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Donald H. Rumsfeld is not a prophet
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2006 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kassen wrote:



I was aware of Powell, my father always maintained that he was responcible for inventing the concentration camps as well but I couldn't find any hint of that on Wikipedia.



Actually, my father has claimed the same.

There is supposed to be some theory papers out there on POW handling and population management written by Baden-Powell. I haven´t read any of these though and I haven´t found any really good sources on this. That said, if these do contain what I think they do, then the Boy Scout industry will be in deep shit.

However, Baden-Powell had serious fun during the Second Boer War in South Africa / Siege of Mafeking .

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2006 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

As for foggy commentaries, the now famous Jostein Gaarder messed up bigtime.

http://www.aftenposten.no/english/local/article1416800.ece?service=print

Shocked

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 05, 2006 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

One of the more exciting responses is this one:

AN OPEN LETTER TO NORWAY FROM THE SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTRE (Paris)

Jostein Gaarder, the author of the literary chef d'oeuvre, "Sophie's World," has become seriously ill, either with malice or, perhaps, Alzheimer's, or both.

Translated into 53 languages and with 26 million copies sold, so many of his readers will mourn Gaarder's current loss of vision, coherence and, above all, his recruitment to the forces of darkness.

His 5 August article in your newspaper has exposed his shallow Biblical knowledge and the Judeophobic paranoia that haunts his nightmares. We call on the Norwegian people to decry his message.

Obsessed with the Jews as "God's Chosen People," Gaarder regurgitates this concept's classic anti-Semitic definition as "arrogant and domineering."

I recall from my childhood the ditty: "How odd of God to choose the Jews" and the refrain, "It's no so odd the Jews chose God." This self-assertiveness is indeed disturbing to tyrants - as a voice for freedom, diversity and conscience - the Jew, as witness, has been a "light unto the nations" throughout the ages. Not by claiming an absolute truth, but as a significant or early warning system for, what begins with the Jews is often a barometer for the human condition.

When others see not the light, as in 1933 with Hitlerism, or currently with fanatical Jihadist terrorism, the scourge will bring us all to the abyss.

The anti-Semite believes that salvation will come by effacing that Jewish light. For Gaarder, the "Good Samaritan" is not a "Pharisee" (codeword for Jew), but a "Palestinian", just as, for others, Hezbollah terrorism is posited as integral to the Lebanese political spectrum.

Gaarder goes where no contemporary anti-Semite has gone before: "Without defense, without skin If the entire Israeli nation should fall and part of the population must flee to another Diaspora, then we say: may their surroundings stay calm and show them mercy. It is an eternal crime to lay hand on refugees and a Stateless people. Peace and free passage for the evacuating, civilian population no longer protected by a State. Shoot not at the fugitives! Take not aim at them! They are vulnerable now -- like snails without shells! Give the Israeli refugees shelter; give them milk and honey!"

Gaarder yearns to extinguish the light of Jewish sovereignty and for the eternal wandering Jew to live once again at European sufferance - this time given "milk and honey" on the death march.

Norway surely seeks not complicity in this "Gotterdamerung" revival.

Gaarder claims that "Israelis cheered the plagues of the Lord as 'fitting punishment' for the people of Egypt." He knows nothing of Jewish liturgy. Daily our prayers recall in sorrow the Red Sea drowning of Pharaoh's horde, which was in pursuit of the Israelite refugees, bent on slaying them.

We also mourn the Lebanese victims of Hezbollah, brutally exploited as their human shields, and we deplore a war that was foisted upon Israel by Iranian design.

Gaarder concludes: "Let not one Israeli child pay with his life," in the same column wherein he sets the scene for the extermination of all Israeli children.

We will not oblige Gaarder and those he seeks to appease. Jewish sovereignty has returned to history. The wandering Jew is a figment of history, as Gaarder and his ilk are now history.

We await the word of honest Norwegians who will vociferously condemn Gaarder because they realize that the fate of the Jews is an alarm bell for humanity.

Most respectfully,
Dr. Shimon Samuels
Director for International Relations

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Kassen
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:

In the US political lingo, the concept of freedom is nothing like what we have here in Europe. The use of the word freedom is a mythological concept that invokes the process of building the US nation, the constitution and stuff like that. As you already know, reuse of the American Constitution and related concepts was later tried in several european countries, but a whole lot of stuff like the US Franklinesque twist on freedom never quite made it.


Quite so. I would say that at the begining, considdering the whole UK-US sistuation and so on, "freedom" and the identity of the US as a nation realy *were* closely linked (and back then democracy was closely linked to that as well). However is some cases right now this development of the US as a independant nation seems at odds with "freedom" and it can't do any harm to get back to the litteral meaning of the word every now and then.

Abstracting the meaning of words like that (bascally turning the language into duckspeak) is a great tool in political debate but not so good for talking about political situations.

In the end this might be the ultimate in democracy; people like Rhumsfeld can use words that way but their audience -together- decides wether they want to hear them that way and understand them in that sense. The audience of the US media (also being the US voters) might elect (pun intended) to treat those words as what they literally mean yet they don't (on average). Using that abstracted usage of words might be far more important and interesting then electing the Bush administration.

I would be very interested in research on changes in the Iraqi usage of language over this period.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 1:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

One very interesting issue is how the german Humboldt philosophy ( regarding "modern" universities ) was adopted in the United States, and then how it later was discarded as defunct, dead, undemocratic, unconstitutional and what have you. Frankly, the Humboldt concepts are still quite useful, but the current european understanding of the Humboldt philosophy is mainly coloured by US ideologies. Europe is discarding these quite excellent ideas for the wrong reasons.

Some general info on the good Wilhelm von Humboldt:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilhelm_von_Humboldt

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:
Kassen wrote:

concentration camps

researching about concentration camps I came across this page:
arrow http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/TCEH/Slouch_power4.html
Quote:
It was a French Catholic bishop who, when asked how to sort out the heretics from the true believers in a newly captured city, is reported to have said: "Kill them all!--God will recognize his people."

Shocked

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

seraph wrote:
elektro80 wrote:
Kassen wrote:

concentration camps

researching about concentration camps I came across this page:
arrow http://www.j-bradford-delong.net/TCEH/Slouch_power4.html
Quote:
It was a French Catholic bishop who, when asked how to sort out the heretics from the true believers in a newly captured city, is reported to have said: "Kill them all!--God will recognize his people."

Shocked


Anyways..

a camp where non-combatants of a district are accommodated, such as those instituted by Lord Kitchener during the South African war of 1899-1902; one for the internment of political prisoners, foreign nationals, etc., esp. as organized by the Nazi regime in Germany before and during the war of 1939-45

Did you notice the South African thingie? That is one of the connections to Baden-Powell.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2006 4:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

seraph wrote:
elektro80 wrote:
Quote:
It was a French Catholic bishop who, when asked how to sort out the heretics from the true believers in a newly captured city, is reported to have said: "Kill them all!--God will recognize his people."

Shocked


The same kind of argument that Usama Bin Ladin used once when asked about the fact that most of his victims have been faithful muslims.

/Stefan

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 18, 2006 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:
In the US political lingo, the concept of freedom is nothing like what we have here in Europe. The use of the word freedom is a mythological concept that invokes the process of building the US nation, the constitution and stuff like that.


Harrumph! As a patriotic American I am offended! angry

At the time of its writing the constitution was mankind’s best effort at freeing man from the tyranny of government. Of course that was white men, no people of color or feminine gender need apply. But you have to take into account what utter and complete shits human beings tend to be to appreciate the scale of that achievement. Rolling Eyes Besides I'm a white male--I got mine--screw you! Evil or Very Mad

Anyway, here in the US the idea of freedom is being reduced the right of propperty and a corollary that the more property you got the more rights you got. We're all equal but some are more equal than others. Onik, oink. Interesting to note that China's headed the same way but from the opposite direction.

As for little Donny Rumsfeld. He's a bright guy who's intellect is a poster child for the saying, a mile wide and an inch deep. Idea He would have made a good press secretary.

Hey I got a two h.p blender and I'm not afraid to throw it metaphors. So stand back you pale, sun-forsaken, godless, unclean, evil-doing, Norwegian heathens. jackson dancing banana jackson dancing

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 3:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

"freeing man from the tyranny of government"

my government provides me with an excellent health service that is free at the point of use. in fact, it provides everyone in the UK with a health service that is free at the point of use.

as long as you live in a community you have to accept certain constraints on your freedom. what Europeans consider freedom is different to Americans, in the broadest scheme of things.

obviously, our concept of freedom differs as individuals too.

i would rather be free of profiteering megacorporations acting on behalf ot heir shareholders than governments acting on their democratic mandate.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 4:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Uh... that was meant mostly as satire. But I do believe that any individual in a position of power is dangerous--its in our genes. And today, in the US, it's not possible to separate out finantial and politcal power.
Perhaps it was the unintentional omission of "to" here that caused some problem.

"Anyway, here in the US the idea of freedom is being reduced the right of propperty..."

should have been

Anyway, here in the US the idea of freedom is being reduced TO the right of propperty...

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 5:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Donald Rumsfeld briefed the President this morning. He told Bush that three Brazilian soldiers had been killed in Iraq .To everyone's amazement, all of the colour ran from Bush's face, then he collapsed onto his desk, head in hands, visibly shaken, almost whimpering.Finally, he composed himself and asked Rumsfeld, "Just exactly how many is a brazillion?"
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 6:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread



OK that's much funnier. But I'm very bitter over how my country is (perhaps by incalculable incompetence) leading the world into a religious world war that will be a horror beyond imagining. And it's hard for me to be nice about our government and the forces at work behind it.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

bachus wrote:
But I do believe that any individual in a position of power is dangerous


Hmm... that is a tricky one - and very interesting.

In most kinds of groups around the world, after a while leaders tend to manifest themselves. On the other hand, pretty scary decisions can be made by anonymous boards. Examples are the governing elite of communist dictatorships and boards of companies with shares. In my country (as far as I understand) it is practically legislated that the board of a shared company (what do you call it? Limited company? It's Gmbh in Germany - I think - AB here, A/S in Norway and Denmark) must act so that it maximises its short-term profits.

/Stefan

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 6:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Stanley Pain wrote:

i would rather be free of profiteering megacorporations acting on behalf ot heir shareholders ...


I have worked for a few of these magacorporations - AT&T, Lucent, IBM. If corporations focused on profit for their share holders I would be all for them, but they don't give a shit about their share holders. They are run by a very small elite group of the top execs and the board of directors. This group is sometimes called "officers of the corporation". They make sure they profit - personally. At times, that means they make the stock go up, but at other times they are playing other games. They are accountable to no one unless there is a complete disaster like World Comm or Enron. Thousands of corporations come and go leaving their stock holders broke and the officers of the corporation rich. The share holders are often the biggest suckers.

The government regulators are all part of the game. The laws are written to appear to control the corporations and protect the share holders, but they in fact facilitate perpetuating the game.

The officers of the corporations believe what they do is good for society and that they deserve all of their riches - much like the royals and their close associates (aristocrats) beleived in the Devine Right of Kings.

The employees of the megacorporations all see this and come to beleive there is no escape. The ones that want to get ahead form social and political relationships with others higher up the chain that are closer to one or more officers of the corporation. They are rarely interested in the share holders, or even the customers - they are simply a means to an end.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 8:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Antimon wrote:
bachus wrote:
But I do believe that any individual in a position of power is dangerous


Hmm... that is a tricky one - and very interesting.


Yea, that’s definitely tricky for a number of reasons including that it might suggest anarchy as a solution. And anarchy is a bad idea because, to repeat an old Russian proverb: “Be the water salt or fresh, shit floats.” The US government was made in three branches for the express purpose of limiting the dangerousness of the individuals involved. As governments go it was a good design and it almost worked.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2006 8:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

As Kinky Friedman says, "Never reelect anyone!"

http://www.kinkyfriedman.com/

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2006 6:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

mosc wrote:
As Kinky Friedman says,[b]


I'm not sure about that but I seem to remember that while the constitution was being formed there was some discussion of making it illegal for a person to be president if his father had been. Can anyone verify that? Seems to me the failure to do so may have been a fatal error.

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