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Here's the definition of trend from Merriam-Webster online: "to show a tendency"
Seems pretty simple to me. I think we can expand it thusly: Something that increases with time demonstrates an upward trend, something that decreases over time demonstrates a downward trend.
To double check myself on this, I checked the definition of trend at dictionary.com: "to have a general tendency, as events, conditions, etc."
Hopefully in spite of the different wording between the two sources there's no complexity to this issue. I checked a second definition because I wanted to be meticulous, but I think both definitions and my expansion are accurate.
Coincidentally, meticulous is today's "word of the day" at Merriam-Webster online: meticulous • \muh-TIK-yuh-lus\ • adjective: marked by extreme or excessive care in the consideration or treatment of details
Hmmm... perhaps I used the wrong term - I don't think the 30 seconds spent checking a second source was "extreme" or "excessive". But I digress...
Here are graphs of Iraqi civilian and US military casualties in Iraq, from the Brookings Institute's Iraq Index
I believe I can spot some trends in these charts. Overall I see distinct upward trends through 2006 (and in the example of US military deaths continuing through June, 2007), where a peak seems to be reached beyond which the trend is downward. One can argue causes for these forever, but I don't think one can effectively argue the existence of the trends.
Unless one writes for Reuters:
Attacks across Iraq have fallen by 60 percent since last June, when extra troops were fully deployed. There has been a fall in violence since January but U.S. commanders in Iraq say this does not represent a trend.I should point out that Reuters is talking about "attacks" here - and while they may be down 60% the fatalities (as depicted in the above graphs) are down considerably more. Regardless, I believe I see a trend.
To be fair, the anonymous Reuters "reporter" (the story is sourced to the agency's "Baghdad newsroom") is not claiming there is no trend where a trend is obvious, she or he is merely claiming that "U.S. commanders in Iraq" are claiming this. However, the lack of an actual quote from a named source makes me think the Reuters "Baghdad newsroom" can't be accused of being meticulous (at the least) based on this account. (See a similar story here.)
In another remarkable coincidence, today's "word of the day" at dictionary.com is chagrin: chagrin \shuh-GRIN\, noun: Acute vexation, annoyance, or embarrassment, arising from disappointment or failure. transitive verb: To unsettle or vex by disappointment or humiliation; to mortify.
Allow me to use it in a sentence: "Reuters will experience absolutely no chagrin over this episode."
I entered the word "trend" in Mudville's search window to see what would come up. (Okay, full disclosure: I knew exactly what I was looking for). In an amazing coincidence, I found this story from mid October of 2007 (did you notice I put mid October of 2007 in bold face? That's because I want you to remember that this is from mid October of 2007 for just a little while):
CHARLES GIBSON, ABC ANCHOR: The U.S. military reports the fourth straight month of decline in troop deaths, 66 American troops died in September, each a terrible tragedy for a family, but the number far less than those who died in August. And the Iraqi government says civilian deaths across Iraq fell by half last month.And there you have it - by definition some things are "news" and some things are "not". So for a final search for trends let's return from mid-October to current "news":
KURTZ: Joining us now to put this into perspective, Robin Wright, who covers national security for The Washington Post. And CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr.
Robin Wright, should that decline in Iraq casualties have gotten more media attention?
ROBIN WRIGHT, THE WASHINGTON POST: Not necessarily. The fact is we're at the beginning of a trend -- and it's not even sure that it is a trend yet. There is also an enormous dispute over how to count the numbers. There are different kinds of deaths in Iraq.
KURTZ: Barbara Starr, CNN did mostly quick reads by anchors of these numbers. There was a taped report on "LOU DOBBS TONIGHT." Do you think this story deserved more attention? We don't know whether it is a trend or not but those are intriguing numbers.
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: But that's the problem, we don't know whether it is a trend about specifically the decline in the number of U.S. troops being killed in Iraq. This is not enduring progress.
KURTZ: But let's say that the figures had shown that casualties were going up for U.S. soldiers and going up for Iraqi civilians. I think that would have made some front pages.
STARR: Oh, I think inevitably it would have. I mean, that's certainly -- that, by any definition, is news.
According to the News Content Index conducted by the Project for Excellence in Journalism, the percentage of news stories devoted to the war has sharply declined since last year, dropping from an average of 15% of the newshole in July to just 3% in February.(Did you notice I put "mid October" in bold face type again?)
As news coverage of the war has diminished, so too has public interest in news about Iraq. According to Pew's News Interest Index survey, Iraq was the public's most closely followed news story in all but five weeks during the first half of 2007; however, it was a much less dominant story between July 2007 and February 2008. Notably, the Iraq war has not been the public's top weekly story since mid-October.
Anyhow, here's a graph from Pew:
Does anyone see a downward trend here?
Holy Cow! Those are some trends allright. The last graph is almost funny, except it's more sad, really.Posted by MD at March 16, 2008 07:57 PM
There's nothing new about "No news is good news."Posted by Porkov at March 16, 2008 09:34 PM
Actually, for the MSM and Donks "Bad news is good news."Posted by MarkJ at March 16, 2008 09:42 PM
Actually, I saw that one when it came across. I suspect, based on the mangled wording, that it was *supposed* to read that there has been an *increase* in violence since January, but commanders say it does not represent a trend.
Of course, I expect the enemy to give it everything they've got this fall--they know very well what's at stake in our election.Posted by Big D at March 16, 2008 09:45 PM
That's odd. I follow the Iraq news pretty closely. I'm 100% sure I saw almost this exact same graf...
Attacks across Iraq have fallen by 60 percent since last June, when extra troops were fully deployed. There has been a fall in violence since January but U.S. commanders in Iraq say this does not represent a trend.
...except it said there was a rise since Jan, which there has been, and as with this version the idea of a trend was denied by military officials.
I find it hard to believe both versions could be accurate; the military denies both a rise and fall are trends? I think you just have a typo here. The recent news is an increase that was said not to be a trend.
As for trends, something I noticed last week is that the last 4 months are the lowest casualties in any quarter of the conflict, both for U.S. troops and Iraqi civilians.
That's a fucking trend.
GatewayPundit has some nice graphs.TallDave at March 16, 2008 10:32 PM
My respect for Reuters has been trending downwardsPosted by Joe at March 16, 2008 10:44 PM
Hmmmm... if you hold a magnifying glass up to the civilian casualties chart you can detect an uptick from January to February - the same isn't true for military numbers, they've continued down.
So I'll acknowledge that perhaps Reuters "Baghdad newsroom" said "fall" when they meant "rise" (not quite a typo, but I think we all catch the drift) and that perhaps no editor caught the error.
If they should correct accordingly I'll stand by my bottom line of that part of the story: "the Reuters "Baghdad newsroom" can't be accused of being meticulous (at the least) based on this account."Posted by Greyhawk at March 16, 2008 11:36 PM
Waaaahh, they're not showing the "good news"! When will you 19%s realize that "downward trends" have nothing to do with the mission at hand...political reconciliation? DO you guys even care? This Iraq thing is cesspool of filth, and your incessant whining about how the MSM isn't covering it to your standards is getting a little old.Posted by Ricki at March 17, 2008 01:43 AM
So "not killing each other" isn't good enough?
Given that there are 'Rickis' all over this world I think that's as close to "reconciliation" as mere humans can get.Posted by Greyhawk at March 17, 2008 02:23 AM
We are down to such a low level now that a single incident like an IED that kills 5 soldiers can cause an "uptick" in casualties. Statistically the small changes now can not be considered a trend. If anyone "Ricki" bothered to read some of the releases from the MNF-I they "he" would see that there is very real political progress at the tribal and provincial levels. The real leaders of the reconciliation between the different factions are proving themselves there. Thats how a real democracy works, from the bottom up. Provincial elections are being held for the people who will truly represent the populace in Bagdad. Using the measuring stick of what the democrats have accomplished in the last year
, the Iraqis don't look too bad.
Great work Greyhawk, future is bright for you in journalism.
As to our teenager ranting on strawman topics. Take a time out. Also, get caught up on some reading. The trend on the homefront is changing too. Iraqi war fundamentals are edging upwards as more news filters below the MSM Gatekeepers radar. More people see our troops succeeding and winning the war.
Political reconciliation is taking place as the Iraqis feel safer, protected and understand they can win the war against terrorist on both sides.
Cities, towns, villages are all coming together, putting ethnic and religious differences behind them. Putting criminals behind bars, giving tips on terrorist and volunteering for Iraqi Police, Army jobs all over the country.
Sons of Iraq, the Awakening, whatever the movement is called, it means that Iraqis are finding freedom, liberty and justice now as something they all can fight for and believe in today. This will force political reconciliation between leaders at higher levels, or, as in all representative societies, they will elect new leaders to move forward.
This is real change for a people long left in the darkness of tyrants hands.Posted by Michael at March 17, 2008 03:42 AM
You guys are completely fricking insane! You don't get it, do you? WE LOST IRAQ! It's over. 7 out 10 Iraqis want us out of there, we're blowing $12 bil a month rearming guys who used to blow us up, and, get this, there are worms in the tap water!! You just can't make this stuff up..it really amazes (and saddens me) that you idiots will sit there and brag about the "trends" in violence without having the honesty to admit that this is biggest foreign policy disaster in our history. It's gotten so bad, that we simply can't even AFFORD it anymore, but you wingnuts have no problem with that. You have no problem allowing our economy to tank so that you can spread "freedom" in Iraq. Get your heads out of the sand!Posted by Ricki at March 17, 2008 04:06 AM
I'm going to jump in here, just for funsies. Get your heads out of the sand!, funny pun.
But let me ask you Ricki, have you been to Iraq? Have you even touched iraqi sand? Greyhawk has been there for two tours and just recently returned home. I find it odd that no one wants to hear from those who've actually been there.
Our troops have been telling us about the progress from the beginning, but because it meant we were succeeding, they're voices have been ignored, and folks like you lump them together as wingnuts.
We're putting more than just money into Iraq, our troops are leaving their blood behind. So let's quite forsaking the troops and listen to them.
How about you get your head in the sand, you might learn the truth.Posted by Mrs Greyhawk at March 17, 2008 11:37 AM
As a matter of fact, I have been to Iraq! See, I'm an active duty soldier stationed at Ft.Lewis. And I'm probably deploying again in the fall. Let's make one thing clear; you don't have to be in the military to have an opinion on Iraq. You righties have made that PERFECTLY clear, looking at all the chickenhawks who sent us to Iraq, let's not have a double standard. As for this truly disgusting meme that since we spilled a lot of blood, that in order to honor the fallen, we need to send MORE young men and women to die in a fruitless exercise really tries my patience. Please do not presume to speak for the wishes of dead soldiers. We do not base our policy on the fallen...we base it on what is best for America.Posted by Ricki at March 17, 2008 12:48 PM
According to a consortium of global media companies, a recent poll of Iraqis counter your claims that 7 out of 10 Iraqis want the us out. Only 38% want an immediate withdrawal of American forces.
Ricki ... it's about more than honoring the fallen, as significant as that is.
It is about making sure we don't have to do this a THIRD time ... by decisively completing the job now.
Our warfighters realize this ... it is one reason they have been so willing to re-enlist, even in-theater.
And enough of our civilian leadership, all the way up to We The People, at least tacitly recognize this ... that is why those who share your view, even after they took control of Congress, have been unable to fulfill your wish to cut-and-run.
As for paying for this ... we have spent more as a nation, in the same period of time, in "compliance costs" to prove our innocence to the IRS, than we have in the prosecution of this war.
And, do not rely on polls alone, as you presume to speak for the Iraqi people.
Thanks for the positive spin. Oh, I feel a lot better now, that $12 bil is now WORTH IT. Keep up the good work cheerleading for the disaster that is Iraq!Posted by Ricki at March 17, 2008 04:38 PM
Okay, so you acknowledge that the whole "dying in vain" meme doesn't work, so you try another talking point "complete the job". Are you guys capable of any independent thought? Does someone deliver these talking points to inbox on the hour? What you righties fail to understand, is that this is no longer a "war". Believe it or not, when Bush declared Mission Accomplished, he was actually right! We defeated Saddam's army years ago, found no WMD's, and let the Iraqis have free elections. We are now occupiers of a sovereign nation....and occupying army can't "win" anything. We have to accept that we can no longer blow our treasure and lives in a fool's errand. And your absurd comparison to "compliance costs" with the $3 trillion we're going to pay for thsi boondoggle borders on the delusional. This is why I fear for our country, because of very ignorant people like yourself who think in slogans and smears, like "cut and run" and "complete the job" and "dying in vain" or "hey, the troops are reenlisting in record numbers"(which is a total lie, by the way). Is that all you guys can come up with?
Believe it or not, when Bush declared Mission Accomplished, he was actually right!
He didn't declare that, actually. Kind of helps to, oh I don't know, listen to the speech or read the transcripts to find out what was really said.
...or were you hoping your audience didn't listen to the speech or read the transcripts?
Ain't karma a bitch! See, that's what happens who you do a photo op with a huge banner that says MISSION ACCOMPLISHED on it. No one cares what the President said, they got the message loud and clear. And now you want to whhhiiiine that he didn't really say that. Here's what he said "In the Battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed." Hmmmm, sounds pretty conclusive to me. Sorry bud, you are the wrong, wrong side of the argument, and you basically have nothing but slogans to maintain the position that Iraq has been good for this country. It's a sad fact.
Ricki apparently is perception-challenged, Patrick.
From not perceiving that fighting on to honor the fallen, and to avoid Gulf War III, are complementary justifications to do so ...
... to not perceiving that, if we left Iraq before her people are ready to protect her, we would be allowing those who are of the same mind as Saddam **was** with respect to life, liberty and peace to hijack her to further their brutal agenda ...
... to the fact that preventing said hijacking is "winning" the war against our enemies ...
... and that we have won, and continue to win, the hearts and minds of many Iraqis, from the long-supportive and grateful Kurds, to the Sunnis who now refer to us with the term of RESPECT "tribe al-Ameriki", instead of what may be Ricki's perception of what Iraqis call us: "Imperial Zionist infidel occupier pigs", showing that we have moved, in the eyes of the population, beyond a hated "army of occupation" ...
... to the conclusion that, since so many of our warfighters choose to re-enlist after seeing the elephant in Iraq, THEY think this war, with this President, is worth winning enough to stay in a position where they could AGAIN be put in harm's way ...
... right down to the trivia that we spend around $250 billion a year to comply with the tax laws ... an amount comparable to the amount directly spent on this war. Now, if you count the civilian and military aid we have provided Iraq , the total goes up from there (but to $3 Trillion? Certainly Not Yet) ... but, given that each 911-type event has the potential of putting a trillion-dollar hit on our economy, making sure that Iraq can't be hijacked for use as a high-tech/industrial-strength version of Afghanistan with regards to terrorism support is still fairly economical.
Of course, all this could have been done at a much later cost in blood and treasure ... had not the Rickis of the world stridently opposed the direct and decisive use of American force in this region, EVERY time prudence and reason called for it in past years!
I wonder where he was when we had the chance in 1991 to remove Saddam from power, destroy his forces, and avoid today's war entirely? Or when Iran committed an act of war against us in 1979, got away with it, and went on to become the leading state sponsor of terrorism?
Where was he, demanding that we ACT in the ONLY way to deal with such enemies -- CONFRONTATION, followed by the ONLY proven way to produce a sustainable peace ... replace totalitarian rule with rights-respecting governance?
I guess he didn't have enough confidence in the principles that have kept him alive and free, to pursue happiness, to demand that they be established for others under oppression?
If so, he is certainly not alone ... and neither the first nor the last to display his vitrolic ignorance upon these virtual pages.
Read my lips, Ricki: you and your ilk, through your strident demands for INACTION in the face of totalitarian expansion, made this war INEVITIBLE. Unfortunately, you don't have the sense to realize it, and be grateful for those who endure hardship and risk life and limb, cleaning up the mess you made.
And Greyhawk, his Mrs., and those of us he lets stand beside him have dealt with others like you before, on these virtual pages. Your ideas have already been weighed and found wanting, many times over.*
Those who are making history now, don't need your tired, old 20th Century noise.
* Patrick, this wouldn't be who I think it is?
... an amount comparable to the amount directly spent on this war ANNUALLY.
Boy Rich, you're writing is a little on the bombastic side, no? Who do you think you are, JRR Tolkien? Get off the fantasy novels, maybe you can a bit more "down to earth". I won't bother with all your little slogans, but this whole tribe al-Ameriki is just so funny and it's painful that conservatives actually buy into this crap. The "Sons of Iraq" don't like us Rich, they like our money. See the difference? These are the very same guys that were blowing us up a few months ago, and now they're our friends? It's embarassing that there are Americans that actually believe this stuff. These guys are taking our money, behaving nicely, and rearming so that they can challenge the Shia in the inevitable civil war. We're buying friends, not making friends. These will go back to blowing us up once the money stops. LOL, tribe al Ameriki! That is funny!Posted by ricki at March 17, 2008 10:56 PM
Ain't karma a bitch! See, that's what happens who you do a photo op with a huge banner that says MISSION ACCOMPLISHED on it. No one cares what the President said, they got the message loud and clear.
You mean you don't care what the President actually said, you are going to use the banner to lie about it and hope constant repetition makes people believe the lie.
That only works so long as people cannot or will not read the primary sources... oh and go ask someone about certain US Navy traditions.
Also, don't bother with the careful out-of-context quoting and pretending the President didn't say anything else bit. It got old around May or June 2003.
Rich: Yes, a rather snouty person is ricki. Though I must admit you are far more patient with this type of person. Nowadays, I usually throw up my hands, post a link or two and hope lurkers notice what someone like ricki is trying to do.Posted by Patrick Chester at March 18, 2008 02:05 PM
Patrick ... actually, it's not so much patience, as a desire to leave them with as little wiggle room for spreading the Big Lies as possible.
Standing by for enemy deployment of T/L-I-C in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...Posted by Rich Casebolt at March 18, 2008 02:45 PM
Ricki ... there are many other motivations -- like protecting one's neighborhood -- besides money for the Sons of Iraq. They are protecting Shia and Sunni (and probably) Kurd alike in their midst.
Are there a few bad apples? Maybe ... but the very graphics shown above tell a different story.
Those who perpetrate that kind of low-level evil, based in tribal or ethnic hatred as opposed to an overarching ideology, usually lack the discipline necessary to stop their part of the killing for any significant length of time.
The downward trend of violence in Iraq implies that the motives of the vast majority of its Sons are sustainable and sincere ... that they too are tired of the violence and seek a decisive end to it.
And even if some are ceding the battlefield now for money, they may be in for a surprise if they resume hostilities ... for their adversaries will in all likelihood be stronger and more entrenched. Not only in terms of arms, either ... but in terms of disdain by millions the ordinary citizens, who have now seen both sides of the coin regarding governance, and are choosing the "heads" of rights-respecting governance.
You assume the battlefield will remain static as they bide their time, if they are doing so. Bad assumption.
Or, is your skepticism based upon the thought that "brown people" are somehow incapable of securing the blessings of liberty in an environment of rights-respecting governance ... in the face of the millions of immigrants who have made it in America, and the natives in the other nations who have emulated our approach to governance?
We've heard it before ... and it sounds a lot like, yet different from, a certain pastor that has made the news recently ... along with another from Kansas who has effectively been silenced by the efforts of good men and women to shield the suffering and innocent from his apostate approach to "evangelism".
Emulating the baseless bombast of a Jeremiah Wright ... or Freddy (Krueger) Phelps ... or for that matter, Baghdad Bob in your posts doesn't right your wrongs, Ricki.
Yeah, you know I usually get my skepticism from the primary sources, like, oh, I don't know...GENERAL PETRAEUS! Here's what the good general thinks about the process of political reconciliation in Iraq "Petraeus, who is preparing to testify to Congress next month on the Iraq war, said in an interview that "no one" in the U.S. and Iraqi governments "feels that there has been sufficient progress by any means in the area of national reconciliation," or in the provision of basic public services." I just go with the commanders in the field tell me. Whether or not Iraqis want democracy, it's clear that they aren't willing to make the compromises to make it work. I love your optimistism, but only for entertainment value. Why don't you write a poem about your beloved "Sons of Iraq"....
Yeah, it sucks that people took that MISSION ACCOMPLISHED banner out of context! I mean, what was the world thinking when Bush stated "In the Battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed." I mean, jeez, didn't everyone realize that he really meant "mission accomplished" for that one particular battle group? Why is it that the average person couldn't put that together? Maybe they should have made the banner bigger you think? It's a philosophical debate. Hmmm. Still don't get why people would assume MISSION ACCOMPLISHED by that one banner after the President of the United States landed on an aircraft carrier and had a photo op in a flight suit. He obviously does that stuff all the time, agree that it was hardly out of the ordinary. Weird, huh? Dumb people out there, I guess.Posted by Ricki at March 18, 2008 08:12 PM
In other words, you've been caught and now are desperately flinging whatever you can to distract people.
I posted a link to the whole speech for a reason, Ricki. It wasn't for your benefit, of course.
Oh, and you probably don't want anyone to see this statement by Petraeus either.Posted by Patrick Chester at March 18, 2008 09:15 PM
Thanks for the link! It actually clarifies things, since this is what Petraeus said verbatim "No one…no one in the government or US…or even in the government of Iraq feels that there has been sufficient progress by any means in the area of national reconciliation, legislation to cement the gains, and so on." How is that a distraction? You inadvertantly helped me prove my point! Did you actually read the transcript? Wow, you guys post links thinking you're debunking the critics, but only debunking yourselves! LMFAO!
Actually, Ricki/LHH, I have a more pressing subject for my verse before me ... you:
Strain, strain, strain, strain those gnats
Then fling 'em out like monkey poo
from wherever you're at
As you swallow camels of destruction
till your belly's fat ...
Strain, strain, strain, strain those gnats
Ricki, with very few exceptions, you're saying nothing we haven't heard before in some way or other ... and already debunked.
At the expense of repeating myself, you and your fellow travelers refuse to recognize that it is the conventional wisdom of the Leftists and "realists" that has led to both the mountain of debt (of which this Administration is only partially responsible), and the continued growth of threats to our life and liberty -- over many, many years.
And too often, a microscopic focus like yours on the errors of this Administration (to the exclusion of all others) is often an attempt to validate the Leftist/realist folly, by discrediting the Men whom you think stand for the opposite.
Let me tell you the difference between this Administration and its predecessors when it comes to dealing with the terrorism of radical Islam:
This Administration, despite its mistakes, has been willing to confront terrorism directly, expeditiously, resolutely, and decisively.
Those before it, based upon their actions against it, demonstrated a willingness to live with it ... in part because of greater threats at the time, but also in large part because people like you stridently discouraged our leaders from dealing with this threat in the name of "preserving the peace".
The results of your advocacy reek of "incompetence".
The errors of this Administration -- which are of the same order-of-magnitude as errors committed, in previous wars, by men who we now consider heroic and WISE -- pale in comparison to the error of INACTION on the part of today's critics, that (despite their promises of peace)left us vulnerable and our enemies enabled and emboldened ... yet the proponents of such INACTION are NEVER CALLED TO ACCOUNT FOR IT!
It is the INACTION you and your ilk encouraged over the years, that is an error far more significant and egregious than any error on the part of this Administration.
Note, from the second paragraph down, except for changing the name of the subject, the above is a verbatim copy of my response to one of Ricki/LHH's fellow-travelers posted here. While normally I don't do that much cut-and-paste, it was done intentionally here, to show our present useful idiot that "we've heard it all before" ... as such straining at gnats is precisely what Ricki/LHH is doing with Petraeus' statement.Posted by Rich Casebolt at March 18, 2008 09:33 PM
Nice attempt at some poetry!? Umm, so I guess your argument is, yeah, Bush and Co made mistakes, but hey, everyone makes mistakes, and he'll be vindicated by history, blah blah blah blah. They've proven their willingness to fight terrorism by blowing $3tril on a country that never attacked and was never responsible for 9/11, nor was associated with Al Qaeda, nor had any WMD, and by the way Bush is only partially responsible for the economic meltdown etc etc etc. Sorry Rich, but your apologia can be rephrased with a little less flowery language. Nothing you say is substantive, it is derivative and is nothing more than the old tired refrain that Bush didn't do anything wrong, it's all Bill Clinton's fault! Are you guys capable of taking any accountability for your own incompetent leaders? Look, tone down the fantasy book language, and a little less Tolkien, maybe I might take you more seriously. It's hard to get lectured to by a chickenhawk who thinks he's some kind of poet out of ancient Greece!Posted by Ricki at March 18, 2008 10:21 PM
They've proven their willingness to fight terrorism by blowing $3tril ...
Source for that please ... no projections. I don't think we're there yet.
... on a country that never attacked ...
Supporting the 1993 WTC bombing and attempting to assassinate a former President aside ...
Afghanistan had never attacked us either, prior to 11 September 2001. I take it you were willing to wait ... and put thousands upon thousands of lives at risk ... until Saddam "proved" the threat by emulating them?
Behold the abject lack of common sense in the Leftist species.
... and was never responsible for 9/11 ...
As if terrorism started and ended with AQ. Were they the ONLY threat out there? No, they weren't ... and Saddam had the capability to outdo them in terms of speed-of-destruction, or to slingshot them to new heights in that regard, had operational ties been able to develop.
... nor was associated with Al Qaeda ...
No OPERATIONAL ties ... evidence of contacts does exist. In fact, it was again being reported upon just a few days ago. How long would it take for these two to become allies of convenience? Baathist Syria and Shiite Iran have been allies for years.
And still ... does terrorism start and end with AQ?
... nor had any WMD ...
He had everything but the stockpiles ... and according to the Duelfer Report, was looking forward to reconstituting his capabilities once we weren't allowed to look.
Are you guys capable of taking any accountability for your own incompetent leaders?
When are you going to take accountability for YOURS ... the people who made this mess possible and this war inevitible?
Do that, and you might be taken seriously.
Ricki wanna cracker?
Ricki waved his arms frantically and yelled:
How is that a distraction? You inadvertantly helped me prove my point! Did you actually read the transcript? Wow, you guys post links thinking you're debunking the critics, but only debunking yourselves! LMFAO!
Oh, I read it. All of it. Not just the part you want people to read. Context is always important.
But then, my link was again not for your benefit.Posted by Patrick Chester at March 18, 2008 10:56 PM
Hey Richie aka Homer
$3trillion? Here you go..http://tinyurl.com/2ygcgo
I won't rehash the extremely weak arguments you wingnuts love to justify invading Iraq,but let me ask you this.15 of the 19 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia...shouldn't we have attacked them instead? Aren't there more substantive ties to SA than there ever were to Saddam Hussein? Doesn't this bother you a bit? http://tinyurl.com/32orf8 ? Or maybe this http://tinyurl.com/3896f6 ? See, you guys are just so dang inconsistent on the facts, a gets a little embarassing having to admit that conservatism is bastion of pure ignorance!
Let's do a recap ...
... subject refers to educator as "Richie" ... CHECK!
... subject extrapolates the facts on the ground, distorting them as needed to support his assertions of "incompetence" of the current, conservative Administration, in the face of the entire history of warfare ... CHECK!
... subject posts "support" for his gnat-strainings using TinyURL (and no, $845 billion does not equal $3 Trillion; you're talking projections, not on-the-books numbers)-- CHECK!
... subject brings up early dealings with Saddam, but refuses to acknowledge how Leftists like him, in their myopic lack of support for direct and decisive use of American force, put our leaders in a position where they were compelled to use proxies like Saddam in an attempt to deal with other enemies of life and liberty ... CHECK!
... subject obsesses over the relationship between Bush and Saudis, but ignores the fact that even the House of Saud is not a monolith when it comes to relations with the West ... and appears to have no problems with Nancy Pelosi and her headscarf soaking in a Baathist nation, or John Kerry making nice with Iran's Mohammad Khatami at the World Economic Forum ... CHECK!
... subject repeatedly asserts that this Milblog is merely a front for the "right-wing" ... and that those who regularly comment here are "chickenhawks" ... CHECK!
... subject obsesses over the alleged shortcomings of his ideological opponents, continually offering unsolicited advice that has little, if any, basis in fact and reason ... while simultaneously belittling their credibility by attempting to define them as a shrinking minority ... CHECK!
The picture is becoming clearer and clearer ... just a couple of more pieces and it will be fully constructed. Will he go over the edge ... and finish the picture for us?
T/L-I-C ... come on, "Ricki", you know you wanna say 'em.
Or do you just wanna cracker?
Now come on, now, let's not to get too hot and bothered! You know I love you, little fella! Look, we have a difference of opinion....I tend to go with where the facts lead me, you tend to go where your ideology leads you, the facts be damned. It's alright, it's a human weakness we liberals have overcome (the weakness being an inability to comprehend reality as it is, not as we want it to be). We can hardly wait until you guys wake up from your slumber, and make your way home to the sweet freshness of REALITY!! It'll take some time, but we'll get there, trust me. Take care bud.Posted by Ricki at March 19, 2008 02:32 AM
More unsolicited advice, lacking basis in fact, combined with lame attempts at sexual innuendo ... CHECK!
Ricki wanna cracker?Posted by Rich Casebolt at March 19, 2008 02:58 AM
Gee, I hate to get back on topic and interrupt the fascinating "you're a libberal idiot," "no, your (sic) a righty tool" discussion, but it might be interresting to see that last graph overlayed with the casualty graphs to see how well the media spikes and death spikes correlate.Posted by submandave at March 19, 2008 02:30 PM
My apologies, Dave ... this particular useful idiot is a particular irritant, even under another name. As always, if the Management wishes to flush both Lord HaWW HaWW and myself to the Latrine, I will understand.
You do raise an interesting question ... I'll add to it that overlaying the figures for enemy captured/killed in the same time frame would also be interesting. I would think that those figures would be a leading indicator for any decrease in violence ... and be indicative of the effect of the change in tactics in the last year.Posted by Rich Casebolt at March 19, 2008 04:59 PM
I'm new to this blog, but reading over the comments I pose the following rhetorical question. What is underlying issue in Iraq? It is that our president lied to the american public to rush the country into a war that cannot be won for a litany of reasons. Individuals that spout "support or troops!" should be saying we support our troops, but what messed up situation they are in. I for one am tired of all of the catch phrases out there describing why we are in there to begin with. Show me the facts...oh yeah, there aren't any. Bringing democracy to the iraqi people..what a farce. Please let me remind everyone that oil at the beginning of this financial and military fiasco was ~36. a barrel. Now look at it. And no end in sight. I could go on for a while regarding this issue, but I take offense that anyone questioning the war gets branded a traitor. How about Alan Greenspan and his bullshit financial monetary policies for the past 15years that has allowed the greedy financial houses on Wall Street to fleece John Q. Taxpayer!!
oZZy ... you're just another simplistic thinker.
Too bad fact and reason aren't so simplistic.
Here is the case for this war ... in the simplest of terms.
And don't give me that BS about "Saddam wasn't tied to 911" ... so what? The threat of radical-Islam-driven terror doesn't start or end with Al Quada ... or its affiliates, who we are now finding out DID gain the interest of Saddam as allies-of-convenience.
WMD? Go read the Duelfer Report ... Saddam had everything but the stockpiles. He also was corrupting the very organization that sends the weapons inspectors out. He was waiting to get sanctions lifted ... then he intended to go back to business-as-usual, with us shut out from watching him. (As if inspections were EVER comprehensive enough to deal with the threats to begin with ...)
Democracy in Iraq? When was the last time YOU risked your life to cast your vote? The Iraqis have done so ... THREE times ... and proudly. Looks to me like they are quite interested in democracy.
The price of oil has more to do with the growth of China and India ... and the enviro-fundamentalists "success" in stopping us from harvesting it in our own backyards ... than it does with Iraq.
As for J. Q. Taxpayer ... a good portion of this mess is his own fault, for going out and buying more home than he can afford, using a lot less down payment than he should.
Expand your mind beyond dental decapitation of bats ... and 20th-century conventional wisdom.
Ozzy, it usually helps to have complete and utter control over all information sources before trying the Big Lie technique, else constantly repeating the same old lies ("Bush LIED!!!", etc) only makes you look like a doofus.
Oh, the irony:
"I for one am tired of all of the catch phrases out there describing why we are in there to begin with."
Why is that? Your entire posting was full of fancy catch phrases.