everyone thought Saddam had WMD's. Even the Egyptians and Jordanians warned Gen Franks Saddam would use them if we invaded. I guess they didn't have access to your intelligence sources. I saw WMD's myself in the first Gulf War so I figured it was a no-brainer he'd still have them. Oh, but there was Vangel out thinking the UN, Israelis, French, Germans, etc..

Only the gullible or outright idiots thought that Saddam had WMDs. Which one are you?

And there we have the shining, idiotic jewel of the Blame America First school of thought. No proof required, just heap the blame on us. That's so pathetic and contrary to the historical evidence. Achmadinejad is in power because the Mullahs have all the guns and have no qualms about using them. You may have heard about the Iranian peoples' uprising last year. Obama, who until then and since offered the Iranians the most pathetic appeasement, provided the perfect test for your hypothesis. He kept his mouth shut for days while the Mullahs and their Baseej shock troops slaughtered civilians. Guess what? Achmadinejad is still threatening holocaust on regular schedule. Guess it isn't quite so easy.

Read your history. It was your support of the Shah's purge of moderate opposition that allowed Khomeni to get to power in the first place. There was nobody but radicals that could step into the void when the population rose up against the American supported tyrant. And it was your government that put the Ba'ath party in power in the first place.

 
At 9/24/2010 6:46 AM, Blogger juandos said...

vangeIV still wailing: "Even the studies that ignore indirect deaths show more than 100,000 fatalities"...

Dude, you don't understand I wouldn't care if all the Iraqis were killed... Why you continue to whine about their deaths is totally beyond me...

Paul says: "Why is it the Lancet study advocates never consider the sanctions body count, most of the dead being children?"...

Or why didn't the Lancet studies consider the hundreds if not thousands of supposed opposition men the Hussein brothers fed into their plastic chipper, or the women that died in their rape rooms?

Its not part of the libtard template and as far as Lancet was concerned Bush in some bizzare way of thinking was perceived to be a conservative...

vangeIV again proving he's making it up on the fly says: "There are a few problems here. First, it does not look at the cost of the Afghan conflict. Second, the analysis does not fully account for the accrued liabilities"...

First of all stay on topic...

Second considering that you don't read and further explore the links makes what you're saying questionable at best...

"The ACLU has already complained to Congress about this and even Wikipedia has a page on the issue"...

O.K. you're done vangeIV...

Talk about less than credible sources, what's next? The New York Times?

 
At 9/24/2010 7:41 AM, Blogger VangelV said...

Dude, you don't understand I wouldn't care if all the Iraqis were killed... Why you continue to whine about their deaths is totally beyond me...

I respect life and consider murder by anyone or any government to be wrong. Why don't you?

...Its not part of the libtard template and as far as Lancet was concerned Bush in some bizzare way of thinking was perceived to be a conservative...

The Lancet published its data and methods and invited anyone who cares to look at them to replicate its results. Like all good studies it has produced a confidence interval and stated the level of uncertainty fairly clearly. While its results are lower than the other peer reviewed study the differences can be explained by the methodology.

The studies that you cite make it clear that they are looking at deaths directly attributed to explosions, bullets, etc., not indirect deaths. That means that they will produce significantly lower results even as all those innocent people die due to the actions initiated by your government.

First of all stay on topic...

Second considering that you don't read and further explore the links makes what you're saying questionable at best...


The numbers are clear, even in the papers that you cite. Add up all of the costs and you get a lot more than $1 trillion for the conflicts.

O.K. you're done vangeIV...

Talk about less than credible sources, what's next? The New York Times?


Look at the links provided in the Wikipedia pages. They cite your own government, court documents, articles in magazines, press releases by the CLU, etc., etc., etc. They are credible sources.

 
At 9/24/2010 3:11 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

And exactly how many innocent people have had this happen to them? I live here, Vangel, I would recognize the change to a police state if it were as dire as you say. I would at least have heard some whispers in the hallway.

Let's get back to this point for a moment. A friend just sent me the link below. In it judge Napolitano talks about how the government limits liberty by using the powers granted to it by the unconstitutional Patriot Act.

http://tinyurl.com/create.php

 

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