- Capitalism and Alternatives -

That's a pretty broad brush you use, SDF

Posted by: MDG on November 24, 1999 at 18:11:12:

In Reply to: A liberal is a 'nice' conservative posted by Samuel Day Fassbinder on November 24, 1999 at 17:25:23:

: SDF: I'm surrounded by them, I'm sure they're slightly better than the conservatives who surround the liberals who surround me. A liberal is a conservative who gives to charity once in a while, while looking the other way when Clinton signed the Welfare Bill.

Not this liberal. Not this liberal's wife.

: SDF: Hard evidence please. Despite Goebbels, not everything said three times is true.

I've addressed that in another message. I've addressed that in another message. I've addressed that in another message.

: Sure, Milosevic messed over people real bad. OTOH, the KLA doesn't have a great reputation either, neither does the Albanian Mafia.

Who said they did?

None of it justifies trumped-up charges of genocide, esp. when they serve to defend a US government that spent its time obstructing the UN when French-trained Rwandan troops were killing 500,000 Rwandans in 1994, a US government which defended Saloth Sar in the UN against Vietnamese "usurpers" back in the '70s.

Even bad governments can do the right thing sometimes.

:SDF: Liberals always picture the New World Order (NATO etc.) as "we," betraying their sympathies with the ruling class right then and there.

When I wrote "We," I did indeed refer to the NATO troops, in the context of their war against Milosevic. As a U.S. citizen, and hence by default a member of a nation which is part of NATO, it's entirely accurate for me to say "we," but this doesn't mean my sympathies lie with the ruling class unless, as is rarely the case, the ruling class acts in a way I agree with.

:Does "we" include the Trilateral Commission? Are you a member?

If I told you that, I'd have to kill you.

: SDF: Did this moral duty involve the moral duty to purposefully bungle the negotiations about the Rambouillet Ultimatum (by including Appendix B, tantamount to a demand that Milosevic surrender), then 2 1/2 months of bombing without a declaration of war (prompting a legal challenge to Clinton's violation of the War Powers Act), then signing a treaty that looked suspiciously like the Rambouillet Ultimatum WITHOUT Appendix B (which allowed NATO free rein throughout Serbia)?

As I've written before, our moral duty was to use diplomacy to stop the ethnic cleansing, and failing that, force. Period. Would you negotiate with a man beating a child and, if he refuses to stop, shrug and walk away, diplomacy having failed?

: Last I debated Appendix B with a pro-war (i.e. "liberal") Green, he rebutted that Rambouillet "wasn't important". Wasn't important? Surely there's a better dodge than that!

I'm not pro-war, but I believe in using one's strenght to help the oppressed, rather than standing by while they are beaten and killed.

: I'd like to see a justification of this illegal bombing on THOSE grounds. How about a justification of the State Department spokesperson as quoted here: "We intentionally set the bar too high for the Serbs to comply. They need some bombing, and that's what they are going to get." Defend THAT!

As I've written, I concur that our State Department committed gross mistakes and outright crime, but that DOES NOT detract from the principle that the strong should protect the weak.

: It wasn't Milosevic the US used force against.

Milosevic's troops are his power, and we used force against them. I've already written that I thought it was wrong to bomb Yugoslavian civilians.

:Just as it isn't Saddam Hussein the US punishes when the embargo against Iraq wipes out 100,000 Iraqis. Talk about genocide!

I've written the newspapers and my Congressmen about this immoral, genocidal embargo of Iraq. I wrote the newspapers and my Congressman about Saddam Hussein way back when he was our friend.

: SDF: Liberals typically add humanitarian "selling-points" to their defense of the New World Order.

When you ASSUME, you make an ass of you and me. How dare you twist my words to fit your ends? I do not defend the New World Order, I defend helping the weak against the strong.

: : Back to your main point: while mainstream liberals may not be as committed to social and economic justice as their more leftwing brethren, they are still further along that road than mainstream conservatives, so why belittle them?

: SDF: My family is composed of them, they're comfortable and well-off, they have nice stock and real estate holdings, their sympathy for the downtrodden exists as long as such sympathy makes them look good, and no further.

Too bad about that.

: Look at the enormous hue and cry the liberals put up when Clinton signed the Welfare Bill... then it all faded away...

What faded away? The hue and cry? I didn't vote for Clinton precisely because of the Welfare Bill, and I still agitate against its provisions.

: And what with the working class movement in the hands of sectarians... what's anyone to do?

All you can do is speak out for what you believe in and live your life accordingly.

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