Tag: Asia-Pacific

VP Biden Accidentally Suggests U.S.-Asia Influence Waning

Posted by – December 27, 2013

December 5th, 2013, Vice President of the U.S. (VOTUS) Joseph R. Biden, speaking to a conference room-full of PRC diplomats and dignitaries after meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, made an accidentally revealing comment:

The United States has a profound stake in what happens here, because we needwe are, and will remain—a Pacific power, diplomatically, economically, and military [sic].”

Judge for yourself, but this comment, calculated to reassure allies and make the top echelons of the Beijing regime think twice about aggressive moves in the region, kind of rang hollow or, at least rang… awkward.

To me, the “we need, we are, and will remain a Pacific power” had the ring of uneasiness, the sound of an aging boxer trying to talk tough and he can hardly convince himself.
Let me know if you think differently, but I thought it revealed something akin to the male peacock who is strutting to impress but no longer pulling it off (the female peacocks are rolling their eyes) or the schoolyard bully power-posing in front of the doors to get kids’ lunch money, but it’s more pathetic than intimidating, because the bully has repeatedly shown himself unable to back it up, even a little girl on crutches backed him down.
During Biden’s visit to East Asia, he repeated various versions of the “we really are a resident Pacific power” message, and it did more to confirm we really aren’t than anything.
Someone who is actually powerful doesn’t have to keep trying to convince people.

VP Biden went on an emergency tour of East Asia to address the recent controversy over the PRC imposing an “Air Defense Identification Zone” (ADIZ) over a huge swath of airspace of the East China Sea, including, most provocatively, the Japanese-administered Senkaku Islands (referred to as the “Diaoyu Islands” in mainland China).  To set up such an expansive ADIZ over disputed territory, nearly half of it overlapping the pre-existing Japanese ADIZ, particularly claiming the airspace of islands controlled by your primary rival country, has, as Biden said, “caused significant apprehension in the region.”  ADIZs have been around since the post-WWII years, so they’re not new, but they never have overlapped like this before over others’ territory.

No one else wrote about how odd Biden sounded in Beijing, so I did… unearthing the unexpected and unnoticed, that’s a big part of what blogging is for, I think.

Nick

Bush In Vietnam – The Irony Is Too Much

Posted by – November 19, 2006

Bush In Vietnam – The Irony Is Too Much

The Irony Is Just Incredible

In Vietnam, Bush cites lessons for Iraq, saying Vietnam war teaches us “we’ll succeed unless we quit.”
WHAT?!
You realize you’re sitting under a giant statue of Ho Chi Minh, right? You’re citing a non-example example?

President Bush is in Vietnam saying the lesson of ‘Nam is “we’ll succeed unless we quit”??? While simultaneously hailing the communist government as a great success?!

If an author had penned this as fiction, he would be laughed out of his chair for something so unrealistic and bizarre.

MY G-D, THE IRONY IS SO INTENSE IT’S EXCRUCIATING!

Why can’t journalists even mention how insane and incoherent Bush’s “lessons learned” from Vietnam are?
Why is this not treated as a major gaffe?

What the hell was he trying to convey? Why is he in Vietnam lauding them for their newfound love of capitalism if he thinks we never should have abandoned the Vietnam war and is saying “we succeed unless we quit?” Can he really have this level of cognitive dissonance?

I don’t understand why he doesn’t realize we lost Iraq for the same reason we lost Vietnam: we didn’t have the troops to hold territory nor prop up a regime the indigenous population didn’t want. If the population doesn’t want it, we can’t make it happen. But yeah Mr. President, if we just send our boys into the quicksand for another decade or two, the Sunnis fighting for the return of the Caliphate and the Shias fighting for the Islamic Revolution will begin to just lurrv representative democracy, right?

And does it bother anyone else that our leadership is now in bed with China and Vietnam, the new capitalist utopias where most of the stuff we buy is made using slavery, child laborers and exploitation in sweatshops?
And if China and Vietnam have now fused the totalitarianism of Chairman Mao with unfettered corporatism, how is that not fascism?

I don’t know whether to cry or to LMAO.

Nick

For 2006 Republican Leadership, Support For Slave Labor Runs Deep

Posted by – October 17, 2006

For 2006 Republican Leadership, Support For Slavery Runs Deep

More Revelations In Marianas Scandal Show GOP Chairman Involved

Yesterday, I shed light on the disgusting Republican effort to protect deplorable labor conditions on the American-controlled Northern Marianas Islands, where Chinese immigrants are kept in sweatshops with little to no pay and not allowed to leave. Basically, the definition of slavery.

The party that abolished slavery under Lincoln has now resorted to extraordinary measures to keep slavery and forced abortions in place in the Northern Marianas Islands.

It has now been revealed that Chairman of the Republican Party, Ken Mehlman conspired with Jack Abramoff to protect the slavery racket there. He intervened and got a State Department official fired for trying to enforce labor laws on the islands.

“…according to documents obtained by Vanity Fair, Mehlman exchanged email with Abramoff, did him political favors (such as blocking Clinton-administration alumnus Allen Stayman from keeping a State Department job)…”

Stayman had been on Abramoff’s hit list for a long, long time, because, as a higher-up at the Interior Department, he had been an ardent advocate for bringing the sorts of labor and immigration reforms to the Northern Mariana Islands that Abramoff had been hired to squelch.


Ken Mehlman Killed State Department Nomination on Abramoff’s Behalf

In related news, China, tired of similar sweatshop operations, has drafted a new law to crack down and empower labor unions. The American response? Instead of applauding the Chinese effort to change their horrendous human rights record, U.S. corporations reacted angrily that their exploitation may be curbed, and are lobbying against this and threatening to stop opening factories there. Check out
China drafting law to protect workers, regulate sweatshops
Foreign firms hint they’ll build fewer factories if it passes (link).

It should be clear to everyone now that these sweatshop corporatists only care about profit, and the dignity of the human person is but another liability to be reduced and mitigated.

It should be clear to everyone now that a vote for Ken Mehlman’s party is a vote supporting his unabashed efforts to keep Marianas slavery and sweatshop exploitation shielded from U.S. regulation.

Three weeks until the Congressional elections. Stay alert, and VOTE!!!

Nick


Filed Under: Politics and Government

Bush Gov’t & House Cronies Supporting Slavery, Forced Abortions

Posted by – October 16, 2006

Bush Government Supporting Slavery And Forced Abortions

Top Rove Aide Involved In Abramoff Scandal Resigns

The Abramoff corruption and its reach deep into the government has been horribly unreported by the mainstream media; almost no one knows about it (liberal media? please.) and the most outrageous aspect of this scandal is how Abramoff and Tom DeLay conspired to continue slavery and forced abortions in the American Northern Marianas Islands (details).

Basically, human traffickers bring Chinese women to the islands, and keep them there in slavery in sweatshops behind barbed wire making clothes for U.S. retailers, force them into prostitution, and if they get pregnant, force them to get abortions. They are not allowed to leave the island, and they either get paid less than half the minimum wage, or not paid at all. Yet the clothing is allowed to be labeled “Made In The USA,” as the Northern Marianas Islands are a commonwealth of the United States.

Catholic social justice groups howled about the slavery and forced abortions under American auspices. A bill was introduced in Congress to enforce U.S. minimum wage and labor laws on the islands. The sinister Northern Marianas authorities then contracted super lobbyist Jack Abramoff to the tune of $6.7 million to kill the bill and protect their slavery racket. Abramoff, who has now pled guilty to fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy to bribe public officials, brought then-Majority Leader Tom DeLay to the Northern Marianas Islands. DeLay appeared at a benefit dinner for the chief slaveowner, Willie Tan, and lauded his operation. “When one of my closest and dearest friends, Jack Abramoff, your most able representative in Washington, D.C., invited me to the islands, I wanted to see firsthand the free-market success and the progress and reform you have made.” Tan, who has paid the largest U.S. labor fines in history, told ABC News that DeLay assured him the bill enforcing labor laws would not pass Congress, because “I make the schedule.” Listen to NPR’s report on the Marianas scandal.

Abramoff hired long-time associate and former-executive director of the Christian Coalition Ralph Reed to send out mass mailings to Alabama Christians telling them to call their Congressmen to tell them to vote against the Northern Marianas bill. “The radical left, the Big Labor Union Bosses, and Bill Clinton want to pass a law preventing Chinese from coming to work on the Marianas Islands,” the mailer from Reed’s firm said, where, it added, the Chinese workers, “are exposed to the teachings of Jesus Christ.”

So Christians were enlisted to protect slavery and forced abortions.

And DeLay did all he could to promote the Marianas as a free market utopia and scuttle the bill to bring regulation to the islands. And succeeded. These brutal sweatshops are still very much in place in the Northern Marianas islands.

The latest development in this outrage is the resignation of top aide to Karl Rove, Susan Ralston, on Friday after the press corps went home. See Rove Aide Linked To Abramoff Resigns in the Washington Post. Ralston, it was revealed in the Abramoff investigation, was essential in the extraordinary effort to protect
slavery and forced abortions in the Marianas Islands. When Abramoff wanted a Republican candidate for the governorship of the Marianas who had promised reform to lose so they could continue the slavery, he e-mailed Ralston to ask if Rove could get Bush to withhold endorsement of the candidate. She e-mailed Abramoff back: “You win. 🙂 KR says no endorsement.” KR is, of course, Karl Rove. Ralston was Abramoff’s executive assistant but in February 2001 went to work in the same job for Rove.

This scandal should be huge, and devastating for the Republican party. It should be all over the front page, all over the 24/7 news channels. It isn’t, even though the scandal has now felled a top West Wing aide.

None of the pro-life groups are up-in-arms or even mentioning this, much less picketing the White House with “STOP PROTECTING FORCED ABORTIONS” signs; they are either duped into actively blocking reforming the island, or at least still supporting this administration. If they really cared about opposing abortions, why does this not get a rise out of them?
Is it that Chinese life doesn’t matter?
Is it just about power?
Where’s the outrage?

This is 2006, dammit. I want my government to stop supporting slavery and forced abortions.

Who’s with me?

Nick

PS
Don’t take my word for it. You can independently verify what I’m saying with a simple Google search.

Filed Under: Politics and Government