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Trust in federal government at all time low
Posted by: McQ on Thursday, September 27, 2007

And that's a good thing as far as I'm concerned:
A new Gallup poll reveals that, as the organization puts it, Americans now "express less trust in the federal government than at any point in the past decade, and trust in many federal government institutions is now lower than it was during the Watergate era, generally recognized as the low point in American history for trust in government."

Among the findings: Barely half trust the government to handle international problems, the lowest number ever. And less than half express faith in the government handling domestic issues, the lowest findings since 1976.

Faith in the executive branch has fallen to 43% — only 3% higher than it was just before President Nixon's resignation in 1974. At the same time, trust in Congress, at 50%, is its lowest ever.
So what does that mean? It should mean that presidential candidates who try to sell us more government in 2008 should meet a majority skeptical if not cynical electorate.
Gallup adds: "The candidates running for president in 2008 will be trying to win over a skeptical public. Just 55% of Americans express trust in the 'men and women in political life in this country who either hold or are running for public office.' That matches the low Gallup found in 2001."
Let's beat that low by going lower, shall we?

Look, it should be becoming obvious, even to the left, that the federal government is not the answer to most of the problems in life, that it has gotten too big, too unwieldy and too intrusive. How many times does it have to prove that it is incapable of efficiently or even competently handling complex programs? Hell, how many times must the fed prove that it can't efficiently or competently handle your money before you begin to raise cain about the money they're taking? Yet we have voters in this country virtually salivating over the opportunity to vote for someone who is promising to take more money and plans to "fix" health care while claiming it isn't a government program, nevermind the "mandatory" nature of it all.

How gullible are they?

It continues to amaze me, given the supposed discontent with government polls like this point out, that a significant portion of the country still wants to give the fed more money, more power and more control over our lives - not less.
 
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It continues to amaze me, given the supposed discontent with government polls like this point out, that a significant portion of the country still wants to give the fed more money, more power and more control over our lives - not less.


Yeah, you’re right. Let’s spend all the American taxpayers’ money in Iraq instead. And control over our lives, more power to the government? Well, sure, if you say the magic words: National security. Trust us: This is for your own good. OK. Where do I sign?
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
Let’s spend all the American taxpayers’ money in Iraq instead.
On a Constitutionally permitted federal task, heavens forbid it!
And control over our lives, more power to the government?
Well gee, that only what the Democrats have taken for the last 90 years or so. They never gave any back on their own either.
Well, sure, if you say the magic words: National security. Trust us: This is for your own good. OK.
Horrors! The executive can keep the warfighting powers it’s always had. Just, yikes!

Yours, TDP, ml, msl, & pfpp
 
Written By: Tom Perkins
URL: http://tomdperkins.blogspot.com/
A few inspirational quotes to ponder. See if you find any relevance to the post 9/11 authoritarianism of the Bush Administration. . . . Try real hard.
Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790), Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759
He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
Thomas Paine (1737 - 1809)
Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the Government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.
Justice Louis D. Brandeis, dissenting, Olmstead v. United States, 277 US 479 (1928)


 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
Constitutionally permitted federal task
Building someone else’s country? Gee, I must have missed that in the Constitution.
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
Look, it should be becoming obvious, even to the left, that the federal government is not the answer to most of the problems in life, that it has gotten too big, too unwieldy and too intrusive. How many times does it have to prove that it is incapable of efficiently or even competently handling complex programs? Hell, how many times must the fed prove that it can’t efficiently or competently handle your money before you begin to raise cain about the money they’re taking? Yet we have voters in this country virtually salivating over the opportunity to vote for someone who is promising to take more money and plans to "fix" health care while claiming it isn’t a government program, nevermind the "mandatory" nature of it all.

It’s not obvious. It’s a myth, perpetuated by ideology, driven by those who stand to profit from it, and illusorily confirmed by anecdotal evidence.

If you study the science of analysis - at any level - you learn about something called the "Vividness" effect - where anecdotes play a sharper role in forming beliefs, despite being less meaningful than systematic data.

Government efficiency is a function of the its institutional design, environment, and leadership, among other things. There’s neither a logical nor an empirical basis for a permanent efficiency deficit for government programs.
Now, government efficiency may rise and fall depending on all of the above things - but the answer is to fix it.

The fact that government is not inherently less efficient than any other organizational method should be blindingly obvious, even to you, just by looking at the relative cost/quality matrix of contractors vs. the US army in Iraq. Contractors do easy work for vast multiples of cost at lower quality, and yet this is all somehow laughed off as entirely accountable to the fact that the government was indirectly involved.

Our distrust in government is increasing because the Bush administration is the least competent administration since - an argument here - Carter, Herbert Hoover or Ulysees S. Grant.

Democrats will fix it - once we finish growing some guts and step on the current obstructionism - hard.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
Democrats will fix it
Yeah, like Johnson’s War on Poverty fixed poverty. Oh, wait...

Okay, like Johnson’s Medicare fixed medical care. Oh, wait...

Okay, like Carter’s Dept. of Education fixed education. Oh, wait...
 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com/
The fact that government is not inherently less efficient than any other organizational method should be blindingly obvious, even to you
Frankly, I wish I had the confidence that you have, both in government generally and in the Democrats. Perhaps if government were run more as a meritocracy I’d be more sanguine. Whatever. We must make the best of it. The reality is that — whether we like it or not — government will be increasingly necessary as the world continues to populate and resources become more scarce and the world generally become more and more technical, complex, and interconnected. We should accept it and try to make the best of it. Frankly, I don’t think the two-party duopoly (either branch) is the answer, but we’ll see.
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
You don’t think perhaps that lack of confidence is because the people currently in charge are amazingly incompetent? Conservatives make the mistake in thinking people want the gov’t to to be nonexistent the way some liberals think the answer is to throw money at the issue. People want a government that does its job, not a bloated bureaucracy nor a weak servant of corporations.
 
Written By: Oliver
URL: http://www.oliverwillis.com
hose who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Tell us what essential liberty you’ve given up post 9/11, and what temorary safety it was sacrificed for, maybe then I’ll see the parallel.
The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.
That applies equally well to both parties and all of government for a very long time. Think of the property rights lost to well-intended environmentalists. Think of the economic freedom everyone has lost to an ever-increasing tax burden. Think of what Social Security costs and your expected ROI, think of what the War on Poverty has cost, or the War on Drugs. There’s plenty more....

To argue that this is somehow reserved to the Bush Administration is just silly.
 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com/
Trust in the govt is at an all time low? Good thing the global warming hysteria is coming along at juuuuuust the right time to make people look to govt for a solution.

How "lucky" the timing is!
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Tell us what essential liberty you’ve given up post 9/11
You missed the one that provides part of the answer to your question:
He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
Thomas Paine (1737 - 1809)

That’s part of the answer. Another part would be a list including no-knock warrants, roving wiretaps, wiretaps without court order (in violation of the law), secret NSA letters, the various amendments to the PATRIOT act, etc. The final part — much more pernicious — is that I don’t know, nor do you, nor does nearly anone else what the government is doing. That is the problem. You say, trust them. I say, no. Let me lay another quote on you, though it’s probably from someone you don’t like:
Power always has to be kept in check; power exercised in secret, especially under the cloak of national security, is doubly dangerous.
William Proxmire
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
global warming hysteria
Yeah, let’s spend a trillion dollars in Iraq instead. Real smart.
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
That’s part of the answer. Another part would be a list including no-knock warrants, roving wiretaps, wiretaps without court order (in violation of the law), secret NSA letters, the various amendments to the PATRIOT act, etc. The final part — much more pernicious — is that I don’t know, nor do you, nor does nearly anone else what the government is doing. That is the problem. You say, trust them. I say, no. Let me lay another quote on you, though it’s probably from someone you don’t like:
All that stuff existed before the Patriot Act, it didn’t spring into being with the act. What essential freedom have you given up post 9/11? What temporary security did it buy?

I never said "trust them". Kindly stop putting words into my mouth, since you clearly don’t know the first thing about me. In fact, I don’t trust government at all. The problem I have is that you seem to trust what the Democrats do and not what the Republicans do. You have no problem with property rights being taken away, you have no problem with a huge chunk of your income going to useless programs...but the Patriot Act, oh, that’s bad.

Pardon me if I don’t buy into your hype here. I want to roll back what oppresses me directly first.
Yeah, let’s spend a trillion dollars in Iraq instead. Real smart.
We have a better chance of having something to show for our money in Iraq than global warming.
 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com/
We should have put all that Iraq money in the Social Security Trust Fund!
 
Written By: spongeworthy
URL: http://
The Democrats are the party that says government will make you smarter, taller, richer, and remove the crabgrass on your lawn. The Republicans are the party that says government doesn’t work and then they get elected and prove it.
- P. J. O’Rourke
 
Written By: racrecir
URL: http://
you seem to trust what the Democrats do and not what the Republicans do
Wrong. I thought Bill Clinton was a despicable creature. Utterly untrustworthy from his first breath in the morning to his last at night. But then George W. Bush came along and . . . well, Clinton actually doesn’t seem so bad now. I recognize the reality that government control over property is inevitable. Let’s face it: It is government that establishes and protects property rights, and that power includes regulation. Economic libertarians chafe at that, but it is a fact of life, and will become increasingly so as time goes on. It is simply inevitable. That surely doesn’t make all government programs good, of course. but in a civilized and developed world government programs are a fact of life. Speaking generally, individual freedoms and liberties are more important to me than property rights, though I recognize that even indiviual liberties may be curtailed in dangerous times like these. My goal is to resist, to question, to doubt government. Especially when it operates in secrecy as this Administration is wont to do. I am much less worried about what is done in the sunshine — hey, that’s how democracies should work — than what is done in the dark. I am at least as worried about Hillary Clinton inheriting George Bush’s powers as I am about Bush himself.
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
Yeah, let’s spend a trillion dollars in Iraq instead. Real smart.
We have a better chance of having something to show for our money in Iraq than global warming.

We should have put all that Iraq money in the Social Security Trust Fund!
Are you guys being intentionally obtuse. The tax money of American citizens should be spent in America. Not some foreign country. Hello . . .
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
Are you guys being intentionally obtuse. The tax money of American citizens should be spent in America. Not some foreign country. Hello . . .
UNLESS spending that money benfits the taxpayers, you know like transforming Japan/Germany/Iraq from nations we have to fight every decade or so into peaceful allies and useful partners. Uh Hello....
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
individual freedoms and liberties are more important to me than property rights
The right to own and control property is a fundamental individual right. You seem to forget why people came to this continent from Europe in the first place.
I recognize the reality that government control over property is inevitable. Let’s face it: It is government that establishes and protects property rights, and that power includes regulation.
There is a point where regulation becomes oppressive. Again, you rail against the Patriot act because you think it’s gone too far, but you don’t rail against far more pervasive government intrusions in the rest of life. The Patriot act is an easy target, try a more difficult and fundamental one.

Here’s what I’m talking about as far as environmental regulation:

A farmer in Riverside County, CA, had his property seized because while plowing his land he may have killed a Tipton’s Kangaroo Rat. Now, you’d be hard-pressed to see any kangaroo rat from the seat of a tractor, but it’s impossible to tell the difference between a Titpton’s and a regular kangaroo rat without dissecting them and inspecting the hip bone. The Tipton’s kangaroo rat may not even be a separate species, but the federal government declared it an endangered species, and some poor sot lost everything without a trial because of the Endangered Species Act. This case is hardly the only one of its kind.

Farmers in the midwest had their lands declared unusable due to the "fact" that they were now wetlands. What made them wetlands is someone flying by taking pictures after a rainstorm. Wow, water sometimes puddles...who’d have thought it? But the federal government used the EPA to declare farmland as wetlands.

If you’re not outraged by this, then all your wailing and gnashing of teeth is just an act to disguise your hatred of Bush.
Are you guys being intentionally obtuse. The tax money of American citizens should be spent in America. Not some foreign country. Hello . . .
No, tax money should be spent for the benefit of the the United States. That doesn’t necessarily mean spent only on US soil. And money spent in America isn’t necessarily to the benefit of the US, sometimes it’s counterproductive.

Are you really this simplistic about everything in life?
 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com/
So what does that mean? It should mean that presidential candidates who try to sell us more government in 2008 should meet a majority skeptical if not cynical electorate.
Unless the disapproval is based on a perception that the federal government is not doing enough, and they want it to do more, or they want to do what it has been done, they just want it done more competently???

With universal healthcare support polling in the 60% plus range, your interpretation may be incorrect.

On a humourous note, Republicans have been running on the idea that government is bad for years, and whenever they are in power, they prove it.

Cap
 
Written By: Captin Sarcastic
URL: http://
You have no problem with property rights being taken away, you have no problem with a huge chunk of your income going to useless programs

a) taxes will exist regardless of any social programs, unless you are an anarchist. b) taxes are fairly predictable and don’t really inhibit my comfortable life (and i doubt they inhibit yours) c) most importantly, taxes are not used against me, specifically, as an individual.

The government’s ability to detain me without trial passes none of those tests.

As for property rights: what are you talking about?



 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
Government efficiency is a function of the its institutional design, environment, and leadership, among other things. There’s neither a logical nor an empirical basis for a permanent efficiency deficit for government programs.
False.

Government intrinsically eliminates the market feedback mechanism (supply & demand), and also breaks down incentives towards productivity while increasing the incentive towards nonproductively.

Government always effect market feedback. Take Medicare for example. When Medicare was being pushed in the ‘60s, the government claimed it would never set doctors prices. But Medicare had the result of providing doctors with “rich” patients who could pay large bills without blinking and without any incentive to shop for lower prices. So doctors did what they did before Medicare, they charged the "rich" patients more. And when the government found out it was paying “too much” (more than non-government funded patients), it called this “Medicare fraud” (previously when real rich people paid more than the poor it was called “charity”). And, since the government had no inherent means of determining the “right” price, it put in place regulations that doctors had to contend with. Doctors than banded together and hired staffs of business specialists (HMOs) to help them sort out the government regulations. The result was higher medical prices all around, and a call for more government involvment in the medical system.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
"Among the findings: Barely half trust the government to handle international problems, the lowest number ever. And less than half express faith in the government handling domestic issues, the lowest findings since 1976"

This should be good news for Republicans. Not so good news for the Republican party.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Government efficiency is a function of the its institutional design, environment, and leadership, among other things. There’s neither a logical nor an empirical basis for a permanent efficiency deficit for government programs.
The Soviet Union

Communist China

North Korea

Sweden

Mexico

India (prior to about twenty years ago)

The US educational system

Medicare

The Veterans Administration

I could go on, but what’s the point? If you can look at that list and still conclude that government doesn’t have a "permanent efficiency deficit", then you’re hopeless. You don’t live in the real world. You live in some mythical utopia, in which selfless politicians and bureaucrats are capable of constantly and consistently making decisions against their own best interests for the greater good. Since that defies economics, psychology, and common sense, it’s obvious balderdash.

And, glas, it did not get past me that your argument is merely a dressed up version of "socialism works great - if the right people are in charge".

 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
UNLESS spending that money benfits the taxpayers, you know like transforming Japan/Germany/Iraq from nations we have to fight every decade or so into peaceful allies and useful partners.

I didn’t know that the U.S. had to fight Japan or Germany every 10 years before the Marshall Plan.

As for Iraq, the U.S. will never transform that country or that region into peaceful allies and useful partners by continuing to do what it’s been doing. And the hundreds of billions of dollars the U.S. is spending to try to turn Iraq into peaceful allies and useful partners is not benefiting this taxpayer at all. Quite the contrary. It’s hurting me, as well as my daughter’s future, incalculably.

Come to think of it, the transformation of Japan and Germany into peaceful allies and useful partners hasn’t benefited me either. Not in the slightest.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Come to think of it, the transformation of Japan and Germany into peaceful allies and useful partners hasn’t benefited me either. Not in the slightest.


Yeah, those Toyotas suck, and so do the BMWs. I prefered the Germans and Japanese when U-boats sank our shipping and carriers loaded with Kites, Vals, and Zeros plied the Pacific.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Come to think of it, the transformation of Japan and Germany into peaceful allies and useful partners hasn’t benefited me either. Not in the slightest
.


Yeah, those Toyotas suck, and so do the BMWs. I prefered the Germans and Japanese when U-boats sank our shipping and carriers loaded with Kites, Vals, and Zeros plied the Pacific.
Well said....
UNLESS spending that money benfits the taxpayers, you know like transforming Japan/Germany/Iraq from nations we have to fight every decade or so into peaceful allies and useful partners.
I didn’t know that the U.S. had to fight Japan or Germany every 10 years before the Marshall Plan.
Sure as as Tom Lehrer sang:
"We taught Germans a lesson in 1918/
And they’ve hardly bothered us since then."
Take a history class then Kathy, and BTW the US planned and the Japanese planned to fight one another from about 1904 on...the Second World War/Great Pacific War was a long time coming, and millions were spent on it PRIOR to Dec. 1941. Again take a history class now and again, I mean a REAL history class, not the "A Social History of the D*ldo: Perspectives on Victorian Sexism" or a class on HERstory, then. It’s amazing what you can learn.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
You don’t think perhaps that lack of confidence is because the people currently in charge are amazingly incompetent?
Well since it includes Congress, you can answer your own question, Oliver.

I’d say for some it certainly has to do with Iraq, but certainly not just the administration on that issue. After all, wasn’t 2006 about stopping that war? And have they?

For a good number of others, there’s the total abrogation of responsibility by the fed (that means both the administration and Congress) concerning the immigration issue.

As I see it those are two of the top three issues for the upcoming election. So yeah, it means all of them, Congress and the administration, are amazingly incompetent.

What you get to prove - given the sad state of Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and Education before the present crops of incompetents were in charge - is that it was ever any better.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
"We taught Germans a lesson in 1918/
And they’ve hardly bothered us since then."
Yeah, but Joe, 1918 to 1941 was more than 10 years.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
You guys crack me up. It’s OK to spent billions (trillions before it’s said and done) in Iraq on everything under the sun and with little to no accountability. Schools, roads, police forces, you name it, we are buying everything for the Iraqis. Yet you contend — with a straight face presumably - that this is money well spent because it indirectly helps America. Then you criticize the very same expenditures when they are made in America and for Americans. You argue — again seriously, I suppose — that it is better to spend American taxpayer money — my money — in Iraq than in the U.S. I disagree.

At least with domestic programs we have some input into what is being done, and there is some accountability, albeit far from perfect. The money appropriated for and spent in Iraq is 100% unaccountable. Gee, do you think there’s much waste, corruption, and fraud going on there? You bemoan the horrible sin of inhibiting a person’s use of their property in order to protect wetlands, but it is perfectly acceptable to send that same person to get their legs blown off in some godforsaken desert.

But it’s all good: Iraq uber alles. GWOT. Pip pip.
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
David,

The thing is, we have to kill the bad guys. And experience shows that rebuilding the bad guy’s country can benifit us. The Japanese used to rape Chinese women to death and bomb American ships, now they make cars, radios, TVs, and other crap that’s pretty cool. Granted it took a while, but I think it was a good return on investment.

The domestic programs tend towards breaking the supply/demand feedback loop, punishing productivity and rewarding sloth. Their main value is that they make guilty white liberals feel better, but the return on investment is otherwise negative.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
The thing is, we have to kill the bad guys. And experience shows that rebuilding the bad guy’s country can benifit us. The Japanese used to rape Chinese women to death and bomb American ships, now they make cars, radios, TVs, and other crap that’s pretty cool. Granted it took a while, but I think it was a good return on investment.

The domestic programs tend towards breaking the supply/demand feedback loop, punishing productivity and rewarding sloth. Their main value is that they make guilty white liberals feel better, but the return on investment is otherwise negative.
Don, I agree that some domestic programs — especially in the tail end of Liberalism’s predominance — were indeed "punishing productivity and rewarding sloth." I also agree eliminating such progams or re-designing them is absoltely the right thing to do. Most of the country agrees, as well. Hence the decline of Liberalism and the ascendancy of Conservatism. Helping Americans who need help is the right thing to do. Abandoning New Orleans, especially while building Iraq, was the wrong thing to do. America first. And that generally means the money goes to Americans, rather than foreigners. This idea that constructing Iraq is a good return on investment . . . Well, let me ask you this: Do you honestly think that a prudent business person would say that Iraq is a good investment?
 
Written By: David Shaughnessy
URL: http://
Abandoning New Orleans, especially while building Iraq, was the wrong thing to do
Uh Dude, check your HISTORY, we didn’t or did you forget the Billions pledged and already spent in NOLA? NOLA’s problems aren’t the Fed’s so much as a pervasive culture of corruption...HEH< just like Iraq!? Let’s withdraw from NOLA, too. Nice try, though Dave, please try again....
Well, let me ask you this: Do you honestly think that a prudent business person would say that Iraq is a good investment?
I don’t know as compared to what? Iraq under the Hussein’s building WMD’s and threatening their oil-rich neighbors? Gee, let’s see; the chance of a new Korea/Taiwan/Japan/Budesrepublik OR more of the vicious kleptocratic regime that has sparked two wars in the region? I don’t know Dave, which would YOU invest in?
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Yeah, those Toyotas suck, and so do the BMWs.

Are you effin’ SERIOUS? Are you seriously telling me that the rebuilding of Japan and Germany after WWII benefited me as a taxpayer because now we have Toyota and BMW dealerships on every corner?

If that is the best and most important benefit you can think of, your values and priorities are seriously f***ked up, my friend. And the others here who tell you "Well done!" I can’t believe it. All I can say in reply is that the things that are important to me, and to my daughter and my friends and acquaintances and most of the people I know, and that we expect to have for the taxes we pay, are things that we are less and less likely to have, and that we are actually losing, to the extent that we ever had them, because of the hundreds of billions of dollars that are being poured into endless war in the Middle East.

 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Abandoning New Orleans, especially while building Iraq, was the wrong thing to do. America first. And that generally means the money goes to Americans, rather than foreigners. This idea that constructing Iraq is a good return on investment . . .
It’s implied that you think rebuilding New Orleans would be a good investment. That’s the same thinking that drives cheap federal flood insurance in hurricane-exposed areas.

Much of New Orleans is under sea level. And it continues to sink. (And, if you believe the global warming alarmists, sea levels are going to rise!) The flooding disaster could have happened in 1992 from Hurricane Andrew, but it turned north a half hour too late to hit New Orleans head on and passed a bit to the west.

And it’s not just hurricanes. The levees are also subject to terrorist attack, flooding the city with no evacuation warning ahead of time.

I’m sorry those folks lost their homes. But this potential problem has been well known for decades. I guess I could see waiting until the disaster hit, rather than speculatively abandoning the place. But rebuilding the entire city is just silly. It might make sense, as a major transportation port and all, to rebuild a third of it.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
Are you seriously telling me that the rebuilding of Japan and Germany after WWII benefited me as a taxpayer because now we have Toyota and BMW dealerships on every corner?
I see. So you think it would be better for BMW and Toyota to be building tanks for the next war against us?
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
The thing is, we have to kill the bad guys. And experience shows that rebuilding the bad guy’s country can benifit us. The Japanese used to rape Chinese women to death and bomb American ships, now they make cars, radios, TVs, and other crap that’s pretty cool. Granted it took a while, but I think it was a good return on investment.

Don, I have no idea how old you are, but you come off like a 16-year-old with a particularly underdeveloped grip on morality.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
David: Do you honestly think that a prudent business person would say that Iraq is a good investment?
Probably not short term, but long term is another matter. Investments include risks.
Kathy: Are you effin’ SERIOUS? Are you seriously telling me that the rebuilding of Japan and Germany after WWII benefited me as a taxpayer because now we have Toyota and BMW dealerships on every corner?
Our trade with Germany and Japan has significantly benifited all Americans. And most people around the world. Since you are presumbably typing this at a computer, that likely includes you.

Trade with market oriented democracies kicks butt.

One point, however. The Marshall Plan didn’t really rebuild Germany, it was mostly aimed at rebuilding our allies, and Germany was included late. Further, it didn’t fully offset what Germany had to pay the allies. Germany’s post war success was rooted in free markets and low taxes.

That said, we must break the bad guys. And history shows that countries need to develop properly so the bad guys don’t return.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Don, I have no idea how old you are, but you come off like a 16-year-old with a particularly underdeveloped grip on morality.
I was born in the first half of 1963.

As far as morality, yeah, prefering a Japan that is based upon trade vs a Japan based upon bombs and rapes does seem underdeveloped.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
So you think it would be better for BMW and Toyota to be building tanks for the next war against us?

Actually, I think it would be better if my government considered education to be a national security issue, so Pres. Bush would ask Congress for an extra $50 billion to create a world-class public school curriculum for all children in the U.S., so there would not be so many adults running around who believe that if Toyota and BMW didn’t have dealerships on every corner, they would be building tanks to start a war against us.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Actually, I think it would be better if my government considered education to be a national security issue, so Pres. Bush would ask Congress for an extra $50 billion to create a world-class public school curriculum for all children in the U.S., so there would not be so many adults running around who believe that if Toyota and BMW didn’t have dealerships on every corner, they would be building tanks to start a war against us.


Maybe the "world-class public school curriculum" could solve the run-on sentence problem as well.

 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
As far as morality, yeah, prefering a Japan that is based upon trade vs a Japan based upon bombs and rapes does seem underdeveloped.

Except that that’s not the moral position you expressed in the comment to which I responded. Here is what you said:

"The thing is, we have to kill the bad guys. And experience shows that rebuilding the bad guy’s country can benifit us. The Japanese used to rape Chinese women to death and bomb American ships, now they make cars, radios, TVs, and other crap that’s pretty cool. Granted it took a while, but I think it was a good return on investment."

That is not expressing the idea that it’s preferable to have a Japan based on trade versus a Japan based on bombs and rape. It’s expressing the idea that killing millions of people and destroying their countries is a good way to make money. That’s why I said you came off like a 16-year-old with a particularly underdeveloped morality.

 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Maybe the "world-class public school curriculum" could solve the run-on sentence problem as well.

Mmmmm, calling that a run-on sentence is a bit of an exaggeration. It’s long, I’ll grant you that. Here, tell you what, I’ll break it into two sentences:

"Actually, I think it would be better if my government considered education to be a national security issue, so Pres. Bush would ask Congress for $50 billion every couple of months to create a world-class public school curriculum for all children in the U.S. Maybe then there would not be so many adults running around who believe that if Toyota and BMW didn’t have dealerships on every corner, they would be building tanks to start a war against us."

And that "every couple of months" I added because I had meant to include that in the sentence to start with.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
It’s expressing the idea that killing millions of people and destroying their countries is a good way to make money.


You can invest more than money, and a return on an investment can be more than just money.

Our ROI in this case is a peaceful Japan that engages in trade, not war, rape, and eating American POWs.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Actually, I think it would be better if my government considered education to be a national security issue, so Pres. Bush would ask Congress for an extra $50 billion to create a world-class public school curriculum for all children in the U.S., so there would not be so many adults running around who believe that if Toyota and BMW didn’t have dealerships on every corner, they would be building tanks to start a war against us.
You’re reaching, Kathy. I think Don had it about right.

Your solution to the education problem is to throw more money at it, this time at the federal level? Now there’s an original idea.

I have to say, though that you have chutzpah. Anyone who you can espouse such positions and still call your blog libertystreetusa is either shameless or capable of extreme cognitive dissonance.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
Actually, I think it would be better if my government considered education to be a national security issue, so Pres. Bush would ask Congress for $50 billion every couple of months to create a world-class public school curriculum for all children in the U.S.
I’d be more inclined to go to a private school system. Schools are not likely to improve with more money. The way to improvement is to make them more directly accountable to parents.

One thing that any socialized system tends to do is erode consumer control, and hence quality. The people paying the $$$ are in charge, and if that’s the government, they tend to delegate control to the bureaucrats. The bureaucrats in question could be the teacher’s union or the nurses union, but in any case their priority does not correspond with the consumers.

If parents pay, the parents will be in charge.

And a side benefit: we could stop this haggling over “God” and prayer in school.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
You can invest more than money, and a return on an investment can be more than just money.
I’m not sure that I was clear; investments and ROI don’t have to involve money at all.

For example, I could invest a vodka in Kathy, anticipating an ROI that doesn’t involve money.

Oh and Kathy: yep, in some ways I haven’t matured past 16.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Under this President Bush, education outlays have more than doubled (as of 2005 the budget was almost 73 billion. Under the last Clinton budget it was 35.7 billion (the last budget of GHW Bush was 30.1 billion, Clinton cut it by 5.5 billion with his first budget to 24.6) The 2006 estimate was nearly 84 billion, while the 2007 estimate was nearly 64.5 billion, I don’t know what the final figures are for those years).
http://origin.www.gpoaccess.gov/usbudget/fy07/pdf/hist.pdf
 
Written By: anonymous
URL: http://
Is anyone running on the platform of killing Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, etc.? No. Didn’t think so.
 
Written By: Oliver
URL: http://www.oliverwillis.com
Is anyone running on the platform of killing Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, etc.? No. Didn’t think so.
What has that to do with competency, efficiency or confidence in the federal government?

As usual, Oliver dodges the point.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Our trade with Germany and Japan has significantly benifited all Americans. And most people around the world. Since you are presumbably typing this at a computer, that likely includes you.

I agree that having access to affordable consumer goods is a benefit. But it’s not the highest or greatest benefit, and certainly not the only benefit, of living in a truly civilized and humane society. Personal computers and the contemporary technology explosion would have happened with or without WWII. And there are many other ways to develop such technologies and consumer goods without having to go to war.

Maybe a clarification is in order. I don’t think it’s objectionable that the U.S. rebuilt Japan and Germany. The point is, Germany and Japan were rebuilt because they were destroyed in war. What I’m objecting to is the idea that war is an attractive proposition because it is profitable.

Here is your quote again:

"The thing is, we have to kill the bad guys. And experience shows that rebuilding the bad guy’s country can benifit us. The Japanese used to rape Chinese women to death and bomb American ships, now they make cars, radios, TVs, and other crap that’s pretty cool. Granted it took a while, but I think it was a good return on investment."

We don’t HAVE to kill "the bad guys." Killing is NOT the only option for dealing with human beings who do bad things. And "bad guys" is SUCH a simplistic, cartoonish way to think about human wrongdoing. Isn’t it? I mean, come on. We’re not six years old anymore.

Destroying a country is not the only option for dealing with governments that do bad things. BUT, if rebuilding "the bad guy’s" country is so hugely profitable for us, and if the only way to rebuild "the bad guy’s" country is to destroy it first, then it actually becomes desirable to destroy the countries of bad guys. And that means, of course, that it is to the United States’s benefit to always be on the lookout for bad guys, so we can destroy the countries they come from and reap huge profits in rebuilding them.

Here is another way to put what I’m trying to say. There are two ways to think about war. One is that war is very, very profitable, and since there will always be "bad guys," war is the best way to deal with them because we will make money rebuilding their country. The second way to look at war is that war is very, very destructive and traumatic, in many more ways than just the obvious physical ways. And since there will always be bad guys, no matter how many wars we fight, we should be looking for ways to deal with "bad guys" other than war.

If you are looking at war as a money-making venture in which human lives are the "investment," then the worth of those human lives will always be in direct proportion to how much money that "investment" will yield. And then you begin to see war as really not such a bad thing — at least as long as it’s not your country that’s being destroyed so some other superpower can rebuild it and recoup their investment.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Your solution to the education problem is to throw more money at it, this time at the federal level? Now there’s an original idea.

And your solution to the education problem is to starve the public education system.

Yes, Billy, it’s a very bizarre thing, but you get what you pay for. If you want to build something good, you have to spend money. Teachers don’t work for free, and the best cost more money. School buildings are not indestructible; books have to be less than 50 years old; sometimes new school buildings actually have to be built. It all costs money. I know it’s a shock.

Just close your eyes and where in your mind’s eye you see the words "public schools," just substitute the words, "Iraq war." Okay, you can open your eyes. Now do you agree that the solution to the education problem is to throw more money at it?
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
I have to say, though that you have chutzpah. Anyone who you can espouse such positions and still call your blog libertystreetusa is either shameless or capable of extreme cognitive dissonance.

There is no liberty without education. And if you think that taking money away from American children to fight a war that has engendered nothing but corruption, murder, and terror has anything to do with liberty, then it’s you who is shameless.

By the way, the name of my blog comes from the fact that when I started it, I lived a block away from a Liberty Street. I thought it was a cool name for a political blog.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
We don’t HAVE to kill "the bad guys." Killing is NOT the only option for dealing with human beings who do bad things. And "bad guys" is SUCH a simplistic, cartoonish way to think about human wrongdoing. Isn’t it? I mean, come on. We’re not six years old anymore.


Obviously I was being flippant.

That said, there really are bad guys out there. And, generally speaking, it’s best when they die.

Of course, the sad thing is that (using the WW2 Japanese as an example), our firebombing of Japanese cities killed thousands of civilians, yet many of the criminal that raped their way through Nanking or experimented on living humans survived.

I read one account where the Japanese shot a healthy Chinese civilian, and a Japanese doctor was then told to remove the bullet. The Chinese was allowed to die afterwards; he was simply used for practice. Can I call those Japanese bad? The account was written by the Japanese doctor, by the way.
Here is another way to put what I’m trying to say. There are two ways to think about war. One is that war is very, very profitable, and since there will always be "bad guys," war is the best way to deal with them because we will make money rebuilding their country.
Rebuilding countries, in itself, isn’t profitable. It’s costly in fact.

What’s profitable is trading with productive nations.

We have to, at times, deal with bad people using the tools of war (let’s leave aside whether Iraq is one of those times for the moment, let’s see if we can agree on this basic principle).

When we are done using the tools of war, it makes sense to rebuild the country so that it’s productive. That way you: 1) don’t have to go to war with it again, and 2) get a profitable trade partner.
Destroying a country is not the only option for dealing with governments that do bad things. BUT, if rebuilding "the bad guy’s" country is so hugely profitable for us, and if the only way to rebuild "the bad guy’s" country is to destroy it first, then it actually becomes desirable to destroy the countries of bad guys.
Generally speaking, war is the way to deal with bad governments. Reagan took care of the USSR with a Cold War, but that was an exceptional case (and the Cold War is best viewed as a war).

Dialogue is of limted value when dealing with the bad guys (yes, I know, that word again). Embargoos can kill more innocents than war. Options are limited.

And once again, rebuilding countries isn’t profitable. What’s profitable is dealing with the productive, rebuilt country. And that profit isn’t limited to the US, but to all who trade with the country.



 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Yes, Billy, it’s a very bizarre thing, but you get what you pay for.
In the marketplace, sure. Not so much when throwing moeny into socialism.
If you want to build something good, you have to spend money. Teachers don’t work for free, and the best cost more money. School buildings are not indestructible; books have to be less than 50 years old; sometimes new school buildings actually have to be built. It all costs money. I know it’s a shock.
And a private system would provide more quality and value.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Yes, Billy, it’s a very bizarre thing, but you get what you pay for.
Don hit the main point. I would add that the last time I checked the US was in the top ten countries in the world in per capita education spending. Also that the highest spending locales in the US are Washington, DC and Philadelphia, PA, and both are known for having education systems that suck toxic waste.

If you had said something about injecting some competition into education, I would have taken you seriously when you talked about spending more money on it.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
Yes, Billy, it’s a very bizarre thing, but you get what you pay for.
No, Kathy, you only get what you pay for in a competitive market. In a monopoly, you pay for what you get, no matter how bad it is or how much is charged.
 
Written By: Random Numbers
URL: http://randomnumbers.us
Billy Hollis;

You may want to add Great Britain(pre-Thatcher, of course) to your list.

**********************

"We don’t HAVE to kill "the bad guys." Killing is NOT the only option for dealing with human beings who do bad things."

Right. We could have given Tojo and Hitler a time out.

"And "bad guys" is SUCH a simplistic, cartoonish way to think about human wrongdoing. Isn’t it? I mean, come on. We’re not six years old anymore........"

" shrew
n 1: a scolding nagging bad-tempered woman [syn: termagant]"

Lighten up.


 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
David said:
He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.
And then David says this:
Yeah, let’s spend a trillion dollars in Iraq instead. Real smart.
David, you don’t agree with what you offered in the first quote? I think the money spent in Iraq meets the goal you espouse in the quote, "He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression;"
 
Written By: tom scott
URL: http://
In a monopoly, you pay for what you get, no matter how bad it is or how much is charged.

That must be why the firefighters and police officers in your town are so incompetent and do such a terrible job.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
And a private system would provide more quality and value.

Not necessarily. My daughter went to a public high school in a town that is about one-third African-American and the rest other ethnicities (Asian, Middle Eastern, European-American, etc.). The high school reflects that demographic diversity. This high school also has mini-schools within it. They’re not physically separate; they’re just programs that integrate the curriculum around a particular focus. The mini-schools are performing arts, civics and government, and social justice. Students can choose one of the mini-schools, or can choose the plain vanilla regular program. My daughter chose social justice. She studied social justice movements in the U.S. through history and literature. She also took Spanish, statistics, phys. ed., creative writing, and more — these courses were outside the center for social justice, just in the regular curriculum.

My daughter received a high-quality, extremely valuable education in this school — much better than she could have gotten in most private schools. Why? Because she was part of a racially, ethnically, and economically diverse student body that reflects the real world. And because she and her classmates were encouraged to think independently and speak frankly even when what they had to say was controversial. She was exposed to authors and writing styles and subject matters that are not heard from or taught routinely. I believe that the quality of her high school education far exceeded anything she could have received in a private school where the student body is likely to be very economically and racially and ethnically homogenous. And she does, too.

My daughter is now a freshman at Barnard College, which is the women’s liberal arts college at Columbia University. It was her first choice school.

I would not exchange the education she got at a public high school for all the insular private schools in the world.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
My daughter chose social justice.
Why does that not surprise me?

And your blog name is becoming more ironic with every comment you make.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
That said, there really are bad guys out there. And, generally speaking, it’s best when they die.

During the century that followed the Civil War, except for a brief period during Reconstruction, black Americans were tortured, murdered, beaten, lynched, mutilated, and terrorized on a daily basis, all over the South. Even though the 13th Amendment gave former slaves the right to vote, in reality black Americans could not vote anywhere in the South. In some counties in the South where not a single black person had voted for 100 years (Lowndes County in Alabama was one of those). When Martin Luther King, Jr., started the campaign for voting rights, people risked their lives and all too many lost their lives to fight for that right. Black people who marched or tried to register to vote were attacked, beaten, murdered, terrorized by the Klan, their homes burned down. Four little black girls were murdered when white terrorists bombed the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham. Not all the victims of white terrorist violence were black, either. James Chaney, Michael Schwerner, and Andrew Goodman were shot to death by white racists, and the second two of those were white. Viola Liuzzo was a white woman who became involved in the voting rights campaign. She was murdered by white scum who shot her from a speeding car that shattered her car window and killed her as she was driving.

Were the Southern whites who did these things, and much, much more, bad guys? Obviously, they were. They were evil, wicked men. Would it have been best if all of them had died? In fact, most of the guilty parties in these atrocities and others like them, far from being made to die, were acquitted by all-white juries if their cases even went to trial.

My point is that anybody can be a bad guy. Not everybody will be, but everybody can be, and many have been whom I’m sure you would not consider "the enemy." But it’s only certain types of bad guys, from certain countries and of certain backgrounds, of whom people like you say that generally speaking it’s best when they die.

Of course, the sad thing is that (using the WW2 Japanese as an example), our firebombing of Japanese cities killed thousands of civilians, yet many of the criminal that raped their way through Nanking or experimented on living humans survived.


Our firebombing of Japanese cities, and our nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, were just as much deliberate, knowing, intentional killings of innocents as the rapes of Chinese women by Japanese soldiers were. Why is it that the mass rapes were "criminal" but the mass firebombings and the two nuclear bombings were merely "sad"?

I read one account where the Japanese shot a healthy Chinese civilian, and a Japanese doctor was then told to remove the bullet. The Chinese was allowed to die afterwards; he was simply used for practice. Can I call those Japanese bad?

Can I used the word "bad" to describe the Klansmen who put one bullet each through the hearts of Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, and 3 bullets through the heart of James Chaney (after they had severely beaten him)?

Those Japanese soldiers who raped Chinese women and murdered Chinese civilians for target practice were bad men, obviously, but not because they were Japanese. They were bad men because they did bad things. There is no monopoly on badness by religion, ethnicity, or national origin. If you call Japanese soldiers who committed atrocities in wartime bad, then you have to call the American soldiers who committed atrocities at My Lai bad, and you have to call the men who murdered Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner bad, too. In fact, I would call them monsters. It’s hard for me to even think of them as human, although I know they were, and that’s the point.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
And your blog name is becoming more ironic with every comment you make.

Billy, you only think that because you’ve got your poles reversed with regard to what "liberty" means.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
That must be why the firefighters and police officers in your town are so incompetent and do such a terrible job.
(sigh) You haven’t got a clue, have you? You still have no choice but to take what is given, and pay for it, no matter ther quality.

I think the whole problem here is that you are talking about government, while I am talking about commerce. Neither police nor fire departments engage in commerce. They instead work for the government to protect the tools of commerce. There is no other customer for them but the government, thus they are a natural monopoly with a single customer.

Schools on the other hand, are an enforced monopoly since they have multiple customers who have no choice, in many cases, but to accept what is offered at whatever cost is demanded.

(You will note I said demanded, not asked. Government takes, under threat, the taxes it demands for education. You pay up or lose your property, your liberty, or your life.)
I would not exchange the education she got at a public high school for all the insular private schools in the world.
I am willing to bet that the schools in your area are, in fact, in competition with other schools. You probably live in an area where a large percentage of parents have the means to send their kids to private schools, so the public school, in order to keep the kids there, has to perform. Compare that with a large city school system where there is little, if any, competition because the parents it "serves" are unable to afford private schools. In such systems the one-size-fits-all approach of teaching to the lowest common denominator rules.

My own daughter, who graduates next year, attends an "insular" private school with a similar racial mix to your own. It is an arts school, and she is in the music program. My father-in-law is paying most of the tuition, as I haven’t the means to do so and he loves his musical granddaughter. She plays 27 instruments well, 14 of them extremely well. She reads the most complex scores I have ever seen like they were bold text.
She could never have recieved this level of education from a public school, and I would put her experiences up to your little girl’s any time.

You wouldn’t like her, though, since her thinking is to the right of Fidel and she thinks Che sucks. (’Atta-Girl!)
 
Written By: Random Numbers
URL: http://randomnumbers.us
a) taxes will exist regardless of any social programs, unless you are an anarchist. b) taxes are fairly predictable and don’t really inhibit my comfortable life (and i doubt they inhibit yours) c) most importantly, taxes are not used against me, specifically, as an individual.
(a) I never said taxes shouldn’t exist. Stop using strawmen.

(b) Taxes are not all that predictable, they can change any time Congress wants them to change. Whether they inhibit your life is immaterial to how the tax money is spent.

(c) Yes, they are. Your taxes fund agencies such as the EPA which regulate away your right to control your property. That’s just one example. You may not see how taxes are used against you, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

As for property rights taken away, I’ve already illustrated how misguided environmental laws have stripped others of their rights.
 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com/
You guys crack me up. It’s OK to spent billions (trillions before it’s said and done) in Iraq on everything under the sun and with little to no accountability. Schools, roads, police forces, you name it, we are buying everything for the Iraqis. Yet you contend — with a straight face presumably - that this is money well spent because it indirectly helps America.
Gee, David... I would have thought you’d see building a freindship is cheaper than fighting a war. You may not want to believe this, but we now have a good working relationship with Iraq... far better than before the Shah came to town.

And just as an aside, allow me to point out that the most efficient and effective government in history was Nazi Germany.



 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
Our firebombing of Japanese cities, and our nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, were just as much deliberate, knowing, intentional killings of innocents as the rapes of Chinese women by Japanese soldiers were. Why is it that the mass rapes were "criminal" but the mass firebombings and the two nuclear bombings were merely "sad"?
The matter of firebombing is somewhat complex; for example, the Brits firebombed Dresden simply as an act of revenge or terror. However, the US firebombing of Japan was generally done with the intent to defeat Japan and bring about the end of the war.

Within the USAAF, there were discussion and disagrements over the firebombing of Japan. Some of our generals considered it ineffective in ending the war, and felt it should be ended.

However, the atomic bombing was effective. At the least, it gave Japan an honorable "out", since they couldn’t face such a weapon (they were also terrified of the Red Army, which would have also invaded).

The effectiveness of the atomic bombs justifies their use: they saved lives. They saved Japanese lives, and more importantly, American lives (1945 was a good year to consider American lives more important than Japanese lives).

The alternatives to the atomic bomb were invasion and blockade. Invasion would mean heavy American losses and huge Japanese losses, and with the Red Army involved, mass rape of any Japanese women who didn’t commit suicide before falling into Soviet hands. Blockade meant starvation for the Japanese, with they young and weak the first to die, and the remaining food saved for the Japanese army and government.

The Japanese inflicted mass rapes and murders on a subjagated population. It was atrocity pure and simple, with no military goal. The indivdual Japanese soldiers as well as their leaders committed massive war crimes.

Dresden was also an atrocity, since the firebombing there also had no military goal. However, Dresden did not demonstrate the same level of personal visciousness that Nanking did; in fact, except for the high level planners (like Churchill), the men who carried out Dresden conducted it as a typical military raid.
Those Japanese soldiers who raped Chinese women and murdered Chinese civilians for target practice were bad men, obviously, but not because they were Japanese. They were bad men because they did bad things. There is no monopoly on badness by religion, ethnicity, or national origin. If you call Japanese soldiers who committed atrocities in wartime bad, then you have to call the American soldiers who committed atrocities at My Lai bad,
Right, evil is an even better term. Americans can be evil too, but there is a difference.

With the Japanese in WW2, evil acts were widespread. Their treatment of civilians and POWs was atrocious. Japanese units serving in China and Korea gained respect as being "expert" in rape. Japanese soldiers sent photos of their atrocities back to Japan, to share with friends.

With the Japanese, acts such as My Lai were typical, not the exception. At My Lai, American troops tried to protect the civilians, and testified about the atrocity. The Japanese didn’t blink at the atrocities their men committed, their leadership supported it, and it was typical behaviour at all levels.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Our firebombing of Japanese cities, and our nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, were just as much deliberate, knowing, intentional killings of innocents as the rapes of Chinese women by Japanese soldiers were. Why is it that the mass rapes were "criminal" but the mass firebombings and the two nuclear bombings were merely "sad"?
The matter of firebombing is somewhat complex; for example, the Brits firebombed Dresden simply as an act of revenge or terror. However, the US firebombing of Japan was generally done with the intent to defeat Japan and bring about the end of the war.

Within the USAAF, there were discussion and disagrements over the firebombing of Japan. Some of our generals considered it ineffective in ending the war, and felt it should be ended.

However, the atomic bombing was effective. At the least, it gave Japan an honorable "out", since they couldn’t face such a weapon (they were also terrified of the Red Army, which would have also invaded).

The effectiveness of the atomic bombs justifies their use: they saved lives. They saved Japanese lives, and more importantly, American lives (1945 was a good year to consider American lives more important than Japanese lives).

The alternatives to the atomic bomb were invasion and blockade. Invasion would mean heavy American losses and huge Japanese losses, and with the Red Army involved, mass rape of any Japanese women who didn’t commit suicide before falling into Soviet hands. Blockade meant starvation for the Japanese, with they young and weak the first to die, and the remaining food saved for the Japanese army and government.

The Japanese inflicted mass rapes and murders on a subjagated population. It was atrocity pure and simple, with no military goal. The indivdual Japanese soldiers as well as their leaders committed massive war crimes.

Dresden was also an atrocity, since the firebombing there also had no military goal. However, Dresden did not demonstrate the same level of personal visciousness that Nanking did; in fact, except for the high level planners (like Churchill), the men who carried out Dresden conducted it as a typical military raid.
Those Japanese soldiers who raped Chinese women and murdered Chinese civilians for target practice were bad men, obviously, but not because they were Japanese. They were bad men because they did bad things. There is no monopoly on badness by religion, ethnicity, or national origin. If you call Japanese soldiers who committed atrocities in wartime bad, then you have to call the American soldiers who committed atrocities at My Lai bad,
Right, evil is an even better term. Americans can be evil too, but there is a difference.

With the Japanese in WW2, evil acts were widespread. Their treatment of civilians and POWs was atrocious. Japanese units serving in China and Korea gained respect as being "expert" in rape. Japanese soldiers sent photos of their atrocities back to Japan, to share with friends.

With the Japanese, acts such as My Lai were typical, not the exception. At My Lai, American troops tried to protect the civilians, and testified about the atrocity. The Japanese didn’t blink at the atrocities their men committed, their leadership supported it, and it was typical behaviour at all levels.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
You still have no choice but to take what is given, and pay for it, no matter ther quality.

As opposed to public firefighting and police services, in which there is something else you can choose if you don’t like the quality of the taxpayer-provided services?

Not to mention that your premise isn’t even true. My then-husband and I moved to the town where my daughter went to school because (well, in large part because) the schools had such a great reputation. And every day, parents just like us are choosing places to live based on the quality of the school system.

I think the whole problem here is that you are talking about government, while I am talking about commerce. Neither police nor fire departments engage in commerce. They instead work for the government to protect the tools of commerce. There is no other customer for them but the government, thus they are a natural monopoly with a single customer.

Schools on the other hand, are an enforced monopoly since they have multiple customers who have no choice, in many cases, but to accept what is offered at whatever cost is demanded.


Since when do public schools engage in commerce? Fire and police departments are taxpayer-paid public safety services. Public schools are taxpayer-paid public education services. Your "natural monopoly/enforced monopoly" distinction is nonsense. Fire and police departments have the same customers as public schools do, and those customers have the same choices: to choose where to live based on the quality of the public services.

(You will note I said demanded, not asked. Government takes, under threat, the taxes it demands for education. You pay up or lose your property, your liberty, or your life.)


Uh, yes, that’s the nature of taxes. They are mandatory. Government also takes, under threat, the taxes it demands for municipal fire and police services. And government, believe it or not, also takes, under threat, the taxes it demands for invading and occupying Iraq for four years and counting. The government takes, under threat, the taxes it demands for maintaining a military occupation of Iraq for the next 50 years. The government takes, under threat, the taxes it demands to massively bomb Iran, if Dick Cheney gets his way. The government will take, under threat, the taxes it will need for the $200 BILLION Pres. Bush is asking Congress to approve in 2008 for Iraq war spending alone.

If I don’t pay those taxes, I go to jail. And I get absolutely nothing for the war taxes I pay. I get nothing in return. There is no benefit for me in endless war, endless occupation, endless weapons build-up. There ARE beneficiaries, of course — defense contractors, oil company executives, etc. But I’m not in that club.

I am willing to bet that the schools in your area are, in fact, in competition with other schools.

This is true, and a fair point.

You probably live in an area where a large percentage of parents have the means to send their kids to private schools, so the public school, in order to keep the kids there, has to perform.

This is true, to a certain extent, but it’s not the whole truth. Competition from private schools did not keep my former (because I don’t live there anymore) town’s government from eliminating the funding for a public prekindergarten program that was nationally recognized and had won awards for its educational achievements. There was a HUUUUGE storm of controversy over that at the time it was being threatened (it happened over a period of years; the town kept cutting the funding for the program, then eliminated it altogether). It made no fiscal sense, because the program was actually working, and it was extremely popular with parents. It drew new families to the town, us among them.

What keeps the schools in that town high-quality is the taxes we pay, plus the icing of the affluent parents who live there. (We weren’t in that group, btw; this town is very economically diverse — one of the things we liked about it — and we were definitely below the midpoint of that range.) It’s the parents who pay for a lot of the "extras" that make one school system so much more attractive than another. Parents fill in the gap between the taxes and what the school needs.

My point is: It’s not solely competition from private schools that keeps public schools in areas like mine high-quality: it’s the fact that our taxes are higher than in surrounding towns whose school systems have fair or poor reputations; and it’s also because a sizable segment of parents in this town have the means to provide the things that make the school system better for *everyone.*

Compare that with a large city school system where there is little, if any, competition because the parents it "serves" are unable to afford private schools. In such systems the one-size-fits-all approach of teaching to the lowest common denominator rules.

I disagree. It’s not because the parents in those communities are unable to afford private schools that the schools are poor (they’re not able to; but that’s not the explanation). It’s because parents in those communities don’t have the money or power or political savvy to be able to advocate for their children. Private schools are not going to locate themselves in the economically depressed areas where these families live. The students there (not all, but many) have multiple educational deficits, are years behind grade level, come from families with appalling problems that consume their lives. (I can list some for you; I taught in these schools for a while.)
You are the "free" market maven; you are the one who believes so highly in the power of the profit motive, so you should know: Private schools are not motivated by a sense of the public good. Their guiding principle, their raison d’etre, does not spring from the notion that econoic and social status should not affect the quality of education a child receives, because an educated populace is essential to a healthy democracy. Their guiding principle is profit. Private schools are in business to make money. There is no money to be made from desperately poor parents, many for whom English is not their native language, and who are dealing with multiple family traumas, and are gravely under-educated themselves. Why on earth would private schools want to take on children with educational problems as overwhelming as the children in urban school districts?

My own daughter, who graduates next year, attends an "insular" private school with a similar racial mix to your own. It is an arts school, and she is in the music program.

Hey. To each their own, you know. It sounds like your daughter is getting a wonderful education, and her talent is being nurtured. That’s a good thing. I believe strongly that public education (quality public education) is absolutely essential to a health democracy. That doesn’t mean I think private schools shouldn’t exist. But they should exist alongside a high-quality public education system, and if they are in competition with each other, it should be in the way that Harvard and Yale are in competition with each other, not in the way that Harvard or Yale and your local state university or community college are in competition with each other. (And no, that is not a slam at state universities or community colleges; it just means that if you have the grades and your parents have the money, you are more likely to go to an Ivy League school than a community college — and that is not the field on which private and public schools should be competing.)

My father-in-law is paying most of the tuition, as I haven’t the means to do so and he loves his musical granddaughter.

AAARGGH! I just choked on my tea! Are you suggesting to me that you get what you pay for?
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
... the US firebombing of Japan was generally done with the intent to defeat Japan and bring about the end of the war... the atomic bombing was effective. At the least, it gave Japan an honorable "out", since they couldn’t face such a weapon. ... The Japanese inflicted mass rapes and murders on a subjagated population. It was atrocity pure and simple, with no military goal. ... The effectiveness of the atomic bombs justifies their use: they saved lives.

This is basically all assumptions based on personal opinion or wishful thing, with no factual substantiation. But even more to the point: What you have written above really boils down to one word: rationalization. You have found all sorts of meaningless excuses to rationalize what the Brits and the U.S. did. None of it is morally compelling. Saying that the bombings "gave Japan an honorable way out" is a rationalization. Saying there was a military goal is a rationalization and also not necessarily true; that point is highly disputed. I’m sure the Japanese could up come up with an argument for the military necessity of mass rapes: It pacified the population so there would be no resistance. If you want to justify something, no matter how monstrous, you can always find a way. Always. Saying that the U.S. nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki "saved lives" is a rationalization — perhaps the worst rationalization of all, because those "saved lives" are theoretical, and the incineration of over 100,000 Japanese men, women, and children was real. Please don’t give me the old tired line of "It’s not theoretical; it’s been proven; it’s been documented," blah blah blah. It hasn’t been proven or documented. It’s been argued, but there’s no way to know because *it didn’t happen.* You cannot prove a negative. To value theoretical lives over real lives is, in my view, immoral.

Right, evil is an even better term. Americans can be evil too, but there is a difference.


Right, the difference is that Americans are American, so their s**t don’t stink as much.

With the Japanese in WW2, evil acts were widespread. Their treatment of civilians and POWs was atrocious. Japanese units serving in China and Korea gained respect as being "expert" in rape.

Rape is a well-known, widespread tool of warfare, and of control over a subjugated population. This is true going back throughout human history. It’s not peculiar to the Japanese. American soldiers raped Vietnamese women, too. German soldiers raped Jewish women. The Normans who invaded England in 1066 raped women. The ancient Romans raped women in all the lands they conquered.

More recently, white Southerners raped black women during slavery. Those were not just individual acts of savagery, either. White men raping black women was widespread, systematic, institutionalized, and encouraged by the slaveowner culture. It was a method of controlling a subjugated population.

With the Japanese, acts such as My Lai were typical, not the exception. At My Lai, American troops tried to protect the civilians, and testified about the atrocity. The Japanese didn’t blink at the atrocities their men committed, their leadership supported it, and it was typical behaviour at all levels.

This is the story of African Americans throughout their life in the United States.

With the Japanese in WW2, evil acts were widespread. Their treatment of civilians and POWs was atrocious. Japanese units serving in China and Korea gained respect as being "expert" in rape. Japanese soldiers sent photos of their atrocities back to Japan, to share with friends.

Don, have you ever heard of lynching parties? For a century after slavery ended, white Southerners routinely sent out invitations to family and friends to join them at planned lynchings. They brought their children, they brought food and drink; an atmosphere of celebration and good cheer prevailed. After the lynching, during which the crowd would be laughing and shouting approval, people in the crowd would surge forward to take the victim’s clothing, or meager possessions, or sometimes body parts, because black lynching victims were frequently mutilated, often before they were killed.

Atrocity and evildoing are not endemic to any one nationality or racial grouping. And I feel that I have to point out that your plain attempt to prove to me that Japanese soldiers during WWII were inherently more evil than other national groupings — that the evil things they did originated in their Japanese-ness rather than in the savage nature of war itself — is racist.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
But even more to the point: What you have written above really boils down to one word: rationalization. You have found all sorts of meaningless excuses to rationalize what the Brits and the U.S. did. None of it is morally compelling.
Actually, I didn’t excuse the British bombing of Dresden, because I know it was done for revenge.

The USSAF tactic of firebombing Japanese cities was in fact debated by US generals during the war. At least some generals were arguing that it wasn’t going to end the war, so it shouldn’t be done.
Saying that the U.S. nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki "saved lives" is a rationalization
False.

If we invaded Japan, more Japanese would have died. Including women and children, who were being armed with spears. In the island campaigns, Japanese women and children were already jumping off of cliffs rather than fall into American hands. An invasion would have devistated the Japanese population.

If we relied upon a blockade, we would have eventually starved the Japanese in massive numbers. The first to starve would be the childern—the military would be the priority.

The atomic bombs were the solution that would take the fewest Japanese lives. And, more importantly, the fewest American lives.
It hasn’t been proven or documented. It’s been argued, but there’s no way to know because *it didn’t happen.* You cannot prove a negative. To value theoretical lives over real lives is, in my view, immoral.


You think you can only know what has happened. So then—how can you argue these point either way? By this logic, you can’t claim we would have fewer deaths otherwise, right?

And, if we had invaded, the resulting deaths would not be theoretical, the ones from the bomb would be.

And, by the way, you don’t seem to understand what "prove a negative" means.
Rape is a well-known, widespread tool of warfare, and of control over a subjugated population. This is true going back throughout human history. It’s not peculiar to the Japanese. American soldiers raped Vietnamese women, too. German soldiers raped Jewish women. The Normans who invaded England in 1066 raped women. The ancient Romans raped women in all the lands they conquered.
It hasen’t been consistently used.

For example, American soldiers rarely raped, in Vietnam and elsewhere. It was atypical. For the Japanese, on the other hand, it was typical, widespread behaviour.

An example is Okinawa, which the Japanese considered part of Japan. The Japanese soldiers raped quite a few Okinawan women (who they considered fellow Japanese!), many more than the Americans did. US Army troops committed a few rapes shortly after the war, and maybe a few during. When cought, they were punished. During the war US Marines committed, perhaps, 0 rapes (I can’t prove they committed 0 rapes; to do so would require proving a negative. Get the "negaqtive" concept?).

To my knowledge, German soldiers didn’t rape Jewish women. Had they done so, they would have kept it quit, since they would have been punished for doing so.

Rape is not a behaviour equally consistent accross armies and cultures. The American military has been exceptionally good in this respect, while the Japanese and Red Army were particularly bad.
More recently, white Southerners raped black women during slavery.


No doubt it sometimes happened, but I doubt it was as common as you claim.
Don, have you ever heard of lynching parties?


How many of these occured from 1865 to 1965? I mean the type you are talking about, not all lynchings. I suspect we are talking about a few thousand incidents at most, over a period of 100 years.
Atrocity and evildoing are not endemic to any one nationality or racial grouping. And I feel that I have to point out that your plain attempt to prove to me that Japanese soldiers during WWII were inherently more evil than other national groupings — that the evil things they did originated in their Japanese-ness rather than in the savage nature of war itself — is racist.
Kathy, several nationalities outdid themselves in their attrocities. Several behaved quite well, committing few attrocities and punishing those when they were cought.

The Japanese, Germans, and Russians way and above committed the most attrocities. In the case of the Germans, the attrocities were mostly limited to specialized Nazi murder units, with the Japanese and Russians it was common among all the troops. On the other hand, American behaviour was particularly good.

Is it racist to tell the truth? Because I’m simply telling the truth. I don’t view this as any way racist, since I ascribe the Japanese and Russain behaviour to culture, not genetics. I don’t have a problem with the Japanese, I even like Toyotas.

But the Japanese behaviour in WW2 was horrific, and you can’t simply ascribe it to the "savage nature of war itself" since others did not decend these depths.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
During the war US Marines committed, perhaps, 0 rapes
Note that I’m specifically speaking about Okinawa here, not for the complete Pacific Theator. I don’t know of any Marines raping in WW2, however the last book I read on Okinawa specifically looked at this issue.


 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
You think you can only know what has happened. So then—how can you argue these point either way? By this logic, you can’t claim we would have fewer deaths otherwise, right?

Yes, I do think that. And I have not argued the point either way. I have argued that it is immoral to value lives that theoretically would have been lost more highly than lives that actually were lost.


But the Japanese behaviour in WW2 was horrific, and you can’t simply ascribe it to the "savage nature of war itself" since others did not decend these depths.


Your statement is not true, even in the singular context of WWII alone. The larger point is that atrocities happen and have happened in all wars throughout history, and that people in all times and in all parts of the world have descended to just such depths.

[re slavemasters and other whites raping black women with impunity] No doubt it sometimes happened, but I doubt it was as common as you claim

Well, if you want to be certain, you should read up on it. It did not happen "sometimes." It happened ALL the time. It was common and routine, and the women had absolutely no avenue of legal redress. It didn’t end with slavery, either. And black women had no more legal recourse after slavery than they had during.

This is one of the aspects of slavery that is most taboo to acknowledge, still. 150 years after slavery ended, it’s still denied, it’s still a dirty little secret. Despite the fact that the evidence that rape of black women was an everyday thing is right in everyone’s face everyday. The evidence is right in your face, every day — right in front of your eyes. Do you understand what I’m talking about?

How many of these occured from 1865 to 1965? I mean the type you are talking about, not all lynchings. I suspect we are talking about a few thousand incidents at most, over a period of 100 years.

I don’t know the exact number, but it was common. Even when it was just the lynch mob, and women and children were not invited to observe the festivities, the lynchers also laughed and cheered and took home body parts as prizes.

But I take it that you believe a few thousand lynching parties in 100 years is no big deal, and definitely not a reason for you to be a bit more humble or circumspect about saying that Japanese soldiers were more evil than white Southerners, or that Japanese soldiers were more inherently evil than white Southerners were.

I am now going to synagogue to have dinner in the sukkah. I am not sure if I will continue with this thread, because when I get to the point of feeling sick at heart, it’s probably time to call it a day.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
I have argued that it is immoral to value lives that theoretically would have been lost more highly than lives that actually were lost.
Well Kathy, in 1945, if you were President, what would you have done? Invade? Surrender? What?
Your statement is not true, even in the singular context of WWII alone. The larger point is that atrocities happen and have happened in all wars throughout history, and that people in all times and in all parts of the world have descended to just such depths.
Yes, my statement was true. And the rape of Nanking occured prior to WW2, during the Japanese invasion of China. It’s just that the Japanese continued to behave in a similar manner for the duration.

And, the larger point is that, in contrast to Japanese behaviour, American behaviour was almost spoltless.
The evidence is right in your face, every day — right in front of your eyes. Do you understand what I’m talking about?
That’s evidence of copulation, not rape.

In Gold Rush California, the rape rate was about 1/30th of what the modern rape rate is. Now, women of the period may have been less likely to report such things, but at that time the ratio of men to women artificially increased the rape rate, and this would more than compensate for underreporting. In other words, the rape rate in America in the late 1840s and 1850s was very low.

Also, the rape rate during the US Civil War was low.

I’d expect the rape rate of female slaves to be higher, but I doubt it would approach your claims.

 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Atomic bombs were not necessary to defeat Japan; by that point Japan was already defeated in terms of its ability to wage aggressive war, and was relagated mostly to the home island. The US could have either isolated it, negotiated over time, or done many things other than invade or use nuclear weapons. One can debate the morality, but it is false to claim that the alternative was surrender or invade, there were many options. Though, to be sure, the bombings of Tokyo, Koeln, and Dresden weren’t morally superior to the use of nukes.

To the post: people don’t like Congress in the abstract, but tend to like their representative or Senator. It’s those from other districts/states who are the problem ;-)

David made a good point in Iraq as an example of government power expansion (and I’d say abuse) — it’s a big government social engineering program, actually. We’re trying to remake their system without really understanding the culture and its problems, and have found ourselves in a quagmire. Iraq is a good example of government’s ability to abuse power and thus cause a lot of death and destruction. Waging war is big government at its worst — it is anti-libertarian.
 
Written By: Scott Erb
URL: http://faculty.umf.maine.edu/~erb/blog.htm
To my knowledge, German soldiers didn’t rape Jewish women.

Well, you’re wrong. German soldiers did rape Jewish women.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
"The mini-schools are performing arts, civics and government, and social justice"

No math or science, eh? Why am I not surprised?

"Why? Because she was part of a racially, ethnically, and economically diverse student body that reflects the real world."

Now I understand the lack of science. I am curious why the skin colors of the student body improve the quality of education? Has anyone done any research to find out which color or combination of colors produces the highest quality? Perhaps if we budgeted more money.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
No math or science, eh? Why am I not surprised?

Tim, your ideologically-driven chasm-wide conclusion jump is unfounded. Science and math are part of the regular curriculum, outside the social justice component. As I mentioned in my other comment, my daughter took statistics in her senior year (she had taken an honors-level integrated math program her first three years of high school), and she took an environmental biology course her senior year. She took straight general biology her freshman year, chemistry her sophomore year, and physics her junior year.

The Center for Social Justice is a component of the curriculum that organizes the study of history and literature through the lens of social justice. I said this in my other comment as well.

And if you had been using your head, Tim, you would have realized, one does not get accepted to Barnard College without having taken a full complement of math and science, as well as having contributed to the life of the school and the community in many other ways.



 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Okay, I knew I wasn’t getting quite right the name of that science course my daughter took in her senior year of high school. My daughter just called me to tell me what time she’ll be at my house (it’s her 18th birthday tomorrow), and I asked her. It was not environmental biology; it was bioethics. They studied controversial ethical issues in biology (stem-cell research, for example).
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
"Science and math are part of the regular curriculum,"

My comment referred to the lack of a mini-school focusing on math or science, not the total abscence of any math or science. But that would be focusing on an idealogy, I guess.

I guess you aren’t going to explain how skin color affects the quality of education. I have heard elsewhere that it does have an effect.



 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
I could go on, but what’s the point? If you can look at that list and still conclude that government doesn’t have a "permanent efficiency deficit", then you’re hopeless.

You’re attempting to "prove" some sort of iron law of social organization with a list of ten or twelve anecdotes, Billy. Now, that’s hopeless.

Shall I list you ten or twelve embarassingly inefficient corporations and attempt to cite it as proof that corporations are inherently inefficient?

How have you demonstrated, or even provided logic, that whatever inefficiencies you percieve in their execution are not a function of their design, operating environment, and leadership?
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
Government intrinsically eliminates the market feedback mechanism (supply & demand), and also breaks down incentives towards productivity while increasing the incentive towards nonproductively.

Supply and demand are always in effect, and government has its own incentive mechanisms for creating efficient programs. These may or may not be well-designed at any point in time, but there’s no particular reason why they can’t be. And in many cases, they are. The Social Security Administration is very good at making sure its checks arrive on time - something which, according to this very simplistic theory, should be all but impossible.

Government competence is hard to spot because no one looks for it.

I lack the preparation to debate your Medicare example, but even if you accept it as valid, it would serve as an example of a badly-designed program, not an example of the inevitable.
 
Written By: glasnost
URL: http://
My comment referred to the lack of a mini-school focusing on math or science, not the total abscence of any math or science.

Okay, that wasn’t exactly clear, but at any rate, the mini-schools are social justice, performing arts, and civics and government. Maybe there will be a math and science mini-school in the future; this is a relatively new development at this school. Since you don’t appear to have read my earlier posts, I will repeat that these mini-schools are not physically separate from the rest of the high school. They are just special programs in which these subjects are studied more intensively. I don’t know what the thinking was exactly in choosing the foci for the mini-schools, but I do know that a very high percentage of the residents of this town work in the arts (dancers, writers, painters, etc.) or in the helping professions (social work, psychotherapy) etc.). The town also has a very strong political activism vibe, and that may explain the choice of social action for one of the mini-schools.

Mini-school or not, though, math and science are not neglected, and at the honors/high honors level (which is the level at which my daughter took all her courses), they are quite rigorous.

I guess you aren’t going to explain how skin color affects the quality of education.

Since you put that so nicely, I will be happy to answer. It’s not "skin color" that affects the quality of education; it’s the exposure to a wide variety of cultures, nationalities, ethnic backgrounds, economic status, etc. My daughter learned what the world really looks like, not just what a small part of it looks like. She learned to see the world through many different points of view — points of view that are formed in large part by the unique experiences each child has had as a result of their unique cultural experiences. A child from Senegal and a child from an African-American family who just moved up to New Jersey from the South both have black skin, but they are worlds apart in terms of culture, family experiences, and historical memory. A Jewish child from Israel and a Jewish child from This Town, New Jersey, may both be Jewish and have white skin, but be utterly different from one another in terms of life and cultural experiences. A child from Denmark and a child from the United States may both have white skin, but one speaks only English and the other speaks Danish, English, French, Spanish, and Italian. That speaks to cultural differences that have nothing to do with the fact that each child has white skin.

It’s not the skin color. It’s the diversity of national origins, regional origins, religions, ethnic backgrounds, economic and social experiences that makes for a quality education. My daughter got that.
 
Written By: Kathy
URL: http://libertystreetusa.blogspot.com/
Scott: Atomic bombs were not necessary to defeat Japan; by that point Japan was already defeated in terms of its ability to wage aggressive war, and was relagated mostly to the home island. The US could have either isolated it, negotiated over time, or done many things other than invade or use nuclear weapons. One can debate the morality, but it is false to claim that the alternative was surrender or invade, there were many options.
Scott, essentially the options were: the bomb, invade, blockade. "Isolate" and "negotiate over time" would have involved a blockade. The bomb was the best answer.
Kathy: Well, you’re wrong. German soldiers did rape Jewish women.
German soldiers did not rape much at all. And the Nazis, specifically, would have been violating race laws if they raped Jewish women.

No doubt that some German soldiers did rape some Jewish women at some point, but it wasn’t common.

If you have some data to the contrary, pleas post if. For example, when the Soviets "clipped" Yugoslovia they raped and murdered some 250 women; the Yugo complaint prompted Stalin to quip: "You can’t expect a man to travel 1,000 miles and not want a woman".
Glasnost: Supply and demand are always in effect, and government has its own incentive mechanisms for creating efficient programs. These may or may not be well-designed at any point in time, but there’s no particular reason why they can’t be.
You are in a sense correct that: "Supply and demand are always in effect", but the problem is that government breaks the feedback loop that connects the two together. Hence the collapse of the USSR, and the failure of Medicare.

The inherent problem with incentives in government programs is that the consumer isn’t in control. The government can create all kinds of rewards and punishments, they just won’t be driven by real consumer demand, hence they will be inefficient.
The Social Security Administration is very good at making sure its checks arrive on time - something which, according to this very simplistic theory, should be all but impossible.
Why would it be impossible according to this "simplistic theory"? Since the government defined when the chacks should be mailed, it shouldn’t have trouble mailing them on time. And there is ample politcical reason to meet the payment date.

SS falls short on the return on investment. That’s a key failure of the program.


 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Scott: Atomic bombs were not necessary to defeat Japan; by that point Japan was already defeated in terms of its ability to wage aggressive war, and was relagated mostly to the home island. The US could have either isolated it, negotiated over time, or done many things other than invade or use nuclear weapons. One can debate the morality, but it is false to claim that the alternative was surrender or invade, there were many options.
Scott, essentially the options were: the bomb, invade, blockade. "Isolate" and "negotiate over time" would have involved a blockade. The bomb was the best answer.
Kathy: Well, you’re wrong. German soldiers did rape Jewish women.
German soldiers did not rape much at all. And the Nazis, specifically, would have been violating race laws if they raped Jewish women.

No doubt that some German soldiers did rape some Jewish women at some point, but it wasn’t common.

If you have some data to the contrary, pleas post if. For example, when the Soviets "clipped" Yugoslovia they raped and murdered some 250 women; the Yugo complaint prompted Stalin to quip: "You can’t expect a man to travel 1,000 miles and not want a woman".
Glasnost: Supply and demand are always in effect, and government has its own incentive mechanisms for creating efficient programs. These may or may not be well-designed at any point in time, but there’s no particular reason why they can’t be.
You are in a sense correct that: "Supply and demand are always in effect", but the problem is that government breaks the feedback loop that connects the two together. Hence the collapse of the USSR, and the failure of Medicare.

The inherent problem with incentives in government programs is that the consumer isn’t in control. The government can create all kinds of rewards and punishments, they just won’t be driven by real consumer demand, hence they will be inefficient.
The Social Security Administration is very good at making sure its checks arrive on time - something which, according to this very simplistic theory, should be all but impossible.
Why would it be impossible according to this "simplistic theory"? Since the government defined when the chacks should be mailed, it shouldn’t have trouble mailing them on time. And there is ample politcical reason to meet the payment date.

SS falls short on the return on investment. That’s a key failure of the program.


 
Written By: Don
URL: http://

 
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