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Bloggingheads 03-25-2011 04:44 PM

Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 

enderud 03-25-2011 05:41 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Hey Ann, be careful!
I never heard of this guy, Farley, before
but just now
out of curiosity
I went to look at his blog
thus increasing his traffic.
Sorry about that.
(I don't think I'll be going back however)

qingl78 03-25-2011 05:50 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
wow, this is like looking in fun house mirror.

sirfith 03-25-2011 06:06 PM

Robert Wright double standard on Unguided Weapons.
 
I like how Bob objected/is outraged by the use of Unguided Weapons in Libya by Gaddafi's forces.
But he is willing overlook/excuse the use of Unguided Weapons against Israel from Gaza "proportional response".

ohreally 03-25-2011 06:17 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Wright is parroting the official propaganda. The oft-repeated claim that Obama saved thousands of lives in Benghazi is wild speculation. Gaddafi forces overran many other cities in the West and didn't engage in Srebrenica style mass slaughter. Consider this: Misurata, roughly same size as Benghazi, has been besieged for weeks with no sign of Gaddafi overrunning it, so why believe that Benghazi was about to fall? We hear that 100 civilians died in Misurata. That's terrible, I agree. But the number happens to match precisely the number of civilians killed by US forces in AfPak in the last four weeks. So why the selective outrage?

Finally on the basis of what exactly is Wright opining that NATO intervention will end up saving lives and not making things worse, when virtually all precedents point to the opposite conclusion?

I will remind him that Srebrenica took place during a No Fly Zone operation. And that Milosevic's real slaughter in Kosovo began after air strikes began, not before. My point is that a half-way measure between nothing and land invasion can in fact give you the worst of all worlds.

In short, any interventionist who doesn't bother to make a rational, historically-grounded case for the likelihood of a better outcome doesn't deserve to be taken seriously. In that sense, Juan Cole, with his juvenile top-10 lists, has become the parody of a neocon lite. Sad to see liberals so desperate for a war they can support.

PS: Not that motives are everything but why are US special forces in Yemen, as we speak, helping a dictator who's already slaughtered hundreds of his own citizens? Oh, Gaddadi dislikes us but Saleh loves us. So that's how humanitarianism works.

ohreally 03-25-2011 06:22 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Gaddafi is being a choir boy next to "our boys" in Fallujah and Gabi Ashkenazi's mass slaughter in Gaza. Why didn't we bomb ourselves in the first case and IDF headquarters in the second? You know, because humanitarian is what we do.

jeffpeterson 03-25-2011 06:30 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Bob's readiness to give Pres. Obama every benefit of every doubt while denying any benefit of any doubt to his predecessor is truly remarkable. At the end of the day, he's a well-read (and, in dialogue with Mickey, sometimes entertaining) hack.

chamblee54 03-25-2011 06:47 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Ms. Althouse doesn't like an attitude.
chamblee54

badhatharry 03-25-2011 06:49 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Bob's horrified concern about the violent rhetoric in Wisconsin.

Wonderment 03-25-2011 06:59 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

We hear that 100 civilians died in Misurata. That's terrible, I agree. But the number happens to match precisely the number of civilians killed by US forces in AfPak in the last four weeks. So why the selective outrage?
If Gaddafi were a bit shrewder he would have called his civilian deaths "collateral damage" in his war against anarchists and terrorist thugs who were holding Libyan cities hostage (human shields).

I think he did try to suggest he was on the prowl for Osama bin Laden (just like us in Pakistan and Afghanistan for the past 10 years) and he was waging a War on Drugs (teens on Ectasy), just like us in Mexico, Colombia (with drones, by the way) and Afopiumstan.

Less facetiously, I'd say I agree that the USA in its role of perpetrator and enabler of countless atrocities against civilians, has no serious moral standing here. However, to be fair, it's not a USA mission; it's a UNSC mission in which the USA is participating.

This is also Ann's mistake (and Krauthammer's). She can't wrap her head around the possibility that this isn't All About Obama and "his" coalition.

To de-emphasize the US leadership, however, is not to say that the USA had no choice. We could have voted with Brazil, Germany and India. They all did the right thing.

Wonderment 03-25-2011 07:14 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Gaddafi is being a choir boy next to "our boys" in Fallujah and Gabi Ashkenazi's mass slaughter in Gaza.
And Lebanon in Lebanon Wars I and II. Lebanon I War, you may recall, was named "Operation Peace." That was in the old Orwellian days before we had porn star names for wars (Odyssey Dawn).

Quote:

Why didn't we bomb ourselves in the first case and IDF headquarters in the second? You know, because humanitarian is what we do.
The SC did try to make a statement on the Apartheid regime in Israel, but Obama killed the resolution.

How about just a self-imposed no-fly zone (i.e., disarmament)? We can start by dismantling our nukes and shutting down our military bases in over 150 countries around the world.

Florian 03-25-2011 07:20 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 202060)
This is also Ann's mistake (and Krauthammer's). She can't wrap her head around the possibility that this isn't All About Obama and "his" coalition.

To de-emphasize the US leadership, however, is not to say that the USA had no choice. We could have voted with Brazil, Germany and India. They all did the right thing.

I agree. There is a huge disconnect between coverage of this in Europe and the US. You would think, to listen to Althouse et al., that Obama had launched this little war all by himself and that the outcome depended on the US alone. Another example of American exceptionalism perhaps.

Brazil and India probably did the right thing. Why should they get involved in a minor conflict in North Africa? Germany, however, has seriously annoyed all its European partners.

sugarkang 03-25-2011 07:33 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Hmm. I usually defend Althouse from the nutters on here, but I'd have to push back and say that Obama didn't need to go as far as Bush regarding the explanation for moving Libya for precisely the reasons Bob stated. U.N. approval.

ohreally 03-25-2011 07:33 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 202065)
That was in the old Orwellian days before we had porn star names for wars (Odyssey Dawn).

Speaking of Orwellian, why Reagan was not impeached after this SNL-like "skit" tells us all we need to know about Americans' insatiable appetite for steaming crap:

Quote:

President's Address to the Nation, Oct 27, 1993: Two hours ago we released the first photos from Grenada. They included pictures of a warehouse of military equipment - one of three we've uncovered so far. This warehouse contained weapons and ammunition stacked almost to the ceiling, enough to supply thousands of terrorists. Grenada, we were told, was a friendly island paradise for tourism. Well, it wasn't. It was a Soviet-Cuban colony, being readied as a major military bastion to export terror and undermine democracy. We got there just in time.

ohreally 03-25-2011 07:42 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 202067)
Germany, however, has seriously annoyed all its European partners.

Germany is now pissing off everyone for not waging war... Ah, the irony of history.

dieter 03-25-2011 08:09 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 202067)
I agree. There is a huge disconnect between coverage of this in Europe and the US. You would think, to listen to Althouse et al., that Obama had launched this little war all by himself and that the outcome depended on the US alone. Another example of American exceptionalism perhaps.

Exactly my impression as well.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 202067)
Germany, however, has seriously annoyed all its European partners.

I was unaware of that. Any pointers?

The incoherence of the European approach is a good thing though. If Gaddafi wins, the blowback will not hit the entire EU and the flow of oil and other dealings may continue. If he is loses on the other hand, nobody will miss him.

The European argument for the war is more utilitarian (Oil, refugee crisis), rather than humanitarian.

Ocean 03-25-2011 08:21 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Ann protests that The Left places her as a right winger, and defends her neutral-independent stance. However, immediately after she proceeds to defend every right wing talking point for Tea Party activism, and against Obama and the decision to join the rest of the countries that are operating under the UNSC resolution. Perhaps that's why The Left sees her for what she shows she is.

I think that Ann has lost perspective of where she is in the political/ ideological spectrum. Her husband's influence may be weighing on her opinion more than what she realizes. It's a very common phenomenon.

alexanderf 03-25-2011 08:41 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
The deep bitterness of Althouse in the first section is wonderful. It's hard to come across as more insincere in the repeated claims to be of the left.

badhatharry 03-25-2011 08:44 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ocean (Post 202075)
I think that Ann has lost perspective of where she is in the political/ ideological spectrum. Her husband's influence may be weighing on her opinion more than what she realizes. It's a very common phenomenon.

It's also quite a common phenomenon for you to make nasty comments about any conservative woman who appears on BHTV. Weird! Test this yourself. Notice your skin crawling when Kristen Solis comes back next week.

http://blogs.psychcentral.com/humor/...-Diagnosis.jpg

Freddie 03-25-2011 08:57 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
9/10 cruise missile liberals agree-- bomb Libya.

Never change, Bob. You're so wonderfully predictable.

I have a crazy suggestion: put Daniel Larison on to forcefully make the case against war on Libya.

Globalcop 03-25-2011 08:58 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ohreally (Post 202051)
Gaddafi is being a choir boy next to "our boys" in Fallujah and Gabi Ashkenazi's mass slaughter in Gaza. Why didn't we bomb ourselves in the first case and IDF headquarters in the second? You know, because humanitarian is what we do.


You mean the way are Marines gave the civilians days to evacuate while giving the insurgents days to wire the homes with explosives? We put ourselves at risk in order to spare innocent lives.

http://wapo.st/e4DkSn

AemJeff 03-25-2011 09:01 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sugarkang (Post 202069)
Hmm. I usually defend Althouse from the nutters on here, but I'd have to push back and say that Obama didn't need to go as far as Bush regarding the explanation for moving Libya for precisely the reasons Bob stated. U.N. approval.

Would you care to name one or two of the "nutters" and try to make the case that a class of opinions in regard to AA has no merit, or are you content merely to toss empty insults into the void?

Ocean 03-25-2011 09:35 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
It's amazing to hear Ann's indignation at the protesters in Wisconsin when a few months ago she was adamantly defending Tea Partier protesters. Bob repeatedly tried to show her the double standards but she wasn't able to grasp what he was saying.

We are all blinded by our biases to some degree. At least we should be able to acknowledge that's the case some of the time.

Ocean 03-25-2011 09:44 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Ann points out and goes on to defend Scott Walker stating that the unions' contributions to the Democratic party create a dysfunctional political dynamic. How about the Koch's brothers manipulation of the state politics? Isn't that the real scandalous and corrupted dynamic?

AemJeff 03-25-2011 09:52 PM

Rave On - heh indeedy!
 
I guess our pal Ann has never heard of a RINO.

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/350...1:54&out=02:11

The closer you get to the extreme on either side, the more likely you are to run up against the purity police. But, as a general rule, people like David Frum and Dave Weigel, to name two, are persona non grata on their own side. I wonder how often Frank Fukuyama, or the Senators from Maine get invited to Rush Limbaugh's parties? The best they can do on that side is barely tolerate Hitchens when, and only when, he's applying his devastating facility with rhetoric to a point they already agree with.

The left may not have a perfect record on this score, but when Bernie Saunders, Jim Manchin amd Chuck Schumer are all voting more or less on the same side, heterodoxy just isn't that side's immediate problem.

Ocean 03-25-2011 09:59 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
During the last diavlog between Bob and Ann, Ann brushed off the impact of Glenn Beck's lies and conspiracy accusations and the possibility that those could incite to violent acts. She ardently defended freedom of speech and minimized the risks.

Now she is fired up about the threats she received and she states that the accusations from the person responsible for such threats may incite violence from others. She reproaches that Bob isn't more sympathetic to her plea. But, why should he? The audience that Beck reaches is infinitely larger than Ann's accuser's. Should there be freedom of speech even if it implies putting someone at risk? Or should there not be? Perhaps we need to come up with some guidelines about it.

harkin 03-25-2011 10:31 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

It's amazing to hear Ann's indignation at the protesters in Wisconsin when a few months ago she was adamantly defending Tea Partier protesters. Bob repeatedly tried to show her the double standards but she wasn't able to grasp what he was saying.
The real double standard exhibited over the past few months is the difference between the way the msm blamed the tea party for the AZ shooting when they were completely wrong with the way they've collectively ignored the violence, threats, stalkings, vandalism etc of the union thugs and their stooges.

Althouse completely exposes Wright's smear with her "just ridiculous" quote. Wright even surrenders by not even offering to take up Ann in her recommendation he do a little research before he spouts his propaganda.

dankingbooks 03-25-2011 10:37 PM

If the dog catches the car
 
The problem with Bob's humanitarian argument for invading Libya (to which I am emotionally sympathetic) is that what happens if we succeed? Aren't the rebels just another incarnation of Qaddafi? Or perhaps allied with al Qaeda? Is this a war we really want to win?

Wonderment 03-25-2011 10:46 PM

Re: If the dog catches the car
 
Quote:

The problem with Bob's humanitarian argument for invading Libya (to which I am emotionally sympathetic) is that what happens if we succeed? Aren't the rebels just another incarnation of Qaddafi? Or perhaps allied with al Qaeda? Is this a war we really want to win?
Bob, Obama and the UN have not framed the Libya intervention as a "war" to win. It's a measure designed to provide emergency protection to civilians under the threat of mass murder. That's the humanitarian part, and that's the limit of the UN and the NATO mandate. (I don't agree with the intervention, but the debate is not about "winning" or deposing Kaddafi.)

joe_mask 03-25-2011 10:46 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Well, Ann keeps making a big deal about congress being "consulted", but really, what does that mean? Did they not know what's going on? Are they cutoff from all the resources of government AND the modern media? Do they have to talk to the President himself? Each one? What leadership? What does it matter? Foreign policy is constitutionally the executive's domain and any "cultural" or "legacy" to the contrary is lost way, way back.


Get over it, Ann. It's your weakest argument in the diavlog.

piscivorous 03-25-2011 10:59 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
At what point in time did we surrender our sovereignty to the UN? The Office is still the President of the United States not Quiescent Servant of the UN.

Diane1976 03-25-2011 11:21 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 202067)
I agree. There is a huge disconnect between coverage of this in Europe and the US. You would think, to listen to Althouse et al., that Obama had launched this little war all by himself and that the outcome depended on the US alone. Another example of American exceptionalism perhaps.

Brazil and India probably did the right thing. Why should they get involved in a minor conflict in North Africa? Germany, however, has seriously annoyed all its European partners.

Exactly, all kinds of people acting as if Obama has launched an invasion and occupation of Libya, Bush style. Good Grief!

I'm still trying to figure out what's with Germany. I read Joschka Fischer is furious with the government.

Ann says she's voted for Democrats and Obama. I've only gotten to the first section. I wonder why. With friends like her I'd say he doesn't need enemies. Her attacks aren't the same as leftists complaining that he hasn't accomplished all they hoped, or that he's disappointed them on this or that. I'm disappointed on the Guantanamo issue, but I do recognize the man is neither a magician nor an absolute monarch and can't do whatever he might want, and certainly will never please all leftists. Hopefully, they'll go out and vote for him anyway in the presidential election. The alternative looks bleak to me.

eeeeeeeli 03-25-2011 11:28 PM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by piscivorous (Post 202102)
At what point in time did we surrender our sovereignty to the UN? The Office is still the President of the United States not Quiescent Servant of the UN.

I don't know about surrendering sovereignty. But if the question were whether it is sometimes appropriate for there to be a broad coalition behind a foreign intervention, I would say yes. I think all the more so in cases in which the threat is not directed at any specific country, or at least is just a general human rights issue. I think a case can be made for intervening in Libya, and that it be done by international forces.

A separate case can be made that explicitly not "going it alone" is in American interests as well. You know, there are just a lot of cases to be made all around!

Diane1976 03-26-2011 12:11 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by piscivorous (Post 202102)
At what point in time did we surrender our sovereignty to the UN? The Office is still the President of the United States not Quiescent Servant of the UN.

The US didn't have to support the resolution, or participate. It could have even used its veto against it. Or it could have just attacked Lybia all by itself, or with some coalition, illegally. Nobody could stop it. I don't see the sovereignty issue.

Diane1976 03-26-2011 12:35 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Re Ann's remarks about invading with troops, nobody wanted that, including the Libyan rebels.

piscivorous 03-26-2011 12:43 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
You may like the mix, of President Obama's coalition, better than the the one that President Bush put together but until the numbers reach 36 direct support and another 7 providing indirect support I would challenge your description of it as "broad". Seems to me it is mostly those countries that get their oil from Libya and suffer from the influx of refuges from that area with the cover of Qatar. So it appears that we have once again been hoodwinked, by the Europeans, into doing for them that which they can't do themselves.

rfrobison 03-26-2011 12:55 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by dieter (Post 202074)
The incoherence of the European approach is a good thing though. If Gaddafi wins, the blowback will not hit the entire EU and the flow of oil and other dealings may continue. If he is loses on the other hand, nobody will miss him.

The European argument for the war is more utilitarian (Oil, refugee crisis), rather than humanitarian.

I do not believe I have ever seen such a refreshingly honest, delightfully cynical defense of the "European approach" to wold affairs. Thank you.

piscivorous 03-26-2011 01:01 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
You are correct in so far as the listing of your options, and had we instituted the the no-fly zone and interdiction campaign in week two, before Qaddafi regained the momentum, we might not be looking at what is now more than likely to be a prolonged engagement. Yes it will mostly be from 20,000 feet so odds are there will be few American combat causalities but none the less it is still a shooting war which will require support from both the political class and the populace. You start from behind if you don't get them on board from the start. As Iraq amply demonstrates support for military action is more likely to go down than up even with few US causalities.

R. Richards 03-26-2011 02:22 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
Again, the "responsibility to protect," which is, I think, the international legal doctrine that is the real basis for US intervention in Libya, is summarized on pages 8-10 of this UN Secretary General's report: http://bit.ly/hE3YS6 . @MarkLGoldberg has written a useful commentary on the application of this doctrine to Libya, at UN Dispatch: http://ow.ly/4i0iG .

piscivorous 03-26-2011 03:32 AM

Re: Rave On (Robert Wright & Ann Althouse)
 
So now that Bashar Al-Assad is slaughtering his "citizens" what becomes of this R2P doctrine? Syria is the real facilitator for much of the terror in their immediate vicinity and remember his father essentially leveled Hana in the early 80s to stay in power. Add those two together and looks like it is the Syrian citizenry that is going to be needing some very serious R2P. In for a penny in for a pound?


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