Review: Winning the Long War: Retaking the Offensive against Radical Islam

5 Star, Complexity & Catastrophe, Congress (Failure, Reform), Democracy, Diplomacy, Empire, Sorrows, Hubris, Blowback, Executive (Partisan Failure, Reform), Information Operations, Insurgency & Revolution, Intelligence (Government/Secret), Intelligence (Public), Military & Pentagon Power, Misinformation & Propaganda, Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Philosophy, Public Administration, Religion & Politics of Religion, Secrecy & Politics of Secrecy, Strategy, Threats (Emerging & Perennial), Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution, War & Face of Battle, Water, Energy, Oil, Scarcity
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First, Understand the Enemy Within

July 25, 2009

Ilan Berman

I love the book, not least because it reiterates the Secretary of Defense view that the military cannot win this Long War alone.

What this book does NOT address is the raw fact that we are our own worst enemy, and that as long as we make policy based on delusional fantasies combined with rapid profiteering mandates from Goldman Sachs and Wall Street, as long as we lack a strategic analytic model, and as long as we are completely opposed to actually creating a prosperous world at peace, then the USA is destined for self-immolation.

Buy the book. Also consider:
Winning the Long War: Lessons from the Cold War for Defeating Terrorism and Preserving Freedom
Unfolding the Future of the Long War: Motivations, Prospects, and Implications for the U.s. Army

HOWEVER, if you recognize as I do that those in power are completely divorced from reality, having become “like morons” as Daniel Ellsberg lectured Henry Kissinger in Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers, and that both Congress and the White House consist of good people trapped in a bad system that robs each and every one of them of their integrity, then no happy ending is possible.

I have posted my book Election 2008: Lipstick on the Pig (Substance of Governance; Legitimate Grievances; Candidates on the Issues; Balanced Budget 101; Call to Arms: Fund We Not Them; Annotated Bibliography) online, the Annotated Bibliogrpahy will lead those who wish to connect to reality to over 500 non-fiction reviews here at Amazon.

Books I specifically recommend for anyone who can actually talk to Obama about reconnecting with both reality and the 70% of eligible voters that did NOT vote for his well-greased win:
The Unconquerable World: Power, Nonviolence and the Will of the People
The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic (The American Empire Project)
The Eagle’s Shadow: Why America Fascinates and Infuriates the World
War is a Racket: The Antiwar Classic by America’s Most Decorated Soldier
Running on Empty: How the Democratic and Republican Parties Are Bankrupting Our Future and What Americans Can Do About It
The Broken Branch: How Congress Is Failing America and How to Get It Back on Track (Institutions of American Democracy)

The power and common sense of the Average American (see the book by that title, I am out of authorized links) can still be brought to bear, but first we have to stop this nonsense of thinking that if we only have the right strategy, we can evil and force not just the emerging powers, but Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Iran, Russia, Venezuela, and Wild Cards like the Congo, Malaysia, Pakistan, South Africa, and Turkey into their “role” as playthings of the American Empire.

Please. We have gone from a village idiot to a major domo that gives good theater, and books like this are still being written? Get a grip!

Phi Beta Iota, the new honour society committed to public intelligence in the public interest, is now publishing the free online Journal of Public Intelligence. There are no costs or qualifications save one: have a brain and use it in the public interest.

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Review DVD Mad Hot Ballroom (2005)

5 Star, Culture, DVD - Light, Reviews (DVD Only)

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5.0 out of 5 stars Why Dancing is Part of Growing Up,

November 6, 2005
Heather Berman
I got this on a whim, intending to help my 6th grader, and ended up loving it. There are some unusually good reviews by others, so I will not repeat them. The bottom line is that this movie is for grade school what E.O. Wilson’s book “Consilience” is for adults. In that book he answers the questions, “why are the humanities vital to the sciences” and concluded that science out of context is not helpful to humanity.

Watching this movie, I found myself really admiring New York City for understanding how dancing could contribute to social IQ and to human interactions. As my own teen-ager (145+ IQ) rejects rote learning in high school, I am compelled to believe that we need to drastically change education, and do more of this social interaction, learning to learn, learning to find people who know, learning to exchange ideas rather than memorize old ideas, etcetera.

As a suburban New Yorker from the 1960’s, I also found that this movie considerably enhanced my appreciation for New York, and the school system, in the aftermath of 9-11. Over-all this movie is a credit to kids at their best, to the idea that dancing matters, to the NYC school systems and its teachers, and to the “Big Apple” itself.

Super, worthy of any adults time, and a definite pick for family nights in over pizza.

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