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Thursday, December 31, 2015

Sound and Fury

ISIS is coming! ISIS is coming!

Oh no! Run for your lives, Everybody!

 

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"If we don't recognize the seriousness of Radical Islamic Terrorism and are unwilling to give our military leaders the tools needed to destroy our enemy, eventually ISIS boots will be on our ground."

If we don’t recognize the seriousness (the seriousness forsooth!) of terrorism, why we’re gonna be sorry.

The seriousness. Why won’t we recognize it?

Right. 

Okay. Show of hands, any of you sissy liberals not recognize the seriousness of terrorism?

Hey! Quit your giggling. This is serious and it’s about time you all recognized it.  Conservatives, boy, they know all about terrorism. So you guys better shape up.

You, there in the back, in the hemp overalls and the bloodshot eyes! You're nodding your head. Are you serious? Are you? Terrorism, harshing your mellow? Lemme see your serious face, lemme see it! Okay. Better.

How about you? You, in the front row, with the hairy legs and the "Meat is Murder" T-shirt. How about it, Bean Curd Breath? What? Nothing funny about terrorism, you say? Goddamned right, sounds like you're serious to me. Good. Good. 

Who else?

You there. Yes, you. What? Yes, yes, I feel the goddamned Bern, but what about … oh, you're serious about terrorism too? Well okay then.

Heard any good terrorism jokes lately? No? That’s odd. When I was growing up we had Irish terrorism jokes and Italian terrorism jokes and Polish terrorism jokes – sure, you’ve heard this one, right, Polish terrorist burns his mouth on a tail pipe trying to blow up a car. Hilarious! What? Not funny? Oh, well, sure, if you’re gonna be all serious about terrorism.

No really, anybody here not think terrorism is serious? Anybody? C'mon, don't be shy, let's see those hands, those soft little girly-man hands ... anybody, anybody at all?

Well, it sure looks like we're all on the same page. Serious as shit about terrorism.

So what’s the problem?

 

Oh.

 

I see.

No. You’re right. And when you’re Right, well, you’re right. 

Okay, everybody all together now, repeat after me: RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISM! RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISM! C'mon, say it! RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISM! LOUDER! LOUDER! LET 'EM HEAR YOU IN TEHRAN! RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISM! RADICAL Islamic terr....

Well, that's disappointing.

There's still terrorism even though we said the magic words. Why, it's almost like magic doesn't actually work and the terrorists don't give a shit what we call them.

Maybe if we prayed on it... no? Dear Our God, help us kill that other God’s followers who want their God to kill Our God, amen. No? Okay. Just putting it out there.

So now what?

What? What's that? You, the jowly-necked red-faced guy with the Mini-14 in the tactical sling. Yes, in the dirty wrinkled camo, yes, yes, waving the Confederate Battle Flag. You! You look like a military genius. Sure. You've got a suggestion? Speak up, I couldn’t hear you over that last chorus of Kumbaya. What? Oh! Give our military commanders the tools they need to destroy ISIS? Why that's brilliant. Just a brilliant idea you got there, Sweet Tea, you learn counter terrorism strategy in the militia while you were off fighting Jade Helm, did you?

What?

Sarcasm? What? No. Nooooo. I have nothing but attentive respect for the expertise of a guy whose sum total military experience is a make-believe bullshit offer of a West Point “scholarship” when he was in high school. As a veteran, I can totally respect that. Sure. Now, I do grant you it's no fake military prep-school to keep rich kids out of Vietnam, but I’m sure this Carson character totally knows serious terrorism when he sees it. I mean, it’s not brain surgery, is it?

So, tools. Ben Carson says we must give our commanders the "tools needed to destroy our enemy" otherwise invasion! Look, out there on the horizon, what’s that? Why, it’s the ISIS fleet! It’s ISIS nuclear aircraft carriers and ISIS cruisers and ISIS destroyers launching ISIS missiles! What’s that, up there? It’s the ISIS Air Force! Soon our skies will be filled with ISIS paratroopers and our beaches will become landing zones for ISIS Marines. Soon ISIS boots will be on American ground.

What tools?

What tools do our commanders need to push back the horde? My God, give them the tools!

Jets? Ships? Missiles? Bombs? A massive global intelligence system? Special forces? Air strikes? Increased domestic and international surveillance? International military coalition and allies? Containment? Largest military and intelligence budget in the world? Advanced technology? Take it! Take it all! Use it!

What? They have all of that already? That and much, much more? But, what then? What tools?

Hey, you don’t mean maybe (and this is just a thought, I mean, what would I know about fighting terrorists in the Middle East, right?) we all work together as a nation? You know, stand with our president? Congress maybe come together, left and right, liberal and conservative, put aside their partisan bullshit and work together like they all promised to do. Sure, you remember, September 12th, 2001, on the steps of the Capitol Building, smoke from the burning Pentagon still staining the sky. Work together against our common enemy.

Heh heh, no. Of course not. What was I thinking? Never mind.

Well, okay, what tools are we talking about then? Nukes? Are we talking about nukes? During the debates Carson mentioned carpet bombing. Is that the tool we’re talking about here? The indiscriminate obliteration of entire cities, towns, villages, schools, hospitals, civilians, children, pregnant women, old folks and their pets? Is that the tool our commanders need?

Might as well use the nukes, I guess.

 

If we don't recognize the seriousness of Radical Islamic Terrorism and are unwilling to give our military leaders the tools needed to destroy our enemy, eventually ISIS boots will be on our ground.

 

Boy, where have we heard that before?

If we don’t fight them over there, we’ll have to fight ‘em here.

If we don’t fight ISIS over there, we’ll have to fight ‘em here.

If we don’t fight Saddam over there, we’ll have to fight him here.

If we don’t fight the Taliban over there, we’ll have to fight them here.

If we don’t fight the Vietnamese, if we don’t fight the Soviets, if we don’t fight the Chinese…

It’s the second sounding of the same old call to arms.

You know, back when they used that phrase about the Nazis and Imperial Japan they might even have been right.  But  it’s become a cliché, unending paranoia as policy and a fundraising tool, an endless parade of increasingly lame enemies and vague threats and undefined objectives and open ended unfocused strategies.  

By now, Americans should be smart enough to see this sickness for what it is, God knows we’ve had enough practice.

If we don't recognize the seriousness of Radical Islamic Terrorism?

Who doesn’t recognize the seriousness of terrorism? Who? Name that guy. Go on. And if you say Obama, you’re a fucking idiot. Of course the president of the United States of America understands the seriousness of terrorism, probably one hell of a lot better than you do. Sure as hell better than the drooling paranoids at Fox News and their fraudulent military advisors. The president has the very best military advisors, national security experts, and information in the world. Serious? He couldn’t possibly get any more serious. So who exactly are we talking about here? Who’s not serious about terrorism? 

If we are unwilling to give our military leaders the tools needed to destroy our enemy?

What the hell is he talking about? What tools? Be specific. Unrestricted warfare? Nukes, carpet bombing, full out invasion and occupation on the order of WWII? That’s it, isn’t it? Bomb ‘em back to the Stone Age, kill ‘em all and let Republican Jesus sort it out. Right? Tools? This is the kind of vague undefined nonsense that got us into this mess in the first goddamned place. Tools? Where the fuck was Carson and his tools when Rumsfeld sent us to war with his unknown unknowns  and the military he had and not the one he wanted and substandard body armor from the lowest bidder and radios that didn’t work and unarmored trucks built by Dick Cheney’s buddies in the defense industry? When people like Carson and Trump talk about how they’ll whip ISIS, you can damned well bet there’s nothing behind it but more flag waving bluster and dead American soldiers.  

Eventually ISIS boots will be on our ground…

And there it is.

There it is. Right there.

Modern conservatism in a nutshell: They’re coming for our stuff.

They’re coming to kill us.

They’re coming to take our freedom.

It’s always some  goddamned monster to be afraid of, some bogyman, some night terror, some vague horrible undefined thing. Commies. Putin. God’s terrible wrath for abortion and  gay marriage. ISIS. Ebola. Socialists. Gun grabbers. The Liberal Press. States Rights. The End Times. The poor. The Rich. Sharia Law. Rap Music. Illegal aliens. Yellow Cake Uranium. Electric cars. Evolution and climate change poisoning our kids in the schools. Iran. Big government. Jade Helm. Bird Flu. Pornography. Harry Potter. Affirmative Action and  Political Correctness. Equal Rights. Black Thugs. Affordable Healthcare. The IRS. The EPA. Benghazi. I mean, fuck, it just  never ends with these people. They’re always afraid of some damned thing.

And now, oh Dear God help us, it’s ISIS! They’re coming, folks, soon they’ll be putting their dirty boots on America.

This is what it’s come to, this is the once great party of Lincoln. Fear. Paranoia. Terror

ISIS? They’ve already won.

That’s right. It’s too late. They’ve won.

Even if we kill every single one of them, they’ve still won.

Even if we carpet bomb the Middle East.

Even if we nuke ‘em.

Even if we burn the entire region down to the bedrock and piss in the ashes.

They’ve still won.

They’ve won because the goal of terrorism is terror.

Because the goal of terrorism is to make us afraid.

Because the goal of terrorism is to make us hate

The terrorists don’t have to invade.

They’ve already won.

108 comments:

  1. Seriously like your blog and FB posts. A breath of air in a stanky universe. donating now. Happy New Year! ANd hey, my drop spindle arrived and it's great! Deb Smith, Dahlonega, GA

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    1. Hey Deb, I'm Becky down in Smyrna GA- not far from you in the Atlanta area. Nice to see I'm not the only pinko liberal scum in GA.

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    2. Up to three of us in the Atlanta area (Midtown for me).

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    3. I'm a little further south about as far south as you can go in Alabama. It is really galling to me that everyone here starts talking to me as if there is no other opinion in the south but the "sky is falling" bullshit. I tell them the terrorist have already won, because they are already afraid of everything. Needless to say I don't have a lot of friends down here. At least my family knows better and still talk to me. One bright spot my 17 year old grandson and some of his friends seem to (gasp) use critical thinking to question the powers that be.

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    4. Becks, Belle, Fred..Gainesville here. Glad there are at least a few of us around here:)

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    5. I'm in Alabama's capitol city and have had the pleasure of observing some of the antics of our esteemed Legislature up close and personal. Due to the pleasant weather, proximity of family, and the fact that my career involves state law (making it difficult at my age to find similar work in another state), I will tough it out and stick around.

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  2. The level of fear in these people is freaking amazing! I wonder that they ever leave their safe rooms or from under their beds! But hey they have the guns to take on the US military---poor sad fools!

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    1. Poor sad fools is exactly correct. A bit delusional also.

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    2. Conservatives' brains are wired a little differently than liberals' -- they're more easily frightened and their 'disgust' reaction is stronger. It's quite easy for Cruz and Trump and Limbaugh and the rest of the fearmongers to scare their audiences. It's a lot easier than trying to scare liberals (who tend to get all analytical about it and point out fallacies), and the "OMG! Al Qaeda in Phoenix! Messican rapists! ISIS mass murderers in California!" conservative response is both reliable and strong.

      Add to that their daily brainwashing from Faux Noise and hate radio, and the poor souls DO live in a different reality.

      Their reality is extremely threatening and, from their point of view, all sorts of groups are trying to do them in. Gay marriage, no municipal Christmas scenes, Black Lives Matter and affirmative action, "undeserving" people getting gov't assistance -- and in the meantime, their wages drop, their health deteriorates, and they get more and more angry and desperate. They are not having a good time. But they've been taught to despise the political party that wants to help them, and to despise the assistance that could change their lives for the better.

      What a shame.

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    3. Not to mention that more and more right-wingers are beginning to insist that their way is the only way, and that any compromise of their "principles" is treason. There is not reasoning with them, and they consider attempts by others to be utterly misguided. After all, they're really geniuses, even those with mid-double digit IQs.

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  3. "We have nothing to fear but fear itself."

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    1. We have nothing to fear but our own people who have been made afraid.

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  4. We have nothing to fear but fear itself.

    It's so damn EASY to whip up the fear and the hatred, isn't it? And then you just have to aim all that fear and hatred at your target and there ya go . . . nuke the gooks, carpet bomb the Muslims, shoot the darkies . . . Diplomacy, taking the time to consider the options, enlisting the assistance of allies, such a pansy response. Does the human race ever learn?

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  5. "How about you? You, in the front row, with the hairy legs and the "Meat is Murder" T-shirt."

    Ok Ok I'll shave..

    Once again, great post, Mr Wright. I don't hate, and I'm not terrified. Well, maybe a little with the upcoming election. Thanks for your sanity. Please run for office.

    bd

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  6. Jim, You lost an "r" in "carpet bombing".

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  7. Is that guy still running for President?

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  8. We have nothing to fear but fearmongerers.

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  9. I'm always a little blown away after reading your posts. You say a lot of what's in my head already and a lot of terrifying truths that hadn't made it there yet. Nukes are a great deterrent. Keeping them in tip-top shape, making them more accurate, that's a great deterrent. God help us if we ever use them.

    I cannot even fathom living in such paranoia and fear every day. I'm sure it's exhausting.

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    1. Even worse than exhausting, it's stupidifying.

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  10. How many Americans have died at the hands of ISIS in the last two years?
    How many Americans have died from bee stings in the last two years?

    I'm tired of being spoon fed paranoia from all sides of the media.

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    1. How many American's have died in the Middle east fighting this crap there?

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    2. How many have died because we created the conditions over there? Operation Ajax was a good start for our hand in creating the mess...and Operation Iraqi Liberation continues the theme.

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    3. How many have died from domestic terrorists - you know those people who walk into a church and kill other people because they don't believe what they believe, or they have the wrong skin color or some other specious reasoning. We have more to fear from domestic terrorists than from ISIS.

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  11. Jim, You have a special, special kind of snark combined with an incredible ability to put it forth at the most opportune time. Love it. This one should be framed.

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  12. donated. Thank you for making me feel sane in this insanity. Happy New year, Jim. and shop cat. and lovely wife :)

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  13. I have little patience for the people who've given themselves over to fear. I find, anymore, it just makes me feel contemptuous of them.

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  14. Thank you. I enjoy your blog & Facebook posts. With every share my friends list shrinks! And my concern? See? Right there. Right there. No? Okay,nothing to see. Busted.

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  15. I was tired of listening to the fear song 20 years ago.

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  16. I was tired of the fear song 20 years ago. The only thing that changes is the name of the boogeyman.

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  17. I "discovered" you and your writing this year, so 2015 was an exciting event ....seeing a new column is more exciting than a new "Simon's Cat" cartoon...srsly...we should publish your articles as a text book and make them required in all social studies classes...now there's an education that would do some good ...thanks Jim Wright, and happy trails as you travel to your new home....

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  18. Perhaps a moment of silence is in order to honor the gentlemen largely responsible for creating this wonderful tool that keeps us all looking in our closets and under our beds and down our toilet bowls for THE EVIL ENEMY. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Allen Dulles and his charming brother John Foster, and their Wall Street, upper-crust cronies who spent much of World War II working on both sides of the fence.

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    1. That and The Bush Family, a nasty nest of profiteers.

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  19. I always enjoy Jim Wright's posts, it helps me gain a broader perspective of the social landscape that we live in.

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  20. Well thought out and well said, as usual.

    Two minor grammatical/spelling beefs (beeves?):

    "THAN the drooling paranoids at Fox" and, nearby,

    "He couldn't POSSIBLY get any more serious".

    Happy New Year and thank you Sir.



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  21. Thanks, Jim. I guess this answers the question I put to you in a message on FB, "When did people become so fearful of everyone and everything?" It's no news that fear is a powerful motivator, and politicians (current and wannabes) are using it to their greatest advantage. I guess someone somewhere is gathering power and/or making lots of money out of all of this, if not now then they're priming the pump to do just that. Thank you for being the voice of reason and saying what others may only think or ponder on, whilst looking sideways at the guy next to them and wondering who's the one out of step.

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  22. Thanks, Jim. I guess this answers the question I put to you in a message on FB, "When did people become so fearful of everyone and everything?" It's no news that fear is a powerful motivator, and politicians (current and wannabes) are using it to their greatest advantage. I guess someone somewhere is gathering power and/or making lots of money out of all of this, if not now then they're priming the pump to do just that. Thank you for being the voice of reason and saying what others may only think or ponder on, whilst looking sideways at the guy next to them and wondering who's the one out of step.

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  23. And Isis isn't even a nation. It's a bunch of guys in pickup trucks.

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    1. and they can't put boots on the ground here...they wear sneakers!

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    2. Old Texas plumber pickup trucks.

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  24. As they all seem to be tactically, intellectually and morally bankrupt, fear is the only thing they've got to sell. What truly appalls me is how much fun they're having peddling the Kool-Aid.

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  25. That last sentence is a very sad truth.

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    1. Joe, that was my thought exactly as I read it. It reminded me of the famous Pogo Possum quote "Yep son, we have met the enemy, and he is us." While some may not fully agree with that.... after all not all of us are buying the fear mongering, if you are not speaking out against it as loud and clear as Mr Wright does you are, by your very silence, complicit. So I share, I comment, I talk to my children, friends, and co-workers, and I try to make a difference in my small corner by giving the best healthcare I can to each person who walks into one of my exam rooms, whether they be Muslim, Christian, Rasta, homeless veteran, homeless drug addict, or the checker at the grocery store. though I fear it will not make much difference because I am only one person, I refuse to be silent.

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  26. "Aaah Jim", she sighed, the dragon smoke of a lit cigarette boiling in the lamp light, "nothing gets me off like the divine rage of your incedulity. Your rants are an Hitachi for the mind."

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  27. I am so pleased to have found you. I continue to look forward to your posts and comments. Thank you for the humor in the midst of this manical election year! Safe travels on your way to Florida!

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  28. What a fabulous essay. Should be required reading for --- everybody!

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  29. I remember the 2004 election. One of the GOP talking points was: We have to fight al Queda in Fallujah so we don't have to fight them in Phoenix.

    And I remember thinking: Did anyone bother to ask the people living in Fallujah if they wanted to be caught in the middle of all of this?

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  30. If I were Obama, I'd start every press conference: Osama Bin Laden? Still dead. Now -that's serious.

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    1. "This breaking news just in: Osama bin Laden is *still* dead." You gotta admit, if SNL was just starting out, Chevy Chase would be saying that on every Weekend Update.

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  31. The republican fear is proof that ISIS has won...at least among republicans.

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  32. Fear. F'n fear. The Right is fearful of the bogeyman that will likely never show up. And the Left is fearful of what the Right will do while waiting for/looking for/shooting at said bogeyman and just hoping the Right's Constitutional rights don't kill the innocent. TFP

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  33. As usual, Jim, spot on. We (our country) have let the Republican party do ISIS's job for them. Just look at us! It is shameful to think that the President of the United States does not have EVERY tool at his disposal to address whatever threats are coming from outside the United States. It is the traitors from within the US that he cannot fight.

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  34. THe ISIS guys are basically wahabi salafists. There are about 5-10 million of them.
    While they could potentially seize Iraq or maybe Syria, I doubt they can keep more then 100 million people under their bootheels.

    Let them come here, show up at a Country bar in Texas, try something. It's going to be like that biker shootout in waco

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  35. Thank you for articulating what I have been thinking, and occasionally saying, for months, though in a far superior manner. I am beginning to believe that #TFP should mean 'These Fucking Pussies'. The pant-soiling among some of my fellow citizens is downright embarrassing.

    I have one minor disagreement with your post thought, Jim:

    The Axis had no chance of putting 'boots on the ground' in the United States in WWII. In fact, I will go as far to say that Germany's fate was sealed on 11 December, 1941.

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    1. It was the one thing that Hitler didn't want. He did not attack The USA 11 Dec '41, Hirohito and his Admirals did.

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    2. I am well aware that Hitler did not attack the USA on December 11, 1941. That was done on December 7, 1941 by Japan.

      Germany DID, however, declare war on the United States on December 11. Combined with the failure of Operation Bararossa in front of Moskow, Germany's fate was sealed.

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    3. Germany did put spies and other operatives in the country by sub, although most were caught. So they decided to stay off the coast and use the lights to sink most of the cargo ships. Wonder if Isis is using our own Republican stupidity to take over the country, just as the Germans used our stupidity back then? Maybe we haven't progressed in 75 yrs. Now if Isis could just build a navy, maybe they can buy some old us ships off haliburton.

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  36. Critical thinking is becoming as rare as common sense. Every single time I hear someone ranting about "them damn Muslim terrorists" and how they are going to be here to behead us all any day now I wonder what world they live in. I have pointed out over and over (at times to the same people) how the surprise invasion that they are predicting is highly improbable, most of the time it's an exercise in frustration, leaving me worried that I am defining insanity if I continue to try to be a voice of reason. It helps that I can see that I am not the only person who sees huge holes in the narrative that is being shouted far and wide, from supposedly intelligent and educated people down to the most uninformed and uneducated. Thank you Jim...and Happy New Year.

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  37. "You know, back when they used that phrase about the Nazis and Imperial Japan they might even have been right."

    At least the Nazis were close to an intercontinental ballistic missile, and only missed out on Da Bomb because Der Fuehrer didn't like the Jewish science behind the nuclear facility ...

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  38. Almost every morning I jump around, arms shaking in the air, voice squealing, oh nooooooo, we must be scared, we must be afraid, who or what are we going to be afraid of today? Fear em! Fear em. Makes my mate laugh out loud.

    In real life, there's only two things I'm a little 'afeared' of, Mother Nature and crazy people. Have a fear free New Year everybody.

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  39. In my world, mountain lions and falling rocks are much more likely to get me than some distant crazy person. How serious am I supposed to be about the things that scare Mr. C. when he doesn't take my concerns to heart? He should be helping us hold all the rocks up in the canyon, and taking his soldiers to the lion's den if he's really serious about my protection. Daesh attacks are not on my radar. Mr. Carson, get real.
    Oh, and thanks Mr. Wright, once again, for putting it so eloquently.

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  40. Politicians being political animals use hyperbole when they are trying to scratch out votes, its just their nature. But what is your nature Jim? You can’t write a post without reminding us of your military experience and yet you seem to be equally out there on the outer fringes with the politicians.
    It is undeniable that there is a faction of the Muslim world that has openly declared war on the western world and portions of their own world that do not go along with their ideology. Granted they are not the Russians or the Chinese but they have shown that they are adept at killing large numbers of people and instilling fear, and by all indications their numbers are growing worldwide after it looked like they had at the least been suppressed by western intervention.
    Correct me if I’m wrong but your recent writings seem to take the “don’t worry approach”. Where exactly do you stand Jim? How should this threat be handled, if you consider it a threat at all? What does your years as military sheepdog tell you to do to ensure the sheep that the wolf isn’t a threat?
    Just Curious

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    1. I write from the perspective of my experience, Anonymous, I'm sorry my military background makes you feel inadequate. You'll just have to put on your big boy pants and live with it.

      Point to the part in anything I've written, ever, here or elsewhere, where I denied "a faction of the Muslim world [...] has openly declared war on the western world and portions of their own world that do not go along with their ideology."

      I never said that terrorism and/or fanatical religious ideology (Islamic and otherwise) isn't a threat. Never. Didn't happen. In fact, I very often said exactly the opposite, in detail.

      What I did say and will continue to say is that there are always threats. Always. Every single day. That is the nature of existence. Whether the threat is terrorism, or an organized and equipped enemy state, or changing climate, or natural disaster, or energy, or healthcare, or bears, or whatever, the measure of character is how you face those threats.

      Just because I don't happen to think pissing your pants in fear every single day is either a sound political philosophy or sound national policy doesn't mean I don't believe there's a problem.

      But you don't solve those problems with mindless hysteria, naked hate, idiotic conspiracy theories, and ridiculous religious mumbo-jumbo.

      You asked to be corrected if you were wrong. You're wrong.


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    2. Your articles have both humor and seriousness coupled with amazing lessons on critical thinking. I married a Turkish woman and have been living in Turkey for the last 15 years. The crises here since 9/11 have a direct effect upon me and my Turkish neighbours. I do find the fear-mongers in the United States both laughable but scary and it seems the polarization in the United States is deeper than ever.

      I do not believe, however, you answered the critical question which Anonymous threw at you "How should this threat be handled?" and I did not believe he was uncomfortable with your military experience but was asking you to share with us, based upon that experience, your suggestions about solutions. I would be very eager to see an article from you telling us how you, as President, would deal with this mess called the Middle East.

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    3. It's interesting that "they [ISIS] have shown that they are adept at killing large numbers of people and instilling fear" was cited as a reason to panic.

      ISIS is very good at killing large numbers of unarmed Syrian and Iraqi civilians. This is not difficult. They've also acquired a modest body-count in France, and a few dead over here.

      In 2015, 386 people died and 1,181 were injured in mass shootings in the United States. In 2014, it was 383 people dead and 1,240 wounded; in 2013, 502 Americans died and 1,266 were injured. These were just MASS shootings, mind you - the numbers of people dead and injured does not include the singletons.

      You're afraid of ISIS? You think we should run around squawking, scared to death of an extremist group on the other side of the world? I'm scared of my nutcase fellow-citizens who are impulsive, short-fused, and armed. Remember that loon who decided to shoot up a parking lot "to help"?

      We are facing a deadly threat here at home. Most of them are Caucasian, call themselves "Christians," and rack up one hell of a body count. Of dead Americans. You scared of them? You should be.

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    4. I do not believe, however, you answered the critical question which Anonymous threw at you "How should this threat be handled?"

      You're right. I didn't answer his question.

      Why not?

      Because of my military experience, that's why not.

      Because the national, political, and military objectives are classified. Because I don't have access to current strategic, tactical, and contingency planning or the vast HUMINT, SIGINT, PHOTOINT, ELINT, COMINT, and the resulting fusion intelligence infrastructure to include both historical and real time analysis of the information behind it. Because I do not have have access to current BDA and MOE. Because I have not been apprised of the ROE, asset availability, budget current and projected, expected outcomes, classified international agreements with embedded indigenous populations, and etc. And I do not have the very best military experts, both civilian and uniformed, advising me in real time.

      Note: Nor do any of the candidates for president, certainly not Ben Carson or Donald Trump, have access to any such information. The difference being that I am smart enough and experienced enough to know it, they aren't.

      Anonymous whined about my military experience. The reason I mention it, is because it is absolutely relevant to the discussion. Q.E.D.

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  41. Holy moley! Not even a day and 52 comments. I am in awe, Mr. Wright. Sometimes I really don't understand why you're not in politics. Please keep fighting the good fight. I'll keep reading. And thank you once again for your voice of reasoned sanity.

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  42. Was just thinking this last night. But you made it much more real.

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  43. the sale of fear by the right wing is just a distraction. Dr. Carson is raising millions of dollars for his "charitable" foundation; the republican pols and their right wing corporate enablers are busy picking the pockets of those they frighten, from tax cuts for the hugely wealthy to burying in the most recent "spending bill", a provision that PROHIBITS the IRS from issuing new and more restrictive regulations on the dark money going into, and being spent by, so-called "social welfare" 501(c)(4) organizations that are funding right wing candidates. Think about this every time you hear a political ad that does not include some form of "I am ______ and I approved this message."

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  44. This.Is.Awesome! You are the man, Jim!

    I have bookmarked this post. It will be my own weapon soon.

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  45. Keep writing these blogs and I will keep sharing them! And if you end up driving thru the St Louis area, let us all know! We have a small but determined fan club for you here!

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  46. Another great post. I also share them in hopes that your writing will do for others what it has done for me - honed and focused my vaguely liberal but mostly apolitical agita about the state of this country.

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  47. Happy and healthy New Year for you and your family.

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  48. "THE SKY IS FALLING!!!", an interesting way of electioneering.

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  49. Thanks Jim. As usual you nail it.

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  50. In 1988, Denzel Washington, Bruce Willis, Annette Bening, and Tony Shalhoub made the perfect movie. It is "The Siege". It is about terrorism and how people acting out of fear are the very defeated Americans Jim is talking about. Almost twenty years ago, we got the answer to Carson and Trump we needed. If you have not seen it, it is worth the time.(Netflix) Jim, if you have a moment, I would appreciate any comments about the movie you might have.

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  51. Holy smokes! I'm surprised Dr. Carson was awake long enough to put enough words together for his "thoughts". Frankly, I think the worst enemy our country faces today is the Klown Kar known as the "radical" rethuglican party. They are really scary! Hope we can survive the next 10 months of political blather! Happy New Year Chief, and thanks for "a voice in the wilderness".

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  52. as long as we keep transsexual women in the men's rooms where they belong and county clerks don't have to sign gay marriage license's we're on the right track. god will work out all that small, nickel and dime stuff.

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  53. This is just what my husband and I have been saying for years. I wish someone or something could impress this on the radical right wingers who are being sucked in, but I guess the damage has been done as you say, they've already won. Being the eternal optimist, I keep thinking, surely they'll see the light.
    It would be so interesting to know where all your replies are coming from I wish more people would at least give their geographic location. It's nice as a Canadian to see that not everyone south of the border is unable see through some of the idiots that are running in 2016.
    Happy New Year, I look forward to and love your views.
    Elaine May in Ladysmith BC Canada

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  54. Good stuff once again! Here's my question: Does anyone have a grasp of just how big the ISIS/ISIL/daesh movement really is? 30,000, maybe 200,000 maybe a few religious zealots but mostly angry, disillusioned people looking to pick a fight? Do you really destroy entire nations, entire civilizations to neutralize that small minority? What, exactly do we fear they will do? I'll tell you a 70 year-old story. On my sons' school bus there was a kind of chunky boy and his younger brother, same ages as my sons. Every day my kids got off the bus, scared of these threatening little bullies that called them names and threatened to hurt them. Then, one evening at a school function my two pointed out their tormentors. I smiled and reminded them that those two were both smaller in stature and certainly not any smarter than my guys. They were just mean and mouthy and the best way to beat them was to ignore them and they would take their aggression elsewhere. Without the fear factor the bullies had nothing, and they knew it. Simplistic comparison, I know, but the weapon is fear, and it paralyzes instead of galvanizing us to find a solution which contains and defuses the threat.

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  55. Jim, I wish you'd answer a question. If the government did try to send the army to seize weapons from the ordinary citizens of America, would they? Is that even possible?

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    1. Why bother? 'Targeted' drone strikes would be the answer to any organized action by separatists - same thing we do in other countries are just as easily done here. Don't need to tell the drone drivers what country they're flying in - just give coordinates, and general target info. Bam!

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  56. LOVE your rants. Wish you wrote more - but I realize you write only as much as you need to say, not enough to fill up an echo chamber.

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  57. Wonderful how you parsed that sentence to reveal the idiocy.Thank you once again for writing.

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  58. Unfortunately you seem to be correct with your final comments as far as large sections of the American public are concerned. They have won because fear is their target and they have achieved that.

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  59. I've been following your Facebook page and lamenting my inability to comment. I just love how you express exactly the right thoughts with such perfect clarity and snark!

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  60. There is this persistent line of thought among conservatives that if they just kill enough people indiscriminately enough terrorism will go away because the terrorists will be too afraid to attack "us" -- and their concept of "us" is a worryingly ever-shrinking circle.

    The fact that this has been repeatedly tried with no discernible effect except to make the next group of terrorists hate the entire Western world even more is, in their eyes, just evidence they didn't kill enough of them yet.

    Wasn't the definition of insanity repeatedly attempting the exact same thing and expecting different results?

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  61. Jim, et al - This comment may seem OT, but pls bear with with. I have a point.

    I have been enjoying the superb "Space Rocket History Podcast" series produced by Michael Annis, and I just listened to the episodes recounting the Apollo 1 tragedy and loss of Gus Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee. (These are episodes 130 - 135, indicating how thoroughly Mr. Annis' series covers the development, events and personalities of spaceflight history.) These three men and their fellow astronauts really do represent the very best of that breed of pilot, engineer, athlete or service member selected to represent our country in its quest to achieve our goals. Not just in space, but in the advancement of national honor.

    From CDR Chaffee's funeral at Arlington, there is a audio clip of his parents commenting on the death of their son. His father Don Chaffee states that he had no anger at NASA or the events that took his son, but that "The price of progress comes high at times."

    Hearing Don Chaffee's words and tone while stating "The price of progress comes high at times" knocked me back for a long while. I imagined the depth of character and morale strength reflected in those words and in the actions of true heroes in hazard, and I considered how those traits relate to Jim's recent essays on our current national events and personalities driving the issues and threats that we are told are important.

    In January 1967 the US was investing more resources in an undeclared war in Viet Nam to hold back the perceived risk of other regional countries "falling like dominoes" to Communism. (Sound familiar?) That month the first manned Apollo mission was preparing to demonstrate the craft that would carry man to the moon and back. And the cost of progress in both endeavors was indeed steep in national treasure, blood and prestige. After recovering from the setback of Apollo 1, we did successfully reach the moon. Our goals in Viet Nam....not so much.

    What sickens me about the current cast of GOP jokers who throw out increasingly ludicrous and unfounded statements of existential threats, terrorists under the bed and how Obama has turned over the keys to the imams, is that these RWNJ clowns, their backers and minions have NEVER in their useless lives ever risked anything to advance the common good or achieve goals outside their own profit. But they are ready to throw our children and treasure into any ill-defined war against some made up external boogeyman threat to America! (Sound familiar?). But, they would strip away the best of national initiatives intended to provide some assistance and security for our fellow citizens to pay for never ending war, enrich their masters and impoverish the rest of the nation.

    Don Chaffee's ode to his son reveals a depth of personal character, responsibility and life awareness that is all too rare now. Many of our fellow citizens have surrendered these traits in exchange for spoon fed opinion, reinforcing hardened ideology and the selfish comfort of hatred for the new, different and inevitable. These GOP clowns tweeting throw away hatred and soundbite stupidity don't deserve to live in the shadow of the great Americans who came before and made this country great.

    Kinda lengthy and roundabout, but there it is. Keep looking to what is clear and right in our lives. And try to stay above the fray. Semper Fi

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  62. And now we have Cliven Bundy's son and a group of militia guys taking over a Federal Building in an Oregon wildlife refuge. Here we go with a group of domestic terrorists just itching to start a confrontation that could easily turn deadly. Somebody ask Dr. Ben what we should do.

    Chuck S. Fla

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    1. And not just a federal building -- a bird-watching station! Boy howdy, them boys sure do aim high.

      So to speak.

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    2. They are aiming with their dicks -- very short barrel!

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  63. That business in Oregon is going to be a tough one for all the GOP candidates. They have to find a way to say they understand and agree with 2nd amendment concerns and FREEDOM® concerns of the armed treasonous insurgent nutjob assholes, while also saying that they support law and order.

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    1. I didn't realize that the 2nd amendment covered arson.

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    2. I didn't realize that the 2nd amendment covered arson.

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    3. Are you trying to take away my matches!?! From my cold dead fingers, Critter, from my cold dead fingers!!!

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  64. I wish - just once - that someone of Carson's (and Trump's) ilk would attempt to explain the mechanics - in complete detail (as Jim says, show their work) - of the invasion they have us sooo afraid of. Never happen, of course, as it is basically impossible, but it would be amusing seeing them come to the realization o their own.

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  65. The Nazis used propaganda to increase their support and appeal. They spent huge sums of money on newspapers, leaflets and poster campaigns with simple slogans encouraging people to support the party.

    The military style of the Nazis involved using large political ‘rallies’ to gain support. These were vast, highly organised events with banners and marching bands. The rallies were broadcast on radio and had audiences of many thousands. Joseph Goebbels, who was excellent at propaganda, began to build an image of Hitler as a great leader. Goebbels used people’s fear of uncertainty and instability to portray Hitler as a man with a great vision for prosperity and stability.

    Hitler used his own skills of oratory to appeal to the patriotism of the German people by promising to break free of the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles. His aim of ending the payment of reparations was especially popular.

    Hitler’s plans to re-arm Germany were also popular. By recruiting a large army and building a whole new navy and air force, he would be able to reduce unemployment. With so many people out of work, this was an appealing prospect.

    Germany’s economy was in such a poor state that Hitler’s promise of strong government and stability was widely supported and not least by industrialists. By attacking Jews in the world of business, Hitler appealed to their non-Jewish rivals. http://www.theholocaustexplained.org/ks3/the-nazi-rise-to-power/how-did-nazis-gain-power/propaganda-and-promises/#.VooEP_krLow

    This is how a christian nation ends up doing all these anti-christian, anti-human things, hatred, propaganda, fear, the jews, etc, etc. When will we learn.

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  66. "By now, Americans should be smart enough to see this sickness for what it is, God knows we’ve had enough practice."

    But we aren't smart enough!!! Don't you get it?

    Peace
    Chris in S. Jersey

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  67. Fear makes one stupid, stupidity makes one fearful. Ouroboros munching its own tail.

    Thanks, Jim. And thanks to my fellow commenters; all of you give me a little hope. Dark days here in Dairyland.

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  68. Ben Carson and his stablemates do understand the job they are applying for, don't they? These guys are running to be the boss, the head man, the top dog, the big cheese, the head honcho, number one, the big toe...........leader of the free world and commander in chief of the biggest, baddest, most "reach out and touch someone" military EVER in the world.

    And they are pissing themselves in fright over a bunch of Toyota driving goons half a world away???

    Our current POTUS cut a Comedians in Cars tape and it was fantastic (coolest President since Teddy Roosevelt). He described his sense of "Whoa! This is it." during his first few days in the Big House. And then he got to work.

    Given the performance and behaviors of Carson and the other dopes on the campaign, this is what I imagine they might do when (potentially) inaugurated:

    - Cruz, Rubio or Fat Boy upon reaching the WH would crumble into sobbing puddles cuz so many people are demanding they actually go to work and make decisions and stuff. (Prezidentin is HARD. Remember?)

    - Trump or Snarly would just quit on day one, cuz "Who can be bothered with this shit? Right?"

    - John Ellis wud wander the halls looking at the pictures, spin in his chair kicking his feet and taking lots of naps. Cuz he wud assume that Uncle Dick and Uncle Don had everything covered.

    - Carson and the others? I just can't see them in the WH except on a public tour.

    But, miracles DO happen. God apparently told half of these mouth breathers to run for the office, so she must have been trying to prove some kind of point. Or, she just doesn't give a fuck about the USA anymore.

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  69. Coming late to the comment party, but I can't help but note that your discussion of the repeated calls to fight them over there rather than here echoes the thought of one of my favourite poems, "Dulce et Decorum Est" http://www.warpoetry.co.uk/owen1.html. The poem ends by noting that the call to war to defend the nation comes from old men who are wiling to trade the lives of the young. The facvt that a poem written during the first World War still resonates today calls into question all our claims of progress in the last 100 years.

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  70. Jim...I am a newcomer to your No-BS thinking Website. I was pointed her when I commented that the problem with the entire Republican Cadre of candidates is that they are all cowards. I read this, and all I can say is that I'm glad that I'm not a Lone Voice Wailing in the Wilderne- ...Ohh, wait... that's you up there, isn't it? :) Donating now...keep up the good work. I would love to sit down and have a beer with you; and talk shop, or anything else.
    (Sorry that I don't have any of the trappings of Modern Intrusive Society... no FB, or LJ, or MyVineInstaTwitSpaceChat... but I am *happy* to sign my name!)
    Paul DeLisle, Copperas Cove, TX

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  71. At last word, Daesh had to cut their soldiers' pay, because the American military had blown up their money stash. Another Obama operation which is so infuriating to the right, because it doesn't actually kill a bunch of innocent people... it just does its job. In this case, it has made Daesh a helluva lot less stable than killing a bunch of innocent people would have -- anyone who reads history knows that failing to pay your soldiers is NOT an effective way to survive as a military power.

    So, to Mr. Tools-to-Do-the-Job Carson, I suggest that we stand back and let President Obama use the tools he has, because he appears to be doing so much more effectively than you'd probably like him to.

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