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Response to oberliner (Reply #35)

Thu Mar 22, 2012, 10:45 PM

38. I quite agree with you...

The Saudi lobby is quite significant and generally is able to prevail whenever the Israel lobby objects to the purchase of US weapons by the Saudi military, although given that the focus by Israel has shifted to Iran the Israelis now seem relatively happy for the Saudis to receive whatever kit they can get.

The Saudi lobby has also been quite effective in stifling US criticism of either the Saudi or the Bahraini autocracies. I think their influence on US policy on balance is clearly negative.

It is quite legitimate for you to object to the power and influence of the Saudi lobby considering the downsides that it has for the US, particularly as it shows up the lack of a US commitment to democracy. It is also quite legitimate for others to point out that at least the Saudi relationship is strategically advantageous for the US, in that it provides energy security in terms of Saudi oil, whereas the relationship with Israel comes with no such benefit.

Its also worth noting that money alone will only get you so far. The most effective interest lobby in the US, as judged by members of Congress, is the American Association for Retired Persons. They have influence not only because they have money, or even because they influence votes, but because they have moral suasion, the mother's milk of lobbying. Medical lobbies such as the AMA, Police Unions, Nurses and Teachers Unions are effective because people actually like doctors and police. That gives them the ability to act in the open whereas other unions and lobbies must stay in the dark.

No one in Congress wants to be seen to oppose the interests of seniors. Being anti-old people is a non-starter, even amongst those that are not old people. In the same way, being anti-Jewish (or just being perceived as such) is a monkey on any candidate's back, even if they are in a district with hardly any Jews. Its worth noting that AIPAC generally comes a close second to AARP in the annual survey of lobbies.



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Arrow 38 replies Author Time Post
Scurrilous Mar 2012 OP
longship Mar 2012 #1
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #2
oberliner Mar 2012 #4
Ruby the Liberal Mar 2012 #8
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #11
oberliner Mar 2012 #16
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #18
oberliner Mar 2012 #22
COLGATE4 Mar 2012 #6
longship Mar 2012 #7
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #14
COLGATE4 Mar 2012 #27
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #37
azurnoir Mar 2012 #3
oberliner Mar 2012 #5
holdencaufield Mar 2012 #9
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #12
amandabeech Mar 2012 #24
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #10
oberliner Mar 2012 #17
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #23
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #30
oberliner Mar 2012 #31
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #34
oberliner Mar 2012 #36
oberliner Mar 2012 #32
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #33
oberliner Mar 2012 #35
LineLineLineLineLineLineLineLineNew Reply I quite agree with you...
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #38
amandabeech Mar 2012 #25
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #26
amandabeech Mar 2012 #28
shaayecanaan Mar 2012 #29
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #13
oberliner Mar 2012 #15
Ken Burch Mar 2012 #19
Shaktimaan Mar 2012 #20
oberliner Mar 2012 #21
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