Friday, January 19, 2007
The Cafferty File: Chinese threat?
On "The Situation Room" today, we asked viewers the following questions, and here are some of our favorite responses that we didn't get to read on air:

How big a threat does China pose to the U.S.?

Schools need to start requiring the teaching of the Chinese language. All not in school need to start learning it. That's how serious it is.
Steve, Alabama

Two reasons China isn't a threat. China's ownership of our currency means they have faith in the resiliency of our economy and currency. Furthermore, our mass consumption of Chinese exports drives their economy. Put simply, the U.S. is a good bet to thrive and consume.
Geoff, Detroit, Michigan

China will shape the 21st century. They will be only as much of a threat to us as we make them. America must put pressure on China on issues like human rights and Taiwan, but we must deal with them as equals or face their opposition at every turn. If we decide to be belligerently uncooperative, we can look forward to the demise of American influence within the next 100 years.
Corey, Nashville, Tennessee

Why would the Bush administration suddenly fire a bunch of federal prosecutors?

They would fire the prosecutors if the administration had broken the law, had eviscerated and violated the Constitution, or acted against the interests and safety of Americans, which is punishable by impeachment.

Pres. Bush would fire a bunch of federal prosecutors because they don't tow his line or he's afraid of being investigated and brought to trial like he ought to be.
Robert, Bakersfield, California

In poker, it's called stacking the deck for the deal, Jack. They want to make sure they have all the "right cards" lined up for the legal challenges ahead of them.
Kate, Federal Way, Washington

Should spanking your kids be illegal?

Define spanking: A swift stinging slap to the bottom or a pinch to the arm to put them in line is fine. What are you going to use? Positive reinforcement, psychology and reason? If you don't agree then take care of my 4-year-old and 2-year-old boys and see how they change your mind. Derek, Coral Gables, Florida

My parents spanked my butt when I got obnoxious and unruly and I think I am a better person for it. Just look at the obnoxious kids in stores and on the streets nowadays. No discipline at all. It is my bet George W. didn't get his butt cracked, ever, and look how he turned out.
Richard, Hawaii

What's next? When will it be illegal to yell at your kids? When we outlaw spanking we are welcoming a generation of brats who think they can get away with anything.
Kevin, Wayne, New Jersey

Jack, My first child (a daughter) was spanked regularly while I was in an unhappy marriage. I got divorced, and never spanked the last two. They have much more self confidence. Striking someone you love detracts from both the hitter and the receiver.
Dave, Florida
Posted By Jack Cafferty, CNN Commentator: 1/19/2007 05:45:00 PM ET | Permalink
Thursday, January 18, 2007
The Cafferty File: Troops to Afghanistan?
On "The Situation Room" today, we asked viewers the following questions, and here are some of our favorite responses that we didn't get to read on air:

Should the U.S. send more troops to Afghanistan?

Yes, if it's not too late. We should have kept them there to begin with instead of sending them to Iraq when we had Bin Laden cornered at Tora Bora. But W is determined to prove that he's right in Iraq by sending the troops there... instead of where they will do the most good. Where's Dwight Eisenhower when we need him?
Chip, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida

When will our leadership wake up to the fact the U.S. military force is helpless against the Islamic tidal wave in an undeveloped country with an embedded non-western tradition. We cannot win the "war on terror" with traditional military strategies. We proved that in Vietnam and Iraq.

Yes! Afghanistan is the real "central front in the war on terror." If we hadn't taken many of them out in the first place to send to Iraq, where al Qaeda wasn't a problem, we could've fought them there rather than creating another battlefield for them in Iraq.
Jenny, New York

What does the next generation of Iraqis have to look forward to?

The Iraqis have two prospects: a relatively stable country with some semblance of a democracy (a highly unlikely scenario at this time); or, more likely, a permanently fractured state in a constant state of civil war, populated by a "lost" generation of embittered youth.
Mike, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Iraqis have a bleak future of control by Iranian-type fanatics and a generation of undereducated, unemployed, America-hating young men with nothing to do but fight and kill.
Donna, Sedan, Kansas

What should Congress do about the approaching Social Security and Medicare crises?

Pull the troops out of Iraq and use the billions of dollars saved to take care of our people.
Bob, Ontario, Calif.

Jack, One thing they could do is to repeal all of the massive tax cuts that the Bush gang gave to the fat cats and big businesses; that would go a long way toward fixing the problem.
Emmett, Michigan

The only thing they can do is be honest with the Americans: tell them they can't retire until they die. That's pretty much what Americans have figured out already.
Helen, Jolliet, Illinois
Posted By Jack Cafferty, CNN Commentator: 1/18/2007 05:37:00 PM ET | Permalink
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
The Cafferty File: Switch on spying
On "The Situation Room" today, we asked viewers the following questions, and here are some of our favorite responses that we didn't get to read on air:

Why would the Bush administration suddenly decide to let the FISA court monitor its domestic spy program?

The same reason you back off the accelerator instinctively when you're driving down the road and see a cop car. There's a new sheriff in town in the Democratic Congress, and Pres. Bush knows he just can't ignore the law and expect not to get called on it. This is proof absolute that he knows he was breaking the law in the past. Now he's trying to pretend he wasn't speeding.
Chuck, Macon, Missouri

The Bush administration can no longer count on the legislative branch to look the other way as the president violates the founding principles of this country. Bush said we would not let the terrorists change our way of life. He was right, the terrorists are not the ones changing it, he is.
Ken, Chicago, Illinois

Think impeachment, Jack. The Democrats control Congress now. Time for President Bush to rethink a few things.
Alan, Buxton, Maine

Why should lawmakers' spouses be able to lobby Congress at all?

No way should the spouses of members of Congress be allowed to lobby Congress. Can you imagine the pillow talk that would go on between a member of Congress and their spouse who might be lobbying Congress?

In my opinion, it's time to redefine lobbying. The currency of lobbying should be information, not campaign gifts, not sweetheart real estate deals, not meals or trips, not the promise of a high-paying job after Congressional service. It should be information, period.
Michael, Worcester, Massachusetts

They shouldn't be able to. It's just more evidence of a corrupt government at all levels. This also proves that we need an independent ethics group.
David, Shreveport, Louisiana

The new United Nations Secretary-General says Iraq is the "whole world's problem." Is it?

Perhaps on a moral level, it is. The state of affairs in any nation should be of concern to others. However, wasn't most of the world opposed to the war in the first place? And didn't we supply Saddam with money and weapons in the early 80s? Why should the whole world now do our custodial work?
Jorge, Bronx, New York

World reaction seems to suggest that Iraq is strictly a U.S. problem.
Jim, Rochelle, Illinois

Iraq is not the world's problem, although I am glad that the Secretary-General is viewing this as a group issue where other countries may now do their part to root out global terrorism. We must do this as a world force to succeed.
Chris, Lewisburg, West Virginia

If the war would have been a success, would "the world" have gotten the credit for it? I don't think so. The U.S. and its coalition of the willing should take full credit for it. The rest of the world knew what the end of this story was before it began.
Will, Toronto
Posted By Jack Cafferty, CNN Commentator: 1/17/2007 05:35:00 PM ET | Permalink
The Situation Online: '06 elections online, "Doomsday Clock"

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved the world two minutes closer to global disaster on Wednesday.

Five Minutes to Doomsday?
Today the "Doomsday Clock" ticked two minutes closer to the end of the world, according to a group of leading scientists. The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists adjusted the symbolic clock in part to reflect Iran and North Korea's nuclear ambitions, and for the first time ever, to reflect unprecedented climate change. We examine how the Doomsday Clock has shifted back and forth 18 times since its launch in 1947.

Campaigns & the Web
Politicians may want to start paying more attention to the Web: according to a new study from the Pew Research Center, the number of Americans who said the Internet was their main source of news and information for the 2006 midterm elections more than doubled since 2002. The study also examines the new phenomenon of online video and politics, defined in 2006 by YouTube videos like Conrad Burns napping during a farm bill hearing and George Allen's "macaca" moment.

Watch "The Situation Room" at 4:00 PM, 5:00 PM, and 7:00 PM ET for these stories and more from our Internet reporters.
Posted By The Situation Online Producers: 1/17/2007 04:35:00 PM ET | Permalink
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
The Cafferty File: Sen. Obama in the race?
On "The Situation Room" today, we asked viewers the following questions, and here are some of our favorite responses that we didn't get to read on air:

Should Senator Barack Obama run for the White House in 2008?

I sure hope so. He represents a new way of politics and brings to the political field an energy not seen for years. He seems practical, capable of sound judgment, articulate, and willing to find consensus on issues. As for his lack of experience, can he be any worse than what we have now?
Gary, Eerie, Pennsylvania

Barack Obama moved me with his keynote speech in 2004 and I have been waiting for this. He can bring the country together and I do hope he will run and of course win.
Elise, Toledo, Washington

I don't think that Obama should run for president in 2008. I don't think he has enough experience to be president. I also think racism is still too much of an issue at this point for him to win enough states.
S., Massachusetts

When it comes to ethics reform, does size matter?

Graft is graft...size makes no difference. Neither party had the guts to do the right thing.
Joe, Oswego, Illinois

The answer of course is: no. What matters most is integrity, something that has been in short supply in DC of late. And if our legislators are serious about reform and restoring the public's confidence in our legislative branch, they would establish an independent ethics body to make sure that our congressional representatives remember whose interests they were hired to represent.
Mike, Carver, Massachusetts

Everyone knows ethics is a matter of quality not quantity.
Tony, Statesville, North Carolina

Does size matter? No, conscience does; not that conscience has anything to do with Congress. They just tell us what we want to hear when somebody gets caught with their hands in the cookie jar, then let the publicity drop down and pass reform on to the next elected House or Senate, or the one after that... and so it goes...and so on, and so on.
Buddy, Douglas, Wyoming

Why are there more single women in the United States than married ones?

Have you seen what is available for single woman as partners? I have dated too many non-working little whiny men.
Susan, Jacksonville, Florida

Women have found that they cannot take care of children, go to a job and wait on a husband without a nervous breakdown so they have cut their losses and cut out the men. I think more women are not marrying at all because of the stress put on them. Think about it, why should they?
Genny, San Antonio, Texas

Okay, Jack, let me help you with this one. Why get married, get saddled down with debt, ungrateful kids and an old lady who takes you on guilt trips every day? Being a bachelor you have freedom to come and go as you please, spend what you earn on whatever pleases, without waiting for some judge and/or lawyer looking over your shoulder for their cut. It's a life sentence Jack, and I'm on my 31st year.
Floyd, Westbury, New York

Women have figured out that they don't need a man to have a successful, happy, peaceful life. Life lasts too long to put up with an annoying man, or woman, for that matter.
Jan, Corvallis, Oregon
Posted By Jack Cafferty, CNN Commentator: 1/16/2007 05:48:00 PM ET | Permalink
The Situation Online: Libby's list, Obama's in

Lewis "Scooter" Libby is not charged with leaking Valerie Plame's identity -- the original focus of the special prosecutor's investigation.

The Libby list
Karl Rove, Valerie Plame, Colin Powell and Tim Russert are among the eighty high-profile Washington insiders listed as names and potential witnesses that could be used in the trial for Lewis "Scooter" Libby. We've posted the list (PDF) and the questions (PDF) being posed to potential jurors today.

"I wanted to tell you first"
Sen. Barack Obama informed the public, via an online video, on his newly launched Web site, that he is exploring a bid for the White House in '08. We analyze the site.

Watch "The Situation Room" at 4:00 PM, 5:00 PM, and 7:00 PM ET for these stories and more from our Internet reporters.
Posted By The Situation Online Producers: 1/16/2007 04:15:00 PM ET | Permalink
Monday, January 15, 2007
The Cafferty File: Iranian Threat

On "The Situation Room" today, we asked viewers the following questions, and here are some of our favorite responses that we didn't get to read on air:

How much of a threat is Iran to Iraqi stability?

Mr. Bush's assertions that Iran is a threat are wearing thin, his credibility is zero at this point.
Roman, El Paso, Texas

Iran is obviously waiting for the U.S. to pull out of Iraq in order to annex it. They understand that Americans do not have the resolve to finish what they have begun. They are already fighting us indirectly through these "terrorists." They are using a Vietnam-style war of attrition in order to weaken America's resolve until we pull out. They are stirring the pot and feeding the fire.
Bill, Owings Mills, Maryland

What ever happened to dialogue? Why is there such a refusal from our politicians to sit down with countries we see as a threat and discuss the matter?
Would it actually hurt to lay our cards on the table, ask the opposing country to do the same, and try to actually "work it out"?

How big of a threat is Iran to the stability of Iraq? How big of a threat is a coyote to the stability of a hen house?
Mike, Arkansas

Should the government have to right to ask for Americans' bank and credit card statements?

If there is legal grounds for a warrant, then yes. If it is a spying mission on the general citizenry like this criminal data mining that we have seen from the Neo-Conservatives, absolutely not.
Tom, Wilton, Maine

Jack, remember after 9/11? When we all said we wouldn't let the terrorists change our way of life? Well, what is this, if not exactly that? This is political-governmental terrorism, intimidation by threat and by shredding of the U.S. Constitution. The only thing worse is people who think that this is ok, and who roll over instead of having the spine to resist.
N., New York

If the government has legitimate evidence that someone is involved in terrorism, yes, check everything about them. Otherwise, the government doesn't need to know that I bought more than I should have at the mall.
Kendall, Houston, Texas

Why in the world would the government want to see my bank statements or credit card statements? Is there no end to the rights we are seeing trampled by this administration?
Jo-Ann, Altoona, Pennsylvania

How would you characterize the progress of civil rights in this country over the last four decades?

For those willing to use the justice system to ensure their civil rights, the movement has been quite successful in the past four decades. For those who do nothing but moan about injustice, the civil rights movement has failed.
Diane, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

As an African-American who lived through and participated in the civil rights movement, I feel Dr. King would not be happy with race relations today. The real question is would race relations be as they are today, if Dr. King was alive.
Tanyah, Rio Vista, California

The U.S.A. has made great strides in the last four decades. However, it will be the future that brings Dr. King's dream to fruition. I can see in my adult children that the U.S.A. is becoming truly colorblind.
Miles, Allentown, Pennsylvania

"Civil rights" was a dream, and we let it slip away so we could play war games.
Ila, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
Posted By Jack Cafferty, CNN Commentator: 1/15/2007 06:03:00 PM ET | Permalink
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