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Friday, March 03, 2006

Dissecting a Rant

(Hat tip: Little Green Footballs)

Not only is he unhinged, he’s wrong too.

You’ve probably heard about the anti-American rant by Colorado geography teach Jay Bennish. Jay has been suspended, rightfully so in my mind, for his wholly inappropriate diatribe against the US. It used to be that we taught students to be good citizens; now we don’t even teach them the facts.

Michelle Malkin has transcribed the majority of the rant for us, so let’s look at some the statements that Jay makes.

Statement: “For over 30 years, America has had soldiers fighting in Colombia in a civil war.”

Fact: US military involvement in Colombia began in the 1980's.

Statement: “Who buys cocaine? Not Bolivians. Not Peruvians. Americans! Why are we destroying the farmers' lives when we're the ones that consume that good.”

Fact: Bolivian and Peruvians smoke coca paste.

Statement: "Who is the world's largest producer of cigarettes and tobacco? The United States!"

Fact: China is the largest, followed by India and Brazil. Depending on how you measure it, the largest tobacco company is either Phillip Morris, BAT, or China National. Brazil is the largest exporter.

Statement:“What part of our country grows all our tobacco? Anyone know what states in particular? Mostly what's called North Carolina.“

Fact: North Carolina is responsible for 37% of the tobacco grown in the US.

Statement: “don't the Peruvians and the Iranians and the Chinese have the right to invade America and drop chemical weapons over North Carolina to destroy the tobacco plants”

Fact: We sell very little, if any tobacco to Peru, Iran and China.
We actually import about 50% our tobacco.

Statement: “killing millions and millions of people in their countries every year”

Fact: Annual worldwide deaths from smoking are around 5 million. I doubt that Peru and Iran account for the majority of those. Muslims aren't even supposed to smoke. My guess is that China probably sells us more tobacco than we sell to them.

Statement: “Who has the most weapons of mass destruction in the world? The United States.”

Fact: For many years, the Soviet Union had the most. Russia most likely still has more weapons of mass destruction than the United States.
Russia is estimated to now have around 20,000 nuclear weapons.

During the Cold War, and afterwards, the Soviet Union had the world's largest arsenal of chemical weapons, including artillery shells, bombs, and missiles...

financial and other difficulties have impeded the destruction of its chemical weapons stockpile, so it is far behind the timetable specified in the treaty.

...the United States maintains a sizeable arsenal of nearly 10,000 nuclear warheads, of which nearly 6,000 are operational and the remainder in reserve or inactive stockpiles.

The entire U.S. [biological warfare] stockpile was destroyed in 1969 and 1970...

The NSCMP also destroyed 80% of the nation's original chemical weapons production facilities in 2003, 16 months ahead of schedule, and will meet the final deadline of 100% destruction by April 2007.

Statement: “There are dozens upon dozens of countries that have weapons of mass destruction.”

Fact: 15-20, depending on who is counting and how.

Statement: They [Israel] assassinated the British prime minister in Palestine.

Fact: I assume he’s talking about Lord Moyne, Minister Resident for the Middle East, who was assassinated in Cairo, Egypt in 1944.

Statement: Israeli terrorists used "Car bombings, you name it".

Fact: One truck bomb, actually (1/4/1948).

Statement: "And when you shoot a missile into Pakistan to quote-unquote kill a known terrorist, and we just killed 75 people that have nothing to do with al Qaeda,"

Fact: 18 killed, including al Qaeda affiliates.

Statement: In the Iran-Iraq war, we sold missiles, tanks, guns and planes to both sides.

Fact: We sold missiles to Iran as a part of the Iran-Contra debacle.

Statement: US conducted 7000 terrorist attacks against Cuba in two years, 1960 to 1968.”

Fact: He can’t even get his Radio Havana propaganda right. (Apparently it’s 5780 over 30 some years. Who knew?)

Statement: The FBI had an office in the World Trade Center

Fact: I can’t find any confirmation of this.

Statement: The Clinton ordered Sudan attacks destroyed the largest pharmaceutical plant.

Fact: I could not confirm the size of the plant destroyed.

Update from Dignan: Welcome Michelle Malkin, Hugh Hewitt, Daily Kos, and Mount Virtus readers. I'd like to make a few comments. Big thanks to my co-conspirator and friend Klaus for taking the time to write this outstanding post (you are the "B-Squad" leader, Klausie!) Also, big thanks for all of those commenting here. Although we here at the 75 Year Plan lean right, we very much appreciate and encourage dialog with those on the left. So we hope those on the left come back for more good dialogue. Finally, I would like to voice my own outrage at Bennish from my particular background. I actually majored in geography in college and have spent most of my professional life in geography-related jobs. Regardless of the political nonsense that Bennish has promoted, he obviously knows nothing about geography and geography education.

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