OUT OF THE LOOP
Re: David Hogberg's There Is No Crisis! Huh?:
Gee, guys... the White House isn't even using "crisis" anymore. It's been downgraded to a "problem." Better have Rove get the talking points to you more quickly, so you can write your objective, non-party-hack articles.
You people are a sad joke. Why not just get jobs with the RNC and end the charade.
-- Nick Sullivan
Upper Darby, Pennsylvania
SENATOR, HEAL THYSELF
Re: Lisa Makson's Buffalo Hillary:
Lisa Makson's "Buffalo Hillary" was excellent. I hope we see more of her byline. The American Spectator has gone through many shades of emphasis over the 20+ years I have been subscribing, but the finest hours always have been with detailed journalism that holds fabulist poltroons accountable point-by-point. Hillary almost represents too easy a target, but I am glad Makson is on the case.
Please thank Reporter Makson for us with a check and the libation of her choice.
-- James N. Ward
Ms. Makson writes: "Clinton made sure to avoid any mention of European countries that are moving away from a national health care system. These countries, groaning under the expenses of 'free' health care, are looking to the U.S. health care system as a model of reform."
I can only support that statement. Here in Germany, which is considered a model for the likes of Hillary, the system is coming apart. The doctors I know personally are thinking of emigrating to Switzerland or the UK. The only reason they don't go to the U.S. is because their degrees would not be accepted.
The socialist system is no longer affordable. Depending on who will run this country in the next decade, and unfortunately it seems the socialists will stay in power, the system will either lead to a minimum health standard at exorbitant costs, and the difference for better care being carried privately, or will be reformed so that private medical funds will become the norm, thus being more like the U.S. system.
What a strange time to be copying the German model, when nobody here, including the socialist government believes in it any more. The only reason they are keeping it is that they would lose most of their voter base if they did not. And here is the real reason Hillary wants this system. It ties those 40 million+ into a governmental subsidy and indirectly into the Democratic Party, ensuring a voter base sufficient to control the political system for decades to come. The U.S. is wealthy enough so that such an indirect voter buyoff would last for decades. Germany is basically bankrupt, so even the socialists are forced to do something about it, albeit slowly. This Healthcare business is more about buying votes than about healthcare.
-- Dirk Neethling
Great, well-researched article. It was wonderful to see every one of Ms. Clinton's "facts" refuted. Just a suggestion for the future. Take abortion off the table in this debate between liberals and conservatives. When you talk abortion, you're playing their game. Abortion is such a divisive issue that it becomes a lightning rod and a very simplistic reason for pro-choice women to reject a more conservative agenda. The conservative message stands on its own merits, why sink to their level?
-- Juliana T. Mastroserio
Skillman, New Jersey
Re: Philip Klein's Domestic Security Democrats:
Philip Klein: Democrat sympathizer, exaggerator, and lucky for the Democratic Party not a strategist (what would you expect from a former Reuters journalist?). Sure one would have to be completely detached from their surroundings or never give domestic security a thought to live like Mr. Magoo. So there are lots of holes in the security net. But to say little has changed in the U.S. airports regarding security protocol since 9/11? What would you call advanced screening machinery that can detect explosives (or that foul odor in your supposedly clean underwear?)? Before 9/11 they had a handy service for air travelers called curb side check in. Before 9/11 you could sit in your parked car at the baggage claim area and wait for your passenger. Before 9/11 you could lock your suitcase.
Currently when Democrats attack President Bush's Iraq policy he is called a liar. He is accused with starting the war for purely financial gain for his business associates. He is accused of being Hitler. Iraq is morphed into Vietnam right before our eyes. Currently the past deals the U.S. and Western Europe made with devil dictators without regard to the most heinous (my spelling error on heinous returned "Heinz" with the correct spelling) abuses of human rights are forgotten when Democrats are reminded how terrible and barbaric Saddam was to the people of Iraq. Three weeks ago President Bush's Iraq policy critics predicted the Iraq vote would be a huge mistake and result in untold carnage. For two years and even now after the failed Kerry campaign the administration is accused of using the terrorist attack potential as a fear tactic to keep the stupid masses frightened like a deer caught in headlights. Currently and in the past President Bush has never accused anybody of being unpatriotic but the Prozac starved lunatics of the Democrat Party insist that he has done that.
So Phillippe, you think the Democrats you are so enamored with will propose stricter security when they want the Patriot Act dismantled? Oh, I forgot the Evil John Ashcroft is no longer a political piñata used by the failed campaign of John F-ing Kerry. Also do you think a perfect record of preventing further attacks on our soil is just a lucky streak while nobody was minding the store?
Imagine if the government did implement a near air tight security system. Your chicken waste Democrat Party would then yell to the heavens that we now live in a police state.
Homeless people can wander the subway tunnels because the left-wing lawyers who as you support every illogical and inconsistent idea that comes out of the Democrat Party waste pipe would file lawsuits to make sure these vagrants would keep their right to urinate in those tunnels.
To still see utter nonsense in print that has been so discredited does seem like groundhog day effect.
I believe that Wlady must publish asinine editorials from the likes of you to elicit emails just to make sure we are paying attention. We were paying attention in 2000, 2002, 2004, and will keep paying attention in 2006 and 2008.
-- Diamon Sforza
San Diego, California
You are right about Security! But Democrats don't even think we need it, Pelosi was just scrambling for something to say. One of the huge holes in the fence is the insane prohibition of profiling, which causes us to strip old Anglo grandmothers, and pass Middle Eastern passengers with a glance. We all can see this hole, but due to Democrat demagoguery we are scared to admit we need profiling.
-- G.B. Hall
Yes, Nancy Pelosi is correct that we have many domestic terror targets that are unsecured. But like the stopped clock that is right twice a day, Ms. Pelosi being right does not enlighten us. It is just not possible to secure every potential terrorist target without turning the U.S. into a Soviet-style police state. If we brought every soldier and marine home to guard these potential targets, we could guard only a tiny percentage of them.
The ONLY way to secure the American infrastructure from foreign terrorists is to take the war to the terrorists. We must deny them training facilities, access to communications, material storage sites, funding, and even a warm place to sleep and the assurance that they will wake up alive; this will secure our domestic infrastructure far better than armed guards at airports.
Then we must ensure that any foreign government that supports terror, including through inaction, is under severe pressure, up to and including, the forced removal of that government. Finally, when a country is transformed from a terrorist-supporting tyranny to a freedom-loving democracy, we have permanently removed a source of terrorist support.
This has obviously been thought through in the Bush administration. It should not be too hard to explain to the American people that we are putting our anti-terror resources where they will do the most good.
-- Ray E. Barker
Philip Klein's observations and Ms. Pelosi's remarks fail on two counts:
1) In a republic, especially one as unfettered as ours, any attempt to "lock down" the institutions, transportation and public square to make it secure pretty much renders it no longer a republic. To amass the manpower necessary to accomplish this task would be a budget buster. To manage the resources would require a near Naziesque attention to detail which Americans would find undesirable.
2) War being a messy thing, it has been the military policy of the U.S. since the Civil War to make such affairs away games. Not that I wish it on the Iraqis, they have shown resilience beyond compare, but better to get all the little Baathists and fanatical Islamists in convenient pockets and let loose a daisy cutter than put pimply faced 20 year olds at every subway station here. To do the latter fetters away the resources that should be on the offense.
Nor do I have to point out that Mr. Kerry suggested just such a strategy and was roundly rejected by the electorate?
"…. We will make homeland security one of their primary missions, and assign Guard units to a standing national task force on homeland security commanded by a National Guard general."
"Although there has been progress in preparing for a bioterrorist attack, we still do not have strong national leadership in planning or coordination."
"…In the end, homeland security is not about changing the alert from yellow to orange; the colors
of safety are firefighter red, EMT white, and police officer blue. …"
All excerpted from Our Plan for America. I see nothing that Pelosi has suggested that Kerry/Edwards did not. Having been rejected once, what is Pelosi bringing to the table that would alter the electorate's perceptions?
-- John McGinnis
Reference Philip Klein's latest: Uh. . .is this for real, or is it just clever Lib baiting? Are you suggesting that we search every single cargo container coming into this country? All one billion of them? Are you suggesting we adopt Soviet-style random spot checks in train stations and airports? (Been there, done that! Ausweiss, bitte!) Are you seriously suggesting the Demo-clowns can win elections with this? LOLOLOL!
NYET! What you propose is simply not possible. Does that mean there is no possible security? Well, yes and no. Depends on what your definition of "is" is. The proper way to do this is: (1) Get all the terrorists to come to someone else's turf, preferably not too densely populated -- like say, A DESERT! -- where you can kill them in massive numbers, with minimal "collateral damage," and (2) since the only way to get rid of mosquitoes in the long run is to drain the swamp, we must shut down the "hate factories" and establish conditions that will promote democracy, so that they will spend the rest of eternity squabbling amongst themselves, as our own Congress does.
But we must also "get real," and come to understand that perfect, 100% security is impossible in any culture at any time. What U.S. President said this, "There can be but one answer to the terrorist's bomb, and that answer is best delivered with the Winchester rifle"? Give up? That was Theodore Roosevelt,
speaking just about one hundred years ago.
-- William Zwiker
North Muskegon, Michigan
FEELING LEFT OUT
Re: David Holman's Left With Nothing:
After reading "Left with Nothing," I recalled Whittaker Chambers' famous phrase from "Witness" when Chambers feared the communists would win their war against liberty (I paraphrase): "One needs something to live for and something to die for."
Everything the left say they believe in, they have no idea what it takes to defend. The left have no idea how the infrastructure of liberty is built or maintained. They are merely consumers of its wealth, lamely protesting the rules and laws that keep the barbarians at bay.
-- P. Aaron Jones
Huntington Woods, Michigan
Go far enough left and get left out.
-- David Govett
Re: Charles V. Peña's Surface-to-Air Security:
People such as Charles Peña who say air and sea superiority weapons are no longer needed by the U.S. are being short-sighted. So, too, are defense planning bean counters who want to reduce our investment in superiority. We will be forced to confront China eventually -- or, perhaps the combination of Russia and China. China is busy expanding and modernizing its forces while it seeks to dominate the South China Sea and, ultimately, the Pacific (even Japan is getting nervous, and it, Vietnam and other nations find themselves in conflict with China over territory and the sea floor). China is very active in Central and South America already. Through surrogates such as Hutchison Wampoa it has positions in Cal. and the Panama Canal.
In terms of air superiority, India bested our pilots and equipment in exercises a few months ago. India and Iran are improving their subsurface fleets. Current and future threats will increase if the United States stops pursuing superiority in arms from the sea bottom to outer space.
-- Edward Tripp
Oh, for goodness' sake. Our forbears dealt with bad (or, in early times, nonexistent) roads and trails, the constant threats of starvation, disease, and attack by hostile Indians, and unpredictable and merciless weather on cross-country treks that took months to complete.
Yet Mr. Peña wants to spend $11 billion now, and $2.1 billion a year (plus inflation adjustments) forever to build Rube Goldberg systems to guard against the types of attacks that over the last thirty years have brought down an average of one plane per year, and none here?
Nah. I'd just as soon keep my money in my pocket and take my chances. In this day of aged stewardesses, pocketknife confiscations, and peanut bans (The chirrun might be allergic to them, doncha know), the tiny frissons that such remote dangers generate are the only things left that make flying fun.
-- Doug Welty
Mr. Pena is wrong about the man portable air defense threat to civilian airliners. A defense scheme that costs $11 billion with annual operating costs of $2.1 billion is money even less wisely spent than buying a new class of nuclear attack subs or jet fighters.
I know of which I speak. I am a retired Army officer who has commanded MANPADS equipped units. I know their capabilities and limitations. I am now working as an airline pilot, so I have a personal stake as well a good understanding of the vulnerabilities of commercial aircraft. I agree with the Air Line Pilot Association's official position: this expenditure is not worthwhile. The actual protection that will result is debatable. The threat from MANPADS is real, but not as great as popularly thought. Look at the results of an SA-7 hit on a DHL Airbus leaving Baghdad international last year. The Airbus returned and landed safely after the puny warhead of this missile had detonated inside its left wing!
We need to put our defense and security money into more infantry battalions. Our troops on the ground at the source is the best way to eradicate this problem and any other terrorist threat.
The airline industry cannot afford President Bush's proposed "security tax" increase, let alone this cost.
-- Gary Knight
Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
McNABBED IN THE ACT
Re: Wlady Pleszczynski's Philly Fails:
Could it be (heaven forbid) that Rush was right? Forgive me, but this was the Super Bowl! There is no tomorrow. I know that Donovan McNabb is a gifted athlete, maybe even a gifted quarterback. But can you imagine Fran Tarkington or Joe Capp, no matter how confused the coaching staff was, sauntering around, taking 25 seconds per huddle, even taking a huddle with 3 minutes left and only 10 points down? They would've been running their 2 minute drills to perfection, hustling themselves to exhaustion, and tearing the head off any teammate who didn't follow them.
Maybe it was the coach, or maybe the entire staff, but the quarterback is the one on the field. The thing you look for most in a pro quarterback is leadership, and last night the Philly QB may as well have been eating a bowl of soup.
-- Tim Jones
I have a single bone to pick with today's piece in re the Super Bowl: John Miller, former radio man for the Orioles and now doing play-by-play for ESPN baseball, is a worthy successor to the noble Scully.
I doubt you intended to slight Miller, just as I doubt you would question his utter dominance of baseball broadcasting. Angelos's firing of Miller remains my primary reason for despising that unctuous owner, and I relish the opportunity to follow a "local D.C." team.
See you at the ballpark!
-- Mark Stoffel
McNabb. How did this guy get into his position? I know very little of his background as I am not a follower of this team. He is very lucky he got as many points as he did. Wasting time when it is not good to waste, throwing interceptions, and just overall sloppy game playing. If they can trade him it would do that team some good.
-- Paul Filler
I have noted today numerous compliments for Budweiser's "thanks to the troops" commercial. This is the ad spot where desert fatigued soldiers walk through an airport to the applause of the airport patrons. In fact, the Wall Street Journal cited the ad at length as being more of a public service spot than a beer ad. But, did no one notice that these soldiers' fatigues were empty of any military markings whatsoever? In fact the fatigues looked like what I can buy at the local Wal-Mart. Is there some sort of agenda in having these soldiers wearing uniforms without names, rank, service affiliation (USMC, etc.), country affiliation (how about at least the American flag on the shoulder?) ?
-- Steve Shaver
Did The Eagles lose Sunday? I knew they should have stopped after "Hotel California."
-- K. E. Grubbs Jr.
Re: Jed Babbin's All the Little Volckers:
The only shocking thing about this article is the sentence, "IT'S NOT EASY TO THINK ILL of an eminence such as Paul Volcker." It is in fact very easy. One only has to remember his politically motivated manipulation of the money supply in 1984 to help his friend Walter Mondale in the ensuing election. This is not out of character at all. Volcker and his Democratic friends love the whole anti-Americanism of the international bureaucracy: stealing millions in food-for-oil money then calling us cheapskates in tsunami relief is just one example. Who will write the comic opera?
-- Pat Bruen
It's time to get this gang of third-world savages (who comprise what's labeled as "United Nations") to get the heck out of the United States! That this country supports this corrupt band of gangsters is a scandal in itself. Let them operate somewhere else on someone else's tax dollar. They need us a lot more than we need them.
-- Linda Rapoza
Fall River, Massachusetts
ON THE BAYH YOU:
Re: The Prowler's Bayh Buy:
Actually the headline should have read, "Bye Bayh."
-- Jerry McDonald