[quote][i]Originally posted by Jet Set Junta[/i]@Sep 22 2003, 03:28 PM
[b] I've been kinda supporting this move and glad it has finally come to this since this country is and should NOT be our "allies", but do ANY of the conservative people touting "Do XXX and the terrorists will have won" angle here fail to see the irony in the US basically fulfilling Osama Bin Laden's main objective 2 years and 7 days to the day after the attack? He recruited Al-Queda operatives on the "outrage" that the Americans kept bases and military personnel on HIS country. And we still haven't found the ****er either.
Maybe he'll be happy about this and have mercy on us. Jesus said "turn the other cheek", after all. <_<
Or you could claim that this is abjectly false since it's in the NY Times and not on Fox News. Did anyone angrily toss a cigarette butt into the river while being quoted for this report? :rolleyes: (inside joke for 5ever from the early days on this thread)
[i]Last American Combat Troops Quit Saudi Arabia
By DON VAN NATTA Jr.
IYADH, Saudi Arabia, Sept. 18 — The last few American combat troops pulled out of the Prince Sultan Air Base here earlier this month, officially closing the Persian Gulf headquarters used by the Air Force during both Iraq wars and concluding a nearly 13-year run of extensive United States military operations in Saudi Arabia.
The withdrawal signaled the end of a long strategic arrangement, mutually beneficial until it fell victim to tensions resulting from the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States, in which 15 of 19 hijackers were Saudi citizens. Since then, the countries' fragile diplomatic relations have undergone considerable strain — only worsened in recent months by the American military presence in the kingdom, American and Saudi officials said here this week.
As one American diplomatic official based in the region put it, "on both sides, actually, the alliance had become a little bit of poison, and both sides were glad to see it end."............[/i]
I agree with this 100%. We shouldn't have had to have them there in the first place. Saddam shouldn't have invaded Kuwait. But he did. We should not have stopped in 1991, but we did. We shouldn't have had to constantly keep patrolling the no-fly zones while being shot at for 12 years, but we did.
The Sauds are not our allies and a major regional threat has been removed. This expensive stationing is now useless.
OBL also said the US was a paper tiger who wouldn't do anything after they've been hit and couldn't fight or handle losses. He was wrong.
If you are willing to accept as premise the USA preferring to station troops in Saudi Arabia, then I can see irony, I suppose. I am, however, pretty sure OBL didn't prefer that we crush the Taliban and kill or capture 2/3's of his leadership, though.
[b]If I can attempt to be non-partisan:[/b]
This is a 1005 good develepment for our COUNTRY, regardless of which pary gets more short-term political capital from this move.
This story is filled with good news. The best in my view is that Five of the Democratic Challengers are in a virtual tie w/ Bush. Just wait 'til the Democratic Party unites behind it's chosen candidate. Bush won't know what hit him!
[b]Poll: Bush down, Clark up
President virtually tied with five Democratic challengers[/b]
Monday, September 22, 2003 Posted: 11:40 PM EDT (0340 GMT)
Wesley Clark emerged as the Democratic front-runner days after entering the race, according to the poll.
(CNN) -- President Bush has the lowest approval rating of his presidency and is running about even with five Democratic challengers led by newly announced candidate Wesley Clark, according to a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll released Monday.
Fifty percent of 1,003 people questioned for the poll approved of Bush's job performance -- down from 59 percent in August and 71 percent in April -- the president's lowest rating since he came to office in January 2001.
The results of the poll, conducted nationally by telephone between Friday and Sunday, has a sampling error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.
"The GOP would point out -- and they would be right -- that the approval rating in the autumn before an election is not a good predictor of how the election will turn out," said CNN poll analyst Keating Holland, pointing out that Ronald Reagan's approval rating was in the 40-percent range in fall 1983, a year before he was re-elected in a landslide.
"This poll may not have predictive value, yet [it could] still show that the president is in trouble. Fifty percent is not trouble yet, but if [Bush] keeps slipping, it might be."
Clark, the retired general who announced last week that he would seek the Democratic presidential nomination, emerged to lead all the Democrats by at least 9 percentage points.
Of the 423 registered Democrats or Democratic-leaning voters questioned in the poll, 22 percent said they would most likely support Clark in 2004.
"The real question for Clark is whether he can sustain his significant lead once the hoopla over his entry into the race has died down," Holland said.
"With over a year to go before the actual election, there is no way this poll can accurately predict the election outcome," he said.
Although 39 percent of respondents overall had a favorable opinion of Clark, 48 percent said they were unfamiliar with him.
The strong support for Clark compared with 13 percent support for former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean and 11 percent for both Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry and Missouri Rep. Dick Gephardt. Connecticut Sen. Joseph Lieberman had 10 percent backing. The poll of Democratic voters has a sampling error of plus-or-minus 5 percentage points.
Of the 877 registered voters included in the poll, 49 percent said they would vote for Clark, compared with 46 percent for Bush. Each of the four other major Democratic candidates came within three points of Clark's showing in a hypothetical head-to-head race with the president, the poll found.
Kerry narrowly outpaced the president, 48-percent to 47-percent. Bush held a slim lead over Dean (49 to 46 percent), Gephardt (48 to 46 percent) and Lieberman (48 to 47 percent).
President Bush's job approval rating dropped significantly after he requested $87 billion for Iraq and Afghanistan.
The poll of the 877 registered voters has a sampling error of plus-or-minus 3.5 percentage points.
Although 59 percent of respondents said Bush had the personal and leadership qualities that a president should have, 51 percent said they did not agree with Bush on issues that mattered most to them.
The evenly split results mirror the president's job approval rating, which had dropped to 52 percent in a poll conducted September 8-10 -- shortly after Bush requested $87 billion to fund efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"Americans may rally around a president when he sends troops to war but not when he sends them the bill," Holland said.
In May, soon after Bush announced that major combat operations had ended in Iraq, 41 percent of Americans said they thought the war was over. But now only one in 10 feel that way.
In the new poll, 50 percent of respondents said going to war in Iraq was worthwhile, with 48 percent saying the military effort was not. In April, 76 percent backed the war. That figure had fallen to 63 percent in August and 58 percent in the September 8-10 survey.
[quote][i]Originally posted by bitonti[/i]@Sep 23 2003, 09:52 AM
[b] Wesley Clark is the frontrunner and Bush is down to 52% approval rating (still a little high for my blood, im hoping it dips more!).
all Wesley Clark has to do is be himself, but less arrogent and he will win a general election. 5ever i know you are scared of this guy.
When Wesley Clark wants to campaign in a uniform he doesn't have to BORROW ONE!
Ladies and gentlement THE GENERAL HAS ARRIVED! [/b][/quote]
Clark is the front runner simply because of the Gen. before his name.
So, is he for the Iraq War, against it, does he know, did Bill Clinton tell him what to say yet?
What this shows is how little faith the Dems have in any of the other candidates. Tail - I think Kerry is done before this thing even started. His whole War Hero angle has been co-opted.
I still think it's going to be a pretty solid margin of victory for Bush. Ronnie polled pretty close with Carter early too. People like and trust Bush and I think they will vote for him substantially a year from now. But I could be wrong.
We will see what happens. Bush hasn't even begun to campaign or spend money yet. I just like elections - it's good theater.
I think, however, that Hillary will make an appearance. A Clark-Clinton ticket would be interesting. I'd almost rather watch the VP debates in that election!
Neither Reagan or Clinton (the last two incumbant presidents to win re-election) were ever in a virtual tie with any of the prospective nominees of the opposing party the year before the election. Right now not just one candidate is in a virtual tie w/ Bush but [b]FIVE[/b] are.
No president in modern times has deserved to lose as much as this guy. He's going down big time.
On January 20, 2005 we can all echo the words of the only other un-elected president in our history "Our long national nightmare is over".
Just remember, even with Karl Rove masterminding every media blitz and nasty angle he can, Bush has to actually compete in rhetoric with guys who aren't stiffs this time a la Gore.
And I still believe that a lot of Bush's "appeal" the first time around was the Clinton hangover souring people on Gore. Now that Bush has had 4 years in the White House to underwhelm people who aren't 95% or more into the Iraq War, it could be tough.
I honestly hope the Clintons stay far away from this race; Hillary has far more negatives than positives, and will only create the same backlash that Bush II rode in 2000 all the way into the Florida clusterfu-- I mean the White House. :D
My personal choice is still a Dean-Clark or Clark-Dean ticket, with Kerry packing it in early and the Clintons keeping their hands off.
In answer to yer last post, 5ever, some quick points:
a - I sincerely would have no problem with a Republican Convention somewhere in NYC, like MSG. I'd even expect them to commemorate/namedrop 9-11 during the festivities. But holding proceeding it from the actual site -- a mass graveyard -- still strikes me as tacky. I hate to use the word 'offensive' since I don't get personally affronted much by broad political gimmicks let alone the tired cliches people drop in this thread about social issues. But there's something kinda lame about it, and I hope it backlashes against the GOP -- especially considering how few of their promises to help rebuild lower Manhattan they came through on.
b - My personal analysis on Saddam was that he was out for Saddam, and to a lesser extent to bully the Middle East around. Once he was neutered after the original Desert Storm, he turned his attention to evading treaties and stirring the pot in Palestine (the only "terrorism" he has ever been proven to support, and that's Israel's cross to bear more than America's). I think the US/NATO/UN in some form should have remained up his ass until something shook out, but not in the form Bush/Cheney/PNAC were clearly going to do from the get-go o matter what 'evidence', 'coalitition', or 'rationale' was cooked up to justify it. I agree 100% we should have finished the job in 1991, but that didn't happen. And pretending this was simply a 12 year cease-fire doesn't explain the whole operation away.
c - The he-said-she-said about nitpicky Al-Queda or empty cannister links do indeed disipate to the middle pages of the Times or Journal after the 3rd back-n-forth, but I think the central "WMD" thing has become enough of an elevated cliche -- rightly or wrongly -- that any solid evidence on it WILL ultimately become a glossy front page extravaganza if something is found. Even the "Niger yellowcake" thing had front-page status for a week. You can say how unfair it is, but would you deny that Bush and Cheney were happy to ride that claim all the way to the end if it helped mobilize more of the general populace to support the war?
d - I am glad we are leading Saudi Arabia, though at this present time all we've done is traded one occupation for a more expensive and extensive one. How long before some disgruntled Iraqi millionaire somewhere in the lower end of the deck of cards starts recruiting more people who share his disgust at "American occupation"? Unless, of course, we buy the "this time it's different -- they're getting democracy, not Saudi oppression". We'll see....
id like to see a Clark-Braun ticket that dean guy is a stiff and mosley-braun would LOCK-DOWN the female/minority vote. Besides the fact she's actually the most intelligent and well spoken of ALL the candidates on BOTH sides. the definition of schooling would be Cheney/Braun VP debate.
5ever its true that most people are unfamiliar with Clark and the "general" before his name is the kicker but the fact remains - he is BLINDINGLY smart and a great speaker - contrasting him with Bush will be a painful comparison for the GOP to stomach. I can't wait for those debates!
All clark has to do is get people to geniunely like him and he will be president. That's the kicker, and from what i've seen i think he's capable of it.
Spread formation, 4 wide-outs. 5ever running the fly pattern on the RIGHT, tailgators the quick hook on the LEFT, bitonti going across the slot to the left. Shakin318 can stay home and BLOCK on the inside. We all know where outsider goes.
Jet Moses can do the post-game wrap up, complete with pictures of the resultant tragedy and a 70's rock chestnut to cry ourselves to sleep to. Until the next round, of course.
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[quote][i]Originally posted by tailgators[/i]@Sep 23 2003, 01:21 PM
[b]I still think John Kerry is gonna get the nomination and that he'll defeat Bush in the general election. Afterall according to the CNN/Gallup pole he beats Bush 48-47!
I can't wait to see Kerry debate Frat-Boy he'll tear him up![/b][/quote]
At this point in his first presidency Ronald Regan had a 40% approval rating. At this time in 1999 George Bush, who had not even stated he was running, was beating Al Gore in polls by almost 12%
I heard fat-drunk ted kennedy may announce he's running...that'll really [i]drive[/i] everyone nuts; good 'ol ted, the chappaquiddick kid! Another degenerate liberal....too bad his daddy's not around to buy this election like he did for his fornacating older brother!
Kerry is done. Its Clark's show - break out the clark bars!
Tailgators you can't order a cheesesteak with swiss cheese and win a general election! kerry's a good lawmaker, and a war hero but ultimately not a man of the people. in the end he's just too unexciting and more than that he did vote YES on the war powers act.
CometoNY Bush is NO REAGAN. Ronnie hooked the economy up. Bush gutted the coffers to chase unnecessary wars. No president since Hoover has lost as many jobs as Dubya. He's toast unless he pulls some sort of rabbit out of his hat. The speech to the UN was just pathetic. Hey where's weeb, i thought it was "F the UN" - oh no that's right i guess we need them after all. :blink: <_<
sooth wants us to spread out but i don't think im capable. Im like Morgan Freeman in shawshank i can only piss with permission!
[quote][i]Originally posted by jets5ever[/i]@Sep 22 2003, 12:53 PM
5ever, you asked several times for my thoughts on this "review". Here they are:
This article is an even bigger joke than the previous 4 I've read trying their damnedest to discredit the movie and revoke the Oscar it won.
First the guy spends 2 paragraphs making fond reminiscences about Spinal Tap, in an effort to architect his grand thesis that BFC is a "mockumentary". He does this in classic Coulter fashion by repeating the word in every paragraph a la "treason" so that the reader going in with an obvious bias can smugly say "Of Course! Bowling for Columbine is a Mockumentary! I knew that Moore was a fraud!" without even reading it closely.
Not saying that's what YOU did, but honestly, what are the FACTS that actually disprove a single thing in the film? The only remotely substantial cited fact is the question of the $245 "humanitarian Aid to organizations on behalf of Afghani people". Maybe we did that IN ADDITION to this one:
Which I have posted before? Whatever. So add up $300 million in supposed "aid", almost 20% of which went directly to the very people who harbored and supported and helped train the 9/11 hijackers. All under the fiscally responsible foreign policy wizardry of George W. Bush.
Do you even realize the level of distortion here? Spinal Tap (a great flick) was made entirely with fictitious characters as a joke. BFC, no matter how much you hate it or claim it's horse**** "spin" or manipulatively edited, was made by interviewing real life people and in most cases backing up the sources. Notice how Koppel doesn't even try to discredit any of the claims in the "What a Wonderful World" montage other than good ol' Afghanistan, nor does he refute Moore's FBI findings about crime. He simply criticizes how little ID check Moore shows on film to open the account at the "Gun special bank" and buy ammo in Canada.
As I said before, this article -- and most like it -- takes direct issue with the fact that Moore, like virtually EVERY documentary filmmaker before and since, edits and narrates his footage to suit his personal viewpoint. Over 90% of the nitpicks in this article are chastising Moore not for making anything up out of the blue, but simply for leaving out extra details that would broaden the argument and legitimize the opposite viewpoint. This is true of EVERY documentary, EVERY political book, and EVERY rant citing a collection of facts and quotes to make a point. Even 95% of the "news" is edited and produced in this fashion, ESPECIALLY the reports from the front in Iraq.
And as such, BFC is far from the level of direct conclusive propaganda that Coulter's books (and Moore's for that matter, who I've said before sucks as a writer compared to his film/TV work). BFC leaves open the question of whether or not gun ownership in and of itself is a bad thing and/or should be outlawed. "Treason" and "Slander" exist solely to rile up the reader to believe that anything remotely "liberal" is inherently anti-american, pro-communist, and pure evil.
Also, if you read between the lines of Koppel's little discourse here, it seems he DOES believe that the problem with Columbine was 100% heavy metal and video games. Every time he refutes one of Moore's opinions about the media fear-mongering, foreign policy, and the nature of suburban Denver's defense sector, he slides in a jab about how the kids were corrupted by all their evil toys and music. Time to burn all those Sabbath LPs in a bonfire, and ban Playstation?
He also gets some jabs in at the end about how America DOES indeed have a bigger minority of those "blacks" and "hispanics" than Canada, which -- far from knee-jerking with cries of 'racist!' -- still prompts me to ask: what does that imply exactly about why America is clearly a more violent place with more gun deaths than Canada, Japan, and Western Europe?
As a sober analysis and critique of the film, I think this one was more to the point and less petty:
It's actually hilarious the amount of vitrol being directed towards the film, but that is to be expected. I think these people would have an easier time going after "Stupid White Men", which is far more whiny, outrageous, and specious a work.
I mean, really, "Bowling for Columbine" is essentiall "Spinal Tap"?? That's the same basic ludicrous exaggeration you jump all over when people call Bush a fascist.
[i]n. pl[/i]. doc·u·men·ta·ries
[i]A work, such as a film or television program, presenting political, social, or historical subject matter in a factual and informative manner and often consisting of actual news films or interviews accompanied by narration. [/i]
[quote][i]Originally posted by bitonti[/i]@Sep 24 2003, 10:30 AM
[b] Tailgators you can't order a cheesesteak with swiss cheese and win a general election! [/b][/quote]
Have you ever tried one? It might just be good.
BTW here's a newsflash, outside of Philadalphia noboby really gives a damn what's on a cheesesteak sandwich.
[quote][i]Originally posted by bitonti[/i]@Sep 24 2003, 10:30 AM
[b] Hey where's weeb, i thought it was "F the UN" - oh no that's right i guess we need them after all. [/b][/quote]
He's mixing up a batch of kool-aid in the regular forum.
If he thinks he needs kool-aid now just wait 'til November 2004. He'll really need it then!
[quote][i]Originally posted by tailgators+Sep 24 2003, 10:34 AM--></span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>[b]QUOTE[/b] (tailgators @ Sep 24 2003, 10:34 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin--bitonti[/i]@Sep 24 2003, 10:30 AM
[b] Tailgators you can't order a cheesesteak with swiss cheese and win a general election! [/b][/quote]
Have you ever tried one? It might just be good.
BTW here's a newsflash, outside of Philadalphia noboby really gives a damn what's on a cheesesteak sandwich. [/b][/quote]
tailgators its not the cheesesteak its what the cheesesteak represents. the ability to fit in, to fool the locals that you geniunely care about their plight and can relate to them
W Bush has that skill. Clinton has that skill. its the ability to stand up in front of a group of hispancis and say "benvenido amigos!" and have them actually believe you, not throw the folding chairs at the podium cause you are a fraud.
its about connecting with the common man and kerry is just too blueblood.
Clearly you are defensive about BFC. Moore COMPLETELY misrepresents facts and stats, you know this, I know this and many others do. You are ripping this Kopel guy for comparing BFC to Spinal Tap - yet bend over backwards to defend every distortion and misrepresentation of Moore's. That aid figure is not the only substantial thing Kopel brings up. You hold your 'opponents' to much higher standards of transparency and veracity than you do Moore, as evident by your "vitriol" for Coulter and lack of it for Moore. And your defense of Moore is, "Well, c'mon, everyone does it." I would argue that your euphamism of "leaving out EXTRA details" is assinely self-serving and absurd. These are not minor details.
"Repitition" of a single word in this review is a huge deal for you, but blatantly lying by omitting clearly important and relevant information is OK? Both Moore and Kopel are trying to make a point...and as you said EVERYONE does it - so why does Moore get a free ride from you for doing exactly what you get pissed at Coulter and this author for doing?!?!?!?
Honestly - why do you like Moore so much? If you think he's funny, fine. And if you are impressed with focusing on Dresden and Berlin and not Omaha Beach or Midway as a complete and accurate capsule of America's foreign policy history, I can't stop you or Moore. But the fact that you are lecturing me about the "level of distortion" of this review while bending over backwards and being logically inconsistent to defend the obvious distortion of Moore's, than it is clear to me that you just enjoy cheap theatrics that rip conservatives and couldn't be bothered with veracity. If a conservative is cavalier with facts or strategtic omissions, then you get righteously indignant. If a liberal is, rock on!
Your definition of a dockumentary is great, "factual" is the problem BFC has, as well as, I would argue, "informative."
I am glad that you do acknowledge the wild and obvious media hysteria regarding reports from Iraq. They are biased. Remember that next time you think a museum is being looted ;)
I'm a gun owner, and I clearly admitted I am not impressed with Moore's 2 books and wish he would stop writing them. But he has a great flair for TV and documentaries, and I did not find anything in BFC offensive as a white gun owner. I also find it telling how nobody who hates BFC can actually answer its central question, which is NOT "why are guns even legal?" but rather "why is there so much fear and gun violence in America?" -- without skirting around nasty crotchetyisms like "all those minorities" and "all those evil rock-n-roll bands and video games" which IMO do not lead to productive rhetoric for the 21st century.
A documentary filmmaker is under NO requirement or obligation to present every side of every issue, and to release their footage uncut. Otherwise we'd have boring 12 hour video surveillance recordings, and even THEN there'd still be a way to argue about the people interviewed and questions asked, as well as asking what was left on the cutting room floor and why.
Bill O'Reilly spins just as much in one hour of his show as BFC does in its 2+ hour running time, and he's whining a lot louder than Moore about how "spin-free" he is. There's a book out now on this as well ("the Oh Really Factor"). I never tried to claim that BFC is free of "spin" and "slant". I simply disagree it is at any point an outright fabrication or fiction, and I wish conservatives railing against the film would do a more sober job in pointing out "the rest of the story" rather than claiming the film is making anything up. Example: The mother of the kid who shot the girl at Elementary School in Flint. It's all well and good to point out that she had what some would call "fair" income and other alterntatives that she should have been aware of, but it does NOT change the FACT that she was being bused 2 hours to her job and her kid had nobody -- at the state or family level -- who could watch after him enough to avoid the tragedy that happened. The circumstances of people like these could spawn its own debate and argument over who's "at fault" and "how" to "fix" it, but it does not make the actual horrible event and Moore's subjective "documenting" of it "false".
As for why I prefer Moore's TV to Coulter's writing, besides the obvious that I'm "biased" politically -- I respect personally where Moore is coming from, especially in BFC. He's asking questions, illustrating interesting ironies and mistruths with a combination of interviews and hilarious anecdotes, without claiming there's a single answer to the problem. And he's doing all this because he hates seeing people die needlessly.
Sure he lays on his "friend of the working man" shtick thick, but who the hell is Coulter fighting for? The right of Republicans to be the only legitimate political party? The right of Angry reactionary conservatives to proudly hate liberals? The right of college Young Republicans to humiliate professors? The right of conservative commentators to get on TV and in books? This point is definitely more of a personal thing with me, since I can plainly admit Moore does his own share of hate-mongering and scapegoating when he goes off on his book rants and "open letters" at his website. But at least he's fighting people who are actually in real positions of power causing deaths he sees as unnecessary, rather than making ridiculous claims that the entire country is being seiged by "liberal thought", despite the fact that Republicans control Congress and the White House, a zealot is in the Attorney General chair, and everyone on the Right got their little Iraq war regardless of the protests made.
In the end, I'll take the classic conservative "work ethic" response to your objections: if there's clearly a market for Coulter's books and Limbaugh's radio show, why hasn't some nasty conservative satirist made the mother of all documentaries showing idiotic hippies, protesters, and academic elites at their worst? They're CLEARLY as easy targets these days as Bush and militia groups, and I'm sure some scathing stuff could be done in the right hands. I'd even watch it if I thought it was making some good points, since I'm not even a fan of many far-leftist excesses.
But, it does surprise me that you'd find BFC so objectionable while enjoying, say, Bob Roberts. I liked both, but I found the latter a LOT more politically biased and over the top against conservatives in its "message". Since both did a great job of satire, surrealism, and asking questions I think should be asked more often, I found both to be enjoyable cinema.