Monday, February 12, 2007

Islam is not the Enemy....

I was reading this week's op/ed by Frank Pastore on, and he mentioned in his column that Islam is not really the enemy in this war on terror.

I have to agree with that. There are millions of practicing Muslims all over the world who aren't planning to blow up the neighborhood coffee house, and wouldn't dream of strapping on a bomb and stepping aboard a croweded bus full of people. And there are quite a few of this number of Muslims who wouldn't dream of hurting a fly, and who are born, live and die in communities of people of all faiths. Fair enough.

I do though, believe that there are people out there who are, by virtue of the fact that their followers have less education and little access to the world beyond their own, in a position to influence the knowledge (or lack thereof) of thousands of dissaffected people, who have been shunned by their own for hundreds of years, and who have the potential of such collective rage that is now spewing forth in the form of the terrorist practices of radical Islam.

Radical Islam is the enemy here. These people are actually practicing Islam the way Muhammad meant it to be practiced. They are probably correct in their assertion that anybody who doesn't practice Islam the way they do is probably, by their lights, an apostate. This includes all the mild-mannered Muslims who don't actively practice Jihad. Or, all the fallen Muslims that drink, and eat pork products like bacon. Which is probably the vast majority of Muslims, especially those who live in more liberal countries, outside the middle east.

But there remain a lot of people in the middle east who have crappy lives. And those crappy lives are made crappier by the machinations of their governments, the greed, the corruption, and the fact that they really don't see individual life as important....given the lack of real education, the constant 24/7 bombardment of propaganda, the fact that most of the people in the middle east will never actually set eyes on America or live here, so how can they imagine a world where life isn't hard?

Where life is so hard that death seems like a release from prison!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

What is it with Liberals and Haliburton?

Why is it, that whenever a Republican gets into a political debate with a Democrat, they always, at some point in the conversation, have to bring up Haliburton. "HALIBURTON!!" They throw it at you like a verbal stun grenade...a desperate attempt to shift the onus of the conversation back, like the mere mention of the devil Halliburton is going to stop his opponent in their verbal tracks, because it is an unassailable fact that Haliburton made money helping to clean up the mess in Iraq!

Oh, the humanity! The utter effrontery of any capitalist business wanting to turn a profit on what is arguably one of the riskiest construction sites in the world! So what? Somebody has to help clean up the mess in Iraq, and since most of the population of that country has no idea how to build infrastructure, to American standards, I might add, and God forbid such a company, which does business around the world, mind you, should make a tidy sum helping to do the backbraking, frustrating, hard work involved in putting Iraq back togther for the Iraqis. Disgusting! How incredibly......captialist!

I will be the first one to say that I don't approve of nobid contracts, and that each company involved should submit bids and go through the process, but at the end of the day, for whatever company that gets any federal contracts, they have to turn a profit on the business, because that's how capitalism works. And granted, it may be the worst of the "isms" but it's the one that works the best because it involves incentive, and rewards hard work.

Communism and Socialism remove the incentive to excel. Why should anybody work harder than the next guy if the government is going to take the fruits of MY hard work, and give it to my slacker neighbor? Life isn't fair. Get over it and get off your lazy ass and go to work. Get an education. Get motivated to do for yourself, and quit expecting "Daddy" to take care of you. Life is what you make for yourself, not what somebody's going to give you.

So what if Haliburton, Bechtel, Brown & Root and a hundred other American businesses are making a profit helping to put Iraq back together? What the screamers of "HALLIBURTON!" aren't taking into consideration is that behind the name there are thousands of actual people on the ground in Iraq, building schools, electricity grids and water treatment plants, getting shot at, risking their lives on a daily basis to help people who are depending on their product, and that despite the mainstream media's pointed lack of coverage of that progress, there IS progress being made. By actual people who happen to get a paycheck from Haliburton, Brown & Root, etc. These dedicated people should get paid well. They're leaving their families, risking their lives in a war what if their companies turn a profit as well?