Tag Archives: Oil

Threat Level

8 Sep

Right Left, doesn’t matter the propaganda out of DC and the media is that we must stop ISIL before they reach the homeland. “Defeat them over there” is the patriotic battle cry . (Queue the multi-racial group of little children waving little American flags). Still no mention of oil.

Defeat ISIL, like we defeated the Taliban and al Qaeda and the myriad of like splinter groups. Webster defines defeat: “ to win a victory over (someone or something) in a war, contest, game, etc : to cause (someone or something) to fail : to control or overcome (something”). After all these years of death and money thrown at the ever popular defeat strategy, how we doin’? We can easily remember when al Qaeda was billed for years as the cataclysmic threat to the American homeland, why to the very fabric of “the American way of life” (that would have to include Ferguson). History is loaded with examples that groups mutate and morph constantly. Nazis have become neo-nazis, skin heads, white supremacists, etc. Al Qaeda becomes al Qaeda in Iraq becomes ISIS becomes ISIL becomes Islamic State. Whatever. So now this iteration is the worst we’ve ever seen, oh my God . . . . until, of course, the next one in the revolving door of war. How long are we going to buy the snake oil (the lubricant) and drink the cool-aid? This cool-aid concocted and distributed here at home is the threat to poor people and our middle class. After years of applying defeat military style what’s the score, ah, conspicuously worse than before we invaded. Our predictable military response to all things that sparkle is so primitive and strangely at odds with our intense interest in such things as technology, at the very least it’s embarrassing. Time to evolve past the global pro wrestling circuit. Time to formulate a plan B; a non- military way of navigating the planet and powering our cars. Plenty of perfectly nice nations do it without being brought to their knees.

The logistics: how would it work? The dooms-dayers and war hawks never give a description of how it would work. The DC and media outlets say that in addition to being the most barbaric group ISIL is also the most well funded of the bad guys at large. Assuming for the moment that this is true, how soon before they have an air force with highly trained pilots, air craft carriers to transport it, jet fuel (not crude oil), radar and satellite communication, missiles and bombs to arm it? Regardless of the revenue stream, how soon before they build this air force for themselves? Or, how soon before sympathetic supporter(s) gift them with a fully functioning air force as described? Or, how soon before they conquer/capture a complete air force and kidnap pilots (which they would have to resist beheading)? Can you see mega masculine Saudi Arabia or Iran allowing their military to be taken over by anyone? These are countries, like all countries, with men at the top that very much like their power and will get violent to retain it. How long before ISIL can fly over and bomb us, or launch long range ballistic missiles at us from the middle east, or launch missiles from their submarines or war ships? ‘Cause they’ve had the capability for years to come to the US and do one-on bombings; place bombs in crowded places, blow up a suicide bomber, etc. We don’t have to spend billions more dollars over seas, they can do one-on bombings right now. The Arab nations that circle ISIL must be thanking Allah daily for the abject foolishness of the United States.

Power to the People

Media and Politicians: Hear the Harmony

30 Aug

The language of TV commentators and politicians: so casual and assuming about US military “strategy” in Syria, Iraq, even Ukraine. They speak with a cavalier entitlement as if our military options in other countries are like coffee choices at Starbucks. Many accept a correlation between video games and a level of desensitization to violence but what of the media’s culpability in desensitizing us to terms like “US intervention”, “military options”, “surgical air strikes” and many more. Why is it wholly unremarkable to hear these people talking matter-of-factly about bombing here and bombing there like possible moves on a chess board? These televised parleys are relegated to debates about targets, timing of strikes, what kind of munitions to deploy and very occasionally about the various benefits of bombing but never about the actual right to bomb. The right to bomb is a given in these dialogs. We feel threatened or we feel there might be a threat in the future. After all there was 911, our “never again” moment (by the way, how has that “never again” strategy worked out for the Jewish people in the middle east?) We feel a paternity toward a world filled with nations and people centuries older than our own. We feel the power of unrivaled wealth (albeit morphing). The deal is we have the biggest stick, currently. Each of these fail to support the right to bomb other countries. Additionally, we continue to be inoculated against the principal question of the right to bomb with the “US interests in the region” serum. Now that covers a multitude of sins. Who defines all of these interests and which countries they are lodged in? We were once sold the very long and expensive Vietnam War as vital to US interests, ooops, not really. There’s the oil of course and the prime military base real estate to be considered to name a few. “US interests” can dissolve foreign boarders and sovereignty and our very own Article I, Section 8, Clause 11 of The Constitution. “US Interests”: a powerful term that has migrated to normal. Who in the US profits financially by these critical decisions and who loses, always the same people.

Power to the People

ISIS Crisis

23 Aug

The US, who are we? Who do we want to be? As a nation we should finally be maturing beyond this cape crusader crap. The countries that surround ISIS (besides Iraq/Syria) are Turkey, Iran, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt. Given ISIS’ business plan, why aren’t these wealthy countries pounding big time on ISIS? But then why should they spend their money and resources when the ever adolescent US is always more than eager to don the saggy pants, flash some bad ink and play toughest kid on the block. The US forever trying to prove its manhood to its young self, to be the quarterback hoisted onto the adoring shoulders of the world. The world that holds us in contempt. Manhood must be singled out here as there are no women anywhere in charge of any war machines. When do we ever get to move to the boring adult table where wisdom reigns and manhood is measured by how well one cares for the family, the extended family stretching from shore to shore? All this BS about being the only country that can save the world from______________, fill in the blank, is standard teenage rationalization for continuing to play the video game. We have no savior destiny; we’re a simple mortal player like everyone else doing a stretch on the planet. And where is Switzerland, Japan, Russia, Brazil, to name a very few? Why aren’t they terrified of ISIS? They are by definition infidels too, surely they need some bloody CC, conquering and converting, why do they have no skin in this game? Could a US citizen turned ISIS commando fly on home and blow some of us up, yes. Or some cop in Missouri could blow us up, dead feels dead by any hand.

Even the evil ISIS needs a trumped up excuse to rampage, God tells them to; not too original but what are you going to do, it is a tried and true classic. Reduce temptation: we could just round up ALL the Americans in Iraq and bring them home removing one excuse that we use for ourselves. Actually what are these Americans doing in Iraq anyway? What vital function do they provide toward our general welfare? We need some cost analysis on this one. Even if you pretend that their continued presence is essential to American well-being how the hell could they get any work done under these circumstances. Is their charge in Iraq now really just to stay alive? What Iraqis are they conducting official US business with these days, the woefully inept Iraqi government? Picture that, Iraqi officials and diplomatic representatives of our congress working on anything. This refusal to extract Americans from Iraq feels very much like “you’re not the boss of me”. It’s the kind of posturing that neighborhood gangs do to act out sad fantasies of gloriously defending property that someone else owns. Think we will look weak to totally vacate Iraq? Think the Lindsey Grahams and John McCains are strategically brilliant? Face saving is a childish response to adult problems. Our crumbling infrastructure and failing transportation systems actually do make us weak. Our declining educational product makes us weak. Our unemployment crisis makes us dangerously weak. The assaults on voting rights weaken the core of our ideology. And on and on. Say no to war.

Power to the People

Now Let’s Try The Carrot

14 Jul

“Peace in the Middle East”, as it’s called, could be had but we’d have to stop funding the occupation. We’d have to give up the scripted delusion that an occupation is in our best interest regardless of the Wall Street/K Street hype. Then we’d have to redirect all that big time “aid” money into actual aid, not just an annual wad to be gifted to the current whomever to be spent at their discretion. If we had a financial stake in Palestinian held territories, hospitals/clinics that we funded and helped build, roads, desalinization plants, comprehensive irrigation systems, seed banks, solar and wind farms, housing, etc. we sure as hell wouldn’t want anyone blowing them up. You can bet the American tax payers would lose their collective mind over blown up tax dollars; i.e. you see how we’ve protected our colossal investment to date in the area with an “Iron Dome”. This change, this positive use of aid money turned into construction, instead of destruction, would also be a huge help to the unemployment crisis in the Palestinian territories. You know, all those young able bodied men with no jobs but lots of rocks and plenty of time to throw them. As a bonus these projects would reduce the hatred coming our way from the folks in Palestine and their many watchful neighbors. Any such reduction in hate is an upgrade in our national security. You want to get rid of Hamas, try building something with the Palestinians; improve people’s lives. This is not a new concept; this is sound foreign policy. Yes there would be problems overcoming Palestinian skepticism; “you reap what you sew”, we’d have to work hard to dismantle the reputation we’ve built but we’ve taken on difficult challenges before. The hardest element is shedding a false premise, like WMDs, and replacing it with positive action. And who knows, if the Palestinians come to like us just a little bit maybe we could begin to work on that misogyny thing they’ve got going on.

Power To The People