Sunday, January 24, 2010

On Haiti

Don't get me wrong, we all feel a sense on compassion for the plight of the Haitian people as they pull themselves and their nation up out of this disaster, but it really begs the question if our politicians ever really truly get things right when its a tragedy is no longer frontpage news.

I can remember when buddies of mine serving in the U.S. Army and Marines back in the 90's were task with assisting in places like Haiti, Liberia, and Somolia and it was always the same political story. It was a hot button issue as long as it was on the front page of the Wapo or NY Times, but as soon as the light on the country dimmed so did the focus of our government. If you were in any of thoese countries, it is hardly a surprise that even though many have contributed large amounts of money over the years that progress has been slow and slower. Bill Clinton's influence notwithstanding.

I can't help but see how the politicos twist themselves over and over about the right way to spin these things. Think Katrina for a second. I cannot recall the massive international relief effort for one thing as we have seen in Haiti and I really also do not recall such a massive undertaking by Hollywood in this nation to raise money for our own people in a post-Katrina environment. Its as if these folks believe that our government should take care of our own and that places like Haiti and the Far Eastern Tsunami plaqued areas deserve all of their fundraising efforts. It really makes you wonder about the mentality of people whose sole livelihood is derived from our people more or less and yet seem so content with using their money and reputation which can be leveraged to raise more money for so many other causes than the ones here at home.

Again, do not get me wrong. What many of these celebrities are doing is honorable and commendable. I just wonder how many of them will continue to step up say six months down the road when this disaster will be off the radar and its not "in" thing to do in Hollywood.

If you do not think it will happen, there are plenty of examples to look at where the media drowns us in images for a period of time and than neglects to after story....Iraq for one. Katrina for another. Except of course if they can make some political assertion to cast the other side in some bad light.

I could not help be be floored whe I saw the pundits on MSNBC try and portray civilian contractors who would go in to Haiti to stabilize and help rebuild the nation as "profiteers" like they did to many in Iraq and still do in Afghanistan. Apparently, Jeremy Scahill (resident MSNBC loon) has some kind of vendetta against contractors because he still has not retracted his stories rooted in falsehoods about the involvement of Blackwater contractors at Nissor Square who were cleared. In fact, Scahill virtually anoints those insurgents that killed Blackwater contractors in Fallujah, Iraq as heroes. Scahill this time around as brought in by MSNBC to comment on Haiti takes his anti-contractor rhetoric to new levels when he asserts that those Blackwater contractors that went into New Orleans during Katrinia were nothing more than a militia of hired thugs. Funny thing is it was these former policeman and military veterans that were task with creating a sense of order when many in the New Orleans police failed to report for duty during the crisis. Instead of going after those idiots who abandoned their own citizens, Scahill and the liberal media goes after the remedy that never would have been required had these officers not abandoned their posts.

Scahill's efforts to distort and manipulate details to his own end is not new to MSNBC as Maddow and Olbermann routinely engage in such commentary--just see Olbermann tirade over MA-Senator Scott Brown. The effort is to create an environment where the government will be forced to end its use of private contractors, but instead grow the actual size of government by creating such areas within our agencies to formulate its own ranks to perform such endeavors. This is classic liberal doctrine.

The lack of admission by these liberal pundits that the very reason Iraq has been a non-issue in large part is do to the work of these contractors who still to this day outnumber our military forces in both Iraq and now Afghanistan.

What does it say to people like Scahill,Maddow and Olbermann that even Obama recognizes the value of these contractors to perform highly skilled functions in country that our military could not. Of course, no admission as to why our military could not respond accordingly came in the wake of eight years of President Clinton desimating our armed forces as his basis for balancing the federal budget. Those of us downsized in the 90's during this purge know the truth. Spin it as they may.

Now in Haiti, these pundits want to make it hard for the White House to send contractors to to the effort in Haiti. Its amazing to me that these people just have no clue about the real politics at work. Just like in Afghanistan, if Obama can send 30K trooops but send 200K contractors through contracts with private and public firms why would he want to send 80K or more military forces and face the backlash? Contractors are a political end and have been a decade or more now.

With all the celebrity assistance, the telethons, the texts donations.....eventually the question will have to be how BEST to put those funds to work on the ground in Haiti. If the past is an example of whats to come, they could be in for a long road in Haiti in terms of true re-building.


Anonymous said...


Its is simply the redistribution of American wealth throughout the world. In the classic sense, liberals today believe in a "world" union and have no issue with taking proceeds from what we consume and distributing it elsewhere.

I would have rather seen an effort like Live Aid or Farm Aid where we could pay $100 and take in a great concert and all the proceeds go to Haiti than these defacto telethons where you have no idea what impact the money is going to make.

Anonymous said...

Do you mean ALTAR of freedom?
I don't understand why this blog continues to misspell the word!