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An easy question
Aug 24th, 2009 by Ken Hagler

Where are the anti­war pro­test­ers now that we real­ly need them?.

Anti-war protests in all 50 states and in front of the hat­ed King Bush II”s Tex­as ranch were a fix­ture in Amer­i­can life and news­pa­pers from 2003 through mid-2008. The protests seem to have dis­ap­peared yet the ills of war remain. Let’s look at what is bad about our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan:

  • Amer­i­cans are being killed
  • Amer­i­can tax­pay­ers are being improver­ished
  • lim­it­ed Amer­i­can resources are divert­ed to unpro­duc­tive activ­i­ties (bomb­ing an opi­um fac­to­ry in Afghanistan is not like­ly to lead to long-term growth the way that build­ing a fac­to­ry in North Car­oli­na would)

All three of the­se things were bad in 2004 when the U.S. was rich and get­ting richer. They are even worse now. We have had a decline in birth rate and pop­u­la­tion growth due to the eco­nom­ic col­lapse. This makes the death of an Amer­i­can sol­dier if any­thing more cost­ly becuase there are few­er chil­dren grow­ing up to replace him or her. We have less mon­ey now, so what­ev­er it is that we’re spend­ing on our adven­tures amongst the Jihadis is less afford­able (http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0933935.html shows that spend­ing is high­er than ever and con­tin­u­ing to grow).

Given that the cost of the wars in Amer­i­can life and tax­pay­er funds is less bear­able now than before, how come the anti­war pro­test­ers seem to have melt­ed away?

[Philip Green­spun Weblog]

The answer to that is real­ly obvi­ous: those pro­test­ers were nev­er real­ly anti-war, only anti-a Repub­li­can being the one in charge of the war. Now that a Democ­rat is in the White House, the war is fine with them.

Standing up to the Evil Empire
May 29th, 2009 by Ken Hagler

Terrorist Pianos of Doom!. Toward the end of last month, a noteworthy incident occurred in the classical music life of Los Angeles:

Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman, who is widely admired for his virtuosic performances and who famously tours with his own custom-altered Steinway, created a furor at Disney Hall on Sunday night when he stopped his recital to announce that this would be his last American appearance -- in protest of the nation's military policies overseas.

In a low voice that could not be heard throughout the auditorium, Zimerman, universally considered among the world's finest pianists, made reference to Guantanamo Bay and U.S. military policies toward Poland.

"Get your hands off my country," he said.

Then he turned to the piano and played Szymanowski's "Variations on a Polish Folk Theme" with such passion and intensity that the stunned audience gave him multiple ovations.

Earlier, about 30 or 40 people in the audience had walked out after Zimerman's declaration, some shouting obscenities. "Yes," the pianist, known in Poland as "King Krystian the Glorious," answered, "some people, when they hear the word military, start marching."

[Once Upon a Time...]

The whole post is worth reading.

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