Patterico's Pontifications

7/23/2008

Der Spiegel Rewrote the Whole Maliki Interview — Of Course!

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:16 am

The Columbia Journalism Review has a maddeningly sloppy and incomplete, but also interesting and informative article about how the Maliki remarks came to be translated so differently by the New York Times and Der Spiegel. It turns out that, not only did Der Spiegel rewrite the critical passage without telling anyone, it also rewrote the whole interview, while pretending that it was a verbatim exchange.

The piece quotes Der Spiegel‘s second version of the remarks (the author of the piece seems blissfully unaware of the first version) and then the New York Times translation, and notes the differences:

How come that version is so different from Der Spiegel’s version?

“His original words were unprintable. It would have been embarrassing to him. So we edited it,” says Müller von Blumencron. “There are very few people you can do a Q&A with without editing for grammar. And you always have to make it shorter.”

Quite true. As any journalist could tell you, if a printed interview transcript reads like a punchy exchange, with each sentence a complete thought and each paragraph well formed, odds are someone has done a lot of tweaking to help the direct transcription along. But extreme care must be taken not to distort the speaker’s original meaning.

The editor’s hand gives any claim of misrepresentation a little credence—especially if there’s translation involved too.

“Quite true,” the author nonchalantly responds to the claim of the Der Spiegel editor that, of course, you always have to change the content of an exchange you represent to be verbatim remarks. You have to make it shorter!

So, for example, if a guy says something about the need for national security improvements, you take it out! Voilà! Shorter!

The CJR article is very congratulatory of the New York Times for seeking out the original version, and makes a big point of noting that Maliki was provided the transcript and had a chance to object to any inaccuracies:

There’s something else that journalists calling Der Spiegel would have learned. “We have a policy at Der Spiegel when we do a question and answer session to provide a transcript to our counterparts in case they want to have a minor thing changed,” says Müller von Blumencron, who says Zand verified that Maliki’s aides received the publication-ready advance copy. They had no response, and presumably no complaints, before its release.

Why would they? The original version they reviewed is presumably the same version that Der Spiegel originally published, before rewriting the passage without telling anyone. (Again, the CJR author appears to have no idea that this happened.)

But of course we have been told that the New York Times was “provided” a copy of the remarks. Turns out that’s not true either. They apparently weren’t given a copy; they were just allowed to listen:

According to Müller von Blumencron, Times reporter Sabrina Tavernise and her translator met with Zand in Baghdad, where he played them the relevant quote.

The article does not say how many times the reporter and her translator were allowed to listen to the passage. It may have been only once.

In a remarkable display of arrogance, Der Spiegel will not release the tape. But they say they’ll play it for anyone who asks:

Der Spiegel has no plans to release the tape (“We don’t see a need to improve upon our credibility by, say, putting the audio on the web.”) but is happy to play it—in person, over the phone—for any journalist interested in verifying.

“Anyone who wants to hear it can hear it,” says Müller von Blumencron. “But no one else has asked.”

I’m asking. My quick perusal of the Der Spiegel site didn’t reveal contact information, but I’m juggling a million things nowadays and didn’t have time to look closely. If anyone knows how I can contact this editor, tell me.

Meanwhile, I love that quote: “We don’t see a need to improve upon our credibility by, say, putting the audio on the web.” Well, friend, I do. Your credibility is pretty much shot in my eyes, with your admission that you’re rewriting allegedly verbatim interviews to make them shorter and save “embarrassment” to the subject of the interview — and then rewriting the rewrite, in a critical area, without telling anyone (apparently thus fooling the Columbia Journalism Review, among others). Yeah, I think your credibility could use a little shot in the arm, and releasing the audio might be one way to do it.

P.S. This is a media criticism post, not a “Maliki doesn’t really agree with Obama” post. I’m not arguing that Maliki doesn’t really agree with Obama. I say that for the benefit of idiot lefties who will claim otherwise if I don’t explicitly say so (some still will, even though I have said otherwise).

I think conservatives have to come to grips with the fact that, differing translations aside, Maliki has clearly indicated some level of comfort with something closely resembling the Obama plan. The exact level of agreement has been muddied by the irresponsible secret rewrites of this interview by Der Spiegel, but all translations (and subsequent events) point to Maliki generally being on board with something like Obama’s plan — and if conservatives aren’t facing up to that, and are using the translations as an excuse, they should stop.

Of course, we’d never be in this position had we followed Obama’s advice on the surge, but that’s another story.

Thanks to reader im bowie, who seems to think the CJR article somehow shows me “off the mark” on this story. If I was “off the mark,” it was in failing to suspect just how sneaky Der Spiegel had actually been.

172 Responses to “Der Spiegel Rewrote the Whole Maliki Interview — Of Course!”

  1. Another story “too good to check.” They will resist releasing the tape because it will show what they did. It might even get erased accidentally.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  2. “His original words were unprintable. It would have been embarrassing to him. So we edited it.”

    Say what?

    Of course, we’d never be in this position had we followed Obama’s advice on the surge, but that’s another story.

    That’s always been the salient point, IMHO. That Obama came up with a magical exit strategy after all the heavy lifting was done is trivial.

    the wolf (3cd7f8)

  3. Der Spiegel maintains the same high standards of journalism as did Der Volkisher Beobachter.

    Bar Sinister (d92631)

  4. It doesn’t look like Der Spiegel was guilty of anything worse than sloppy journalism. Since critics will think the worst if the tape is not made public, Der Spiegel has nothing to lose by providing it. But traditional journalists are loathe to open up their editing process to the sunlight of public scrutiny.

    Bradley J Fikes (0ea407)

  5. …differing translations aside, Maliki has clearly indicated some level of comfort with something closely resembling the Obama plan.

    So what? It could certainly be true but the “Obama plan” is the same as it was two years ago. Get out in 16 months. How is that allowed to be passed off as a “plan” almost two years later?

    Not knocking the host, just the narrative. The fact that we’re even marginally accepting it is troubling.

    Chris (b6ebef)

  6. This just tells me that either we can’t communicate with the leader of Iraq, or once again right wingers need to muddy the waters.
    I of course tend to believe the latter.

    Looks to me like Maliki, Bush and Obama are on the same side as far as Iraq withdrawal Time Horizon/Time Tables.

    What is a McCain to do?

    Oiram (983921)

  7. What is a McCain to do?

    When he is President, he will continue to keep troops there until the conditions on the ground show that they are not needed, rather than picking a date out of the blue. (Setting an arbitrary date simply tells the bad guys how long they have to hold out before the forces that have been slaughtrering them are going to go away. Leaving that date dependent upon actual conditions means that the bad guys know that we aren’t leaving until they have been defeated, root and branch.

    Which do you think the bad guys are hoping for? A specific date? Or “until the job is done”?

    (We already know which side you are hoping for, which tells us much about where your sympathies lie.)

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  8. Mario,
    here’s today’s right-wing WaPo, “muddying the waters” for you:

    Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who has a history of tailoring his public statements for political purposes, made headlines by saying he would support a withdrawal of American forces by 2010. But an Iraqi government statement made clear that Mr. Maliki’s timetable would extend at least seven months beyond Mr. Obama’s. More significant, it would be “a timetable which Iraqis set” — not the Washington-imposed schedule that Mr. Obama has in mind. It would also be conditioned on the readiness of Iraqi forces, the same linkage that Gen. Petraeus seeks. As Mr. Obama put it, Mr. Maliki “wants some flexibility in terms of how that’s carried out.”

    [Y]et Mr. Obama’s account of his strategic vision remains eccentric. He insists that Afghanistan is “the central front” for the United States, along with the border areas of Pakistan. But there are no known al-Qaeda bases in Afghanistan, and any additional U.S. forces sent there would not be able to operate in the Pakistani territories where Osama bin Laden is headquartered. While the United States has an interest in preventing the resurgence of the Afghan Taliban, the country’s strategic importance pales beside that of Iraq, which lies at the geopolitical center of the Middle East and contains some of the world’s largest oil reserves. If Mr. Obama’s antiwar stance has blinded him to those realities, that could prove far more debilitating to him as president than any particular timetable.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/22/AR2008072202462.html

    Chris (b6ebef)

  9. So what? It could certainly be true but the “Obama plan” is the same as it was two years ago. Get out in 16 months. How is that allowed to be passed off as a “plan” almost two years later?

    Right. The only thing unique about Obama’s plan is the number 16. Even he concedes that that can’t be a hard and fast deadline, but something about having the number 16 in your policy position is magical. Last January, it was the height of good judgment, despite the fact that hindsight makes it look utterly foolish.

    Get out in failure in 16 months does not equal get out after achieving victory in 16 months. This is a brand new Obama plan with only that magic number 16 remaining from the old one.

    Pablo (99243e)

  10. You know what Drum. This is part of the problem. Not all Republicans, but some like yourself assume that Democrats sympathies lie with the enemy. That’s a convenient talking point as you would like to put it. The truth is I am one of those Democrats that understands that even though I dissagree with most of what our current administration preaches, I know they are doing for what they think is good for America.

    Regarding your last comment:
    Do you really think Obama would pull troops before conditions on the ground warrant it?

    If this surge is working, why wouldn’t we at least consider withdrawing?

    Oh wait, Maliki wants us to withdraw and Bush not matter what he calls it is also talking about withdrawing. I don’t believe their “sympathies” lie with he enemy……… do you Drum?

    Oiram (983921)

  11. This just tells me that either we can’t communicate with the leader of Iraq, or once again right wingers need to muddy the waters.

    Um, yeah. Those nasty right wingers at Der Spiegel, Columbia Journalism Review and the New York Times are muddying the waters again.

    Pablo (99243e)

  12. Not all Republicans, but some like yourself assume that Democrats sympathies lie with the enemy.

    Not exactly. Democrats are invested in defeat, because victory makes them look like idiots.

    Pablo (99243e)

  13. Regarding your last comment:
    Do you really think Obama would pull troops before conditions on the ground warrant it?

    Obama wrote legislation last year that would have capped the number of troops, thereby preventing the surge, and would have had all of our combat brigades out of Iraq 4 months ago. So, yes.

    Pablo (99243e)

  14. Do you really think Obama would pull troops before conditions on the ground warrant it?

    Yes, he has said so repeatedly, including in a nationally-televised Democratic debate against Hillary.

    Oh wait, Maliki wants us to withdraw and Bush not matter what he calls it is also talking about withdrawing.

    But Maliki and I (and Bush and McCain) all agree that the withdrawal of our troops should be based on the conditions on the ground. Obama’s plan is to pull them out immediately, no matter what, starting on January 20, 2009.

    Which is more realistic? Which will actually help keep the peace in the region? Which doesn’t give the people who want us dead more hope to keep going?

    Think HARD.

    Not all Republicans, but some like yourself assume that Democrats sympathies lie with the enemy.

    Not all Democrats. (The two major exceptions I can think of who don’t want America to lose in Iraq are Joe Liebermann and Zell Miller.)

    But an overwhelming majority of Democrats seem to have a vested interest in damaging America’s ability to defend herself against enemies that would see us destroyed by any means necessary. Your Presidential nominee hangs out with a crowd whose first response to any crisis is top blame the US first, last and always.

    When you actually have people saying that they would rather see America lose, how can I be blamed for pointing out that they want America to lose?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  15. Democrat Idiots look like a flock of Einsteins next to our current administration Pablo.

    Oiram (983921)

  16. I suggest that you compare the Democrat led Congress’ approval rating with that of the President, Oiram.

    Pablo (99243e)

  17. Well we can go round and round on this guys, you know how I feel about this war. I don’t want to lose, but Bush made that a choice by invading Iraq without a real plan.
    I know your positions on this so no need to yell back.

    Seriously, and I know you wont believe it I hope for the best for the U.s. and I know you guys do too.

    I mentioned this yesterday, especially you Drum. I recommend trying out liberal bloggs, in essence the opposite of what I’m doing here.

    Liberals need a clear thinking fast typing Conservative such as yourself. The challenge will be rewarding to you and the Libs.

    You wont get kicked off, just try it.

    Peace

    Oiram (983921)

  18. Obama’s plan is to pull them out immediately, no matter what, starting on January 20, 2009.

    Except that he also says he’ll listen to the commanders on the ground. And they’ll tell him not to do it. So, it depends on which Obama you’re talking to.

    On a related note, credit where credit is due. CBS and Katie Couric did an outstanding job covering the Obama concert tour whistle stop campaign trip fact finding mission yesterday. Dare I say it was fair and balanced?

    Pablo (99243e)

  19. I mentioned this yesterday, especially you Drum. I recommend trying out liberal bloggs, in essence the opposite of what I’m doing here.

    As was pointed out, the liberal sites do not tolerate opposing viewpoints. They will ban users and delete comments rather than hear anything not in line with the party line. (After all, it was Hillary who famously said, “You don’t have to fall in love, you just have to fall in line.”)

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  20. I love you guys, you complain about the media being unfair. Yet when I drive home from work, on the radio all I hear is right wing conservative talk.
    Since I spend a lot of time in traffic, that’s about an hour of blathering right wingers spewing junk out of my car speakers.
    They covered McCain half the time and whined about the media’s coverage of Obama’s trip the other half.

    And don’t tell me people aren’t listening to the radio Pablo. Rush’s huge paycheck isn’t just tomming from you frequenting the sponsors.

    Oiram (983921)

  21. Untrue Drum #19.

    You have to realize that on bigger sites it takes them a while to screen the posts. They want to make sure we’re not pervs.

    Your preaching to me and your choir here Drum. I’m not telling you to give up this site, it’s pretty good actually. I’m just telling you that one or two bad experiences does not mean you could put the censorship label on liberal blogs.

    You will get trounced on as I have here, but I know you can handle it.

    Oiram (983921)

  22. Yet when I drive home from work, on the radio all I hear is right wing conservative talk.

    When I watch my TV at home, all I hear is left wing liberal talk, no matter what alphabet channel I choose.

    If it were not for the overwhelming liberal presence in the so-called “Main Stream Media”, there wouldn’t be a market for Fox News or talk radio (usually on the AM dials, which limits their range).

    How’s that Air America working out? Have they found another boys/girls club to pillage for funding? Or are they waiting for the “Fairness Doctrine” to get pushed through that Democratic Congress?

    (Funny how they are not concerned about the clear liberal bias on TV or in the print media, but only in talk radio, innit?)

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  23. Yet when I drive home from work, on the radio all I hear is right wing conservative talk.

    Yes, conservatives are successful in talk radio. But those hosts are pundits, not journalists. They provide mostly opinion, and very little news.

    And don’t tell me people aren’t listening to the radio Pablo. Rush’s huge paycheck isn’t just tomming from you frequenting the sponsors.

    Rush’s paycheck isn’t coming from me at all, as I don’t listen to him. People are listening to the radio. They’re just not listening to progressive radio. And they’re fed up with the legacy media too.

    Pablo (99243e)

  24. Untrue Drum #19.

    Very true. There are too many examples to deny it, but you’ll keep trying…

    I’m just telling you that one or two bad experiences does not mean you could put the censorship label on liberal blogs.

    Democratic Underground actually made it a policy that they would not accept comments from “right wingers”. HuffPo does the same thing, just not as explicitly.

    Feel free to come up with any conservative commenters at any major liberal site (Kevin Drum’s, dKos, HuffPo, MoveOn, DemUnd, etc.) to show us how tolerant they are. That’s all it would take to prove your case. If you can.

    (That ought to keep you busy for a few days…)

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  25. You know Drum, for once we can agree. I don’t like the fairness doctrine either.

    I don’t know much about how Air America funds their show, I don’t even listen to half of their crap. I actually like listening to Laura Ingrahm, I disagree with her 98% of the time of course.

    But it is funny to me how “Letting the Markets dictate” somehow doesn’t apply to what you guys consider “The liberal Media”

    Try watching CNN or MSNBC Drum.

    Oiram (983921)

  26. CNN and MSNBC are not liberal? Is that what you are saying, Oiram? I bet you have not yet learned to tie your shoes yet, or walk and chew cow cud at the same time.

    JD (5f0e11)

  27. Classy that JD is.

    Oiram (983921)

  28. I don’t want to lose, but Bush made that a choice by invading Iraq without a real plan.

    Mega-BS. The plan was the same as the Clinton Administration’s plan: regime change. It worked. Live with it.

    Leftie whining about lack of a ‘plan’ is simply kvetching about lack of a cast-iron timetable before the event, perfectly predicting every move in the game down to the pre-scheduled victory parade.

    ‘Antiwar’ protagonists want such a silly thing simply as a big fat target to sneer at when the future doesn’t follow the plan. Nobody in their right mind would commit to such a thing – so the lefties complain that their big fat target was not allowed to appear.

    Due to Bush’s persistance against al-Qaeda, the Europeans and every major media organ in the USA, we won. Get over it and support the Maliki government for a change.

    Insufficiently Sensitive (8f6a35)

  29. But it is funny to me how “Letting the Markets dictate” somehow doesn’t apply to what you guys consider “The liberal Media”

    Who has said anything otherwise? Who proposes regulating the media? Who wants a return of the Fairness Doctrine? I think that the market is working.

    Pablo (99243e)

  30. You said it best with “Lack of time tables”.

    I heard from Bushies, things like a “few years” uhhmmm….let’s see, the oil reserves will pay for this war, Uhhmmm….. what else, man the list hurts my head.

    Oiram (983921)

  31. So if the market is working in the supposed “liberal media” shouldn’t you quit your damn whinnying about it? Mr. Pablo

    Oiram (983921)

  32. Patterico, I noticed on the copy of the interview that was provided that there was a sub-title, something to the effect that Maliki responds to the Obama 16 month withdrawal plan and what he expects from the remaining months of the Bush Administration. I wonder, is that what Maliki was told would be the focus of the interview when he was asked to provide one or was that something that was added after the interview? There didn’t seem to be much in there about what Maliki expected in the last months of Bush so I find it strange that would have even been included as a description. Actually I find it strange a sub-title was included at all .. unless the interview was previously focused in those areas. The reason this interest me is because much is being made of the fact that Maliki used Obama’s plan as the example without being specifically asked that question. But if he had been told that was the focus of the interview, naturally he would have responded that way.

    I don’t think Der Spiegel is still be honest. And no doubt that across much of Europe, including their media, an Obama presidency is a foregone conclusion.

    In my opinion based on Maliki’s response in the first translation, he was not agreeing with an Obama timetable plan, but he was saying that it would be doable if progress in the security conditions continued.

    Did Der Spiegel set Maliki up to get the response they wanted and then played footsie with the translation to make it even more nuanced in order to make it appear that Maliki supported Obama?

    Texas Gal (47b439)

  33. #28 SAID:
    “Mega-BS. The plan was the same as the Clinton Administration’s plan: regime change. It worked. Live with it.”

    Gee, Maliki appears to agree with Obama. Here we go again…….REGIME CHANGE!!!

    Maybe the Chinese can loan us another trillion dollars to fund that one too.

    You guys are too much.

    Oiram (983921)

  34. But it is funny to me how “Letting the Markets dictate” somehow doesn’t apply to what you guys consider “The liberal Media”

    The markets ARE dictating. They are dictating ever increasing audiences for conservative talk radio and non-stop #1 ratings for Fox News for the last nine years running. They are dictating plummeting readerships for every major liberal paper in the country. They are dictating Air America’s ratings and fiscal disaster.

    THAT is what the liberals are attempting to stop.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  35. So why are you guys complaining then? Don’t tune in to Obama’s coverage. Raitings will plummet and Mcain will be in the spot light.

    Oiram (983921)

  36. So if the market is working in the supposed “liberal media” shouldn’t you quit your damn whinnying about it? Mr. Pablo

    Pointing out the failings of a business is part of how the market works. Why shouldn’t it be pointed out when they’re blowing sunshine up our asses? And what is it you think I was doing in my comment #18?

    Pablo (99243e)

  37. Have liberals succeeded in stopping right wing talk radio?

    When they do then get back to me.

    We all have idiots in our camps Drum. I just think you guys have a few percentage points more.

    Hopefully the election market will show us that in November by electing someone new.

    Oiram (983921)

  38. I didn’t see Catie Couric like you did – LOL
    Some stand you took their against the “Liberal Media” Pablo.

    Oiram (983921)

  39. So why are you guys complaining then? Don’t tune in to Obama’s coverage. Raitings will plummet and Mcain will be in the spot light.

    Oh, no. This is hilarious, topical, timely and well deserved. I’d like more and more of it. One day, these sycophantic fools will either get the message or find enough shame to stop showing their faces in public.

    Pablo (99243e)

  40. I believe in a realistic assessment of the facts, Oiram. I give credit where it is due, mostly because I’m not an ideological hack. You?

    Pablo (99243e)

  41. Have liberals succeeded in stopping right wing talk radio?

    No. That is why they are talking about the “Fairness Doctrine”, which (in an odd coincidence) says nothing about print or televised media, only talk radio.

    Why is that? Are they afraid that the 5% of media coverage provided by a conservative source is somehow going to swamp the other 95%? (Don’t forget all the liberal ideals being put forth in Hollywood movies, too.)

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  42. “But it is funny to me how “Letting the Markets dictate” somehow doesn’t apply to what you guys consider “The liberal Media”” Oiram

    You know what is funny about your statement is that the right does whine about it. But we actually did something about this issue of never hearing an opposite point of view. All I have ever heard for 40 years was the liberal spin on how America is and was. Instead of creating new laws to get our message out we just created a new market, the AM talk market. Then Fox came along and guess what??? Market forces once again fixed things. Now we conservatives have a place we can get the news.

    It would be interesting to see all Americans behind this multi-fronted war. Its amazing how far positive thinking can take you. Imagine the doctor telling you that you have cancer. How many times have we heard stories of someone surviving cancer because they just gave up??? None because the biggest thing that helps is hope and positive thinking.

    Imagine if everyday the newspapers and radios back in the early 40′s had been trashing this country the way the press does today. You would have to be blind and deaf to not understand how important it was for everyone to pull for victory. Just as an example, look at the difference between Hollywood today versus Hollywood back then. How many anti-American movies were made during WWII? The answer is none and it helped to pull this country together.

    Yes there have been bad things that happen in wars thats why they call them wars. I do not understand how the people on the left equate cutting someone’s head off and posting the video on Utube versus putting underwear on someone’s head???? Or strapping bomb vests to retarded people versus pouring water on someone’s head? In both examples we have no intention of killing anyone but the enemies only goal is to cut your head off. Another thing since when did the Geneva Convention state we had to give Koran’s to criminals and to give them prayer mats and point there cells towards the west?? Do the muslims give bible’s to the christians they capture? Nope they don’t have to worry about any of those things because they are cutting their heads off.

    Personally I do care if your a Democrat a Repub, Indy, green, Martian or whatever. This is America the home of the brave. The only country in the world that everyone is dying to get into. If we sucked as bad as the US press and world press makes us out to be then why does everyone want in?

    Be proud of your country, be proud to be an American. We are all so lucky that we can all disagree and still live here.

    Sorry for the long rant…

    Dave (fccb8c)

  43. All right!! There it is “Hollywood”!! I knew it was on the tip of someone’s tounge here.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but when you say Liberal media and apply to Television isn’t the ratio of things to watch vs. things to listen to about 100 to 1???
    Think about that when all you have to listen to live in a car is AM/FM.

    Quit complaining about the supposed liberal media guys, it really doesn’t suit you.

    Oiram (983921)

  44. OHhhhhhh….ohhhh…..Let the markets dictate” “LET THE MARKETS DICTATE”………. THE CONSERVATIVES SAY.

    C’ept for Hollywood, then we’ll complain our asses off.

    Cracks me up every time.

    Oiram (983921)

  45. Hey Dave, you o.k. with Fox’s over coverage of Obama’s trip to Iraq? (Just curious)

    Oiram (983921)

  46. Think about that when all you have to listen to live in a car is AM/FM.

    Let me tell you about this new invention. It’s called a “CD player”. Even more recent is an “iPod”/mp3 player.

    I usually listen to college lectures when I’m driving. If all you do is listen to the radio, no wonder you can’t get anything right…

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  47. C’ept for Hollywood, then we’ll complain our asses off.

    Weren’t you the one harping about “Big Oil’s Monopoly”? How many independent movies have you seen released recently, as compared with the number of releases by the Big Screen Monopoly?

    Yeah, I thought not.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  48. Oiram, are you really incapable of distinguishing the difference between criticism and regulation? Or are you just playing dumb?

    Pablo (99243e)

  49. Or are you just playing dumb?

    I don’t think he’s playing…

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  50. Then there’s satellite radio which has all sorts of talk options, one of which is Air America. I very rarely listen to AM/FM anymore.

    Pablo (99243e)

  51. Change of subject but along the same lines here my hypocrite Conservative friends. Who regulated Fanny Mae and Indy Mac last year?

    I do know the difference between criticism and regulation. Thanks you.

    As I said before it wasn’t all of us who were in favor of regulating radio because of right wing biases.

    Oiram (983921)

  52. Who regulated Fanny Mae and Indy Mac last year?

    That would be the Democratically-controlled Congress.

    If it were anyone else, I would say they are pretending to be stupid. But we all know you aren’t pretending.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  53. “Who regulated them last week?” is what I was asking Drum.

    Oiram (983921)

  54. It’s the same old story though isn’t it guys?

    “Regulation is good as long as it suits the rich who pay way more than there fair share of taxes (2%) right?” IS WHAT GOES THROUGH THE AVERAGE INTELLECTUAL CONSERVATIVE.

    Oiram (983921)

  55. Der Spiegel has no plans to release the tape (“We don’t see a need to improve upon our credibility by, say, putting the audio on the web.”) but is happy to play it—in person, over the phone—for any journalist interested in verifying.

    Oh my God, what a crock.

    What’s German for “If the audio backs up your side of the story, it will only ENHANCE your credibility, instead of keeping it in the damaged state it is in right now?!”

    This reminds me of something that, as far as I know, I alone detected in the run-up to Bill Clinton’s impeachment: One of the answers to House Judiciary Committee chair Henry Hyde’s 81 questions submitted to Clinton in lieu of being questioned in the Committee chambers was contradicted by – of all things – the President’s own web site.

    76. [Hyde]: Do you admit or deny that you made false and misleading public statements in response to questions asked on or about January 21, 1998, in an interview with Roll Call, when you stated “Well, let me say, the relationship was not improper, and I think that’s important enough to say. But because the investigation is going on, I don’t know what is out – what’s going to be asked of me. I think I need to cooperate, answer the questions, but I think that it’s important for me to make it clear what is not. And then, at the appropriate time, I’ll answer to what is. But let me answer – it is not an improper relationship and I know what the word means.”

    [Clinton]: The tape of this interview reflects that in fact I said, “Well, let me say the relationship’s not improper and I think that’s important enough to say …” With that revision, the quoted words accurately reflect my remarks. As I stated in Response to Request Nos. 62 to 68, in the days following the January 21, 1998, disclosures, I misled people about this relationship, for which I have apologized.

    This was a lie for two reasons:

    1. On the White House web site at the time was a transcript of that interview, held by Ed Henry and Morton Kondracke of Roll Call. Contrary to the claims of Clinton, this is what was said in the interview, as noted by the Washington Post’s “Clinton Accused” archives (bold mine):

    January 21, 1998

    Q [Roll Call]: You said in a statement today that you had no improper relationship with this intern. What exactly was the nature of your relationship with her?

    A [Clinton]: Well, let me say, the relationship was not improper, and I think that’s important enough to say. But because the investigation is going on and because I don’t know what is out – what’s going to be asked of me, I think I need to cooperate, answer the questions, but I think it’s important for me to make it clear what is not. And then, at the appropriate time, I’ll try to answer what is. But let me answer – it is not an improper relationship and I know what the word means…

    2. In the follow-up question, either Henry or Kondracke tried to pin Clinton down, and he did what Clintons do: lie.

    Q: Was it in any way sexual?

    A: The relationship was not sexual. And I know what you mean, and the answer is no.

    Of course, by now, Clinton had admitted that his relationship with Lewinsky was “improper.” But it was beyond shadow of doubt sexual as well – once ejaculate happens, it’s no longer platonic.

    In my mind, this warranted another perjury charge as soon as proof was presented that the transcript was not inaccurate. I tried calling Roll Call to request they release audio of the interview. Unable to reach Kondracke at all, I left a message to Ed Henry through his assistant, and was told in a follow-up call that Roll Call either wouldn’t or couldn’t release the recording publicly. Nevertheless, to my knowledge, the Clinton White House has NEVER changed the transcript of the interview to reflect his sworn account of what he actually said.

    I posted this discovery on Free Republic (it’s since been deleted) and emailed it to Matt Drudge. If Matt saw it, he ignored it. Surprisingly, there were fewer commenters on FR than I expected. Nothing ever came of it, and this is the first time in years I have even thought about it.

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  56. “Who regulated them last week?” is what I was asking Drum.

    That wasn’t regulation. Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac are government chartered entities. Conservatives would argue that they should never have existed. And IndyMac was not regulated, it was taken into receivership because of its insolvency and according to the terms of it’s FDIC insurance.

    Pablo (99243e)

  57. This post by Grim at Blackfive is about the US/Iraq Status of Forces negotiations, but it is useful background for understanding Maliki’s remarks to Der Spiegel (whatever they were).

    There is an important concept needed to understand the negotiations — both formal ones, and those using the press as a proxy — between the US and Maliki on the long-term security agreement between our countries. The real issue is not which bases we will maintain, or surrender. It is not whether we will stay for 16 months or ten years. The real issue is whether Iraq is a genuinely sovereign power, with the full authority to negotiate its interests as an equal with America.

    It is vitally important to our counterinsurgency efforts that the answer to that question be “Yes.” In order for Iraq to survive its internal pressures, the central government must be accepted as legitimate by the people.

    In other words, as our COIN operations succeed, we are guaranteed to find ourselves annoyed or worse by what Iraqi leaders sometimes say. They are speaking to the rest of the world, as statesmen. At the same time, they are offering quotes for domestic consumption, as politicians. In the runup to an election, who would want to come across as the patsy of some foreign country?

    AMac (c822c9)

  58. “Who regulated them last week?” is what I was asking Drum.

    The failure of IndyMac can be laid directly at the feet of Chuck Schumer. He’s a Democrat.

    And are you seriously asserting that the rich only pays 2% of taxes?

    You’re either completely oblivious or a liar. Which is it?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  59. As confirmation for Patterico’s point that Der Spiegel‘s policy on transcripts of interviews strays far afield from “this is what was said,” here’s part of The New Republic staffer Zvika Krieger’s The Plank post, Maliki’s Endorsement: Not Lost in Translation.

    A writer at Der Spiegel sent us this tidbit of info:
    The reason the magazine scores so many high level interviews is that the editors agree to allow the subjects to “authorize” the interviews before they go to press. It wasn’t just a slip of the tongue, in other words: Maliki not only endorsed Obama’s plans for withdrawing from Iraq, but his office then explicitly approved the endorsement before it was printed. The denials, then, were doubly facetious. Spiegel couldn’t say so, though, without revealing its embarrassing authorization policy.

    Der Spiegel has gotten flak in the past for this policy. According to Ingrid Kolb, director of the Henri Nannen School for Journalism in Hamburg:

    The long interviews that Der Spiegel publishes with famous public figures, their so-called talks, are known for this … They can go back and forth a dozen times, with each side bringing their argument a bit more to the point, refining it, improving it. In a best-case scenario, it serves the interests of both sides.

    AMac (c822c9)

  60. Oiram wrote: Democrat Idiots look like a flock of Einsteins next to our current administration Pablo.

    I try not to think about the fact that Nancy Pelosi — who, if she is not the dumbest person in Congress, is DEFINITELY the dumbest woman – is a missed heartbeat and an indigestible pretzel away from being leader of the free world. Even if Bush was as moronic as you believe he is, he’s at least TWICE as smart as Pelosi.

    (“Flock of Einsteins?”)

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  61. If “16 months” are predicated on the security situation, and if the security situation is partly predicated on the performance and readiness of Iraqi forces, then it wouldn’t hurt to know something about that subject.

    At the excellent Long War Journal, DJ Elliott regularly updates the Iraqi Security Forces Order of Battle. (July update.) A browse gives a sense of what’s been accomplished so far, what’s gone wrong, and what remains to be done.

    AMac (c822c9)

  62. I can’t stand it any longer! The Democrats in fact DO want the US to lose the war simply to spite President Bush. It’s time to recognize it and to say it aloud. We are in a cold civil war.

    Mason (0a4ad8)

  63. Drumwaster wrote: The failure of IndyMac can be laid directly at the feet of Chuck Schumer. He’s a Democrat.

    I have to watch my blood pressure when Schumer is the subject. I first got to know him as he was covering up for Clinton as a member of the House Judiciary Committee (see #55). Then I saw him in the Oscar-nominated documentary Waco: The Rules of Engagement in his previous role covering for lying DOJ, FBI and BATF flunkies who lied about their role in the inferno of the Branch Davidian compound.

    IMHO, Schumer deliberately caused the run on and subsequent failure of IndyMac. Why? First, to cause a panic that sets the stage for overhyped comparisons with bank failures during the 1930′s (which is better for Obama). Second, to promote the idea that the Federal Government is doing all it can to save us all from being out in the cold.

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  64. Didn’t htey give a copy for maliki to approve?

    afall (861715)

  65. I just noticed this Bloomberg News article from July 20.

    Following is an excerpt of Spiegel’s interview with al- Maliki as translated by Bloomberg News.

    Spiegel editors Mathias Mueller von Blumencron and Bernhard Zand conducted the interview in Baghdad, the magazine said. It didn’t specify when the interview took place, or in what language.

    Spiegel: When will the majority of U.S. troops finally leave Iraq?

    Maliki: As far as we’re concerned, as soon as possible. U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama talks of 16 months. That, we think, would be the correct period of time for the withdrawal, with the possibility of slight changes.

    Spiegel: Is that an endorsement for the U.S. presidential election in November? Does Obama, a civilian, understand Iraq better than his rival John McCain, a war hero, at the end of the day?

    Maliki: Whoever bargains on short-term time limits is closer to the reality. Artificially extending the time that U.S. troops stay would cause problems. That being said, of course I don’t want to give any endorsement. Electing a president is something Americans themselves have to do. The job of Iraqis is to say what we want. And here the people and the government are in agreement. Coalition troops should be in Iraq for a limited time.

    Emphasis added. Hmmm.

    So the Maliki interview was translated by Bloomberg News… but they didn’t know what language the interview was conducted in?! Or does Bloomberg mean that Der Spiegel failed to specify the language because everyone already knows it was Arabic (duh)?

    AMac (c822c9)

  66. This can’t possibly be true. Der Speigel and the NY Times’s word is the gospel. Everything they say is true, which is why NY Times profits are down 82%, because they have lost readers who are tired of reading the truth and want to read the lies perpetrated by the Wall Street Journal and Fox News.

    (That spin could get me job as a NY Times columnist! I’m gonna spread it everywhere!)

    Brian G. (dabba5)

  67. afall: “Didn’t htey give a copy for maliki to approve?”

    As Patterico points out, they did and then Der Spiegel completely rewrote it.

    Michael McNeil (808800)

  68. I don’t want to lose, but Bush made that a choice by invading Iraq without a real plan.

    hey oiram, choice is the operative word. we can also choose to win. its been the democrat controlled congress that has held over 50 votes designed to make the choice to lose. never once have they considered language exhorting or encouraging the troops or expressing a commitment to victory. so while you personally may be on board w/ winning there is no indication that the democrat party leadership is. they are willing to sacrifice our security to increase their political power. its despicable, treasonous and inexcusable.

    chas (12a229)

  69. So democrats are being democrats, what else is new?

    After all they are and always have been the party of liars,thieves and treason. Traitors in 1861. Traitors in 1971. Traitors today.

    What else is new?

    cubanbob (409ac2)

  70. #63
    First you say , “hey, the surge is working!” and next you say, “the democrats want us to lose this war to spite Bush.” How can you win the war and lose it in one breath? Take a stand, are we winning the war or are we losing it?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  71. ” 71 #

    #63
    First you say , “hey, the surge is working!” and next you say, “the democrats want us to lose this war to spite Bush.” How can you win the war and lose it in one breath? Take a stand, are we winning the war or are we losing it?

    Comment by love2008 — 7/23/2008 @ 6:19 pm”

    In spite of the best efforts of the Party of Treason and its marching moron fellow travelers, we are winning. And we will win this war. And the Party of Patriotism and Sanity will prevail in November and here is a hint; it ain’t the democrats.

    cubanbob (409ac2)

  72. First you say , “hey, the surge is working!” and next you say, “the democrats want us to lose this war to spite Bush.”

    If you were at all intelligent, you would see that those statements are not contradictory.

    We are winning.
    The Democrats do not want us to win, just to spite the Republican President who has been proven right, time and again.

    HTH.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  73. #72
    This other side, party of treason and marching moron fellow travelers are also fellow Americans. Right? You sound like a war veteran who doesnt know the war is over and keeps treating everyone else as the enemy. Welcome to civilization cubanbob. And hint: The war is over. And…Ahem….(With a whisper): They are also Americans.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  74. This other side, party of treason and marching moron fellow travelers are also fellow Americans.

    Maybe they should start acting like it.

    If they were merely stupid, they would be right more often.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  75. #73
    If you were at all intelligent, you would see that those statements are not contradictory
    If you had any brains left you would see it is impossible to take both positions and make a strong argument. If we are really winning then we should get ready to withdraw.We should be talking about withdrawal dates and all. Thats how intelligent people reason.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  76. #75
    Maybe they should start acting like it.
    No one is praying for his or her country to lose. We are just saying that we dont agree that this war has anything to do with the so called, war on terror. It’s the wrong war that never should have been fought in the first place. Why is that so hard to see? The real Americans will always put America first. Not politics. I know a lot of hard core Republicans who agree with me on this. Are they now liberals? Are they now enemies of America? Are they traitors?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  77. love2008,

    A person diagnosed with cancer may require surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, or some combination of those treatments but an oncologist doesn’t initially decide on a specific date when all treatments will be completed. Instead, the oncologist evaluates the patient during each stage of treatment and adjusts the treatments depending on how the patient responds. At some point, hopefully the oncologist can pronounce the treatments a success and release the patient to a normal life. But it would be ludicrous indeed if an oncologist told a patient on Day 1 that s/he would get no more than 16 months of treatment.

    Do you see where I’m going with this?

    DRJ (297528)

  78. If you had any brains left you would see it is impossible to take both positions and make a strong argument.

    I just did, and the data bear me out.

    If we are really winning then we should get ready to withdraw.

    That’s like arguing that just because the football team is ahead as the fourth quarter starts, they should just walk off the field. (Hint: you don’t walk away from a war just because you’re “winning”. You walk away when you’ve “won”. Past tense.)

    We should be talking about withdrawal dates and all. Thats how intelligent people reason.

    No we should be talking about withdrawal conditions. We can leave once those conditions have been fully met, but not until. THAT is how military people think and exactly what Bush has been saying for several years.

    And exactly the opposite of what the Democrats have been saying for exactly as long.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  79. The amount of “whining” on this post’s discussion is startling. We can dance around the details, but when it is all said and done the big picture is this: Americans want out of this war and someone will get them out, whether it is the republican or the democrat matters not a white. Nixon ripped us out of Vietnam because, politically, it had to be. The same reality exists now. I was allive then and believe me, it had better happen again or things will get really creepy. All this who what when stuff is for your guys who like to play those war games with all the little pieces. People are just not like that. No one gives a crap about whether the Germans painted it all a certain way. Maliki doesn’t give a crap either. He wants his power to extend and he can see that only with Obama is there much chance of that. You watch. President Obama will support this Iraqi administration, but not in the same way as the previous admin. All your complaining and sniveling really is turning a lot of people off. It is so sad. The right is imploding now. You guys need to be able to have some range or the electorate is just going to see you as the dinosaurs they used to see the liberal dems as. I guess my words don’t make any real difference. It’s all about your egos. Sad, though.

    Mickey Mouse (d193b7)

  80. We are just saying that we dont agree that this war has anything to do with the so called, war on terror.

    Because you are ignoring the actual historical data.

    The AUMF gave several reasons, and was passed with very high levels of bi-partisanship. (Even John Kerry voted for it before he voted against it, and Obama didn’t vote against it at all.)

    The real Americans will always put America first.

    Rather than giving credit to the enemy?

    Or wishing death upon military officers?

    Or spitting on war vets?

    Thanks for proving my point.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  81. #78
    Yes DRJ I do see where you are going with this. You are saying that it is difficult to say when would be the best time to pull out since the conditions of war are unpredictable. I understand that. But why are we making the argument about the surge working? Isnt the surge supposed to bring us to the place where we can actually predict victory? If indeed it’s working. And BTW DRJ, in your analogy, you didnt say what type of tumor this patience has. Is it benign or is malignant? Because in the iraq case, I think we are dealing with a malignant cancer that may prove incurable unless we caught it off!

    love2008 (1b037c)

  82. But why are we making the argument about the surge working? Isnt the surge supposed to bring us to the place where we can actually predict victory?

    We’re capable of predicting that the conditions we need can be brought about sooner than we had hoped, even though they are not here yet, and it is foolish to gamble on a probability where other parties can affect the outcome.

    Normandy Beach was the turning point of WW2, and Allied generals were confident that they could win, but weren’t going to try to predict a specific date for Germany’s surrender. Instead, they set conditions, and the war was only over once those conditions were finally met.

    Please don’t keep confusing “winning but still fighting” with “won and partying down prior to going home again”.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  83. But why are we making the argument about the surge working? Isnt the surge supposed to bring us to the place where we can actually predict victory?

    No, it was supposed to bring us to a place where we can watch it develop. Predictions don’t really factor into it.

    Pablo (99243e)

  84. Because in the iraq case, I think we are dealing with a malignant cancer that may prove incurable unless we caught it off!

    So you think we should have used nuclear weapons in Iraqi civilian centers? Cauterize the infection?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  85. One more question: who really is the enemy in Iraq? Who are we fighting? McCain talks about never surrendering in Iraq.Who exactly is he never surrendering to? And what does he mean by “I know how to win wars..” Which war exactly? Iraq? In Drumwaster’s comment, he spoke about the second world war. That war made sense in that we knew who we were fighting. We knew who the enemy was. In Iraq, who is the enemy?

    love2008 (1b037c)

  86. #85
    Have you ever heard about an “open and close case” Drumwaster? It is the stage the cancer gets to that trying to cut it off will kill the sufferer. So they just close it up and send him home to wait for his last day. It’s sad. Sometimes we hurt more when we are trying to cure. Somethings are best left alone.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  87. who really is the enemy in Iraq? Who are we fighting?

    If you don’t even know these basics, how can we take any of your opinions on this issue seriously?

    It’s like a guy who doesn’t even know how to add and subtract interjecting on how the international financial markets should be run…

    In Drumwaster’s comment, he spoke about the second world war. That war made sense in that we knew who we were fighting.

    Nice of you to admit that they don’t meet the minimal standards required by the Geneva Conventions, and are, in fact, unlawful combatants who don’t deserve GC protections.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  88. So they just close it up and send him home to wait for his last day.

    So Iraqis just deserve to be oppressed and murdered randomly, because you’re afraid to get your hands dirty with the treatment that has worked so well in the past?

    Just throw up your hands and say “Oh, this is too hard, we need to run away…”?

    Wow.

    If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or your arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen. — Samuel Adams

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  89. #88
    I am sorry, is the question too high for you? Maybe I should simplify it for you. Who are we really fighting in Iraq? who is the enemy we need to destroy? Simple question Drum, just answer it and drop that intellectual smoke screen you like to use.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  90. I am sorry, is the question too high for you?

    Not at all. I’ve answered it repeatedly. (Let’s start with the ones shouting “Death to America” on national TV, and go from there, shall we?)

    You weren’t paying attention when IU gave that answer before, so I figured, if you can’t learn once, and won’t learn twice, your failure to learn means that your opinion on anything beyond that simple level is utterly worthless.

    And until you display a grasp on the subject higher than you’ve shown so far, why should I take your blatherings at all seriously?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  91. Rewriting Q&A’s is quite fashionable among the MSM – even at the NYT of all places: Public Editor wrist slap here.

    BTW, so what if Maliki is making nice to Obama? The man has a better than even chance of being the next president. Would you behave any differently in his place?

    ronbo (17ada4)

  92. Still cant answer a simple question. Why dont you pretend you are talking to you seven year old grand child.
    7 year old: Grand pa.
    Drumwaster: Yes my dear.
    7 year old: Who are we figthing in Iraq? Who is the enemy there? Do you know?
    Drumwaster: ?????

    love2008 (1b037c)

  93. I have heard the tape and actually have the original German translation, and, while the translation provided to the media is correct, Der Speigel omitted a key sentence following Maliki’s quote, “I agree with Obama.”

    Here it is as originally translated into German. The second sentence was omitted by the English language media:

    Ich stimme mit Obama. Nicht!

    Nomennovum (d869f2)

  94. Try and pay attention, you simpering twit.

    We are fighting the people who want to see us DEAD. They can be identified most easily by being seen chanting “Death to America” on the TV news programs from those countries.

    Groups that target innocent civilians as a means of scoring political or religious gain are next in line.

    That is the fourth time I have answered your question – twice in the last half dozen comments – but you clearly don’t have the smarts to understand simple English.

    Here’s a simple question for you: why do you not want the US to defend itself against those who would see it destroyed?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  95. Since you can cut and paste the question, I will cut and paste the same answer I have given EVERY TIME YOU ASK THIS STUPID FUCKING QUESTION:

    Try and pay attention, you simpering twit.

    We are fighting the people who want to see us DEAD. They can be identified most easily by being seen chanting “Death to America” on the TV news programs from those countries.

    Groups that target innocent civilians as a means of scoring political or religious gain are next in line.

    That is the fourth FIFTH time I have answered your question but you clearly don’t have the smarts to understand simple English.

    Here’s a simple question for you: why do you not want the US to defend itself against those who would see it destroyed?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  96. Answer: People who are trying to kill us!

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  97. Just as the Kerry position on Iraq was, when one was fortunate enough to get a straight answer, hardly distinguishable from the Bush position so too will Barry, sooner rather than later, parrot the McCain line; We must win. Of course that is easier to say when victory is already at hand and much of the difficulty of the war was caused by your own obstructionism. These cowardly pukes who now line up to lap success from the opened flies of Bush and The Neocons are far lower than the ideological pacifists who were, yesterday, their patsies. Like that, Lefties? Get used to it.

    megapotamus (17c12e)

  98. It looks like Oiram has left after his post #54, but it should still be responded to in case others mistakenly think his numbers are accurate.

    “The rich” don’t pay 2% of taxes. They pay a whole lot more. Read this Wall Street Journal op-ed for the numerical breakdown. A few choice highlights:

    The top 1% of income earners, collectively, paid 40% of all taxes in 2006 (the latest year for which the IRS has released data).

    The top 5% of income earners paid 60% of all taxes.

    The top 50% of income earners — the top half of the income bracket — collectively paid 97% of all taxes in 2006. Yes, ninety-seven percent. That means that the poorest half of America paid a grand total of 3% of the total income taxes in 2006.

    If that doesn’t come as a surprise to you, you were probably already a conservative. :-)

    Robin Munn (6f355b)

  99. #95 and #96
    Try and pay attention, you simpering twit.
    is that how you respond to your little 7 year old grand child? You, Drumwaster are an angry, grumpy, old grouch! Be nice. It’s your little grand child you are talking to. Now breath in…..out. Thats nice. Now lets do it all over again grandpa.
    7 year old: Grand pa.
    Drumwaster: Yes, my simpering twit?
    7 year old: What is the name of the enemy we are fighting in Iraq? Are they the shiite insurgents or the Iranians or Al Quida?
    Drumwaster:….????…
    7 year old: …and grand pa..
    Drumwaster: What is it this time you suffering, blinking fool..you..
    7 year old: Please grand pa. In your reply dont get all worked up and unkind and angry. Remember your blood pressure. You might burst a valve and have a stroke and die. So, please be nice and answer the question grand pa.
    Drumwaster:……..????$#@$%$@*….?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  100. is that how you respond to your little 7 year old grand child?

    None of my grandchildren are that young. And none of them show your lack of comprehension. I have given you an answer five times so far, and you have failed to read it every single time, or you would not keep asking the same question over and over.

    None of my grandkids need to be taught anything more than once or twice.

    You haven’t managed it after five repeats.

    Why is this? What is the cause of your lack of comprehension? Is there anything I can do to help you read those simple words? (Use shorter ones, perhaps? Fewer syllables?)

    What specific lack do you have that causes your blind spot? Is it genetic, perhaps? Environmental in nature, maybe?

    Now lets do it all over again grandpa.

    Good. Go back and re-read those comments above (95 & 96), and tell the class exactly what about those paragraphs you don’t understand. We’ll see if we can’t teach you a thing or two…

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  101. I’m with you on this one Drum regarding comments 95 and 96.

    I say lets go get them.
    Let’s smoke them out.

    But let’s try to do it without waring against a country who had nothing to do with 9/11.

    Oiram (983921)

  102. But let’s try to do it without waring against a country who had nothing to do with 9/11.

    Using another WW2 analogy:

    Q: What did the country of Morocco have to do with the Pearl Harbor attack?

    A: Nothing, of course.

    Q: But then why would we have invaded Morocco as our first act after Pearl Harbor?

    A: Because it was just the first step in a much larger strategy.

    Are you seeing where I’m going here?

    WW2 wasn’t just against the nation that bombed us at Pearl Harbor. It was against an ideology that fought us solely because we believe differently, and celebrate the freedom of mankind, rather than subjugating ourselves to a foreign mindset.

    This war is not against just the terror groups. It is also against the nations that provide them training and sanctuary. Such as Afghanistan. Such as Iraq. Such as Syria, and Iran and North Korea and all the rest.

    Afghanistan was conquered, and has a free and democratic government in place, even though there are still bad guys up in the hills.

    Iraq was conquered, and has a free and democratic government in place, even though there are still bad guys hiding behind women and children.

    You should try comparing a map of the region before 9/11 to the one that exists today, and think of the words “divide and conquer”.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  103. #96
    <i>We are fighting the people who want to see us DEAD. They can be identified most easily by being seen chanting “Death to America” on the TV news programs from those countries.
    That would be OBL and his ilk. But the problem is, they were not in Iraq. They only came into Iraq after Saddam was deposed and Iraq invaded. Removing Saddam helped them to gain grounds in Iraq. So again, granPA, who are we fighting in Iraq? But dont worry, I can see you dont have the answer to that question. So lets skip the subject.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  104. That would be OBL and his ilk.

    Again reverting to WW2 analogies, you are blaiming the Japanese sailors on that particular mission, while refusing to acknowledge that there is a larger problem that must also be confronted.

    But the problem is, they were not in Iraq.

    Neither was the Japanese task force anywhere near Morocco.

    But there is a larger picture here that you are not seeing.

    They only came into Iraq after Saddam was deposed and Iraq invaded.

    Not true, and irrelevant in any case. This war is not against OBL and Al Qaeda, it is against the whole collection of nations that has been supporting and supplying those international terrorists. Iraq is just one of those nations, just as there were nations that were members of the Axis Powers and those nations that were merely under their control (France and Belgium are two such examples.)

    So again, granPA, who are we fighting in Iraq?

    THE PEOPLE WHO ARE FIGHTING TO KILL US.

    What is it about that sentence that prevents you from understanding it?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  105. #103
    Please give me an analogy that works.

    Iraq did not attack us.

    Al Queda attacked us on 9/11. It’s not a county, google it on maps if you like. :)

    Japan is a country that attacked us.

    Mudding the waters with “Operation Torch” once again shows me what Obama is up against.

    Oiram (983921)

  106. Iraq did not attack us.

    Morocco did not attack us.

    Al Queda attacked us on 9/11. It’s not a county,

    It isn’t even a nation. And that is irrelevant, because we are fighting the nations that have supported and supplied international terrorist groups, as well as the groups themselves.

    Why do you not grasp this point?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  107. #107 I agree with fighting terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq. But I don’t see why we admit Saudis here under stduent visas when most of the 911 crew were Saudis. Bush asks them to pump more oil and they refuse. US invades Kuwait to repel Iraqis and protect Saudis from possible Iraqi invasion/ attack on oil facilities. Saudis can fund all the mosques they desire here and yet no one who is an infidel can even visit Mecca? No churches or synagogues allowed there either. Why not open ANWR and offshore to drilling and tell Saudis to go screw themselves? Why not gouge them for whatever comsumer items they want from us or charge them out the butt for whatever military shield we provide? The same could apply to Europe.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  108. Why not open ANWR and offshore to drilling and tell Saudis to go screw themselves?

    You get absolutely no argument from me. I also say open up the oil shale fields in Colorado and the already drilled-and-capped wells on the Outer Continental Shelves and in the Gulf of Mexico (why is China allowed to drill there, but we can’t?).

    Why not gouge them for whatever comsumer items they want from us or charge them out the butt for whatever military shield we provide? The same could apply to Europe.

    Another point that I shall not argue with. “All the market will bear”.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  109. #105
    THE PEOPLE WHO ARE FIGHTING TO KILL US.
    Easy granny. Watch that blood pressure.
    You keep saying the people who want to kill us. That is as ambiguous as it gets. You fail to ever give them a name or any form of identification. I have tried to offer OBL as a name of one of those who wish America ill, yet you refuse that.
    Unless of course you are saying that Iraq is a proxy war against all of America’s enemies (who you fail to name). So Iraq is where we fight all our enemies. (Even when we dont know who they are). I see. Thats a new way to see it.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  110. I have tried to offer OBL as a name of one of those who wish America ill, yet you refuse that.

    I don’t think he is currently one of those who want America dead, because a smear of scorched protein on a cave wall cannot – by definition – “want” anything.

    Try these folks. (Not rick-rolling, and there are subtitles, so you will actually have to read.)

    Is that a good enough start for you?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  111. Unless of course you are saying that Iraq is a proxy war against all of America’s enemies

    No more than Morocco was a “proxy war” against the Nazis in Germany. It was the first step in a much longer journey.

    Go crack a few Time-Life History books. They have pictures.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  112. Drum Said: “It isn’t even a nation. And that is irrelevant, because we are fighting the nations that have supported and supplied international terrorist groups, as well as the groups themselves.”

    And that’s irrelevant……..??? I say.

    It is relevant my friend, that’s what you don’t grasp.

    I’m proud to be an American, but you have to understand that the world is not stupid.

    I mean, I know your smart Drum. We’ve done the very things you accuse these countries of doing.
    You know that, and don’t make me list all the times.

    Bottom line is we should pick are wars carefully and we didn’t.

    Your a good debater dude, I’m sure your going to tear me apart, but try to be civil here.

    Talk to me like I’m at least a High School graduate.

    Oiram (983921)

  113. It is relevant my friend, that’s what
    you don’t grasp.

    How is the name of the group trying to kill Americans even remotely relevant?

    We’ve done the very things you accuse these countries of doing.

    Gather a crowd of thousands and shout “Death to America”? What color pills are you on these days?

    Bottom line is we should pick are wars carefully and we didn’t.

    And if we had actually STARTED this war, you might have a point.

    Since we didn’t, you don’t.

    Talk to me like I’m at least a High School graduate.

    Show me that you can learn lessons like a high school graduate, and I will do so.

    But when you keep asking the same question over and over, while ignoring the answer, that is not the behavior of someone who graduated high school.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  114. You’ve got the answers Drum at your fingertips. The problem is you just hear……. or rather search with strokes of the keys what suits you.

    Hope you caught Obama’s speech in Germany.

    Get used to him Drum.

    I’m sure the Right Wing web sites are already taking pictures of missing flags on his coat in an attempt to beat him 2012…….Good Luck.

    Act like a smart person.

    Google it if you have to Drum.

    Oiram (983921)

  115. “And if we had actually STARTED this war, you might have a point.”

    Cracks me up every time.

    Thanks for the laughs Drum.

    Oiram (983921)

  116. Cracks me up every time.

    Do I really need to walk you through this AGAIN?

    You run away every time I expose you to the facts.

    You are not arguing in good faith, and deliberately ignoring facts.

    If you do not start showing good faith, or stop ignoring the actual historical data, I will quit wasting time trying to teach you.

    Now, which shall it be – shall you grow up, or shall we return to slapping you like a red-headed stepchild?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  117. Get used to him Drum.

    Why? I’m not from Illinois.

    You sound like those people standing up for Lurch four years ago.

    He’s still in the Senate, you’ll note.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  118. LOL

    Must be tough to be a Republican nowadays Drum. Sorry I brought you to this.

    Nah, to answer your question….keep your facts, I’ll keep mine.

    Let’s put partisan bickering aside.

    We’re never gonna convince each other right?
    I mean we can agree there, I think.

    So Friend to Friend,
    Are you worried there will be separate sets of history books pertaining to this time 20 or 30 years from now?

    I am.

    I admit Democrats will be responsible as well as Republicans.

    Can we agree there?

    And please I’m offering a hand here, so if you belittle me with my lack of facts or whatever, then you are absolving all hope.

    Peace Brother

    Oiram (983921)

  119. The people fighting us to kill us are the Iranians? Is that what we went to Iraq to fight? The Iranians? Thats exactly Drumwaster’s point. You can see it when you look at the link he gave on comment #111. Those chanting “Death to America. Infidel..” are Iranians. These are the enemies of America y’all. They are the enemies we went to Iraq to fight.. Dont look at me that way, ask Drumwaster!

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  120. keep your facts, I’ll keep mine.

    You are entitled to your own opinion. You are not entitled to your own facts.

    Who started the Gulf War? The answer to that is a historical fact.

    How did the Gulf War end? The answer to that is a historical fact.

    You don’t get to rewrite history in an attempt to score political points against people you cannot persuade any other way. The facts remain, no matter your attempts to spin them away.

    But I asked you a question. Are you going to start debating in good faith or shall I just start beating you like a rented mule? (Facts trump ideology. But you can’t even agree on that.)

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  121. I think lovey is starting to catch on. Maybe it was that new hat…

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  122. We’re never gonna convince each other right?

    Not as long as you keep shying away from facts. I won’t accept anything less, and you won’t even be seen in the same county as the truth.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  123. You are what you are Drum.

    Peace Brother.

    Oiram (983921)

  124. And to add to Oiram’s comment #115, Barack Obama was magnificent in Berlin. 200,000 people came out to see a US senator running for president. Unprecedented. I understand the envy, dont bother.
    “President Barack Obama.”I like the sound of that, dont you?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  125. I like the sound of that, dont you?

    Enjoy the sound bite, because “the sound of that” is all you’ll ever have…

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  126. #122
    i>I think lovey is starting to catch on. Maybe it was that new hat…
    Arent you getting a little confused Drum? So the enemy in Iraq is Iran? mmmmgh. If we knew that all this while, why didnt we simply go to Iran (where they are) and kill them their? By your admission, Iraq was the wrong war. The real war was supposed to be in Iran. Not a good case you make here Drum. Not good.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  127. So the enemy in Iraq is Iran?

    Is Iran currently sponsoring international terrorism? Are they sending their soldiers over to kill American troops? Are they supplying the IEDs and training to ambush our convoys?

    Or are those facts too painful to pay attention to?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  128. By your admission, Iraq was the wrong war.

    No, as I have repeated, Iraq was THE CORRECT FIRST STEP IN A MUCH LARGER CONFLICT. (You can quote me.) I’ve said that Iraq is the analog to Morocco in the global war fought two generations ago. Was Morocco the wrong war?

    Try thinking of Iraq not as a “war”, but merely another battlefield in the war. Afghanistan was one, Iraq is another, but the war is not over, since there are still nations supporting international terror groups, and seeking WMD.

    Get used to a very long war.

    Isn’t it nice that we didn’t start it?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  129. #126
    Enjoy the sound bite, because “the sound of that” is all you’ll ever have…
    Like I said, I understtand the envy. Even Poppy Bush told us y’all are so jealous. wooooooohooooooo!!
    But tell me something Drum, where would you go when Obama becomes President? (Oh I would give the world to see the look on your faces then…)

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  130. where would you go when Obama becomes President?

    I’m not going to run away, because I know this nation survived the horrors of Jimmy Carter, it survived having a rapist and adulterer in the Oval Office, and it would survive four years of the White Lighter from the South Side. He would be too incompetent to do to much damage, just like a baby with a hammer – there is only so much damage that he can do before Congress gets taken away (like it did in ’94 after two years of Bill’s fiascos).

    Are you going to run away to France with all of those celebrities promised to do after Bush won again in ’04? Or are you going to chicken out (like they all did)?

    He’s already slipping and his seven-point lead from last week has already slipped to within MOE. People are starting to understand him, and that is anathema to his election hopes.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  131. Mmmmmgh.. Gets more complex. So war with Iran is inevitable. This is why the Republicans want McCain. To continue the wars. Do you really think America is in a good shape for more wars after Iraq? Dont you think taming Saddam and using him would have been a more effective way of dealing with Iran?

    love2008 (1b037c)

  132. love2008, “taming” Saddam and using him to attack Iran?

    Are you drunk?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  133. This is why the Republicans want McCain. To continue the wars.

    Are you attempting to imply that Obama will cause the terrorists to stop trying to kill Americans? Or that he will magically be able to talk the Iranians out of trying to develop nuclear weapons or kill Jews (not to mention homosexuals, women who have been “uppity” and anyone who isn’t a Muslim)?

    Here’s another fact you are ignoring: a State of war ALREADY EXISTS between the United States and Iran. (Try Googling what happened in Teheran on November 4, 1979. Then look up “Operation Preying Mantis”, followed by the term “Casus Belli“.)

    Sounds like you would prefer we return to the September 10, 2001 mindset.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  134. #133
    You already had a formidable and powerful enemy of Iran in Saddam. If half or a quarter of the effort put in Iraq so far was expended on winning him over, dont you think we would have been in a better place on Iran?

    love2008 (1b037c)

  135. You already had a formidable and powerful enemy of Iran in Saddam.

    You seem to be missing the point. Both of those nations used to be major league supporters of international terrorism.

    Now only one of them is.

    If we don’t elect a coward to the Oval Office, soon neither of them will be.

    That will be a net positive to the region and the world.

    Don’t you agree that keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of people who shout “Death to America” is a pretty good idea? Don’t you agree that keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of governments that sponsor terrorists is a pretty good idea?

    If you agree that they are good ideas, and since diplomacy isn’t stopping them from getting those weapons, what else would you recommend we do to stop them?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  136. If half or a quarter of the effort put in Iraq so far was expended on winning him over

    The 300,000 people in those mass graves would disagree with you, I’m sure.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  137. love2008, Iraq had already exhausted itself fighting Iran. We have leftist moonbats whining on a daily basis that Saddam was “our fault” because we gave him a trivial amount of aid during that time. Saddam would never reopen hostilities against Iran – especially not as an ally of the US. Iraq’s army was in no condition to take on Iraq after the ’91 Gulf War. And Iran has had a nuclear program in part specifically because of Saddam’s programs. If Saddam was still in power, the US and Europe would have little argument that Iran was not entitled to a weapons program.

    I repeat: are you drunk?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  138. #138
    I repeat: are you drunk?
    Yeah. A little. But you are really in a stupor to carry on this hogwash talk.
    If Iran was a greater threat, why waste all this resources in a meaningless war in Iraq? I say, we take those apes out! If this war was against Iran, we wouldnt have this argument. They are the real threat. But the work in Iraq has made it very tough for the US to lead a strong coalition against Iran. That is the problem with Iraq people. Thats what happens when you lose moral authority. You cant be trusted again. Reminds me of the guy who cried wolf.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  139. If Iran was a greater threat, why waste all this resources in a meaningless war in Iraq?

    Because there are wiser minds than yours who see Iraq as a necessary first step? Did you look at a map of that region? Iran is now surrounded between Afghanistan and Iraq and the Persian Gulf; we have also trapped Syria between our troops – now freshly battle-hardened – and Israel, and diplomatic efforts spanning the last four years have utterly failed to accomplish their goals of peacefully persuading Iran to give up their plans for nukes.

    And are you saying that not fighting back is somehow more “moral” than defending ourselves against people who clearly want us dead? How can any morality descend from a base that does not include the right of self-defense?

    What is it going to take for you to wake up to the threat that is only kept at bay by men and women whose boots you are not worthy to lick?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  140. If Saddam was still in power, the US and Europe would have little argument that Iran was not entitled to a weapons program.
    The only problem with that is that Saddam never had a “weapons program”. That is what puts us in an awkward position on Iran. If we were so wrong on Iraq, who will support against Iran? (I mean using military force on Iran) This administration has a credibility problem. That is why it is losing influence over some of our important allies. That is why we need a different administration, one that can re-engage the world and lead the war on terror. One that can win back the confidence of the world and with time still deal decisively with Iran.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  141. Every time I ask you a direct question, you change the subject. Are you scared to answer for fear the truth will expose you for what you are?

    Why not answer my questions?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  142. love2008, Saddam never had a “weapons program”?

    Now you are reinventing history. You really are drunk.

    This administration does not have a credibility problem, Europe has a credibility problem. They’ve failed to hold up their end in the war on terror. Spare us the empty Obama rhetoric. It fails to change the subject from your ludicrous ideas – like that we could have “tamed” Saddam.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  143. And are you saying that not fighting back is somehow more “moral” than defending ourselves against people who clearly want us dead? How can any morality descend from a base that does not include the right of self-defense?

    What is it going to take for you to wake up to the threat that is only kept at bay by men and women whose boots you are not worthy to lick?
    Yeah. Problem is, that threat manifested on the eleventh of September 2001. And we know who was behind it and where he was and still is. That is where these boots you speak so nicely of should be marching. Fighting the war that really makes sense. And drop that partisan meme of fighting them in Iraq so you dont have to fight them here. They were never there. We know where they are. Send those “boots” there.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  144. love2008 is again repeating the Obama’s second most stupid foreign policy “idea” – that of invading our allies. Nuclear armed allies.

    Brilliant.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  145. #143
    What then are you trying to achieve with the North Korea mad dog? What is the aim of tough sanctions and effective diplomacy? Is it not to “tame” him and desuade him from his ignoble ambitions? Is it not yielding results? Dont tell me you are that shallow brained!

    love2008 (1b037c)

  146. Not to mention dodging direct questions.

    I’ll try again.

    Lovey, you said, “Problem is, that threat manifested on the eleventh of September 2001.”

    What threat is that? Not “who”, but “what”?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  147. love2008, no one is attempting to get North Korea to begin military operations against China.

    You really don’t seem to understand how stupid your ideas are. Both the idea that Saddam would be our “tamed” ally against Iran and the idea of invading Pakistan to attack the tribal regions there.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  148. #145
    So if your so called allies become a haven for terrorism and attack against America, you would sacrifice the lives of Americans to save your friendship? What are you drinking SPQR? It’s really not helping you think straight.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  149. You would attack allied nations, but let the actual enemies go unmolested. That about right?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  150. love2008, you really don’t have any idea, do you? The last time someone suggested something as stupid as Obama’s ( and your ) idea, President Truman fired him.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  151. #147
    The real threat my friend. Osama Bin Laden and all he represents. The real threat, not your paraphrenia-induced, percieved threat that you cant seem to identify. But of course, killing him wont be a nice thing to do. I hear he is a family friend of the President.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  152. love2008 vomited up: “I hear he is a family friend of the President.

    You are a liar.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  153. #150
    Nobody is talking about attacking allied nations. We are talking about attacking our enemies where ever they be found.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  154. love2008, invading a soverign nation that is allied to us without permission is an attack. Only a fool would think otherwise. Obama and you make two.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  155. and all he represents.

    Which would be?

    Be as specific as you can be.

    And your slander of the President? Nothing less than what we’ve come to expect from you – lies and more lies.

    Can’t you participate in a debate without making stuff up?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  156. We are talking about attacking our enemies where ever they be found.

    Such as in Iraq? In Iran? How about Syria?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  157. #153
    And you are uninformed SPQR. You surprise me. You mean you dont know that? I am sure you are aware that OBL’s family were leaving in America before 9/11. And they had ties with the Bush family. Oil ties. Well I dont expect you to know everything.

    love2008 (1b037c)

  158. I am sure you are aware that OBL’s family were leaving in America before 9/11.

    And what can we infer from this data? Be specific in your slander.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  159. love2008, I happen to be better informed than you. That’s been demonstrated repeatedly. You did not state that bin Laden’s family had ties to the Bush family. ( Which would have been an exaggeration ) You said that Osama bin Laden was a family friend. That’s a lie.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  160. #157
    Come on Drum. You are they warmonger here. Why is that so difficult for you to swallow?

    love2008 (1b037c)

  161. We are talking about attacking our enemies where ever they be found.

    ]

    I just want you to be more specific. What do you mean by “where ever [sic] they be found [sic]“?

    I fully expect you to panic yourself into a full-fledged panic attack over being asked to support your position…

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  162. #160
    When someone is a friend of your family, doesnt that make him a family friend?

    love2008 (1b037c)

  163. When someone is a friend of your family, doesnt that make him a family friend?

    Yes, but OBL was not a friend of Bush’s family. He wasn’t even considered a vague acquaintance to his own family. They had disowned him years before, and he was only one of 54 siblings, so no great loss. Even the Saudis stripped him of his Saud citizenship.

    One other thing… The bin Laden family isn’t in oil, they are in construction. They also own part of Microsoft and Boeing.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  164. love2008, you are so much more informed than I am, that you need to keep rewriting your own comments. It is hilarious.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  165. Okay. Maybe this will help this discussion. I am not endorsing it. I am only providing them as talking points.
    What do you think about this?
    And this.

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  166. Weren’t you the one whining about biased sources?

    “Talking points”, indeed.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  167. bin Laden had been attacking the United States long before Bush was even a candidate for Congress from West Texas, much less Governor of the State.

    Why did Clinton refuse to accept custody of bin Laden three times, even after the Federal indictment had been issued?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  168. #168
    Now you are losing your comportment again Drum.
    But dont you think that the fact that this so called rumour is out makes it morally problematic for Bush to be seen as blameless on the bin laden issue? Doesnt that create a credibility problem for him?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  169. Not since it is only a “rumor”, and a debunked one, at that.

    Are you ever going to answer any of my questions?

    Or are you above such petty issues?

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)

  170. #170
    I dont think you can call the whole thing a rumour. There is no smoke without fire. There is always an element of truth in every rumour.
    What is your question?

    love2008 (0c8c2c)

  171. What is your question?

    Try re-reading the last few comments.

    Drumwaster (5ccf59)


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