sidebar 2005.07.09
RE: Lex. Well, you're just an angry boy!  Why can't you feel sympathy for terrorist victems even though you're angry?
--ErinMaru Tue Jul 12 01:37:58 2005
Oh, it's an intellectual sympathy, but not like the sympathy that I see a lot of people show, the spontaneous first reaction kind. I kinda wish I could show more of that, but at times, I kind of find those sponetaneous people as not so sincere, or sometimes misguided, like the majority of the people who have those "Support the Troops" ribbons on their car. It's like, I support the troops qua people in the line of fire because our leader put them there, but I'm angry that our leaders put them there in the first place. It's like that ribbon means more than support the people who are troops but support the troops qua representatives of this ugly ideology and we're going to call you treasonous if you denounce our war. . .know what I mean? I guess it feels like the people who show that spontaneous sympathy might start yelling at you if you even begin to start providing any kind of analysis in the direction that these terrorists might have done what they did because they were angry at our countries. Sure, they shouldn't strike out at civilians and such, but the Western countries do bear some degree of responsibility for contributing to the conditions that have made it so much easier for terrorists to recruit more people to their cause. I guess there's more complicated issues and so forth, but nonetheless, the US and possibly Britain could do more than warmongering to try to deal with the problem. . .. But yeah, I guess I feel that if I even go in that direction around people who have the "Support the Troops" ribbons on their car and probably show spontaneous sympathy, they would pretty much call me treasonous for what I would think as patriotic criticism. But I'm simplifying. . .that's just a taste of my anger. . ..
--Mr. Lex Tue Jul 12 17:52:09 2005
And I know I stereotyped a lot in that last passage. I guess I'm referring to some vocal loud people who somehow seem to trump more reasonable people. . .. =/
--Mr. Lex Tue Jul 12 18:25:13 2005
That's a lot of nuance to expect from a colored ribbon, truly. But you'll find the full spectrum of beliefs among troops-supporting ribbon-fliers. I suggest you try not to assume that they're all against you because you don't like the ideology who seem to seem to have wrested control of the symbol in the popular mind.

Frankly, I'm not all that impressed with the vocal loud people who're against the war and somehow seem to trump more reasonable people. I'm really far from enamoured by those loudmouth socialists who advocate fragging, the practice of soldiers murdering their commanding officers. I don't have to look far enough, for my taste, to find people who think that Bush and/or the Jews are fabricating this war for profit, somehow. It's frankly irking to me to see a Kerry/Edwards sticker, because that ticket had two major sorts of voters-- true believers in Kerry (probably a minority) and people who would vote for a dead stump before they'd vote for Bush, generally because of a mis-informed (IMO) loathing of the man, personally. 

I get over it. I get over getting accused of endorsing the murder of hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians, just as you should get over the similarly bogus charge of america-hating. (Unless you really do hate America, in which case I recommend you vote with your feet, kthx. :^)
--LAN3 Tue Jul 12 21:51:22 2005
you can support the soldiers and not support the war or the government that keeps bummbling the war and wasting soldiers lives. You should read up on the history of the Weathermen, and other 70s American Terrorist groups. It would explain a lot about how a movement for change can become a bitter act of violence.  
--ErinMaru Wed Jul 13 02:06:10 2005
Maybe your experience has been different but I'd say the extreme leftist sentiment you find repulsive to be a pretty damn small minority.

And while I'm sure there's a spectrum of beliefs behind the car magnets, I can't shake the feeling it's more a dodge to support Bush and the policy of takin' it to Iraq than it is for the well-being of our troops.

Yes, a tremendous amount of Kerry support was of the "anybody but Bush" vein. "Anybody" is a bit of a misnomer, but Kerry seemed like a reasonable man, and to many Bush has not.

I've had so many reasons to dislike Bush and most of his policies, and have had to come to accept that he is my leader for the next 3 years, that I have a pretty big case of Bush-Dislike-Fatigue. So I'll just remember he represents this disgusting alliance of neocon excessively-proactive stridency with bible thumpin' ram your morality down our throats piety, and that he's awfully anti-drugs for a guy who partied so hearty in the 70s and 80s.
--Kirk Wed Jul 13 02:11:58 2005
Even if I were a violence mongering "socialist," I logistically couldn't leave this country, unless I wanted to go to some 3rd World country without much infrastructure or much protection to my own body, because I have nothing economic, at this moment, to offer a country except for my intelligence and sparkling personality, but I really have nothing tangible to show for my intelligence. But anyway, I haven't lost faith in the US, I've just lost faith in a lot of people who we have called our leaders. Like Kirk, I've come to accept that we have Bush as the leader now and that I have to accept things that happen because of him and his administration in the name of our country over the next 3 1/2 years or so. I may have to accept the same thing once he's out of office. Nonetheless, that acceptance doesn't stop me from trying to help the US attain its ideals, even if I believe many people and leaders in it currently don't have the same image of ideals as I do. Nonetheless, you won't find me picking up a gun, a bomb, a grenade or even my fists to convince anyone. At least, not as long as they don't start herding up Jews or something then start putting them in concentration camps, even though I do have some contention about herding up people, putting them in prisons in other countries then pretty much forgetting them and not giving them due process of law. Then there's the aspect of detaining people in a metal box then letting them suffocate because they were forgotten. I could probably find more examples of things that I find atrocious done in the name of our country, but I'm already depressed and stressed out as it is with things that I need to do to survive day to day. . ..
--Mr. Lex Wed Jul 13 11:13:08 2005
No need to put socialist in scare-quotes, Mr. Lex. The people I had in mind are card-carrying members of one of the Socialist parties. And in case I wasn't clear, I wasn't accusing you of any violence-mongering-- just some of the bozos on your side of the debate, heh.

Kirk, I agree that Bush's antics as a youth make him Unfit for Command:
--LAN3 Wed Jul 13 14:25:44 2005
His hypocrisy is what makes him Unfit for Command, not his former hedonism.
--Misti Wed Jul 13 14:32:38 2005
Oh, I thought those were the blaring Communists at protests and such who call for the tumbling of the capitalist way of life.

And wow. . .after reading your first entry, I can see how much more moderate it sounds now. . .I bet I pretty much agree with you. =D

Even though I am kind of curious as to when that line gets crossed when war is OK and when it's not. In the long run, though, I'm guessing that's full of nuance and there's plenty of research to be done on it to have a good idea.

As for the ribbon thing, I guess most of the experience that I've had with the ribbons is with people at my office and my mom, who've kind of shown something of a irrational mob mentality when it comes to following a lock step behind Bush for some reason that I can't really understand even though I can understand on another level. It's a strange understanding, probably more of a toleration sprinkled with a disinterested understanding of social situations.
--Mr. Lex Wed Jul 13 15:08:22 2005
LAN3 - don't strawman me with the party animal thing. But I'd respect him a lot more if he owned up to it rather than giving carefully guarded and dated statements about what years he wasn't using drugs.

Lex, very rarely is mob mentality as simple-minded as you imply. People decided it was a useful visible indicator of their support for a certain way of thinking about our country and the war.

I do agree that the nation is so polarized, that some people will be very vocal Bush supporters even if they agree with only a part of what he really stands for.
--Kirk Wed Jul 13 18:03:14 2005
Kirk, you kind of spelled out what I meant by mob mentality, in a way.
--Mr. Lex Wed Jul 13 18:40:38 2005
"..but I'd say the extreme leftist sentiment you find repulsive to be a pretty damn small minority."  If you are refering to my Weatherman comment, I am repulsed by all violence, not just by that commited by minor groups. I find the Weathermen had the same line of thinking that led them to violence as the religious extremists that I grew up around. "To save the village we must burn the village" 

I've seen bumper stickers that say "I support the troops, not the war." When the first Iraq war happened I was in high school, and my UU youth group had a Vietnam Vet speak to us. After his tour he was against the war, but he took a job training new men at bootcamp because he wanted to give them all the knowlege he had to help them come home alive. He really drove home the difference between supporting the people who want to defend the U.S., and the politicians who use them. I know people that are/have been there, so I feel proud to support them.
Anyway, is getting 2 long for a comment on a sidebar, sorry kirk :)
--ErinMaru Thu Jul 14 04:09:36 2005
(Actually Erin that comment was directed at LAN3)
--Kirk Thu Jul 14 11:58:37 2005
Hmm, and I need to test this as well...
--Kirk Fri Jul 15 10:09:24 2005
Favoriate bumper sticker so far: "I support more troops than you"
--Mr. Ibis Fri Jul 15 16:05:48 2005
Oh! Can we sponsor them? Does Sally Struthers do an infomercial for them? Zoom in on a soldier without body armor. . . "This troop needs body armor because his government won't fund it. You can support this troop!" Or is that in bad taste?
--Mr. Lex Fri Jul 15 16:57:38 2005