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speaking of propaganda

Reader Sondra sent me a link to this story, concerning her state senator, that almost made me lose my lunch:

Speaking at Columbia River High School, [Senator Pat] Murray, D-Wash., responded to questions from students, most about the war on terrorism or government spending for education.

Murray met at Columbia River with world history students and student government leaders. Across town, Hudson's Bay High School students participated via teleconference.

Murray concluded the session by challenging the students to consider alternatives to war.

"We've got to ask, why is this man (Osama bin Laden) so popular around the world?," said Murray, who faces re-election in 2004. "Why are people so supportive of him in many countries … that are riddled with poverty?

"He's been out in these countries for decades, building schools, building roads, building infrastructure, building day care facilities, building health care facilities, and the people are extremely grateful. We haven't done that.

"How would they look at us today if we had been there helping them with some of that rather than just being the people who are going to bomb in Iraq and go to Afghanistan?"

So, she challenged the students to think how we could be more like the man who masterminded the plan to crush America.

There are plenty of philanthropic people who, at the end of the day, are still raging assholes. Giving money to charities and building bridges does not mean that people should follow your lead. Most likely, in bin Laden's case, he had ulterior motives for everything he did that seemed "neighborly."

I resent the fact that a senator of the United States went into a classroom and shoved her leftist propaganda bullshit down the students' throats.

Before you lefties start in on me, imagine if a right-wing senator went into your child's class and asked them to suppor the war, or support Israel or any of your perceived enemies. You would be marching on the school campus within minutes.

"War is expensive too," she said. "Your generation ought to be thinking about whether we should be better neighbors out in other countries so that they have a different vision of us.

"It is a debate I think we ought to have."

Better neighbors? Should we start by having Saddam over for a cup of tea and a nice chat? Shut down the INS so anyone and everyone can come on over here, earn an engineering degree with student loans and then make a plan to blow the USA to pieces? Perhaps we should extend a welcoming hand to North Korea. You know, share plans for nuclear annihilation over a sandwich.

Murray opened Wednesday's event telling the students, "You'll be graduating into a world that is very difficult. … The economy is struggling. War in Iraq is a very real possibility in the short term" and could cost $200 billion even if it were to last only a few weeks.

The cost of waging war could result in cuts to domestic programs such as Pell grants for college students, she said.

Remember Natalie's project on propaganda from this morning? Her history teacher could use Senator Murray as a prime example.

Murray did respond to the paper, stating that "Osama Bin Laden is an evil terrorist," but she also said in the statement "Having a challenging and thoughtful discussion about America’s future reflects the best values of a free democracy; To sensationalize and distort in an attempt to divide is not."

Oh, really? What was that bit about how a war could result in cuts to Pell grants? Engaging in a bit of scare tacticts, there?

She also stated in her response "How else can we bring America's values to those who do not understand us?"

News flash, Senator. I guess you haven't been keeping up with current events because those people do not want our values. In fact, some of them want us to adopt their values and threaten to kill us all if we don't.

Good neighbors, indeed.

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» http://www.juangato.com/blog/002951.php from Juan Gato's Bucket o' Rants
Notice: Patty Murray releases a statement. She does not actually speak. Remember that in the context of what I said [Read More]

Comments

Two observations:

1) Approriate sentiment, considering alternatives. Critical thinking is always good.

2) HORRIBLY inappropriate choice of role models.

I'm a Librul, and I've always admired Sen. Murray, but even I have to admit that she is out of bounds on this one.

Hey........and the Evergreen State College once had Mumia as commencement speaker..from prison. Talk about inappropriate choice of role models.....I live in Loony land!!!!!!!!!!

People like Senator Murray keep me awake at night worrying how I'm going to trust schools with my own kids (when I have them).

Just one question though...If it is true (which I think it is) that the leftish parents would march if a rightie came in a preached pro-war propaganda, why can't the parents who are justifyably appalled at Senator Murray march into the school and say so? Even if they are few in number--even if they aren't THEY but just one person, why not?

Guess I better be prepared to be the lone voice in the wilderness or save my pennies for private school!

My sister says that if anyone came and said things like Murray said to her kids, she's bring child abuse charges.

I we thought like OBL, Mecca and Medina would be nuclear glass right now. I'm shocked, shocked that a US Senator would ever suggest such a horrific policy.

Woodland

Her spewing doesn't shock me in the least.

There is a LOT more of that where she came from..... The US Senate....

no, no. he's perfectly right. we need to have saddam over for tea and discuss it rationally. just exactly like mr. potter's kittens up there, having tea. he can be the stuffed one. hush, now. it's a good idea. shhhhhhh.

Is the pressure of a Bush presidency coupled with Republican mid-term gains driving some on the Left insane? It's a valid question. The Left seems to have become a genuine nuthatch in the past year or so.

If Bush wins in 2004, look for general apoplexy to set in...send for the guys in the white coats.

Ah yes, the smarmy questions that limit the range of solutions to stupid alternatives favored by the questioner.

Ah yes, the smarmy questions that limit the range of solutions to stupid alternatives favored by the questioner.

The best part is her saying that bin Laden funds day care centers! So the muslim ladies don't have to choose between motherhood and a career I suppose.

Her spokesperson went on lefty auto-pilot today, screaming how anyone with any problem with what she said was just a "right wing hater."

I have the sad fate to be one of Senator Murray's constituents. Every state gets to to have a chance to vote for a fucknozzle for Senator. (Thanks Michele for a great epithet!) Washington State is the Mississippi of the left.

What the fu...???
My dog (scratch that, a bag of rocks) has more sense than this Murray creature. Damn, but she's dumb...and believe me, I know dumb first-hand...I live in CA, home to Barbara "Best of Breed" Boxer, AKA the Smallest Brain in the US Senate.

First the stupidest man in the Senate identifies himself, now the stupidest woman raises her hand. I'll bet the DNC is ballistic.
The bit about Pell grants was a simple appeal to greed-just another variation on "Unless you listen to me and back me, 'they' are going to take away your federal freebies.".

The moron President keeps outsmarting everyone. Its sent the left over the edge. Charles is right.

I think Patty Murray is 100% right and I'll support her.

Trent Lott
Jackson, MS

What makes one wonder about Murray's IQ--or at least whether she reads the papers--is her reference to BL "bulding schools." Doesn't she know these scholls are madrassahs, those institutions which don't teach anything to do with knowledge but only inculcate hate in seven-year olds via the facist branch of Wahhabi Islam. Certainly it is now hard to regard Murray as a spokeswoman for education.

I just have one question for The Honorable Ms. Murray about the "day care centers."

Name ONE.

While I can understand telling children that war is bad, peace is good and such ("Blessed are the peacemakers") - the United States' through the Peace Corps and plenty of other organizations builds more infrastructure for the world than OBL. Murry's statements seem to point to her not knowing this (odd for a US Senator who votes on the budgets for such things, really strange - dumb, in fact). Plus, characterizing OBL as "so popular" is odd. Is he "popular"? My take is that he's "gotten a lot of attention"; Yasser Arafat is "popular," Michael Jackson is "popular." Etc.

Dear Mizz Murray,

Just exactly how much has bin Laden spent on projects that genuinely help humanity?

How much has America spent?

Do you think it is even close?

He spent a lot to bribe the Taliban? Is that why they love him so? Should we have supported the Taliban?

Looking forward to your "challenging and thoughtful" answers to these questions.

Moron.

Sincerely,

Snippet

Even I have a problem with what Patty Murray did and I'm a lefty. I have big problem with anyone who enters a school - whether visitor or educator - who proselytize their political viewpoint on kids. Teach them history, have them debate current events, but don't lay your right wing or left wing bullshit on my kid. It's happening in my daughter's school where we've got some right wing asshole teacher talking the evils of pro-choice and how corporate scandal is a liberal hoax.

It's not his fecking place...any more than it is Senator Patty's place to get in there and talk up Philanthropy by Osama.

I just heard about this comment on the radio. Unbelievable!! What planet does this woman live on? Certainly not the same as the rest of us. So, let's get this straight, Trent Lott was forced to resign his post because of a thoughtless remark made at a private gathering among adults, and this woman goes to our public schools and speaks to our children? She shouldn't resign, she should be tarred, feathered,and run out of the country.

This discussion is a convenient example of how we will, if not lose the overall "war on terror," then how we will make it much more difficult and costly to ourselves. Not only do we not want to ask ourselves the difficult questions, we don't even want to hear anyone begin to ask them.

Clearly, Ms. Murray could have done a much better job of making the point she was trying to make. And I suppose it can make us feel good to hold up her bogey-(wo)man image and feel good about ourselves by comparison. But this prevents us from doing the real work we have to do.

The "war on terror" is, ultimately, a fight against a mindset. We have to conquer not only the armed soldiers of Al-Qaeda, but the hearts and minds of the more moderate populace which tolerates their activities. To succeed in that, we must understand why they would tolerate terrorist policies and attacks. How else can we combat it--through comforting, reflexive, self-satisfied ignorance of those same hearts and minds?

To ask the questions which lead us to knowledge of our enemy (and, indeed, our enemy's base of ideological support) should hardly cause us to "lose our lunch." It should be our patriotic duty.

There are ways to do this better than Ms. Murray, but the reaction to her in this forum suggests that even this possibility is repugnant to many in this country.

Too bad. Enjoy your war.

The real problem today is that what passes for
reasoned discourse is actually a collection of
ill-informed (or completely uninformed) egotists
shouting their half-baked rhetoric and empty
sloganeering at the top of their lungs. The idea
seems to be that those who can keep it up the
longest and the loudest are the ones who are right
and who deserve to win. Sadly, in the process a
little thing called the truth gets lost.

While Senator Murray's comments (as reported, I
wasn't there to hear them) were artless, they did
contain a grain of truth. One of the reasons Bin
Laden has some support in the moslem world (note:
not every moslem supports him, probably not even
most) is because of the public works he has paid
for. And yes, some of the schools he sponsored
were the brain-washing acadamies we know as
"madrassahs", but who helped him (and the Taliban)
to take over Afghanistan? Answer: the U.S.
government, as part of a short sighted anti-
communist policy.

Now before the usual suspects start condemning me
as a "pinko", bear in mind that opposing the
soviet invasion of Afghanistan was certainly the
right thing to do. The short-sighted part of the
policy is the way we abandonned that country to
the Taliban and to Bin Laden after the soviets
were driven out. Instead, we should have been
working to provide a democratic and moderate
alternative.

Consider the lesson of history. After World War I
the decision was made in the Versailles Treaty
to punish Germany with restrictions on its
industry, and demands for crippling reparations.
The result: Hitler and World War II. Fortunately,
we learned our lesson the second time around,
and after WWII we created the Marshall Plan:
the most unique and generous response of a
victorius nation (US) to its conquered enemy,
and its shattered allies. The result: not only
did our own economy benefit from the demands for
American goods that Europe needed to rebuild,
but over 50 years of almost complete peace reigned
in Europe (a unique experience for that bloody
continent). And, of course, Germany took and
kept its place in the world as a peaceful and
democratic nation.

The point is that our track record in Afghanistan
(and in other parts of the world) more closely
resembles the Versailles Treaty than the Marshall
Plan; we win the battle, but by failing to
follow through end up losing the war, and have to
fight the same battle all over again. Ominously,
we seem to be repeating that mistake in Afghanistan
today. We are sending aid, but is it enough?
There are signs the Taliban are creeping back in.

Of course, we must protect ourselves. And, yes,
that must mean using force where necessary. But
if we rely solely on force, then we will lose in
the end. And thumping our chests like "a summer
soldier and a sunshine patriot" will not solve
these problems.

So merely stating the obvious (Bin Laden is an
evil man, and so are those who work with him), is
not enough. Learning what drives them to that
evil, and learning how to prevent others from
taking that same path, is the only solution. To
put it another way, if building more schools,
feeding more people, and providing a better life
for the poor of the earth will help, isn't that
more efficient than just dropping bombs
everywhere? The war on terrorism is a war we must
fight to win, but let's use every weapon in our
arsenal: our brains as well as our brawn, our
generosity as well as our military might.

Why are so many American people afraid to look at our country in a critical light? We have made many many mistakes in our foreign policy yet posing tough questions brings cries of outrage. President Ronald Reagan ordered the CIA to train Osama Bin Laden to be a terrorist in 1985. We were supporting the muhjahdin groups because we wanted the Soviets out of Afghanistan. So does anyone now think that providing Bin Laden with superpower-grade weapons and guerilla training was a good idea? Is it a good idea for President Bush to order the Pentagon to provide $92 million in weapons and training to "opposition groups" in Iraq (last week, cbsnews.com)? Who are these opposition groups and when will they turn their shiny new American- built weapons and modern military training on our troops or - worse - American civilians?

But nobody wants to think about that, do they? I'm outraged that our president is a warmonger who does not have any concept of the horrors or war. I'm outraged that he went AWOL for a year during his military "service" as a n aviator in the National Guard during the Vietnam war yet here is is diligently working to put our soldiers in harm's way. For what?

Businesses that don't ask tough questions about their performance and their tactics go bankrupt and dissapear. So will our nation - and our very existence - if we do not do the same. The fate of the earth is in our hands but we go forth with blinders on. Unwilling to question our tactics, confront facts, learn from our past or heed the warnings of the world community.

It's a mess alright but besides Gordon and a few others, m ost of you would rather lose yourselves in rage and righteous indignation. Why don't you take a hard look at what we've been up to for the past 30 years or so?

Try this: http://www.liquidtodd.com/newsandviews/viceguide.html

Todd, NYC

Why are so many American people afraid to look at our country in a critical light? We have made many many mistakes in our foreign policy yet posing tough questions brings cries of outrage.

Ah, I see. Excusing terrorism is just about "posing tough questions". And the only possible explanation for our not agreeing with OBL's conclusions is that we are afraid.

Would observing that you have kitty litter for brains be an unfair argument?

President Ronald Reagan ordered the CIA to train Osama Bin Laden to be a terrorist in 1985.

The CIA trained him to be a guerrlia fighter to oppose Soviet occupation of the country.

Unless you can provide proof that the CIA trained him to kill civilians, then you guilty of outright lying.

Tell me, where in Osama's CIA training did we tell him to go over to russia and start killing civilians? Oh, we DIDN'T?

Your idea of "tough questions" is "questions that gratuitously slam the U.S."

Forgive me for observing that questions that don't pass the giggle test don't deserve to be called tough.

I'm outraged that our president is a warmonger who does not have any concept of the horrors or war.

That's your idea of a tough question? Looks like a foaming at the mouth rabid slur to me.

... yet here is is diligently working to put our soldiers in harm's way. For what?

To prevent your ungrateful ass, since you asked.

You are not asking questions. You are demanding that we come up with the same answers you have.

And THAT is why people yawn and tune you out, in case you were wondering.

The stupidity of people never ceases to amaze me. The comments here show how stupid we can be. Not one person has a clue what they are talking about. It is like 3 year old children talking about Relativity. The people who don't recognize the history which Britain & the US have perpetuated are doomed to suffer it's result. And NO that doesn't mean everyone else is good! Try real hard to hold two opposing thoughts in your little right-wing skulls. This is not a sport. GROW UP!!!

I hate these damn liberals who are just a bunch of hipocrits. They support these Arabs and the Jews too. And these bitchy women who think they know whats best for us. I say let George Bush do his job and wipe out the terrorists so we can get on to living life without all these idiots.