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Iraq war worth costs

— The war in Iraq, which has cost 4100 American lives, has brought freedom to the Iraqi people and has helped bring a little more freedom to the Middle East, in general. That is hardly "no good reason." All our past wars cost many more lives, all under Democrat presidents. In WW2 and Vietnam, we bombed civilians indiscriminately in order to defeat the enemy. In Iraq, we are using smart bombs to specifically target the enemy (I don't know the ratio of smart bombs to standard munitions). Our soldiers also have body armor that actually deflects bullets along with armored vehicles that have saved many lives, something we have never really had in war before. This is not the worst president in history.

- Don Thayer

Comments

paulmauro 5 years, 7 months ago

Mr. Thayer has overlooked some equally compelling data in construction of his defense of the Iraq war. It is convenient to state only 4100 soldiers died. But that number overlooks the thousands more who were so grievously wounded as to require very significant and serious care, some never to rcover. While it is true the ratio of deaths is less than other conflicts, this is due more to modern medicine than to a kinder conflict.

He also overlooks the war's effects on the families at home: harsh financial burdens, divorces, or dysfunctional problems, all prevalent. How many more thousands of family members were unwitting war casualties of a different form?

Dare we overlook the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis killed, and millions displaced? He should ask the Iraqis of the wonders of new smartbomb technology before touting that this was more humane. I assert you can't count the effects of a war by using such a one-sided view.

As to his assertion the war brought freedom to the Iraqi people and to the Middle East in general: last time I looked there was scant evidence of greater freedom in the Middle East in general. In fact, the US may have done irreparable harm to the cause of freedom in the Middle East. The Iraqis themselves are having trouble showing appreciation for their new found freedom also; all too many are instead wishing for electricity, water, sewage facilities, jobs and schools. If Mr. Thayer would read Imperial Life in the Emerald City he might better appreciate how the president actually further antagonized and provoked the Iraqis to dislike America.

We could argue about whether Bush is the worst president in history but the argument does not ride on whether the war was a good one or a just one. No, it rests on the lies told to justify the war, the lies to propagate the war, the intransigence to rectify obvious problems, and the Crimes and Misdemeanors committed (witness, for example, the outing of a CIA agent in the interest of promoting the war).

Then there is the inevitability issue. More and more publications have revealed that the president was determined to bring war to Iraq and was merely looking for an opportunity. As early as October 2001 there were discussions about going to war in Iraq. Why? Here again, a little background would help: In the Project for a New American Century, published in 1997, the numerous neocons who populated this presidency presented a strategy for taking on Iraq. All that was needed was the right president, or in the view of some, the wrong president, to make it happen. Very possibly the worst president ever.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Here are some figures on past wars. US Military Deaths(Source - Wikipedia; other sources vary): WW1 - 116000 in 19 months, WW2 - 407000 in 44 months, Korea - 54000 in 37 months, Vietnam - 58000 in 90 months, Iraq 1991(Desert Storm) - 150 in 1 month, Iraq 2003 - 4000 in 60 months. Contrast that with Iraq - 4100 deaths in 65 months. None of these figures include wounded, I'm sure we all agree that these past wars cost MANY more wounded than the current one in Iraq. I did not imply this is a kinder conflict.

Although it hasn't affected me since I don't know anyone in Iraq, I also understand the results at home. Compare the current results to the results of the Vietnam conflict. Those men and women were called names, spit upon, generally treated badly upon their return. I don't know the quality or quantity of mental care they got afterwards but I seriously doubt it was as good as we provide today. We now have a much better understanding of the traumatizing effects of war.

Are you honestly implying smart bomb technology is less humane than carpet bombing? I hope you're joking. At least we've made an effort to reduce civilian deaths.

The Iraqi people have voted 3 times since we invaded and chosen their leaders in elections that were much more honest and fair than under Saddam, I remember seeing them raising their thumbs in pride to display the ink as proof they had voted. Let's not pretend there is less peace in the Middle East today than before Saddam was removed from power.

Do you blame the terrorists who have destroyed schools, mosques, electricity plants, sewage plants for the lack of clean water and electricity or do you pretend we've done that because our leader is horrible and uncaring?

I agree that Bush at least exaggerated the threat from Saddam, but that's my personal opinion based on no facts. My understanding is that Saddam authorized the murder of the former President Bush and got caught at it(a US citizen and former US President), invaded 2 countries during his rule(Iran and Kuwait) which caused an estimated 1000000 + deaths, tortured and murdered 300000 of his own people(that's 25000/yr for 12 years), used chemical weapons to wipe out a complete village of Kurds(some townspeople had tried to assasinate him), and drained 2/3 of the Central Marshes fed by the Tigris River, destroying the livelihoods of the native Iraqis who had lived there for hundreds of years.

My understanding of the Plame affair is Richard Armitage gave her name to the press, not Libby, yet he was never indicted for it. Why?

My question about the Iraq war is why didn't the UN do it's job and protect the Iraqi people from Saddam in the first place? They could have simply insisted he leave the country with his fortune and retire somewhere, yet they did nothing. At least President tried to stop the killing.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

My original comment was a partisan reply to a partisan comment that Bush is the worst president in history. I don't think he is. The following is why:

John Adams signed the Sedition Act into law July 14, 1798, which made it a crime to publish "false, scandalous, and malicious writing" against the government or its officials. Enacted July 14, 1798. Bush has done nothing of the kind.

Woodrow Wilson supported the Sedition Act of 1918 during WW1 which made it a crime to utter, print, write or publish any disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language about the United States' form of government. Bush has not done so.

Franklin Roosevelt imprisoned 110000 +/- Japanese Americans, over 60% of whom were US citizens, after the attack on Pearl Harbor; Bush spoke publicly after 9/11 reminding Americans that Muslims in this country hadn't committed the attack, that we shouldn't blame them.

If you disagree with Bush's leadership, fine, but let's be honest, past president's have been far more abusive with their power and far more restrictive with our constitutional rights.

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JustSomeJoe 5 years, 7 months ago

Bush's leadership? In what, flouting the Geneva Convention, rendition, secret prisons and torture? Suspension of Habeas Corpus? Warrantless wiretapping of American citizens? Claimed executive privelege to ignore the laws he doesn't care for? Take a look at what we do know about Bush's unprecedented abuse of power, and then imagine what we haven't found out yet. Bush has more than caught up to Adams, Wilson or FDR. The Sedition Act in comparison to his administration, what a joke. I've always been proud to be an American, but I am ashamed of our government.

How about invading a country that treated us as liberators for about about a month? This war has already cost America almost a trillion dollars, the unnecessary loss of American life, our blood and treasure and for what, Saddam Hussien? That's another HUGE joke Don. It was for the benefit of those who put him in office, the military-industrial complex. Bush/Cheney has sold our country cheaply to war profiteers and energy companies, much too cheaply and on the backs of our lower and middle class.

There's a reason he enjoys a twenty-something approval rating. Only the most partisan, most closed-minded Americans can defend the man. Even scarier, the GOP and now potentially independents rallying around John McCain, a man who sold his soul to the social conservative wing of the Gasping Old Party to become president. Looks like we can enjoy four more years of a Bush style presidency with a McCain/Palin administration. The question is can our country take four more years of it?

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Jason Krueger 5 years, 7 months ago

Dan, There are a number of facts in which you are mistaken: 1- The smart bombs you mention have, by our own Government Account Office reports, missed their intended targets by distances of 100m or more in a number of instances.
2- Our soldiers WERE ill-equipped with armor. Remember Rumsfeld's response to the soldier, "You go to war with the military you have, not the military you wish you had" when asked why his unit was forced to use scrap metal to protect their equipment? 3- Physically and mentally disabled vets have not received the level of care you are implying based once again on GAO reporting. 4-Saddam Hussein was an ally of the US up until he invaded Kuwait. Read your history book. The US overthrew the democratically elected PM or Iran (not Iraq) in the early '50's and placed the Shaw in power. Following 20 years of repression, the Iranian people overthrew the Shaw and the radical cleric Khomeini took power determined to oust the American influence. The US aligned itself with Saddam in an attempt to solve this crisis. Iraq, under Saddam's, leadership was very secular and radical Islam was virtually non-existent there prior to our invasion.
The US turned against Iraq only after Saddam's invasion of Kuwait concerned he would continue his march into Saudi Arabia thus controlling the majority of mid-eastern oil.
Saddam's WMD killings occurred in the 1980's when he was our ally. Not only did we turn a blind eye to these actions, we taught him how to do it. 5- Do I blame our leader for the destruction of their infrastructure? Yes, inasmuch as Mr. Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld chose to ignore what far too many people already knew; maintaining stability would be the difficult part of the war, not the overthrow of the government.

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Jason Krueger 5 years, 7 months ago

6- Bush DID exaggerate the Saddam threat. The Administration's statements claiming Saddam had sought uranium in Africa were based on 1980's intelligence (again, when he was our ally). Recent intelligence (post Gulf War 1) gave no indication he was trying to increase his WMD arsenal. THESE ARE FACTS. THEY WERE KNOWN BY OUR LEADERS AND WERE IGNORED. 7- Your understanding of the Plame affair is also lacking. Again, government investigations have determined VP Cheney WAS aware and gave implied consent to "out" Mrs. Plame. 8- Why didn't the UN do it's job? Stop blogging and go read recent history, Don. 9- Prior to taking office, Mr. Bush had NEVER been outside of the US. Mr. Bush takes pride in not bothering to educate himself on issues he is unfamiliar with and chooses to follow his gut instead. Under Mr. Bush's watch, our country was attacked by terrorists. (This was predicted by an intelligence report handed to Mr. Bush when he entered office entitled "Al Qaeda Determined to Attack US Using Commercial Airliners"). He invaded a sovereign country and overthrew its leader by implying to the American people Saddam was responsible for the Sept. 11 attacks; an outright lie. He stated the Undersecretary of Emergency Preparedness and Response, Michael Brown, was doing a "heckuva job" when New Orleans was drowning. His leadership has allowed warrant-less wiretapping, torture (as defined by the Geneva Convention of which we are a signatory), and has suspended the right to habeas corpus. His economic policies have resulted in the current housing crisis, caused the gap between the rich and poor to be the largest in US history, and turned a national surplus into a deficit, His administration has stated "conservation" is a nice idea but not "sound governmental policy". His solution to skyrocketing oil prices is to continue tax credits to the oil industry, and allow off-shore drilling and further exploration into wilderness areas. His Heath and Human Services secretary has been quoted saying: "There is still a debate as to exactly how much lead in a person's blood is an unhealthy amount." (Is there a healthy amount??).

Would you like me to continue?

Mr. McCain has also supported all of the above policies over 90% of the time.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

I'd like to reply to everyone this evening around 5:30, I'm on my way to work right now. Even though I disagree, I appreciate those of you who are willing to discuss the issues rationally.

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Jason Krueger 5 years, 7 months ago

Don, The problem I see with all of your posts is they seem to fall into one of two categories. You either condone mediocrity or you make vague references to Republican talking points that really don't mean anything. You mentioned giving "Bush the benefit of the doubt" too many times to count. I too am willing to forgive a mistake here and there but Bush has made far too many to be "given the benefit of the doubt" any more. More importantly, ALL of his mistakes have been based on naive assumptions and uneducated "gut feelings". His choice to invade Iraq was based on lies and manipulation; lies and manipulation that were directly refuted by hundreds of intelligence reports. His assessment of New Orleans was simply moronic. And his preoccupation with clearing brush on his ranch is just odd. Fundamentally, his inability to even understand or acknowledge his own limitations is insulting to anyone who has ever taken pride in receiving a quality education.

As for the invasion of Iraq being a "noble act" which is what it appears you are implying, I truly hope you aren't that ignorant. Name one time in our history where America has gone to war for purely altruistic reasons. To say we invaded Iraq to "free the Iraqi people" is as foolish as saying bin Laden hates America because we allow our women to dress how they choose.

It is precisely this over-simplified view of the world which has resulted in our current domestic and international fiscal, diplomatic, and military mess.

Why do you and the RNC in general insist on allowing half-ass decisions and policies to be the norm? Why does America, a country that used to take pride in its innovative and educated masses continue to allow the political climate to center around simplistic and utterly ignorant talking points that don't truly address the needs of its people or the greater concerns of the global economy?

I am tired of listening to a President who is incapable of forming a complete sentence without sounding like a baffoon. I am tired of living in a country where "intellectuals" are demonized and a "common man (or woman) who "never dreamed of becoming Vice President"" (a direct quote from Palin) is considered virtuous.

In less than 2 months we will elect a new President. This country does not have the luxury to continue debating pointless arguments regarding the patriotism of our candidates, the number of houses they own, the type of school they attended when they were 10 years old, or the color of lipstick they choose to adorn their domesticated animals with! If we continue this mindless banter we should not be surprised when our liberties, our values and our quality of life are further sacrificed under the guises of such empty phrases as "preservation of freedom" and the "return to traditional family values".

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

JustSomeJoe,

Your comments are based on insinuations, are argumentative, and don't truly deserve a reply.

Bush is not jailing Americans because we disagree with his policies, at least not that I've heard. He has NOT abused his power more than Adams, Wilson or Roosevelt. As an example, he publicly supported Cindy Sheehan's right to criticize him.

I don't have a problem believing he invaded Iraq for reasons other than he claimed but show me some evidence, don't imply.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Jason,

Missing targets by 100 meters in some instances is still better than carpet-bombing innocent civilians, and I assume some smart-weapons were on target. At least we made the effort to reduce civilian deaths.

Yes, our soldiers were ill-equipped with armor, which they have NEVER had, at least not of this quality; when Bush saw it was needed he reacted to the situation and procured armor for our troops. Rumsfeld's statement is true, you don't wait several years to allow the enemy time to prepare. I understand if you think we should have stayed out of Iraq, but the Rumsfeld statement is true, the key difference is Bush thought the war was necessary, you don't

I don 't know what the GAO says about our veterans' healthcare but maybe you should be more specific. Do they claim we don't provide care, that we need to do better, that is is unacceptable healthcare? Is today's healthcare better than post-Vietnam as I assume?

Your argument concerning Saddam as our ally is invalid as President Bush NEVER considered him an ally and did not overthrow the previous Iraqi government. You're comparing a past situation to a current one, times change. Yes it was a fairly peaceful country before we invaded, why is that? Saddam tortured and murdered people who protested his rule, most people would shut up and deal with the situation under those circumstances. That is NOT peace.

Do you disagree that insurgents were destroying mosques, sewage plants, and electricity plants, not to mention oil pipelines that the Iraqi people depended on? Why were they fighting their own people, destroying their own country?

I agree with your WMD statement although I don't have all the facts, you ignore my other comments on Saddam. My personal opinion is that the UN should have done the job long ago.

You also ignore my comment on Richard Armitage. Cheney may have known and even encouraged the disclosure, I don't know, but if this was a true investigation, why wasn't Armitage charged? It appears to be an anti-Republican witch hunt. Grill a public official long enough and you can charge him with perjury and obstruction of justice. The Republicans did the same thing to Bill Clinton.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Jason,

I've been to the UN website and read the charter and mission statement. They habitually discuss the issues and react far too slowly. How many people have died needlessly because of a failure to react, or a delay on taking action?

As far as I know Bush NEVER tried to tie Iraq to 9/11, he implied Saddam had terrorist ties, which he did. I suspect your statement on Bush's knowledge of the world is based on personal feelings, not fact. I think the last sentence of the report you refer to was something to the effect that the FBI gave no credibility to the report since it was unsubstantiated, but it's been a while since I've read it. Bush had been in office for 8 months when 9/11 occurred and there was supposed to be a meeting concerning terrorism Sept 12th if I remember correctly. I'm sure it takes a while to coordinate a complete change of government like a transition from one presidency to the next, I'm willing to give Bush the benefit of the doubt.

I understand Bush signed the national emergency order(I don't know the proper term) 2 days before Katrina hit land. If true that shows leadership and preparedness. I don't know if Michael Brown did a good job or not, do you honestly know? The people of Louisiana voted their governor out of office afterwards, that makes a strong statement by those with personal experience. Let's not forget what a catastrophic storm it was, and the geography of the area(below sea level in some places). It was the local governments that failed to prepare, the federal government came in to help with the aftermath, as it should.

Are you comparing warrantless wire-tapping to imprisoning American citizens for criticizing the government, or based on nationality? My understanding is that the instances of torture were not widespread, I agree we should take the moral high ground, but once again I give Bush the benefit of the doubt, at least initially after 9/11. It was much more important to stop further attacks and protect American lives, which the US Constitution obligates the president to do. I'm unsure, but I don't think Bush has suspended "Habeas Corpus", I know Lincoln did during the Civil War.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Jason,

Bush' policies have nothing to do with the current housing crisis, realtors set prices based on current selling conditions, buyers support prices, and speculators drive prices to unreasonable levels. Congress controls legislation on oil company tax credits, not Bush. I believe we should drill offshore, we have the technology to do it cleanly and we need to rely more on ourselves and less on the Mideast. I don't know about lead, is it an honest comment by the HS secretary, do we have all the facts or are we still learning? Scientific debate constantly changes our level of knowledge.

The deficit peaked in 2004 above $450B, dropping yearly since then until the tax rebates this year which added $150B to it(projected was $160B /- before the rebate), and now bailouts of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are adding to it. The deficit rose then fell just as I remember Bush predicting it would(he said it would halve by 2009).

We haven't gone into recession yet but they are a regular phenomenon, Bush inherited one from Clinton, he inherited one from Bush Sr.

I don't agree that Bush is the worst president in history.

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JustSomeJoe 5 years, 7 months ago

Don - Just so I'm clear, you believe the Sedition Act was worse than breaking our responsibilities under the Geneva Convention in regards to torture, worse than ignoring the laws of our country regarding spying/wiretapping citizens, worse than detaining persons of interest for 3+ years without proving probable cause or bringing charges against those persons? I disagree, my opinion only of course. You are right, he didn't arrest Cindy Sheehan but that hardly elevates the man in my view.

As far as Bush's reasons for invading Iraq, they have all be shown to be the results of his adminstration manufacturing evidence, and using outdated and unproven intelligence. (WMD, Yellowcake, etc) His administration directly manipulated raw intelligence to support the war they wanted to launch. Bush/Cheney were discussing invading Iraq as part of their transition strategy after the election and before 9/11. The 9/11 commission interviews showed in the immediate aftermath of 9/11, the administration looked to link Iraq to the attack despite the absence of any evidence.

Plenty of interviews, articles and books have been done on the neoconservative movement spearheaded by Feith, Wolfowitz, Perle, Rumsfeld and of course Cheney. They had already targeted Iraq to be their first preemptive war, their strategy of bringing democracy and revenue through regime change by the sword.

Don - if you believe that Bush invaded because of a right minded belief that Saddam had WMD and was about to use it, then you truly are in that 20% that believes in their elected President without question. I'm taking a broader view and am considering the goals of the primary Bush/Cheney corporate sponsors; Energy/Oil, Brown and Root, Halliburton. I'm seeing their no-bid contracts, the billions and billions of allmight revenue this war has delivered them. I'm rightly cynical of the Bush Administration and your defense of one of the worst presidents in history.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

JustSomeJoe,

I do believe the Sedition act was worse because, at least under Adams, men were imprisoned for speaking out. Thomas Jefferson pardoned them when he took office. I don't know, but I don't think our Geneva Convention violations were as wide spread as has been implied. This is simply based on my feelings about Americans in general, including our soldiers.

Persons of interest who are being detained are not average people from the street, they are at the least associating with terrorists. Do you release a probable terrorist because his guilt can't be absolutely proven? These are people who murder innocents by the dozens, without remorse, simply because the victims either don't fight against America(Iraq), they follow a different religion, they ignore restrictive practices(strict fundamental Islam), or refuse to support the "Cause". We don't want to imprison innocents but we have an obligation to protect life, it's a bit of a catch 22 situation. I believe our prisons, even Guantanamo, are much more humane than anything under the people we are fighting.

I don't really mean to defend Bush, I just don't believe he's our worst president. If he went to Iraq for the wrong reason, the worst we can say is that he did the right thing, or at least a good thing, for the wrong reason. Others have done nothing. I don't justify manipulating the American people into war, I support Saddam's removal and ask why it wasn't done much sooner. I believe the Iraqi people are much freer now than under Saddam.

I also don't believe this is the first American administration in history to lie to the voters, I have no faith in politicians, including John Kerry, John Edwards, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

I mentioned giving Bush the benefit of the doubt twice, I had to read several of my replies to even find them. I make a lot of assumptions but I believe they're reasonable. I'm not repeating Republican talking points, I'm speaking my opinion based on the facts I know and some assumptions. There's no reason to reply to your opinion of Bush, it's only an opinion.

We did a noble thing in Iraq, I don't know Bush's true reasons, neither do you. You point on altruism is a good one, we have NEVER gone to war to help someone else, including the past wars that have cost an average 131000+/- American deaths per war(WW1 through Vietnem).

I watch the markets, Europe is falling into a far worse economic situation than we are in, and at a faster rate. I believe our economic problems are mostly due to the housing issue which I discussed above. Our exports are currently growing for a change, although that may not last. Do you credit Bush with that?

The current candidates for the presidency are not impressive.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

I'd like to clarify that I'm defending Bush here, not supporting him, there is a subtle difference.

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peace 5 years, 7 months ago

Defending someone versus supporting someone, with subtle differences. Yes Don it is about as subtle as a smart bomb deployed by an idiot commander in chief....I would like to join this conversation but have little time to do so now...I look forward to adding to the debate. At least differing viewpoints, (such as ours are bound to be), can lead to change of hearts and minds. My personal opinion of why we went to war was the threat Saddam made to George 41, and George 43 did not like that. Also 43 said he would fire anyone who outed a covert CIA operative...look what is happening now. Oh and the economic pyramid scheme unfolding now with financial institutions. Over five hundred billion dollars lost for American consumers. But then again the russians and chinese who made investments in America are losing too. That is why now something is being done about this tip of the iceberg money meltdown, not just about mortgages....

Anyway more later I hope.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Peace,

I don't like defending Bush because he's a politician, just like all the others, and there's a good chance I'm wrong. But no one here has made a counterpoint to my opinions, only argument and insinuation. You're doing the same.

If Bush DID go to war because of his father, isn't that what the US Constitution charges him with, protection of the American people? Everyone tries to belittle him with this argument but Saddam tried to assassinate a former US President, the American people should have been calling for his head on a plate. Didn't Richard Armitage, a former Clinton appointee, actually out Valerie Plame? As far as I know he didn't work for Bush, therefore he can't be fired. Why wasn't he charged with a crime and why did the prosecutor continue chasing Libby?

If Bush caused the current housing market crash, state how. My opinion is in my earlier comments.

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Jason Krueger 5 years, 7 months ago

Don- to be clear on why I am against Bush. Again, the following are indisputed facts. ALL OF THEM CAN BE VERIFIED. My OPINIONS are clearly noted

1- During the lead-up to Gulf War #2, Pres. Bush on NUMEROUS occasions implied Iraq was responsible for 9/11. He never directly stated 9/11 was masterminded by Saddam but he DID make statements including the following: "We must attack Iraq to prevent future terrorist attacks on our soil." These by ANY COMMON SENSE definition were made to convince the American public 9/11 and Iraq were linked. THIS IS PATENTLY FALSE AND HAS ALWAYS BEEN.

2- The Administration never used the "assassination plot against Bush 1" as a justification for war. In response to your question, I do take issue when a President chooses to endanger the lives of our troops to exact revenge against a supposed assassination attempt on his father. Our CIA has done the same to other leaders. (Castro/Cuba is an example. Again this is not an opinion- it is a FACT) Such ATTEMPTS are what the covert parts of a nations' government do. Great Britain does it. Iraq does it. Canada does it. THE USA DOES IT! ITS THE WAY THE WORLD WORKS

3- The Bush administration's policy is to allow alternative theories of creation to be taught in public schools. THIS IS A FACT. The principles supported by EVOLUTION are what have allowed such medical breakthroughs as antibiotics along with producing watermelons without seeds. The science behind evolution has been tested and peer reviewed to the point of exhaustion. It is a disservice to our children and the future of the United States to blur the line between science and its systematic study of structure and behavior through natural world study and experiment to support a hypothesis, and religious dogma.

4- The Administration believes in trickle-down economics. Their fundamental tax policy is based on reducing the tax burden to the highest incomes in America with the theory such reductions will promote job creation and innovation and ultimately lead to prosperity for everyone. THIS IS A FACT. My OPINION is their policy over the past 7 years have FAILED. If YOU or anyone else believe the country is in a BETTER FINANCIAL POSITION today than it was 7 years ago, you are welcome to debate this.

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Jason Krueger 5 years, 7 months ago

5- Our Constitution provides for Habeas Corpus. The Administration has been UNABLE to SUCCESSFULLY PROSECUTE the majority of its enemy combatants. If these individuals are indeed our enemies it is OUR MORAL AND LEGAL OBLIGATION AS DEFINED BY OUR CONSTITUTION TO PROVE IT . In the overwhelming majority of instances, this has not been done.

6- The FACT is prior to George W Bush becoming governor of Texas, Texas was in a budget surplus. When he left the governorship, Texas was running a deficit. The same has now occurred in the US economy. THIS IS A FACT. Just as I would begin to suspect a child being responsible for the cookie crumbs leading from the cookie jar to the child's bedroom, I can draw a reasonable assumption that the Republican fiscal policies are responsible for many of the current financial troubles.

7- The Bush/Republican belief that our energy crisis will, in a large part, be solved by further drilling in America will not work. Simple math proves this statement. Our consumption exceeds our maximum production capacity. THIS IS A FACT BASED ON CURRENT GEOLOGICAL DATA.

As I've stated before, we have an election in less than 50 days. Neither politician will be able to make a sea-change in the direction America is headed over the next four years. (For all of you Republicans out there, there is no way Obama will be able to completely socialize our health care system in 4 years so stop panicking.) HOWEVER, your DUTY as an American is to participate in the election process. Your only practical options are to elect either McCain or Obama for the next 4 years. Any other vote, while perhaps noble and politically daring, is not going to result in anything worth mentioning. If you feel the past 7 years are the direction the United States should continue to head then you should continue those policies and vote for Mr. McCain. His PROVEN, FACTUAL voting record has supported those policies 90% of the time. If you do not like the current direction we are traveling, the only option you have at this particular "fork in the road" is to vote for Obama.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Jason,

You're manipulating the facts.

Bush did NOT say Iraq was responsible for 9/11, regardless of his other statements or beliefs. He said Iraq was linked to terrorism, which evidence supports.

I didn't say Bush used the assassination argument for war, I said it helps justify it for me.

I agree that Bush is wrong about teaching creationism, also his budget-cutting for science programs.

Although I'm not an economist, I do believe in trickle-down economics. There may be a better policy but I don't think trickle-down is a failure or that it has been proven wrong. I don't know of any Bush policy that has caused the current economic slowing, it's a natural cycle, exacerbated by a speculative housing bubble and oil price spike.

Yes our Constitution provides for Habeas Corpus for American citizens, implying it has been suspended because we imprison POW's is simply dishonest and manipulative.

I don't have any facts on Bush's term as Governor of Texas.

Your statement on oil is opinion, not fact. We are still finding new sources of oil around the world, the current known supply is not an absolute final figure. Our current consumption may be above our current maximum production capacity but if we had been expanding that capacity for the last 30 years where would we be now? Also, we buy over half of our oil today from other producers, we don't need to meet our needs on our own unless we choose to. We should drill more and research and develop alternatives, combined.

I trade the markets and I understand how prices are set. The basics are supply/demand. My opinion of the recent oil spike is that it has been manipulated by speculators, seemingly confirmed by the continuing crash in oil prices(real supply/demand issues would have supported the price near it's highs). If we drill more, supply will grow, eventually meeting demand, decreasing buying pressure and increasing the selling side, thereby decreasing buying speculation. These bubbles occur constantly, they seem to move from one market to another, I assume based on the vulnerability of the specific market to volatility.

We have a choice this year, vote based on the facts, not a manufactured hatred of Bush.

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Jason Krueger 5 years, 7 months ago

Don- Only because you continue to exist in a world of illusion, here are another 935 reasons that contradict the world you've created.

http://projects.publicintegrity.org/WarCard/

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Jason,

Once again the facts are being manipulated. It's clear to me that your link is a biased anti-Bush website, with questionable credibility.

Saddam HAD chemical and (I think) biological WMD's, Bush never said he had nuclear weapons, only that he was trying to rebuild them. He had made numerous public statements supporting the destruction of Israel, and my understanding is that he financially supported Palestinian terrorism.

The link you refer to claims "232 false statements about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq " from Bush, another 244 from Powell, plus other officials. That's almost half the "lies" when Saddam HAD the weapons, which means they aren't false statements. I personally think Bush exaggerated the figures in order to go to war, but I think the war was the right thing to do, regardless of Bush's true reasons.

Compare this war with Vietnam under Johnson: approximately 36000 dead and MANY more wounded in four years just to stop the spread of communism, and we lost. I don't mean to sound callous but 4100 dead in 5 years compared to past wars is not a catastrophe, more people are murdered in the US every year. We did a good thing in Iraq, regardless of Bush's true motives.

My point is not that Bush is a good , honest man, he's a politician after all. It's that we've had other presidents who were more abusive with their power (Adams, Wilson, Roosevelt) , completely incompetent(Johnson, Carter), liars(Clinton),etc.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Jason,

I saved your link even though I think the website is because I AM interested in the truth, I intend to at least check it out more thoroughly.

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JustSomeJoe 5 years, 7 months ago

Don - What surprises me about your posts are your statements on everyone else's "opinions" versus I guess what are your "facts". Your original letter or comment which started this thread is "Iraq War worth the Costs". It's all opinion, especially your point that "Bush is a good, honest man." It is my opinion you would have a very difficult time finding many people in the US that share your opinion that the Iraq war was worth the costs.

Bush Job Ratings are at a several year high at 33% ( http://www.pollingreport.com/BushJob.htm )

61% of Americans think the war was not worth it ( http://www.pollingreport.com/iraq.htm )

Keep reading through those Iraq polls, 60 % of Americans think we made a mistake invading Iraq.

My point is, Don, the majority of Americans think this war was a mistake and not worth the costs. Look at it another way, in this very partisan political environment, many core conservatives /republicans have gone against their incumbent president's views and actions. All you have remaining is the core partisans to support Bush's actions. Just the folks that believe what they are told, because the president wouldn't lie to us.

It's America my friend, believe what you want. Maybe burning bushes and snakes do talk and Noah the 950 year old man built an ark. Maybe Bush did invade Iraq because Iraq posed an immediate threat our national defense.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

JustSomeJoe,

I think I've been honest in distinguishing between my facts and opinions. The headline "Iraq War Worth Costs" is from The Steamboat Pilot, my original comment was a reply to someone's comment that Bush is the worst president in our history.

I did not say "Bush is a good , honest man". Look at the end of the 3rd paragraph previous to this and you will see that my statement - verbatim - was "My point is not that Bush is a good , honest man, he's a politician after all."

Opinion polls don't prove incompetence, only opinion. Congress has lower numbers.

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Don Thayer 5 years, 7 months ago

Everyone,

The original comment for this page was made Aug 31 under Steve Hofman's column, 3rd paragraph down from the top. It was a reply to Bush's critics. The Steamboat Pilot chose the headline.

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JustSomeJoe 5 years, 7 months ago

Don - thanks for the correction on your quote. I did miss the key word in the sentence, so my apologies. The rest of the post stands on it's own. Most of America thinks the war is a mistake. I also think, my opinion here, if you polled the question, "Do you think re-electing Bush in 2004 (or electing him in 2000) was a mistake?", you would see close to the same numbers.

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