This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com
- Syria's Assad promises new violence in public speech
- Brookings Institute freaks out over 'extremism' and fiscal cliff
- India and Pakistan armies clash in Kashmir
Syria's Assad promises new violence in public speech
Bashar al-Assad on TV on Sunday
When it was announced that Syria's president Bashar al-Assad
would give a nationwide speech on Sunday, some people dared to
hope that he would announce an end to his program of massive
bloody slaughter of innocent women and children in his own
country. Unsurprisingly, nothing of the sort happened.
Here are some excerpts from his speech:
"Today we meet and suffering permeates Syrian land and
there is no place for joy in any corner of the country while
security and safety are absent from its streets and alley ways.
We meet today and there are mothers who have lost their finest
children and families who have lost their providers, children who
have been orphaned and brothers divided among the martyrs, the
refugees, and the missing. ...
Terrorists holding the views of al Qaeda who call themselves
jihadists are the ones running the terrorist operations here and
we are fighting them. It is not impossible to destroy them if we
have the courage. ...
Whoever talks solely of a political solution only is turning a
blind eye to the facts and he is either ignorant or has been
fooled into selling his people and the blood of martyrs for free
and we will not allow this.
We are now in a state of war in every sense of the word. This war
targets Syria using a handful of Syrians and many
foreigners. Thus, this is a war of defending the
There have been 60,000 deaths since the war began in March, 2011, the
vast majority of them women and children. In saying that his
opponents are foreigners and terrorists, controlled by foreign powers,
he's indicating that he plans to continue massacring innocent women
Assad's speech is another embarrassment for Lakhdar Brahimi, the
United Nations envoy who replaced Kofi Annan, and who has been meeting
frequently with al-Assad in an attempt to convince him to agree to
some kind of political solution. Like Annan, Brahimi has been a total
failure. Reuters and Guardian (London)
Brookings Institute freaks out over 'extremism' and fiscal cliff
First, by way of introduction, let me reprise the following:
- In 2006-2007, the Brookings Institute was dead wrong about the
war in Iraq. (See "Brookings Institution does a full reversal on Iraq war" from 2009.) Not
only was the Brookings Institute wrong, but they were disastrously
wrong, and if President Bush had followed their advice, it might well
have been a disaster for Iraq. Basically, Brookings Institute made up
"facts" known only to themselves.
- As I've written many, many times, economists have no clue about
what's going on. They didn't predict, and can't explain, the tech
bubble of the 1990s, the real estate bubble, the credit bubble, the
credit crunch of 2007, the collapse of 2008, they had no idea what was
going to happen in 2012, and they have no idea what will happen in
2013. Alan Greenspan has said that every macroeconomic model has
failed since 2007.
So with repeated failures by economists and by the Brookings Institute
itself, you'd think they'd develop a little humility. Instead, here
are some excerpts from an interview on CNN's Reliable Sources on
Sunday, or Thomas Mann of Brookings Institute and Norman Ornstein of
American Enterprise Institute on the subject of the fiscal cliff:
Thomas Mann: "The Republican Party is very much
together like a Tea Party now. Their ideological commitments have
moved far to the Right and they really have deep skepticism of the
whole notion of facts, of evidence, of science. And they're
willing to engage in behavior that a generation ago we would have
said is just beyond the pale, that is take the country's public
credit and risk a default to get their way."
Thomas Mann: "It's just stunning what Republicans have said and
been willing to do that's simply aren't true, not in a little
fact-checking way, but in broad arguments about what America's
about, where we've come from, why we have deficit problems now,
what government spending does to jobs, and the like."
Norm Ornstein: "And, you know, part of our concern is -- again,
it's not ideological. But if voters don't have a sense of who's to
blame, in a system -- you know, it's not a parliamentary
system. If you have a party acting as a parliamentary minority,
you're going to have to find ways to hold them accountable and
it's up to the press to report the truth, not the
It's absolutely incredible. Instead of recognizing their repeated
record of failures, and saying something like, "Maybe we're wrong, but
we believe that the Republicans are making some errors," they claim
that they have the "facts," they're right about everything, and anyone
who disagrees is an extremist.
And then they say "it's not ideological!!"
How stupid do Mann and Ornstein have to be to claim they know
everything, despite repeated past failures by their colleagues? Note
that I'm not saying that they're wrong and the Republicans are right.
I'm saying that Mann and Ornstein don't have the vaguest clue what
they're talking about, and that they're simply making stuff up to
support their ideology.
But this is the way people are these days. If you disagree with them,
then you're an "extremist." If you disagree with an Obama policy, then
you're a "racist." If you're a member of the Tea Party, then you're a
"teabagger," according to CNN's David Gergen and Anderson Cooper, who
giggled as they uttered the epithet. (See "Vile 'teabagging' jokes signal the deterioration of CNN and NBC news")
At least Mann and Ornstein didn't threaten any Republicans with
violence. That task regularly falls to Teamsters president James
Hoffa, who said of the Tea Party
in his introduction to the next speaker president Obama, "We are ready
to march. Let’s take these sons of bitches out and give America back
to an America where we belong." And his union thugs have followed his
As far as who's right and who's wrong, I would remind readers that in
2005 I issued a challenge to anyone to find a web site, an analyst, a
journalist or a politician anywhere in the world with a better
predictive record than my web site, GenerationalDynamics.com, and no
one has produced one. I set up my web ten years ago, and I've posted
thousands of articles containing hundreds of predictions that have all
turned out to be right or are trending right. None has turned out to
be wrong. That's not because I'm particularly clever or prescient,
but because in ten years the Generational Dynamics methodology has
been proven to be valid. Unlike the ideological rantings of morons
like Mann and Ornstein. CNN
India and Pakistan armies clash in Kashmir
Kashmir was the epicenter of the extremely bloody 1947 war between
Hindus and Muslims that followed Partition, the partitioning of the
Indian subcontinent into India and Pakistan. The "Line of Control
(LoC)" in Kashmir, separating the Indian-held territory from the
Pakistan-held territory is the site of continuing violence. The LoC
was established by the United Nations, following the Partition war, to
"settle" the Kashmir problem by partitioning the region and giving
part of it to each. The U.N. mandated that an election be held in
Kashmir within five years to decide which country they wanted to
belong to, but India has always blocked any such election, knowing
that it would lose in the majority Muslim population.
On Sunday, India and Pakistan armies clashed near the LoC.
According to a Pakistani report:
"The Pakistani military said Indian troops had crossed
the Line of Control (LoC) and raided their Sawan Patra checkpost
in Kashmir. ... "Pakistan Army troops effectively responded to
the attack successfully." Two Pakistani soldiers were critically
injured in the attack, one of whom later embraced
Here's the report from India:
"Denying Pakistan army's allegations that Indian
soldiers crossed the Line of Control (LoC) near north Kashmir's
Uri area, the army on Sunday said Pakistan army resorted to
unprovoked mortar shelling on two-three posts in the morning.
There was a breach of ceasefire as Pakistan resorted to mortar
shelling in the morning. Our troops retaliated with small arms,"
said an army spokesman."
The clash ended with no further casualties. Dawn (Islamabad) and Hindustan Times
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