God bless the morons

The Dilbert blog understands me completely when it comes to this "stimulus package" business:

Our government is preparing to pass something called a stimulus
package. According to the experts, this stimulus package won't directly
stimulate much of anything in the short term, when we need it. But with
any luck it will bamboozle a hundred million morons into thinking their
government did something useful, and that in turn will cause them to
become more confident and spend additional money on cigarettes and
lottery tickets, thus stimulating the economy.

The funny thing
about this scheme is that it might work. The other funny thing is that
no one is trying to hide the fact that the entire plan depends on
bamboozling the aggressively ignorant portion of the population. We
need to get those bozos spending again, and if it requires a fraudulent
stimulus package to get it done, most people seem okay with that.

This
is yet another situation where smart people are ironically incompetent
if left to their own devices. If the world were populated only with the
smart and well-informed, we'd all sit around waiting for someone else
to spend money first, so they can take the highest risk. Eventually
society would crumble and all of us geniuses would be eaten by rats.
But if you throw a bunch of clueless bastards into the mix, suddenly
the economy is supercharged. Money is flying everywhere, confidence
becomes warranted, and the economy flourishes.

Our past economic
booms depended heavily on morons. Those wonderful stimulators of the
economy had to buy stock in perpetually unprofitable tech companies, or
invest in real estate after it was clearly overpriced. Every economic
boom is powered by the clueless. I see no reason why the next one
should be different, except that the government is doing the
bamboozling this time.

I plan to do my patriotic duty by no
longer following the news coverage of the economic stimulus plan. This
will allow me to imagine that all of the pork and special interest
garbage will be removed from the final bill that gets approved. I will
blissfully assume that the economic stimulation will be short term and
effective. Oh, and long term and effective too. And then I, and my
fellow ignorami, will spend, spend, spend our way out of this slump.

You're welcome.

Word. 

Comments

  1. Frenchmanaz says:

    While I won’t say that I am 100% behind this package, the question I have for everyone who seems to think they know it’s useless and won’t work, is what do THEY think will ? Tax cuts ?

    While getting the US out of this mess should be the top priority, so should dragging this country into the 21st century. Anyone who has been to Europe or even some parts of Asia can attest to how backward ass this country is in so many areas of it’s infrastructure. I won’t go down the check list, but this plan has long term implications that are critical.

    Next let’s be clear than we heard none of this neighsayer nonesense while the first shoveling of tax dollars occured and did so with strings. So banks and wall street continue to be the immense thorn in our sides. Instead of liquifying the credit market, they went on holidays and received extra bonuses.

    The factor of national mood cannot be underestimated, given that we rely so heavilly on the financial markets that jump up and down whenever somebody of moderate importance happens to fart out of the mouth. This country no longer really manufactures anything so we have no real gauge. Mood is all we have.

    Ultimately though, if you have a better idea, let’s hear it ! Would I rather see the stimulus plan be simply a big paycheck for each American divided by 800 Billion, shit yeah, but that ain’t going to happen, so what will work ? Tax cuts ? Tried that, didn’t do shit.

  2. hehe, so true.
    i love it.

    love ur blog btw

  3. Anyone who has been to Europe or even some parts of Asia can attest to how backward ass this country is in so many areas of it’s infrastructure.

    Say what?

  4. Frenchy…

    “While I won’t say that I am 100% behind this package, the question I have for everyone who seems to think they know it’s useless and won’t work, is what do THEY think will ? Tax cuts ?”

    Well look who left his girlfriends (probably boyfriend’s) hairy armpits long enough to same something intelligent…

    But yeh…he is right…tax cuts, IF they worked, would work WAY WAY to slow…the package does try to hide a bunch of real BS favoritism spending…but we need the emergency room…not the rehab. unit. The stimulus package is dangerous…but doing nothing would be a disaster.

    What PISSES me off is the fucks that caused this mess are getting out way way to clean…How American is it…well I guess many countries do it…to say “you destroyed the world economy…bad rich people…now we are going to punish you by giving you billions of dollars…bad bad boy…stop being so damn French already”.

  5. SM

    and this is what me and my bitch have for you and your spam filter which is annoying:

    http://www.killsometime.com/Pictures/images/1620.jpg

  6. But yeh…he is right…tax cuts, IF they worked, would work WAY WAY to slow…

    Yep, Howie… this isn’t really a about fixing systemic problems, at this point. It’s about creating jobs, and slowing down the layoffs. Stop the bleeding first, then try to figure out how to keep it from happening again.

    We’ve had two economic bubbles burst on us in the last 10 years. And, in both cases, it was regular folks being stupid that caused them. We need to hold financial institutions for catering to idiots – it’s the only way to prevent it from happening again. We can’t rationally expect people to be more careful with their own money, in the future. All we can do is try to make it illegal (or at least extremely difficult) to take advantage of people who don’t know shit from shinola and thing there’s a way to get free money.

  7. It’s all in the head, you know.

    Call it a placebo but do not tell about it to anyone.

  8. Frenchmanaz says:

    My Buddy Howie, comment ca va ? took me a while to untangle myself THEIR… http://worldfilm.about.com/od/frenchactresses/ig/French-Actresses/… hairy armpits to respond to your comments =). Can you see the clouds part and the angels sing that you and I are even close to the same page on anything ? I will however guess that you have not been to either Europe or Asia on the infrastructure thing. Trust me, I dearly want the US to be the leader in this area. I am proud at both end of my patriotic heart. We have many of the most revolutionary ideas and our businesses do lead but the same cannot be said for our country, in terms of this type of thing.

    As for the stimulus, where our President and his crew have failed is clarifying all of these programs in this package, what some of these less obvious programs could do to bring us into the 21st century and stop the hemoraging. This weeks blitz has helped but…..

    However, on the flip side of the coin the Repugs ( guess which side I am on, yep the hairy armpit liberal side ) have also tried to call out absolutely everything where job creation is not a blaring result of a particular portion of the spending. ie. The Rethugs are trying to fight against turning government buildings green. They also fought against pushing the government fleet of vehicles green ?????? Uh excuse me energy independence, cost savings, global warming, WAR, lives. I could go on.

    The last wave of tax cuts, which while a flash in the pan benefit that even I welcomed lasted all of 10 seconds and we were all still in the crapper. Unless the government doles out, as mentioned, the entire 800 bil, divides it equally amongst all Americans, any payout will serve only to pay one bill, for one month.

    Craig, I agree about the stupidity of people, despite being French ( therefore, to Howie, logically inept ) and receiving numerous opportunities to live beyond my means over the last years, I have been in the same nice but modest house for 10 years, have had the same car for 5 years etc etc. My family lives within it’s means. I am f’ing angry at these idiots you mentioned who thought they could buy the multi million dollar home, yacht and Bentley on their McD’s salary. We are all suffering but without the sleaze bags in the financial industry and regulations to slice their greedy hands off, these offers would never have been made. Case in point, 2 weeks ago my Seven year old son received a credit card offer !!!!!!!! WTF ?????? Time to regulate and as Howie Last name = Can you believe I agree with him again, punish the bankers severely.

    PS, I received an e-mail from Michael Moore this morning ( a broadcast ) asking for help from disgruntled Wall Street people people, signifying that his next movie is going to be a penetrating expose about the snake pit that is Wall Street. I am in Sales and don’t mind mildly lying and ripping off my business customers, but Wall Street takes money right out of Grandma’s pocket and they are then rewarded with Billions of our tax dollars to spend on new planes and vacations. The lack of moral conscience in Wall Street make Satan look like the Salvation Army lady.

  9. Craig:

    “this isn’t really a about fixing systemic problems, at this point. It’s about creating jobs, and slowing down the layoffs”…

    $800 billion to “save or create” 4 million jobs works out to $200,000 per job.

    With the median US personal income at $29,000: $200,000 works out to paying for each job for 7 years.

    Another fine example of government efficiency.

  10. This thing is a joke. There was way too much purchasing on credit, credit not backed up by real assets (that weren’t multiply pledged to other debts). The bills came due and there’s not enough actual assets to cover them. Borrowing more (nonexistent) money only pushes the problem down the road, makes it even worse. Giving everyone monopoly won’t do squat and the Dem leadership knows it. This is about asserting government control and ironically we have Bush to thank for proposing the first bailout. Thanks GW. May you and Obama both rot in H.

  11. I will however guess that you have not been to either Europe or Asia on the infrastructure thing.

    I’ve been to both, and I have no idea what you are talking about. In the UK, the tube broke down twice while I was on it… in a week. Basics, like food, cost close to 3x as much as in the US. I got so tired of looking up and seeing CCTV cameras that I had to make a conscious effort to pretend they weren’t there… but I was getting really paranoid about the curtains, eh? Other than that, I can’t really tell any difference in “infrastructure” between the UK and the US. Oh, wait, yes I can… at the airport, I had to wait in a big cattle pen for an hour and a half, because they didn’t bother to announce what gate my plane would be departing from until 20 minutes before talk off, which is coincidentally when boarding started.

    I haven’t been to Germany since the 1990s, but unless things are a lot better there than they were then, they have nothing to crow about in terms of infrastructure.

    So, really, I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. Are you comparing some particularly run-down parts of the US to some of the nicer European cities, or what?

  12. $800 billion to “save or create” 4 million jobs works out to $200,000 per job.

    dick, 4 million jobs isn’t enough with unemployment rates at ~8% and rising. And creating actual jobs is better than handouts, because it grows the US economy at the same time. Of course, if you think welfare is better than work, that’s fine… but don’t call it efficient :)

  13. Frenchman,

    My family lives within it’s means. I am f’ing angry at these idiots you mentioned who thought they could buy the multi million dollar home, yacht and Bentley on their McD’s salary. We are all suffering but without the sleaze bags in the financial industry and regulations to slice their greedy hands off, these offers would never have been made. Case in point, 2 weeks ago my Seven year old son received a credit card offer !!!!!!!! WTF ?????? Time to regulate and as Howie Last name = Can you believe I agree with him again, punish the bankers severely.

    I agree with you about that. And nobody in my family is in dire straits right now, because we’re a pretty practical bunch. But if the economy continues to worsen, everyone is going to take a hit. But we can’t blame the crash of the tech sector 10 years ago on the financial institutions. Dunno what we can do to keep that from happening again… and that is what caused the real estate boom and bust. Very frustrating.

  14. Call me Atlas. I’ve got 60K that will go straight into this economy in three days, provided there is even a discussion of making the Bush tax cuts permanent plus an additional 3% cut to boost the economy.

    The reason is, I’ve been saving money ever since Obama got elected, because he promised to increase my taxes next year (assuming business doesn’t fall off any worse) by $30,000 in addition to the $180,000 I was already paying, and I figure it will actually be about twice that.

    I went light on the gifts for Christmas, I refrained from letting the contract for renovations on my house, I haven’t bought new clothing, and I’ve cut the visits to restaurants. I know the names of the people and the businesses that will get an immediate boost, not in the nearly a year that the government would take, but next week.

    Small businesses can do that. The Federal Government cannot.

    Contrary to what BO says, neither 30K nor 60K is “chicken feed” to me. I have one kid through college, and two to go. I’ve already figured out that I will have to postpone retirement for FIVE YEARS because of the losses to my savings. Further, I have SIX close relatives facing impoverishment because the Democrats in both Houses of Congress refused to pay attention to George Bush about the problem with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (30% bad loans!!!!!) although he raised the issue initially in April, 2001. If those banks get nationalized, all six of them will be looking to me.

    That so-called “stimulus package” is a phony. It isn’t even going to start to take effect until after the recession is expected to end on its own (mid-late 2009). It is nothing but a massive, massive spending/borrowing bill, and we just doubled the national deficit over the last quarter. As far as I can tell, the Democrats are doing their damnedest to stifle the recovery that would normally come after the recession.

    There is no question that other measures are necessary due to the huge job losses since the election. But, if I get some assurance that I’m not going to get hit with a huge set of new taxes, I can take that money and use it in good conscience. Otherwise, I’m the one that has to lay in resources to protect the family.

  15. Frenchmanaz says:

    Craig, the UK is about the worst example in Europe that you can site.

    The infrastructure to which I am referring where Europe is by far superior to the US ( let me please clarify that my desire for the US to improve is out of a genuine wish for America to be the best it can be, rather than some sense of superiority about Europe. I hold both a US And French Passport and am equally patriotic about my two countries ).

    Swiss and German public transportation systems are penalized if late, even in countries in Europe where transportation is disfunctional ( like France and the UK,) they at least have far reaching networks that almost everyone can use if they wish to. You undoubtedly know about the train Euro pass. You can hit anywhere in Europe by train on good systems.

    The road system in Europe is superior, which includes bridges. The telecommunication systems in larger Europe are also superior, GSM. 3G has is the norm there whereas here it is just coming on line now with the IPHONE. I know I work in the tech sector selling semi’s.

    In terms of harnessing clean energy from wind, solar, wave etc etc, Europe is light years ahead.

    If you look at internet usage in Europe, more are hooked up to high speed than America ( hence Obama’s call for spending on connectivity in rural areas ).

    The Swiss are so far ahead in terms of the green revolution that it’s almost a joke.

    European airports are dramatically superior.

    Do a check online to see about green buildings in Europe.

    I work for a German company and can assure you that Germany is a very different country than it was in the 90′s. Look at how they managed to absorb East Germany. And one need only look at how incredibly efficient they are in everything they do to know that this is a model in Europe.

    I could go on and on.

    I grew up in Singapore ( 25 years ), my family still lives there and I visit. There are of course places in Asia where it’s still backwater but they are catching up fast.

    Is everything I bundled into infrstructure actually related to infrastructure, maybe not, but it’s relative to the mindset. Is Europe perfect, of course not, but for the most part it functions much better and you might be able to pick the tube in London or the Metro in Paris as examples of failures but they do not represent the overall picture of how far ahead Europe is in terms of it’s infrastructure. Can you imagine our government ever tackling the issue of trying to unite under one currency like they did with the Euro ? IF for example all of our states used different currencies.

    I want to be proud of America and Obama, at least to me, has been a quantum leap forward, but we have a long way to go. There remains a lot to be proud of and America is not some desperatly old school former soviet block project, but it’s lagging big time and needs serious work. Check into the statistics on the health of roads and bridges etc etc. Not good, in some areas we are hanging on by a thread. it can’t be that this is such a priority for Obama because he was at a loss for areas to improve and just decided infrastructure sounded good. It’s because it’s actually needed.

    Again, for me this is not about, look how great Europe is and how America is not. Not at all. Nothing will make me happier than the day we are back on top. But before anything can be done, we have to admit there is a problem, no ?

  16. Nothing quite like a good conspiracy theory.

    http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2009/02/tight-before-the-election-of-president-hussein-an-electronic-run-on-the-banks.html

    It’s a more fun explanation than mere opportunism.

  17. Frenchman, you are certainly entitled to your opinions, but I am one American who doesn’t want what the Europeans have… even if it was possible to raise taxes in the US to the extent necessary to pay for all that stuff, which it isn’t :)

  18. Frenchmanaz says:

    Craig, I appreciate your position and feel somewhat how you do, but America seems to have gone to the very opposite end, and while it may seem we are not paying more taxes than the Euro’s, we are not that far off and we pay end up paying just as much in the US, as they do in the US. Figure in your healthcare costs. The healthcare quality in Europe is another debate alltogether but I can tell you that having experienced it personally it is up to snuff. Complaints about Euro style healthcare come largely from large urban areas where there are big problems in the US as well.

    In the end though there is a huge array of tasks and national issues that have to be attended to that need money and someome has to pay for these improvements, progress costs money. If left entirely to the private sector, we would still be driving on dirt roads.

    The difference I see between the US and Europe as it pertains to taxes, is that while nowhere is perfect, Europeans, for the most part see their tax dollars go to things that do make their lives easier and better. You know having been to London and Germany that we are not talking about communism. The Euro’s might be culturally different but nothing more. They don’t goose step down the street talking about shared wealth and property, it’s not the big devil many politicians in this country make it out to be.

    The idea; would be to find a happy medium between our way and theirs. For too long our taxes have been pissed away. Wasted.

    It’s a long debate but I very much appreciate that you have taken such a non attacking tone. The Frenchman tag typically begs attacks from others, somtimes fun, sometimes not. It a pleasure to have a discussion where we are debating the issues on their merits and not on the defence. I do appreciate your point of view but it sounds like you a very reasonable person and therefore likely more open to practical solutions rather than adherance to ideology no matter how counter intuitive it might be.

    This country needs change and sense of common good is a good step. This selfish, greedy mentality works nicely for a while but in the end , well…we see the results =)

  19. a stimulus package is just borrowed money pumped into a system that is encouraging people to borrow money and live a lifestyle they can’t afford. Why are they in a recession? because the banks were giving away too much money that people couldn’t pay back and they finally crashed. it was all fake money to begin with. Why not educating people on how to live within their means rather than giving them more money and hoping it works a second time.

  20. Frenchmanaz says:

    Jack, your over simplifying the problem right now. While the reason for the crash has been, in part the result of many spending beyond their means, the result is a virtual standstill in the credit market. This means no one, including millions of legitimate credit borrowers, including most importantly small and even big business are not getting the funds to bankroll their monthly payroll, pay for raw materials etc etc etc. The primary immediate objective of the first stimulus package was to feed money into the banks so that they started lending again, not to the Joe idiots out there but to small businesses etc. Because these business’s are not getting these money’s they are having to let go of staff.

    So the real pigs in all of this are THE BANKS, because they got the money, but instead of releasing it to legitimate businesses etc, they have been going on vacations and giving out huge bonuses. So while stupid borrowers might have been the problem that set this thing off, it is now the banks that are grinding the economy to a halt.

    My wife and I just yesterday organized a refi with some withdrawal ( just in case something goes wrong…if you read above we live within our means and are still both employed ). We managed because our credit scores are high, but the bank did not make it easy and now one needs a crazy high credit score to get anything from the banks. Point being that unlike just a year ago, fools who cannot afford it will not get any of this money from the banks, suddenly the banks give a shit.

    So you point is moot, at least for the foreseable future. Banks aren’t lending to anyone, let alone stupid people so this money is supposed to be opened up for legitimate business who need it.

    I am as angry as anyone about the stupidity of some but when thinking about these stimuli packages we need to think past. The problem with the first stimulus and possibly even this one is the stipulations forced on to the banks, because the fear on my end is not that suddenly it’s all going to start again, a new bubble but rather that the banks will just pocket the money and run, therefore not pouring back into the legitimate market.

    That is the fear !

  21. Frenchmanaz says:

    Jack, just a quick follow up. I do agree with you though that education is desperately needed on the issue of living within your means , however, greed is global and many economies ( such as China’s ) have been made on the backs of largely America greed for more stuff. So there will always be tremendous resistance for anyone to stiffle consumer spending through the promotion of responsible spending. As someone who has lived modestly despite being offered carrot after carrot tempting me with new cars, houses etc. I agree that much growing up needs to be done, but it won’t change. As soon as things get better everyone will forget the pain of these years and live the excitement of the new bubble. After what are going to be very lean times though it is hard to fault anyone for living it up again. The essence of you message though is spot on.

  22. SWAT! There goes the conspiracy theory.

    http://baltimorechronicle.com/2009/021109Cherbonnier.shtml

    It is dead, solid easy for an intelligent, capable adult to live in the United States on very little income. It helps, though, to have gone through the frame shift induced by real, independent poverty. The big trick, however, is getting your means to outstrip your needs, so that you can provide for a family and their future.

    Food is cheap. Housing is cheap. Once you figure out that you really do not have to buy anything for full price, everything else — TVs, radios, computers, clothing, furniture — all consumer goods, can be had in good condition, for cheap.

    What is very difficult is to provide for a family’s future on one ordinary adult’s salary. The alternative, and it works abundantly well, is to engage in free enterprise. When two adults work for somebody else, and they spend 5 years running a business on the side, they can provide a college education for 3 kids. Add another 10 years for one person in another business after retirement, and you have a decent retirement.

    At least, that was the model before yesterday. Today’s model is to invest in politicians instead of businesses.

  23. “End the Practice of Writing Legislation Behind Closed Doors: As president, Barack Obama will restore the American people’s trust in their government by making government more open and transparent. Obama will work to reform congressional rules to require all legislative sessions, including committee mark-ups and conference committees, to be conducted in public. By making these practices public, the American people will be able to hold their leaders accountable for wasteful spending and lawmakers won’t be able to slip favors for lobbyists into bills at the last minute.”
    (Source: http://change.gov/agenda/ethics_agenda/)

    And then this happens:

    “This morning, a very senior contact within the House GOP informed me that Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Harry Reid (D-NV) met at length last night to put together the House/Senate conference report on the “stimulus” package. Only Democratic conference committee members were informed of the meeting and permitted to attend.” (Source: http://www.redstate.com/jeff_emanuel/2009/02/11/democrat-leaders-hold-midnight-meeting-freeze-gop-out-of-stimulus-negotiations/)

    I knew there was a reason I loved Scott Adams, too. Besides the fact that nerds get me hot and we share a hatred for the use of the word “paradigm” by administrative types.

  24. What these hundreds of billion of dollars ( stimulus money will come from? Logic brings to mind only two options 1 ) To print it by government authority , or 2) As borrowed money (from !!! say.. China ?!), . The first option one might ask what barrier/challenge they have to face to print whatever amount?. Since the seventies, the (US) $ isn’t backed up or based on gold reserve (or any resources). One might suggest that the government income (tax money) should support and balance what the government prints. If that is the case then what stops the government of creating whatever project they might think of , subsidize them with private companies and hire more and more (tax payers)??, nothing really !. Then what challenge the government exactly face?. The second option (i.e. borrow the money from China, is a fake one, since China’s economy runs (or move) by the US economy, so again it seems like borrowing the money from yourself. Just a thought !!!

  25. Egyptian in Germany says:

    Hi Guys,

    Living and working in Germany, I have to agree with what Frenchmanaz has written. The system in Europe is not perfect but it has its merits and the infrastructure there is really high class. The US could borrow an idea or two to jump start its economy.

  26. “Jack, your over simplifying the problem right now. While the reason for the crash has been, in part the result of many spending beyond their means, the result is a virtual standstill in the credit market.” There’s a standstill because the crap has to work it’s way out. We never should have given banks $ in the first place. We should have had the recession in 2000-2001, but our gutless politicians didn’t want anyone to feel pain. This simply will not work. BTW, I’d sure love to see how wonderful Europe would be if the U.S. hadn’t Marshall Planned it and then paid to defend it against the USSR (whilst pumping $ into local economies) all these years. Yeah, if the U.S. announces today that henceforth we’re not defending Europe against any threat (like Europe is defending us?), the SoL would go down. It’s like living with mom & dad — when you don’t have to provide for your own basics, life is groovy.

  27. Frenchy….

    SM seems to have lost all my delicious insults I wrote to you…oh well…he is just jealous of my razor wit and hates Jews….

    But yup…overall I agree with you. I don’t know enough about Europe other than they turn out a lot of really bad cars…especially the French…well…then there is Fiat isn’t there

    It comes down to a balance…you need regulation or people will cheat like crazy…too much regulation and everybody moves their thing to Taiwan.

    You guys say education…I say morality and values…This disaster was driven, from the lowest to the highest not so much by ignorance (that was part)…but by very immoral behavior which could only continue because the value of utter GREED is held so high. And that is not an American phenomena…it has happened everywhere; China, Middle East, Mexico, Russia, Europe, Africa…where has it not been a factor? When in history?

    This was about immoral behavior and educated people chosing to be very very bad…

    Greed.

  28. Frenchy…

    And unless you drive a Puegot or Renult…or however the HELL you spell that fucking language of your’s…don’t start bragging about European production.

  29. Marie Claude says:

    eh oh Howie, do you still have cars ??? cuz lately I heard that they are made in China, and one do know how the Chineses make trustful stuffs

    no US cars

    fiability :

    Nissan, owner : Renault !!!

    small cars :

    Nissan !!!

    berlines :

    BMV, Peugeot 5th !!!

    monospaces compactes :

    Citroen !!!

    monospaces :

    Mercedes, ah uh, ford finally

    so, Howie, you can swallow your morality and falsh values, cuz they make you intellectually LAZY !!! uh, not fiable !!! LMAO

  30. Mercedes suck and are overpriced…Renault is a disaster always has been..Fiat..disaster…Volkswagon…OMG…trash…Volvo..overpriced…history of Peugot cars…horrible, Jaguar…piece of mechanical shit…MG’s, Triumphs…British feces…

    Japs make the best cars by far and have for decades…American cars are almost as bad as the European line of trash…

    Oh course there is the Israeli Susita…now THERE was a car…

    And California wine has been consistently rated better than French wine for some years now…take THAT Frenchy

  31. Frenchmanaz says:

    Marie Claude bienvenus et enchante. Juste pour clarifier, Howie and I have been taquiner / poking each other since we met on this site, so don’t take his attitude to heart, although Howie I point to Marie Claude’s menu as proof of the fact that you know not what you speak as it pertains to French / European cars and in the last 30 years, I have to say that calling anyone out on their automobile industry, given the state and cars that have been pumped out of Detroit ????????

    SFGoth, it sounded like a conversation could be had between you and I until, once again, yet another tired ” if it wasn’t for America ” rears it’s head again. Let’s be clear that all of the military aid being offered by the US is a result of the US’s desire to have a logistical foot hold in Europe. It’s a give and take. I won’t go further into this debate because it’s futile but the US isn’t doing what it does for Europe out of the goodness of it’s heart.

    It’s desperately sad when ideology or patriotism overshadow common sense. We can see it in the US political system and also in America’s refusal to forge ahead and lead. It is not until we all realize that the most positive way to learn is to look at others who might be doing it better even if that education doesn’t happen to come from your neck of the woods. The US does some things better than Europe and vice versa. The dog tired ” well if it wasn’t for us you’d be speaking……” is so weak anymore that I won’t take the bait.

    And let’s be clear here Europe can defend itself, but if the US wants to do so and be rewarded with bases all over Europe so that it can nip the possible Russian problem in the bud and reach the Middle East in half the time, then why should Europe look a gift horse in the mouth eh ? France is nuclear mon ami, what more do we need to defend ourselves and our amis in the European union, so please don’t act as thought without America there would be no Europe.

    Let’s also look at the strength of the Euro compared to the dollar. Let’s see you explain how America is also responsible for that.

    I am not interest in yet another war of words about how great Europe is or America is but rather trying to convince others that in the same way Europe has and can learn from the US, that the US can also learn from Europe.

  32. Frenchy….

    I hope SM lets this one get through…

    Why the HELL do we talk about “Europe” as some kind of united entity anyhow? You guys slaughtered each other for at least a couple of thousand years and have only half-way gotten along for a few decades…To me the concept of “Europe” is really a very stupid one…what the hell makes Europe a unit? Because you guys are trout-belly white honkies? WTF…somebody explain that to me…

    Although the French were very friendly to the Nazis in terms of opening the doors and turning over their Jews…eh Frenchy?

  33. Frenchmanaz: “If left entirely to the private sector, we would still be driving on dirt roads.”

    Soviets left it to Socialists of public sector. Guess what, almost 20 years after SU collapsed they still are driving on dirt roads. To be fair Russia gotten better but only after turning some of it over to the private sector. So is China and so are others.

  34. And let’s be clear here Europe can defend itself…

    Disagree with you (again) there, Frenchman. Britain can pull its weight, and Germany could if it wanted to… but the rest of Europe? Forget about it. And the UK plus (maybe) Germany is not enough military power to defend Europe as a whole, and I don’t think either country would even try.

  35. Marie Claude says:

    Frenchmanaz, I am aware of the “kidding” part of the contention, I’m not new here, though, as much I like to smile on them, I also like to make it on true facts !!!

  36. “And let’s be clear here Europe can defend itself” LMAO. Aside from a few rusty nukes — has either England or France tested them? — BFD. Nukes are radioactive; by definition they’re kind use-them-or-lose-them (well, replace-them-or-shoot-big-lead-blobs) No Western European country has the fortitude to go to serious war even if need be. Look at how cowardly the Brits have been in both Iraq and Afghanistan. With the exception of a few courageous units, they’re utterly docile and frankly, incompetent. I doubt the UK could hold the Falklands today. Does England even have a modern carrier? Whether the U.S. is defending Europe out of altruism is irrelevant. If we hadn’t been there from 1945-1990, you’d have been overrun by the USSR. Hell, you were already overrun once by a country that had less (and smaller) tanks and less infantry than you. Oh, and great job in Vietnam.

  37. Tax cuts are the onl thign that has ever worked. This bill should be called the “Genertional Theft Act” because only about 7% of it is stimulus the rest if pure pork. Just wait until the Bush tax cuts expire in 2010 and watch unemployment rises. Then corporte tax rates rise back to their prior level. While it seems to be fun for the left to demonize corporations but they forget that they are the ones who create jobs. Our rates already make us the #2 most expensive place to do buisness I guess democrats won’t be happy until all of them leave the country.

    You know I called Obama Jimmy Carter 2.0 but I need to corect that. It took Jimmy two years to do what Obama has done in 2 months. By summer I fully expect umemployment to go to somewhere around 15%. I guess the people who voted for him didn’t realize that the change he was talking about was them losing their jobs?

  38. SFGoth @33 ; You are wrong; Nukes are not radioactively decaying if not used. They can be kept for thousand years!!. The problem is they are the most stupid weapons , particularly if your designated enemy is inland bound to be bordered with friends of yours.The explosion and the fallout (days later) doesn’t distinguish between your enemies or your friends. And question,who is(are) going to send soldiers in the defeated land for eve months afterward!!??. Take the examle of threatning to be used by or against Israel is the user going to program the fission product to distinguish Israeli from Palestinians!!??. They are Stuuuupppid weapons, unless you are in the ME and use it against Australi for example.

  39. Anon123 @ 35,

    Actually, nukes are decaying and they need to be replaced after some 30-50 years of shelf life.
    All radioactive materials have limited life span. Some may have split of a second half-life others may have centuries but they constantly decaying none the less.
    BTW, this is the biggest problem Russia currently has with its nukes. Due to lock of resources Russia decommissions more nukes than it can produce.

  40. back to the stimulus package-
    i noticed that the nytimes said that none of the monies given in this next bailout to the banks will be allowed to go to bonuses. Does that mean that bonuses will continue to be given out, however, the govt money will be going elsewhere such as to loans? So if they are still being given bonuses why should govt bail them out?Let them give up their bonuses and get their company working profitably that way

    Also re those bonuses -can there be lawsuits (civil or otherwise)to get those obscen amonts back from those greedy bastards?

  41. Leo @36, I was reluctant to respond to your comment for sounding way off topic, but it seems the stumulus topis got saturated already. Anyway, Leo you sounds like someone who is foreign to physics, If that is the case you are execused. Nukes half lives goes from 24000 yrs(plutonium) to 700 millions years (uranium) , how much you think 100 , or 200 yrs compares to that ?. The trigger in the weapon is a neutron source that can be replaced with not much effort if needed. Don’t blindly beleive what you read in the press. The most important point I would like to make, they are stupid weapons and the military industry likes to keep the public ignorant and spread fears in order to commission more money to them for counter responses . Politicians should educate the masses about that before sending troops to iraq for instance.

  42. Roman Kalik says:

    @38 Anon123:

    Unfortunately, it seems that you are the one who has a limited understanding of physics. Half-life of the particle is not the same as the life-time of the bomb. You also seem quite ignorant of the various developments in nuclear weaponry.

    Firstly, uranium – pure uranium decomposes rapidly when exposed to oxygen. It “rusts”, for lack of a better comparison. It’s the reason for why nuclear warheads are airtight, but minute emissions of oxygen, hydrogen, and water vapor coming from plastics, high explosives, and other materials of organic origin in the warhead contribute to the corrosion and oxidation of the uranium.

    Now we move on to uranium alloys. Are you familiar with crystal structure? It pertains to the atom arrangement of a mineral – something that can be changed depending on the process involved in the creation of the alloy. Uranium’s crystal structure changes over time due to changing environment temperature and pressure. This is a problem, as the crystal structure directly affects the desired state of the alloy – strength, density, and corrosion resistance.

    Where does the heat come from, you would ask? Why, it comes from inside the weapon itself! Radioactive plutonium produces heat.

    So yeah, the weapon shelf life is NOT the same as a particle’s half-life, as would have been obvious even from a cursory investigation of the matter. No one is lying to you – there is no Vast Government/Military Conspiracy meant to keep you stupid and servile. What there is, first and foremost, is the mistaken belief that calling others ignorant means you’re not ignorant yourself.

    As for nuclear weapons being “stupid weapons” – kindly read up on tactical nuclear warheads and, for that matter, maximizing fusion over fission. Or even neutron bombs, where the residual radiation is minimized and instant radiation maximized. While nuclear weapons still essentially remain a standoff device for the saner parties of the world, pretending that nuclear technology is a matter of fallout and radiation alone is, quite frankly, amazingly populist and bends the facts out of shape to suit political trends.

  43. anon123 @ 38,

    Yes you are correct and I am practically ignorant in this matters but it does not change the fact that average nuke’s life is very much limited (still 30-50 years). And since you were making point specifically related to use of nuclear weapons I see no reason for you to get offended by my previous comment. You just lost your perspective (got sidetracked by stimulus package, I suspect), that is all. Stuff happens.

    Roman Kalik @ 39,

    Thank you for your reply.

  44. Roman Kalik says:

    @40, Leo:

    My pleasure.

  45. Sorry SM I have no intention dragging your topic off track but I can’t leave Prof Raman thinks he is winning the argument. Now, prof. Khalik, your long statement that you borrowed from Los Alamos lab site doesn’t explain to the reader the reality that Nuke Weapon functional life (30-50 yrs) is not affected by the radioactive decay of plutonium/Uranium(235), but by the Military industry LTA housing material control . Anyway rusted plutonium/uranium can steel fission, and removing few grams from the surface doesn’t mean the weapon is useless, one day work in the lab will resuccitate it (God forbid). The facts remain Nuclear Weapons are useless achieving any sane strategy. Can Israel risks using them against Syria, Lebanon?? How Iran’s Nuke will avoid Palestinians , Jordanian or Lebanese Hizboallah friends????.
    So called tactical Nukes is a fiction, and neutron bombs will activate materials and , buildings and soil besides killing people. Again sorry SM for the long winded argument.

  46. This is a blog for idiots by idiots. There is no supporting evidence or anything of substance in this post. Just another pathetic case of a blogger stroking his own ego.

    gtfo and read a book.

  47. “This is a blog for idiots by idiots.”

    That explains your presence but what about the rest?

  48. John seems to have made a website for his internet programming homework and to document his strange encounters with netizens… so much more interesting than this blog is ;)

  49. Marie Claude says:

    SFGoth

    “And let’s be clear here Europe can defend itself” LMAO. Aside from a few rusty nukes — has either England or France tested them? —

    http://www.dailymotion.com/search/missiles%252Blandes/video/x7e986_tir-de-missile-m51-13-novembre-2008_tech

    http://www.lefigaro.fr/international/2009/02/13/01003-20090213ARTFIG00084-la-france-se-lance-dans-la-defense-antimissile-.php

    No Western European country has the fortitude to go to serious war even if need be.

    really ??? try to invade us !!!

    We make the wars we choose to, Afghanistan is one, but you didn’t seem to take it seriously

    “Richard Clarke, who served as the national coordinator for counterterrorism in the White House, argues in his new book, “Against All Enemies,” that the Bush administration ignored the threat from Al-Qaida and instead chose to fight “the wrong war” by attacking Iraq. The troops who could have been used in Afghanistan to capture Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaida were instead held back for the planned invasion of Iraq. In contrast to the 150,000 men sent to Iraq, only about 11,500 troops were sent to Afghanistan, a force smaller than the New York City police. The result is that Bin Laden and his followers escaped across the border into Pakistan.”

  50. We make the wars we choose to, Afghanistan is one, but you didn’t seem to take it seriously

    Why did you need us to, if you took it so seriously? Didn’t you just defeat your own argument? You either can’t or won’t fight to win in Afghanistan without US help. Would you in Europe? You may say “yes”, but the real world evidence doesn’t support that, does it?

    The result is that Bin Laden and his followers escaped across the border into Pakistan

    Clark is wrong about that. Bin Ladin and his cohorts were already in Pakistan in January 2002, when the US only had a few thousand troops in Afghanistan, and long before any NATO troops arrived. If you want to go into Pakistan to finish the war, MC, it’s not too late to make that case. And if that isn’t what you want, then what is the point in pretending that things could have been done differently in the past? The mission in Afghanistan become one of nation building, long ago. Why? Because nobody had an appetite to go after AQ in Pakistan, way back then. And that’s probably still true today.

  51. Roman Kalik says:

    @42, Anon123:

    but I can’t leave Prof Raman thinks he is winning the argument.

    *shrug* Spite isn’t a very healthy approach to a debate, regardless of its many traditions of use. And neither am I a professor. My academic degree ends with my Bachelor’s.

    Now, prof. Khalik, your long statement that you borrowed from Los Alamos lab site doesn’t explain to the reader the reality that Nuke Weapon functional life (30-50 yrs) is not affected by the radioactive decay of plutonium/Uranium(235), but by the Military industry LTA housing material control .

    Firstly, the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the United States is hardly the sole authority on nuclear physics, or on degrading materials available to our limited technological advancement.

    And yes, it’s limited. It always will be, one way or another. We don’t live in Utopia. We don’t live forever. We haven’t cured all disease. And neither are our weapon designs perfect. We use what we have, and what we can understand – and that applies to *every single human* endeavor in existence.

    The bomb shelf life is improving all the time, by the way. As newer technologies are research and newer bombs are designed, they last longer. It’s one of those little things that research does.

    I fail to understand your obsession with the decay of a radioactive isotopes. They are not, and never have been, a central issue in the first place.

    Anyway rusted plutonium/uranium can steel fission, and removing few grams from the surface doesn’t mean the weapon is useless, one day work in the lab will resuccitate it (God forbid).

    Interesting… so your solution to handling an unstable nuclear weapon of mass destruction is *refurbishing* it? Good grief. It wasn’t that long ago that such weapons had a constant radiation leak. But I digress.

    So let me get this straight… you honestly believe that a nuclear warhead is like a cell-phone. That it can be quickly and easily taken apart to replace faulty parts with a minimal expense, and with little to no danger to the parties involved. Here’s a hint… a nuclear bomb is not easily disassembled once assembled. It is not Lego. In fact, like *any other explosive device on the planet*, assembly ensures the continued structural stability of the device – it’s central to it.

    Do you honestly want to treat a weapon of mass destruction as if were an old car? And you see no contradiction in this view with a healthy wish to survive in the country that maintains such a stockpile?

    The facts remain Nuclear Weapons are useless achieving any sane strategy. Can Israel risks using them against Syria, Lebanon?? How Iran’s Nuke will avoid Palestinians , Jordanian or Lebanese Hizboallah friends????

    You assume that Iran cares for the continued survival of anything other than Iran proper. You further fail to understand the deterrent value of nuclear weapons in an environment already rife with other weapons of mass destruction – primarily of the chemical nature, not to mentioned a region-wide desire for the total destruction of an entire nation and its populace.

    So called tactical Nukes is a fiction, and neutron bombs will activate materials and , buildings and soil besides killing people.

    So facts of Cold War research are fiction, interesting. I commend you for your self-delusion and commitment to supporting a political and idealist view even when it goes against reality.

    Tactical nuclear weapons, which is to say weapons of a far more limited yield and specialized use, as well as far greater potential for later cleanup of radiation and fallout, are very much a reality – though their development had been criticized heavily due to them making nuclear weapons a more viable weapon rather than merely a strategic “weapon of last resort”.

    Also, neutron bomb radiation has very little residual radiation – 24-48 hours, in fact, before the area would be accessible to unprotected personnel. There is no lasting radiation in buildings or the ground.

  52. Roman Kalik says:

    @47, Craig:

    Why did you need us to, if you took it so seriously? Didn’t you just defeat your own argument? You either can’t or won’t fight to win in Afghanistan without US help. Would you in Europe?

    I was going to mention that as well, Craig. If European forces are so capable, why didn’t they succeed in capturing Bin-Laden or defeating the Taliban? Why would they need US forces for that?

  53. Marie Claude says:

    BTW, I’d sure love to see how wonderful Europe would be if the U.S. hadn’t Marshall Planned it and then paid to defend it against the USSR (whilst pumping $ into local economies) all these years. Yeah, if the U.S. announces today that henceforth we’re not defending Europe against any threat (like Europe is defending us?), the SoL would go down. It’s like living with mom & dad — when you don’t have to provide for your own basics, life is groovy

    OKKAI, so had the Americans pilots been a bit more precise, they wouldn’t had be able to destroy all our bridges, railsways, harbours, our whole and or part of most of our cities, except inner Paris, oh, I forgot, de Gaulle made sure that they couldn’t deliver Paris, cuz Patton wanted to make the revue of “follies” there, I dunno in what condition we would have found the Bergères then !!!

    http://www.ina.fr/archivespourtous/index.php?vue=notice&from=fulltext&full=brest&num_notice=4&total_notices=123

    the bail out, ah yes, the Marshall plan, umm dunno if the soviet architecture would have driven 80 million tourists pro year otherwise !!! the plan was ment to rebuilt the infrastructures that the bombings dammaged !!! and to make sure that the business could restart with the capitalists, umm, coca-cola became a famous drink stuff, I tell ya after a rutabaga diet, it was like a small Jesus with a velvet costum that went through your throat !!! and so many other stuffs, movies, arms, yes, indeed we need arms to make a new war, where about, in Indochina !!!

    so you see then Vodka never became our favorite drink, the fascinating babouchka didn’t came around, though the slavic charm was wellknown !!!

  54. Marie Claude says:

    Craig, Roman

    Because this was a war headed by the Americans and NATO members went there as their foreigh legion

    but Mr Bush didn’t want us in the fighting aeras first, he changed his mind, dunno why !!!

    Pakistan was/is still your sponsored Alliee and didn’t/doesn’t allow external troops for hunting there

  55. MC,

    Because this was a war headed by the Americans and NATO members went there as their foreigh legion

    You said you are capable of fighting alone in the wars you want to fight, and that Afghanistan is one you want to fight. If both those things are true, you don’t need American permission (or help) to get your war on. Do you?

    but Mr Bush didn’t want us in the fighting aeras first, he changed his mind, dunno why !!!

    MC, NATO never signed up to fight. NATO signed up for the rebuilding contracts and the peacekeeping mission. Face-saving claims about NATO forces being forced to stay in the rear areas against their will aren’t going to change that.

    Pakistan was/is still your sponsored Alliee and didn’t/doesn’t allow external troops for hunting there

    If you want to invade Pakistan, I doubt you’ll hear any complaints from Obama. Nor do i think you would have heard any complaints from Bush. But, can you do it? Without calling for Uncle Sam to give you a ride there, and then deliver you hot meals and lots of ammunition, provide medevacs, and eventually come in and help you get the hell out of Dodge? Hell, I’m with you on that MC. I think the US congress will be too, and I know that Obama will be. Especially now. Did you see this story?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/7891410.stm

    Taleban fighters in north-west Pakistan’s restive Swat valley have announced a 10-day ceasefire.

    The move came after local officials signed a deal with a militant leader to enforce Islamic law in the district.

  56. Marie Claude says:

    Craig you don’t read me and I’m not entering in your scenario

  57. If (when) Iran gets nukes it can put on intermediate range ICBMs (basically, the capability to hit Eastern Europe and maybe central, what’s Western Europe going to do? Nothing but bleat, cajole, wring hands, and blame Bush and Jews. It’s funny – in the 1920′s, England and France carved up the Middle East for their own purposes but they walked away from their mess and now criticize the U.S. for trying to fix it. The cultural memories of being important countries must be a huge burden. OTOH, from such histories did wonderful images of decolletage spring.

  58. Marie Claude says:

    gothy, the palestine thing and Balfour thing are a british responsability

    take your history book not the msm blaaaaaaah

  59. Roman Kalik says:

    Marie Claude, you pretend that the “palestine thing” is the sole matter of the Middle-East.

    Shall we perhaps discuss Syria and Lebanon? Particularly the latter? Or the the borders defined between the French and British spheres of influence in the Middle-East following WWI?

  60. Hell has truly frozen over! The devil is passing out snow cones down there

    http://www.therightperspective.org/?p=1472

    Do you think anyone will listen?

  61. Marie Claude says:

    OK Roman, I should have precised that the territories that are actually in conflict were ruled under the British.

    For responding to the above post :

    in the 1920’s, England and France carved up the Middle East for their own purposes but they walked away from their mess and now criticize the U.S. for trying to fix it. The cultural memories of being important countries must be a huge burden. OTOH, from such histories did wonderful images of decolletage spring.

    the Sykes-Picot agreement is at the origin of the borders cutting of what was an ottoman possession ; the French were alloted “the Great Syria” according to the ties that she traditionally had there as the “elder daughter” of the roman church, (since 17th century she had the duty to defend and represent the christians interest with Istanbul) ; the British chose to hold what was the big Palestine (so named by them, and normally should have been administrate under an international mendate), Jordania, the arabic peninsule and Mesopotamia. As enlightened businessmen, they were determined by the fact that they previously discovered some oil in these aeras during the Lawrence campain.

    After many divergeances and traps from the perfid Albion, about 1922 the decisions were finalised. France created what is Nowadays Lebanon, thus gave more autonomy to the Maronites that alredy were the inhabitants there. Britain was reserving a part of the so called Palestine for creating a state to the Jews.

    Exploitant le nationalisme arabe pour battre en brèche les ambitions françaises, l’Angleterre va également jouer la carte sioniste en Palestine, territoire dont elle entend faire une « Belgique asiatique » utile à la protection du canal de Suez. Les Français ne sont pas en reste et, dès juin 1917, Jules Cambon, secrétaire général du Quai d’Orsay, prend position en faveur d’une présence juive en Palestine, cinq mois avant que l’Angleterre ne s’engage à son tour sur ce point avec la déclaration Balfour du 2 novembre suivant. À cette époque, F.-G. Picot espère obtenir la mise en place dans cette région d’un condominium franco-anglais, mais la part prépondérante prise par les Britanniques à l’effort de guerre en Orient limite les ambitions de Paris. Les forces françaises n’interviennent en effet que marginalement dans la « révolte arabe » conduite par Lawrence et l’émir Fayçal et dans l’offensive lancée depuis l’Égypte par l’armée du général Allenby

    http://www.clio.fr/BIBLIOTHEQUE/le_proche-orient_sous_mandats_francais_et_britannique.asp

    One can’t say that the conflict in these aeras are related to the french mendate !

    The nowadays conflict,Lebanon/Syria/Shia/Iran/Israel can’t be put on the French too, I remember that Carter and his blessed friend Brezinzki removed the Shah in Iran to set this evil Theocraty in place of, so still an anglo saxon affair !!!

  62. Roman Kalik says:

    @58, Marie Claude:

    OK Roman, I should have precised that the territories that are actually in conflict were ruled under the British.

    Utter bollocks, I’m afraid. France left Syria in the hands of militant nationalists who set up a tyrannical regime with goals for Greater Syria – which, by the way, included Jordan, Lebanon, and Israel as well. This increased regional tensions, ethnic and religious suppression, and outright armed conflicts – specifically, on the Syria/Israel and Syria/Lebanon lines.

    As for Lebanon, France left it in the hands of the Christian Maronites. Specifically, France formally helped create a country where Christian Maronites were the superior citizens – they legally had the most representation in Parliament and in various government positions, regardless of their actual number, and the other major population groups in Lebanon – Druze, Sunni Muslims, Shi’a Muslims, even other Christians, were marginalized into second-class citizenship by other aspects of Lebanese law.

    France set the stage for two Lebanese civil wars, did nothing to attempt and resolve the situation beyond well-wishes (the United States was actually the one that helped resolve the first sparks of a Lebanese civil war in 1958), and disaster ensued.

    You think the current situation in Lebanon is merely a matter of Shi’a extremists funded by Iran? Lebanon had been a hotbed for proxy conflicts since its founding, thanks to the prevalent sectarianism and mutually assured massacres. Hezbollah is just a symptom of the problem, not the problem in itself.

  63. Marie Claude says:

    Roman, who wanted to expel the French from Lebanon ? already before WW2 ?
    and with a heavy pressure during and after ? UK-US !!!

    OK, the origins were written as still a colonial conquest, or what the yesterday american administration would call a christian and a democraty crusade, which was also the case :

    The outright dismemberment of the Ottoman Empire was not on the agenda before 1914, but major European powers did not monitor less closely the health of the “sick man” and hear — as they did in China – to carve out zones of economic influence likely to prepare, in due course, a more direct political presence. Tsarist Russia to seize the dream straits, the Reich Wilhelminian expanding its influence through the “Young Turks” trained in military academies and in favor of the railroad construction in Baghdad. England monitors primarily the Persian Gulf, and the protectorate imposed on small emirate of Kuwait in 1899 aims to ensure the safety of the route to India if the Germans to push the route of Basra Bagdadbahn. France has significant economic interests in Syria – confirmed in April 1914 by a Franco-Turkish agreement to granting new railway and port concessions – and also claims to rely on this region of “historical rights” dating back to the Crusades, but also the capitulations in 1740 concluded with the sultan and making the “eldest daughter of the Church” the natural protector of the Holy Places and Catholic communities … It is in this context that decisive written a page of contemporary history, and historian Philippe Conrad reminds us today.
    ie link above

    There have always been inter-tribes conflicts, even durring the ottoman empire, though none care in the western world, except that we still look at the christians, regularely a french expedition and or a diplomatic negociation were launched there. How can you explain that the christians survived in a muslim world ? cuz they were supported !!! It was so that they got a certain autonomy on Lebanon mont during Napoleon III th regime, umm, France was helping Turkey to preserve her territories against Russia, Crimea war anyone ? The borders were moving along the tribes conflicts and were not defined on a map !

    Equal status accorded to different religions in 1856 by the Ottoman ruler seems to have rendered anachronistic carefree defense of religious minorities, but in 1860, Napoleon III sent a military corps to Lebanon to protect the Maronite Christian minority, dangerously threatened by the Druze. ie link above

    I am not endorsing your argument saying that we set the seeds for the actual conflict there, cuz they existed before ! Also who “betrayed the hopes of the arab unification plan of Fayçal ? that was though the purpose of Lawrence adventure !

    But of course France wanted her part of the ottoman empire decomposition too

    I recommand you to translate the historical article in the above link

  64. MC @58;
    Religion was a superficial umbrella covering separation of Lebanon from the Syria and the Maronite in Lebanon from the rest. Reality is they wanted to create a place where loose money (dirty and otherwise) for financing all political projects in the region (mostly dirty), are kept in “free banking- ambiance”, similar example is the Cayman Island (separated from Jamaica in 1962). When the poor population density grew in Lebanon, France backed off, leave it to political drama in the region to guide its future, and the US finds and alternative place comes to the map (e.g. UAE). Do you see any deep ME politics conflicts/ discussion in that area? Guarding the wee-being of money is far more important than people. But you know what! I am a conspiracy minded idiot, I guess !!!

  65. Roman Kalik says:

    Roman, who wanted to expel the French from Lebanon ? already before WW2 ?
    and with a heavy pressure during and after ? UK-US !!!

    And who wanted to expel the UK from the rest of the Middle-East, before WWII? France, and the rest of Europe. The only exception was a tiny part of Palestine, which the UK was meant to administer until a national home for the Jewish people was set up. In the rest it was meant to help form a local government and leave ASAP.

    OK, the origins were written as still a colonial conquest, or what the yesterday american administration would call a christian and a democraty crusade, which was also the case

    Your point being… I am familiar with the reasoning behind France’s policies in Lebanon and the Middle-East. I am simply stating that they were selfish, blind to the general realities in the field, and left the region in a bad situation.

    You know… precisely what you accuse the UK of doing. France is no angel – it was just as selfish and interested in its own affairs and advancement as everyone else.

    I am not endorsing your argument saying that we set the seeds for the actual conflict there, cuz they existed before !

    Of course they did. France simply did nothing to resolve the situation, ignored this reality, and proceeded to step mightily on the toes of those it didn’t like as much as it liked the Maronites of Lebanon.

    You know, acting like every other colonial power…

    Also who “betrayed the hopes of the arab unification plan of Fayçal ? that was though the purpose of Lawrence adventure !

    Lawrence was a dreamer. The UK opted for supporting the old existing power bases in various kingdoms (choosing, of course, those power bases that were favorable to the UK) rather than the vague tribal confederacy Lawrence would have liked.

    And what did France do? The same, only worse. Of all the local regional powers the colonial empires supported, only the royal house of Jordan was a good choice. The rest merely made the situation worse.

    But of course France wanted her part of the ottoman empire decomposition too

    Of course it did. It took you long enough to realize that.

  66. Marie Claude says:

    dear Roman, then why discussing ? you don’t want to read another story than the one that you profess, though facts are there, and they are written in yhe long history book !!!

    _________________________

    Domo, please provide me sources

  67. My point being that the major intermeddlers 90 years ago were Britain and France. Today, the only country really trying to drag the Middle East kicking, screaming, and throwing tantrums like brats into the 20th century (forget the 21st) is the U.S. You can criticize the motives for Iraq all you want and whether it holds is anyone’s guess, but if the Middle East doesn’t grow up, I think we’re all in for a pretty ugly time.

  68. How can you explain that the christians survived in a muslim world ? cuz they were supported !!!

    And how did they survive all those years, before France came to rescue them? :o

  69. Roman Kalik says:

    @63, Marie Claude:

    Read what is written in your own linked page. This is some of the key content, translated:

    “Applying the old principle that it must “divide and conquer”, Gouraud decide on 1 September 1920, based on the Maronite Christian community, creating a “Greater Lebanon”: besides the traditional Christian country, it includes any the region of Beirut, the Bekaa, Tripoli, Sidon and Tyr, but its territorial guarantees a slight majority in the Maronite population – obviously contested decision by Sunni Muslims for their part attached to the idea of a “Greater Syria “including of course the Lebanese Christian minority.”

    And thus France essentially created a fractured and politically unstable country called Lebanon, giving the Maronites supreme power over other groups.

    “Against Arab nationalists – mostly from Sunni Islam – the French, who separated Lebanon from Syria, are also trying to divide it in between Damascus and Aleppo, promoting minority Alawite and Druze (but Jebel Druze experience a major revolt from 1925 to 1927), and giving special status to sanjak Alexandrette – finally abandoned to Turkey in June 1939, under an agreement that could be considered as a Munich East.”

    Further instability due to playing with the regional and ethnic issues.

    Over half a century after the French and British mandates in the Arab Middle East, it is clear they have not promoted a peaceful and positive development of the territories, in this highly sensitive region that they have instead contributed to the “Balkanization”.

    You have to hand it to Philippe Conrad – he’s honest about the history of his country, and doesn’t merely deposit the blame for current regional instability in the Middle-East in the hands of the “Anglo-Saxons”.

  70. Marie Claude says:

    yeah, also :

    The capture of Jerusalem in December 1917 and that of Damascus in October 1918 decided the victory of the Entente in the Middle East evacuated by Turkish forces. Appointed High Commissioner in the East, F.-G. Picot is actually powerless in the face of the facility because of British military protectorate over the region, and it was not until 30 September 1918 to reach an agreement with the English about the Syrian occupied. On 30 October, is without reference to their allies that the British signed with the Turkish enemy armistice Moudros. The French have arrived late, October 7, a small expeditionary force in Beirut, but they do not weigh in the balance of power, and Britain can afford to demand a revision of the Sykes-Picot agreement of 1916. From 2 to 4 December 1918, Clémenceau negotiating in London with Lloyd George. It abandons any condominium project on Palestine and renounces the vilayet Mosul, rich in oil, that the English want to link to Mesopotamia to remain under their control. In return, France is given control of Syria and of Cilicia and can expect the support of England on the Rhine

    right too !!!

  71. Marie Claude says:

    Craig
    And how did they survive all those years, before France came to rescue them?

    thanks to your friends, um not quite they were murdered

  72. Roman Kalik says:

    @67, Marie Claude

    right too !!!

    So the English screwed the French politically. *shrug*

    All part of the political game of that time and era.

  73. Craig: And how did they survive all those years, before France came to rescue them?

    MC: thanks to your friends, um not quite they were murdered

    Sorry. Makes no sense. There wouldn’t have been any Christians in the middle east for the noble French to rescue, if they hadn’t been capable of surviving there during all the preceding years. In point of fact, there are far fewer Christians in Lebanon and Syria now than at any previous point of time in the last 1800 years.

  74. Marie Claude says:

    I know that your greatness :lol: can’t imagine such fact, yeah I’m goin to laucnch a new religion ” and Amerca creates the world in 1945″, the evangelicals think it was 6000 years ago and that it comes to end, I’m no particular religious but wouldn’t like to advocate that there isn’t any God, but that he is above human definition

    of course, you’re right, and the history too, so we have a proverb that says “aides-toi, le ciel t’aidera”, means, you gotta stand for yourself and help will follow

    the truth is that the christians were really morally suported there, especially by the French, then explain why one of them had to hide they came to France,

  75. Marie-Claude, this is what I really hate about you. You said something dumb, and when I pointed it out instead of revising your opinion you said even more dumb stuff to try to bolster it. Now, you go one step further and result to insults.

    No matter how hard you work at it, Marie-Claude, you can’t change the facts. Christians were doing better in the middle-east before France and the UK showed up on the scene.

  76. Roman Kalik says:

    @71, Marie Claude:

    the truth is that the christians were really morally suported there, especially by the French, then explain why one of them had to hide they came to France,

    You’re talking about General Michel Aoun, I presume?

  77. Khomeini went to France when he had to hide as well! Tell us about all the things you did to help Muslims in Iran, MC :D

    Didn’t Ho Chi Minh go to France to hide also, Marie-Claude? That really worked out well for you, didn’t it? I suppose the French were really interested in helping communist revolutionaries in Indochina right?

    I’ve never seen somebody work so hard at justifying the deliberate balkanization of a region as being the morally right thing to do.

  78. Marie Claude says:

    Roman yes, but not alone a francophone tradition existed since longer ago

    However, the capitulations signed between Francis I and his successors and the Sublime Porte made the king of France the official protector of Christians in East and allow religious missions to develop. Congregations (Jesuits, Capuchins, Lazaristes the Holy Family, the Christian Brothers, the Marist, the Daughters of Charity) based schools that will allow the introduction of French in Lebanon during the Ottoman period

  79. Marie Claude says:

    nah Craig !!!

    Khomeini spent more than 14 years in exile, mostly in the holy Shia city of Najaf, Iraq. Initially he was sent to Turkey on 4 November 1964 where he stayed in the city of Bursa for less than a year. He was hosted by a colonel in Turkish Military Intelligence named Ali Cetiner in his own residence, who couldn’t find another accommodation alternative for his stay at the time.[48] Later in October 1965 he was allowed to move to Najaf, Iraq, where he stayed until being forced to leave in 1978, after then-Vice President Saddam Hussein forced him out (the two countries would fight a bitter eight year war 1980-1988 only a year after the two reached power in 1979) after which he went to Neauphle-le-Château in France on a tourist visa, apparently not seeking political asylum, where he stayed for four months. According to Alexandre de Marenches, chief of External Documentation and Counter-Espionage Service (now known as the DGSE), France would have suggested to the shah to “organize a fatal accident for Khomeini”; the shah declined the assassination offer, as that would have made Khomeini a martyr.

    ho chi minh ? yeah an intelligent student who learn very well in our universities, where he happened to know about communist ideology, though the komintern and Mao initiated him to the communist grades strategies

    Too bad for you we couldn’t kept him as a coolie, but you had the chance to visit asian countries because of him LMAO

  80. Too bad for you we couldn’t kept him as a coolie, but you had the chance to visit asian countries because of him LMAO

    We’ve spent a great deal of time in Asian countries, Marie-Claude. A lot more than you have, and going back a lot further than Vietnam :)

  81. Craig et al.: Do you honestly think that this jingoistic pissing contest of yours makes America look *good*?

    Seriously?

  82. James, is it my job to make America look good? lol. If I’m supposed to be engaged in public diplomacy, I want to get paid for it. Otherwise, STFU. I did my time, trying to get along with idiots on blogs. No more. I will never again try to cajole people into telling the truth, into not being bigots, into not being blind nationalists, into not being propagandists, etc. Not my job. Not my inclination.

    I assume it isn’t your, either, since my first reaction after reading your comment was to find a way to track you down and slap you in the back of the head.

  83. thank you very much

  84. Marie Claude says:

    who is the biggest biggot ????

  85. MC, in a sense, America did form the world anew in 1945. At least English, and not German, is the dominant language these days. Sprechen sie Deutsch? Verstehen Sie mich? Was glauben Sie davon? Nihonjin wa, atomic bombu ni shitsurei shimashita kedo….

  86. Marie Claude says:

    Ach du lieber Scheiss, du bist Goth !!!

    Niemals Deuschland uber alles sei könnte !!!

    Frankreich hat bessere Grenzen

  87. Craig:

    No more. I will never again try to cajole people into telling the truth, into not being bigots, into not being blind nationalists, into not being propagandists, etc. Not my job. Not my inclination.

    No, point is: You’re a bigoted nationalist propagandist. And it’s not doing justice to our country.

  88. James, to Craig´s credit, he’s made this clear numerous times; I’ve had several quarrels with him because, despite agreeing with him on a number of issues, I find him extremely narrow-minded in his worldly outlook .

    In this, he’s a typical american in the negative sense.

    Luckily, there are still plenty of you guys who, despite your position, can embrace a broader perspective, and this is why there is still plenty of reason to respect your nation and what it has accomplished in it’s short lifespan…!