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Technology has always found its greatest consumer in a nation's
war and defense efforts. Since the last attempts at a "Star Wars"
defense system, has technology changed considerably enough to make
the latest Missile Defense initiatives more successful? Can such an
application of science be successful? Is a militarized space
inevitable, necessary or impossible?
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(1101 previous messages)
- 12:16pm Apr 5, 2002 EST (#1102
Krugman and Kristof did superb pieces today, and searching other
pieces they have done, I came across these postings from this MD
thread, from last year:
rshowalt - 01:04pm May 30, 2001 EST (#4346 of 4466)
In The Wicked Tao of Lee http://www.nytimes.com/2001/05/30/opinion/30DOWD.html
MAUREEN DOWD deals with Republican leaders as total scoundrels,
frauds, and criminals, for what appear to be good reasons.
Bad Heir Day by PAUL KRUGMAN http://www.nytimes.com/2001/05/30/opinion/30KRUG.html
" The Bush tax plan was always peculiar: in
order to hide the true budget impact, its authors delayed many of
the biggest tax cuts until late into the 10-year planning period;
repeal of the estate tax, in particular, was put off to 2010. But
even that left the books insufficiently cooked, so last week the
conferees added a "sunset" clause, officially causing the whole
bill to expire, and tax rates to bounce back to 2000 levels, at
the beginning of 2011.
" So in the law as now written, heirs to great
wealth face the following situation: If your ailing mother passes
away on Dec. 30, 2010, you inherit her estate tax-free. But if she
makes it to Jan. 1, 2011, half the estate will be taxed away. That
creates some interesting incentives. Maybe they should have called
it the Throw Momma From the Train Act of 2001.
" That's by no means the only weird element in
the tax bill. Almost as bizarre is the sudden tax increase for
upper-middle-income families scheduled for the end of 2004. Anyone
who has been following the tax debate — in particular via the
extremely informative Web site of the Center on Budget and Policy
Priorities — knows that the alternative minimum tax is a major
land mine lurking in the road ahead. Under the tax bill just
passed, the number of taxpayers subject to this tax will balloon
from 1.5 million to more than 36 million, with the result that
many people — typically well-off but not rich families who already
pay high state and local taxes — will find the tax cut they
thought they were getting snatched away.
" So why not fix the law? Because that would
raise the budget impact of the tax cut by hundreds of billions of
dollars. Still, the conferees felt they had to do something; so
they included a partial fix for the A.M.T. problem. But even that
partial fix, if maintained over the whole decade, would have made
the tax cut too big to fit the budget resolution. So guess what?
The A.M.T. fix is scheduled to expire in 2004, which means that
according to the law millions of families will face a sudden large
" In short, the tax bill is a joke. But if the
administration has its way, the joke is on us. For the bill is
absurd by design. The administration, knowing that its tax cut
wouldn't fit into any responsible budget, pushed through a bill
that contains the things it wanted most — big tax cuts for the
very, very rich — and used whatever accounting gimmicks it could
find to make the overall budget impact seem smaller than it is.
The idea is that when the absurdities become apparent — when mobs
of angry junior vice presidents from New Jersey start
demonstrating against the A.M.T., or when elderly
multimillionaires develop a suspiciously high rate of fatal
accidents — Congress will always respond with further tax cuts.
And if the result of all those tax cuts is to prevent the
government from ever providing the things Mr. Bush promised during
the campaign, like prescription drug coverage under Medicare or
increased aid to education — well, that was also part of the
" Someday, responsible politicians — or is that an
oxymoron? — will have to untangle this mess. . . . . .
- 12:17pm Apr 5, 2002 EST (#1103
rshowalt - 01:05pm May 30, 2001 EST (#4347 of 4466)
When words like this are factually and justly used, the United
States, and the world that has trusted the United States, is in new
And the motivation of parts of society that support the Bush
administration is ugly -- the following ARTS piece bears reading.
Concerts Rock the Tiny Kingdom of Skullbonia by NEIL
Let me repeat my opinion. We are dealing, now, with concerns
about a presidential administration more serious than any before in
history. Americans, honorable republicans most of all, and everyone
else in the world who values decency and safety should carefully
consider what the administration is doing.
We have good reason to be concerned about matters of military
balance, and the whole world has good reason to check what the
United States says, and not simply to defer to its "good faith and
rshowalt - 01:08pm May 30, 2001 EST (#4348 of 4466)
With internet usages now in place, the "culture of lying" that so
much of Cold War history was built around is much more vulnerable
than before, and chances of real peace are much greater than they
And some things are coming into the open.
But at some essential levels, for reasons almarst
emphasizes, some journalistic usages need to change. And, slowly, it
rshowalt - 01:11pm May 30, 2001 EST (#4349 of 4466)
There are plenty of people of ability and good will who have
supported the present administration, many of them in the
administration. They should, if they value their honor and their
party, want to fix things.
The world is starting to pay attention to tactics used by the
Bush administration that cannot stand the light of day.
I hope good things and good policies can be salvaged -- from what
is essentially an act of corruption and subversion.
- 12:21pm Apr 5, 2002 EST (#1104
Bush outfoxed http://www.csmonitor.com/durable/2001/02/15/csmimg/0215p1b.jpg
- 12:21pm Apr 5, 2002 EST (#1105
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