Comments: Help With Definitions

I know, I'm really beating a dead horse here, but today the LA Times ran this story:

"Politicians Share Personality Traits with Serial Killers"

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2009/06/politicians-and-serial-killers.html

Posted by Oarwell at June 15, 2009 03:15 PM

apparently, the only pre-condition is that the Palestinian Arabs become Zionists.

Piece of baklawa...

Posted by Woody at June 15, 2009 04:11 PM

Bibi wants some liebensraum.

Posted by par4 at June 15, 2009 05:14 PM

I imagine that any demands the Palistinians might make would be regarded by Netanyahu as preconditions, including under the category of sneaky, after-the-fact post-preconditions.

Perhaps Netanyahu's only precondition is, well, complete capitulation to Israeli demands, but since he has the good manners to not say so ahead of time he insists on being credited with good faith.

(I tried an online Esperanto translator for the phrase "a chance in hell of success" but all I got was a runtime error.)

Posted by grimmy at June 15, 2009 05:23 PM

I know, I'm really beating a dead horse here

Yes, but at least you're not stalking the horse, luring it into your apartment, strangling it, stabbing it multiple times, eviscerating it, eating its entrails, fucking its corpse, and then writing your thoughts on the subject in ink made from its blood on parchment made from its skin, which puts you on a slightly higher plane than most politicians.

Posted by NomadUK at June 16, 2009 05:38 AM

the only pre-condition is that the Palestinian Arabs become Zionists.

I thought they were supposed to turn into Finns!

Posted by windy at June 16, 2009 07:29 AM

Not that I believe he's speaking in good faith, but I think it's fair to read "Let's begin negotiations immediately without preconditions" as "let's begin talking to each other now, without having a pre-negotiation about the conditions under which we'll begin talking to each other", not "let's begin talking to each other now, with no preconceptions as to requirements for a final settlement".

Posted by Picador at June 16, 2009 09:43 AM

Picador, I think you're being entirely too generous. I read it to say,(borrowing from you):

"let's begin talking to each other now, without having a pre-negotiation about the conditions under which we'll begin talking to each other, because my not going through the motions of negotiating with you is starting to make me look bad."

but that's me.

Posted by grimmy at June 16, 2009 10:23 AM

...I think it's fair to read "Let's begin negotiations immediately without preconditions" as "let's begin talking to each other now, without having a pre-negotiation about the conditions under which we'll begin talking to each other"...

Yeah, that's why I included the last paragraph (though I took it in a different direction, of course). But at the same time it's not meaningful to say you're putting no preconditions on talking when you've already put so many conditions on what you're talking about. If we have an argument and a week later I say, "Let's talk without preconditions, but you'll have to admit you were entirely wrong and wash my car for a month to make up for the mental anguish you caused me," what's the point? Netanyahu was basically just offering to sit in the same room and repeat the same nonnegotiable demands in person.

Netanyahu didn't really say any of this, though—he gave the speech in Hebrew. So it doesn't make sense to parse the specifics of the possibly-imperfect English translation so closely in his favor when the bad faith of the offer as a whole is so clear (as you imply).

Posted by John Caruso at June 16, 2009 11:38 AM

Netanyahu was basically just offering to sit in the same room and repeat the same nonnegotiable demands in person.

Precisely.

As long as Binny is the PM, injustice and immorality will rule the region.

Posted by Juan Seis-Olla at June 16, 2009 12:32 PM

"Binny" just does what YOU PAY him to do. Just ANOTHER puppet government dancing on the end of a short rope and turning on YOUR dime. THAT's why they call it empire.

Posted by Mike Meyer at June 16, 2009 02:58 PM

Netanyahu expressed his attitude clearly later:

> I told President Obama when I was in Washington
> that if we could agree on the substance, then the
> terminology would not pose a problem.

Sure, call it a state, as long as it is a Bantustan, fine. Sure, we can say no "preconditions", as long as we agree to these preconditions, you can call them what you like.

David Bar-Illian said it better in 1996, but - hey, Netanyahu endorses a state, big news!

> Semantics don’t matter. If Palestinian
> sovereignty is limited enough so that we feel
> safe, call it fried chicken.
(http://www.pij.org/details.php?id=513)

Posted by Erik at June 17, 2009 02:56 PM

It's like you read my mind, Erik. I did miss that first quote in his speech, though, which makes the principle explicit.

Posted by John Caruso at June 17, 2009 05:13 PM

Mike Meyer came pretty close to posting something I agree with.

I agree that Binny is a puppet of the USA, and that Israel is a client state.

What I don't agree with is the idea that I am responsible for Binny, or for the puppet state status of Israel. I have no input on the matter. My tax dollars are spent without asking me what I want, where I want them spent.

Luckily for me, since 2003 I have not made enough money in any one year to hit taxable status. So I can even say that I'm not even indirectly paying for Binny to be PM.

I'm going to guess that Mike Meyer's real gambit in this thread is like his gambit in other threads -- to say we all have to call our congresscritters! Sorry, Mike, but I tried that route to exhaustion about 20 years ago, and found it went nowhere. The only people Congress listens to are the ones who donate by the thousands of US dollars, and even that may be too low a floor. It may be 10,000 or even 100,000 to get a Congresscritter's ear on voting agenda and legislative input.

But you go on tilting at windmills, Mike. Keep imagining your calls and letters are "making a difference." You know, whatever lets you sleep at night -- that's probably a decent survival strategy. Hell, Germans imagined Hitler was a noble leader, it helped them sleep at night. Ought to work for you.

Posted by Juan Seis-Olla at June 17, 2009 09:04 PM

Juan Seis-Olla: ITS ONLY a phonecall Juan Seis-Olla, no pitchfork or torch needed. A Palestinian Lobby hiring a K Street Firm is a GREAT idea yet expensive, WHEREAS a phonecall is only a nickle. I suppose it would be foolish to count on YOU storming the castle later on since a pitchfork ALONE is 6 or 7 bucks at Wally World, at least.

Posted by Mike Meyer at June 17, 2009 10:12 PM

U PAY @ the pump, that's where the SERIOUS money is.

Posted by Mike Meyer at June 17, 2009 10:30 PM

John, I admit I borrowed the quote from Chomsky.

Thanks for the formaldehyde reference, I'll have to borrow that one as well.

Posted by Erik at June 18, 2009 07:49 PM