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Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Nathan Jacobson, an Israeli-Canadian businessman

Why does that ethnic classification, given the viewpoint expressed, seem somehow utterly unsurprising?

Because most of the news I read about Israel is just about humanity's oldest continuously-running war crime, I have no idea about Israeli views on climate change, actually, so I have no idea whether it should be surprising or not. I'm not ready to say the actions of this Jacobson character are directly related to Zionism.

This may be a dumb question, but if they're using that much natural gas, how can the extraction efforts even be profitable?

The connection, I think, has less to do with climate change than it does with the propensity to blame every possible action which opposes your own on terrorists.

You think the terrorist threat to the Canadian tar sands is far-fetched? Why, with all that tar, the terrorists could construct a giant Tar Baby, with which to entrap the U.S. military, potentially for decades.

Oh, wait - that's already happened.

Oh, get them out, get them out, dangerous Greenpeace terrists! (Yes, I choose to spell it that way).

God, these folks SO rock!

What struck me the most is what this illustrates about the filters through which elites and their faithful servants view the world—so in their view this isn't a group of concerned citizens trying to save the world, but an object lesson in potential terrorism.

Another example: when the Clinton administration was trying to drum up support for an assault on Iraq in 1998 it held a town hall in Ohio that was a total disaster—because some people there actually knew what was going on, and they used this opportunity to make Madeleine Albright, William Cohen, and Sandy Berger look like the vicious liars they were.

So what was L.A. Times reporter Robin Wright's response to this example of citizen engagement and informed opposition to war? That "it was clear that the administration hadn't done a very good job in bringing the public along" and "it was also clear that Saddam Hussein's propaganda had actually had an impact inside the United States." The notion that those people were making relevant and valid points, or that it was the Clintonites who were pushing the propaganda, apparently never crossed her mind; what mattered to her was the administration's ability to sell its war plans, and anyone who didn't fall in line with that effort was clearly just a dupe of Saddam Hussein. And if Wright hadn't internalized these filters, she wouldn't have been writing for a major media outlet.

A nice example of the mindset John is talking about, coincidentally, also from the LA Times:

In an incident that could seriously undermine the central U.S. aim in Afghanistan, dozens of civilians were killed or injured early Friday in a NATO airstrike, Afghan authorities said.

What's the lede? Not the deaths of the Afghans themselves, but how their deaths could "undermine" our "aims." I really don't see how you could more clearly state that we really don't give a shit about these people, except to type, "You know, we really don't give a shit about these people."

Their lives (or their deaths, for that matter) only have importance insofar as they advance or impdede U.S. "aims."

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