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post #91 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-21-2006, 07:32 PM
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RE: The selling out of America

Arabnoia does run rampant...

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #92 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-21-2006, 07:37 PM
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RE: The selling out of America

Quote:
Shabah - 2/21/2006 9:21 PM

Quote:
JimSmith - 2/21/2006 8:20 PM

Getting back to the point of this thread, the selling of America's security at critical entry points to a firm owned and operated by the UAE.

Shabah, the nearly unilateral recoil by American citizens to this announcement has less to do with specific knowledge of the company and its officers than it does with fear. Fear that has been fanned by the present Administration to its political advantage, and will continue to be fanned when it is deemed to benefit their political aims. That fear of Arabs has been fanned by Arabs as well. In the threads about the cartoons and the Arab reactions to those cartoons the cultural differences between the mindsets of Westerners, Americans to be specific in this case, and the Arab Muslims (possibly other Muslims as well, but "we" know a lot less about them - not to say "we" know much of value about Arab Muslims) was discussed. This difference, as illuminated by the light of those fanned coals of fear, has raised some gut level distrust. The only Arabs to seem to really be in power are the radical Muslims. Sure there are some front men, even Emirs and other VIPs, but they seem to take orders from the religious leaders and the most outspoken anti-American religious leaders seem to be only ones with real power.

I agree with you and Bot that one hijacker does not a terrorist nation make. However, people in high places in the UAE banking and business world had a lot more to do with enabling the 9-11 attack than Saddam. Have they been rooted out and tried? Maybe, but I don't recall any such campaign.

In the end, the bulk of the Arab Muslim population is again being painted, unfairly and unfortunately, with a color of distrust. However, until there is a demonstrated effort to root out the bad guys and stop the threats against the United States, Great Britain, etc. this distrust will continue to be used by Arab bad guys, and American bad guys, to gain control of their respective national political arenas.

I for one would not subject the American psyche to this test at this time. It is going to fail and make things worse, not better. It is not the vehicle to establish a trust, it is galvanizing the distrust this administration under Bush has fostered to control the United States political and supposedly non-political seats of power. Hopefully the benefit will be that the pendulum will begin to swing the other way once this massive manipulation of the American populace becomes apparent to more Americans.

Jim
Jim, here is the double standard. The Americans are afraid of Arabs doing business on their soil yet the Arabs are welcoming Amricans to do business on their soil. Here is a real good example: John Hopkins Univesity just entered in an agreement with the UAE for a ten year contarct to control a large hospital in Abu-Dhabi. (Source: http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/bal-bz.hopkins21feb21,0,2133061,print.story?coll=sns-ap-nation-headlines)
This is from the same city that has a mayor (O'Malley, I believe) working so hard against the port deal.

My question, should the Arabs respond in kind and reject this deal and all future deals of any substance??? I am sure someone is going to say, but the US did not harm the Arab people like the terrorists did to us. My answer will be; sure whatever you say...
Well that sure is a clever argument you have there cowboy.

First, I'd let the dust settle. This has all the fury of politicians scrambling to find a microphone to act indignant in front of. I would hope that when people have some time to reflect on how f**king stupid teh controversy is that they will give up and find something else to go harrumphing in front of cameras about.

It happens with depressing regularity.

Bot
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post #93 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-21-2006, 07:58 PM
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RE: The selling out of America

HS says 'no worries'. Politics or objective assessment?




US Security Chief Says UAE Ports Deal is No Threat
By Stephanie Ho
Washington
19 February 2006


Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff is defending a deal giving a company in the United Arab Emirates control over terminals at key U.S. ports. Critics in Congress say the deal is a threat to national security.

Critics have blasted the recent deal, in which government-owned Dubai Ports World purchased London-based Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company, a private company that runs commercial operations in six major U.S. ports.

The nearly $7-billion sale has been approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which includes officials from the Departments of Commerce, Defense, Homeland Security, Justice, and State.

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff emphasized that the deal has undergone close scrutiny, although he said he could not provide details.

"Without getting into classified information, what we typically do if there are concerns, is we build in certain conditions or requirements that the company has to agree to to make sure we address the national security concerns," said Michael Chertoff. "And here, the Coast Guard and Customs and Border Protection really played a leading role for our department in terms of designing those conditions and making sure that they are obeyed."

A bipartisan group of senators and House members last week called on the Bush Administration to review the sale, saying it undermines national security.

They noted that the United Arab Emirates served as a base for the hijackers who took part in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States. They also argue that the UAE was one of only three countries that recognized the Taleban as Afghanistan's legitimate government.

The Bush Administration considers the United Arab Emirates an ally in the war on terror.

Secretary Chertoff told NBC's Meet the Press he believes it is not fair to automatically cut off business with entire countries, like the United Arab Emirates, just because there were some UAE connections to the September 11 terrorists. He pointed to the so-called shoebomber, the terrorist who tried to detonate a bomb in his shoe while on an airplane, to make his point.

"Well, Richard Reid was British," he said. "He was going to blow up an airliner. We do not say the British cannot buy companies here."

He added that he believes the committee's careful review of the deal, which includes building safeguards into it, reduces any risks to the United States.

"And this is part of the balancing of security, which is our paramount concern, with the need to still maintain a real robust global trading environment," explained Michael Chertoff.

The six major American ports affected are Baltimore, Miami, New Jersey, New Orleans, New York, and Philadelphia.

The Associated Press reports that a company at the Port of Miami has sued to block the UAE company's takeover of shipping operations there. The company, Continental Stevedoring and Terminals, said it will become an "involuntary partner" of Dubai Ports World. It also expressed doubts that the UAE company, Florida or the U.S. government can ensure compliance with American security rules.

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post #94 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-21-2006, 08:19 PM
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RE: The selling out of America

Aw, such a pity when the master spinster's get spun back in kind. Almost brings a tear to the eye. Almost.
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post #95 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-21-2006, 11:11 PM
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RE: The selling out of America

Quote:
Shabah - 2/21/2006 9:21 PM
Jim, here is the double standard. The Americans are afraid of Arabs doing business on their soil yet the Arabs are welcoming Amricans to do business on their soil. Here is a real good example: John Hopkins Univesity just entered in an agreement with the UAE for a ten year contarct to control a large hospital in Abu-Dhabi. (Source: http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/bal-bz.hopkins21feb21,0,2133061,print.story?coll=sns-ap-nation-headlines)
This is from the same city that has a mayor (O'Malley, I believe) working so hard against the port deal.

My question, should the Arabs respond in kind and reject this deal and all future deals of any substance??? I am sure someone is going to say, but the US did not harm the Arab people like the terrorists did to us. My answer will be; sure whatever you say...
Shabah,

As I noted there is little being discussed about the actual parties involved and their qualifications to run a port, and enforce security regulations while doing so. The reaction is purely based on the fear that has been fostered by politicians using the unknown and lack of experience dealing with unknowns for their own purposes.

The case you cite, from an American's perspective, would presume the selection of a well established and respected medical university that runs a state of the art hospital in the United States to run a hospital in Abu-Dhabi was based on objective criteria. That information regarding the UAE company has been largely ignored in the present situation.

If there is anything to bolster the selection, such as the process used, or the history of the UAE company's qualifications for running a series of large ports, that would indicate the selection was made with some objective criteria, surely that information will be forthcoming? Additionally, it would be helpful if some background questions were answered, such as how the British company was performing. For example, was their performance substandard? What was the impetus for booting them and putting the UAE company in? How many other companies were asked to bid? Were any American companies asked to bid? What was the selection criteria? Did it favor the UAE company?

Hopefully some of these questions will be answered in the next few days. But, Shabah, in the counter point example you put up, is there a general Arab world suspicion that an American medical university selection was based on back room politics and selling out of Arab interests? Jim
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post #96 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-21-2006, 11:33 PM
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RE: The selling out of America

Quote:
JimSmith - 2/22/2006 1:11 AM
Shabah, in the counter point example you put up, is there a general Arab world suspicion that an American medical university selection was based on back room politics and selling out of Arab interests? Jim
This is the objection I expected to see once I saw Shabah's example.

A better example might be Aramco or any of the countless other ventures whereby Arab oil wealth was extracted over the last several decades. Surely a certain amount of wariness might be expected, and hence Shabah's point remains quite valid.
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post #97 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-22-2006, 12:18 AM
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RE: The selling out of America

I've not sure if this has been pointed out yet or not, I neglected to read the 4 pages so far because I'm sure it's mostly political bickering with little substance.

I was watching TV today and one of the chiefs of some government department, Justice maybe as I can see Gonzo saying it, was talking about how the British company that is involved on the ports now is foreign so what's the big deal. The difference that he failed to mention was that the British company is independant of the British government. Dubai Ports World on the other hand is owned by the UEA government. BIG DIFFERENCE!

I think frankly it is funny. Here we have the President thinking he's going to veto any block and a homeland security general, who's job it is to secure our boarders, saying it's cool if a foreign country with known ties to Islamic terror owns our ports.
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post #98 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-22-2006, 04:07 AM
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RE: The selling out of America

Well my world is certainly turned upside-down. The old adversaries are untied in this thread.
I have been looking for reasoned, cogent arguments against this selling of port management, but I am finding very little of substance.
Most of the opposition is emotional ranting.
Reason seems to indicate that this might be a good thing. I must admit, my first emotional reaction to the news was negative, but after thinking about it for a while, I see little reason to oppose it.
Those arguing for it seem calm, and thoughtfu; those opposed are simply employing emotion and subtle raciism.

Since many knee-jerk dems and repubs are so opposed to this, I conclude that the opposition is both stupid and evil; hence the takeover must be a good idea.
I am waiting to see some cogent arguments against.....
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post #99 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-22-2006, 06:07 AM
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RE: The selling out of America

Quote:
MS Fowler - 2/22/2006 11:07 AM

Well my world is certainly turned upside-down. The old adversaries are untied in this thread.
I have been looking for reasoned, cogent arguments against this selling of port management, but I am finding very little of substance.
Most of the opposition is emotional ranting.
Reason seems to indicate that this might be a good thing. I must admit, my first emotional reaction to the news was negative, but after thinking about it for a while, I see little reason to oppose it.
Those arguing for it seem calm, and thoughtfu; those opposed are simply employing emotion and subtle raciism.

Since many knee-jerk dems and repubs are so opposed to this, I conclude that the opposition is both stupid and evil; hence the takeover must be a good idea.
I am waiting to see some cogent arguments against.....
I'm doubtful that argument, in the absence of data is anything other than opinion (but hell that has never stopped us before) - what is needed is detailed information on any security risk, how ports operate, what their current practices are, etc., and I doubt that that, by its very nature, will be forthcoming. Coupled with this is the nature of the UAe administration, past evidence of support for jihad, likelihood of infiltration even though they are ostensibly allies (didn't the US move bases from KSA to there before the Iraq war?). This is an ideal situation for another huge political bun fight.
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post #100 of 112 (permalink) Old 02-22-2006, 10:09 AM
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RE: The selling out of America

Quote:
MS Fowler - 2/22/2006 6:07 AM

Well my world is certainly turned upside-down. The old adversaries are untied in this thread.
I have been looking for reasoned, cogent arguments against this selling of port management, but I am finding very little of substance.
Most of the opposition is emotional ranting.
Reason seems to indicate that this might be a good thing. I must admit, my first emotional reaction to the news was negative, but after thinking about it for a while, I see little reason to oppose it.
Those arguing for it seem calm, and thoughtfu; those opposed are simply employing emotion and subtle raciism.

Since many knee-jerk dems and repubs are so opposed to this, I conclude that the opposition is both stupid and evil; hence the takeover must be a good idea.
I am waiting to see some cogent arguments against.....
There remains to be a cogent discussion of the facts surrounding the solicitation and selection. Until then, any conclusion or argument for or against is an opinion based on emotions.

It is apparent that just because Bush supports this that you feel the case "for" the selection has been made. I don't take that for granted. But I am looking for some rationale to be revealed. Much less serious procurement projects require a solicitation process that includes a "source selection plan" that qualifies the bidders before they are solicited directly, then a bid evaluation plan that has to be finalized and formally approved by the Government's procurement agency before the bids are solicited, and then the inevitable sequence of questions and answers and so on and so forth, all of which should be available through the Freedom of Information Act.

Let the game play out. I will make an opinion when the facts come out about the specifics of the deal, whether the selection, bidding and award was made with the overall best interests of the United States in mind. But I think the move, overall, was unwise. More beneath the surface ugliness about Americans is going to come out, ugliness that has been grown by the fear politics of the last nearly five years. But planning ahead is not a strength of the Bush Administration. Jim
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