Posted by: Jim | February 1, 2007

Don’t Think of an Elephant

Apologies to George Lakoff for stealing his book’s title. But I am getting a very queasy feeling when I see headlines like this:

“Bush: Iran Not a Target of U.S.”

OK, thanks. If they’re not a target … why are you telling us they aren’t a target? At the same time, when talking about the “crisis” we are having with the Iranian government, why are you heating up the rhetoric that is making the world think that Iran is a target?

I’m getting very, very worried. Last night Keith Olberman showed the remarkable similarity in how Bush talked about Iraq in 2002, and how is talking about Iran today. If Bush is trying to frighten the Iranian populace into Impeaching Ahmadinejad, he may actually frighten them enough to rally around him and brace for war with the U.S. After all, they know our military is over-extended as it is. Perhaps they think they could garner sympathy from the European Community, as well as their Shia bretheren, and pull a rabbit out of their hat?

We are not in a position to bluff. President Bush is holding seven-two off-suit, and he’s in first position at a high-stakes table.

Mr. President, please fold!

Advertisements

Responses

  1. …because everyone and their brother is saying that Iran is a U.S. target, not the U.S. We are denying rumors. Plain and simple.

    This article is not about invading Iran, it is about resisting Iranian forces trying to squelch progress in Iraq.

    Two different things.

  2. Todd, your answer seems straight-forward on the face of things. It would be nice if you were right, but this administration has taught me to see through the words and see into the argument they are framing.

    Political analysts everywhere are finding Bush’s recent rhetoric on Iran rife with subtext.

    I have to agree that it warrants careful scrutiny.

  3. What you are describing though is politics in general, not the politics of a particular administration. Every single administration has had its critics, every set of lines are to be read through, but when you start seeing through words, I believe sometimes you see what you want to.

    I choose to apply careful scrutiny to my children’s report cards and my work ethic. Politics, aside from voting, takes care of itself.

  4. Did anybody see the Fox News special on ‘radical’ Islam tonight? It was a redux of Glen Hacks CNN Islam show a few months ago, using the same clips from MEMRI.

    Bring on the nuclear holocaust! The faster we wipe out these barbarians the better. Elect me as president when I am old enough, and 2 days later the Jihadi will cease to be an issue. Forget Bushiter, Hitlery Clinton, and Al Gorebbels; all of these political hacks have the same agenda, and it’s not in the best interests of America. Tommy is right (pun intended), and you know it.

    The Islamist only understands and respects brute force. Lemme ask you this… If a thug kicked down your front door in the middle of the night, who would you call? The ACLU or the SWAT team?

    -T

  5. Right right. There are hordes of radical Islamic people who want to bomb us into oblivion.

    These specials are compelling. I’ve seen one of them, and it was terrifying. But I have to ask one simple question: if there are hundreds of thousands of jihaadists who want to commit terrorist acts on Americans … where are they? Why are there not bombs going off everywhere all the time? 9/11 was one, but that was 5.5 years ago.

    I do not think these alleged groups of jihaadists are all unified and controlled, and holding back to lull us into a false sense of safety so they can lunge in for the death-blow. Irrational fear, on the other hand, can make people believe that they are. I don’t, and these propoganda videos do not a crisis make. It might be interesting to watch the propoganda videos of other times, when there was a desperate political party trying to foment fear among the populace to create unity and support.

  6. is the Venjanz post an intentional joke?

    “The Islamist only understands and respects brute force. Lemme ask you this… If a thug kicked down your front door in the middle of the night, who would you call? The ACLU or the SWAT team?”

    Arguing with a bizarre false analogy, what next? Actually, I will go with a third option, when my door gets broken down, I’ll call Venjanz and have them offer their fighting keyboard talk, that should have the Islamists running for their caves (they all live in caves, right?)

    There is a serious side to Venjanz’ comment, and that is that fascism is the philosophy of ‘the little man’ and that it takes root when people in the general population harbour views like this. That is why I thinks FOX News is so dangerous, as it is continually pushing the opinion-set of the citizen to the right, in preparation, seemingly, for increasingly right-wing foreign policy.

    face facts, Venjanz, anybody, ANYBODY, calling for indiscriminate use of nuclear weapons against a region IS a fanatic themselves, IS a barbarian. you obviously have no patience or time for such niceties as International Law. it’s this ongoing myth that Everything Changed after 9/11 that is probably behind this. nothing changed. all that changed was that bloodthirsty rhetoric like yours came overground into the US political mainstream.

    but, check the poll figures and find, clearly, that your Extreme political position has no traction with the American people, you know, all those ‘traitors’ you share a nation with. (Question, do the right-wing goons labelling Hilary Clinton, Hagel, Kerry, etc, traitors, call out the 300 pound guy on the next stool in a diner questioning Bush’s policy? somehow i doubt it. and if George Soros was making millions from this war like Cheney’s Chums, oh, i wonder what the reaction would be then?

    let’s hear it Venjanz, would you imprison Democratic opponents for their outspoken views on Bush’s war ‘strategy’ at this, ‘a time of war’?)

    The last time I dismantled your views on this blog, you didn’t have a thing to say, nothing in the way of a debate (apart from clarifying your willingness to use nuclear weapons). That is apparently how much you care about the veracity of your statements. Let’s see if this time you can at least offer a defense of your views.

  7. a defense that employs reason, rather than insults

  8. 1 comment deleted for being a personal attack.

    Remember folks–attack the argument, NOT the person.

  9. jim,

    well, as Fox News keeps reiterating, to even Have the Argument on Bush’s plans is to be ’emboldening the enemy’. As Bill Kristol said, the Senate would adhere to its duty in a time of war by ‘doing nothing’. And so on. there’s total fascism at work once more in the extreme rhetoric being used to shut down opposition to build-up to war with Iran. i was watching a Fox News segment that talked about how John Kerry was siding with our enemies and they popped up a picture behind of him sandwiched between Al-Sadr and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

    that is just one small instance, and, to me, it is the fact that it doesn’t even merit comment in the mainstream that shows how deadened we are becoming to such tactics. it is totally the case that John Kerry has become demonised by the right, that a person who has served their country with distinction, both in the US military (right-wing people are supposed to respect that kind of service), and in the US senate, is casually smeared in the media as a traitor.

    i think history clearly shows that Kerry made mistakes in his Presidential run, but it is the over-the-top treatment, that would brand him a traitor for possessing the courage to speak out against Bush’s absurd plans (this courage is now reported as ‘another foot in mouth moment from Kerry’ etc)

    john kerry could save a child from drowning and Fox News would be asking ‘What happened to Child’s Hat? Does Kerry Know the Answer?’

    this is an aside, but just this one person’s treatment is a model for how other opponents of Bush are being treated, most notably, Chuck Hagel, who is now referred to laughingly, as a freak, cast as the ‘mad uncle’ who we can all ignore.

  10. Two words: Neville Chamberlain

  11. To continue… King had it right the first time; it was a joke, sorta.

    Make no mistake, the west is at war with radical Islam, and we have been ever since that psychotic pedophile Mohammed created his religion of peace and tolerance. Why haven’t they attacked since 9/11? The same reason that Y2K didn’t melt down the world’s computer networks: We took pro-active action to prevent it. I think it’s rather disingenuous to suggest that my views on Islam were formed by a 1-hour special on Faux News, but given the rhetoric of my comments, that’s forgivable. I spend a LOT of time reading the news from Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, and the situation is dire. If things continue, Europe will become Islamized by 2050. Imams in England are openly calling for the overthrow of the Crown. There is a continuous low-level intifada in France. You don’t have to read too much to find some story about a “youth” or “vandal” or “immigrant” or “north African” or “Asian” (these are common euphemisms for Muslims in the press European) committing some act of violence in the name of Allah. And it’s coming to America, like it or not.

    Call me if wish during a home invasion, I would protect you with my evil guns, but I don’t think you live near me.

    The Islamists in Waziristan and eastern Afghanistan live in caves. The rest live openly all around the world.

    Fox News is no more dangerous than CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, etc. The one network that slants right is more of a threat than 5 that slants left? Please.

    The nuclear holocaust thing was hyperbole, as I thought was oblivious, but I guess not. Don’t worry; Israel will take care of business. You can’t negotiate with thugs and terrorists. Period.

    You seem to think I am rabid supporter of the Bush admin, which is incorrect. This is a logical fallacy on your part known as Association Fallacy (Google it). Tommy supports the war. Bush supports the war. Therefore Tommy supports Bush. Wrong.

    I would not imprison Demonrats for opposing the war. Not a bad idea, but unconstitutional.

    I do hope this clears things up a bit.

    Yours Truly,

    Tommy

  12. demonrats…. hmmmm

  13. Venjanz just can’t get through any post without calling somebody a name. This time Mohammed is a psychotic paedophile. I would no more think Mohammed is responsible for what takes place in his name as Jesus Christ is responsible for The Inquisition or The Crusades.

    As for the association fallacy, you voice the same views on Islamofascism etc, as neocon voices, administration hawks, and so on. I’m not worried about where you scratch an X or what you think of Bush, just with the rabid quality of your rhetoric, its perpetually insensitive tone, its basic unreasonableness, the frisson of joy you seem to get each time you hurl an insult. I think you have a severe case of “America is The Best” syndrome. if the US doesn’t want to be all caught up in the goings on of the Middle East, then perhaps it should not have been continually meddling in the region. You would be far better turning your rhetorical guns on Saudi Arabia, a nation that is simultaneously a US ally, while also pouring billions of dollars into the promotion of Radical Islam.

    I can’t even begin to unpick your casual ‘thugs and terrorists’ line. You clearly don’t do nuance. The US has propelled Iraq into anarchy and civil war, supposedly in the search for WMDs (non-existent) and because of links to the 9/11 attacks (outright lies from the VP’s office). Now it is the Iraqis who are the focus of your ire. Remember, none of us would have even needed to be caring about this mess if Bush had not perpetrated it.

    Now the Bush people, after their astonishing success in Iraq, are off to Iran! Are you looking forward to that war, too? Perhaps you want this endless cycle of war, maybe you believe in ‘the end of days’ and want some final conflict with Islam. That’s your problem. The rest of us are trying to live in the world.

    As for Israel, what an ally. Since when did the greatest nation on Earth have a foreign policy that appears predicated on the priorities of a tiny nation in the Middle East? If Israel wanted to be a true ally of the US, it would pursue a meaningful peace with the Palestinians, rather than continually inflaming Arab opinion with its actions. But you are probably right, this rogue nuclear state (non-signatory to nuclear treaties) will intervene in Iran, making the situation even worse.

  14. I agree with kingfelix. I hope Iran can get rid of Israel once and for all, hence ending our problems in the middle east.

  15. This is my last comment on this post.

    These are direct quotes from the Hadiths (Traditions in the words and deeds of Mohammed):

    Sahih Muslim Book 8:
    A’isha (Allah be pleased with her) reported: Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) married me when I was six years old, and I was admitted to his house at the age of nine. She further said: We went to Medina and I had an attack of fever for a month, and my hair had come down to the earlobes. Umm Ruman (my mother) came to me and I was at that time on a swing along with my playmates. She called me loudly and I went to her and I did not know what she had wanted of me. She took hold of my hand and took me to the door, and I was saying: Ha, ha (as if I was gasping), until the agitation of my heart was over. She took me to a house, where had gathered the women of the Ansar. They all blessed me and wished me good luck and said: May you have share in good. She (my mother) entrusted me to them. They washed my head and embellished me and nothing frightened me. Allah’s Messenger (, may peace be upon him) came there in the morning, and I was entrusted to him.

    Bukari 1 6:298
    A’isha (Allah be pleased with her) reported: Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) married me when I was six years old, and I was admitted to his house at the age of nine. She further said: We went to Medina and I had an attack of fever for a month, and my hair had come down to the earlobes. Umm Ruman (my mother) came to me and I was at that time on a swing along with my playmates. She called me loudly and I went to her and I did not know what she had wanted of me. She took hold of my hand and took me to the door, and I was saying: Ha, ha (as if I was gasping), until the agitation of my heart was over. She took me to a house, where had gathered the women of the Ansar. They all blessed me and wished me good luck and said: May you have share in good. She (my mother) entrusted me to them. They washed my head and embellished me and nothing frightened me. Allah’s Messenger (, may peace be upon him) came there in the morning, and I was entrusted to him.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: