Good News, Bad News

Bad news, probably — the UN Security Council just approved a no-fly zone over Libya. If air strikes support the rebels without triggering some other endless military adventure, this might be OK, but I’m skeptical.

This afternoon the House voted to to bar federal funding of National Public Radio. The bill also bars public radio stations from using federal grant money to pay their NPR dues. Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) congratulated the House for saving America from Click and Clack.

First rate snark, Congressman. Well done.

Oh, the good news — there’s news there is some reduction in the radiation danger in Japan.

18 thoughts on “Good News, Bad News

  1. I disagree, I think this is good news. Read Juan Cole, who knows more about this than anyone; he doesn’t think it’s a bad idea.

    Anyhow, whatever the long-term implications, in the short term it is as necessary as the air war in the Balkans. Without it Quaddafi is simply going to slaughter the rebels and probably everyone else he can catch in the rebel towns.

    Our idiot adventure in Iraq has accomplished this: Bush I was unwilling to stop Saddam from slaughtering Kurdish rebels in the wake of the Kuwaiti war, because Bush I was unwilling to conquer Iraq. Since we’re now no longer unwilling to conquer these places, there’s no longer any reason not to support their rebellions. If this next middle eastern war can be no better than last time, it’s hard to see how it could be worse, and it stops the immediate slaughter of thousands of people. So bombs away!

  2. I’d feel better about us going to war in Libya, which is what this really is, if we’d managed to establish the rhetorical point that it would be a whole lot easier if we hadn’t squandered blood and treasure in Iraq, and if we weren’t still preoccupied with fighting in Afghanistan.

    The headlines will refer to it as a no-fly zone, but the initial news I’ve seen about the resolution authorizes much more, which is probably good, because it will take air strikes on Qaddafi’s motorized columns and artillery if the rebels are going to have a chance of holding out until they can manage to get more ammo and supplies.

    And then one of those jets will get taken out by Qaddafi’s forces, and another shoe falls, and escalation, and… well.

    I’m sure I’ll be able to hear all about it on NPR. Oh, wait.

  3. Some good news for those of us on the left coast, California GOP Struggles to Remain Relevant

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — After suffering widespread losses at the polls in 2010, the California Republican Party is trying to regroup and stay relevant in a state that appears to be leaning less and less toward Republican ideology.

    The party has had trouble attracting support from non-white residents, a troubling sign in a state that U.S. Census data show is becoming increasingly diverse. But Republicans also have been caught up for several years in a family feud over ideology – one that tends to flare up around its twice-yearly state conventions.

    The party’s three-day spring convention opens Friday night with an address by former United Nations ambassador John Bolton. Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, a potential GOP presidential candidate, is the keynote speaker Saturday….

    Everything you need to know about why the CA GOP is in trouble can be found in their choice of keynote speakers.

  4. A brilliant reelection campaign promise strategy by Obama.. He’ll get us out of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and close down Guantanamo by 2013/14. And Petraeus will get another row of campaign ribbons to add to his already abundant chest full of fruit salad. The great general needs more glitter and we need to waste more money and lives.

    Maybe they should just declare war on poverty and attack the jobless situation here in America!

  5. “and to stop the immediate slaughter of thousands of people. So Bombs away!”

    Great! that reminds me of something I heard back in the 70’s during the Vietnam “conflict”; “bombing for peace is like fucking for virginity.”

    One would think there is a middle path, but NOOOO………..
    Apparently the choices are sitting on the sidelines wringing our hands (code for running weapons and conducting covert ops.) or full scale invasion.

    There IS another way, but we Americans are addicted to flash bang boom (as long as the carnage is not shown on the evening news), and that Kadaffy needs killing anyhoo ( man, its so easy to get into that mindset, just watch “Inglourious Basterds”).

    I have wondered what would happen if a group of “freedom Fighters” attacked Washington. Would the “government” use tanks and airstrikes against the attackers? Would the “troops” turn their weapons on the rebels?
    Would it be good to have an interveining force from, say Brazil or China?
    Would we really welcome ( as I have heard a number of righties say ) a full on shooting revolution?

    On killing NPR funding; yet another splendid idea from the right. As Lewis Black would say, “the party of bad ideas”.
    Why we continue to tolerate that group of knuckle dragging, hate mongering, southern fried dipshits is way beyond insane.
    Ralph Nader posted the idea of charging private radio to use public airwaves to fund public radio; in other words, charging the Beck / Limbaugh axis of insanity so a little humanity gets some air time.

    The right is on a killing spree. They will continue to kill anything they don’t think is worth funding due to pure stupidy, ignorance, and ideology.
    They wrecked the place during the Bush years and blamed it on Obama and they are getting away with it.

    Later today, I’ll put up a link to what Rick Scott and his band of Cenobites is trying to do in Florida which will really hurt our state. I urge every Florida resident to contact their state rep. and firmly but politely tell them HELL NO!

  6. Another thing about NPR, during our horrific huricane season back in ’04, NPR gave the best news, forecasts, and information. NPR is my “go to” station each morning because I drive great distances in my job, and need a “head’s up” in regards to roadway conditions, weather, traffic, etc. NPR has the best out of all available in my area.

    Defunding NPR is a big mistake on many levels.

  7. I’m not as pessimistic about Libya as some.
    This is a UN action, so it’s not just us going in there alone, which I think is a huge plus.
    On the other hand, we had a ‘no-fly’ zone over Iraq for a long time, and all it kept Saddam from doing was bombing rebels, who, except for the Kurds in the north, were few. So there is that, “we need the threat of actual ground action,” to make if effective. So I’m not sure why I’m more positive about this than I normally would be.

    As for NPR, I’d like to remind the Republicans that they have FOX, which is broadcast over the PUBLIC airwaves. And that maybe the Democrats should look into doing what Canada did, which decided that FOX could NOT broadcast there because the government there does not allow mediums licences if they repeatedlly and knowlingly lie to viewers and listeners.
    Maybe we should push for that if the Democrats ever regain the House and keep the Senate. I can hear their cries of “Censorship!” now. But stopping the spreading of lies and falshoods isn’t censorship, it’s just stopping the spreading of lies and falsehoods, so ‘stf’ up!
    FOX is the equivalent of a local weather channel that tells you it’s beautiful outside, when there’s ice, sleet, and snow coming down, and tells you to make sure to put on your parka and mukluks on a cloudless 75 degree spring day. And yes, it’s the fault of the listener/viewer if they’re dressed completely inappropriately for the weather – they are idiots. But when you try to ask them why they’re wearing a parka, mukluks, a ski-mask and mittens, while you’re in shorts, a t-shirt, sandals, shades and sunscreen, they tell you that YOU’RE the idiot, and can’t you look around, and don’t you know what’s happening?
    And you walk away thinking, ‘you know, insane asylums were once full of straight-jacketed people like that.’ Then you realize, we’re lucky if these are just people walking around and not running for some government office! Or already there.

  8. Had the UN just denied the use of air power, I would have been all for it.

    Unfortunately, they included most, if not all, ground troops, basically imposing a ground was in Libya.

    Another embarrassment.

  9. “….the use of air power, I would have been all for it.”

    I understand how aiding the anti Kaddafi rebels sounds like a good idea, and standing on the sidelines while Kadaffi uses his air power to crush them is painful.

    Flying into another country’s air space without permission is a grave offense, dropping bombs is an act of war (go figure). We have become so used to doing these things that they just seem normal.

    Libya is closely tied to Europe and the Arab League, NOT the United States.
    I see absolutely NO reason to get involved when the other parties are closer, have the economic and diplomatic ties, and are not broke due to on going wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan.

    I do, however agree with what Hillary did regarding threatening kadaffi with air strikes,and I wouldn’t be opposed to having some war planes scream overhead (EU/Arab League). Threats are one thing, murder by air is quite another.

  10. erinyes,
    That’s kind of what I was getting at, I just didn’t specify.
    Let it be the EU and Arab nations that do this, not us. We could send supplies, and help with things like AWAC’s.
    We do want to be a presence somewhere nearby since this will be one of the rare times we actually support the people protesting a dicatator and not the dictator (we seem to be doing less supporting of dictators recently, which can never be a bad thing).

  11. The Pentagon said it fired 110 cruise missiles at 20 targets along the Libyan coast.

    Wikipedia says that a cruise missile costs approximately $600,000. Maybe it’s that I’m such a small thinker and can grasp the concept of what goes around, comes around, but it seems to me.. that that is a lot of money to just be blowing away.

  12. A new war in libya, tax cuts for the rich, military tribunals, so how exactly is Obama any different than bu$hco? Hopefully this will get him primaried in 2012.

  13. Swami,

    Not rubbing it in, I just don’t see much difference anymore. I mean the guy authorized bombing a foreign nation without any input from congress, I call that an act of war. What a disappointment, I’ll not be working for his reelection, I can guarantee that.

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