Xah Lee's Unixism

Bulent Murtezaoglu bm at acm.org
Tue Sep 14 18:13:41 CEST 2004

>>>>> "GM" == Greg Menke <gregm-news at toadmail.com> writes:

[on the 'crusade' faux pas]

    GM> You may or may not be right about the dumbness of language,
    GM> but thats not germane.  What is important are the conclusions
    GM> people in the middle east draw from it.

I think the retraction/clarification came out in less than a day if
not in hours.  People who'd report this to further their agenda are also
the kind of people who shamelessly lie regardless of who says what
anyway, so I doubt he did any major damage.  But of course it couldn't
have helped.

    GM> What if what if what if.  The problem is we're stuck in a
    GM> hugely expensive, poorly planned and strategically stupid
    GM> situation.  We weren't before we invaded.

I'll tell you what's worse: if the guys who got you into this
situation aren't duly punished at the polls, we may well see more of
it.  Not that the replacement would be any better necessarily (indeed
he might be worse in many ways), but this kind of poor judgement needs
to have political consequences domestically.  With the Soviets gone,
the only force that can keep the US gov't in check right now is the
reaction of the US voter.  That or the unwillingness of the world to
bankroll these adventures with loans will restrain them in the short
term.  (The US gets to borrow with US$ denominated paper, if that 
weren't true and with the US$ getting weaker by about 20-50% against 
major currencies in the past 3-4 years, the true cost of these 
adventures would have been obvious by now.  But then again, what 
do I know?)

    GM> One problem with the situation was Dubya & Co succeeded in
    GM> strongly hinting that disagreement was akin to treason.  

So it seems.

    GM> There was simply no policital room for debate after 9/11.  [...]

Yeah that's probably why people didn't point and laugh at the officials 
who implied the treason bit above.  Now, I suppose it will be having the
armed forces stuck in hostile territory that'll be used for this



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