The Clinton Wars

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JPP13
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The Clinton Wars

Post by JPP13 » Sep 10th 2003, 10:05 pm

For a very interesting read on the Bushies character assassination of Gore and the orchestration of the election, check out the chapter "The Stolen Succession" in the book "The Clinton Wars" by Sidney Blumenthal. Its enlightening. Its scary.

Some of the tidbits include the infamous urban myth about Gore and the internet, as well as the Bushie back-up plan to organize quasi "riots" should Gore actually win.

Its an interesting thought - what if Gore's victory was not thwarted? Would we be in Iraq? Would we be in a recession? Would gas prices be at an all-time high? Would Ken lay have made billions? Actually, these things interest me less than the notion that the "actual" president is hanging out in Tennessee somewhere.

As Radiohead said - "Hail to the Thief".

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Post by TomSpeed » Sep 10th 2003, 11:31 pm

We would be in a recession regardless. There is a business cycle. It goes up, and it goes down. A president has little influence on the overall economy. The Federal Reserve Board has a greater impact, and just the natural ebb and flow of supply and demand has the greatest impact. To say that Bush caused the recession by cutting taxes is dumb beyond anything anyone can say in public. Running large deficits year after year can have a negative impact in time, but it takes longer than a few months. Also, people have to remember that Bush isn't a king. All of the tax cuts were approved by Congress, which, by the way, also gave Bush a blank check to go to war in Iraq.

Former President Clinton had a regime change policy on Iraq. It's unclear if Gore would have invaded Iraq. He probably would have invaded eventually, if the intelligence and news coming from Iraq weren't entirely fabricated.

I happen to think Bush I looks better and better every day. The old man saw Iraq for what it was -- a money-sucking black hole. Gore might have continued Bush I's Iraqi containment policy, but he would have had a great deal of pressure to do something.
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Post by JPP13 » Sep 11th 2003, 12:10 am

I think its somewhat simplistic to say this is a business cycle. We had a tremendous shift in tax policy and spending priorities. One also can't blame the technological sector collapse. The stocks were overvalued, then they corrected themselves, no question. But if that was driving the economy things would have turned around 2 years ago. There has been massive deregulation. Most key positions in the administration are filled with CEOs, most if not all of whom are tied to scandalous corporate ventures at one point or another.


This fundamental change from the prior period of prosperity did not go unnoticed by the markets and the forces which drive the economy.

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Post by Nostradamus » Sep 11th 2003, 12:54 am

Here's a little background on the Bush (senior) and Clinton administrations' dealings with Iraq, from http://www.truthaboutwar.org/1brutal.shtml.
Except where noted, the details for what follows can be found in the definitive works on this subject by the award-winning journalist Dilip Hiro, Iraq and The Iran-Iraq War.
Bush, Sr. called on the Iraqi people to overthrow Hussein. The Iraqi people responded. They expected U.S. support. They didn't receive it.

Hussein's army crushed the rebels while our jets flew overhead. We could have stopped Hussein, but Bush, Sr. ordered our military not to intervene. The Bush administration felt the wrong people were responding to our call for revolt. They wanted Hussein's officers to remove him instead, so the dictatorial regime would remain in place, only without Saddam.

Colin Powell and Dick Cheney were on the National Security Council at that time. They were involved in these decisions. Our government was once again complicit in Hussein's brutality. (For an insider's view of these events see The World Transformed by Bush, Sr.'s National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft—note the ironic title.)

After Gulf War I our politicians added to the brutality in Iraq by imposing trade sanctions.

These sanctions didn't just cover weapons materials. They mostly affected food and medicine. It's hard to see why. Our politicians have already made it clear they don't want the Iraqi people to revolt, so their purpose isn't to cause a general uprising. But the sanctions aren't likely to cause Hussein's officers to revolt either—he makes sure his officers have the best of everything. So all the sanctions have done is kill innocent people, and cause the Iraqi people to hate America more than they hate Hussein.

As with Castro in Cuba, trade sanctions against Iraq have only served to strengthen Hussein's grip on his people.


But the embargo has continued through the Clinton administration to the present day.

A minor exception has been made to allow Iraq to trade oil for small amounts of food and medicine. It isn't enough. The Iraqi people still starve and die.

Our politicians don't care. On May 12, 1996 Leslie Stahl interviewed Clinton Secretary of State Madeleine Albright on "60 Minutes." Stahl claimed that "More than 500,000 Iraqi children are already dead as a direct result of the UN sanctions." She then asked, "Do you think the price is worth paying?" Albright did not dispute the number of deaths, or that our policy caused them. Instead, she said, "It is a difficult question. But yes, we think the price is worth it."

That's easy for her to say. Her children aren't dying. And it's hard to see what, exactly, our politicians think is "worth it," since the sanctions can't cause either the Iraqi people, or Hussein's officers to revolt, and not even Hussein's full compliance with UN resolutions would lift the embargo.

Albright made this last point perfectly clear in another interview on "Meet the Press" on January 2, 2000. In that interview Albright admitted that the true purpose of the sanctions was regime change and not weapons control. She stated that the sanctions would not be lifted until Hussein was gone, even if he complied with all UN weapons controls. The current Bush administration has continued this policy.
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Post by TomSpeed » Sep 11th 2003, 7:50 am

Supply and demand and economic cycle are broad concepts that often work hand-in-hand. One example is what's been happening to American jobs. Americans are skilled, productive, and intelligent workers. However, they are also highly paid workers. Demand for good workers has not decreased. However, that demand is being met by workers in other countries, who are paid a great deal less than American workers. People demand cheaper products. Labor is a big component of production costs. Many of the jobs that have shifted overseas will not be coming back. The president has little control over this shift.

Unfortunately, all administrations have had a fair share of shady characters. Often, a little shadiness is required for people to attain positions of power. To say that President Bush is surrounded by more unsavory characters than other presidents were during their terms is probably not being factually correct.

There were many reasons why Bush I did not topple Sadddam. Among them include his willingness to work with the UN and his concern about the unknown. Yes, Saddam could have been toppled. But what would have happened then?

We will see what happens next now. So far, many of the assumptions President Bush's war planners have made about post-war Iraq have proven incorrect.
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Post by grim4746 » Sep 11th 2003, 8:27 am

TomSpeed wrote: Americans are skilled, productive, and intelligent workers. However, they are also highly paid workers. Demand for good workers has not decreased. However, that demand is being met by workers in other countries, who are paid a great deal less than American workers. People demand cheaper products. Labor is a big component of production costs. Many of the jobs that have shifted overseas will not be coming back. The president has little control over this shift.
I'm not so convinced that the president could not make changes in this area. A number of trade laws and laws governing business in general were dropped by the Regan administration (and in other countries by leaders like Thatcher and Mulroney) opening up the doors for cheap exploitable labour in poor countries with weaker governments who can be bullied by the World Trade Organization and the International Monetary Fund, into lowering their minimum wages and fighting against attempts to build unions. The current president continues to vigorously pursue the advancement of this sort of trade throughout the world. Claiming that certain rights and freedoms should be sacrificed to increase trade which in turn will bring democracy (and presumably then they will be entitled to the rights and freedoms they sacrificed in the first place?). I think the president could if he chose, push back toward the old system where even companies like "Nike" predominately produced its products in the US and western Europe for what we'd consider decent wages and anyone would have a hard time convincing me that a pair of sneakers are cheaper now than they were in the early 80s. I don't think this sort of protectionist system is better or even perhaps less exploitative than the one we have now but certainly the president also has the influence to usher in a new trade system that fundamentally links human rights to trade agreements. But that's right, making basic assurances for people's safety and equitable pay that would allow them to afford minimal food and shelter could cut into profit and therefore would be against the rules of capitalism, would be anti-democratic, anti-american, and basically a crime against God and nature.

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Post by TomSpeed » Sep 11th 2003, 9:39 am

President Bush can suggest and encourage other leaders to improve working conditions and wages, etc. Trade treaties often include assurances that these things will be done. However, these things cannot be mandated by the president. Fundamental changes must be brought about by the people in those countries. Eventually, the disparity of wages and working conditions will abate, but time will be needed for this to happen.
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Post by Nothingman » Sep 11th 2003, 10:41 am

Currently we are faced with a number of problems that are larger and more complex than any other time in the last half-century. There are no easy answers, no man in any position has the ability to make it all better. Nor do I believe that, if Gore was not swindled out of office, we would be in a world of rainbows and unicorns. But I do stand firm to my belief that the current path we are on is the wrong one. Everything I know tells me that we are heading in the wrong direction. We are continuing to dig a hole for ourselves with our selfish foreign policy, I may not have all the answers to fill the hole, but I know when it’s time to stop digging.

Another thing that saddens me is that I am ashamed to be an American. Not in the sense that I am ashamed of where I come from, but in the sense that when I visit another country, they associate me with this administrations action’s, and I am ashamed of that. I do not want our country to be portrayed as we are. I don’t know who Bush thinks he representing, but it isn’t me. And I get the impression that he isn’t trying to represent us as much as he’s trying to be a crusader against evil. He treats the American people like sheep and he is the Shepard who will make it all better, because he knows best. I thought the point of electing a leader is to have them speak on the people’s behalf, not to elect the person who does what he thinks best. Just once I’d like to hear Bush say we are going to do this because it’s what the people want.
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Post by starbug » Sep 11th 2003, 11:51 am

grim4746 wrote: Thatcher
*shudder*
grim4746 wrote: I think the president could if he chose, push back toward the old system where even companies like "Nike" predominately produced its products in the US and western Europe for what we'd consider decent wages
I think this is an interesting point. He'd have to make it a financial incentive. He could, for example, impose a fiscal penalty (read 'extra tax) on any company with their headquarters in the US but who manufactured a certain percentage of their products overseas. That ought to catch most of the big offenders. He could close loopholes in the law that allowed a 'HQ' to be one in name only and stipulate the percentage of offices/factories required to be on US soil for them to be classed as a US company. If the companies relocated in their entirety to cheaper countries, he can slap import duties on their products, thus making them more expensive thus depriving the companies of the advantages of cheap labour abroad.

Just a thought...
grim4746 wrote:anyone would have a hard time convincing me that a pair of sneakers are cheaper now than they were in the early 80s.
In real terms, they aren't. What costs more is the big fat dividends and salaries paid to directors and shareholders so they can sit on their yachts sipping martinis. Increase the tax on those dividends and salaries too (but not too much, I know that doesn't work) I say.

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Post by TomSpeed » Sep 11th 2003, 12:24 pm

A leader must balance what the people want with what he thinks is best. And it is very easy to be a Monday morning quaterback after decisions are made and policies implemented. I'm following the candidates for the Democratic Party nomination closely. All of them are saying pretty much the same thing -- rollback the tax cuts, the Iraq war is going badly, Bush is a criminal, etc. All of this sounds great. But how did they vote in Congress? Many of them voted for the war and the tax cuts. Where was their leadership then? And I'm waiting on their explanation as to how increasing taxes will spur economic growth.

I believe that the economy and Iraq will both be well in hand come next November. I don't agree with all of the things the current administration has done thus far, but I am in no way ashamed to be an American.
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Post by JPP13 » Sep 11th 2003, 12:40 pm

I'm not sure even the most optimistic Republican believes the economy and Iraq will be tidied up in a year. We'll see.

We sorta drifted away from the original topic, that being the theft of the election, but thats ok.

As a general principle, no raising taxes does not spur the economy. However, none of the candidates are asking for that. What they are discussing is a reversal of the Bush windfall for his wealthy Yalies and the rest.

If a man who has 100 million dollars suddenly has 112 million dollars, is the clerk at the local Kmart going to be trickled down upon? George Bush I rightly called that voo-doo.

Instead, if working class individuals are each getting an extra couple of hundred dollars, and the guy with the 100 million now only has 97 million, Kmart is suddenly going to sell more sneakers. Thats not voodoo.

Unfortunately, the man with the 100 million probably gave 10 mill to the RNC or Bush or was involved with Spectrum 7 or another such group. Thus Bush doesn't really care.

In a way, Bush is very smart. He's either out of office in either in 1 year or 5. When he leaves its a much different world. His family oil industry now runs Iraq and Afghanistan. Gas is at an all-time high. He's set either way.

For some interesting background on our Prez, check out this site.

http://prorev.com/bush.htm

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Post by TomSpeed » Sep 11th 2003, 12:49 pm

I believe that Dean is asking for a complete rollback of the tax cuts. At least this is what was reported in the debate coverage. This would include the reinstatement of the marriage penalty.

Al Gore lost the election because he didn't win his home state. His advisers also made a tactical error in not calling for all of Florida's votes to be recounted. His team opted to recount the votes in selected counties. If he had won Tennessee and/or called for all of Florida's votes to truly be counted, he probably would have won. Bush didn't steal the election, Gore gave it away.
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Post by JPP13 » Sep 11th 2003, 1:13 pm

That's not true. Gore asked for a Statewide recount.

"I am also prepared, if Gov. Bush prefers, to include in this recount all the counties in the entire state of Florida,'' Gore said.
"I would also be willing to abide by that result and agree not to take any legal action to challenge that result.''

George W. Bush tonight called for the Florida vote recounting to end and for the acceptance of the vote totals Friday, when overseas ballots are due.

He rejected Vice President Al Gore's two plans for settling the Florida vote recount.




http://www.newsmax.com/archives/article ... 2106.shtml

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9/11

Post by lance » Sep 11th 2003, 1:21 pm

So here we are on the 2nd anniversary of 9/11.

What deeply troubles and saddens me is that since last fall the Administrations focus does not seem to be on fighting terroism, destroying al Queda or bringing in Osama been Forgotten dead or alive. Rather the administration has launched us into an epic foreign misadventure.

In doing so W and co. have wasted the vast goodwill of the world toward the US in the wake of 9/11. Instead of fully capitalizing on this goodwill and working with the world community to combat terroism, its causes and its backers W decided to settle a personal vendetta against Saddam Hussein.

What has it cost us: Nearly 300 dead American service people, nearly 1,500 wounded (see link here http://lunaville.org/warcasualties/Summary.aspx) and $1 Billion dollars a week to maintain operations there. How can 140,000 US troops police 22 million Iraqis, while protecting hundreds of miles of borders, oil pipelines, electric lines and substations and water lines?

How many lives lost will America tolerate: 300 (almost there), 600, 1,000, 10,000? How much money are Americans willing to spend on Iraqi: 87 Billion, 100 Billion, 1 Trillion dollars? How can we afford to keep rebuilding things that will be destroyed the next day by individuals who don't want us there? And what might we have done here in the United States with that money: repair our electric grids, infrastructure or provide some insurance for the nearly 41 million who don't have health insurance.

And what does 300 dead American servicemen and 87 Billion dollars have to do with terroism? There has never been a proven link between Iraq and 9/11. Now that we have gone it alone, daring resistance figters with our quicked witted, "Bring Em ON" what have we created?

We have created a new training ground for terroists where one did not exist before. The administration has not managed to find WMDs in Iraqi but they have managed to find a guerilla war, in which local fighters and fighters from all over the Muslim world come to kill Americans.

TomSpeed is right, Congress wrote W a blank check on the war, that was a mistake. A mistake that I hope and pray will be corrected next fall, we'll see.

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Post by JPP13 » Sep 11th 2003, 1:27 pm

Lance, I think it will be. Corrected that is. I have never sensed such an undercurrent of hatred/disappointment/disillusionment in a President. Unfortunately the next president will have to deal with this mess.

Yes, I know people hated Clinton. But as the far right went crazy with the sex cops, his popularity and the country's prosperity increased. This si very different.

I must admit I'm shocked about something. I figured by now one of the Haliburton flunkies would be planting, for later "discovery" some vials with a certain substance (Rumsfeld sold it for years) with Arabic writing on the outside.

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