Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Pirates $238 Million, Liberals 0

Remember when Obama sent in the Navy Seals to stop some pirates? Everyone cheered. Then Hillary went around getting everyone to send ships to the Indian Ocean to put an end to piracy. Everyone cheered again. These were major triumphs! Well, after two years of showing how liberals wage police actions, no one’s cheering. . . except the pirates.

In 2005, thirty-five ships were taken for ransom by pirates. Arrrgh. The pirates received on average $150,000 per ship. Arrrgh. In 2008, Obama and his Liberal Superfriends stepped in to put an end to this scourge. Hurray for rainbows! How did they do?

Last year, 219 ships were taken and they were ransomed for an average of $5.4 million per ship. That’s a 625% increase in the number of ships taken and a 3,600% increase in the amount paid per ship, combining for a total increase in profits of 22,527%. You should have invested.

So what went wrong? In a word: liberalism.

The Liberal Superfriends (twenty five countries) sent a total of 30 ships. This may not sound a lot, but it was more than enough to start capturing pirates in droves. So far, so good. But then it gets tricky. See, liberals don’t like punishing criminals, so their rules of engagement require that 90% of the pirates captured are released right after they are captured. The others are sent to places like the United States and Western Europe to stay for a few years in our luxury prison accommodations. Three hots, a cot and cable TV, baby! Arrrgh!

So think about the economics of this. If you take up piracy and you pull it off, you and your mates get to split $5.4 million. That’s pretty tempting, especially as your alternative is to sit at home and eat stolen UN rice. But we have to weigh that against the risks before we decide, right? Well, the ship crews aren’t armed because liberals whine that will endanger the crews. . . . 760 of whom have now been held prisoners for more than a year, and 30 of whom have been killed. So the real risk is from the foreign navies. If one of them catches you, which is a small likelihood, then you have a 90% chance of getting a warm meal and a pat on the back before you get sent home. If you’re one of the “unfortunate” 10%, you get an all expenses paid trip to somewhere like the US.

Shiver me timbers! Why would anyone want to be a pirate? It unfathomable!

Well, the liberals intend to fix this unexpected debacle. The new thinking is that maybe the real problem is the lack of foreign investment in Somalia. If we could only build up their court system and give them jobs that earn $4 a year, then they won’t be temped to risk life and limblunch and leaving Somalia for $5.4 million. Yeah, that’ll work.

You know what else would stop piracy? Midnight basketball. Yep. If only pirates had midnight basketball, that would stop them.

Liberals are stupid.


57 comments:

Anonymous said...

Andrew, your article perfectly sums up the liberal mind set when it comes to criminals. By the way, I just heard on the radio this morning that 4 Americans were killed by pirates. They didn't seem to have any other details.

TJ

Tennessee Jed said...

They are stupid coddlers, at very best. Practical when it suits there cause, standing on principles if it is harmful to American (at least as we know it) interests.

Tennessee Jed said...

BTW, pardon my going off topic, but I'm wondering if you guys are planning to blog about the "fracking" controversy. There was an "Oscar nominated" (big whoop) documentary on HBO titled "Gasland" purporting to expose this practice by the natural gas industry as polluting water tables. The practice of "fracking" (using pressuruzed air to fracture rock to extract gas) was "cleared" by the E.P.A. during the Bush administration in 2004, albeit more as a "no indisputable evidence" ruling. Now, there is a huge new push by enviro weenies and their Democrat allies, for the government to seize control of this industry and study and regulate it to death.

As usual, the public (like me) is left not knowing truth from fiction. I am not willing to state unequivically that there aren't dangers associated with this practice. How would I know? Unfortunately, as we have so often discussed, the subject of the environment has been co-opted by hard left radical politicians, and shortcuts or outright lies spread by the likes of algore that, once again, motives and facts are suspect.

I became particularly interested in the topic since every year, I go to north central Pennsylvania to golf with old friends. That area has seen massive changes (not all welcome) since they found a huge vein of natural gas. Poor farmers have been selling drilling rights and making out very well economically, but the charming rural nature of the area is rapidly changing as well. Then there comes the pollution issue. Seems like a good topic for discussion, anyway.

AndrewPrice said...

TJ, I just that on the AP wire. That's sad. But the pirates don't care about human life. They just want their money, which is why they will take whatever targets they can get and they don't care about killing the crews. The idea that we can stop them by investing in their country is ridiculous.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, "Coddlers" is the word, and that's the problem with liberals. They don't understand why people commit crimes and thus they don't realize that the things they do encourage terrorists. They've never understood the issue of incentives.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, I hadn't planned to cover it, as it's highly technical. But I'll see what I can do.

I am a huge proponent of switching from petroleum to natural gas for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that it would shift American dollars from the Middle East to places like Arkansas and the mid-west.

My understanding is that "fracking" does pose environmental hazards, but I haven't looked into it enough to know if it's justified.

CrispyRice said...

"unfathomable"?! Har-dee-har-har!! Or should I say Arr-dee-arr-aRRRR, mateys?

Actually, I was surprised to learn that we even had "modern day piracy" a few years ago when I happened to pick up a book at the library about it.

It's much a bigger security threat than merely hijacking a ship for ransom. There are what they call VRCCs - Very Large Crude Carriers - that could not only block certain strategic straits and prevent transport of oil around the world, but they could also essentially be rammed into places like, oh say, the port of LA, which could do serious damage and would have immense repercussions on the US's entire shipping trade.

It's a real serious issue. And, of course, the dear leader has no clue about it, nor any real guts to solve the problem.

Arrrrrg....

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, Let me clarify. Fracking has known hazards, such as contamination of drinking water if the chemicals used escape from the rock formation that get's fracked either into the water table or into the land above. The problem is that no one has truly studied the issue. The EPA study that cleared the practice was based on some special circumstances and it didn't find that there were no risks, it found that there was "no unequivocal evidence of health risks". That's a very different thing, and isn't a standard that we can really use to decide if it's safe.

It also didn't focus on above ground effects, and it only studied the practice in gathering methane from coalbeds.

With other underground chemicals, they've found that these things do move (seep) into surrounding soil. I don't know why this wouldn't be the same. But I don't know. I don't think anyone has done this before to rock.

Is it safe? I hope so, and I also suspect it is. Some of my favorite natural gas companies rely on this. But suspect is all I can do at this point because no one's really studied it.

As I said the other day about the government not doing the things it should, because it's busy doing things it shouldn't, this is a classic example where the government should be studying the issue before someone makes Arkansas or Pennsylvania uninhabitable(r).

AndrewPrice said...

Crispy, I see you like puns! :-)

In terms of this being a security risk, that's absolutely true. The one that I expect happen at some point is someone is going to hijack a liquid natural gas carrier and blow it up in a port city. That will go up like a small nuclear bomb.

What was the name of the book?

Ed said...

I love the picture! What was that, the Rum Summit? Arrrgh indeed! LOL!

CrispyRice said...

LOL @ The Rum Summit!!

Yes, those tankers would cause huge destruction.

The book I read, which is a tad dated by now, and there are many newer ones, but which I found very compelling was by a guy named John Burnett. _Dangerous Water - Modern Piracy and Terror on the High Seas_. I'd recommend it.

http://www.amazon.com/Dangerous-Waters-Modern-Piracy-Terror/dp/0452284139/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1298394072&sr=8-5

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, Yep, that was the Rum Summit after Obama said that pirates act stupidly. I guess they showed him!

AndrewPrice said...

Thanks Crispy! Here's your link: LINK.

In truth, piracy is one of those hard things to stop. Asia had a ton of problems with it for decades, particularly Indonesia. But it can be stopped and coddling the pirates is not how it gets stopped. You have to make them want to stop.

The issue of terrorism is a little different, but sadly much more dangerous. I have seen a lot of shows and read a bit on port safety and it's shockingly lacking.

Ed said...

P.S. I love the midnight basketball reference! I remember when liberals were all excited that midnight basketball was going to end crime in the inner cities forever. Talk about weak minded stupidity!

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, Yep. That was all the rage at one point. They really thought that if they just found ways to entertain gang members, they would stop being gang members. Forget the fact that people join gangs for protection and profit. Yeah, it's just the fact they don't have anything else to do.

But that shows you the problem with liberal thinking, it really does. They don't grasp that human behavior is based on weighing costs and benefits of activities and alternatives, not because someone is bored.

T_Rav said...

Anon, I heard that a little while ago. They were handing out Bibles and doing other missionary stuff (or at least 2 of them were) and they got slaughtered. If you ask me, the U.S. Marines need to head over there and party like it's 1799.

AndrewPrice said...

T_Rav, That is the dirty secret that our MSM won't report on. In several places in the Middle East, like Afghanistan, they routinely kill missionaries and doctors who have come to help people, all in the name of Islam.

T_Rav said...

Andrew, I saw on NRO the other day where in Afghanistan--you know, the country we liberated and established a free Western-style democracy in?--there's been at least two cases of Muslims who converted to Christianity (good for them, by the way) being sentenced to death and forced to flee the country. Kind of hard to avoid that sort of thing when your own defense lawyers won't have anything to do with you except to spit on you.

AndrewPrice said...

T_Rav, That's true. It is a capital crime in Afghanistan (and Pakistan) to convert to Christianity. In Pakistan, they had a famous case recently where they stoned a woman to death for it. And they were trying to say "sure, you get sentenced to murder, but it's really rare that they carry out the sentence." That's supposed to excuse it? That's a classic example of what's wrong with that part of the world.

In Afghanistan, they had a case about a year ago, where they killed 12 or 13 doctors who were treating people in the hinterlands and they tried to claim the reason they did it was because they were handing out Bibles. Which (1) they weren't, and (2) is still an insane justification!

Yet, our media ignores this.

They get upset that some gay kid doesn't get to go to prom with their date or some poor liberal is forced to see a government worker reading a Bible during their lunch break, and they descend on these city like a plague of outraged jackasses, but somehow the killing of decent people because they are the wrong religion in places like Afghanistan doesn't rate a mention?

StanH said...

Liberal = Stupid! Liberals make things worse without exception. They have their heads stuck so deeply in their posterior it’s amazing they don’t smother themselves. This goes back to a conversation Lawhawk had a couple weeks ago about, “moral equivalence,” gobbledygook, “ the Somalis are just people who want the same things we do,” sorry, but no, we don’t want the same things that Somalis want, and vice-versa. We’re right, they’re wrong, now STFU, and as soon as they can figure out how to quit pissing in their drinking water, maybe then liberals will have a weak point. This is Barry spreading (wasting) the wealth. God these people piss me off.

StanH said...

Rush just reported democrat pols fled from Indiana to avoid votes against the government unions. Wow! These liberals are truly exposing themselves to the American people.

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, I couldn't agree more. It's an example of liberal stupidity to think that everyone is a normal, middle-class American waiting to happen. People in different parts of the world have very different beliefs and desires. They are not ready to "become like us" if we just toss them some money.

Maybe in a 100 years, Somalia will be more like us, but not right now. Right now they are reveling in ethnic and religious warfare. And the idea that building them a court house and a market place is going to solve that is just silly.

Yes, they need a stable country with an economy, and yes, that would cut down on some of this. But there is much more going on here than just that.

LawHawkRFD said...

The Somali pirate story is still playing out. At least one expert is wondering why there were nineteen pirates on a 58 foot boat. Once the boat was captured, why didn't some of the pirates return to the mother ship? There's a question of why the RPG was fired at the destroyer in the middle of negotiations. And at least two of the pirates had been shot before the boat was boarded. There may have been a bigger plan of some sort than just the piracy. The innocent owners and missionaries may have gotten caught in the middle of something more sinister than a simple hijacking. It will probably take awhile to sort it all out.

But that said, once again you are absolutely right. The US (perhaps with a little help from our so-called allies) needs to sweep the seas. Four murdered hostages should be enough to tell us it's time for this farce to end. To start, the Marines that boarded the ship should have hanged the pirates on the spot once the hostages were found murdered. Law of the sea, and all that. Instead, they'll be punished with temporary incarceration in places better than their wildest dreams, most will be released, and the ACLU will offer free assistance for them to sue for cruel and unusual punishment. Pffft. "Millions for defense, but not one penny for tribute."

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, Wow! That is just not going to play well with the public. Aren't these the same people who used every dirty trick in the book to push through something the public hated? And now they're fleeing like rats to prevent states from solving their budget problems!

Well, here is Mitch Daniels' chance to show us what he's made of. Ram through a lot of good conservative laws while they're gone and make them pay for their childish obstructionism!

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I couldn't agree more. There should not have been any prisoners taken.

And don't forget, these aren't the first people killed. As I mention in the article, 760 are currently being held for more than a year, over 1200 were taken last year and at least 30 have died. This is not a harmless crime, and paying them ransom is no solution -- it just encourages them to keep at it.

The solution in this case is to up the cost to the pirates, and that means killing them, not releasing them.

I would be interested to know how many of those 90% who get released after they are caught turn right around and go after another ship. I'll bet its all of them -- just like so many of the Gitmo detains go right back to terrorism once they're released.

This is liberalism run amok!

Ed said...

Andrew and Stan, This is indeed Mitch Daniel's moment to show if he's a good conservative. I'm not sold on him by any stretch, so here's his chance to convince me.

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, Agreed. Now is the time to show us that he's willing and able to fight against the kinds of tactics Democrats use, or if he falls into the "can't we all just get along" school of conservatism.

StanH said...

Mitch Daniels was around the great Reagan as a political advisor ’85. He came up with Richard Lugar in the ‘70s, as mayor, then senator, an early conservative, only too become a late RINO. As director of OMB under “W” you’d expect a fiscal conservative? …or compassionate (RINO) conservative? …so his pedigree may not inform. We’ll see!

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, We'll see. As I mentioned a couple days ago, he's clearly the media darling and leftists say he's a conservative they can love... that makes me very nervous. So does the name Lugar, who the Tea Party is targeting for removal, as does being Bush's director or OMB -- there was no restraint shown in his budgets.

I'm skeptical.

T_Rav said...

Andrew, it puts me in mind from something I once read on BH from a commenter who identified himself as a gay man. He said something like, "I don't affiliate with either one, but I would take a religion whose members say they'll pray for me over one whose members want to kill me any day." Pretty good summation, in my opinion.

To jump on the Indiana thing, I can't imagine what was going through the Dems heads. After the past week in WI, did they really think they'd come out of this looking like the heroes? It might have worked up there, but it sure ain't gonna now.

Also, I propose that from now on we refer to such derelict legislators and their supporters as "Fleebaggers." Not my invention, but I like it.

AndrewPrice said...

T_Rav, Wow! I love that -- Fleebaggers! Thanks for sharing that one!

I think what they're thinking is that their hard-core supporters approve of this. You've seen the reports of union people and other professional protestors being shipped in to help out, right? This is good times for them, when they feel like they're reliving the 1960s or something.

And since they are likely to get massive amounts of support from the unions, etc. for doing this, it probably seemed like a good idea. Don't forget, the Democrats don't answer to the public, they only answer to a small portion of the public that they've squeezed into Democratic districts. That's how guys like Charlie Rangel and Nancy Pelosi keep getting re-elected.

I think this will not only look bad in Indiana, but I think it will play very poorly throughout the country.

Plus, they run the risk of making Republican heroes, which will embolden even more Republicans. Last week, I didn't even know Wisconsin had a Republican governor, now I know his name and I'm thrilled by what he's doing. That's the kind of thing that inspires Republicans everywhere to develop a backbone and start standing on their principles.

(continued)

AndrewPrice said...

(continued)
On the religion/gay issue, I think that's remarkably well put. I don't have a particular opinion about gay people one way or the other -- it doesn't affect me. But the idea that somehow America is evil or Christians are evil and need to be controlled, does bother me a lot. And I find it ridiculous when those claims are made by the same people (be they gays, feminists or whatnot) who completely ignore what is going on in places like the Middle East. That shows a real lack of sense of proportion and reality.

Tennessee Jed said...

Thanks, Andrew.The State of Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commissiondid issue a paper which is available online at the website of America's Gas Alliance under a section titled "The Truth Abut Gasland."

Both the makers of Gasland and America's Gas Alliance clearly have their own biases and agendas. I have had trouble securing accurate information. My suspicion is that 1) just like off-shore drilling, accidents can happen, particularly if proper precautions are not taken. Like Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth" "Gasland has just enough truth to scare people. It probably needs to be regulated (and is if I'm not mistaken.) Like anything else, if the industry is really taking off, the number of inspectors etc. may lag behind.

DUQ said...

Stan/Ed/Andrew, I'm don't know about Mitch Daniels either, but I trust Commentarama to fill us in. How about an article Andrew?

LawHawkRFD said...

DUQ: I'm sure Andrew will bring us up to date on Mitch Daniels, but in the meantime, here's my article from last year that might give you some useful info: Mr. Show, Meet Mr. Go.

StanH said...

Daniels called the actions of the state Democrats “a perfectly legitimate part of the process.”

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/

I smell a RINO!

T_Rav said...

Well Andrew, it appears that Daniels has advised the state legislature that the "right-to-work" legislation should not be pursued during this term--meaning, the term during which we've got all the momentum on our side. I don't want to jump to conclusions, but I second Stan's diagnosis.

LawHawkRFD said...

Stan: I have no dog in the presidential race, so I'm not defending Daniels without further information. But I think the Daily Caller went a bit overboard. Daniels was largely discussing his own state, which has similar problems, but not the same problems. Each state has its own laws and procedures, and Indiana and Wisconsin are quite different in that area. I'm not yet convinced that Daniels is a RINO because of his remarks. I would agree with him on his statement about the rights of the union members to demonstrate (and you know I hate unions). Right-to-work must happen, but it's on a different timetable in Indiana from what it is in Wisconsin.

That leaves Daniels comment on Democrats hiding out in Illinois. The Daily Caller actually said: "Daniels also seemed to say that Democrats fleeing the state was a “perfectly legitimate part of the process,” which is how he described the “activities of today.”

"Seemed" is a lot different from "said," and appears to be taken out of context. If Daniels actually said that, and doesn't have a decent clarification, I'm willing to consider his conservative credentials in doubt. But I'm not there yet.

StanH said...

Oh indeed Lawhawk, no circular firing squad from me brother, I’m just a concerned
observer. “Smell” also indicates the hint of RINO, not confirmed…we’ll see. However this does jive with an earlier statement Daniels made in regards to timing.

As for me, call me a radical, I don’t want to accommodate liberals/unions, I want them utterly defeated, strike while the irons hot! I like some of Daniels fiscal stances, and I like the man, he may be our guy? …but to acquiesce too liberal shenanigans is un-wise, in my opinion, you give them an inch, and they’ll want a mile. I watched a video early this AM on FOX of Ronald Reagan and his PATCO problem. There was no equivocation in the great man, but a simple 48hr ultimatum, show up at work in 48hrs or be fired, we know what happened next. Call me nostalgic, but that’s what I’m looking for.

LawHawkRFD said...

Stan: You and I are very much on the same page. But I will always defend the right of anyone to protest (as long as they're not breaking the law, as many teachers did). Reagan agreed. He let the PATCO employees protest, whine and howl. Then he fired them.

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, I'll see what I can do. Lawhawk did an article on Daniels some time ago, though I don't have the link at the moment. I'll get that for you.

But I'll get something written up. I'm doing a Christie article tomorrow.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, You're welcome. I sadly don't know all that much about it. I knew vague how the process works, as I read about it when I looked at the stocks, and I know about the EPA ruling, but I don't know the hazards or not. All I know for certain is that no one knows anything for certain and this would be the kind of thing that should be studied.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, Good, I knew you did an article on Daniels. I'll look to do an update!

AndrewPrice said...

Stan, That's a bad sign. And that's not the first whiff of RINO I've gotten from him. The first thing to trouble me was when The Economist decided to do a "he's so wonderful, he's not like other conservatives" article on him. That's a really bad sign.

I'll see what I can put together and do an article updating everyone on him. I'm working on a Christie piece for tomorrow. He's not quite what he seems either.

AndrewPrice said...

T_Rav, That's even more suspicious! First, right now is the perfect time to free the workers of these states that don't have right to work laws -- with the lack of jobs and the recession still lingering, now is the best time.

Secondly, even many Democrats are turning on the unions. If he can't get a little pro-freedom backbone in this environment, I'd hate to see what happens in a more "go-along-to-get-along moment."

Grrrr.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I haven't made up my mind yet either about him, I just don't have enough knowledge without some research. And you definitely need to examine a whole record, not just a couple quotes (or "kind a sort a" quotes). But these are troubling issues, that's for sure.

AndrewPrice said...

Stan and Lawhawk, Agreed. People have the right to protest, and we should not be attacking conservatives if they are indeed conservatives.... but I want to see a lot stronger action. I don't think the union or the Democrats are good people nor should their wishes be accommodated. Moreover, if the shoe was on the other foot, bet me that they wouldn't be pulling out all the stops to punish the Republicans.

Heck, think back on the outrage Pelosi had over the Tea Party protests, and how they started calling for investigating their funding, etc. These are not people we should be coddling.

LawHawkRFD said...

Andrew: As always, the MSM make the union thugs look like choirboys in the same way they demonized every Tea Partier. The beauty is that this time, the public's not buying it. In arbitrations, I would carefully listen to the aggrieved union employee, give him his full say, then smile and say: "Gee, I see your point. But you're termination stands anyway." Only once did one employee, a female, have a legitimate argument. Even by my conservative standards, she had clearly been sexually harassed by a manager. So I ordered reinstatement with back pay and the company fired the manager.

I also want to see the state licensing authority look into revoking the licenses of each and every one of those doctors who attended the protests and wrote phony medical excuses.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I totally agree about the physicians. I'm serious when I say it's a fraud for them to give out fake sick slips. In federal terms, each one of those is a violation of the False Claims Act.

And you know, the media can spin all they want, but it's not going to help this time. Too many people have lost jobs or taken pay cuts for there to be a lot of sympathy for people who are being asked to make such minor sacrifices.

DUQ said...

Andrew, Great! I look forward to reading both.

LawHawkRFD said...

Andrew: I think DUQ may have missed the Daniels link. The link is in a comment I made to him above. Lots of comments today or I'm sure he would have acknowledged it.

Here's the note again: DUQ: I'm sure Andrew will bring us up to date on Mitch Daniels, but in the meantime, here's my article from last year that might give you some useful info: Mr. Show, Meet Mr. Go.

Ed said...

It looks like Algeria is next in line. They are having protests now and they just announced they were going to end their state of emergency. This is really fascinating.

T_Rav said...

Ed: If not Algeria, it might be Morocco. They've had massive protests over the weekend.

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, Tomorrow is Christie, give me time on Daniels. If I don't get to it Thursday, they maybe Monday.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, I'm sure. I'll see what I can do about an update. Just give me a day or so, I just crunched a ton of information about Christie. Ouch my head!

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, I think there are a whole bunch over there in varying degrees of trouble. This is an interesting time to be alive. I hope these turn out well. Wouldn't that be something if the Middle East took a big step toward joining the modern world?

AndrewPrice said...

T_Rav, I hadn't heard about Morocco, but then I've been out of pocket tonight. Algeria is interesting to me because I remember when the security forces imposed martial law after democratic elections returned a very radical Islamic group. There was a real question whether a huge civil war wasn't going to start, which would lead to millions of people trying to get into France.

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