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03/26/2006

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Wes

I do not see how anyone can claim that Iraqis are no better off...At the moment, I would estimate that the Iraqis have a greater chance of being killed or injured, more difficulties finding and maintaining employment, and, given that they are subject to things like "daytime curfews", I'm not even sure that, over all, they have more freedom.Now, it may turn out that they are better off in the long run but, even if the USA had not invaded, the situation might have gradually evolved to where the Iraqis saw the same benefits that the invasion and occupation are supposed to bring them.It can hardly be doubted that the vast majority of Iraqis supported the overthrow of Saddam.If the vast majority had been willing to give up their lives to see Saddam overthrown then he would have been overthrown without US intervention. Either it was not the vast majority who wanted Saddam overthrown (that is, there was a substantial minority of the population who wanted him to remain in power) or the vast majority did not care enough about having him overthrown that they were willing to give up their lives.I suspect that a similar majority would oppose the quick withdrawal of U.S. troops.It may be that the "good" Iraqis want the USA to stay but from the level of violence there are clearly many Iraqis who believe that their faction would benefit from US withdrawal.One thing that made me very uncomfortable about the US invasion is that the Iraqis did not have a say in the decision to invade. If there had already been a revolution in progress and the USA had simply assisted then I could have felt more confident that it was really what the people of Iraq wanted.

Muppy

I am sure that there are more Muppys in the world, but it is me !!! Thanks for you comment. I think that internet betting markets have similar advantages as government insurance plan that I proposed.

As you mentioned, it does encourage many alternatives to official estimates of the costs and benefits of fighting a war. In addition, I think that this system is better, because people who do not believe government estimates, and oppose to war do not necessarily burden the extra cost for fighting war. Even though they have to pay some money by taxation, they can earn more money from internet betting market to compensate their loss if such market exists.

David Tomlin


Why Spain and not here?

I'm not following the logic here. If occupying Iraq somehow inhibits terrorism, why wouldn't it inhibit terrorism against Spain, or any other country, as much as against the US?

I do not see how anyone can claim that Iraqis are no better off, despite the continuing number of horrible Iraqi deaths.

Obviously Iraqis are better off in some ways and worse off in others. Doing a cross-personal utility sum for the whole country is problematic to say the least, and could reasonably go either way. That you 'do not see' this suggests willful blindness.

It can hardly be doubted that the vast majority of Iraqis supported the overthrow of Saddam.

Unsupported assertion.

The polls I have seen show opinion about evenly divided, with pluralities or bare majorities on one side or the other.

For example

http://tinylink.com/?l9l7Ja2fRZ

I suspect that a similar majority would oppose the quick withdrawal of U.S. troops.

Why should anyone care what you 'suspect', particularly about a majority similar to one that is itself not established?

That should not be the reason for keeping them, but we should be clear on where Iraqis stand.

It would be nice if we could know that. I don't see why your speculations are of such importance.

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