WITH ENEMIES LIKE THESE, WHO NEEDS COMRADES?
What, with Ken Parish
deploying stock-standard rightist propaganda by way of dubbing my reservations concerning the deliberate incineration of thousands 'stock-standard leftist propaganda', I'd best let voices more acceptable to delicate ears such as m'lud's do the talking ...
: "[B]efore I can just stand up and say, 'Beyond a shadow of a doubt, we need to invade Iraq, I guess I would like to have better information ... Candidly, I have gotten somewhat nervous at some of the pronouncements Rumsfeld has made. He almost sometimes seems to be enjoying it, a sensation to be avoided when engaged in war."
General Anthony Zinni
: "I don't know what planet they're on," he told the BBC. "Such a war would make the situation between Israel and the Palestinians much worse."
: "Should Saddam conclude that a U.S.-led attack could no longer be deterred, he probably would become much less constrained in adopting terrorist actions."
Oh, and there are others who might have a Parish-approved klew on the case, too:
Forty-one American Nobel laureates in science and economics, all of whom served as government advisors
: "Military operations against Iraq may indeed lead to a relatively swift victory in the short term. But war is characterized by surprise, human loss and unintended consequences. Even with a victory, we believe that the medical, economic, environmental, moral, spiritual, political and legal consequences of an American preventive attack on Iraq would undermine, not protect, U.S. security and standing in the world."
... and then there's these Vietnam vets
: "If you choose to participate in the invasion of Iraq you will be part of an occupying army. Do you know what it is like to look into the eyes of a people that hate you to your core?"
WHY THE CIA-RULES-THE-WORLD CONSPIRACY THEORISTS ARE WRONG
... Because the truth is worse than that.
Here's my hard evidence:
First the CIA argue US foreign policy is likely to produce belligerent resentment from parts of the world incapable of matching the US in conventional or strategic arms and thus likely to opt for acts of terrorism. They dub their idea 'blowback'.
The White House ignores the idea. After it actually happens, blowback quickly becomes an idea that dare not speak its name.
Then the CIA tells the White House they have no hard evidence of any links, much less an alliance, between Baghdad and al Qa'ida.
The White House ignores this, perpetually promising, but never delivering, hard evidence they obviously did not get from their Central Intelligence Agency.
Now the CIA says that the one thing likely to induce such a link, indeed an enemy-of-my-enemy alliance between otherwise incompatible ideologies and interests, is a US invasion of Iraq.
The White House ignores this ...
A WEE BIT MORE ON THE DEATH OF ECONOMICS
Some choice cuts from ever readable Professor in Economics, Deirdre McCloskey, off a forthcoming article (on the gutting of Notre Dame's economics faculty in particular but the death of economics in general) in the *Eastern Economic Journal*:
" ... the department is to abandon courses on Political Economy and the History of Economic Thought (which set economics in its wider social context) as requirements in the graduate program. It is to make its graduate program look like nearly every other program in the United States, e.g. make the theory courses duller and more “mathematical” and more useless for actual scientific work; hire more econometricians, to teach the kids even more completely how to misuse statistical significance (when is the profession going to catch on to the con in more and more and more econometrics?).
... been fooled ... as so many physical scientists have, by the absurd claim that modern Samuelsonian economics is mathematical and quantitative “like physics”
(as the Samuelsonians put it; for which see Mirowski’s work). That the math is existence theorems from the mathematics department, not magnitude-math from physics and engineering, and that the allegedly “quantitative” work is vitiated by its entire dependence on meaningless tests of statistical significance hasn’t seeped into the
consciousness of outsiders. (Don’t tell them: we may get away with this phony way of claiming scientific status for another decade or so. Heck, we may never have to explore the actual magnitudes of economic phenomena! We could go on being Samuelsonian solvers of chess problems forever, and get high rankings in the journal
counts without having to learn anything about any extant economy!)
... Academic economics in the United States has a methodological and ideological range all the way from M to N. This is not because it is such a smashing scientific success, unless you count numbers of mainstream articles certified by mainstream scientists as “success.” Real insight into the economy does not come from existence theorems buttressed by statistical significance, that is, the cargo-cult method of Samuelsonian economics. Insight comes from the dwindling number of individual
economists and sometimes whole departments of economics (fortunately the political scientists, sociologists, and policy mavens are taking up the slack) who think, as the present Department of Economics at Notre Dame does (wait a while), that economics is
the study of the economy and is a part of the conversation of humankind ... "