Monday, August 30, 2010

HOT5 Daily 8/30/2010

1. "US Wasted Billions in Rebuilding Iraq" Not surprising, but still annoying. 

Representative Sample: As the U.S. draws down in Iraq, it is leaving behind hundreds of abandoned or incomplete projects. More than $5 billion in American taxpayer funds has been wasted -- more than 10 percent of the some $50 billion the U.S. has spent on reconstruction in Iraq, according to audits from a U.S. watchdog agency.

2. "The Price Of Victory" A good run-down. 

Representative Sample: For Afghan troops and police, the death rate is 700-800 dead per 100,000. The death rate for U.S. troops during Vietnam, Korea and World War II, was over 1,500. Better body armor, tactics, training, weapons and medical care have all contributed to a sharp reduction in fatal losses. Last year, IED (improvised explosive devices) accounted for over 60 percent of foreign troops deaths, but this year that is under 60 percent and falling.

3. "A discomfort with being commander-in-chief" He's not comfortable with being commander-in-chief, and we're not comfortable having him commanding.  

Representative Sample: I'm sorry. He is a president. He has ordered more troops into Afghanistan and some of those men and women are dying and will continue to die. Why shouldn't he speak of that more often and keep reminding the American people why we are fighting in Afghanistan? These troops deserve more than a sporadic mention. If we are going to be committed to Afghanistan, those troops also deserve to be more than a consideration in domestic politics.

4. "On the Uses of Ridicule" Good points. 

Representative Sample: The whole reason I'm an atheist, the reason that Ebon Musings and Daylight Atheism exist, is because of those websites which made me realize that religious beliefs could be poked fun at. Ridicule has its uses: If skillfully deployed in an argument, it can be more persuasive than anything else

5. "Pennsylvania’s Death Penalty: Uslesss" Having a death penalty is pretty meaningless if no one ever gets executed.

Representative Sample: the death penalty is not a deterrent if it is never carried out. Rendell is correct there. In Pennsylvania, you can kill as many people as you want, content in the knowledge that you will live a long life at the expense of the state.

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