Thread: apathetic throng
03-16-2004, 05:02 PM #1
As I read this I think about a line that a Mr. Chaplin wrote
Mourn not the dead that in the cool earth lie, but rather mourn the apathetic throng, the coward and the meek who see the worlds great anguish and it's wrong and dare not speak.
How do you feel about what happened?
Mark Steyn : The Spanish dishonoured their dead
Posted on 03/15/2004 5:36:52 PM PST by Villain
The Spanish dishonoured their dead By Mark Steyn (Filed: 16/03/2004)
"When people see a strong horse and a weak horse, naturally they will like the strong horse." So said Osama bin Laden in his final video appearance two-and-a-half years ago. But even the late Osama might have been surprised to see the Spanish people, invited to choose between a strong horse and a weak horse, opt to make their general election an exercise in mass self-gelding.
To be sure, there are all kinds of John Kerry-esque footnoted nuances to Sunday's stark numbers. One sympathises with those electors reported to be angry at the government's pathetic insistence, in the face of the emerging evidence, that Thursday's attack was the work of Eta, when it was obviously the jihad boys. One's sympathy, however, disappears with their decision to vote for a party committed to disengaging from the war against the jihadi. As Margaret Thatcher would have said: "This is no time to go wobbly, Manuel." But they did. And no one will remember the footnotes, the qualifications, the background - just the final score: terrorists toppled a European government.
What was it all those party leaders used to drone robotically after IRA atrocities? We must never let the bullet and the bomb win out over the ballot and the bollocks. Something like that. In Spain, the bombers hijacked the ballot, and very decisively. The Socialist Workers' Party wouldn't have won, except for the terrorism.
At the end of last week, American friends kept saying to me: "3/11 is Europe's 9/11. They get it now." I expressed scepticism. And I very much doubt whether March 11 will be a day that will live in infamy. Rather, March 14 seems likely to be the date bequeathed to posterity, in the way we remember those grim markers on the road to conflagration through the 1930s, the tactical surrenders that made disaster inevitable. All those umbrellas in the rain at Friday's marches proved to be pretty pictures for the cameras, nothing more. The rain in Spain falls mainly on the slain. In the three days between the slaughter and the vote, it was widely reported that the atrocity had been designed to influence the election. In allowing it to do so, the Spanish knowingly made Sunday a victory for appeasement and dishonoured their own dead.
And, if it works in Spain, why not in Australia, Britain, Italy, Poland? In his 1996 "Declaration of War Against the Americans", Bin Laden cited Washington's feebleness in the face of the 1992 Aden hotel bombings and the Black Hawk Down business in Somalia in 1993: "You have been disgraced by Allah and you withdrew," he wrote. "The extent of your impotence and weaknesses became very clear." To the jihadis' way of thinking, on Thursday, the Spaniards were disgraced by Allah; on Sunday, they withdrew. The extent of their impotence and weaknesses is very clear.
Or, as Simon Jenkins put it in a hilariously mistimed cover story for last Thursday's Spectator arguing that this terrorism business is a lot of twaddle got up by Blair and Bush: "Bombs kill and panic the panicky. But they do not undermine civilised society unless that society wants to be undermined." And there's no chance of that happening, right?
Jenkins's argument, such as it is, is that a bomb here, a bomb there, nothing to get your knickers in a twist about: that's one thing we Europeans understand. But what he refuses to address is the shifting facts on the ground.
Europe's home-grown terrorism problems take place among notably static populations, such as Ulster and the Basque country. One could make generally safe extrapolations about the likelihood of holding Northern Ireland to what HMG used to call an "acceptable level of violence".
But in the same three decades as Ulster's "Troubles", the hitherto moderate Muslim populations of south Asia were radicalised by a politicised form of Islam; previously broadly unIslamic societies such as Nigeria became Islamified; and large Muslim populations settled in parts of Europe that had little or no experience of mass immigration.
You can argue about what these trends mean, but surely not that they mean absolutely nothing, as Sir Simon and the Complaceniks assure us: nothing to see here, chaps; switch back to the Test and bring me another buttered crumpet; when Osama vows to avenge the "tragedy of Andalucia", it's just a bit of overheated campaign rhetoric, like Kerry calling Bush a "liar", that's all.
For the non-complacent, the question is fast becoming whether "civilised society" in much of Europe is already too "undermined". Last Friday, for a brief moment, it looked as if a few brave editorialists on the Continent finally grasped that global terrorism is a real threat to Europe, and not just a Bush racket. But even then they weren't proposing that the Continent should rise up and prosecute the war, only that they be less snippy in their carping from the sidelines as America gets on with it. Spain was Washington's principal Continental ally, and what does that boil down to in practice? 1,300 troops. That's fewer than what the New Hampshire National Guard is contributing.
The other day, the editor of Le Monde, writing in the Wall Street Journal, dismissed as utterly false the widespread belief among all Americans except John Kerry's campaign staff that France is a worthless ally: "Let us remember here," he wrote, "the involvement of French and German soldiers, among other European nationalities, in the operations launched in Afghanistan to pursue the Taliban, track down bin Laden and attempt to free the Afghans."
Oh, put a baguette in it, will you? The Continentals didn't "launch" anything in Afghanistan. They showed up when the war was over - after the Taliban had been toppled and the Afghans liberated. And a few hundred Nato troops in post-combat mopping-up operations barely registers in the scale against the gazillions of Americans defending the Continent so that EU governments can blow their defence budgets on welfare programmes that make the citizens ever more enervated and dependent.
The only fighting that there is going to be in Europe in the foreseeable future is civil war, and when that happens American infantrymen will want to be somewhere safer. Like Iraq. There are strong horses and weak horses, but right now western Europe is looking like a dead horse."Illegitimis non carborundum."
- Gen. Joseph Stilwell
(Lat., "Don't let the *~#%&S grind you down.")
03-16-2004, 05:59 PM #2
Man, that is some powerful stuff.
Let's not let John Kerry be America's socialist pushover.Lt. D. Gordon
Greendale Fire Department
03-17-2004, 01:09 AM #3
- Join Date
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- Glenn Dale Md, Heart of the P.G. County Fire Belt....
And The Point Is?.................
Sorry, I read it, I thought about it, I decided that I could care less about it. Some may find it a topic of great debate, I do not. What I DO find however, are people who fail to have a clue about truly important things. For instance, how do we force gas prices down? How do we get meaningful change when budgets are written, change that benefits Fire/Rescue services? Is any progress being made in the search for the most elusive quarry of all, a cost effective public school system? I care about America first, those are some things that I think we need to care about. Here. Now. Today. Stay Safe....Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
In memory of
Chief Earle W. Woods, 1912 - 1997
Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006
IACOJ Budget Analyst
I Refuse to be a Spectator. If I come to the Game, I'm Playing.
03-17-2004, 09:28 AM #4
I gotta get glasses
While glancing down the thread titles....at first glance I thought this title was "Apathetic Thong".....nothing worse than an apathetic thong. Oh boy...
03-17-2004, 11:18 AM #5
First of all I would hate to see something like this happen again here in the US. If it did would our country do the same? Elect the wrong man for the job? I would hate to see the world in 4 years after another wishy washy pansy president made it to the White House after everything Bush has fought for. Most of what the world is going thru can be traced back to the Carter years when Jim eliminated or hung out to dry the only contact on the ground we had in the Middle East and then Clinton came along and really screwed foreign policy up. We took hit after hit with no retaliation.
I think gas prices are a problem but let me go out on a limb here and give you my theory on gas prices. I think that OPEC really doesn’t like us that much or the current administration so they know that if they can get the American people to grumble and blame the current administration for all the problem with gas prices they can influence the election. They know we like out pocket books and that’s where they hurt us most with high gas prices. We want a new leader. A push over leader they can have there way with. During the 90s we got bigger SUVs that used more gas and it was cheap and we were all stupidly happy then wham gas goes up. It happened in the 70s and during the 80s & 90s we forgot.
As far as the school system goes here my 2 cents worth. I think some states need to start over. Wipe the board clean one summer and start over from scratch. Learn from systems that work here and in other countries and stick to it. Make it a level playing field but not at dummy level.
Well lastly budgets. If you give government money they are going to spend it. Plain and simple. That’s our fault as apathetic citizens. If you squeak you get the funds. You just have to make your cause sound more dire than the other guy’s. The fire service needs to stick together and ask for what the whole needs. Not what western half needs, not what the eastern half needs but what we all need. Money solves all problems? No not really? It’s still not going to make that man volunteer. What it will do is lessen the burden on that man so he doesn’t have to fundraise more than train. Somewhere along the way that man is going to have to speak up and say we need more money from the government. No it will not happen as fast as cooking and selling BBQ but if given time the money and funds will come I believe. The multitude must not fight among themselves because they think the other is getting over on another, but must show that they are working toward being the best fire and EMS service they can but without funding they can do nothing. Many voices out of tune sound like nothing but chatter, many voices together make people take notice. Specially when they are voting voices.
Have a great one!"Illegitimis non carborundum."
- Gen. Joseph Stilwell
(Lat., "Don't let the *~#%&S grind you down.")
03-17-2004, 12:38 PM #6
I don't think its apath on the part of the Spanish as much as it's just plain fear. When faced with fight or flight, they went French and chose flight.
to some of the off topic topics
Gas prices - part taxes, part OPEC manipulations.A solution is to gag the enviro weinies and develope our own resources. OPEC killed much of the domestic market in the early 90s by dropping it's price. Many existing wells in the US are capped off and not producing. In the late 80's, early 90's the a guy who ran a small indie oil business told me that (late 1980's dollars) gas had to be at $1.38/gallon at the pump or above to be able to pump. Adjust for inflation, and we might be looking at $1.80-$2.00/gallon at the pump for the extraction people to stay afloat. Many from the late 70s/early 80's US "oil boom" are not in business anymore. Kinda like a MEGAMART store dropping prices to run the local competition out of business and raising prices afterward. A more Hawkish solution is to take over the mid East oil fields (we're over there already) and create a 51st state. Be a good place to ship the Tim Robbins and Michael Moores.
As for the rest of it, if our elected official and appointed judges would start referring to those documents known as the Constitution & its Admentments many of our domestic problems would sort themselves out.
03-17-2004, 03:22 PM #7how do we force gas prices down?
03-17-2004, 03:39 PM #8
QUOTE]Most of what the world is going thru can be traced back to the Carter years[/QUOTE]
Ok, you need to go back a wee bit before Jimmy and have another look.
Christianity has been around for 2,000 years, the Muslim religion for a little bit less.
Before then we had Egyptian, Roman, Greek, and Norse gods and religions, along with 1,000's of other belief systems around the world. And they were cracking each others heads open LONG before Jimmy and the Republican/Democratic systems came into being.
The world revolves around the North Pole/South Pole axis, not America, get used to the idea, it may help you see things a bit clearer.
The broad context of the editorial is correct. The Spanish have just shown they can be coerced by terrorist attacks. This will open them up for further attacks, or as we are now seeing, a week government that will lobby internationally not to beat up the naughty boys "Because we don't like all this violence"
They will do the terrorists work as effectively as the terrorists.Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.
03-17-2004, 04:43 PM #9
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I think I have to agree with Chief Woods. It follows a basic philsophy that I learned a long time ago:
"Clean up your own back yard before criticising someone else's."If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)
"I may be slow, but my work is poor." Chief Dave Balding, MVFD
"Its not Rocket Science. Just use a LITTLE imagination." (Me)
Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!
impossible solved cotidie. miracles postulo viginti - quattuor hora animadverto
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03-18-2004, 10:30 AM #10
I think that 9-11 taught us that if we ignore the noisy, crazy guy across the street we are going to end up playing catch-up in our “back yard”. Attached is an article about the Middle East. Note the date and info on the Carter years.
And no the world does not rotate around the US I know that but if not for the US the world would be a worse place. What happens in the Middle East does affect the US. If we would have taken some peoples advise in the 1930-40s we would probably all be goose stepping to Nazi school. I think if the US led attack on these terror nests in the middle east had not taken place we would be in bad shape in a few years. I think given a chance these groups would turn cities into smoking holes. I'm personaly glad the US had a leader with a pair, unlike some countries leaders who could care less as long as thier pockets get fat from oil imports and arms sales.
Making America a Bigger Target of Terrorism
by Eric Margolis (10/29/1998)
WASHINGTON - How much was the hidden cost of the latest Mideast summit, I asked last week in my column from Washington? What did Clinton's latest Hollywood diplomacy cost American taxpayers?
Hard figures are beginning to emerge. Israel is likely to get a special US $1 billion grant on top of the $3-5 billion in annual aid it currently receives. The Palestinian Authority may get $100 million, some of which is more likely to end up in Switzerland than Palestine. This is a very expensive photo-op. The president's self-proclaimed process of `redemption' is not going to come cheap.
Clinton compared the Wye River summit to the 1978 Camp David agreements between Israel and Egypt. Camp David cost US taxpayers $4 billion annually in direct aid - $80 billion to date. Half of all US foreign aid now goes just to Israel and Egypt.
Military power and money are the two principal components of international power. America's huge expenditures to rent Mideast peace have degraded its ability to influence events elsewhere. Excuse my cynicism, but Israelis and Palestinians are no fools. They clearly understand their ongoing feud keeps the Yankee dollars coming.
The second big cost incurred at Wye was Clinton's offer to use the Central Intelligence Agency to
ensure the Palestinian Authority is making a maximum effort to crush Palestinian radicals.
This is a terrible mistake that will have dangerous repercussions for US security. CIA's prime role is to provide information and evaluation to the White House and Congress. Its secondary mission is to influence events overseas by covert means, and to provide an unofficial diplomatic network.
Turning CIA into an official auxiliary of Israeli and Palestinian security forces in their long war against Palestinian radicals deters from the agency's mission, wastes resources, and interferes with CIA's ability to make clear, impartial evaluations.
CIA has long operated in the Mideast shadows to defend America's Arab clients or Israel, and combat radical groups. Everyone in the region understands this. CIA was also the main defender of the PLO within the US government, and a close ally of Arafat since 1980. Yet CIA also maintains links with many radical groups, including groups branded `terrorists' by the US and Israel.
Giving CIA an open role in the `war against terrorism' means its agents cease being unbiased information providers and become foot soldiers in the Mideast's back-alley battles. Worse, by clearly aligning CIA with one side, Clinton will drag the US ever deeper into the Mideast's multi-layered conflicts and make America a bigger target than ever.
CIA is simply not ready for this new job, contrary to Director George Tenet's assurances. CIA is strong in information collection, but its analysis/evaluation is still flabby, bureaucratized, and too often tells the White House what it wants to hear.
The agency's human intelligence (humint) remains a disaster. Mass purges of veteran field officers by President Jimmy Carter, ineffectual directors, the Aldrich Ames spy catastrophe, and failure to hire sophisticated personnel, crippled the Operations Directorate, caused widespread demoralization, and produced a string of humiliating fiascos.
Consequently, CIA has had to rely on foreign intelligence services for humint. Not surprisingly, it gets fed a steady diet of disinformation, or selective, self-serving information from `friendly' governments. Just such tainted data resulted in the recent disgraceful attack against a Sudanese pharmaceutical plant.
Once CIA is seen working overtly on behalf of Israel or the Palestinian Authority, its already dented credibility, and essential access in other Mideast factions or regimes will suffer, not to mention heightened risks to its agent networks, methodology, and codes caused by such close collaboration.
Palestinians and Israelis are, of course, delighted. Uncle Sam will fork out yet more cash. CIA has been openly enlisted to fight their sworn enemies. Just such `mission-creep' got the US into Vietnam.
Copyright: Eric Margolis, 1998
Mass purges of veteran field officers by President Jimmy Carter,"Illegitimis non carborundum."
- Gen. Joseph Stilwell
(Lat., "Don't let the *~#%&S grind you down.")
03-18-2004, 06:47 PM #11
from Ann Coulter
The reign in Spain falls mainly on the lame
Posted: March 17, 2004
7:35 p.m. Eastern
© 2004 Universal Press Syndicate
After a terrorist attack by al-Qaida that left hundreds of their fellow countrymen dead, Spanish voters immediately voted to give the terrorists what they want – a socialist government that opposes America's war on terrorism. Al-Qaida has changed a government.
Until the bombings last week, the center-right Popular Party of outgoing Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar had been sailing to victory. But then the al-Qaida bombs went off and Spaniards turned out in droves to vote against the government that had been a staunch Bush ally in the war on terrorism. (I guess it's OK for a Spanish socialist to "politicize" a terrorist attack just to get elected.)
In a videotaped message, the al-Qaida "military commander" for Europe claimed credit for the bombings, saying that the terrorist attack was meant to punish Spain for supporting the war in Iraq. The message came as a total shock to liberals who have been furiously insisting that Iraq had absolutely nothing to do with al-Qaida.
Apparently al-Qaida didn't think so. After the Madrid bombings, it looks like liberals and terrorists will have to powwow on whether there was an Iraq /al-Qaida link. Two hundred dead Spaniards say there was.
The New York Times called the Spanish election "an exercise in healthy democracy." And an ATM withdrawal with a gun to your head is a "routine banking transaction." Instead of vowing to fight the people who killed their fellow citizens, the Spanish decided to vote with al-Qaida on the war. A murdering terrorist organization said, "Jump!" and an entire country answered, "How high?"
One Spaniard who decided to switch his vote in reaction to the bombings told the Times: "Maybe the Socialists will get our troops out of Iraq and al-Qaida will forget about Spain so we will be less frightened." That's the fighting spirit! If the violent Basque separatist group only killed more people, Spain would surely give them what they want, too.
After his stunning upset victory, Socialist Party leader Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero vowed to withdraw Spanish troops from Iraq if the United States does not turn over Iraq to the United Nations. He also vowed that all of Spain's remaining trains will run on time.
Zapatero said the war with Iraq had "only caused violence" and "there were no reasons for it." One reason for the war, which would seem to be a sufficient reason for a more manly country, is that the people who just slaughtered 200 Spaniards didn't like it.
But, like the Democrats, the Spanish hate George Bush more than they hate the terrorists. Zapatero said the war in Iraq was based on "lies" and called on President Bush and Tony Blair to "do some reflection and self-criticism." So don't think of the Spanish election as a setback for freedom – think of it as a preview of life under President John Kerry!
What kind of lunatic would blame Bush for 200 Spaniards killed by al-Qaida bombs? Oh wait – Howard Dean just did. Summarizing the views of socialists everywhere, Dean said: "The president was the one who dragged our troops to Iraq, which apparently has been a factor in the death of 200 Spaniards over the weekend."
Yes, with 1,700 dead or injured Spaniards, George Bush certainly has some explaining to do. What have the terrorists ever done besides kill and maim thousands of innocent civilians? Bush isn't fully funding "No Child Left Behind," for God's sake!
Before he was put into office because he supported policies favored by al-Qaida terrorists, appeasement candidate Zapatero said: "I want Kerry to win." Kerry is also supported by North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il, who broadcasts Kerry speeches over Radio Pyongyang with favorable commentary.
So now Kerry really does have two foreign leaders on record supporting him: a Socialist terrorist-appeaser and a Marxist mass murderer who dresses like Bea Arthur.
Zapatero predicted that his own victory would help the anti-war party "in the duel between Bush and Kerry." Would you mind repeating that, sir? I was distracted by that large white flag you're waving.
However Spain's election affects Americans, we can be sure that Spain's surrender to terrorism hasn't been lost on the terrorists. It's difficult to imagine the American people responding to a new terrorist attack by deciding to placate the terrorists, as the Spanish did. A mollusk wouldn't react that way to an attack. Only a liberal could be so perverse.
No matter how many of our European allies may surrender to the terrorists, America will never be alone. This is a country founded in a covenant with God by people who had to flee Europe to do it.
Sailing to the New World in 1630 on the ship Arabella, the Puritans' leader and governor, John Winthrop, said Americans were entering into a covenant with God to create a "city upon a hill." We would be judged by all the world if we ever broke that covenant. But if we walked with God, "We shall find that the God of Israel is among us, when 10 of us shall be able to resist a thousand of our enemies." He has intervened in our affairs before, such as in 1776, 1861 and 1980.
With the Spanish election, we are witnessing a capitulation to savagery that makes full-scale war inevitable. The Democratic candidate wants to represent godless Europeans. The Republican candidate wants to represent Americans. As Winthrop said: "The eyes of all people are upon us."
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