Is Bush against the Pill?

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  • Thread starter Loren Booda
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  • #26
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I listen to Christian counseling on the radio most every night, and their main objective is to convert unbelievers, reflected also in their commercials. I am fairly sure this is the main effort of most conservative Christians, to "save" nonbelievers through ensuring worldwide their belief that Christ is their Saviour, ultimately through Armageddon.
It's called missionary work -- spreading the word of Jesus Christ. I would hardly call it global supremacy, since the term "dominance" does not fit this picture.

Again, you tend to decribe normal events in loaded language. If I hear a cool song on the radio, I tell my friends about it. I may even urge them to buy it. In no way am I trying to instill global supremacy in my musical tastes.

I said it before, and I will have to say it again: Bush is a Christian who probably believes in missionary work. But the Iraq War is not an example of a Christian mission. I see no evidence whatsoever that we went to war to convert Muslims to Christianity.


So we wage war on all those who commit genocide but do not have nuclear capability?
Loren, forget the nuclear capablility and discuss this in terms of Saddam's genocide. I asked you what we should have done to (1) end the regular slaughter of Iraqi civilians by Saddam's regime, and (2) end the sanctions that were killing tens of thousands of children?

I am not saying that the above two criteria were the most important in Bush' reasoning, but to ignore them completely and suggest that Bush' invasion was nothing more than a orgy of killing is unfair to him. He obviously thought he was saving hundreds of thousands of lives in the long run by ending the sanctions and Saddam's dictatorship, and he was almost certainly right. Under those conditions, do you see how a Christian could support such an invasion?

The continent of black Africa is wide open, but we have made ineffective inroads to the millions killed there. Two major selfish reasons for attacking Iraq: oil and Israel. The former is our addiction through wasteful usage in, e. g., SUVs and huge houses, and the latter with a government who spies on us and have killed scores of our sailors. Perhaps we should question the motives involving billions of dollars annually wasted through these money sinks.
Let me repeat: We did not invade Iraq to control oil supplies.

How much were we paying for oil four years ago? How much are we paying now?
 
  • #27
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I will let rest our communication, as I hope others would join in. You have spoken well, if not in fact converting me to Republicanism or Christianity, at least I have come to respect them more. I had thought politics to be loaded with jingoism - maybe now I will calm my "rhetoric" toward more objective argument.

I believe that it was Billy Graham who said that 80% of those calling themselves Christian were not really saved (source: "Hope for the Heart" or Charles Stanley on Christian radio). George W. Bush, to paraphrase, couldn't remember when he "had made a mistake." I believe that he couldn't remember.
 
  • #28
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Maybe I should quit my day job. :)
 
  • #29
plover
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JohnDubYa said:
He obviously thought he was saving hundreds of thousands of lives in the long run by ending the sanctions and Saddam's dictatorship, and he was almost certainly right.
I find it hard to square the idea that this is 'obvious' with the reasoning the administration offered for the war beforehand. As presented by the White House, this factor seemed at the time to run far behind other rationales such as WMD. While there are people for whom the calculus you refer to was a chief reason for supporting the war (although some of those now see our presence in Iraq as a disaster and sharply regret their earlier support), I have no reason to believe that it was Bush's. (It goes without saying (right?) that this is not an argument in support of Bush being an indiscriminate killer.)

I also have yet to see anyone include in this calculus the human cost in Afghanistan of the truly pathetic support the U.S. provided for reconstruction there (after promising a 'Marshall plan'). We had already made Afghanistan our responsibility. Any policy that utilized resources that should have been allocated to meeting this commitment is at best criminal indifference.

And given how overstretched our troops are, providing the troop strength that is known to be necessary for securing a situation like Afghanistan, would effectively have prevented going to Iraq.

How many lives will be lost in Afghanistan in the long run due to our dereliction?
Let me repeat: We did not invade Iraq to control oil supplies.

How much were we paying for oil four years ago? How much are we paying now?
Terrible argument. In order for this to make sense, you would have to show that
  1. if the post invasion period had not devolved into chaos, that the prices would be similar,
  2. the current situation is hurting profits in the oil industry, and
  3. Bremer's policies were not designed more for the benefit of foreign investment than the Iraqi people.
The first of these points being most critical.

I'm not saying anything here proves that the invasion was motivated by oil profits, just that the argument you give to oppose that assertion doesn't fly.
 
  • #30
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I find it hard to square the idea that this is 'obvious' with the reasoning the administration offered for the war beforehand.
Most of your post is off-topic. This isn't a political debate, but rather an ethical debate. We are discussing whether or not the lives lost during the invasion gels with Bush' Christian views. All I am saying is that, privately, Bush must have considered the lives that he would be saving in the long run, which would make invasion acceptable to him on a moral level.
 
  • #31
plover
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JohnDubYa said:
Most of your post is off-topic. This isn't a political debate, but rather an ethical debate. We are discussing whether or not the lives lost during the invasion gels with Bush' Christian views. All I am saying is that, privately, Bush must have considered the lives that he would be saving in the long run, which would make invasion acceptable to him on a moral level.
Ok, if considered solely in the context of squaring Bush's Christian values with possible outcomes for Iraq that might follow from invasion, there's no real problem. However, those outcomes do not happen in a vacuum. Morally, the attack upon Afghanistan incurred an obligation on the part of the U.S., an obligation Bush publicly promised to fulfil. I'm not sure why you would define these consideration as political rather than moral or ethical. (Was that what was intended by saying I'm off topic?)

As for the second section of my post, the concern is logical. It appears you are trying to back up the idea that the Iraq invasion is not about oil by with the implication in your questions that current oil prices indicate that the U.S. does not "have control of oil supplies". These ideas do not connect directly.
 
  • #32
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Morally, the attack upon Afghanistan incurred an obligation on the part of the U.S., an obligation Bush publicly promised to fulfil. I'm not sure why you would define these consideration as political rather than moral or ethical. (Was that what was intended by saying I'm off topic?)
Morally, Bush was under no obligation to inflict violence on Afghanistan according to Christian scripture, and was certainly under no moral obligation to invade Iraq. He did so only because he was able to square in his own mind that the loss of life would be justified.

As for the second section of my post, the concern is logical. It appears you are trying to back up the idea that the Iraq invasion is not about oil by with the implication in your questions that current oil prices indicate that the U.S. does not "have control of oil supplies". These ideas do not connect directly.
1. Prices have risen, which usually indicates less control of supply. If you truly control the supply, you control the prices. If I commit acts that guarantees that I can have all the potatoes I want, I am not going to pay as much for potatoes. Controlling supply is controlling prices, because we already could buy as much oil as we wanted; we simply didn't like the price tag.

2. High oil prices have hurt Bush politically.

So tell me again why Bush's invasion of Iraq was all about oil. From an oil standpoint, where has he benefitted?
 
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  • #33
plover
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JohnDubYa said:
Morally, Bush was under no obligation to inflict violence on Afghanistan according to Christian scripture, and was certainly under no moral obligation to invade Iraq. He did so only because he was able to square in his own mind that the loss of life would be justified.
ok.... I don't disagree, but how is this a response to the quote that preceded it?

I'll restate the first sentence from that quote in case the original form is unclear:
By attacking Afghanistan, the U.S. incurred a moral obligation to help that country with reconstruction, an obligation Bush publicly promised to fulfil.
1. Prices have risen, which usually indicates less control of supply. If you truly control the supply, you control the prices. If I commit acts that guarantees that I can have all the potatoes I want, I am not going to pay as much for potatoes. Controlling supply is controlling prices, because we already could buy as much oil as we wanted; we simply didn't like the price tag.

2. High oil prices have hurt Bush politically.

So tell me again why Bush's invasion of Iraq was all about oil. From an oil standpoint, where has he benefitted?
Your points above were, in fact, the argument I drew from your original post. Also, I never said that he has benefitted in those terms, I said the argument fails to prove that it wasn't part of his intentions. (And I also explicitly stated that is not a proof of the converse viewpoint.)

Your argument implies that the situation in Iraq is in accord with the administration's intentions. Considering, however, that on more or less every count other than removing Saddam from power, the excursion to Iraq has either failed abysmally or is in a state of uncertainty, it seems unlikely that the effect that the current state of Iraq has on oil prices was any part of those intentions. From a different direction, if Iraq were going swimmingly but oil prices were high anyway, it would still be necessary to show that things hadn't been set up for a longer term payoff for Bush and/or his associates.

I shouldn't have said, "These ideas do not connect directly"—it doesn't really convey the meaning I wanted. It's not that the argument itself isn't clear, it's more that the background necessary for the argument to work has not been established, and indeed I have trouble seeing that the information that would be required to accomplish this is even available.
 
  • #34
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Considering, however, that on more or less every count other than removing Saddam from power, the excursion to Iraq has either failed abysmally or is in a state of uncertainty...
Really? The last time I looked the sanctions that had killed thousands had actually been lifted.

Bush has given Iraq a golden opportunity. I can't blame Bush if too many in the population are too stupid to understand that blowing up your own infrastructure and killing your own people are bad things to do. And, to move back on topic, Bush' actions certainly were consistent with his Christian views.
 
  • #35
plover
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JohnDubYa said:
Really? The last time I looked the sanctions that had killed thousands had actually been lifted.
I can agree that this is a good thing. It's also a fairly direct result of removing Saddam from power. Whether that it means it was effectively "included" in my original statement or not doesn't seem worth arguing about.
Bush has given Iraq a golden opportunity. I can't blame Bush if too many in the population are too stupid to understand that blowing up your own infrastructure and killing your own people are bad things to do.
Hmm, this is right up there with "she was asking for it"... :rolleyes:
And, to move back on topic, Bush' actions certainly were consistent with his Christian views.
I already agreed with this for Iraq considered as an isolated case. You still haven't addressed the idea considered in the context of Afghanistan.
 

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