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Osama Bin Laden is Dead.

148 posts in this topic

[quote name='SimonH' timestamp='1304379785' post='4805695']
I believe that according the US constitution assassination is illegal - so does that make this murder? Any lawyers handy?
[/quote]

Assuming this is even true (and I don't think it's likely this sort of action is actually illegal), I'd be astonished if anyone here is a strict constitutionalist.
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[quote name='trzy' timestamp='1304380049' post='4805699'] I'd be astonished if anyone here is a strict constitutionalist.[/quote]
So what's the constitution [i]for[/i]?
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[quote name='trzy' timestamp='1304379405' post='4805691']
We elected a Democratic Congress in 2006 and a Democratic President in 2008 in order to lead and get things done. You can't blame the minority party when Democrats had control of the House, Senate, and White House. We were promised change if only they were given power. Instead, they ended up suffering a historical election defeat, losing control of the House. What are you going to say next, that they somehow need [i]more[/i] power?

I think it's an obvious case of them lying and taking advantage of partisan fools, which is precisely what leftists have exposed themselves to be.
[/quote]

Politicians of all stripes are lying, to be sure. But the 110th and 111th congresses did get a lot of things done. The bailout and stimulus bills were pretty massive pieces of legislation. Health care reform, whatever you think of it or the political capital/ time requried to get it, is a pretty monumental achievement. The stimulus, same thing. Dodd-Frank, while not great, is a big legislative achievement. SCHIP too. Any of these is big enough to be the signature achievement of a Congress, and between two sessions all of them happened. They got a lot done, despite obstinate foot-dragging from the minority in some cases.

That they didn't get everything they said they wanted done (and you're a fool if you ever thought that that would happen), and were schmoozed out of control of one chamber doesn't make them ineffective, opportunist losers. Oh and also, Democrats didn't actually control the Senate outright in the 110th. They held 48 seats, and caucased with two independents. Small point perhaps, but I figured I'd mention it.
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In my opinion, the propaganda machine on both sides of the Atlantic has done as much to incite hatred of decent, everyday Muslims as AQ or OBL ever did to incite hatred of the West, just in a more subtle way. Here in the UK we've had Mosques getting smashed up and vandalised, decent hard-working Muslims spat at and abused on the streets and worse.

These are all wars over control of resources, just like the Crusades, with religion and morality being bandied about as an excuse. Afganistan, according to my 22 years serving, ex-Marine friend, is about controlling the poppy production, not for moral or ethical reasons but because it is funnelling too much money at people who control other resources that the West want/need.

Wars happen, sadly. People have always fought over resources. But this whole "We are the moral side, they are evil" nonsense is really getting tiring after all these years.

[quote name='SimonH' timestamp='1304380413' post='4805701']
So what's the constitution [i]for[/i]?
[/quote]

Something to do with arming bears, isn't it?
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[quote name='Khaiy' timestamp='1304380776' post='4805704']
Politicians of all stripes are lying, to be sure. But the 110th and 111th congresses did get a lot of things done. The bailout and stimulus bills were pretty massive pieces of legislation. [/quote]

Yes, they were massive. Yes they were...

They were a massive haul for special interests and self-serving bureaucrats.

[quote]
Health care reform, whatever you think of it or the political capital/ time requried to get it, is a pretty monumental achievement.[/quote]

A monumental achievement in the sense that they managed to do so little good with so many words. Health care reform was a joke and the Dodd-Frank bill, TARP, etc. have done nothing to cleanse the rot out of our financial system, reduce the ties that bind Washington and Wall Street, and will be an irrelevant footnote once the next financial crisis hits (funny how these reforms can never actually prevent a crisis).
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[quote name='Aardvajk' timestamp='1304380934' post='4805705']
[quote name='SimonH' timestamp='1304380413' post='4805701']
So what's the constitution [i]for[/i]?
[/quote]
Something to do with arming bears, isn't it?
[/quote]
[img]http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_fE-F7VIvYfk/Sa_jW-KsVcI/AAAAAAAABGc/4lKQs3uDkGY/s400/family%2520guy%2520bear%2520arms.jpg[/img]
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[quote name='trzy' timestamp='1304381218' post='4805710']
[quote name='Khaiy' timestamp='1304380776' post='4805704']
Politicians of all stripes are lying, to be sure. But the 110th and 111th congresses did get a lot of things done. The bailout and stimulus bills were pretty massive pieces of legislation. [/quote]

Yes, they were massive. Yes they were...

They were a massive haul for special interests and self-serving bureaucrats.

[quote]
Health care reform, whatever you think of it or the political capital/ time requried to get it, is a pretty monumental achievement.[/quote]

A monumental achievement in the sense that they managed to do so little good with so many words. Health care reform was a joke and the Dodd-Frank bill, TARP, etc. have done nothing to cleanse the rot out of our financial system, reduce the ties that bind Washington and Wall Street, and will be an irrelevant footnote once the next financial crisis hits (funny how these reforms can never actually prevent a crisis).
[/quote]


I quite agree. But, it's incongruous to claim that the Congresses were do-nothings when by the admittedly low standards of the legislature they accomplished a lot, in short order, and with significant obstacles. They delivered as much as any person with even mild political awareness could have rationally expected. Especially with a public disinterested enough to let them pass such feeble legislation compared to what the public claims to want so badly.

If the public were stepping up and demanding that what they claim to want actually happen, rather than the garbage that generally happens on the Hill, we might get a different result. Instead, the public expresses general outrage and fear, poorly and sporadically aimed, and the most coherent demands are economic policies that make as much sense as declaring leprechaun hunts to solve our problems.
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[quote name='Alpha_ProgDes' timestamp='1304378626' post='4805687']
They had no nukes, chemical and biological stockpiles were considered harmless. And Iraq said they would let inspectors. The US thought it was a trick and went in anyway. So yeah, that Resolution is not really a justification for the war. Sorry.
[/quote]

The had been saying they would let inspectors in for a decade, and the times they did let them in they weren't allowed to inspect everything.

I think the significantly larger problem than whether or not we should have invaded Iraq was the post invasion plan, which is what really cost the most civilian and US soldier's lives.
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[quote name='Khaiy' timestamp='1304380776' post='4805704']
Health care reform, whatever you think of it or the political capital/ time requried to get it, is a pretty monumental achievement.
[/quote]

I'd come to the UK and take a look at the NHS before you guys get too excited about health care reform.

After over 50 years of paying national insurance every month, which is about £60-£70 in todays money on a normal wage, my mother still had to pay privately for her hip replacements unless she was willing to wait in agonising pain for about two years.
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[quote name='Prinz Eugn' timestamp='1304359987' post='4805567']
[quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1304339160' post='4805377']
Does the vietnam war's 70% civilian casualty rate count, with it's many documented acts of genocide (2 million civilians)? Or the 2nd gulf war's 90% civilian casualty rate (400,000 civilians)?
Or what of the 500,000 Iraqi children who died as a [u]direct[/u] result of American sanctions during the 90's ([i]to no effect[/i])? Isn't that basically laying siege to and killing via attrition hundreds of thousands based on nothing but their nationality...?

Would you celebrate the death of the men who ordered these acts?
[/quote]Your Gulf War number is basically made up. The Vietnam one is close to the total caused by all sides (N-S Vietnam, US), however. Plus the sanctions were UN, and could have been vetoed by any country on the security council.[/quote]My Iraq war numbers were quoted from the ANU, however the [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lancet_surveys_of_Iraq_War_casualties"][b]peer reviewed[/b] lancet surveys[/url] found a higher number of 600,000 deaths from 2003-2006. The official American figures say at least 100,000.
The Vietnam numbers came from the modern Vietnamese government. Other estimates go up to 3-4 million dead total (including troops).

Yes the US-enforced sanctions through the 90's were approved by the UN, after being tabled by the US - so obviously you can blame other security council representatives who agreed.

The question still stands -- those men [i]killed half a million children[/i] for no reason other than they happened to be in the wrong country -- would you celebrate [i]their [/i]assassination?

[edit]And here's a source for a US ambassador (later secretary of state) defending the 90's genocide in Iraq:[media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RM0uvgHKZe8[/media]
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[quote name='way2lazy2care' timestamp='1304381846' post='4805716']
[quote name='Alpha_ProgDes' timestamp='1304378626' post='4805687']
They had no nukes, chemical and biological stockpiles were considered harmless. And Iraq said they would let inspectors. The US thought it was a trick and went in anyway. So yeah, that Resolution is not really a justification for the war. Sorry.
[/quote]

The had been saying they would let inspectors in for a decade, and the times they did let them in they weren't allowed to inspect everything.

I think the significantly larger problem than whether or not we should have invaded Iraq was the post invasion plan, which is what really cost the most civilian and US soldier's lives.
[/quote]

The post-invasion panning was awful, to be sure. But we wouldn't have needed a post-invasion plan if there had been no invasion. Even a well planned and executed post-invasion strategy would have been expensive and time consuming. And even the expenses from a well done plan could only be justified by a compelling reason to have gone to war in the first place. The presence of WMDs or lack of them doesn't change the fact that a hawkish White House did a bit of fudging on their rationale to go to war, and then hired ad executives to sell that war to the American people to build popular support.

[quote name='Aardvajk' timestamp='1304381949' post='4805717']
[quote name='Khaiy' timestamp='1304380776' post='4805704']
Health care reform, whatever you think of it or the political capital/ time requried to get it, is a pretty monumental achievement.
[/quote]

I'd come to the UK and take a look at the NHS before you guys get too excited about health care reform.

After over 50 years of paying national insurance every month, which is about £60-£70 in todays money on a normal wage, my mother still had to pay privately for her hip replacements unless she was willing to wait in agonising pain for about two years.
[/quote]

Before you start claiming that all government led health care reform is awful, I'd go to Japan and take a look there. After paying for their nationally regulated insurance, they get high quality low cost care, with very little waiting. I remember the story of a journalist in Japan who got in to see one of the top-rated spinal specialists within a week of his calling to make an appointment. There are still issues, namely that their doctors are paid too little (and getting increasingly angry about it), but quality and access to care aren't what are suffering under their system.

Besides, middling to low quality reform isn't ideal, but it's still better than what we've had. Fewer people had access to care every year, and it became more expensive-- both the care itself and the cost of insurance. Insurance companies had a great time taking premiums until people needed care, and then retracting their coverage for BS techincality reasons. Care got worse and harder to get, while insurance company profits soared. A painful 2 year wait is better than never getting it at all, and I bet that the out-of-pocket costs are lower in the UK than here.
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[quote name='Alpha_ProgDes' timestamp='1304379974' post='4805697']This isn't assassination.[/quote]Thank God we've got the assassin's word that he resisted capture in a manner requiring deadly force!
[quote name='way2lazy2care' timestamp='1304371386' post='4805662']That is not the question that I asked. Which of the UN resolutions do you consider a lie?[/quote]That's the wrong question. The right question is "[i]which of the UN resolutions permitted coalition forces to conduct an invasion[/i]"?[quote name='way2lazy2care' timestamp='1304381846' post='4805716']The had been saying they would let inspectors in for a decade, and the times they did let them in they weren't allowed to inspect everything.[/quote]Prior to the invasion, the previous inspectors, investigative journalists visiting the sealed sites, and most importantly US and western intelligence agencies all agreed that Iraq had no WMD capability and in no way posed a threat to the west. The WMD story was told despite intelligence services informing their leaders of this.
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[quote name='Khaiy' timestamp='1304383388' post='4805727']
Before you start claiming that all government led health care reform is awful, I'd go to Japan and take a look there. After paying for their nationally regulated insurance, they get high quality low cost care, with very little waiting. I remember the story of a journalist in Japan who got in to see one of the top-rated spinal specialists within a week of his calling to make an appointment. There are still issues, namely that their doctors are paid too little (and getting increasingly angry about it), but quality and access to care aren't what are suffering under their system.
[/quote]

For every good anecdote like this, someone could trot out a bad one. I've heard horror stories about the Japanese system, from utterly incompetent doctors to oncologists who would rather keep cancers secret than disturb their patients with the bad news.

[quote]
Besides, middling to low quality reform isn't ideal, but it's still better than what we've had. Fewer people had access to care every year, and it became more expensive-- both the care itself and the cost of insurance. Insurance companies had a great time taking premiums until people needed care, and then retracting their coverage for BS techincality reasons. Care got worse and harder to get, while insurance company profits soared. A painful 2 year wait is better than never getting it at all, and I bet that the out-of-pocket costs are lower in the UK than here.
[/quote]

Survival rates in the United States for most conditions and cancers are better in the United States than the UK (and indeed most of the developed world). Likewise, when accidental deaths are factored out (workplace accidents, gunshot wounds, etc), life expectancy begins to reach parity with Europe, and that factors into account lack of access to care. In other words, the socialized health care systems manage to do worse than the US system, even though too many citizens here are uninsured or unable to afford health care.

We need real health care reform, to be sure, but the argument that "a painful 2 year wait is better than never getting it at all" holds very little water. At any rate, Europe's health care systems are only going to provide less, not more, as Europe becomes older, poorer, less dynamic, and responsible for its own national security. America's gaze is turning to the Pacific, where its future hopes lie. Enjoy your two-year waits while you still can, my European friends ;)
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[quote name='Alpha_ProgDes' timestamp='1304378626' post='4805687']
They had no nukes, chemical and biological stockpiles were considered harmless. And Iraq said they would let inspectors. The US thought it was a trick and went in anyway. So yeah, that Resolution is not really a justification for the war. Sorry.
[/quote]

Again, as stated three times above, that wasn't the part of the resolution that was violated. The resolution did not require the existence of weapons.

The resolution required [b]access[/b], which was denied.

[quote] Iraq shall provide UNMOVIC and the IAEA [b]immediate, unimpeded, unconditional, and unrestricted access[/b] to any and all, including underground, areas, facilities, buildings, equipment, records, and means of transport which they wish to inspect, as well as [b]immediate, unimpeded, unrestricted, and private access[/b] to all officials and other persons whom UNMOVIC or the IAEA wish to interview in the mode or location of UNMOVIC’s or the IAEA’s choice pursuant to any aspect of their mandates; further decides that UNMOVIC and the IAEA may
at their discretion conduct interviews inside or outside of Iraq, may facilitate the travel of those interviewed and family members outside of Iraq, and that, at the sole discretion of UNMOVIC and the IAEA, [b]such interviews may occur without the presence of observers from the Iraqi Government[/b]; [/quote]

They locked up IAEA and UN investigators in the buildings they were inspecting as materials were removed under Iraqi government orders, and required them to be accompanied at all times by government minders even during interviews. That is not immediate, unimpeded, unrestricted, unconditional, or private. The government minders kept telling them "Yes, we will give you access", then failed to give it and restricted access anyway. This was included in the UN testimony.


But again, this is the reasoning behind the Iraq action, which is winding down.


Afghanistan had a completely different mission. Usama was not the end goal, it has been and remains the dismantlement of the terrorist organization and the ending the use of Afghanistan as a base for terrorist operations.
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[quote name='frob' timestamp='1304389478' post='4805773']
Again, as stated three times above, that wasn't the part of the resolution that was violated. The resolution did not require the existence of weapons.
The resolution required [b]access[/b], which was denied.[/quote]The resolution did not permit invasion as a method of implementation though. Which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?
The Iraq war [b]was [/b]sold to the public via the rationale of WMD's, which was known by everyone in power to be a blatant lie at the time.

[quote]Afghanistan had a completely different mission. Usama was not the goal, it has been and remains the dismantlement of the terrorist organization and the ending the use of Afghanistan as a base for terrorist operations.[/quote]Again, which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?
BTW, The previous Afghan government asked for proof that they were entangled with the 9/11 terrorists, and no proof was given to them.
Also "Al Qaeda" isn't an "organisation" as such. Intelligence reports always refer to "the broad Islamic extremist network linked to al Qaida".
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Heh decided to join my friends at the bar. One of my old farmer friends filled the juke box with American country songs. This bar is having a good time. Sorry to break up the serious posts.
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[quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1304389985' post='4805775']
Again, which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?
[/quote]

[i]Permission[/i] is not necessary to combat national security threats. War is the breakdown of law. No one can grant permission, by definition.
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[quote name='trzy' timestamp='1304393439' post='4805790'][quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1304389985' post='4805775']Again, which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?[/quote][i]Permission[/i] is not necessary to combat national security threats. War is the breakdown of law. No one can grant permission, by definition.[/quote]Then why did the US ask the UN for permission first, before being knocked back and then pulling the "imminent threat" card and going it alone?
Frob keeps quoting UN resolutions as if they were the justification for war -- the US tried to use these as justification for a UN sanctioned invasion, but the UN wouldn't give the green light to it. So instead they kept pumping out the propaganda to everyone about WMDs and went ahead without authorisation from anyone.


Sorry, but there's a lot of laws, treaties and conventions regarding war. That statement is so unfounded that it beggars belief that someone would present it seriously. There's no way to even have a discussion if you're not grounded in reality...


Also, Iraq wasn't a national security threat -- your own intelligence services were telling you so.
Afghanistan asked for proof that they were a threat, or in any way connected to the 9/11 terrorism, and no proof was given.
While we're at it, can you dig up a source for the claim that Bin Laden has admitted to planning 9/11?
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[quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1304322022' post='4805311']
[quote name='cowsarenotevil' timestamp='1304319738' post='4805305']What makes you think he's been dead for years?[/quote]French, Australian, Saudi and Pakistani intelligence said so.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai said so.
Pakistani presidents Asif Ali Zardari and Pervez Musharraf said so.
Boston University and the Australian National University said so.
FBI Counterterrorism chief Dale Watson said so.
The CIA disbanded it's Bin Laden unit five years ago.[quote name='Smeagol' timestamp='1304320533' post='4805306']I doubt that he's been dead for a while, AQ or some similar organization would've done something like step up attack against coalition forces in either Iraq or Afghanistan in revenge and would've made it well known why they were doing it.[/quote]He reportedly died peacefully of disease + natural causes, not coalition bombs.
[/quote]

Karzai, Zardari and Musharraf have zero credibility. The CIA disbanded it's bin Laden unit because Bush said he wasn't concerned about bin Laden. <a href="http://thinkprogress.org/2011/05/02/bush-bin-laden/">[url="http://thinkprogress.org/2011/05/02/bush-bin-laden/"]FLASHBACK: Bush On Bin Laden: ‘I Really Just Don’t Spend That Much Time On Him’[/url]</a>

If the assault was staged, why didn't the Bush administration stage one of their own so as to take credit for his death? Already Bush supporters are trying to steal credit from Obama, some members of Congress have even gone as far as issuing statements vindicating the use of torture, claiming that torture provided the intelligence that lead to the successful assault (even though it would be more accurate to say that torture delayed getting the intelligence)... <a href="http://thinkprogress.org/2011/05/02/right-reax-bin-laden/">[url="http://thinkprogress.org/2011/05/02/right-reax-bin-laden/"]Right Rushes To Praise Bush For Obama’s Order To Kill Bin Laden</a>[/url]
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[quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1304394253' post='4805793']
[quote name='trzy' timestamp='1304393439' post='4805790'][quote name='Hodgman' timestamp='1304389985' post='4805775']Again, which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?[/quote][i]Permission[/i] is not necessary to combat national security threats. War is the breakdown of law. No one can grant permission, by definition.[/quote]Then why did the US ask the UN for permission first, before being knocked back and then pulling the "imminent threat" card and going it alone?[/quote]

Political face-saving, obviously. It's a matter of protocol, that's all. Are we still talking about Afghanistan?

[quote]Sorry, but there's a lot of laws, treaties and conventions regarding war. That statement is so unfounded that it beggars belief that someone would present it seriously. There's no way to even have a discussion if you're not grounded in reality...
[/quote]

The application of international law is purely discretionary, thanks to national sovereignty and the lack of an enforcer.

[quote]Afghanistan asked for proof that they were a threat, or in any way connected to the 9/11 terrorism, and no proof was given.
While we're at it, can you dig up a source for the claim that Bin Laden has admitted to planning 9/11?
[/quote]

Osama took credit in a 2004 audio tape. There was other evidence linking Bin Laden to the organization and financing of the effort. You may as well question how they linked KSM to it. Admissions mean little either way. If the United States wanted a scapegoat, they would've picked someone else -- someone they could have easily captured or killed. Bin Laden wasn't taking extraordinary measures to hide from US intelligence for no reason. Neither were his Pakistani protectors.

It's interesting to see who you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt here.
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[quote name='Khaiy' timestamp='1304395364' post='4805797']
It holds plenty of water. Our medical care is great. Awesome. There are tons of people who put off going to the doctor because they can't afford it, and then they have much worse conditions that finally force them in, which are more expensive to treat and harder to recover from well. If you present to the hospital, they can't turn you away, so they treat you and you rack up a huge bill. A hospital room is thousands of dollars per day, and that's assuming that you never see a doctor, need any treatment or medicine, or follow-up care. So you can get awesome treatment, on credit, and then be in debt for the rest of your life. That's not a great system, even if we have great doctors and medical technology. And again, given that concern, many people put off going to the hospital.
[/quote]

Life expectancy factors all of this into account, and the US may actually be leading there.

[url=http://blogs.wsj.com/numbersguy/does-the-us-lead-in-life-expectancy-223/]Does the U.S. Lead in Life Expectancy?[/url]

I pretty much agree with the rest of your post. But the point made above is key.

[quote]
And why does everyone in these debates have such a hard-on for the European system? The UK system is not the shining example. That's why I mention Japan, and all that you came up with was that some Japanese doctors suck and/or are shy, conveniently ignoring the better life expectancies and similar (if not better) health outcomes. And by the way, Japan doesn't have socialized medicine in the way that the UK does. So your apparent position, that American can choose between its current system or a Western European system is a false dichotomy. There are other choices, which work better and for less money.
[/quote]

I don't know enough about Japan's system to comment any more. All I'll share is that in my limited experience, things are not necessarily as they may seem in Japan. The Japanese are especially shy about reporting things that reflect badly on their welfare state. And let's not forget their crushing debt burden. Maybe all is not well in Japan.
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[quote name='trzy' timestamp='1304403810' post='4805819']
Osama took credit in a 2004 audio tape. There was other evidence linking Bin Laden to the organization and financing of the effort.
It's interesting to see who you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt here.[/quote]Given that "it's all over" and he's been summarily executed, I'm just interested to see the proof. It's common knowledge he's admitted to it, but from some quick googling I could only find transcripts containing a denial of responsibility and others containing both condemnation and appreciation - he seems to be very careful with his words. For 'common knowledge', my google-fu is proving weak.

Any good links would be appreciated... Do you have one for that audio tape?


As for giving people the benefit of the doubt - that goes for the US govt too. After all the lies they've been caught telling, you can't really have 100% faith in their announcements either. Nothing wrong with being sceptical.


Regarding KSM, didn't they torture him until he confessed to being the mastermind behind every terror attack ever?
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