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Huckabee’s Scrutiny Reaches Hurricane Force Winds

Posted in Election 2008 by Ryan on the December 13th, 2007

Hugh Hewitt links to Personal Presidential Elimination Process: The Case Against Mike Huckabee, a post by Stephen Bainbridge.

Point #2 hits close to home as I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Huckabee has come out saying he has apologized but it will take a little more explanation than “a slip of the tongue” to create a context in which that question makes any sense.

Maybe if he had used the word “do” instead of “don’t” it would lend itself to a more curiously worded question and less accusatory.

The Torture Debate

Posted in War on Terror by Ryan on the December 12th, 2007

While I respect the opinion on those who insist that water boarding is torture, I would like to see a couple of elements added to the debate.

That of who has the moral high ground?
And what is torture?

I feel like we need to realize that we have captured very bad people who have done or planned very bad things against US citizens. The strange thing is, we’re willing to shoot or otherwise blow them up, but if caught alive, we have to treat them well?!

Most people can’t even define torture other than to say, “waterboarding is…and whenever anything else comes up we don’t like, that will be too.” John McCain, the hero of one side of the debate, was tortured in Vietnam. He had permanent damage done to his arms. That is torture. The “waterboarding is torture” crowd make me wonder if laying a hand on detainees is torture? Can you strike them? If so, how much? Is sleep deprivation torture? If so, at what point does it become so? Do our special forces and navy diving commandos undergo torture in their training? Oh, but it is by choice? Then is it not a psychological technique to waterboard or inflict severe discomfort? And discomfort it is, temporary at that. These people can walk away like they just got tasered.

And are terrorists’ actions in any way dictated by whether or not we subject them to water boarding or not when they’re caught? Not sure that is why they’ve been blowing things up for a couple of decades…

I’m all for less “aggressive” techniques if they are backed up by results, but when the case made in a liberal saturated media is that we should simply let ideals govern ourselves, it is unconvincing. Not a merit less argument by any means. Having the moral high ground indeed also hinges on how we treat detainees, but lets hear the case made for that more powerfully.

This article by Mark Davis on the subject clarifies some of my sentiments:

We have heard much from the portion of America that grows queasy at the thought of tough treatment for al-Qaeda detainees. But I’ll share what makes me queasy: my countrymen in tattered clothes perched at windows a thousand feet high against the Manhattan skyline, their lungs burning with jet fuel, making the decision to jump to their deaths because it was a better fate than what awaited them if they did not.

Against the backdrop of that memory, anyone worked up about the occasional, carefully targeted waterboarding is simply not serious about protecting our nation.

The Candidates in a Phrase Again

Posted in Election 2008 by Ryan on the December 10th, 2007

Democrats:

Edwards
“It’s nothing personal, but its important the voters know they have choices…”

Clinton
“I’d like to thank Corporal Smith, Sergeant Jones, Captain Williams, Lance Corporal Hunter, Captain Jensen, Lieutenant Foster, Commander Winston, Sergeant Kent………………and every other law enforcement individual in the state of New Hampshire ”

Obama
“Hope. Audacity. Oprah!”

Dodd
“Hola muchachos”

Richardson
“I can get all the troops out in 24 hours”

Biden
“Look, I’ve been on the foreign relations committee since 500 AD…”

Kucinich
“Impeach!”

Gravel
“These wieners didn’t invite me to the last debate!”

Republicans:

McCain
“Our terrorist enemies think we torture them. I cannot imagine anything worse…”

Thompson
“Huckabee? I thought I was the….”

Huckabee
“My campaign has organized a “Victory in Iowa” prayer group online…”

Tancredo
“Out tancredo Tancredo! Heeheehee.”

Paul
“Well…this needs to be done, and apparently a lot of people online think I ought to do it”

Hunter
“We’d all be farmers, but at least those dang Chinese wouldn’t have anywhere to sell stuff!”

Giuliani
“It wasn’t improper, New Yorkers have affairs all the time…”

Romney
“Iowa, oh Iowa!”

What is Fueling the Immigration Debate?

Posted in Immigration by Ryan on the December 4th, 2007

According to Ruben Navarrette Jr., a contributor at CNN, it is culture. His somewhat blanket assertion of nativism is the epitomy of the current position of illegal immigration advocates.

This is what I wrote to him upon reading his article:

Your recent article was a good read.

I agree that nativism is a really indefensible stance for any American to take. We ought to be forcefully refuting nativism. We are all a conglomeration of immigrants here in the United States.

However, you only point out those that hold extreme positions against Hispanic culture while ignoring the arguments of the majority of people that welcome legal immigration. You need to clearly identify and represent these elements of the immigration debate in an article that claims to address the immigration debate. You briefly mention that it “…it goes well beyond words like ‘legal’ or ‘illegal.'” Why not stop there and dissect the arguments about legality? Why so little mention of it? Do you honestly believe that the immigration debate is predominantly fueled by things other than legality?

As a professional, you should more soundly isolate and identify arguments against immigration, clearly separating the fundamental premise of each argument. Your use a broad brush to confuse different groups of people with very different opinions.

Thanks. Your articles are enjoyable to read. I’ve come to recognize them as great examples of how the immigration debate is distorted by yourself and others with like views. You do this by avoiding true debate and discussion of fact by asserting racism and nativism towards opposite viewpoints.

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