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Author Topic: I take personal responsibility for...
Gaoics79
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quote:
What a conceited crock of ^#*$. Do you have ANY idea how arrogant this is? I go out of my way to say I am not blindly partisan and all you can do is fire back "yes you are!" and cloak it in what you seem to think is phrasing that makes it acceptable? My monicker here, as I explained in the intro thread, stems from my usual coincidence of siding with liberal takes on issues, but I evaluate every situation seperately. I resent your continued suggestions that I'm some wildly flailing ideologue who is so consumed with bias against Bush that I can't objectively evaluate things. You are way out of line here and the only thing holding your repeated crap up is your "standing" here on Ornery and reputation for writing long-winded posts whenever people come close to questioning the validity of your beliefs about Islam. And then YOU have the guts to turn it around and say I was the one issuing personal attacks. Well I guess with this post I'll oblige you, after all, if I'm going to be blamed for something I might as well let that person actually have it.

Try sticking with the issues and addressing my main points. I'm still waiting to hear your brilliant and developed answer to why Bush's crazed notion of using Iraq land and civilians as shield for America is a good long term strategy for stabalizing Iraq and for our own peace.

Your own language suggests the inherent flaw in your argument, which stems from your obvious bias.

Logically, Bush can only take responsibility for mistakes he personally believes to have been mistakes. Your problem is you're so hopelessly biased that you cannot conceive of anyone honestly believing that Bush's policies were not mistaken. This is a "crazed" notion in your mind, so your bias leaves you with no possible solution but to assume (without foundation) that Bush doesn't believe he was mistaken, but is simply refusing to admit how wrong he was.

Consider this remarkable possibility:

1. Many of Bush's policies were wrong.
2. To the extent that Bush honestly believes that a given policy was wrong, he admits to it, and therefore takes responsibility for his mistakes.
3. The reason Bush doesn't take responsibility for some mistakes is because... and here's the shocker... get ready... he actually honestly believes they weren't mistakes! GASP!!!!

Call him stupid, call him wrong, call him crazy, but no facts you have cited on this thread entitle you to conclude that he hasn't been honest about his mistakes.

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Gaoics79
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quote:
Well, yeah... most of his moves HAVE been errors, as can be seen from the RESULTS of those moves.

When I, sitting here at my computer, with my recently earned bachelors degree in physics, not political science or history or anthropology, can predict with better accuracy what will happen in, for example, Iraq then Bush can predict, then I feel like I have the right to criticize the moves he makes if I've accurately predicted that those moves will result in more negatives then positives for the country.

The fact of the matter is that almost every move bush has made, especially in foreign policy, has resulted in the opposite occuring from what would be a positive outcome for the country. When that happens, we SHOULD be routinely criticizing the man, and criticism shouldn't be viewed as "bias."

Which is irrelevent to the main issue of whether Bush personally believes that his policies were mistakes. It's really like murder: to make your case, you can't just prove that the guy did it; you have to prove that he intended to do it. Intention is everything. A loony who kills you thinking you're a leprechaun may be loony, but he isn't a murderer because it isn't murder to kill leprechauns; only people can be murdered. Unless you can prove he thought he was killing a person, rather than a leprechaun, you get no conviction, no matter how loony and dangerous the guy happens to be.
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Richard Dey
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I don't think presidents get uppity with their military staffs unless their military get uppity with them. Our technological competence is undervalued; our military prowess is overvalued. We train our troops that belligerence wins; it doesn't. It's wile that wins.

Lincoln put up with McLellan long after it became obvious that his timidity was getting the Union into trouble. There were gross errors of judgment made in WWI that should have gotten generals fired, and nothing was done. What with Russo-Hungary out of the war, we were lucky, frankly, that Austro-Germans sued for peace before the Anglo-Franks burst into revolution. MHO, it was one of the worst-managed wars ever fought by anybody.

I remember when Truman fired MacArthur -- and what a ruckus that produced. I mean, this was the guy who said I shall return, who led us to victory in Far East. Well, I've changed my mind about Truman (I now think he was not a good president) and I've certainly changed my mind about MacArthur (whom I now call Lady Blowhard) whose plan, I would hold, was dangerously obvious.

Pusan! The Perimeter is one of the 1st international circumstances I could comprehend (as a 10-y-o). We were thrown back to Pusan in the Korean War , defending a line about 150 m long, much of it on the Nakdong. Pusan was the only port we continued to hold and the airhead.

It was so embarrassing that WWII vets, at least in the VFWs and Am Legions, were talking openly of the need to assassinate 'The haberdasher'. I learnt one of my 1st swear words in these days [Wink] . "a-hole". Mary's Cafe, Newton Lower Falls, October, 1950.

Truman, et al., had completely underestimated the capabilities of the NoKos. Eisenhower won the election of 1952 at Pusan, not Normandy.

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Liberal
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jasonr you seem to have reading difficulties. You didn't seem to grasp after several posts "GASP!" that my problem here is with the mistakes that Bush does admit to, that he's not really admitting to them at all: that he shifts blame for them and his appologies and aknowledgments are empty and meaningless.

Keep in mind, I am perfectly willing to acknowledge some of the good that Bush has done, such as reforming the DSHS mid-level bureaucracy scheme, which was bloated and sickening. So please shut up already with repeating Redskull's tired, blind rhetoric.

[ October 17, 2006, 09:00 PM: Message edited by: Liberal ]

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Gaoics79
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quote:
jasonr you seem to have reading difficulties. You didn't seem to grasp after several posts "GASP!" that my problem here is with the mistakes that Bush does admit to, that he's not really admitting to them at all: that he shifts blame for them and his appologies and aknowledgments are empty and meaningless.

Keep in mind, I am perfectly willing to acknowledge some of the good that Bush has done, such as reforming the DSHS mid-level bureaucracy scheme, which was bloated and sickening. So please shut up already with repeating Redskull's tired, blind rhetoric.

I just reread all your posts Liberal, to make sure I hadn't missed anything. I stand by what I said.
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kenmeer livermaile
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"some of the good that Bush has done, such as reforming the DSHS mid-level bureaucracy scheme"

Yeah! Yea for an effective restructuring and yea for Bush. It's hard to know of anything he's done right. Give him a hand...

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Liberal
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quote:
Originally posted by jasonr:
quote:
jasonr you seem to have reading difficulties. You didn't seem to grasp after several posts "GASP!" that my problem here is with the mistakes that Bush does admit to, that he's not really admitting to them at all: that he shifts blame for them and his appologies and aknowledgments are empty and meaningless.

Keep in mind, I am perfectly willing to acknowledge some of the good that Bush has done, such as reforming the DSHS mid-level bureaucracy scheme, which was bloated and sickening. So please shut up already with repeating Redskull's tired, blind rhetoric.

I just reread all your posts Liberal, to make sure I hadn't missed anything. I stand by what I said.
Alright, if you stand by the fact that you think I'm blinded by partisan bias even after re-reading this
quote:
Also, find me one instance where Bush admits a mistake he made Redskull. EVERY instance where he's ever said that there was a chance one of his policies was a mistake he has ALWAYS blamed it on his subordinates' judgment, and not his own.
then I will now stand 100% behind the fact that I think you are physically blind.

[ October 17, 2006, 09:16 PM: Message edited by: Liberal ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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Typical Bush admission:

'You see, I don't think it's a mistake. And let me tell you why...'

Besides, admitting mistakes is part of a liberal media conspiracy.

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DonaldD
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Liberal, how exactly does that quote illustrate that you are NOT "blinded by partisan bias"? Maybe it doesn't prove you are so blinded, but I'm having difficulty seeing it as a counterexample.
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javelin
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quote:
Originally posted by Liberal:
quote:
Also, find me one instance where Bush admits a mistake he made Redskull. EVERY instance where he's ever said that there was a chance one of his policies was a mistake he has ALWAYS blamed it on his subordinates' judgment, and not his own.

quote:
Originally posted by RedskullVW:
quote:
The man has taken responsibility for errors, including the screwed intel going into Iraq, and instituted the most sweeping realignment of federal intelligence agencies in over 60 years to hopefully prevent any president being fed false intelligence in the future.

This is but one example, germane to the topic of the President taking personal responsibility for an error and doing what is in his power to prevent it from happening again.



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kenmeer livermaile
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Bush:

"It is true that much of the intelligence turned out to be wrong," Bush said during his fourth and final speech before Thursday's vote for Iraq's parliament. "As president I am responsible for the decision to go into Iraq. And I'm also responsible for fixing what went wrong by reforming our intelligence capabilities. And we're doing just that."

So. Bush admits that the composite intelligence agenmcies were wrong. He takes responsibility for invading Iraq (well, duh... we didn't know that?), then points the finger at intelligence (intelligence which was so cherry-picked that Powell famously took some of the data provided him for his sell-invading-Iraq-to-the-UN speech, and said, "This is ****."

One heckuva admission of fault, Brownie.

From invasion to evasion.

I want someone to show me a quote of Bush saying something that directly translates into 'I ****ed up'. But then, I want a levitating moped too.

For that matter, I want someone to provide an example of Clinton forthrightly admitting he just plain ****ed up. But then, I want a pony.

Reckon I'll get a pony before that levitating moped, if either.

There's also bait'n'switch: say you made a mistake when actually you deliberately lied :

<begin>
The White House has now released a statement acknowledging the Niger documents were forged but insisting there were other intelligence reports at the time suggesting Iraq was indeed attempting to acquire uranium from other countries in Africa. Still, the White House says, those reports were not specific.

"Because of this lack of specificity, this reporting alone did not rise to the level of inclusion in a presidential speech. That said, the issue of Iraq's attempts to acquire uranium from abroad was not an element underpinning the judgment reached by most intelligence agencies that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program," the statement said.

Sen. Carl Levin, the ranking member of the Armed Services Committee, says this issue reinforces the need for a formal inquiry -- why as late as the President's State of the Union address, the President was "still using information which the intelligence community knew was almost certainly false."
<end>

Or maybe you didn't deliberately lie. Maybe your standards of verification (yellow cake crapola and intelligence cherry-picked by members of the infamous Team B )are so low in relation to your objectives (invade Iraq!) that, as an old and fantastically foul-mouthed former boss of mine said, "You wouldn't know the truth if it walked up and kicked you in the disck-sucker."

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Liberal
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quote:
Originally posted by javelin:
quote:
Originally posted by Liberal:
quote:
Also, find me one instance where Bush admits a mistake he made Redskull. EVERY instance where he's ever said that there was a chance one of his policies was a mistake he has ALWAYS blamed it on his subordinates' judgment, and not his own.

quote:
Originally posted by RedskullVW:
quote:
The man has taken responsibility for errors, including the screwed intel going into Iraq, and instituted the most sweeping realignment of federal intelligence agencies in over 60 years to hopefully prevent any president being fed false intelligence in the future.

This is but one example, germane to the topic of the President taking personal responsibility for an error and doing what is in his power to prevent it from happening again.



Bush never did that, and Redskull even hedged on it a little in that mitigation. Bush blamed Tenet and others even though they tried to warn him. Oh he said 'it was a mistake I made, but I made it because other people were "wrong.'"
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KnightEnder
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[Confused] [FootInMouth] [LOL] [Roll Eyes] [Crying]
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Richard Dey
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One thing we should be able to agree upon: the British had better intelligence on Araby from Lawrence of Arabia than Bush has had from all the civilian and military intelligence 'communities' combined.

Believe me, it was no different when we went to war in Vietnam which had French, and little better than when went we went to war in Korea which had some Japanese.

When we went to war with Germany, we had millions and millions who could read and speak German. We had less than a million who could speak or write Japanese -- and they untrustworthy because a lot of them had returned for schooling in Japan. We still beat them at their own game.

I suspect that Oz has put his finger in the right hole. The data was cherry-picked -- and the President got a pit. Did he choose the pit?

The best that can be said of him is that he forbade the planting of false evidence, i.e., WMDs the Iraqis did not have. Ah! but the WMDs -- Islamic zealots -- did finally show up [Frown] .

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Redskullvw
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Liberal

Here are the salient facts.

1. I think Bush has made several horrible mistakes.

2. I have stated that I think he has made mistakes.

3. Like Ev, even before the invasion of Iraq, not only did I question his public policy, but also accurately predicted several of the outcomes. For the record, Ev pretty much hit a home run in predicting what would happen.

4. This thread is about people standing up and saying "The buck stops here" and an ancillary component of whether Bush has ever done that.

5. I point out that amoung many of his critics, there is the unsubstantiated claim that the President never takes responsibility for his actions or errors, and when provided with examples of such statements by him they are still dismissed as being examples of Bush not being able to do anything right.


6. I further pointed out that regardless of what your personal bias is, to either glorify or deamonize someone so complete cannot possibly reflect reality, and it therefor makes such points of view suspect when partisan and anti-partisan commentary on Bush is preceeded by such absolutes.

I pointed out that you have been one who postulates this absolutist viewpoint of the President. And I pointed out an example which at the very least, indicates that your absolutist viewpoint has at least one error in it.

That I was clear enough to be understood by others is evident.

I am sorry you felt that I somehow attacked you, but I think all I have attacked is your point of view.

Don't misunderstand my point of view on Bush. He has committed many avoidable blunders, as well as make choices that have turned out to be errors. But, I also grant that he has done some pretty good things as well.

Thats the difference between you and I. I see a shade of grey, while you see absolute black.

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Colin JM0397
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From Ev:
quote:
When I, sitting here at my computer, with my recently earned bachelors degree in physics, not political science or history or anthropology, can predict with better accuracy what will happen in, for example, Iraq then Bush can predict, then I feel like I have the right to criticize the moves he makes if I've accurately predicted that those moves will result in more negatives then positives for the country.

The fact of the matter is that almost every move bush has made, especially in foreign policy, has resulted in the opposite occurring from what would be a positive outcome for the country.

Exactly!
Why is that? To just dismiss it as errors of idiocy and ignorance is to fall victim to idiocy and ignorance on our part. C’mon, think. Don't let the easy explanation snuff out your disgust over this matter.

Lets look at this a new way. Work with me here...
Lets say Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, et. all are not simply village idiots. They are, after all, well educated folks who have shown the ability to think, evaluate and make judgment calls.

Instead of looking at the apparently idiotic, obviously flawed things they've done to ruin our international standing as well as stoke the fires of the terrorists, try to break from the normal line of thought and look at it differently:

They are not idiots yet they are doing apparently idiotic, counterproductive things.
If smart people do what seems to me to be stupid and counterproductive things, why? What is it they know that I don’t see?

Find that piece of the puzzle you don’t see and it all falls into place quite nicely.

Perhaps the goals and values we think they should have, that the majority of Americans - left, right, black, white, straight, gay, etc - stand behind, are not the goals and values these people hold dear and follow through on.

So what the hell is it they are doing, then?

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Redskullvw
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jm0397

Well what they are doing is pretty obvious, making mistakes that stem from how they collectively interpret the world. How they have choosen to act has at times been obvious, while at other times it has been concealed.

I don't know the full measure of the information they have to draw conclusions from. I think they may be errors, but they may in fact turn out 50 years from now to seem like brillant moves despite political fallout that harmed the administration.

Truman vs the General seems a good example.

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Colin JM0397
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True. I should say find that piece of the puzzle and things might fall into place.

I look more to our country's track record over the past 80 yrs or so to try and forecast where we go from here, and I don't like it. We're not off track, we haven't diverged down the WOT track - we're right on the same track we've been for quite some time - collective globalization.

While some folks are okay with this - and that's fine by me, it's your prerogative - I am not, and I think it takes us further and further away from the principles of freedom and personal responsibility.

Of course, I'm an anti-cynic - I actually have faith in the common wo/man to do what's right 90% of the time... given a proper education and foundation in life - which is another topic altogether...

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DaveS
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RS, that's a hopeful, or even wishful, interpretation. Truman vs the General was an event that could have been ultimately interpreted either as a success or a failure. We're dealing with a consistent set of policy driven actions that some ex-Administration officials and even Bush reluctantly admits haven't panned out. The only hope for posterity to give him the nod is for things somehow to turn out well somewhere down the road. If that happens, I hope that posterity also notes that there were alternate paths to the same goals.
quote:
So what the hell is it they are doing, then?
Dunno. What do you think?
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Redskullvw
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Dave

Well Truman vs the General turned out to be a short term solution that seemed right for about 20 years. Hindsight 20/20 McCarthur was right in thinking that you should fight a war once and with all means availible. Had he done so, I think you would have not only a united Korea but also a modern Nationalist China Koumingtau lead China.

Would certainly have resulted in a better future for the USA had he been allowed to fight the real backers of the war.

I am not sure anumore of what exactly the Bush administration is attempting to do. Aside from simple things like saying Korea is evil, or Iran should be negotiated with, I really don't know. The original optimistic handling of problems by the Administration has turn instead into almost a case of problem "avoidance". In some cases I can see a trend where Bush negotiations and diplomacy seem to be going no place, except lasting another 2 1/2 years until the end of his term. Negotiations seem more focused at status quo in the hope that the next president gets to solve the problems.

Other than that I have no idea what the heck he is up to.

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kenmeer livermaile
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At the end of WWII, the use of the bomb on Japan was portrayed to the American public as necessary to prevent the slaughter of a million American soldiers.

Since we'd already firebombed a million or so German/Jap civilians into barbecued oblivion, it mde sense to the American public.

But the facts were different. Actual Pentagon estimations of troops losses were around 40K. The Japanese had been making sonsiderable surrender noises since at least the spring of that year. (That's a whole chapter of itself.)

The main reason we used the bomb was to put Stalin on warning that we *would* use it. Japan was only a secondary consideration by then, since it was agreed within military circles that, stoic samurai mythos notwithstanding, including an alleged fanatical military inner circle that would supposedly defy the emperor's orders and fight to the last drop of saki, Japan by summer '45 was all washed up.

My point? It is that to this day mainstream debate about the bomb focuses almost entirely on Japan, and the military/moral rationales of devastating Hiroshima/Nagasaki. But the real policy emphasis that Truman/Byrnes/Groves promoted was to bomb Japan in order to give Stalin pause. (There was also this ridiculous slef-deception on these gentlemens' part that they would have a nuclear monopoly for at least 10 years and probably 20-50 years, despite the opinions, of the very men who'd designed and built the bomb for them, that Russia was thouroughly capable of building a bomb in 5 years and that demonstrating our ruthless intent to use it even when not necessary would only excerbate Russia into stepping up its efforts to build a bomb. They exploded their first nuke just 4 tears later.)

Mistakes were and are being made. Some of them are being made honestly, i.e., via ignorance or self-delusion. Others are being made dishonestly, and in a treachorous manner that bodes as ill for our foreign relations on this century as lighting a nuke just behind Russia's Pacific rear end for the primary purpose of scaring the bejezus out of Stalin only galvanized the most perilous arms race humanity has seen.

Bush's admissions of responsible blame have been both irresponsible and designed not to stop the buck at his desk but instead to snip it into smaller chunks that he could then assign to his subordinates.

On top of this, we add the crime of lying, lying about national security matters that will grossly affect the world in which our children grow up.

Sorry, Bush's mea culpas to date have been like stale tea brewed in cold water. Sure, the water turns brown...

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DaveS
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RS, you never cease to amaze me.
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Redskullvw
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Dave

What I say?

KL

Had the Rosenbergs not sent the blueprints to the USSR, we would have had a monopoly for 10 years at least. As to taking out Japan on the ground without Fat Man and Little Boy, Its been debated routinely, and by far the single greatest pots war historical argument for using the bomb is that it saved literally millions of Japanese civilians from combat and starvation deaths.
The Stalin inspired arms race was already in full bore mode by January 1945. The bomb in August just happened to make him want to add a nuke to his massively stockpiled conventional army. And it can be argued, had we not dropped a bomb on Japan, Europe would have ceased to exist as we now know it. The Channel would have been the border of the Iron Curtain.


Would have probaly improved France markedly.

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DaveS
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RS, That was a positive (cryptic) remark [Smile] . BTW, I think both Truman and MacArthur were right, but even saying that Mac was right doesn't mean that things would have turned out all that well in the end.
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Colin JM0397
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quote:
demonstrating our ruthless intent to use it even when not necessary would only exacerbate Russia into stepping up its efforts to build a bomb.
I seem to remember writing an essay on that topic in my history of western civ class - the bombs served a purpose in Japan, but also as a warning to the USSR.

However, looking back... we seem to have quite a track record of stoking the fires under our enemy, don't we? Kinda hard to keep fighting a war and justify a war footing when you don't have an enemy who'll scare the bejesus out of your people, and it’s much easier to legislate control when the people have the bejesus scared out of them.
quote:
Why of course the people don’t want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally, the common people don’t want war: neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship…Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.
Hermann Goering
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kenmeer livermaile
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"Had the Rosenbergs not sent the blueprints to the USSR, we would have had a monopoly for 10 years at least."

a) Not according to guys like Oppenheimer and Phillip Morrison and Rotblat and Szilard: you know, actual nuclear physicists working on the bomb. Were they right? Don't know. But they were roundly ignored.

b) But they (the Rosenbergs) did. Such things were to be expected. After all, a huge factor in our success in WWII was that we were able to penetrate German/Japanese secrecy.

Here's what Groves (the general in charge of the New Mexico bomb project) said to Byrnes that summer when they were deciding the bomb, regarding USSR bility to make a bomb:

"There's no uranium in the USSR."

Probably, Groves said this just to propagandize Byrnes, who was indeed swayed by Groves' ideas, although it is possible Groves believed his own BS. The man believed he could do no wrong -- and so did most of his colleaguesm subordinates and commanders, for he WAS a managerial wizard.

Either way, it speaks clearly of the self-deluding nature of that era and the decision to use the bomb.

By the way, this is not to say that I am reflexively against the Hiro/Naga decision. Perhaps the results were for the best? It's a weird world in which we live.

This is to point out the all too common deluson and deception that our leaders indulge in these matters of crucial life and death for thousands and milions of innocent people.

"Its been debated routinely, and by far the single greatest pots war historical argument for using the bomb is that it saved literally millions of Japanese civilians from combat and starvation deaths."

*ahem* I repeat: it's well-documented that the Japs were tendering for surrender terms. Two big problems:

a) Roosevelt had decided in January '43 that our goal in germany and Japan was unconditional surrender (UC). This not ony led to lovelies like Dresden but also made the process of discussing surrender terms delicate.

b) Having pursued the goal of UC for a year and a half, the American military bureaucracy was dogmatically fixed upon it. While Stimson and others (like Churchill, remember him? the pacifist wussie?) argued for negotiating a surrender with Japan, which obviously would NOT have cost the Japanese millions of starvation deaths and violent casualties, that beikng the nature of surrender, Byrnes, with Groves pushing him from behind, rammed through the idea that unconditional surrender via total destruction was the only way to go. By then, Truman was giddy with the sense of power that having The Bomb gave men who'd been involved in a war effort that began with Britain humbled and most of Europe conquered by a genocidal maniac, and which first directly engaed us by virtually annihilating our Pacific fleet and placing hundreds of thousands of US soldiers in the confines of Japanese brutes to be tortured.

The Bomb gave them a false sense that they could have it all. I understand their intoxication. As for the innocent civilians slaughtered, by then we'd slaughtered so many via conventional means (although the napalm bombs that did most of the mass slaughter were newly invented during WWII) that another 100K or so Japs hardly mattered. We'd accepted total war via total destruction, and The Bomb gave us the ultimate means for waging such war.

And no, I don't buy for a screamikng second the BS about Stalin marching to the English Channel. Yeesh. We had a combined armed forces of 14 MILLION by 1945. AND The Bomb.

Truma said, "We've got to show them we're not afraid to use it."

As if 500 B-29s dropping 2.5 to 7 tons per plane of incendiary ordnance on Tokyo, to the tune of 100k dead, didn't make clear that we weren't afraid to use such forces of destruction.

Our codename for the firebombing of Hamburg -- Operation Gomorrah -- evinces our willingness in the 2nd half of WWII, to use weapons that inflicted massive civilian casualties.

I doubt very much that Stalin wanted to push us to the point where we did that to the cities of the USSR.

Right or wrong, wise or foolish, we used the bomb on Japan not because it was the most humane, least devastating means of ending the war in terms of both our troops and their people, for surrender was very likely, so likely that it was a matter of policy decision to be DEBATED during those war councils of that summer in '45. It wasn't a mastter of if, but when, and when was largely up to us.

We used the bomb to make a point.

The point of this entire post, then? That our leaders regularly lie to we the people and to themselves on these enormously dangerous matters.
It asmuses me, albeit nauseously, to hear us quibble about Bush/admin's willingness to lie about such things and unwillingness to accept responsibility for mistakes caused either by deliberate deception or misguided delusions or mere incompetence, although the 3 categories generally overlap.

During WWII, we the people told ourselves the Japs and NAzis had it coming (massive civilian casulaties) for what they did to our troops and the civilians they attacked. They were not at all nice. But at the same time we held to the belief that WE didn't do horrible things to massive numbers of innocent civilians.

According to the Master Race, the Jews had it coming, and according to the racist emperor-worshipping Japs, other people were sub-human. Therefore they deserved extermination and their suffering was not that important.

According to USA, the civilians of those countries had it coming too. While I believe we held higher moral ground than our enemies, I also acknowledge the lies we told ourselves, and the lies we were told, to justify the gradual resemblance to our enemies we took on as the war progressed.

Everyone wants shelter from the storm. Read about the controversy of the '95 Smithsonian exhibit about Hiro/Naga. No one wanted to look at the facts of the matter. Keep the cultural myth enshrined, period. And so we have. And so we erode what elevation our moral ground enjoys in comparison to those we deem dangerous or who merely have the audacity to oppose our will.

[ October 18, 2006, 01:21 PM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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oops... make that a little over 12 million enlisted personel in 1945...
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Liberal
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quote:
Originally posted by Redskullvw:
Liberal

Here are the salient facts.

1. I think Bush has made several horrible mistakes.,

2. I have stated that I think he has made mistakes.

3. Like Ev, even before the invasion of Iraq, not only did I question his public policy, but also accurately predicted several of the outcomes. For the record, Ev pretty much hit a home run in predicting what would happen.

4. This thread is about people standing up and saying "The buck stops here" and an ancillary component of whether Bush has ever done that.

5. I point out that amoung many of his critics, there is the unsubstantiated claim that the President never takes responsibility for his actions or errors, and when provided with examples of such statements by him they are still dismissed as being examples of Bush not being able to do anything right.


6. I further pointed out that regardless of what your personal bias is, to either glorify or deamonize someone so complete cannot possibly reflect reality, and it therefor makes such points of view suspect when partisan and anti-partisan commentary on Bush is preceeded by such absolutes.

I pointed out that you have been one who postulates this absolutist viewpoint of the President. And I pointed out an example which at the very least, indicates that your absolutist viewpoint has at least one error in it.

That I was clear enough to be understood by others is evident.

I am sorry you felt that I somehow attacked you, but I think all I have attacked is your point of view.

Don't misunderstand my point of view on Bush. He has committed many avoidable blunders, as well as make choices that have turned out to be errors. But, I also grant that he has done some pretty good things as well.

Thats the difference between you and I. I see a shade of grey, while you see absolute black.

I have no idea where you are still getting this. You are ascribing far more faith and conviction to me than I am capable of. I am non-religious and trained scientifically; I do not view the world in such manichaen terms. I lack the necessary passionate conviction required for such a view of anyone or anything. I will, for the last time, repeat my thought process regarding Bush and much everything else: I view every situation independantly, take no stock in personal statistics or pathos-type appeals, and I summarize judgments on people and issues with a cost-benefit analysis. In the case of Bush, after so many mistakes I have concluded he has cost the US more harm than the productive actions that I see he has contributed. Believe me when I say, with every post you claimed I was some polarized idealogue, you could not have portrayed a more opposite picture of me.


Now, on to my issue with this thread, and more specically with your #5.
What I have seen is that when Bush comes close to saying what you seem to draw clearly from his words, "I made a mistake," all instances of this that I have observed have been laced with caveats about the shortcomings and failings of others which supposedly caused him to have bad judgment -- implying that had others always done their jobs he would never have made mistakes. You seem to think repeatedly posting examples of Bush admitting mistakes refutes this point: it does not. Please address the more specific sub-point here.

[ October 18, 2006, 07:43 PM: Message edited by: Liberal ]

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Matteo522
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quote:
What I have seen is that when Bush comes close to saying what you seem to draw clearly from his words, "I made a mistake," all instances of this that I have observed have been laced with caveats about the shortcomings and failings of others which supposedly caused him to have bad judgment -- implying that had others always done their jobs he would never have made mistakes.
Is it really reasonable (and right?) to expect a leader to simply say, "I made a mistake"? Wouldn't you want him or her to list the caveats and reasons for the mistake when saying that? The only things I can think of that would qualify for simply saying "I made a mistake, pure and simple" would be some kind of personal, private choice, such as an affair. Any other kind of public action or decision would require so many levels and so many other people that to say it was simply the president's fault and nothing else would be dishonest and misleading.

Sure, the buck stops there and it's his *responsibility* to attempt to fix it or step down. He's trying to do the former, and congress hasn't tried to enforce the latter. I really can't see anything constructive out of him having a press conference just saying, "I made a mistake", though, and walking away. Plus, I have a real hard time imagining journalists and his opponents accepting that anyhow.

Matteo

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Liberal
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quote:
Originally posted by Matteo522:
quote:
What I have seen is that when Bush comes close to saying what you seem to draw clearly from his words, "I made a mistake," all instances of this that I have observed have been laced with caveats about the shortcomings and failings of others which supposedly caused him to have bad judgment -- implying that had others always done their jobs he would never have made mistakes.
Is it really reasonable (and right?) to expect a leader to simply say, "I made a mistake"? Wouldn't you want him or her to list the caveats and reasons for the mistake when saying that? The only things I can think of that would qualify for simply saying "I made a mistake, pure and simple" would be some kind of personal, private choice, such as an affair. Any other kind of public action or decision would require so many levels and so many other people that to say it was simply the president's fault and nothing else would be dishonest and misleading.

Sure, the buck stops there and it's his *responsibility* to attempt to fix it or step down. He's trying to do the former, and congress hasn't tried to enforce the latter. I really can't see anything constructive out of him having a press conference just saying, "I made a mistake", though, and walking away. Plus, I have a real hard time imagining journalists and his opponents accepting that anyhow.

Matteo

Matteo, you don't understand. This is all in response to the situations where his subordinates acted correctly and then Bush took an extra step on his own and made the mistake, but then went back and blamed it on subordinates. Ie: 2003 SotU Speech where Tenet warned him before hand that the info. was outdated and quite likely incorrect. Bush then proactively decided to lie on his own and tell the American people that it was 100% true info. when he listed those giant, specific amounts of chemical and biological weapons. He later went back and said it was a mistake, but that Tenet had caused HIM to "screw up."

[ October 18, 2006, 08:16 PM: Message edited by: Liberal ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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"s it really reasonable (and right?) to expect a leader to simply say, "I made a mistake"?"

Yeah.

"Wouldn't you want him or her to list the caveats and reasons for the mistake when saying that?"

No. One of the reason boss is boss is because boss fire those who misiform and boss no hide behind excuses.

That why bwana supposed to be bwana.

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Matteo522
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But you really want him to just say, "I made a mistake." and end it there?

That just wouldn't satisfy my inquisitive nature. I'd want to know why the mistake happened, who else is responsible, and what steps are going to be made to remedy it so it doesn't happen in the future. I'm not saying I want to hear excuses, but I do want to hear *reasons*.

I'm not saying Bush did do the above, but if he just released a public statement saying, "In regards to Iraq, I made a mistake" and nothing else, I'd be entirely dissatisfied. Plus, it's not like the Democrats (as in the party... Dean, Pelosi, Reid, etc.) and anti-Bush media would be particularly graceful handling that tempting, juicy steak.

:shrug:

That's just how I see it.

Matteo

[ October 18, 2006, 09:50 PM: Message edited by: Matteo522 ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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"But you really want him to just say, "I made a mistake." and end it there?"

Oh, explanatioons are OK. But not in place of, or mitigatingly grafted onto, a straightforward mea culpa.

I've not heard Bush *explain* what he did wrong.

I've heard him 8glancingly, evasively, partially acknowledge somethng not right about his actions, and then immediately distance himself from the error by associating his error, his decision, his action, with those of his subordinates or his declared enemies (Dems, liberals, terrorists, goverrnment accounting agencies).

His statements regarding the bad intelligence he chose to believe regarding Iraqi WMD (presumably because it supported his beliefs and desires) rather than the good intelligence regarding Itaqi WMD that he chose to ignore, was an adult White House version of, 'But Ma! All the cool kids are doing it!' when he's caught smoking cigarettes.

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Redskullvw
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Liberal

Your comments to Matteo are exactly my point.

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Colin JM0397
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At this point, hollow apologies and explanations of poor decisions get us squat.

The Bush haters would rejoice and all join in a cacophony of I told you so's yet it gets us nowhere vis-à-vis a solution to our international woes.

Left/right - whatever - what we need are leaders who have the balls to stand up and in active, positive language (opposed to this wussy passive, non-confrontational wishy-washy crap that passes for public statements these days) say something like "I broke it, this is how I'm going to fix it. If I don't make progress in X time, I'll resign."

Hell, someone did that, we’d probably be so relieved we wouldn’t let them resign even if they screwed up again!

Sadly, with the MSM hacks and partisan division these days, anyone who actually showed some balls like that would be demonized as being too partisan and "another cowboy".

Kinda like how we'll never have another Gen Patton get any further than Major these days...

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Liberal
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quote:
Originally posted by Redskullvw:
Liberal

Your comments to Matteo are exactly my point.

I'm sorry but this is far from anything close to a sufficient explanation. Given your repeated insistence on my nature and "others like me," in repeated but yet less and less hostile terms, you are obligated to explain yourself or retract what is still a personal observation on your part.
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DaveS
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quote:
He later went back and said it was a mistake, but that Tenet had caused HIM to "screw up."
You are talking about the same Tenet that Bush later awarded the Medal of Freedom. Bush gave the award to Paul Bremer and Tommy Franks in the same ceremony.
quote:
The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the Nation's highest civil award. It was established by President Truman and later re-established by President Kennedy. It is awarded by the President of the United States to persons who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.
BTW, the person who later took responsibility for allowing the phony information into the SotU speech was Stephen Hadley, Dick Cheney's senior aide (and source of Valerie Plame's name to Bob Woodward) at the time. He is now the President's National Security Advisor.
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Redskullvw
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Liberal

You fit in with partisans who find even when he admits he did something wrong, that he still can't even take responsibility for something without fouling even that effort as well. What you have done is created a circular argument.

You can't debate a circular argument as was demonstrated by your exchange with Matteo.

As to it being a personal observation, it is merely my pointing out how illogical your argument is because even if Bush takes responsibility, it is still an error on his part.

Short of Bush commiting ritual suicide on national TV, as Tom suggested, critics of Bush, which in this case includes you, cannot be satisfied in objective and reasonable terms.

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Liberal
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quote:
Originally posted by Redskullvw:
Liberal

You fit in with partisans who find even when he admits he did something wrong, that he still can't even take responsibility for something without fouling even that effort as well. What you have done is created a circular argument.

You can't debate a circular argument as was demonstrated by your exchange with Matteo.

As to it being a personal observation, it is merely my pointing out how illogical your argument is because even if Bush takes responsibility, it is still an error on his part.

Short of Bush commiting ritual suicide on national TV, as Tom suggested, critics of Bush, which in this case includes you, cannot be satisfied in objective and reasonable terms.

It's not a circular argument as long I have the facts right about each specific instance that I talk about... ...I am not making generalizations but am dealing with specific events. You are truly doing yourself a disservice by this continued vague denigration.

Bush really did blame his subordinates in every "appology" that I have heard. If you have an instance where he didn't, please post it and I will yield. If not you need to concede this is not a circular argument, this is a statement of fact.

[ October 19, 2006, 10:56 AM: Message edited by: Liberal ]

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kenmeer livermaile
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"Short of Bush commiting ritual suicide on national TV, as Tom suggested, critics of Bush, which in this case includes you, cannot be satisfied in objective and reasonable terms."

And you said I was hyperbolic! (Also, is ritual suicide 'objective and reasonable'?)

If I heard Bush say, for example:

'We should have committed far moretroops in Iraq from the beginning. Plans drawn up for such an event stated that far more troops than we deployed were necessary for a successful occupation and subsequent stabilization of Iraq into a peaceful civil environment, but we ignored those plans and decided to do it another way.'

I would accept *that* as an admission of responsiblity for the current mess in Iraq, bercause that it what happened. That is what Bush/admin did.

Instead, we're turning an infinite corner and we're told we must stay the course or else terrorism will prevail. While this may be true, we are given no reason to place further confidence in a leader who won't own up to simple basic errors in judgement made in defiance of the expert counsel of prevailing military wisdom.

Bush said, 'I'll do it MY way, thank you.'

But he has yet to 'fess that his way produced precisely the failed results that was predicted by those whose advice he ignored even though our nation had trained them since West Point for 20, 30, 40 years to assess and detail necessary measures for just such adventures as invading Iraq, deposing its regime, and holding down the fort in such a manner that stabiity, not civil war, would result.

None of the events I've described here are speculative; they're an accurate depiction of exactly what happened. Bush/admin really DID override the collected wisdom of the majority of our military, despite warnings that doing so really WOULD produce the dismal outcome that is our occupation of Iraq today.

[ October 19, 2006, 11:25 AM: Message edited by: kenmeer livermaile ]

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