Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Ender Sai, Oct 11, 2005.
Koizumi was so odd. On one hand, the postal reform. On the other... Yasukuni.
And, of course, Elvis love...
So, too lazy to link, but anyone seen the Rush Limbaugh controversy?
What the hell. Seriously. I heard it on the radio - he said "phony soldiers" to confirm and specify what the guy meant.
The caller mentioned that the media sought out and put guys on the air who claimed to be soldiers to give their anti-Iraq War views validity - they're phony soldiers because they're not soldiers, and that's who Limbaugh was referring to.
It's not a big deal, and Tom Harkin is frickin' developmentally disabled.
I've not heard what he said.. and this is in large part because I don't listen to Rush much, and I've only heard Hannity on the radio talking about this but saying he's played it over and over on his tv show, which does me no good because I don't watch that, I only listen to Hannity to avoid Dr. Laura.
From what I gathered though, and if someone's got a better source on this, I'd love to see it, Rush seemed to be talking about the 'soldiers' that have gotten such a soapbox to stand on when scrutiny shows that they didn't serve, or didn't serve in Iraq, or otherwise have inconsistant stories, but in the process try to make the whole military look bad. I'm not sure where the problem is with that, because that seems to me that that would make them fake soldiers, or phony soldiers.
I don't really care too much for this issue because there really is not much to debate about: of course Rush Limbaugh is a hypocritical ***hole.
But Lowbacca you can [link=http://mediamatters.org/items/200709270010]here[/link] for the initial article and transcript that started it off and [link=http://tinyurl.com/29y9cw] here[/link] for followup info.
I'd much rather see the greater context for Rush's show, because I've been hearing things saying he was talking about Jesse Macbeth on that show, a phony soldier that became prominant as an anti-war activist. And he wasn't the first, either. So given that there is a group that could be arguably considered phony soldiers, I'd want more of the show to actually see what the topic was, not just what the previous call was.
I don't like Rush much (I listen to him when I'm driving during his hours sometimes, but its more just a lack of other good talk radio on), but I'd like to at least see what the actual context of this was before it becomes screeching about what someone said out of context.
I have absolutely no sympathy for Rush Limbaugh.
The man has taking things out of context down to a fine art.
Why is he not in jail over the whole oxycontin thing again....after his diatribes against no sympathy for drug addicts?
Oh yeah, he's a celebrity.....
That, and the ACLU which he so despises came to his aid
The so-called "highs" from the thing aren't that great anyway.
[link=http://economist.com/world/asia/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9989898]Pakistan | Bombed in Pakistan[/link]
[blockquote]Bombed in Pakistan
Oct 19th 2007 | KARACHI
Over 130 people are killed
CAUSING carnage that was horrible, and predicted, two bomb blasts tore through the homecoming parade in Karachi of Benazir Bhutto, a former prime minister of Pakistan, shortly after midnight on Friday October 19th. The explosions?the first apparently caused by a hand grenade, the second by a suicide bomb?erupted close to an armour-plated lorry on which Miss Bhutto had for hours been inching through a sea of elated supporters. Over 130 people were killed and at least 250 injured, including several leaders of Miss Bhutto?s Pakistan People?s Party (PPP).
Miss Bhutto, who was using a lavatory inside the lorry when the bombers struck, was unharmed. But the parade?which had drawn perhaps 200,000 people to welcome her back to Pakistan after an eight-year self-imposed exile?was abandoned. The leader of Pakistan?s biggest party and its main political dynasty, Miss Bhutto had been heading to the tomb of the country?s founding father Muhammad Ali Jinnah to address her supporters. It would have taken her many hours to get there: in 10 hours since her arrival at Karachi?s airport, Miss Bhutto?s convoy had crept 5miles (8km) towards the shrine ? about half the distance.
Taliban militants, who control a swathe of north-western Pakistan near the border with Afghanistan, were possibly behind the massacre. Ahead of Miss Bhutto?s return, a militant leader in South Waziristan, Baitullah Masood, had threatened to deploy suicide bombers to Karachi to kill her. Miss Bhutto has done much to rile Islamists during a wildly oscillating career in Pakistani politics: including aggressively championing the rights of Pakistani women and drawing accusations of grand-scale corruption. Miss Bhutto?s husband, Asif Zardari, who remains in exile, nonetheless accused government spies of being behind the blasts.
The homecoming rally had represented a hugely impressive effort by Miss Bhutto?s party workers. It was also the start of the PPP?s campaign for an election due in January. At a time of grave insecurity and uncertainty in Pakistan, the election threatens to loosen the grip of General Pervez Musharraf, an unpopular president. In launching Miss Bhutto?s challenge to the general the PPP had her previous return from exile, in 1986, to aim at. On that occasion, some 750,000 people welcomed her to Lahore? where she had come to challenge another dictator, General Zia ul-Haq, who had hanged her father, a populist former prime minister, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.
But Miss Bhutto is now a harder sell. She is the former head of two regimes that were both dissolved amid allegations of huge thieving. Moreover she may not plan to challenge General Musharraf at all. In recent months she has been negotiating with him to share power. This month the general granted Miss Bhutto (and others) amnesty from corruption charges relating to her two terms as prime minister?and so smoothed her way home.
He also pledged to resign as army chief, as Miss Bhutto and the constitution demand, before November 15th when, all being well, he will be sworn in for another five-year term as president. On October 6th, still in uniform, he had himself re-elected to this post by an electoral college of Pakistani lawmakers. Every opposition party quit parliament in protest, except Miss Bhutto's PPP.
Despite all this, General Musharraf and Miss Bhutto still do not have a deal. The general has not yet met some of her demands: including measures to help ensure a fair election?for example, by suspending corruptly-elected pro-government mayors. One reason is that the general?s re-election is itself still in doubt. On Wednesday the Supreme Court began hearing a legal challenge to it. The court was also due to rule on a challenge to the legality of Miss Bhutto?s amnesty.
Cosying up to a detested general, as many Pakistanis consider this, has hurt Miss Bhutto. A
Seeing as how Bhutto massive support, I'd say there is hope for Pakistan. Unfortunately, Islamic radical bastards had to go blowing up 130 people.
I really don't think there's much hope for the place. These blasts usually scare the hell out of me because my grandparents still live there.
Your choices for leadership:
1) a military dictator
2) a corrupt politician
3) Anarchy (see Iraq)
Honestly, the situation the country is in right now is just ripe for murder and corruption.
Unless someone honest can get public support, but then he'd probably get assassinated.
The place is just too disorganized (just like my post) to keep security and you need security to organize the place, so it's a catch-22 of sorts.
[link=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7102898.stm]First hearing for Cambodia court[/link]
[blockquote]An international genocide tribunal set up to try surviving members of Cambodia's brutal Khmer Rouge regime is holding its first public hearing.
The UN-backed court is hearing a bail request from Kang Kek Ieu, or Duch, the former head of a notorious prison.
Duch was the first of five senior Khmer Rouge officials to be arrested and charged by the court.
More than a million people are thought to have died during the four years of Khmer Rouge rule between 1975 and 1979.
Tribunal spokesman Peter Foster described the hearing as a "milestone" for the court, which was set up last year after decades of wrangling.
"It's a big day," he said. "The spotlight will now be on Cambodia."
'Sense of relief'
Duch, who is now in his 60s, was driven to the court from a nearby detention centre, where he has been held since his arrest in July.
Three decades ago, he ran Tuol Sleng jail in Phnom Penh, where thousands of people were tortured and executed by the Khmer Rouge regime.
Lawyers for the elderly ex-leader are appealing for bail on the grounds that he was held without charge under the jurisdiction of another court for eight years.
Proceedings inside the small chamber were broadcast to hundreds of people - journalists and ordinary Cambodians - outside in the court's compound.
The BBC's Guy De Launey, in Phnom Penh, says that the former Khmer Rouge jailer is unlikely to be released, but his appearance in court shows the tribunal is finally moving forward.
Co-prosecutor Robert Petit told the BBC the bail hearing would allow the people to see that justice was being done.
"I hope that it will provide Cambodians with a certain sense of relief that the process is ongoing and is transparent, or as transparent as it can be."
Fifty-five year old Chhouek Sao, who lost five family members to the regime, said he wanted justice.
"It's obvious that justice has been delayed and some people are so frustrated by waiting for so long," he told the French news agency AFP.
Five senior Khmer Rouge officials are now in the custody of the tribunal.
On Monday, former head of state Khieu Samphan was formally charged with committing crimes against humanity.
Pol Pot's second-in-command Nuon Chea and the former foreign and social affairs ministers Ieng Sary and Ieng Thirith are also facing charges.
Their trials are expected to begin next year. [/blockquote]
I've been following this for some time (I'm managing our engagements in Cambodia amongst six other things atm), albeit through diplomatic cables.
I remember over dinner with a Colonel in Cambodian DoI, him talking about these trials and saying that in his opinion, Cambodia needed to more forward united rather than remaining divided about the past. Clearly, the article's presenting of one argument about "wanting justice" indicates the picture in Cambodia isn't as straightforward as the BBC hint.
Nobody will pretend the Khmer Rouge was anything short of an evil regime, in terms of the sheer havoc and spiteful devastation they wreaked upon Cambodia, a beautiful country populated by perhaps the nicest people I've ever met.
However the tribunal has moved along slowly. My questions are; will this really bring justice, or division? Is there any actual benefit to Hun Sen and his government for having these trials? Does this send an important message to states like Burma?
My mother is a survivor of the Khmer Rogue regime who wound up spending several years in a work camp separated from her family. I won't go into the bloody, nightmarish details, but suffice to say she escaped, but the entire ordeal left her with some very deep emotional scars.
I asked her about this a few days ago, and she said she was relieved he was going to tribunal. The rest of her family (who didn't suffer nearly as much at the hands of the Khmer Rogue as my mother, but suffered nonetheless) agreed that it was a step towards justice.
Now, she said she didn't really believe there was any extraordinary benefit to the tribunals other than to provide some positive PR spin. However, for people like her who survived the Khmer Rogue, it was an enormous development.
When did your mother leave Cambodia, Lane?
Sheesh, I can't remember the year off the top of my head, but it was about half-way through the Khmer Rogue's regime. She somehow escaped the camp she was in without the guards noticing and made her way towards Thailand on foot.
An open question of what rammifications a change in the Australian leadership may have outside Australia? Especially as John Howard, who's backed Bush on a lot, isn't looking like he's in good shape over there right now.
It's official: Labour's won in Australia. Yahoo sez John Howard nearly lost his own district.
Rudd's now pledging to withdraw their troops from Iraq by the end of `08.
Not looking good for Bush: Spain, Philippines, Japan all withdrawn, and now Poland & Australia moving to pull out. Plus the UK's been reducing their presence in Basra for some time. I'm guessing the Democratic candidates will make hay of this throughout the remainder of the campaign.
Kevin Rudd will be the 26th PM of Australia. And it looks like John Howard has lost his own seat. He's also set on ratifying the Kyoto Protocol. . .isolating Mr Bush even more.
Do you know why Howard objected to Kyoto?
The main reason was that China, India, and emerging markets are exempt anyway. Besides the US, China is the world's largest polluter and not subject to the protocol at all. (And some have China as the #1 polluter this year, surpassing the US)
Howard objected to the lack of target goals assigned to certain areas at the expense of others.
The secondary reason is that mnay countries which signed onto Koyoto in theory are now struggling to meet the targets as they are laid out.
PARIS (AFX) - Canada, Japan and the old 15-member European Union are falling short on their commitments to cut greenhouse gases under the Kyoto Protocol, according to a new UN report on global warming. Canada is among those countries most likely to run into difficulty implementing its commitments, as in 2003 the country had increased its emissions by 24.2 pct from the base 1990 level, far from its 2012 target of a 6 pct reduction.
Canada failing Kyoto pact, lawsuit says
The latest figures (March, 2007) from Environment Canada show that the country's greenhouse-gas emissions in 2005 were 747 million tonnes, or 33 per cent above the Kyoto target. Under Kyoto, Canada must cut its releases by 6 per cent of 1990 levels from 2008-2012.
Some projections indicate that if Rudd wants Australia to meet the standards mandated in Kyoto, it's going to cost around 3% of Australia's GDP. That's a costly prospect that has to come from somewhere.
Finally, with regard to the US, Koyoto was finalized in 1997, and failed to be ratified back then. Bush hasn't submitted it during his tenure either, but it was never approved under the previous administration going back 10 years.
The overall picture that emerges is that Kyoto is a complex subject, much more complicated than "GO GREEN CUZ IT'S COOL!"
My gf is now feeling bad for having not voted for Howard because she's so used to having had Howard all her life as a rep. He'd had that seat for 33 years and lost it now.
Also, looking at Rudd's position on Iraq, and just going off of wikipedia, it says that there'd be a continued presence of over 1,000 Australian soldiers in Iraq in security roles, but removing 550 from combat positions. So I wonder how much of an overall effect that will have.
Kyoto is a foolish point now, just because of how its time sensitive. It would be better to look for future plans.
Seeing how those trendy Euros who backed Kyoto so strongly with talk failed to follow up with actual results, I'd agree and say Kyoto is a bust.
Of course, that wont stop the internationlist losers from continuing to bring it up.
Well, its more also useless because the idea was to reduce emissions in 10-20 years time. Signing it now.... you'd have 1-4 year's time. Its simply unreasonable.
I think it's a largely symbolic move, given that we're on track to meet any Kyoto obligations regardless (although that's only due to changes in land use, which isn't a sustainable method of reducing emissions). Hopefully it leads to Australia's involvement in a newer, more useful international agreement on climate change.
I wouldn't have any trouble applauding a truly international emmissions treaty that addressed everyone. What I didn't like was those phony europeans posturing and lecturing the U.S. and then failing to bring China and India in, all while falling short of their own emissions targets.
Lowbaca, yeah we should return to the table and openly discuss a real emissions treaty. Kyoto has run out of time and has plenty of insincere participants.