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The issue that the Dems are stressing is not the "we can't let A-rabs run our ports," but rather "everything is for sale in Washington right now." The Dems are basically stressing that the White House is putting economic interests (there are some reports about connections between port authorities and John Snow, for example) above security and safety issues. The port management is going to the company that makes most sense economically because of cronyism, so say the Dems. This bodes well for their "culture of corruption" meme they have been pushing. I do think there is some pandering (of course as with everything else in this country), and the Democrats are probably taking some cheap shots. But the GOP is basing their entire 2006 election cycle on security and terrorism once again, and the Dems are trying (desperately) to break that cycle.

Mikhail from SF
by Tsarrio (dj_tsar@yahoo.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 01:23:28 PM EST
Unfortunately, Joe Biden was on TV today doing the
"we can't let A-rabs run our ports," thing.

I suppose it is up for debate wether he's actually a Democrat or not...

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -Voltaire

by p------- on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 02:04:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No, what's up for debate is whether the Democratic party is what liberals (especially liberal bloggers) make it out to be.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 02:08:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You know, I was taken to task a few days ago for outright dismissing someone's comment.  And rightly so.  

I think may both right, making two separate points (Biden can be a wolf in sheep's clothing and the Democratic party can have altered its mission such that it no longer champions what "liberal bloggers" consider democratic values.)

I know I can have a dissmissive tone at times and I'm trying to be aware of that.  Can I ask the same of you?

Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. -Voltaire

by p------- on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 03:55:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sorry, I didn't mean to sound dismissive.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 04:29:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The issue for Democrats here is how to reconcile being "tough on security" in Americans' eyes with  standing true to their party's principles. Some people are able to be consistent, others like Joe Biden or Joe Lieberman fail miserably. They are still infinitely better than the GOP majority, because you can at least count on them half the time. At the same time though, in a country where political debate is limited to who makes the best soundbyte, how can any productive discourse take place without turning off potential voters? Just think back to 2004 when Kerry said we need to be "smart and sensitive" when it comes to using force to fight the war on terrorism. He was basically portrayed as a complete weakling by the opposition!

Mikhail from SF
by Tsarrio (dj_tsar@yahoo.com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 08:22:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's like trying to appear tough on crime while arguing against the death penalty. By the time you're done explaining your position your right-wind opponent has already gone through their entire platform.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 08:26:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
btw the wingnuts appear to have shot self in foot -- their passionate campaign to criminalise physicians over assisted suicide has borne strange fruit:  in California doctors are refusing to officiate at the execution of a condemned murderer on grounds that it violates the Hippocratic Oath and professional ethics...

The difference between theory and practise in practise ...
by DeAnander (de_at_daclarke_dot_org) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 08:31:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's fantastic.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 08:32:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
All they need to do is give up the lethal injection and go back to the electric chair, or hanging, or firing squad, or garrote, or guillotine, or drawing and quartering, or...

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 22nd, 2006 at 08:33:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm in favor of execution on the breaking wheel with live broadcast on all channels, over the air and cable, and compulsory attendance of the populace. Death penalty itself would be marched to the wheel pretty quickly :>
by Francois in Paris on Thu Feb 23rd, 2006 at 03:31:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
but rather "everything is for sale in Washington right now." The Dems are basically stressing that the White House is putting economic interests (there are some reports about connections between port authorities and John Snow, for example) above security and safety issues
Wait, go over the facts again.

A British company has been operating these ports, administratively, for years.  They, because of their own business reasons, decided to sell, and they sold to an Arabian company.  Neither Bush nor any other American had anything to do with that sale, or proposed sale--I'm not sure that's it's done yet.  But, our government (just like any other government buying a service from an outside company in a sensitive area) gets to review, and approve whether or not they will accept the service from basically the same workers,,,who will now work for this new Arab company.

There is nothing for sale,,,it's just as before.  There is no cronyism.  There is a right to review the new owner.

by wchurchill on Thu Feb 23rd, 2006 at 12:28:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
you'd here the same outcry. It's not a racial distinction butone based on the fact that some of these companies are inimical to the US interests. As such it makes no sense to give a contract for the ports to them.
by Upstate NY on Thu Feb 23rd, 2006 at 12:35:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It does seem that there may be some quid pro quo between UAE and us oil interests that are leading up to this sale, no real solid info yet, but that is to be expected with the Bush regime.

"I said, 'Wait a minute, Chester, You know I'm a peaceful man...'" Robbie Robertson
by NearlyNormal on Thu Feb 23rd, 2006 at 02:50:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
no real solid info yet, but that is to be expected with the Bush regime.
Perhaps you could share the unsolid info, and its source?
by wchurchill on Fri Feb 24th, 2006 at 01:01:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Pacifica Radio had a gentleman on Wed. that said he was an investigative reporter and that the story he was working on involved US oil companies trying to buy larger stakes in UAE companies than was currently permitted (49 percent maximum at this point).  He was investigating this and believed that the ties between the oil companies and the administration were being used to allow the sale of port authority to Government controlledDPW in exchange for greater access to that countries large oil and gas resources.

"I said, 'Wait a minute, Chester, You know I'm a peaceful man...'" Robbie Robertson
by NearlyNormal on Fri Feb 24th, 2006 at 10:32:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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