Friday, January 30, 2015

No More Mitt

A lot of deadwood left to prune before we get to the main event!

No doubt you already saw the news: Mitt's out for 2016. I want to thank the former GOP Presidential Nominee for saving me the trouble of putting together my planned post suggesting he not run.

Romney made two fundamental mistakes in 2012, one messaging and the other tactical. By shying away from the fight with Obama over foreign policy when the press started to howl in Obama's defense he gave away one of the GOP's strongest issues. And by failing to counter Obama's massive spending on paid staffers and offices in key states he ceded the critical get out the vote effort in the handful of key states that determined the race.

We need new blood and new faces at the top of the GOP ticket and Mitt's withdrawal makes that possible. But it also helps Jeb Bush who is now the favorite for the moderate/establishment wing of the party. This will make it harder on conservatives whose vote and fundraising will be split unless they coalesce soon around a single candidate.

Scott Walker anyone?

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Obama Violates Constitutional Checks and Balances, Disrespects Ally; Then Complains About Congressional Protocol Breech

For the way he has behaved in office it takes some nerve to complain about Boehner's invitation for Israeli P.M. Netanyahu to speak!

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) reminded us last week that the Obama Administration had promised "full consultation — with the real meaning of the word consultation," in regard to any changes in Cuba policy then weeks later went right ahead and announced normalization of relations without ANY consultation with the Senate. Rubio and others on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, including Democrat Robert Menendez(NJ) are concerned the Administration will ignore their responsibility to consult again in any dealings with Iran.

In a hearing with Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken Rubio reviewed the problem:

Senator Rubio: “Secretary Blinken, much of this debate here today has been about the role of Congress and our need to trust in the ability of the administration to craft a good deal, and in the fact that we are going to be consulted. That was the question that you asked. So I want to take you back to the last time you were before this committee, and I asked you a question at that time, during your nomination, about whether there would be any unilateral changes or changes in Cuba policy.

“And your answer, and I want to quote it for you. It said, quote, ‘Anything that in the future might be done on Cuba would be done in full consultation, with the real meaning of the word consultation that I just alluded to, with this committee.’ You told me that the last time you were before this committee. Who did it consult with on this committee? Or who did the administration consult with on this committee before it announced the changes on the 17th of December?”

Secretary Blinken: “Senator, I regret that I did not live up to the standard I set during that hearing and in the remarks that you just quoted. I think that I could have done a better job in engaging with you and consulting with you in advance. And I regret that.”
Does anyone really believe that the Obama Administration will fully consult with the U.S. Senate, even Democrats on any deal on Iranian nuclear development?

Yet Obama and his aides get quite indignant if any of their prerogatives get stepped on. Witness the outpouring of bile when Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu accepted an invitation to speak to a Joint Session of Congress:
“He spat in our face publicly, and that’s no way to behave,” one Obama aide told an Israeli newspaper. “Netanyahu ought to remember that President Obama has a year and a half left to his presidency, and that there will be a price.”
To paraphrase New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin, Obama is one to talk:
It is pointless to say petty threats do not become the Oval Office. Trying to instruct this White House on manners recalls what Mark Twain said about trying to teach a pig to sing: It wastes your time and annoys the pig.

Still, the fury is telling. It reminds, as if we could forget, that everything is always about Obama.

How dare Israel be more concerned with the existential threat of Iranian nukes than with Obama’s feelings? And what do members of Congress think they are, a separate branch of government or something?

Yes, the presidency deserves respect, even when the president doesn’t. Although Obama routinely ignores lawmakers and their role in our constitutional system of checks and balances, there is an argument afoot that Congress should have taken the high road and consulted him before inviting Netanyahu.

The argument has a point — but not a compelling one. To give Obama veto power over the visit would be to put protocol and his pride before the most important issue in the world.
Obama's deliberate snubs and petty slights to our ally Israel and it's Prime Minister are numerous. Going back to a White House meeting in 2010 where Obama abruptly left the meeting to have dinner with Michelle while Netanyahu was forced to wait. In 2011 there was the open mic conversation between French President Sarkozy and Obama with Obama complaining about Netanyahu.

For Obama to be indignant at what he perceives as a breach in protocol when he regularly disregards his own constitutional responsibilities would be laughable if the issue of Iranian nuclear weapons was not such a dangerous threat to world peace. Sadly, Obama seems to be taking the side of the Iranians and again ignores the concerns of our ally Israel!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Obama Mid East Policy Collapses While He Interviews w/ Glozell

Why does he always seem to be doing anything BUT his job?

In his State of the Union Address Obama claimed that we have had "turned the page" after 15 years of terrorism and war. He was right about that. We've turned the page from a bad situation to one that is much worse due to his failure to lead.

You need look no further than Yemen as a an example of Obama's failed foreign policy. It was just four months ago that Obama touted the U.S. Yemeni alliance as a success story in the war on terror:
OBAMA: This strategy of taking out terrorists who threaten us, while supporting partners on the front lines, is one that we have successfully pursued in Yemen and Somalia for years. And it is consistent with the approach I outlined earlier this year: to use force against anyone who threatens America’s core interests, but to mobilize partners wherever possible to address broader challenges to international order.
Now that the government of Yemen has collapsed and ceded power to Iranian back radicals there is no question but the alliance that was so pivotal to Obama's lead from behind strategy in Yemen is shattered as well as the counter terrorism strategy (1,2).

Remember also that Obama just released five Yemeni terrorists from Gitmo. Just in time to supply reinforcements!

Note that Obama never mentioned Yemen in his State of the Union Address.

Obama did mention ISIS (or ISIL):
OBAMA:In Iraq and Syria, American leadership -- including our military power -- is stopping ISIL’s advance. Instead of getting dragged into another ground war in the Middle East, we are leading a broad coalition, including Arab nations, to degrade and ultimately destroy this terrorist group. (Applause.) We’re also supporting a moderate opposition in Syria that can help us in this effort
Really? Is this what success looks like?

OBAMA: “In Iraq and Syria, American leadership—including our military power—
is stopping ISIL’s advance.”

Throughout the Middle East things are getting worse, not better. The only bright spot may be the relative stability of Egypt whose military leaders defied the Obama Administration and tossed the Muslim Brotherhood from power.

Bi Partisan Opposition to Obama's Incompetence, Indifference and Misguided Policy

Writing at Commentary Magazine Pete Wehner runs down the list. Remember Obama's brag about freeing Libya? Then the Benghazi attack came along. And things with Iran just keep going backward:
Our percipient president also declared in his State of the Union speech, “Our diplomacy is at work with respect to Iran, where, for the first time in a decade, we’ve halted the progress of its nuclear program and reduced its stockpile of nuclear material.” That assertion is so reality-based that (a) the Washington Post fact-checker declared “there is little basis” for the president’s claims and (b) the highest ranking Democratic member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Robert Menendez, said the more he hears from Mr. Obama and his administration about Iran, “the more it sounds like talking points that come straight out of Tehran.” Oh, and the president made his announcement on the very day that we learned that Russia and Iran are more aligned than ever, having signed an agreement on military cooperation between the two nations.
Russia signing a military cooperation agreement with Iran? Anyone remember 1939? Also, Russian tanks and troops continue to roll across the border into Ukraine. Does that sound like a success story for Obama?

And note that Sen. Bob Mendez (DEMOCRAT-NJ) says that Obama's talking points on Iranian nukes sound like they "come straight out of Tehran." For those who were looking for more bipartisanship in Washington, we just found some!

With all this going on you would think that Obama would be busy huddling with his foreign policy team. Instead, on Thursday he was giving interviews to You Tube stars. You know, the kind of people who gain fame and notoriety by doing stupid stuff. One interviewer was Glozell Green famous for bathing in Fruit Loops and milk [full video].

Obama Interviewed by Glozell Green famous for this scene on You Tube.
Obviously Obama has his priorities and it's clear that dealing with the collapse of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East isn't one of them. The consequences for his indifference and incompetence will pay out in blood with tens of thousands of innocent lives lost and a more dangerous world for all of us!

UPDATE: Washington Post Editorial
IN DEVOTING 250 of the 6,800 words of his State of the Union address to the fight against “violent extremism,” President Obama offered a boilerplate description of his policy. “Instead of sending large ground forces overseas,” he said, “we’re partnering with nations from South Asia to North Africa to deny safe haven to terrorists who threaten America.” As he spoke, his strategy was crumbling in a nation he failed to mention: Yemen, home to the branch of al-Qaeda that claimed credit for the recent attacks in France and has repeatedly attempted to strike the U.S. homeland.
The Yemen mess reveals the weaknesses of Mr. Obama’s “partners” strategy, which has been too narrowly focused on drone strikes and training of specialized units, and not enough on providing security for the population, institution-building and support for moderate political forces. Unfortunately, the president’s cursory and formulaic description of his counterterrorism policies this week, following a year in which jihadist forces and terrorist attacks expanded across the world, suggested that he remains uninterested in correcting his mistakes.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Contrast Bush's Gracious Recognition of Dem Victory in 2007 State of the Union Speech to Obama

Bush is a class act. Obama never misses an opportunity to be small and petty!

Tuesday's State of the Union speech was attended by the largest number of Republican legislators in both houses of Congress since the 1920's. You might have thought that deserved some mention from Obama. Instead, all he did was make a snarky remark about how he had won two elections.

Contrast that with these opening lines from George W. Bush's State of the Union speech in 2007. Dems had just won control of both houses of Congress in the 2006 election.

BUSH: And tonight, I have the high privilege and distinct honor of my own, as the first president to begin the State of the Union message with these words: "Madam Speaker."

In his day, the late congressman, Thomas d'Alessandro, Jr., from Baltimore, Maryland, saw Presidents Roosevelt and Truman at this rostrum. But nothing could compare with the sight of his only daughter, Nancy, presiding tonight as speaker of the House of Representatives. Congratulations, Madam Speaker.
Some in this chamber are new to the House and the Senate, and I congratulate the Democrat majority.
The 2006 midterm election was an astounding political defeat for Bush but he bore it graciously and without rancor. Obama on the other hand always seems to have an over-sized chip on his shoulders as if he suffers from some deep seated inferiority complex!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Obama Delivers a State of the Union Speech Designed to Divide Rather than Unite

Once again, he proves that true leadership is the last thing on his mind. Politics always comes first!

Did we really need another speech [text] by Obama to remind us that his solution to nearly every problem is more spending and to raise taxes? Yet that's pretty much what we got in Tuesday's State of the Union Address. Writing at the Washington Post Jennifer Rubin summarizes the speech this way:
If you were looking for signs the president learned anything from his 2014 thumping, you were disappointed. If you had hopes he had a coherent foreign policy they were dashed. If you expected the president to double down and emphasize areas where impasse is certain you were prescient.
It didn't surprise me that Obama delivered another left wing address. Despite saying "we are still more than a collection of red states and blue states; [] we are the United States of America," Obama's speech was directed at cheering on his liberal base which clearly was demoralized after the November election. The speech itself ranked only slightly behind his other SOTU addresses for it's hardcore left wing ideological appeal. Here's the key graph from a study at Real Clear Politics showing how extreme Obama's SOTU speeches are in relation to other recent presidents:
The speech was less memorable for what it said. Not even a Democrat controlled Congress would pass much of what he proposed. It was significant in that it demonstrates that Obama intends to continue pursuing left wing policies and playing hardball politics the way he has now for six years. Despite his promise that he will "commit to every Republican here tonight that I will not only seek out your ideas, I will seek to work with you to make this country stronger," there is nothing in his past, or this speech that suggests that he is any more serious about that than the dozens of other times he has said it.

Also, he added the obligatory plea for civility:
OBAMA: Understand, a better politics isn’t one where Democrats abandon their agenda or Republicans simply embrace mine. A better politics is one where we appeal to each other’s basic decency instead of our basest fears. A better politics is one where we debate without demonizing each other; where we talk issues and values, and principles and facts, rather than “gotcha” moments, or trivial gaffes, or fake controversies that have nothing to do with people’s daily lives.
Wouldn't it be nice if Obama lived up to that promise. Yet demonizing Republicans is what he does best. There are so many examples of Obama using the most extreme, partisan rhetoric to attack Republicans (1,2,3,4,5...) It's a staple by now that anyone disagreeing with him is either racist, stupid, evil or all three.

Middle Class Flim Flam

Seven times Obama reference the Middle Class in his speech. It's another staple of Obama's speeches. But like all the others his concern for improving the lot of the Middle Class evaporates once the camera is turned off. It's no secret that the rich have gotten richer under Obama. It's also no secret that the Middle Class is worse off now then when he was elected.

As a recent Reuters story points out:
Barack Obama enters the final two years of his presidency with a blemish on his legacy that looks impossible to erase: the decline of the middle class he has promised to rescue.
Michael Snyder documents 27 facts that show how much worse off things are for those in the Middle Class. But perhaps we need to put the issue in perspective with a few charts:

Foreign Policy An Even Bigger Hot Mess

When it comes to foreign policy it would appear that the speechwriters simply cut and pasted old soundbites. Nothing new. Obama declared that we are "stopping ISIL’s advance" In Iraq and Syria and repeated the pledge to "destroy" ISIL "ultimately" whatever that means. Yet facts on the ground remain stubborn. True, ISIL (I prefer ISIS but I'll go with ISIL for now) hasn't totally overrun Iraq and have been pushed back in some places. But they continue to expand in others. The Pentagon lists thousands of vehicles, tanks and other targets destroyed or damaged. But after months of limited strikes it's hard to see how the effort will succeed in the goals Obama has laid out at this rate.

Obama also claimed that his policy to punish Russia for invading Ukraine was a success:
OBAMA:Second, we’re demonstrating the power of American strength and diplomacy. We’re upholding the principle that bigger nations can’t bully the small -- by opposing Russian aggression, and supporting Ukraine’s democracy
Yet Russia still holds Crimea and large chunks of eastern Ukraine. Can he really claim to support democracy in Ukraine when it's being dismembered by force?

He also claimed success in forestalling Iran's nuclear ambitions when he said "we’ve halted the progress of its nuclear program and reduced its stockpile of nuclear material." Yet by all accounts all Iran has to do to build a nuclear weapon is flip a switch and the program resumes.

The Good News

One bright spot and prime achievement for Obama was that this State of the Union was witnessed by the most Republican and fewest Democrat legislators to witness such an event since the late 1920s. Obama has managed to unmake all the legislative gains that have lasted for generations until his time.

More good news comes as we learn from a recent study that Obama's record for enacting State of the Union promises is the worst among all two term Presidents since Lyndon Johnson. Only Gerald Ford, who only served two years had a worse record.

And as we all know by now, after Obama completes his latest campaign swing that's likely to be the last time we hear of these promises. Obama's habit is to make a speech, declare problem solved then move on to the next "fake controversy."

Still better news is that we only have to endure one more of these speeches until Obama leaves office!

Friday, January 16, 2015

What Signal Does Obama Send When He Releases Yemeni Terrorists One Week After Paris Attack by Yemeni Terror Cell?

Whose side is he on?

So, sending 5 terrorists from Gitmo to Oman, which borders Yemen to which they can easily return is a good idea?

Last September Obama cited Yemen as a success story in combating terrorism and a model for his strategy to defeat ISIS. That's worked well hasn't it? Yemen is the source of the terror cells that struck in Paris and ISIS is bigger than ever.

So, naturally Obama wants to reward Yemeni terrorists by sending back five of the worst from Gitmo. That follows on from earlier terrorist releases, his refusal to attend the March in Paris and continued refusal to link Islam with terrorism. Obviously even Obama can't be this stupid so something else must be going on.

Roger Simon wonders whose side Obama is on:
I started this post thinking it was kind of funny. I liked the hed — “Is the White House a ‘Sleeper Cell’?” It reminded me of, um… Charlie Hebdo. But actually it’s not so funny. And it’s not impossible. We know something close already happened during the communist era (Alger Hiss), and the Israelis famously planted an agent, Eli Cohen, at the highest echelons of the Syrian government until he was caught via the KGB and hanged in the central square of Damascus. They say it was Cohen’s reports that were responsible for the rapid Israeli success against the Syrians in the Six-Day War.

But a “sleeper cell” in the White House? It would certainly explain Obama’s not going to France, which was a decision that hurt the USA, hurt the effort against Islamic terror and hurt the president’s already tarnished reputation into the bargain. There are so many other things that the existence of a White House “sleeper cell” would explain that I couldn’t even begin to count them. And as you know, a cell doesn’t have to be violent to be active. There are many ways to do damage.

But who would be a member of this cell? Is it one or all of them? Well that, I am sorry to say, I cannot tell you. I do not have the proper clearance. You are, however, free to guess. Who would stop you?
You are free to draw your own conclusions but actions speak louder than words and thus far Obama's actions don't seem to be doing much to dent the expansion of terrorism. Quite the opposite!

ISIS Continues to Expand Despite Obama's Promises to Defeat

Nothing succeeds like success and Obama's failure to use military power effectively invites more terrorism and death.

Did you see the 10 year old ISIS boy executing two prisoners?  Or the killing homosexuals by tossing them off high buildings and stoning women? Then, there's the recent successful attack in Paris which is bound to encourage more ISLAMIC RADICALS to take up the jihad.

And why not? Air strikes in Syria and Iraq have done very little to clip the wings of the monsters who continue to inflict their blood lust on the people living in large swathes of Syria and Iraq.

Here's the latest report:

Remember when this was front page news? But the time tested Obama technique of replacing one scandal with another one has worked again. Besides, Obama gave a speech promising action and that was supposed to be the end of it right?

Do the Saudis Know Something About Border Fences That Obama Doesn't?

Saudis to build 600 mile fence to keep out jihadis!

With Obama's failure to counter the growth of ISIS in Iraq and Syria the war continues to spread as Muslim terrorists (the phrase Obama refuses to use) are extending their reach even further. Now, they are probing with attacks against Saudi Arabia. In response the Saudis are building a fence. But not just a fence....

From Business Insider. Full Size image here.
If it's good enough to keep terrorists from crossing the Saudi border do you think it would help to keep tens of thousands of children from crossing the U.S. southern border? But no, Obama thinks a border fence is a bad idea. Remember when he mocked requests for more border security?
OBAMA: They said we needed to triple the Border Patrol. Well, now they're gonna say we need to quadruple the Border Patrol or they'll want a higher fence. Maybe they'll need a moat. Maybe they'll want alligators in the moat. They'll never be satisfied.
The Saudi fence has everything but the alligators. Maybe they know something Obama does not!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Remember When Obama and the Dems Mocked "Drill Baby Drill" and Suggested $2/gallon Gas Was a Fantasy?

Despite Obama's best efforts to keep energy prices higher American ingenuity in the private sector came through!

In Detroit a week ago Obama bragged about the lower price of gas: "America is the number-one producer of oil, the number-one producer of gas. It’s helping to save drivers about a buck-ten a gallon at the pump over this time last year."

But a few years back when gas prices were high and Republicans insisted we could drill our way to lower prices and energy independence Obama laughed. At a speech in Miami in February 2012 Obama mocked GOP energy plans.
OBAMA: You can bet that since it’s an election year, [Republicans are] already dusting off their 3-point plan for $2 gas. And I’ll save you the suspense. Step one is to drill and step two is to drill. And then step three is to keep drilling.  (Laughter.) We heard the same line in 2007 when I was running for President. We hear the same thing every year. We’ve heard the same thing for 30 years.

Well, the American people aren’t stupid. They know that’s not a plan, especially since we’re already drilling. That’s a bumper sticker. It’s not a strategy to solve our energy challenge. (Applause.) That’s a strategy to get politicians through an election.

You know there are no quick fixes to this problem. You know we can’t just drill our way to lower gas prices.
Over the last three years my administration has approved dozens of new pipelines, including from Canada. And we’ve opened millions of acres for oil and gas exploration. All told we plan to make available more than 75 percent of our potential offshore oil and gas resources from Alaska to the Gulf of Mexico.
Interesting that three years later and Obama is still blocking the Keystone pipeline.

And where are those millions of acres of new oil and gas exploration? Certainly not offshore. In response to high oil prices President Bush opened offshore areas to exploration. Obama slammed the door shut.

When it comes to onshore production Obama's record isn't any better. Oil production on federal lands continues to fall while production on private lands increases:

The revolution in oil and gas has nothing to do with Obama:

Obama has waged a "War on Energy" so his rich friends who invest in green energy can make more money to funnel into Democrat campaigns. Fortunately, there's still enough freedom left in the private sector to fuel America's energy needs. So naturally, Obama has announced new plans to choke that off too!

Such an Embarrassment! State Dept. Spokeswoman Cannot Name Terror Other Than Islam But Refuses to Say Islamic Terrorism

These the people who were supposed to make the U.S. more respected in the world?

While French leaders have no problem saying the words "Islamic radicals" or jihadis or terrorists somehow it's impossible for leaders in the Obama Administration to make that connection. At times the effort to twist around the issue gets downright ridiculous. Take for example this report by Martha MacCallum. Following the clip with White House Spokesman Josh Earnest insisting there are many forms of violent extremism MacCallum interviews State Department Spokeswoman Marie Hart. She asks Harf to name other forms of extremism that are a problem. Watch....

MARTHA MACCALLUM, "KELLY FILE" GUEST HOST: Every time we see this exchange it seems like the answer is so tortured. Like it's so difficult to say what everybody around the world seems to feel so clearly it is. And what the leaders have said in Canada and Australia and Paris where they have felt it potently and personally, they've all said quite clearly the battle is against Islamic extremism. Why is that so hard to say?

MARIE HARF, STATE DEPARTMENT: Well, it's not hard to say, but it's not the only kind of extremism we face. I would recommend folks looking at this administration's counter-terrorism record. I would remind people that more terrorists who claim to do acts of violence in the name of Islam have been taken off the battlefield in this administration than other any previous one because of our counterterrorism operations and our efforts that we put in place. But that's not the only way you counter this kind of extremism. Much of it Islamic, you're absolutely right. But some of it not. So we're going to focus on all the different kinds of extremism with a heavy focus on people who do this in the name of Islam, we would say falsely in the name of Islam, but there are other forms of extremism --

MACCALLUM: Tell me, what other forms of extremism are particularly troubling and compelling to you right now?

HARF: Well, look, there are people out there who want to kill other people in the name of a variety of causes. Of course, Martha, we are most focused on people doing this in the name of Islam. And we've talked about with ISIL, part of our strategy to counter this extremism is to have other moderate Muslim voices stand up and say they don't represent our religion. They speak for their religion more than we do certainly and we need those voices to stand up. In addition to all the other efforts we're undertaking.
Notice she could not name ONE EXAMPLE of others committing acts of terror. I guess the danger of Methodists beheading people isn't as real as some might think!

Also, note that Harf says "ther moderate Muslim voices stand up and say they don't represent our religion." But did we hear one word of support from the State Department when the President of Egypt gave his remarkable New Year's speech condemning radical Islam? NO. And we didn't hear a word of praise from the White House either.

Hark looks like an idiot here. True, she's an Obama campaign flack, but her bio might lead you to believe that she's got to be smarter than she comes off. Obviously the problem here isn't with Harf or Josh Earnest but Obama.

Charting the Historic Path of Islamic Radicalism

In the Daily Mail Yasmin Alibhai-Brown describes the emergence of radical Islam as a recent phenomenon and one that imposes great fear on Muslim women in particular. One wonders why Democrats, who constantly accuse Republicans of waging a "war on women" are so silent when there is a real war waged on women in the Islamic world?

Sunday, January 11, 2015

French Prime Minister Takes Stronger Stand on Terror Than Obama

What does it say when the French talk tougher than we do? The FRENCH!

Here's the report from the New York Times:
PARIS — Prime Minister Manuel Valls declared Saturday that France was at war with radical Islam after the harrowing sieges that led to the deaths of three gunmen and four hostages the day before. New details emerged about the bloody final confrontations, and security forces remained on high alert.

“It is a war against terrorism, against jihadism, against radical Islam, against everything that is aimed at breaking fraternity, freedom, solidarity,” Mr. Valls said during a speech in √Čvry, south of Paris.
Note that you will rarely hear Obama use the word "terrorism" let alone a "war" against it. You'll never hear Obama use the words jihad or radical Islam. No, Obama is planning a "Summit on Countering Violent Extremism" no doubt filled with the usual politically correct whitewash that prevents us from actually directing attention to where the problem truly lies.

When even the French have a better understanding of our enemy when we do it spells trouble!
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