Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 130 (since 2010-06-03 15:17:12)

gazacalling

Website: http://gravatar.com/gazacalling

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  • Anti-Cantor coalition included Tea Partiers, Independents, Democrats
    • You guys at MW should stop navel-gazing. There are a *lot* of people who agree with you or could be persuaded to. The base of the Republican party is not the preening, warmongering, crony capitalists of the Bushes and Cantors of the world.

      If you stopped being so left-wing ideological, if you really put justice for the Palestinians first, above your own progressive self-image, if you were really willing to drop your preconceptions, think objectively and strategically about who your allies could be, you'd realize that the Republican base is ripe for an appeal.

      The potential is there. Drop the liberal agenda, the promotion of the sexual "liberation" road to nowhere, the knee-jerk support of Obama even when he bombs Libya, the self-congratulations for events like this which have nothing to do with you. It makes you feel good but it turns people off.

      Liberals and conservatives need each other. They complement each other's strengths and counterbalance their weaknesses.

      Israel/Palestine is such a cut-and-dried issue: anyone who just sees the evidence agrees. Drop the ideology that is there only to boost your own self-esteem! Reach out to conservatives! The base of the party isn't crazy, a *lot* of them know the Cantor's and Bush's of the world are losers.

      Don't alienate them! Stick to Israel/Palestine. That's the strength of this site. Stupid posts like this aren't.

  • Israeli government tries to undo image of Pope at the wall
  • The Pope in Palestine
  • Full transcript of new Snowden interview: 'I don't want to live in a world where every expression of creativity or love or friendship is recorded'
  • Netanyahu brags on his fancy German car
    • Interesting article. Compare Netanyahu with Pope Francis.

      On Saturday, the pope told a group of priests and nuns that cars "are necessary. But take a more humble one." He said it "hurts" him when he sees a priest or nun in the "latest model car; you can't do this." He told his audience to drive a cheaper car and pass the savings on to feed starving children.

  • Out of the margin: One-state paradigm and nonviolent resistance are now standard fare on US left
    • Yep, the 2ss is dead and the one-state solution is all that is left. And yes, the Palestinians have to do it themselves.

      But they need an assist from the US media, or at least some elements of it that make it less monolithic. There has to be publicity of the nonviolent resistance, otherwise it won't work.

      That's where we come in. Keep chipping away. It's happening, baby.

  • Notes from an illegal military court in Israel
    • Wow, incredible post, thanks for that.

      The right to peaceably assemble and petition the government for the redress of grievances is one right Americans just take for granted. But we shouldn't; it does not exist everywhere.

  • On US television, Zuckerman, Ross and Remnick all refer to Israeli prime minister as 'Bibi' on first reference
    • Yeah, Rose should interview Stephen Walt. The Bibi thing is disgusting. Use formal titles when you are in a position of high responsibility, either as an elected leader or a journalist.

      On the "peril of the third Intifada," that is real. I was in Ramallah last month and saw a Hamas demonstration supporting Fatah. Israel agreed to a ceasefire Nov. 21 right after the Tel Aviv bus bombing because of US and European pressure and the knowledge that everything could really blow up if Fatah and Hamas start supporting each other.

  • Netanyahu out as PM?: Yair Lapid shocks Likud/Beiteinu in Israeli election
    • No, it doesn't open up the peace process.

      But I like the focus on economic issues. De-emphasizing the Palestinians in an election seems to me to be a positive development.

      Here's why: being friends with your neighbors is the best possible economic policy. You don't have to waste tons of resources on security. You can trade with your neighbors.

      Right now you can't win an election in Israel by saying you want to be friends with the Palestinians. That's sad but true. So the next best thing is to de-emphasize it and focus on an area where ultimately the end game is friendship.

  • John Brennan, assassin
    • Wow, this is a powerful and important post.

      There needs to be more shame, there needs to be more outrage.

      By neutering the left, Obama has been worse than Bush. At least everyone hated Bush, and he got slammed in the media. The press is so unbelievably compliant with Obama, it does a service to nobody.

  • Obama taps Hagel with combative speech-- following outreach to AIPAC
    • This is really exciting. I have to think that this pick would not have been possible without this site and Walt and Mearshimer, bravely bringing the AIPAC issue to light.

      Keep up the good work!

  • 'NPR's bad geography
  • 'NPR' airs Ken Pollack's Iran war games and leaves out his last war
  • Pssst, Maureen Dowd-- Colin Powell said neoconservative 'ideologues' pushed Iraq war out of concern for Israel
    • Wow, great excerpt. I wish Powell had had presidential ambitions. The presidency seems only to be for those who put their ambitions in first place, and the best interests of their country second. The true patriots are not as power-hungry.

      Bush had delusions of grandeur. It's hard not to when your approval rating is the highest ever recorded. That's really about the worst thing that can happen to a president.

      Whoever is the next president will be helped to be a better president by the fact that his approval rating will not be in the stratosphere.

  • Exile and the prophetic: When David Gregory came to my seder
    • Yet another beautiful post. The portrait of Gregory seems correct (I never talked to him, but I used to hang out at the Starbucks he would frequent in DC).

      I wanted to briefly point to this sentence: "The reward is lots of money and status."

      I've been reflecting on this in recent days. The nature of a scam is when somebody offers you something for (seemingly) nothing. This is what we all want! Unconditional love, someone to give us things we didn't earn.

      But this isn't the way life works. When money and status are offered to you, there's always something expected in return. And that something is usually your integrity.

      It's hard to have integrity. You have to really put yourself out there on occasion, and stand up for something. What is it you're going to stand up for?

      The only thing worth standing up for are the oppressed everywhere. Bravo to Marc Ellis and Phil Weiss for leading the way and giving us the benefit of their examples.

  • Maureen Dowd accuses the neocons of fomenting war -- and is promptly tarred as an anti-Semite
    • Powerful post, thanks. The Iraq War was a terrible, terrible thing on so many levels, and at the moment one candidate for President seems to have learned absolutely nothing from it. (Or maybe two: Obama's term seemed pretty much like a 3rd Bush term to me in terms of foreign policy actions.)

      Typo in paragraph 2 you may want to correct: "...Dowd was right..."

  • Obama will go to NY to see Letterman-- but not Netanyahu
  • Romney runs from 'neocon' label-- because Americans reject neoconservatism by more than 2 to 1!
    • These polls are good news, thanks for sharing.

      People are just tired of this stuff. Ever since 9/11 we've had years and years of Middle East warmongering. Obama's 1st term was basically Bush's 3rd term in foreign policy. If you disagree, just ask yourself if Bush had a 3rd term what he have done differently from Obama.

      By the way, I got an Axelrod email plea about Sheldon Adelson today -- he wants Romney to win because he'll cut his taxes, so Romney is an "investment." I suppose the Obama campaign thinks plenty of people will believe this.

  • Romney says that Obama 'has thrown... Israel under the bus'
    • Yep, this is absolutely right. It's pure campaigning, doesn't have any relationship to reality. Romney has used this line throughout his run for the nomination.

  • 'Today I saw a lynch with my own eyes, in Zion Square, in the center of Jerusalem'
  • Bloomberg says Israel lobby is 'blackmail'-ing US gov't to support Iran strike, but Times is clueless
    • Oops, meant to say that "preemptive war is sometimes necessary".

    • The neocon argument is not that war is really great and cool, they just argue that it is sometimes necessary. Exactly like the pro-abortion side does.

      Women who have abortions are the second victim of a violent procedure. No laughing matter, you are correct.

      There is nothing to be ashamed of in a consistent life ethic. There is something to be ashamed of in your profanity towards me, and your puerile insistence on politically correct euphemisms on this site.

      Imagine this: there is a blog on law or economics or environmental issues -- any topic totally apart from Mideast politics -- that you find very insightful. Every now and then the authors throw in some derogatory remark about the Palestinians and some praise for Israel's policies regarding them. Would this turn you off? Would you doubt their judgment as a result? Yes, you couldn't help doing that, even if it didn't necessarily fatally detract from their judgment on other matters.

      There is no reason why the pro-abortion position has to be featured on this site, even marginally. It only turns people off; it's all loss and no gain.

      I'm highly interested in this site having the widest possible audience. You are interested in shouting down with foul language anyone who disagrees with you on totally unrelated issues. I'm telling you, that is a big turnoff for a large contingent of the American public. You're doing this site no favors.

    • We must be politically correct at all times. We must not utter the word "abortion," lest our mind wanders, and we think of the innocent child in the womb, and not the "choice" of the woman.

      It can't, just can't, be about innocent life; we must keep the sexual revolution immune from criticism always, even when it resorts to killing children in the womb. All euphemisms all the time.

      All you pro-abortion liberals on this site who shake your heads and wonder at how immoral and tone-deaf neoconservatives can be when it comes to innocent life, know this: on the abortion issue the other side is doing exactly the same thing to you.

      And they are right.

      This site should stick to what it's good at, Middle East politics.

  • Paul Ryan's foreign policy: Spinning straw into gold
    • Neither Romney nor Ryan offered any clue as to how either of these two policy guys would deal with the "challenges" Romney alluded to during the interview.

      That's because they don't have a clue.

      But it matters less now that last decade. A bankrupt nation has to look inward and solve its own problems before it goes on a neocon warpath. The days of the US blithely invading other countries has come and gone. So whoever is president matters less.

      And Obama has been a disaster anyway. Anyone see this Goyte parody? The money line: "Nobel Peace Prize winners shouldn't have kill lists."

      Presidential elections matter much less than the existence of sites like this on the internet. The Lobby isn't going to die because of some election. It's going to die first because of people like Phil Weiss, and then elections will reflect that.

      Anyway, thanks for this analysis, it's very interesting and helpful.

  • Sheldon's wish list
  • Jon Stewart on Romney's painfully oblivious racism against Palestinians
  • Romney backs Israel in the battle of the Iran red lines
  • Romney visits Western Wall, ignores question, Does Israel have a right to annex West Bank
  • The occupation machine can't run on empathy
    • Yeah, that article is awesome. Thanks so much for this post.

      Look, it's for an American audience. We are the bullies of the world. In a way it is more relevant to talk about what oppression does to the oppressor, this is more in our experience. I agree the Palestinians should be humanized, only then do you get the full story, but as a tactic focusing on the Israelis in this way is particularly effective for an American audience I think.

  • Travels with a former Zionist in Israel and Palestine, part 2
  • Exile and the Prophetic: Overcoming partial practice
    • I really love this series, I had a smile on my face the whole time reading this post.

      Especially: "What’s our option? Play the game. Win or lose."

      Also these seven wise words: "Suffering for what you believe is just." Exactly.

  • Announcing a new partnership between Mondoweiss and Salon
  • 'NYT's takeout on a Jewish leader's 'criticisms' of Obama doesn't dare to mention Israel
  • David Brooks's conscious oversight about America's 'elite'
  • Backer of NY ads exposing Palestinian land-loss says response has been 'astounding' and news 'coverage is pouring in'
  • Ali Abunimah KO's Jonathan Tobin in 'Democracy Now' debate
  • Introducing 'Exile and the Prophetic': a new feature from Marc Ellis
  • Shamir ordered Bernadotte assassination to save Jerusalem for Jews. But will his obits tell you that?
  • Help Mondoweiss continue to push Israel/Palestine into the mainstream
  • C-SPAN is ravished by neocons
    • It's really bad that you have to be a war-crazed thug to get ahead in DC. War pays big bucks, though. It expands the military-industrial-Congressional complex.

      You can't get ahead in DC calling for cutting government spending. Everyone wants to spend more, more, more. The war issue is symptomatic of the larger issue, which is that DC has become the new Rome, the new London, existing for no other reason than to continue to exist, greedy, bloated, sucking the countryside dry, leaving devastation in its wake.

  • Trend? Israeli soldiers sick of Zionism
  • Wright: Obama is 'drifting toward war with Iran' out of 'pathetic' fear of blowback from the lobby
    • Whoo hoo! I love posts like this.

      Obama was elected as the anti-war candidate. Now he drifts towards war as President due to the Lobby. In Beinart's book it's almost poignant how Obama is portrayed as going against his instincts on I/P out of weakness, the inability to use political strength and back up his fine words with actions.

      We need a strong President to resist the warmongers. Too bad Obama has not turned out to be strong.

  • Palestinian Bureau of Statistics: 262,000 Israeli settlers in East Jerusalem, living in 26 illegal settlements
  • One state, two states and the art of the possible
    • Great post, very hardheaded analysis. I agree completely.

      Don't underestimate the power of dreams and visions to capture the imagination. This might seem totally impracticable or impossible, but that is not the case. It's the battle of the imagination in which political battles are won or lost even before they begin.

      In the battle of the imagination, Israel is slowly bleeding. This imperceptible movement is going to determine everything in the future. By the time it is clear, Israel's oppression will have already lost.

  • US imperialism and the lobby
    • OK Robert Kagan!

      Actually, everything here is true. Kagan's book Dangerous Nation has a point. But I would still like to cling to the myth that the Philippines marked a turning point. It's one thing to expand in a continent, even at the shameful expense of American Indians. But it's another thing to exercise imperialism halfway around the world. I don't think we should be so quick to blur this distinction.

  • Netanyahu vets possible Romney VP
    • Same thing happened to Sarah Palin in '08. Previously she was a Pat Buchanan enthusiast, but that had to be dropped like a hot-potato, as Randy Scheunemann and Michael Goldfarb prepped her for her public appearances. A year ago she got back to her roots, though, ditching Scheunemann and Goldfarb from her PAC.

  • A look at who is running Mark Kirk's office in his absence
  • 'Do you feel more Arab or more American?': Two women's story of being detained and interrogated at Ben Gurion
  • US Embassy to American in trouble in Israel: 'You're not Jewish? Then we can't do anything to help you'
  • Another op-ed headline you won't be reading any time soon in the US press
  • The antiwar thinktank: West Point
    • Yeah, I saw that, that was awesome! Tons and tons of people read Buchanan's column, he's got the largest syndicated column in the country I believe. I was absolutely thrilled to see him mention Phil Weiss by name.

      I hope that drives readers to this site. Likewise I hope this site continues its positive trend in staying clear from annoying social liberalism (and censoring discussions about it), so that those people won't be turned off.

  • Honest broker? Israeli consulate sponsors Obama's former Middle East peace adviser at Stanford talk!
    • Great post! Imagine if it was a Palestinian lobbyist who was negotiating on behalf of the US in mid-east issues, oh how the other side would howl.

  • Why 'Brand Israel' is failing
    • That was a thoughtful reply, Warner. I tend to agree with Ahmed about the public opinion shift though. There's shifts in public opinion that respond to events, and then there's the tectonic shifts that opinion polls can't measure except over a very, very long period. The key thing about that deeper public opinion is the education of opinion-leaders. That is something that I do see changing, even though it is incremental.

      I don't see much hope for a one-state solution either. There's just too much racism for that too work. But there's too much attachment to Jerusalem on both sides for a two-state solution to work either. So this thing hurtles to a conclusion on its own, and all we can focus on is education of opinion leaders...

  • The charmingest flashmob you ever did see
    • That's true, you do encounter civility in Palestine.

      There is a high cost for Palestinian-Americans to speak out: everyone thinks they are terrorists. You have to be brave to do it.

  • Beinart gets a Jewish conversation going in the media (just don't call us a cabal)
    • Well, after having tried and failed for ten days or so to get my (nonoffensive) comment published, I wanted to just mention how down I feel right now about Mondoweiss.

      I suppose I’ll still give money in the future, but to me this episode is really disheartening. If there are defining characteristics of Phil Weiss and Mondoweiss, it’s bold courage. If there is anything that describes a vigorous back-and-forth about abortion taking place on a liberal website, it’s boldness and courage. But stepping in, censoring me and ending this discussion is cowardly, the opposite of everything I thought defined MW.

      I’m saddened because I yearn for bridges to be built across political divisions, to find common ground on issues as important as I/P. If the problem of the Israeli oppression of the Palestinians is going to be solved, it is by reaching out and forming a broad political coalition. There’s no inherent reason why pro-lifers cannot be a part of this coalition. If there is a hearty group of people who are unbowed in the face of stereotypes, jeers and mockery, it is pro-lifers. These are the type of people you want on your side, especially when you are attempting something as difficult as changing public discourse on Israel-Palestine.

      Remaining in a small little liberal cocoon, where one’s feelings about issues are more important than any actual change for the better, is the recipe for zero progress on Israel-Palestine in American politics.

    • Woody Tanaka, what’s the difference between “desirable” and “bad” in your view? You’ve been using this distinction but I’m confused by what you mean by it.

      Regarding the appendectomy analogy, answer me this: is saving a life a good thing? Is living good? Is life good? I want to hear your view, not a recitation of what other people think. If life is good, then saving someone from dying by an appendectomy is good. This doesn’t seem like bad reasoning to me, just common sense.

    • I’m really mystified as to why my follow-up comment is being blocked. What policy is it violating? Please advise. I’m not attacking anyone, just answering the arguments provided by Woody Tanaka. Am I permanently banned from this thread? Under what part of the comments policy does this fall under?

      Remember: I would love nothing better than if MW would stick to the Middle East and stop its embarrassing forays into marriage and family issues. I think the best interests of the site are served by staying on topic.

      But once broached, banning me commenting on this topic in the middle of a vigorous back-and-forth seems low. Like you’re afraid of arguments and would rather shut them down then allow them to be aired. That seems really beneath you guys, to do that to a loyal supporter.

    • I don't understand what your comment means, Annie.

    • Annie, why don't you engage, and start making real arguments?

      This is the first time I've talked about abortion before on MW, ever, and only because Phil brought it up. Hardly my favorite topic.

      I like discussing things, that's what being able to comment was all about. I know on social issues liberals prefer an echo chamber where all they hear is their own views.

    • Awesome, Woody Tanaka, I appreciate this discussion and the time you took to write that.

      You are conflating two things — “bad”-ness and desire. That no one does not desire it does not make it bad. Again, no one desires abdominal surgery, but that doesn’t make it “bad.”

      So you are saying that abortion is not desirable but not “bad.” So you agree it is not desirable, then? You compare it to an appendectomy, which isn’t “bad.” But of course an appendectomy is actually good, right? We want people whose appendix burst to have an appendectomy, everyone agrees that this is a good thing, and the reason of course is that the person will otherwise die, and life is good. But wait a minute -- the unborn child would also live unless something is done to take his or her life. Abortion is precisely taking that life, so as it turns out the reason an appendectomy is good is exactly the same reason that an abortion is not good, because a life is either saved or sacrificed.

      You need to pick a new analogy. The appendectomy example is a bit embarrassing.

      Well, it depends on exactly what, and how, that limitation would come about. The pro-choice and anti-choice sides have VERY different views on that. That’s why the phrase is “safe, legal and rare,” because “limitation” is not the only (or even the primary) principle involved.

      Your answer seems to be saying, “yes.” You agree, then, that abortions should be limited, that limiting it is a good thing.

      [Is the disagreement just over legality?] No. There are other disagreements, including whether it is anyone’s business to even decide legality other than the woman involved and her doctor.

      You used the word “legality” again in your answer here, so it’s difficult to discern what the other disagreements here are.

      I don’t think [opposition to abortion] HAS to be based on religion. But you would have to be a fool that the primary motivation among those opposed to abortion is religion. It is not exclusively such, as there are non-religious people who are opposed to abortion, but most anti-abortion sentiment, and virtually all anti-abortion organizations, are based in part or whole on religion or religious views.

      I know I’m calling into question a sacred stereotype of the elite left, who comfort themselves in thinking that all opposition to them is based on religious superstition and prejudice, while they are the keepers of true enlightened rationality. Though widespread, this comforting myth that makes an insulated group feel good about itself is wrong.

      In my experience there have been prejudiced religious people and prejudiced secular people, as well as open-minded religious people and open-minded secular people. The trick is to focus on the actual arguments, and not get caught up in the stereotypes that mock and put down people of religious faith. If you are open to argument, this marks you as open-minded in my book.

      You admit the arguments do not have to be based on religious faith. If it is true what I say, that the arguments are totally rational and independent of any special faith, then it would be the aggressive secular left that -- in this instance -- would be acting in a more close-minded way and the religious people who are actually more rational. This tacks against a sacred stereotype, but that’s not a problem unless you think that every single stereotype of the elite left just happens to be 100% true.

      But, further, if all that were required to declare something “human life” is for it to have 46 chromosomes and cell multiplication, then we would call a cancerous tumor — which has both of those elements — “human life.” Further, under that “definition,” a person with Downs Syndrome would not have “human life” because they have 47 chromosomes.

      This is really interesting. You point out that the scientific definition of human life I give does not cover people with Down’s Syndrome. This is a really good point! It would be a horrible thing to start killing other people because we had a narrow definition of humanity, a moral definition we crafted ourselves rather than respecting all human life. Once we start crafting definitions of who is and who isn’t human, we can define things to suit our interests and our racism. I was in Pirna in 2010, that’s the city where the Nazis sent all the handicapped and disabled people to kill them. That was the start of the Holocaust; when the dirty job was done, the doctors from Pirna were sent to the first extermination camps.

      It would be a horrible thing for us to declare, based on some definition we made up of what is true humanity, that people with Down’s Syndrome aren’t truly human, and sent them to a modern-day Pirna to be exterminated. We can all agree on this I think.

      But wait! We do that already. Down’s Syndrome babies are killed in the womb 95% percent of the time. As soon as their mothers hear the news, apparently, they think that their baby is no longer worthy to live, and they decide to kill it. Just last month a couple won a multimillion dollar settlement, because the hospital didn’t tell them their baby had Down’s Syndrome, and they would have aborted him! Millions of dollars in settlement, plus lawyer’s fees -- I have a much simpler idea. Wouldn’t it just be easier to kill the child? Just throw it in a ditch and walk away, why go through all the hassle of a lawsuit?

      This is point I’m trying to make and which you have yet to grasp: the burden of proof is not on pro-lifers to somehow demonstrate that a person is worthy of life, is somehow truly human. The burden of proof is rather on the pro-abortion side to show that something is definitively not human life. In the case of a tumor or an appendix, the answer is clear. In the case of an unborn child the answer is also clear: it is clearly the case that an unborn child turns into an adult. This is not magic. Everyone knows it. That’s in fact why people want to kill it, because it is known that it will be a free-standing human being, and that’s what they are trying to prevent.
      And the reason they are trying to prevent it is clear: they don’t want the hassle of raising a child. In other words, selfishness and irresponsibility. The vast majority of abortions are for convenience. But if we apply this logic consistently, there’s no reason why we wouldn’t advocate mass killings of disabled people and other undesirables. It would be so convenient to redefine humanity so as to exclude them.

      This is why the pro-abortion side is not rational, because they are inconsistent in their reasoning. Insisting on some separation of “science” from “morality” won’t help you refute this point; at some point you have to acknowledge the consequences of a consistent application of your own principles.

      Further, your use of the word “innocent” is a complete non sequitur. Concepts of guilt and innocent are as irrelevant when discussing a fetus as are concepts of humility and pride or knowledge or stupidity.

      Is it ok to kill a newborn then? Are you in favor of infanticide? What’s the big difference, really, between a baby that’s about to be born and one who is just born?

      To really think that there’s some big magical difference requires religious belief, like that of Judaism that believes that human life begins with first breath.

      You are actually the one who has to rely on religious belief, while all I need is rationality.

    • OK, RoHa, great point. So what's your moral definition?

      Regarding Annie’s comment, I want to emphasize that I have got into a discussion on social issues on two posts prior to this on MW, which I have already linked everyone to in my comment above. The first was a post on MW on gay marriage. The discussion here was (surprise!) about gay marriage. The other was Annie’s participation in the smearing of a social conservative by a bunch of lowlives, here.

      All three of these contributions have the best interests of this site in mind. If there are posts that are indefensible or wrong, or if Phil says something off-base, my comments pointing this out are in order. It only helps this site if it stays on-topic to the Middle East and avoids ridiculous forays into social liberalism. That just turns a lot of people off who might be your allies, thoughtful people who care about the fate of children and the strength of families in our country.

      My comment here was originally responding to a post by Phil here. In that post, Phil says at the end:

      I must quote Joan Walsh of Salon, appearing on Hardball a few weeks ago, during the federal funding for abortions flap: "The choice issue is a very tough issue, especially for those of us raised Catholic." Beautiful. A transparent statement about religious-political adhesions, on the part of an outspoken liberal. Chris Matthews is also transparent about his Catholic struggle re choice. When can we have anything like this conversation about Jewishness and Zionism?

      Now, as you can see from my last long comment, this idea of Phil's that Catholics "struggle with dual loyalty" on some issues is out in left field. Abortion is not a "Catholic" issue at all. It's a human issue, like slavery or I/P. It's about the dehumanization of a whole class of people, who are clearly biologically human, but the humanity of which liberals want to deny in order to protect that sacrosanct right to adult sex without any consequences. (What a low, ignoble goal this is: sex without love and responsibility! It's no wonder the tactics of social liberals follow the Annie/Mooser line of personal attacks, jeers, scatological jokes, and stereotyping. Similar to Israel Lobby tactics, but even more base.) It's about the common good of the whole society we live in. It makes rational arguments defended by evidence. If anything it's the other side which is protecting its absolutes with religious fervor, such that it can't even argue its positions effectively.

    • Woody Tanaka, I have to say I'm impressed. You clicked the links and read them. I'm not being facetious either, I really appreciate that. It's a positive thing to be exposed to views other than one's own.

      You hit perhaps the core of the argument in the abortion piece, and you make a really good point. In the piece the argument is that any young woman, in the abstract, would never desire an abortion. What you point out is that real life does not work that way. What we want in our daydreams is not necessarily what happens in reality. No one daydreams about getting an appendectomy, in your apt metaphor.

      So it seems you agree that abortion is a bad thing, something no one would want. Correct? Most people do agree with this, outside of the really hard-core abortion doctor sickos.

      I find this to be common ground amongst us, and in our country. Abortion doctors and the Planned Parenthood Lobby aside, we agree that abortions should be limited. Again, correct me if I'm wrong.

      So the disagreement is just over whether it should be a legal option or not. And here the analogy with an appendectomy breaks down. And also your claim that opposition to abortion is based on religious arguments breaks down. That, actually, was the point of the whole piece -- to make themselves feel better, liberals rationalize abortion by telling themselves that those who opposite it are just religious fanatics, while they are the enlightened ones who stand on the side of science. But nothing could be further from the truth.

      All 46 human chromosomes are present in a fertilized embryo, but not before. It has multiplying cells, therefore it is alive. According to the basic scientific definition of human life, it seems to be the case then that the fertilized embryo is human. And if it is human life, it deserves to be protected as such. Nothing at all religious about this reasoning. It’s straight-up science.

      No one things an appendix is innocent potential life. Everyone knows that an unborn baby is. Liberals pretend not to know, but they can only keep that up because they are typically insulated in an elite bubble, in a constant state of self-congratulation at how rational and scientific they are, and how religious and closed-minded everyone else it.

      By the way, Judaism thinks life begins at first breath, hence at birth. Under this religious view, it would seem, abortion is perfectly fine. In other words: it takes a religious view or an blinkered ideology to think abortion is OK. It's the pro-life view that is supported by reason and science. It's also the view that unites most Americans, that abortions should be limited.

      I wish thoughtful liberals would work to support strong families and limit abortions, rather than shilling for the hard-core pro-partial-birth-abortion crazies and doing everything they can to end all discussion of personal and social responsibility when it comes to sexual mores.

      But hey, I have to give credit to your response here. Thanks for reading the post, it's great to have a vigorous dialogue (even if it's so unbelievably off-topic!). :)

    • Yeah I know! Talk about off topic. It was relevant to Phil's post on dual loyalty, though not here.

      I absolutely love mixing it up with liberals on social issues, because I have the upper hand: liberals haven't ever thought seriously about these issues a jot. Everything is about the ideology of adult sexual libertinism for them.

      If you need any evidence of the fact that liberals have never thought through the rationality of their "arguments" on social issues, see the comment sections on these two MW posts, where I take apart all comers: here and here.

      And to read a bit more how social liberalism -- that depraved ideology that gave us partial-birth abortion -- is willing to ignore science and reason on the abortion issue, click here.

    • I'm flattered by your interest! No, I'm not in Gaza. I've never been there, though I have a friend who has. The name is just from my favorite Checkpoint303 song.

      Ironically, just last week I made a comment that "outed" my true identity. Funnily enough it did not end up getting posted, which I chalk up to technical issues since I didn't say anything objectionable. (Unless Phil and Adam were tired of my harping on social issues. The comment was objecting to Phil's characterization of Catholic positions on life issues as a "dual loyalty." I was pointing out that objections to abortion and contraception in marriage are totally rational positions, defensible in terms of science, the wider social good and the nature of human love. If a position is a rationally defensible argument about the wider common good, "dual loyalty" simply doesn't exist, the label is irrelevant.)

      Anyway, I'm a college poli sci prof at a Eastern college in the US. I have tenure now, so nothing really to hide here.

      I know the Israelis oppress the Palestinians and this tears me up inside. But I still believe it's possible to be in solidarity with the Palestinians and the Israelis. It has to be. Otherwise you're taking a partisan side and fighting an endless war.

    • I totally agree with Samel.

      I write about Israel-Palestine issues only occasionally, because the onslaught of emails and comments calling me a self-hating Jew can be emotionally overwhelming.

      It's called having guts. A just cause brings hatred, veritas odium parit.

      [W]hen non-Jews criticize Israel they’re immediately suspected of seeking to endanger our safety (they must be anti-semites).

      This paranoia is a big part of the problem, as seen in early Zionist history. It's understandable, but still creates more problems than it solves.

      I criticize Israel a) because US policy is directly involved, and 2) because I love Israel. I always try to emphasize that. It's about Israel's long-term best interests. Anyone who loves Israel wants her to flourish, and perpetrating horrible injustice never caused anyone to flourish in the long-term. That's why I like Beinart's approach, since it starts with solidarity with Israel.

  • Iowa. New Hampshire. Yad Vashem
    • Krauss, what's your evidence that he's into Christian Zionism?

      When I saw this I assumed it is all about 2016 and donors. I wonder though, would Romney pick him as a running-mate? I've honestly never thought about that possibility before. It would be an interesting pick in a lot of ways.

  • Bloomberg warns BDS will lead to 'massacres' as Park Slope Co-op holds initial vote on boycott tonight
  • Hundreds of soccer fans crowd Jerusalem mall: 'Death to Arabs!'
  • Public radio station fires editor who dared to speak out about Israel's 'brutal military occupation'
  • Exclusive Excerpt: Miko Peled's 'The General's Son: Journey of an Israeli in Palestine'
  • In Jerusalem, the Nakba is a fresh memory
  • Adelson dumps Gingrich and Santorum's star is rising
    • Good point, kma. This is the same point Charles Murray is making in his latest book.

      And this applies to Annie's second comment as well. Liberal elites do follow traditional mores in their own lives, and their children benefit from it. But the underclass doesn't, and the response of the liberal elites is silence, a nihilistic every man for himself. The explanation for this is sheer intellectual spinelessness.

      In my experience in following politics daily for decades, liberals are moralistic on absolutely everything. There isn't a topic on which liberals won't start with their heavy-handed moralism -- except with the gaping exception of sexual morality. Then, suddenly, according to them no moral judgments are even possible. This is silly and extremely destructive.

      So, let's not fall into that pattern on this site. Annie, you want us to take your tears for Palestinian children seriously. Then please don't participate in the degenerate mockery of someone because he takes the cruel fate of American children to heart.

    • Ok, fair enough, I should have been more specific. I was referring to one simple aspect of the post -- linking to Dan Savage's site.

      Dan Savage is by any measure a scumbag, spewing toxic pollutants on the culture. Annie, he is totally beneath you in every way.

      Citing his site and thereby participating in his tactics is beyond bad taste, it is filthy.

      Imagine if the tables are turned. Imagine if a politician was brave enough to champion human rights for Palestinians, and in response he was branded a "terrorist" on the internet by the same tactics of Savage. Everyone on this site would be rightfully denouncing this.

      Imagine if you went to a new internet site and saw a post where the author cites a warmongering neocon to the extent that "we all know" Palestinians don't deserve any rights because they're all terrorists. Would that turn you off to the site as a whole? Yes. Now what do you think happens to anyone who knows from firsthand experience the vital importance of intact families for children and the larger society who, searching for info on the Conflict, stumbles onto this site and sees it uncritically signing onto the radical agenda of the homosexual lobby? It would be the same.

      Please take the larger view of the place of MW in the internet. Filthy jokes on irrelevant topics might get a few laughs from those who already agree, but they actually really hurt this site.

    • Supporters of rights for Palestinians are often treated terribly, dismissed and slandered. But they are usually not viciously mocked.

      Liberals in this country have failed utterly, miserably, when it comes to the most basic social unit, the family. The family exists for the protection of the most vulnerable among us, children.

      Liberals never engage in a real discussion about the meaning of spousal love and the social purpose of strong families. They have abdicated this discussion, gone completely AWOL. If you are at all interested in promoting strong families in this country, 10 out of 10 times you are a conservative.

      Worse, liberals actively mock and jeer those who would engage this conversation. If you are going to stand up and say that the actions that destroy families hurt the wider society, you can expect to get the Santorum treatment.

      And here it is yet again, on display from Annie. On a site that prides itself on being a serious discussion of issues of grave responsibility for Americans, issues that are usually dismissed and utterly stereotyped. I suggest this site sticks to what it knows, and not go stereotyping and mocking others on totally unrelated political issues.

      What do liberals not get about the fact that sexual morality matters for the health of the whole society anyway? In 1960, 5.3% of all births in America were to unmarried women.; 50 years later it is 40.8%. In 1960 married families made up almost three-quarters of all households; 50 years later just 48%. Cohabitation has increased tenfold since 1960. All of this is very worrying if you care about the common good of American life, but you won't get a single worry out of liberals. They give you the Annie Robbins wink-and-a-laugh.

      Dismissing family issues and sexual mores is fine if you are already an adult, already self-sufficient, and not a vulnerable child who has to suffer from not having a mom and a dad.

      I took on all comers on this site a while back on gay marriage, an issue that MW should stay far away from, as it ruins its creditability. Annie et al. tried to engage a discussion, but they were totally out of their depth. The reason is simple -- liberals never engage these issues, they never even think about them seriously.

      You can read it all in the comments section here

      Liberals can only mock anyone who wants to talk about limits to adult sexual proclivities. They resort to crude nastiness only because they totally lack any good arguments.

      Phil Weiss and Annie Robbins are my heroes on I/P. Their intellectual courage is admirable and very beneficial.

      Rick Santorum's engagement with issues that liberals don't want to talk about for some reason (it's probably a simple lack of intellectual courage) is equally admirable. His courage and virtue towers over the filth who slander him on the internet.

  • Would you buy a used metaphor from this warmonger? (Niall Ferguson's 'creative destruction' echoes Rice's 'birth-pangs')
  • Is Israel a failed state? asks 'American Conservative'
    • '67 has turned out to be Israel's Nakba. Since then the state has steadily lost control to the settlers and extreme right-wingers.

      720,000 Israelis now live illegally on occupied land. Humiliating and depriving civil rights to the Palestinians. If another country did this to Americans on US soil, what would we do? Britain tried it, and Americans revolted, resisted, just like the Palestinian freedom fighters.

      At some point Americans are going to realize what the situation is like in Palestine, and the true historical analogy (viz. the War for Independence). Then Israel will be on its own. Which will be better for Israel in the long run.

      I'm with Gorenberg. Israel's long-term best interests are not being served by the illegal settlements, the humiliation of the Palestinians who just want to be free and have rights, and unconditional US support for all this.

  • 'NYT' gives Israelis its magazine to make an attack on Iran 'normal'
    • One of the most awful moments in the Republican Presidential Candidates debates in Florida this week was when an American man from Palestine asked the question about the conflict.

      Romney responded, "There shouldn't be an inch of daylight between us and Israel." Gingrich tried to top this hyperbole as only he can, but saying he'd move the US Embassy to Jerusalem on his first day as President.

      I went to bed very depressed. Are these people running for office to represent the American people and their interests or what?

      I'm all for being friends with and helping Israel, in order to further America and Israel's long-term best interests. But 720,000 settlers on occupied land, treating the people as second-class citizens with no civil rights for decades now, and using other countries like Iraq and now Iran as scapegoats to blame all Israel's problems on... all of this is certainly not in America's best-interests, and really, neither is it even in Israel's long-term best interests.

      The American political situation doesn't come out of nowhere though. The Republican candidates aren't just being evil. It's the Establishment media, the NYT, that facilitates and creates this environment. The candidates are forced to respond to it.

      When Newt Gingrich attacks the Establishment media, I actually love it. They deserve our scorn. Look at what they do.

  • Jabara and Ross thrill a drizzly Brooklyn crowd
  • Obama opposes Assad's human rights violations now, but not when they were useful to the US rendition program
  • New additions to the Mondoweiss comments policy
  • Iran accuses CIA & Israel, US warns Israel to back off
  • Adelson is backing Gingrich in effort to wean Romney and U.S. off peace process
    • That's not true. Gingrich can effectively articulate conservative principles, like Paul, and he is no establishment Republican. The establishment conspired to crush him those last two weeks in Iowa. There's a lot of similarities between the two that attract the same pool of voters.

    • I think this analysis is right on. One can accuse the Lobby of many things, but stupidity is not one of them.

      Two points:

      1) Gingrich could very well be the next president, so such crucial support could be an investment that pays off handsomely down the line.

      2) Supporting Gingrich suppresses votes for Ron Paul, as Phil says in this previous post. Now, why would that be? Giving money to Gingrich to beat down Romney, how does that affect Paul? Phil doesn't spell it out, but the reason is that if Gingrich emerges as the heavy to challenge Romney, there will be Paul voters holding their nose and voting for Gingrich just to defeat Romney in later primaries.

      The neocons are very adept at playing the game of let's-fool-the-yokels. Bill Kristol recruited fellow Straussian Alan Keyes to run for president back in 1996 just to cut into Pat Buchanan's margins. Poor schmucks in the hinterland thought they were casting a vote for a dynamic pro-life voice, when in fact they were voting to enable an unjust, interventionist foreign policy.

  • Ron Paul gets respect
    • Yeah, that makes 1/3 of NH voters voting for candidates who want out of Afghanistan now. What a change from just 4 years ago in the GOP, when that horrible warmonger McCain leveraged NH for a SC win and the nomination.

  • Trying to save two-state consensus, 'Washington Post' invokes 'demographic' threat
    • Great post! This is why MW is such a breath of fresh air.

      "Washington is living in an alternate reality, Hunky-Doryland." Ha ha ha! That just about sums it all up.

  • Ron Paul and the liberal interventionists
  • Ron Paul's foreign policy should be embraced
    • Great post, Samel, thanks!

      As my brother says, "When people call Ron Paul's foreign policy 'dangerous,' it's like down is up and up is down."

      Paul is threatening to the Establishment because he blows the lid off all the excuses for the shameful irresponsibility and recklessness.

      All they have left in their bag of tricks is to smear him. It's simpleminded to participate in that along with them.

  • Is Paul a precursor of a more presentable candidate in 2016?
    • I hate ideologues too. Rand is disgusting to me. Hayek is very different than Rand, however. I'm not saying I agree with him, necessarily, but he's an interesting read. Have you ever read Hayek?

      I really hope that Ron Paul is wrong on inflation ahead! But it would be really rather foolish to render judgment at this point.

      Tell me mudder, in 2000 were you praising Greenspan like the rest of Establishment in 2000?

    • It's impossible to tell, at least from polls. Looking at exit polls (or even national telephone surveys, though the crosstabs from these aren't released) reveals nothing, because the percentages of the total republican vote in these demographics are too small to be statistically significant. You'd have to poll so many more people, but that's cost-prohibitive.

      So it's just anecdotal evidence, which is of course of limited value.

  • Spouse of 'NYT' correspondent calls on Israeli gov't to wage 'war' on int'l threat to its image
  • Catholics won't warm up to Santorum's pro-war mindset
  • More responses to Ron Paul's surge
    • Yeah, that part intrigued me too. Very interesting.

      The first thing to say is that what we would be talking about here is trade. States can't really run their own foreign policies, that's for the Federal Government.

      From Article I, Section 9 of the Constitution:

      No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal...

      No State shall, without the Consent of the Congress, lay any Imposts or Duties on Imports or Exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing it's inspection Laws: and the net Produce of all Duties and Imposts, laid by any State on Imports or Exports, shall be for the Use of the Treasury of the United States; and all such Laws shall be subject to the Revision and Controul of the Congress.

      No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as will not admit of delay.

      But trade is something different. In recent years states have had trade deals with other nations themselves. From Stateline five years ago:

      States increasingly are becoming more assertive on the international stage.

      More than 30 states now export goods to Cuba despite tight U.S. trade restrictions. Organizations in eight states brokered deals to import heating oil for the poor this winter from Venezuela, despite strained relations between the White House and Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez. Three states -- Illinois, New Jersey and Oregon -- passed laws to divest state funds from companies with interests in war-scarred Sudan. In the Southwest, states are engaging in bilateral talks with Mexico to stop crime along the border.

      Foreign-policy experts warn that some state policies -- such as friendly ties between state capitols and Venezuela and Cuba -- could undermine federal power abroad. Likewise, states risk swings in U.S. foreign policy, and some state policies are in danger of running afoul of international trade agreements and U.S. court rulings.

      Despite the risks, international trade is a powerful magnet for states, and governors are emerging as the chief ambassadors for states seeking trade deals.

      Massachusetts tried in the '90s to divest from Burma, but the US Supreme Court overruled it in 2000, based on the Supremacy Clause.

      This means that a principled foreign policy (e.g. BDS) on the state level is not really something that SCOTUS is going to allow. But that's as it should be -- the US Constitution was created to centralize only what concerned the common interest of the states, like foreign policy. As Madison says in Federalist #45:

      The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the Fœderal Government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State Governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects, which, in the ordinary course of affairs concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the People, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State.

      Ron Paul wants to return to a Federal Government which does what the States cannot do, and is limited to that, but that clearly includes foreign policy, and he knows it.

  • Thank you!
  • Ron Paul and the left
    • Very interesting, thanks David!

    • OK, points taken David. I agree with your search for balance completely, that's exactly what we should be looking for.

      But what about my first point, about the disavowing of beliefs? If a candidate called Palestinians dogs, but later apologized and totally disavowed the sentiment, I'd be inclined to accept it, especially if their actions showed they were genuine. Heck, even religions preach forgiveness and conversion. But not the Holy Priests of PC Righteousness, who in my experience are as moralistic and dogmatic on their pet issues as any religious believer ever was.

      Why should we not believe someone's words? When their actions don't correspond. If Ron Paul's actions and policies were trying to impoverish and oppress African Americans, then this is a really good reason not to vote for him. (I'm not saying this case couldn't be made, only that Ms. Ratner and the Establishment media don't make it here.)

      Of course, there's a very good reason that the Establishment does not want to start talking about actions and their consequences: because once we make the actual consequences of decisions the standard, the Powers That Be come out very badly indeed.

      It's much easier to just put any opposition on the defensive by demanding they prove their political correctness bona fides. This cows most people, who eagerly queue up to exercise their 2-minute hate, lest they be the next target put on the defensive.

      But when did 2-minute hate ever actually help marginalized peoples? It wasn't designed to: it is a mechanism of control to ensure the status quo, not to change anything for the better.

      Anyone who really cares about justice and tries to do something about it should expect to be the target of attack on the grounds of political correctness.

    • The big two issues of our time are related: a counter-productive American Empire that can no longer be supported, and out-of-control government spending and printing money for the benefit of Wall Street. This blog is dedicated to an important portion of the first part, on which Ron Paul proudly and bravely represents the truth. True, if you like big government you will disagree with Paul on the second part.

      Ron Paul disavowed these letters. It seems pretty silly to withhold support for someone who represents so articulately your own views because of something the candidate himself disavows. It's much more honest to say you don't like him because you like big government and he doesn't. Fair enough, just give him his propers for his bravery in putting himself out there to speak the truth on one important issue at least.

      But for the totalitarian logic of Political Correctness, there is no forgiveness for violating its Sacred Canons. But as readers of this site know, charges of racism and antisemitism are used to shut down inconvenient debate that challenges Establishment policy failures.

      If Ms. Ratner actually believes she is against Ron Paul because of these letters, this self-delusion of hers is worrisome to me. It means that Political Correctness is lodged deep within her brain and is affecting her judgment.

      Political Correctness is when the Establishment uses minor issues that don't actually affect anybody in real life, in order to distract attention away from the real policies that matter, and smear anyone who challenges their bad decisions. Readers of this site know this all very well first hand.

      The way PC works is it gets fools like Ms. Ratner to automatically feel her face "singe" when she reads "a big, politically reckless spit glob in the face of ... marginalized [people]."

      Ack! Someone is being mean! This is the worst offense against PC that there can be. PC is not about anything real -- this is not about whether Ron Paul's proposed policies benefit African Americans or not -- but about feelings. It's telling that Ratner calls it "politically reckless." We all need to act and speak in a PC way; anything else is "politically reckless."

      I'm certainly glad that Phil Weiss and Ron Paul are "politically reckless" on American foreign policy.

      Thinking clearly on issues that matter requires seeing through the enforced dogmas of political correctness. Everyone on this blog knows that. Participating in the unforgiving tearing down of someone who is clearly right (at least on foreign policy) and very courageous, on a matter of political correctness is foolish.

      Lizzy Ratner is being very foolish.

  • For the holidays, we give commenter Mooser the third degree about his religious identity
  • 'This is awful,' Bush said, coming into Bethlehem
    • Wow, that's an amazing post.

      When I took students through this checkpoint a couple years ago the reaction of one of them summed it up: "That's the most racist thing I've ever seen."

  • We've almost reached our fundraising goal--please kick in!
  • Howard Fineman seeks to redline Ron Paul's populist Iran ideas as extremist
    • Ooohh, I'm all for hotly debating it!

      Fineman & Brooks, inc., want to brand those who disagree with them as kooks outside the mainstream, so they don't have to defend their weak positions.

      This was a really hard-hitting post.

  • 'The Social Network' and the Acceptance World
    • Jon Stewart's popularity is explained by the "a salutary inoculation of cynicism" on the part of his audience.

      What a great phrase! I love it.

      And then the last sentence's to die for: "The news-entertainment programs reinforce complacency by a style of criticism that squanders its force through the multiplicity of its targets, the thinness of its coverage, and the message of ultimate non-urgency that comes from agreeing not to dwell on any horror for too long."

      Wow! Amazing prose.

      Can't wait to buy and read his intellectual bio of Edmund Burke when it comes out...

  • Kinsley ran many pieces in 'New Republic' opposing Palestinian statehood even though he didn't agree
  • Mainstream press sniggers at Ron Paul's antiwar message
    • My daughter has a friend who is the oldest of four children. Her mom has to take care of them while her husband goes on these ridiculously long tours in Iraq. Know how hard that is? Not seeing your husband for 15 months? Raising four kids by yourself in the interim?

      None of these Establishment types know.

      What a bunch of jerks.

  • Iraq-- I'm sorry
  • Give it up to Hitchens!
    • Well that's true. But I love the "I can't un-know it line." That sums everything up in 5 words.

      You missed this, Phil? Well how'd I know about it then? I feel like I read it on here a while back...

  • Ron Paul's stunning antiwar performance: Iran threat recalls Iraq, 'a useless war that killed 1 million Iraqis' and 8000 Americans
    • Oooh, good point jaynot. That phrase is a contraction-in-terms, no? Science is the process of skeptically testing hypotheses with evidence. Dogmatically enforcing one viewpoint is the opposite of science.

      Readers of this site are naturally skeptics of enforced dogmatisms...

    • Ignoramuses indeed! I was so depressed watching that display of ignorance on stage amongst the journalists and candidates. Journalists especially. It's one thing to be running for office -- you have to say certain things to appeal to ignorant voters' prejudices. OK, fine, as long as you know what you're doing. But journalists saying things that aren't true! Am I wrong to find that even more outrageous? At least politicians have responsibilities to run things, journalists don't have any tough decisions or responsibility to speak of.

    • Yeah, I know. Global warming a dealbreaker? That seems a bit of a stretch. Shouldn't Climategate give us pause on that issue anyway? Admittedly I don't really follow this issue closely...

    • I think that's true.

      But Ron Paul's run now is just to burnish the brand for his son Rand, who is the real presidential material.

    • Yeah, this is the way I feel too. He's the only one who treats us like adults and engages the complicated issues. The other candidates boil them down to such simplistic soundbites ("I'm a businessman, so I know how to get America working again" -- Mitt Romneybot) Everyone has to have a soundbite. But ultimately working exclusively in soundbites means you will govern for the interests of the Establishment. The Establishment has failed in so many ways, from Iraq to big banking, while enriching themselves in the process (military contractors, obscene Wall Street remuneration). Really talking about our problems means, in the end, being a threat to the Establishment. So the other candidates stick to simple soundbites for a reason.

      Liberals shouldn't get so spooked about the label "libertarian." The more I listen to Paul, the more I feel like true liberals -- not Establishment "liberals" -- would like how he would govern. Namely, taking on the vested interests. Exactly what Obama has so utterly failed to do.

  • Why did it take 6 years to talk about the Israel lobby?
    • This was an action-packed post. I love these little glimpses into the future, 'cause you know it's going to play out pretty much in this way. People as smart and knowledgeable as Phil Weiss can see the contradictions in the present and then predict the future. The way Martin Feldstein predicted the current EU mess, for instance.

      Contradictions can be endured for a little while, even a good long while because it takes time for the dissemination of information and the reforming of stereotypes. But fundamental contradictions (Separate But Equal; Democratic Jewish State) can't last forever.

      By the way, the dissemination of information and the refashioning of stereotypes based on new information is exactly what journalists are supposed to do. Phil Weiss sleeps soundly at night; I don't know how the Establishment "journalists" do though.

  • Let's say you got to ask Israel's president 8 questions-- what would they be?
    • Exercise regimen!?! This Guy should be ashamed of himself.

      Everyone on NPR acts like such condescending know-it-alls. That's fine, but four months ago I finally had enough. Their I/P coverage is so ridiculous, that all the rest of their reporting just lost all its credibility for me. I thought after one story -- "not only is what they just said not true, but I know they know it's not true."

      When a journalistic outlet knowingly reports falsehoods, that crosses the line. Why should we believe *anything* they say?

      I listen to HR-Info Radio now on my commute.

  • Keep Mondoweiss going strong -- make a donation today
    • The new site looks awesome! Congratulations on all the success.

      Everyone should donate at least a little. It's great to feel a part of something that is changing things for the better.

      In twenty-five years the opinions here will look obvious and quaint to most people. Phil Weiss is decades ahead of his time and he pulls us along with him.

  • The lobby blinks! Democratic insiders throw Josh Block under the bus
  • A Warsaw Ghetto with guns (my recent trip to Israel/Palestine)
  • Could Ron Paul's Iowa surge finally open up political debate on Israel and Iran attack?
  • On Shabbos the rabbi stood outside neighbor's house shouting F-you at his 'Free Palestine' bumper sticker
  • Salon: Israel pushes US warmongering via neocon dog-tail-waggers
  • Activists to sue Minnnesota for investments that fund Israeli occupation
  • Should have seen this coming - Dershowitz defends Paterno
    • In fact, in the case of Palestinians whose property and land are seen as fair game for Israeli punitive action, there may be no connection whatsoever between the terrorist action and the individual civilian. This tactic has been known throughout history as “imputation of sin”; a Christian concept that promotes collective guilt and denies individual responsibility. That is why they call it “collective punishment”; it means that the collective is held responsible for the actions of others. But for Joe Paterno there is no responsibility, collective or otherwise.

      I think the real contrast is between those who believe in responsibility and those who don't, as David says at the end of this quote.

      If you do believe in responsibility, then it seems to me that you have to distinguish between an individual element and a collective element. Now, this certainly does not mean that Israel's justifications for raining down terror on the heads of the Palestinians is justified -- that's an incredible leap that requires a whole other logic, viz. the logic that there is no responsibility. But that the Dersh makes this leap doesn't have anything to do with the partitioning of responsibility into individual and collective elements.

      There has to be collective responsibility. As an American, I share a form of responsibility for what my government does. Just because it is not me making the decision doesn't mean that it's not my government, that I am involved in numerous potential ways, albeit indirectly.

      If Phil didn't take collective responsibility very seriously, this site wouldn't exist. He's the model for what the concept means, not Dersh.

  • Five Republican congressmen take Christian Zionist solidarity tour of settlements
  • Where occupy and tea overlap
    • Great pic, thanks annie!

      At Occupy Pittsburgh. one out of every fifth protester was a Ron Paul supporter.

      The Tea Party's Zeitgeist might be fading. The Occipy folks aren't going anywhere though. I think both movements are really great. This is what democracy's all about.

      Just as an aside, wasn't the '48 tent protests first? Israel's got a claim to being cutting edge, it seems to me

  • Hamas achieves something the peace process could never deliver
    • Great post.

      I'd love to see something detailing the people who were released. Are they really terrorists, or were they mostly political prisoners? The latter would be my hunch.

  • Palestinian citizens of Israel are second class citizens, even in the Prague airport
    • Well, I'm divided over this post. I'm not necessarily proud that I'm divided.

      On the one hand, nothing rankles me like airport security. Every time I have to go through it, I come away muttering to myself like a loony libertarian nutjob. I absolutely abhor my contact with the national security state and their unreasonable searches with the new pervert scans.

      On the other hand, can't Arabs realize that the actions of a few of them have brought this suspicion down? It's not just some blind prejudice, it's our reality that Arabs are more likely to hijack planes. To not admit this is to live in a fantasy world where you are intentionally blind to the reality that is obvious to everyone else.

      Putting on blinders to reality is second-nature to liberals. But man does it make us lose cred in middle America to deny things that are obviously true.

  • Zuckerman turned on Obama over Israel. 'WSJ' refuses to say so
    • Unbelieveablely outrageous. This is the kind of journalism that any responsible citizen should loathe: they know their omissions distort the reality beyond all recognition, but they don't care because it's part of their agenda.

  • The jury is in - Times readers decide against Bronner
  • Ron Paul for Palestinian statehood: 'I believe in self-determination of peoples'
    • Come on, Dan, it's a legit point. "Why are you so obsessed with singling out Israel?" is a common question. Phil has answered it here eloquently. All things being equal, we should be a lot more concerned about the injustices here at home than abroad. Of course, the US's unconditional support is the reason. But absent that, the US shouldn't go abroad looking for monsters to destroy -- that's the obsession of the warmonger.

      Ron Paul's ethos does in fact inspire a significant segment of people. And ideologically speaking, he's driving the Republican bus.

  • Blair uses envoy post to support billionaire life-style, TV doc claims

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