“You have to get permission from the government to do almost anything. If that is the definition of a police state, that you can’t do anything unless the government gives you permission, then we’re well on our way.”
This is the complete text of a very brief video clip; the speaker is Republican Congressman Ron Paul of Texas. Just to avoid any confusion on the reader’s part, it is the ‘fact’ of this video clip, not his specific quote, that plays into the subject of this post.
You can find Ron Paul’s video clip (and access others) on a recent edition of a political commentary site (or as the author calls it: “a collaborative news blogsite”) titled: ModernOpinion’s editorial on the troop surge. “Modern Opinion” is the brain child of Michael Madson, a student of political science and Asian studies and a soon to be published author.
The reason I started this review of Modern Opinion’s view on the proposed troop surge with Congressman Paul’s quote is to stress the fact that Modern Opinion appears to present political news in an even-handed fashion and I always applaud that. I make that presumption of even-handedness based on the fact that Modern Opinion supports the president’s philosophy behind the proposed troop surge while Ron Paul, as you can read here, from his address to Congress on January 5th of this year, is dead set against the Iraq war and finds the planned escalation of the war (by sending additional troops) to be just another chapter in what he calls a “financial charade” perpetrated on the American people by the U.S. government.
The following summary of Modern Opinion’s view on the proposed troop surge is presented by Modern Opinion’s author. Mr. Madson says:
“I agree with the president’s new strategy, which has been beautifully enshrined for years in the realm professional sports: ‘Go big or go home’.”
I can certainly see Congressman Paul’s point but I don’t believe that either he or Modern Opinion are considering the realities of the “big picture” as well as they could.
The Real Big Picture (according to me)
My version of that ‘big picture’ is based on the ‘apparent fact’ that, whether I, Ron Paul or Modern Opinion like it or not, and in spite of any inferences drawn from Mr. Bush’s speech, the reality is the United States is (and will be for the next couple years at least) committed to staying in Iraq. We will not, I predict, for at least that period of time, abandon Iraq or stop fighting terrorists there.
Modern Opinion’s choice of that particular sports shibboleth is ‘right on’ in one sense but is likely to be too optimistic; “go home” is not an option on the table in the oval office and it is unlikely to be on that table very soon. (I do, however, agree that it should be on that table.) In light of the fact that go home is an unlikely option, our only hope is going big and then hoping against hope that more troops equal safer troops. (Growing up, I was always told that there is “safety in numbers” and, in my experience, that has proven to be true.)
“It is a complex world with some very complex issues and you will never be able to really understand any issue unless you understand both sides as well as the middle ground and then allow reality to sort it all out.”
That quote is MY opinion and perhaps the best reason I can offer for suggesting that Modern Opinion is a website that should be on your list of must reads. It is now on mine!
The “Modern Opinion” website is NOT sponsoring or influencing this post. The opinions expressed here reflect my honest assessment of the website and the subject matter under review.
Bloomberg.com: Murtha to Block Bush’s Troop Surge by Limiting Funds
Chicago Tribune: Democrats eye alternative to troop `surge’
From the blogosphere:
Skeptical Brotha: Olbermann slaps down Dubya’s troop surge
“Looking to the founder of our hope”: On the “Surge”