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Denver Post Stupidity
Wednesday, 3 November 2004
Why Did Peter Coors Lose??
By Daniel G. Jennings
The most intriguing Congressional races in the 2004 elections were here in my home state of Colorado where the moderately Democratic Salazar brothers captured a Senate and a House seat formerly held by Republicans. And they did it in a red Bush state in the midst of a historic Republican victory.
So how did the Salazars pull it off? Well Ken Salazar was one of the few Democrats who was able to take advantage of the values issue. Ken's opponent was beer baron Pete Coors. Coors' family has made a huge fortune selling watered down beer to lower income people. His advertisements include scantily clad women, raunchy sophomoric humor, and hints of lesbianism. Obviously all the evangelicals and social conservatives who came out to vote for Bush were not going to vote for this day.
Salazar made skillful use of Coors' family business pointing out that Coors has suggested lowering the drinking age to 18 and tying it to drunken driving. A surefire appeal to values voters.
Then Salazar made a strong effort to cultivate rural voters, he drove around the state in his pickup truck and visited virtually every small town in the state. This wasn't a silly publicity stunt like Kerry's hunting trips it was real. There Salazar presented himself as just folks a man of the people in true Harry Truman fashion one of us. That worked, Salazar is a fifth generation Coloradoan who still lives on the family farm. The values card played well in those areas as well.
Salazar also made strong use of the environment. Most Coloradoans moved here from somewhere else because of the beautiful scenery. They came to fish, to hunt, hike, ski and enjoy the mountains. Any threat to that scenic beauty is taken seriously. Salazar was able to paint Coors as an evil corporate polluter. The environment especially when it is connected with natural beauty is an issue that resonates with average Americans. Salazar took advantage of it.
Salazar's brother, Jim a potato farmer from the San Luis Valley in Southern Colorado, did much the same thing in the Third District of Colorado. He won the congressional seat in a rural and mountainous area. He used identical tactics to those of his brother and they worked.
Of course changes in the population of that area have helped. Large numbers of new residents many of them retired middle class professionals from places like California and Texas have moved in. Economic changes have driven out many traditional residents like miners and ranchers. Many of these new residents are socially and politically liberal and inclined to vote Democratic.
So what do the Salazar victories mean for the nation and both major parties? First, the Democrats can take advantage of the values issues and turn the tables on the Republicans if they play their cards right. Second, Democrats can still appeal to the Red State voters if they are willing to treat those people with respect and understanding and appeal to the issues that they care about.
The Coors loss also shows that Republicans can't win simply by talking about taxes and warning about Democrats raising taxes. Coors did that, he flooded the airwaves with commercials talking about all the new taxes Salazar would support. It didn't work, the Republican base voters voted their values over their economics. They were willing to vote for a tax and spend Democrat if he or she takes the right position on values. That's something Republicans ought to pay attention to.
The Salazar victories in Colorado prove that the Democratic Party is far from dead and can still win. These victories also show that the values issues can be turned against Republicans by shrewd Democrats and that voters will respond to Democrats who are willing to take the right stand on values. Both parties should pay attention to the recent events in Colorado because they show that the political situation is still volatile and Republican victory is far from assured.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 10:34 PM MST
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Saturday, 25 September 2004
Now Playing: Iraq
Iraq: A Stage for America
By Daniel G. Jennings
Iraq isn't just a country or a war: it is a stage for which America to perform upon. More importantly, Iraq is a place where the world can watch America and evaluate America's performance.
What America does in Iraq is being taped by TV cameras and being beamed to homes throughout the world via satellite. Far more so than Vietnam this is the first real television war, the first war the world is watching in real time. The first war that millions of viewers in places like India and China who never had TV before are watching and evaluating. Many others are watching via the new fangled technology of the Internet.
Unfortunately what they are seeing is a terrible image of America. American troops with the best training and most powerful and advanced weaponry available refusing to fight back against poorly armed thugs with homemade bombs and forty year old Soviet rifles. The US military doing nothing while the bodies of dead Americans are dragged through the streets and mutilated for the amusement of two-bit gangsters. Americans refusing to take action while their allies are murdered and Americans failing to retaliate for the kidnapping and beheading of their countrymen.
What is coming across is an image of America as a paper tiger, a nation of cowards who refuse to use their vast powers. A country of girly men who won't even defend themselves and their allies. A bunch of self righteous chest thumpers who don't even have the balls to kill their enemies.
The message being sent to the terrorists, the thugs, the murderers, the fanatics and the tyrants of the world is a terrible one. America is an easy target, you can kill and kidnap and murder and do worse to Americans and get away with it. Americans are the perfect victims too arrogant to run away or avoid a fight, but too sanctimonious to get blood on their hands and actually win a fight. All the fear we put into the tyrants and terrorists with our invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq has evaporated. We've emboldened the bad guys and shown them that we are afraid to get down and dirty and actually fight them.
The message being to sent to our friends and allies or would be allies is even worse. America won't stand by you, the minute the going gets tough or things get nasty America will get up and run away. Leaving you high and dry. We did it in Vietnam and now we're doing it in Iraq. I bet a lot of foreign leaders are putting the President of China's number on their speed dial right now because they figure they'll need a big ally especially if America is a nation of wimps.
So what's America to do? The answer is simple get tough in Iraq and show the world that we are willing to fight and kill our enemies. That is we actually have to start fighting this war like a war.
First we must show the Iraqi insurgents and the world's people that there are real consequences for killing Americans. I would suggest we start by telling the communities that harbor insurgents the insurgency must stop or their cities will be destroyed. Then we follow up on our threat by bombing one of the Iraqi cities such as Fallujah into rubble. Then we follow up by moving into that city and others with our tanks and troops and wipe out as many of the insurgents as we can. When we do these things we should have the TV cameras, in particular Al Jazera's cameras there to record all the death and destruction. Perhaps we should follow this up with drumhead trials of insurgent leaders and the execution of insurgents like we did to Nazi guerrillas in post World War II Germany.
This way people can learn that there are consequences for the killing of Americans and that those who support or harbor terrorists will face death from the sky. More importantly the world must learn that we Americans are willing to fight and to kill their enemies. For if they don't America won't be a superpower anymore instead it'll be a very bad joke.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 5:58 PM MDT
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Sunday, 19 September 2004
Owens and FasTracks
Owens Right to Oppose FasTracks
By Daniel G. Jennings
Gov. Bill Owens is doing the right thing by opposing RTD?fs ambitious $4.5 billion FasTracks scheme for transit expansion financed by a sales tax increase. Owens is absolutely right when he notes that the plan would increase taxation while not noticeably decreasing traffic congestion on regional highways.
Owens attack on FasTracks is not the standard anti-transit propaganda it is based on a sober assessment of the proposal. Owens is right: FasTracks will cost too much and deliver too little in the form of transit. Sadly, Owens isn?ft tough enough on FasTracks. Here are a few of the dismal details about FasTracks:
?? Fastracks does not mean extension of RTD?fs popular and successful light rail to the entire Metro Area as its supporters are insinuating in very deceptive advertising. Instead FasTracks would provide new light rail lines to Arvada and Lakewood and extension of the T-Rex and Southwest corridor lines. Other areas including Boulder, Northglenn, Thornton and Westminister would be served by diesel powered commuter rail or bus rapid transit.
?? The diesel powered commuter rail wouldn?ft be as fast or as frequent as light rail. It would run on old freight railroad tracks. Diesel trains would pollute the air unlike light rail and would require more maintenance. They would also be noisier.
??Worse it would greatly increase maintenance and operations costs because those trains would require a second rail yard with a second set of maintenance employees. This would duplicate costs.
?? Diesel trains operating at high speed on old freight railroad tracks would cross streets on the surface level at many locations. This would lead to accidents between cars and trains and needless deaths and injuries.
??Since the diesel trains couldn?ft operate on light rail tracks and visa versa. Commuters would have to switch trains at Union Station. This would greatly increase travel time, make trips more inconvenient and discourage ridership. RTD itself admits that switching trains at Union Station would create massive congestion downtown. The trip between say Northglenn and the Tech Center would on FasTracks $4.5 billion rail system would take about the same amount of time as the same trip on our existing bus system.
??RTD is setting itself up for lawsuits and political criticism. It?fs planning to build light rail to affluent white suburbs but diesel trains to working class largely Hispanic areas up north and out east. Blacks in Northeast Denver and Hispanics in Commerce City would have to put up with the noise and fumes from the diesel trains and see more traffic congestion in their neighborhoods created by trains crossing streets. They would also have to put up with safety threats posed by those trains at surface level crossings.
?? RTD plans to spend around $1 billion to refurbish Union Station into a transit hub in Lower Downtown. This wouldn?ft help commuters, it would actually hurt them by making trips longer and less convenient. It would make life for Downtown residents less pleasant by generating massive amounts of needless congestion. It would only benefit real estate developers, including Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper and Billionaire Phil Anschutz who own property in the area. $1 billion would be enough to build another light rail line to the suburbs. Bypassing downtown with light rail lines running along I-70, I-25 or the old freight railroad tracks would make more sense. Especially since the majority of the commuters changing trains downtown wouldn?ft be going downtown.
??RTD plans another wasteful duplication in its service to Boulder. Boulder would be served by two different Transit lines a bus line running along the Denver-Boulder Turnpike and a diesel train running along an old freight rail line between Denver and Boulder. Boulder will get two new transit lines as many other areas get little or nothing.
??Most of the metro area would not be served by FasTracks, fast growing outlying areas like Brighton, Evergreen, Conifer, and Lochbuie would get no service. So would such popular destinations in the city such as Cherry Creek. The new high density developments at Lowry and Villa Italia would not be served. So would the already developed areas along Hampden in the Southwest area and the congested C-470 corridor. People in places like Ken Caryl and Lowry would essentially be left high and dry by FasTracks even though they would pay higher taxes to finance it.
If all this wasn?ft bad enough Owens had proposed an excellent alternative to FasTracks, more T-Rex type lines that would combine freeway expansion with new light rail lines but RTD shot it down. This plan would have been cheaper, requiring a lower sales tax increase and those lines could be under construction right now. It will take nearly twenty years to complete FasTracks. Many areas including Aurora wouldn?ft see new rail lines until 2018 under some RTD plans. Had RTD gone with Owens?f suggestions we could be seeing major new rail lines to the North and West opening in the next few years.
RTD refused to go along with Owens even though voters did go for T-Rex in a big way in 1999 and have voted down proposals similar to FasTracks before (remember ?gGuide the Ride?h). Fortunately Owens is showing the kind of leadership that other metro area politicos have not. By refusing to jump on the FasTracks bandwagon, Owens can come out next year after it is voted down, dust off his expanded T-Rex and put it before voters. Then that will pass, giving Denver the transit it needs and ensure Owens place in Colorado history.
Thank God for Bill Owens, he hasn?ft been the best governor but at least he?fs on the right track when it comes to transportation issues.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 8:49 AM MDT
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Thursday, 16 September 2004
Mood:  crushed out
An Article Every American Should Read
By Daniel G. Jennings
The Sept. 20 issue of Time magazine contains an article every American should read "Who Left the Door Open." This valuable piece of journalism exposes the massive problem of illegal immigration and exposes it's true causes: corporate America's insatiable hunger for low-cost illegal labor and Uncle Sam's refusal to enforce laws against employing illegals.
The facts as exposed by writers Donald R. Barlett and James B. Steele are dismal: investigations of alleged employers of illegal immigrants fell by more than 70 percent between 1992 and 2002 and orders levying fines on employers of illegal aliens fell by 99 percent in the same period. In 2002 only 13 fines were issued to employers of illegal aliens. Even though legislation passed in 1986 mandates the creation of a federal program for the verification of employment information no such program has been created. Worse, compliance with such laws is voluntary, that is employers themselves decide whether to check immigration staff or not.
If this charade wasn't bad enough the Immigration and Naturalization Service's efforts to crack down on employers of illegal aliens have been thwarted by political pressure. In 1998 the agency launched Operation Vanguard in which agents subpoenaed the records of Nebraska meatpackers, found 4,700 employees with suspicious record then demanded the employers verify their immigration status. The agency was forced to back off because of pressure from congressmen, employers, Hispanic groups and others.
Barlett and Steele also allege that it is the low wages that illegal immigrants are willing to work for that motivates corporations to hire them. They cite court records in which Truley Ponder - a manager at a Tyson Foods meat processing plant in Shelbyville, Tennessee - alleged he was forced to hire illegal aliens because his company wouldn't pay the wages local residents demanded. Ponder plead guilty to hiring illegals but Tyson itself was acquitted of the charges.
It should be noted here that Tyson (which is based in Arkansas) and the family that owns it has long standing connections to Bill and Hillary Clinton. A fact that Time conveniently forget to mention in its article. Tyson is also a large purchaser of advertising.
The sad thing is that the border could be secured fairly easily if the government enforced its employment laws and used modern technology to do so. T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council, a union for border patrollers, told Time he believes that 98 percent of the illegal immigration would end if the federal government would issue an employment card similar to a credit card. This card which would contain a photo i.d. could be swiped through a machine like a credit card reader which would check the data on it against a national database. It would enable anybody to check a perspective employee in seconds.
With such a program in place, (and keep in mind the technology for this exists, as do the phone lines and Internet which would enable it) Bonner told Time that he believes the border could be secured with the existing 10,000 man Border Patrol. No army on the border, no giant fence, no racist sweeps endangering the rights of Hispanic Americans. No massive waste of tax money on new bureaucracy and hardware. (Such a program could be financed by fees paid by employers). The only thing stopping such a program from being implemented is large corporations and their political influence, Bonner said.
It's obvious that giant corporations and the people who profit from them are putting national security and the common good at risk by hiring large numbers of illegal aliens. It's also obvious that our politicians are not doing a thing to stop this travesty of justice. One final thought, sooner or later there will be hell to pay for this illegal immigrant business and I have a feeling that the large corporations and their pet politicians will pay for it, in spades.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 10:03 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 24 August 2004
moore and mccarthy
Michael Moore: The Joe McCarthy of the Left??
By Daniel G. Jennings
Michael Moore is the modern day Joseph McCarthy.
For the historically challenged out there Joseph McCarthy was a US Senator from Wisconsin in the 1950s who became a powerful and influential political figure by spreading false charges and ridiculous conspiracy theories. McCarthy's theory was a simple one, Communists had somehow infiltrated the US government and were responsible for the nation's problems. For a few years in the 1950s, McCarthy (who was considered one of the worst Senators of the time by observers) gained fame and a good deal of political influence by making such charges. Eventually McCarthy's actions became so repugnant that he was censured by the US Senate and abandoned by his fellow Republicans.
Michael Moore, the propaganda film maker behind "Fahrenheit 911" has a great deal in common with McCarthy. Like McCarthy, Moore is a fat and lazy slob and something of a bully. Like McCarthy, Moore is rude, crude, arrogant and nasty.
And like Joseph McCarthy, Michael Moore is a miserable failure who has gained a great deal of fame and fortune by spreading ridiculous conspiracy theories. McCarthy was a failure as a US Senator, Moore failed as newspaper publisher and editor, TV producer and movie director. His only success has been with documentaries that pander to political prejudices.
McCarthy promoted the loony idea that the Communists were running the Truman Administration in the 1940s. Moore promotes the ridiculous idea that evil business interests control the US government and are behind George W. Bush and the decision to go to war in Iraq. Like McCarthy, Moore takes advantage of popular prejudice by linking his political opponents with America's enemies. McCarthy accused Democrats of being in league with Communists, Moore accuses Republicans of being in league with Al Qaeda. In particular Moore, claims that business deals involving Bush's family and Bin Laden's family prove a criminal conspiracy that led to Sept. 11. (Moore ignores the facts that Bin Laden's family has disowned him and the Sept. 11 Commission no friend of Bush found no links between Saudi Arabia Sept. 11)
Hopefully, Moore will end up just like McCarthy. McCarthy died a drunken failure who had been humiliated and stripped of his power when people stood up to him and exposed him as the fraud he was. Sooner or later the same thing will happen to Michael Moore, some brave journalist or politician will go after Moore and expose him as the fraud he is. Maybe we'll even have the satisfaction of seeing Moore stripped of his movie awards and unable to distribute his putrid propaganda. Then the left will drop Moore like a hot potato and the toast of Hollywood will probably end up dying in obscurity just like McCarthy did. That would be poetic justice indeed.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 8:31 PM MDT
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Wednesday, 18 August 2004
Kerry is stupid
Kerry Victory=Democratic Disaster
By Daniel G. Jennings
A John Kerry victory in November would be a disaster for the Democratic Party and possibly the nation.
There are several reasons a Kerry victory would be a catastrophe but the major reason is this: Kerry would almost immediately face an impeachment attempt. The Republicans, the geniuses responsible for the Monica Lewinksy fiasco, will probably control Congress after the election. My guess is that they would try to impeach Kerry. Especially since the presidential election is likely to be close, if Kerry wins, Republicans will regard his election as illegitimate just as many Democrats believe Bush stole the 2000 election. So there will be plenty of ammunition for a Kerry impeachment attempt.
Having our national leadership distracted by something as silly as impeachment in a time of war and global oil shortage would be disaster. Yet that is a likely outcome if Kerry wins. Especially if Republicans in the heartland blame the media and Hollywood for the Kerry victory.
A Kerry victory would further alienate the Democratic Party and its leadership from average Americans and destroy whatever popular appeal the party still has. This would happen because a Kerry victory would embolden left-wing extremists in the Democratic Party and the media. The left would go further and further off the deep end pushing loonier and loonier ideas. The real concerns of the nation would be abandoned in favor of a policy focusing on such things as gays rights and political correctness.
The left wing extremists with their man in the White House would undoubtedly launch a nationwide witch hunt. Michael Moore and his ilk would undoubtedly try to hunt down and punish the evil conspirators they blame for the war in Iraq. If Kerry were elected president and/or Democrats took back a house of congress there would be pressure for investigative committees, grand juries and special prosecutors to investigate the causes of the war. Self proclaimed investigative journalists would quickly come forward with hit lists of evil warmongers to punish. Dozens of innocent people, many with Jewish last names, would be dragged before these bodies and see their characters destroyed by two bit tyrants. The result would be the most embarrassing witch hunt and abandonment of American ideals since Joseph McCarthy's day.
If all this weren't bad enough Kerry would be a one term, lame duck president. Kerry would have one of two unappealing choices. He'd either have to adopt a Democratic foreign policy, pulling troops out of the Middle East, relying upon worthless European allies, that is a sure fire prescription for disaster or abandon that policy and face the wrath of the peace movement, his fellow Democrats and the media. Either policy would destroy Kerry following the rational course that is continuing Bush's agenda would open Kerry up to criticism and leave him with no allies. Following the Democratic policy would leave America weak and vulnerable to terrorist attack while effectively turning the Middle East oilfields over to China or India. This would leave Kerry wide open to attacks by both Republicans and many of the Democrats who urged him to pursue that course of action in the first place.
Such foreign policy boondoggles combined with the Michael Moore witch hunt would destroy Kerry quickly and lay the groundwork for a tremendous Republican victory in 2008. The Democrats would become the party of American weakness abroad and character assassination at home.
The best thing for Democrats in 2004 would be a sound defeat of John Kerry. This would kill off the far left which despite its media overexposure as no popular appeal (as Howard Dean's primary defeat proved) and give Bush time to prove his foreign policy. If the Bush Doctrine is justified by events, as I believe it will be, the Democrats can simply adopt it as the Republicans adopted the Truman Doctrine. That way a strong Democratic candidate can run on a sensible platform in 2008, win the election and implement the social, economic, regulatory and other reforms America so desperately needs. If this doesn't happen, social liberals and progressives, had better hope that the Republicans will be willing to make room for them because the GOP will become the majority party if Kerry wins the election.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 6:14 PM MDT
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Sunday, 11 July 2004
By Daniel G. Jennings
Intelligence Failures
The latest news out of Washington is pretty disgusting despite the vast bureaucracies, incredible technologies and untold billions of dollars available to our numerous intelligence agencies, our leaders don't have much better information on our enemies than the predecessors before World War II.
A report from the Senate Intelligence Committee states that none of our intelligence knew what was going on in Iraq. Even though we've been watching Iraq for decades with satellites, spy planes and all manner of high technology, our spies didn't know whether or not Saddam had weapons of mass destruction.
Since we aren't getting much better intelligence from the NSA, the CIA and the rest of the alphabet soup than FDR did from a few code breakers in the back room and a couple of amateurs snooping around dark alleys. We have to ask the question, is our massive intelligence community and the apparatus t hat supports it really necessary? Maybe it's time to shut it down and go back to the drawing board. Perhaps the money we spend on intelligence could be better spent elsewhere.
One more thought here, if our intelligence community is broken it's been broken for a long time. After all this was the intelligence community that failed to see the Revolution in Iran coming and get our embassy staff out before they were held hostage. The same intelligence community failed to predict the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of Communism. This intelligence community didn't see the rise of the Taliban and its alliance with Al Qaeda as a threat to us. Most damning of all the intelligence community failed to detect the conspiracy that led to Sept. 11 and put a stop to it.
The worst part of this was that our politicians knew the intelligence community was broken and did nothing to fix it. Instead they let the spies and spooks keep taking our tax dollars and wasting them.
Perhaps what's really in need of a change is not the intelligence community but our political leaders.
Bin Laden
Perhaps the failure of the US military and intelligence community to capture or kill Osama Bin Laden and the rest of Al Qaeda's leadership is a good thing.
As long as Osama and company are on the loose the US and other nations will keep up the military pressure on Al Qaeda and it's allies. They won't be able to regroup, reorganize and launch new attacks against the United States and it's allies. We'll also have to keep up the security measures that protect America and Americans from terrorists.
If Bin Laden gets captured or killed, there will be almost immediate pressure to end the war on the terror. Military pressure will be lessened, security measures reduced and defenses lowered. The terrorists will be able to regroup and operate again.
Even though Bin Laden is simply one man and one leader in a mass movement. There are hundreds of thousands of terrorists and dozens of terrorist organizations around the world.
The minute Bin Laden gets taken out a dozen other lunatics will rise up to take his place and finish his work. Some of those lunatics maybe smarter, better financed and more sophisticated than Osama was and could be an even greater to us.
So perhaps it is a good thing that we haven't captured Bin Laden.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 8:55 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 29 June 2004
Waiting Game in Iraq
Waiting Game in Iraq
By Daniel G. Jennings
The war in Iraq has become a sort of vicious waiting game where time is on our side.
All the United States has to do in Iraq is stay and keep its allies in power there. If American troops remain in the country for a number of years despite all the attacks of the fanatics the opposition and the international Jihad movement behind will be discredited. These groups whole reason for being is to defeat the West on the battlefield, if they can't do that they will collapse. If after a few years of combat and many deaths, no result is achieved the Middle Eastern terrorist groups will collapse or degenerate into criminal gangs much as the various Communist guerrilla movements in Latin America and Southeast Asia did during the 1970s and 80s.
The longer the war goes on the more brutal the terrorists will get, which will take away most of their support. Eventually, the Iraqi people will get sick and tired of the violence and demand an end to it. They'll get tired of the war and demand peace even if it means accepting defeat or American occupation like the South in 1865, or Japan and Germany in 1945.
More importantly, the terrorists resources are limited and they will be whittled down over time. As the more fanatical and effective members get killed off and recruiting becomes harder the terrorists will have to scrape the bottom of the barrel, using criminals and the mentally ill as operatives.
As the terrorists ability to harm us declines our ability to hurt them will increase. America and its allies will get better at fighting the terrorists. Since our resources are larger, we'll have the luxury of developing new tactics and weapons for dealing with them and learning how they operate. The terrorists won't have the luxury of developing effective new tactics to fight us because they'll be hunted fugitives. Instead they'll have to develop shock tactics like beheading captives.
This of course is the reverse of the Vietnam War where time was on their side. In Vietnam, the Communists had to wait us out that is simply keep fighting until Americans got sick of the war. In Iraq, time is on our side because all we have to do is wait them out.
The question is do we the will to play the waiting game in Iraq or not?

Posted by thegreatone168 at 9:45 AM MDT
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Saturday, 26 June 2004
Michael Moore
Michael Moore & Art
By Daniel G. Jennings
The awards, critical claim, media attention and praise Michael Moore's new propaganda film "Fahrenheit 911" represent a terrible development: the triumph of politics over art.
Moore's film is not being praised for its artistic content or because it is entertaining, no the movie is being praised because the powers that be in the news and entertainment industries agree with its politics. Moore's ability and the artistic quality of his film do not matter only the political content of the movie matters.
Fahrenheit 911 only won the Golden Palm Award at Cannes and four or five stars from virtually all of the film critics because of its politics. Undoubtedly many deserving directors who produced real works of art were passed over in favor of Moore's shoddy propaganda piece.
To make matters worse, I'm sure many of the filmmakers at Cannes thought Moore's movie was nothing but cheap propaganda and Moore himself nothing but a fool. Unfortunately these people probably voted for Moore and his movie because they were afraid of the reprisals they would receive for challenging the prevailing ideology in the entertainment industry. Just as I'm sure that a number of top film critics who disliked Moore's movie recommended it because they were afraid of reprisals from higher ups in the news business.
Art no longer matters among the independent film makers and critics who made a cult out of artistry in film. Only politics now matters, films that are politically correct are praised as quality. Movies that are not politically correct will be attacked.
The filmmakers who so vocally defended Michael Moore's freedom to make his propaganda film would undoubtedly do everything in their power to censure or ban a film that tried to justify the war on terror. They would do this because such a movie wouldn't be politically correct.
The only people criticizing the film industry are not those who value art and artistic freedom but conservatives who would ban Moore's film because it isn't politically correct and produce some equally simple minded propaganda to take its place. Art has become the hostage of politics and little more than a plaything of the politicians.
The example of Michael Moore proves that the artistic climate in Hollywood today is that of the 1970s Soviet Union. Only art that justifies the prejudices of a narrow minded and vicious class of bigoted intellectuals is allowed. All other art is suppressed. We Americans should take heed of what happened to the Soviet Union, a society where art, literature, entertainment, economics, industry, the military, the news media, science and scholarship were completely politicized, it collapsed because nothing in the country worked any more. If we don't stand up and say no those like Michael Moore and his apologists who would politicize our culture, America will suffer the same fate.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 9:29 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 8 June 2004
Comments Upon the War
By Daniel G. Jennings
Historical Comparisons
Over the past couple of weeks, President Bush has used the 60th Anniversary of D-Day and the opening of the World War II memorial to compare the present conflict in Iraq with WWII. At the same time numerous antiwar activists have compared the Iraq War to the US war in Vietnam.
Neither of these comparisons are very good, World War II was a global conflict between great powers, the present conflict is a battle between various groups of insurgencies and US troops. The Vietnam War was a conflict between a well-armed and well-organized guerrilla force and US and allied forces. Any similarities between either of these conflicts and the Iraq War are superficial. The comparisons are propaganda ploys designed to appeal to emotion and sentiment rather than legitimate historical comparison.
This war instead is something new and different, a new war for a century. The US isn't fighting an organized enemy with a hierarchical command structure instead it is fighting a sort of mass movement. In Vietnam, the Communist forces had leaders with whom we could negotiate and deal with. There are no real leaders to deal with in Iraq behind a few loudmouths who claim to be leading the opposition such as Sadir, who appears to have no real control over his troops.
American troops haven't faced a situation like this since they were fighting Indian tribes in the Old West, many of which had no real leaders or organization. Americans could sign a peace treaty with one Indian but the war would continue because there was no Indian government with which to deal. Yet that's a very poor comparison.
Some people have raised comparisons to the Philippine Insurrection after the Spanish American War when US forces occupied the Philippines after defeating Spain in 1898. In that war, the rebels had leaders and a formal command structure. When American troops captured the leaders, the rebellion collapsed.
Perhaps the best comparison would be the Boer War of the early 1900s when British Imperial Forces fought Afrikaner or Boer (Dutch speaking South African) guerrillas for control of South Africa. After the fall of their capitol, the Boers had no real leadership or government and usually fought in bands called commandos (from which the term "commando" for special operations soldiers was derived). The disorganized resistance continued until the Boers realized that couldn't achieve their objectives through warfare. This was only achieved after the British employed brutal methods such as placing tens of thousands of Afrikaner civilians in concentration camps in which many women and children died of starvation that the war ended. Like the US in Iraq, the British were condemned around the world for their actions in South Africa and like Americans in Iraq the British were poorly prepared for the new tactics and weapons technology they faced. Eventually the British agreed to a political settlement in which most of the Boers' demands were met.
There is no real good comparison for this war in American History and only a poor comparison in British history. Perhaps it's time for our politicians to face the reality of what's happening in Iraq and abandon their misuse of history. That is probably too much to ask.

Posted by thegreatone168 at 10:50 PM MDT
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