Berkeley CSUA MOTD:2006:July:21 Friday <Thursday, Saturday>
Berkeley CSUA MOTD
2006/7/21-22 [Computer/Companies/Google, Computer/SW/Languages/Misc] UID:43752 Activity:nil
7/20    Anyone know if it is possible to share your Google Calendar with
        other people?
        \_ Funny, I was just on this topic because I was trying to link
           iCal with google calendar. To answer your question, click on
           the link that says "Manage calendars". Click on the tab that
           says "Calendar Details" and their should be a link to the
           XML, ICAL, and  HTML versions of your calendar. By the way,
           if you want to link iCal to your yahoo and evite accounts,
           one of my friends created this site:
           XML, ICAL, and  HTML versions of your calendar.
           \_ I clicked on Manage Calendars and I see the Calendar Settings
              page with General, Calendar, Notifications, and Import Calendar.
              However I don't see Calendar Details. What am I missing? -op
              \_ Nevermind, you need to click on the triangle thing next
                 to your calendar name, then select Calendar Settings.
                 Thanks motd! FYI to see other people's calendars you do:
                 Replace <login> with the gmail login and voila!     -op
                 \_ Another neat thing you might want to try is to go to
                    You can then link your yahoo! calendar and evites to
                    google calendar by going to Calendar -> Add Other
                    Calendar -> Public Calendar Address
2006/7/21-22 [Politics/Domestic/RepublicanMedia] UID:43753 Activity:nil
7/20    Can we arrest Ann Coulter already?
        \_ obIfYouPayAttentionToAnnCoulterAnnCoulterWins
        \_ Get a Dem elected Pres. and then get her to joke about that.
        \_ That darned 1st amendment...
           \_ Sure she can *say* the NYT is the devil, blah, blah, blah, but
              intentionally setting off security measures by sending white
              powder, just to be a bitch? That's gotta be worth a civil suit
              at least, if nothing else to pay for wasted time. And with all
              the anti-terrorism laws, it may even be worse.
              \_ So, she was probably just "joking," but I have no
                 problem with her being brought in for questioning over
                 that sort of "joke."
2006/7/21-22 [Transportation] UID:43754 Activity:nil
7/20    Say I have an old vehicle that I intend to keep for several months.
        I'd like to transfer its personalized license plate to a brand
        new vehicle that I plan to purchase, while getting a regular
        non-personalized plate for the old vehicle. What's the best way
        to go about this?
        \_ Craigslist
2006/7/21-25 [Politics/Foreign/MiddleEast/Others] UID:43755 Activity:nil
7/21    People were asking on MOTD why Syria hates USA?  well, it turned
        out that we had an economic embargo and a policy of regime change
        against Syria since 2003:
        hmm... what are any incentive for Syria to stablize Iraq and
        stop Hezbolla again? so we can take them out on our list?
        \_ Hello, Syria is run by the fascist Ba'athist party. They haven't
           had a real democratic election in two decades.
           \_ Syria is about as democratic as Putin's Russia, *MORE* democratic
              than Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and any member of UAE.
              \_ Syria is a traditional lineal descendent dictatorship.  It is
                 not possible to be less democratic than that, silly person.
                 \- Brunei is "less democratic". --psb
                    \_ Yes but they're cuddly and don't kill people.  -John
                       \- what about the white slavery? i dunno if "cuddly"
                          is the right word.
                          \_ John is white and white is always right.
                          \_ Semi-cuddly.  -John
        \_ And the economic embargo and anti-Syria policy came out of thin air
           and had nothing to do with Syria being a state sponsor of terrorists
           or anything like that.  Yup, yessirreeBob!  They're just these
           happy froods and along came Big Bad United States to pick on them
           for no reason.  Uh huh.  Troll harder, silly person.
           \_ They're evil. George Bush said so, and he always tells the truth.
        \_ Shannon Elizabeth is half-Syrian.  She is one hot piece of ass.
           We need more Syrians in the USA.
2006/7/21-22 [Politics/Domestic/Abortion, Health/Women] UID:43756 Activity:nil
        Christian adoption site supports baby on baby action? (Check out the
        picture on the front page.)
        \_ while already-born children go unadopted. nice.
           \_ Well, it kind of makes sense.  It's about as anti-abortion as you
              can get short of live-birthing someone else's aborted fetus.
           \_ As I understand it, it's very hard to adopt a baby, demand
              far outstrips supply. It is easy to adopt older children,
              but most people don't want to do that.  I wouldn't be
              surprised if this organization supported older child
              adoption as well, they almost certainly aren't against it,
              but it seems pretty reasonable to respond to demand with
              supply to me.
              \_ Sure, but in this case the supply of widgets that we're
                 talking about are children who aren't being adopted.
                 These are essentially "unwanted" children.  So, isn't it
                 better to solve the unwanted children problem with abortion?
                 \_ As I just pointed out, adpoting babies is hard.  If
                    people know they don't want a baby when it's a baby
                    (or in utero), finding someone to adopt it is pretty
                    easy.  (Assuming the baby is healthy).  Since
                    retroactive abortion is currently illegal, abortion
                    does not solve the our current problems with unwanted
                    children, who are older.  Of course, part of the
                    reason adoption is hard now is because abortion has
                    cut off much of the supply.
                    \_ It's even harder than that.  Many court decisions have
                       given the birth parents the right to "take back"
                       parenting rights even years after the adoption goes
                       \_ Yeah, does anyone think that's a good idea?
2006/7/21-23 [Recreation/Dating] UID:43757 Activity:nil
7/20    Well, that didn't last long:
        \_ same sex marriage / same sex divorce.  Why discriminate against
           the gays to deny them this?
           \_ No reason to discriminate.  I seem to recall that some of the
              arguments about same-sex marriage were that if gays were allowed
              to marry they'd stick together longer instead of bed-hopping.
        \_ Outlasted the drunk Britney Spears 50 hour marriage.
2006/7/21-25 [Politics/Foreign/MiddleEast/Israel, Politics/Foreign/MiddleEast/Others] UID:43758 Activity:nil
7/21    U.S. television and print media seem to place less importance on deaths
        of Lebanese civilians (Wash Post blog)
        \_ I agree with many of the reader comments posted on this
           page.  I just wish my writing skill is better so I can
           troll the motd with more credible opinions.
2006/7/21-25 [Finance/CC, Finance/Investment] UID:43759 Activity:kinda low
7/21    I understand valet tipping is now customarily $2 (up from $1).
        Is it customary to tip the valet if, let's say, there is a required
        $2.50 or $3 fee to use the valet, and you're driving let's say an
        1999 Camry?  What about required fees of $5 or higher?
        What do you do?
        \_ To avoid this stupid discussion again, look:
        \_ Generally, tips are independent of any "mandatory" charge.  A
           gratuity is a thank you for good service and is voluntary,
           I don't care what anyone says.  -John
                        \- i'm sort of curious what your actual
                           tipping range is in USA restaurants.
                           say what percentage of the time do you
                           tip under 10%? BTW, do you also consider
                           wedding gifts optional? was it holube
                           who considered wedding gifts optional
                           but considers tips "mandatory"?
                           \_ was it passb who considers "holube" a clever
                              insult?  Wedding gifts are optional if you
                              didn't attend the wedding.  -tom
                              \_ They are mandatory if you did attend?
                                 \_ By etiquette, yes.  -tom
                           john advisory: are you from SF? the situation
                           in SF has gotten sort of complicated with the
                           minimum wage law change since it doesnt have
                           a tip credit ... it basically takes money away
                           from the worst paid employees [busboys, dishwasher
                           etc] and xfers more money to the much-higher-paid
                           and certainly over minwage frontroom wait staff.
                           one restaurant owner [i think at incanto] responded
                           by creating a "mandatory" service charge, which
                           made a lot of people go insane. then again most
                           people cant think in economically rational
                           manner and people seem to have amazing ability
                           for self-serving delusion per the corkage
                           article recently discussed in the motd.
           \_ OK, we'll just cut your salary in half, then, and expect you
              to make it up on tips.  -tom
              \_ Bad example; I'm an independent consultant and if I don't
                 deliver, or provide crappy service, I don't get paid.  Why
                 should I be compelled to pay someone anything beyond the
                 indicated price if he's a surly shit?  -John
                 \_ Gee, I didn't know I could refuse to pay my independent
                    consultants if they are surly.  Does it say that in
                    your contract?
                    You are compelled to pay according to whatever the local
                    tipping rules are, because their salaries have been
                    cut with the expectation that they will make the rest
                    on tips.  The U.S. would be a better place if waiters
                    earned a real wage and tipping were truly gratuitous,
                    but they don't and it's not.  -tom
                    \_ No, you're able to not pay them if they do not
                       provide the service they are contracted to do.  In
                       the case of service personnel, part of their job
                       is to provide me with civil, competent service.  If
                       they do not, it should reflect on their earnings.  And
                       tipping is fine, it gives me a chance to stiff the
                       guy throwing a snit while serving me.  -John
                       \_ But it's not OK for someone to stiff you for
                          throwing a snit, of course.  -tom
                          \_ Apples and oranges. A waiter might get a
                             $100 tip or a $0 tip. A better waiter will
                             usually make more than a poor one. I happen
                             to think that waiters actually benefit from
                             the current system. A decent waiter can make
                             $60K/year easy. Without tips, it's probably
                             half that.
                             \- 1. the true distribution is not $100 or $0.
                                and you need to talk in terms of percentages
                                anyway. a server at a boulevard  may get
                                a $100 tip but will never ever get $0.
                                the waiter at the neighborhood pasta restaurant
                                is never ever going to get $100. so i think
                                the tip distribution has probably 90% of its
                                mass in the 12%-22% range. 2. i think tip
                                pooling among the frontroom staff is not
                                uncommon, so the poor waiter can be
                                shielded. 3. the waiters even benfitted
                                more from the fact that there is no
                                tip credit in CA when it comes to min wage
                                [this is for waiters at decent places].
                                4. i think $60k is a bit high for your
                                waiter salary estimate [do waiters
                                work 40hr weeks?].
                                See e.g.
                                work 40hr weeks?]. See e.g.
                                for some details on reasonably high end
                                restaurant operation. As well as:
                                \_ If you have a crappy waiter, SOP is to give
                                   the manager a tip and tell him to make sure
                                   the bus boy gets it.  Stiffing bus boys is
                                   king lame.  And Partha, my mom has a
                                   culinary placement company in SF, so I'm
                                   well aware of the tipping & wage situation.
                                   I'm also aware that a good waiter can pull
                                   upwards of $100k, a lot of it effectively
                                   tax free.  -John
                                   \- What percentile would you guess $60k
                                      and $100k are in terms of waiter incomes
                                      in SF?
                                   \- What fraction of waiters in SF would
                                      you say make $60k or more? $100k or more?
                                      Yes, I realize there are escalatory
                                      ways of dealing with exceptionally
                                      lame service, but I dont think most
                                      people resort do that ... and they are
                                      pretty rare events i'd say. i agree
                                      routing the tip to the mgs is a good
                                      routing the tip to the mgr is a good
                                      way to deal with the situation.
                                      [I personally weigh intentional things
                                      like snooty obnoxiousness [Aqua] more
                                      heavily than minor incompetence [dropped
                                      plate ... that stuff happens]]. I've
                                      sort of decided to put up with less
                                      deliberately bad service and walk out
                                      of places.
                                      BTW, I do agree with you than the getting
                                      rid of tipping is probably not the way
                                      to go, although I dont think the
                                      status quo is perfect. It's sort of
                                      like rent control ... there are pros
                                      and cons ... one regime not unambiguously
                                      better than the other.
                                      and cons ... one regime not "pareto
                                      superior" to the other.
                                      \_ I'm not interested in how much a
                                         waiter makes, or what percentage of
                                         waiters make >$60k (a good number in
                                         more upscale restaurants).  That is
                                         not my problem.  In a restaurant, I am
                                         paying for the experience as much as
                                         for the food.  If a waiter is being
                                         a shit (surprise, it does happen), I
                                         should make sure the owner knows this
                                         (maybe through the manager) as he has
                                         a financial stake in the business.  In
                                         the meantime, I will not give "hey,
                                         thanks, good job" money to a waiter,
                                         bellhop, cabbie or anyone else who
                                         gives me a shitty attitude (note that
                                         I'm not talking about incompetence or
                                         inexperience here.)  There is no
                                         obligation to tip, but if you feel
                                         your service was ok or better, some
                                         conventions apply.  -John
                                         \- I understand what you are saying.
                                            I am just sort of curious what
                                            %age of the time or how many times
                                            per year the service hits the
                                            threashold of not tipping,
                                            rerouting the tip etc. In the past
                                            15 years say, i can think of maybe
                                            10ish incidents ... in one case
                                            [in durant court] we left a 5cent
                                            tip that was thrown at us as we
                                            we leaving, but i really havent
                                            caused a scene in a med/highend
                                            place. [sometimes because i was
                                            somebody else guest, in other cases
                                            because the management made it up
                                            sort of [free bottle of wine] etc.
                                            if this is something you do 1-2%
                                            od the time [like inb my case],
                                            od the time [like in my case],
                                            then it's more sort of an ad hoc
                                            reaction, than your "standard
                                            behavior for bad service". i think
                                            the place where i most frquently
                                            get annoyed are bars where the
                                            bartender is lame about imple-
                                            menting FIFO. i guess i have caused
                                            a scene in a high end place but we
                                            left a very very large tip :-).
        Not often, to be honest--maybe about 10 times in the last 5 _/
        years.  I have a pretty high tolerance; usually I just leave
        a lower tip if service is really bad enough to make me notice.
        However, we frequently go to nice restaurants, and I know what I can
        expect for a given price, so I don't hesitate to ask for a different
        waiter.  I've only walked out on a place once or twice, and usually
        I'll tell the manager if something really pisses me off (normally
        they're very cool about it.)  I dislike waiters being snippy, being
        ignored, having food take a very long time even when we ask about it,
        pissy reactions when a dish isn't acceptable, and worst of all, "do
        you want your change?"  The problem is that most people feel a bit
        intimidated and think they owe the waiter something, and are afraid
        to speak up when something really sucks.  -John
        \_ Once a waitress argued with us that a certain item was not on the
           menu. We said that it was. She said it was not. We again told
           her it was. She again said it was not. We asked for the menu.
           She was wrong. This was a fairly nice restaurant (Campanile in
           LA). The manager overheard the whole thing and gave us free
           dessert. That is acceptable and she got a 15% tip. Since two
           of my sisters (and their two boyfriends) are in the restaurant
           business (GM, chef, waitress, and sommelier) in nice SF
           restaurants I can definitely say that $60K isn't a problem if
           you are experienced and that you really shouldn't leave less
           than 10% even if the service sucked. However, you should
           complain to the GM. It is the GM's job to make things right.
           Also, without tipping, I really do think waiters/waitresses
           would make a whole lot less money and as a result the quality
           of service (already poor in most cases) would get worse as
           professionals left for other jobs. Tipping works well, because
           when the restaurant does well so does everyone and when the
           restaurant does poorly then everyone suffers. No sense keeping
           waiters on at $60K+ when business is bad.
           \_ Only once in the last five years have I not tipped, and that
              was at the Grill place across the street from the Piedmont
              Landmark Theater (formerly a Rolling Dunes): the entire wait
              staff were rude and indolent. We did not tip, and we will not
              be back. --erikred
              \_ Funny, that's in my neighberhood, I go there all the time,
                 and get fine and friendly service.  Chris, the owner and
                 often bartender, is the only shop owner on the street
                 (except for the yogurt place) who knows me and greets me
                 on sight.
                 One thing to remember is that waiters have to deal with
                 obnoxious customers a lot more often than you have to
                 deal with obnoxious waiters.  We all have bad days.  -tom
                 \_ Agreed, but this was beyond the pale. This was mid-day,
                    and the fan above our table was casting a shadow that was
                    making all four of us dizzy and queasy. We asked a waiter
                    if it would be possible to turn it off; he went off to ask
                    someone, but never came back to tell us one way or the
                    other. We asked another waiter and finally the person who
                    looked like the manager at the time, and were similarly
                    blown off. At the same time, our orders arrived and were
                    wrong; even though there were only three groups of
                    customers there including us, no one ever came by to see
                    if we needed more water, more food, or even the bill. We
                    eventually went to the bar to ask for our bill, and when
                    we paid, we left no tip. Please understand, I have friends
                    who are waiters and I am sympathetic to the plight of the
                    working wait staff, but this level of silliness was
                    untenable. --erikred
           \- i think "routing around" the problem works when the problem
              is a lame/snooty/etc waiter, but there are some establishements
              that have that problem [farralon, aqua, various medium level but
              hot and packed placed in the mission], i wonder if they will do
              anything. or even at say zacharies, a place i think is sort of
              customer unfriendly. re: the "feel they owe their waiter
              something" ... i think in part they feel they will be thought
              of a cheep [perhaps "justifying" in the waiters mind thinking
              "these guys are declasse"] if they just leave a small tip without
              elaborating on the reason. and most people may not have the
              personality to say something beyond the tip.
              \_ Weird. I have been to Farralon three times and Aqua once
                 and all four times I had great service. How many times
                 have you been to Aqua? -ausman
                 \_ I, too, had superb service at Aqua the one time I went.
              \_ If you leave a 10% tip they definitely get the idea
                 that you are either dissatisfied or declasse. You have
                 to tell the manager why if you want them to know which.
                 All I am saying is that 10% is low enough that they will
                 know something's up. I know people who stiff the
                 waitstaff and I've only do that in an extreme situation
                 (e.g. the one time I was asked to not patronize a
                 particular restaurant ever again). As for Zachary's, it
                 is very unfriendly to customers. The cash only policy is
                 evidence of that.
                          \- along with no RSVP, no pitchers of soda,
                             exploiting children etc.
                 \_ Again, stiffing the "waitstaff" is lame.  The busboy
                    can't help it if the waiter's a prick.  Nor can the
                    waiter if the restaurant has crappy policies.  Use your
                    own judgment, and as psb says, let the GM know, they
                    need to be aware of this sort of stuff.  But I've been at
                    Farallon 7-8 times and never had bad service.  -John
                    \_ Tipping is fundamentally a way to enforce class
                       structure.  The wealthy (restaurant/valet/hotel/taxi
                       patrons) want to have the right to punish the servants
                       for insolence.  Look at the sense of entitlement
                       displayed in the comments in this thread; it's really
                       pretty sad.  -tom
                       \_ Uh...I want to punish someone who gives me crappy
                          service and bad attitude.  In shops, I can't do
                          this to the sales clerk directly, in restaurants I
                          can.  Don't turn this into some pseudo-Marxist class
                          warfare claptrap.  I's a not tryin to keep the po'
                          folk in they's place, just have a nice dinner
                          without some snotty shit spoiling it.  15% says
                          "you did a reasonable job, thanks".  10% = "you did
                          not do a good job."  Anything less, including 0% =
                          "you suck, fuck you."  That's my right as a
                          customer.  -John
                          \_ Ponder these two questions:
                             1) How did the tipping rules get developed in
                                the U.S.?  Why is the waiter tipped and
                                the shopkeeper not?
                             2) Why are relatively large tips customary
                                in the U.S. and generally not elsewhere?  -tom
                                \_ The shop clerk (not shopkeeper, wrong
                                   comparison) is not tipped because he is
                                   not providing a service in the same class
                                   as the waiter, shoe shine guy, taxi driver,
                                   etc.; many salesmen also get commission.
                                   \_ Commission is not the same as tipping.
                                      And what is different about the class
                                      of service being provided by a taxi
                                      driver vs. a shop clerk?  Non-circular
                                      definition, please.  -tom
                                      \_ The shop clerk is selling me an item.
                                         His manner of selling it, strictly
                                         speaking, is not part of the overall
                                         experience I am paying for.  With a
                                         waiter or cab driver, it is (how nice
                                         is the service, how smooth is the
                                         ride.)  Same with shoe-shine guys,
                                         or valets.  What's your point?  -John
                                         \_ That's a crock; plenty of shops
                                            provide personal service at or
                                            above the level of shoe-shine-boy.
                                            (Like a shoe store, for one). -tom
                          \- i agree there is something "american" about
                             the tipping system ... compared to a more
                             "socialist" system [modulo tip pooling], but
                             i think holube is overstating things. where i
                             think there is a class system is the disparity bt/
                             frontroom staff and the often minority back
                             of the house people like the dish washing crew
                             who are paid lower and certainly work hard
                             and get no part of the tip pool. under a sort
                             of rawlsian theory i'd rather see increased
                             spoils going to them rather than the wiatstaff
                             [in re: sf min wage change]. and i also think
                             at reasonable standard resturants the waitstaff
                             are not just passive agents to their fate ...
                             i think some probably consciously tailor
                             behavior to who the expect better tips from ...
                             and if they guess wrong, well they deserve to
                             lose out a bit. [i've seen white businessmen
                             in their 50s get much better service than
                             i did when in my late 20s at places like aqua.
                             analogous to the bartender who give better
                             service to hot chicks who are lousy tippers ...
                             at least in cash.]
                       \_ Hello, there is no tipping in Japan and yet the wait
                          staff are still professional and polite. I see no
                          reason to reward wait staff here who cannot do this.
                          I'm not expecting anything more than civility and
                          politeness; I'm certainly not looking for servility.
                          \_ Paying 15% in the U.S. isn't "rewarding" wait
                             staff; it's paying their wage.  More than 15%
                             could reasonably be construed as reward.  -tom
                             \_ This is an semi-invisible system in that the
                                general public is not usually made aware that
                                wait staff's salaries have been depleted to
                                the point where tips mean the difference
                                surviving or not. I agree that the situation
                                needs to fixed (i.e., adjust wages to comp),
                                but relying on customer support of an
                                unpublished system sounds broken. That said,
                                I generally tip 20%. --erikred
                                \_ It's not really an unpublished system;
                                   it's part of etiquette.  I agree that
                                   the system is untenable, and I think it's
                                   particularly onerous because it has its
                                   roots in slavery and the culture surrounding
                                   it.  I certainly don't think I get better
                                   service in the U.S. compared to overseas
                                   in countries where tipping is not
                                   customary (because they pay full wages).
                                   \_ In many other countries, being a
                                      waiter is a career choice. In the
                                      US (except at high-end restaurants)
                                      it is not. The quality of service
                                      reflects this. However, I can't say
                                      that I've gotten really great
                                      service at dive restaurants in, say,
                                      Europe either. I think your ideas
                                      about the nature of tipping are
                                      crazy. As I said before, I think
                                      most waiters make out better by
                                      earning tips than they would without.
                                   \_ It is basically unpublished. There are
                                      so many immigrants here in the bay area
                                      for example that it's not realistic to
                                      expect everyone to be on the same page
                                      wrt tipping. I see that clearly with
                                      coworkers. They have no idea. I never
                                      really analyzed it in detail either...
                                      sure you see your parents and others
                                      do the 15% thing but the details are
                                      not explained. How many people know
                                      how the tips apply to busboys? What
                                      do you do in buffet restaurants? The
                                      tipping system seems like a good one
                                      for a more homogeneously civilized
                                      society but not apropos now. (One
                                      coworker from India thought it was
                                      ok to tip almost nothing at a lunch
                                      joint. Of course he also liked to talk
                                      about the dirt-cheap food and services
                                      in India where regular engineers had
                                      full-time chauffeurs etc.)
                                      \- having a chauffeur in india is like
                                         having somebody mow your lawn here.
                                         but your major point stands: indians
                                         treat service class people like
                                         shit and tip like shit. the latter
                                         is a social norm diffcult to change
                                         but there is no excuse for the
                                         former. a dramatic case of this is
                                         how westerners and indians deal with
                                         say trekking guides and porters ...
                                         on the other hand, i think indians
                                         are often pretty low maint when it
                                         comes to "special requests".
2006/7/21-22 [Politics/Foreign/MiddleEast/Iraq] UID:43760 Activity:nil
7/21    Huh, turns out, peace IS war (Thomas Sowell) (, a mouthpiece for conservatives)
        \_ "One of the many failings of our educational system is that it sends
           out into the world people who cannot tell rhetoric from reality."
           I thought the current conservative climate would have found that to
           be a plus.
2006/7/21-25 [Politics/Foreign/MiddleEast/Israel, Politics/Foreign/MiddleEast/Others] UID:43761 Activity:low
7/21    This is the best article I've found describing the recent Lebanon
        escalation and its repercussions (Wash Post, a mouthpiece for liberals, opinion)
        \_ Faster, please.
           \_ Faster and faster fast it goes
              Hutalahey Hutalahey
           \_ Faster, faster, fast it goes
              Playing the sitar with my toes
              Hutalahey, oh
              Hutalahey Hutalahey
              Hutalahey, oh-oh-ey-oh
        \_ I can understand Israel's right to defend itself, but this
           whole thing is just stupid. It's one thing to act tough
           when you are being attacked, but their response is
           disproportionate. This bullying attitude toward their
           neighbors will create more hatred toward Israel (and
           therefore the United States) throughout the world.
           Personally I think the only way they can make peace with
           their neighbors is by helping them out, one way or the
           other, instead of bomb the shit out of them at every
           \_ They're doing a good job with their Pre-emptive Warfare,
              because fighting evil is a good thing. God Bless.
              because fighting evil is a good thing.
              \_ you are funny.
           \_ ie "Can't we all just get along"
           \_ Um, you do know that Israel was one of the biggest donors to
              pre-Hamas Palestine, right?  They repeatedly tried to help the
              bits of the country that _weren't_ attacking them.  And
              regardless, the sworn policy of Hamas and Hezbollah calls for
              the destruction of Israel.  Not "calls for that because Israel's
              been mean lately", but "has called for that since Israel's
              creation"  There's not a lot of room for diplomacy with those
              groups, and when those groups are in power, officially or
              otherwise... what do you do?
              \_ I don't know, but you can't seriously support what Isreal
                 is about to do - it is a collosal strategic mistake, no
                 matter what your politics. !pp
                 \_ What exactly is Israel about to and and why in your
                    is it a collosal mistake?
                 \_ Of course it is.  The previous post was contesting
                    " neighbors out instead of bombing them at every
                     opportunity..."  They've done both.
           \_ the stragetic mistake Israel made, IMHO, is Israel's deliberate
              act of punishing / weakening Lebanonese government.  More stable
              and wealthy Lebanon government it is, less justification for
              Hezbolla to keep their arm.  In fact, one would argue the reason
              Hezbolla kidnapped Israeli soldier WAS to create incident to
              justify their status quo.  By destroying the basic infrastrue
              Lebanon has build in the past 20 years, Israel is in effect
              strengthening Hezbolla.
              MAY BE, that is what Israel want, a strong, out of control
              Hezbollah that Israel can justify their attack.  I simply don't
              \_ Hezbollah doesn't help their cause with rocket attacks. It
                 rather proves Israel's point. Can you imagine rockets
                 bombarding Mexico from Texas and the US not stopping it?
                 Hezbollah should not fight back and show Israel to be
                 the aggressors.
                 \_ Hezbollah helps their 'cause' a great deal by lobbing
                    rockets into Israel.  Their *only* cause is the complete
                    destruction of Israel.  They don't hide that fact.  They
                    are not in any way ashamed of that.  They announced it
                    proudly to the world.  What do you think their cause is?
                    \_ Lobbing rockets into Israel will only set them back.
                       It's not like that is going to destroy Israel. However,
                       it turns international opinion against them and proves
                       that Lebanon can't or won't control their activities.
                       Open war with Israel is not going to help Hezbollah at
                       the moment.
                 \_ Then why are they focusing their attacks on Lebanese
                    infrastructure?  Bombing the rocket facilities seems
                    perfectly justified.  Bombing highways does not.
                    \- I'm ceritainly not a knee-jerk israel supporter,
                       nor have i been following this "accidental war"
                       very closely, but hizbollah is not a group of nutjobs
                       at arms length from the lebanese state ... they hold
                       cabinet-level posts as well as being an appreciable
                       part of the legislature [10-20%?]. i recognize a weak
                       govt in a place like lebanon doesnt have complete
                       control over all parts of the country, but they also
                       cannot totally take refuge in "what can we do" ... i.e.
                       to israel's war not just with an outfit of fanatics
                       israel's war not just with an outfit of fanatics
                       but to some extent with the state. it's not as clean a
                       case of nobody expecting the US to distinguish between
                       the taliban [then the afgan state, more or less] and
                       al queda, but there is an element of that.
                       the mexico-texas thing is a strawman. i havent thought
                       about this deeply but consider the crossboarder
                       interventions in SE Asia in the 70s ... that might
                       be a better scenario to mine for what is a comparable
                       scenario ... china in vietnam, vietnam in cambodia,
                       khemer rouge, incursions into laos etc. do not taunt
                       LON NOL.
                    \_ Bombing the highways and runways prevents Syria from
                       moving more arms into southern Lebanon.
                       \- maybe this is a silly question but if israel
                          has clear evidence that syria and iran are
                          aiding and abetting HIZBOLLA, how come they
                          dont do a CPOWELL-style UN presentation with
                          the smoking gun. i'm not suggesting i or anybody
                          else doubts the connection, but it seems like
                          that sort of forces "the world" to confront the
                          issue ... especially the issue of state involvement
                          rather than state vs "group of crazies". then israel
                          can paint this as a proxy war against them by
                          two states.
                          \_ It isn't silly but it is naive.  Let's say they
                             have this evidence in a way that is easily
                             presented to the UN and make the best presentation
                             the UN has ever seen and now the whole world is
                             convinced of it.  So what?  The whole world
                             already knows and believes Syria and Iran are
                             supporting terrorist organizations like Hamas
                             and Hezbollah.  Why would the world 'confront'
                             them over it?  Nations exist only for one
                             reason: to advance their own interests.  It is
                             not in the interests of most of the world to
                             support Israel or oppose Iran (where their oil
                             comes from).
                             \_ I think your extended comments are a bit
                                naive. There are significant implication of
                                this being state vs state vs sort of a
                                "police action" type setting. It can put
                                Lebanon in the position of taking a postion
                                on Syrian/Iranian involement. I was looking
                                for a reply by somebody more knowledgable
                                about sunni-shiite interest, for example
                                [like which states are actually kind of
                                happy to see Hizbolla take a pounding] ...
                                the it's trivial to say people will act
                                in their own interest. What is meaningful is
                                to discuss what those interests are in this
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