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Boardman writes: "While the US publicly plays Pontius Pilate washing his hands clean, the Saudi-led coalition of Arab police states continue to enjoy US support for their one-sided war."

Yemenis check the damage following a Saudi airstrike in southern Sana'a, Yemen. (photo: Mohammed Huwais AFP/Getty)
Yemenis check the damage following a Saudi airstrike in southern Sana'a, Yemen. (photo: Mohammed Huwais AFP/Getty)

Saudis Try Yemen Peace Initiative – For More Than an Hour

By William Boardman, Reader Supported News

25 April 15


US-sponsored war crimes resume as Yemenis fail to give up their country

hile the US publicly plays Pontius Pilate washing his hands clean, the Saudi-led coalition of Arab police states continue to enjoy US support for their one-sided war. The same Arab dictatorships that continue to wage aggressive war with impunity against a defenseless Yemen have, at the same time, scaled back on fighting the militant Islamic State despite its hold on large parts of two other Arab countries, Syria and Iraq. Seriously, why fight someone who might do you harm in return?

In a rational world, the unprovoked aerial and naval attacks on an impoverished Yemen by Saudi Arabia and its allied monarchies would seem more likely to draw objection than military support from the US and its somewhat-democratic allies. In a comprehending world, the public explanations for criminal aggression by the Saudis and the US would provoke howls of derisive laughter for their preposterous fabrications. In a principled world, a dedicated peace movement and a motivated left would be filling the streets with protest.

But we don’t live in a rational, comprehending, or principled world. In our world, opposition to the criminal bombing of an internationally peaceful, defenseless, collapsing state draws scant objection from the international community except for quiet, pro forma critiques by China, Russia, and Iran. No nation actually threatens to defend the territorial integrity or independence of Yemen. As is traditional, the Yemenis are left to defend themselves, which they haven’t been able to do in the past. Now the Yemenis’ greatest offense is achieving some success in their chaotic search for a more representative government than any of their neighbors will allow.

Seldom has such a clear case of criminal war, of naked aggression, drawn such yawns from the world at large. Describing the current mad consensus of power in the American imperium, with a quiet objectivity to which no reaction is expected or forthcoming, The New York Times of April 22 reports in deadpan prose the irreconcilable contradictions of an insane policy – or if there is no policy, just crazed tactics – in the second paragraph of its lead story, under this headline:


... The announcement followed what American officials said was pressure applied by the Obama administration for the Saudis and other Sunni Arab nations to end the airstrikes. The bombing campaign, which has received logistical and intelligence support from the United States, has drawn intense criticism for causing civilian deaths and for appearing to be detached from a broad military strategy.

Written before the world realized that the bombing “halt” was actually only a brief pause in the Saudi terror campaign, the Times’ “explanation” was nevertheless ridiculous. With masterful flat affect, the Times assured us that the US applied pressure to get the Saudis to stop doing what we had helped them do from the beginning and were continuing to help them do. Say what? 

Has there ever been a better use of the word “detached” in a piece not openly critical of authority? Not only is the Saudi air attack detached from any broad military strategy, it is detached from any military strategy at all, and it is detached from reality. Detachment from reality is one measure of insanity.

Another measure is one’s insistence on continuing to do what one has been doing while at the same time claiming that what one has done has accomplished all its objectives. Or, as Adel Al-Jubeir, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the US, put it in his official statement on April 22 [with imagined honest annotations]:

“We destroyed their air force.” [Even though Yemen didn’t really have an actual air force, due to corruption and neglect, which is why we were able to bomb the planes they had while they were still on the ground. And, technically, that was the Yemen government air force under the command of President Hadi, who happens to be living in Riyadh these days, but never mind about all that….]

“We destroyed their ballistic missiles, as far as we know.” [Because, after all, we don’t really know if anyone in Yemen actually has any ballistic missiles. We know or we think we know they had some in 1979 and for awhile after that, but we don’t know if they ever used any and by 2010 they had, maybe, 6 launchers and maybe 33 SCUD missiles and maybe 22 other SAMs, which are surface-to-air missiles which could shoot down Saudi F-15s, for example, if they had them, and if they knew how to use them, and we know none of our planes have been shot down, so you figure it out.] 

“We destroyed their command and control.” [That sounds impressive, doesn’t it, but I don’t know what it really means either, in Yemen, where there are so many different factions under so many different commands and no perceptible control, except maybe the Houthis, who’ve been fighting for their independence for more than a decade without the need for sophisticated command and control bunkers and electronics and stuff.]

“We destroyed much, if not most, of their heavy equipment.” [Also an impressive accomplishment, until you ask how much heavy equipment they have, besides the handful of tanks we haven’t destroyed. But we’ve destroyed schools and hospitals and food aid depots and other heavy equipment like that, so when you add it all up, it comes to a lot of damage.]

“And we made it very difficult for them to move, from a strategic perspective.” [Nevermind that, strategically, they don’t really need to move, since they’ve held the capital city, Sana’a, for months now and they’ve pretty well got Aden and the eastern part of the country, which is pretty much all they really want. So never mind that part. And never mind the reality that it hasn’t been easy to move around Yemen for years, but that hasn’t stopped the Houthis. What we’ve done, destroying roads and bridges where we could find them, is make it harder for people to move around Yemen when it wasn’t easy in the first place, and that includes refugees and internally displaced people, and, really who cares, we did what we could with what they had.]

“So we’ve degraded their capabilities substantially, and thereby eliminated the threat that they pose to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and, in a process, ensured the safety of our borders, our territory and our citizens.” [That is such a good line, absolutely my best line, and Western media lap it up like limp puppies, they talk about how we’ve ensured the safety of our borders and our territory and our citizens and they never ever even stop to think: Hey, Joe, wait a minute – what was the threat to Saudi Arabia? There was NO threat to Saudi Arabia, and that goes a long way toward making it possible for us to secure our unthreatened safety. And what about their capabilities, you might ask, are they not degraded? And the answer is, of course, they’ve always been degraded and now they’re a little more degraded, which makes them even less of the no threat they posed to Saudi Arabia, and also has the benefit of making the Houthis more vulnerable to Al Qaeda and to the Islamic State, and we’re counting on them to go in and finish off the Houthis, because we certainly don’t want to send Saudi boys to do the job Yemenis boys on one side or another should be doing themselves.] 

“That was the objective of Operation Decisive Storm, in addition, of course, to the protection of the legitimate government of Yemen. Those objectives have been achieved.”  [Sounding a little Monty Python here, that was the objective here, protect Saudi Arabia and the Yemen government, those were the two objectives here, but the Yemen government part is tricky because we had to bring it to Riyadh to protect it, those are the three objectives here, even though having the Yemeni government in the Saudi capital rather curtails its ability to run things in Yemen, at least it’s protected and, having installed it undemocratically once, we have every hope of installing it undemocratically again because, after all, nobody expects the Saudi Installation. So those are the objectives that have been achieved by our chief weapons, fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency, except the ones that haven’t been achieved.] 

Having accomplished their objectives, the Saudis resume bombing

Having been the poorest country in the Middle East, and one of the poorest in the world when the US-supported Saudi attacks began a month ago, Yemen’s humanitarian condition has deteriorated. According to Robert Mardini of the International Committee of the Red Cross, on April 22, after a three-day visit there: “Nowhere is safe in Yemen. People are really facing a lot of challenges – no electricity, no water, no fuel, no public services, no garbage collection….” The next day in Geneva Mardini emphasized the predictable result of US-supported Saudi war crimes:  “The humanitarian situation is nothing short of catastrophic.” 

In a meaningless word game, the Saudis say the short bombing halt marked the end of so-called Operation Decisive Storm, which has decided nothing. The Saudis call their new intensive bombing campaign Operation Renewal of Hope, as if to say that they are continuing to bomb defenseless targets in order to accomplish the same objectives they claim to have already achieved, in hope that achieving them anew will be made easier by already having claimed to have achieved them. 

Or, as Saudi ambassador Jubeir said of the Houthis: “The decision to calm matters now rests with them.” At the same time, Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal announced that he would give a $200,000 Bentley luxury car to each of 100 Saudi fighter pilots, in apparent appreciation of their crimes against humanity, although he didn’t put it that way.   

An estimate by the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, based on Yemeni sources, reports the air war and ground fighting together have displaced some 150,000 people. The UN also estimates that of Yemen’s population of about 25 million, at least 7.5 million require humanitarian assistance, and the number continues to grow.  

Asked to sponsor peace talks, the UN has delivered a limited embargo

For their part, the Houthis again called for UN-sponsored peace talks and political negotiations in which they have an equal role. This is a longstanding Houthi position that has yet to be honored by Saudi Arabia or anyone else. When the international cabal comprising the Saudis, the US, and others deposed Yemen’s President Saleh in 2012 and installed President Hadi in an undemocratic process, the Houthis were excluded from the process. Quite reasonably and accurately, the Houthis maintain that there is NO legitimate government of Yemen. 

Because the UN did not authorize the Saudi-led war, it is by definition illegal. There is little evidence to suggest that the UN will address the questions of US-supported Saudi-led aggression in violation of the UN Charter any time soon, if ever. The UN Security Council did impose an arms embargo on Yemen, however, by a 14-0 vote, with Russia abstaining. Comparing this international behavior to American frothing over Ukraine illustrates the flexibility of application inherent in international law and the roundly pontificated moral principles supposedly underlying them. 

The delusion making all this irrational, criminal, and murderous behavior seem plausible to the perpetrators and their camp followers is the claim that the Houthis are a hand puppet of Iran. President Obama says, with a straight face in public, that “We’ve indicated to the Iranians that they need to be part of the solution, and not part of the problem.”

The big problem with that perspective is that it is detached from reality. There is no credible evidence available to suggest that Iran is anything more than a minor, largely insignificant player in Yemen, where most of the fighting on all sides is heavily supported by American weapons that have been flooding the region for decades. 

Reporters at the State Department on April 21 asked what kind of evidence the administration has to support its claims against Iran, including the recent claim that Iran has been supplying the Houthis with weapons. In an evasive non-answer answer to the question, State Department flack Marie Harf effectively revealed that there’s no cat in the bag:

Well, we’ve – this isn’t something new, unfortunately. We’ve long talked about the support when it comes from funding or whether it’s weapons supplies that the Iranians are sending to the Houthi. This has been really an ongoing relationship for a very long time. I’m happy to see if there’s more evidence to share publicly of that, but this has been something we’ve expressed concern about for some time.

In other words, Harf is saying: look, this is something we’ve been saying for a long time, we don’t have evidence and we don’t need evidence because usually when we make the same claim over and over and over you come to accept it as true, that’s the way propaganda works, that’s the way propaganda is supposed to work, why are you giving us a hard time now? You can’t possibly care about a minority cohort of Yemenis like the Houthis, can you? 

For objective reporting of propaganda as news, try PBS or the Times

Frontline has a reputation for being about the best thing going in news reporting on PBS, which says more about PBS news reporting than it does about Frontline, none of it good. Here’s Frontline’s lead for an April 22 Yemen story, perfectly recapitulating the false Saudi line:

Late on Tuesday, the Saudi Arabia-led coalition that launched a military campaign – dubbed “Operation Decisive Storm” – against Houthi rebels in Yemen nearly a month ago announced that it was ending the operation. Taking its place would be “Operation Renewal of Hope.”

The story quoted a Saudi general and a Saudi ambassador and went on to create the impression that American involvement consisted only of pressure to end the bombing, not an ongoing month of American logistical and intelligence support to the undeclared war on a neutral country. 

Following up on its front-page “Saudis Announce Halt to Bombing” story that became so quickly inoperative, the next day’s Times had a front page headline claiming that:


Later online editions of the story changed “defiance” to “resolve,” adding nuance to the propaganda.  The story began by explaining that this all just goes to show “the difficulty of finding a political solution to the crisis.” Actually it doesn’t show that so much as it shows the intransigence of the US and the Saudis and others in their unwillingness to accept the reality that the “political solutions” they have imposed on Yemen in the past have fallen apart because of the corruption and injustice on which they were built. And it shows how unwilling the US and Saudia and others are to enter into – and abide by – a genuine political solution that treats fairly the interests of all relevant parties. 

And then there’s the Saudi ambassador again, invoking the largely imaginary threat from Iran as a reason Iran should have no part in any peace talks relating to Yemen. Echoing President Obama, or cueing him, Ambassador Jubeir is quoted making the same propaganda point, that Iran is “part of the problem, not part of the solution.” 

In fact, based on the evidence to date, the US and Saudi Arabia and its allies are the problem, and none of them are interested in what the Yemenis might accept as a solution. 

And besides, they’re all betting no one will ever hold them accountable for this package of war crimes and crimes against humanity any more than anyone has been held accountable for such crimes relating to Iraq, or torture, or drone strikes.

William M. Boardman has over 40 years experience in theatre, radio, TV, print journalism, and non-fiction, including 20 years in the Vermont judiciary. He has received honors from Writers Guild of America, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Vermont Life magazine, and an Emmy Award nomination from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News. your social media marketing partner


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+19 # REDPILLED 2015-04-25 13:17
"And besides, they’re all betting no one will ever hold them accountable for this package of war crimes and crimes against humanity any more than anyone has been held accountable for such crimes relating to Iraq, or torture, or drone strikes."

That's a sure bet, especially as long as the U.S. Empire exists, with its powerful military, nuclear arsenal, and huge economy. This global bully/terrorist knows how to throw its considerable weight around, and blowback doesn't bother it one bit.
+3 # pietheyn07 2015-04-25 23:06
"International Law is what we say it is":
+15 # Radscal 2015-04-25 13:43
Remember how the Iraqi and U.S. military stood by and watched ISIL "liberate" military arms and equipment?

Yeah. Same thing in Yemen.

"Al-Qaida's Yemen branch routed government forces from a large weapons depot in the country's east on Friday, seizing dozens of tanks, Katyusha rocket launchers and small arms

“However, the Saudi-led air campaign has not targeted areas with an al-Qaida presence, including Hadramawt, where the militant group has long been implanted despite U.S. drone strikes and Yemeni counterterroris m operations. The coalition says the airstrikes are aimed at the rebels, known as Houthis, not al-Qaida.”

The Saudis are allowing al Qaeda to acquire enormous firepower, while they bomb civilians just a few miles away.

People should ponder why this pattern is playing out in Iraq/Syria and Yemen.
+7 # Kootenay Coyote 2015-04-25 17:04
“Why do they hate us for our rights & freedoms?” Oh, Yeah.
+4 # geraldom 2015-04-25 17:54
The United States and its proxy puppet military in Saudi Arabia are openly committing war crimes and crimes against humanity each and everyday, and I will even use the word genocide in that statement.

Where in hell are the strong threats from the United Nations and the World Court threatening to bring charges against the leaders of these two countries.

The United States has threatened to bring war crime charges against Bashar Assad for allegedly bombing his own people, but it's perfectly okay for Saudi Arabia, using advanced U.S. weapons, to brutally slaughter innocent men, women, and children in Yemen with complete impunity..

The following interesting article came out today:

I don't know how true it is, but I can damn-well believe it.
+5 # Merlin 2015-04-25 20:44
geraldom 2015-04-25 17:54
The following interesting article came out today:

No thanks for the link to Allen West's blog. The "article" is tabloid crap and the comment section is on the same level as breitbart.

Allen West…who Sarah Pailin pushed as a VP candidate. The man is a vile joke.
+4 # geraldom 2015-04-25 23:48
I said in my comment, if the story was true, that I could damn-well believe it. But, if the article is BS, then that does not change my mind that Obama is a war criminal and is a cold and ruthless individual, and I voted for the man in 2008. It doesn't seem to bother him much as to how many people in the world have died under his administration.

I don't know why the Republicans hate him so much. he's doing one hell of job for them when it comes to his foreign policies, his national security policies, and financial policies.

He pushed the passge of the NDAA which allows him to murder U.S. citizens without any due process, just on his order alone, even within U.S. borders. The NDAA allows indefinite detention for even U.S. citizens without any due process.

He's pushing and will probably succeed in getting the U.S. Congress to vote for the TPP and TPIP which will allow corporations to sue national governments who, in the process of protecting the health and the welfare and the best interests of their citizens, might hurt a corporations bottom line, their profits. And the biggest joke of all, is that the judges that will preside over these trials will be corporate flunkies.

The list of his betrayals to his voting base is way too long to list here. He would've made one hell of a Republican.
+3 # Merlin 2015-04-26 04:06
geraldom 2015-04-25 23:48
I was well aware of what you said about "if" etc. My comment was smashing West and his trashy blog, not the rest of your comment.

As you know from reading my posts over these months, I agree with your position and feelings.
+3 # Radscal 2015-04-26 13:25
"I don't know why the Republicans hate him so much. he's doing one hell of job for them when it comes to his foreign policies, his national security policies, and financial policies."

Of course, the right wing/fascists LOVE Obama's foreign and domestic policies.

But if they openly cheer him on, that would blow the cover of the phony Democrat/Republ ican "choice" facade.

By pretending to be upset about all these manufactured "Scandals," they rally their base of manipulated partisans and simultaneously unite the manipulated partisans of the other party flavor in opposition.

Kabuki Theater.
+3 # Merlin 2015-04-26 18:20
Radscal 2015-04-26 13:25

+4 # jdd 2015-04-25 18:32
Although Boardman seems reluctant to come right out and say so, he implicitly indicts Barack Obama for war crimes.
+4 # geraldom 2015-04-26 00:19
There’s nothing implicit about it, jdd. If I had the chance, I’d tell Obama right to his face that he’s a war criminal. It’s been proven and verified that Obama has murdered hundreds of men, women, and (especially) children in Yemen via his use of illegal drone strikes in sovereign nations that are no threat to us. This is a clear violation of international law.

How many thousands of innocent people have died in Afghanistan and in Iraq and in Pakistan ever since Obama took office. He’s been proven to be a prodigious liar, even better than G.W. was when he was president. Now that the newest American puppet has been put in place in Afghanistan, he signed away Afghanistan’s sovereignty by allowing the U.S. to, in effect, permanently occupy his country, and to continue breaking into Afghan homes like good Nazis in the middle of the night and arresting and disappearing the male residents.

How many innocent Yemenis have died so far and continue to die as a consequence of Saudi Arabia's illegal airstrikes primarily and purposely targeting Yemeni civilians? Obama is as guilty as the Saudis for every innocent death in Yemen. Obama is not only supplying the Saudis with the lethal weapons to murder innocent Yemeni civilians, the U.S. is giving the Saudi govt logistical and intelligence information as to what to attack.

+4 # geraldom 2015-04-26 00:21

How many innocent Palestinian men, women and children (whole families including babies) died in Gaza in 2014 (not to mention the several previous wars by Israel in the last 5 to 10 years) because of withering Israeli airstrikes on their homes using U.S.-supplied weapons and with U.S. backing and support. It was estimated that close to 2400 Palestinians died which includes close to 800 to 900 children and tens of thousands maimed and wounded for life. And, to add insult to injury, when Israel almost literally used up all of their bombs in their arsenal to murder helpless and trapped Palestinians who had no place to run or hide, virtually every U.S. Senator (all 100 of them) voted to resupply these weapons to Israel so that Israel could continue to slaughter these innocent victims. There are a whole lot of war criminals in this nation besides Obama that have a lot to answer for when they meet their maker.

How many innocent people have died at the hands of the illegitimate govt of Honduras. The U.S. was behind the illegal overthrow of the democratically elected govt of Manuel Zelaya in 2009, and has put in his place a dictatorship where crime is so bad now that many of the illegal immigrants attempting to enter the U.S. are from Honduras. Every innocent human soul murdered in eastern Ukraine by the Nazi goons sent in by the illegitimate Poroshenko govt can be blamed on the Obama administration, that is well over 6000 deaths.
-2 # MidwestTom 2015-04-25 19:19
Who dreamed this up? We have Muslims killing Muslims with weapons that they bought from us using money that we sent to them for their crude oil. Our government may be smarter than I have given them credit for.
+4 # Merlin 2015-04-25 20:03
MidwestTom 2015-04-25 19:19
Who dreamed this up?

'Start here Tom. Its called the Yinon Plan
+4 # bibi 2015-04-26 10:38
Since Yemen is not a threat to Saudi Arabia, it makes no sense why they're doing this. But according to an Iranian cleric, the US asked the Saudis to attack.
Operation Decisive Storm sounds a lot like Operation Desert Storm!
And this attack is a lot like the Israeli attack on Gaza.
Cannot help but feel that the US, and Israel are behind this and S. Arabia is just as bad. And it's probably got everything to do with profiteering from war & the arms race.
Depraved and despicable!!
+2 # Radscal 2015-04-26 13:36
Yemen, Djibouti, and Somalia squeeze the Red Sea into a very narrow strait. All shipping traffic to and from the Suez Canal must pass through that tiny little strip of water.

That shipping includes every oil tanker heading West, every Israeli warship heading East and most of the trade goods and plundered resources traveling to Europe from the East.

Valuable, strategic tiny part of the globe.

Djibouti is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the U.S. military; home to our military bases.

Somalia has been rendered a neutered failed state with no ability to advance its own interests.

Yemen has been "regime changed" every time a popular government develops so as to maintain a dictatorship loyal to U.S. and our "allies."

It is perfectly logical for the U.S., Saudi Arabia, Israel, etc. to crush any movement which seeks a Yemeni government that puts the needs of Yemenis ahead of them.

Perfectly evil: but perfectly logical.
+1 # bibi 2015-04-26 19:07
Thanks..that about sums it up.
+2 # bibi 2015-04-26 20:06
But then is perfectly illogical to do something perfectly evil, because bad Karma is sure to follow.
+3 # Radscal 2015-04-26 20:15
Karma is a lovely magical thought. Were that it were so.

But, we see wealthy monsters live long and happy lives and innocent children suffer short and torturous lives resulting in the deaths of (50,000 every day just from poverty).

I suppose that's what leads some to believe/hope for karma in "the next life" or an "afterlife."
+2 # bibi 2015-04-27 07:04
Karma is a reality, even in this life. Wealthy monsters lives are not as happy as they seem, they have to pay in some way that is significant. And innocent children and people it appears, suffer unfairly, and yet if you have noticed, there's a lot of joy in their lives in spite of the suffering.
And it's a given,100% true, life does not end with material life!
“For money you can have everything it is said. No, that is not true. You can buy food, but not appetite; medicine, but not health; soft beds, but not sleep; knowledge but not intelligence; glitter, but not comfort; fun, but not pleasure; acquaintances, but not friendship; servants, but not faithfulness; grey hair, but not honor; quiet days, but not peace. The shell of all things you can get for money. But not the kernel. That cannot be had for money.”
-Arne Garborg
+2 # Radscal 2015-04-27 11:04
In a way, I admire your optimism and faith in the face of overwhelming contravening evidence.

How many really rich jerks do you know? Since I worked in the yachting industry, and competed in "Gold Cup" level yacht racing for years, I've known quite a few. I even raced against Papa Koch a few times.

They may have the same sort of personal problems that we all have, but they are not exhibiting great cosmic anguish over the ways they accumulated and hoard great wealth.

On the other hand, there is little joy in being born poor in Africa, living several years with constant hunger pain and then suffering a slow death from malaria, or from dehydration due to constant diarrhea caused by dysentery.

Money may not be able to guarantee happiness, but extreme poverty sure does guarantee suffering.

+2 # bibi 2015-04-27 14:02
I don't want to be cynical. I know and knew(even more!) rich folks but not all of them were jerks. But believe me, the ones that were, got what they had coming to them, one way or another!And I would rather be a poor African and have a clear conscience, than be a rich monster!
+1 # Radscal 2015-04-27 14:57
Yeah, many, many years ago I decided that I'd rather get screwed over than screw someone over.

I specified rich "Jerks" because the discussion was on karma. Rich nice folks would not fall under that "law," would they?
+1 # bibi 2015-04-27 19:18
Well...neither screw someone, nor let anyone screw you, is my motto!
Money in itself is not evil, nor is being rich a sin. Everything depends on how you earn and spend your money!
0 # WBoardman 2015-04-28 11:35
"nor is being rich a sin," says bibi,
and that's inarguable in a sense.

But lacking a clear definition of "rich," it's also sort of

Rich enough to live well, maybe even two homes and
a boat or whatever turns you on is not so bad, but
one person's wealth is always one or more person's poverty,
one person's power is always one of more person's powerlessness,
one person's greed is many people's deprivation,
so where is the proper balance
and how is it defined.

If you start with the premise that wealth is evil,
you'll get a whole lot better society than we have now,
built in part on the premise that the poor deserve to be poor.
-1 # bibi 2015-04-28 12:09
Rich is what YOU consider being rich is, not what others consider being rich is.
I don't see how one person's being "rich" is another person's poverty, provided every person has been given equal opportunity to become as rich as they want/need to be.
There is something to be said though for an individual (especially a leader), who denies himself luxuries because he sees that some of the people do not have them. But that's more of an empathy type thing, in the nature of people who shave their heads in solidarity with cancer patients.It's not going to make the poor person richer. Nobody who doesn't do the above should be made to feel ashamed for it.
Every person is richer than somebody else, and every person has the opportunity to be charitable in whatever ways he can.
0 # WBoardman 2015-04-28 18:38
bibi's response, while a familiar sentiment in the world,
strikes me as hopelessly subjective.

Also hopelessly naive, especially in a capitalist society,
where the mega-rich and the mega-powerful
can treat others with disregard.

"Equal opportunity" is both subjective and naive,
as well as imaginary.

Most rich Americans have inherited wealth.
Some have built on that.

If you are born poor in America, or born less than white or
less than smart, without rich parents,
your opportunities are limited to nil.

America has never been honest by that,
because the American dream of getting rich
is compellingly seductive
and every bit as much a dream fantasy
as winning the lottery.

0 # bibi 2015-04-29 08:10
Well, that's the point I made too, "provided every person has been given equal opportunity to become as rich as they WANT/NEED to be."
You're right, in a Capitalist society, "the mega-rich and the mega-powerful
can treat others with disregard."
But a system has to be in place where this is not the norm, people should stop voting for leaders that allow such a system to prevail. I often wonder how some other countries, also western democracies, are successful without the parameters that America has in place, like the military and prison complexes and the auto mobile industry etc.
I lived in another democracy in the East, among those who were born with a silver spoon in their mouths, and others who were not, but who worked their way to the top. If you're given the CHANCE, you can make it happen.
Obviously, if you had the chance, if you had no hindrances in your path, but you did nothing, only complained about the rich being rich, it's nobody's fault but your own!
0 # bibi 2015-05-01 07:56
When it appears like nobody has read your comment, it is fishy..

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