Obama spanks Cheney

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Getting some perspective

Bruce Schneider responds to criticisms of technology like Google Earth.

Criminals have used telephones and mobile phones since they were invented. Drug smugglers use airplanes and boats, radios and satellite phones. Bank robbers have long used cars and motorcycles as getaway vehicles, and horses before then. I haven’t seen it talked about yet, but the Mumbai terrorists used boats as well. They also wore boots. They ate lunch at restaurants, drank bottled water, and breathed the air. Society survives all of this because the good uses of infrastructure far outweigh the bad uses, even though the good uses are – by and large – small and pedestrian and the bad uses are rare and spectacular. And while terrorism turns society’s very infrastructure against itself, we only harm ourselves by dismantling that infrastructure in response – just as we would if we banned cars because bank robbers used them too.

Precisely.  You don’t go banning things because some morons put them to good use.

Dreaming of victory

Good, muyst-read analysis of why things aren’t as they seem, at least as reported by the media.  Don’t believe the GOP talking points that the “Surge” is working.

Unfortunately, no one seems to be calling our elected officials or the traditional media on this nonsensical idea that the “Petraeus strategy” should be credited with stanching the flow of blood.  No one seems to notice that, as with everything else in Iraq, the Iraqis are going to do what they want, when they want.  When al-Sadr lays down his arms, there will be relative peace.  When he takes them up, Americans will die in dozens.

Regardless, the fortunes of Iraq will turn on Iraqi decisions made in Baghdad and Najaf, not in Washington, D.C. and the halls of Congress.  As this situation shows, peace in Iraq lies in the hands of Iraqis.  It cannot—and will not—be forced by Americans at the point of a gun.

Read it in full.

The GOP id

Via Digby.

It was quite interesting watching the Republicans debate down in South Carolina tonight. I think it’s clear that this group has come to fully understand that winning the GOP nomination is all about the codpiece. These guys have just spent the last fifteen minutes of the debate trying to top each other on just how much torture they are willing to inflict. They sound like a bunch of psychotic 12 year olds, although considering the puerile nature of the “24” question it’s not entirely their fault. This debate is a very clear insight into what really drives the GOP id

Sad and true.