Sean's Blog

A Guide To Online
Opinion And Current Events

Saturday, January 01, 2005

I don't have the link now, but yesterday Drudge featured a picture and a story about tourists in the tsunami stricken area. It seemed particularly cold, heartless and downright evil for these people to be vacationing while people all around them in the general area were suffering so much. I thought about what kind of person could enjoy himself while human beings were suffering so much.

I'm sure other people around the world saw the story and thought, "Rich bastards. The is surely the face of evil and capitalism and this is the reason I am a leftist and damn proud of it too." No doubt many leftists around the world saw the story and were reassured that, in fact, they are morally superior to those on the right because they would never do what those people were doing and "How dare those people enjoy themselves while others so close to them suffer?"

I felt a twinge myself. I admit it. At first I was a bit horrified at the aerial photos of vacationers sunning themselves. Then this morning I got another perspective from Glenn Reynolds. He makes an excellent point that one of the things that region needs, now more than ever, are those tourist dollars. That's the economy those peoples lives are based on. If we truly want to help those people we need to support the local economy as well as provide disaster aid.

If we all thought as the left thought then the local Thai, Sri Lankan, and other economies would die from good intentions and a bad idea. That would destroy many lives too. The people in the affected area need their economy and we would be hurting them greatly if we all just stopped going their out of some sense of respect for what has happened there. Yes, we can mourn for them and try to help out charitably, but to stop visiting Thailand because so many died would be as devastating for those who are still alive as any earthquake and tsunami.

Tim Blair compares Thailand after this tragedy to New York City after 9/11. City leaders and celebrities such as Robert De Niro went on TV to encourage people to come to New York to support the restaurants, Broadway shows, museums, and other attractions. They said that New York was open for business and President Bush asked people to go on with their lives. The best thing for New York was for tourists to keep coming to New York instead of staying away out of some sense of respect for the dead.

Those areas have suffered one massive disaster and another massive disaster would be if tourists decided to change their vacation plans and go elsewhere.

Friday, December 31, 2004

I haven't mentioned the unbelievable 9.0 earthquake that rocked Asia and created a massive tsunami that has so far killed more than 125,000 people.

Many people are saying that the death toll could go as high as 400,000 after governments in the area are able to make more accurate counts. Unbelievable. Then there are the deaths from disease and other variables that will most likely bring the toll to close to one million people.

This is and will likely remain the worst natural disaster in my life.

Wow. Patterico's Pontifications has a year in the life of The Los Angeles Times.

The piece is a link filled (think documented), story by story, examination of the behavior of the Los Angeles Times as it reports the news.

A brilliant must read that has got to be deeply disturbing the anyone who cares about the LA Times as a credible news outlet.

If I were an editor at the Times I would be deeply embarrassed that, first of all, my paper had been so blatantly biased and, second of all, exposed so effortlessly.

Well, maybe not effortlessly, but at the least it can be said that this wasn't difficult. All that was required was for Patterico to pay attention to what the Times had reported and then to check certain elements of their story against other media outlets or against past documented behavior at the Times.

As I said, it's a must read.

Click to read a joke about Dan Rather, Peter Jennings, and a marine. Hehehe.

In July of 2003 The Wall Street Journal's Opinion Journal, Best of the Web, featured a short piece about Jumana Hanna that described the torture that she endured and the murder of her husband at the hands of Saddam Hussein's thugs.

Well, now Sara Solovitch in Equire Magazine has exposed this woman as a liar and a fraud.

While attempting to corroborate her story so that it could be better documented in a book, Solovitch discovered that many of the things that Hanna told her were outright lies. Finally, Solovitch realized that the whole story was a fabrication that Hanna had spun to enrich herself financially while garnering sympathy that somehow fed her emotionally as well.

Unfortunately many people believed her story, including myself. I'm glad she was exposed for the fraud she is. That's justice. This woman is no different than the people who tried to scam insurance companies by telling them that a family member had died at Ground Zero in New York.

I have been working so much lately that it's nearly impossible for me to post with any kind of regularity. There's not much I can do about it. Therefore any posts to this page will be infrequent at best.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Cliff May has an outstanding article at "The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies." It's a must read.
When Iraqi election workers are shot dead in the streets, as they were last weekend, the murderers' hatred for democracy ought to be obvious.

Yet somehow the debate goes on about whether those fighting us are really enemies of freedom, about whether or not it is imperative they be defeated.

The charge that Americans came to Iraq to steal oil is not much heard these days. Instead, the suicide bombers and throat slitters are romanticized as “militants” -- or even “nationalists” and “patriots” -- who are “resisting American occupation.”

When those “militants” do something particularly barbaric – summarily executing civilians, blowing up police stations, beheading aid workers – the conversation never dwells long on their crimes. Instead, controversy swirls around America's failure to control “the security situation.”

Then, too, there are those who do not defend the killers but argue that the continuing carnage proves the United States can't overcome this foe.
I believe the most regrettable part of this whole war is that the Democrats seem to have decided that if America takes one position, they must take the opposite because whichever side we come down on must be the wrong side since America is the biggest problem the world has today.

Democrats seem to adopted the idea that freedom and liberty are not worth fighting for. They have decided, apparently, especially in the wake of 9/11, that the best solution for the world is a continuation of the status quo as it relates to the Middle East. That more diplomacy and more talking are what's needed and that action should only take the form of more of what we were already doing. More No-Fly-Zones, more talk, more Jewish concessions, more American guilt and blame, more containment of Saddam Hussein, more appeasement of Arab despots, and more of the status quo.

Leftists worldwide have become the conservative party as it relates to the Middle East. American conservatives have actually become the progressives. We are the ones demanding a radical change in our Middle East strategy; a radical change in our thinking. What are the odds that nothing would have changed in the Middle East if we kept doing the same things we were already doing? I'd say the odds would be great that nothing would change.

Conservatives see that progress means promoting democracy, and yes, even if it means that we have to do it at the point of a gun. Afterall, who would that gun be pointed at? Dictators, despots, totalitarians and mass murderers who abuse their people and deny them basic human rights such as the right to choose their representatives.

Democrats are the ones demanding that we do nothing to actually help the people to achieve their human rights. They denounce the war, but by what means to they suppose that future generations will have their freedom and rights? Do they really believe that Jimmy Carter-like sanctions are going to defeat a brutal dictator who thinks nothing of gassing his own people? That's delusional if they do indeed believe that. Besides that, look at what the sanctions actually did to the people of Iraq and how the French and Russians skimmed the revenue and used it to bribe Saddam.

The advance of humanity will only be achieved when people are allowed to choose their government and representatives. Appeasement and useless talk will do nothing to free people. It will only ensure that they remain under totalitarian rule.

Democrats used to say they cared about people, but that was before the United States decided it was time to actually do something to help them end the rule of their totalitarian dictators.

I believe the left is on the wrong side of history and someday when the revisionism begins to take place I will speak up and remind everyone what the left did. We musn't forget.