Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“A society that gets rid of all its troublemakers goes downhill.”     Robert A. Heinlein

February 16, 2006

More Abu-Ghraib?

by Kay

Two years ago, for a brief period, I tried my hand at my first blog, which I called “Kayz In”. Hurricanes and other life experiences happened, and I gave it up – just had too many other stressors in my life at the time. But there was one post I made highlighting an interview documented by Ali at Iraq the Model that I felt never got the attention it deserved – and so, begging your indulgence, I’d like to invite you to read “below the fold” the article “Just Another thought on the Abu Ghraib Scandal”, originally written by me in May, 2004.

Just another thought on the Abu Ghraib Scandal

I must confess. My first thoughts when looking at those first images broadcast around the world was this:

1) Who the heck are these soldiers? In what kind of environment did they grow up that they would think posing and taking these kind of pictures was an okay thing to do? It’s just sick.

2) These “humiliated” prisoners do not show body language in many cases that speak to me of humiliation. I see very open body postures, some standing tall. In only a couple of the photos that I saw (and no, I certainly haven’t seen them all – only the ones posted by the mainstream media) was there anyone “cowering” or appearing to be really intimidated. Frankly, in a couple of the shots, it appeared to me that the body language of the “humiliated” made it appear that they were enjoying themselves.

Now, I’m not saying anyone was complicit, but check out some of these things posted by some fellow bloggers (The first two are from Iraqi bloggers, last an article from the American Spectator):

Ali writes of a meeting of a doctor friend who spent a month of service in Abu Ghraib working alongside the American Soldiers and questioning him on his experiences there (Ali’s questions in italics, answers in bold)(Saturday, May 8 IraqtheModel):

So tell me what did you see there? How’s the situation of the prisoners? Did you see any abuse? Do they get proper medical care? (I was excited to see someone who was actually there, and he was a friend!)

Hey, slow down! I’ll tell you what I know. First of all, the prisoners are divided into two groups; the ordinary criminals and the political ones. I used to visit the ordinary criminals during every shift, and after that, the guards would bring anyone who has a complaint to me at the prison’s hospital.

What about the ‘political’ ones?

I’m not allowed to go to their camps, but when one of them feels ill, the guards bring him to me.

Are the guards all Americans?

No, the American soldiers with the IP watch over and take care of the ordinary criminals, but no one except the Americans is allowed to get near the political ones

How are the medical supplies in the prison?

Not very great, but certainly better from what it was on Saddam’s times. However my work is mainly at night, but in the morning the supplies are usually better.

How many doctors, beside you, were there?

There was an American doctor, who’s always their (His name is Eric, a very nice guy, he and I became friends very fast), and other Iraqi doctors with whom I shared the work, and in the morning, there are always some Iraqi senior doctors; surgeons, physicians…etc.


Why do you say they are very well treated?

They are fed much better than they get at their homes. I mean they eat the same stuff we eat, and it’s pretty good; eggs, cheese, milk and tea, meat, bread and vegetables, everything! And that happened every day, and a good quality too.

Are they allowed to smoke? (I asked this because at Saddam’s times, it was a crime to smoke in prison and anyone caught while doing this would be punished severely).

Yes, but they are given only two cigarettes every day.

What else? How often are they allowed to take a bath? (This may sound strange to some people, but my friend understood my question. We knew from those who spent sometime in Saddam’s prisons, and survived, that they were allowed to take a shower only once every 2-3 weeks.)

Anytime they want! There are bathrooms next to each hall.


Is it the same with the ‘political’ prisoners?

I never went there, but I suppose it’s the same because they were always clean when they came to the hospital, and their clothes were always clean too.

How often do they shave? (I remember a friend who spent 45 days in prison at Saddam’s times had told me that the guards would inspect their beards every day to see if they were shaved properly, and those who were not, would be punished according to the guards’ mood. He also told me that they were of course not allowed to have any shaving razors or machines and would face an even worse punishment in case they found some of these on one of the prisoners. So basically all the prisoners had to smuggle razors, which cost a lot, shave in secrecy and then get rid of the razor immediately! That friend wasn’t even a political prisoner; he was arrested for having a satellite receiver dish in his house!)

I’m not sure, from what I saw, it seemed that there was a barber visiting them frequently, because they had different hair cuts, some of them shaved their beards others kept them or left what was on their chins only. I mean it seemed that they had the haircut they desired!

Yes but what about the way they are treated? And how did you find American soldiers in general?

I’ll tell you about that; first let me tell you that I was surprised with their politeness. Whenever they come to the hospital, they would take of their helmets and show great respect and they either call me Sir or doctor. As for the way they treat the prisoners, they never handcuff anyone of those, political or else, when they bring them for examination and treatment unless I ask them to do so if I know that a particular prisoner is aggressive, and I never saw them beat a prisoner and rarely did one of them use an offensive language with a prisoner.

One of those times, a member of the American MP brought one of the prisoners, who was complaining from a headache, but when I tried to take history from him he said to me “doctor, I had a problem with my partner (he was a homosexual) I’m not Ok and I need a morphine or at least a valium injection” when I told him I can’t do that, he was outraged, swore at me and at the Americans and threatened me. I told the soldier about that, and he said “Ok Sir, just please translate to him what I’m going to say”. I agreed and he said to him “I want you to apologize to the doctor and I want your word as a man that you’ll behave and will never say such things again” and the convict told him he has his word!!

Another incidence I remember was when one of the soldiers brought a young prisoner to the hospital. The boy needed admission but the soldier said he’s not comfortable with leaving the young boy (he was about 18) with those old criminals and wanted to keep him in the isolation room to protect him. I told him that this is not allowed according to the Red Cross regulations. He turned around and saw the paramedics’ room and asked me if he can keep him there, and I told him I couldn’t. The soldier turned to a locked door and asked me about it. I said to him “It’s an extra ward that is almost deserted but I don’t have the keys, as the director of the hospital keeps them with him”. The soldier grew restless, and then he brought some tools, broke that door, fixed it, put a new lock, put the boy inside and then locked the door and gave me the key!

Did you witness any aggressiveness from American soldiers?

Only once. There was a guy who is a troublemaker. He was abnormally aggressive and hated Americans so much. One of those days the soldiers were delivering lunch and he took the soup pot that was still hot and threw it at one of the guards. The guard avoided it and the other guards caught the convict and one of them used an irritant spray that causes sever itching, and then they brought the prisoner to me to treat him.

So you think that these events are isolated?


As far as I know and from what I’ve seen, I’m sure that they are isolated.

But couldn’t it be true that there were abusive actions at those times that the prisoners were afraid to tell you about?

Are you serious!? These criminals, and I mean both types tell me all about there ‘adventures and bravery’. Some of them told me how they killed an American soldier or burned a humvee, and in their circumstances this equals a confession! Do you think they would’ve been abused and remained silent and not tell me at least!? No, I don’t think any of this happened during the time I was there. It seemed that this happened to a very small group of whom I met no one during that month.

Can you tell me anything about those ‘political’ prisoners? Are they Islamists, Ba’athists or what?

Islamists?? I don’t care what they call themselves, but they are thugs, they swear all the time, and most of them are addicts or homosexuals or both. Still very few of them looked educated.

Ah, that makes them close to Ba’athists. Do you think there are innocents among them?


There could be. Some of them say they are and others boast in front of me, as I said, telling the crimes they committed in details. Of course I’m not naive enough to blindly believe either.

Are they allowed to get outside, and how often? Do they have fans or air coolers inside their halls?

Of course they are! Even you still compare this to what it used to be at Saddam’s times and there’s absolutely no comparison. They play volleyball or basketball everyday, and they have fans in their halls.

Do they have sport suits?

No, it’s much better than Saddam’s days but it’s still a prison and not the Sheraton. They use the same clothes but I’ve seen them wearing train shoes when they play.

Are they allowed to read?


Yes, I’ve seen the ordinary criminals read, and I believe the political are allowed too, because I remember one of them asking me to tell one of the American soldiers that he wanted his book that one of the soldiers had borrowed from him.


So, you believe there’s a lot of clamor here?

As you said these things are unaccepted but I’m sure that they are isolated and they are just very few exceptions that need to be dealt with, but definitely not the rule. The rule is kindness, care and respect that most of these thugs don’t deserve, and that I have seen by my own eyes. However I still don’t understand why did this happen.

I agree with you, only it’s not about the criminals, it’s about the few innocents who could suffer without any guilt and it’s about us; those who try to build a new Iraq. We can’t allow ourselves to be like them and we can’t go back to those dark times.
As for “why”; I must say that these few exceptions happen everywhere, only in good society they can be exposed and dealt with fast, while in corrupted regimes, it may take decades for such atrocities to be exposed which encourage the evil people to go on, and exceptions become the rule.

What happened in Abu-Gharib should be a lesson for us, Iraqis, above all. It showed how justice functions in a democratic society. We should study this lesson carefully, since sooner or later we’ll be left alone and it will be our responsibility to deal with such atrocities, as these will never cease to happen.

Next, lets visit the blog of Alaa (The Mesopotamian – May 14)

Friday, May 14, 2004
Hi,

I am deeply suspicious, regarding this affair of prison abuse and the photographs. Not being particularly one who sees conspiracies everywhere, but this one does smell strangely. The nature of the abuses, the photography and the timing: all that cannot be just coincidental. The objectives seem clear and need not be explained. Discrediting and attacking the moral position of the Allies in the most sensitive area of human rights, which they champion, and which constitutes the main moral justification for overthrowing the Saddam regime is clearly the purpose and the intent of this affair.

Apart from the obvious parties who may be interested in achieving the above objective, there may be other quite subterranean and unsuspected quarters. I don’t know exactly who these may be, but like good detectives we should consider all those who may have interest in aborting the mission. Perhaps the emergence of a moderate, democratic and decent system in the middle east, and particularly in an “Arab” country; a system which is allied to the U.S. and commands respect and consequently has some influence; perhaps this proposition is not particularly attractive to certain currents of thinking in the most unexpected places.

In the lax situation and the “failure of leadership”, and the practice of employing “contractors” of dubious nature; have you not considered that bribes and money might have been used to “stage” these events?

Yes, I am profoundly, deeply suspicious.

Salaam

Finally, this little article appears in the American Spectator
Emmett Tyrrell, Jr. notes in paragraph five an article written in early 2002 by Matt Labash in the weekly standard:

MAY I REFER FELLOW skeptics to a first-person report on the folkways and mores of Arab prisoners at Guantanamo written by Matt Labash in early 2002? Writing in the Weekly Standard he reported asking Marine jailers “if they’ve seen anything weird.” The Marines, continues Labash, “laugh sheepishly, looking at each other. Finally, Sgt. Josh Westbrook, who sports a forearm tattoo of flaming baby heads, steps up. ‘They know they’re being watched,’ he explains, ‘so they’ll stare at you, and while they stare at you, they’ll, uh, masturbate.’”

The Marines believed that their Islamic fundamentalist masturbators were particularly avid “to embarrass the female Army guards.”

“The weirdness doesn’t end there,” reports Labash. “They’ve also eaten their toiletries and urinated on equipment. ‘The other day,’ says Westbrook, ‘one of the guys tried to do a naked cartwheel.’ In the most bizarre twist,” writes Labash, “Lance Corporal Devin Klebaur says a few have also been known to ‘put toothpaste in their ass.’”

So, given all this, you can see why I might be a tad sceptical . . .

Kayz Out


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15 Comments

  1. Yeah, that’s it, the pictures must be fake, because Americans are good and don’t torture. God, you people are so stupid. Normally I would say wake up, but it is obvious that you have your whole lives and self-images wrapped up in believing what you do. You won’t wake up. I suppose you still think that “they” hate you because of your “freedoms”.

    I should point out that the Pentagon has admitted that the photos are real. The only question now is how you you can spin it away. Don’t worry, no one in America will remember in a week when Britney does something or other.

    If you really want to know the truth, join your Army, then you’ll know. But hey you’ve got some fat kids to take care of right? Let someone else burn the Iraqis alive.

    Comment by gary_7vn — February 16, 2006 @ 4:07 pm
  2. Maybe they were doing these things because they had been driven mad by torture, beatings and never-ending interogations by pimply faced soldiers bent on revenge for 911. After all Cheney, Bush, and Rice all said Saddam was involved and the President would not lie right?

    “You’re doin a heck of a job Brownie”.

    Comment by gary_7vn — February 16, 2006 @ 4:12 pm
  3. Ah yes. When you can’t bring meaningful comments to the discussion, be sure to insult your hosts. I’ve never asserted the the pictures were fake, only that I suspect there is more to the story than the way it has been spun in the media and by those who were accused. And the vileness that is prevalent in our society, in our schools, and yes, even in comments on blogs such as this one do nothing but reinforce my belief that it is the fault of the persons who have been convicted – no matter whether they committed them of their own volition or were coerced by their “higher ups”. I can guarantee you – my own will and sense of what is right would NOT allow me to have committed those acts on any human being – no matter who “commanded” it. If you don’t stand for something in this life, you are guaranteed to fall.

    Comment by Kay — February 16, 2006 @ 4:22 pm
  4. “Frankly, in a couple of the shots, it appeared to me that the body language of the “humiliated” made it appear that they were enjoying themselves.”

    Yes, you are correct, I should not have called you stupid. I should let everyone make their own determination, based on on what you say.

    I think the statement above and the people you have chosen to quote make it pretty clear whom you believe about the torture question.

    Now you seem to be saying that there was torture, and that you would never have done such a thing. Probably not, but many would and did – it’s undeniable at this point. America invaded Iraq for reasons other than those stated at the time, and then proceeded to kill 30,000 to 130,000 Iraqi civilians, while at the same time, arresting and torturing untold thousands more. It’s war Kay, in a war, whoever is winning commits atrocities on the losers, it’s not particularily and American thing, except that you are so good at fighting wars in America, that you have killed millions since World war two. Always for good reasons of course. America is now the most hated country in the world. We did not just wake up and decide to hate America. America is hated because of their policies and their practices (invasion, exploitation, torture, death squads) and then worst of all – Macdonalds.

    Comment by gary_7vn — February 16, 2006 @ 4:40 pm
  5. All I can say to you, without getting too graphic – is that as a married woman I can’t imagine an intimidated male, in fear of their lives or well being, being able to “masturbate” in any form or fashion. So, I can say only that I stand behind what I wrote two years ago and hope that others will actually read and consider the interview and writings of the Iraqi’s I chose to quote. And we as Americans do not fight wars to “invade, exploit, torture, etc.” but in an effort to keep such things away from our shores and protect our way of life.

    Comment by Kay — February 16, 2006 @ 5:01 pm
  6. Gary,

    First, I challenge your belief that the United States is the most hated country in the world. It certainly might be in Western Europe, but Western European opinion doesn’t even come close to representing popular global thought (if there IS such a thing).

    Second, I’m amused that you’ve somehow managed to justify your own US-hatred. That’s fine, but using a mixture of vague, relativistic terms and unsupported accusations isn’t going to sway anyone on this forum.

    Third, what I took away from the post (as I understood it) is to be skeptical of the immediate conclusion reached about the photos. More specifically, to be skeptical of the conclusion reached by much of the world and pushed by the mainstream media. Fine. To call Kay stupid because you disagree with this and then proceed to go on US bashing rant is off-topic. Simply explain why you think the photographs should be taken at face value. My guess is, judging by your use of epithets and usual left-wing memes, that you’ve never rationally debated anything in your life.

    Comment by Bret — February 17, 2006 @ 10:46 am
  7. “Third, what I took away from the post (as I understood it) is to be skeptical of the immediate conclusion reached about the photos. More specifically, to be skeptical of the conclusion reached by much of the world and pushed by the mainstream media.”

    You got it, Bret! I hope a few others have “gotten it” as well. It appears like a number of folks have migrated here to read – and as Gary is the only one who has come with negative comment, I can only surmise that others either agreed or decided it wasn’t worth their commentary.

    Comment by Kay — February 17, 2006 @ 11:19 am
  8. Skepticism of someone else’s conclusions, whether they agree with your own thinking, or not, is intellectually healthy. I didn’t particularly see any reason to pile on to Kay’s post with a “me too” comment.

    Gary, I’m the owner of The Liberty Papers. Before you post again, you might want to check our comment policy. Your comments about Kay and her children was way out of line. I haven’t taken any action yet, but another such comment will be deleted without warning. The use of personal attacks to try and discredit your opponent in a debate is a very common logical fallacy, but it isn’t a good way to convince anyone that you are correct.

    Comment by Eric — February 17, 2006 @ 11:35 am
  9. Yes,thank-you I get the message. Only Bush lovers and Republicans here. The fat kids was meant in a larger sense, it was not directed at “Kay” about whom I know nothing except what she or he writes. If you people here just want to ping around here, with everyone reinforcing each others beliefs, enjoy your selves. I like to have my beliefs challenged, that’s why I am here. I want to hear both sides of the arguments. And if I result to the occassional insult, I am sorry, I know it’s not a good idea, but I do want you to understand how people who do not get all their news from Fox and right wing blogs feel.

    These photos are clearly photos of people who have been abused in an American run prison. If you like you can try to explain it all away – if you want. I would prefer to do the analysis.

    BTW Bret, “…I’m amused that you’ve somehow managed to justify your own US-hatred. That’s fine, but using a mixture of vague, relativistic terms and unsupported accusations isn’t going to sway anyone on this forum.” I knew going in that I was not going sway anyone. Have you ever convinced anybody of anything in your entire life Bret? I mean on an important matter that they have pre-formed opinions on? No, neither have I, but I keep hoping that the weight of all those bodies, both American, Iraqi, et al will crash through ordinary Americans rationalisations. What hope could I have in a forum where people look at bloody, broken bodies in an American prison, and then really really work at coming up with some other explanation other than the obvious one – that they were tortured or abused! Instead we get comments like: …is to be skeptical of the immediate conclusion reached about the photos. More specifically, to be skeptical of the conclusion reached by much of the world and pushed by the mainstream media.”

    And America is most assuredly now the most hated country in the world, bar none. What are thinking of? Iran? Canada? Sweden? Oh, that’s right – it’s Denmark! I am not talking about Western Europe in particular; have a look at: Mexico, South America, Asia, you know – the world. I don’t mean the world as shown on FOX, I mean the real world pal. The one it is no longer safe for you to travel in.

    And I don’t hate America. It’s your leadership. Most Americans will be deeply disturbed at what has been done in their names, that’s if they ever wake up and stop calling documented torture pictures MSM propaganda! I hope that someday you realise that torture, invasion for oil, and geo-political advantage, is anti-Christian, and anti-American (as espoused in your constitution and bill of rights – both fine documents). What I hate, what billions of people like me hate, is the neo-con junta that has hi-jacked your government to implement it’s plans for a new world order as outlined by PNAC.

    I can also document anything I said about invasion torture etc. but why would I? Just read some history about Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia (millions – MILLIONS of dead civilians) Every day in Laos, someone steps on a American made mine left over from the illegal war in Laos. Read about Negroponte and what he did in South America. What about the Nagasaki bomb? Hiroshima is debatable, but why did you people choose to incerate another 100,000 people just a few days after Hiroshima? What was the point of that? The list of American atrocities just goes on an on and on. Of course some of these atrocities were good for American business interests and your oligarchy, even your people in a trickle down way – but don’t expect the rest of the world to love you for it.

    And finally, how many of you rightists are reading this and just praying I was in Abu Ghraib with a German shepard at my throat? How many of you thinking this are supposed to be Christians?

    No, I am sorry but America has lost it’s way. You are too close, too involved to see it. But the America you see in the movies is gone.

    Ban me if you like, Eric. I have been kicked out of better places.

    Comment by gary_7vn — February 17, 2006 @ 12:59 pm
  10. Gary, you toss strawmen around like you have the market cornered on them. Telling you to stop making personal attacks in no way implies anything else about who can comment, who should comment, what kind of discussion we want, etc. If you want to disagree, do so. If you want to insult, go visit Daily Kos.

    Comment by Eric — February 17, 2006 @ 1:37 pm
  11. Now, on to your strawmen:

    …how people who do not get all their news from Fox and right wing blogs feel.

    I read the New York Times, WaPo, SF Chronicle, Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine on a regular basis. I don’t watch Fox News, and the blogs I read regularly are not considered “right wing” (Catallarchy, Samizdata, Cato Unbound, Reason Hit and Run, etc.). Just because we don’t agree with your position does not make us “right wing”. Just because someone thinks the US is something that you disagree with does not make them right wing. I am making an assumption that, by right wing, you mean neo-conservatives who support George Bush on just about everything when you say right wing. That is not actually an accurate meaning of “right wing”, but we won’t go there right now.

    These photos are clearly photos of people who have been abused in an American run prison. If you like you can try to explain it all away – if you want. I would prefer to do the analysis.

    Who said they weren’t? No one. What was said is that skepticism is part of being intellectually honest. Can you set aside your preconceived notions and consider the situation objectively?

    And America is most assuredly now the most hated country in the world, bar none.

    Do you have evidence for this? I can wave my hand in the air and make unsubstantiated statements too.

    And finally, how many of you rightists are reading this and just praying I was in Abu Ghraib with a German shepard at my throat? How many of you thinking this are supposed to be Christians?

    You also said:

    I like to have my beliefs challenged, that’s why I am here.

    Now, that seems difficult when you make statements like above.

    But, I’ll try to engage you in a civil discussion.

    1. I’m not Christian
    2. I want you to remain safe, live in a stable place, able to do those things you want to do, say what you want to believe, act as you want to act, so long as you don’t impact my own life, liberty or property. And vice versa for me. If that includes saying things I consider to be wrong, so be it. If that means holding beliefs I don’t agree with, so be it. That’s what adhering to my own principles is about. At the same time, it doesn’t mean that I have to provide a forum to you, using my own money and time, to insult me.
    3. I’m not a “rightist” in the sense that you mean it.
    4. I didn’t say anything about banning, why did you?

    See, if you would stop focusing on attacking people and start providing more than just unsubstantiated claims, we might get somewhere and have an actual conversation. Until then, though, it really isn’t accomplishing much.

    Comment by Eric — February 17, 2006 @ 2:03 pm
  12. A couple of things, Gary:

    (1) You say: “And America is most assuredly now the most hated country in the world, bar none. I am not talking about Western Europe in particular; have a look at: Mexico, South America, Asia, you know – the world. I don’t mean the world as shown on FOX, I mean the real world pal. The one it is no longer safe for you to travel in.”

    And yet America still has a huge surplus of immigration from such places. So tell me why, if this nation is so abhorred, people flock to it?

    (2) Yes, I have convinced quite a few people to change their minds. Everyone enters a discussion with preconceived notions but not everyone enters the discussion looking for a conflict. It is those people that are immediately either on the offensive or defensive that become impossible to convince of anything.

    Comment by Bret — February 20, 2006 @ 10:19 am
  13. Hi Bret

    I disagree that the level of interest in emigrating to the United States proves much. Of course some campesino living in a shack would prefer even a housing project in LA. Many Africans would rather clean up after a fat cat, than die in some tribal or ethnic conflict, this hardly equates with loving or even liking America. Most people are not political, they just want to be able to live as good a life as possible.

    The only reason I mention how much America is hated is my hope that someday, somehow, people in America who support current policy, especially around your policies in the middle east, will at some point wonder why you are so hated. You, as a nation have to reevaluate your place in the world, and most importantly you have to understand that as long as what 6% of the worlds people continue to use a vastly disproportional percentage of the worlds’ resources, obtained through force essentially, you will be attacked and you will be hated. Maybe this sounds like a viable plan to you, but it is not.

    There are many polls on the subject of just how much THE AMERICAN GOVERNMENT (not so much the people) is despised, I will leave you with this quote: “I have never known a time in my life when America and its president were more hated around the world than today. I was just in Japan, and even young Japanese dislike us. It’s no wonder that so many Americans are obsessed with the finale of the sitcom “Friends” right now. They’re the only friends we have, and even they’re leaving.” – Thomas Friedman, NYT

    Personally most of the Americans I have met are just normal people, neither remarkably good, or remarkably bad. But your government? I think that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the people they work for… are demons.

    Comment by gary_7vn — February 23, 2006 @ 1:36 pm
  14. Gary, are you here for a discussion, or do you just want to preach to us about the evils of the Bush Administration? How would you feel if I came to your blog and told you how evil your government (your IP address seems to indicate you are from Canada) was? What if I just preached to you, like you are doing here? I didn’t bother to provide any objective evidence. I didn’t even consider how silly this sounds:

    Of course some campesino living in a shack would prefer even a housing project in LA. Many Africans would rather clean up after a fat cat, than die in some tribal or ethnic conflict, this hardly equates with loving or even liking America.

    Clearly if I would rather live in LA than my own country, because of the insanity of life in my home country, I like LA better. That line of argument is just not worth tackling, from an objective perspective. It would be like arguing that the American Revolutionaries really liked being part of England better, but were tried of the oppression, so decided to revolt.

    Or saying that folks who come get healthcare in the USA really like Canadian healthcare better, they just don’t want to wait 17 weeks, on average, to see a specialist.

    Come on, does this sound logical to you? If we are so hated by “average people”, why do we have the highest immigration rate in the world? Why do people risk death crossing a desert on foot to get here or taking a rowboat across the Caribbean? This is silly.

    If you want to debate whether Bush, Cheney, etc. are good or bad leaders, I’m there and I’ll do it all day long. But describing them as demons indicates no ability to have an objective discussion.

    Comment by Eric — February 24, 2006 @ 10:07 am
  15. To add to Eric’s argument a bit, 20% of our foreign born population is from Europe. Current immigration from Western Europe is only slightly smaller than immigration from Mexico. Clearly THOSE immigrants aren’t coming to the United States to escape the squalor of their home countries.

    Comment by Bret — February 24, 2006 @ 1:31 pm

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