Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Free Trade for Colombia

The recent deal between Congress and the White House clears the way for the ratification of free-trade agreements with Panama and Peru, two American allies in Latin America. But what about Colombia?

Colombia has risked the lives of its police and military and sustained huge casualties in an effort to do us a favor by keeping drugs off our streets. Our military aid to Colombia has not been frittered away on useless hardware or used to line some general's pockets, but has paid for a military that has disarmed the drug dealers' personal armies - 30,000 have been disarmed - and driven the leftist drug-linked guerillas into hiding in a remote jungle portion of the country. Unable to come out or mount operations in major urban areas, they are just trying to survive, to stay one step ahead of the American helicopters manned by brave Colombian soldiers that pursue them.

I recently visited Medell¡n, Colombia, once the heartland of the Medell¡n Cartel, the main drug ring in the hemisphere. Drug lords have been driven out of the area and there have been no kidnappings, once a staple of Medell¡n life, in the past three years.

But Colombia is entitled to ask a basic question: If you don't want us to sell drugs to your children, why won't you at least let us sell you bananas, sugar, flowers, textiles and other products without imposing tariffs on us? Peru and Panama are both loyal allies, but their soldiers are not conducting daily drug sweeps through the mountains trying to stop drugs before they reach our schools. And Colombia is.

If the Democrats in Congress scuttle the Colombia free-trade deal, they will undermine and undercut Colombia's successful war on drugs. The troops in Colombia who risk their lives daily to smash labs, defoliate cocoa plants, and arrest drug lords will find themselves swimming against the economic tide. If the United States does not reward Colombia by making its exports - other than cocaine - profitable, it will leave the poor of that South American ally no choice but to go back to the drug labs.

More here

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ELSEWHERE

An amusing post here from a Leftist. As usual, disagreement with Leftist policies is "hate speech". But the really amusing thing is that he accuses conservatives of "sociopathy", which is an alternative term for psychopathy. But the defining characteristic of a psychopath is inability to tell right from wrong. So I guess it is conservatives who are always telling us that "there is no such thing as right and wrong"? Ha! I say more on psychopathy here.

I have always intended my FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC blog as a perfectly serious one but there are so many absurdities in the medical literature that what the blog reports can be quite entertaining at times. I think my second post down today should give most people a belly-laugh.

A strangely selective conscience : "There is an article on the Guardian site called Throw a pebble at Goliath: don't buy Israeli produce, by Yvonne Roberts, in which she urges people to boycott Israel because of its human rights record. Now I know nothing about Yvonne Robert and have never even heard of her before, but I assume she also an avid campaigner for people to boycott products from Cuba, Burma, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, China (good luck doing that), Iran, Syria, Belorus, Zimbabwe, North Korea (assuming they actually produce any products) etc. etc. etc... after all, if she is such a tireless campaigner for human rights, surely she could not possibly feel it was alright for people to trade with all those places, given the state of human rights in those places. Right? Anyone want to take any bets on this?"

Young American Muslims no cause for worry?: "Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) is not alarmed at the Pew Research data showing one in four young Muslim-Americans supports suicide attacks. ABC News reports: "It's not an alarm. Nothing to be alarmed about," Ellison said, "although it is also important for mosques around the country to engage young people to make sure they have the proper understanding that Islam is about moderation and balance." I think it is time to revive and adapt the old lefty bumpersticker: "One suicide bomb can ruin your whole day" By the standards of all those in the media and Muslim community who think that there's nothing to worry about, someone playing Russian Roulette is nothing to be concerned about either. After all, 5 out of 6 chambers of the revolver are empty and harmless."

CBS helps Iranian nuke program: "How do you say, "Thank you, CBS!" in Farsi? The Jerusalem Post notes that CBS has alerted the Mullahs and their nuclear scientists to an intelligence black op that might have set back their nuclear program. Intelligence operatives in the US and its allied nations have sold Iran flawed technological components in an attempt to sabotage the country's nuclear enrichment program, CBS News revealed Wednesday evening. In January 2007, the head of Iran's Atomic Energy Agency, Vice-President Gholamreza Aghazadeh, said after an explosion at the Natanz nuclear facility (the first Iranian plant to attempt enrichment) that some of the equipment had been "manipulated." The explosion destroyed 50 of the plant's centrifuges. Other evidence has indicated that sabotage was the reason for some of the technical problems Iran has encountered in its enrichment enterprise. Sources told CBS intelligence agencies have altered technical data, making it "useless."

"Hello Media.you are killing us": "Okay, header space demands that I paraphrase the words of fed up Blackhawk helicopter pilot, Chief Warrant Officer Jim Funk who has written the following to the press: "Hello media, do you know you indirectly kill American soldiers every day? You inspire and report the enemy's objective every day. You are the enemy's greatest weapon. The enemy cannot beat us on the battlefield so all he does is try to wreak enough havoc and have you report it every day. With you and the enemy using each other, you continually break the will of the American public and American government. "We go out daily and bust and kill the enemy, uncover and destroy huge weapons caches and continue to establish infrastructure. So daily we put a whoopin on the enemy, but all the enemy has to do is turn on the TV and get re-inspired. He gets to see his daily roadside bomb, truck bomb, suicide bomber or mortar attack. He doesn't see any accomplishments of the U.S. military"

Iran Drawing Up Plans to Strike European Nuclear Sites: "Iran is attempting to draw up plans to strike targets in Europe and has conducted reconnaissance of European nuclear power stations, a security analyst told a meeting at Britain's parliament Tuesday. Claude Moniquet, president of the European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center, a private think-tank in Brussels, said his organization also had evidence Tehran has increased numbers of intelligence agents across Europe. "We have serious signals that something is under preparation in Europe," Moniquet said. "Iranian intelligence is working extremely hard to prepare its people and to prepare actions." The center, which he said deals directly with European intelligence agencies, believes Iranian operatives have carried out "reconnaissance of targets in European cities, including nuclear power stations," Moniquet said. He mentioned no other specific targets."

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH and EYE ON BRITAIN.

List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here

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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".

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1 comment:

alan said...

Regarding your comments on Free Trade Agreements for Peru and Panama and arguments in favour of the same treatment for Colombia you err in stating that Peru (and Panama)do not have to fight cocaine growers and terrorists every day in the mountains. In Peru both the police and army special forces seek out cocaine growers and the terrorists who protect them in firefights every day!! That said, I agree that Colombia should not be excluded from a free trade agreement with the USA.