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FORUM POSTING RULES - Read before posting

Forum Rules.

(1) The guiding principle for posting in this forum is moderate yourselves.

(2) Don't write a post that attacks, impugns or denigrates another poster's character. There's an obvious difference between the language of humor and hateful, debased language. Know the difference and post accordingly.

(3) This is a Michigan sports forum. The forum welcomes posts from M's sports rivals. Talking smack, posting sass is what college sports rivalries are all about. Rules (1) and (2) above apply. If you don't want to view the posts of a rival talking smack or sassing, use the ignore feature in User Controls.

(4) This forum is about sharing thoughts, ideas and viewpoints about all sports, any number of subjects and issues, learning stuff from other posters and having fun. There are threads by subject matter within the forum for doing this. Keep the threads on point.

NB: The rules above are not intended to build a case to ban a poster. There are consequences for rule breaking as specified below. That's as far as it should go. Only the most egregious and persistent rule breaking would cause the moderators to consider a ban.

Due Process.

(1) The forum has 6 moderators. Jeff Buchanan, Jon, JD, Hannibal, Oracle, Entropy. None of them want to moderate adult posters who should know better. There may be posts that break the rules.

(2) Posters who, at the sole discretion of a moderator, break a rule will be given a warning post that will site one of the rules listed above as the reason for the deletion.

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  • So we know now that the Saudis took a doctor who specializes in dissection, a bone saw, a body double, and a fake beard to Istanbul but had no intention of killing him...

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    • Scott Adams

      "Cue the next Saudi explanation: "A fight broke out during a friendly poker game at the embassy. Khashoggi was upset because he lost all of his clothes on the last hand, and he attacked the other card players with his bone saw. We think he slipped."

      lol

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      • Saudis in deep consultation with America's Shitstain® identifying the effective methodology of lying, distraction, distortion, and alternate fact creation for the implementation of an alternate reality for consumption by the masses. WITCH HUNT!!!!
        #MAGA -
        Morons Are Governing America

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        • The FBI used multiple confidential informants as part of its investigation into former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

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          • Creepy Porn Loser is having a bad month
            A day after The Daily Beast revealed that Avenatti and his former companies owe millions in unpaid taxes and judgments, a judge orders the lawyer to pay $4.85M to former colleague.

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            • Republican-affiliated voters have outpaced Democratic-affiliated voters in early voting in closely watched states, according to data provided by TargetSmart.

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              • LOL @ Turkey milking this. I'd like to lock MbS in a room with Erdogan. They deserve each other.

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                • Originally posted by Jeff Buchanan View Post

                  I've always found it interesting to follow the history and politics of the ME. It has been and is now a sort of side show to the inter-relationships of the great powers of the East and West. OTH, what goes on there is immensely important to the world's economies and political stability.

                  I was in my late 20s when I first encountered the Arab world live and in person. I was aboard an aircraft carrier making a port call in Oman .... well, if you can call it that. We anchored off shore some where to receive an Omani entourage that included Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said. He had recently taken power by overthrowing his father and we were acting as a US envoy signaling US support ..... not to mention that at the time Oman was a key US ally in the region. It still is today. We had the US Pacific Fleet Commander aboard and the Sultan arrived by Helicopter. We were all in formation on the flight deck. Out pops this guy in flowing white robes and traditional head dress. On his side was a huge Saif or Arab sword. He unbuckled it and presented it to the Fleet Admiral. It was like out of a 40s movie scene. Anyway that picture has stuck in my mind and defined Arab rulers for me.

                  At some point on this long cruise in the Indian Ocean, I learned about the dirty underbelly of Arab culture and it has never left me. Arabs do things very differently than they are done in the West or most other corners of the globe. Rulers are ruthless and wield power through the wealth they've gained from oil revenues - this goes back to the 20s. You want something in a personal, business, political or military relationship with Arabs, there is background payback beyond whatever the deal might have cost up front. It's called Baksheesh. It's oily, underhanded and absolutely expected. If bad things happen to others involved in a deal, you either look the other way or you become a part of those bad things.

                  Anyway, it's very difficult for Westerners to understand Arabs and the ME in general. We are shocked by how governments govern. There are always signs of democratization but it's a facade that conceals the brutality of the rulers there. The brutality and self-serving interests of the ruling elite is, fundamentally, what has given rise to Islamic governance and the violent groups within the Sunni sect of it such as Al-Qaeda and ISIS.

                  So, when we in the US demand consequences for MbS's actions in the Kashoggi affair, we fail to realize this is day to day life in the Arab world. We may not like it, we may be disgusted that things like this can happen while at the same time we praise the nice things Arabs do by allowing women the right to drive in SA (what a fucking joke), but it is the way things are done to create security for the ruling elite.

                  In judging the US reaction to Kashoggi's murder at the hands of the House of Saud, we need to take into account how things are done there and have been done there for centuries. We're not going to change it by crying and wringing our hands over the brutality and we certainly should not jeopardize our strategic interests in the ME that include a relationship with SA by acting on silly outrage. Do we need to send a message that shows we don't take kindly to the brazen murder of MbS's critics? Yes, but it has to be measured and not conditioned on outrage from the left that often fails to see the world in terms of things that don't necessarily conform to there view of how the world should be.
                  Very interesting post I'd saved to comment on, Jeff. I would have liked to see the Sultan of Oman in that setting myself. Interesting man; interesting country. But the time I started going to the Gulf regularly he was older and has remained out of site, if he's actually still alive. I bet that as a younger man, in that pomp-rich setting, he must have been quite a site, as he was supposedly a hell of an actor on that diplomatic stage. A former advisor to the sultan once gave me the best I've ever heard evening-long explanation for the place and the logic of the religion. Brilliant person.

                  You are 100% right about that underbelly you speak of. Except that it's just not considered that, in those places. That's just in play. Which is interesting, because IMO economies run on trust, and having so little of it is a crimp on growth. That said, the story of how the Gulf countries have kept their financial house in order in the post-crisis world is extraordinary. It could only be accomplished in a place in which a handful of people have absolute authority and deeply entrenched relationships, but by keeping to the old ways they've managed to share the risk, keep every bank and emir from failure, maintain every Arab's honor, and ensure no foreign investors have had to take a haircut. It takes the exploitation and humiliation of thousands of Indians and Pakistanis, in ways even worse than how migrant workers are treated in the US. We ought not want to switch our system for theirs, and constraining one's self within an unwritten code of conduct is probably too much to ask of our commercial culture, but in some ways one of the main improvements Western civilization offered was a blind justice system that was to be more robust than that old-world code-of-conduct approach. I don't know how that gets addressed if/when we decide to move on from the reality-TV show version of capitalism we've come to think of as normal.

                  Comment


                  • More compassionate conservatism on display.


                    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-b...-idUSKCN1MX0AQ
                    #MAGA -
                    Morons Are Governing America

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                    • He's George Fucking Soros for chrissakes. Whatever you know about him or think you know about him, you should probably know he's seen worse than whatever people like that can throw at him.

                      LOL that ``A Hungarian spox declined to comment''. I wonder if that satisfy's the editor's suspicions or the perception of readers'.
                      Last edited by hack; October 23rd, 2018, 04:15 AM.

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                      • https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/22/polit...urt/index.html


                        In play with the courts is the question whether or not to allow the additional question of citizen status on the US Census. Other than to self report non-citizens for potential round-up ala Iran, what purpose does it serve? Does America's Shitstain® really think it will make a difference? And to what end?

                        I do genealogy work on the side and I refer to census records frequently. In days of old, the census recorded head of household's name, the numerical count by gender and age of household members, if the head could read/write, and the number of slaves. Today's census is a bit more intrusive.

                        What difference will this question make for the 2020-30 time frame? Is it a nothing-burger for the imbecilic base showing toughness against goddamn fur-i-ners? What is that one piece of information going to be used for and how will it be used? If a non-citizen checks the citizen box, so what? There is no validation of any of the data. Its sliced and diced, used for things the census was never intended for, but it is not empirical data. If nothing else, non-cits will check that they are citizens, artificially inflating representative numbers in traditionally non-GOP areas. I just don't see the benefit of that question.

                        Myself, I have never completely filled out the census form, believing the less the gov't knows about you the better. I fill out my family names, their ages, `our address, my education level and leave the rest blank. But I always submit the form. Nothing has ever been kicked back, it gets fed into some scan-o-matic and the numbers get crunched.
                        Last edited by Ghengis Jon; October 23rd, 2018, 04:27 AM.
                        #MAGA -
                        Morons Are Governing America

                        Comment


                        • I guess I'd never thought about the lack of verification in that process. Makes me wonder how politicized it's become, if that's the case. Certainly it's very hard to get accurate numbers in places with American-level tribalism as well as a level of dysfunction to which the US has not yet sunk.

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                          • Hack, thanks for your additional narrative on the culture of the ME. I'm not sure I understand what reality TV show capitalism is. Can you elaborate in the context of ME economies and how you argue, correctly I suspect, they are sustained?
                            On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): “We'd rather be about it than talk about it."

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                            • I meant OUR Reality TV version. Theirs is more of a Shakespearean tragedy.

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                              • 195 Countries, the number 1 prisoner of journalists in the world is.... Turkey. Second is China.

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