Sean's Blog

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Saturday, September 14, 2002

I read Will Saletan's article yesterday at the the leftwing magazine, Slate. The article is titled, "Appease This: Bush's Useful War Lust," but the thread from the front page at Slate is, "Does the U.N. think Bush is nuts about Iraq? Let's hope so." Slate is not my kind of magazine to say the least.

After I read the article I posted a comment at their board which they refer to as "The Fray." That's the only part of the magazine that I do like. Here are the comments I posted and the responses I received:

Subject: Craven leftists
From: Sean Roper
Date: Sep 13 2002 9:45 PM

I am so glad that you people aren't running this country because we would have to sit and wait for the nuke to go off in NY. Even then I have serious doubts about whether you would do anything. I know you would wring your hands, furrow your brow, and hold sensitivity and diversity classes so that we could "understand" what we had done to bring the horror upon ourselves, but I believe that a military response would still be out of the question.

Your insistence that we can do nothing without proof of Saddam's intentions is the same argument the appeasers were making in 1938.

People like you (leftists) are the reason that we have people like Saddam. He is the bully and you are the enabling wimp ready to cringe, cower, and assuage at the first sign of aggression.

Thank God that you people aren't running this country at this critical time in history. Thank God we have George W. Bush for our president. He will defend us and you won't. People understand this about the left and that is why you are nearly irrelevant in national elections. People know you will not defend them, and in fact, you will probably help to destroy our great military which would only accelerate our destruction. To say that I have contempt for leftists is an understatement. You are ready, willing, and eager to see America destroyed. Your intentions are clear and that is why you don't get votes. People aren't as stupid as you need them to be to gain control of the US.

Subject: RE: Craven leftists
From: Shrieking Violet
Date: Sep 13 2002 11:02 PM

Whoa! Whoa! Reality is over that way, Sean!

I've read hundreds of craven analogies to Munich '38 over the years. It's one of the most common gambits in all of rhetoric, and has be used to justify almost every military misadventure in the history of the world since Neville Chamberlain fled 10 Downing Street in disgrace.

But Saddam Hussein, as of September 2002, bears about as much resemblance to the armed, dangerous, and lebensraum-minded Hitler of 1938 as Anna Nicole Smith does to Marie Curie. His country is defeated, unreconstructed from the last war, caged by sanctions, blanketed by airspace restrictions, and fundamentally incapable of invading a country much larger and better defended than Disneyland. He is as thoroughly unappeased as a crackpot dictator can be.

Saddam doesn't have ties to Bin Laden, no matter how desperately Bush tries to pretend otherwise. His is a secular regime that represses Islamic fundamentalists-- he is one of al qaeda's big enemies.

He wouldn't dare use a nuclear weapon against the US. He wants nukes for the same reason we do-- deterrence. And we'd don't need to invade Iraq for attempting to get nukes anymore than we need to invade China. Because of the policy that has kept us from being nuked for the last 57 years-- deterrence. Saddam knows damn well that that the US would wipe his sorry regime off the face of the earth if he dared to nuke us. This is why he didn't use chemical or bio-weapons against the US in the Gulf War, although he was more than happy to use them against Iran, and against dissidents in his country.

These are all flimsy excuses for invading Iraq. There is only one good reason to attack Iraq, as Saletan accurately points out... Iraq is not living up to its terms of surrender in the Gulf War. All this talk of war is probably a bluff designed to strong-arm Saddam into compliance. Would Bush seriously defy the UN to attack Iraq for the stated reason that Iraq is defying the UN? Even ol' Dubya isn't that brazen of a hypocrite. Or is he?

Subject: RE: Craven leftists
From: Sean Roper
Date: September 14 2002 2:36 PM

I read what you had to say and I disagree with most of it, but the one thing I had to respond to is your insistence that Saddam would never nuke us because we would wipe his sorry ass off the face of the earth. Are you kidding me? SADDAM NUKING US IS NOT THE THREAT. THE THREAT IS THAT HE WILL GIVE THE NUKE TO SOME TERRORIST ORGANIZATION, HIDE BEHIND A WALL OF DENIABILITY, AND WAIT FOR YOU LEFTISTS TO DEFEND HIM. Forgive the caps, but I wanted to make that point very clearly. If Saddam wants us nuked, he won't do it himself. He would most likely give the weapon away. After the horror, you leftists would be lining up to defend Saddam because no one had pictures of him giving the weapon away.

Saddam has shown a willingness to gas his own people, not to mention the Iranians. He has attacked Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Israel, but you appeasers are willing to give him ONE MORE CHANCE.

As I said before, thank God that you leftists aren't running this country because you would not defend us, and you would most likely disarm us in some incredibly naive belief that evil can be appeased.

Subject: RE: Craven leftists
From: Tony
Date: Sep 14 2002 12:25 AM

Codswallop!!!!!!!

This is what Israel does, with George Whacko Bushes blessing - guilty until proved innocent ( posthumously, preferably ) and it is exactly the same tactic as that used by all dictators.

Bush is a dangerous lunatic, in my book, because he is incapable of addressing the reasons behind the terrorist attacks a year ago, and his actions will further alienate Islamic opinion, and de-stabilise countries which are at the moment reasonably friendly. These are widely accepted scenarios, held by people with far more nous in their little toes than GWB has in his entire brain cell.

Don't dismiss people with divergent views to your own as craven leftists, or you might be accused of being a rabid right-wing racist!

Subject: RE: Craven leftists
From: Sean Roper
Date: Sep 14 2002 9:50 AM

The simple truth is that you leftists who appease Saddam would have appeased Hitler. No matter how you want to spin it, that is the truth. Leftists are making all the same arguments. That Saddam has broken every UN resolution is undeniable, but you always want to give him one more chance. If leftwingers weren't appeasing him, they would have demanded years ago that he abide by those resolutions. But all we got were more resolutions. Your position for nearly 10 years has been to appease the man and you're being dishonest when you deny it

The lessons of 1938 and comparisons to Hitler are clear, but you deny that too.

End of string.

I enjoy this sort of thing so much. It's the biggest reason I used to visit Excite's Soapbox chat room and argue with people. It really does get the adrenaline running because you MUST be quick or you will be swallowed up like bait in a tank full of sharks.

It's time for my week two football picks. Here they are:

Inside the NFL: BEAT THE EXPERTS
WELCOME SeanRoper YOUR SEASON RECORD 8-8
WEEK 2

Chicago at Atlanta

Cincinnati at Cleveland

Tennessee at Dallas

Miami at Indianapolis

Jacksonville at Kansas City

Green Bay at New Orleans

New England at NY Jets

Detroit at Carolina

Tampa Bay at Baltimore

Sunday September 15, 04:05 PM EDT

Arizona at Seattle

NY Giants at St. Louis

Buffalo at Minnesota

Houston at San Diego

Denver at San Francisco

Sunday September 15, 08:30 PM EDT

Oakland at Pittsburgh

Monday September 16, 09:00 PM EDT

Philadelphia at Washington

TIEBREAKER: total points scored in Monday Night game: 51

Friday, September 13, 2002

I didn't mention this, but the Prime Minister of Canada had an interview the other day with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in which he basically blasted the US. I didn't post anything on this because I assumed this was typical of many Canadians today (actually it is) and not worthy of regard. However, The Toronto Sun features a blistering response in an editorial by Peter Worthington.

I found this via Instapundit.

Here's a link to still more links to various opinions on President Bush's speech at the UN.

I have never heard of many of these people, but the consensus seems to be that Bush was masterful in turning the tables on his critics. Bush detailed all the resolutions that Saddam has broken and served notice to the UN that they risk becoming irrelevant if they don't enforce them. He didn't ask for new resolutions, just enforcement of the ones they have already.

Read what Andrew Sullivan and James Lileks say (scroll down).

It's clear that President Bush has done a brilliant job. People have underestimated him simply because he is a republican and because of his down home demeanor. Once again, I am so grateful that he is our president at this critical time in history.

Radley Balko asks, "Black Enough, Or Liberal Enough?". What he's talking about is a belief by some in Washington D.C. that Mayor Anthony Williams is not black enough to lead D.C. Yes, that is absurd and stupid. Julian Bond says, "African Americans properly reject as racist allegations from others that we all think, look and act alike. Why should we impose these reactionary notions on one another?" Unfortunately the organization he heads, the NAACP, does not appear to agree with him. Read the article to see exactly how the NAACP has treated blacks who don't tow the liberal line.

Even more wow, the editors of The New Republic have published a scathing indictment of the Democratic party for not taking a stand on the issue of the war on terror. The editors don't presume to tell them what that position should be, but they say the democrats should at least support something.

I agree. I believe that democrats are afraid of losing power because war is something that they have historically been opposed to as a party. Their constituents are mostly left-of-center types that hate the military and many of whom hate America as well. So for the democrats to come out in support of the war would alienate that voting bloc, but if they come out as opposed to the war they will offend as many or more in their own party. They have put themselves in this position and now they are trying to walk that tightrope. One of the ways they are walking that tightrope is to change positions from 1998 as I pointed out in this post a few days ago or to change the subject from the war to domestic issues. This is why the democrats don't want to make the coming election about the war as Jonah Goldberg pointed out. It's a no win position for them and they are more concerned with winning power and elections than they are about taking a stand based on principles, integrity and honest convictions. But they will probably get away with it. The American people elected a man in 1992 and 1996 who had no principles, integrity, honor, convictions, and as it turned out, morals. So the people haven't shown that those qualities are too important. That's good news for the democrats.

The New Republic is a left leaning magazine. When they say something like this the democrats should listen.

Wow, Tammy Bruce is brutal in her assessment of European appeasement in 1938 and in 2002. The problem for Europe is that she is also brutally accurate.

When faced with the greatest threat to peace in its time, the Europeans sought to soothe and to assuage Hitler instead of standing up to the man. They are doing the same thing now. It appears that only Tony Blair has learned anything from history.

Thursday, September 12, 2002

President Bush made the case against Iraq in this speech at the UN.

I don't think Saddam can do anything to prevent his overthrow. Our demands are going to be that he follow the letter of each UN resolution and he simply cannot do that. We will not allow him to delay or prevent any inspection whenever or wherever we feel it's necessary. In the past Saddam was able to keep us off his palace grounds, but that won't do anymore. We are going to give him a anal probe like he can't believe and he will simply not allow it. Saddam has repeatedly placed conditions on implementation of Security Council resolutions. The days of him dictating terms are over and that will be the basis for war.

This is from yesterdays Opinion Journal:

"Blogger James Lileks ponders the short life of Christine Hanson, a passenger on Flight 175, which hit the second World Trade Center tower:

She was two. The family was flying to Disneyland when the terrorists slaughtered the flight attendants, stabbed the pilots to death, and drove the plane into the building. . .

Little Christine was [my daughter's] age, give or take a month; bin Laden's lackeys killed her--and did so to ensure that other fathers, mothers, brothers, and sisters died as well, preferably by the tens of thousands. This little girl's death wasn't even a comma in the manifesto they hoped to write. They made sure that her last moments alive were filled with horror and blood, screams and fear; they made sure that the last thing she saw was the desperate faces of her parents, insisting that everything was okay, we're going to see Mickey, holding out a favorite toy with numb hands, making up a happy lie. And then she was fire and then she was ash."

I read the whole thing a few days ago and it still breaks my heart. There's a link at the Opinion Journal for Lileks piece.

Jonah Goldberg's latest G-File is about the absurd demand of leftists that we "learn to understand Muslims." You say that it's not absurd at all to demand that we gain some understanding. That a lack of understanding is the reason for all the strife in the world. Well, I think Goldberg makes a great argument that many of the worlds hot spots are between people that understand each other very well, and while we're at it, it's not the US that needs to understand Islam. In fact, Goldberg shows that the Muslims are the ones with closed minds:

"One small example: At the University of Nablus, Professor Suliman Bashear suggested that Islam, like all other religions, evolved over time rather than having been simply delivered, perfectly formed, from Mohammed's mouth. His students responded by throwing him out the second-floor window."

And this:

"Americans question themselves all of the time. We ask hard and, often, stupid questions about our religions, our laws, and our politicians every single day. We study Islam in our universities (while Saudis confiscate Bibles and jail people who carry them) and our leaders, from the president on down, talk themselves blue in the face about the need for tolerance and understanding."

Sounds like to me that we are not the ones who need to practice a little understanding or, as the the left would say, diversity. I think leftists should go tell it to the Arab Muslims.

Ann Coulter argues persuasively that, overwhelmingly, the only hate crimes that have taken place in the US between Muslims and Americans has been committed by Muslims.

Coulter shows that American religious and political leaders rallied to support and defend Muslims in this country. She also shows how the Muslims have rewarded that support. Ann describes a New York Times visit to a private Islamic academy and some of the students reaction to events. Here's a sample:

"Soon after the terrorist attack, the New York Times chatted with students at the Al Noor School, a private Islamic academy in Brooklyn......None of the students said they had experienced any harassment since Sept. 11. To the contrary, their school had been deluged with support from local Catholic schools, hospitals, state education officials and political leaders.

"But the love was entirely one-sided. The students stated point-blank that they would not fight for America against a fellow Muslim, denied that Osama bin Laden was behind the attacks, and criticized the United States for always opposing Muslims.

"Isn't it ironic," one student sneered, "that the interests of America are always against what Muslims want?" (That's why the last several major American interventions abroad – in Kuwait, Somalia, the Balkans – were all conducted in defense of Muslims.)"

I would call that selective memory. I wonder if anyone at the Times pointed this out to those students?

If James Lileks doesn't bring a tear to your eye with his latest bleat then you must be a robot. I wasn't going to read anything like this but I since I am a fan of Lileks I felt that I must. It's a very good piece.

Wednesday, September 11, 2002

God Bless Great Britain! Via The Corner. See the signs that have popped up in British stores announcing two minutes of silence at 1:46 PM local time for those lost on 9-11 and read the comments from Americans. The outpouring of sympathy and love from England is deeply touching and encouraging. If the Arabs who did this had had a speck of the humanity that the British exhibit they wouldn't have done that evil thing.

Michael Ledeen has an upbeat piece in the British paper, The Telegraph.

I have been reading several articles today although I haven't posted anything about them. Virtually everything I have read has been confident and determined. Today is not a day for sorrow or guilty reflection on what we might have done to bring this on ourselves. Today is the day when we remind ourselves that those bastards f***ed up when they did that terrible thing. They made a huge miscalculation and we are determined to show them how wrong they were.

James Taranto's Best of the Web column for the Opinion Journal is one of the smartest and very often the funniest things I read. I love the "You Don't Say" sections the most because that features stupidly obvious headlines from newspapers. I also love when Taranto has a feature about Yasser Arafat's Fatah, the terrorist wing of the PLO. At the end of each story they state that "Arafat won a Nobel Peace Prize in 1994." Everytime. The cumulative effect is damning because they have had tons of stories on Arafat's terror organization. It simply cannot be denied that he is a terrorist even though he won a Nobel Peace Prize. The most infuriating thing is that some members of the committee that gave the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize to Arafat and Israel's Shimon Peres complained that they couldn't take away Peres' award. They didn't say the same thing about Arafat, just Peres. That's the hypocrisy of the Europeans for you.

The World Policy Journal features a detailed examination of internal Iranian politics by Whit Mason.

Mason provides an in depth look at Iran by discussing the recent revolutionary history of that nation, which serves to give the reader a better understanding of contemporary Iranian politics.

Mason agrees with Michael Ledeen that Iran is simmering with resentment and outright anger at the theocracy that has such a stranglehold on the economy and personal freedoms. Both writers say that some sort of revolution is likely in the near future, but Mason says that President Bush's Axis of Evil speech actually harmed the reform movement while Ledeen says that the people of Iran welcomed President Bush's speech and that it gave them hope. One thing is clear, Iran is teetering and it wouldn't take much to push that nation over the edge.

Personally, I don't care what they do in Iran. If they want a theocracy, then I say more power to them. But the Iranians use terrorism as a diplomatic tool and now something must be done. We should do all we can do to promote democracy and rule of law in that terrorist haven, but ultimately the Iranian people must decided for themselves what kind of government they want.

Tuesday, September 10, 2002

An Iranian man cut off his daughters head because he suspected she had been raped by her uncle according to this story which I found via Opinion Journal. The father cut her head off "to defend my honor, fame, and dignity."

All cultures are equal. Yeah, right.

Jonah Goldberg is one of my favorite writers. He has a weekly column at National Review called the G-File. This weeks column is sort of along the lines of my last post on the democrats 180 on military action against Iraq. The democrats say that Bush is using the war to score political points and Goldberg says, to sum it up, "yea and your point is?" I agree that this election can and should be about the war and how we are going to deal with terrorism in the long term. Either we are going to fight a long, hot and cold, war against terror outfits and nations that support them, or we are going to do like many leftists want us to do and prosecute these people individually as criminals. I especially like this aside from Goldberg:

"(By the way, could someone explain to me why Republicans are evil for allegedly making an issue of the war in order to gain a few seats in Congress — while Democrats are somehow virtuous for stifling their convictions in order to save a few seats in Congress? Seems like a moral wash to me.)"

Why is it ok to make an election about prescription drugs or welfare, but it's not ok to make an election about the war? Goldberg makes a very good point.

I just saw this Fox News story on TV. It seems that democrats have changed their tune on Iraq since 1998. When Bill Clinton was president, they were all for strong military action. There was none of the handwringing and furrowed brows that we are seeing today from the very same democrats in 1998. They were resolute and confident that they had all the reason they needed to start military action against Iraq. What the f*** happened? Why did they change? The plain truth is that the only thing that has happened is that a democrat is not president. I wonder what the polls are telling them? I suspect that polls are telling them that they are in danger of being marginalized by a popular war. That they are in danger of losing power and they fear that more than terrorism. I am just guessing here, but what else could be the reason that people like Sen. Tom Daschle (D-SD) have suddenly reversed positions? It appears that they will do anything to win an electoral majority or to at the least to limit their damage. It looks like they have made a cynical calculation of just how much they can oppose military action against Iraq. They are gambling with our lives, but they are quite prepared to make that gamble to ensure that democrats don't lose too much power. That's absolutely disgusting.

Ordinarily I wouldn't read The Nation because it would just piss me off and that's no way to go through the day. But today I read a long essay by Adam Shatz called, The Left And 9/11 because Andrew Sullivan recommended it as fair, comprehensive and fascinating. Since I am a fan of Andrew's, I had to read it. I wasn't disappointed. It is an excellent examination of the left post-9/11. And when I finished reading it, I sent them this letter.

Editors

I keep hearing leftists say that we have lost civil liberties since September. That's pretty vague. Would someone please explain to me what civil liberties I have lost? The police do not stop me on my way to or from work. I am not stopped in public and asked for my papers. So, please tell me what "widespread violations of civil liberties" the government can be said to have made. If you can't, please shut up because that is nothing more than an intentionally deceitful, vague and incendiary term designed to inflame passions. The term has no meaning. Everytime I read something from a leftists, the term "widespread violations of civil liberties" is included in the text somewhere, but not one has yet to list the "widespread loss of civil liberties." Either you don't know what "widespread" means (which I know is not the case) or you are being intentionally dishonest (which is probably the real reason). Yes, I will admit that some civil liberties have been a casualty of the war, but that is true in EVERY war and it is a price to be paid for defending our nation. But the loss is hardly "widespread" and can more accurately be described as a "focused" loss of civil liberties aimed at individuals instead of the nation as a whole. This is a critical point. I am not a leftist and I don't take much of what they say seriously because they have a horrible way of exaggerating and twisting the truth to fit their arguments. In short, you guys are dishonest, or to be more blunt, you lie. Noam Chomsky comes to mind right off the bat. Take the stories about how the US is responsible for the deaths of millions of children in Iraq. Chomsky doesn't even mention that Saddam Hussein is allowed to sell as much oil as he needs to provide food and medicine to his people. That's intentionally dishonest. A lie. Then you can take the Afghan casualty statistics. Leftists said the number was something like 3,000, but a closer examination of the sources for this number revealed that the main source was the Taliban government which was never an honest source for information during the war. Independent sources put the number at between 800 and 1,000, and could possibly be lower still. Next, consider the stories coming from leftwing news sources that reported a massacre at Jenin. Even the UN admitted that it never happened. The left has a credibility problem. You don't have any because you have been caught in multiple lies and exaggerations. You twist and contort the truth. You use these exaggerations, lies, and contortions in support of an argument and when these things are revealed your whole argument falls apart. That is the real problem the left has. You lack credibility and you have done it to yourselves.

Sean Roper

Monday, September 09, 2002

Michael Ledeen knows the Middle East pretty well, Iran in particular, and he is growing increasingly alarmed at the slow pace of events that must take place. He has been saying "faster please" and I see that he is getting frantic. We are at war with the entire Middle East. If we fail to act quickly enough, we doom us all, western Europe included, to terrorism and blackmail by nuclear wielding nations. That why Europe is driving us so crazy. Don't they get it? The Arabs are aiming to kill us all. How much clearer do they have to be? Sure they have started small, but they have big plans.

The anniversary of September 11th is just two days away. Many writers and pundits are focusing on that terrible day, remembering what happened. Some are writing about the changes that day brought. Martin Walker of UPI has written an excellent piece explaining how America has changed as a result of that day.

I am with Walker. I think America has decided that that is just about enough of multilateral appeasement. We have had it up to here with weak and ineffective UN resolutions and sanctions. We are going make some changes in the middle east. If we do it properly Iraq will be transformed in much the same way that Japan and Germany have been transformed.

We are not going to wait to get nuked. If the western alliance is destroyed because of what we must do, then so be it. I think irrepairable damage has already been done. Here's the way Walker explains it:

"The real effect of Sept. 11 is that American patience and tolerance for its global critics, most of whom do rather well out of America's benign hegemony, seems just about exhausted. And however it was that Osama bin Laden expected what he has called "the American Empire" to react to his murderous assault, if indeed he thought that far ahead, he seems not to have calculated that America might react by tearing up the old rule book of international affairs."

Amen brother, as well we should now that we see that Europe has abandoned us. Now that we see that they are quite prepared to sit back and wait for us to get torn apart; to watch it happen. Opinion polls show that the average European does not want to help us do what we must do. Fine, but they must also understand that things are now changed. We virtually guaranteed them that we would stand shoulder to shoulder with them anytime, but this is too much to take. If this is what they want, it's time we go our separate ways.

Sunday, September 08, 2002

Woohoo! The Carolina Panthers won their first game of the season ending a 15 game losing streak. I picked them to lose against Baltimore, but I was hoping they would win.

The opening weekend had several close games for me. So far, I am 7 and 4 with 5 games to go. Not bad, but not great either.

I wasn't able to watch the Panthers game because it was blacked out for not being a sell-out, so I watched the Packers-Falcons. I was skeptical about Michael Vick when he was the first overall pick last year, but I am a believer now. He is an incredible talent as long as he remembers that he is the quarterback and not a running back. I was afraid he would become a runner first and a quarterback second, but he stood in the pocket and made several great throws two of which were DROPPED, and which eventually cost the Falcons the game. The Falcons have the makings of a great offense. They added Warrick Dunn and drafted a big RB named T.J. Duckett. All they need is a reliable go-to receiver. If the Falcons can improve defensively, they will be a top team in the NFC.

The Atlantic online magazine has an interview with the respected military journalist Nick Cook about his new book, "The Hunt For Zero Point." This book is about the mysterious "black world" where powerful technologies of warfare are developed.

Cook reveals that the US is developing ANTI-GRAVITY weapons systems. The science behind this technology is quantum level "zero-point field." Cook says that this technology dates back to World War ll, to the German general Hans Kammler who was in charge of the Nazi's secret weapons projects. Here's how the interviewer says that anti-gravity could change the world economy:

"If this were developed and incorporated into flight vehicles, the implications could hardly be understated: antigravity would forever alter the world's economy, make global transport systems obsolete, and, of course, change the face of warfare. Some also felt that the zero-point field could be an enormous source of energy, if only people could learn how to tap it."

Cook says that the military implications are enormous and varied:

"Well, in a number of basic ways. First of all, you don't need a propellant. It's a reactionless motor, so that would be immensely beneficial simply in terms of fuel consumption. But that's a very menial advantage, in a sense. I think the real potential is that if what you are doing is manipulating the forces of nature, you may get untold effects from that manipulation, effects that we can probably only guess at right now, but which would lead to ultra-fast flight, extraordinary maneuverability, and stealth—the ultimate stealth vehicle, if you like."

I have often wondered what weapons systems our government was developing. If they tell us about new aircraft and stealth technology, what aren't they telling us? I think I have my answer. This is simply incredible.