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Israel’s UN ambassador: former US President “a bigot”

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Now here is some strange reasoning.

Jimmy CarterFormer President Jimmy Carter goes to listen to Hamas, for the purpose of finding out what the prospects for peace with Israel might be. He negotiates for seven hours to try to bring about a truce. In the end, it doesn’t work out.

Days later, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Dan Gillerman, says (according to the AP):

Dan Gillerman[I]t was “a shame” to see Carter, who had done “good things” as a former president, “turn into what I believe to be a bigot.” … The ambassador called last weekend’s encounter “a very sad episode in American history.” Carter, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, “went to the region with soiled hands and came back with bloody hands after shaking the hand of Khaled Mashaal, the leader of Hamas.”

Now a bigot, according to my dictionary, is “an obstinate and intolerant believer in a religion, political theory, etc.”

OK. This 84-year-old former President, displaying obstinacy and intolerance, risks his life to try to bring peace to a country whose UN Ambassador calls him names.


I’d call it acting like Jesus.

[with a tip of the hat to 99]

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Written by Monte

April 25, 2008 at 7:47 pm

Posted in Politics

Pat Buchanan: McCain would be a War President

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clipped from

McCain win would mean war with Iran

McCainMSNBC’s Joe Scarborough asked old-line conservative Pat Buchanan about McCain’s remarks, saying, “He talked about promising that more wars were coming. … Is he so desperate to get off the economic issue?

Pat Buchanan replied that McCain never used the word “promise” but simply said there would be more wars, and that from McCain’s point of view, “that is straight talk. … You get John McCain in the White House, and I do believe we will be at war with Iran.”

“That’s one of the things that makes me very nervous about him,” Buchanan went on.

“There’s no doubt John McCain is going to be a war president. … His whole career is wrapped up in the military, national security. He’s in Putin’s face, he’s threatening the Iranians, we’re going to be in Iraq a hundred years.”

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Me too, Pat.

Look, has this war been a good thing?

Do we want more? More dead soldiers? More traumatized children? More PTSD? More amputations? More brain injuries? More divorces? More suicides? More billions for bombs? More arming the world? More Abu Ghraibs? More international hatred? More world dominance?

McCain, if so, is apparently our choice. And unfortunately, most of the remaining candidates seem more preoccupied with talking tough than with calculating—à la Colin Powell—the human cost of Round 2.

For too long, Americans have said, “Presidents know things that we can’t know; if they think we must go to war, we should support them.” But presidents have taken us to combat dozens of times in the last fifty years. How many conflicts can you name that Americans would have supported, had they known the whole story? Precious few.

Perhaps we should refuse to elect people who assume war is inevitable. Why see suffering as a done deal?

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Written by Monte

January 30, 2008 at 2:36 pm

Presidential historians: Judgment more important than experience

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Here’s something I’ve been wondering about.

Sen. Clinton has pitched her experience pretty hard, and the supposed lack of it in Sen. Obama. Thing is, though—she’s not held elected office as long as he has. Wonder if I’d hire a surgeon whose main credential was “Married to One”?

Since no one knows what the future holds, it seems like how a candidate has made decisions would be a more important predictor of success. And I was delighted to find an interview with five presidential historians working the subject:

clipped from
Mr. Dallek — and every presidential historian interviewed for this article … argued that the whole question of Mr. Obama’s experience is a nonissue, one manufactured by candidates in a hot campaign who are looking to exploit any perceived weakness they can find.
After Nixon and George Bush, none of the rest of America’s presidents in the past 50 years came into office with much more foreign policy experience than Mr. Obama …
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, one of the candidates talking the most about experience, in reality, comes up shorter [than most of the contenders], says presidential historian Richard Norton Smith…
Unless being first lady counts as a foreign policy credential, Mrs. Clinton does not have that much on her resume. “There is this osmosis working for her … In lieu of more traditional experience, she benefits as being seen as the third Clinton term.”
[Dallek:] “That’s why I’m sympathetic to Obama. Does experience count? What really counts is judgment and what kind of judgment you have.”

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Interesting! Try the judgment standard on your favorite candidates. See where they’ve been, and how their judgments have held up.

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Written by Monte

August 29, 2007 at 9:25 pm

Posted in Politics

It’s the neo-conservatism, stupid (not the President)!

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Despite waning Administration influence, blowback from neo-conservative policies approaches gale force. Consider these excerpts from the DemocracyNow! summary of June 5 alone, and ask yourself if the President acted alone:

1. Gitmo tribunal falls apart: “U.S. military judges have dropped all war crimes charges against the
only two Guantanamo prisoners facing trial by military tribunal. The judges said they lacked jurisdiction under the strict definition of those eligible for trial under the Military Commissions Act…”

2. Surge not working: “The U.S. military has privately admitted the so-called surge is failing to meet its targets….”

3. Cold war returns: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Monte

June 6, 2007 at 11:26 am

Sojourners’ Presidential Forum on Faith, Values, and Poverty

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Highlights of last night’s discussions with the three major Demos. Intriguing, helpful, and something of a watershed moment in American politics. Can you imagine this happening four years ago?

Written by Monte

June 5, 2007 at 4:20 pm

Posted in Politics, Poverty, Religion