Half of a decision

I said previously that President Obama had to decide whether to fight to win, or fold and flee. Apparently the fold and flee option has been discarded:


Obama rules out a narrowed Afghan war¹

By Ben Feller, Associated Press
WASHINGTON – President Obama yesterday ruled out shrinking the Afghanistan war to a narrowly focused counterterrorism campaign, but did not signal whether he was prepared to send more troops to the war zone – either the 40,000 his top commander wants or even a smaller buildup, according to several officials.

House and Senate leaders of both parties emerged from a nearly 90-minute conversation with Obama with praise for his candor and interest in listening. But politically speaking, all sides appeared to exit where they entered, with Republicans pushing Obama to follow his military commanders and Democrats saying he should not be rushed.

Obama is examining how to proceed with a worsening war that has claimed nearly 800 U.S. lives and sapped American patience.

Having taken the decision to continue the fight, President Obama now has to decide how he’s going to do that. The simple and easy decision is to agree to the 40,000 additional soldiers for which Lieutenant General Stan McChrystal asked; such would be reflective of the “surge” to which President Bush (reluctantly) agreed in Iraq, which certainly helped out the situation there. Thus far, the President has not agreed to an Afghan surge.

But he has to agree to something, has to change our strategy in Afghanistan, because the enemy is starting to gain ground under our current strategy. And the President has to be given some time to do that. How much time is another question, because every day that is taken in examining possible changes while no actual decisions are taken is a day in which our soldiers and Marines are in harm’s way without a workable plan for success.

_________________________
¹ – The Philadelphia Inquirer, Wednesday, 7 October 2009, p. A-1

41 Comments

  1. If BO folds to the left, and does a half measure, and it is not the success McChrystal is expecting, the failure goes to BO. But when it comes to the military, the Left and BO, I will never expect the right thing to be done. The key will be the budget. If the GWOT funds are cut by the Left as they did in Viet-Nam and left thousands to die by the Commies, then another 9/11 is not too far away.

  2. If the report is accurate, Obama is about to make a fatal mistake. In terms of defeating al-Qaeda, our primary reason for being in Afghanistan, al-Qaeda does not have a significant presence there, as they are mostly in Pakistan. Recall also that both the Brits and Russians failed and withdrew, making the odds of our success remote. Moreover, we are in support of a very corrupt government there, with an economy based on poppies. So there is your definition of insanity, Phoenician, those who support continuing this war. These same people who support escalation are the same people who oppose health care reform. They’re all authoritarians!

  3. Perry opines:
    the same people who oppose health care reform. They’re all authoritarians!

    Two questions; 1) how does one who opposes health care become an authoritarian, and 2) where is health care mandated in the Constitution.

    And while we’re at it, the People have spoken and said no to health care. Congress is saying screw you. Why isn’t that authoritarian?

  4. “Authoritarian”, in this context, refers to an individual personality trait, Yorkshire.

    To answer your questions:

    i) They don’t.

    ii) Your question is irrelevant because the government is not necessarily limited to explicitly “mandated” functions. Where is the Interstate system or the Air Force mandated in the Constitution, Yorkshire?

    iii) It isn’t an authoritarian government because that IS what the Constitution is designed to do. You don’t live in a direct democracy, Yorkshire. You elect representatives, Yorkshire. The Constitution was written in 1787; they would have been well aware of Edmund Burke’s Speech to the Electors of Bristol, given in 1774, Yorkshire. The fact that you are unaware of this basic point about representative government shows precisely why your opinion should not have a direct voice in that government – you are ignorant, and unable to learn or reason.

  5. And, to elaborate on that “explicitly mandated” point:

    Section 8. The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

    covers an awful lot of territory.

    To illustrate – where does the Constitution explicitly mandate the Interstate highway system (and, no, post roads don’t count)?

  6. Yorkshire asks: “Two questions; 1) how does one who opposes health care become an authoritarian, and 2) where is health care mandated in the Constitution.”

    1. My statement referred to those who support both escalation in Afghanistan and rejection of health care reform, so you took one phrase out of context. I say this, because I understand that you are taking an ideological position on both of these issues, instead of doing some critical thinking to come to your own position on these issues. This then is characteristic of an authoritarian. And by the way, Yorkshire, a Liberal can be authoritarian just as a Conservative, or a Libertarian, so this is not a commentary aimed only at Conservatives.

    2. Regarding health care being mandated by the Constitution, I suggest that you do not understand the function of the Constitution, which is to delineate core principles and rights and government structure to guide the performance of our government, otherwise, according to your view, why would we even need a Legislature?

  7. I just read Phoenician’s posts. He answered your questions very well. I think we were both getting to the same points to answer your questions, Yorkshire, but Phoenician’s points are very well articulated and substantiated. I note that he knows more about our government and politics than all of us on here put together, rather amazing for a person, a critical thinker, from New Zealand who puts us all to shame, so you ought to continue to pay attention to him.

  8. Phooey doesn’t have a clue what “authoritarian” means. He just throws terms like these about the way a baby tosses spaghetti at the walls to see if any sticks.

    Pho is a moron who thinks Googling up dictionary definitions makes him wise.

  9. 2. Regarding health care being mandated by the Constitution, I suggest that you do not understand the function of the Constitution, which is to delineate core principles and rights and government structure to guide the performance of our government, otherwise, according to your view, why would we even need a Legislature?

    The reason I asked about where in the constitution do you find healthcare is because in many arguments made here and elsewhere, it is spoken as if it were a “Right” granted. It’s not, but the legislature has taken this as if it were a “Right” such as Free Speech.

    I think the Congress has lost their minds because we can not afford another boondoggle. CBO has priced this out around $850Billion which will be more borrowed money. The economy is in the tank, the deficit is out of control, the stimulus hasn’t stimulated much, and now we have a huge big ticket item that if it goes like all other entitlements will triple or worse in 10 years. We are spending ourselves into oblivion, and BO just wants to keep on printing fiat paper to pay for this. This is Germany after WW1 all over again.

  10. Phooey doesn’t have a clue what “authoritarian” means. He just throws terms like these about the way a baby tosses spaghetti at the walls to see if any sticks.

    Pho is a moron who thinks Googling up dictionary definitions makes him wise.

    Bit of a chip on your shoulder there, kid. How’s that Dunning-Kruger effect working out for you?

  11. Bit of a chip on your shoulder there, kid.

    Hardly. Watching you scramble all over Google to make actual “Points” is rather amusing. An adult can do their own reasoning.

    How’s that Dunning-Kruger effect working out for you?

    More fancy pants words. Let me guess – you got that one from Wikipedia?

  12. Perry, Pho is a bullshit artist. He is the used car salesman of socio-political thought. I shouldn’t use the term thought since he’s never had an origional one or one that didn’t include denegrating someone else. He’s a narcissist, a lonely self loather who tries to destroy anyone with whom he disagrees. He is Oz. Look behind the curtain and see this puny mind who “cites” everyone but himself. And his citations are all left wing wackos who reenforce his pinko ideology. He’s a person who hates the very people that afford him the right to opine his despotic ideology. In short, he’s an elitist asshole. You think he’s a critical thinker? He’s just a critic. And as most critics he criticizes what he’s incapable of doing. The internet allows him to bloviate and impress kids like you while he sits and cites the virtual world. But he does entertain. After all you can’t take him seriously since he’s accomplished nothing. So his babbeling is pure entertainment. If you read any more into his inane nonsense shame on you.

    You have the ability on this site to learn from men and women who have lived through war, worked through being poor, strived to make a better life for themselves and their families, communities and country. Yet you fall for a line of bullshit that’s been used time and time again to hobble men’s ambition. You have the combined experience on this site of people from all walks of life who in varying degrees have suceeded in overcoming their respective hardships. But instead of learning life’s lessons from those of us who have learned them, you pick Pho as a mentor. An asshole who pontificates about other peoples money, motivation, honor,intellect and capabilities. You have on this site men who work their asses of every day to bring home the bacon. Guys like me who have built business’ for years. Even a one legged guy in a wheelchair who won’t surrender to the Pho’s of the world. Instead of learning from and sharing the experience of people who actually “Do” in life, you spout crap about Pho being a critical thinker. You must have fallen for “hope and change” too. They are bullshit lines thrown out by people who have never done anything in their lives except try to tell others what they should do with theirs.

    I will reiterate one more time the difference in philosophy for you: Why is it when a conservative thinks something is a good idea he does it, but when a liberal thinks something is a good idea he wants to pass a law to make everyone else do it?

    The Dana Pico’s, Art Downes’, John Hitchcock’s, DNW’s, Eric’s and Yorkshire’s of this world are the doer’s. The blubonnet’s, Pho’s, Thomas Tallis’, Mike g’s are the self imposed “victims”. The whiners and cryers. Pay for my health care…wa…wa…wa. Regulate everything to death…wa…wa…wa. It’s not fair that there are rich guys…wa…wa…wa. Buy me a car wa…wa…wa.

    To Pho a damn Republican is the enemy, not the Taliban. To blubonnet corporations are evil (even Wal-Mart who gave 200 million to charity) not Kim Jung-Il.
    These guys are like children…I want….I want. You can’t have an honest disagreement with them. If you don’t buy their line of crap you are stupid, moronic, evil, or as his latest rant “ignorant”. But that’s just my opinion and as Pho so graciously stated I’m just a “skinny-assed whining drunk”.

    By the way, I doubt very much Pho knows more about our govmint than all of us put together. He knows only what he reads. Again, pontification not experience. There is more to America than words. There is the Idea of America. The idea that govment should do the bidding of men not the other way around. The ideal of community rights and individual responsibilty. There is the opportunity of America. That we are not limited by anything other than our own ability. There is the Freedom of America. That knowing we are not always right but we can always change to make it right.

    He knows nothing about what is in the heart of an American and his seething hatred of Americans and all things American is self evident in his rants.
    Just because I can quote the Koran off the internet does not make me a Moslem. Similarly, just because Pho can quote the Constitution does not mean he understands who we are.

  13. Yorkshire claims: “CBO has priced this out around $850Billion which will be more borrowed money.”

    Not true, Yorkshire. In fact, that $850 billion/10years amount is better than budget neutral. According to the CBO, this Baucus Bill will shave $81 billion off of the deficit in 10 years. Now it should be noted, the Baucus Bill is not the final bill, so it remains to be seen what the figures will be for the it. Obama has committed that the health care reform will not cost “one dime”, as it will be paid for in medicare and medicaid cost savings and revenue increases. You will find the WH explanation right here.

    As I have noted before on the stimulus, just under half is spent, so there is about $350 billion more to go.

    That said, I have to agree with you, we remain on shakey grounds, not only due to the massive sums spent for bailouts and stimulus, but also because as individuals our credit card debt is at an all time high, and jobs continue to be lost at an alarming rate.

    Bush-Obama et all, like FDR, are gambling that the stimulated economy will grow, enabling us to begin to pay off our massive debt.

    Thing is, I don’t know what alternatives the government had/has. Certainly more of the same old same old, which is what Republican leaders are proposing, cannot be a solution, now or ever again.

    As a nation and as individuals, we have been living high on the hog with borrowed money, so this was bound to come home to roost, and it has. Hopefully, we can turn this around as we tighten our belts like never before going back to the Great Depression.

  14. “where in the constitution do you find healthcare”

    Seems to me it’s right here: “The Congress shall have Power To … provide for … general Welfare”

    Health care and health insurance would seem to be a big part of welfare, if you’re not insane.

    An what good, exactly, is a government if it doesn’t keep the people alive? Is there any reason more important than that?

  15. John, you are making a poor case, because instead of refuting Phoenician’s debating points, you are attacking him as a person. This tells me that you do not feel capable yourself to step up and debate the issues with him. And you are not the only one on here, for sure!

    Of course the life experiences of many of the commenters on here count, but they are all anecdotal and do not necessarily adequately address what ever issue may be the topic.

    I see Phoenician doing his research and making his points succinctly and with notable articulation and clarity. Said another way, I can follow his reasoning, and there is almost always a citation to enable fact-checking of his sources.

    In addition to ideological differences on certain issues, I see another problem here. That is, most of you cannot stand to have some of our policies and leaders criticized, especially by someone who is not American. It makes them/you red-hot angry! I think we need to get over it, and make a determination about whether his critiques are legitimate and accurate, or not. I give Phoenician high scores on both legitimacy and accuracy.

    So I suggest you forget where Phoenician lives, and stop worrying whether or not he “hates” America. Instead, we should be flattered that he cares enough about our country to participate in discussions and debates about our policies and our leaders. If anything, he enables us, if we are willing, to look more carefully at what we are doing and why.

    May I ask in what non-American blogs do you participate? Certainly there must be some countries with whom you disagree. You get my point? Phoenician disagrees with us on certain issues, and comes to us to state his disagreement. We should not only be flattered, we should be grateful.

    And we should step up and debate, instead of sulking and beating ourselves on our chests because of all we’ve been through.

    Instead of being thoughtful, I would say that too often our defense of our country is a knee-jerk reaction, because someone has criticized us and it hurts our national pride. That’s arrogant, pure and simple. It is that impulse best described as “my country right or wrong”, that some folks refer to as patriotism. If that is your impulse, you might do well to think about it.

    So instead of thinking of Phoenician as a threat, or as a twit, step up to the challenges he presents, and conduct a debate based on facts and interpretations thereof.

    So far, with the exception of Dana Pico, who does step up to debate him, I find most of the rest of you acting like declawed pussy cats.

    Grow up, folks!

  16. Nangleator, excellent points. And on your last one about our obligation to keep people alive, that was exactly the main point of Olbermann’s full hour on the subject last evening, including his personal experiences with his own mom and dad. It was a compelling piece.

  17. An what good, exactly, is a government if it doesn’t keep the people alive?

    That’s the job of doctors and nurses, not government. We don’t need the State to run our health for us. Most of us can manage on our own just fine.

  18. Perry, if you had your nose stuck any farther up Pho’s ass, it would be sticking out of his mouth! For Heaven’s sake, man, learn to think for yourself and quit sucking up to a guy whose only talent is Googling stuff he otherwise doesn’t understand (like the actual meaning of “Authoritarian”) and attacking people personally. If that’s your idea of a role model, then I feel sorry for you.

  19. Not true, Yorkshire. In fact, that $850 billion/10years amount is better than budget neutral. According to the CBO, this Baucus Bill will shave $81 billion off of the deficit in 10 years. Now it should be noted, the Baucus Bill is not the final bill, so it remains to be seen what the figures will be for the it. Obama has committed that the health care reform will not cost “one dime”, as it will be paid for in medicare and medicaid cost savings and revenue increases.

    And if you believe that, I’ve got some beachfront property in Kansas to sell you!

  20. Eric: “Most of us can manage on our own just fine.”

    The goal should be that ALL of us can manage just fine. Under our present system, that is impossible. I know you will change your mind if something unfortunate or unforeseen strikes you or yours. In the meantime, you will continue selfishly to think only of yourself.

  21. the main point of Olbermann’s full hour on the subject last evening, including his personal experiences with his own mom and dad. It was a compelling piece.

    Olbermann is a jerk, and an unctuous, pompous ass. I would imagine, despite being rich, he’s too cheap to pay for his own parents’ health care, but expects the government to do it for him.

    PS The only time I watch Keithie Boy, he’s busy whining about one other another FOX News personality who just happens to be kicking his ass in the ratings.

  22. Eric: “Perry, if you had your nose stuck any farther up Pho’s ass, it would be sticking out of his mouth! For Heaven’s sake, man, learn to think for yourself and quit sucking up to a guy whose only talent is Googling stuff he otherwise doesn’t understand (like the actual meaning of “Authoritarian”) and attacking people personally. If that’s your idea of a role model, then I feel sorry for you.”

    I happen to agree with most of Phoenician’s well articulated points. I don’t care how he finds his facts, I find them convincing. Since you have Google and other on-line sources available to you, why don’t you use them? Answer: You are too lazy; instead, you choose to take the ‘authoritarian’ approach. That’s easy … anyone can do that! Problem is, it’s not convincing, except to other authoritarians on here.

    As far as attacking people personally, yes, Phoenician does do that at times. I don’t admire that about him. I take from him, gladly, the intellectual approach he uses to make his points; for that, he is outstanding. Do you ever attack people personally, Eric? Answer: Yes, far too often! You just did!!! I am not impressed!

  23. Here is the essential Eric: “Olbermann is a jerk, and an unctuous, pompous ass. I would imagine, despite being rich, he’s too cheap to pay for his own parents’ health care, but expects the government to do it for him.”

    Good show, Eric!

  24. Since you have Google and other on-line sources available to you, why don’t you use them? Answer:

    Answer: I can think for myself, and articulate original opinions. I don’t need to rely on Google to do my thinking for me. And, as I have stated before, a big problem with the Internet is you can find “Proof” of just about anything. I could use the ‘Net to “prove” that Bigfoot exists, or that the gov’t is hiding dead space aliens at Area 51. That’s why quoting the Internet is usually a waste of time, and evidence of a lazy thinker who can’t come up with original, well articulated ideas.

  25. Good show, Eric!

    Then you agree with me that “he’s too cheap to pay for his own parents’ health care, but expects the government to do it for him.”

  26. Eric whines: “Answer: I can think for myself, and articulate original opinions. I don’t need to rely on Google to do my thinking for me.”

    Eric, in order to do some critical thinking on an issue, facts are required. Sure, people can use Google to “do their thinking” for them, but it is also a source for facts. It is obvious that you do not honor the need for a factual basis for debating an issue. I don’t think you lack the intelligence to put forward a good debate, I just think you are too damn lazy to do it effectively, with facts as the basis. And I will bet that I’m not the first to point this out to you. You are all opinion, Eric, and that is not convincing. Sorry!

  27. Eric: “Good show, Eric!”

    And finally, you are unable to detect/acknowledge sarcasm, as you twist, spin and turn in your chair. Pity the poor boy!

  28. By the way, I doubt very much Pho knows more about our govmint than all of us put together. He knows only what he reads. Again, pontification not experience.

    I have, for example, read Richard Hofstadter’s “Anti-Intellectualism in American Life“. In fact, I think I have a copy of it around here somewhere.

    Hofstadter accused religion, politics, and the public schools of fostering in common people a resentment and suspicion of intellect, of the life of the mind, and of those who devote their lives to it. He charged that local evangelical preachers and small town lawyers and businessmen masked their bias against intellect with the rhetoric of morality, democracy, utility, and practicality. Thus, as the twentieth century chipped away at village culture, it was regrettable though not surprising that common folk, made suspicious of urbanity and learning by community leaders, reacted with a “righteous” vengeance to change and those who celebrated it.

    Which is to say that I know that an American identified your’s and Eric’s type of screed as a particular type of bullshit and dissected it so well he won a Pulitzer for it back in 1964.

    I read – continually. It’s my job. I’m *paid* to go through dozens of magazines a week, and absorb hundreds of substantive stories. I also read things like the New Scientist and the Economist and follow the Internet for pleasure. There’s a geyser of information roaring past us every second, and a large proportion of modern humanity enjoy trying to drink from it – infovores. Me, I’m luckier than most because I get paid to sit down for eight hours a day and do it professionally.

    Of course, reading up on infovores just now has given me a new connection I’ll probably throw in when talking about dealing with Generation Z, a reoccurring topic in librarianship. That’s the way it goes – in dealing with information in the modern age, infovores such as me and Perry kick the ass out of ignotarians such as Eric and John C.

    The fact that they always have to degenerate arguments to personal attacks only; to take pride (as Eric does) in his own ignorance; and to talk about “learning from life experience” when other people have had lives too and a single life experience is meaningless save as a single perspective on complex modern issues shows that they perceive their limitations.

    There’s no way in hell I can remember the details of everything I read. That’s precisely why the human species poured the equivilant of hundreds of thousands of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars into developing an applied techonology called “a library”. The interaction of the Internet and libraries is way too detailed to go through, but we’ve taken to it like ducks to water. We have always operated on the principle that you need not and cannot know everything; but you should know of most things, and know how to get to them. That’s what my profession has been doing for 4000 years, and that’s why libraries and librarians are emblematic of civilization itself.

    Now, that’s different from an education, which is what Eric is dimly grasping at when he talks about thinking for yourself. As it turns out, I also do that very well – I’m supposed to be working on a paper analysing knowledge management cycles and practises in a 12 member team now. I’ll probably have to be doing academic work all my life – professional development.

    But here’s the kicker – I don’t have to do that sort of original thought here. All I have to do is combine logical argument with professional praxis, a picture of the world of information and the ability to navigate it. And it’s enough to kick the crap out of wingnuts (who I really don’t like) in online arguments because wingnuts are fundamentally at odds with the reality-based community. Reality has a well known liberal bias.

  29. In the meantime, you will continue selfishly to think only of yourself.

    I think you mistake “selfish” for self-reliance.

  30. Eric, in order to do some critical thinking on an issue, facts are required. Sure, people can use Google to “do their thinking” for them, but it is also a source for facts.

    It’s also a source for bias, nonsense, and just plain lies. It’s easy to use the Internet to cherry pick “Facts” to score points, but does it really add to constructive dialogue?

    I like to debate ideas, and for that I don’t need Google. I only offer “Cites” when absolutely necessary, for the reasons I listed above. It’s just too easy to find info that is biased toward your POV, like Pho’s self-serving definition of “Authoritarian. This obstructs debate, rather than clarifying anything.

  31. I admit that I am disappointed that a foreign policy thread is turning to health care again, but I just have to address this one by the Phoenician:

    And, to elaborate on that “explicitly mandated” point:

    Section 8. The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

    covers an awful lot of territory.

    To illustrate – where does the Constitution explicitly mandate the Interstate highway system (and, no, post roads don’t count)?

    A highway is used by all, at the same rate, as they choose. Nationalized health care would not be a “Duty, Impost or Excise” which was uniform throughout the United States, but a tax which required higher earners to subsidize lower earners.

    Regrettably, I cannot see anything in our Constitution which would make a nationalized health care system unconstitutional; if it is passed, it will almost certainly be something that the government can do legally. But while it would probably be legal for the government to do it, it would still be unwise for the government to do it.

  32. I like to debate ideas,

    *snort*

    So did Aristotle. Many of his ideas, arrived at without reference to the real world, turned out to be nonsense when experimentally checked.

    And not only is the idea of you enjoying “debating” ideas codswallop, you are nowhere near as smart as Aristotle’s back-scratcher.

    “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – George Santayanna.

    How many actual books, fiction and non-fiction, do you read in an average month, Eric? Honestly?

  33. A highway is used by all, at the same rate, as they choose.

    Nope. By your logic above, in which you confuse progressive taxation and the services said taxation pays for, it is a subsidy by the carless to those with cars. Try again.

  34. I read – continually.

    Sounds like that’s all you do. And most of it left wing twaddle, I’ll wager. You’ve never read Buckley or any other conservative from the looks of it, since you apparently have no idea what conservatives believe and stand for.

    Typical academic. All books and no actual experience. I knew these types in engineering school. They had all the theory down pat, but didn’t have a clue how to actually build or design anything.

  35. Of course, reading up on infovores just now has given me a new connection I’ll probably throw in when talking about dealing with Generation Z, a reoccurring topic in librarianship. That’s the way it goes – in dealing with information in the modern age, infovores such as me and Perry kick the ass out of ignotarians such as Eric and John C.
    The fact that they always have to degenerate arguments to personal attacks only; to take pride (as Eric does) in his own ignorance; and to talk about “learning from life experience” when other people have had lives too and a single life experience is meaningless save as a single perspective on complex modern issues shows that they perceive their limitations.
    There’s no way in hell I can remember the details of everything I read. That’s precisely why the human species poured the equivilant of hundreds of thousands of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars into developing an applied techonology called “a library”. The interaction of the Internet and libraries is way too detailed to go through, but we’ve taken to it like ducks to water. We have always operated on the principle that you need not and cannot know everything; but you should know of most things, and know how to get to them. That’s what my profession has been doing for 4000 years, and that’s why libraries and librarians are emblematic of civilization itself.

    My, aren’t we impressed with ourselves! Too bad no one else is. Face it, Pho, you’re a mouse potato, just like Blu. The main difference is Blu actually has a pleasant personality most of the time, and probably has people in the real world that actually like her.

    As for the “personal attacks”, well, you’re the king of them here. Consistently nasty, snide, and condescending, it’s no wonder most of the people here regard you as a pest at best, and a troll/spammer at worst. You contribute little here of positive value, and that’s being generous.

  36. Perry presents the fundamental difference:

    Eric: “Most of us can manage on our own just fine.”

    The goal should be that ALL of us can manage just fine. Under our present system, that is impossible. I know you will change your mind if something unfortunate or unforeseen strikes you or yours. In the meantime, you will continue selfishly to think only of yourself.

    The question is: ought it to be the duty or responsibility of the government to enable “all of us” to manage just fine? I don’t think that it is.

    Everyone has a responsibility to support himself. We may decide as a society to care for those clearly incapable of caring for themselves, but we sought not to use government and society to act as parents for those who are physically and mentally capable of caring for themselves but who choose not to do so,

  37. My, aren’t we impressed with ourselves! Too bad no one else is. Face it, Pho, you’re a mouse potato, just like Blu. The main difference is Blu actually has a pleasant personality most of the time, and probably has people in the real world that actually like her.

    As for the “personal attacks”, well, you’re the king of them here. Consistently nasty, snide, and condescending, it’s no wonder most of the people here regard you as a pest at best, and a troll/spammer at worst. You contribute little here of positive value, and that’s being generous.

    Comment is not even necessary.

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