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BS: UK Anti Bush Protests

akenaton 14 Nov 03 - 04:59 PM
GUEST 14 Nov 03 - 05:12 PM
Gareth 14 Nov 03 - 06:59 PM
McGrath of Harlow 14 Nov 03 - 07:06 PM
akenaton 14 Nov 03 - 07:16 PM
Gareth 14 Nov 03 - 07:35 PM
akenaton 14 Nov 03 - 07:42 PM
Gareth 15 Nov 03 - 08:01 AM
McGrath of Harlow 15 Nov 03 - 08:42 AM
GUEST,ro1sin 15 Nov 03 - 11:25 PM
Gareth 16 Nov 03 - 11:58 AM
McGrath of Harlow 16 Nov 03 - 12:22 PM
McGrath of Harlow 16 Nov 03 - 01:11 PM
Hrothgar 16 Nov 03 - 06:38 PM
harvey andrews 17 Nov 03 - 05:14 AM
Dave Bryant 17 Nov 03 - 06:04 AM
Ebbie 17 Nov 03 - 01:30 PM
GUEST,Boab 17 Nov 03 - 02:07 PM
GUEST,Teribus 17 Nov 03 - 02:10 PM
akenaton 17 Nov 03 - 04:01 PM
TIA 17 Nov 03 - 04:21 PM
Amos 17 Nov 03 - 04:26 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Nov 03 - 06:00 PM
Gareth 17 Nov 03 - 06:55 PM
Deda 18 Nov 03 - 12:39 AM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Nov 03 - 06:26 AM
Wolfgang 18 Nov 03 - 06:47 AM
GUEST,Teribus 18 Nov 03 - 10:57 AM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Nov 03 - 11:35 AM
Wolfgang 18 Nov 03 - 12:08 PM
Wolfgang 18 Nov 03 - 12:15 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Nov 03 - 01:14 PM
Wolfgang 18 Nov 03 - 02:27 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Nov 03 - 04:07 PM
DougR 18 Nov 03 - 06:23 PM
Gareth 18 Nov 03 - 07:17 PM
Peace 18 Nov 03 - 11:26 PM
Wolfgang 19 Nov 03 - 05:09 AM
ard mhacha 19 Nov 03 - 08:16 AM
McGrath of Harlow 19 Nov 03 - 08:47 AM
akenaton 19 Nov 03 - 06:54 PM
McGrath of Harlow 19 Nov 03 - 07:05 PM
akenaton 19 Nov 03 - 07:26 PM
Amos 19 Nov 03 - 08:09 PM
akenaton 19 Nov 03 - 08:39 PM
DougR 19 Nov 03 - 09:29 PM
Amos 19 Nov 03 - 09:46 PM
DougR 20 Nov 03 - 12:33 AM
LadyJean 20 Nov 03 - 12:37 AM
GUEST,Boab 20 Nov 03 - 03:08 AM
akenaton 20 Nov 03 - 04:43 AM
GUEST 20 Nov 03 - 07:18 AM
akenaton 20 Nov 03 - 12:30 PM
Amos 20 Nov 03 - 12:36 PM
GUEST 20 Nov 03 - 12:41 PM
Amos 20 Nov 03 - 12:43 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Nov 03 - 12:48 PM
akenaton 20 Nov 03 - 12:55 PM
akenaton 20 Nov 03 - 01:13 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Nov 03 - 01:32 PM
Linda Kelly 20 Nov 03 - 05:29 PM
Bobert 20 Nov 03 - 06:01 PM
GUEST,Frank Hamilton 20 Nov 03 - 06:34 PM
akenaton 20 Nov 03 - 08:18 PM
DougR 20 Nov 03 - 09:30 PM
GUEST,Teribus 21 Nov 03 - 03:40 AM
akenaton 21 Nov 03 - 05:54 AM
ard mhacha 21 Nov 03 - 06:01 AM
GUEST 21 Nov 03 - 07:01 AM
GUEST,Teribus 21 Nov 03 - 07:03 AM
akenaton 21 Nov 03 - 08:31 AM
TIA 21 Nov 03 - 08:33 AM
Bobert 21 Nov 03 - 08:43 AM
akenaton 21 Nov 03 - 08:57 AM
akenaton 21 Nov 03 - 05:33 PM
Gareth 21 Nov 03 - 07:01 PM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Nov 03 - 07:09 PM
Bobert 21 Nov 03 - 07:21 PM
akenaton 21 Nov 03 - 07:31 PM
GUEST 22 Nov 03 - 09:57 AM
GUEST,pdc 24 Nov 03 - 02:28 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Nov 03 - 04:04 PM
Bobert 24 Nov 03 - 05:26 PM
ard mhacha 25 Nov 03 - 06:29 AM
Teribus 25 Nov 03 - 07:39 AM
akenaton 25 Nov 03 - 07:41 PM
Teribus 26 Nov 03 - 03:26 AM
McGrath of Harlow 26 Nov 03 - 08:05 PM
Teribus 27 Nov 03 - 07:48 AM
akenaton 27 Nov 03 - 09:02 AM
McGrath of Harlow 27 Nov 03 - 11:03 AM
GUEST 27 Nov 03 - 11:13 AM
Teribus 27 Nov 03 - 12:27 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 Nov 03 - 12:34 PM
Teribus 28 Nov 03 - 07:34 AM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Nov 03 - 08:14 AM

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Subject: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 04:59 PM

Interesting to hear Will Self on BBCTV,harangue anti Bush protesters.
He reckons they are wasting their time,and should be trying to de-select Blairite paliamentary candidates.I think I agree with him ...


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 05:12 PM

trying to de-select Blairite paliamentary candidates will also be a waste of time. Sad but true.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 06:59 PM

Which confirms what I have been saying for some time - An element of the "Anti-War" protestors are more concerned with regime change in the UK than freedom or justice in Iraq.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 07:06 PM

President (yeah right) Bush coming to UK One thread on this rather than two might be better?


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 07:16 PM

Gareth...The decision to invade Iraq has been taken.It is clear now to everyone, regardless of their politics, that the action was ill concieved,given the mess we now have to extricate ourselves from.
Perhaps regime change in the Labour party would stop similar blunders in the future.Although I must admit I'm a bit doubtful,being a devout realist....Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 07:35 PM

akenaton

Ill concieved maybe - Moral yes !

Interestingly here in Caerphilly we are well into our round of selections, by local ward members for our council candidates next June.

There have been some intersting casualties on existing councillors, those who were most vocal against the Iraq "invasion/liberation" have gone down in flames. Deselected by the rank and file. And NO!, I can speak as a CLP official (Unpaid) - HQ in Cardiff was told to keep clear, and they did.

After all we had had enuf of thier attempts to deal with Ron Davies.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 14 Nov 03 - 07:42 PM

Gareth... Im not really a political animal, so I ask in ignorance, what sort of people compose the "rank and file" these days.
When I was a young man, most of the LP officials were radicals...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 15 Nov 03 - 08:01 AM

Ake - To misquote Kipling "Ordinary folks, a bit like you and me"

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 15 Nov 03 - 08:42 AM

"Ill conceived maybe - Moral yes!"

"It's worse than a crime - it's a mistake..." Nobody seem quite sure who first said that - either Fouché or Talleyrand - some cynical Frenchman anyway.

Either way, it's very apposite in this context. The key criticism of this all along, for me anyway, has been that it was likely to end up making things even worse, whereas going at it another way offered a real hope of making things better.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,ro1sin
Date: 15 Nov 03 - 11:25 PM

do all of you realize that every president that was elected in a year ending with a zero was shot and killed in office starting with Lincoln with the exception of Regan, he was shot but surviced


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 16 Nov 03 - 11:58 AM

ro1sin - The problem here is that Bush Jnr was not elected in 2000, by the people, but by the courts.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 16 Nov 03 - 12:22 PM

And if you check with the records it's not true anyway.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 16 Nov 03 - 01:11 PM

It's not actually true - it is true that all the ones who were shot were elected in these years, but that's not the same thing. Here is a list with dates.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Hrothgar
Date: 16 Nov 03 - 06:38 PM

Three of them died without being shot. Interesting contrast - Roosevelt, arguably one of their best presidents, and Harding, almost certainly one of their worst. Harrison's only distinction was having the shortest presidency.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: harvey andrews
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 05:14 AM

Nice of George to tell our protesters that they're lucky to be living in a country where they can protest. That statement is usually followed by.."Of course, if I had my way....."
It seems our Govt has turned down US requests to fly their fighter jets and helicopters over our capital after closing down the underground system and fencing off most of the city. Oh, and they also requested that they be allowed to shoot to kill anyone they chose to without any comeback and also to be allowed to have a tank gun that can spray a crowd with bullets faster than anything else.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Dave Bryant
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 06:04 AM

Saddam, Bin Laden, Guy Fawkes, Lee Harvey Oswald etc - Where are you when we need you !


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 01:30 PM

I believe we usually say that since McKinley, each president elected in a year ending in '0' died (not "was shot") in office. Reagan survived, so perhaps the chain is broken. With Bush getting into office the way he did, we may never know!


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 02:07 PM

Heard a confused old guy [a"press representative" from London]on CBC news this morning telling the Canadian public that the 100,000 protesters expected on the streets are "a noisy minority", and the "vast majority" of the British public "approve of Mr Bush"!!! Either he's a truly desperate Tory propagandist or he has been having some wild nightmares which he confuses with reality.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 02:10 PM

They most certainly be wasting their time - on both counts.

For those attending it will be something akin to peeing in your pants whilst wearing a dark suit - it will give you a lovely warm feeling for a few minutes, but will not be noticed by anyone.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 04:01 PM

Im afraid that you are correct Terribus,and this goes to show the lie in our "democracy"....When Government can treat a large part of public opinion In this arrogant fashion.
It is clear to almost everyone,that the war and its aftermath have been a blunder and we are now being treated to a lage portion of spin
       Ake..


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: TIA
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 04:21 PM

It certainly won't be noticed by Bush - who by his own admission does not watch, nor read, the news. In addition, protestors are kept well out of his eye- and earshot. I think he truly believes the world is behind him. People used to joke about Ronald Reagan being detached. People joked about George H.W. Bush being astonished by a supermarket scanner (doesn't get out much does he?). But Little Georgie lives in a fairy land. He'll come home having very much enjoyed his peaceful visit to Merrie Olde...probably get his picture taken with those Mr. Serious guards in big fuzzy hats, maybe bring back a plastic Big Ben.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Amos
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 04:26 PM

See also http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2003/11/274781.shtml.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 06:00 PM

You've tried doing that, Teribus?


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 17 Nov 03 - 06:55 PM

Kevin, I don'y know if Terribus has, but have you ?

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Deda
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 12:39 AM

Well, I'm grateful to all the folks who are turning out to let the world know what an ass he is perceived to be by the rest of the world. If I had the money I'd hope over to join the crowd. No one in his administration cares but still, I appreciate the protests from over here.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 06:26 AM

Here's Steve Bell's cartoon summary of the event in today's Guardian.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Wolfgang
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 06:47 AM

Thanks for that link to 'majority of Labout voters backs Bush visit'.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 10:57 AM

I'll second Wolgang's thanks Kevin - that link makes interesting reading.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 11:35 AM

Interesting - but not quite as straightforward as that headline suggests - "...majority backs Bush visit" it says, but that's not actually true. The figures further down indicate that "43% - say they welcome George Bush's arrival in Britain than the 36% who say they would prefer he did not come." And that is made up of 51% of men and only 35% of women.

Forty three per cent is not a majority.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Wolfgang
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 12:08 PM

McGrath, as well as anybody else you know that the word 'majority' has at least two meanings, absolute and relative majority. The article makes completely clear in the context that 'relative majority' was meant. Understood in that sense the headline is true. Headlines are not a good spot for the small print.

Wolfgang (suppressing the very strong temptation to use the word 'ironic' to describe you making this link)


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Wolfgang
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 12:15 PM

And, by the way, my line 'majority of Labout voters backs Bush visit' (in which did with purpose change the headline of the Guardian) is correct in both senses of the word, for not only a relative but even an absolute majority of Labour voters...

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 01:14 PM

What you refer to as a "relative majority" is correctly called a "plurality". To use the term "majority" where what is being talked about is in fact a minority is not in my view an acceptable use of language.

"Majority backs Bush's visit" means that most people back it - but in fact accordingly to that poll, most people did not say they welcomed the visit.

As you say, it's quite true that a majority of people who said they intend to vote Labour said they back the visit. Of course that would exclude many who voted Labour last time, but don't feel like voting that way next time, precisely because they disagree over the Iraq war and so forth. But my quote was taken from the Guardian headline, not from Wolfgang's post.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Wolfgang
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 02:27 PM

"Different dictionaries", McGrath.
In my dictionary, plurality is the wrong word in this context and '(relative) majority' is the correct expression.

Plurality refers to the choice with most votes in a situation with more than two choices. For instance in elections. In these cases, the majority may not prefer the candidate with most votes.

In situations with two choices and a third option of 'don't respond/ don't care' the expression to be used is 'relative majority'.

'Relative majority' here is the majority of those who care or have an opinion or want to tell their opinion.

The difference in usage is whether a majority has explicitely stated another choice, then 'plurality' would be correct, or whether in what basically is a two-choices situation with the possibility of 'undecided' vote the majority of those who are not undecided favour one possibility, then 'relative majority' is the correct expression.

But completely aside from which words to use, we do not differ on the basic facts and as I said I'm glad you have brought them to our attention.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 04:07 PM

I still feel unconfortable using "majority" in this kind of sense, more especially without even a "relative" added. And that isn't actually because of the way the figures worked out. I'd object to it if it had come out the other way. Honestly.

In this case 21% of people declined to express an opinion.   But what if it had been 90%? If that had happened I suspect that Wolfgang would agree that, even if virtually all the 10% had said "Yes" (or virtually all had said "No"), it would be a distortion of the result if anyone were to say that this was the view of "the majority". So what is the magic figure between 90% and 21%?   I don't think there is one. I think the only responsible thing is to take a little more time and trouble and be more precise.

People reading the Guardian story could read down a couple of paragraphs and see the actual figures - but, for most people, the way it's reached them has been through the TV news - and it's seemed to me that every news bulletin which has referred to this poll has just gone with the headline, and failed to clarify the results. We've been repeatedly told that the poll shows that most people welcome Bush's visit - and that just is not a true summary of the result.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: DougR
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 06:23 PM

Now you British folks be nice to our president, okay?

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 07:17 PM

Kevin - When yer in a hole - Stop digging !

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Peace
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 11:26 PM

Send him to Canada. We want to be nice to him, too.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Wolfgang
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 05:09 AM

If a considerable number of people was undecided or did not state an opinion it should be mentioned. What is 'considerable'? As a rule of thumb, in a two-choice situation, when more people are undecided than the least preferred of the two options it is worth mentioning.

Since the link above does not go now to where it did yesterday those who are interested in the polls we discuss go here.

Isn't it interesting that the highest percentage wishing Bush did not come is among those above 65?

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: ard mhacha
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 08:16 AM

The majority of the British population read the Sun newspaper, and the majority of the German population voted for Hitler.

This sound logic means, that there was always more idiots out than in. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 08:47 AM

I prefer my rule of thumb Wolfgang - it's only a majority if it's 50 per cent plus one. That's what it's always meant so far as I'm concerned. Nobody would describe a government which had fewer that half the seats in a parliament as a majority government, even if it it had far more seats than any of the other parties.

"Isn't it interesting that the highest percentage wishing Bush did not come is among those above 65?"

I agree. And it's not what a lot of people would have predicted. It rather undermines the assumption you often get that caring about these things is just a matter of young people going along with a fashion, "they'll grow out of it"...


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 06:54 PM

Come come Mcgrath..The figures that Wolfgang Quotes are quite a blow for the left.   I would have expected this poll ,especially in the Guardian, to have shown a large majority against Bush's visit.
Your wriggling does you no credit.
As Iv said before,we on the left must stop glossing over our weaknesses. We only make ourseves look foolish....Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 07:05 PM

Not guilty of wriggling this time.

As I said above, I'd have made the same objection if the figures had been the other way round and they'd had headlines about 43% as being "a majority", interpreted by the media as meaning "most".


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 07:26 PM

Yes McGrath. But surely ,like me, you would have expected a large majority against the visit.
The world seems to have moved on ,or back, since the heady days of Feb 15......Nothing as fickle as public opinion it seems.
This is probably the reason that "real" democracy is unworkable ,under our present system...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Amos
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 08:09 PM

NPR reported this evening that 6 per cent of Britons considered Bush a world leader.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 08:39 PM

Actually Bush came across as a confident speaker on British TV.
He seemed sincere and gave an un compromising message to the world that America was determined to stamp on any country ,or organisation that they deemed a threat to their security and freedom.
Im sure this stance will have won round large numbers of "wobbly" Brits. Im sure glad I dont bother with politics any more..Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: DougR
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 09:29 PM

Interesting. When "THE GUARDIAN" promotes the left-wing party line, it's a wonderful, not to be disputed publication. When it reports something not acceptable to the hard line left-wingers, it's reporting is suspect.

Amos: NPR? What would one expect?

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Amos
Date: 19 Nov 03 - 09:46 PM

DougR:

I'd expect them to have a reasonable source for the statistic. The Guardian, well, I'd give it a grain of salt sometimes. In any case, attacking the medium is not the point. Do you argue, then that the ROTUS is highly esteemed in the UK? Does the fact that NPR published a datum make it unbelievable to your worried mind?

A


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: DougR
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:33 AM

Amos, I don't have a "worried mind." I think Tommy Duncan, vocalist with the Bob Wills Texas' Playboys, lies claim to that. As to ROTUS, I haven't the foggiest.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: LadyJean
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:37 AM

At least the Britons can call the S.O.B. an S.O.B. We his countrymen and women are banished to free speech zones, out of his view.

Another U.S. president said, "If you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen."

They called him give 'em hell Harry. I don't think anyone will ever call Bush give 'em hell George. Of course they could call him, give 'em BS Bush.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 03:08 AM

Nay, Ard Mharcha! The Sun may be the biggest seller in the UK of the crappy tabloids [page three bums and tits are hard to ignore when you're young and undersupplied], but the "majority of the Brits" most surely do NOT read it. Most of those who buy it, I would guess, bounce from the tits page to the sports section. Another example of how published statistics, though accurate in themselves, can mislead.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 04:43 AM

Doug..Although I may be chiding my friend Mcgrath,for a minor misdemeanor,(asISee it).   This does not mean that I am blind to the infinitly greater sins of the right.
The oft repeated claim ,that conservatives can construct a united society,is a gross lie .
Most people know that the right with their enevitable "two tier society",always end up with a mass of social and economic problems,which require them to be removed from power and the damage patched up.
I ask for honesty from Mcgrath and his comrades on the left...I am not so naive as to ask the same from the right ...ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 07:18 AM

Akenaton, pray tell, who can construct a united society?


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:30 PM

GUEST...All political parties falsly claim to unite society ,but in the case of the right wing,unity goes completely against their principles....Winner takes it all...


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Amos
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:36 PM

Doug:

ROTUS is an acronym standing for Resident of the United States.
The state of your mind is not the point, really, although I am always interested :>)

A


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:41 PM

Akenaton,

Germany was what could be described as a fairly comprehensively united society under the Nazi's 1933 - 1945. They don't come much more right wing than that and it was completely in tune with their principles.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Amos
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:43 PM

From the SF Chronicle:

Bush opponents stage mass protest in London
San Francisco Chronicle

Amid chants, the blast of foghorns and the beat of drums, tens of thousands of anti-war activists marched peacefully in London Thursday to let President Bush know of their opposition to US-British policies in Iraq.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:48 PM

I was objecting to a sub-editor sticking a misleading headline on an otherwise accurate story. And to lazy reporting of this in other media outlets that compounded the error.

Anything wrong with this?

And Doug, I tend to quote stories from the Guardian because that's the paper I read, because it's website doesn't require people to sign up, and it maintains its archives in a way that a lot of papers don't. In no way do I regard it as "not to be disputed". I'm likely to dispute anything if it seems to be inaccurate, and I don't allow my politic preferences to get in the way of that.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 12:55 PM

Guest...how can you say Germany was united under the Nazi's. Would you have liked to be a communist there?...Or even aJewish communist, or a Gypsy ,or a negro.or have been handicapped,or, or, or,
I dont wish to be offensive ,but your not thinking straight...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 01:13 PM

Im sorry GUEST I re-read your post ,and take your point.
Its me who's not thinking straight ...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 01:32 PM

And it's fairly clear that when ard macha talked about the majority of Germand voting for Hitler, and the majority of people in Britain reading the Sun, he was demonstrating what happens if you use the term "majority" in the way I objected to in the Guardian headline.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Linda Kelly
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 05:29 PM

I do find polls interesting- as a houseowning, electorally registered, Labour Party Member having numerous credit cards, subscriber to magazines and charities etc, etc I have never once IN MY LIFE been asked my opinion in a poll by a newspaper, or any opinion pollster - so who is compiling figures and why are we taking any notice of them whatsoever. Richard Baker was on television the other night rying to flog the nation's favourite classical pieces-say's who -not me-no-one asked!


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Bobert
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 06:01 PM

Good point, GUEST. The cornerstone of facism is consolidation of power. Mix in nationalism and superpatriotism and, waalaa, nazis. Lots of folks here are not comfy with these basic concepts because they have been *conditioned* by the facists (those who wish to consolidate power) that comparing whats going on now to Germany in the 30's is somehow anti-American...

Well, I'm sure that Martin Luther King would remind us that knowledge and wisdom, when used to criticize out governemnt is going in the wrong direction it is out responsibility, from out "love of America", to speak up...

Bobert

And, BTW, in consolidating power, there are always folks that are in the way and need to be either marginalized or removed.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Frank Hamilton
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 06:34 PM

Think you ought to take the polls with a large grain of salt. Who conducts them and who answers them? As to majority or plurality, I am suspicious of these words today. It sounds like editorializing.
I am sure that there are a lot of British people who support Bush and his policies as there are many Americans who are likewise asleep. But the real breakdown of a poll count is anyone's guess really.

I've seen that there is a tendency for those who have an ideological point of view to emphasize poll content. Often these questions are ambiguous and if followed by another related question, they can be made irrelevant.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 08:18 PM

I found it amusing ,in a morbid sort of way, to hear Blair support Bush's stance in Iraq and Afganistan.
Blair said he believed war was justified ,as that was the only way to rid the world of terrorism.
I thought Blair should have choked on his words.
After the IRA bombing campaign,which forced a complete change in British policy in N Ireland,Blair now "canoodles" with people he once called terrorists.
Another example of political hypocricy! What short memories the public have.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: DougR
Date: 20 Nov 03 - 09:30 PM

Interesting how polls, when they support one's point of view are legitimate, and when they don't, they are a waste of time.

Linda: the fact that you have not been personally polled has nothing whatsover to do with the accuracy of polling.

Bobert: whe one "gets in the way," how does one dispose of them? Surely not by violence!

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 03:40 AM

akenaton - 20 Nov 03 - 08:18 PM

What forced the change in British policy in N. Ireland was the civil rights movement and the Northern Ireland governments response to it.

That was when Stormont was suspended for the first time, the bombing came later (started by the loyalist paramilitaries, which people tend to forget, although at that time they tended to blow things up, not people). The Nationalist's "Armed Struggle", was realised as the stalemate it could only ever be by the time the PIRA declared their last cease-fire. Political moves fathered by John Hume, Seamus Mallin, Jerry Adams and Martin McGuiness, led to statements being made, which were taken up by the governments of the UK and Eire and led to John Major's, "Downing Street Declaration" - It said in effect, "OK we will take what you say at face value, now put up and honour the promises you have made, or show the world that you cannot be trusted." By and large they did, and the result was the "Good Friday Agreement". Some sections of the PIRA at the time were not capable of compromise. They still continue "the struggle", even although they stand condemned by referenda by the vast majority of the population of the island of Ireland. Those who continue to bomb, maime and kill (Omagh), represent no-one bar themselves.


Nothing whatsoever wrong in talking, or negotiating, with enemies who are prepared to discuss the situation and are capable of compromise. Problem is, with the current situation, from Al-Qaeda's perspective, there is no negotiating, there is no compromise. Pretty much like the PIRA, and the Loyalist paramilitaries, in the mid 1970's - "No Surrender!!" - MY ARSE.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 05:54 AM

Teribus Im sorry fo a short post ,buthave to rush.
I am cynical about the reasons you gave for the change in policy regarding negotiations with IRA .I think the continued bombing campaign, especially the Brighton bomb certainly helped to concentrate the government of the days' mind
Surely no sane person believes this terrorism can be defeated by brute force ,That would mean taking on Islam and all the nutters contained within its folds.Comprmise would appeare to be the only way forward,who knows to what end .The alternative ...Armageddon...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: ard mhacha
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 06:01 AM

So Bush and Blair have made the World a safer place, after the bomb in Istanbul yesterday they are having to eat their words, the situation now is beyond both of them. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 07:01 AM

Akenaton,

Serious attempts at negotiated settlement in Northern Ireland on the part of the governments of the UK and Eire pre-date the Brighton Hotel bombing by many years. I refer to efforts made by the governments of Harold Wilson and Ted Heath.

"Surely no sane person believes this terrorism can be defeated by brute force" - In that you are perfectly correct although at times the use of controlled force is sometimes essential. The response to counter terrorism should primarily be political and civil (Examples Malayan Emergency 1949 - 1964; Borneo Confrontation 1964 - 1968)backed up with a military capability. It takes time and that should be realised by all - no overnight solution or remedy. In relation to Iraq at present there are I think four areas where the application of the above differs:
- Northern Kurdish areas, largely quiet, drive here is mainly politically led, potential concern that could have ignited the situation was the idiotic idea that Turkish troops could be used in this area - thankfully that has now been ruled out.
- Southern Area around Basra up towards Nasariya, again largely quiet
- Baghdad and area known as the Sunni triangle, very active, very aggressive. Here is where you use military force, otherwise the impression is fostered that the war is still ongoing, everything the US has at its command should be applied to this area to put Saddam's supporters on the back foot. In application this should not of the hammer to crack a walnut, it requires understanding and a bit of finnesse.
- South from Baghdad to Nasariya, mostly quiet with only occasional flare-ups (Recent attack on the Italians). Here as in most of the quiet areas, power has been restored, clean water supply has been restored, life is getting back to normal and things are moving on.

With regard to the war against terror - nobody is talking, or has ever talked, about, "taking on Islam". The only Islamic dimension to this is the extent to which that religion, and some of its teachings, have been hijacked by those you accurately describe as, "the nutters contained within its folds." Unfortunately those "nutters" do not want to negotiate, they do not want to compromise, their fundamentally held beliefs forbid either. Their way is absolute - as a "non-believer" you are an enemy to whom no quarter shall be given.

Taking a look at the things most on this forum accuse the current administration of, with regard to their effects domestically in the USA, relating to Afghanistan and Iraq. Curtailing personnel freedom, and shredding rights enshrined in the US Constitution, etc. Some make reference to Fascism and the rise of the Neo-cons and far right. There is still one hell of a long way to go before circumstances in the US in any way, shape, or form, equate to the conditions the ordinary citizens had to suffer under Taliban rule in Afghanistan, or under Ba'athist rule in Iraq.

Nobody said it was going to be easy - but I have no doubt whatsoever that it did have to be done.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 07:03 AM

Last post was mine BTY


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 08:31 AM

Teribus...A fine piece of writing containing many good points...but unforunatly the very "freedoms" that the US and UK want to bring to Iraq, Afghanistan ,ect,are seen by a large number of Moslems as an attack on their beliefs and culture.   Hense my point that we will inevitably come into conflict with "Islam".I believe compromise can at least buy us time,and perhaps a softening of attitudes on both sides
Please dont think I have any particular axe to grind ,as i think all organised relions ,and political dogmas ,work against the long term good of humanity.
Also, I can see that if Islam did gain "the upper hand,like all the rest (Christianity included), another face would be seen.However that premise still brings us back to compromise or conflict ...Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: TIA
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 08:33 AM

Teribus says ... "With regard to the war against terror - nobody is talking, or has ever talked, about, "taking on Islam"."

Apparently US talk radio does not make it to the UK. There is actually a frightening amount of this talk.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Bobert
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 08:43 AM

And let's no dismiss General Boykin who has been making the rounds in his generals uniform speaking before congregations of Christain Right churches, ahhh, mean mouthing Islam and stating that the war on terrorism starts with taking on Islam... And he gets his paycheck from my tax dollars?

Beam me up...

And I just read the AP report on the demontrations in London. The story is about 10 column inches, of which 2 column inches were quotes from 3, yes 3, supporters of the B & B War Machine. Yes, 3 folks got 20% of the article and between 50,000 and 100,000 got 80%! Hey, I'm not even gonna worry the Wes Ginny Slide Rule on this one.

Beam me up, Part 2...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 08:57 AM

We anti's must also ask ourselves ,and answer truthfully.
If our lifstyle and economy were put at risk ,by Islamic inspired "sanctions",would we care so much for the beliefs and cultures we now defend in Iraq
Self preservation is a powerful motivation ,as the right correctly point out.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 05:33 PM

Well....what do you think??
Would a war against Islam ,to protect our "way of life" as B and B put it....Be justifiable


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Gareth
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 07:01 PM

Ake.

Define :-

"Our Way of Life"

"Moslem Way of Life"


Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 07:09 PM

I think setting up that kind of conflict is the primary aim of Al Qaida at this time.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Bobert
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 07:21 PM

Well, McG, looks like they have a willing partner in Bush, who still doesn't get it that he has been sucked into Osoma's trap...

Bush is the best thing that ever happened to the terrorists. Looks like he's done a nice job of givin' them a resurgence... Recruiting has never been better...

Maybe Bush owns stock in Al Qaida?

Heck, his daddy sure has enough bin Laden bucks in his bank account...

Oh, those wacky Bushes and bin Ladens....

As per usual, beam me up....

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 21 Nov 03 - 07:31 PM

Gareth "our way of life" Bush's words ...not mine...but I suppose he meant, all the benefits of our free,egalitarian,entrepreneurial,caring ,society ..... as opposed to a bunch of loonys in dressing gowns and funny hats???
Mcgrath ...I was making the point in previous posts,that US UK actions may lead to conflict with Islam.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Nov 03 - 09:57 AM

Cupla t'oughts...

First, any time a demonstration of tens of thousands of people can be organized, especially on a work day, everyone understands that there is deep and wide concern over the issues related to the demonstrations. That is why they receive widespread coverage, and why the Nixon spinners invented the term "silent majority". To counter the demonstrations against the Vietnam war, which eventually did change the course of the nation. Teribus' suggestion that the demonstrations are irrelevant couldn't be further from the truth. No single demonstration changes the course of nations immediately, but over time they most certainly change the course of nations, and sometimes bring down the leaders they are attempting to topple--anyone remember the whistle protests at 5:00 p.m. every day?

As to whether or not the Bush administration is listening--you bet they are. The stories of the protests and the polls in England were one the top stories on the American newscasts all week. The Bush/Blair spinners tried working magic with the numbers to show that their support was solid. Maybe those look like good numbers in Britain, but they'd be considered disastrous for Bush here, where he has yet to fall below the 50% approval line (although he has been very close to falling below 50% approval in the last month). However, savvy folks know that polls are a bunch of bullshit anyway, and used by spinmeisters to "prove" they are on the same side as god.

The demonstrators were very media savvy as well. Many of us Americans enjoyed the hell out of the Bush effigy statue being pulled down and stomped on in the capital city of our strongest ally--an image that got a lot of airplay on US network news this week. So, kudos to the organizers (Stop the War Coalition) of the London demos. They were dead brilliant, and played to great effect here in the US. There is currently a large cringe factor when Bush goes overseas to these kinds of protests among the American political establishment and media whores especially. The story of Bush's polarization of the nation, of his administration's manipulation of 9/11 to their own political advantage, to the Bush administration's attacks on free speech, civil rights, the Geneva Convention, etc. etc. These issues only come sharply into focus here in the US mainstream media when Bush goes overseas, where they can't control the spin.

It is clear from the protests over his visit, and the stupid polls, that Bush doesn't enjoy majority support ANYWHERE for his policies, except the bare majority he continues to eek out of the US Congress. And of course, it is the members of the US Congress and lobbyists who, along with their corporate brethren, stand to gain from supporting Bush's policies. God knows the American people and citizens of the world won't.

Which brings me to the final thought. When Ronnie Rayguns dodged the bullet, he ended the 00 curse. And Bush proves the curse is now on the people, rather than the president.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 02:28 PM

And now you can add the Queen to those who protested Bush's visit:

From the Sunday Mirror, Nov. 23:
GROUND FARCE 1 Nov 23 2003


Queen's fury as Bush goons wreck garden

Exclusive By Terry O'Hanlon


THE Queen is furious with President George W. Bush after his state visit caused thousands of pounds of damage to her gardens at Buckingham Palace.

Royal officials are now in touch with the Queen's insurers and Prime Minister Tony Blair to find out who will pick up the massive repair bill. Palace staff said they had never seen the Queen so angry as when she saw how her perfectly-mantained lawns had been churned up after being turned into helipads with three giant H landing markings for the Bush visit.

The rotors of the President's Marine Force One helicopter and two support Black Hawks damaged trees and shrubs that had survived since Queen Victoria's reign.

And Bush's army of clod-hopping security service men trampled more precious and exotic plants.

The Queen's own flock of flamingoes, which security staff insisted should be moved in case they flew into the helicopter rotors, are thought to be so traumatised after being taken to a "place of safety" that they might never return home.

The historic fabric of the Palace was also damaged as high-tech links were fitted for the US leader and his entourage during his three-day stay with the Queen.

The Palace's head gardener, Mark Lane, was reported to be in tears when he saw the scale of the damage.

"The Queen has every right to feel insulted at the way she has been treated by Bush," said a Palace insider.

"The repairs will cost tens of thousands of pounds but the damage to historic and rare plants will be immense. They are still taking an inventory.

"The lawns are used for royal garden parties and are beautifully kept. But 30,000 visitors did not do as much damage as the Americans did in three days.

"Their security people and support staff tramped all over the place and left an absolute mess. It is particularly sad because the Queen Mother loved to wander in the garden just as the Queen and Prince Charles do now.

"Some of the roses, flowers and shrubs damaged are thought to be rare varieties named after members of the Royal Family and planted by the Queen Mother and Queen.

"Other Royals had their own favourite parts of the garden as children and some of those areas have been damaged."

The Queen's insurers have told her she is covered for statues, garden furniture and plants she personally owns, but the bill for repairing damage to the lawns and the structure of the Palace will probably have to be picked up by the Government.

The Americans made alterations to accommodate specialised equipment. The mass of gadgetry meant the Royals couldn't get a decent TV picture during the visit.

Bush the Boorish


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 04:04 PM

I believe she may be drafting in some Rottweilers to give the Royal Corgis a bit of extra muscle if ever again Bush and Co get billeted on the Royals.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Bobert
Date: 24 Nov 03 - 05:26 PM

Well, as a major gardener, now I'm *really mad*! Hey, rare shrubs don't grow on trees, dangit! They'll all rot in Hell fir this!....Grrrrrrr..........

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: ard mhacha
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 06:29 AM

As a grower of prized Dandylions, I feel really sorry for oul Liz and I hope you will all pardon me while I laugh,the only bloody good thing that came out of the visit. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Teribus
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:39 AM

akenaton -

Your post of 21 Nov 03 - 05:33 PM, asked the following question

"Would a war against Islam ,to protect our "way of life" as B and B put it....Be justifiable"

1. If the way in which my "way of life" was being threatened meant that I was being forced to accept the rule of Sharia Law, then I would fight it to the last breath in my body.

2. If the way in which my "way of life" was being threatened meant that I had to accept that, as a non-moslem, a true believer was, at the urging of some moslem cleric, free to legitimately attack and kill me - then that true believer had better come after me loaded for bear, in the full understanding that should he attack me, I will defend myself to the extent that I eliminate any likelyhood of future attack for as long as his thinking and that of his cleric remain prevalent.

Our "way of life" has been, by and large, decided by a concensus. It is certainly not acceptable in any way, shape, or form, for believers in another religion to impose their beliefs on others. What the people of both Afghanistan and Iraq have been offered is an opportunity to exercise their choice free from line of thought directed by organised religions ,and political dogma.

With regard to what Bobert and MGOH would like us to believe about us having - "Fallen into Bin Laden's Trap"

1 Why have Al-Qaeda started attacking fellow moslems?

Answer: Because their fellow moselms do not back them.

2 Why in Iraq are the attacks mounted by Saddam's sympathisers now predominantly targeting their fellow Iraqi's?

Answer: Because the Iraqi people do not back them.

A fairly recent interview with the late King Hussein's brother talking to Tim Sebastian brought up one observation. In which the interviewee said something to the effect, "Go to any Arab or moslem state, go to any city or town, and set up two stalls in any market place. At one stall you advertise for volunteers for Al-Qaeda/Hammas/Hezbollah/etc. At the other stall you advertise entry visas for the USA - irrespective of what is perceived in the West, or by the world's media in general, as a wave of anti-Americanism - you will find on examining the number of customers at each stall, that for every one person at the first stall, there will one thousand at the second." - Interesting that. Now why? A good indication as to the answer can be found in Iran.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:41 PM

Teribus...Of course I didnt mean to say that you might be attacked by a moslem...I meant the scenario where moslem countries,seeing their culture and religion under attack from "creeping Westernisation",might band together to impose oil sanctions, or destroy our patently fragile economic system by "terrorism"

Would a pre-emptive strike against Islam then be justified???

I also think your being a bit naive about the Iraqis who are assisting the "coalition".   Everyone needs to earn to provide for their families, and in the Iraq situation survival comes first.
Regardless of where these people want to live,Islam is in their blood and wont be removed without the letting of blood.
This appears to be ONE doctrin which is stronger than capitalism


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Teribus
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 03:26 AM

Akenaton,

The oil weapon no longer exists, it was only ever used once, in 1973. Subsequent to that happening, take at look at how the international oil and gas industry responded - globally. The major, non-OPEC, oil producing countries could destroy OPEC in a matter of months. OPEC fully realises that. Another difference from 1973 and today, and a thing that tends to keep the OPEC cart rolling is that the main players in OPEC (The Saudi's and the other Arab Gulf States) NEED an oil price of $25 per barrel, or they are in trouble. Russia and the former Soviet Republics NEED an oil price of $21 per barrel. As long as that differential remains - no oil sanctions would ever be imposed.

But would a war be justified to break such sanctions - history would tend to say yes - wars have been fought for a damn sight less in the past. That war would not be fought against "Islam".

I can't remeber saying that the Iraqi people were supporting/assisting the "coalition". I think what I said was that they were not backing Saddam Hussein's sympathisers - there is a major difference in those two contentions.

You are correct in saying that, "Everyone needs to earn to provide for their families, and in the Iraq situation survival comes first."

What is becoming abundantly clear to the people of Iraq is that they will be far better off without the likes of Saddam Hussein and the Ba'athists - It is because of the dawning of that realisation that Iraqi's, International NGO aid groups and the UN Organisations have been targeted by Saddam's supporters. The better things get the less likelyhood there is of them ever getting back into power, so they do their damndest to retard the progress being made by falling back on their old tactics - terrorise the population. Long way to go, but they are on a loser.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 08:05 PM

There's no evidence that Al Qaida is specifically attacking Muslims - destabilising Turkey, and disrupting the occupation of Iraq, is surely the immediate goal in the explosions. The fact that large numbers of Muslims are killed is irrelevant. Al Qaida is not running for election - popularity as such is not important. The crackdowns and reprisals to be anticipated as the result of these atrocities can be expected to counteract the effect of the explosions on Al Qaida's standing in any case.

The net effect of all this, and I am sure a central aim, is to ensure that increasingly a wedge is driven between Muslims and non-Muslims, both within countries and between them. The expectation would be that this generates increased suspicion and hostility, together with a feedback process that inexorably builds towards a situation of segregation and escalating conflict.

And Al Qaida will surely be expecting that in the long run - possibly a few years, possibly a few decades - the will of America to continue to be involved in the conflict would dissipate, while that of those involved in the other side grew stronger.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Teribus
Date: 27 Nov 03 - 07:48 AM

What would Al-Qaeda gain from destabilising Turkey? Their attacks, made possibly in collusion with a fundamentalist Turkish group, were reportedly against British interests and the relatively small Turkish Jewish community.

They are doing precious little by way of disrupting coalition efforts in Iraq

With no warnings issued, the fact that large numbers of Muslims were the victims is highly relevant. Such an act goes against the very teachings of the Koran. Such attacks can only affect Al-Qaeda adversely. You are right in saying that Al-Qaeda is not running for election (they, after all, offer nothing), and while popularity may not be important, alienation amongst their fellow Muslims is not something they would want. The more innocent Muslim bystanders are killed and maimed, the more likely anyone within those communities having information will offer that up.

What crackdowns and reprisals? Action by the relevant authorities in Turkey will be readily seen as measures being taken to protect the lives of Turkish citizens.

Al-Qaeda's recent attacks in Turkey have done nothing to ensure that a wedge is driven between Muslims and non-Muslims. If that is their central aim, then they are way off target.

Al-Qaeda's principal enemy is the United States of America, they have broadcast that loud and clear. That being the case, it follows that they must attack America, America's allies and American interests. Under such an onslaught do you seriously believe that the will of America to continue to be involved in the conflict would dissipate? No chance of that happening whatsoever, because faced with such a situation the state being attacked simply has no choice. Al-Qaeda will be relentlessly, hunted, harried and removed from the equation at every opportunity, by the foremost power on this planet. That is hardly an environment in which their organisation and followers can hope to thrive or prosper.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: akenaton
Date: 27 Nov 03 - 09:02 AM

Teribus...Granted the US will keep on ,keeping on,but given the fragile state of Western economies,...Depending as they do on public and business confidence,it would be ridiculously easy for a handful of terrrorists to cause mayhem,perhaps involving biological weapons....Smallpox has been suggested.
I still think in this case, compromise,not confrontation is the answer,
giving Islam the chance to put its "own house in order".....Ake


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 Nov 03 - 11:03 AM

"What would Al-Qaeda gain from destabilising Turkey/" A powerful ally of America and a member of NATO, slap bang in the middle of it all - no it's very hard to see why Al Qaeda would wish to do anhything to destabilise a country like that, and perhaps bring about a situation in which the US miitary came into conflict with the Turks.

"Under such an onslaught do you seriously believe that the will of America to continue to be involved in the conflict would dissipate" What has my personal beliefgs about this got to do weith it? What matters are the beliefs of the people promoting the attacks.

It seems quite reasonable to surmise that they might well believe that America will not have the political stamina to keep on with this, for maybe a couple of generations, and that under the internal stresses set up, it will retreat into some kind of Fortress America. The aim would be to try to bring about a situation in which America mishandles things in such a way as to generate ever greater opposition.

In any conflict it is likely that people will find themselves facing the question "Which side are you on?" The hope of Al Qaida must be to set things up so that large numbers of people decide that question in a way that sets them against the USA and its friends.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Nov 03 - 11:13 AM

There is also the distinct possibility that attacks in Turkey, Iraq, and elsewhere, are now being carried out by terrorists other than Al Qaida--organized groups we haven't heard of before. The current circumstances in the Middle East have created a breeding ground for hard core militants to organize, and as a French journalist I saw being interviewed mentioned in her report on the militants in Iraq, they have a ton of weapons. Sadly, that means the attacks will likely escalate, rather than de-escalate in the coming months.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Teribus
Date: 27 Nov 03 - 12:27 PM

OK Kevin, let's have a look at it:

Turkey -
Recent elections have returned an Islamic Government to power with a landslide majority, first since Kemal Attaturk came to power. That indicates that the majority of the population are firmly behind their new government. Economically the conditions within Turkey have been improving. It is the aim of the present Turkish Government to join the EC and do so as rapidly as possible, I would presume the reason for that being that it would be in Turkey's best interest. As you point out Turkey is a member of NATO and has been so for some considerable time. The likelyhood that Al-Qaeda could do anything to destabilise such a country is extremely remote. Even remoter is the likelyhood that they could engineer a situation in which the US miitary came into conflict with the Turks.

"Under such an onslaught do you seriously believe that the will of America to continue to be involved in the conflict would dissipate"

That question, Kevin, was rhetorical, all you omitted to do was paste in the answer I provided.

If they, whoever, do indeed believe that under their threats ands attacks that America lacks the political will, or stamina, to defend herself - They are only serving to delude themselves. This US Government, and it's successors know very well that faced with the current threat that, "retreat into some kind of Fortress America", is not an option.

As to the "Which side" question - that has already been done Kevin - If Al-Qaeda hoped that it would set things up so that large numbers of people would decide that question in a way that sets them against the USA and its friends - they must be bitterly disappointed with the result - the vast majority of nations throughout the world support the "war against terror", that still remains to be the case today, over two years after the attacks on 11th September, 2001.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 Nov 03 - 12:34 PM

A lot of commentators have said that it's misleading to think in terms of Al Qaida as a centralised command structure, with Bin Laden, or someone like that sitting up there, making all the plans. It's much more like a sort of franchise operation, with groups making their own targeting decisions, and organising their own logistics.

Even using the term "Al Qaida" or the name "Bin Laden" is a kind of oversimplified shorthand - the trouble is decisions then get made which involve acting as if that shorthand actually reflected the way things really are. For example the whole invasion of Afghanistan seems to have been predicated on the assumption that operations were actually organised from up in the Afghan mountains. It seems to me far more reasonable to see Bin Laden as a motivator and inspirer rather than an organiser - a kind of cheer leader rather than a general.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: Teribus
Date: 28 Nov 03 - 07:34 AM

Hi Kevin,

I agree with much of what you state in your post of 27 Nov 03 - 12:34 PM, regarding perceptions of Al-Qaeda and bin Laden.

The only bit I disagree with you on relates to the following:

"Even using the term "Al Qaida" or the name "Bin Laden" is a kind of oversimplified shorthand - the trouble is decisions then get made which involve acting as if that shorthand actually reflected the way things really are. For example the whole invasion of Afghanistan seems to have been predicated on the assumption that operations were actually organised from up in the Afghan mountains."

The invasion of Afghanistan? Who invaded Afghanistan? When?

If memory serves me correctly, in response to the refusal of the Taliban to expell Al-Qaeda from Afghanistan and to hand over the leaders of that organisation. The US gave assistance to members of the Northern Alliance who at the time were engaged in a civil war against the Taliban. The US was in turn assisted in this by a number of other countries.

The whole reason for doing anything in Afghanistan was to hit Al-Qaeda where they were known to be, and where Osama bin Laden was known to be. Some operations were undoubtedly organised from bases Al-Qaeda established in Afghanistan. Afghanistan became the location for their training camps subsequent to Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda being expelled from the Sudan. Evidence of the planning and training for those operations was captured as the Al-Qaeda bases were taken.

That Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda are linked to other fundamantalist Islamic terrorist groups is no new revelation. Al-Qaeda and some of those groups have issued joint declarations of their intent, some going back to the mid 1990's. The declared purpose of Al-Qaeda is to support fundamentalist Islamic revolutionary groups world-wide - that is your franchise part of it. Not having a safe haven to operate from has just made it that much more difficult for Al-Qaeda to fulfil that role.


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Subject: RE: BS: UK Anti Bush Protests
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Nov 03 - 08:14 AM

An invasion is what it's called when a military force goes into action in a foreign country with the aim of overthrowing the people in control. The D-Day invasion for example.

Afghanistan last year was an invasion every bit as much as the Soviet invasion was. More so in fact, since that could reasonably be seen as an attempt to bolster up a government in control.

When Vietnam went into Cambodia to overthrow Pol Pot that was an invasion, and a good thing to happen, since Pol Pot's regime made the Taliban and Saddam look like pussy-cats. In spite of which the US and other countries continued to support Pol Pot, and punished Vietnam for overthrowing his regime, with extended sanctions and blockages on humanitarian aid.

Though it is a good thing that the Taliban and the type of repression they were involved with are no longer in control in at least part of Afghanistan (at a pretty terrible price), I think it's very doubtful whether any significant damage has been done to the ability of people who share Bin Laden's ideology to carry out atrocities around the world.

Paradoxically, it seems possible that the invasion of Iraq has provided such people with an operating base and even a kind of safe haven which is if anything more useful than Afghanistan.

If you kick over a beehive you do not get rid of the danger if getting stung as you go about your gardening. Not even if you take a few hundred bees unto custody.


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