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Obama or Clinton (Very curious what you think either one's chance might be at becoming President?)

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JenniferMaxwell
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75 posted 07-24-2008 10:01 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

My opinion of course, but I honestly believe that if Obama, Gore or Kerry had been President and received that Aug. 6th Daily Brief entitled ďBin Ladin Determined To Strike In USĒ, that included ďindications of hijacking preparations and plans for domestic attacks using explosivesĒ they just might have done something other than cut brush and ignore it.


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76 posted 07-24-2008 10:34 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

They needed a brief to know that? How about the first WTC bombing attempt? Don;t you think maybe that could have given the same thoughts? Oh, Bush wasn't president then, was he? How about when the fellows were going through flight school, telling the instructors they didn't need to learn how to land? Oh,he wasn't president then, either, was he?

Yes, I have little doubt that a brief in Gore or Kerry's hand stating that Bin Laden wanted to attack the USA would have spurred them into action and saved the country from the 9-11 tragedy....or at least would have caused them to say, "No kidding!"

cutting brush....very clever.
JenniferMaxwell
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77 posted 07-24-2008 11:26 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell


Bush spent approximately 40% of his first 8 months in office, the eight months directly before 9/11 on vacation - 54 days at the ranch, 38 days at Camp David, and four days at the Bush compound in Kennebunkport.

During the summer of 2001 Clarke and Tenet had both been waving reds flags about a threat spike and the possibility of an imminent attack. So what does Bush do to protect the American people from the possibilty of an imminent terrorist attack? He goes to the ranch for a month's vacation, cuts brush, plays golf and never even convenes a cabinet-level meeting to discuss these imminent threats until after his vacation, one week before the 9/11 attack. Or, as Kucinich put it in Article XXXIII, Bush

REPEATEDLY IGNORED AND FAILED TO RESPOND TO HIGH LEVEL INTELLIGENCE WARNINGS OF PLANNED TERRORIST ATTACKS IN THE US, PRIOR TO 911.

The Lounge is all yours, Balladeer, Iím off to work. Have a lovely day!



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78 posted 07-24-2008 11:35 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

You would knock a man for playing golf??? You are much more unreasonable than I imagined!!

I'll assume you're not working at the RNC....have a good day.
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79 posted 07-24-2008 02:47 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


quote:
Hillary said, while running, that this was not the time for an on-the-job-training president, referring to Obama. She was right.


She was so far out Mike she almost missed wrong altogether.



Every single President thereís ever been, or ever will be, has by definition got to start out as an on-the-job training President - Prior experience at being President in the case of a new president is an impossibility.

The only way her statement would make sense is if she was suggesting giving the incumbent President or a former President another crack at the job.

quote:
I happen to like the fact there has not been another 9-11


So do I Mike, I also dislike the fact that the price of oil has gone through the roof. If Bush wants the credit for one he has to accept the responsibility for the other because both happened while he was in office.

quote:
They needed a brief to know that? How about the first WTC bombing attempt? Don;t you think maybe that could have given the same thoughts? Oh, Bush wasn't president then, was he? How about when the fellows were going through flight school, telling the instructors they didn't need to learn how to land? Oh,he wasn't president then, either, was he?


While itís true that Presidents prior to Bush dropped the ball that doesnít excuse Bush from not picking it up.

Iíve a little story that highlights my point:

At 09:00 am on my first day in a new job the IT Director asked me for a backup tape of an SQL database. I checked and there wasnít one. When I told the IT Director he pointed out that backups were my responsibility and not maintaining a robust backup policy was sufficient cause for dismissal. He said that heíd let me off on account of it being my first day.

At 09:00 on my second day in a new job the IT Director asked me for a backup tape of the same SQL database.  I gave it to him which is why I still have my job.

Bushís responsibility wasnít ensuring that he had  a backup tape, his responsibility - you could say his prime responsibility - was to protect the United States and itís citizens. If 9-11 happened on his second day or even the second week in office Iíd be willing to cut him a little slack anytime after that and the buck stops with him.
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80 posted 07-24-2008 02:49 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Dear Balladeer,

          In response to the sneer at Post hoc ergo propter hoc logical fallacy, I notice that you carefully switched statistically confirmable examples, such as engine wear, for logically unconfirmable one, such as your comments about cause and effect.  You blithely side-step the need to actually establish causality, and hide your major misstatement with that slight of hand.  Not so fast, Red Baron!  You've got about six aces up that sleeve, and all of them are spades.

     There is no causal connection we can make between Bush and lack of U.S. terrorist action over the past seven years.  If it helps you at all, there was probably no causal connection between the first World Trade Center bombing
shortly after Clinton took office, his actions, and the absence of foreign terrorist attacks on U.S. soil during his tenure in office either.  You can't establish causality in either case.

     Nor am I sure how it helps to discuss President Clinton.  It allows you to express venom at Democrats, and I suppose that's alright; I do it myself sometimes, most especially about how the Democrats have not made an issue out of each time the Republicans have filibustered or threatened to filibuster a Democratic initiative that's fairly clearly a popularly supported bill.  I think that's spineless, and it doesn't show how obstructive the Republicans are actually being.

     You can say that the Democrats, when they turned over power to the Republicans in 2001, went to very great lengths to make it known to the Republican incoming officeholders that they thought that Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda should be at the very top of their list of concerns.  And you can say that because we have it from multiple sources, including books praised by President Bush himself (the first of the trilogy of Bob Woodward books dealt with this aspect of the transfer of power and the lead-up to the war quite extensively, and was based on interviews with administration officials, including President Bush).  We have the same material dealt with from  another direction by Thomas T. Ricks in his book, "Fiasco.   Should you be interested in following up on documentation, please ask, and I'll dig up some other source material as well.

     The Republicans, whatever their motivation might have been, did not follow up on this information.  Nor did they follow up on information that was being generated and passed on to the president, and, according to some sources, to his then National Security Advisor, Dr. Rice, that named Osama Bin Laden, said he was planning an immanent attack on U.S. stateside targets, and said the threats were serious and creditable.

     Why is this relevant now, and not the record of President Clinton?

     President Clinton is, I guess, as relevant as you want him to be.  In practical terms, however, the Republican candidate for the Presidency at this point has voted with the president's policies a lot over the past year.  Eric Alterman says 95%.  I know that he's changed policies that I found drew me to him, such as his original loathing for torture and human rights abuses.  Apparently his stance on this has changed so much over the past year that he's voted against his own anti-torture bill, and with those of his own party who seem to think that torture is fine.
We are voting on Senator McCain, so I know we need to talk about him.  If only for his stance on torture.  But wait, there's more!  For no extra charge the Republicans will also throw in a Candidate who's says he's willing to stay in a shooting war in Iraq for a hundred years and who thinks it's funny to sing songs about bombing Iran.

     The other candidate is Senator Obama.  Now Senator McCain is grossly sarcastic with Senator Obama about not being in favor of the surge, and being "wrong" about that, yet somehow forgets to give Senator Obama credit for not wanting us to get into that war in the first place, 5000 American bodies ago, and heaven knows how many Iraqi bodies to boot.Senator Obama has expressed concern about the economy.  I'd like to mosey over to his web site and see what his plans are on that matter, wouldn't you?

     But I suspect that rather than doing that, for some odd reason, Balladeer would rather have us talking about Bill Clinton, as though Bill Clinton were running.  Perhaps, if Balladeer can run Bill Clinton down enough, people will become both blind and deaf, and mistake him for Barack Obama.  Alas, while some of us think Bill Clinton has his flaws, we're still sort of fond of him.  He wasn't much for provoking useless wars.  He maintained decent relations with foreign powers and even managed to balance the budget a couple of years in a row.  The better the country got, the more the Republicans went after his personal life.
Now that we've had seven years of Republican rule, I can see the way they want the country to look and feel instead, and I don't particularly like all these great things Republican government has given us.  I particularly don't like the way they keep trying to blame the other guy for what they've done with deregulation of banking rules and communications rules.  I think many of them thank the Lord for Bill Clinton every night of the week, because he gives them a scapegoat.  It used to be FDR for 50 years.  I think Bill Clinton should feel complimented for the company he been placed in.  

     Once again, somebody we should be talking about instead of what the Republicans are doing to the country today.  Hooray!

Welcome, Balladeer!
By best to you, BobK.
  
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81 posted 07-24-2008 11:03 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I see two men that have presumably been selected by intelligent people as the best candidates to hold office, neither of whom have any experience of being President, which is the only experience that counts when push comes to shove.

I see. So, if I am looking for a man to fill the post of CEO of my company, the candidate who has many years of experience in my particular field and has years of experience in leading others would actually be no different than the assistant manager at Burger King also applying, since neither has experience being the CEO of my company, which is the only experience that counts, according to your statement.

I also dislike the fact that the price of oil has gone through the roof. If Bush wants the credit for one he has to accept the responsibility for the other because both happened while he was in office.

I see. So, by your standards, anything that has happened in the world in the past eight years is Bush's responsibility. The price of oil is up so that's Bush's fault in some way, disregarding the experts who cite the immensely increased demand for oil in countries like India and China are the main reasons. Bush somehow made it all happen by himself, just by virtue of being president when it happened. 9-11 is also Bush's responsibility, even though all of the planning for it occurred before he took office. When he read a memo about possible explosives being used on aircraft in futuristic terroristic attacks, he should have immediately told the FBI,CIA, and airports to be on the lookout for exploding box cutters.  His responsibility was to protect the United States, yes? How do you propose he could have done that? Well, he could have shut down all of the airports, just in case. He could have begun searches of all passengers, removing any item that could have been used as a weapon. "Sorry, grandma, but that knitting needle could be a terrorist weapon. Turn it over!"  Can you see that happening in a pre-9/11 world? Are you kidding? People complain even after 9/11 about going through airport security! Can you imagine how many memos predicting mayhem pass through Washington, DC on a daily or weekly basis?  For you to say Bush is responsible for 9/11 simply because he was the man in the Oval Office at the time is absolutely incredible to me and shows a bias on your part that makes the one I have for Clinton insignificant.   If you feel any action on his part could have prevented it, please share it with me. I'd really be interested in hearing it. Then please share with us how he is responsible for the price of oil. If you can't, then you accusatory finger is pointed in the wrong direction. I'm sorry, Grinch, but I find it very difficult to try to reason with someone who has your viewpoints. Of course, you may feel the same of me, who knows?

At least you're not alone. I'll repay your story with a little one of my own. Two days ago there was a story in the Miami Herald of a 42 year old man found dead, trapped in an a/c shaft. Seems the fellow was hiding up there to rob the stores after the mall closed. Unfortunately for him, he was a little too large for the shaft, got stuck and was lying there dead for three or four days before an evil smell was detected and his body ws found. The fellow was a habitual criminal with a rap sheet longer than Gore's electric bill. This venture of his to burglarize  was not his first. One of the local politicians (a Democrat, by chance) stated when interviewed that, unfortunately this could have been a result of the state of our economy, forcing people to resort to such drastic measures to feed themselves and he wouldn't be surprised to see more instances like this, due to Bush's handling of the economy.  Forget the fact that this was a habitual criminal. By the time you finished reading the article, you could be worried that there would be a rash of dead bodies stuck in a/c outlets all over the place  while trying to rob some business, all victims of Bush's failed economic policies.

Spare me, please......
Bob K
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82 posted 07-25-2008 12:57 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Bear Balladeer,

quote:
Balladeer:
        I see. So, if I am looking for a man to fill the post of CEO of my company, the candidate who has many years of experience in my particular field and has years of experience in leading others would actually be no different than the assistant manager at Burger King also applying, since neither has experience being the CEO of my company, which is the only experience that counts, according to your statement.



     Not having been here through the original Bush election cycle, and being too darn lazy to check on my own at this time, my curiosity has been piqued, Balladeer?
What exactly did you say when the experience issue came up between Bush and Gore in the 2000 election cycle?  Did you use this frankly off base analogy when you were pushing President Bush over the clearly more experienced Vice-President Gore?  It doesn't really fit now, and I suspect you would have been really clear about how silly it would have been during that election cycle.  

quote:
Balladeer:
I see. So, by your standards, anything that has happened in the world in the past eight years is Bush's responsibility.


     I go on to address this not because I believe Grinch shouldn't or can't, but because I addressed you about the problems in Bush's position, and his failure to take proper responsibility for events in my post above, and your response to Grinch ignores what I said.

     There is nothing that Grinch said that blames Bush for anything [and everything gone wrong] that happened in the world for the past eight years.  Further, there is nothing that I said that blames Bush for anything [and everything gone] wrong over the past eight years either.  

(The bracketed parts are my interpolations.  I believe you meant to say that Grinch was blaming Bush for everything gone wrong over this time frame rather than a single potential thing that probably did not happen, and were using exageration to say so, and I believe that the same obtains to my description of what you might mean had you said such a thing about text I would have written.  If I'm wrong, simply say so, and say how:  You know what you really meant to be saying, and all I'm doing here is making a guess.)

     Speaking for myself, however, I did say that President Bush did not pay attention to specific warnings from outgoing administration officials about the importance of terrorist activity and specifically Osama Bin Laden, and Al Qaeda.  He and his advisors were warned specifically.  I gave references above.  They were warned by the CIA afterward.

     What could he have done?

     What would a reasonable man have done, Balladeer?  You are frequently a reasonable man.  I am frequently a reasonable man.  With warning in hand from people who have just finished doing my job, even if I didn't like or approve of them, I would have immediately turned to the DCI and said,  I want to know everything you have on this and I want the preliminary report on my desk in 24 hours.  I want daily followup in addition to the other material we're going to cover.  I want to get to the bottom of this.

     To myself and my closest advisors I would have said, I don't care if this is a political wrench they're trying to throw in the works.  I want the truth about this and I want to know the truth now, not when somebody sets off a bomb in the subway someplace like they did in Tokyo.

     If my advisors couldn't handle that or thought it was a silly assignment, I'd fire my advisors.  I wouldn't want sabotage, I'd want information, criticism and cooperation.
And I would want to read briefing papers that came across my desk that said they were about the risk of terrorist activity in the continental United States by arab extremists.  I think papers like that would interest me a great deal.  And if they wanted to continue to work for me, they'd better interest my staff as well, especially if other portions of my staff were telling me that Bin Laden and Al Qaeda were still very much a threat.

     Please don't tell me that you'd simply ignore the whole thing, Balladeer.

BobK.

  


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83 posted 07-25-2008 01:11 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Bush:  Ok, gentlemen, we have a report, #3247, of a chance there may be a terrorist attack on the United States. We have to get to the bottom of this! Muellar, take 1,147,212 of your best agents and check out every Arab currently residing in the country. Just don't make it look like racial profiling. Can't give  them ALCU whackos a reason to poop their diapers. Don't use any wiretapping of overseas calls to suspected terrorists abroad, either. Democrats would have a kiniption fit over that. Just, uh, observe them and see what they do out in public, where they wouldn't be doing anything to tip their hands, anyway. I want you to take this report without specifics and find me some specifics. If it acutally had any specifics, then there wouldn't be a need to look for them, now would there? Just find something and, if you can't do it in 24 hours (where is Jack Bauer when you need him?), I'll fire the lot of you and hire another group of advisors who won't be able to find anything in the next 24 hours. Get moving! I need to know if they are going to attack on a day I have an early tee time so I can't switch it.

I'm curious, Bob. Do you put on a helmet and shoulder pads before doing your Monday morning quarterbacking? And I would want to read briefing papers that came across my desk that said they were about the risk of terrorist activity in the continental United States by arab extremists.   Are you stating that he didn't? Are you further stating he did nothing? Where does that insight come from?

President Bush did not pay attention to specific warnings from outgoing administration officials about the importance of terrorist activity and specifically Osama Bin Laden, and Al Qaeda.

...and what exactly did the outgoing administration do about these warnings before they were outgoing? If there was so much information on the subject while they were still steering the ship, why didn't they do anything during the time all of the planning and preparation for 9/11 was going on? They had enough pointers to go on....the previous WTC bombing, the USS COLE, Clinton calling Bin Laden "the most dangerous man in the world". Why didn't they follow your advice instead of just "passing it on" to the next administration? No, you don't like references to that, do you?

Let's face it, Bob. Your comments and conclusions stem from your utter dislike for Bush and his administration...period. You picture him as a fellow who sits around and provokes useless wars, nothing more, just as Jennifer portrays him as a man who cuts brush and plays golf. Your complete disdain for him obliterates any other type of rational thought.  You will paint whatever scenario needed to cut him down a notch or two. I daresay that, if the situation were reversed and Bush had been President before Clinton, you would have pointed out the same things I pointed out here and damned Bush for not doing anything during his term and sympathized with poor Bill for coming into a situation like 9/11 happening.

You appear to refuse the simple fact that NOTHING could have prevented 9/11. That's they way our country is set up, with it's revolving doors. Anyone can come in and live a life of as much privacy as they want. They can travel anywhere, attend flight training schools, and do anything an American can do. Nothing could have stopped them, outside of a dictatorial role by our government, which you certainly don't like, do you? I seem to recall lately your distaste for the fact that officlials could ask for papers. Should the airports, train stations, power plants, tunnels, bridges, schools or whatever other targets on the terrorist wish list have been shut down? Should they have been enforced with extra security? Who says they weren't? And what would you have looked for in the airports? Would you have checked each bag in that pre-9/11 world? Would you have taken away all sharp objects? Subjected passengers to body searches? Would a box cutter trigger a vision as a weapon able to command a 747? No, I believe you would have been one screaming about individual rights and government officials acting like storm troopers.

You can speak of meetings, firings, advisors and briefings all you want and create a made-for-tv episode about how the government was able to save the WTC, but, if you can get past the bias and disdain you have for Bush for just a second, you must certainly realize that it would have been impossible to stop in that pre-9/11 world.

You actually stated that as well, in a recent e-mail, if I may share it...

We simply need to remember that itís likely  that anybody whoís serious enough and lucky enough may find a way through our defenses.

That's right, bear Bob.
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Mike,

If your selection process for potential candidates deemed the assistant manager at Burger King was suitable Iíd have to presume he\she had something that made them seem suitable. The same goes for the alternate candidate.

One thing I can say with absolute certainty is that having experience of being the CEO of your company wasnít a deciding factor in selecting either as a possible candidate.

quote:
I see. So, by your standards, anything that has happened in the world in the past eight years is Bush's responsibility.


Not my standards Mike, I was using yours. You inferred that Bush should get the credit because thereíd been no terrorist attacks since 9-11 when thereís no obvious correlation between the two. I pointed out that the price of oil had risen while Bush was in office which, using the same logic, must be down to Bush despite there being no correlation, I was hoping youíd see how ludicrous either claim was.

Thereís another glaring hole in your logic, while youíre happy to give Bush credit for attacks that havenít happened youíre adamant that he canít be apportioned any responsibility for one that spectacularly DID happen. It canít work both ways Mike.

quote:
Then please share with us how he is responsible for the price of oil. If you can't, then you accusatory finger is pointed in the wrong direction. I'm sorry, Grinch, but I find it very difficult to try to reason with someone who has your viewpoints.


I never said he was responsible for the price of oil, I chose that particular absurd example to highlight the absurdity of your claim that Bush should get the credit for there being no terrorist attacks.

quote:
I'm sorry, Grinch, but I find it very difficult to try to reason with someone who has your viewpoints. Of course, you may feel the same of me, who knows?


I donít have any problem at all in that regard - the trick is to try to understand the other persons viewpoint.

[This message has been edited by Grinch (07-25-2008 05:08 PM).]

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85 posted 07-25-2008 02:07 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

What exactly did you say when the experience issue came up between Bush and Gore in the 2000 election cycle?

Well, let's see.

Gore attended Vanderbuilt Divinity School but didn't finish. He went to Harvard Law School but earned no degrees. He then went into politics, where he has been ever since. The only acutal job in the outside world he ever held was a night-shift reporter for a small paper, The Tennesseean, no other experience in the corporate world and no leadership positions of any kind. Vice-President for eight years, with duties ranging from attending social functions for the president and working on environmental issues. Oh, yes, and fundraising, like the one at the Buddhist Hsi Lai Temple in Hacienda Heights, where everyone wound up being arrested  but Gore, who claimed he didn't know it was a fund-raiser, even though all those people showed up with briefcases filled with money for him.

On 9 March 1999, Gore gave an interview for CNN's Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer, in which he stated: "During my service in the United States Congress I took the initiative in creating the Internet.   Well, he did have that going for him

Bush had been the CEO of several companies. He was part owner of the Texas Rangers. He was the two-time governor of the biggest state in the country (if you take away Alaska's snow and ice).  As governor....

Bush used a budget surplus to push through Texas's largest ever tax-cut of two billion dollars. He extended government funding for organizations providing education, alcohol and drug use and abuse prevention, and reduction of domestic violence


So you have, one one hand, a fellow who never held an actual job in his life, outside of politics, going up against a man who was both very successful in private life and equally successful in politics. What's a voter to do????

If Bush had been smart, he could have come up with some fancy slogan, like "We need change! Time for a change! It's time to get away from those washington insiders and elect someone who's interest is in the American people and not their own political legacies."

But, then again, he didn't need to, did he?
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86 posted 07-25-2008 02:37 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Thereís another glaring hole in your logic, while youíre happy to give Bush credit for attacks that havenít happened youíre adamant that he canít be apportioned any responsibility for one that spectacularly DID happen. It canít work both ways Mike.

Of course it  can, Grinch.  Bush had no control over 9/11. It happened, shortly after he took office. Now, if he had not taken steps to prevent another one from happening, and one did, it would certainly be on his head. It's the old, "Fool me once, shame on you - fool me twice, shame on me" routine. He has instituted many items into prevention, from airport security to that evil surveillance to having terrorists all over the world running for cover, instead of sitting around coming up with new ways to attacks us. You or I  don't know even a small percent of the things the government is doing to bolster our security...and that's fine with me. Don't tell me - just do it.  Do you really think there have been no thwarted attempts since then? They just decided to leave us alone?

How you, or even the most adament Bush-hater alive, can look at the fact that no further occurences have occurred here since that day, even though there are terrorist groups all over the world dedicated to doing so, and not give Bush any credit for it, simply boggles the mind and shows a prejudice so overpowering that it is irrational, to say the least.
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quote:
How you, or even the most adament Bush-hater alive, can look at the fact that no further occurences have occurred here since that day, even though there are terrorist groups all over the world dedicated to doing so, and not give Bush any credit for it, simply boggles the mind and shows a prejudice so overpowering that it is irrational, to say the least.


Itís not a result of prejudice Mike or irrational - you even prove the point yourself if youíd take a moment to think about it.

quote:
You appear to refuse the simple fact that NOTHING could have prevented 9/11.


Explain the logic in saying that, on one hand, NOTHING could stop a terrorist attack and on the other that Bush should be given credit for doing SOMETHING to stop one!

He either did something to prevent an attack or he did something that had no chance of stopping an attack because nothing could stop an attack.

If itís the latter Iím right. If itís the former you were wrong to say that NOTHING could stop an attack - worse than that though you need to explain why the hell he didnít do that magical SOMETHING heís taking credit for BEFORE 9-11!

Iím not saying that Bush canít claim credit simply because itís Bush, Iíve no political axe to grind either way, Iím saying it because itís the most rational thing to conclude.

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88 posted 07-25-2008 04:02 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Ok, Grinch...I see the point you are trying to make. Let me clarify, if I can.

Yes, I am still of the belief that nothing can stop a terrorist attack should the terrorists be determined and clever enough to do so.

Before, there was basically nothing to make their jobs even difficult. Grab a box-cutter, hijack a plane, fly it into a building. We had no controls to make it even a challenge.

It's not that simple anymore. Airport security is much tighter. Ports are much more  closely guarded. Suspicious activity is more scrutinized. Communication and cooperation between us and other international anti-terrorist agencies is better coordinated.  Many safeguards have been instituted since then.

Could there be another attack? Of course. Can it happen like, or as easily as,  9/11? Nope. One does what one can do and hopes it's enough. That's all the guarantee one gets in life. Apparently, at least up to now, what Bush has done, has done the job. To not give him credit for it is not only ungrateful, it's wrong.
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89 posted 07-25-2008 04:55 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


quote:
Apparently, at least up to now, what Bush has done, has done the job.


Maybe it has Mike, then again maybe it hasnít, it could be that the terrorists havenít even tried another attack, in which case what Bush has done hasnít made an ounce of difference.

If thatís the case surely the terrorists who havenít tried another attack are more deserving of the credit than Bush.

Like I said Iím not arguing against Bush in this case, Iím arguing against the logic of giving credit where itís not due.

In fact Iíd happily agree with you if you were to say ďBush deserves some credit for putting measures in place to reduce the chance of another terrorist attack.Ē

I couldnít argue with that - I wouldnít even want to, I might disagree with you on the amount of credit but Iíll readily agree the guy deserves some.

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90 posted 07-25-2008 08:36 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

Dear Balladeer,

         You really should read what other people say before you let yourself respond:


     "There is no causal connection we can make between Bush and lack of U.S. terrorist action over the past seven years.  If it helps you at all, there was probably no causal connection between the first World Trade Center bombing shortly after Clinton took office, his actions, and the absence of foreign terrorist attacks on U.S. soil during his tenure in office either.  You can't establish causality in either case.

     You can say that the Democrats, when they turned over power to the Republicans in 2001, went to very great lengths to make it known to the Republican incoming officeholders that they thought that Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda should be at the very top of their list of concerns.  And you can say that because we have it from multiple sources, including books praised by President Bush himself (the first of the trilogy of Bob Woodward books dealt with this aspect of the transfer of power and the lead-up to the war quite extensively, and was based on interviews with administration officials, including President Bush).  We have the same material dealt with from  another direction by Thomas T. Ricks in his book, "Fiasco."   Should you be interested in following up on documentation, please ask, and I'll dig up some other source material as well."


     At another point in our exchange I write, in the letters you've placed in boldface:


And I would want to read briefing papers that came across my desk that said they were about the risk of terrorist activity in the continental United States by arab extremists.  

And Balladeer responds,
"Are you stating that he didn't? Are you further stating he did nothing? Where does that insight come from?"

     And I respond to you here by pointing out that yes, in fact, I am pointing out that he didn't.  And that had you checked the references I supplied, you would have seen that was so, and that though there have been instances of Dr, Rice denying that these were the events that happened, there have also been times when she has acknowledged them to be true.  In fact, as you will remember, presidential candidates are given CIA briefings before they are elected because the country wants to make sure that whomever is elected, they will be sure to be able to hit the ground running.  Whatever my feelings about Bush may be are completely secondary to the actual events that occurred before, during and after his assuming office; despite your attempts to make what you assume to be my feelings about President Bush an issue, they are not, no more than your avowed dislike of President Clinton is the issue.

     The issue, as I understand it, for the purposes of this thread, is Obama and McClain.  The revelence of Bush seems to be only the extent to which Senator McClain seems to be eager or willing to carry forward those policies.

     My interest in Bush about this is that he does no more damage to the country and the constitution while he's in office; that he starts no more wars, and commits us to no more policies that will ruin us financially and militarily, and none that will raise the possibility of a new cold war.  That those that have been instituted be curtailed and reversed, and that the awful temptations for the further abuse of power by the administrative branch be reduced buck to where they were before this unfortunate expansion of them began before this administration took office.  I say before, because some of these things, like FISA, took place even earlier.

     No matter whom we elect, we will need to do those things.  I believe no matter how trusting you are, balladeer, there's got to be somebody you won't trust to have all the power that's devolved into the hands of the administrative branch.  It doesn't belong there, to my mind, in as unbalanced fashion as it has arrived there now for the use of anybody, no matter how benign.

     But to return to your questions, which I still feel to be misleading,
my insight but more importantly my information comes from those books.  I can dig up articles, but since you don't actually seem to read my responses these days before dashing off a reply, I'm not certain that the extra references would actually get read or, if read, would get digested.  The two I offered above were not.  Here are others that talk about the time period in question, and what the Bush White House Team was doing.  I'm even defining the word "team" narrowly.


http://www.slate.com/id/2098861/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bin_Laden_Determined_to_Strike_in_U.S.
http://www.antiwar.com/rothschild/?articleid=2342
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2002/may/19/september11.usa
http://www.truthout.org/article/jason-leopold-bush-ignored-911-warnings
http://http://thinkprogress.org/2006/09/26/rice-clinton-terrorism/


     While the democrats in the Clinton administration had left office saying that terrorism was the upcoming issue, and was the one that needed urgent attention.  The incoming Bush administration thought differently.  They were interested in policy initiative around an anti-ballistic missile system, and in getting our allies on board in taking part in deploying one.  As part of a major speech that Bush delivered in May of 2001, he mentions this and even suggests that it may be possible to get China and Russia to sign on to the initiative.  If I remember correctly, the White House felt there were Five major  national priorities, and homeland security didn't even make the cut.
Although, to be fair, President Bush, even then seemed interested in tackling and eliminating Sadam Hussein.  I guess he was willing to wait and allow time to let his creativity work to invent causes.

     The information that Bush and friends that was coming in from pre-Bush administration sources, from current CIA sources, and from even within their own temporarily retained Richard Clarke (life long Republican, worked previously for Clinton, sure, but also for Bush I, and for Reagan) said that they weren't paying attention to the facts so much as what they wanted the facts to be.  I don't know why.  I have guesses, but those really aren't all that important.

     I'm not interested, to correct your frequently stated misunderstanding, in Bashing President Bush at all.  I'm actually amused at the characterization.  I am interested in getting the facts straight.  Making sure that the events are told without really strange distortions and lies by anybody is important to me because I've worked with crazy folks my whole life, and I know what a precious commodity truth is, and how hard it can be to come by.  I've seen people kill themselves when they loose their sense of truth.  I'm not making an analogy; I'm being quite literal here.  I've also seen people quite literally make a decision to live, on the spot, when I've told that that, yes, from what I've seen, person X despite all the nice things they're saying and how great they manage to look while they're saying it, really does seem to be trying to kill you,  Let's make sure they don't do that.  I simply like to think that I'm on the side of truth rather than the side of lies.  

     That makes me a pompous jerk sometimes, which I try to avoid as best I can.

     But my interest isn't bashing President Bush, it's simply in making sure that his facts are as straight as possible.  When they aren't, and I say so, you tell me I'm bashing Bush.  I've criticized Clinton as well, almost everybody including myself about the way the truth tends to bend when we tell it.  With Clinton, you agree with me, or go a bit further.  With myself, you've often been extremely kind, more so than warranted, on occasion, I think.  With Bush, suddenly I'm bashing.  I'm far more unhappy with myself than I am with Bush; I take my sins more personally, in the same way I tend to take the sins of Democrats more personally.  I think we should somehow know better.

     Why is it that you seem to think that when President Bush lies and I point it out, that I have committed some sin?  I have done nothing but try to keep the record trustworthy, and the world in working order.  I want a leader who can at least confine his lying
to places where it isn't fatal to other people and dangerous to the health of others.  I don't believe that this is a standard that is so high that I cannot expect a presidential candidate or, heck, even an actual president Herself to live up to it.  

     If you believe that it's a flaw in my character first of all to actually dare to notice this myself, and then, horror of horrors, actually to point this out to somebody else, I can only tell you that we must flatly disagree.  I believe it is a right and in fact a responsibility of a citizen in a democracy for YOU to do so, when you see somebody doing something of this sort.  I don't think this is "bashing" at all if you are being honest in your assertions.  If you believe I am speaking without facts to back me up, as you seem to assert when you say I speak only out of my dislike for Bush, I should like to point out that you have neglected to point out such a case.

     It doesn't matter if I dislike Bush or not.  My motivations and my explanations of them or your accusations about them don't matter.


     People already know I'm ugly and mean, Balladeer.  I might add that my parents never loved me, and children run from me screaming when I do my Peter Lorre imitation. I speak with animals.  I deny rumors of special powers, and I am still struggling to be fluent in English.  I tend to side with the downtrodden, and I like long walks along the beach-NOT.  And IF YOU DON'T LIKE WHAT I SAY ABOUT BUSH, TELL ME WHERE MY FACTS ARE WRONG. I know that may seem like too much to ask when all that character assassination stuff is so-o-o much fun, but really, as far as I'm concerned ALL YOU NEED TO DO IS DISPROVE THE FACTS.

     Most anything else you do seems to me a pretty poor substitute.

Sincerely yours,
Bob K.

An afterthought:

     What Bush has done is make people very much aware of the possibility of further attacks.  We do need to credit Bush for this; I do.

      I believe however that Grinch is right about the reduction of actual danger.  That can't be proved.  Balladeer and I went over this in our discussion of Post hoc ergo Propter hoc reasoning above.  Balladeer smothered the possibility in scorn before actually thinking it through.  This is one of those not-testable propositions.
As I suggested in an earlier post, Balladeer might take comfort in the fact that this conclusion also suggests that Clinton era efforts to curb terrorist attacks on the continental United states after the 1993 world trade center bombing could not be proved to have been successful in preventing all continental U.S. bombings until the 2001 WTC bombing, when the Republicans were in office, either.

     The train of logic simply doesn't follow in either case, no matter who would like to use the false political gain from that reasoning.  Alas.  BK

     In fact many of the major channels for terrorists to smuggle weapons, explosives and, quite possibly people into the country are still quite open, while a lot of time and effort are put into addressing hot-button issues.  Air Freight, for example, as opposed to passenger baggage is not well regulated.  Sea transport of goods is poorly regulated as well, and is the entry of most goods into the country.  Propositions for funding such programs have been, as I understand it, been regularly vetoed because they may block the free flow of commerce.


[EDIT - Tried to clean up broken links. Sorry, Bob, some of them were so scrambled all I could do was remove them entirely. - Ron ]

[This message has been edited by Ron (07-25-2008 09:46 PM).]

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91 posted 07-26-2008 01:54 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Maybe it has Mike, then again maybe it hasnít, it could be that the terrorists havenít even tried another attack, in which case what Bush has done hasnít made an ounce of difference.

If thatís the case surely the terrorists who havenít tried another attack are more deserving of the credit than Bush.


An amazing statement...there is no way to respond to that. Obviously any further dwelling on this point would be pointless.
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92 posted 07-26-2008 03:54 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Thanks for cleaning up as much as you did, Ron; I appreciate the work.

Dear Mike,

          Let's not credit the terrorist with being swell fellas all that quickly.  You and Grinch exasperate each other.  It's simply not in the cards to prove a negative in this way, such and so DID NOT happen because of THIS action.  This is part of the problem with retrospective studies as opposed to prospective studies in scientific research.

     I'm not sure if I've ever heard either of you acknowledge the other making a decent point, though, and I'm pretty sure that both of you have at one time or another.  Would acknowledgment by the other make it any easier to keep down the provocative tones.  When I hear it, it makes a difference with me, I know.  It helps me listen more closely.  I know I need to get back to doing more of that.

     Thoughts?

BobK.


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93 posted 07-26-2008 11:02 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I have no idea what you are hearing, Bob. Grinch and I have a long history of profound respect for each other and I see nothing provocative or personally insulting in any of our exchanges. If he does, then I would apologize immediately. If you do and he doesn't, then I would say you are viewing what's not there. Provocative, or personal comments, sound more like..

Did you use this frankly off base analogy
You really should read what other people say before you let yourself respond:
I'm not interested, to correct your frequently stated misunderstanding,
Most anything else you do seems to me a pretty poor substitute.
Bear Balladeer,
Perhaps, if Balladeer can run Bill Clinton down enough,
"Because that Balladeer fella's spouting another of them logical fallacies.  Probably thinks nobody'll notice that what do you call it."

You will find no personal barbs between grinch and I. See the difference?
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94 posted 07-26-2008 12:51 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


Bob,

As Mike says weíve known each other quite a while, since the Forums opened in fact (though IĎve had a few names since then), and over the years, as happens in real life, respect for each other ends up as given. We chat, we disagree, we might throw our dummies out of the pram and our hands in the air but we then start the whole process off again in the next thread. The respect is still there, we just donít need to confirm it every two minutes.

Familiarity doesnít always breed contempt - sometimes it kindles respect too.

Hope that clears that up.

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95 posted 07-26-2008 01:18 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

I think Bob's touched on a very important point. Because of copyright laws we're not allowed to post excerpts from articles, books, etc., so we actually need to click the links and read the material in order to respond appropriately.
Grinch
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96 posted 07-26-2008 02:10 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


quote:
we're not allowed to post excerpts from articles, books, etc.,


Jen,

First Iíd like to say I respect you a lot. (better Bob?)

But.

Are you sure? I thought you could use excerpts under the Fair Use clause, hopefully Ron (who I also respect) will probably be able to clarify.

Respectfully

The Grinch
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97 posted 07-26-2008 02:37 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

I could be wrong, Grinch, I frequently am, but I think you can only use a couple of paragraphs.

I respect you, too, and all who post in this forum. I certainly hope no one ever takes my rather opionated stand on issues as being a personal attack.

Ron
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98 posted 07-26-2008 03:58 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
... but I think you can only use a couple of paragraphs.

Shouldn't that be enough, Jennifer? Along with a link, where possible, so people who want to read more can easily do so?

Ideally, on a site dedicated to writing, people can use their own words to get their points across, even if that sometimes means paraphrasing authoritative sources instead of using excessively long quotations. We want to know what you think, not what someone else said. Nonetheless, as Grinch said, excerpts that remain substantially less than the original source material are fine when necessary to support your points. Links are also fine.

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99 posted 07-26-2008 05:07 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Thanks for the clarification, Ron, I appreciate it. Just to make sure that I understand correctly, since it seems I often donít, youíre saying I could quote from a copyrighted source like an AP article or recently published book? Is that what you meant would be ok? And approximately what portion/percentage of that copyrighted article or book could I quote on this site?

What I think is based in part on what Iíve read. Iíd much prefer to use quotes rather than links since people may not want or have time to read an entire article to locate just a few paragraphs pertinent to the discussion. Or they may have to register at a site in order to read an article and might not wish to do that. As for paraphrasing, well, since it seems I so often misunderstand, perhaps thatís a bit risky.

Thanks again for your help.
 
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