EJ Dionne: "Our country and the world were never threatened by the caliphate of [Al-Qaeda]'s mad fantasies."

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    Sep 10, 2011 2:09 PM GMT
    A remarkable column that lays a number of delusions bare from a columnist respected by many liberals who at the same time argues for an ever expanding regulatory and welfare state.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/time-to-leave-911-behind/2011/09/07/gIQA0dpUAK_story.html - from EJ Dionne:

    After we honor the 10th anniversary of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, we need to leave the day behind. As a nation we have looked back for too long. We learned lessons from the attacks, but so many of them were wrong. The last decade was a detour that left our nation weaker, more divided and less certain of itself.

    Reflections on the meaning of the horror and the years that followed are inevitably inflected by our own political or philosophical leanings. It’s a critique that no doubt applies to my thoughts as well. We see what we choose to see and use the event as we want to use it.

    This does nothing to honor those who died and those who sacrificed to prevent even more suffering. In the future, the anniversary will best be reserved as a simple day of remembrance in which all of us humbly offer our respect for the anguish and the heroism of those individuals and their families.

    But if we continue to place 9/11 at the center of our national consciousness, we will keep making the same mistakes. Our nation’s future depended on far more than the outcome of a vaguely defined “war on terrorism,” and it still does. Al-Qaeda is a dangerous enemy. But our country and the world were never threatened by the caliphate of its mad fantasies.
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    Sep 10, 2011 2:35 PM GMT
    OPThus was an event that initially united the nation used, over and over, to aggravate our political disharmony. This is also why we must put it behind us.

    In the flood of anniversary commentary, notice how often the term “the lost decade” has been invoked. We know now, as we should have known all along, that American strength always depends first on our strength at home — on a vibrant, innovative and sensibly regulated economy, on levelheaded fiscal policies, on the ability of our citizens to find useful work, on the justice of our social arrangements.

    This is not “isolationism.” It is a common sense that was pushed aside by the talk of “glory” and “honor,” by utopian schemes to transform the world by abruptly reordering the Middle East — and by our fears. While we worried that we would be destroyed by terrorists, we ignored the larger danger of weakening ourselves by forgetting what made us great.
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    Sep 10, 2011 2:39 PM GMT
    oopsie riddler.
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    Sep 10, 2011 2:44 PM GMT
    TropicalMark saidoopsie riddler.


    What's the oopsie? His premise is absolutely flawed. Just because you arrive at a conclusion - any conclusion that you can agree with doesn't make the reasoning more or less sound.
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    Sep 10, 2011 2:49 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidoopsie riddler.


    What's the oopsie? His premise is absolutely flawed. Just because you arrive at a conclusion - any conclusion that you can agree with doesn't make the reasoning more or less sound.
    You know what the oopsie is for.. dont play pattycake, unless your a fem.
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    Sep 10, 2011 3:14 PM GMT
    What - exactly - is flawed? The "War on Terror" has contributed mightily to the failing of our country through two of the longest "wars" we've ever been engaged in. And, Dionne right notes, that only a small fraction of largely poor citizens have been asked to sacrifice anything.

    Al Qaeda has proven to be a far greater threat to our values than they ever were or will be to our physical safety.
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    Sep 10, 2011 3:22 PM GMT
    Lost decade for domestic policy indeed:
    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0911/63134.html
    The day that changed everything had surprisingly little impact on U.S. energy policy.

    A decade after Sept. 11, 2001, the United States is still importing as much as 60 percent of its petroleum supply, much of it from the unstable Middle East. And many experts’ predictions for how the U.S. would respond to the attacks have fallen flat: We didn’t open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, for example, or launch an all-out effort to lessen reliance on foreign oil through conservation and alternative fuels.
    ...
    Sept. 11 “would have been a wonderful teachable moment to get serious about energy efficiency,” said Rocky Mountain Institute co-founder Amory Lovins, a consultant and scientist who has written books on energy security. “That isn’t how it turned out. It would have made an interesting alternative history.”

    Myron Ebell, director of energy and global warming policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, said he thinks the security implications of Sept. 11 did have a lot to do with President George W. Bush’s declaration in 2006 that “America is addicted to oil” and needs to devise fuel from new sources, such as switchgrass — both statements that Ebell considers “unfortunate.”

    Otherwise, “it seemed like the impetus from the terrorist attacks really carried over into creating the Department of Homeland Security and attacking Afghanistan and Iraq,” Ebell added. “And there was unity on those things, but it didn’t go very far beyond that into domestic policy.”
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    Sep 10, 2011 3:24 PM GMT
    Whatever Al Quida was or is, lets not forget that we 'made them', The CIA funded them, set up the madrassa schools and the works to fight the Russions, then dumped them to go off on its 'control oil' ventures and wars. Every country the US interfered with because they 'nationalized' their oil fields helped form Al Quida, The war in Iraq was the best gift to Al Quida for recruiting that the US could have given them.

    Our Government leaders led by the Israeli influenced NeoCon group "Project for the New American Century" played right into the Al Quida hands, giving them a win / win situation from every angle. Never in the Al Quida Leaders wildest dreams, could he have forseen just how deep a hole the US led by NeoCons would dig for itself. Yes !! We made Al Quida, and no they didn't do the 911 deed because they "Hate our freedoms", they pulled this off because of our interference for control of Oil in the middle east and over our financing the Israeli abuse of the Palestinians.


    Our government running interference in the Middle East for our oil interests has put us in this situation, Just imagine what all that money used to interfere in Middle East affairs would have done spent in our own country, on infrastructure, on schools and Universities and the like. Our NeoCon leaders don't want the public knowing the truth about why we have this enemy, because it was and is an enemy of our own making. Our own leaders are who we should be the most angry with, because they got us here.


    Just for a minute add up all the costs to run interference for our oil interests in the ME, from the time the CIA originated the coup in Iran to take out the democratic leader in Iran over his 'nationalizing oil' ,so they could install the dictator Shah of Iran. Add up this staggering figure, then apply it to the cost per barrel of oil and see if you think holding on to the status quo so oil remains our main source of energy, is worth it. And if you don't think these are the reasons for many of our enemies, you haven't been reading or paying attention, and that's what these NeoCons want and depend on for their purposes to continue.
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    Sep 10, 2011 3:24 PM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidLost decade for domestic policy indeed:
    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0911/63134.html
    The day that changed everything had surprisingly little impact on U.S. energy policy.

    A decade after Sept. 11, 2001, the United States is still importing as much as 60 percent of its petroleum supply, much of it from the unstable Middle East. And many experts’ predictions for how the U.S. would respond to the attacks have fallen flat: We didn’t open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, for example, or launch an all-out effort to lessen reliance on foreign oil through conservation and alternative fuels.
    ...
    Sept. 11 “would have been a wonderful teachable moment to get serious about energy efficiency,” said Rocky Mountain Institute co-founder Amory Lovins, a consultant and scientist who has written books on energy security. “That isn’t how it turned out. It would have made an interesting alternative history.”

    Myron Ebell, director of energy and global warming policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, said he thinks the security implications of Sept. 11 did have a lot to do with President George W. Bush’s declaration in 2006 that “America is addicted to oil” and needs to devise fuel from new sources, such as switchgrass — both statements that Ebell considers “unfortunate.”

    Otherwise, “it seemed like the impetus from the terrorist attacks really carried over into creating the Department of Homeland Security and attacking Afghanistan and Iraq,” Ebell added. “And there was unity on those things, but it didn’t go very far beyond that into domestic policy.”


    Meanwhile environmentalists railed against pursuing developments in horizontal drilling in natural gas despite its abundance and currently oppose the pipeline from Alberta carrying heavy oil. If only the hypocrisy weren't so deafening.
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    Sep 10, 2011 3:32 PM GMT
    realifedad said Whatever Al Quida was or is, lets not forget that we 'made them', The CIA funded them, set up the madrassa schools and the works to fight the Russions, then dumped them to go off on its 'control oil' ventures and wars. Every country the US interfered with because they 'nationalized' their oil fields helped form Al Quida, The war in Iraq was the best gift to Al Quida for recruiting that the US could have given them.

    Our Government leaders led by the Israeli influenced NeoCon group "Project for the New American Century" played right into the Al Quida hands, giving them a win / win situation from every angle. Never in the Al Quida Leaders wildest dreams, could he have forseen just how deep a hole the US led by NeoCons would dig for itself. Yes !! We made Al Quida, and no they didn't do the 911 deed because they "Hate our freedoms", they pulled this off because of our interference for control of Oil in the middle east and over our financing the Israeli abuse of the Palestinians.


    Our government running interference in the Middle East for our oil interests has put us in this situation, Just imagine what all that money used to interfere in Middle East affairs would have done spent in our own country, on infrastructure, on schools and Universities and the like. Our NeoCon leaders don't want the public knowing the truth about why we have this enemy, because it was and is an enemy of our own making. Our own leaders are who we should be the most angry with, because they got us here.


    Just for a minute add up all the costs to run interference for our oil interests in the ME, from the time the CIA originated the coup in Iran to take out the democratic leader in Iran over his 'nationalizing oil' ,so they could install the dictator Shah of Iran. Add up this staggering figure, then apply it to the cost per barrel of oil and see if you think holding on to the status quo so oil remains our main source of energy, is worth it. And if you don't think these are the reasons for many of our enemies, you haven't been reading or paying attention, and that's what these NeoCons want and depend on for their purposes to continue.


    I have two thoughts on this - I am not a defender of realpolitik - and I think it has bred a number of unintended consequences. Just as Israel supported Hamas at one point, let's also recognize that the Soviets supported the PLO. The world is/was different - and socialism was a threat - particularly the over 100 million who have been killed under their regimes. That's as much of the truth or rather a more complete than you would have it.

    That said, would more spending on schools and universities help? You seem to believe that yes, the problem with our education system is spending when the reality suggests different - we spend more per capita over time and we get worse results. Administrators have in particular grown while benefits have also grown when the US and Canada for that matter have spent more. They say it's for the children - but what do we really get of it?

    Finally, the US has also provided a subsidy in energy to the world in attempting to maintain middle east stability which I also disagree with. That stability has also allowed for under priced energy from both the volatility in price and in absolute dollars. These dollars have also provided subsidies for the US economy and others - so these policies have worked both ways. Further, we have the development of highways that have been highly subsidized by the state that have allowed for the rise in suburbs which in turn have fueled automobiles and the thirst for energy. So let's not demagogue this debate as one between defense and domestic services.
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    Sep 10, 2011 4:09 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    realifedad said Whatever Al Quida was or is, lets not forget that we 'made them', The CIA funded them, set up the madrassa schools and the works to fight the Russions, then dumped them to go off on its 'control oil' ventures and wars. Every country the US interfered with because they 'nationalized' their oil fields helped form Al Quida, The war in Iraq was the best gift to Al Quida for recruiting that the US could have given them.

    Our Government leaders led by the Israeli influenced NeoCon group "Project for the New American Century" played right into the Al Quida hands, giving them a win / win situation from every angle. Never in the Al Quida Leaders wildest dreams, could he have forseen just how deep a hole the US led by NeoCons would dig for itself. Yes !! We made Al Quida, and no they didn't do the 911 deed because they "Hate our freedoms", they pulled this off because of our interference for control of Oil in the middle east and over our financing the Israeli abuse of the Palestinians.


    Our government running interference in the Middle East for our oil interests has put us in this situation, Just imagine what all that money used to interfere in Middle East affairs would have done spent in our own country, on infrastructure, on schools and Universities and the like. Our NeoCon leaders don't want the public knowing the truth about why we have this enemy, because it was and is an enemy of our own making. Our own leaders are who we should be the most angry with, because they got us here.


    Just for a minute add up all the costs to run interference for our oil interests in the ME, from the time the CIA originated the coup in Iran to take out the democratic leader in Iran over his 'nationalizing oil' ,so they could install the dictator Shah of Iran. Add up this staggering figure, then apply it to the cost per barrel of oil and see if you think holding on to the status quo so oil remains our main source of energy, is worth it. And if you don't think these are the reasons for many of our enemies, you haven't been reading or paying attention, and that's what these NeoCons want and depend on for their purposes to continue.


    I have two thoughts on this - I am not a defender of realpolitik - and I think it has bred a number of unintended consequences. Just as Israel supported Hamas at one point, let's also recognize that the Soviets supported the PLO. The world is/was different - and socialism was a threat - particularly the over 100 million who have been killed under their regimes. That's as much of the truth or rather a more complete than you would have it.

    That said, would more spending on schools and universities help? You seem to believe that yes, the problem with our education system is spending when the reality suggests different - we spend more per capita over time and we get worse results. Administrators have in particular grown while benefits have also grown when the US and Canada for that matter have spent more. They say it's for the children - but what do we really get of it?

    Finally, the US has also provided a subsidy in energy to the world in attempting to maintain middle east stability which I also disagree with. That stability has also allowed for under priced energy from both the volatility in price and in absolute dollars. These dollars have also provided subsidies for the US economy and others - so these policies have worked both ways. Further, we have the development of highways that have been highly subsidized by the state that have allowed for the rise in suburbs which in turn have fueled automobiles and the thirst for energy. So let's not demagogue this debate as one between defense and domestic services.





    This may surprise you but I do believe your right about the Soviets and those their regimes killed.


    As for education I wasn't talking about Federal infusion of money from the standpoint of "no child left behind" or any other such Federal interence. I'm talking about School facilities, updated or advanced technology for our schools, the best possible financial support of the arts.(there is direct correlation between music education and mind development/math development) and Particularly I'm talking of making it possible for even the poorest being able to go to college, our children and their education are a much greater investment for our future than all that wasted money on Middle Eastern adventures to control oil. and now to fight terrorism (which is basicly a conspiracy theory to back making war).
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    Sep 10, 2011 4:35 PM GMT
    realifedad said
    riddler78 said
    realifedad said Whatever Al Quida was or is, lets not forget that we 'made them', The CIA funded them, set up the madrassa schools and the works to fight the Russions, then dumped them to go off on its 'control oil' ventures and wars. Every country the US interfered with because they 'nationalized' their oil fields helped form Al Quida, The war in Iraq was the best gift to Al Quida for recruiting that the US could have given them.

    Our Government leaders led by the Israeli influenced NeoCon group "Project for the New American Century" played right into the Al Quida hands, giving them a win / win situation from every angle. Never in the Al Quida Leaders wildest dreams, could he have forseen just how deep a hole the US led by NeoCons would dig for itself. Yes !! We made Al Quida, and no they didn't do the 911 deed because they "Hate our freedoms", they pulled this off because of our interference for control of Oil in the middle east and over our financing the Israeli abuse of the Palestinians.


    Our government running interference in the Middle East for our oil interests has put us in this situation, Just imagine what all that money used to interfere in Middle East affairs would have done spent in our own country, on infrastructure, on schools and Universities and the like. Our NeoCon leaders don't want the public knowing the truth about why we have this enemy, because it was and is an enemy of our own making. Our own leaders are who we should be the most angry with, because they got us here.


    Just for a minute add up all the costs to run interference for our oil interests in the ME, from the time the CIA originated the coup in Iran to take out the democratic leader in Iran over his 'nationalizing oil' ,so they could install the dictator Shah of Iran. Add up this staggering figure, then apply it to the cost per barrel of oil and see if you think holding on to the status quo so oil remains our main source of energy, is worth it. And if you don't think these are the reasons for many of our enemies, you haven't been reading or paying attention, and that's what these NeoCons want and depend on for their purposes to continue.


    I have two thoughts on this - I am not a defender of realpolitik - and I think it has bred a number of unintended consequences. Just as Israel supported Hamas at one point, let's also recognize that the Soviets supported the PLO. The world is/was different - and socialism was a threat - particularly the over 100 million who have been killed under their regimes. That's as much of the truth or rather a more complete than you would have it.

    That said, would more spending on schools and universities help? You seem to believe that yes, the problem with our education system is spending when the reality suggests different - we spend more per capita over time and we get worse results. Administrators have in particular grown while benefits have also grown when the US and Canada for that matter have spent more. They say it's for the children - but what do we really get of it?

    Finally, the US has also provided a subsidy in energy to the world in attempting to maintain middle east stability which I also disagree with. That stability has also allowed for under priced energy from both the volatility in price and in absolute dollars. These dollars have also provided subsidies for the US economy and others - so these policies have worked both ways. Further, we have the development of highways that have been highly subsidized by the state that have allowed for the rise in suburbs which in turn have fueled automobiles and the thirst for energy. So let's not demagogue this debate as one between defense and domestic services.





    This may surprise you but I do believe your right about the Soviets and those their regimes killed.


    As for education I wasn't talking about Federal infusion of money from the standpoint of "no child left behind" or any other such Federal interence. I'm talking about School facilities, updated or advanced technology for our schools, the best possible financial support of the arts.(there is direct correlation between music education and mind development/math development) and Particularly I'm talking of making it possible for even the poorest being able to go to college, our children and their education are a much greater investment for our future than all that wasted money on Middle Eastern adventures to control oil. and now to fight terrorism (which is basicly a conspiracy theory to back making war).


    But as you point out that sounds like you agree then the problem is with respect to education, what we've been spending money on within education rather than we have spent on other priorities at the expense of education. I think the level of defense spending is an issue that should be debated but I don't think that demagoguing domestic spending is fair.