Sunday, September 30, 2007

Random Iconoclasties

Just some random articles and the iconoclastic thoughts they engendered.

Children Of Lesbian Couples Are Doing Well, Study Finds

Now that one will pull the chains of some Evangelical Fundies and rightfully so.

However, should you read the article, you might notice the following:

....findings like these have led the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Psychiatric Association, and American Psychological Association to issue official policy statements supporting equal treatment of families headed by lesbian and gay parents.
Gays <> Lesbians.....
And the research was about
Lesbian couples.
Not Gay couples.

Doctor-aided Suicide: No Slippery Slope, Study Finds
To quote from Science Daily:

Contrary to arguments by critics, a University of Utah-led study found that legalizing physician-assisted suicide in Oregon and the Netherlands did not result in a disproportionate number of deaths among the elderly, poor, women, minorities, uninsured, minors, chronically ill, less educated or psychiatric patients.

Of 10 "vulnerable groups" examined in the study, only AIDS patients used doctor-assisted suicide at elevated rates.
This will also drive the Evangelical Fundies nuts and make people wonder why the Xian mafia had Doctor Kervorkian thrown into jail. I can only hope (not being Xian, I am allowed to do this) that they all die in extreme pain the way their God wants them to die...... The Fundies oppose assisted death ostensibly because they believe it will be misused(and also because it is EVIL). These studies show otherwise. OTH, it may be that Fundies are scared to death that Fundies themselves might misuse this option as a quick way to get to Heaven. It may also be the only way some Fundies can get out of some terribly abusive relationships.

World Leaders Need To Remain Alert To Latest Scientific Thought On Climate Change

Any rational human being would agree with that. But, our leaders are not rational nor are many of those wannabe leaders that reside in Congress rational. The right wing that leads this country is genetically unable to adapt to change. Whether it be changing weather or changing weather models. Any and all change is perceived as weakness. They simply have to be overridden by the 70 or so percent of us who are capable of dealing with change.

I highly suggest you read the paper:

Even if you, as I, have no expertise in Atmospheric Science at all. And even if you are a denier or someone who hasn't made up their minds yet.

Scientists: Owl recovery plan 'deeply flawed'

Hidden between the lines in this article is yet another indictment of the Bush misAdministration's policy of injecting politics and corporate interests into what should be a scientific matter. Also hidden between the lines is yet another woman or two who is complicit in these immoral (if not outright illegal) attempts to manipulate science for political and economic ends. Any of you who are infected by the "woman superior" myth can dispense with it. Woman are no more morally superior than men. All those republican women put in charge of these agencies would do anything in their puppy-like need for the love of their male superiors. (Remember that in the right wing and Fundie world, THE MALE IS SUPERIOR!).

Read More......

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Some thoughts on Terrorism

Some thoughts on fighting a war against terrorists and guerrillas.....

I am not capable of a really technical study of the relationship between guerrilla war tactics and strategies and terrorist tactics and strategies. I suspect they have much in common. The only way to win a guerrilla war that I know of is to redress the grievances that give authority and cause to the guerrillas.

Beyond and above that, there will always be some people who hate someone or some idea or some religion enough to try to physically destroy it. Those you can't do much about. Call them the "Random Anarchist" for lack of a better term.

Identify the difference between them (the "Random Anarchist") and an organized group of terrorists. Identify the difference between an organized group of terrorists and an organized group of freedom fighters. Is there any difference?

Note that redressing the grievances that give power and authority to the terrorists doesn't get rid of the terrorists - it simply removes popular support. You still have to use police or military action to get rid of the actual terrorists who are likely to be fanatics not easily won over.

Redressing the grievances is also known as "winning the hearts and minds" of the people infested with guerrillas or terrorists. This technique is poorly done by Americans. It's as if Americans cannot deal with anything more complicated than shock and awe. If they can't blow it up or shoot it, it doesn't exist. That is why the State Department has been ignored in these modern mini-wars. That is why American Marines will build an outpost right on top of a muslim holy site and then act honestly surprised when the locals object. We have no feel for that at all. We are barbarians.

That is also why the British, evil and conniving that they are, are much better at it than we are. At least their government understands the concept. Probably as a result of all the British and colonial and Irish blood shed over the last 500 years.

One of our problems is the right wing and it's insistence on the Absolute Truth of their position. They believe in absolutes. They believe that their religion contains the Absolute Truth, that the American culture (their version of it) is the Absolute Perfect Culture and that all other cultures around the world are deficient in some way. Which means that when their soldiers (the little boys they train to believe this from birth) trample all over another cultures holy symbols and customs, it is ok for them to do so since the American system is superior. Of course this kind of behavior makes it impossible to win people over but who cares? "Winning the hearts and minds" is only for left wingers anyway.

One of the problems with the left wing is their inability to understand the necessity for military force in putting down either guerrilla wars or terrorism. Evidence from Viet Nam and from Afghanistan indicates that guerrillas and terrorists both rule by fear in addition to popular support. If you are successful in removing the popular support, the guerrilla will strike back with terror to control the populace. No amount of diplomacy will counter that. It takes a military or police force with the mission to keep the people secure to accomplish that. Simply ejecting the guerrillas has no effect if you leave the next day. You must plan to stay around awhile and train and equip a native force. This is extremely difficult for a military to do. Their missions are all based on attack and defense, not training. Our troops receive no such training.

In Iraq we are seeing a third problem. Infrastructure that we have destroyed not being replaced. Not just physical infrastructure but the political and social infrastructure.

Think about it. A small American town is pretty much destroyed. No power. No food distribution. No employment. No Police. No firefighters. No medical help. No politicians(no jokes, please). Those who managed the system from the power station operators to the local Mayor are either dead or dispersed or trying desperately to take care of their own. Expertise in almost all infrastructure positions is lost. Furthermore, a foreign military who does NOT speak the local language and who does not keep the local customs is in charge. The main mission of the foreign military is, however, not to rebuild your infrastructure but to fight some shadowy enemy. Further more your town is broken up into White, Black and Mexican gangs each fighting for turf. What would happen?

Read More......