Comments Posted By WR
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Maybe I'm just a dense liberal, but I don't even understand the underlying ideas behind this post. What does it mean to "love America"? Is it love for the consitution and our founding principles? It is adoration for every square inch of the enormous land mass? Is it complete devotion to everything its government does? Fellowship with all its citizens?

I guess the reason I'm confused is that I read a lot of right-wing blog entries by people who insist they love America and question whether Obama does as well. And yet these same America-lovers are often the same ones who express a great desire that huge swaths of the country -- my own state of California, the entire Northeast -- be destroyed by terrorist attacks or natural disaster. These same people frequently express the idea that people who agree with my political views should be killed. While they demand that every citizen uncritically follow the current administration's wishes in all things relating to national security, they certainly feel free to call the other branches of government "traitors," "scumbags," "Islamo-lovers" and all sorts of other perjoratives. And I frequently read that we must be willing to eliminate most of the bill of rights so that terrorists won't kill us.

So these America-lovers despise great chunks of their country, wish death on vast numbers of its citizens, loathe two-thirds of its government, and don't care if the administration ignores the constitution.

So how is Obama's love insufficient? Rather, how is your love for country expressed in a way that's superior to his? Because I've got to say, I don't buy the idea that wearing a flag pin in your lapel and a support the trooops magnet on your car makes you a patriot. Nor do I believe that hating liberals is the same as loving your country.

Comment Posted By WR On 15.03.2008 @ 15:55


Dear Rick,

Like you, I was trying to understand the "chasm" between us. And I felt I'd understood you clearly when you wrote: "They oppose the Iranian regime on an intellectual level but can’t make the leap to opposing them on the only level you can effectively fight them – the gut churning emotional level where you can feel something is either absolutely right or terribly wrong. Without moral certitude in fighting the Ahmadinejad/Attas of this world, we will lose. We will lose because they are certain that they are in the right."

This to me sounds like a call to war -- a call to war based on emotion. And it seems to be saying that liberals are actually inferior because they can't whip themselves up into a berserker rage, believing everything they do is good and everything the other guy does is evil, thus allowing them to commit unspeakable atrocities.

If I misread you, I apologize. But if you're actually trying to bridge this "chasm," why is it that when I respond in what I believed was a polite manner, you flew into a rage? "Don't be an idiot." "Read the damn post." It's funny, I thought that you were one of the rare right-wingers who actually liked a conversation with people who don't simply parrot back your ideas and tell you how brilliant you are.

Oh well. I'm sure there's one out there somewhere.

Comment Posted By WR On 23.09.2007 @ 20:38

Maybe one difference between left and right on this issue is that some of us on the left think that the "gut churning emotional level" is exactly the wrong place to make decisions that will effect the lives of millions of people. We -- well, let me just speak for myself -- believe that it is crucial NOT to act on emotions that spin us into self-righteous fury, but to get them under control, and then calmly consider what actions will best serve our desired outcome.

Maybe this sounds like mental illness to you, I don't know. But what I do know is that in the early '60s, back when we had a different "no more complete enemey," -- one that did actually have the power to hurt or even destroy us -- the "gut churning emotional level" response to the discovery that the USSR had placed missiles on Cuba was to blow them off the island -- the very response that some like Curtis LeMay advocated -- despite the very real probablility that doing so would start the nuclear war that would kill hundreds of millions. JFK, although undoubtedly as gut-churned as any American president would have been under the circumstances, wisely ignored that anger and worked out a solution that calmed the situation and saved untold numbers of people.

Comment Posted By WR On 22.09.2007 @ 14:59


Of course Harry Reid didn't insult "the troops." He made a comment on the performance of one of the highest ranking military officials in this country. I'm sure Peter Pace wouldn't feel compelled to hide behind soldiers when someone criticizes him -- why do you feel compelled to make the ludicrous claim that somehow criticizing the commanders is the same as attacking the soldiers on the ground?

Beyond that, this was anything but a "baseless criticism." Pace is a public official doing a highly public job -- and doing a pretty terrible job at it, if we're going to measure by results instead of sticking our heads in the sand. At what point are out elected leaders allowed express an opinion on the appointed military commanders? When the war is over?

Comment Posted By WR On 15.06.2007 @ 17:23

So now the elected representatives of the people of the United States are not allowed to criticize the leaders of our military? And if they speak up, they should resign in disgrace?

Who then should be running the country? Do you believe this should be a military dictatorship? Or should we pretend to have elected representation as long as all our elected leaders promise to submit to the military at all times?

Comment Posted By WR On 15.06.2007 @ 11:32

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