Leadership in a Majority-Minority America

Debater Anita Israel raised a number of thought-provoking questions after reading the Post story with this striking headline: Of U.S. Children Under 5, Nearly Half Are Minorities.

Anita's questions would be better answered by a cross-section of informed people, so I invited her to be a guest blogger to pose some of her queries to you directly. She writes:

I work for an academic institution devoted to the study of leadership, especially among women and historically underrepresented groups, so naturally I got fired up trying to imagine how leadership will evolve in this country over the course of the next two generations.

Debaters, how do you think this ethnic shift will impact the United States in years to come?

In Politics
Currently, the number of minorities in the Senate and the House is not even close to proportional to the number of ethnic minorities in the U.S. population. Can we count on our "representative government" to accurately represent this coming demographic change? Should a healthy government perhaps require that its legislative assemblies reflect the diversity of the population?

In Business
Does a demographic shift affect "business as usual"? It has in the past. The most basic consumer behaviors -- like eating habits -- can and do change with massive demographic shifts. Those eating habits can then affect things such as consumer-driven agriculture. In this list of 25 possible future business trends, which, if any, do you think are likely to be impacted by the population's ethnic metamorphosis?

In Culture
In a multicultural and multilingual society, what common ideas will unite us? Will they be rooted in the language(s) we speak? Is having a dominant language an oppressive cultural tool, or is it the glue that holds our society together? Are we destined to further divide and multiply along cultural and linguistic lines? How can we help a new generation of leaders figure out how to find enough common ground to bring us together?

The questions I ask are simple, but they will not have simple answers. There are many other aspects of our changing ethnic demographics and leadership that are worthwhile to examine, and I look forward to reading them in your comments.

By Emily Messner |  June 2, 2006; 2:50 PM ET  | Category:  National Politics
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"Should a healthy government perhaps require that its legislative assemblies reflect the diversity of the population?"

It could, by voting. If you are suggesting some kind of quota then I am viciously opposed. The idea that race should be an explicit qualification for public service is insulting.

Posted by: Will | June 2, 2006 04:21 PM

Merely asking questions, not advocating a particular stance. I was, however, hinting at the debate surrounding switching to a proportional representation system.

Posted by: Anita | June 2, 2006 04:34 PM

I don't mean to jump on you because you have a lot of intriguing things to say. I live in Texas and I eat more Mexican food than I do any other kind of food (and I like it just fine that way, thank you very much). My closest friends have married legal and illegal hispanics. I've spent my life around Spanish speakers and it is the only language I "know" besides english.

But "proportional representation" is not a fair question. It suggests that government is best decided by race. I find the entire idea insulting but, rather then offer royal indignation, I'd love to give you the chance to defend the practice. Why do you think proportional representation is necessarily better? Even if you could argue compellingly that it was better, do you think a non-electoral mechanism (like quotas) should be in place to ensure proportional representation?

Race is best left out of electoral politics, in my opinion.

Posted by: Will | June 2, 2006 04:49 PM

Thanks for the compliment! I appreciate it.

The debate I was hinting at, and again this was the subtext, not the actual question I posed, is the debate regarding the U.S. voting process.

The plurality system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plurality_voting_system) vs. the proportional system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proportional_representation).

So, to draw it back to one of the explicit questions I posed - would that sort of change help the new "minority majority" in terms of representation in government? Will they need help, for that matter?

Posted by: Anita | June 2, 2006 05:03 PM

Wow...this should be good. Such a statistic must strike fear in the hearts of the right...as if they need more of THAT!

What will happen is what happened when Italian/Irish/African Americans begin to get a voice in politics...things will change. And, of course, it's this change from the status quo where the old regimes of power and money stand to lose, that makes them fight so hard to keep it from happening.

What makes this so emotional for said old regimes is that the majority of the new minorities are...gasp...BROWN! Oh, and CATHOLIC! And, as we all know...the color of their skin makes them inferior...right?

If there is two things that freak out the right more than anything...it's butt sex and brown skin. They'll tell you it's our HERITAGE and CULTURE they are defending while leaving out the not so nice parts of our heritage and leaving out a definition of just what IS American culture.

These are the same people who see a black man driving a BMW and immediately think A) Drug Dealer B) Recipient of special dispensation C) probably living in a subsidized house. They just cannot wrap their heads around the fact that in a truly social darwnistic world, where they aren't protected from competition by their money or position of power, they wouldn't fair so well.

Of course, they fail to see that it is the RULE OF LAW that we have created here that defines our culture...not our bigotries and toys. In a nation governed by the RULE OF LAW, color of your skin and sexual predelictions don't matter. The problem is, this cuts both ways. Indeed, we should not give special treatment to minorities, just appropriate and fair treatment, NOR should we give a pass to the majority for being the majority or for being White.

But, since the other edge of the sword implies such a thing, they appeal to fear in order to deflect attention to their own failings.

I do so eagerly await Mr. Fords measured response to this subject and my post. I do like to swim in his invective and colorful euphamisms for "those-not-like-ford".

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 2, 2006 05:04 PM

Anita-

Hard to say. I don't think plurality voting is going to go away. Frankly I don't think the hispanic population is going to need proportional representation; as recent political events involving immigration have shown, the parties participating in a plurality system recognize a growing electorate and pander to it at the behest of the surviving majority.

At some point the Hispanic population will overtake all others and "Hispanic" issues will dominate the national agenda. My hope is that there will not be a "Hispanic" agenda, but many competing political groups within that larger group. I don't think there is a "White agenda" (naive of me?) because I witness political groups made predominantly of white people thrash each other in politics frequently.

But you clearly are not talking about racial government quotas so, moving on...

Posted by: Will | June 2, 2006 05:17 PM

if you make hiring _illegals_ a felony first time and enforce it a great percentage of those


minorities will go home.


I think it is encumbant upon the peoples from other countries that are not here legally to change their own country to make it comparable to the United States,


not come here and compete with our serf class for the jobs and work that exist here...


our Social Service sector has been reduced at every level since Reagan was in office and they emptied the mental facilities and thus street people became suddenly more popular...


I don't think flooding the system that was already stressed with our own underprivleged makes us a better country...


I think that it reflects poor management and I've got some solutions...you understand...?

come on.

.

Posted by: actually.... | June 2, 2006 05:41 PM

The fearful right will pass plenty of laws "protecting" our "way of life" - English only, etc.

They will then do everything they can to keep the masses poor and downtrodden - take Bush's little plan to flood the US with immigrants who will then have to take whatever low paying no benefit job they can get.

They will continue to tamper with voting on the fringes of legality - not enough voting machines in "brown" districts, putting up flyers with the wrong voting days, shredding registrations from brown districts, using techniques to identify felons with brown sounding names that are so non-specific that only 20% of those identified are true felons - you know, the same stuff that bought BW Bush the White House in both 2000 and 2004.

And Congress will stay lilly white for a good long time.

But not forever. Because when you keep a large segment of the population ground under your heel long enough, they eventually stage a revolt. And the first thing they do is get even. Suddenly it will be Spanish only laws, etc. The tyrrany of the majority will be turned against them.

How much better if:
1. We had spent the last 5 years since 9-11 actually protecting our borders and keeping the illegals and others out
2. We enforced immigration laws and pushed penalties for hiring illegals
3. We had immigration laws that made sense, allowing enough in to fill these jobs "Americans don't want", requiring a sponsor who can help the family become self sufficient, physical exams for TB and other diseases, etc. like we do for any other country.
4. Setting standards that goverment documents and services would be available in other languages if more than a specific percentage of the US citizens in that county/state etc were born in a country where that was the official language - say, 20%. I have little hopes for this, this nation is too stupid to adopt the metric system, much less be bilingual. (In the metric system, in order to convert between larger and smaller units (the metric equivalent of yards, pounds, etc) you only have to divide/multiply by 10, or 100, or 1000, not 36 (in/yd) or 16 (oz/lb), or 1760 yards/mile etc) Its so EASY. Thanks to the soda industry people now know how much a liter is. Maybe we can get the meat packing industry to start selling hamburger by the kilo next!

Posted by: patriot1957 | June 2, 2006 05:46 PM

In many ways, it is a sterile debate.

The definition of "minorities" was essentially rectally plucked by two Jewish bureaucrats appointed by Nixon to set up EEO and create legal definitions of who was who, which was done with EEO Form 1 the two devised one weekend. They believed they could create useful groupings and set up affirmative action policies to "aid" the needy.

"Hispanic" is the most obvious construct they came up with. It covers 100% white people and 100% black people, as well as mestizcos (mix of Indian and other races). It is not a race or ethnicity, but a convenient bureaucratic artifice, that covers people from 4 continents. (Latin America, the Caribbean & MesoAmerica of the Northern Continent, Spanish settled African lands, and the Iberian Peninsula, parts of France, and various Mediterranean islands of Europe) My sister's kids are "hispanic" by virtue of her husband inheriting a Portugese surname.

The two EEO guys set up arbitrary geographic lines in distinguishing between Asians and the more desirable (for affirmative action bennies) "Pacific Islanders". They said a Samoan was a Pacific Islander, same with a Tahitian, but a Philippine Islander was just an Asian entitled to nothing special.

They messed up "Native American" as well. It was left to tribes to define, and many just said whoever was on the tribal rolls at X date, must be a NA even if they are blacks or blue-eyed whites. It is valuable if you have casino action...while it leaves one to ponder why some of the casino Indians claiming at least 1/64th Native American blood and their entitlements as NAs are somehow true Native Americans - when the full-blooded Mayan woman from Guatemala here illegally cleaning Casino toilets isn't a NA, but a "hispanic" - just like my freckled Portugese-surnamed nieces and nephews.

(Almost 60% of hispanics, when asked if they are white, mixed, or black - say they are white)

The confusion continues as other groups demand minority status for privileges. ME Muslims wish to not be considered white in lawsuits launched. Indonesians wish they were Pacific Islanders, not Asians. Mixed race children wish there was a category like white-asian they could check, or that no categories at all existed.

I think this will all be less important in the future as long as special privileges from affirmative action that the people never voted on finally end, everyone speaks English, and assimilate.

Posted by: Chris Ford | June 2, 2006 06:10 PM

again...WE, AMERICAN CITIZENS...


Need to enforce the law,


and require our congress people to act repsonsibly,


and abide by the laws that exist, zero tolerance for scofflaws...do the Guilliani thing, arrest for all crimes pertaining to congress peoples...


it cuts down on the big ones, like a war on false pretenses


we could _require_

our president and his _tribe_ to


quit giving our rights, our land, our children to his friends to


use as they see fit.


I don't think, that the few reich people that are controlling our government actually

have the right to say how the other 99.8%

of the rest of us live our lives...


I don't want to go to "war" to make sure Cheyney and his friends can bet on the oil_futures market and win..


I don't want to lose an entire class of people

blue-collar middle class

construction, factory workers, trade, drivers, agricultural, painting, electrical, plumbing, truck driving, etc.


because their jobs are _outsourced_

because their jobs are given to people that would make $4 dollars a day _max_ in Mehico, want to come here and take theirs away...


any more than I want to see my job as a computer tech go to India, because they'll do the same thing that I get paid more than 30 dollars an hour for for 37 cents and hour....


I don't believe in child labor or slavery either, both are practiced in India....slavery not so much...but...


I'm all for other countries getting ahead, not overnite, and not at the expense of _my_ class

the middle class

I'm perfectly willing to sacrifice George Bush's families share, and that includes his uncle Jeb, his brother Neil and his father's as they've probably stolen that money from me or someone _I_ know, or _you_ know

after all, this is what they do for a living

they inherited it, and their families taught them how to use the peasants since the Revolutionary War, when they voted to not let slaves learn how to read or write...

Posted by: the only thing sterile here is the space between your ears d-less... | June 2, 2006 06:18 PM

barrier in the instance of a blood barrier is so that the entity does not bleed to death but that the chemicals on either side of the barrier reach equilibrium...


that isn't what will happen if we let "minorities," continue to move in _illegally_


the US will economically bleed to death....


and there will be a very small upper class and most of the rest of the Americas will be third world....


and the rich will live in compounds like they do in the Latin American countries and Haiti/Santa Domingo, like that....


armed guards, containment like LA....ask the blacks in LA how they feel about the police....


we need to fix the people that we have that aren't emotionally viable, let's all send chris ford some peanut butter sandwiches...

.

Posted by: the reason for an osmotic | June 2, 2006 06:24 PM

Representation in Government by race is a horrible Idea, it's not only unconstitutional, and it's insulting to all minorities. It's segregation in government. And if you think we have Bozo's running this country now, with Anita's way, it will fall to an all new low. This is a view that says Minorities are too incompetent to get elected to public office on their own.

EEO has done more harm than good and resulted in a new era of bigotry (Chris Ford types). My brother in law, who is an attorney, expressed to me that in over half of the discrimination cases his firm handles, no discrimination ever took place and they still win most of the cases. In government quotas are preferred for government contracts, resulting in some cases totally unqualified individuals being hired, but not in all cases. Even with documentation of poor minority performers on the job, it's difficult to terminate. A good analogy is would you by a product with a 100% warranty or one with no warranty? So, would you hire someone you could not terminate from a job for poor performance without getting sued or hire someone you could terminate for poor performance with little or no chance of getting sued? The private sector, with no ties to government EEO, hires few minorities and EEO has caused this.

Will,

"I eat more Mexican food than I do any other kind of food (and I like it just fine that way, thank you very much)."

Why do you always bring up the subject of I eat Mexican food to prove your knowledge of Mexicans, does that mean anyone who eats at Taco Bell is an Expert on Mexico? Or someone who eats spaghetti is an expert on Italy?

Chris Ford,

"The definition of "minorities" was essentially rectally plucked by two Jewish bureaucrats appointed by Nixon to set up EEO and create legal definitions of who was who, which was done with EEO Form 1 the two devised one weekend."

Why do you bring up Jews as the cause EEO, they are not even a minority and not covered by EEO? These were two individuals directed by a conservative Republican President, who approved their work. They could have been any faith. Most murders in this country are commited by christians, does than mean we are all murderers?

Posted by: Jamal | June 2, 2006 08:13 PM

Or maybe the definition of what makes a minority will be tossed out with other outdated ideas that cause obnoxious behavior and we will all get to be people.
(Or Native Americans will get sick of people bickering about who is or is not an American and give EVERYONE the push.)
We are already seeing a move away from the idea that people can be placed in boxes (I always check Other and write Mutt, the Census Bureau hates me). and an acceptance of the idea that not everyone's parents are from the same part of the world. Have you seen, for example, the definition of African-American? It does not include people from places like Morocco which, the last I checked, was in Africa. What clowns came up with this stuff? Why do we even pay any attention to them? And of course if you leave the U.S. and go to another country the African-American may become white, coloured or just another ugly American depending on what local law/custom dictates.
I think what will happen in a few years is this debate as it applies to people from Mid and South America will die down the way it did for the Italians and Irish and Polish and Germans and Russian and Chinese and Japanese and Cambodians and Koreans... It will become irrelevant because we'll calm down and realize there are just Americans and if a particular person's grand or great-grandparents came from another country, that's very interesting but [shrug.]
Ethnically representative legislatures? Yeah, sure. I'll be running on the Mutt ticket.

Posted by: Mutt | June 2, 2006 10:13 PM

Ladies and Gentlemen, the single, undeniable feature of a democracy is the fact that it is based on the value of a vote; one person, one vote. Democracy does not analyse that vote in order to determine the language involved in the process of deciding which way that vote should go. At the moment, there is a concern as to whether ballot papers should be printed in English or another language.
According to demographic data published in this issue of WP, there is a distinct probability that English will soon be a minority language in the United States. In the interests of maintaining English as one of America's languages, I believe that ballot papers (and other documents devoted to the maintenance of democracy) should be printed in the languages of significant minorities - while they are still significant....

Posted by: Rick CLARKE | June 2, 2006 11:17 PM

Vet hits the mark: "Of course, they fail to see that it is the RULE OF LAW that we have created here that defines our culture...not our bigotries and toys. In a nation governed by the RULE OF LAW"

I cannot think of a better response. We have already dabbled in paying for past mistakes and have begun a non-stoppable move beyond discrimination of citizens of any color or sex.

If they are a majority, they are not a minority. And hypothetically speaking, if the new majority attempts to pass law that seriously discriminates against the new minority, you will see a resitance that would dwarf any movements of the past ... at least during my lifetime. I am sorry, but I think this is stupid.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 2, 2006 11:20 PM

"Why do you always bring up the subject of I eat Mexican food to prove your knowledge of Mexicans, does that mean anyone who eats at Taco Bell is an Expert on Mexico? Or someone who eats spaghetti is an expert on Italy?"

LOL! My family (parents) is of Irish and French Canadian descent. My last name sounds "hispanic." Whenever asked what I am, I respond, "Is there something special for me if I am hispanic? If so, then YES!" I would respond similarly if there was something special in the law for gays. It would be difficult to convincingly say I am black, but if I could benefit from doing so, yea, I would.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 2, 2006 11:38 PM

Jamal - I think what you meant was EEO has brought in a new era of stupidity, not bigotry....and that you hold yourself as it's paragon.

Mutt - The people that concocted America's race preferences just did it as bureaucratic fiat and as you say, it makes no sense, and had nothing to do with "affirmatively addressing past wrongs and creating the conditions" for equality.

Blacks immigrating to America from Nigeria are due affirmative action points to recompense for other Americans doing ....what? How are they entitled to preference and voluntary immigrants?

Yeah, some Americans going elsewhere are treated different. Very light-skinned blacks are considered white in Brazil. During the days of Apartheid, I read S Africa got around laws for well off Japanese and Japanese Americans by classifying them as "equivalent to whites".

No other country accepts the EEO bureaucrats of "Hispanics". Latin countries think it is laughable. The Indian subcontinent has 1.4 billion people who are anatomically Caucasians...but the bureaucrats who defined ethnicity for America in the 60s thought white people ended at Iran's edge, and classified the Subcontinent's people as Asian.

Your Moroccans are classified by EEO rules as white, unless they sneak into Spain and live there a while. Then they become Hispanics. Some clever Separdic Jews in America realized that they could get preferences if they became brother Hispanics, so some have successfully sued and proven that their ancestors were chucked out of Spain in the 1400s, thus got reclassified as bona-fide Hispanics.

Irish claiming descent from the Spanish Armada, the so-called Black Irish, still await their preferences. Asiatic Russians, including those Siberian tribes American Indians descend from, are all termed "white" by the Federal Gov't for EEO quotas and bean-counting.

It's all such nutty crap. Only liberal judges have kept the whole farce going for as long as it has.

Posted by: Chris Ford | June 2, 2006 11:49 PM

johnnyg, you make me wanna come to Washington just to have a beer with you.

We have a serious shortage of trained people in my field, and no government interest to fund more training programs. We have been recruiting for 4 years now, but the only candidates we can find have student visas, and the bosses upstairs tell us its too expensive and troublesome to engage in a special application for a permanent visa. Pre 9-11 a program at USC had one of theirs unwittingly go home to visit family and couldn't get back in the country. So his colleagues met him in Tijuana for a drinking party and just walked him back over the border no problem.

Thus I have issues with thousands, maybe millions of people streaming across the border with no medical exams, no sponsors, no jobs, and no resources. ANd since 9-11, add NO security checks.

Make the visa application process fair and reflect the needs of employers, and bring in enough people to do the jobs Americans are not doing at both ends of the spectrum, gardener to (American trained) doctor in the low paying medical specialties. (No one should have to wait 4 months for a doctor's appointment). Let the churches and civic groups be their sponsors, and help them with food and shelter until they find jobs. I know an immigrant now a productive American citizen who was sponsored to come to this country by Ronald Reagan.

Posted by: patriot 1957 | June 3, 2006 01:43 AM

English ballots. Spanish ballots. You home boys are so behind the time! Soon all voting will be done on the Web with color pictures of the candiates embedded in what's called AJAX. All you have to do is point and click. Or drag and drop. You want your guy or gal to be prez? Just drag her pic over to that White House icon. Or over the current guy's icon. Or over the opponent's icon. There you go, drop Hillary over Bush. Or Katherine Harris over Bill Nelson. Ain't that fun?

And what's more. You can vote even if you are down in Tijuana or the Amazon jungle or Dubai on election day. Ain't globalization cool?

Posted by: Minister of Information | June 3, 2006 04:08 AM

The cultural role of the leader is to create and execute efficient and humane solutions. This always requires intelligence, which is the raw driving force. Training and powers of perception refine the basic leader, who, again, has to have a wealth of raw intelligence.

A lot of American culture has put the emphasis, falsely, on assertiveness; and this emphasis hasbeen magnified by hierarchical organization.

We are shedding aspects of pyramid organizations, and many of the important problems are more technically complex, requiring special skills in engaging technical expertise without permitting their functions to distort values and visions.

The net effect I have noticed is that a new and still very rare style of leaderships is coming to the forefront. I mainly see it with very young adults still not empowered with executive positions. It's what I call "taking charge with a Type-B personality."

When you observe and analyze this phenomena, what you see is the natural ascendency of young women, for example, which tells me the imbalance of female leaders is going to be resolved though a pulling and not a pushing influence. Also, if my theory is correct, young women (and really all germinating leaders in our culture) should be less anxious about display of power, and should be consciously true to themselves in not emulating outmoded styles of leadership which are steadily losing ground.

Posted by: On the plantation | June 3, 2006 08:52 AM

Jamal-

Sometimes in discussions with respectful people it is polite to point out things you find agreeable in their statements before you disagree with them. I had aggressively questioned something Anita said, and she responded non-combatively. That was nice of her. To continue my disagreement I wanted to remind her that some aspects of her post certainly made enormous sense to me, particularly this part: "Does a demographic shift affect "business as usual"? It has in the past. The most basic consumer behaviors -- like eating habits -- can and do change with massive demographic shifts."

As a matter of fact this is a salient point for any Texan who has witnessed first hand the impact of Hispanic culture in eating habits. As a matter of fact, like most Texans, I've eaten more Mexican food than I have Russian food. In no way does this "prove my knowledge of Mexicans" rather, it proves merely that I eat a lot of Mexican food because the particular culture I live in has been transformed by Mexican culture in a certain way: food. This point was explicitly mentioned by Anita so I thought I would support it.

I mentioned my friend's marriages to hispanics because it is also relevant to the point. My white friends will have hispanic children. This will represent a demographic change which will likely affect the culture (not my friend's particular circumstance but you get the picture).

I mention Spanish because it was explicitly addressed by Anita here: "Will they be rooted in the language(s) we speak?" Many Texans speak Spanish. It would be a relevant point to examine in this discussion.

Go fist yourself.

Posted by: Will | June 3, 2006 12:01 PM

Jamal-

Sometimes in discussions with respectful people it is polite to point out things you find agreeable in their statements before you disagree with them. I had aggressively questioned something Anita said, and she responded non-combatively. That was nice of her. To continue my disagreement I wanted to remind her that some aspects of her post certainly made enormous sense to me, particularly this part: "Does a demographic shift affect "business as usual"? It has in the past. The most basic consumer behaviors -- like eating habits -- can and do change with massive demographic shifts."

As a matter of fact this is a salient point for any Texan who has witnessed first hand the impact of Hispanic culture in eating habits. As a matter of fact, like most Texans, I've eaten more Mexican food than I have Russian food. In no way does this "prove my knowledge of Mexicans" rather, it proves merely that I eat a lot of Mexican food because the particular culture I live in has been transformed by Mexican culture in a certain way: food. This point was explicitly mentioned by Anita so I thought I would support it.

I mentioned my friend's marriages to hispanics because it is also relevant to the point. My white friends will have hispanic children. This will represent a demographic change which will likely affect the culture (not my friend's particular circumstance but you get the picture).

I mention Spanish because it was explicitly addressed by Anita here: "Will they be rooted in the language(s) we speak?" Many Texans speak Spanish. It would be a relevant point to examine in this discussion.

Go fist yourself.

Posted by: Will | June 3, 2006 12:02 PM

Jamal-

Sometimes in discussions with respectful people it is polite to point out things you find agreeable in their statements before you disagree with them. I had aggressively questioned something Anita said, and she responded non-combatively. That was nice of her. To continue my disagreement I wanted to remind her that some aspects of her post certainly made enormous sense to me, particularly this part: "Does a demographic shift affect "business as usual"? It has in the past. The most basic consumer behaviors -- like eating habits -- can and do change with massive demographic shifts."

As a matter of fact this is a salient point for any Texan who has witnessed first hand the impact of Hispanic culture in eating habits. As a matter of fact, like most Texans, I've eaten more Mexican food than I have Russian food. In no way does this "prove my knowledge of Mexicans" rather, it proves merely that I eat a lot of Mexican food because the particular culture I live in has been transformed by Mexican culture in a certain way: food. This point was explicitly mentioned by Anita so I thought I would support it.

I mentioned my friend's marriages to hispanics because it is also relevant to the point. My white friends will have hispanic children. This will represent a demographic change which will likely affect the culture (not my friend's particular circumstance but you get the picture).

I mention Spanish because it was explicitly addressed by Anita here: "Will they be rooted in the language(s) we speak?" Many Texans speak Spanish. It would be a relevant point to examine in this discussion.

We don't always agree on political matters. But I am certain that you have better things to do with your time then fine-comb my posts trying to embarass me.

Posted by: Will | June 3, 2006 12:05 PM

I've got two unfriendly posts above that I thought were (thankfully) unposted. I would prefer the "Go fist yourself" were removed for the third. It more accurately represents my views on the matter.

Posted by: Will | June 3, 2006 12:07 PM

will, what do you mean unposted? Can you recall a post you screw up in?

Posted by: | June 3, 2006 12:45 PM

are not minority except in the ethnicity that they hold onto...


Jews are an ethnic group for that reason...they hold onto behaviours as well as beliefs....although you can be chinese or black and be jewish...

miniorities are not the problem or a situation waiting for great truths to spring from....


they don't represent a breakthrough, they represent a breakdown....

we _Americans_ of all flavors have decided to turn our back on ourselves


and believe the current administration that there is no hope for us and that we must cope....


that simply is not true.


we have more resources than any other country, possibly continent on EARTH....

we have the where withal to turn the world in whatever direction that we want it to,


at any point in time.


quite frankly most of the distortion in this country is due to the people currently serving in the Executive branch and Legislative branch of government.


they think that because they have privelege, and used it to get to the offices that they hold, that they have a right to work against the citizens and work only for themselves....


you can't get scrooge to work for you, you either have to take him out, or show him something to make him change.


I suggest, arresting and liquidating the properties of someone prominent.


cia/fbi/nsa/negroponte/cheyney/rumsfeld/agency/angry/destruction

(get a clue boyz)


having the United States Government attach the properties of the president or his family members and reducing them to poverty....so that they can learn how the other half live....

like these citizens:
jobs outsourced, future disposed of, shipped overseas when they're just trying to get some college money by joining the effing National Guard who everyone knows _never_ gets involved in wars...

take a few obviously corrupt congress people and make an example of them,


say, "this could happen to you,"


destruction so deep they can't recover from it.....no nest eggs, no properties exempt, seize and destroy....


reduce them to the plight of the common man....


let them go to emergency rooms for healthcare, if they can find a way to get their after thier cars have been taken and their medical abilities reduced by $30 a month when they only bring in a thousand to live on through SSI


let _them_ find out what it's like to go to a homeless shelter because their friggin jobs got outsourced, and they lost their home, their marriage and one of the kids killed themselves because they got caught up in the emotional firestorm of two parents in meltdown...


let them taste hell.


now.

.

Posted by: real citizens | June 3, 2006 03:04 PM

than to read about it,


when you want to make a point,


believe me.................!.
..
.
.
.

Posted by: it's much better to experience hell | June 3, 2006 03:23 PM

This question is by, for, and answered by white peoples.

Like most of the leadership in America, and its business and social elite, almost all of the participants in this board are lily white.

As a "token" person of color or non-white person, here is my contribution to this debate.

It is very interesting to hear a bunch of privileged white people, who have and are enjoying the benefits of white privilege, land theft of and genocide of Native American peoples, enslavement of black peoples, theft of half of Mexican land, oppression of Asian and hispanic workers since the birth of the nation to speak about equal rights, equal treatment, no racial preference for peoples, etc.

But, these beneficiaries of white privilege fails to acnowledge the fact that they are all beneficiaries of racial preference.

America is an equal place where a person can, if they work hard attain high positions these white peoples say.

Right!!!!

No wonder in this equal and equitable America there is the invisible glass ceiling, above which a person of color, be that person black, red, brown, or yellow rise despite their high qualifications and hard work. Whites are ofcourse hired.

No wonder in this equal and equitable America there was 200+ years of white privilege, the benefits of which could be seen by white families, which have on average 11 times more asset than an average black family and 20 times more asset than an average hispanic family, and lord knows 50 times more asset than an average Native American family. Why? Cause during those 200+ years of white domination and supremacy, white families enjoyed the fruits of free lands, which was given to them by the US government which were ofcourse lands that were stolen from native americans, who were herded like cattle in tiny and unproductive reservations or simply killed. Black people were ofcourse not even considered humans, and were the property of their white masters. asians had head tax placed on them and were not allowed to bring their partners out of fear that asian peoples would outnumber white people. During all of this time when a non-white person got no land, no education, no state service, whites and whites only got land, educaTION, state services, etc, with the result that today most whites have many times more wealth than a person of color family, who only recently have been getting the benefits and services which have been owed to them.

with regards to the senate and congress, the number of white people, especially white male are way out of proportion to their numbers when compared to hispanic, black, asian, and native american congresspeople.

the senate, well it is truly an old boyz club, with a lone black man, and maybe 2 asians from hawaii.

so tell me is america a free, equal, and a land of opportunity? sure it is, if you are white, aryan, european-descendant.

For the rest of us, non-whites - black, red, brown, and yellow, america is a land of privileges which are denied to us, simply because we are not white.

Posted by: What an interesting question | June 3, 2006 05:55 PM

Posted by: Will

"I mention Spanish because it was explicitly addressed by Anita here: "Will they be rooted in the language(s) we speak?" Many Texans speak Spanish. It would be a relevant point to examine in this discussion.
Go fist yourself."

Will,

You have run a fine comb through many posts of other individuals, please be able to give and take criticism like a good debater. As for your food statement it, has nothing to do with Anita, you have used the analogy in past debates and you have the right to imply that if you eat ethnic food, it makes you an expert on that ethnic group, however I find it to be a comical analogy. And please leave your pornographic insults out of debates, you might dwell in that trash, but I don't.

Posted by: Jamal | June 3, 2006 06:15 PM

Posted by: What an interesting question:
"so tell me is america a free, equal, and a land of opportunity? sure it is, if you are white, aryan, european-descendant.

For the rest of us, non-whites - black, red, brown, and yellow, america is a land of privileges which are denied to us, simply because we are not white."

If this assertion so truly relevant today, then why is everone clammoring to get in here?

You also assume that everyone white is born with some inherent silver spoon. Get real dude.

Thanks Will. I looked up on the Internet what that term means. Do people really enjoy that sort of thing? I'm still disturbed at what I saw. Eeewww. I hope the new majority puts tighter controls on the Internet so my kids and grandkids don't see that stuff.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 3, 2006 08:37 PM

This question is by, for, and answered by white peoples.

Like most of the leadership in America, and its business and social elite, almost all of the participants in this board are lily white.

As a "token" person of color or non-white person, here is my contribution to this debate.

It is very interesting to hear a bunch of privileged white people, who have and are enjoying the benefits of white privilege, land theft of and genocide of Native American peoples, enslavement of black peoples, theft of half of Mexican land, oppression of Asian and hispanic workers since the birth of the nation to speak about equal rights, equal treatment, no racial preference for peoples, etc.

But, these beneficiaries of white privilege fails to acnowledge the fact that they are all beneficiaries of racial preference.

America is an equal place where a person can, if they work hard attain high positions these white peoples say.

Right!!!!

No wonder in this equal and equitable America there is the invisible glass ceiling, above which a person of color, be that person black, red, brown, or yellow rise despite their high qualifications and hard work. Whites are ofcourse hired.

No wonder in this equal and equitable America there was 200+ years of white privilege, the benefits of which could be seen by white families, which have on average 11 times more asset than an average black family and 20 times more asset than an average hispanic family, and lord knows 50 times more asset than an average Native American family. Why? Cause during those 200+ years of white domination and supremacy, white families enjoyed the fruits of free lands, which was given to them by the US government which were ofcourse lands that were stolen from native americans, who were herded like cattle in tiny and unproductive reservations or simply killed. Black people were ofcourse not even considered humans, and were the property of their white masters. asians had head tax placed on them and were not allowed to bring their partners out of fear that asian peoples would outnumber white people. During all of this time when a non-white person got no land, no education, no state service, whites and whites only got land, educaTION, state services, etc, with the result that today most whites have many times more wealth than a person of color family, who only recently have been getting the benefits and services which have been owed to them.

with regards to the senate and congress, the number of white people, especially white male are way out of proportion to their numbers when compared to hispanic, black, asian, and native american congresspeople.

the senate, well it is truly an old boyz club, with a lone black man, and maybe 2 asians from hawaii.

so tell me is america a free, equal, and a land of opportunity? sure it is, if you are white, aryan, european-descendant.

For the rest of us, non-whites - black, red, brown, and yellow, america is a land of privileges which are denied to us, simply because we are not white.

white dominated ameriKKKa also tries to control latin america and the world by supporting right wing, oppressive, undemocratic regimes, whose only offense was to redistribute land amongst the non-white majority people as in the case of zimbabwe or carry out social and humane pro-poor policies as in Cuba, venezuela, and bolivia.

leaders such as hugo chavez, evo morales are termed democratic, whereas leaders, who would be a lackey to the white dominated USA, as in mexico and colombia would be regarded as democratic, despite their undemocratic and oppressive policies against their own peoples.

that is what it comes due, namely the preservation of white privilege, hegemony, and white supremacy in the nation called amerikka, which was built upon the backs of millions of dead and tortured native americans, black peoples, asians, hispanics, all to provide a life of luxury for the white massahs (that is, masters)!

Posted by: america is indeed a non-racist and non-biased country (sarcarsm here)! | June 3, 2006 10:56 PM

I would say, "you're right,"


but the reality is:

" For the rest of us, non-whites - black, red, brown, and yellow, america is a land of privileges which are denied to us, simply because we are not white. "


that statement is bulls-hit.


I taught school for awhile and the majority of the students were people of color....


and they are not going to leave their neighborhood...


they are ethnically outcasts.


they are children raised by children, with all of their attention drawn to how to get through the next fifteen minutes....not fifteen years,

I've also worked with folks that grew up in rural America, really the same mindset, if you listen to old tyme country music, it's the blues...

it's the ethnicity and mores that keep people of color from succeeding....


certainly it doesn't keep the Japanese or Korean from succeeding even in the same neighborhoods....


I could talk for several hours about the apparent differences....but I can also say it real quickly....


I had a black girlfriend in 1969, well spoken, her father was a CPA and in charge of accounting for a large city....she was well-spoken and very intelligent...went to an all girls school...

when I was out with her talking to my friends, they all treated her the same as they treated other people, standing off to the side I watched her interact with some people...to see what it was, then it dawned on me, she shared the same semantic basis, and was choosing the same words as the people that she was talking to...


her background was the same, she was actually "upper crust,"


she agreed with their reality.


That wasn't true of Black people that weren't from her family or close friends, they treated her as_if she were a traitor, talked trash to her...


the kids that I taught school to, they had short attention spans, their mores were more immediate gratification oriented....

some of them were pregnant at 12/13.

they were very bright, with little social restraint,

Alpha-oriented.

I also worked at an A-List school a couple of times........dull, boring predictable, inherited money....no insights about life, all accounting book keeping types, keep the-money-in-the-family...the town is fairly old...and olde money rules here....

you have to go to the right school to succeed in this town in established business....or bring your own money in...


to make a long story short,

the color difference is not as great as the social training difference...


what are seen as racial differences are "ethnic," or taught differences....they're not real....


give me 30 years and control of the schools at all levels and I'd empty the prisons....no more money spent on containment....all, or most of the people living the same type of lifestyle, and able to be as productive as each other....


try me.


another thing:


this is a serial conversation, not parallel, sequential....


the point to that is that taking a position, is a serial thing, believing a position is an imprisoning thing....I talk without believing...I see the effects of my writing and adjust as I go

the difference between kata and actual combat is that you can't train for predictability when you're working for unpredictable results...

you have to furnish them

to really understand fighting, you can't have a style

you all can't understand parallel, but you can feel it...


see yah.

.

Posted by: well, if I was lilly white and trying to please you, | June 3, 2006 11:01 PM

Thank you, above poster.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 3, 2006 11:06 PM


I appreciate the idea of race influencing
our government but a more overiding factor (I think) is the conservative nature of immigrants who are coming to this country. Most Hispanics immigrants are generally right of center and have very strong opinions regarding family and culture. The same goes for Asians and other new immigrants.Americans who are liberal tend to develop there left of center beliefs after many generations. There families tend to be smaller. Meanwhile immigrants tend to have larger familes. This shift in demographics has and will shift the political beliefs of his country more to the right.I dont believe these newer americans will vote on race lines but will more likely look for those who mimic ther values and beliefs.In a melting pot society, this is the healthiest habit to encourage. Voting based on color or race is at best a primitive type of behavior .

Posted by: ew | June 4, 2006 01:05 AM

(Much more has been added to this post, especially at the bottom half of this article).

This question is by, for, and answered by white peoples.

Like most of the leadership in America, and its business and social elite, almost all of the participants in this board are lily white.

As a "token" person of color or non-white person, here is my contribution to this debate.

It is very interesting to hear a bunch of privileged white people, who have and are enjoying the benefits of white privilege, land theft of and genocide of Native American peoples, enslavement of black peoples, theft of half of Mexican land, oppression of Asian and hispanic workers since the birth of the nation to speak about equal rights, equal treatment, no racial preference for peoples, etc.

But, these beneficiaries of white privilege fails to acnowledge the fact that they are all beneficiaries of racial preference.

America is an equal place where a person can, if they work hard attain high positions these white peoples say.

Right!!!!

No wonder in this equal and equitable America there is the invisible glass ceiling, above which a person of color, be that person black, red, brown, or yellow rise despite their high qualifications and hard work. Whites are ofcourse hired.

No wonder in this equal and equitable America there was 200+ years of white privilege, the benefits of which could be seen by white families, which have on average 11 times more asset than an average black family and 20 times more asset than an average hispanic family, and lord knows 50 times more asset than an average Native American family. Why? Cause during those 200+ years of white domination and supremacy, white families enjoyed the fruits of free lands, which was given to them by the US government which were ofcourse lands that were stolen from native americans, who were herded like cattle in tiny and unproductive reservations or simply killed. Black people were ofcourse not even considered humans, and were the property of their white masters. asians had head tax placed on them and were not allowed to bring their partners out of fear that asian peoples would outnumber white people. During all of this time when a non-white person got no land, no education, no state service, whites and whites only got land, educaTION, state services, etc, with the result that today most whites have many times more wealth than a person of color family, who only recently have been getting the benefits and services which have been owed to them.

with regards to the senate and congress, the number of white people, especially white male are way out of proportion to their numbers when compared to hispanic, black, asian, and native american congresspeople.

the senate, well it is truly an old boyz club, with a lone black man, and maybe 2 asians from hawaii.

so tell me is america a free, equal, and a land of opportunity? sure it is, if you are white, aryan, european-descendant.

For the rest of us, non-whites - black, red, brown, and yellow, america is a land of privileges which are denied to us, simply because we are not white.

white dominated ameriKKKa also tries to control latin america and the world by supporting right wing, oppressive, undemocratic regimes, whose only offense was to redistribute land amongst the non-white majority people as in the case of zimbabwe or carry out social and humane pro-poor policies as in Cuba, venezuela, and bolivia.

leaders such as hugo chavez, evo morales are termed democratic, whereas leaders, who would be a lackey to the white dominated USA, as in mexico and colombia would be regarded as democratic, despite their undemocratic and oppressive policies against their own peoples.

that is what it comes due, namely the preservation of white privilege, hegemony, and white supremacy in the nation called amerikka, which was built upon the backs of millions of dead and tortured native americans, black peoples, asians, hispanics, all to provide a life of luxury for the white massahs (that is, masters)!

Look at washingtonpost itself. almost all of its directors and researchers are lilly white, despite the profusion of colored capable and educated candidates out there.

sure there is a "token" black or asian or hispanic and maybe even native american person. however, in a nation which is 33.333% or one third non-white to have a token non-white person is an insult to us colored, non-white peoples.

this will not stand. the colored peoples will not tolerate this kind of racial oppression for much longer. unless white dominated organizations start to hire more persons of color into positions of power, than just having a "token" houseslave, then people of color non-white people will demand their justice and this may in the future even lead to a civil war in which whites would be outnumbered and old.

so you decide who will win!

so this is my advise to the white privilege whites who are dominating this nation. start to make sure that at least 33.333% of people in power are non-white people and not just a few token non-white people.

this tokenism is an insult to us non-whites and we will no longer tolerate this kind of crap!

Posted by: ameriKKKa only promotes white privilege and white supremacy! | June 4, 2006 10:38 AM

it isn't the immigrants that need to be worried about it's the overall effects of elitist orientations...


which includes an influx of _illegals_ to fuel the unbridled disenfranchisment of legal citizens...

many from other countries come to the United States to escape an unprincipled class of leader that is all too willing to take advantage of the people in order to get more of what they want.....it's what they are used to, and they're unwilling to address that attitude in their own countries.....


we haven't seen as much of that attitude _here_ because WWII tended to make people think of each other....

that has worn off and the leaders are back to the old "it's all about me," mentality,


the _illegals_ feed that, agree with that...


they don't care about _this_ country, they care about getting what they want

now....


arrest those that hire, and if the parents came here _illegally_ I would seriously urge that, until we can take care of our own, the children be considered illegal too....


butting in line, does not sit well with me.


we allow, 900,000 LEGAL immigrants a year


the others are here for the money, not to improve, add to moral fibre or even to contribute to the other citizens life, nor are they concerned if they ruin it for those already here....


they actually have the mindset of our current crop of leaders without the assets, why do we need more trash here, when we're already trying to get the police to arrest our corrupt leaders?


_illegal_ means _ill effing legal_


it means "arrest,"

.

Posted by: whatever... | June 4, 2006 10:51 AM

ameriKKKa wrote,

"this will not stand. the colored peoples will not tolerate this kind of racial oppression for much longer. unless white dominated organizations start to hire more persons of color into positions of power, than just having a "token" houseslave, then people of color non-white people will demand their justice and this may in the future even lead to a civil war in which whites would be outnumbered and old.

so you decide who will win!"


You really have it wrong! For any business, for any country, the most qualified should be hired or most of these organizations will ultimatly fail. Expanding the quota system will create more racial division. And if the ethnic/minority communities have few highy skilled workers, then education and social/family support should be the target, not division via quota.

An example of not hiring the most qualified would be the Bush administration. This administration tried to hire by loyalty and like-mindedness over much more qualified individuals and is now, along with the country, suffering the consquences of this idiological mistake.

Anita and Amirikkka, the solution is hire the most qualified, and if a community does not have qualified citizens, then get them qualified for the job market or elected office.

Posted by: Jamal | June 4, 2006 11:21 AM

Jamal is right. I work in a highly specialized field that requires a degree in engineering and knowledge of arcane legal subject matter. This does not make me "special" in a personal way. I decided to study, intensively, for many years (and paid for all of it). We see very few blacks as potential candidates. However, it is not the path to a position in my field does not discriminatory! Colleges do not discriminate! In fact, it has been the opposite with these institutions.

The glass ceiling you speak of is non-existent in my field. Business is about making money. If a person can demonstrate the capacity for this, he/she is on a level playing field with the others. Token hiring is stupid. I will never, ever consider such crap.

If you want to change things for yourself, read the other multi-named poster's response very carefully. It is not about "acting white."

I hate to use a "I know a black guy," story as an example, but I do know a few black colleages and friends, who are very successful and well respected in my field. They earned that like everyone else.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 4, 2006 01:04 PM

Sorry about the double negative, should be:
However, the path to a position in my field is not discriminatory!"

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 4, 2006 01:06 PM

Mr Jamal : I have worked and spent time with people such as you. People who have little knowledge about the true and real history of the country.

sure you may have come to ameriKKKa in the last few years as an engineer, scientist or some other professional and now work for some white dominated organization.

however, you are in no position to make any statement about what kind of racism existed and still exists in ameriKKKa and how people of color, be they black, red, brown, yellow are disenfrachised from political posts and also from economic posts and other positions of power.

you simply get a salary from your white master and that keeps you happy. all you work, whatever you do, only enriches the white old club even further and what you get are small little crumbs.

again read about from my previous posts as to why minorities are as poor as they are today. that was because of centuries of quite open pro-white affirmative action, and when non-white peoples were not even considered humans, let alone allowed the ability to own land (go to the countryside for once and you will see that 99% of all farmland in ameriKKKa is owned by white farmers - yes white farmers, not black, hispanic, or asian landowners), education (remember the time when blacks were not allowed to attend any top or Ivy league colleges), ability to vote, other health and other benefits.

that legacy is why people of color are so many times poorer than non-whites.

and what about the invisible glass ceiling! I am sure you know what I am talking about having worked for your white bosses. who gets most of the top management and executive level jobs? You? or you other white guy, who worked with you only less harder than you, only to get promoted to become your new boss.

this is even more schocking when you see how few non-white peoples are in congress and in the senate.

so, my friend read the real history of ameriKKKa and do not give me your crap about equality in ameriKKKa.

also how many rednecks have you seen in ameriKKKa. maybe not a lot as you live in the cities or suburbs, which are majority non-white now.

however, go to the countryside and see who owns all the land, how you get treated, and how white privilege discriminates against the black, red, brown, and yellow peoples.

oh by the way, what about the millions of native americans who lost their lives owing to the european occupation of the americas. do you think white people were NATIVE to america or to europe?

so get a history lesson, not a lesson that was written by old white men ofcourse.

Posted by: From ameriKKKa: Jamal seems to be anti-people of color | June 4, 2006 02:17 PM

ameriKKKa, you are all over the place. Try to limit your issues for more coherent discussion.

The "rich white" farmers, you know those "crackers" who inherited their land, do you want their land redistributed like the communists did?

Rednecks. I also generally do not like them (-not talking about the simple country folk here-). However, if they own property, what right do you have to it? Are you looking for reparations? LOL!

And historical issues with slavery and racism are fading fast as new generations emerge. There is no correlation with my personal responsibility and the past wrongs. Do you perceive that I am guilty simply because I am white? My ancestors were not slaveholders and did not partake in the genocide against Native Americans. In fact, the first US citizens in my family came from Ireland shortly before the Civil War, and fought for the Union (Army of the Potomac). Believe me, while the Irish were not slaves, they have had their measure of job discrimination (and also were seen as a lower form of life). Over time, things change. I believe the Hispanics will have an easier time fitting in here than other groups in the past.

I just read the Post's article about the Harvard poll concerning black men in America. Check it out.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 4, 2006 03:18 PM

"however, go to the countryside and see who owns all the land, how you get treated, and how white privilege discriminates against the black, red, brown, and yellow peoples."

Sad to see another person who has bought the big lie the so called white master really wants everyone (regardless of color) to believe. Namely that privilege in the US is based on color, not the real issue: Cash. Traditionally, "red necks" don't own a lot of land. They don't own a lot of anything. Your average "red neck" is lower to low-middle class. He has a thousand times more in common with the brown and yellow necks around him than the man whose neck would be red if he actually went outside to do anything but play golf.

Do you think the white man living in a trailer is treated better or better liked or gets a some sort of break from the white man in the mansion? (A la the Eddie Murphy skit) Get real. The man in the mansion wants the man in the trailer to believe that he is better liked or appreciated or just better because he is white, like the guy in the mansion.

Being white is supposed to serve as a comfort when the guy in the trailer is laid off and his water is cut off because he can't pay the bills or arrested for drunk driving and winds up in jail because he can't afford a lawyer while the man in the mansion goes scott free for the same offense.

Otherwise the trailer person might look around and notice that the man in the mansion treats him just as badly as the brown guy next to him. Then the white guy in the trailer and the brown guy in the trailer and all the other people living in the trailer park might all gang up on the real problem, the filthy rich schmoe in the mansion. Allons enfants!

However, so long as people of any group that is not the dominant group continue to squabble and point fingers over imagined priviliges based on skin color the rich man knows he's safe. So, Amerikkka, for propogating the big lie, you have the gratitude of "white master[s]" everywhere.

Posted by: Mutt | June 4, 2006 03:27 PM

It really ain't worth explaining white privilege to a couple of white guys, who are the product of pro-white affirmative action and white privilege in ameriKKKa.

here is my advice. keep on enjoying your white privileges, white benefits, and oppressing non-white peoples (maybe you do not oppress racial minorities, but your group as a whole does).

pretty soon, when we, that is the red, black, brown, and yellow peoples become majority, who after 500+ years of oppression becomes so pissed of with white domination, white privilege, and white affirmative action, and white control of ameriKKKa and vent their anger, then let us see how your tacit unconcern about white privilege helps you in explaining to the masses and provide a satisfactory answer to them about white privilege.

let us see if you can convince them.

also yes, if native americans were forced to move off of their land, what, "are whites somewhat more superior, to not also have to share the land of america with the colored peoples of the world?" or do you think that just cause you are white you do not have to share the land!

as I said before, it ain't worth a dime or a cent explaining white privilege to a couple of white guys. if you cannot understand that is your own problem.

Posted by: From ameriKKKa: Johnnyng and Mutt | June 4, 2006 03:59 PM

I am going to comment on some of this post, however after reading this rhetoric, it appears you are someone pretending to be a person from a minority and doing a very poor job of it. Also, to mention my being an engineer, few know that in here, so you are most likely a regular commenter in this blog using an alternate identification.

ameriKKKa wrote,

"Mr Jamal : I have worked and spent time with people such as you. People who have little knowledge about the true and real history of the country."

In your post you have demonstrated a lack of American history over the last 500 years. Was it not the Buffalo soldiers, an all volunteer black unit that fought for the removal of Native Americans from their lands?

"sure you may have come to ameriKKKa in the last few years as an engineer, scientist or some other professional and now work for some white dominated organization....however, you are in no position to make any statement about what kind of racism existed and still exists in ameriKKKa and how people of color, be they black, red, brown, yellow are disenfrachised from political posts and also from economic posts and other positions of power."

I personally don't care what color, religion, sex, sexual orientation..... as long as you're the best qualified for the job. In competitive private business that is what it takes to succeed. I am black and have had less qualified persons get promotions over me, but as my mother always said, "if they are as bad as you say, they won't last" and they never do. I was born in America and all my roots are at a minimum antebellum. My father and mother were high school drop outs who knew the road to a good career was an education, something that was never emphasized by their parents. The only complaining they did was about hard times in the great depression and not blaming other people. And they saw that their children got an education.

"you simply get a salary from your white master and that keeps you happy. all you work, whatever you do, only enriches the white old club even further and what you get are small little crumbs."

LOL, you can do better than that, such lousy acting!

"land (go to the countryside for once and you will see that 99% of all farmland in ameriKKKa is owned by white farmers - yes white farmers, not black, hispanic, or asian landowners), education (remember the time when blacks were not allowed to attend any top or Ivy league colleges), ability to vote, other health and other benefits."

Mutt answered this very well.

"oh by the way, what about the millions of native americans who lost their lives owing to the european occupation of the americas. do you think white people were NATIVE to america or to europe?"

If your conscious bothers you so much about Native Americans, then why haven't you given your land back to them?

Whether its public service or private sector, an organizations road to success is hiring qualified employees. And that's an undisputable fact.

There's an old quote "The greatest competitors are those that compete with their own limitations and not other people" You my friend should start working on your own limitations.

Posted by: Jamal | June 4, 2006 04:54 PM

whether or not intentionally enforced, there exist barriers for members of certain groups

"Are Emily and Greg More Employable Than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination"
identical resumes got fewer callbacks, interviews, etc. when the name at the top was "black-sounding"
http://post.economics.harvard.edu/faculty/mullainathan/papers/emilygreg.pdf

nyt article 04/15/2005:
"Mel Hochster, a mathematics professor at Michigan, belongs to a committee of senior science professors that gives workshops for heads of departments and search committees highlighting the findings of numerous studies on sex bias in hiring. For example, men are given longer letters of recommendation than women, and their letters are more focused on relevant credentials. Men and women are more likely to vote to hire a male job applicant than a woman with an identical record. Women applying for a postdoctoral fellowship had to be 2.5 times as productive to receive the same competence score as the average male applicant. When orchestras hold blind auditions, in which they cannot see the musician, 30 percent to 55 percent more women are hired."

debate btwn Harvard profs Pinker and Spelke 2005:
"The subjects in the study were people like Steve and me: professors of psychology, who were sent some vitas to evaluate as applicants for a tenure track position. Two different vitas were used in the study. One was a vita of a walk-on-water candidate, best candidate you've ever seen, you would die to have this person on your faculty. The other vita was a middling, average vita among successful candidates. For half the professors, the name on the vita was male, for the other half the name was female. People were asked a series of questions: What do you think about this candidate's research productivity? What do you think about his or her teaching experience? And finally, Would you hire this candidate at your university?"

"For the walk-on-water candidate, there was no effect of gender labeling on these judgments. I think this finding supports Steve's view that we're dealing with little overt discrimination at universities. It's not as if professors see a female name on a vita and think, I don't want her. When the vita's great, everybody says great, let's hire."

"What about the average successful vita, though: that is to say, the kind of vita that professors most often must evaluate? In that case, there were differences. The male was rated as having higher research productivity. These psychologists, Steve's and my colleagues, looked at the same number of publications and thought, "good productivity" when the name was male, and "less good productivity" when the name was female. Same thing for teaching experience. The very same list of courses was seen as good teaching experience when the name was male, and less good teaching experience when the name was female. In answer to the question would they hire the candidate, 70% said yes for the male, 45% for the female. If the decision were made by majority rule, the male would get hired and the female would not."

"A couple other interesting things came out of this study. The effects were every bit as strong among the female respondents as among the male respondents. Men are not the culprits here. There were effects at the tenure level as well. At the tenure level, professors evaluated a very strong candidate, and almost everyone said this looked like a good case for tenure. But people were invited to express their reservations, and they came up with some very reasonable doubts. For example, "This person looks very strong, but before I agree to give her tenure I would need to know, was this her own work or the work of her adviser?" Now that's a perfectly reasonable question to ask. But what ought to give us pause is that those kinds of reservations were expressed four times more often when the name was female than when the name was male."

Posted by: glass ceiling | June 4, 2006 05:16 PM

btw i dont support that we should have race/sex quota in government but both unintentional and intentional discrimination exists, its something to think about

maybe it will change when country makeup changes

Posted by: glass ceiling | June 4, 2006 05:18 PM

Moving past ethnic/racial quotas for elected officials - which, I was neither advocating nor even suggesting for debate given how unrealistic that prospect really is - what of the other leadership issues that face the U.S. with this demographic shift?

Can we prepare future leaders able to meet the challenges of these demographic changes? How? Should we? Or should we just let what happens happen?

Posted by: Anita | June 4, 2006 05:34 PM

seeing your support for the white man, you seem to be a black republican, who are individuals who despise their own race and also praise and support the white master.

As brother Danny Glover and Harry belafonte once rightfully spoke of the uncle toms amongst us.

sure the buffalo soldiers fought against the native americans. what does that have to do anything with white privilege, white domination, and white supremacy?

Soldiers from France also fought on the German Nazi side during the WW2. does that mean that all French were pro-Nazi Germany??? Ofcourse the buffalo soldiers had no choice. they were forced by their white officers to kill innocent native americans. if there were some self conscious black officer, the chances of sand creek would have been much lesser.

Answer that!

as for my land and wealth, I live in poverty and own no land or house, despite three university degrees. i guess, I was not white enough for a job in the white massah's plantation.

but again, if I say massah to the white master and lower myself to my proper place, then maybe the white massah will give me a good job! ain't it brother?

Posted by: Mr. Jamal | June 4, 2006 05:43 PM

As for a shift in increased government representation for minorities, it's not what the minority percentage of the general population is, but what percentage of the minority actually votes. And if more citizens' minorities had actually gone out and voted the current incompetent administration would not be in office.

A case in pint is if American women, if as a united group, they wanted to elect a woman president, they have the numbers to do so and have for very many years. Yet we sill haven't had a woman president and women are still a vastly under-represented MAJORITY in government. With this example, will there be any great shift at all in government?

Posted by: Jamal | June 4, 2006 06:09 PM

Correction, case in pint should be case in point. LOL

Posted by: Jamal | June 4, 2006 06:10 PM

Jamal, I think Amerikka was confusing you with me. I mentioned above that am one. And I assure you that I am not AmeriKKKa.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 4, 2006 06:31 PM

"In a multicultural and multilingual society, what common ideas will unite us?"

In the long term, I don't think there will be a multilingual society. And where multi races and cultures have coexisted for several generations within the same economic level, intermarriage is happening at an increased rate.

"Will they be rooted in the language(s) we speak?"

No, in the incomes we have.

"Is having a dominant language an oppressive cultural tool, or is it the glue that holds our society together?"

A dominant language is an important ingredient in the glue that holds a society together, but not the only ingredient in that glue.

Are we destined to further divide and multiply along cultural and linguistic lines?

In the world there has always been division among differing groups of people, this is not going to change. What can change is our ability to control our basic human instincts.

"How can we help a new generation of leaders figure out how to find enough common ground to bring us together?"

Elected leaders need to realize they might be elected by a majority, but they're elected to serve all.

Posted by: Jamal | June 4, 2006 07:54 PM

Anita,

To see a shift in elected officials to more minority representation, you can not look at the percentage minorities make up of the general population. You must take into account actual percentage that participates in elections. With current levels of minority participation in elections it will take much more than a simple majority of the population to see any shift in government representation. And with the current voter rate, it would be interesting to determine the actual level based on voter participation when the minorities of today would be the actual voting majority. Going out on a limb without the stats to analyze, it would probably take greater than 60% of the general population to be minorities to see a major shift in government representation. So, with current minority voter apathy, this is not going to happen in the near future.

Posted by: Jamal | June 4, 2006 08:08 PM

I hope blacks dont just vote for blacks, yellows dont just vote for yellows and whites dont just vote for whites. It would be a huge step backward if race/sex played a large part in our voting decisions. It would mean that people who are different then us will not look out for us. That would cripple the great american experiment and drive us each into our respective racial cultural camps. It would be scary and devisive. Thats when the empire falls. I may be in a minority but I think american politicians for the most part do a fairly
good job in representing the ideas of "most "americans. This society has a great ability to self examine and criticize. Its a fairly complicated formula, but the press, our educational system, religious leaders all are pretty much on the same "general" page, Yes we have our devisive issues but we all have sort of drank the koolaid and so far have done a good job of getting along. Yes there are still big issues out there, but all big funtional dynamic growing families have issues, its the nature of the healthy beast.

Posted by: ew | June 4, 2006 10:26 PM

let me see, you can get two or three of them for the price of one citizen, and they don't mind their benefits getting cut...


what's leadership got to do with it, it's called taking advantage of the existing citizen base...

replacing the old worn out American Citizens with new, smaller, faster, stupider, peasants....


what's leadership got to do with anything?


isn't bush doing a good enough job of disinfranchising the existing citizens?


isn't inviting in _illegals_ as the poverty leven increases and social services are cut and have been cut yearly since he came into office?


did you know VA BENIFITS have been cut too, during _purported_ wartime?


what's that all about? can you say "bait and switch,"


can you say, corruption, corruption, corruption?


Posted by: leadership issues with the demographic switch... | June 5, 2006 01:44 AM

what has this government done to address the inequities that are growing daily between the haves and have nots....

except to increase the number of have nots?


they already know how to deal with the problem of an increasing disparity in income...


you build walls around the areas where the rich live and keep the citizens out....


we're moving backwards, not forwards, they've already dealt with it before, and the citizens then came up with their own way of dealing with it....


defenestrazation.....throwing someone from a window in a high place, French Revolution,

my solution would be simply to arrest a few, seize their properties, mark their resumes with felony convictions and let them try to find work....


with no land, no friends and no resources...


that would be what would happen to you if you defrauded the public out of several million dollars, or thousands of millions of dollars...


should they fare better?


I don't think so, I'd even be willing to cast the first stone, or spank one publically....congress person, executive branch officer whatever...

I'd even slap a few, hard.

.

Posted by: how about this.... | June 5, 2006 01:52 AM

it's a caste issue.

it is a caste issue...


we are a plutocracy, an oligarchy...


we have been mislead, and given our democracy away


like good children....


you can't get scrooge to work for you, you either have to take him out, or show him something to make him change.


I suggest, arresting and liquidating the properties of someone prominent.


cia/fbi/nsa/negroponte/cheyney/rumsfeld/agency/angry/destruction

(get a clue boyz)


having the United States Government attach the properties of the president or his family members and reducing them to poverty....so that they can learn how the other half live....

like these citizens:
jobs outsourced, future disposed of, shipped overseas when they're just trying to get some college money by joining the effing National Guard who everyone knows _never_ gets involved in wars...


take a few obviously corrupt congress people and make an example of them,


say, "this could happen to you,"


destruction so deep they can't recover from it.....no nest eggs, no properties exempt, seize and destroy....


reduce them to the plight of the common man....


let them go to emergency rooms for healthcare, if they can find a way to get their after thier cars have been taken and their medical abilities reduced by $30 a month when they only bring in a thousand to live on through SSI


let _them_ find out what it's like to go to a homeless shelter because their friggin jobs got outsourced, and they lost their home, their marriage and one of the kids killed themselves because they got caught up in the emotional firestorm of two parents in meltdown...


let them taste hell.


now.

.

be a real citizens, show them how to accept responsibility for their actions...


make them.

.

Posted by: this isn't an ethnic, racial or moral issue... | June 5, 2006 01:57 AM

Until, white Americans get treatment for their crayola coloring addiction we will have to suffer this sort of ridiculous debate.

Now one has to wonder, if white Conservatives will change their position on abortion as they realize that their lilly white world will be quickly vanishing. Or will they advocate government incentives to produce more white babies?

If in fact 50% of the babies are non-whites , inter-marriages will certainly be in vogue and we might finally remove all this race identification from census, school admission, et al.

Posted by: J. Leopold Roy | June 5, 2006 07:31 AM

The ethinicity of Politics will change under the plurality system as I was witness to it in Atlanta, when Maynard Jackson was elected and it set about changing the quality of life for all of Atlanta over the past 33 years of African Amercian leadership as Mayor and in the City Council. Language should bind us and assimilation is the process however, and as the plurality changes the assimliation and cultural identification process will change, that's an axiom of power. We can thank the civil rights movements of the 20th century to have stimulated our evolution as a nation, from our "manifest destiny" cultural genocide of the 19th century. Cultural delineation will remain but the "dominant" culture will fluctuate and then change over the next century. Furthermore, religious intrepretation of life will change as the cultural flavor of America changes.

Posted by: Alphonso | June 5, 2006 08:51 AM

There are many obstacles in a society like ours. Inequality is a hallmark of a democratic society. Communism and socialism are what the above writers propose. Considering the ugly histories of the latter, I'll take what we have here.Its not perfect and its always awork in progress, but no other country attracts more immigrants then this one. If what you say is true, that we outsource , kill people and discriminate to such a degree, then why do so many people of diff nationalities still flock to our shores and stay ? Why would such a horrible country have to work so hard to keep people out ?

Posted by: ew | June 5, 2006 09:04 AM

Hey, give me the brown and yellow and other people...just save me from the religious nuts!

Move along...no Theocracy here:

http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/religion/stories/DN-gopreligion_04tex.ART.State.Edition1.903cb29.html

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 09:14 AM

Education, education opportunities, and motivation to learn and acquire skills, along with good physical health, are the important factors in advancing individual economic and social opportunities.

The lifetime-entitlements mentality of the country-club kids who think they can always take the easy way out because it doesn't matter if they apply themselves or not, as well as the resentfully claimed social entitlements of kids who agonize because they get few breaks through their family, are both spiritual wounds of a sort.

If we always look at extremes, even though there are a lot of people in such groups in absolute numbers, it's more difficult to figure out what is one's best interests in practical long-term ways. All of us are minorities in more than one way, and we all need to smile about it as often as we can.

Posted by: On the plantation | June 5, 2006 10:14 AM

You are all correct, opportunity abounds in this country for people of all colors and creeds.

But people who think minorities don't have extra roadblocks along the way are kidding themselves.

I had to sit on a committee to decide the fate of an otherwise good (and respectful) medical student who missed finals - because he was in jail. He committed the crime of driving while black in a lily white gated community with a taillight out in an expensive car (owned by his father). He spent the night in jail until his father the lawyer (three states away) got him out. How many white people go to jail for having a taillight out? (By the way he aced his makeup finals).

A secretary of mine allowed her registration to lapse on her car. She was stopped in February for driving while black again with a taillight out, the lapsed registration was discovered, and the car was impounded on the spot, and she was left on a streetcorner in the snow with two small children, one of whom has a chronic illness and a central intravenous line. I remember once when I was a kid and my parents were stopped for a lapsed registration. A nice policeman gave them a ticket that would be cancelled if they presented a valid registration within 48 hours.

There's two different worlds out there, the one lily whites live in and the one everyone else lives in.

Posted by: patriot1957 | June 5, 2006 11:32 AM

Diversity in congress (house and senate) is up to the people to elect. Not some predisposed criteria for balance.

Posted by: Vern | June 5, 2006 12:05 PM

This is amusing.

In response to a post by Jamal, AmeriKKKa writes:

"seeing your support for the white man, you seem to be a black republican, who are individuals who despise their own race and also praise and support the white master.
As brother Danny Glover and Harry belafonte once rightfully spoke of the uncle toms amongst us."

In response to posts by myself and Jamal:

"It really ain't worth explaining white privilege to a couple of white guys, who are the product of pro-white affirmative action and white privilege in ameriKKKa."

Everyone should be able to spot the contradictions in amkkaka's posts as directed at Jamal, the black republican white man.

However, I must hold up people like amkkka as an example of one reason I do not judge people based on race, colour, sexual orientation, religion, party affiliation etc:

Some people, no matter how much you may appear to share in common with them, reflexively spout offensive drivel that is almost criminal in its dullness. It reminds me of the "You hate America! You hate soldiers! You love terrorists!" blather in debates about the war in Iraq (which is especially odd when directed at American soldiers who have killed terrorists...). It all comes down to the same 'thought' pattern: "People who disagree with ME are BAD and I get to slap labels on them no matter how wild, insulting, ignorant or in the case of communication via internet - unsupportable."

Amerikkka does not know it, but like all other radicals who have drunk of the holy Kool-Aid, he/she is right at home with the the most uptight of the conservative right, the grandest grand dragons and critters like Fred Phelps. S/he cannot formulate an original idea or launch a valid counter debate so instead s/he falls back on fill-in-the-blank rhetoric designed to cow the opponent into submission. I don't care if a speaker is saying All Men/Whites/Straights/Christians/Republicans are Evil or All Women/Blacks/Gays/Jews/Democrats are Evil, it is all comes from the same limited cerebral power and [YAWN] man, is it tedious!

Posted by: Laughing Mutt | June 5, 2006 12:06 PM

Indeed...just WHOSE bacteria should we trust? Don't be bringin' your stinkin' bacteria to MY country!

http://today.reuters.com/news/newsArticle.aspx?type=scienceNews&storyID=2006-06-01T183140Z_01_N01206758_RTRUKOC_0_US-BACTERIA.xml

And a little humor to go with it:

http://witlist.blogspot.com/2006/06/were-only-partly-human-after-all.html

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 12:29 PM

Well...Vern...that would be nice if it were true. See...politicians gerry-mander state districts to ensure the status quo, just ask Tom. Then throw in the money and simmer with some "Swift Boat" sauce and you have a recipe for...well...a rubberstamp Congress like we have now.

This is why the pain of our current situation has to be so bad. When the incompetence reaches past wealth and power barriers...people finally wake up. Unfortunately, the damage is already done and we spend more time cleaning up the mess then moving forward.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 12:35 PM

I'll let the rest of you yell at each other over the latest fake neocon issues thrown out to divide the Real Majority who don't like incompetence.

Meanwhile, amusing story, my son has been a minority (caucasian) since he was in kindergarten, in a white area of Seattle (north of ship canal), but we had him in mixed schools, it wasn't until this year that he went to an 85 percent caucasian high school that he's been a "majority".

As I said when I lived in Canada, my ethnic group is American, because after a couple of generations, who the heck cares? When my brothers and sisters did our census forms, we all did them at a family gathering and found out, with our spouses, we could together check more than 10 ethnic groups.

This is the face of the 21st century, and once you realize that's normal, you'll have a much more fun and rewarding time in it. So long as you're in denial about it, you'll feel isolated.

Posted by: Will in Seattle | June 5, 2006 12:40 PM

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 12:41 PM

I wouldn't worry, in a few short years our leaders will all be Chinese Americans or Black Americans with Spanish names and we will be the better for it.

Chinese heritage brings us wisdom and careful, studious attention to detail.

Black heritage, charisma and style, key to compelling leadership.

Spanish names attract the latino vote without bothering other populations (i.e., spanish names don't affect white and other voter preferences).

Although I for one, would love to see latinos predominate in public office.

Latinos (so poorly named) are genetically the descendents of american indians, Maya, Aztecs and many others whose culture is heavily influenced by Spain. Unlike North American indians they are for the most part still the majority in their respective countries and fast becoming a signifigant minority in ours.

Go, go for it!!! Geronimo your distant cousins will get Texas back yet!

Posted by: Vic | June 5, 2006 12:45 PM

Hey, come on Will, it's OUR HERITAGE and CULTURE they're defending...right?

Again, I will say that what makes this country truly unique is our adherence to the laws of this nation above our emotions and our elected leaders. Our BELIEF and ADHERENCE to certain unaliable rights trumps ALL color, religion, creed, ethnicity and political parties. Should we lose sight of this and measure ourselves by some subjective metric...WE WILL ALL LOSE.

Let's not lose understanding that behind all of this is a certain amount of fear and racism. Certainly we should be able to control imigration for reasons of practicality, but not for racial or cultural purity.

It's certainly nice that we have created a nice sounding lexicon for illegal immigration to hide our racist feelings, but it doesn't change the obvious. How can one say the "vast majority" are hard working and law-abiding and then turn around and blame immigration for all of our ills?

Indeed, how great must we be to risk EVERYTHING to come here? I say OPEN the borders and enforce the laws of this nation. If you come to work and will work hard, then come on over. If you don't get minimum wage or are exploited...let's prosecute the companies engaging in those activities. If you commit a crime...home you go.

Let's face it...this is not about the drain on social services for most of us...this is about race and culture. TO deny that and to circumvent that with a nice, sellable lexicon of empty language is just foolish and will lead to more problems, not less.

Damn good thing the Canucks aren't brown.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 12:52 PM

patriot1957 wrote:

"How many white people go to jail for having a taillight out?"
____________

Petty oppression can happen whenever little and resentful minds get a bit of authority. Having lived in Atlanta (true intown not the suburbs) for decades, where the majority of policie are black, and basically all the elected power structure is the same, I can tell you a few stories from the other side where the pink guy is the legal majority but the statistical minority. I've been with people threatened with arrest for stuff even more trivial than a taillight (e.g., inadvertently walking between two people at the train station, pulling out of a parking place in a mall parking lot with wipers on but lights not on yet, moving into an added right turn only lane where it expanded without making a turn signal, and others). Incidentally, all events were black cops and pink citizens.

Free-floating hostility when it has a badge is not what respectable people foster in their minds. But there is precious little defense against it, even though the citizen is right.

Posted by: On the plantation | June 5, 2006 01:09 PM

Most cops, black or white, are asses and not the "heros" like they try to make them appear to be. Never liked them, never will.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 5, 2006 01:19 PM

"Black heritage, charisma and style, key to compelling leadership."

And they dance well too. Sheesh.

Ethnic background/race are not linked to personality traits. I REPEAT ethnic background/race are not linked to personality traits.

A person's charisma or wisdom or ice cream flavor preference cannot be determined by their skin colour or their grandparent's country of origin.

Posted by: Mutt | June 5, 2006 01:55 PM

I am glad to see that at least there are some people who are willing to debate on hard issues such as social equality or inequality and immigration.
However, I cannot believe that some people cannot acknowledge that there are social inequalities that are determined by race. Social Science research has proven that a long time ago.
How does one go about changing things for the better? Well, the first step is to acknowledge the injustice. Affirmative action aims at amending these injustices.
I want to return to the original question posted by Anita on the issue of plurality vs. representation in government.
In the beginning steps of change we must have quatas that will ensure representation. This is what happens in some europian countries who want to encourage or make sure that women are represented in government and the parliament.
Let me explain why I think that there should be quotas:
To get elected you must have money and access to media.Too many studies of political communication have proven that.
In order to raise money you have to have people working or volunteering their time to raise that money or wealthy sponsors. Lets assume that wealthy sponsors can be found. A minority candidate generally needs minority people working for him/her in order to persuade minority people to come out to vote and vote for that particulat candidate. The thing is, that most minority people, because they are excluded from some higher paying jobs, because some of them may not have the education needed because they live in lower income neighborhoods who do not get as much funding to improve their schools and so on in the vicious cycle, those minority people do not have the time to go out to volunteer because they are working two or three jobs.
We don't realize that some people are not as well off as we are and we think that it is because they are not working hard enough or because they are weak. Let's acknowedge that having social programs, progressive taxation, and good public schools are going to benefit all of us in the long run.
There is this inherent fear that if we provide for those who don't have as much we are going to lose everything!

I want to make another point about a question posed earlier about why do immigrants come here if it is not so good for them. The answer to that is that in their country is probably worse. And the U.S. foreign policy along with the IMF and the World Bank is not letting them "make it better."

Posted by: mm | June 5, 2006 02:12 PM

We have a considerable challenge ahead of us. For the preponderance of the country's history, the "majority" has been white and European heritage. African Americans made up a distinct minority with which the majority has been hard-pressed to understand how to integrate. We now have a minority of hispanic heritage and a new influx of residents from today's Africa. There will be some required adjustments.

The biggest adjustment is to our thinking. We often hear people speak of their heritage as if some other country's customs and traditions had a great bearing here. Truth is that the United States has its own customs and traditions. It is for those customs and traditions that people have ultimately come her to make this land part of their family's life. We must think about what it means to live here; what does this life offer and demand of us?

What is important in this discussion is that we need to understand and recall constantly what our formative documents promised those who fought for and maintained this country. It was to be a land of justice and freedom, a place to pursue one's life dreams with no unfounded interference. It agreed to be a place governed by laws applied to all equally. It agreed to be a place where no one's religion was enforced upon someone else.

To regulate such a state, we need not be represented according to "ethnicity" but according to what we agree to be our common good. Why should the good of a black person be different from that for an Hispanic or some person of another extraction? Is that not the issue facing the people of Iraq? The good of each person is not contingent upon his or her religion, country or origin or kinship in one or another society of humankind.

Our general interests are not served by private entities prejudging the good of society. It should be clear that there are among us those who would like to draw power to their own benefit by making us believe, one individual at a time, that our best interest is that of others who share such things as religion, historic nationality, cultural "ethnicity" and so on. However, these factors play very little in the broader meanings of our representative government. We want the government that values and respects our individuality and our desires to succeed in our own ways in our own measures. We want the government that recognizes protection of our rights, our principles of governance to be the most profound and fundamental duty of our society. If we, the government of the people, do that we shall not need think of "ethnic" representation for all of our needs will be addressed.

Posted by: Jazzman | June 5, 2006 02:16 PM

Mutt wrote:

"Ethnic background/race are not linked to personality traits."
_______________

This is a pretty broad assertion. You are saying that ethnicity (social culture) is not linked to personality.

Let me describe something, in my opinion, that is a positive example of an exception. Rural old black folks I have known frequently have a demonstrable trait that I categorize as "the gift of idiom." I've also heard it from the mouths of immigrant Cubans, although not quite as incisive or as common with them in my opinion.

I envy that gift. I try to train my pink daughter to listen for it and develop it as part of her speech and writing abilities. It is a particularly valuable gift in modern technological times. What it consists of, is the mental ability to take key ideas or observations/insights down to a string of three to five ordinary words. It's powerful stuff. Executive speech writers would pay hugely to have it on tap on a consistent basis, but it mostly seems hard to replicate and seems to originate natively, based on particular cultural insights, and perhaps somewhat enriched by oral traditions.

Cultural ethnicity, as well as cultural experience, definitely do affect powers of perception and personality, or lack thereof.

Posted by: On the plantation | June 5, 2006 02:29 PM

Great topic Emily!

I am worried that the changing demographics of the American population will have a negative impact on important civil rights issues, especially affirmative action.

Justice O'Connor recently wrote, "We expect that 25 years from now, the use of racial preferences will no longer be necessary." And if whites no longer command a majority in the population, how can it be said that racial minorities deserve additional protections such as affirmative action?

My response (and I am white, btw) is that 400 years of slavery and segregation cannot be erased by 40 years of desegregation and affirmative action. Equal opportunity may be gauranteed by law but it is not true in practice. Homicide is the leading cause of death for black men under 40. In New York City, an African American has a better chance of going to prison than going to college. I could go on ad nauseum about the persistent influences of racism and economic inequality, but I think the post is sufficiently juicy for me to be shouted down by other debaters!

Posted by: William | June 5, 2006 02:29 PM

MM,

I am going to have to disagree with your proposed remedy of quotas. I think that that quotas are a simplistic fix to a very complicated problem.

While we DEFINITELY still have issues as far as racism in this country, we also have laws on the books to deal with it. The question is, are we enforcing them appropriately. If we were to apply quotas to all businesses, then we would be seeing a whole lot more white players in the NFL and NBA and whole lot more black ones in Soccer and NHL.

We must find a way to demonstrate hiring and firing based on merit and ability to get the job done. We MUST remove barriers to ENTRY, but we should not HAND OUT entry based on anything but merit either. How we can ensure that, I am not really sure. But, I know that quotas taint those who worked hard to get their positions regardless of the color of their skin.

This is not to say that statistics demonstrating a disparity of major proportions cannot be used as an argument, just not the ONLY argument. Such a disparity should certainly be the smoke that points one to investigate for a fire...but a fire will NOT always be the source.

What is evolving more in America then any of the other "isms" is Classism. We are creating greater distinctions regarding economic classes and en greater barriers. Indeed, our tax policies, access to good legal council, access to good health care and the like are creating a caste society that has a little to do with race, sexuality, religion and the like, but more to do with wealth and power.

It's ok to be rich and we will NEVER eradicate the poor, but we shouldn't indulge in extremes of either. It is the middle class that has ALWAYS made this country great...NOT THE RICH. As we destroy the middle class, so we destroy ourselves.

No one who BECAME rich thinks they did it on their own. Anyone who was born into wealth tends to have a sense of entitlement that allows them to WHINE about taxes and the "parasites" who use THEIR money, but in the end, they could not survive without the stability that a well-functioning central government provides when answerable to the MIDDLE CLASS.

If you look at virtually EVERY economic policy taken up by the right since 1994, you will see that they are ALL the result of "think tanks" created, funded and run by the wealthy with the only goal being protecting THEIR wealth...not this country or you. They believe in the Aristocracy of Wealth and all of the entitlements it implies.

They wrap up their "ideas" in words that make the 50k a year millionaires think they are part of the club, when they KNOW you will NEVER set foot on the "club grounds". They use emotional, empty language to ensure you never stop hyper-ventilating about the "parasites" and the "big spending government" to realize exactly what is being trickled down on you.

Unrestrained capitalism cares not for the human condition. It is a system that is self-probogating and self-correcting based on a set of boundaries, rules and criteria that make it indifferent to the suffering caused by it's fluctuations. That does not mean it's BAD, just BAD when left unchecked by reason.

We have indeed shown the world the way past blatent racism, tribalism and bigotry (yes, we still have work to do), but we have yet to defeat the caste system of wealth that is created by unchecked capitalism.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 02:36 PM

You know, when the Atty General took on affirmative action, the Wall Street Journal did a big spread on it. Now, I wondered, why would that bastion of rich uber-conservatives write an article that seemed, well, sympathetic to preference in college admissions.

A colleague gladly popped the bubble of my naivete. The article was sounding a warning that if this went too far, they were not going to be able to buy a spot at Yale for their lazy underachieving children or grandchildren. They might actually have to COMPETE with the riffraff for admission. Interesting how it all worked out isn't it.

Posted by: patriot1957 | June 5, 2006 02:52 PM

The idea that minorities can only be represented by minorities is an unfortunate one, as it leaves one with the impression that people of different colors and races can not relate.

If that were true we'd be doomed, but it isn't.

I think as Americans we deserve political parties that represent us, but don't use our prejudices to keep us apart. THAT's the problem in this country, the preservation and advancement of stereotypes that keep people of different backgrounds from talking to one another. Our actual differences are hard enough to mediate.

Proportional Representation sounds good at first but what it does is reward politicians for their differences instead of the what they have in common.

The defect of our current system isn't the two-Party system, but rather the two Parties (Republican and Democrat) that currently dominate and the way they keep dissenters out of the political system.

Party Primaries are the problem.

As minorities become a larger part of our country it is important that they come to feel like they are a part of America. The longer they feel alienated from the system the more in danger we are of having our country come apart at the seems.

The Democrats and Republicans BOTH are responsible for maintaining an ongoing fight between the races in order to win elections and solve nothing.

A common point of reference is necessary for this country to perpetuate itself. Not everyone is going to agree with it, but it is past time that we find it and impress it upon the American people as a whole.

Posted by: Cavalier829 | June 5, 2006 02:58 PM

This "quota" talk is wasted air. Racial quotas for admissions are unconstitutional according to the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th amendment.

Posted by: Will | June 5, 2006 03:08 PM

Patriot-

"They might actually have to COMPETE with the riffraff for admission."

I think you've got this mixed up. Racial qualifications for admissions are not in place to protect minorities from racist institutions but to redress past grievences by society or any particular institution. They do not force "riffraff" from competing with everyone else on level footing, rather they ensure that otherwise unqualified people will have a chance to participate with otherwise qualified people. This is not the goal, of course. The goal is to make sure that members of a racial group who have been discriminated against are given admission to schools they otherwise would not be able to qualify for.

And this might be a perfectly noble goal. But don't trick yourself into thinking that a bunch of black, overly qualified students have had their access to higher learning institutions restricted in recent years; it's quite the opposite. Lesser qualified minorities are given access to upper learning institutions that they otherwise could not qualify for with the hopes that this access will redress past grievences by society or particular institutions. I don't have an enormous problem with using race as *A* factor (if it is the sole determinative factor, ie quotas, then it is clearly unconstitutional) in admissions because I can admit that societies and institutions have committed historical wrongs by restricting access to racial or cultural groups.

So lets redress those grievences without playing the victim card twice, alright? It's not that "riffraff" suddenly get a chance to compete fairly, it's that certain groups are given an enormous advantage they would not otherwise have merely because of their race.

And if a white kid and a black kid with identical qualifications apply for Harvard Law School then the black one will take the white one's place. As they should, in many people's opinion.

I'd encourage anyone to check out http://officialguide.lsac.org/OFFGUIDE/pdf/lsac6882.pdf and scroll down to the bottom. Now ask yourself why a person with an LSAT score of 135-139 would get into a Law School where a person with an LSAT score of 170-174 did not with better grades could not.

Posted by: Will | June 5, 2006 03:21 PM

Will, you missed my point.

I know all about why affirmative action is there.

My point is that preferential admissions exist for reasons other than race. If your daddy or grandaddy adds enough to the endowment, you pretty much have guaranteed admission to the ivy halls. How do you think W got in?

When W and his pals were suing to stop affirmative action, very carefully sounded alarm bells went off in the upper crust. If they succeeded in making a rule that all admissions must be merit based only, it was going to cause a bit of a problem for Jr.'s admission to Yale. So you will notice that you didn't see the blueblooded team of rich white men out there pounding the airwaves about this issue, and it lost its punch pretty fast as an issue after that WSJ article.

Posted by: patriot1957 | June 5, 2006 04:35 PM

Anita,

Your link curiously fails to include Jewish minorities. Am I, perhaps, wrong to assume they still are considered such?

There are ten Jewish Senators in the U.S. Senate--meaning they are five times over-represented. There are two alone in my home state of Wisconsin--Herb Kohl and Russ Feingold, both fine men--where Jews make up 0.5% of the population.

Obviously if some groups are "over-represented" then other groups must be "under-represented." The fact that Jews are over-represented while other ethnic groups are under-represented is curious. I suppose it could mean Americans (overall) possess a greater affinity for certain ethnic groups than others. I believe, however, that this is unlikely (especially when one considers the persecutory history of the Jewish people.)

Call me naive, but to me such statistics suggest that the American population is generally not bigoted in its voting patterns and people tend to elect pols on the candidate's substance and views, not his or her ethnic background or skin color.

Does this disproportionate representation of Jews to [fill box with racial/ethnic group] need to be "fixed?" Should we perhaps limit the number of Senatorial seats that can be held by people with Jewish ancestry? Should we allot an established number of seats to each particular group based on race, ethnicity, gender, etc...?

I hope we all can agree this would make a mockery of representative government and democracy.

Perhaps the lesson here is that the world should not always be viewed through racial and ethnic prisms. Such myopic vision only builds barriers; maybe we would be better served by remembering we are simply Americans.

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 04:37 PM

patriot-

Noted and point well received. Strange bed fellows the abandonment of meritocracy does make.

Posted by: Will | June 5, 2006 04:49 PM

U.S. News & World Report
June 12, 2006

Bush Knows His History

By Michael Barone

Two weeks ago, I pointed out that we live in something close to the best of times, with record worldwide economic growth and at a low point in armed conflict in the world. Yet Americans are in a sour mood, a mood that may be explained by the lack of a sense of history. The military struggle in Iraq (2,473 U.S. military deaths) is spoken of in as dire terms as Vietnam (58,219), Korea (54,246) or World War II (405,399). We bemoan the cruel injustice of $3 a gallon for gas in a country where three quarters of people classified as poor have air conditioning and microwave ovens. We complain about a tide of immigration that is, per U.S. resident, running at one third the rate of 99 years ago.

George W. Bush has a better sense of history. Speaking May 27 at the commencement ceremony at West Point--above the Hudson River where revolutionary Americans threw a chain across the water to block British ships--Bush noted that he was speaking to the first class to enter the academy after the September 11 attacks. And he put the challenge these cadets willingly undertook in perspective by looking back at the challenges America faced at the start of the Cold War 60 years ago.

"In the early years of that struggle," Bush noted, "freedom's victory was not obvious or assured." In 1946, Harry Truman accompanied Winston Churchill as he delivered his Iron Curtain speech; in 1947, Communists threatened Greece and Turkey; in 1948, Czechoslovakia fell, France and Italy seemed headed the same way and Berlin was blockaded by the Soviets, who exploded a nuclear weapon the next year; in 1950, North Korea attacked South Korea. "All of this took place in just the first five years following World War II," Bush noted. "Fortunately, we had a president named Harry Truman, who recognized the threat, took bold action to confront it, and laid the foundation for freedom's victory in the Cold War."

Bold action: The Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan in 1947, the Berlin airlift in 1948, the NATO Treaty in 1949, the Korean war in 1950. None of these was uncontroversial, and none was perfectly executed. And this was only the beginning. It took 40 years--many of them filled with angry controversy--to win the Cold War.

The struggles against Soviet communism and Islamofascist terrorists are of course not identical. But there are similarities. "Like the Cold War, we are fighting the followers of a murderous ideology that despises freedom, crushes all dissent, has territorial ambitions, and pursues totalitarian aims," Bush said. "And like the Cold War, they're seeking weapons of mass murder that would allow them to deliver catastrophic destruction to our country."

Misreading Truman. The New Republic's Peter Beinart argues that Bush, unlike Truman, has shown no respect for international institutions. But the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan were unilateral American initiatives, and Truman used the United Nations to respond in Korea only because the Soviets were then boycotting the Security Council. Otherwise he would have gone to war, as Bill Clinton did in Kosovo, without U.N. approval. Bush did try to use the U.N. on Iraq but was blocked by France and Russia, both stuffed with profits from the corrupt U.N. Oil for Food program. But as Bush pointed out, we have worked with 90-plus nations and NATO in Afghanistan and with 70-plus nations on the Proliferation Security Initiative. We're working with allies to halt Iran's nuclear program.

"We can't have lasting peace unless we work actively and vigorously to bring about conditions of freedom and justice in the world," Harry Truman told the West Point class of 1952. Which is what we're trying to do today--in Iraq and the broader Middle East, in Afghanistan, even Africa.

Reports of Bush's West Point speech noted that Truman had low job ratings--lower than Bush's, in fact. But does that matter now? Bush, as Yale historian John Lewis Gaddis has written, has changed American foreign policy more than any president since Truman, and like Truman acted on the long view. "The war began on my watch," Bush told the class of 2006, "but it's going to end on your watch." Truman might have made the same point, accurately as it turned out, to the class of 1952. We're lucky we had then, and have now, a president who takes bold action and braves vitriolic criticism to defend our civilization against those who would destroy it.

Posted by: Truth Bringer | June 5, 2006 05:07 PM

Washington Post
June 5, 2006
Pg. 15

And Now For Some Good News

By Peter Wehner

By now Americans know the litany: The nation is engaged in a difficult and costly war in Iraq; Iran is trying to build a nuclear weapon; gas prices are high; the costs of reconstructing the Gulf Coast region are huge; illegal immigration is a major problem -- and more.

These issues are real and pressing. But they aren't the whole story -- and they ought not color the lens through which we see all other events. We hear a great deal about the problems we face. We hear hardly anything about the encouraging developments. Off-key as it may sound in the current environment, a strong case can be made that in a number of areas there are positive trends and considerable progress. Perhaps the place to begin is with an empirical assessment of where we are.

Social Indicators: We are witnessing a remarkable cultural renewal in America. Violent crime rates remain at the lowest levels in the history of the Bureau of Justice Statistics' survey (which started in 1973). We are experiencing the sharpest decline in teen crime in modern history. Property crimes are near the lowest levels in the history of the federal survey. Welfare caseloads have declined almost 60 percent since 1996. Both the abortion rate and ratio are at the lowest levels we have seen in the 30-year period these data have been tracked. African American and Hispanic fourth-graders posted the highest reading and math scores in the history of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) test. The use of illegal drugs by teens has dropped 19 percent since 2001, while the use of hallucinogens such as LSD and ecstasy has declined by more than half.

The teen birth rate has fallen for a dozen consecutive years. The percentage of high school students who reported having had sex is significantly lower than in the early 1990s. The divorce rate has fallen steadily for over a decade. And teen smoking has dropped by almost 50 percent since the late '90s.

There are areas of concern, to be sure. Births to unmarried women are at an all-time high, and in many respects our popular culture remains a cesspool. But context is important. Between 1960 and the mid-'90s virtually every social indicator got worse -- and in many cases staggeringly worse. Then things began to turn around, almost as if a cultural virus created its own antibodies.

The Economy : The American economy is the strongest in the world and growing faster than that of any other major industrialized country. It grew at an annual rate of 5.3 percent in the first quarter -- the fastest growth in 2 1/2 years. It has added more than 5.3 million jobs since the summer of 2003, and employment is near an all-time high. The unemployment rate (4.6 percent) is well below the average for each of the past four decades. Mortgage rates remain near historical lows, homeownership remains near a record high, and sales of new and existing homes reached record levels in 2005. Real disposable personal income has risen almost 13 percent since President Bush took office; and core inflation rose just 2.3 percent over the past 12 months. The Dow Jones industrial average has risen from under 7300 in 2002 to above 11,000 for most of this year. Tax revenues are at an all-time high -- and so is total household net worth.

National Security : Perhaps no nation has ever been as dominant as the United States is today -- and we are using our military power to promote great purposes. As a reference point, it's worth recalling that the 1930s and early-'40s were regarded by many as the twilight of freedom. Democratic societies were threatened both internally (by a depression) and externally (by Nazism and fascism). There were only a dozen or so democracies on the planet.

Today we are witnessing one of the swiftest advances of freedom in history. In the past four years more than 110 million people have joined the ranks of the free -- and for the first time freedom is taking root in the Middle East. Once ruled by cruel dictatorships, the people of Afghanistan and Iraq are now governed by constitutions and are participating in national elections. The governments of the two countries once provided safe haven to terrorists; now they are engaged in a mortal struggle against them. This struggle is longer and harder than any of us would wish, but by any standard or precedent of history, Afghanistan and Iraq have made remarkable political progress.

Kuwait's parliament has granted full political rights to women. Arab intellectuals are pushing for a rapid acceleration of democratic reform. After almost 30 years, Syrian troops left Lebanon in response to the Cedar Revolution. And Libya has abandoned its program of weapons of mass destruction. The biggest nuclear-smuggling ring in history, run by Pakistan's A.Q. Khan, is being rolled up. The government of Pakistan has cast its lot with us against al-Qaeda.

Islamic terrorists have been denied sanctuaries, their networks are being broken up, their leaders are being incapacitated and they are on the run. Our homeland has not been attacked since Sept. 11, 2001. And we have set aside decades of mistrust to put relations with India, the world's most populous democracy, on a new and fruitful path.

This account does not mean that everything is going smoothly. Every day we are reminded that hardships are real. Grave threats persist. Missteps have been made along the way. And more can always be done. But we are witnessing significant progress on many different fronts, and there are authentic grounds for optimism.

The Sept. 11 attacks, two wars, a recession and the worst natural disaster in our history have been turbulent and draining events. History-shaping periods often are -- and so, not surprisingly, the nation is unsettled. Yet the United States is a deeply resilient and hopeful country. The trajectory of events is in our favor -- and with the passage of time, all this will become clear enough.

Posted by: Truth Bringer | June 5, 2006 05:14 PM

Hey Truth Bringer,

Imagine this. Truman declared the Soviet Union and China's WMDs a mortal threat to America and human civilization and mounted a preemptive war on both!

That would have made the Iraq war and the war on terror irrelevant and unneccessary of course.

Posted by: Truth Binger | June 5, 2006 05:22 PM

Looks like che's got company in the loony bin.

Posted by: | June 5, 2006 05:23 PM

The first affirmative action program in the US was the allocation of 2 senators to every state regardless of the number of its citizens. It's an affirmative action for smaller states.

The second affirmative action program is the electoral college.

Posted by: Truth Revealer | June 5, 2006 05:29 PM

Oh man what luck. I just finished reading the Peter Wehner piece and was begging that someone would mention it here for some critical review. One line jumped out at me:

"Tax revenues are at an all-time high..."

What Wehner conveniently leaves out is that tax revenues were at an all-time high in... 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1999, 2000, and finally, magically, 2005. Come to think of it, since 1962 the Government has set an "all time record" for government revenue every single year except 1971 (Richard Nixon), 1983 (Ronald Reagan) and 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004. Anyone catch a trend here?

If you ask Wehrner, taking 4 years to get "tax revenues to an all time high" is a good indicator of economic success. News to me. Jimmy Carter managed to do it four times in a row. Bush is 2 for 5. That's bush (irresistable) league if you ask me.

Posted by: Will | June 5, 2006 05:34 PM

I left out 1989-1998 though, I assure you, each year was marked by a record breaking year in Government revenue.

Posted by: Will | June 5, 2006 05:36 PM

I doubt anyone wants to start a nuclear exchange but how many lives would have been saved it Mao, Stalin and Kim Il sung were not in power ? It is estimated that the number of dead from mao's policies alone were 70-80 million.Stalin took out 20 million(low estimate). Kim of North Korea was put in power by China and the Soviet Union and is credited with killing 2-3 million.

Posted by: ew | June 5, 2006 05:43 PM

Looks like che's got company in the loony bin.

Posted by: | June 5, 2006 05:23 PM


It's che's evil twin. The new guy should have used the right wing's hero's moniker - pino'che.

Posted by: Truth Tinker | June 5, 2006 05:44 PM

"Islamic terrorists have been denied sanctuaries, their networks are being broken up, their leaders are being incapacitated and they are on the run."

If this is true, why am I being asked to give up more and more civil rights in the name of fighting terror. Your missive would indicate I should be seeing my rights returned to me given our great success rate.

"And we have set aside decades of mistrust to put relations with India, the world's most populous democracy, on a new and fruitful path.:

Wow, what a poetic way to say we've given them our jobs.

"and we are using our military power to promote great purposes:

Yeah, that's what Napolean and Hitler thought when they went to Russia too.

"Real disposable personal income has risen almost 13 percent since President Bush took office;"

That is true, but it came from the upper quartiles. Median income fell between 2000 and 2004. It fell most among the lowest quartile, it fell most among wage earners under 35. Debt also accumulated and savings dwindled even more for those in the lower quartiles. College became unaffordable for the lower quartiles. One third of factory workers whose jobs have disappeared or overseas will find their new jobs paying 20% less with fewer benefits.

"by any standard or precedent of history, Afghanistan and Iraq have made remarkable political progress"

The cup is half full. Iraq is now teetering on civil war, and Afghanistan is in grave danger of going back to the terrorists because we left it without adequate troops to keep the peace outside of the cities. But keep smiling and maybe it will all go away.

"The government of Pakistan has cast its lot with us against al-Qaeda."

All that separates Pakistan from the rule of the Taliban and/or civil war is a bullet in Musharraf's head. Better hope he has good protection.

Yes, Truth Bringer, let us put a smiley face on problems that are are gradually building up to critical mass in a year or two - just long enough to be able to blame on the next administration.Perhaps Bill Gates can come up with a way to make a little heart to dot the i's with to help you.

Your piece remids me of the way people in communist countries used to listen to the news to glean the truth. "There is no truth to unpatriotic rumors that the war is going badly in Afghanistan. Our glorious troops fight bravely there and will not have their patriotism desecrated by those who fail to believe in our mighty army". To anyone with a practiced ear, it was pretty clear this news story meant Afghanistan was going to the dogs. I just never thought that I'd need to develop that ear in the USA


Posted by: patriot 1957 | June 5, 2006 06:13 PM

tell the truth,

it's not a gay marriage issue, this president holds hands with rich arabs and they make movies about it.....


he's not homophobic, he uses it, he su-cks off money on a daily basis...

he gives your children to line the wallets of his arabic brothers....as he smokes cigars in private and asks them over to his place to go bass fishin....

what's the issue then, ?

it's a caste issue.

it is a caste issue...


we are a plutocracy, an oligarchy...


we have been mislead, and given our democracy away


like good children....


when someone askes us to "do the right thing,"


like support homophobia, burn him to hell.

you can't get scrooge to work for you, you either have to take him out, or show him something to make him change.


I suggest, arresting and liquidating the properties of someone prominent.


cia/fbi/nsa/negroponte/cheyney/rumsfeld/agency/angry/destruction

(get a clue boyz)


having the United States Government attach the properties of the president or his family members and reducing them to poverty....so that they can learn how the other half live....

like these citizens:
jobs outsourced, future disposed of, shipped overseas when they're just trying to get some college money by joining the effing National Guard who everyone knows _never_ gets involved in wars...


take a few obviously corrupt congress people and make an example of them,


say, "this could happen to you,"


destruction so deep they can't recover from it.....no nest eggs, no properties exempt, seize and destroy....


reduce them to the plight of the common man....


let them go to emergency rooms for healthcare, if they can find a way to get their after thier cars have been taken and their medical abilities reduced by $30 a month when they only bring in a thousand to live on through SSI


let _them_ find out what it's like to go to a homeless shelter because their friggin jobs got outsourced, and they lost their home, their marriage and one of the kids killed themselves because they got caught up in the emotional firestorm of two parents in meltdown...


let them taste hell.


now.

.

be a real citizens, show them how to accept responsibility for their actions...


make them.

.


Posted by: make the world a better place to live in... | June 5, 2006 06:36 PM

ew - I had a few eye opening experiences in the last decade that have made me rethink the concept that my understanding of freedom is something that ought to be imposed, instantly, on the rest of the world.

One was discovering that the older people in Russia weren't all so happy with their sudden "freedom". In the old USSR they had not much, but food (even if not much meat) and a roof over their heads (even if shared with 3 or 4 generations of their family), and a job (even a hard or boring one), and someone who made the hard decisions for them. Suddenly they were thrust with no preparation into the "free market", with no clue how to fend for themselves. Like most Americans I celebrated their freedom, and failed to understand how much help they would need adjusting to capitalism - the turn back to a harder line there with no outcry from the people isn't all so surprising when you think about it in this way.

I also expected women in Afghanistan to have burka burning parties hosted by Christiane Amanpour. The burka was not something they were raised on from infancy like in some countries, it was a relatively new imposition from the Taliban. It never occurred to me that the burka gave them some anonymity and therefore protection in the dangerous Taliban years. They are in fact not so secure there after all yet, and I don't think we'll be seeing any burka burning parties there for some time.

Finally, I had a chance to go see where my grandparents were born in Eastern Europe (came to America in the early days of WWI by hiding in the bottom of a potato wagon to get out of the country). When the Soviets took over after WWII, they built schools and sent the rural kids to school. Once they were educated they no longer wished to live in the unheated, no running water 2 room dwellings their parents lived in, and the Soviets built them these horrid looking cinder block apartment buildings in town (with running water and central heat). Now most of the old huts are inhabited by old folks too old for school at the takeover, or are used as weekend "dachas" by their educated grandchildren.

When the Communists took over China, millions upon millions of people were starving. By cruel methods, the population is now educated and of a size that people get enough to eat.

We think of Communism as "bad". I sure wouldn't want to live under it. But it seems in retrospect it served a larger purpose of stabilizing and educating the populace and preparing them for democracy. It was a 'stepping stone" of sorts between the rule of the repressive emperors or the czars into democracy.

So, what would have happened if the world had taken on Mao or Stalin? Turned starving nations crushed from centuries under the heel of emperors and czars into democracies overnight? I dont' know, but the experience in modern Russia makes me think democracy probably wouldn't have "taken" at that time. Sort of like we're seeing in Iraq right now, no?

Education and the inabililty to block out all modern communication is helping China to gradually become freer. I once believed there would have to be a revolution there, but now I wonder if it isn't going to come by inches. Likewise we must support infant democracy in the former USSR, mostly by understanding the reasons the people are allowing the old hard liners to consolidate their power and helping to counter them.

So no, I think the law of unintended consequences would not have made the impostion of democracy tenable had we fought Mao and Stalin right at the beginning.

Posted by: patriot1957 | June 5, 2006 06:52 PM

Patriot:

You may need a little context. Lets remember that wars will always be ugly, messy affairs and their is always a tragic price to pay for them. Yet the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are not so much different from previous U.S. engagements; only our perception of them is.

Imagine if we had reported Okinawa minute-by-minute. It was clearly more of a "quagmire" than anything we have seen in Afghanistan or Iraq. Its blood price was also infinitely higher.

Barbarities--committed by both sides--and carnage defined the War in the Pacific, yet we talked more about the accomplishments than the death tolls or the atrocities.

Iraq has had setbacks and the Administration was probably myopic in some of the earliest stages its planning, yet we have achieved nearly all of our goals and Iraq will likely have an operating government within months.

There was a time when any politician who spoke out against any war America was fighting was condemned as traitor, regardless if the war was just or not. Today, we have the opposite affect, but one just as dangerous as the former: politics is fueled by opposing a war a constituency opposes on ideological grounds.

These engagements are neither "unwinnable" or "quagmires". The war has simply become the arena of cutthroat party politics. The Left is now vested in a U.S. retreat and defeat--or "redeployment" if you will--for a war they say we should never have entered (and they never should have voted for.) The Right is hell-bent in fining a silver lining to justify the 2500 dead soldiers, since it appears their were no WMD and removing Saddam is meaningless if the country should collapse into anarchy.

We are the lone super-power in the world. We will win this war or lose it because the public will to fight it wanes. The real war is one of politics, not troops.

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 07:01 PM

Make the World a Better Place:

Citizens don't vote in Oligarchies. The poor don't have the same rights as the wealthy in a plutocracy.

That poem? was, well, not offensive, just inane. We live in the wealthiest civilization the world has ever seen and you write nonsensical blather like, "destruction so deep they can't recover from it.....no nest eggs, no properties exempt, seize and destroy...."

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 07:20 PM

Jon M
You make a false analogy. Iraq was not WW II. Iraq did not attack us. There were no bastions of al Qaeda in hte parts Saddam controlled. It would be like us getting bombed at Pearl Harbor and attacking Stalin in retaliation because he was an evil dictator and communism was the enemy of democracy.

We turned the tide of WWII in two years while fighting the entire Imperial Navy in one hemisphere and Germany and Italy in the other. I somehow don't find the entire force of the USA unable to keep order in a country the size of Iraq glorious evidence of a job well done.

You talk about WWII and Okinawa, and indeed it did go badly in the Pacific for two years or so while we continued to gear up for war militarily. And people did indeed know the war was going badly. And so they ante'd up for more war bonds and tire drives and bandage rolling and blood donating and ration cuts because that was not a war of choice. What has W asked of you besides to repeat his propaganda? We, on the other hand have abandoned a war of necessity in Afghanistan, in favor of a war of choice in Iraq, and have only begun to taste the foolishness of that decision.

Its not that I "want" us to give up. But we botched it badly, and to fix it would take an overwhelming action that would sap more of our resources, destroy the remaining shreds of our reputation, and leave us less prepared to face real threats in the rest of hte world. Okinawa hung in the balance so long precisely because we couldn't destroy our other fronts to muster more forces there. And neither can we afford to do this for Iraq.

So, we are screwed. We can't afford a failed state, and we can't afford to expend the resources there to prevent one.

It is disingenuous to paint a happy face on our "progress' there. I've spoken to troops posted to Afghanistan. Our choices are rapidly narrowing into two options - declaring "victory" and getting out, which will probably leave a failed Afghanistan given the extent to which we've allowed the Taliban to resurge, or repeat the debacle of the USSR and fight an enemy we allowed to move into the caves and arm to the teeth. It didn't have to be this way. Had we not pulled out our forces for elective war in Afghanistan we could have one that war and had a stronger hand in the region.

Posted by: patriot1957 | June 5, 2006 07:41 PM

pat 1957

I can see where yr coming from . I would say that what you experienced/observed is really the withdrawl symptoms of oppressive inefficient economic systems. No system was as inefficient and as costly as communism. Maos five year"great leap" plans cost China millions of lives and set them back decades economicaly when compared to a democracy. No doubt democracies have there horrid side but in a world of bad choices democracies are better. In communism and socialism, the only real equality is that most people living under those systems have a below average standard of living and a below average chance to better themselves.

Posted by: ew | June 5, 2006 07:56 PM

This is a pretty broad assertion. You are saying that ethnicity (social culture) is not linked to personality.

Your example actually proves my point, unless you can tell me you met each or even the majority of ROBF's in the area. What you are in FACT saying is "Some of the people I spoke to who shared these traits: colour, age and geographical location also exhibited these traits: A gift for idiom."
Actually, I'm not sure how a gift for idiom is a personality trait. Wouldn't a speech patterm be more like an accent? Oh well. It is the "My [fill in the blank] friend" mistake. Because of the way our brains work such categorizations are very hard to avoid.
However, I avoid My [blank] friend statments because I don't want it done to me, my other [blank] friends don't want it done to them and here's my biggest problem: You really can not have it both ways. If I attribute a positive quality to every member of a group based SOLELY on the fact they are unlike me, I can't legitimately say "Hey, you cut that out!" when someone places a negative stereotype on that entire group.

Posted by: Mutt | June 5, 2006 08:10 PM

Patriot:

"You make a false analogy. Iraq was not WW II. Iraq did not attack us. There were no bastions of al Qaeda in hte parts Saddam controlled."

1)Germany did not attack us either. Using this logic, we should have left the Nazi's to the Churchill and Stalin. 2) the links to Saddam and terrorist networks was very real, more so than we realized. Stephen Hayes of "The Weekly Standard" has done excellent work on the subject. I recommend him highly. 3) "We, on the other hand have abandoned a war of necessity in Afghanistan, in favor of a war of choice in Iraq, and have only begun to taste the foolishness of that decision." This is just false. Military commanders (even critics) at all levels agree that our (minor) troop levels in Afghanistan are not the cause of the problems in Iraq.
4)"I somehow don't find the entire force of the USA unable to keep order in a country the size of Iraq glorious evidence of a job well done." Iraq IS a large country, and we are fighting an insurgency. We are relatively new at this, and war critics can't seem to agree if we need more troops (Clark, Kerry '04) or we have "too large a footprint" (Murtha, Kerry 06, Biden).
5) We had very good reasons to go into Iraq. Saddam Hussein saw it was in his interest if the world BELIEVED he had WMD, thus he chose to convince the world he had them. Hence, we are here. If we love Iraq and it collapses the Middle East will warp into a nest of violence and anarchy. We have a duty to make sure that does not happen. We can do this.
6) I am pleased to see you regarded Afghanistan as a "war of necessity." However, most would be screaming the same complaints and objections if Afghanistan looked more like Iraq.
7) I disagree with you sentiments regarding Afghanistan. Violence is increasing (modestly) but we every time the Taliban raises its head we smash it, hard. This is confirmed by first hand assessments.

War is never pretty. But our losses have been relatively low. At Cold Harbor 8500 U.S. soldiers were cilled in 10 mins. Many Northerners were saying at the time that THAT war was not worth it. Afterall, Lincoln admitted he was now fighting to free negroe slaves.

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 08:20 PM

I can see you need some remedial help...


yes you did vote an oligarchy in disguised as a democracy...


need some more help?


the founding fathers established it...


it was a beginning argument, rule by the rich or rule by the ragtag...

as I understand it, it's why we are a two party system...


the republicans hold the rule by the elite view...and currently control the Executive, Legislative and some would say Judicial as well as the Military...


you were saying?


as far as inane goes, well, I think I've got some corn to shuck...come a little closer green boy...

.

Posted by: Dear Jon... | June 5, 2006 08:33 PM

having the United States Government attach the properties of the president or his family members and reducing them to poverty....so that they can learn how the other half live....

like these citizens:
jobs outsourced, future disposed of, shipped overseas when they're just trying to get some college money by joining the effing National Guard who everyone knows _never_ gets involved in wars...


take a few obviously corrupt congress people and make an example of them,


say, "this could happen to you,"


destruction so deep they can't recover from it.....no nest eggs, no properties exempt, seize and destroy....


reduce them to the plight of the common man....


let them go to emergency rooms for healthcare, if they can find a way to get their after thier cars have been taken and their medical abilities reduced by $30 a month when they only bring in a thousand to live on through SSI


let _them_ find out what it's like to go to a homeless shelter because their friggin jobs got outsourced, and they lost their home, their marriage and one of the kids killed themselves because they got caught up in the emotional firestorm of two parents in meltdown...


let them taste hell.


now.

.

be a real citizens, show them how to accept responsibility for their actions...


make them.

.


Posted by: do you need help with this dumf'uck? | June 5, 2006 08:36 PM

help me out here.

.

Posted by: is it that hard to understand? | June 5, 2006 08:38 PM

Dear Jon:

I applaud your candor. Most liberals deny they are communists, but you come right out and say you are. I encourage such forthcoming sentiments. However, I am neither green nor a boy. But this should be of no concern of yours. Continue to shuck your corn and read Jung and Marx. At least it is some education.

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 08:40 PM

made sure that they were taken care of right...


he dumped them out into an economy, in which they had been forbidden to participate in with no education...


to compete with poor southern trash...


right, and you are uh....where are you posting from?

.

Posted by: and after he freed them.. he | June 5, 2006 08:41 PM

no I said make an example of a few,

southern boyah...


would you lak tuh be one?


I gots a special place for yah...

.

Posted by: oh I see, you slither... | June 5, 2006 08:44 PM

I'm goin to enjoy this...

Posted by: gee you are stupid... | June 5, 2006 08:45 PM

slither:

You're crazy. Let the rest of us sane people be please.

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 08:46 PM

most aholes pretend to be being nice while they try and assert that their implicit lies are the truth...


I'm the remedy for your disease friend, and you aint no friggin daisy..

Posted by: I applaud your lack of candor | June 5, 2006 08:48 PM

I'll use 'em first then we can just chew you a new one...

friend..okay?

Posted by: kool aid, tinfoil helmets..gawd... | June 5, 2006 08:50 PM

system which is actually an old tool for rule by rome...

that says that being the first in line is important because it proves gawd loves you,

but not when you murder others to get there first...


drew barrymore, answers from another room...

is this yours dear?

.

Posted by: there's an implicit belief in the christian | June 5, 2006 08:53 PM

Koolaid:

Please. Cease the nonsense. Only a coward or a fool would threaten someone via a modem. To what end?

Posted by: Jon M | June 5, 2006 08:54 PM

and you resort to childish distortion as a way of answering directness...

slither on, I've got a forked stick...

pissant...or is that peasant pretending to be a landed?

fighting someone elses battle little doy?

Posted by: gee, you are a slow one... | June 5, 2006 08:57 PM

a slithering toy,

a useless banter of slithering cantor...

a mistake I'm going to enjoy.

.

Posted by: a one trick goy.. | June 5, 2006 08:59 PM

send out.

sometimes I hope for a plug, I enjoyed eating doug...


and for you I have something special..

.

Posted by: I'm always amazed at the fools they | June 5, 2006 09:01 PM

for congress people, that's why you're hurt

isn't it?

and a slow learner too...and you're still sitting in your office...

and you look like henry gibson...

.

Posted by: oh, I see you're an administrative staff person... | June 5, 2006 09:13 PM

gopher...jon m.

Posted by: a 69 yeer olde | June 5, 2006 09:44 PM

1)Germany did not attack us either. Using this logic, we should have left the Nazi's to the Churchill and Stalin.

We had been supplying England for months before the Japanese attacked us AND the Germans were threatening even larger land grabs. Iraq was effectively contained and incapable of launching anything other than rhetoric. Again, this is NOT WWII. If it was, people like you would have already been drafted and war profiteers would be in the midst of being prosecuted. Oh, and we would at least try to raise taxes to pay for it.

2) the links to Saddam and terrorist networks was very real, more so than we realized. Stephen Hayes of "The Weekly Standard" has done excellent work on the subject. I recommend him highly.

Funny, he would be the only one to recommend as virtually ALL reporting from our own services show little or NO connection. Please name some other credible sources, you know, like our own government.

3) "We, on the other hand have abandoned a war of necessity in Afghanistan, in favor of a war of choice in Iraq, and have only begun to taste the foolishness of that decision." This is just false. Military commanders (even critics) at all levels agree that our (minor) troop levels in Afghanistan are not the cause of the problems in Iraq.

Doh! Yeah, nice point. Too bad you have it backwards. It's not the 20k troops in Afghanistan that hurts our Iraq debacle, its the 200+K troops and multiple rotations in Iraq that hurts our Afghanistan campaign.

4)"I somehow don't find the entire force of the USA unable to keep order in a country the size of Iraq glorious evidence of a job well done." Iraq IS a large country, and we are fighting an insurgency. We are relatively new at this, and war critics can't seem to agree if we need more troops (Clark, Kerry '04) or we have "too large a footprint" (Murtha, Kerry 06, Biden).

Oh, you forgot Bush from 2003 to now. You criticize those trying to find a solution to a mess W got us into without criticizing the guys that got us into it via poor planning and hubris in the first place. Whatever. Nice deflection.

5) We had very good reasons to go into Iraq. Saddam Hussein saw it was in his interest if the world BELIEVED he had WMD, thus he chose to convince the world he had them. Hence, we are here. If we love Iraq and it collapses the Middle East will warp into a nest of violence and anarchy. We have a duty to make sure that does not happen. We can do this.

We have a duty. What, are you French? Who is we? What are YOU doing? We believe the North Koreans have nukes, AND missiles to put them on...why aren't we there? Pakistan is a radical muslim nation with nukes...and we pay them! Hell, it was THERE scientist that had the black market working.

6) I am pleased to see you regarded Afghanistan as a "war of necessity." However, most would be screaming the same complaints and objections if Afghanistan looked more like Iraq.

The DIFFERENCE is...it was done right and for the right reasons...that's why it's working. Simple is as simple does.


7) I disagree with you sentiments regarding Afghanistan. Violence is increasing (modestly) but we every time the Taliban raises its head we smash it, hard. This is confirmed by first hand assessments.

Really, who's first hand reports? Please cite your sources.

War is never pretty. But our losses have been relatively low. At Cold Harbor 8500 U.S. soldiers were cilled in 10 mins. Many Northerners were saying at the time that THAT war was not worth it. Afterall, Lincoln admitted he was now fighting to free negroe slaves.

Losses low? I'm sure that is comforting to 3,000 families without a loved one now. I'm sure it's equally comforting to those 20,000 wounded. And, just how are we going to pay the estimated 1 MILLION dollars it is going to cost for each war veteran over their lifetime for VA benefits?

Must be nice to be a cheerleader.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 5, 2006 10:06 PM

Do not - I repeat, do not - get me started on lower middle-(economic)class standard of living. I have been point out for the last ten years that our relative income has been shrinking. I can compare my market-basket buying power in reality. You may trust my intimate knowledge that the dollar is shrinking for the vast majority of Americans. Faster now than previously. And I also will assure all of you that the rapidly increasing costs of energy in the form of gasoline, natural gas, and heating oil is making a huge dent in both discretionary spending and the economy over all.

You may wait for the "official" figures in five years, but the evidence in far more than apparent. What do you need to convince you? That I have gone from shopping in 1st line department stores for household goods and clothing for myself and my family? That I have gone from "brand-blind" shopping in the grocery store to "house-brand" shopping. That rents have quadrupled in 12 years in my region? That home prices have quadrupled or more in the same time? That keeping a car registered, insured, inspected, and in good repair has become nearly impossible?

It's difficult for me to imagine that the rest of you commenting here do not see the same economic shifts. In a society that in the 1950s and 1960s could have a single parent working to support a family of 4 - 6 on a blue-collar or lower to intermediate white-collar job we now have two parents working in virtually all instances. Most college-age students in these families cannot attend school without working part-time year round (full-time in summers and vacations) and getting financial aid and loans. We are going downhill economically, friends. That's a challenge for all of us.

Posted by: Jazzman | June 5, 2006 10:08 PM

Afghan Vet - you said it better than me.

Thanks

And thanks for your service. The guys I know who've been there are very concerned about Afghanistan's future.

Posted by: patriot 1957 | June 5, 2006 10:45 PM

is that dicking cunning ham is not an aberration...


but a "way of business," in Washington DC.


during the 50's and 60's at no time did the owner, CEO of the company exceed the highest paid worker


by 5 times that income....


there may have been property that accrued...

but no one was taking $380 MILLION DOLLAR bonuses while the rest of the United States was trying to figure out how to meet the rent/mortgage, pay for their medical bills.........


as Veteran benefits are cut too....as you are fighting in their make-believe "war,"

.

Posted by: the only reason the rest of us are on a downhill slide | June 5, 2006 10:47 PM

"Mission Accomplished," yeah and 12 to 20 MILLION ILLEGAL FRIGGIN ALIENS walk across the border,


because no ones guarding it.


we need oil so we invade another country, any right thinking citizen, would have formed a cabal to find an alternative energy form...


not one that ensures that Dad's old friends got to sell their oil down to the last drop and the boyz in DOD kept there job even if "hell froze over,"


so when someone complains about the fact that we're not looking for alternative fuel sources....


bush does a photo op and talks about it in California, not before he goes to war to intervene....pre emptive attack...


and once the ILLEGAL FRIGGIN IMMIGRANTS start becoming an issue with the rest of us, he's all like, I want people that hire them to be arrested.....like he doesn't know anyone that hires _illegals_ check his families ranches out...


and now, that it's been mentioned about 190 times in the press that the 9/11 Commision said that he ignored all of their advice and did nothing to protect America, post 9/11 (because he planned it), why he's making a big show of "look, I'm thinking of you!"


that's why he sent the National Guard to Iraq with no real combat training....


Katrina, it's a photo-op, bet you didn't hear about the 130 New Orleans residents that got on a plane to Houston and ended up at Dulles did you?

they were pissed, why were they flown there?

photo-op...


too little too late,


I care about you? shure you do shugah...

like any lord cares for his slaves, his peasants, his serfs...


he needs them to work the land, sure, he'd rather have slaves, don't have to treat them nice....or how about those new serfs....you can get two or three for the price of one of the old ones....


just let the old ones die off, and replace them with the smaller less expensive ones....the old ones are called "citizens?," that's odd I thought they were servants or serfs, lord knows when I'm driving drunk I'm not worried about being pulled over or taken to task for being a draftdodger, cokehead or alcoholic, even though I ran for public office....


and guess what, I didn't, you really have to ask yourselves why George W. Bush was not taken to task for his record and isn't being taken to task now....


need an arrest interrupted? just call George, he's got your back if you've got his....


it's not about honor, it's about family...

.

are you in his family?

homophobia, a family value or this families effing trick?


holding hands with Saudi Princes for a movie shot....he's not homophobic,


are you?

.

Posted by: are you in his family? | June 5, 2006 10:52 PM

Well Anita,

I believe imposing some reflection of race composition in our government is not the way to go, but it is a good idea to crack down on the practice of gerrymandering election districts. Gerrymandering is one of the most powerful ways that groups in power remain in power without addressing needs of their demographically changing consituencies.

In terms of business, staples won't change (basic clothes, gas, most groceries) but entertainment, music, and eating out will change to accomodate the tastes of "minority" peoples. If you live in the DC area or other large metropolitan areas you already see it.

The final category, cultural, is the most intriguing to me. The common ideas that unite us is the aspect I believe is most important and it gets to our educational system. We have to be willing as a country to pay for and demand a top notch public education system. The true American values of freedom, respect for the rights of others, and responsibilities that go with these concepts must be effectively instilled in the minds of all newcomers as well as kids that come from segments of our society that have a long history in the US, but have traditionally had less resources and poorer schools. Of course there is never a substitute for good parenting, but a strong public education system supports good parenting by bestowing the skills for success and developing the values of citizenship in the kids that will lead our nation into the latter half of this century.

To keep the U.S. strong for the future we have to accept and assimilate today's generation of immigrants and minorities, the way we did the newcomers at the turn of the 20th century. We have to avoid our society's mistakes of the past where we resisted and dicriminated against many groups based on racial differences. I also believe the use of English as the primary language of the country will take care of itself as the second generation of many new arrivals come up through our schools.

The key is for us to trust and have faith in the founding ideas of our country which I believe call on us to accept, teach, and assimilate those who appreciate the ideas we espouse.

Posted by: DK | June 6, 2006 12:09 AM

Comparing Iraq to WWII and Bush to Lincoln, I'll laugh my self to sleep on that one!

Posted by: Jamal | June 6, 2006 12:14 AM

Washington Times
June 6, 2006
Pg. 15

Political Ambush

By Mona Charen

No one yet knows what happened in Haditha, Iraq, last November. There are unconfirmed accounts of a massacre perpetrated by a unit of enraged Marines against unarmed civilians. Unless I miss my guess, this is about to be the biggest story in the world.

Consider that Abu Ghraib, which did not involve killing or torture (though it did include extreme humiliation) became the American and world press' favorite topic for weeks on end, though far more grotesque acts were perpetrated daily by the jihadists in Iraq and elsewhere. The American press since has focused almost exclusively on stories from Iraq that depict the situation as hopeless and the role of Americans as counterproductive.

Even before we know anything with certainty about Haditha, the Chattanooga Times Free Press has let fly with this bit of instant sociology: "If the vicious sectarian strife that is ripping Iraq apart holds no apparent end and is now sufficient to prompt a spree of unprovoked killings of innocents by American troops, Americans reasonably may wonder whether, as some generals already believe, this nation is now doing more harm than good by remaining in Iraq."

Rep. Jack Murtha, Pennsylvania Democrat, every liberal's favorite ex-Marine since the day he advised pulling out of Iraq, called a press conference to accuse the Marines of murder. "[T]here was no firefight, there was no IED that killed these innocent people. Our troops overreacted because of the pressure on them, and killed innocent civilians in cold blood."

The Boston Globe, like countless other outlets I checked on Nexis.com, has rushed to dust off Vietnam analogies: "The My Lai massacre, covered up for more than a year, symbolized the moral bankruptcy of the Vietnam War. Senators need to determine whether the Haditha killings were a shameful anomaly, or, three years into the occupation, a manifestation of a deep coarsening in the U.S. force." Three guesses which option the Globe thinks is true?

Actually, My Lai was not evidence of the moral bankruptcy of the Vietnam War. It was exactly what America-haters here and abroad claimed it was not -- an aberration. It is endlessly frustrating to see those who were so wrong about the Cold War, starting with Vietnam, invoke the memory of that conflict to stand for the opposite of what it should. The principal "lesson" of Vietnam that our enemies learned was that America could be driven from the battlefield by psychological warfare aimed at the home front. They always flee, teaches Osama bin Laden. The lessons our liberal professors and editorialists learned was that the war was immoral. And no amount of experience -- a million boat people, genocide in neighboring Cambodia, the collapse of communism nearly everywhere -- has been sufficient to alter their view.

There are any number of liberal congressmen, commentators and opinion leaders who, like their European counterparts, actively wish America to fail in Iraq because it will mean the failure of the hated Bush presidency. Their reporting from Iraq has therefore been one-sided and defeatist from the beginning. (In fact, the defeatism preceded the Iraq war and was evident in the early days of the Afghanistan campaign as well when the New York Times famously declared the conflict a "quagmire" after only a few days of fighting.)

Amir Taheri, writing in the June issue of Commentary magazine, offers a catalogue of progress in Iraq that is almost impossible to find in our principal news outlets. For example, he notes there have been no queues of refugees streaming out of Iraq. To the contrary, 1.2 million have returned home since Saddam's ouster. Muslim pilgrims flock to the holy sites in Karbala and Najaf. The Iraqi dinar, which had been in free fall during the final period of Saddam's misrule, has risen by 17 percent against the Kuwaiti dinar and 23 percent against the Iranian rial. Iraq's gross domestic product has rebounded since the invasion, and inflation has dropped from 70 percent to 25.4 percent.

Yes, violence is extreme, particularly in certain areas of the country. But this does not mean democracy is failing to take root. Seventy percent of eligible Iraqis voted in the last three years. Radio stations, newspapers and Internet blogs have proliferated. The first free trade unions in the Arab world have begun in Iraq.

But don't expect to hear about those things. Our press will doubtless be too busy luxuriating in Haditha.

Posted by: Truth Bringer | June 6, 2006 10:29 AM

I have no idea how this will all shake out but, I have always been a strong believer in Karma. White men--of which I am one--have been pretty much in contol of running the world and in doing so have built up some hugem Karmic debts.

One cannot have studied American and European history and not come away with that inconvenient truth. What is happening today--with the rise of brown people--is part of paying off this debt. In America, we justified thepushing of native populations off their lands, their home and rationalized the dismantling of their cultures.

What we see happening today with the movement of dark sinned peoples all over the world is nothing more than the first down payment on athe hugem Karmic debt that we white humans have incurred as we have dominated and ruled the planet. I think it is time for white people to accept the distinct possibility that they now face a future where they are no longer the dominant political and cultural force on the planet.

Posted by: Jaxas | June 6, 2006 10:31 AM

ground when a country is being plundered for it's oil is to be a


dark side apologist, not a truth bringer...


"you shall know them by their works,"

as in:

"there will be many false prophets,"


not that I'm into the bible as a source of truth...but hey, the evangelist needs to have his underwear clean, in case he ends up in front of saint peter and gets asked...

"did you mislead any one, you little s_hit?"

.

Posted by: to claim the high | June 6, 2006 01:18 PM

Afghan Vet:

It is nonsensical to suggest that anyone who is not currently fighting in a war does not have a right to defend the validity of that war. This is preverse logic. Americans can no longer support a conflict or the merits of that conflict without being a soldier on the ground? Puh-lease. It's like telling Lincoln he shouldn't be sending boys to Gettysburg unless he (or his kids) were their fighting. Does this make the cause or objective of that cause loss worthy?

"this is not WWII"is weak. Hitler in 1936 was as harmelss as Saddam. No, MORE harmless. He BECAME a threat. Saddam would have been a threat: his own weapons secretary said he would have had capability to use WMD in 2-5 years. I repeat, we had every reason to take the man out, especially considering we reason to believe he had or was attempting to acquire WMD.

Again, this debate always reverts to the issue of why we are in Iraq. Demoncrats in 2003 agreed Hussein was a threat that needed to be addressed. Clinton signed a declaration in '98 that stated U.S. policy in Iraq war REGIME CHANGE.

In the blood and fire Liberals have shown their true colors. They voted for war when the public thought the cause worthy. When the public soured on the war, when the sacrifice was more than some people had bargained for, Liberals scream they were "misled."

Now is the time for leadership, instead liberals bemoan the fact we are their, as if hindsight had been available at the time the decision was made.

If we could put the politics of the decision itself behind, and simply focus on what is the best course of action NOW, I believe we would be better served.

Posted by: Jon M | June 6, 2006 01:39 PM

Let's see on ethnic diversity of foodstuffs. Just returned from the market and bought:

2 boxes of curried steam dumplings.
2 packages of potato flakes for tempura.
1 box of S+B Curry mix (best curry mix ever).
1 container of natto (fermented soybeans).
1 package of rice cakes (not the crunchy type, but the square tofu like ones).
1 package of red bean paste (to use with the rice cakes).
1 package of buckwheat noodles (to make a cold noodle dish).

Now those ingredients requires:

Curry rice: potatoes, carrots, onions.
Tempura: any veggie, shrimp, Wesson oil by the gallon.
Some: sesame oil, green onions and Han-Dashi (fish stock).

A lot of ethnic food will use the same ingredients Europeans would use (Japanese food uses a heck of a lot of red meat [Japan was a major US beef importer until the Mad Cow incidents] and chicken, apart from too much to count fish). So even though rice would bypass bread and potatoes as mainstays, potatoes will still be needed for some dishes (nevermind tempured sweet potatoes; okra; squash; green beans; zucchini; tomatoes; and a host of other European staples including cooking fats).

So the priorities will shift, but the basic foodstuffs will remain the same and the market won't drastically change even in 100 years.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 6, 2006 07:29 PM

Posted by: Jon M,

"In the blood and fire Liberals have shown their true colors. They voted for war when the public thought the cause worthy. When the public soured on the war, when the sacrifice was more than some people had bargained for, Liberals scream they were "misled.""

Jon, your right bush didn't mislead, he flat out lied about Iraq and your one of the few idiots still falling for his lies. He not only lied, he pursecuted those who unveiled the truth.

Jon, once and for all, there was no 911 connection and there were no WMD's. What bush has caused with his botched policy is the spread of blown terrorism into the heart of the middle east, a place it rarley existed before. Jon if you think this war is such a noble cause, then get your ass over there and fight, instead of being mouth running chicken-hawk.

Posted by: Jamal | June 6, 2006 11:21 PM

Jon M,

You aren't arguing your case using logical statements about the decision or the conduct of the war, you are blovating rationalizations for a BAD decision and even WORSE leadership of the war. For THAT, and for your use of cheerleading rationalization, YOUR service and contribution to the war can most certainly be questioned.

Yes, let's CONVENIENTLY just give a pass to a decision that has cost this nation BILLIONS, caused the death of over 3000 soldiers and contractors and the wounding of another 20,000 more and resulted in the death of and wounding of OVER 100,000 Iraqis who were NOT jihadists BEFORE we got there and did NOT plan, participate or execute the attacks of 9/11.

YES, indeed, let's just forget about that act of idiocy.

YES, let's talk about what is best NOW.

Well, you tell me Mr. Soldier of Ideas. Please tell me what the MEASURABLE criteria for success are. Please tell me so we can measure WHEN we should leave or at least reduce our presence. Oh...but you can't because there IS NO PLAN for success. YOU and BushCo et al cannot even tell us what success is and how it will be measured. You'll just know it when you see it.

Now, let's assume you could come up with some RATIONALE success criteria that could be measured. Give me your risk analysis and mitigation planning. Give me your ROI that supplies us with at cutoff point where a "good" outcome is no longer feasible or likely no matter how many men and women we sacrifice and no matter how much we spend. PLEASE, provide that and then we can talk about what the best APPROACH is NOW.

I'm guessing since our Dear Leader and his toadies cannot do that, you can't. So, by all means, dazzle us with your plans for getting it right from here on out within the constraints of the Charlie Foxtrot WE created in Iraq.

I breathlessly await your response.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 7, 2006 09:46 AM

I guess success can be measured by the eventual type of government formed in Iraq. If they are not nuts, like Saddam, then we can say that (not now damnit, later) there is less chance, in Iraq, for destabilizing events. It's economic stability from uninterupted oil flow over the next 50 years - until it is all gone, and they dry up and blow away.

Good enough reason for me.

Armchair General johnnyg in NE DC

Posted by: | June 7, 2006 12:58 PM

Of course, we need a million more men on the ground to win this. My suggestions to the president have gone unaswered. It seems no one respect an armchair general these days.

Posted by: Gen. (arm.chr.) johnnyg in NE DC | June 7, 2006 01:07 PM

And...for those who just can't get off the "Blame The Press" meme:

...a search of Lexis-Nexis shows that over the last week the New York Times has published approximately 22 articles and columns mentioning "Haditha," compared to more than 40 articles and columns that mention the GOP hot-button issue of "immigration." Same for the Washington Post and Los Angeles Times; both devoted far more print space in the last week to the Republican-fueled immigration debate than they did to the alleged war crimes in Haditha.

On television, the imbalance was even more pronounced. Between Mary 23 and May 30, back when the White House was most aggressively pressing the issue of illegal immigration, CNN mentioned "immigration" and "immigrants" 463 times, according to TVEyes.com. Compare that to the last seven days when, according to conservatives, Haditha media mania was raging. How many times did CNN anchors, reporters and guests utter "Haditha" on the air? 263 times, or 200 fewer times that they mentioned "immigration" and "immigrants." The same was true at all-news MSNBC, where there were 220 fewer mentions of immigration than Haditha. Of course the disparity was more pronounced at Bush-friendly Fox News--614 mentions of "immigration" and "immigrants," compared to just 155 references to "Haditha."

NOTE: Fox News has made more on-air mentions to "gay marriage" this week than it has to "Haditha."

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 7, 2006 01:31 PM

To my fans:

I see I am quite correct. Critics can do nothing other than bemoan the fact that we are in Iraq. We ALL wish we were not their. We ALL wish we had perfect intelligence at the time our decision was made. The fact remains that we are in Iraq. What policy best serves us now?

You would have us immediately withdraw and bring instability and chaos to a region that is a tinderbox. I trust you rationale is based on sincere "humanitarian" reasons. The same "humanitarian" reason were used to justify our retre--uh--redeployment from Vietnam which resulted in the extermination of millions by the hands of communists. If you want to see carnage, have U.S. withdraw from Iraq. The country will collapse into anarchy. The hasty U.S. retreat will encourage our enemies, proving to all of the Osamas out there that we are indeed nothing but a "paper tiger."

But lets all bit*h about being in Iraq in the first place. It is certainly easier than facing the reality of the situation at hand.

Posted by: Jon M | June 7, 2006 04:06 PM

Jon M,

I STILL await YOUR plan. What is YOUR plan. Hell, I'll settle for Bush's plan...does he have one?

Let's start easy.

What are the criteria for declaring success?

How will we measure those criteria?

Just answer that.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 7, 2006 04:37 PM

Here's a partial plan:

First, deploy twice as many National Guardsmen at the US border than would be needed. Train them to protect our country. When they demonstrate a competent force, redeploy, on a rotating baisis, half of them to Iraq borders to seal them off. Build and deploy huge amounts of robotic aircraft for 24-hour coverage.

Second, draft men as needed for domestic border patrol after initial training is complete. Additionally, draft young gamers, who have nothing better to do than waste thier time playing games, to control and maintain the robotics and related electronics. Get the illegal immigrants involved also. Make them earn it the haaard way.

Get Iraqi oil production/revenue up to maximum level asap.

In Iraq, build state colleges that do not teach any religious subject matter. Call them Ahatolla [whatever] University, but do not allow credits for religious studies. Encourage attendance, or temporarily make it mandatory for Iraqi citizens to attend these colleges.

Encourage venture capitalists from around the civilized world with incentives to invest in Iraqi start-up businesses.

In short, get the stupid idiots with nothing better to do than set ieds, i.e., those who to blame the rest of the civilized world for their problems, studying engineering, other sciences, and business. Make them holy moly Ahatolla businessmen and women.

Best I could come up with on such short notice.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 7, 2006 06:25 PM

Perhaps Iraq is not the major problem of terrorism, perhaps all along it was our two allies Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. Saudi Arabia is the largest financer of terrorist networks, much based on revenue from oil sold to our country. Saudi Arabia still teacher's in its schools hatred toward other religions, jihad, and supplies text books of the same orientation to other Islamic countries. Pakistan has been and still is a sanctuary to Islamic terrorist groups.

Ironically this was known by our intelligence networks before 911 and before bush's Iraq invasion. 911 and WMDs were just excuses and simple facades for the real reasons. So why did bush take us into the quagmire?
1. To avenge not taking out sadam in the first gulf war?
2. To flood Iraqi oil on US markets to spur our economy after it went south under his administration?
3. To establish US military bases in the M.E.?
4. Did we invade at the urging of the Saudis to once and for all end the Iraqi threat?
5. Or bush was only "C" student in history and got Iran and Iraq confused?



Posted by: Jamal | June 7, 2006 11:07 PM

Whites are not the only ones that have used race to destroy native peoples. I have noticed in my work that graduate students from China make up a huge portion of the workers in fields such as nanosciene, chemistry, and engineering. The Han Chinese have simply settled and used racialist blood policies to drive out minority Turk, Miao and other groups for centuries and continue to put pressure on the Tibetans and other minority groups in China. In science, engineering, manufacturing and other means of crucial manufacturing know how, the Chinese are becoming, undeniably, a major power. They will not be as hung up about past injustices and strive for a more prominent role in global affairs.
In the last 500 years the Europeans have clearly been dominant, before that Islam was a major rival from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
I admit, the U.S. was founded on Anglo-Saxon conceptions of liberty and a messianic, Old Testament urge to settle the land and displac ethe "heathen." Racist, yes, genocidal, yes, but such has been human history. If we have entered a new age so be it, but in the past, whether Ottomans, Spaniards, or Britons, a more technologically advanced and warlike people will drive away a primitive society.
Aside from a few racists, whites have been educated and taught the nature of their horrible crimes. In the future, a strong China and Asia may make sharecroppers of us all. Why must we be so hung up about Race in the US, why can't we just work, equal the playing field by opening the political discourse from two corrupt, broken parties, no more political dynasties (Bush or Clinton, I want someone else to be president for once in the last 20 years (89-2009).

Posted by: Evan | June 7, 2006 11:59 PM

Johnny G,

Hey...it's a plan. But good luck with that. A draft...not going to happen. And, while your infrastructure plan is commendable, how are we going to pay for it?

Hey, but at least your trying.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 8, 2006 09:13 AM

I am so happy to be able to contribute to such a wonderful discussion of liberated ideals. I have been a Democrat all my life and I am deeply appreciative of all the strong voices who have commented here on embracing the poor and hard working needy immigrants from Mexico. It's so commendable that we're paving the way to adopt their language and culture but I think we have an opportunity and obligation to do more, which when we Democrats take over the White House and Congress again, we'll be able to do. Here's the plan I would push on behalf of the hard working huddled masses

I believe all languages should be represented in this great Union, but we do need to prepare better for the predominance of Spanish. I think all taxpayers are more than willing to pay for printing multi-lingual driver's licenses, voting ballots, IRS forms, school entrance applications, medical forms, government job applications, text books, social security forms, Medicaid forms and welfare applications in every language spoken in the United States including Spanish, Mandarin, German, Japanese, Italian, French, Sioux and other Native American languages, Russian, Yiddish, Gaelic, Farsi, Greek and did I miss any? Nope, I think I covered them all. We may need to raise taxes to accomplish this in the short term but the increases will be more than worthwhile given the good will it creates. We could probably winnow the various languages down a bit - we really don't need to print forms in German, Italian, Yiddish and Gaelic because most people of those origins already speak English and will be able to quickly learn Spanish, especially under the future plans our party has.

I also think that our schoolteachers should be able to fluently converse in most of these languages too. All languages, of course, should be freely spoken everywhere and anyone else providing public services (e.g. Doctors, Police, Government officials, Taxi drivers) should be required to converse fluently in those languages. We can offset training expenses by reinstating the death tax at a higher rate and raising taxes on the wealthy. As you know there is a huge gap in the world between the poor and the wealthy. Anyone earning more than $65K a year is among the wealthiest in the world and they can afford to pay for the less fortunate.

I think, most importantly, that anyone who migrates here, legally or illegally, is entitled immediately to drivers' licenses and there shouldn't be a mandate for them to know how to read silly English advisories like the "Do Not Enter" and "Do Not Exit" signs. We can erect dual language signs until Spanish is the national language.

I also believe we must increase our outreach to the poorest of migrants - greater medical benefits, free dental, free welfare and food stamps, free education and free movies too. Actually, I believe that pour wealthy middle class should go ahead and give our welcomed newcomers free rent. In exchange, these hard working illegals could teach our lazy Natives to speak the future majority language. As industrious as the Mexican immigrants are, especially the illegal ones, well, they don't have to learn all the others languages that I mentioned above. There's no need. Nor should they have to pay for any of the free services for other illegal immigrants. They don't make enough to be taxed yet. The middle class, the wealthy industrialists, can offset related expenses. We could also create a special business tax if need be.

If I was President (pay attention Hillary), I would also establish an Immigration Services Agency (ISA ), an Federal organization run for and by the hard working immigrants form Mexico - who better to understand and act on the needs of our new citizens. It can be a Spanish only speaking agency, which will give our white, black, yellow and red American citizens a superb opportunity to learn our new national language. This way, Spanish-speaking immigrants who are the most needy can join the ranks of taxpayers quicker. As I mentioned earlier, right now, they can't afford to be taxed very much. Under my plan, I'll also require the FCC to issue more Spanish speaking broadcast licenses to make Mexicans feel more at home. I'll also require all English only broadcasters to begin teaching the new language to our fellow Americans who only speak English. We could have 1-hour broadcasts every night during prime time of Spanish language teaching. I'll also sponsor a bill to mandate that the Federal Government and all institutions receiving Federal funds fully represent our future Spanish population. Businesses and agencies will be required to comprise a full 45% Hispanic workforce in white-collar jobs.

But, we shouldn't stop there. While it is true that Hispanic immigrants are the most worthy of all migrants to this country, we need to do a little more for those of other ethnic descents. Even if we accommodate their languages, we need to recognize their importance in the future. Under Democrat leadership, this could be accomplished by teaching all other language speaking populations to learn Spanish until such time as we can reduce the multi lingual printing demands on our services systems. Once those tangential printing requirements are eliminated, we can do away with all English language documents and completely convert to the new National language. With this sole reduction in fiscal expenditures (elimination of English), we will be able to balance our National budget. But, we need more Spanish speaking persons to make this a reality. Thus, I would raise the annual immigration quotas for people of Spanish descent to 100 million a year. A side benefit of this would be increasing the size of the aforementioned ISA. I know America is ready for this. We are the only Nation in the world with the Stature of Liberty and I'm sure everyone here will join me in proclaiming that we can and must do everything to show our responsibility to the beckoning call emblazoned on that national monument.

Posted by: Fred Kennedy - My Plan | June 8, 2006 10:44 AM

Posted by: AfghanVet: "And, while your infrastructure plan is commendable, how are we going to pay for it?

Hey, but at least your trying."

Vet, with the oil! :) That is an important part of this plan. I do not claim to know why the admin's "plan" to use Irawi oil revenues never panned out, but that oil certainly is a great source of revenue currently not efficiently used.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 8, 2006 11:16 AM

Afghan Vet:

The Plan? Where have you been, living under a ****ing rock? For God's sake....

Let me make this real simple for you. The PLAN is setting up an operable and stable Iraqi goverment. I would say we took a monumental step today, would you not agree? Mr. Al Zarqawi is roasting in the seventh circle as we speak.

Criteria for success? We have laid it out step by step. Suppress the insurgency. Working on that. Take Fallujah. Done. Have elections. Done. Elect a prime minister. Done. We are still waiting for Defense and Interior Secretaries. (Democracy is admittedly less expedient than autocracy.)

What are we doing? We are the only thing currently keeping a semblance of order in the country. It's a b*tch, I know. I wish our boys were back here now, grilling out, drinking beer and having a good old time. But we have a responsibility to 1) the people of Iraq 2) ourselves, because if we fail in this the defeat encourage the fanatics. We will be the "paper tiger" Bin Laden has always claimed.

All we are asking from the Left is time to train a coalition force that can take over. While we are doing this, a little support instead of the constant shrill cries of "defeat" "failure" and "Bush lied" would be most useful.

Posted by: Jon M | June 8, 2006 01:47 PM

Suppress the insurgency?

THAT is what is called a fluffy requirement or mission statement. How do you measure the suppression. If it's by bodies per day...I'd say that our "working on it" isn't working.

Your asking for some time? We've been at this longer than WWII! How MUCH time do you want? What is the tipping point either way?

And, if we are so successful, why don't we leave and let the new government handle their own business?

I'm sorry, but you continue to FAIL in giving SMART requirements that will help Americans figure out when it's time to call it DONE.

S - Specfic
M - Measurable
A - Agreed Upon/Achievable
R - Realistic
T - TIME CONSTRAINED!!!

In the military we call these mission objectives and commander's intent.

As for holding BushCo accountable...isn't accountability what he ran on in 2000. Is accountability pre 9/11 thinking as well?

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 8, 2006 03:03 PM

Johnny,

We TRIED using the Oil...problem is the NEO-TARDS tried to PRIVATIZE the oil companies in Iraq and pissed of all the state employees and killed the infrastructure. And, since we don't directly get the revenues, we can't tell them what to do with said revenues...or we would be occupiers, not liberators.

No, we are spending about 10 Billion a month to maintain security and TRY and rebuild the infrastructure, but it does no good when the insurgents can just blow it back up.

Your first requirement is really the one that needs to happen. Either we put 600,000+ troops on the ground, secure the borders, disarm the public (hopefully there is no Iraqi NRA), provide security that allows for the rebuilding of essential infrastructure.

Problem is, we can't do it politically or physically and we can't pay for it either. Bush SAYS he listens to the commander's requests for troops, but what he really means is that he listens to the requests from those commanders who will work within the ARTIFICIAL political constraints his administration has placed on the commanders. Shenseki anyone?

You have three constraint under which any operation must be completed. Time, Money, Resources (Human/Physical). These three are directly effected by Politics & Law, which effect the availability of all three artificially. Now, if any one of those is NOT fully appropriated for any reason, real or artificial, then the QUALITY of the resulting effort will suffer.

You can make up for a short-fall in one, sometimes, by adding to another pillar. But, all of these resources are FINITE. Therefore, we are constrained in efforts to succeed by the APPROACH decided upon BY OUR LEADERS.

In the case of Iraq, OUR LEADERS chose an approach that inadequately planned and resourced the mission, causing our failure to complete the mission in a timely and quality way. Furthermore, their inability to adjust fire and either cancel the project or committ the appropriate resources to the mission, are causing outside influences to impede their ability to do so.

See, all these dolts in this administration went to GREAT business schools and learned all about finance, and profits, organizational development and control and efficiency and all that...but apparently, none of them learned project or operations management. They tried to run this war, the military and this government like a business and it has failed miserably.

War is not a business that can be run on a tight budget with minimum resources. One need only look at the incredible Charlie Foxtrot this admin has created in Iraq to see that. And, one need only look at the malfescence, incompetence and outright failures of the businesses most of these cronies ran before they joined our dear leader to see that they must have skipped the eithics classes and PM classed.

When the 32% figure out that W doesn't give a rat's behind about them or their welfare, MAYBE we'll start to move forward. Until then, Jon and Chris will be happy to continue to throw good money after bad in hopes that this mess will turn around. I guess it's just too bad we cannot outsource this like we have our other business failures.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 8, 2006 03:25 PM

Evan,

Good points, very good points (the Han were like any other tribe than won out. There's many other tribes/clans that were destroyed or bred out of existence [inter-marriage or migration]. The past can't be undone, but the future doesn't have to repeat the past).

Wish to read more, anything but the tennis match between Dems and Repubs!

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 8, 2006 03:49 PM

Afghan VET:

We fought WWII with 8 million men. We were fighting armies, not an insurgency.

"Take Fallujah. Done. Have elections. Done. Elect a prime minister. Done. We are still waiting for Defense and Interior Secretaries."

I think these fullfill all of your SMART requirements to some degree. But we are fighting an asymmetrical war, not ideal for nice and neat SMART guidelines.

"Suppress the insurgency" means allowing the Iraqi government to coalesce without being blown to hell. Without us their the government would surely collapse. We have succeeded in this objective. Only yesterday, along with the death of Zarqawi, Iraq filled its final cabinet positions (Defense and Interior). This is measurable progress by any sense of the term.

Quite simply, I don't believe Americans today could not stomach the price of sacrifice of say, Grant's summer campaign of '64. We are insulated consumers living in a Golden Age and we do not want to concern ourselves with the harsh realities of a Hobbesian world.

I guess to an extent I can understand the Left's bitterness that we are fighting a bloody war that they feel they were tricked into. What I cannot understand is how they believe Iraq or ourselves will be better served by pulling out and letting the region disintegrate into chaos and anarchy.

Posted by: Jon M | June 8, 2006 03:55 PM

Jon M, you sound like a cynical government spinner or someone not quite in touch with reality.
The "people of Iraq" did not exactly ask "our boys" to take any responsibility on their behalf, did they?. As for "if we fail in this the defeat encourage the fanatics...", that remains to be seen. In the meantime, if the the facts matter, it's precisely the presence of "our boys" that seems to encourage them. Saddam was a lesser evil than the "sectarian conflict" (read 'the chaos bordering on the civil war') triggered by the US invasion.

Posted by: Emilio | June 8, 2006 04:06 PM

AfghanVet wrote:
===========================================
"disarm the public (hopefully there is no Iraqi NRA), provide security that allows for the rebuilding of essential infrastructure."
===========================================

In the Middle East it's an cultural ethic to have rifles. To disarm such a population will just create a war itself.

A simple partial plan:

1. What is needed is starting off on a clean slate to win "hearts and minds" (much like the USMC teams that did that job in Vietnam -- one of the largely untold and underreported missions in Vietnam). The population has to trust Americans and coalition troops, not fear them, nor know that troops aren't governed by any laws.

2. Establish grievance courts (so Iraqis can file formal grievances so they DO have a voice, much like Americans with their city officials, and citizens with their government -- another do as we do, not as we tell you to do deals. Isn't it a DEMOCRACY that's being pushed? If that's true [I doubt it though] the Iraqis have to learn HOW to settle differences in court, not the battlefield).

3. Open true health clinics (since now many are being bombed and the mental health issues will be many).

4. Patrol and truly secure the open air markets, so women and children going to buy groceries aren't murdered to just to eat.

5. Protect the Iraqi government officials from being murdered by armed thugs. How are Iraqis going to volunteer for such positions, if they and their family are going to be murdered?

6. Ramp up training of a national military and police force. Make sure that they can stand on their own in fighting, not having to rely on coalition forces to prop them up. They will have to fend for themselves.

7. Start making patrol arenas smaller, then company by company send the troops back in theater locations (Saudi Arabia/Kuwati) just incase they're needed in a pinch for a period of 1 year (to watch how the Iraq government can stand on it's own without our help, slowly).

8. After a year, start sending company by company back home once their time is up.

9. Keep troops available on naval ships to deploy when necessary (and use the naval guns and Air Force more to show we're out, but not far away to check buildup of insurgent activity after a withdrawal).

10. Heavily monitor the region via satellite and aerial surveillance for years to come.

That ensures stability, yet also get our troops out before they become the target of not only insurgents, citizens themselves who know we're not there for the long haul anyway.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 8, 2006 04:11 PM

So, Jon, you basically want an open-ended mission with unlimited resources, costs and time. Is this correct?

Americans can stomach all kinds of carnage FOR THE RIGHT REASONS. Perhaps our collective weariness is due to the fact that it has become increasingly obvious that the alternatives to never-ending COIN may just be better. Yes, a region busy fighting itself, may just not have time to worry about us. Besides, the FEAR mongering about a destabilized region smacks of the old Domino Theory of the Cold War.

But you say...WHAT ABOUT THE OIL? What about it? What better time to take the 70+ billion per special session an put it towards energy independence? Hell, if my grandkids are going to have to foot the bill, at least it can be for something CONSTRUCTIVE that actually addresses one of the ROOT problems that has us in this mess.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 8, 2006 04:15 PM

Jon M. wrote:
===========================================
"Quite simply, I don't believe Americans today could not stomach the price of sacrifice of say, Grant's summer campaign of '64. We are insulated consumers living in a Golden Age and we do not want to concern ourselves with the harsh realities of a Hobbesian world."
===========================================

Nor Neo-cons from the comfort of their 'burb neighborhood or office. If the pictures of the real horrors of warfare were allowed on TV, you'll be BEGGING for the troops to get home, like any other sensible human being -- as Iraq is a civil war matter, not a terrorism one. Iran is the terrorist kingpin, and why Bush and Company didn't go after the country that supplied the entire region with a vehicle to spread their extremism, is the major mystery. It's not that there wasn't enough troops (Reagan called everyone back, reserves and even the retired to break the Soviet back). Could it be the Bones men and crew are modern day Fifth Monarchists, instead??

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 8, 2006 04:18 PM

SandyK,

EXACTLY Sandy. Disarming them is a constraint that we operate under that makes all of the other things, which we are ALREADY doing, harder if not impossible to do.

Your plan of action could be copy and pasted out of the current op order, but it begs the question of the resource constraints we are operating under. You are talking about the WHAT, not the HOW. WHAT we have to do is succinctly defined by you...but I am asking HOW do we do it?

Boots on the ground is the simplest resouce to talk about. But, we CANNOT support 2 years of 600,000+ troops in Iraq. We cannot do it physically, we cannot do it financially and we cannot do it politically.

So, COULD we do it right? Absolutely, as long as we were operating in a fantasy land of no constraints. CAN we do it given the current constraints under which we operate; I do NOT believe so. Not because we don't have the best military in the world, but because our leaders are incompetent and we have squandered our resources too much to recover without both a draft and a raising of taxes and sacrifices at home. These things are simply NOT going to happen.

The Jons of the world see to think we are operating in a vacuum, unhindered by the constraints of the real world...we're not.

Now, faced with the dilemma described above, WHICH path does one choose? There are three options:

A) Stop, baseline where we are, set obtainable mission goals, apply the appropriate resources to meet those goals (draft, taxes, national sacrifice, 2-3 years of deployment) and get the job done.

B) Stop, declare that we created a mess that cannot be fixed given the current constraints and bring our boy and girls, our money and our pride home.

C) Continue on the current path and watch as our inability to appropriately resource the mission attrit our national will and our national treasure and our national resouces while destroying what is left of our reputation as a great nation. We have piecemealed our forces across the world, which has destroyed our economy of force.

Those are the choices. A) is not going to happen because America will NEVER buy into it after the last 3 years and Bush would never want America to know he f'd up so badly. B) will at LEAST cut our losses, stem the bleeding of our sons, daughters, treasure and resources and might even go a ways in restoring our good name. But, it will indeed leave a vacuum of violence that will IMPLODE. C) Well, we know where that goes, we've been watching it for 3 years now. The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

We have been in the Balkans for 10 years now, and they haven't been nearly as motivated and well-armed as Iraq. Are we REALLY going to endure 10 years of this level of violence and warfare?

Wise up.

Posted by: AfghanVet | June 8, 2006 04:32 PM

"Nor Neo-cons from the comfort of their 'burb neighborhood or office. If the pictures of the real horrors of warfare were allowed on TV, you'll be BEGGING for the troops to get home, like any other sensible human being "

So true. And since some people want to liken this war to WWII, imagine what would happen if us folks back home were expected to make [cue incidental music] SACRIFICES for the sake of the war?

AAAAH, NOT THAT!!

One of the things that fascinates me about WWII is how EVERY ONE was expected to do their bit. I know there was hoarding and a brisk black market trade but it was illegal. Imagine if the government tried to bring back the "Is this trip really necessary?" campaign, 35 mph speed limits or food rationing now.
Talk about civil unrest.
I was once lucky enough to meet a man who fought during WWII (Pacific) and survived the Bataan (sp?) Death March. He stayed in the army and trained pilots on Bell-Hueys during Korea. After that, he quit.
Why?
During WWII he felt people cared. Friends and family wrote about the Victory Gardens and the scrap metal drives and so forth. It made him feel great to know that people were making changes in their lives for him. He said during Korea his friends wrote him about (not making this up): The bikini.
Hello? I'm getting shot at here and you're talking about skimpy bathing suits?
(And by the way, I can't type what he thought of this current dust up or it would get banned.)
I guess troops in combat now are treated to blow-by-blow accounts of American Idol (Hello? I'm getting shot at here.)

However, I wonder what all of the "This is a GREAT WAR, This is a JUST WAR" crowd would say if they had to give up something of their own NOW - the tires on their car, the sugar in their cabinet, the ability to drive two blocks to the Quickee Mart in their GigantoMobiles, and by the way, PUT OUT THOSE LIGHTS (even the TV and computer) - to keep the war going?
I don't think that response would be fit for print either.

Posted by: NII | June 8, 2006 05:19 PM

We can't just pull out, as anarchy will ensue. Anarchy isn't good for any country (want Iraq to become another Somalia??).

And any plans that you, I, Americans or other countries make won't include the nuances that is required in a different country. We're not privy to their ways, means and culturals needs. All we can do is put up the ideas, and THEY have to work it out among themselves (like we do in this country).

The biggest mistake we can do is setup a puppet government (like South Vietnam) based on our moral values (ugh, WP, hurry up on article comments!!). As the population won't trust it, and if the population doesn't it won't work.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 8, 2006 05:20 PM

This talk of "footing the bill" and "open-ended resources" is crass and nonsensical. The Iraq War has cost us very little nothing compared to what we spend on entitlements ever year and consume nearly 60% by themselves. This talk of "not being able to afford" the war is tripe. The screams of debt are propaganda. Don't believe me?

Look for yourself at the Congressional Budget Office history: Our annual deficit is nearly identical to the historical average based on GDP budget percentages. So enough with the can't afford stuff.

I would support a draft if 1) It was possible politically. Bush and the GOP would be out office by November at even the mention of the draft, and liberals would have sent up the white flag before the year was out. 2) It was necessary for success. Again, liberals can't make up their minds if we have too many troops there or not enough. More troops could have been useful, I believe, in 2004 and early 2005. I think this was poorly planned on some levels. However, today more troops would not serve our current strategy.

C) "Well, we know where that goes, we've been watching it for 3 years now. The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result."

The Adminstration predicts (to Iraqi official) that troop levels will be as low 25,000-35,000 by 2008. We just killed the leading terrorist and 7 of his Lts. Yesterday the Iraqi government became complete, filling the final two, and most important, cabinet positions: defense and interior.

This is progress. My god it is not easy. And it certainly is not free. But lets remember that for the last five years Americans have not had to bury thousands of innocent civilians, or wake up and see a massive crater where a city or skyscraper once was.

If Iraq is allowed to become a pool for terrorists--like Afghanistan was for the Taliban--we will pay a much larger price than we can imagine, much higher than the tragic price we have payed thus far in Iraq.

Posted by: Jon M | June 8, 2006 05:29 PM

Jon's w-a-y too positive and sounds like an Republican "actiongram".

BTW, the expense of this "little war" amounts to much more that's not on the books, yet. Like YEARS of cleanup work and the $500 toilet seat sweetheart deals that follows.

Oh, that's right as long as corrupt Republicans are profitting it's okay, right?

:rolleyes:

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 8, 2006 05:33 PM

Sandy:

You reveal yourself as nothing more than a partisan hack, ranting about Republicans and so on.

You are a perfect case in point of Liberal Democrats who continue to view this struggle as "Us v. G.W. Bush" instead of "US v. Islamic Fascism."

Optimistic? If that means that I believe the world's sole super-power can handle a handful of poorly armed militant extremists in an area the size of Texas until that country's own government is stabilized, why yes, I guess I am.

The PR war is far more difficult however, as Liberal Democrats like yourself continue to regard GW Bush as the true enemy, not the Zarqawi's on Bin Laden's.

Posted by: Jon M | June 8, 2006 06:12 PM

"The Iraq War has cost us very little nothing compared to what we spend on entitlements ever year and consume nearly 60% by themselves."

And Ebola in Africa wasn't that bad compared to Bubonic Plauge in Europe. So stop with the pessimism folks.

"But lets remember that for the last five years Americans have not had to bury thousands of innocent civilians, or wake up and see a massive crater where a city or skyscraper once was."

Are you making a connection between the Iraq and the Sept 11th attacks? Dear me, I think even Bush has backed off that one.

Also wondering which U.S. city was reduced to a massive crater by a terrorist attack?
Did I miss something (Huston, Houston, Do you read?) or are you saying this would or MIGHT have happened if we hadn't gone into Iraq?
Dear me.

Posted by: NIW | June 8, 2006 07:07 PM

"Are you making a connection between the Iraq and the Sept 11th attacks?"

Well, there is now and has been for quite some time. When George Bush said, "bring 'em on," they came, LOL. In a way, his misplaced bravado forced or accelerated the issues. It is difficult to tell now, but in five to ten years, it may turn out to have been a positive thing. And by the way, tens of thousands of those a-holes are dead now.

Just a thought, not a sermon.

Posted by: johnnnyg in NE DC | June 8, 2006 07:36 PM

Hey kids,

I'm back. Just one thought on the original issue in question. I think that the proportional representation idea forwarded by Emily and Anita would work in the following manner:

one person one vote. No districts (or fewer districts) seats are divided up as a percentage of the vote. for example if there are 100 proportional representation seats, and your party gets 30 percent of the vote, you get 30 seats (occupied by the candidates on a list submitted before the election so you know who you are electing, and the ranking of individual candidates on each party's list - so the ones who are seated will be numbers 1 through 30).

The way this helps minorities of all kinds (ethnic, political, gender, etc.) is that you don't have to win a majority of the vote in any district to be represented in the legislature. This effectively negates gerrymandering of districts to favor one political party (which is constitutional) or to dilute the voting strength of a discrete and protected minority (which is not), both of which are issues that are litigated every ten years (or less if you live in Texas) when the districts are redrawn according to the census.

Thus, if you are a sizeable minority that is not concentrated in a specific geographic area (green party members for example) if you can make a good showing at election time, you can still get a representative (or two) elected to the legislature. You wouldn't need to set aside quotas for discrete minorities (which would invariable generate a ton of constitutional litigation, which is always fun for con law geeks but of little use to the rest of us), because if there are enough people supporting a party or a candidate in a given state, a representative will be elected.

Might be a good way to introduce some new ideas to governance and break the two party stranglehold on power that our system has generated in an effort to remain stable over time.

Posted by: El Naco | June 8, 2006 10:38 PM

"Might be a good way to introduce some new ideas to governance and break the two party stranglehold on power that our system has generated in an effort to remain stable over time."

Yea, like communism.

Posted by: johnnyg in NE DC | June 8, 2006 11:31 PM

Jon M,

Read my sig for a clue.

Yeah, Neo-Con you've been spotted. You know liberal Democrats real well, since you're a convert yourself (carry Mao's red book of history and propaganda too, huh?).

Not that it matters for brain dead partisans who only believe in what brand of Kook-aid they drink, I'm an independent voter not associated to any political party, as well (I get alone fine with liberals, moderates and conservatives who are ideologues, not demigods). I vote on idealogy that spans further than some social agenda that mucks up the very Constitution (nevermind mixing religion and politics -- a Founder's no-no), let alone the basis of conservatism to keep federalism from expanding into one's bedroom, employment, or just plain day-to-day life.

SandyK
Moderate Traditional Conservative.

Posted by: SandyK | June 9, 2006 08:05 AM

Ooooooh, Emily, it's Friday. Is there another article for the weekend to debate about??!!

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 9, 2006 08:49 AM

This talk of "footing the bill" and "open-ended resources" is crass and nonsensical. The Iraq War has cost us very little nothing compared to what we spend on entitlements ever year and consume nearly 60% by themselves. This talk of "not being able to afford" the war is tripe. The screams of debt are propaganda. Don't believe me?

--- IRRELEVENT...ENTITLEMENTS are a CONSTRAINT under which we must operate. If you want to debate the merits of entitlements, then that's a different issue. But, they EXIST NOW and therefore must be accounted for. And, since we have already had a referendum of sorts on basic entitlements...SS Reform down the drain anyone...it's not even worthy of debate. Again, deal with what IS not what you THINK SHOULD BE!

Look for yourself at the Congressional Budget Office history: Our annual deficit is nearly identical to the historical average based on GDP budget percentages. So enough with the can't afford stuff.

---- Funny, I remember a time in the 90's where we were running a surplus. And the CBO demonstrated that our deficits would have happened regardless of the war because of the tax cut for the rich. The War expenditures, which by use of enron-like accounting are not put on the REGULAR budget, are exacerbating the problem. When W talks of reducing the debt...he means the AMOUNT of deficit spending we're doing...OUR DEBT IS STILL INCREASING!!!!

Furthermore, the deficit spending isn't EVEN directly benefiting Americans! If you are going to go into debt, at least let it do something constructive. If it HAS to be for war...at least prosecute accordingly.

-----

I would support a draft if 1) It was possible politically. Bush and the GOP would be out office by November at even the mention of the draft, and liberals would have sent up the white flag before the year was out. 2) It was necessary for success. Again, liberals can't make up their minds if we have too many troops there or not enough. More troops could have been useful, I believe, in 2004 and early 2005. I think this was poorly planned on some levels. However, today more troops would not serve our current strategy.

-----

And WHY would they be out of office? Because the MAJORITY of Americans would NOT support such a move. Does that make the MAJORITY of Americans liberals????? My behind you would support the draft. I believe that like I believe you would entertain enlisting. I'm betting you're fresh out of some College Republican group and at the PERFECT age to serve. I would say that the PERFECT support would be to sign up and let the military take advantage of your intellect, enthusiasm and conviction. Let me know when you decide to go, I'll put in a good word for you.

------

C) "Well, we know where that goes, we've been watching it for 3 years now. The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result."

The Adminstration predicts (to Iraqi official) that troop levels will be as low 25,000-35,000 by 2008. We just killed the leading terrorist and 7 of his Lts. Yesterday the Iraqi government became complete, filling the final two, and most important, cabinet positions: defense and interior.

-------

The administration predicted the following:

- We've turned a corner like 20 times now...I'm getting dizzy.
- We would be greeted with flowers.
- We would find WMD.
- We would discover a global terrorist support network in Iraq.
- We were in the last throws of a failing insurgency.
- We would get OBL.
- The Oil Revenues would pay for the war and it would cost us about a BILLION.
- Democracy would spread across the Middle East.
- New Orleans wouldn't flood.
- That there wouldn't be civil war in Iraq.

Hey...0 for 10 ain't that bad...right?

-------

This is progress. My god it is not easy. And it certainly is not free. But lets remember that for the last five years Americans have not had to bury thousands of innocent civilians, or wake up and see a massive crater where a city or skyscraper once was.

-----

Hmmm...well, we haven't buried OUR innocent civilians...that is correct. But conflating Iraq with the broader war on terrorism is, well, troubling. It's pretty much accepted now that Iraq was and is tangetial to the war on terror. We still haven't captured or killed the ONE guy we KNOW was responsible for the attack on our soil. So...keep on conflating there my man.

------

If Iraq is allowed to become a pool for terrorists--like Afghanistan was for the Taliban--we will pay a much larger price than we can imagine, much higher than the tragic price we have payed thus far in Iraq.

----

Yeah, but whose actions made it that way? Oh, that's right...OURS! See, Saddam was effectively contained, he had no WMD, he was a secular despot that had NO formal ties with GLOBAL terrorists and even the ONE really bad terrorist we just killed was...JORDANIAN!!!! See, the NEO-TARD heatsink theory of warfare was only DREAMED up AFTER we saw the tables turning in Iraq. We were supposed to be in and out...not sitting and fighting. And, they can recruit locally now as we have killed and pissed off HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of iraqis.

Do us all a favor and turn off Karl's fax machine and read a little bit about conducting war, COIN operations and the history of the Middle East and the Arab culture. Better yet, enlist, get trained, go fight for what you believe in and then come back and talk.


Posted by: | June 9, 2006 10:06 AM

Nll, isn't the perfect age to serve. It's why he's so for the war to begin with. Even troops understand that war is the last option as it's never clean, never cut and dried, and the bill is so expensive it'll take a bite out of the GNP. It's made as the last resort, when other options won't work (like in Afghanistan no amount of UN sanctions would've got the Taliban to comply). Hussein was easily bought out earlier, and could've been bought out again to save expense on the real terror agent in the region IRAN -- but Bush needed an easy target for "feel good" Neo-Cons who believe in their own form of Marxism straight from Mao (it's no wonder how much they love China, too).

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 9, 2006 10:53 AM

SandyK:

I'm no neocon, although I happen to like Kristol's and Krauthammer's very much. I am Reagan/Goldwater Conservative of the, say, George Will mold. You seem to be one of those strange sorts that somehow seems to feel superior by crowing about his or her's "moderation". As if being moderate gives one some great moral authority that allows them to transcend the usual crassness of politics.

I find intellectually limited or lazy people tend to gush about their "moderation" because it makes them seem reasonable.

I will take a an honest postmodern liberal (re: socialist) with conviction any day over a "Moderate Traditional Conservative," whatever that means.

All I can say in your support is that you at least recognize that Iran is a grave threat.

Posted by: Jon M | June 9, 2006 01:42 PM

The intellectual posts from your sort, Jon, betray impeccable breeding. What does the 'M' stand for, by the way? A Moron?

Posted by: Emilio | June 9, 2006 02:33 PM

""Might be a good way to introduce some new ideas to governance and break the two party stranglehold on power that our system has generated in an effort to remain stable over time."

Yea, like communism."

If that is the will of the people, that is what democracy will allow.

Posted by: El Naco | June 9, 2006 02:51 PM

Emilio:

Impeccable breeding? Well, thank you.

But comparing it to the breeding customs you are accustomed to in in Tijuana animal performances is not quit fair.

Posted by: JONM | June 9, 2006 03:05 PM

If wit was sh*t, Jon, you would die from the effort of straining. Your grammar is pretty bad too.


Posted by: Emilio | June 9, 2006 04:20 PM

this entire thread should have been locked after the first remark.

Posted by: dj | June 10, 2006 02:50 AM

Hello Anita,

I was happy to see that you do not use the term "race," a divisive concept that has no basis in biological reality. Although too many people still cling to the discredited notion, we are moving towards a society in which we are defined by our culture rather than by our physical features and the geographical location of our ancestors.

I'm not sure that large groups of humans are capable of being monocultural. Even groups whose members inherited the same amount of melanin contain different cultures. We are as segrated by education, religion, temperament, taste, and a variey of other factors almost, if not as much, as we are by ethnicity.

So rather than spit at the wind trying to create a monoculture, I suggest we fall back on some of that old-time philosophy and live by a rule of law based on a bill of rights that apply equally to everyone, then everything else -- government, business, language and culture should take care of itself.

Well, not quite. I also think we need a (partially) standardized curriculum in our schools so that we all have a common point of reference for our arguments.

But in the real world of our representative democracy, we are represented commensurate to our wealth. Every dollar is equal and entitled to its own vote. So if greenish-skinned people from Atlantis one day surface and acquire great wealth, they can buy a government that will represent their interests and a news and entertainment media that will promote them.

It is unfortunate that our democracy has evolved to be reprentative (as described above) rather than participatory -- with the law, like everything else, for sale.

So if we want a truly representative democracy, there are two things we can do to help that along: vote and use our wealth to educate people and encourage them to vote. Unfortunately, it's an uphill struggle and the steady erosion of our democracy (more people are selling than buying) is making it steeper all the time.

Anyway, thanks for trying. I was sorry to see this thread devolve into the usual blather, but what can you do?

Posted by: chuckling | June 10, 2006 09:22 AM

Jon M. wrote:
===========================================
"I'm no neocon, although I happen to like Kristol's and Krauthammer's very much. I am Reagan/Goldwater Conservative of the, say, George Will mold."
===========================================

Ah, you're a converted Democrat that likes Commie literature, and prefers reading a writer who had 3 ethics violations.

Real good examples of what's NOT a conservative ideal -- and intellectually bankrupt too!

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | June 10, 2006 07:54 PM

avast the no one world order,

Posted by: | August 26, 2006 10:30 PM

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