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In The Mind Of A Moonbat

Betsy Newmark pointed me to this incredible piece by James Lileks that addresses a question that I wonder about from time to time, but that has especially been on my mind since hearing of the death of Zarqawi: what must it be like to be one of those people that cannot celebrate good news for America because it might also be good news for President Bush? Lileks deals with the issue of terrorism here, but could easily do another column on the economy or a host of other issues. Please follow the link and read every word. Here is a bit of it to give you a taste.

You're an enlightened world citizen. Your T-shirt says "9/11 was an inside job." You're pretty sure we're living in a fascist state, that President Bush taps the Dixie Chicks' phones, Christian abortion clinic bombers outnumber jihadis, and the war on "terror" is a distraction from the real threats: carbon emissions and Pat Robertson. Then you learn that 17 people were arrested in a terrorist bomb plot. How do you process the information? Let's take it step by step.


Gosh, that's horrible, you think. But no -- that's what they WANT you to feel. Recall the prime directive: Question Authority (unless he's a college professor). The plotters must have been impoverished olive farmers radicalized by the removal of Saddam Hussein. Why, if someone came in and toppled your president, you'd go to their country and ... well, you'd thank them. Unless they did it for the wrong reasons! Then you'd blow something up. Like an SUV dealership. At night. Anyway, you understand; you care a lot about Iraqis these days. You think about Iraq more than China, to be honest, but it's not as if you'll scrape off your "Free Tibet" bumper sticker -- unless it's to make room for "Free Darfur." Or "Hands Off Darfur," depending.

Wait a minute: The "terrorists" were Canadian? You can understand someone blowing up trains in Spain and London. They sent troops to an illegal war cooked up by neocons who want to kill brown people for Exxon and Jesus, or something. You can understand, reluctantly, blowing up teens in an Israeli pizza parlor, because the Jews took the West Bank from the sovereign, ancient nation of Palestine. (How can a liberal socialist country behave so poorly? The world is full of mysteries.) But Canada? Isn't Michael Moore from Canada? You can get medical marijuana from married gay doctors in Canada, and no one has guns. You console yourself: Maybe they were really planning to attack the U.S.


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Comments (89)

Don't question their patrio... (Below threshold)
Beth:

Don't question their patriotism, though! They "love" America so much they MUST change everything about it! It's their "patriotic duty!"

/smirk

I'm still wondering: can h... (Below threshold)

I'm still wondering: can hang them yet?

LorieThis i... (Below threshold)
mak44:

Lorie

This is shameless Maharushee Limbarf redefinition. It doesn't even fall into the category of satire because, if you had any intellectual honesty, you would recognize that.

As I said above, it is a typical Limbarfian tactic of redefining the opponent to the point of absurdity all the while screaming like a stuck sow when you claim that someone distorts your position, in a similar fashion.

You are so eager to reach for any outrageous slime that you actually end up believing it and then regurgitating it to the Choir at Wizbang.

This crap is just one of the shades of an Ann Coulter or her smarmy protege, Michelle Malkin.

Evidenced by you, the Right seems to love to indulge in this sort of imbecility.

At least Kim and Jay offer some challenge when they aren't simply recycling baseless garbage.

If you think this bilge is valid, you really are demented.

mak44(stooopid posts a day)... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

mak44(stooopid posts a day)

Did you actually (a) read the full post by Lileks and/or (b) read ANY of the SYMPATHETIC opinions coming our of Canada re. these terrorists??

These moronic terrorists (redundant) were planning to attack one of the most terrorist friendly countries on earth!!! and the SHEEP who were about to slaughtered by them are EXCUSING them...and defending them!!

p.s. mak44(stooopid posts a day) you've exceeded 44 today...rest, my friend, rest.

Justrandyea... (Below threshold)
mak44:

Justrand

yea, I read all of it, altho the rest was no more reality than the segment Lorie posted.

You can set up any boogeyman you want with this kind of distortion.

But I can see how those w/ no mind could get a good fill and feel very smug.

Canadians don't have the sa... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

Canadians don't have the same approach to the issue of terror as you do. That much is true. We are bleeding heart liberals by comparison. And we're proud of it.

But I do not know anyone who resembles the caricature Lileks has offered. There were a couple patchouli-stinkin' poncho-wearin' hippies in a couple of Development Studies courses I took, but no one took them seriously when they would say shit like "Maybe trees DO have feelings!" We ignored them. You, however, reify them as The Left. I don't expect you to know a whole lot of liberals, but I would like you to distinguish between the crazies and the people worth engaging in a debate with. I don't conflate you with Ann Coulter, so do me the same courtesy, thanks very much.

Obviously this is just a gu... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Obviously this is just a guess at what it might be like to be in the head of one of those who continually excuse terrorists and hate Bush so much that they cannot even rejoice in the death of a murderous madman, Mak.

I am not saying, nor does Lileks, that this is what liberals think. But there is a fringe, that unfortunately seems to grow daily, that does cheer when America suffers -- if only at the thought that it might cost Bush a few more poll points. How could their minds process information like that of the 17 would be terrorist bombers targeting Canada? Lileks' scenario may be dead wrong, but can you explain how those who cheer when more Americans are killed in Iraq think? What about Kos who said of the American contractors who were killed and had their burned corpses hung up for display, screw them? How must his mind work? Maybe Lileks isn't right, after all, how can anyone even attempt to explain such lunacy?

Bemused, I may have ... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Bemused,
I may have covered this in the comment I just posted, but I don't think Lileks said that all liberals think this way. I know that I did not. In my post I said I wondered "what must it be like to be one of those people that cannot celebrate good news for America because it might also be good news for President Bush?"

I never said that all liberals felt that way. I hope that by you saying I was lumping you all together that you are not saying that all liberals are unable to celebrate good news for America. I hope you just skipped over that part of my post, but frankly I am beginning to worry.

LorieI'd ap... (Below threshold)
mak44:

Lorie

I'd appreciate seeing the KOS link you reference. While I only skim that site on occasion, I have not seen that sort of attitude anytime I have looked thru the site.

Bemused are you glad old Za... (Below threshold)
Luke:

Bemused are you glad old Zarq has taken one for the "team"?

Even if it means Bush's poll ratings may go up 5 or 6 points?

Honest?

Mak44 <a href="htt... (Below threshold)

Mak44

HERE

Scroll down about 1/3 of the page. Or use Ctrl-F and search for the word "screw"

That is the tolerant, peace-loving left and Kos is the media darling mouthpiece for them

Lorie's Kos comment referen... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Lorie's Kos comment referenced "contractors" and Kos' actual comment (as linked above) refers to "mercenaries", not contractors.

There is a huge difference between the contractors who were killed, and mercenaries.

Good job, Mak, on calling her on her Sh*t. Reality does have left-leaning bias.

Mak,Do you peruse ... (Below threshold)
GoldenGreg:

Mak,

Do you peruse the KOS site with one eye open only and excuse all the lunatics as "exceptions". At least conservatives do not constantly use swearing as their main point. I find it amusing how some libs come here and say we all say the same talking points. Many ppl here and other reasonable rightish sites do not like Bush for alot of issues (including me lately), but they are all based on positions, not frothing of the mouth hate like you see on the other side. We do not have mantra's like "Blood for Oil" because we are not conspiratory people making excuses for anything we do not like or to cover our failures in life (or perceived future failures for the normal teenage early 20's life issues). Emotion versus logic can be painfull to the left. Get used to it, since it is getting worse and marginalizing the Dem party more each passing day. And whether you beleive it or not, I do not want the Dems to be marginalized, since a one party system will be even worse. Need checks and balances, but reasonable one based on at least some facts.

Lee ... are you just that f... (Below threshold)

Lee ... are you just that friggin stupid? The link I posted and what Lorie referred to are the same thing. Kos was referring to the deaths of the American contractors, but he chose to call them mercenaries. In his delusional, distorted view, clouded by all that hatred ... he thinks only evil of the people that are in Iraq to rebuild its infrastructure. Kos is nothing but slime.

Lee, Kos was referri... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Lee,
Kos was referring to those contractors whose burned bodies were displayed hanging (from a bridge as I recall). He just decided to call them mercenaries to explain why he thought they got what they deserved. His comment got so much attention at the time that I really didn't think it necessary to remind everyone of the details, but evidently it is news to many of you.

Are you saying that because he called the contractors "mercenaries" that makes it okay to say what he did? So I guess by that logic, those who call Bush "the chimp" can say whatever they want, including encouraging people to engage in violence against him because, after all, they are talking about "the chimp" not the President.

Really. Can't you all just denounce such outrageous comments from Kos and the D.U. crowd? Why do you want to defend stuff you would never say (or even think)yourselves? I make it a habit to say when I disagree with Ann Coulter and people who claim to speak for the Right when they say things that I find offensive. Is it really so hard to admit that some on the Left have just gone too far?

No, I assumed that if he ca... (Below threshold)
Lee:

No, I assumed that if he called them mercenaries, they were in fact mercenaries. I'll take your word for it that they were in fact contractors instead. I don't read Kos -- if that isn't obvious already.

a few points to add:... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

a few points to add:
1) I must second Bemused's point that the vast majority of Dems/libs are nothing like what is described in the piece. Of course there are extremes, but that is true of both ends of the political spectrum.

For instance, Ann Coulter called for revenge killings for anyone who smiled about 9/11 and we should go into there countries and convert all their citizens to Christianity. There was also that Shelby Steele article (I think it was an op-ed in the WaPo) that said the US has white man's guilt and therefore is not ruthless enough in carrying out the war. Bill O recently said WWII vets massacred Nazis at Malmedy when it was really the other way around, twice, and still has not apologized for it. And Rush Limbaugh said that when Christian peace activists were kidnapped in Iraq, that somewhere, deep inside, that pleased him. Now the left has Michael Moore as its main media figurehead, but his sole piece was F911 and he hasn't really been heard from since. So I think the right must realize, that as much as they like to portray loony lefties as the heart of the heart of the Dem party, that is far from the truth. Conversely, your most controversial spokespeople truly are major players in the right wing media and are consistently praised despite their clear extremism.

2) What about Kos who said of the American contractors who were killed and had their burned corpses hung up for display, screw them? Lorie

First, you should be clearer and say it was a Kos commenter who said the following, not Kos himself. It is unethical to word it so it appears Kos said it. Similarly, commenters at LGF have been known have extreme statements, like calling for the nuclear bombing of the Mid East, and do so on a much more frequent basis.

In conclusion, liberals are much more middle of the road than the right thinks, and the right is much more extreme than is realized by the majority of people. And as much as the right likes to decry the liberal media, they have caved to right wing pressure and not pointed this out and instead play along with this false portrayal. Liberals have finally grown sick of this and have just begun a new concerted effort to counter this. The conservative movement took about 30 years to assume power, we'll have to wait and see how long the liberal movement takes to respond.

Uhm well, I took a look at ... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Uhm well, I took a look at the post that Kos' infamous comment was referring to, and uhm, it does indeed appear to "private military" dead.

The post in question, as linked above:

Now I'm not squeamish about the realities of war. But I find this over the line. I assume the logic is that because they were "civilians" or "contractors" it's ok...it's not like they are soldiers. except these are soldiers. they may be a private army, but they are fighting the same war. they may get paid better but they face the same dangers. they may have volunteered, but they're still americans. Ultimatly this is someone's family... I wouldn't want to see my family member displayed like this. While I think that the majority of America is too sheltered from the harsh realities, I think the front page of the paper isn't the proper place for this graphic a photo. Does anyone else's paper have this on the front cover?

Hopefully this tragedy sheds light on the fact that private military forces are the second largest group in the "coalition of the willing"

The post is referring to "private military forces". So I go back to my previous comment, there is a huge difference between contractors and mercenaries.

In fact, before posting this comment I've did some searching, and it appears that the "contractors" were employees of Blackwater USA a private security firm that was employed to guard facilities formerly guarded by US soldiers.

Yes, if all of that is true, then "mercenaries" is appropriate. I'm not saying Kos' statement is appropriate, but I stand by my comment that there is a huge difference between innocent "contractors" and "mercenaries".

I would also like to say that repeating a lie, and even calling someone "stupid" because they don't believe your lie, is a distinctly right-wing blog phenomena. Sorry, Lorie, I know I said I would take your word for it - but my good judgement got the better of me, and I'm glad I did check. I now know better than to trust you on the facts again.

Kudos to Mak again, on that whole "reality has a left-leaning bias" thing.

And Lorie, you should be ashamed - or better informed, or both.

Lileks is a fargin' genius.... (Below threshold)
Captain Ned:

Lileks is a fargin' genius.

sorry Lorie,I saw th... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

sorry Lorie,
I saw the comment with the title "screw them?!" by a commenter named azizhp and not the comment saying screw them in the test actually from a commenter named kos. Has it ever been confirmed/denied if the owner of the site kos posted that?

sean is typical of the moon... (Below threshold)

sean is typical of the moonbats.

First {his #1}, instead of defending the left, he attempts some "moral equivalence" twist by finding someone on the right to attack.

Secondly {his #2}, he just LIES:

It WAS a "commenter" all right - his name is KOS:

Every death should be on the front page (2.70 / 40)
Let the people see what war is like. This isn't an Xbox game. There are real repercussions to Bush's folly.
That said, I feel nothing over the death of merceneries. They aren't in Iraq because of orders, or because they are there trying to help the people make Iraq a better place. They are there to wage war for profit. Screw them.

by kos on Thu Apr 01, 2004 at 12:08:56 PM PDT


From LissaKay's link above.

Yes, Sean.He took ... (Below threshold)

Yes, Sean.

He took the credit for that comment.

J.

i read the comments some mo... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

i read the comments some more and kos provides an explanation, if anyone cares:

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/4/2/175739/8203

Sean ... the commenter was ... (Below threshold)

Sean ... the commenter was indeed Kos himself

Every death should be on the front page (2.70 / 40)
Let the people see what war is like. This isn't an Xbox game. There are real repercussions to Bush's folly.

That said, I feel nothing over the death of merceneries. They aren't in Iraq because of orders, or because they are there trying to help the people make Iraq a better place. They are there to wage war for profit. Screw them.

by kos on Thu Apr 01, 2004 at 12:08:56 PM PDT

=========

Lee ... you're still stuck on stupid. There is no such thing as private military. Duh. Do you not remember the killings of four Americans, where their bodies were burned and dragged down the streets before being hung from a bridge? US media printed the photos and there was a huge uproar about it. THAT is what Kos is referring to. Whatever he, or the OP or anyone else chooses to call them, they were employees of a company, Blackwater something, I believe ... retired military, yes, but not "private military" and they were there to help rebuild Iraq. That, of course, is offensive to lefties because that would be American doing good.

HERE is the CNN article, and it states that the four were providing security for a convoy that was delivering food to the Iraqi people.

They deserved to die for that? The mouthpiece of the Left sure thinks so ....

First {his #1}, instead ... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

First {his #1}, instead of defending the left, he attempts some "moral equivalence" twist by finding someone on the right to attack. Adjoran

I am saying that the extremes should not be defended, but the right does just that and even promotes their extremes to positions of prominence, displaying the hypocrisy the right displays.

and #2 I saw I was mistaken and resolved it. sorry again.

Sean,Actually Markos... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Sean,
Actually Markos has not only taken credit for the "screw them" comment he made,but has discussed it on several occassions since then.

Lee,
With all due respect, I have not a clue what you are talking about when you say "And Lorie, you should be ashamed - or better informed, or both." I don't understand the distinction you and Kos make between the contractors and mercenaries. They were CONTRACTED to work as security guards. If that makes them mercenaries in your book, then by all means, use that word. Whatever floats your boat. My contention is that whether you choose to define them as contractors or mercenaries makes not a bit of difference to me because regardless of what label you put on them they were living, breathing human beings who were savagely murdered and had their bodies desecrated and I think it is not only not okay to say "screw them", but that it is entirely appropriate to condemn anyone that would say such a thing, especially at that time when their families were grieving their deaths. So what exactly should I be better informed or ashamed of?

As I said before, the comment got an incredible amount of attention in the blogsphere and I just assumed that anyone who frequented blogs would be extremely familiar with all the details. Kos did later try to put a better face on his comments by explaing his own childhood, but his past, in my opinion, did not justify his remarks.

As for the human beings that were murdered and desecrated, they were Americans, employees of Blackwater, which as I recall, is a company based here in NC. The employees of Blackwater are mostly former military. (I knew all that off the top of my head, but did not see any reason to include it in my post as I assumed it was common knowledge among those who follow blogs.) I am still completely clueless about how you think the fact that they worked for Blackwater makes any difference with regard to Kos' comment unless you are equating those men you choose to call mercenaries, with terrorists and murderers about which I would have no problem hearing such a comment made.

Lee,I just read back... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Lee,
I just read back over your comments and have a question or two:

"Lorie's Kos comment referenced "contractors" and Kos' actual comment (as linked above) refers to "mercenaries", not contractors.

There is a huge difference between the contractors who were killed, and mercenaries.

Good job, Mak, on calling her on her Sh*t. Reality does have left-leaning bias.

Posted by: Lee at June 9, 2006 10:38 PM"

So, Lee, just exactly what is the difference between the contractors who were killed and mercenaries? Kos was referring to the same individuals, whose charred corpses hung from the bridge, regardless of how you or he or I label them.

"No, I assumed that if he called them mercenaries, they were in fact mercenaries. I'll take your word for it that they were in fact contractors instead. I don't read Kos -- if that isn't obvious already.


Posted by: Lee at June 9, 2006 11:02 PM

Again, they were contractors. They were contracted to provide security services. By contractors if you thought they were home builders or something else, I still don't see how calling them mercenaries makes it okay to say what Kos did about them. I am honestly shocked that anyone would quibble over the label given to the men who were murdered and desecrated, and would even attempt to defend the Kos statement.

It has been interesting, but I have been checking in while taking breaks from writing a column and now I am too tired to see straight. Good night guys and gals.

Yes, pure genius. It calls... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Yes, pure genius. It calls out lil' cocks$ckers like Mak44, who end up squeelin' like the little p#ssies that they are. So many posts. So little relevance.

Heh.

All of this talk about the ... (Below threshold)
Jim B.:

All of this talk about the difference between "contractors" and "mercenaries" and Kos brings to mind an interesting discussion of Kos's notion that there might be such a thing as "Libertarian Democrats" which is still in progress over at Samizdata. This comment seems like a good place to start, at least for the part about how the meanings of words are not to be trifled with.

The meanings of words are important. Contractors are doing a job. Mercenaries will switch sides for better pay. If Kos called those men from Blackwater "mercenaries," he was saying that they would have switched sides if Zarkawi or al-Sadr had made them a better offer. Would they have? I rather think not. There might be a libel or slander case there.

Mak, Lee and bemused. You ... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf:

Mak, Lee and bemused. You are all well practiced in the liberal arts. That is the art of lying, the art of spinning and the art of misdirection. Mak spoke of Lorie's intellectual honesty. I question how Mak could ask that question judging by his posts over time, as they show he has no intellect and does not understand honesty. You three claim you do not read Kos. I question how you got that stupid on your own.

A cartoon made it all clear... (Below threshold)
Scrapiron:

A cartoon made it all clear. The Moonbats are hurt by Zarqawi's death because they have no one left to surrender to. Osama in either dead or hid so deep in a cave they can't find him to wave their white flag to. Hey, i thought it was just because he was their best buddy and they had a lot of money and their political career invested in him.

Zelsdorf,Umm, perh... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:

Zelsdorf,

Umm, perhaps they were just born that way? You know, mentally challenged and all...

Well, I'm disappointed to h... (Below threshold)
Jim B.:

Well, I'm disappointed to have actually tried that link in my earlier post only to find that it does not work. Those "permalinks" at Samizdata don't have the <a name> tags that would make the link go straight to the comment. So to get there, do find "Popper was completely wrong". That'll do it.

Many of these heated comme... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Many of these heated comments on both sides of this debate bring to mind, what Kipling wrote "Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet," And as the argument goes on and on, matters of fact become matters of integrity..To get into the mind of a influential moonbat on Iraq(and some of the minds of influential wingnuts) this revealing interview with General Wes Clark, at the yearly Kos convention in Las Vegas, reinforces how different the two sides, Democrat and Republican, are in their approach to waging war, if you be, on terrorism in Iraq.

Lorie,A mercenary ... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Lorie,

A mercenary travels to a foregn country, replaces and works in concert with military personnel, and carries a gun and would shoot and kill as a duty of their employment. I put the Blackwater security forces who were killed in that category, as would any other reasonable person. The people who were killed were mercenaries.

Back to the original post--... (Below threshold)
pjaykc:

Back to the original post--I thought it was hilarious. Too bad our "friends" can't recognize intelligent satire. It's okay for them to use foul language and sleazy epithets against people they don't like, but they squesl like little pigs when the tables are turned on them and act like they're soooo innocent. Good post, Lorie. You shouldn't have bothered to try to debate them.

Lorie,Having read ... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Lorie,

Having read more in other comments let me add to the "definition of mercenary" the fact that these people were trained to kill, and according to info posted here, former military personnel, and that they were employed in war zone. That plus what I posted above leads me to agree with the definition that they were "mercenaries".

The most important aspect is that they were armed and their employment included the use of deadly force in a war zone. You depicting them as innocent "contractors" is disingenuous.

From the Blackwater web site (and check out the photo on that web page):

Blackwater Security Consulting is a strategic division of Blackwater USA. Blackwater USA has historically provided a spectrum of support to military, government agencies, law enforcement and civilian entities in training, targets and range operations as a solution provider. Blackwater Security Consulting has its roots in the Special Operations community and continues to sustain the skills acquired over the years. These skills are effective tools that support both national and commercial objectives.

Lorie: Unfortunately the sa... (Below threshold)

Lorie: Unfortunately the satire is pretty close to reality in many of the folks I rub elbows with in Oregon. There is no arguing with folks so committed to their point of view (as well demonstrated by some of the above posts). Peace Moonbeam and Scooter are still alive and well in America. And unfortunately the real ones are doing more than attempting to free captive chickens.

OMG, when I was night watch... (Below threshold)
SCSIwuzzy:

OMG, when I was night watchman, and before that a store detective... I was a mercenary.
Except for being ex-military, I fit Lee's definition (Camden, NJ, is a warzone IMO)

Lee, et al:The dic... (Below threshold)

Lee, et al:

The dictionary definition I have of mercenary is pretty concise:

A professional soldier hired to fight in a foreign army.

I don't believe these contractors were part of or fighting as part of a foreign army, nor can any of the verbiage noted or linked above support this contention with any evidence. Therefore they were not mercenaries. Lorie offers you some literary license, but I don't think that such license has place in a LOGICAL argument.

Is it really so hard to ... (Below threshold)
astigafa:

Is it really so hard to admit that some on the Left have just gone too far?

Let's see...I spent an hour last month trying to convince someone at church that the tsunami was not a result of global warming...a woman I did a job for a while back told me that women were naturally and congenitally brave, resourceful, truthful, honest, hard-working, self-effacing, yadda-yadda-yadda. I said, well, do men just naturally and congenitally posess any good qualities? She thought a minute. Well, she said, they're good at fixing things...I was solemnly informed the other day that George W. Bush had John Kennedy Jr. killed, and maybe Pope John Paul II...I worked for a guy who thought that there were just too many people alive for the earth to support, and that we should start killing people, "as gently as possible," to relieve the pressure...My Vegan sister-in-law drives all roads, even freeways, at under 40 mph because, she says, the insects need our help -- seldom bathes for the same reasons...

On the other hand, I know a woman who says that she can't trust George Bush because, she says, his father made that "new world order" comment and, more sinister, "...the Bushes are a close family"...I talked movies with a naval officer recently, told him that I liked Monty Python's Holy Grail, to which he said, "Did you know that Monty Python's not really funny?" Why, no sir...saw a "Kill Environmental Terrorists" bumper sticker on a pickup truck, asked the driver, What's this about? Oh, he says, they're all over the place, runnin' the TV and the government. Right, I said, you got it...worked next to a guy who wouldn't speak to me for my first few weeks. I was living in Providence, RI, at the time, and eventually he turns to me and says, You live in Providence? Yeah. Got niggers up there? Well, ah, it is integrated -- Oh! he says. I hate niggers...

I guess the upshot of all this is, I guess the left does on occasion go too far, as does the right and, for that matter, the middle. There are big mouths and small minds across the political spectrum, and it just don't signify one way or the other, my dear. Have another cup of coffee, try to do something nice for yourself today.

I nominate LEE for Murthas ... (Below threshold)
virgo:

I nominate LEE for Murthas hate america campaign!

Good point Epador. Words d... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Good point Epador. Words do matter and I should have made the point that in no way did the Americans employed by Blackwater, contracted by our military to do security work resemble mercenaries. My point was that he could call them fluffy pink poodles or anything else he wanted, but it still would not make it okay to say what Kos did about their deaths.

epador - The Blackhawk merc... (Below threshold)
Lee:

epador - The Blackhawk mercenaries were probably employed in a defensive position. Their website promotes their "special ops" experience and expertise - and they are employed to kill foreign operatives in a foreign land. Things are rarely black and white, but these guys are grey enough to be called mercenaries in my book.

Whatever we want to call blackhawk's personnel, they weren't innocent contractors as depicted by others. These guys were armed, military trained, and paid to kill as needed.

Once again, I'm not defending what Kos said, but the statement by Lorie that these are innocent contractors is, in my opinion, a big fat lie. In a thread about "liberal moonbats" that is particularly hilarious.

Lee, Regarding the c... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Lee,
Regarding the comment that I dipicted them as "innocent" contractors, you still don't answer the question about how my choice of words to describe them makes it okay for Kos to say what he did. The "innocent" comment you make quite frankly confuses me even more, or tends to clear things up completely, depending on the interpretation. So, are you saying they weren't innocent, so they were guilty of something (being associated with the military, perhaps) and that makes them deserving of their fate? Stop dancing around it. Come out and say what you mean. Is everyone who works for Blackwater deserving of being murdered and burned and hung on public display? Does that include our U.S. troops, as well, or just those contracted to support our troops through Blackwater?

Please Lee. Tell me what m... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Please Lee. Tell me what my lie was. You are calling me a liar. That is a serious accusation. What is the lie? What is it that I am to be ashamed of, as you put it last night?

Is the lie that they were "innocent contractors"? They were contractors. I guess innocent is up to your definition of what innocent is. Heaven help us. Some of them had kids, so they weren't innocent in that way, but they weren't guilty of anything that made them deserving of their murders. They were guilty of supporting our military and trying to support their families. Unfortunately many on the fringe left see that as deserving of not only murder, but of comments like those made by Kos. At least this discussion has made that more clear than ever.

To get into the mind of ... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

To get into the mind of a influential moonbat on Iraq(and some of the minds of influential wingnuts) this revealing interview with General Wes Clark, at the yearly Kos convention in Las Vegas, reinforces how different the two sides, Democrat and Republican, are in their approach to waging war, if you be, on terrorism in Iraq.

THe Young Turks? Did Ceny make it through the interview with threatening to fight somebody? He has a bit of a problem with doing dumb things like that.

A mercenary travels to a foregn country, replaces and works in concert with military personnel, and carries a gun and would shoot and kill as a duty of their employment. I put the Blackwater security forces who were killed in that category, as would any other reasonable person. The people who were killed were mercenaries.

No reasonable person would actually do that. That is, easily, one of the most idiotic comments I've ever read.

Hell, it's not OK -- which is what Kos was saying --- when it happens to troops. It's even LESS OK when it happens to people hired for a private firm to provide some protection for people who are trying to restore the infrastructure to a country.

What you, Lee, are basically saying is that it is OK for people to be captured, burned alive, and hung from bridges. "Screw them" and all.
-=Mike

That is the implication of ... (Below threshold)
virgo..:

That is the implication of Lee's comments. that the contractors are somehow evil and deserved their fates.
What exactly Lee were the contractors guilty of if they were not innocent? please tell.

You'll write it off as inve... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

You'll write it off as invective typical of the oh-so-liberal anti-war MSM (the same MSM that beat the war drum at the administration's behest), but what I've read about contractors like the Blackwater guys is that they're typically ex-military paid to do extremely high-risk operations, like escorting dignitaries or doing security around oil infrastructure.

What the insurgents did to those four guys was tragic. One of the victims' mother's was on a far-left radio program that I listened to for awhile... think it was "Democracy Now"... and she claimed that her son was sent to his death by his boss because he kept asking too many questions, such as "How come we never have enough firepower and armour to deal with determined insurgents? How come you're only sending four of us with this convoy when company rules requires there be eight of us? Why don't we have heavy weapons when the situation requires that we do?" and that sort of thing. They were sent into Fallujah with no map (told "It's too late for maps now!"), were ambushed, and killed. The guy was a former Navy SEAL, and had been the military consultant on the film GI Jane. His mother cited lots of witnesses and reports that shows Blackwater's management to not give a shit about a) Iraqis or b) its own contractors. His boss is being investigated, and has hired an attorney. Let's hope he finds himself in a brig.

Kos showed his true colours when he said what he did. I don't read anything at his website. (So STFU Zelsdorf. Nothing I have read by you has contributed to any discussion. You're an intellectual weakling and a bully, who likely has serious self-esteem issues. Deal with them in private, please and thanks.) I don't think Lee is guilty of the same thing as Kos, though, when he calls hired guns "mercenaries". If they aren't, they're close enough. That's not a condemnation of these people, though; mercenaries, while in it for the money, are human beings who presumably have the same conception of right and wrong as you or I.

Can't fault these guys for trying to make a buck; better them in there than former apartheid-era troops from S. Africa, or ex-narco-terrorists from Colombia, who are very popular soldiers of fortune. We can, and should, scrutinize organizations like Blackwater, and criticize them when their conduct is unbecoming of a liberating army that needs to win hearts and minds.

So I really don't think there is an issue here. And I still don't get your obsession with the loony left, Lorie. If Kos, Chomsky, Howard Zinn etc. got 1/10th the airtime as Limbaugh, Coulter, Michael Savage, etc., I would understand your beef. But right now I don't.

Lee, and his brother Mak44,... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Lee, and his brother Mak44, work down at the local DMV office in charge of the little machine you have to pick out the correct road signs in, I think.

Why do the reality based community disproportionately work in academia, government? Is that really a place to learn about reality? What equips them to lecture the rest of us living in the real world?

Apparently the above named ... (Below threshold)
virgo:

Apparently the above named radio host and columnists have something worth listening to? otherwise they would end up like Airhead anti America, who wants to listen to that crap? no one!
I suppose this thread being about the insides of a moonbats mind (lee) in particular has chosen to be exhibit #1. time to fly back to Your cave Lee, unless Your a fruit bat?

No, Mitchell--Bein... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

No, Mitchell--

Being an academic gives you the authority to lecture people on ideas of varying topics and complexity. (Doesn't make them right all the time, obvs.) Being in government gives you a better vantage point from which to observe the ins and outs of... government!

I wouldn't lecture a mechanic on how to fix my car; I wouldn't tell my dad, a Chem. Engineer, how to manufacture plastic products. Having read a few dozen books about politics and such does not make me smarter than you, nor does it make my opinion more valid; could you entertain the notion, though, just for one second, that maybe there are things within books that would be useful for people and civilizations as they navigate through reality?

Virgo-- Michael Savage is a crazed racist lunatic. I don't care how many people listen to him, he's fucked in the head, has anger problems, and needs to go away. If you think he's worth listening to, you're wrong. Rush Limbaugh is a hypocritical drug addict who continued to bash the ACLU after they came to his defence. Ann Coulter does not understand the difference between criticizing the civilian leadership of the military, and criticizing the soldiers themselves. If you think that the veracity of a person and his/her ideas is determined by the number of people who listen to him, then you're nuts. Right and wrong is not a popularity contest.

Lee, and his brother Mak... (Below threshold)
astigafa:

Lee, and his brother Mak44, work down at the local DMV office in charge of the little machine you have to pick out the correct road signs in, I think.

Mitchell, and his brother virgo, work down at the local carnival, sucking the farts out of dead chickens, I think.

astigafa, I lolled coffee r... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

astigafa, I lolled coffee right out my nose. You have won the battle of funny insults, and, thus, the war of ideas! =)

One final thought:... (Below threshold)
USMC Pilot:

One final thought:

"If you need to clarifiy your comments, maybe you shouldn't have made them!"


Have you noticed how long "... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

Have you noticed how long "Lee Lee"'s and "mak-i-e 43 2/3"'s posts are. Could it be that they are trying to make you think that they "smart"? Naw- when in the h*ll have you ever saw a asskissing, bootlicking wimpy ass liberal that knows enough to even get in out of the rain. But then again it's Bush's fault.

Lorie, Lisa Kay... (Below threshold)
mak44:

Lorie, Lisa Kay

Lorie, hope you're still around. There were tons more posts since I last looked at this thread.

I went back & read the original KOS post, thanx to LK, as well as the follow-up link re KOS' explanation of himself posted by Sean.

There is no excuse for the remark. However, unlike Coulter, Limbarf or Insanity, KOS had a change of heart and did essentially correct himself and acknowledge that he had written out of passion. His explanation was quite reasonable and reflected that he knew he had been intemperate.

There is no valid reason to hang onto KOS' remark as you & Lisa Kay and other posters have, as if one intemperate remark has forever branded him and anything he ever has to say in the future, especially considering his "aplogia" shortly after the incident. It hardly "marks" him forever as you 2 certainly seem to suggest. And, with his follow-up, I think no one could argue that he dosesn't value all human life. This is more of an example of "gotcha."

For sure, one would not have to work so hard nor go back so far to find intemperate speech to brand the Bitch of Bile, Ann Coulter. Or Malkin's remarks about internment among others.

For all the techicalities of defining "mercenary" vs. "contracted" the basic point is that the 4 men from Blackhawk are as much the equivalent of "mercenaries" as you'll find in the US. If one wants only to be classical about the definition or to use the standard dictionary definition, the 4 would not literally be mercenaries. For all practical purposes, however, the term fits. They were fulfilling a militarty role which would have been done in the past w/ military forces unitl Bush & Rummy discovered the idea that DOD could let tons of private contractors get a grab at the $450 billion DOD annual budget by farming out the work.

As to your own further illumination of what you originally wrote, it doesn't quite pass the smell test. Neither you nor Lileks made any attempt to qualify your intention behind the piece. Rather, w/ Lileks' use of a near endless list of causes, colored w/ exagerated definition, it was the same kind of crap I hear from Limbarf & Insanity all afternoon as I sit at the computer, skimming Wizbang among other things.

It is classic exageration to the point of absurdity that then is repeated over and over to create a knee-jerk reaction in the listener. Lileks' piece was no different and I suspect you liked it initially because, in its snide baseless way, it ascribed all the wrong-headed positions that you on the Right love to pin on the Left. That was the impression the piece left, and I imagine that that was the original intent.

However, your further explanation was as good as KOS.'

jhow66Some ... (Below threshold)
mak44:

jhow66

Some turd poster on Wizbang has been making the most gawdawful asshole posts on this site and then signing your name to them to make you look like a retarded Turd.

Just thought you'd want to know.

I wonder if Lorie can get t... (Below threshold)
jp2:

I wonder if Lorie can get through a week without childish name-calling.

I wonder if Lorie can get t... (Below threshold)
JannyMae:

I wonder if Lorie can get through a week without childish name-calling.

Posted by: jp2

I do hope you're kidding, right?

RE: Topic of the thread. Lileks is right on the money, and it couldn't have better been illustrated by the liberals on this thread. Particularly, of course, Lee.

JannyMaeSo ... (Below threshold)
mak44:

JannyMae

So what is your point, or do you just yelp when the bell is rung?

astigafa,Your late for bed... (Below threshold)
virgo1:

astigafa,Your late for bed check at the state hospital for the criminally insane!

Her point is that LEE or Ar... (Below threshold)
virgo1:

Her point is that LEE or Arafatgafa or You for that matter, are suffering from failed election voter fatigue syndrome. doomed to repeat the same tired mistakes over and over again..

VirgoWhy do... (Below threshold)
mak44:

Virgo

Why do you keep proving that you don't have to pull your pants down below your knees to count your IQ?

You have won the battle ... (Below threshold)
astigafa:

You have won the battle of funny insults, and, thus, the war of ideas! =)

Not fucking likely.

Rush Limbaugh is a hypoc... (Below threshold)
wilky:

Rush Limbaugh is a hypocritical drug addict who continued to bash the ACLU after they came to his defence.

Only a lefty. Calls someone something than shoots it down in the same sentence.

Lorie wrote:"Rega... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Lorie wrote:
"Regarding the comment that I dipicted them as "innocent" contractors, you still don't answer the question about how my choice of words to describe them makes it okay for Kos to say what he did."

Well, there you go lying again. I never said Kos' comments were ok, and I've repeated that several times now. Do you have difficulties with comprehension?

I wrote:
"I'm not saying Kos' statement is appropriate, but I stand by my comment that there is a huge difference between innocent "contractors" and "mercenaries".

and

"Once again, I'm not defending what Kos said, but the statement by Lorie that these are innocent contractors is, in my opinion, a big fat lie. In a thread about "liberal moonbats" that is particularly hilarious."

I did say that there is a huge difference between contractors and mercenaries. Mercenaries are paid to put their lives on the line, contractors are not.

"They were guilty of supporting our military and trying to support their families."

Oh, so now you admit that they were in fact mercenaries. nice. They weren't guilty of anything; that's just you putting words into my mouth again. They were paid to do a job that they freely chose to do, and that job required them to take risks, and they ultimately died from those risks. That's extremely sad... but I have now told you three times that I've never said that Kos's comments were okay. Has it sunk in yet - or are you truly impaired?

I'm sorry to have to put it to you that way, but I see no other explanation. You either aren't reading what I write, or are reading but not comprehending.

Is there a little voice in your head talking to you Lorie? Perhaps you and LissaKay can get a group rate on psychotherapy.

I have been out all day vis... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

I have been out all day visiting with friends and seeing "Cars." It was great, by the way.

Lee -- When you first called me a liar, it was because I referred to the murdered contrators as "contractors". I think you brought in the innocent part, but I do believe they were innocent, as opposed to being guilty of anything that would cause them to deserve murder, desecration and ridicule by Kos or anyone else.

Now you think I am a big liar because I believed when you took all the time and energy to dissect the definitions of contractor and mercenary (which I still don't even think you defined correctly) that you were doing it in an effort to defend Kos' statement. I think I was just reaching a logical conclusion. If not, then why? Why spend all that time to make the point that those men who were murdered were not "innocent contractors"? I think everyone here who read those comments knows exactly what was going on because you took great pains to make the distinction that those men carried guns and worked for the military. I really shouldn't have asked for clarification because that told me all I needed to know. I just hoped you would be forthright enough to stop dancing around it and just say it.

You think I am a liar for referring to contractors as contractors. I should have stopped there. That is all I needed to know. No further response from me was required. You will get no further responses from me because anyone who thinks I am a liar for referring to contractors as contractors is beyond my ability to understand, much less reason with or carry on an honest discussion.

One last thing -- notice that I did not delete your comments or ban you from commenting or in any other way censor you, even after you called me a liar for calling a contractor a contractor and later calling me a liar for some reasons I still don't quite understand. Try that at The Daily Kos and see how long you are allowed to stick around.

Lorie, as we all know in th... (Below threshold)
wilky:

Lorie, as we all know in the lefty world it all depends on what the meaning of is is. No use banging your head against the with with Lee, in his world, he passes mercenaries walking through the airport.

Lee the problem with your definition is that the were not actively hunting and killing, but rather gaurding. Mercenaries are not passive.

Could mak44 possibly by mar... (Below threshold)
USMC Pilot:

Could mak44 possibly by maryQ(ad infinitum)?

typeO: "by" should be "be".... (Below threshold)
USMC Pilot:

typeO: "by" should be "be".

You'll write it off as i... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

You'll write it off as invective typical of the oh-so-liberal anti-war MSM (the same MSM that beat the war drum at the administration's behest), but what I've read about contractors like the Blackwater guys is that they're typically ex-military paid to do extremely high-risk operations, like escorting dignitaries or doing security around oil infrastructure.

Seeing as how they served in a civilian capacity and weren't attacking the sub-humans, no, they were not mercenaries.

They are as much "mercenaries" as the Secret Service is.

What the insurgents did to those four guys was tragic. One of the victims' mother's was on a far-left radio program that I listened to for awhile... think it was "Democracy Now"... and she claimed that her son was sent to his death by his boss because he kept asking too many questions, such as "How come we never have enough firepower and armour to deal with determined insurgents? How come you're only sending four of us with this convoy when company rules requires there be eight of us? Why don't we have heavy weapons when the situation requires that we do?" and that sort of thing. They were sent into Fallujah with no map (told "It's too late for maps now!"), were ambushed, and killed. The guy was a former Navy SEAL, and had been the military consultant on the film GI Jane. His mother cited lots of witnesses and reports that shows Blackwater's management to not give a shit about a) Iraqis or b) its own contractors. His boss is being investigated, and has hired an attorney. Let's hope he finds himself in a brig.

Or...and this is a radical approach...we actually investigate and don't condemn a man based on opinions expressed by a mommy on a far left wing radio show.

So I really don't think there is an issue here. And I still don't get your obsession with the loony left, Lorie. If Kos, Chomsky, Howard Zinn etc. got 1/10th the airtime as Limbaugh, Coulter, Michael Savage, etc., I would understand your beef. But right now I don't.

Hmm, Chomsky is only the most referenced guy for academic papers. Yeah, he gets NO play at all. And you don't see conservative politicians praising Coulter or Savage. You DO see that with leftie pols and Kos.

Rush Limbaugh is a hypocritical drug addict who continued to bash the ACLU after they came to his defence.

Hmm, NAMBLA argues in support of gay rights fairly consistently. I suppose gay rights groups would be hypocritical if they condemned NAMBLA, huh?

Ann Coulter does not understand the difference between criticizing the civilian leadership of the military, and criticizing the soldiers themselves.

Rushing to judgment AGAINST the military in every "atrocity" seems to show a lack of support for the soldiers.

There is no excuse for the remark. However, unlike Coulter, Limbarf or Insanity, KOS had a change of heart and did essentially correct himself and acknowledge that he had written out of passion. His explanation was quite reasonable and reflected that he knew he had been intemperate.

He defends it to this day. And Kos comments on the right have every inch --- hell MORE --- vitriol than Coulter or Limbaugh's comments about the left.

For sure, one would not have to work so hard nor go back so far to find intemperate speech to brand the Bitch of Bile, Ann Coulter. Or Malkin's remarks about internment among others.

Seeing as how you clearly never read Malkin's book on internment, you're a poor source on it. I have read the book and her argument is hardly "Well, it was a good thing." Imagine pro-choicers publicly stated view of abortion and it's not dissimilar to Malkin's view of internment --- a necessary evil.

She also reminded that it wasn't ONLY the Japanese who were interned.

And if you have missed the wealth of "Bush is a chimp. Bush is Hitler. Coulter is a man" type crap, you've opted to do so.
-=Mike

wilkyThey w... (Below threshold)
mak44:

wilky

They were performing a function, that in the past, would have been performed by troops. To that extent, they are essentially no different than mercenaries, paid at a far higher rate than the GIs they were supposed to guard.

If you really want to get bent out of shape, read the post much further above wherein it tells of a mother of one of the 4 "contractors" who spells it out. They were working for a greedy contractor who was using half the standard crew for this particular assignment, most likely to enhance the corporate profit.

Most of these "contractor" jobs were formerly performed by GIs. It looks more like a way that Bush & Rummy found to allow corporations to get their hands on a bigger chunk of the DOD budget. And some of these corporations like Haliburton have screwed the government repeatedly w/ overcharges, among other things.

It's also the inverse of outsourcing as far as saving $, since the pay for these "contractor" jobs is many times higher than would be the cost when performed by service personnel.

Outsourcing helps when you're fighting a war of choice because it reduces the level of military manpower required to fight the war.

This enhances the saleability of the war because there are fewer families affected and there is less liklihood that conscription would be required. A significant sector of the "fighting force" is going for the big bucks.

Mak and Lee have confused l... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Mak and Lee have confused lots of words with lots of thought. It's better, in their case, not to say so much, lest they illustrate thier ignorance.

It must really suck to be you, always being wrong, but desparately trying to defend your ideas for the sake of your petty ego. That also explains the lengthy, and largely incoherent and fact-free, posts.

And high-fivin' each other over an empty, infantile put down is kind of pathetic.

MitchellI i... (Below threshold)
mak44:

Mitchell

I imagine your were the champion of your kindergarten debating society. No one can cut through an argument w/ your skill and deftness. Or is the word "daftness."

Mak, I'm waiting for my sac... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Mak, I'm waiting for my sack of feces to be mailed from your zip code. Isn't that the level of discourse for you moontwits?

Once your were vanquished with my rather pointed, and factual, set of posts on death tax repeal, you've raised that furry little head of yours again, like the bonk-the-groundhog game at the State Fair. Your getting smacked silly, my bitch.

Actually, that bag of feces idea is much more entertaining, and intelligent, than anything you've posted on this site.

Keep it up. We all love a laugh, at your expense.

Mak, did they get paid to f... (Below threshold)
wilky:

Mak, did they get paid to fight or did the get paid to protect. And all definitions I have come across for mercenaries include the words "foreign armies".

And you want me to get bent out of shape because of what one of their mothers say. Please. These contractors are former military, no. That puts them in their mid to late twenties, minimum. Grown men. If the got problems they should take care of business on their own. Mercenaries running home to complain to mommy. There you leftys go again, calling them mercenaries than pointing out to me how they are really just "momma boys". Thats like saying Cindy Sheehan is a right wing nut. And you know what, they always had the option of quitting.

Oh yea, just a sneeky suspecion, but I don't think that the military and their families where the ones that had to be "sold" on the war.

Mitchell, what's with the r... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

Mitchell, what's with the repeated feces comments? It's like that Domenech idiot, always saying that people are going to trespass on his property and fuck his dog. Who's fucking dogs? More to the point, who is mailing you bags of shit? And if anyone is actually doing this, how come you don't realize how incredibly funny it is that someone dislikes you enough to handle shit and pay money to have it delivered to your address?

Wilky--read about the issue before attacking the anti-war mother. I know it's tempting to beat up on relatively undereducated fifty-something-year-old women, but if you really want to step up, you should at least know what you're talking about. That woman's son was paid to deliver kitchen equipment for a Greek catering service. They were ordered into Fallujah, a war zone, to drop off a bunch of heavy appliances. Their vehicle was unarmoured; they were not given heavy weapons (machine guns, grenade launchers, etc.); and there were only four of them. Three direct violations of COMPANY policy, let alone basic principles of human decency. They were slaughtered and set on fire.

I don't care whether they are "mercenaries" or "contractors". Note, however, that they were serving in Iraq on a CONTRACT basis. The point is, they were hung out to dry by their employer. KBR have no business in that country, and neither do their parent country, Halliburton. They have ripped off Americans, and screwed their employees. Support the troops by learning the facts and holding the civilian leadership and corporate contractors accountable for their mistakes. Why not demand better?

First, I said these guys wo... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

First, I said these guys worked for KBR. My careless mistake--it was Blackwater. I don't think this changes anything about what I've said; private contractors don't seem to care about their employees. They should be made to.

I say the woman is "undereducated", because she referred to herself as a simple, ordinary person who just wants answers. She's not a left-wing poli sci professor, she's like you. Blackwater refused to turn over the incident report of her son's death. They tried to prevent her meeting privately with the parents of the other men killed in that ambush. How the hell would you act if you were her? Her son's commander refused to give him a map of Fallujah before entering the city! "It's too late for maps!", witnesses report him saying. His attorney denies it on his behalf, but why would other contractors make that up?

Supporting the troops takes more than cheerleading on the internet and attaching yellow ribbons to your car. Sometimes it even requires criticism of the people running the show. Don't argue with the founding fathers, they hate that.

Mak44They were ... (Below threshold)
Marc:

Mak44

They were performing a function, that in the past, would have been performed by troops. To that extent, they are essentially no different than mercenaries, paid at a far higher rate than the GIs they were supposed to guard.
And why is that Mak44? Do you know?

Many jobs in all branches of the military are now done by civilians as a result of your hero Clinton gutting the military under the banner of "A Peace Dividend."

I don't care whether the... (Below threshold)
Lee:

I don't care whether they are "mercenaries" or "contractors". Note, however, that they were serving in Iraq on a CONTRACT basis

So are U.S. soldiers- they sign a contract to serve. Watada signed a contract also, and he is being criticized for trying to back out of his contractual obligation to serve.


Bemused, I never attacted t... (Below threshold)
wilky:

Bemused, I never attacted the mother. If I attacted anybody, it was the the grown men who took employment with a contractor. If they had problems with their employer they should have gotten what they were told per the contract or refused and walk away. What would I think if that was my son?, I'd think that he is a grown man, he knew the risks and put himself in a war zone. I'd pray that I would see him coming home, but he made his choice.

There you go Lee, U.S. soldiers signed a contract to serve, as soldiers. The contractors signed a contract to serve as gaurds, drivers and probably a few other things that did not require the hunting down and killing/capturing the enemy.

Lee, wilky, et al: let's ag... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

Lee, wilky, et al: let's agree that whether or not they were mercenaries, or contractors, is moot. They did sign contracts, but I typically use the word "contractor" to refer to a guy fixing my roof or building my deck, not some dude patrolling oil pipelines with automatic weapons.

As for always having the option of quitting, why do you think they're there, wilky? Not to work on their tans. Leaving early costs one of these guys the bulk of their paycheque, obviously, as most contract work is payable upon completion. The son of the woman I mentioned had massive debt, and this was his best option. Besides, if his company had held itself to its standards of deployment, he would probably still be alive.

"There you go Lee, U.S. ... (Below threshold)
Lee:

"There you go Lee, U.S. soldiers signed a contract to serve, as soldiers. The contractors signed a contract to serve as gaurds, drivers and probably a few other things that did not require the hunting down and killing/capturing the enemy"

"Contractor" is a type of employment status, not a role or assignment.

Soldiers are contractors, they sign a contract that commits them to obligations, as do plumbers, carpenters, and mercenaries. They are all serving and obligated under a contract. The point is not moot.

In this case the mercenaries were contracted to be armed and use deadly force as needed. Check out the Blackhawk website. These guys aren't school crossing guards.

Does being a mercenary, in ... (Below threshold)
Bemused:

Does being a mercenary, in and of itself, count against one's integrity, or make one's actions less respectable? Mercenaries can do good; mercenaries can also do bad. I don't get what (non-semantic) difference it makes, Lee...

Yes bemused, I know why he ... (Below threshold)
wilky:

Yes bemused, I know why he was there. But if it was me, and the employer did not fulfill his part of the contract per their own regulations and felt that my safety was at issue. I would quit then sue for that what was owed up to that point because they not living up to their own regulations. You keep talking about his mother. Did she put him in debt? Did she sign him up to work for the contractor? I'm sorry for her loss, but he was a grown man making his own decisions. Obviously not his best option, maybe his quickest option. My girlfriends ex-husband is deep in debt and had discussed working as a contractor, a job he is very well suited to do. But doesn't want to risk missing watching his kids and grandkids grow up, so he deciede to find another way to pay off his debts.

No, Bemused, I'm not sugges... (Below threshold)
Lee:

No, Bemused, I'm not suggesting mercenaries are less respectable or have less integrity - I totally respect someone who will put their life on the line for an honorable cause, whether they do it because of patriotic reasons, or because it is employment they are suited for and enjoy doing.

The distinction between contractors in general, and soldiers and mercenaries who are also contractors by virtue of their contractual obligations, is important to me because it speaks more to the integrity of political bloggers and commenters, and relates to comments made earlier, above.

Wow, I never would have ima... (Below threshold)
MikeSC:

Wow, I never would have imagined I'd find a liberal who actually PERSONIFIES Ann Coulter's criticisms of liberals.

Those men were as much mercenaries as the Secret Service is. If you cannot recognize that, there is no point in trying to enlighten you.
-=Mike

qfezrjw rqpxz zwyrbafov zkm... (Below threshold)

qfezrjw rqpxz zwyrbafov zkmeyxr kelydxjvz gspnke dmoc




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Editors: Jay Tea, Lorie Byrd, Kim Priestap, DJ Drummond, Michael Laprarie, Baron Von Ottomatic, Shawn Mallow, Rick, Dan Karipides, Michael Avitablile, Charlie Quidnunc, Steve Schippert

Emeritus: Paul, Mary Katherine Ham, Jim Addison, Alexander K. McClure, Cassy Fiano, Bill Jempty, John Stansbury, Rob Port

In Memorium: HughS

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