The Watering Hole: August 23rd – A short tale of two wars

War I fought to rid the world of a dictator (or so they said):

Deaths of military coalition forces: 4’792
Deaths of civilians due to coalition action: 100’000 est.

Cost: USD 792’313’100’000 and counting

War II fought to rid the world of a dictator

Deaths of military coalition forces: 1 (British Airman killed in a traffic accident in Italy)
Deaths of civilians due to coalition action: 64 – 90 casualties, but it is still an estimate.

Cost USD 896’000’000 est.

Don’t get me wrong here. I do not approve of war. But I do not approve of dictators either and my home country has been rid of the worst in 1945. It wouldn’t have been possible without using military force. But you can get rid of them in a smart way by supporting a people in the uprising, or you can go about it the dumb way by just going in with out a first, let alone a second thought.

This is our daily Open Thread. Just add your thoughts.

190 thoughts on “The Watering Hole: August 23rd – A short tale of two wars

  1. Great links EV.

    Of course, we must be honest about one thing. The first one (Bush’s Iraq War) wasn’t about ridding the world of a dictator. It was a gift to the Military-Industrial-Complex, whom many in the Bush administration where part of. Some of the same players who helped prop up Saddam in the first place. The Bushies weren’t people of principle. They were people of profit.

    • That’s why I said “(or so they said)”. I won’t shed a tear for Gaddafi. I didn’t for Sadam and I hope Asad is next.

  2. This is my opinion only:

    It seems that almost every whack job in recent history that made it to power was supported by corporations or the United States or some combination of the two.

    • Gaddafi not so much. He was aided by the Russians (then USSR) who are now complaining that all this nice oil has now gone into the hands of pro NATO people..

      This is another upside of the way the Lybia conflict is handled. The rebels owe you (and France and the UK) now.

  3. zxbe on August 23, 2011 at 4:48 am said:
    Of course, we must be honest about one thing. The first one (Bush’s Iraq War) wasn’t about ridding the world of a dictator. It was a gift to the Military-Industrial-Complex, whom many in the Bush administration where part of. Some of the same players who helped prop up Saddam in the first place. The Bushies weren’t people of principle. They were people of profit.
    Zxbe, the Iraq war was also a gift to the oil companies and to multinational corporations who now control the Iraqi economy. Plus, 9/11, terror-terror-terror and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were great distractions to cover up what was happening on Wall Street thanks to the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999 and the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000.

  4. Sadly some of the wars, conflicts or troubles we have had with other countries since WWII are due to the puppets we put into place, who later decided not to play ball with us anymore. Boy it sure would have been nice if other countries leaders demanded that Bush step down during his eight year reign of terror and error. Again…who the phuck are we to demand that other leaders…or dictators step down…Are we God?…never mind answering, I know how many on the right would answer that.

    • I love it EV!

      I once had a debate over that very issue of pro-life and pro-war with my Bachmann adoring republican sister.

      She claimed that thou shall not kill meant in a premeditated sense like when a woman decides to have an abortion. That war is different. I replied “So you don’t think killing other humans isn’t premeditated when a soldier fires at the enemy or a crowd of civilians or when a bomber pilot drops his bombs onto a village below?”

      • Here’s how it works: The effects of the fire bombing of Hamburg, Dresden, and Tokyo along with with the nuclear destruction of both Hiroshima and Nagasaki were NOT premeditated, were NOT intended to kill/murder innocent people. Unlike Pearl Harbor and abortion.

        War is so fucking cool! Obviously blessed by god! As is Amurka! Which would be even MORE blessed by god if we could find a way to knock off the gays and the abortionists, of course. Maybe start another war or two in the process (profit is good, always) and kill some Muslims while we’re at it. They ain’t Christian, after all, and … well, you know how god feels about THAT.

        Jeebus, I gotta watch myself. I’m starting to sound like my cousin. 😯

    • The “pro-life” movement co-opted the anti-death penalty movement — stole the slogan, really, It would perfectly appropriate to steal it back, don’t you think?

    • IP, comments differ when you read the original at The Guardian.

      To add one thought when it comes to Gaddafi:

      Europe used to have an “asylum seekers problem”. Swiftly legislation was introduced, so whoever was immigrating into any European country and passed a “safe” country on the way had to be kept by the first “safe” country and ask for asylum there. This made Europe into a fortress whose borders in the Mediterranean were fortified to keep out the dark folks. I think it was Berlusconi who first made friends with Gaddafi and struck a deal to keep them darkies in Africa. Libya detained them, Lybia abused them as a cheap labor force and Libya ultimately killed many. Gaddafi isn’t very particular when it comes to dealing with this “problem”. We in Europe didn’t take too close a look at what really happened. Gaddafi was our ultimate hit man. Nasty isn’t it? This may explain why some (do you hear me Mr Westerwelle?) were really reluctant to have Gaddafi ousted. Never mind the oil.

      The situation in March was such, that there was a real threat of immeasurable bloodshed in Misurata and Benghazi planned by Gaddafi. Political decisions have always a variety of reasons, the fact that the French President is up for reelection and really slumping in the polls may have played a role to turn him into a falcon. UK’s corporations like Shell and BP have surely lobbied as well. But in this case it was the right decision to support the rebels and it was done smartly. Especially by the US administration (taking a backseat is surely not always a bad idea).

      You could ask why not Syria? I’d immediately support action against Asad. But he has Iran in the background and going after him using military action would trigger another Gulf War. The war with Iran that some neocons still promote. We don’t want that, do we? Obviously Obama doesn’t want that either. The action against Gaddafi is sending a clear message, even without open intervention. And who knows what is really going on when it comes to covert ops?

      Politics and war are dirty businesses, but you can’t always keep out of it.

  5. Kind of off topic, but isn’t it totally unconstitutional to allow those with more wealth and money, the wealthy and corporations, to have a greater voice and influence within our government than we, the average American, working class person?

    • It’s ok, permission is in this here part of the declaration of the constitution where it says,

      Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

      That’s the founder’s way of saying “Once I git mine it’s ok for me to git more, and screw you. All y’all.”

  6. The Libya story has greatly distracted from the story of the Federal Reserve secretly handing out a trillion dollars in low interest, short term loans to Citigroup, Bank Of America and others who refuse to work with homeowners.

  7. And don’t get me wrong, the Libya story is great for the Libyan people but there is more going on behind the scenes. The liberation of the Libyan people angle being played out in the corporate media is being used to justified the theft of the oil and natural gas reserves, along with the international bankers getting their greedy, evil hands on the independent State ran Libyan central bank.

    • It really isn’t about her in the long run, is it? It’s to send a message to anyone else who might be considering a lawsuit… puts a damper on anyone else trying to get restitution.

      It kinda works the same in Texas these days where the “loser pays” court costs. If you can’t afford to pay court costs if you lose (in very business oriented courts, mind you) then you aren’t very likely to bring suit against an employer or corporation of faulty merchandise, are you?

  8. I got an stupid email from my father today about climate change. I might have a guest post in my rebuttal….

    …I need to cool off first though and work on it tonight.

  9. Sexual assault charges against Dominic Strauss-Kahn have been dropped.

    If you’re going to get assaulted by a man in a hotel room, make sure you’re a “good” victim.

    • He’ll get his due in France. There is a very upper class young woman accusing him of assault. Maybe the class thing helps. Btw her mom had an affair with the guy and came out saying he’s somewhat brutal in his love making. Yucky old geezer.

    • .
      Didn’t take long (maybe a decade or just a little over) for the pendulum to swing back to: “you asked for it, I gave it to you”/”it’s your fault”
      The woman is always to blame.

      As for KBR – all the blue language and more to them. I’ll say it – they are m’fers to the nth degree.

      • These days, if a woman gets raped and is not beaten to the brink of death, she faces a real possibility of not being believed or being blamed for the attack — unless, like EV says, the woman has money backing up her word.

        Fascism is on the march.

        • Or, if she is kept in a container and not allowed to seek medical help until after all the evidence of her assault is gone…then what’s a girl to do?

          I’d think twice and three times about wanting my daughter to join a mercenary group like KBR anyway.

  10. .

    Frugal, were you affected by this?

    “Magnitude 5.3 Quake Rattles Colorado

    Trinidad Still Feeling Aftershocks

    The largest earthquake to strike Colorado in almost 40 years has shaken hundreds of people near the New Mexico border.”

  11. Rebel Flag flying over Gaddafi’s hidey hole.

    The BBC:

    1645: Rebels have hoisted their flag over Col Gaddafi’s home in the Bab al-Aziziya compound, rebel TV reports.

  12. .
    He shouldn’t be held accountable for his wife’s ignorance and thorough lack of judgment…
    resigning was all he could do given the circumstances.

    New Jersey GOP lawmaker resigns after wife’s racist email

    A New Jersey lawmaker has resigned from office after his wife delivered a racially charged e-mail to possible campaign opponent and former Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis.

  13. Frugal…. read an article about some artist painting dead trees in Colorado… is that anywhere near you? and what do you think if it is?

      • All is well. I’m about 40 miles north of Mineral. It was impressive. Child is quite freaked, we’re never moving to California.

        • .
          ah, what’s a little 6.2! (damn scary).

          The beauty and weather far outweigh the ‘occasional’ quake!

          Sorry Outstanding, jr. was shaken!

          • I had son crawl under my massive kitchen table. I wish I had been watching the pigs, I bet they knew it was coming.

        • A facebook friend stated that she was gardening at the time and all the earth worms jumped out of the ground and then she felt the quake.

          I was sitting at the computer and my desk and monitor started shaking and I didn’t realize it was an earthquake. Just thought it was my imagination.

    • .
      You’ve been baptized – you are now a Californian! (earthquake country, you know!)

      Do hope you are all ok.

      Is there fracking going on in VA; WVA or the environs?

      • The fracking is in PA. Southeastern PA has had earthquakes in the past. There is a lot of limestone in the ground and we get “sinking” quakes. The largest that I felt was a 6.4 about 15 years ago.

        • No, Ebb. I felt quakes here before. They are usually small without after shocks. Perhaps this is why I don’t get frightened although I should because my business is located in a very, very old building. The floors shake when I walk across the room. Tornadoes frighten me. We had a tornado uproot an eighty year old oak tree and drop it on our roof many years ago. I cried for days.

  14. Remember, the Rapture is scheduled for two days short of two months from today, on October 21st. Could these quakes be part of it? Preparations under way?

    Don’t have cable so can’t watch Fox for confirmation.

  15. Have Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins and John Hagee blamed Obama for the 5.9 quake in the D.C. area yet? (Hagee blamed Katrina on an impending ‘homosexual parade’). Any GOP candidates? Ok, maybe they’re rattled and trying to get their talking points lined up.

  16. I just reversed my DVR on MSNBC to see what was on as the earthquake happened. It looked like the picture started to shake just as Andrea Mitchell was going to commercial, and they came back on with a report about the quake from Tamryn Hall in Miami.

    Thom and Ellen Ratner as the earthquake happened, at about 1:47:53 on the player.

  17. The sheriff’s office just called and said we’re in a state of emergency. They did not say why. From local news reports the biggest problem so far is all the freaked out people. Schools closing, people stuck in traffic.

        • Thanks for asking.

          It’s been hectic.

          Our new main developer deleted all the source code; which sounds more dramatic than it really is. Most new developers manage to do it, because the source control tool we use (Perforce) is not very intuitive at first. But being that it’s source-control, code is never actually deleted; it’s just marked for deletion, so it’s all fairly simple to recover. Just time consuming, and lots of panicky e-mails wondering what’s going on.

  18. That national memorial to MLK on the National Mall just opened yesterday. Yep, that has to be the cause of the quake.

  19. Just something I thought of when I read the comments about the earthquakes today and the East coast one near a nuclear power plant:

    Electric Funeral – Black Sabbath

    Kind of ironic how so many believe or thought Ozzy was a Satanist or in the Occult but when you listen to many of his lyrics, he warns of the devil, war, corrupt politicians, and we the people being pawns in their game of chess.

  20. .
    “Bull semen spill closes Nashville highway

    Fire and emergency crews shut down an on-ramp to Interstate 65 South in Nashville Tuesday after they found several steaming canisters with a foul odor. “

    • Sounds like the old joke: “What did Tarzan do when he saw the elephants coming over the hill? – He swam for it”

  21. Earthquake Does Less Damage to Washington than Eric Cantor

    Majority Leader’s Devastation Felt Across Nation

    WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report) � Seismologists said todayy that a 5.8 magnitude earthquake centered in Virginia did less damage to Washington, D.C. than House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, also centered in Virginia.

    “The earthquake and Eric Cantor originate from almost the identical point,” said Dr. Davis Logsdon of the University of Minnesota’s Seismology Institute. “But while the earthquake caused some minor shaking, there’s only one word for Eric Cantor’s impact: devastation.”

    As residents of Washington picked through the rubble left behind by Rep. Cantor, some questioned whether it made sense to rebuild.

    “What’s the point? Congress will be back from recess in a few days and then he’ll just knock everything down again,” one resident said.

    While rumbling from the quake extended to states as far-flung as New York and Ohio, Rep. Cantor’s path of destruction has wreaked damage on almost every state in the country, Dr. Logsdon said.

    “The only state he hasn’t destroyed is Wisconsin,” he said. “That’s because there was nothing left of it after it was hit by Scott Walker.”

  22. Virginia Nuclear Plant Had Quake Sensors Removed Due to Budget Cuts

    A nuclear power plant that was shut down after an earthquake struck central Virginia Tuesday had seismographs removed in 1990s due to budget cuts.

    U.S. nuclear officials said that the North Anna Power Station, which has two nuclear reactors, had lost offsite power and was using diesel generators to maintain cooling operations after an 5.9 earthquake hit the region.

    The North Anna plant, which was near the epicenter of Tuesday’s quake, is reportedly located on a fault line.

    Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) Senior Scholar Bob Alvarez told the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) that the North Anna plant was built to withstand a 5.9-6.1 quake. […]

    • .
      “…the North Anna plant was built to withstand a 5.9-6.1 quake…”

      What if this one turned out to be a 6.6 on the Richter Scale?

      Then by all means – taking away the seismographs for budgetary reasons seems really… idiotic.
      Lawd have mercy on the stupid –

    • It makes one wonder if they bothered to keep the Geiger counters. There’s really no sense in warning about a radiation leak that might not even be serious enough to kill anyone and if it is serious enough to kill people then the people dropping dead would be far more telling than a gauge, dial, or warning tone.

  23. I have friend who helped build North Anna and questions were raised at the time as to whether it was a good idea to build it in on a fault, even though it’s sort of a wussy east coast fault. The hyperbole on the news is pretty funny, but the earthquake did manage to shake my well enough to turn my water to a rich red brown.

    Zooey, I’d rather an earthquake than your shocking news. If only we could tell when folks are on the verge of breaking.

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