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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 24,979

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This thread should be swamped by capital punishment abolitionists.

The assumption that "we have to have death penalty" is an irresolvable problem in your logic.

To grant you that assumption leads us to your entirely irrelevant question: How should the state kill someone over whom it has total power? It's like asking, even though I am not compelled to do a wrong thing, how should I do a wrong thing in a fashion that makes me feel better about myself, and thus makes it easier for me to do the wrong thing?

The only answer should ever be: don't do the wrong thing and don't think there is a way to do the wrong thing that somehow makes it less wrong.

Now the usual ways historically have been shooting or hanging. Shooting is quick and does away with the moronic and hypocritical pretenses that there is a humanitarian way to kill someone. It's certainly what I'd demand, if I were to be the judicial murderee.

If your idea about humanity obtained...

We'd still have legal slavery and child rape.

That's right, assholes are in charge everywhere... and yet over the longest term, things keep changing for the better. Thanks to the dreamers and fighters for justice. Thanks to the real realists, who can envision a future that doesn't end with another world war.

You like to reduce human history to the wars and triumphs of the strong, that's your decision. That's your lack of imagination, Mr. Rogers of the 15 posts, arrived to give a boost to the war criminals Clark and Wolfowitz of all people. Hmph!

"National interest"

I love it. The national interests of the world in 2014 indisputably lie with peace worldwide. That is in the national interest of every nation, a nation being a people who live in a country (and not an imagined entity for nationalists to exploit). The "national interest" would mean an end, for example, to the U.S. empire and its policy of interference everywhere, and a devotion of U.S. resources to real problems ($82 billion buys you another year murdering people in Afghanistan, or the tuition at every public university in the U.S., plus $20 bn left over).

National interest would mean summits and negotiations to disarm everywhere, and to shut down the arms race, the trade of arms, and the practice of covert warfare: everywhere. The biggest dog on the military pile is the only one who can lead such a rational course into the global future. National interest would mean dealing with the underlying burdens of national and personal debts, and an ecocidal economy. These are real problems to all nations, unlike the various illusions they have left over from their ancient histories that lead to the ethnic antagonisms and hatreds.

Thus our dispute is not about "national interest" -- I deny that you have any right to claim that more than I. Not "national interests" but insane ideologies and class interests rule. Thus you have washed-up old murder generals like Clark and unindicted war criminal architects like Wolfowitz trying to figure out how to involve the U.S. in yet another idiotic international mess, invoking "national interest," waving that fucking piece of cloth as if this is what binds us as humans. As long as they and their cronies and their class get to profit, of course. Fuck them. They are not your compatriots. They are your ruling class. They don't care about you. They don't give a shit about "nation," except insofar as they get to run an imaginary one in their power fantasies.

Being a general is a major disqualification, yes, elleng.

I think plumbers are an admirable profession. They know a lot of shit. Fuck generals. This is supposed to be a democracy, not a military regime. Fuck the authoritarian respect for generals. What the fuck do they know? They specialize in mass murder. Fuck the American generals, fuck the Russian ones, fuck'em all. It's pretty sick that this is a respected profession. Anyone who pursues high military ranks is by definition a sick fucker. Not that military brass iredeemable, of course. We do have Smedley Butler as a counterexample.

It's no surprise that Clark lines up here with the monster Wolfowitz. Very funny that your citation of an associate to exonerate the war criminal Clark is the even bigger war criminal Albright, of "the price is worth it" fame with regard to Iraqi deaths from the US-UK sanctions regime.

There were many times in American history when this particular class was not lionized or taken seriously when they started talking up new wars. I guess it's an argument for having draft armies. Or none whatsoever. There is no threat to the United States that requires bases and deployments and blowing shit up around the world (which of course makes the "enemies" we then pretend to "defend" against).

God, what bullshit.

Russians in the Ukraine are disturbed by the coup d'etat against the government they had overwhelmingly backed in the 2010 elections and the coup government's use of Ukrainian ethnic identity. So they're clamoring for protection from the Russian government, which is treating this opportunistically and of course is provoked by the drive to push the borders of NATO all the way to Russia's. Both of these morons are war criminals -- Clark nearly set off World War III in Kosovo. Unless the State Department is planning to sponsor similarly anti-Russian ethnic coups in other former Soviet Republics, there is no fear of this insane scenario. It's straight out of the 1950s anti-communist propaganda book.

My, sounds like a mirror image of what happened in Kiev...

a few weeks earlier, when a combination of neoliberals and right-wingers, working with explicitly fascist forces on the street, overthrew the elected government.

They too occupied buildings and called themselves the only legitimate government, held "democratic" votes, etc. And on the first day after taking power in parliament, they banned Russian as a state language! And then they were shocked, shocked, that Russians thought of this as an ethnic antagonism rather than a totally legitimate move of "the people."

Incredible how "the West" helps to light the fire and then sees only the response on the other side, rather than the illegitimacy of the side "the West" has backed.

How kind of the BBC to understand whose "nightmare" it is...

never mind the Ukrainians, whose elected government was overthrown by a right-wing coup d'etat based on exploiting ethnic conflict. It's "the West" that is now having nightmares, albeit at a convenient remove from the actual blood-spilling on the streets.

Yeah, I can imagine "the West" sees the elections as a nightmare -- since there is of course no guarantee the present government (an unelected government which includes fascists, and which is imposing austerity) would win a legitimate, peaceful election that includes all of the people (who after all voted in a majority for Yanukovich just 3 years ago).

So it's important to make it seem like it's the Russian government that is causing the problem, when there wouldn't have been a problem in the first place if "the West" had not helped engineer the coup d'etat, and had simply waited for the country's next regular elections.

Obviously that's not what I said.

This thread is about a lie by the U.S. government. Or at any rate, the promotion of a now-proven falsehood by the U.S. government. If you start a thread about an actual lie by the Russian government, there's very little chance I'll complain. (Assuming it is an actual lie.)

Russia generally lies a lot less, not because Russia is better, but for the simple reason that Russia pretends a lot less to be the glowing democratic example to the world. If you're going to pretend that, like the U.S. does while being a global empire, you're going to need more lies. Russia is just a mean and nasty great power. They are full of ethnic pride and self-defensiveness (since they're not as powerful as the U.S., and have been on the retreat for the most part). They don't need lies about how they are helping the world. They do need lies to justify atrocities like the Chechen wars, but they require very few lies in the case of Ukraine, wherein a US-backed right-wing coup d'etat overthrew an elected government and then started scapegoating the ethnic Russians.

The transcendent, all-good mythology of the U.S. government requires many more lies. For starters, that this is a democracy. Or that its actions are not those of an empire.

This thread is not about a Russian lie.

See, the difference between us is that I have no problems seeing imperialism on both sides of this particular great-power conflict. I can also figure out which one of the two imperialist sides is the bigger threat to the world (because much more powerful). It seems to be you who wants to see Russian perfidy, but not the equally consistent and morally equivalent (or worse) actions by an unaccountable set of U.S. government institutions that constitute the modern global empire.

In any case, this thread is about how the State Department advanced a naked falsehood about a supposedly aggressive action by Russia that did not actually happen. So this is what you should be big enough to acknowledge. We are having this discussion not because the Russian forces encroached on Ukrainian airspace - they didn't - but because the State Department lied and said they did. If the State Department had not lied, and if the OP had not seen fit to reproduce the lie uncritically, we would not be here in this thread.

Anyone who cites these facts...

is by definition working blindly for Putin (who is Hitler!) and helping him exterminate Ukrainians, gays and Jews. At least, that is the logic of the State Department's partisans on Democratic Underground. In any case, to wait for the actual confirmation on any claim that attacks Russia and stokes the new Cold War is to be a premature factualist. As soon as any claim against Russia is made, you must first be appalled and engage in the two minutes hate, or else you are working blindly for Putin... (continue as above) If it later gets refuted, it's important to ignore that or to argue that even if the claim was untrue, it could have been true because the main thing is that Putin is Hitler and not believing all propaganda claims against him is to follow him blindly and help him to exterminate (etc. etc.) There's a new Hitler and you've got to get on board with the rhetoric or be thrown under the bus.
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