A comment on a clipmark of mine stated:

You want to talk about preventable deaths? How about drinking and driving? How about smoking? How about obesity? Heart disease, lung disease, cancer, death by murder, suicide, etc....?

  Not sure what the clipper was getting at, citing these societal ills; calling them preventable? Anyway, it occurred to me… what about WAR; shouldn't that be at the top of this woeful list?

The Bush/Cheney administration, wanted WAR so badly, they started TWO OF THEM! Of course, they could, 9/11, HAPPENED!  (I’m still not convinced the attack occurred without A WINK & A NOD.) Now 8 years later and still young people are dying because of that infamous day. We can’t blame Bush/Cheney any longer, so who should we blame, who should bear the brunt of accountability for the bloodletting?

Barack Obama won the election, partly due to his stance against war and now he’s ratcheting up troop levels assuring its longevity?

If he continues to act like Bush/Cheney when it comes to WAR; He has not only misled us, he's FUCKED us royally! And although I’m charmed by his eloquence, it can’t last… We, who consider ourselves, WAR PROTESTERS, won’t keep looking the other way while he sends so many of our brave young men and women, to die… AND OVER WHAT? thinkingblue.blogspot.com

PS: Check out Op-Ed Columnist - Reliving the Past

It hurts me badly that the wars Bush had started are not number one on America's hit parade...  Wouldn't it be a wonderful life if the TOWNHALLERS were acting insane because they wanted the wars to end... No, they act crazy because they want Obama to end.  I clipmarked this article ( I love Bob Herbert) today...You'll find it here: HEY AMERICA, THERE ARE STILL WARS GOING ON!   Thanks, Bob Herbert, for waking me up... I have been... (along with everyone else) acting as though the American wars don't exist. tb

Op-Ed Columnist
Reliving the Past

The president should listen to Joe Biden.

Bob Herbert

Mr. Biden has been a voice of reason, warning the administration of the dangers of increasing our military involvement in Afghanistan. President Obama has not been inclined to heed his advice, which is worse than a shame. It’s tragic.

Watching the American escalation of the war in Afghanistan is like watching helplessly as someone you love climbs into a car while intoxicated and drives off toward a busy highway. No good can come of it.

The war, hopelessly botched by the Bush crowd, has now lasted nearly eight long years, longer than our involvement in World Wars I and II combined. There is nothing even remotely resembling a light at the end of the tunnel. The war is going badly and becoming deadlier. July and August were the two deadliest months for U.S. troops since the American invasion in October 2001.

Nevertheless, with public support for the war dwindling, and with the military exhausted and stretched to the breaking point physically and psychologically after so many years of combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, the president is ratcheting the war up instead of winding it down.

He has already ordered an increase of 21,000 troops, which will bring the American total to 68,000, and will be considering a request for more troops that is about to come from Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of American and NATO forces in Afghanistan.

These will be troops heading into the flames of a no-win situation. We’re fighting on behalf of an incompetent and hopelessly corrupt government in Afghanistan. If our ultimate goal, as the administration tells us, is a government that can effectively run the country, protect its own population and defeat the Taliban, our troops will be fighting and dying in Afghanistan for many, many years to come.

And they will be fighting and dying in a particularly unforgiving environment. Afghanistan is a mountainous, mostly rural country with notoriously difficult, lonely and dangerous roads — a pitch-perfect environment for terrorists and guerrillas. Linda Bilmes, a professor at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, has been working with the Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz to document the costs of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. She told me:

“The cost per troop of keeping the troops in Afghanistan is higher than the cost in Iraq because of the really difficult overland supply route and the heavy dependence on airlifting all kinds of supplies. There has been such a lot of trouble with the security of the supplies, and that, of course, becomes even more complicated the more troops you put in. So we’re estimating that, on average, the cost per troop in Afghanistan is at least 30 percent higher than it is in Iraq.”

The thought of escalating our involvement in Afghanistan reminded me of an exchange that David Halberstam described in “The Best and the Brightest.” It occurred as plans were being developed for the expansion of U.S. involvement in Vietnam. McGeorge Bundy, who served as national security adviser to Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, showed some of the elaborate and sophisticated plans to one of his aides. The aide was impressed, but also concerned.

“The thing that bothers me,” he told Bundy, “is that no matter what we do to them, they live there and we don’t, and they know that someday we’ll go away and thus they know they can outlast us.”

Bundy replied, “That’s a good point.”

We’ve already lost more than 5,000 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and spent a trillion or so dollars. The longer we stay in Afghanistan, the more resentful the local population will become about our presence, and the more resentful the American public will become about our involvement in a war that seems to have no end and no upside.

President Obama is being told (as Lyndon Johnson was told about Vietnam) that more resources will do the trick in Afghanistan — more troops, more materiel, more money. Even if it were true (I certainly don’t believe it), we don’t have those resources to give. It’s obscene what we’re doing to the men and women who have volunteered for the armed forces, sending them into the war zones for three, four and five tours.

The Army, in an effort to improve combat performance under these dreadful conditions, is planning intensive training for all of its soldiers in how to be more emotionally resilient. And, of course, a country that is going through the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and that counts its budget deficits by the trillions, has no choice but to lay the costs of current wars on the unborn backs of future generations.

Lyndon Johnson made the mistake of not listening to the Joe Bidens of his day. There’s a lesson in that for President Obama.

Anti War Demostration Jan 27, 2007

Bill Moyers Voice of Reason


I've included Janeane Garofalo in my Voices Of Reason videos because besides being a humorous comedian she can also see the nutty side of life through objectivity. In other words... She questions. She's a delight and she makes you THINK! ttb

Let's keep our heads, while we continue to watch THE