• I did not read your diatribe because from the first sentence it was clear that you're playing some semantic game based on bad terminology you introduced into the conversation.

    And your claim that you invite disagreement is simply laughable.

  • Good point. Clearly, no one is going to get everything they want, and everyone is going to have to make compromises. This is another issue that can be negotiated, but we need everyone to get to the negotiation table first.

  • You said we are their "protector and patron". That's what a "protectorate" is. Like I said, that was a bad choice of words and I would never use them to describe Israel -- or ANY country. (I would use those words to describe our relationship with U.S. Guam, Midway, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, etc.)

    And now my hopefulness is an evasion of responsibility? Wow, at least we agree that making generalizations is "cheap, but your prerogative of course".

  • I really don't have time to go through all of your points, but it seems that your real issue is with U.S. aid to Israel, and I have no desire to argue that point at all. I don't think foreign aid makes a country our protectorate. You apparently do. All I can suggest is that you address your elected officials about that. There are a lot of countries that receive aid from the U.S. that I find questionable. But I certainly don't fault any of the recipients for taking that aid, nor do I think they become colonies or protectorates because of it.

    And yes, I am taking a slightly isolationist view. The U.S. tends to be very ineffective when we take a heavy-handed approach and recent history has proven this. We're not going to invade Israel, so to get any sort of resolution, we have to get the parties at the negotiation table. Preferably, on their own accord.

    I did find those total $ amounts (as I said). But they don't indicate HOW dependent a country is on our aid. I wanted to see the percentage of the various nations GDP's comes from the U.S. And of course we give more to Israel than their neighbors. They're our military ally in a very sensitive region and they're surrounded by enemies. If Panama were surrounded by enemies, they would require a lot more aid too. (And please don't bother arguing Bush era policies with me. I am completely convinced that the Bush administration encourged conflict to give them a cover for their own evil-doings, and that is a reason why Israel is more right-wing and the situation has worsened.)

    You don't have to share my hopefulness about the situation. But assuming the worst all the time is never going to get anyone closer to peace.

  • on a comment on Up To Date on Health Care over 4 years ago

    Hopefully a universal plan with guaranteed coverage, subsidies for the poor, and a public option. I say we fight for all of these things, and hope to get most of them.

    Our elected representatives are notorious cowards, especially when it comes to making huge investments like healthcare. With all of the fear-mongering by the MSM, medical industry, lobbyists and GOP, they have reasons to be afraid. That's why we need to remind them about how important this is for their constituents and the U.S. economy, and tell them not to cave under pressure.

    Organizing for America's Health Care Action Center has lots of tools for people to get informed, and get involved.
    http://my.barackobama.com/page/content/h ealth-care-action-center/?source=feature

    I recommend everyone who cares about this issue get involved now before it's too late.

  • Interesting that you got all over my case about making assumptions about your motives, yet you (wrongly) assume so much about how I feel.

    I am quite happy if Hamas makes a statement saying they recognize any or all of Israel's concerns. Any common ground is welcome. Thanks for asking.

  • Not sure why you're arguing these points with me. I don't agree with Israel's right wing and have never advocated any of their positions. I'm just trying to be realistic about the situation, and the reality is ANY movement towards negotiation is an improvement.

    I support the independence of all sovereign nations. I think the U.S. gets ourselves into trouble anytime we try to "demand" any type of behavior from any nation. The fact that Israel receives lots of aid from us doesn't make them any different in that respect.

    I want peace and an end to the conflict, and I welcome any signs from either side that move in that direction. Clinging to negative assumptions about the other side does not help. (I also have confidence that the Israeli electorate is about 5 years behind the U.S. electorate and they will start electing more liberals soon. It took most Americans 8 years to figure it out.)

  • comment on a post Up To Date on Health Care over 4 years ago

    The cost of not doing anything about health care is far larger than the cost of reform.

    The CBO report is getting a lot of media attention right now, so it's up to those of us who understand the issue to continue to point this out to all the doubters -- including our elected representatives.

  • A good step in the right dirction. But still not nearly enough.

  • comment on a post What do you think? over 4 years ago

    Sounds like a tough job. Good luck to you!

  • Yes. Both Israel and Turkey have been excellent, loyal allies for a long time. Allies are good. We need them. They need us. That's what makes us allies.

  • Yes, I'm sure Israeli PMs know how far they can push things. As far as they can to score political points without alienating their allies. That's pretty much the rule for leaders of all sovereign nations, including our own.

    And I did try to find comparative stats on the percent of GDP that comes from US aid, but couldn't find any. I do know that without U.S. aid, both Iraq and Afghanistan would be in a total shambles right now (they both get way more $$ than Israel these days). We give aid to most of Israel's neighbors. I believe Panama has been dependent on U.S. aid for most of its history. We give aid to everyone. Sometimes we get things in return, sometimes we don't. That's the price we pay to be a superpower that is relevant in international relations.

  • Not analogous at all.
    There aren't other "buyers" out there making better offers.
    The analogy would be if there was only one person in the world with available cash or credit. The homeowner who needs money would have to consider that $100k offer, or at least work out a compromise that everyone can live with.
  • I think you have a fundamental misunderstanding of negotiation strategy. And you really cling to a ton of negative assumptions about the peace process. Please do not enter the field of international diplomacy.

  • That is an amazing article that really shows what's going on in our medical industry.
    The hospitals, labs, surgical facilities, medical equipment suppliers, etc. are the ones making all the money in this industry. (Plus some doctors who were savvy enough to have invested in these facilities and/or the land they are on.)

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