Why are United States armed forces involved in Libya? I think many Americans want to know the same thing. POTUS is supposed to explain his thinking to us on Monday night and I’m torn between not wanting to hear anything he has to say and wanting to hear his rationale, if there is any, for engaging in this constitutionally unauthorized military incursion.
The Secretary of Defense has said that Libya is, “of no vital interest” to the U.S. The Secretary of State has said the same thing. Admittedly, they, the President and his administration have waffled on the issue which leaves us, as well as the rest of the world wondering what the administration is thinking.
If Gaddafi stays in power Libya continues its status quo—maybe. If he is dethroned presumably someone else will rise to power—but who? That is the question on the government’s lips, no doubt. The Muslim Brotherhood stands in the forefront of contenders, it seems. If they do succeed the dictatorship, it hardly seems likely they will be a friend to the U.S. but Gaddafi wasn’t either.
Assuming the worst, a government entity antagonistic to the United States ultimately being in control in Libya may mean that once again we have spent billions we don’t have to build up an enemy that may have as their goal to harm us.
POTUS has indicated that he will depute leadership in the Med to NATO as though that will absolve the U.S. of any further involvement or responsibility.
But according to the Congressional Research Service, the United States contributes somewhere between 22% and 25% of its per capita gross national income to NATO’s civil and military budgets or $84.1 million and $430 million respectively, according to Dave Schuler of Outsidethebeltway.com.
Given that level of investment in NATO, why is the President willing to give up all leadership in NATO’s involvement in Libya? I think the answer is obvious: if something goes wrong as it is almost certain to he can simply say he had very little or nothing to do with it.
The overt excuse for Libyan involvement seems to be to protect the civilian population. Now seems an odd time to step up to the plate given that Gaddafi has been in power in that country for 42 years. There have always been dictators who have brutally subjugated their people. If their people want freedom, let them fight for it—we did. Why Libya? Why now? Oil for the United States doesn’t seem to be the answer because if it was oil would have required our presence in Bahrain, or Yemen, or Saudi Arabia, or the Gulf Emirates, or Venezuela, or Nigeria, or Mexico, or a number of other places in the world. It has been suggested by at least one conservative commentator that oil—for Europe—is the motivation for intervention because European companies are heavily invested in Libyan oil fields. If this is the case, the European Union and its member states should carry the brunt of the incursion, not the United States. We don’t need to come to the defense of Europe—again. No doubt, the excuse will be that we can’t let European countries fall economically which may very well happen if their oil supply is cut off. On the other hand, they may very well fail anyway given their reportedly profligate spending on entitlements, e.g. Greece and Spain. Wouldn’t our financial resources be better spent in building up our economy?
Why must we be the world’s policeman? If we foot the bill for other people’s freedom they will not cherish it like they would if they had fought and won it for themselves. History adequately demonstrates that truth.
The answer may well lie a little deeper than the American psyche is prepared to go. First of all, every conflict the United States has become involved in since the administration of William McKinley (the Spanish American War) was under a Democratic administration with the exceptions of the Gulf war, Iraq and Afghanistan and those wars were acceded to by Democratic majority Congresses.
Further, Obama desperately needs a distraction to continue implementation of his social agenda and, just as other Democratic administrations have done in the past, he has turned to an unjustified wishy washy foreign policy incursion in a country that has very little or no national impact to accomplish that. In addition, military adventures have always brought about economic growth which Obama badly needs right now. And finally, much as I hate to contemplate it, given Obama’s past associations, i.e. Bill Ayers, Bernadette Dorn, Van Jones, et al, he may just want to see the Muslim Brotherhood succeed in Libya as a proving ground for more Muslim successes around the world.
Get our forces out of Libya now. If the Libyan rebels demand it and can pay for it, send arms and ammunition and humanitarian aid if necessary but do not extend our military any further than they already are.
- Obama vows U.S. forces won’t get bogged down in Libya (reuters.com)
- “The coalition is going too far in Libya” – Russian envoy to NATO (rt.com)
- Barack Obama defends US military intervention in Libya (guardian.co.uk)
- Obama sets doctrine on Libya (rt.com)
- Obama: We have stopped Gaddafi’s deadly advance (rt.com)
- Libya: Narrowing the options – The Guardian (news.google.com)
- The aim of Western strikes in Libya (theworld.org)
- Muammar Gaddafi’s Forces “Fight to Save the Oil” (hotdogfish.wordpress.com)
Article first published as New Hampshire Legislature Steps Up to The Plate: They Repeal Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative on Technorati. Click the link to read more–
The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative purports to limit so-called greenhouse gases from all kinds of potential pollutant-producers—everything and everyone from power generating facilities to transportation, both private corporations and public entities. The RGGI website claims that all “proceeds” will be invested in “consumer benefits” including energy efficiency (CFLs and LED lights: oh, those light sources where you strike a match to see if they came on or not), renewable energy (those wind power-generating windmills dotting the landscape along the Atlantic coast and the Columbia river gorge in Oregon/Washington that are not turning even when the wind is blowing to name a couple of locations), and other clean energy technologies (like solar power? One huge panel that can generate 45 watts when the sun does shine in, say, places like the Pacific Northwest generating enough temporary power to run the light bulb in the refrigerator if you don’t hold the door open any longer than required to find the mustard) and other similarly “useful” technologies that hold a place in government’s heart.
Article first published as Angry Protestors in Madison: America’s Cairo? on technorati.com
Angry protestors in Madison, Wisconsin are ranting about a bill introduced by Governor Walker requiring public employees to pay more for their health insurance and pension amounting, according to the New York Times report, to about a 7 percent pay cut to help Wisconsin get a handle on their budget deficit. The bill also would curtail to some extent their collective bargaining rights and restrict negotiations to basic wages.
This protest, given the current state of financial affairs in every state and the ridiculous budget President Obama gave to Congress, is completely unbelievable. This group of 175,000 state employees, especially the teachers union, is holding the people of Wisconsin hostage to further their own gains, never mind how the rest of the state is doing.
Hiding behind the human shield of our children and grandchildren to coerce extra benefits and wage increases has become a modus operandi for teachers’ unions across the United States. Time and again, they tell us that if we cut their remuneration in any form our children will suffer. It may finally be coming to light that our children are suffering, unable to read and write or compute and it is primarily because of their greed and malfeasance. The media report that some Wisconsin teachers have gone so far as to bring their students with them to the protests. Two students interviewed by a reporter stated they had been pulled out of class and had no idea why they were there. This is completely unconscionable.
It is also becoming increasingly clear to many Americans how the unions are impacting our society. Every union from the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) to the AFL-CIO and the SEIU is utilizing members’ dues to buy votes and lobby politicians from the local to the national level to support legislation that favors their union. The trouble is, of course, the money that provides increased benefits and wages has to come from somewhere and it devolves, ultimately, upon the taxpayer. When an electrician gets a higher wage or more retirement or medical benefits, it drives the price up for his services; it’s elemental economics.
Mismanagement of pension funds has driven many expectant pensioners into going back to work to provide for themselves and their families. United Airlines is a prime example. I know personally of at least one case where an individual put in thirty years for United Airlines working his way up to management and looking forward to a cozy retirement only to receive a letter from the Airline shortly after he retired telling him that his pension was non-existent. He had to accept menial jobs to keep his home.
This egregious Actus Reus going on in Wisconsin’s capitol deserves to be treated in the same manner President Reagan used to resolve the air traffic controller strike during his term in office. He fired each and every one of them and began to hire new controllers. I know, I was one of the applicants.
As a former union member and public employee, I know a lot of the games these organizations play and it is not pretty to be involved in. Graft, corruption, greed, manipulation and many other acts of malefaction that go unpunished are committed every day by union officials and individuals. Most of the time the public is unaware of these doings because it is not of benefit for the media to publish them; the union can hurt the media and they know it.
There is some talk in the media that Madison, Wisconsin may become America’s Cairo, Egypt. If that means supporting and defending freedom and the Constitution of the United States as it currently exists, that may not be a bad thing.
It is time the American public rose up and put a stop to union activists holding the public hostage by defunding union activities at the highest levels of government and refusing to patronize union businesses. Unfortunately, until we elect a different President, this is unlikely to happen. Hopefully, Governor Walker will hold firm and defend his bill; and, ideally, fire the striking public employees and hire a whole new team, non-union, of course.
- US union protests intensify as thousands rally (rt.com)
- “The State of the Unions” and related posts (barkbarkwoofwoof.com)
- Could government-union battle happen in Penna., Jersey? (philly.com)
- Wisconsin: The Protests Continue – CBS News (news.google.com)
- Protestors Take State Capitol in Wisconsin – ABC News (news.google.com)
In 1978 President Jimmy Carter worked what many might have considered a miracle and secured a peace of sorts between Israel and Egypt by the signing of the Camp David Accords.
Now it comes to light that the annual multi-billion aid package, both economic and military, that the United States has spent ever since that momentous year was nothing short of an annual bribe to coerce the Egyptians into restraining their hand toward Israel. It appears that the Egyptian people, not the happy recipients of much of that loot, are in near-open revolt, demanding better economic conditions through the resignation of their eighty-year old leader and his government.
At least in personal and civic relationships, bribery is a morally reprehensible act; it is also illegal. How is it that the act of bribery passes from an unacceptable act to an acceptable one in its utilization in international affairs? Perhaps it is in its objective of illicit gain. Avoiding war is not illicit; taking a bribe not to engage in warfare has to be.
With a truly honorable peace at Camp David maybe Israel would have been surrounded by its enemies in 1979 instead of thirty years later. Maybe all Jimmy Carter did was postpone the inevitable back then. Of course, it is possible that our steadfastness might have wrought a nervous, backpedaling and cowering enemy thirty years later instead of a current state of terror inside our borders and out.
The United States, through mismanagement of its resources, is about to reach the end of its pecuniary rope insofar as monies available to purchase peace on the open and overtly antagonistic market are concerned.
We’re broke, or nearly so; we have alienated most, if not all, of our allies; certainly the most recent “leaks” where Britain is concerned have left another sour taste in their mouths. Israel is dubious about our willingness or ability to come to their aid in case of attack. We have left Eastern Europe at the mercy of Russia after many decades of Cold War.
South Korea and Japan are uncertain as to our determination to come to their aid in case of aggression on the part of the North. And what are we left with? Fear. Confusion. Doubt. Uncertainty. We sure could use another Ronald Reagan now, couldn’t we?
- Egyptian Opposition Leader Ayman Nour: ‘Camp David Accords Finished’ (rightpundits.com)
- Camp David Accord “over,” opposition leader charges (jta.org)
- Egyptian Opposition Leader Ayman Nour Declares Camp David Accords “Finished” (legalinsurrection.blogspot.com)
- Camp David Remembrance (blogs.cqrollcall.com)
Right after the new Congress convened reports have it that the new Republican Representatives stood up and read the Constitution of The United States before the whole Congress. Apparently, this is the first time in the history of the Congress that has ever been done. I would like to extend my heartiest and nearly anonymous heartfelt thanks to each and every member who took part. I am proud and extremely happy to have played an insignificant and miniscule part in their election and wish them Godspeed in their endeavors both today and in the near future. My hopes and prayers are with them all. God Bless America.
I decided to quit going to the Weightwatchers meetings and unsubscribe from the online program, completely for monetary reasons, not because of any fault with the program. In fact, I still use the program including the scales, the points calculator, the books and the points for each food I eat. The good news is, I not only reached my 10% goal of 214 pounds, I reached my next goal of 200 pounds and as of this writing, I am just slightly under 200. My next goal, long-term anyway, is to reach 185 which also happens to be my weight at the time my wife and I got married 24 years ago!
I’m still working out at least three days a week, walking. Although now that the foul Pacific Northwest weather is here, I’m going back to the gym three days a week where I use the treadmill to walk and jog (I’m up to jogging more than a mile without stopping!). Some days I start out with half an hour on the exercycle, then an hour or two on the treadmill, then crunches on the machine and a couple other machine exercises I don’t know the name of but they work the muscles of the small of my back and my chest muscles as well as the arms. That way I work out my core muscle groups as well as the arms and legs.
I got a little lax about recording my food but I’m putting the pressure on to get back on track with it. I usually wind up eating first, then writing what I ate down. But weight loss only happens for me if I plan my menu first, then stick to it.
On to 185 (well, actually, 195 for now)!