>Noam Chomsky’s Hopes and Prospects: A Review, Part I

>I’m not usually a huge fan of Chomsky but his new collection of essays Hopes and Prospects is really good. The first part of the book deals with Latin America. Chomsky outlines the colonial past and present of Latin American countries and their valiant efforts to rid themselves of neo-imperialist domination by the United States. He states correctly that today’s struggles of Latin American countries (Bolivia, Argentina, Venezuela) to oppose the depredations of the US-inspired version of globalization offer hope for the rest of the world.  He is also absolutely right in pointing out that “Latin America is not merely the victim of foreign forces. The region is notorious for the rapacity of its wealthy classes and their freedom from social responsibility.” Here, Chomsky echoes Eduardo Galeano’s classic work Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent that decades ago offered a brilliant analysis of how Latin American power elites sold out their own countries to the predatory forces of the US neo-liberalism.

Chomsky states that the drive to imitate their Northern neighbors in ostensible consumption of Westernized goods and services has been the main cause of Latin American failure to achieve real as opposed to formal independence from colonial domination. Today, Chomsky points out “Latin America has real choices, for the first time in its history.” And this is great news for the entire planet.

In the second part of the book, Chomsky analyzes the influence that the imperialist mentality in the US exercises over the discussions of the US military presence in Iraq. I was particularly pleased to see that Chomsky decided not to follow in the footsteps of most liberal commentators in their refusal to see that Russian imperialism is in no way “better” or more justified than the US imperialism. Chomsky qualifies Putin’s actions in Chechnya as “murderous”, which they most definitely are. I only wish that more progressive analysts dared to depart from the tendency to praise everybody who opposes the US regardless of the atrocities they perpetrate. It is definitely right that the US imperialism and Russian imperialism should be discussed together since there are glaring similarities between them.

Chomsky then segues into what I consider the weakest part of the book: the discussion of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As usual, Chomsky’s analysis of the issue is one-sided and biased. Israelis are all villainous nationalists and religious fanatics, while the Palestinians are without an exception languishing and tolerant victims. While Chomsky is right in suggesting that the Israelis do everything they can to make sure the conflict continues, he forgets to say that so do the Palestinians. When he describes the Israeli “information campaigns to instruct the world on its errors and misunderstanding, arrogant self-righteousness, circling the wagons, defiance . . .  and paranoia,” he avoids mentioning that this exactly the pattern adopted by every single nation-state with a very weak and diluted national identity (Russia is a great example of precisely this kind of paranoid nation building. Closer to home, so is the US.)

Chomsky’s discussion of nuclear proliferation is powerful and convincing, and I believe everybody should read it because it touches on some of the most important issues we confront today. The only objection I have to this part of his discussion is Chomsky’s insistence that there is no need to fear a nuclear attack from Iran because that would be suicidal and self-destructive. Chomsky forgets that these same statements were made about Germany 70 years ago: “Germany would not start a war, that would be suicidal and self-destructive.” And then a few years later: “Germany will not open up a second front, that would be suicidal and self-destructive.” We all know how those predictions went. Countries often act in completely self-destructive ways, which should be well-known  to Chomsky.

Starting from Chapter 9 of Part II, Chomsky offers a brilliant analysis of the 2008 presidential elections and the job Obama’s presidency has done since then. He points out correctly that both Democrats and Republicans are considerably to the right of the American population on many major issues, both international and domestic. Hence, it is not surprising that Obama’s tepid efforts to defend his intentions to introduce some kind of change don’t convince Americans any longer. Chomsky talks about how the American people have been brilliantly manipulated into being suspicious of public welfare programs that would be of invaluable use to themselves while supporting the “nanny state for the rich.”

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75 comments on “>Noam Chomsky’s Hopes and Prospects: A Review, Part I

  1. >I'm sorry, of course I meant 70 years ago. Believe it or not, I actually counted the number of decades with the help of my gingers, and this was the sorry result. No wonder than when I calculate grades for my students with the help of a calculator I often end up with grades like 976% or 2398%.

  2. >"Israelis are all villainous nationalists and religious fanatics"Come on, get real – this is a caricature. He doesnt say that. Does he say that about Uri Avnery, Israel Shahak, and countless other Jewish Israelis? No of course not."the Palestinians are without an exception languishing and tolerant victims."More of the same caricature. Chomsky has harshly criticized the PLO from time to time, eg it was Chomsky who pointed out some years ago that the PLO had failed to establish a solidarity movement in the US when even the North Korean regime had done that. "The only objection I have to this part of his discussion is Chomsky's insistence that there is no need to fear a nuclear attack from Iran because that would be suicidal and self-destructive."Entirely reasonable point of view. Even Hitler would have baulked at attacking the Soviet Union had it been the 50s and Stalin was well stocked with nukes. "I only wish that more progressive analysts dared to depart from the tendency to praise everybody who opposes the US regardless of the atrocities they perpetrate."This is another caricature. I really dont know anyone who thinks like this, but then I tend to read people like Chomsky and those of like mind.You've said some nice words about Chomsky but you sound like a Zionist who hasnt come to terms with all your illusions yet.

  3. >"Entirely reasonable point of view. Even Hitler would have baulked at attacking the Soviet Union had it been the 50s and Stalin was well stocked with nukes."-In the late 1930ies there was hardly a news outlet in the world that did not discuss in the same terminology as Chomsky how Germany would never attack/open up a second front because it would be suicidal. Look where this kind of thinking led the world. Today, many people including Chomsky insist that unless we start paying attention, an ecological catastrophe or a nuclear self-immolation are imminent. Once again, nobody is paying attention.This is why I believe that the argument "Iran will not behave in a suicidal way" cannot be taken seriously. Human societies behave in suicidal ways more often than can be listed here."This is another caricature. I really dont know anyone who thinks like this, but then I tend to read people like Chomsky and those of like mind"-Alexander Cockburn (a brilliant journalist who writes for "The Nation") is one example. He praising Russia and disregarding all the racism, neo-nazism and the horrible human rights violations there.The point of the review is not to say "nice" or "not nice" words about Chomsky but to analyze. I do not find his analysis of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict convincing. I find it veru one-sided and weak.

  4. >I find your words related to the "balance" or lack thereof between Palestinian and Israeli leadership seriously troubling.I would suggest looking at a variety of sources to get more balance in your understanding of the issues and situations of the Palestinians such as:www.jewishvoiceforpeace.orghttp://www.juancole.com/http://www.ramikhouri.com/http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/ as a good starting point. I don't have to agree with Chomsky 100% to see how his antipathy towards Israeli leadership and how the Palestinians are hurt by it are most understandable.Watching any of the excellent You Tube Series: "Sleepless in Gaza and Jerusalem" despite its obvious pro-Palestinian biases portrays a devastating picture of increasing apartheid and brutality.The Palestinians are weak and divided and their leaderships has made plenty of major mistakes.At the same time where moderation has been attempted over and over again it has failed because of Israeli intransigence.King Hussein (the younger) speaks a lot of truth in his talking about peace and how it can be possible.Most of the key issues aren't really difficult IF Israel will give up the West Bank and Gaza and not pieces of land as it proposes.Obviously the status of Jerusalem and the areas near it and the rights of Palestinian refugees (probably to a slightly lesser degree) are serious, tough issues.As Israel makes more and more grabs of land and laws and similar weakening Palestinian (including Israeli citizens) rights, as some on the Left have noted it builds a future likelihood – perhaps 20-30 years from now into inevitably being a Single State solution – which would evolve into being eventually a Palestinian State ruling over a Jewish Minority, hardly what most Jews and Israelis want.Excuse my emotion in this! While I know you are sincere in what you say, words such as yours from the Left – help continue the status quo making necessary change more and more difficult over time when understanding and "real balance" is necessary.http://www.ramikhouri.com/http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/

  5. >geo: thank you for this very informative comment.I have a question for you: what do you think will happen if Israel withdraws from the West Bank and Gaza? I believe that this will be followed by an immediate spike in anti-Israeli terrorism and in all probability some acts of aggression from Israel's neighbors.Another question that I have is how asking Israel to give up West Bank and Gaza can be more fair and reasonable than asking the US to return the territories it took away from Mexico? Those are the very same territories in which Mexicans today are persecuted and marginalized.

  6. >- My guess, and it's only a guess is that 60-80% of the Palestinians really want peace with some justice – and likely it's generally closer to the 80%. IF Palestinians wanted violence (now) in substantial numbers, there would be far, far more violence than there is now.Given that a significant majority of the violence now is clearly coming from religious Jewish "settlers" in the West Bank at least, it would seem logical to me – IF the West Bank were a Palestinian State, there would be much Less of a desire for violence than exists now.I think that you need to be more specific as to who the "enemies" of Israel are and will be. The Palestinians have been a source of middle class – educated "labor" for other Middle Eastern countries besides Israel where they've been the source of cheap labor.As it is now – Anyone in the Middle East besides the Jewish population of Israel can easily unite Only when it is Anti-Occupation/Israel.If Peace Breaks Out, it would seem logical that the "losers" in some cases might have some anger towards Israel, however it seems likely it might not be more than already exists.I'm totally unclear Why there would be Anti-Israeli violence with a semi-just-peace, except among a disgruntled small minority.I think that it's amazing that there's been as little anti-Israeli violence as there has been.IF you were a Palestinian born in Israel living in Israel you would be part of 20% of the population who could legally be discriminated against related to jobs, housing, ability to travel freely, education etc., yet violence from them is rare. The violence that exists now I suspect is most comparable to how oppressed White People were in the South by Black folks circa 1900-50.UN Peace Keepers – could control the rare possible violence issues.C – how asking Israel to give up West Bank and Gaza can be more fair and reasonable than asking the US to return the territories it took away from Mexico? G – I think that your question is problematic. IF – Israel were to say – "we are a pluralistic nation who accepts all" perhaps one could make such an argument. IF – Israel were to annex The West Bank and Gaza, quite soon the Jewish population would be a minority in its "own country". Israel is declared as a "Jewish State" and there are Clear deliniations where Jews have "more rights" than others.Any Jew has a right to emigrate to Israel. While there is obviously discrimination in Texas, I can't imagine it being "legal" to deny any US citizens the rights to live, own property or travel in "White towns".It was clearly unfair that the US annexed the Southwest and West Coast Areas! Two wrongs don't make a right! It is a huge necessary compromise to acknowledge Israel's right to exist. Most Palestinians accept the reality of Israel's existence. Neighboring Jordan and Egypt have peace treaties which have been honored for decades.The U.S. will have much less of a "terrorism" problem without Israel and the U.S. as its apologist as "the enemy" as they are seen now in much of the world.I think a better comparison than what you spoke of would be a US invasion of Cuba, returning it as a puppet of the U.S.Thanks!

  7. >I do not understand why a peace treaty between Israel and the Palestinians should result in increased violence. It should make violence much less attractive and marginalize radical forces opposed to peace.Current violence is overwhelmingly coming from the Israelis in any case. The number of Israelis killed by Gazan rockets over a several year period was at the most around 15. The truce between Hamas and Israel was broken by Israel, NOT Hamas. Then Gazan’s were subsequently killed at a ratio of close to 100/1 vs. Israelis in the ensuing “war”.Violence on the West Bank oft times comes from Jewish Settlers who are rabidly anti-Palestinian. Other violence comes from the conflicts between the occupation army and the native population who strangely feel upset as their rights diminish and they have less and less access to and possession of what has been their land.It’s unclear to me who is going to be violent? Egypt and Jordan have had long-standing, solid peace treaties for decades. There is no Palestinian “army” to seriously confront the Israeli army.The only thing which unites Palestinians, Arabs, Iranians and other Moslems is the common feelings against the Israeli occupation (and the US related to this). Terrorism would be much less potent, without “the enemy”.20% of Israeli citizens are Palestinians who were born in Israel. Anyone who might claim that they have “equal rights” is seriously deluded. Israel is self-defined as a “Jewish State”. It is amazing how little violence comes from Israeli Palestinians.Certainly there is violence directed at Israeli Jews because they are Israeli Jews, however it almost certainly is less than the violence perpetrated by Israeli Jews against Palestinians.You ask why The West Bank and Gaza should be given up, while Texas, the Southwest and Northwest remain in U.S. hands. I would ask whether you would similarly support a U.S. invasion today of Cuba to return it to it’s “proper status”. While the efforts in Arizona and elsewhere have been despicable, we’re not quite yet at a point where Chicanos born in the U.S. can legally: 1.) Not live in “White” towns, 2.) Not own property in “White” towns, 3.) Be not hired because of their “nationality”, 4.) Have monies for education and other areas be legally less related solely to their nationality.A greater Israel annexing the West Bank and Gaza will be majority non-Jewish relatively soon. Expelling Palestinians because of their nationality seems harsh. I have a legal right to emigrate to Israel because I am Jewish. Many Israeli citizens have greatly limited rights because they are not Jewish.It seems evident that you’ve read relatively little about Israel and the Palestinians which isn’t “party line” related. I hope that you will educate yourself in such areas. I’m similarly open to education in areas I know little about.We might strangely find that “terrorism” is less of a problem in many places were we in the U.S. no longer to be the prime force helping perpetrate the increasing apartheid Palestinians face.Thanks!

  8. >Liberal commentators actually excuse Putin?! I don't read enough mainstream news sources so I didn't know this, but it's a ridiculous stance to take from any but an imperialist point of view.

  9. >"-In the late 1930ies there was hardly a news outlet in the world that did not discuss in the same terminology as Chomsky how Germany would never attack/open up a second front because it would be suicidal. Look where this kind of thinking led the world."That was the 1940s. This is now, the age of nuclear ICBMS that can devastate a country in a matter of hours. It took the Soviet Union and the West years and millions of casualties to advance on Berlin, the clerics in Iran know that everything they value can be obliterated in a few hours. Evidence of Iran's risk/value assessment can be derived from the Iran/Iraq war; when it became too costly to cut out Saddam's heart, the Iranian clerics called it quits and backed off. Tehran is not suicidal and its behaviour (not rhetoric) over the past 30 years backs up that observation.

  10. >Very nice comment on the book, thanks! I am looking forward to read it.Just wanted to give my 2 cents by saying that "Chomsky's insistence that there is no need to fear a nuclear attack from Iran because that would be suicidal and self-destructive" is not that silly (if we may put it this way. I agree with you in that by logic it doesn't follows the shameful typical human actions, but what it is interesting and Chomsky has pointed out several times when addressing that (or similar) statement, is that even the military analysts don't seem to believe the problem is the actual use of a nuclear weapon, but the balance of power as a result of having the weapon. Iran doesnt need to use it to cause tremendous harm (from the US point of view). For me the idea its hard to digest, but I trust Chomsky's notion after reading US military magazines that analyze Iran's threat (look for may-june 2010 issue of Military Review –> here is a link http://usacac.army.mil/CAC2/MilitaryReview/Archives/English/MilitaryReview_20100630_art016.pdf) Very interesting article and even more interesting to see how the option of attacking civilian targets (bridges and railroad stations) are considered as less damaging than attacking the actual nuclear plants.How sick is our world? sigh…

  11. >"Chomsky forgets that these same statements were made about Germany 70 years ago: "Germany would not start a war, that would be suicidal and self-destructive." And then a few years later: "Germany will not open up a second front, that would be suicidal and self-destructive." We all know how those predictions went" Not quite sure your analogy between Germany and Iran works. Germany was, unlike Iran, a powerful and developed (militarily, economically and educationally) country with strong resources to wage war against most opposition. Iran is a completely different proposition which, in its current position, will not be able to develop the resources needed to wage war. A WMD is its only weapon and I agree with Chomsky when he states that this is a deterrent rather that a first strike option – i.e. its lack of resources would make it suicidal. You analogy is therefore not entirely relevant.

  12. Dear Clarissa,

    Thank you for a very good and helpful review. I’m looking forward to reading the book. However, I do feel I have to comment on one of your posts in the above thread. I’ll take the liberty of answering some of the questions you asked geo (even though it’s been a while since you asked):

    “what do you think will happen if Israel withdraws from the West Bank and Gaza? I believe that this will be followed by an immediate spike in anti-Israeli terrorism and in all probability some acts of aggression from Israel’s neighbors.”

    Where do you get that? The mainstream Palestinian demand (as well as the demand from most of the international community) is that Israel withdraw from the Occupied Territories and let the Palestinians be free. Why on Earth would that result in more – and not less – animosity against Israel?

    “Another question that I have is how asking Israel to give up West Bank and Gaza can be more fair and reasonable than asking the US to return the territories it took away from Mexico?”

    Because the era of conquest ended when it became illegal under international law to acquire territory by military means. This happened, as far as I remember, in 1950. The Israeli occupation (not to mention colonization) of the West Bank and East Jerusalem is simply illegal, which should be reason enough for the international community (including the US) to insist that they withdraw – and by insisting I mean more than just having the UN pass resolutions on the subject every now and then.

    I have heard other people defending the Israeli occupation make references to the US-Mexican War. However, they often forget to make the right parallels. The Palestinians don’t correspond to Mexico – they correspond to the indigenous population. I don’t think Mexico today has any more claim to Texas than the US does, just as I don’t think Jordan has any legitimate claim to East Jerusalem, and I’m not lying sleepless over Syria losing the Golan Heights. But I do think that if Native Americans were still being persecuted by European settlers who ate away at their lands, and if they were still living as stateless people with no rights, then something would have to be done about it (first an unconditional settlement freeze, and later giving the Native Americans their own state alongside the US should they want it). Colonization and displacement is the reality for Palestinians today, and the fact that Israel has in the past been threatened by its Arab neighbors does not justify Israel’s treatment of the region’s indigenous population. That Palestinians have at times resisted occupation and colonization in a violent way – again, like the Native Americans – also does not change the fact that it is precisely the occupation and colonization which is the root of the conflict, just like when the West was “won”.

    Thanks for a nice blog!

  13. “It is definitely right that the US imperialism and Russian imperialism should be discussed together since there are glaring similarities between them.”

    Just curious, but what are the similarities between the two? How has the U.S. been imperialist as of late? Invading Iraq was not imperialism. The U.S. overthrew a brutal dictator with the goal of establishing a free and independent Iraq. It did not take any of Iraq’s resources. One could say the idea of invading a country like Iraq, overthrowing the dictator, and then making it into a free and functioning liberal democracy quickly was rather naive and unrealisitc, and costly in terms of the blood and treasure required, but it’s still a noble goal.
    Russia, on the other hand, has no intention of establishing a free society in any country it invades.

    “He points out correctly that both Democrats and Republicans are considerably to the right of the American population on many major issues, both international and domestic.”

    How are they to the right of the American population? The American population doesn’t lean left, it tends to lean center-right.

    “Chomsky talks about how the American people have been brilliantly manipulated into being suspicious of public welfare programs that would be of invaluable use to themselves while supporting the “nanny state for the rich.”

    That’s his opinion, it doesn’t make it right. We have a large body of scholarship and also historical experience that shows that the welfare state created a whole lot of problems and made worse problems it was meant to fix, and creates an underclass of people dependent on the government. In the process, it also infantilizes the population, which makes them then prone to rioting and destroying things when the State can no longer afford the welfare state and must pull it back, as is happening in some European nations right now, in particular Greece.

    • “The U.S. overthrew a brutal dictator with the goal of establishing a free and independent Iraq. It did not take any of Iraq’s resources.”

      – And that’s exactly how the USSR always justified their invasions. You sound just like the Soviet imperialist propaganda machine.

      “One could say the idea of invading a country like Iraq, overthrowing the dictator, and then making it into a free and functioning liberal democracy quickly was rather naive and unrealisitc, and costly in terms of the blood and treasure required, but it’s still a noble goal.”

      – Yes, the Soviets also always tried to bring peace and justice for all by killing people.

      “The American population doesn’t lean left, it tends to lean center-right.”

      – You do realize that these are all completely relative terms, right?

      “prone to rioting and destroying things when the State can no longer afford the welfare state and must pull it back, as is happening in some European nations right now, in particular Greece.”

      – You have absolutely no understanding of what is happening in Greece.

  14. “And that’s exactly how the USSR always justified their invasions. You sound just like the Soviet imperialist propaganda machine.”

    The difference was that the Soviet Union was literally an imperialist empire. Their idea of invading consisted of slaughtering and subduing the people by force (often free peoples) and then establishing a puppet government. The United States does not do this (in invading both Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S. has gone out of its way not to harm the civilians and to establish a free society that can govern itself).

    “Yes, the Soviets also always tried to bring peace and justice for all by killing people.”

    The Soviets never sought peace or justice, they sought conquest, and oftentimes, against free and democratic peoples whom they wanted to control by force.

    “You do realize that these are all completely relative terms, right?”

    Well if we are looking at “left” as in socially-liberal and for a large State presence in the economy and society, and “right” as socially-conservative and for a limited State presence in the economy and society, generally America leans more center-right I’d say.

    “You have absolutely no understanding of what is happening in Greece.”

    People there have been rioting because the government is no longer able to support the large social welfare state that has existed for a long time. The country has on the verge of defaulting.

    • “he United States does not do this (in invading both Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S. has gone out of its way not to harm the civilians and to establish a free society that can govern itself).”

      – You are very funny. Things that you are saying are beyond egregious and offensive. Yet you keep saying them like it’s OK to be this ignorant about the world.

      “Well if we are looking at “left” as in socially-liberal and for a large State presence in the economy and society, and “right” as socially-conservative and for a limited State presence in the economy and society”

      – Who are these “we”? This is your definition. And a pretty weird, at that. Besides, in terms of this definition, you, a supporter of torture, are as Leftist as they come.

      “The Soviets never sought peace or justice, they sought conquest, and oftentimes, against free and democratic peoples whom they wanted to control by force.”

      – Most people in the world – and I mean the absolute majority – feel this way about the US. Are you even awar of that?

      • Most people in the world – and I mean the absolute majority – feel this way about the US. Are you even awar of that?

        No, you see, after the horrors of Vietnam the US military engaged in an expensive project to modify all weapons and ordnance so as only to fire MDMA pills directly into the mouths of enemy combatants. This is why the international community is at this very moment lobbying the POTUS to change “United States of America” to “World Party Central #1″. All green cards come with free glo-sticks and Smarties.

    • Wait, do you really think US (or anybody) went to wars abroad for freedom to those people, rather than money? And if it’s money, do you think US would let to establish a free society, if it would be Iran-like in its’ love for US and contrary to US interests?

  15. “You are very funny. Things that you are saying are beyond egregious and offensive. Yet you keep saying them like it’s OK to be this ignorant about the world.”

    I’m just stating facts. That is how the surge in Iraq was made to work, by actively seeking out to make friends with the people (as opposed to the terrorists, who were threatening them). Same with Afghanistan. The Battle for Fallujah was the first major battle in which steps were actively taken not to harm civilians, which no one even knew if it was possible to do, and it succeeded to a great degree.

    “Who are these “we”? This is your definition. And a pretty weird, at that. Besides, in terms of this definition, you, a supporter of torture, are as Leftist as they come.”

    Totalitarians support torture as a means of imposing fear. A person like me is only willing to use torture in very limited circumstances (EXTREMELY limited at that) when required.

    “Most people in the world – and I mean the absolute majority – feel this way about the US. Are you even awar of that?”

    So what? They’re wrong. To an almost comically degree, except that so many of them actually believe it.

    • ““Most people in the world – and I mean the absolute majority – feel this way about the US. Are you even awar of that?”

      So what? They’re wrong. To an almost comically degree, except that so many of them actually believe it.”

      – Yes, everybody is wrong, except the anonymous Kyle who approves of torture, has obviously not read a single book on history and enjoys sharing opinions of cosmic ignorance with the self-assurance of somebody who can never even begin to glimpse the degree of his own ridiculousness.

      “Totalitarians support torture as a means of imposing fear. A person like me is only willing to use torture in very limited circumstances (EXTREMELY limited at that) when required.”

      – I’m sure that I person who is being tortured really cares about this difference. It must make torture so much easier to experience.

  16. “No, you see, after the horrors of Vietnam the US military engaged in an expensive project to modify all weapons and ordnance so as only to fire MDMA pills directly into the mouths of enemy combatants. This is why the international community is at this very moment lobbying the POTUS to change “United States of America” to “World Party Central #1″. All green cards come with free glo-sticks and Smarties.”

    Vietnam never would have happened in the first place if the Communists hadn’t been bent on taking over control of the country.

    • Kyle :Vietnam never would have happened in the first place if the Communists hadn’t been bent on taking over control of the country.

      You are either a bad troll or just totally lacking any sense of sociohistorical context, or an idiot.

      • Not trolling at all, just am disagreeing with some of the posts. And yes, the Vietnam War would not have happened if not for the communists. The North wasn’t able to fight the South without help from the Soviet Union and China. After U.S. troops were pulled out, the South was able to stand on its own with funding from the U.S. Then Congress decided to cut the funding. Some warned that the North would likely go into the South and slaughter lots of people. The Congressmen decided this was nonsense and cut the funding. Upon which then the North went in and slaughtered the South.

  17. “Wait, do you really think US (or anybody) went to wars abroad for freedom to those people, rather than money? And if it’s money, do you think US would let to establish a free society, if it would be Iran-like in its’ love for US and contrary to US interests?”

    If the U.S. actually went into Iraq or Afghanistan for money, then it sure has got a lot of people fooled, as the wars have not resulted in a single dime but have cost a lot. If the U.S. had established puppet governments and formal colonies engaged in mining the resources from these countries, you might have a point. Instead, it has done no such thing (Iraq isn’t even allowing U.S. companies to have oil contracts there).

    If the country would be “Iran-like,” then it wouldn’t be a free society. Remember also, even if democratic, a democratic society is not necessarilly a free society. Democratic government isa necessary component of a free society, but in and of itself, does not make a society free. As I said also, the idea that one could toppled Saddam Hussein and then turn Iraq into a free society quickly was rather naive. It may be doable, but would take time.

    • “If the U.S. actually went into Iraq or Afghanistan for money, then it sure has got a lot of people fooled, as the wars have not resulted in a single dime but have cost a lot.”

      – You deny that some people made out like bandits as a result of this war?

      “As I said also, the idea that one could toppled Saddam Hussein and then turn Iraq into a free society quickly was rather naive.”

      – What if somebody decides that the US President is a dictator and that the American people are “not free”, whatever that means. Would the country that arrives at such a conclusion be justified in bombing your town and killing you (with the best intentions in the world, of course)?

      A yes or no answer will suffice.

      • “You deny that some people made out like bandits as a result of this war?”

        Sure some people did, the particular industries that benefited from supplying the military. But the country, as a whole, did not. The wars cost the U.S. in terms of global reputation, in terms of money, and in terms of human lives. And for what? No massive oil revenues or anything like that.

        “What if somebody decides that the US President is a dictator and that the American people are “not free”, whatever that means. Would the country that arrives at such a conclusion be justified in bombing your town and killing you (with the best intentions in the world, of course)?

        A yes or no answer will suffice.[/quote]

        A yes or no answer does not suffice because that’s a loaded question. The United States does not bomb and kill civilians of any totalitarian nation because it doesn’t like their leader. And freedom is not an arbitrary concept, it refers to do people have human rights and liberties. Whether or not a president is a dictator is not an arbitrary concept either, it’s something that one can empirically determine.

        If the U.S. was headed by an oppressive dictator, then no I would not have a problem with a free nation coming in and knocking him out of power.

      • “Sure some people did, the particular industries that benefited from supplying the military. But the country, as a whole, did not.”

        – Nobody cares what “the country as a whole” benefitted from. The wars are not started by “the country as a whole.” People were duped by a bunch of criminals into sending their children to dies to enrich this bunch of criminals. And people bought into that.

        “And freedom is not an arbitrary concept, it refers to do people have human rights and liberties.”

        – Are you familiar with the Patriot Act? Are you familiar with how low the US ranks in the world in terms of human rights? Are you aware that the US lags behind all developed countries in almost all human rights and civil liberties? This country needs to improve its own abysmally poor record on human rights before it starts educating others on the subject.

        “If the U.S. was headed by an oppressive dictator, then no I would not have a problem with a free nation coming in and knocking him out of power.”

        – And raping you, your wife and your child and the killing all of you in the process, I assume. You’d be totally fine with that? I applaud your dedication to the cause of the struggle against dictatorships everywhere, if that is the case. Now there is just a slight little problem remaining of what happens if the foreign country misjudges and sees as a dictator somebody who isn’t one.

  18. Kyle :A person like me is only willing to use torture in very limited circumstances (EXTREMELY limited at that) when required.

    A person like you sickens a person like me.

    So what? They’re wrong. To an almost comically degree, except that so many of them actually believe it.

    translation: “LalalalalalalalalafuckinglalalaLA can’t hear you lalalalalala”

  19. bloggerclarissa :
    Nobody cares what “the country as a whole” benefitted from. The wars are not started by “the country as a whole.” People were duped by a bunch of criminals into sending their children to dies to enrich this bunch of criminals. And people bought into that.

    People were not “duped” by anyone to enrich anyone. That Hussein was believed to have had WMDs was something that had been believed for years. And WMDs weren’t the sole reason for invading Iraq (other reasons were to establish a democracy in the Middle East (although IMO naive to think this could be done quickly), that Hussein was a brutal dictator with multiple human rights violations, that he was a threat to the region, and so forth (which historically he was). In hindsight, they should have considered more evidence over the WMDs issue, but the administration did not lie the country into war as many like to claim.

    Are you familiar with the Patriot Act? Are you familiar with how low the US ranks in the world in terms of human rights? Are you aware that the US lags behind all developed countries in almost all human rights and civil liberties? This country needs to improve its own abysmally poor record on human rights before it starts educating others on the subject.

    The Patriot Act does not violate any one’s human rights, and has been revised and reviewed constantly by the legal profession to make sure of this. There are parts of it that have been eliminated, parts that have been modified, and new things that have been added. As for human rights, the U.S. is one of the more free nations in the developed world (and we rank among the highest, if not the highest, in rights such as freedom of speech, something most other countries regulate a lot more—check Geert Wilders in the Netherlands, where they want to restrict his freedom of speech and accuse him of being a bigot and violating the law because he points out the problems of the radical portion of Islam). You are innocent until proven guilty, with the right to a fair trial, and the right to remain silent, something many developed countries do not have.

    In terms of a poor record, yes, the U.S. has a poor record historically (Native Americans, women, blacks, etc…) but it has gotten past that. Most nations have abysmal records regarding human rights (Germany, England, Japan, etc…) but they’ve evolved past that too.

    - And raping you, your wife and your child and the killing all of you in the process, I assume. You’d be totally fine with that? I applaud your dedication to the cause of the struggle against dictatorships everywhere, if that is the case. Now there is just a slight little problem remaining of what happens if the foreign country misjudges and sees as a dictator somebody who isn’t one.

    Where does the U.S. have a policy of raping and killing people in some process of freeing a nation? The U.S. is not like the Soviet Union, where in Afghanistan the soldiers were raping the women, bayoneting the pregnant ones, designing bombs purposely to look like toys so that children would pick them up, or where they had the Hind attack helicopters flying around machine gunning everything. Today we have the technology to be able to precisely target the military equipment and structures of a dictatorship while leaving the civilian areas untouched.

    If overthrowing the dictator required mass-bombing of civilian areas, then that would be a bad plan, because you’re then making things worse for the civilians than they were under the dictator.

    As for misjudging, a country can’t misjudge a dictator. Either you have a free society, with a liberal democracy for government that respects human rights and freedoms, or you have a democratically-elected government that does not respect freedoms, or you have a dictator who holds all the power.

    • “As for human rights, the U.S. is one of the more free nations in the developed world (and we rank among the highest, if not the highes”

      = I’m sorry, Kyle, but you have no idea what you are talking about. It saddens me to see somebody who has bought into such egregious propaganda. In this country, people have no right to rest. There is no maternity or paternity leave. At all. Even the most miserable banana republics do better than this. Legislation gets passed where people will be physically raped by the government in order to gain access to medical procedures.

      The Human Rights Data Project (conducted in the US) lists the US beneath the following countries in terms of the human rights:
      Norway (29)
      San Marino (29)
      Canada (29)
      Belgium (28)
      Luxembourg (28)
      Sweden (28)
      Finland (28)
      Denmark (28)
      Iceland (28)
      New Zealand (28)
      Slovenia (28).

      As for freedom of speech, the US is currently doing as bad as Bahrain!

      “The targeting of journalists covering the Occupy Wall Street movement has caused the United States to drop precipitously in a leading survey of press freedom.

      Reporters Without Borders’ latest Press Freedom Index was released on Wednesday, and the list reflected some of the tumult that took place in the world in 2011, as well as the impact that those events had on journalists across the globe. Reporters became targets over and over again throughout the year, both in the Middle East and on the streets of New York.

      The U.S. tumbled almost as far as Bahrain did in the wake of the repeated crackdowns on journalists covering Occupy movements. Reporters Without Borders was explicit in its summary of its report, saying that “the United States (47th) also owed its fall of 27 places to the many arrests of journalist covering Occupy Wall Street protests.”” Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/25/press-freedom-occupy-wall-street-us-arrests_n_1230825.html

      The Democracy Index places the US in the 19th place.

      My advice to you, Kyle: stop listening to Fox News and start educating yourself. Because it’s kind of sad to see aperson who lives in such a state of ignorance as you do.

      • = I’m sorry, Kyle, but you have no idea what you are talking about. It saddens me to see somebody who has bought into such egregious propaganda. In this country, people have no right to rest. There is no maternity or paternity leave. At all. Even the most miserable banana republics do better than this. Legislation gets passed where people will be physically raped by the government in order to gain access to medical procedures.</blockquote?

        You have a right to rest as people have weekends. No one has any "right" to a vacation (although most companies offer them as part of the benefits package). Nor does nayone have any "right" to something like maternity leave. That you decide to have a baby should not be on the company's dime. And no, the most miserable banana republics do not do better than this.

        Regarding Republicans and abortion legislation, Republicans are seeking to protect the sanctity of human life. I'm not saying they're totally correct in that belief (it is debatable hwne exactly the life inside the woman is a human being), but that is what their belief is. IMO, I think both sides have legitimate points and there are extremes on both the pro-life and pro-choice people.

        The Human Rights Data Project (conducted in the US) lists the US beneath the following countries in terms of the human rights:
        Norway (29)
        San Marino (29)
        Canada (29)
        Belgium (28)
        Luxembourg (28)
        Sweden (28)
        Finland (28)
        Denmark (28)
        Iceland (28)
        New Zealand (28)
        Slovenia (28).

        The Human Rights Data Project measures such human rights as:

        Physical integrity rights–the rights not to be tortured, summarily executed, disappeared, or imprisoned for political beliefs.

        Civil liberties such as free speech, freedom of association and assembly, freedom of movement, freedom of religion, and the right to participate in the selection of government leaders.

        Rights of women to equal treatment politically, economically, and socially.

        In almost all of these, the U.S. ranks among the highest in the world. For people who consider abortion a fundamental right, the U.S. will rank lower because the U.S. has limits on abortion that most other countries do not have.

        As for freedom of speech, the US is currently doing as bad as Bahrain!

        The U.S. has among the freest speech environment on the planet, freer than many other developed nations. This is a country where many were arguing that it should be okay for a mosque to be built near ground zero even. You don’t get thrown in prison in the U.S. for what you say like you will in Bahrain.

        “The targeting of journalists covering the Occupy Wall Street movement has caused the United States to drop precipitously in a leading survey of press freedom.

        Reporters Without Borders’ latest Press Freedom Index was released on Wednesday, and the list reflected some of the tumult that took place in the world in 2011, as well as the impact that those events had on journalists across the globe. Reporters became targets over and over again throughout the year, both in the Middle East and on the streets of New York.

        The U.S. tumbled almost as far as Bahrain did in the wake of the repeated crackdowns on journalists covering Occupy movements. Reporters Without Borders was explicit in its summary of its report, saying that “the United States (47th) also owed its fall of 27 places to the many arrests of journalist covering Occupy Wall Street protests.”” Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/25/press-freedom-occupy-wall-street-us-arrests_n_1230825.html

        What that shows is that the Reporters Without Borders movement organization loses a lot of credibility if it is actually going to compare the United States with the likes of a totalitarian state. NO reporter in the U.S., even if arrested (which makes one wonder what they were doing to get arrested as no one got arrested covering the Tea Party protests), is going to be put through what a reporter arrested in a country like Bahrain is going to go through.

        One way in which this is incredibly obvious is the degree to which the media can criticize the government of the United States government without any fear of repercussion. Remember Dick Cheney called the New York Times traitorous over thei revealing the surveillance program? Did the NYT news people get imprisoned? Nope.

        The Democracy Index places the US in the 19th place

        The Democracy Index is an index compiled by the Economist Organization that is not peer-reviewed and no one even knows how they go about arriving at their conclusions. Despite this however, the U.S. still ranks as a full democracy.

        My advice to you, Kyle: stop listening to Fox News and start educating yourself. Because it’s kind of sad to see aperson who lives in such a state of ignorance as you do.

        No ignorance here, just disagreements. And I don’t listen to Fox News.

      • “You have a right to rest as people have weekends. ”

        NOT TRUE!!! I just blogged about it today. Turns out that legally, there are no weekends. If an employer wants to make you work through the weekend, there is nothing to stop it.

        “What that shows is that the Reporters Without Borders movement organization loses a lot of credibility if it is actually going to compare the United States with the likes of a totalitarian state. NO reporter in the U.S., even if arrested (which makes one wonder what they were doing to get arrested as no one got arrested covering the Tea Party protests), is going to be put through what a reporter arrested in a country like Bahrain is going to go through.”

        – What is it exactly that you know about Bahrain? Are you aware that it is one of the richest countries in the world?

        “Remember Dick Cheney called the New York Times traitorous over thei revealing the surveillance program? Did the NYT news people get imprisoned?”

        – The NYTimes is the lackey of the Republicans. It never dared to squeak anything that the government would dislike.

        “The U.S. has among the freest speech environment on the planet, freer than many other developed nations. This is a country where many were arguing that it should be okay for a mosque to be built near ground zero even. ”

        – And that’s evidence of what exactly, other than extreme stupidity and religious fanaticism of jerks who objected to the mosque? You can repeat “we’re free, we are so free” like a mantra, but you have nothing to offer in response to the data I have provided.

        “Regarding Republicans and abortion legislation, Republicans are seeking to protect the sanctity of human life.”

        – What sanctity when human beings will have their genitals penetrated against their will? Or are you suggesting that people who will be raped by the government in this way are not human? Or not alive? How will this rape “protect” anything? Abortion is still legal and will continue to be so irrespective of this legislation.

        “Rights of women to equal treatment politically, economically, and socially.

        In almost all of these, the U.S. ranks among the highest in the world. ”

        – You are not serious, are you? Try looking at the legislation of the Scandinavian countries, for example, and observe what women’s rights look like in actual civilized countries.

        A question for you: what is the length of guaranteed paid maternity leave in the US? And in Canada? Which country has the longer paid maternity leave, Russia or the US? Peru or the US? Belarus or the US?

    • “Today we have the technology to be able to precisely target the military equipment and structures of a dictatorship while leaving the civilian areas untouched.”

      – Are you trying to be funny or something? The civilian casualties in the Iraq war have been humongous and tragic.

      “Either you have a free society, with a liberal democracy for government that respects human rights and freedoms”

      – For the fifth time: most of the people in the world (including many of the people within the US) to not consider the US to be such a country.

      ” Either you have a free society, with a liberal democracy for government that respects human rights and freedoms, or you have a democratically-elected government that does not respect freedoms, or you have a dictator who holds all the power.”

      – So who was “a dictator” in the Soviet Union when it invaded Afghanistan? Your understanding of politics is extremely limited, Kyle. You need to read and learn, not pontificate. There are many political systems in the world that do not fit into your liberal democracy OR dictatorship model.

      • - Are you trying to be funny or something? The civilian casualties in the Iraq war have been humongous and tragic.

        And whose fault is that? It isn’t the U.S.’s fault that Al-Qaeda decided to go to war with it in Iraq.

        “- For the fifth time: most of the people in the world (including many of the people within the US) to not consider the US to be such a country.

        So what? Most of the world is not free, it is under some form of totalitarianism. If you mean the developed world, well they have been coddled and protected by the United States going on for over sixty years now, and I’ve never heard of an imperialist nation that protects everyone else the way the U.S. has.

        They’re also just factually incorrect, as the U.S. is a liberal democracy, with a very free economy, with a very free press and media (far more free than in most of the developed world where they regulate it in the name making it objective and unbiased, which usually results in it being very subjective and biased), and very much respects human rights and freedoms (although some people have a habit of considering things as rights that aren’t really rights).

        - So who was “a dictator” in the Soviet Union when it invaded Afghanistan? Your understanding of politics is extremely limited, Kyle. You need to read and learn, not pontificate. There are many political systems in the world that do not fit into your liberal democracy OR dictatorship model.

        Now you’re just nitpicking. Yes, there’s different types of dictatorships, in some, you don’t have a literal dictator, the Soviet Union being one, but they still had a one-party government that was in charge. There was no democratic system, no elections. It was still a totalitarian dictatorship of which the people had no ability to oppose and no checks and balances in the system.

        All political systems ultimately boil down to either one person or group of people bossing everyone else around and not giving them any say in the matter, or a representative government that the people select to govern them.

      • “Now you’re just nitpicking. Yes, there’s different types of dictatorships, in some, you don’t have a literal dictator, the Soviet Union being one, but they still had a one-party government that was in charge. There was no democratic system, no elections. It was still a totalitarian dictatorship of which the people had no ability to oppose and no checks and balances in the system.”

        – Buddy, I was born in the Soviet Union. Please refrain from trying to educate me about it. This semi-literate collection of idiocies makes you sound very very silly.

        “And whose fault is that? It isn’t the U.S.’s fault that Al-Qaeda decided to go to war with it in Iraq.”

        – Al-Qaeda was at war in IRAQ?? OK, then. I have wasted my time arguing with a delusional person who escaped from a loony bin.

        Bye bye, Kyle. Don’t forget to take your meds.

  20. Buddy, I was born in the Soviet Union. Please refrain from trying to educate me about it. This semi-literate collection of idiocies makes you sound very very silly.

    Being born in the Soviet Union doesn’t mean you know more about it or its history than someone else. I am simply stating a fact, which is that the Soviet Union was a one-party dictatorship with no elections. They used military force repeatedly to put down uprisings. And BTW, resorting to personal insults does not help your argument.

    Al-Qaeda was at war in IRAQ?? OK, then. I have wasted my time arguing with a delusional person who escaped from a loony bin.

    You do realize that Al-Qaeda engaged the United States in Iraq after the invasion? It is Al-Qaeda that turned the whole thing into the long war that it was. It was Al-Qaeda that was so violent and cruel that they turned the Iraqi people against them.

    • “Being born in the Soviet Union doesn’t mean you know more about it or its history than someone else.”

      Not being born there sure isn’t working the fuck out for you either, chump.

      “You do realize that Al-Qaeda engaged the United States in Iraq after the invasion? It is Al-Qaeda that turned the whole thing into the long war that it was. It was Al-Qaeda that was so violent and cruel that they turned the Iraqi people against them.”

      Trooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooll or really fucking dumb.

      Try emptying your mind of all opinion, all desire, all but geometric, Platonic logic if you have any shred of anything like it. Then reread what you wrote there. Then explain what you wrote and yourself.

  21. P. rhoeas :
    nm looks like he’s been banned or given up or something.

    The fact that you choose to insult rather than make an argument makes me reason that you do not have one.

    • Kyle, we are all very compassionate towards you. It is tragic that you have swallowed the patriotic swill and came to believe it. I am very very sorry that this happened to you. There is nothing more I can say to you because making fun of people who suffer from such a severe affliction as patriotism is not something that I, as I Christian, can allow myself to do.

      • bloggerclarissa :
        Kyle, we are all very compassionate towards you.

        HA!

        It is tragic that you have swallowed the patriotic swill and came to believe it. I am very very sorry that this happened to you. There is nothing more I can say to you because making fun of people who suffer from such a severe affliction as patriotism is not something that I, as I Christian, can allow myself to do.

        You do realize it’s essentially an extremely condescending way of insulting a person to accuse them of suffering a mental condition because they disagree with you?

        Also, patriotism isn’t any affliction. Don’t confuse patriotism with nationalism. Patriotism isn’t about thinking one’s country or people is better than another or anything like that, it’s just pride in one’s country and people. I do consider America a very great country, but not for reasons of patriotism. It’s actually the inverse, I am patriotic because I consider the country great.

        You say that I live in a bubble, but it seems to me that you yourself exist within such a bubble that you literally cannot stand or even fathom a dissenting opinion on many of your various beliefs, and thus the disagreeing person must either be a vile person or suffering a mental condition.

        For example, on torture I wrote:

        “. The only torture (if one can call it torture) performed was waterboarding, and only then in extreme circumstances.”

        As I said, it is performed on certain soldiers as part of training, which was why I questioned whether it was torture, and if performed on terrorists, it should only be performed in extreme circumstances. For this, you said:

        - I wonder how fast you’d call it torture if it were done to you. Buddy, what made you a jerk of such enormous proportions, eh? You are a total monster. Just a complete and utter piece of vile, stinky rubbish, that’s what you are.

        All that over questioning whether something is torture that is used in training soldiers and also only used in very limited circumstances on terrorists. You make it sound like I endorsed the wholesale slaughter of people or something.

        You support abortion, so let me ask you a question. Do you support the option to third-trimester abortion? Third-trimester abortion means they are pretty much murdering a child. It’s not any collection of cells at that point like in the first or second trimester, it’s a very developed baby at that point (there’s no hard science behind the law that claims its a “fetus” until birth). They use some rather gruesome methods to “abort” (i.e. kill) the child at that point. Sometimes the abortion attempt fails and the child is born, in which case they will deny medical care and allow it to die.

        Let’s say you support the option for third-trimester abortion for certain circumstances though, like if the woman is going to die if she has the child. If you are okay with third-trimester abortion for that reason, does that automatically make you some horrible vile person? Of course not!

        However, by the sheer fact that you were not for third-trimester abortion anytime a woman wanted it, there are many on the left who would say you are a horrible person who is against women’s rights as well.

        If you are for third-trimester abortion either in very limited circumstances only, or anytime a woman wants it, irregardless of the reason, how do you reconcile either view with being totally against something like waterboarding in only very limited circumstances? If you are totally against third-trimester abortion irregardless of the circumstance (if the woman is going to die, tough potatoes) then I understand better your position on waterboarding.

        My point is do not be so close-minded. You seem to be so close-minded in some of your views, and intolerant of dissenting opinions (like my claiming the U.S. invading Iraq is not comparable to anything the Soviet Union did), that you literally do not realize HOW close-minded you are (or are coming across).

      • Kyle: as I said many times, I believe that people should have a complete, total and inviolable right to their own bodies. People should be able to dispose of their own body parts as they see fit. Your comparison between an abortion (where a person decides what happens inside her own body) and torture (where other people decide what happens to a person’s own body) demonstrates that you suffer from a degree of mental retardation that does not allow you to distinguish between what happens inside people and what is inflicted on people against their will.

        “My point is do not be so close-minded. ”

        – If you dare to offer any other piece of advice to me, I will ban you from this blog. If you don’t see why it is inappropriate for intellectually and morally inferior creatures like you to offer advice to intellectually and morally superior human beings like me, I will have to teach you a lesson.

        ” irregardless of the reason”

        – “Irregardless” is not a word. First, learn to speak, then inflict your string of inanities on people.

        “However, by the sheer fact that you were not for third-trimester abortion anytime a woman wanted it, there are many on the left who would say you are a horrible person who is against women’s rights as well.”

        – People who dare have an opinion on what a person should do with her body parts at any time are subhuman, vile, disgusting, vomit-inducing cockroaches. If you oppose abortion at any stage, that is what you are. You are not even a person. You are a thing. And a pretty useless one at that. Have I explained things clearly to you now?

      • “You support abortion”

        – What a vile, disgusting lie!!! I do not “support abortion.” It is not my place to have an opinion on other people’s abortions. I support a person’s right to do what they wish with their own body. Only a total freakazoid would translate this is “supporting abortion.”

        Jeez, these Fundamentalist freaks can’t process any information. They have to translate it all into their cannibalistic terminology. Jerks.

  22. bloggerclarissa :
    Kyle: as I said many times, I believe that people should have a complete, total and inviolable right to their own bodies. People should be able to dispose of their own body parts as they see fit. Your comparison between an abortion (where a person decides what happens inside her own body) and torture (where other people decide what happens to a person’s own body) demonstrates that you suffer from a degree of mental retardation that does not allow you to distinguish between what happens inside people and what is inflicted on people against their will.

    This only applies if you consider the child inside the womb to not be another person, which is your OPINION, not a fact. Sure, at the moment of conception, it’s just a couple of cells. By the third trimester, it’s clearly a child. It isn’t a “body part.” I agree fully someone has a right to their own body, but when you have the body of someone else inside of you, then it complicates things. You could argue that your right to your own body is greater than the right of the person inside of you, but you still, after a certain point, have another person inside the womb. That you are so against even considering this shows that you adhere to the belief that the life inside is not a human until birth in essentially a religious manner.

    Remember, there is NOTHING scientific behind the claim that a child in the womb is not a human until birth. It’s just an arbitrary decision made for the law. But as we all know, the law can be flawed, as it has been throughout history on many issues, and still is on certain issues.

    BTW, it isn’t “mentally-retarded” to compare killing a human child in a rather gruesome manner inside of the womb with waterboarding a mass-murdering terrorist. You give no acknowledgement or even consideration to the child inside, saying it’s just the “woman’s body” when it clearly is not just her body, and thus are okay with killing the child if the woman wants to. But you have a real problem with waterboarding a terrorist (key word terrorist here) to get information out of them to protect the country.

    - If you dare to offer any other piece of advice to me, I will ban you from this blog. If you don’t see why it is inappropriate for intellectually and morally inferior creatures like you to offer advice to intellectually and morally superior human beings like me, I will have to teach you a lesson.

    Now this is truly comical. You really cannot stand any kind of dissenting opinion. Yes, I am so horrible for considering a child or wanting to protect people. As for ban, if you want to do that, go ahead.

    -“Irregardless” is not a word. First, learn to speak, then inflict your string of inanities on people.

    Coolbeans.

    - People who dare have an opinion on what a person should do with her body parts at any time are subhuman, vile, disgusting, vomit-inducing cockroaches. If you oppose abortion at any stage, that is what you are. You are not even a person. You are a thing. And a pretty useless one at that. Have I explained things clearly to you now?

    Nope, you have shown yourself to be an extremely narrow-minded, and very intolerant, person. I have no opinion on what a person should do with her body parts. But a baby is not a body part. It has a separate blood system, brain, nervous system, beating heart, lungs, arms, legs, etc…at least after a certain point in the pregnancy anyway. At this point, even if one is still for abortion, it is not as simple as just a woman’s body anymore. You’re killing another person now. Just because the person is inside doesn’t mean that they are not another person.

    Thus I find it rather disturbing you’d be okay with killing, just because the woman may want to, a child in the third-trimester, but are totally against waterboarding a terrorist (and only in extreme circumstances at that). What’s rather ironic is you use the word “subhuman” when talking about protecting the most innocent forms of human life.

    • “Thus I find it rather disturbing you’d be okay with killing, just because the woman may want to, a child in the third-trimester, but are totally against waterboarding a terrorist (and only in extreme circumstances at that). What’s rather ironic is you use the word “subhuman” when talking about protecting the most innocent forms of human life.”

      – Buddy, go away and take your fundamentalist rantings with you. I have already said that you are not even a person. You are useless, stinking thing. A cockroach is better than you are. Stick your “innocent forms of human life” back into the stupid excuse for a brain that produced this insane verbal concoction.

      “At this point, even if one is still for abortion, it is not as simple as just a woman’s body anymore. ”

      – I wonder, how much do you have to pay to have at least some totally stupid, ugly broad have sex with you? It is obvious that no woman would agree to touch you with a pole unless she simply had no idea how to get fed otherwise. This is why you hate women, right? Your Mommy hated you and detested the idea of giving birth to you. Now, adult women reject you every day because you are stupid and have no possible value as a lover. This is why your only consolation is to produce these woman-hating rants.

      What a useless freak you are.

      “Yes, I am so horrible for considering a child or wanting to protect people. ”

      – People? What do you know about people? You are not even one of them. Remember, you are subhuman. Oh wait, you can’t remember because you have no brain.

  23. bloggerclarissa :
    – What a vile, disgusting lie!!! I do not “support abortion.” It is not my place to have an opinion on other people’s abortions. I support a person’s right to do what they wish with their own body. Only a total freakazoid would translate this is “supporting abortion.”

    You support the option for a woman to have an abortion, and you support it in the third-trimester. You also show no consideration to the argument that it isn’t just a woman’s body throughout the entire pregnancy.

    Jeez, these Fundamentalist freaks can’t process any information. They have to translate it all into their cannibalistic terminology. Jerks.

    Religion has nothing to do with it. If anything, I’d say it’s the inverse, that claiming it is just a “woman’s body” and not considering that after a certain point there’s another person inside, is itself a religious outlook on the issue. There are extreme views on both sides of the issue.

    • ” I’d say it’s the inverse, that claiming it is just a “woman’s body” and not considering that after a certain point there’s another person inside, is itself a religious outlook on the issue.”

      – This sentence has absolutely no meaning in any language. Kyle must be experiencing a psychotic break induced by the profound anxiety he experiences at the realization that he can have no access to female bodies.

      • bloggerclarissa :
        – This sentence has absolutely no meaning in any language.

        Actually, it’s quite clear. You say it’s just a woman’s body, i.e., that the human life growing inside is not a person. My point is that to hold such a view, that the human life inside is absolutely not a person until birth, is not grounded in science, and is thus essentially a religious view. It’s based solely on belief, nothing more.

      • “Actually, it’s quite clear. You say it’s just a woman’s body, i.e., that the human life growing inside is not a person. My point is that to hold such a view, that the human life inside is absolutely not a person until birth, is not grounded in science, and is thus essentially a religious view. It’s based solely on belief, nothing more.”

        – Who cares? People should decide what happens inside them. Religious, scientific, moral, economic – whatever their reasoning or beliefs. The only thing we actually own in the world is our body. You are trying to argue that having a government invade a person’s body at will and rummage inside of it is something that needs to be promoted. This is a ridiculous opinion that will get all decent people simply spit on you.

        It is not surprising that you support torture. As a believer that human bodies belong to the government, you have no choice but believe that. Once again, your opinions – all of them – betray a profound sexual misery you are experiencing. Just go get laid already and you will stop dreaming of the government penetrating women on your behalf.

  24. bloggerclarissa :
    – Buddy, go away and take your fundamentalist rantings with you. I have already said that you are not even a person. You are useless, stinking thing. A cockroach is better than you are. Stick your “innocent forms of human life” back into the stupid excuse for a brain that produced this insane verbal concoction.

    Nothing fundamentalist at all (in fact, I am not even religious).

    - I wonder, how much do you have to pay to have at least some totally stupid, ugly broad have sex with you? It is obvious that no woman would agree to touch you with a pole unless she simply had no idea how to get fed otherwise. This is why you hate women, right? Your Mommy hated you and detested the idea of giving birth to you. Now, adult women reject you every day because you are stupid and have no possible value as a lover. This is why your only consolation is to produce these woman-hating rants.
    What a useless freak you are.

    Talking about protecting a baby is “hating women?” That’s a spin-job worthy of the Soviet propagandists. I could take you more seriously if you said my point-of-view is just incorrect because of various reasons, but you are totally intolerant of any different POVs it seems.

    • “Talking about protecting a baby is “hating women?” ”

      – What baby, you delusional thing? We are talking about body parts. Can you follow a simple conversation or are the voices in your head too loud for that?

      “I could take you more seriously if you said my point-of-view is just incorrect because of various reasons, but you are totally intolerant of any different POVs it seems.”

      – You don’t have points of view because you have exhibited no evidence of having a functional brain. You can’t even tell the difference between a fetus and a person. You keep referring to a body part as a “baby”. That sounds very delusional. And very scary.

      And yes, I am completely intolerant towards insane ravings of brain-damaged woman-hating freakazoids. Imagine that. I wonder what makes you think that people shoukd be “tolerant” of jerkwads like you? What next? You will start telling me that you deserve respect?

  25. bloggerclarissa :
    – What baby, you delusional thing? We are talking about body parts. Can you follow a simple conversation or are the voices in your head too loud for that?

    You know, the baby that grows inside of the womb of the woman? It isn’t a body part, no matter how much you like to try to spin it that way.

    - You don’t have points of view because you have exhibited no evidence of having a functional brain. You can’t even tell the difference between a fetus and a person. You keep referring to a body part as a “baby”. That sounds very delusional. And very scary.

    What you can’t stand is that I have pointed out that there is no distinct difference between a fetus and a person after a certain point, as a fetus is a person after a certain point in the pregnancy. Again, there is NOTHING scientific in the legal claim that a “fetus” isn’t a person until birth. It’s just an arbitrary definition. That you actually buy into the legal claim so wholeheartedly is itself scary.

    And yes, I am completely intolerant towards insane ravings of brain-damaged woman-hating freakazoids. Imagine that. I wonder what makes you think that people shoukd be “tolerant” of jerkwads like you? What next? You will start telling me that you deserve respect?

    No, you are intolerant of different opinions, to the point that you like to claim the person is engaging in “insane ravings” and is a “woman-hater.”

    • “You know, the baby that grows inside of the womb of the woman? It isn’t a body part,”

      – Buddy, I know it’s hard for you but try to concentrate. Is the fetus part of a woman’s body? If so, wouldn’t you agree that what’s part of your body is your body part?

      “What you can’t stand is that I have pointed out that there is no distinct difference between a fetus and a person after a certain point, ”

      – Yes, there is a dramatic difference. And I am so hopeful for you that I will let you figure out what that difference is. Just strain your non-existent brain. Come on, you can do it.

      “Again, there is NOTHING scientific in the legal claim that a “fetus” isn’t a person until birth.”

      – Leave the complex legal issues aside for the moment. They are too confusing for you. You have yet to figure out that “irregardless” is not a word you are yet to learn how to construct a grammatically correct sentence in the only language you kind of know.

      “No, you are intolerant of different opinions, to the point that you like to claim the person is engaging ”

      – For the fifth time: I don’t think you are a person and I don’t think you can formulate opinions.

  26. bloggerclarissa :

    – For the fifth time: I don’t think you are a person and I don’t think you can formulate opinions.

    This is very interesting. I had very prolonged internet dialogues with all sorts of right wingers, as I was still maturing and finding my intellectual (as it were) feet.

    The conclusion I came to finally is that they are not people.

    • “This is very interesting. I had very prolonged internet dialogues with all sorts of right wingers, as I was still maturing and finding my intellectual (as it were) feet.

      The conclusion I came to finally is that they are not people.”

      – This is the conclusion I have been forced to arrive at. They exhibit no human traits. They don’t think but just reproduce memorized bits of propaganda, like recording devices. They are incapable of empathy. They do not develop intellectually. They lack any sort of capacity to connect to other human beings. They hate all manifestations of human sexuality. No matter what you say to them, they just repeat robotically, “A fe-tus-is-a-per-son, a fe-tus-is-a-per-son.” And that’s it. Scary.

  27. bloggerclarissa :
    – Buddy, I know it’s hard for you but try to concentrate. Is the fetus part of a woman’s body? If so, wouldn’t you agree that what’s part of your body is your body part?

    That’s oversimplifying the issue for a few reasons. When a person just uses the term “body part,” one thinks of a part of the body, not a separate human being growing inside that is attached to the body for the time being. This doesn’t automatically make it not a human being.

    - Yes, there is a dramatic difference. And I am so hopeful for you that I will let you figure out what that difference is. Just strain your non-existent brain. Come on, you can do it.

    The only “difference” according to you is that a “fetus” is attached to the woman’s body while the person is not (of course, by this standard, when the baby is born, it’s still not a person until you cut the umbilical cord; sure, it may be squirming and crying and all that, but it’s still a “body part”).

    - Leave the complex legal issues aside for the moment. They are too confusing for you.

    It’s not a legal issue, it’s an issue of science.

    You have yet to figure out that “irregardless” is not a word you are yet to learn how to construct a grammatically correct sentence in the only language you kind of know.

    Could have fooled me as I haven’t used it since then. BTW, you do realize that you made two grammatical errors in typing this? Well I guess that settles it, you don’t know English then! Seriously, it’s kind of sad that you have to keep harping on about one mis-use of a non-existent word (and something totally irrelevant to the discussion here).

    - For the fifth time: I don’t think you are a person and I don’t think you can formulate opinions.

    All this over differences of opinion.

    • “- Buddy, I know it’s hard for you but try to concentrate. Is the fetus part of a woman’s body? If so, wouldn’t you agree that what’s part of your body is your body part?

      That’s oversimplifying the issue for a few reasons. When a person just uses the term “body part,” one thinks of a part of the body, not a separate human being growing inside that is attached to the body for the time being. This doesn’t automatically make it not a human being.”

      – Answer the question you were asked. Have the guts to do that, at least. I will repeat the question: Is the fetus part of a woman’s body? If so, wouldn’t you agree that what’s part of your body is your body part?

      “The only “difference” according to you is that a “fetus” is attached to the woman’s body while the person is not ”

      – You have not managed to retell my very simple ideas correctly. A fetus is not something that differs from a person because of being attached to a woman’s body. If that were so, then my earring would be a fetus. One has to be completely ignorant of human physiology to discuss fetuses this way. A fetus is located INSIDE of a woman’s body. This makes it part of her body (i.e. her body part.)

      “when the baby is born, it’s still not a person until you cut the umbilical cord; sure, it may be squirming and crying and all that, but it’s still a “body part””

      – No, because when a baby is born, it is not located inside a woman’s body. The umbilical cord has nothing to do with anything here. Inside. Outside. I know that thinking about this difference is painful to you but collect your self and try.

      ” Well I guess that settles it, you don’t know English then! ”

      – English is not my first language. It is not even my second language. And yet, I have mastered it brilliantly and you have not mastered it at all.

      I have a very popular blog and thousands of people have commented over the years. Some of them very geniuses. Some were very stupid. But not a single one has been as intellectually challenged as Kyle. This weird creature can’t even process the difference between “inside of” and “attached to.”

    • scratchy888 :

      bloggerclarissa :
      “They are incapable of empathy. They do not develop intellectually.

      Those were the two points that convinced me finally.

      You seem really naive regarding the right-wing philosophy. Right-wingers very much have empathy. As for intellect, people both on the far-right and the far-left do not develop intellectually (the right adhere too much to religion and the left to faith in government).

      • Hahaha. I seem naive regarding what I’ve spent over ten years understanding. Yes– that is indeed what right wingers would say to me, even the ones I engaged with for ten years, before arriving at my conclusions. They need me to seem naive. It’s important for them that I am as incapable of learning or developing as they are.

        Believe me, I do understand how this works. It’s supposed to perpetuate an endless roundabout, where I’m expected to try to guess what I missed. Perhaps there was some hidden genius for me to discover just around the corner? I’d only have to wait another ten or twenty years for it to appear.

      • scratchy888 :
        Hahaha. I seem naive regarding what I’ve spent over ten years understanding. Yes– that is indeed what right wingers would say to me, even the ones I engaged with for ten years, before arriving at my conclusions. They need me to seem naive. It’s important for them that I am as incapable of learning or developing as they are.

        You apparently don’t understand much of any of it, or you wouldn’t hold the opinions you do.

        Believe me, I do understand how this works. It’s supposed to perpetuate an endless roundabout, where I’m expected to try to guess what I missed. Perhaps there was some hidden genius for me to discover just around the corner? I’d only have to wait another ten or twenty years for it to appear.

        Nope, no roundabout. The right are very capable of empathy They just have a whole lot of limited-government and non-governmental solutions to issues where people need help, some of which make sense, some of which do not.

      • “You apparently don’t understand much of any of it, or you wouldn’t hold the opinions you do.”

        – You are a primitive lifeform, like an amoeba. You cannot begin to understand Jennifer Frances’s opinions. So shut up and listen, you, a victim of a failed abortion.

      • “As for intellect, people both on the far-right and the far-left do not develop intellectually (the right adhere too much to religion and the left to faith in government).”

        – So given that you support governmental intrusion onto people’s bodies (torture, anti-abortion), you must be one huge Leftie?

  28. bloggerclarissa :
    – Answer the question you were asked. Have the guts to do that, at least. I will repeat the question: Is the fetus part of a woman’s body? If so, wouldn’t you agree that what’s part of your body is your body part?

    The issue isn’t as black-and-white as you seek to make it. I would say that what’s part of your body is not necessarilly your body part. A baby that is attached to your body isn’t a body part, it’s a separate human that is attached to your body for the time being. It isn’t comparable to something like an arm or a leg. A tapeworm attached to your insides is not a body part.

    - You have not managed to retell my very simple ideas correctly. A fetus is not something that differs from a person because of being attached to a woman’s body. If that were so, then my earring would be a fetus. One has to be completely ignorant of human physiology to discuss fetuses this way. A fetus is located INSIDE of a woman’s body. This makes it part of her body (i.e. her body part.)

    You do realize that by “attached,” I mean biologically attached? The fetus being inside of the woman’s body doesn’t make it her body part, it makes it something that is growing inside of her. It’s a separate lifeform that is feeding off of her.

    - No, because when a baby is born, it is not located inside a woman’s body. The umbilical cord has nothing to do with anything here. Inside. Outside. I know that thinking about this difference is painful to you but collect your self and try.

    Inside/outside is a really intellectually lazy way of trying to determine whether something is a person or not, and totally not dependent on science at all. It’s essentially just a belief. Again with the tapeworm example, a tapeworm inside or outside the body is a tapeworm. You don’t judge whether the life is a person based on whether it’s inside or outside of the body, you have to look at other factors.

    - English is not my first language. It is not even my second language. And yet, I have mastered it brilliantly and you have not mastered it at all.

    You do realize I was being sarcastic there? In other words, just because you made a few typos, it would still be ridiculous to claim you don’t know English. Similarly, I make one mistake (write a commonly-used, but technically non-existent word), and apparently I don’t know English.

    I have a very popular blog and thousands of people have commented over the years. Some of them very geniuses. Some were very stupid. But not a single one has been as intellectually challenged as Kyle. This weird creature can’t even process the difference between “inside of” and “attached to.”

    “Inside of” has next to nothing to do with whether something is a separate lifeform or not, which is a rather simple concept to grasp. By attached to, I meant biologically attached, which I thought you would have been able to understand (I’m wondering if maybe you don’t grasp English as well as you might think).

    You are one of the more intolerant people I’ve ever encountered regarding differences of opinion.

    • One other point of your logic to consider is you say that if you go by the definition of “attached,” then your earring could be a fetus, well if you go by “inside” in the same manner, a meal you eat that lands in your stomach could then be considered a fetus. If you say the meal was put into your body, well sure, but the earring was attached to your body, it didn’t grow on it.

      • “One other point of your logic to consider is you say that if you go by the definition of “attached,” then your earring could be a fetus, well if you go by “inside” in the same manner, a meal you eat that lands in your stomach could then be considered a fetus.”

        – And does the government have the right to prevent you from putting that meal into your body or evacuating it when and how you see fit? No, it doesn’t. Do you advocate the government’s right to monitor your diet? No? Then how can you agree to the government intruding into people’s uteri?

        Just think about it. Your position makes no sense. Either you support governmental intrusion inside of people’s bodies or you don’t.

      • bloggerclarissa :
        – And does the government have the right to prevent you from putting that meal into your body or evacuating it when and how you see fit? No, it doesn’t. Do you advocate the government’s right to monitor your diet? No? Then how can you agree to the government intruding into people’s uteri?

        The meal isn’t a separate living organism, one that after a certain point is a separate human being.

        Just think about it. Your position makes no sense. Either you support governmental intrusion inside of people’s bodies or you don’t.

        I do not support any governmental intrusion into people’s bodies. I just point out that the sanctity of human life must be taken into account as well.

    • “The issue isn’t as black-and-white as you seek to make it. I would say that what’s part of your body is not necessarilly your body part. ”

      – What are you trying to become a stand-up comedian? Your own sentence makes zero sense. Just think about it. part of the body is not body part. Huh? What does that mean?

      “You are one of the more intolerant people I’ve ever encountered regarding differences of opinion.”

      – It might help your painful intellectual struggles to know that I would find it extremely offensive if somebody called me “tolerant.” So, consequently, calling me intolerant is a huge compliment in my system of values. Maybe this will help you stop repeating it like a crazed parrot.

      And I will now go and keep laughing at part of body is not the same as body part. This is definitely the joke of the year.

      • bloggerclarissa :
        – What are you trying to become a stand-up comedian? Your own sentence makes zero sense. Just think about it. part of the body is not body part. Huh? What does that mean?

        It makes plenty of sense. You have a separate human being growing inside. That is not a “body part.” And at the third trimester, the baby is pretty much fully developed. It just has to do some more growing, gain some more weight, etc…but otherwise, the development phase is pretty much done. Everything is there. Third-trimester babies will suck their thumb, kick, open and close their eyes, can experience pain and are also capable of surviving outside of the womb.

        A baby is actually capable of surviving outside the womb as early as 24 weeks, which is technically still the second trimester, although that is asking for trouble. Third trimester starts at 28 weeks and 92% of babies born at 28 weeks survive, thanks to modern medical care.

        That is not a body part. None of this is whack-job Christian fundmentalism, it’s just reality. According to people such as yourself though, it is okay to kill such a child in the third trimester, but absolutely unacceptable to waterboard a terrorist.

        When confronted with these facts, you resort to the “It’s a body part” dogmatic response. It’s like the idea of the baby being a body part until birth is like a religious belief to you.

        – It might help your painful intellectual struggles to know that I would find it extremely offensive if somebody called me “tolerant.” So, consequently, calling me intolerant is a huge compliment in my system of values. Maybe this will help you stop repeating it like a crazed parrot.

        Intolerant is never a compliment. Being skeptical, or a contrarian, can be.

  29. Kyle :

    scratchy888 :
    Hahaha. I seem naive regarding what I’ve spent over ten years understanding. Yes– that is indeed what right wingers would say to me, even the ones I engaged with for ten years, before arriving at my conclusions. They need me to seem naive. It’s important for them that I am as incapable of learning or developing as they are.

    You apparently don’t understand much of any of it, or you wouldn’t hold the opinions you do.

    Believe me, I do understand how this works. It’s supposed to perpetuate an endless roundabout, where I’m expected to try to guess what I missed. Perhaps there was some hidden genius for me to discover just around the corner? I’d only have to wait another ten or twenty years for it to appear.

    Nope, no roundabout. The right are very capable of empathy They just have a whole lot of limited-government and non-governmental solutions to issues where people need help, some of which make sense, some of which do not.

    Yeah, I admit it. I didn’t get it. If I understood it, I would have embraced it. Not having embraced right wing dogma is a sure sign that I didn’t understand it. Also, the right wing empathy has still to reach me. I know it’s doing its darnedest. It shall surely reach me some day.

    • Yeah, I admit it. I didn’t get it. If I understood it, I would have embraced it. Not having embraced right wing dogma is a sure sign that I didn’t understand it. Also, the right wing empathy has still to reach me. I know it’s doing its darnedest. It shall surely reach me some day.

      Um…no. You do not need to embrace it. That just shows all the more how little you know about it. You say the right lack empathy. I pointed out that this is complete nonsense as the right very much have empathy, they just do not believe in using government to address societal problems (or at least not to the extent the left do, as neoconservatives actually do support a welfare state).

      If you truly understood the right-wing policies and views on such things, you don’t have to agree with them at all, you would just conclude that their empathy-based policy proposals are not workable. There’s a huge difference between caring about a problem but having a pie-in-the-sky way to address it versus not caring about it at all.

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