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07 March 2014


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OH, you mean the PERSIAN GULF !
Yes, everyone is busy chipping away at something; Maddow's stick is business. Then there are those who would like to get rid of the PERSIAN in the PERSIAN GULF name too and take every opportunity to try ...... and fail....


Sir, respectfully, you wasted a couple of hours listening to MSNBC garbage. A better investment would have been to see the Heat get blown out by the Spurs. lol


There is a difference between the neocons and the predatory capitalist neoliberals? Coulda fooled me. Or is that a distinction without a difference?
I do see a distinction between unregulated predatory capitalism, btw, and moderate, well regulated capitalism. I think that is where the problem lies.
Look at Halliburton share prices for one tiny example.
The hungry ghosts fed well on Iraq and Afghanistan.


This is something that I see often: I should be able to get off lightly for doing something because "I was trying to do good/meant well." For someone who has a well-defined objective, which making money qualifies, there is no "higher" purpose that offers justification for the actions.

To me, this seems almost disgusting. By invoking a "higher" purpose, those who seek excuses are merely tugging at the prejudices (and hubris) of their audience. The neocon ideology of exporting democracy at gunpoint is not something that those who subscribe to the idea of waging holy wars for the secular humanist religion of "democracy and freedom" (tm) and the moral duty of every American to sacrifice hims/herself for the cause--which DC seems to be full of. That, obviously, cannot be criticized. The only thing that they can be criticized for is that they are heretics, corrupt, or at least, not true believers, in that they would allow such practical considerations as money get in their way(instead of putting all their faith in universal human desire for democracy, free markets, and the American way).



I did not watch it. that is why I had to ask for a transcript. pl



I agree with you up to a point. Most of the time is wasted listening to these fools and liars, save events like this over Ukraine. I find it enlightening to compare with what I know about the issue from other sources and compare and contrast with the propaganda line put out by the "liberal" and neocon media. What they either lie about, obfuscate or leave out all together can be a most informative study in technique.

Still, there are compelling health reasons to do this sparingly. Prolong exposure to cable and talk radio can kill a serious number of brain cells.


I saw just a few snips. It's unfortunate she took such a singular view of the role of oil and not the delusional narratives about oil or flawed neocon doctrines advocating war. The Idea the US needs to maintain the flow of oil out of the Persian Gulf is a bit of a fairy tale like American power can bring democracy to the natives through aerial bombing. We've covered the place with our forces while our economy is unable to thrive on $100/barrel oil.
As a principal actor Cheney was probably more aware of the intersecting lines of oil depletion with oil demand than anyone. At that intersection, which came around 2005, Saddam and sons would have tremendous ability to affect the price of oil. My take is that Cheney saw increased terrorism and chaos from war an acceptable risk compared to the words economy getting disrupted from Saddam's behavior


How reassuring to know that the same folks who were absolutely, positively certain that Saddam had WMDs had no clue that the Iraqi oil industry was held together by duct tape and bailing wire!

Eleven years after Bremer decided that America needed to get Iraq's oil industry up and running ASAP, Iraq is producing a grand total of 2.8 million barrels per day, about 10% more than Saddam produced. What success!!!

Of course, no one really knows how much oil Iraq produces, because there are no meters on the wells. Nor do we know how the oil revenues are split between the Iraqi government and the oil producers, since the government never published the contracts. Nor were the contracts approved by the parliament, as required by the Iraqi constitution.

My guess is that oil companies, which are not necessarily Western ones, are making out like bandits, returning maybe $15/barrel to the government, then selling it for over $100.

Of course, Bremer would insist piously that the Americans had only the best interests of the Iraqi people in mind. What else would you expect him to say?

Stephen Jones

Yes, I agree with your assessment Colonel. I tuned in to that broadcast to see what the line was going to be and it was very clear after the first several minutes of introductory remarks and set up where the thrust of the piece was going. I lost interest pretty quickly though kept it on in case something of note jumped out at me later in the show that might relate to more relevant truths.

I have to say I was not totally surprised by this abysmal failure to recognize the more dynamic impulses and motivations behind the Neocon push in that travesty. Without getting into the relative merits of so-called ‘liberal’ or ‘progressive’ or ‘conservative’ philosophies or ideologies, or the propensities so many of us have for adopting the more simpleminded explanations for things we may not want to examine too closely for fear of disturbing the security of our own preferred beliefs, I think this Maddow broadcast reflects the deeper problem inherent in something SST’s own ‘Confused Ponderer’ remarked upon a week or two ago in his/her excellent post.

CP defines the similarity between the Neocons and the R2Pers as one characterized in a ‘utopian’ framework of sorts. I think that is fine and important as far as it goes yet I see the more defining impulse, the primary driving imperative, as an authoritarian one rooted in the sense of entitlement and the arrogance with which that entitlement is weaponized to inflict its delusional hegemonic ambitions upon the world at large.

What makes the Maddow show misfire so troubling is, for me, not so much related to the essence of the ideological positioning of the Neocons or the R2Pers. It is that because the Neocons and the R2Pers are so close to each other in practical terms as far as how their ‘we are the bosses of everyone else because we have the power so we make our own rules’, etc., is imposed on others, left leaning people, even ones with pretty powerful intellects like Maddow, experience a cognitively dissonant cross-contamination of ideological allegiance in a way that winds up preventing them, in this case, from criticizing the Neocons on the merits and the evidence because to do so means they would have to, for the sake of ideological consistency, call out their feckless R2P idols like, well, the entire current administration’s foreign policy ‘team’ from the ponderous droning gasbag Kerry all the way down the line; Clapper, Rice, Power, Clinton, Nuland and Pyatt, and a host of others.

So Maddow, consciously or not, winds up completely sidestepping the central force driving both the Iraq atrocity and the bulk of current US global policy today.

I am by no means an expert or have any direct experience in policy matters like the ones involved here. I do have a good deal of experience wrangling with deception professionals in various environments, and all what I’ve posited above seems clear as a bell to me.


With all due respect, Colonel Lang,
As you know far better and with a much more nuanced understanding than I, the dichotomy “nefarious oil industry interests”/”neocon government” oversimplifies the various interests and issues. I recall much ink spilled at the time over Cheney and his role in the energy policy, the Bush family connections to oil, speculation regarding the motives (to gain access to the oil to profit from it by sitting on it, selling it, gaining more leverage in the market . . .) to name just a few of the purported motives at the time.
Recent events regarding Russia and the current crisis suggest that several of the major factors in our blinkered American view of the world regarding the motives of other include our sense of our American exceptionalism, your often- mentioned delusion that the world want to be like us in terms of government and governance, the neglect of curiosity regarding foreign languages, geography and history on the part of students due to lack of support for them and the legacy of the “greed is good” mantra leading many university students and graduates to opt for business and finance careers. Witness this piece today, as the NYTimes seems to be playing catch-up on its coverage of the current events regarding US-Russian relations: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/07/world/europe/american-experts-on-russia.html?action=click&module=Search&region=searchResults%230&version=&url=http%3A%2F%2Fquery.nytimes.com%2Fsearch%2Fsitesearch%2F%3Faction%3Dclick%26region%3DMasthead%26pgtype%3DHomepage%26module%3DSearchSubmit%26contentCollection%3DHomepage%26t%3Dqry464%23%2Flack%2520of%2520Russia%2520experts
I often wonder about how many of my fellow Americans comprehend “A Committee of Correspondence” or have sworn an oath including the following words ”support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic”.

Marco Naccio

The prime motivation for the Iraq War for Israel was the Israel-firster neocon contingent. No disagreement there.

However, the theatrics of Maddow (& Co.) in ignoring these facts are due to her holding forth on a msm platform, where honest discussion of the Israel-firster impetus behind the war (or even the use of that term) are totally verboten. In fact, had Maddow engaged with those facts, she wouldn't have a job. Her job is to avoid discussion of these topics, because it's not part of the faux-progressive agenda she's allowed to discuss.

Does all this make her "anti-capitalist" or a leftist? Not even close. There's nothing particularly leftist about her. She's an "establishment liberal" at best who very carefully avoids discussion of the neocon agenda. Because she wants to stay employed. Likewise, the fact that she gladly cashes those big paychecks indicates she's firmly a part of the capitalist system.

I'm all for criticizing Maddow, but off-target ad hominems don't elevate the discussion.



"Leftist?" you don't like that? I suppose that this judgment depends on your point of reference on the political scale fro left to right. Describing Maddow's political position as I understand it is not an "as hominem attack."Perhaps to you Maddow and Corn are not leftists but they are to me and my opinion counts here. You are warned that if you take another critical shot at my right to say what I please here, you will be banned. pl



"I recall much ink spilled at the time over Cheney and his role in the energy policy, the Bush family connections to oil, speculation regarding the motives (to gain access to the oil to profit from it by sitting on it, selling it, gaining more leverage in the market" Yes , a lot of that was written and it was mostly bilge scribbled by people who are incapable of understanding anything except in economic terms. pl


I don't think there is as much of a gap between the public and private sector now. So distinguishing between national interests and business interests is harder to do.


Seems like the call has gone out among the Tribe. This morning Mark Levin was attempting to exonerate the neocons, saying that "neocon = jewish = you anti semite!" Not that all neocons are jewish (Cheney most notably), but noticing things is looked down upon in this Brave New America.

Not surprising that Maddow would be carrying some water.


Colonel, I recently read a take on the Iraq War that took into account the non-oily nature of it. It surmised that Bush II went into Iraq to repay Saudi Arabia for their citizen's part in the WTC bombing and to also shake up countries so no true hegemon would prevail.

Richard Armstrong

All - My biggest take away from the broadcast was at the very top where we were informed that President Bush'd very first national security meeting focused on toppling Saddam and Ms. Rice's positions of Iraq as the most destabilizing influence in the ME.This meeting was held 9 months before 9/11he Bush administration wanted that war from his earliest days I'm office.Then there are still the unanswered questions about Vice President Cheney'd secret meetings with top oil executives.

I don't blame the oil companies because they are just opportunistic capitalist (sorry for the redundancy).

Bush's desire to depose Saddam is the tree from which all if the things wrong with the Iraq war sprang.

I fully understand the frequent derision of liberals on this board what with all their attempts to limit voting right and health care, their insistence that corporation are people, and their never ending hand wringing over made up scandals and their pandering to the most reactionary members of their party,


Richard Armstrong

that meeting was fully documented in my article "Drinking the Koolaid" in the Summer edition of MEP. There is nothing mysterious about Cheney's meetings with oilys. He was a former oil service industry executive and Bush had put him in charge of an energy task force. As for your cute baloney about "liberals," you are inviting real attacks on their faults which are many. pl pl

Mark Gaughan

I think it was a combination of Neo-con beliefs and oil company profits.

From a comment I made on 31 August 2012 at 05:15 PM:

Iraq was invaded so that Big Oil could get a piece of the very lucrative oil business in Iraq. They're getting a percentage of every barrel sold. They're charging fees for their services.


Reply 31 August 2012 at 05:15 PM

Mark Gaughan

from antiwar.com today:
At least 82 people were killed and 176 were wounded across Iraq today. Most of the casualties were civilians. A series of bombings once again took place in Baghdad province, but there were significant blasts in nearby cities as well.


Mark Gaughan

Believe what you will. I give up. pl

Mark Gaughan

Off topic, but I just have to say thanks PL for having SST. I read it every day and tell everyone to read it. Thanks so much. I've learned a lot from you and some of the others that post here.

I just saw your response to my comment come up as I was typing this. I don't believe anything. I think. I think you do too.


mak gaughan

Are you the sports announcer? You believe that I, too, think? Well, thanks. Mark, the mere fact that people make money from historical events like the invasion and occupation of Iraq does not mean they caused the event. American business made vast amounts of money in WW2. Did American business cause he war? pl


Gee...I should proofread better. The bottom line is, can liberationists criticize others who claim to be wanting to "liberate" peoples? No, the only possible criticism is that, "they don't really mean that. they have some hidden agenda that corrupts the holy cause of liberating peoples at gunpoint." Oil (or whatever) makes for a convenient excuse, unlike the true believers who just want to bomb people to liberate them.



I agree there were a lot of reasons Bush II decided to invade Iraq besides oil but it was somewhere in the middle of the list. On top was the fact that the USA had been at war with Iraq since the 1990, admittedly low grade, but the President decided to show his old man up by finishing the war for good. He failed.

He did succeed in implanting neo-cons through out the State Department and DOD. He privatized logistics and security. He showed that a voluntary army will fight loosing wars forever. He made it possible for Israeli Firsters and R2Pers to involve America into wars in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Syria, and Ukraine.

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