He was our Napoleon, our Caesar, and our Honor Harrington.
Archive for June 2006
*Found this in my clipboard program history, I think I wrote this about the first time Murtha came online or just there abouts*
It is quite amusing and intersting the asymmetrical tones of this political conflict. The Democrats use people like Kerry and Murtha because their war efforts make it hard for Republicans to criticize them. One of the reasons why Democrats nominated Kerry, cause they thought he’d win given the Republicans support for the military. Why wouldn’t Republicans and Independent Americans vote for Kerry?
There’s two sides to this issue, and perhaps even more, as with all asymmetrical conflicts. The Democrats don’t appreciate military service as a virtue in itself, seeing it for its political benefits. The Republicans and mainstream America truly values the armed forces, making it a political hot potato, everyone wants it so they’re all fighting over it and getting burned in the process.
A very insightful look into how having obvious strengths and strong points makes you vulnerable to enemy attack and infiltration. once the enemy knows your weak points, he can know where to attack, and where to avoid.
But the Democrat’s plan didn’t quite work. Maybe because they didn’t realize that the American people value the military and military service not because it is “military and war like” but because it serves the purpose of protecting the US Constitution and the American people. Why does that make a difference? Because, if “war heroes” like Kerry or Murtha ever acted to harm the US Constitution or the American people, their military service is not going to prevent people from acting against them. This is the difference of swearing allegiance to the government of the United States and the President of the US, to swearing an allegiance to the US Constitution against all enemies, foreign or domestic.
From what I’ve witnessed, Americans don’t tend to put the military upon a pedestal, appreciating its existence and not its purpose. It is a bad analysis of Americans, when the Democrats conclude that military service will defacto make them right, presumably because people don’t know better than to put their faith in the military.
This kind of exploitation is troublesome, but it is also ineffective. Don’t expect loyalty from people that you mistrust and abuse. Loyalty in human affairs go both ways, or else it doesn’t exist.
I’ve watched too many “Japanese anime” shows that used “chan”. Aziz might be getting a bit too cute here. Shivers down the spine, cute.
Aziz: irrelevant. he is talking about math at the 2+2 level as being more real than abtractions about the real number line
Great, here we go with spiritual vs empiricism again.
Science, in using inductive logic, bases itself on empiricism. Philosophy, and religions that deal with Revealed Truth and other truths, are operating on both levels, the inductive and deductive logics. But mostly on deductive logic, things that must be true rather than things that are “probably true”.
Science can no more make conclusions based upon what they can’t see as humans can avoid being blinded by the sun. Scientists are limited by what they can see and sense. Philosophers reach beyond the physical level, and trace it all back to the a prioris. If this, then that. While science does it back wards. If I see this, then it was that.
Matoko: but theorems and postulates are structure.
They are a posteriori, and science plus religion all use a posterioris. Ridiculous to suggest that science and religion/philosophy is inherently based upon a superior to inferior level. The basic fundamentals and building blocks are the same. It’d be like saying Iron (science) is superior to uranium (philosophy) because uranium is rarer.
Aziz: you don’t need a shared language you need to explain why higher math is important and what makles it useful even though it is abstraction
Matoko: but how can i explain that? it is like explaining higher math to a dog!
Aziz: no it isn’t. he’s a human being not a dog. and someone had to one day say, hey let’s take math beyond 2+2, what was their rationale?
Explaining that things like Good and Evil exist on a non-material non-physical plane of existence, independent of human existence, is not easy nor should people actually do it. Understanding comes from within, and Matoko obviously understands that but does not apply it to religion or philosophy.
However, I think that the conversation illustrates the difference between high IQ and high g.
I think it illustrates that intelligence is tri-luminary. IQ=innate problem solving, wisdom=true understanding, and knowledge=data learned in life. It is all linked. People without the knowledge, can solve the enigma and understand it. But if you can solve problems, but don’t have wisdom nor the knowledge (of how to do it), then you won’t know.
A sensei could have a great and talented student in the martial arts, but does that mean the student has a true understanding of what he has learned? Does that mean the student has an automatic access to the “knowledge” that long term training would give him as his skill increases? No. IQ can’t be increased, since I am refering to Intelligence Quotient, not the test. So in this sense, IQ for me is G for others, innate intelligence and talents. The potential.
M looks like she knows the math, as a piece of knowledge and skill. She also looks like she has a high natural intelligence, born of the genes. What she lacks, is wisdom, true understanding. The ability to piece it all together, so that it means something. Knowledge about car mechanics is knowledge about car, and only, car mechanics. True understanding of car mechanics is true understanding of humans as well. Thus someone with a HIGH Iq innate intelligence are better at both knowledge retention and wisdom comprehension. But neither is guaranteed.
From Froggy. Interesting to see some details of Wood’s life that hasn’t been popularly reported for some reason.
External link is in the title.
I believe that, at core, America is a Jacksonian nation. And when America finally realizes with what loathing we are regarded by the rest of the world, the result will not be what the rest of the world thinks will occur. There will be no sudden American need to apologize and submit ourselves to the world’s judgment. We are a nation founded on telling the rest of the world to go to hell, and shedding our blood to send it there. One of the things that enrages those who hate us is the sneaking suspicion that America and Americans consider themselves and their nation to be better than they and theirs. In this, they are correct, although it is not the American way to toot our horns on the issue. Still, Americans don’t really understand just how much our national success angers those who secretly lust after it and who, unable to achieve it, would see it destroyed here if they could.
When Americans realize that much of the rest of the world is not our friend, then they will regard much of the rest of the world as our enemy. And I can guarantee you that the rest of the world really does not want a Jacksonian America as its enemy.
Just as the Jews ran from Gaza, the Americans will run from Iraq and Afghanistan and the Russians will run from Chechnya, and the Indian will run from Kashmir, and our children will be released from Guantanamo.
The prisoners will be released by Allah’s will, not by peaceful means and not by agreements, but they will be released by the sword, they will be released by the gun.
By all means, release them. Releast them now, by gun and sword. Execution style of course. Terroists demand, we give them their demands, in our own way.
Reporters talking about being blooded, reminds me of the days when “journalists” sometimes had more “combat zone experience” than the dough boys at the war front.
Esprit de Corps. Can’t have that without an enemy to fight. Iraq will become different than pacifistic and useless Germany (a waste of Prussian military discipline in my opinion) and wacky Japan ( a waste of Bushiddo code and Japanese philosophy that North Korea and China might recoup for us).
For them, their peace will not be handed to them on the hands of AMerican conquerors because they surrendered to us (obviously they didn’t). There is a benefit in defeating an enemy and not breaking their spirit, instead using that fight in them to ascend your own interests. Japan’s and Germany’s spirit was broken, and therefore they were never a military threat, to anyone, afterwards. Iraq will be different, and so will Afghanistan. Theirs is not a defensive occupation at the end of a war. But an offensive shock troops training center for the start of the first war in the 21st century, which will last a rather long period of time in human affairs. Just when people thought the coming millenium heralded the end of time, we see that God is not yet done with the human race.
The supremacy of the American military was never ordained by God. Back when old Washington was training a bunch of slacking off undisciplined layabouts in his Revolutionary War (against the British that he once fought with before), a Prussian dude came over to train the American guerrila army, either regular or irregular. Washington even had to deal with the “I only signed up for 1 year” deal. Oh, what he would have given for stop loss.
If Washington could get a bunch of individual unmilitary people to win any battle with the help of a Prussian trainer, I’m pretty sure the United States that sprung from his initial ancestral actions can train up the Iraqis to the best force in the Mid East. And it is proof that if you give a nation superior military training, discipline, and virtues through the Band of Brothers bond, then that nation will in the end repay the nation of Prussia far in excess of the initial investment. It was not the US’s fault Germany chose not to ally with us in WWI, their loss. Don’t give up on those you trained from the cradle, they might just become the teacher.
It is amusing the ignorance of the Left when they talk about America, an America that they fabricated whole cloth rather than sourced from the reality. “Americans don’t run from the enemy”. Oh, ya we do. Humans are humans, and Americans are not the uber-menschen that the Left would like to make us.
The most impressive thing about this Iraqi unit is that they are running their outfit themselves (as opposed to the US running their unit).
What was funny is that John Ringo suggested in 2001 that you get a bunch of Afghanistan sepoys that were lead by American NCOs and officers, sorta like the Gurkhas (as a way to lessen the CNN casualty sensitivty of Americans). Obviously a similar situation was attempted in Iraq, yet because of the Regular Army Way that was implemented, it didn’t get off on a good start. Now we’ve somehow leap frogged (shunpo) John Ringo’s initial recommendations, to the Iraqis running their own stuff without ever actually going into the phase of leading them ourselves via American NCOs and officers, except by example.
Unfortunately, the US did not take Iraqi troop training seriously in the first two years of the war, and we are playing catch up now.
What was that saying I heard? There’s the right way, there is the wrong way, and then there is the Army Way?
America has some weird idioms once you figure out where they come from. For example.
Going off half cocked came from the Kentucky rifle, when if you half cocked the firing hammer, it’d be very likely to strike the flash powder zone and fire your weapon when you didn’t want it to. Cocked and loaded, is also related. Same as Lock, Stock, and Barrel. A kentucky rifle has a lock, that holds and hits the blackpowder primer, a stock to be used as a shoulder rest, and a barrel.
Beat around the bushes and cut to the chase, seems to me to mean basically that you should stop having the beaters beat around in the bush to flush out the prey, instead cutting to the chase of that prey. HUnting terms basically. Cut to the chase, forget all this beating around the bushes to flush the prey.
That’s all I can remember, the non-literal vernacular idioms. Pretty sure there are more.
August 28, 2003
Hoping We Fail
Who loses and who wins in the high-stakes poker in Iraq?
by Victor Davis Hanson
National Review Online
It’s a good listing of the major points of Israel’s propaganda disadvantage, as well as the characteristics of the propaganda operators both in Palestine as well as the global media. With a dash and dollop of human psycology of course.
In the media war, Israel has three disadvantages. The first is an open society, which allows reporters (and filmmakers and activists and human-rights observers) the freedom to roam, record, and interview in first-world comfort. This has saddled Israel with what may be the world’s highest per capita concentration of reporters. Jerusalem is host to 350 permanent foreign news bureaus, as many as New York, London, or Moscow; the volume of reportage on Israel, Gaza, and the West Bank is 75 times greater than on any other area of comparable population. This obsessive attention necessarily distorts, by casting the Israel-Palestinian war in a theatric, world-historical light.
In the last decade, around 4,500 Israeli and Palestinian lives have been lost to the fighting. The Russo-Chechen war has killed 50,000 (11 times as many), the Darfur crisis has killed 180,000 (40 times as many), and the Congolese civil war has killed 3.5 million (778 times as many). But very few Americans can call to mind images of the ghastly violence in Chechnya, Sudan, or Congo—or even identify the warring parties—because these are places so dangerous that the New York Times simply cannot responsibly send a reporter there, much less a bureau.
Then there are the reporters themselves.
How do these reporters or photographers, on a quest for dramatic stories and footage, know where the “spontaneous” violence is to “erupt”? One or another foot soldier in their “small army of Palestinian fixers” is tipped off by the attackers. The Associated Press, Reuters, and Agence France-Press (which together supply 80% of news images to the world media) require the assistance of natives who speak the local language, know who’s who, and can get things done. These hired locals, in turn, make decisions about where to drive and what to translate (or leave un-translated).
The Al Dura episode.
On September 30, 2000, film footage became available to the world showing a Palestinian boy, Mohammed al-Dura, who, cradled in his father’s arms, is shot by Israeli soldiers. Or so it seemed. Subsequent analysis, based especially on firing angles and ballistics examinations, called the story into doubt. Israel, in fact, was probably not responsible for the shooting. But by the time the Israeli army released the findings about its unlikely guilt, the Pietà-like image had zipped around the world, eventually appearing on a Belgian postage stamp, inspiring renamed streets and squares across the Arab world, and co-starring in the propaganda film extolling the execution of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.
On October 12, 2000, less than two weeks after the al-Dura incident, two Israeli reservists took a wrong turn while driving home and were arrested by Palestinian police, taken to the local station, and lynched by a mob. One photographer happened onto the scene:
Within moments [the crowd was] in front of me and, to my horror, I saw that it was a body, a man they were dragging by the feet. The lower part of his body was on fire and the upper part had been shot at, and the head beaten so badly that it was a pulp, like red jelly…. My God, I thought, they’ve killed this guy. He was dead, he must have been dead, but they were still beating him, madly, kicking his head. They were like animals.
The crowd tore the photographer’s camera from him and smashed it. But a colleague managed to capture the infamous image of one of the murderers holding up his bloody hands for a cheering crowd.
The two scenes provided visual scripture from which reporters sermonized about symmetry, suffering on both sides, and cycles of violence. But Gutmann discerns the tragedy, for Israel, precisely in the asymmetry:
The images were frequently paired—by the news media. But it was a forced symmetry, created by the media for its convenience and because it was more soothing and less complicated to represent the situations as the same. Consider just the two pieces of videotape by themselves, which was all anyone had to work with at this time: In ‘Ramallah’ we actually see perpetrators at work—men hoisting a body to a window ledge, then shoving it off the ledge to a crowd below, whom we then see all too clearly stomping and stabbing it. In ‘al-Dura,’ however, we see a boy collapsing, apparently shot. That is all. In one story, most of the who, what, where and why is answered. But in ‘al-Dura,’ virtually everything, except that two people were shot at in front of a wall, is essentially a mystery.
Less of a mystery is that the “al-Dura” cameraman became a minor celebrity, treated to interviews at European media conferences. The “Ramallah” cameraman, on the other hand, remains unknown, while death threats forced his bureau chief to flee the region.