Two letters in yesterday’s War Street Journal

Cheney Was Right, But Long Ago in 1994

The headline of your editorial “Dick Cheney Is Still Right” (Sept. 10) is absolutely correct if one is referring to his 1994 statement.

The headline of your editorial “Dick Cheney Is Still Right” (Sept. 10) is absolutely correct if one is referring to his 1994 statement. In response to the question of why the U.S. didn’t push ahead to Baghdad after the liberation of Kuwait he said: “It’s a quagmire if you go that far and try to take over Iraq.” Many other statements in this 1994 interview were spot on and in hindsight are prophetic. One hundred forty-six Americans were killed in the 1994 conflict. In further justifying not pushing on to Baghdad, he asked “how many additional dead Americans is Saddam worth?” Again, Mr. Cheney was right in his answer “not very many.”

To now say he is right about the most recent strategy and tactics totally ignores his direct involvement in creating the situation after 9/11.

Mr. Cheney was right in 1994, but since then he has made horrific mistakes and chosen his own facts which too many Americans are willing to accept. “Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it” is a lesson we continue to forget.

John Miller

Dallas

The Middle East is a complicated place that breeds unintended consequences. Various factions have been warring for centuries. The countries that are directly affected like Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Turkey, Jordan and Iran will never take responsibility for their own defense as long as we are there to spend our blood and treasure.

John Melin

Seattle

400,000 Watermelons

We finished off a delicious seedless watermelon today. Paula, the fruit expert at Fareway, says that may be the last of them for the season. So sad. And yet the seasons are what make Iowa such a great place to live. The prairie’s grass grew and froze for thousands of years. The soil life mixed the dead foliage with the minerals left by glaciers to produce an ideal environment for plants to turn solar energy into sustenance for animals and humans. A chaotic system not regulated by anything we can see, almost like a series of miraculous accidents. No. I do not think God is ruling things like puppets. Like a good employer he unleashes the energy inherent with matter to create life.

How could anyone be so bold as to disrespect the work of a force so beyond genius. But it happens all the time. In the name of “God’s chosen people,” Allah, climate change!

Climate change. Watermelons. So closely related. This day brought marches, worldwide, of well meaning disciples of a false god. A cause to fill a void in the lives of watermelons. I heard there were 400,000 marching at The People’s Climate March in New York (The People’s. no kidding). Totally unbelievable (just kidding) that so many people could fall for such rubbish. Not a one of them would admit to hating poor people and wanting them to freeze this winter or starve  because the energy to grow and transport food has become too expensive for it to be delivered within access of their intake cavities.

I can’t help but think of those newsreels of Germans grinning with admiration as Hitler passed by in a parade. Their lives were empty. The terms of Germany’s surrender after WWI had left the country with no hope of returning to to a solvent monetary situation. The Jews were a convenient scapegoat, as capitalism is today. The watermelons. A crisis situation. Drastic measures needed. You look at Leonardo DiCraprio, All Gore, and the rest. All taken in by the same thing totalitarians have promised in the past: management of the unmanageable. The result will be the same.

Watermelon = red on the inside, green on the outside. Do you suppose the tens of thousands of people murdered by communists died for a good cause to fight overpopulation in a world that will be unable to feed everyone because of these climate change fools?

Here is a video of managing the unmanageable:    

And a link to an alternative opinion on climate change: http://drtimball.com/

Mor-on Baseball

Still on the baseball kick. Although with no TV and being out here on the prairie it is hard to follow it closely, the Giants/Dodgers race to the playoffs is invigorating. I’ve surfed around and read some on the rivalry and never remember this story on Juan Marichal clubbing Dodger catcher, John Roseboro, with a bat.  Roseboro was having Koufax go high and inside to Marichal, who was pitching for the Giants. Roseboro had trouble with Sandy, as he  was a bit too much of a gentleman to do anymore than try to scare Marichal.

My dad told me about taking me to a Dodger game and seeing Koufax throw a no-hitter. I was young and bored by it. In the first game of the Series following the clubbing incident, Koufax refused to pitch because it was Yom Kippur, a Jewish holiday.  The Dodger went on to beat the Twins for the championship anyway.

Here is a short story on the Marichal/Roseboro incident:   http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/eye-on-baseball/24368857/two-amazing-photos-of-famous-juan-marichaljohn-roseboro-brawl

Good thing they don’t use bats in the NFL, eh?

Another video from Jazz on the Tube. This gal on guitar graduated from the Berklee School of Music at 18 years of age. Yet she relapsed on heroin and ODed at a young age. Not uncommon,given the fact illegality makes the composition of the drug a mystery. What a talent and a fool.

On a lighter note, Scotland voted no on secession from the UK. Good thing, if England wanted to emulate Obaombya’s hero, Lincoln.

Dean’s Uncle Leonard

A funny thing happened at the War Street Journal. Gerald Seib started making sense.

In his column, “Three Hidden Worries in the Islamic State Fight,” he says, “What if this fight is exactly what Islamic State wants?” Well, duh! Just like Al-Qaeda and 9/11, “the terrorists” are goading foolish western leaders into spending more lives and treasure in a futile attempt to control an uncontrollable world. bin Laden, himself said our reaction to the 9/11 attacks would bankrupt us and they did. It is easily conceivable he planned it that way.

His other two worries were legitimate as well. That other Islamic organizations would step up activity in a spirit of competition and that Americans would grow weary and wise to the military industrial complex’s shenanigans.

Where was Jerry’s wisdom when we deposed Mohammad Mosaddegh and installed The Shah in Iran, ramping up hatred for England and the U.S., who obviously felt entitled to someone else’s oil. You’d be resentful too.  Ever since there has hardly been a time when western politicians weren’t led around by the nose by crazy religious fanatics who shouldn’t have any advantage over civilized people. Maybe we just look it.

On the front page of the same paper is”Arab Divide Snarls Coalition, Washington’s Efforts Against Islamic State Complicated by Sunni-Shiite Feud.”  Like my cousin Fred said…Why intervene in a good fight?

Here is Seib’s article:

 

CAPITAL JOURNAL

Three Hidden Worries in the Islamic State Fight

Terror Group Could Use It as Recruiting Tool, Other Groups Could Act and American Resolve Could Cool

  • E
  • Updated Sept. 15, 2014 1:28 p.m. ET

    Fighters of the Islamic State wave the group’s flag from a damaged display of a government fighter jet following the battle in August for the Tabqa air base, in Raqqa, Syria. Associated Press

    There are plenty of potential problems to worry about in President Barack Obama‘s decision to go on the offensive against Islamic State fighters, and many have gotten ample attention in recent days. But here are three possible downside risks that aren’t so obvious, yet warrant some consideration:

    • What if this fight is precisely what Islamic State wants? Logic would suggest that a group such as this one, with perhaps 20,000 fighters in its army and an embryonic self-declared state to protect, ought to try to avoid conflict with the largest power in the world.

    Yet logic doesn’t always prevail with such groups. It’s entirely possible Islamic State’s leaders actually want a confrontation, and consider it a boon for their long-term prospects.

    U.S. efforts to build a coalition to combat the Islamic State hit a snag with the sectarian chasm that has divided the Middle East for centuries. WSJ’s Stacy Meichtry has more. Photo: Michel Euler/Reuters

    Being singled out by the world’s leading superpower can be, in the realm of ideological radicals, a kind of badge of honor. In this case, it may be used as a signal that Islamic State has achieved supremacy in the world of Islamic extremist groups. That distinction also can be a boon in recruiting young fighters and perhaps even in raising funds in the Islamic world.

    The notion that Islamic State wants this fight is fed in part by its use of gruesome videos showing the beheadings of two American journalists and a British aid worker. Perhaps the group’s leaders thought the horror would terrorize Americans into backing away. But they must have known it was just as likely to compel the American public to demand a response.

    Islamic State literature suggests the group thinks a confrontation with the West is inevitable. Muslims “have a statement to make that will cause the world to hear and understand the meaning of terrorism, and boots that will trample the idol of nationalism, destroy the idol of democracy, and uncover its deviant nature,” said the group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, upon declaring the establishment of an Islamic nation this summer. Moreover, the group’s literature belittles other Islamic extremist groups for shrinking from or seeking to move slowly toward a fight with the West.

    The U.S. military said it conducted its first airstrike in Iraq as part of an expanded mission announced last week by President Obama. WSJ’s Robert Ourlian has more. Photo: Islamic State

    So it may be that Islamic State leaders want to pull the U.S. into a fight, and calculate that they can turn it into a debilitating long-term quagmire, in a part of the world where that has happened often. That’s not reason enough to avoid a confrontation, of course, and this approach could represent a giant strategic mistake by the group. Still, it also would be a mistake by the West to assume Islamic State is stumbling into this fight.

    • The attention being focused on Islamic State actually may be increasing the risk of attacks from other groups. U.S. officials worry that extremist organizations, seeing their thunder stolen by the rise of Islamic State, may be plotting new terror strikes to show they are still relevant. That’s one reason some nations have raised terror-alert levels.

    The leaders of al Qaeda, in particular, may see an incentive to strike now. Islamic State was born as a subset of al Qaeda in Iraq, but now it has both shaken off its former masters and openly criticized their approach to expanding Islam’s reach.

    In a post on The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank blog, Michael Kugelman, a scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, lists three other terrorist groups that have made credible threats to attack the U.S.: al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula; Lashkar-e-Taiba of Pakistan; and the Pakistani Taliban.

    • Americans’ enthusiasm for this fight may be perishable. At the moment, the public, outraged by those beheading videos, is in a mood to act. Almost two-thirds of those responding in a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finished last week said they thought it in America’s interest to attack Islamic State.

    The poll also suggested Americans were acting amid newly rekindled fear of the terrorist threat. The share of Americans who said the country is less safe now than it was before the 9/11 terror attacks jumped to 47% this month, from 28% a year ago. Just 26% said America is more safe now than at the time of the big attacks 13 years ago.

    That marks an end to the trend that prevailed through most of the Obama term, in which Americans were inclined to say the country was safer than before 9/11.

    But will that fear fade over time? Will Americans remain resolved to persist in a fight that Mr. Obama, along with just about every other analyst, has said will take a long time to win?

    Until recent days, the public’s mood was decidedly against intervention in another Middle East fight. Now that the country is engaged in such a fight, there will be ups and downs, and some bad days. It’s far from certain today’s grim determination will prevail then.

    Write to Gerald F. Seib at jerry.seib@wsj.com

    Video sent from Stefan

    I just love this kind of talent. And a Dodgers hat! I was a kid in the glory days of the Dodgers/Giants rivalry. Just think if players were identified as team players again. We’d reconsider TV. This guy is in Sweden and yet he’s obviously got Dodger fever. I kept saying, “is it almost over?’ when my dad took me to a Kofax no hitter. Yikes.

    Wasting Time At the New Faucet

    Our old faucet leaked and we bought one that had a sprayer hose coming out of the spout. It could either spray or run a solid stream. Then as I was thinking I needed something to read while waiting for the teapot to fill, it occurred to me how much I missed the leaky one. This new thing only puts out 1.5 gallons per minute of water per EPA mandate. The thing is, I go check the cows, herd them out of floods, I buy inputs, work long hours, and for what? So I can stand around like an idiot waiting for water. We have a one inch waterline from the well to the house and the EPA says it must go through a quarter inch hole before I can use it.

    I’m finding time grows short at a faster rate as I age. It is a precious commodity. And I’m going to find a way to alter our new faucet so my time can be spent more wisely. A little American ingenuity is needed to combat the American government. Where are these people fighting for our freedom when we need them?

    The answer is they are working for monied interests rather than “the people.” That probably sounds odd coming from a libertarian. Libertarians are the ones who say the rich folks should be free to do whatever they want while trampling all over the working poor, right? As Eric Burdon sang back in 1965, “Oh Lord please don’t let me be misunderstood.”

    Here is a good example of “monied interests.” Warren Buffet owns a large part of Berkshire Hathaway, which owns the only main rail line across the northern United States. Corn production has increased in the Dakotas along with oil. Warren Buffet is a huge contributor to the Democrats who obstruct oil pipelines. The alternative is rail transport. Cost of a rail car has gone from $450 to $3,300. Analysts are saying that will put the price of corn at under $2.00 at North Dakota elevators.

    General Electric contributed nearly $10 million in lobbying and campaign funds so far in 2014 and $16 million in lobbying alone in 2013. They profit from sales of fluorescent lights. The General Electric connection to our loss of real light bulbs was reported by libertarian economist, Walter E. Williams (after whom we named our dog). But as I read on I discovered GE has received $22.5 billion in defense contracts since 2003. Get the connection? Come on, Walter, are you afraid to offend the regime?

    When I moved to Dumont in 1977 my friend, Mike Thornburg, had a diesel VW Rabbit that got 60 miles per gallon. Now a similar car struggles to achieve forty, due to government regulations. The math would suggest thirty percent higher fuel sales. Who benefits?

    If you find yourself a little less able to pay your bills as time goes by, look at the facts presented above. The time spent filling a teapot is really insignificant until it is added to all the other waste generated by manipulation of our politicians by businesses seeking unfair advantage in the marketplace.

    Leftists will blame capitalism. But what we have is the opposite of capitalism. Capitalism is private ownership of property. Government dictating the flow rate of a faucet, the type of light bulb we can use or where we can sell natural gas is not capitalism. It is crony capitalism. There is a perpetrator and a victim. Individuals are the victims and the government, as an agent for its controllers, is the perpetrator.

    Now we find the war fever being utilized by these controllers again. After $2 trillion has been spent in a futile attempt to stifle Islamic extremists, people who were beginning to doubt the effectiveness of our archaic war on terror make excuses to continue because Islamic State is nearly as “brutal” as our allies, the Saudis (who have beheaded many times the number IS has).

    This is no slow running faucet. When all the manipulations of government power are added up, it equates to real poverty, especially for our children and grandchildren to whom the burden will be passed. The big corporations will get the blame. But what they are doing is within the legal framework as defined by corrupt politicians and judges, even though it is constitutionally illegal.

    Each segment of our society has their own interests in mind. If they see another’s government favor as undeserved, they refuse to speak up in fear their own plunder will be taken away as well. It’s too bad our freedom fighters are controlled by the government.

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