Tag Archives: Barack Obama

Tyrant

I’m afraid.  Trump withdrew from the Paris Accord walking away from a commitment that we made with virtually every nation on earth.

The science of climate change – global warming – has been debated here and else where for years now.  I don’t wanna get into that now except to say that for the purpose of this post, I have settled that we are not in danger of catastrophic warming.  Because of that, I am fine with the reasons for rejecting Paris.

But before we rejected Paris, we agreed to it.  And that should mean something.

Now, as for the world without American leadership?  Screw ’em.  I am less and less inclined to care what a Parisan sipping coffee at 2.00 pm thinks of America while the rest of the world refuses to act in most cases.  We’re a handful of days away from the anniversary of America’s leadership.

No.  What scares me is that without Obama we don’t have Trump.  But we had Obama, and now we have Trump.

Barack ruled with his phone and his pen.  Paris was illegal.  GM’s bankruptcy was illegal.   His immigration policies were illegal.  Libya?  Illegal.  And the list goes on and on.  So, mostly, as Trump undoes Obama’s work with equal executive orders, I am conflicted.  We are removing oddles and oodles of illegal and wrong minded policy.

But I don’t believe that Trump is going to stop.  He’s going to get used to ruling, aka Barack, and will simply, and horrifically, continue on the trajectory.

The President never should have pulled out of Paris.  But the President never should have entered Paris.  Without the first, we never have the second.

Is Voter Fraud An Issue

Election Fraud

As a follow up to my last post, I have thought it would be important to point out that the Republicans might have a point when it comes to the illegal immigrant and their desire to vote.

Namely, do they?  Do immigrants, not yet citizens, vote?

Yes:

How many non-citizens participate in U.S. elections? More than 14 percent of non-citizens in both the 2008 and 2010 samples indicated that they were registered to vote. Furthermore, some of these non-citizens voted. Our best guess, based upon extrapolations from the portion of the sample with a verified vote, is that 6.4 percent of non-citizens voted in 2008 and 2.2 percent of non-citizens voted in 2010.

So, 14% of non-citizens REGISTERED to vote and 6.4% voted in 2008 and 2.2% voted in 2010.  That sounds like a lot, but is it?

Because non-citizens tended to favor Democrats (Obama won more than 80 percent of the votes of non-citizens in the 2008 CCES sample), we find that this participation was large enough to plausibly account for Democratic victories in a few close elections. Non-citizen votes could have given Senate Democrats the pivotal 60th vote needed to overcome filibusters in order to pass health-care reform and other Obama administration priorities in the 111th Congress. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) won election in 2008 with a victory margin of 312 votes. Votes cast by just 0.65 percent of Minnesota non-citizens could account for this margin. It is also possible that non-citizen votes were responsible for Obama’s 2008 victory in North Carolina. Obama won the state by 14,177 votes, so a turnout by 5.1 percent of North Carolina’s adult non-citizens would have provided this victory margin.

Yup – again, it is a lot.  And further, may have given Franken his seat as well as Obama North Carolina.

President Obama – His Legacy

Obama Rushmore

Lots of talk about Obama and his place in history.  We recently passed the day marking less than 18 months to go before he moves back to Chicago.  So it’s natural to look back and try to identify where he is going to rate.

Not surprisingly, such placements are pretty heavy on the ‘partisan’ influence – for example, Democrats are gonna remember Carter more fondly.  And the same holds for Republicans and Bush the Elder.

Given this, I was very surprised to see the liberal leaning news channel CNN report on the legacy of President Reagan and the as of yet incomplete legacy of President Obama:

(CNN)This may be President Obama’s time, but it’s still Ronald Reagan’s era.

Obama has helped negotiate a nuclear deal with Iran, normalized relations with Cuba, and watched his approval ratings recently hit a two-year high after the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Obamacare. But has he become a “transformational” president like Ronald Reagan?

“He’s simply plowing the ground Reagan cleared 30 years ago,” says Tom Nichols, a political blogger and author of a column “Fantasyland: Obama Is No Ronald Reagan,” referring to Obama’s policies on nuclear weapons and his agreement with Iran.

Shocking.  But there’s more:

But we took the comparison a step further. We asked a group of historians and political scientists from the left and right to describe the qualities that make a president transformational. We also asked whether Obama lines up more favorably against Reagan now that he’s reached a deal with Iran.

The consensus was quick. Even those historians who personally disliked Reagan say Obama still hasn’t matched the Gipper — at least not yet.

Here are four reasons why:

  • Transformational Presidents change the conversation

  • Transformational Presidents deliver great lines

  • Transformational Presidents poach followers from the enemy’s camp

  • Transformational Presidents become beloved figures

President Obama will be remembered as historic; he will be the first black man elected President.  But he won’t be remembered for his accomplishments.

Further, Obama’s accomplishments aren’t that heady.

Obamacare remains a massively controversial program passed in the dead of the night with a congress consisting of 60 democrats.  To date, not one single republican has voted for the program.  Further, it was only finally passed through budget reconciliation.

And we don’t know if the program will do what it says it will.  But we DO know that government is incapable of managing large projects.

Cuba, while great policy, is largely insignificant.

And Iran will be remembered not so much a victory of negotiation and statesmanship as a situation in which we were led to water.  The coalition behind the sanctions was crumbling and nothing we had control of would or will prevent Iran from obtaining a bomb.

America is more divided now than before Obama and the ‘gaps’ the left hates have grown, not shrunk.

We don’t know that Obama is better than Jimmy much less ranking as one of the greatest.

Our Response To Crimea

Here is what John Kerry said we’d do:

Mr. Kerry repeated his warning to Moscow in remarks to a congressional panel on Thursday.

“There will be a response of some kind [to] the referendum itself, and in addition, if there is no sign of any capacity to be able to move forward and resolve this issue, there will be a very serious series of steps on Monday in Europe and here,” Mr. Kerry told members of a Senate Appropriations subcommittee.

And here’s what we did:

…the Obama administration froze the U.S. assets of seven Russian officials, including top advisers to President Vladimir Putin, for their support of Crimea’s vote to secede from Ukraine, while similar sanctions were imposed on four Ukrainian officials for instigating Sunday’s Crimean referendum.

That is very scary AND serious sanctions indeed!

All this still confuses me.

We support Ukrainians desire to force an elected President out of power – replacing him with one they find more acceptable.  But then we fail to recognize Ukrainians desire to separate from the country to join with Russia.

IRS: Taregtting Conservatives And Liberals

IRS.1

IRS vs Bridgegate

I posted the difference in media coverage between the Chris Christie bridge scandal and the IRS targeting scandal.  I made the point that media coverage of the bridge scandal has dwarfed that of the IRS scandal in recent months.

In the comments nickgb called shenanigans base on the fact that the tails of a scandal are less covered than the beginnings of the scandal.

Full point.

Continue reading

Two Scandals: The Bridge And The IRS

Media Coverage.Bridge.IRS

Listen, I mentioned that government is coercion:

We allow ourselves to be governed in exchange for a certain degree of order.  We allow ourselves to be subject to the confiscatory practice of taxation in order to pay for that order, that law and order.

And we give power to men that we wouldn’t otherwise give.

Power corrupts – absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Continue reading

The Impact Of The Tea Party

Tea Party Spending

The debate is raging in Washington.  Can the government spending excess be reigned in.  On the one had we have an Obama administration that wants to spend and spend and spend.  There can be no doubt as to their desired policy – more government spending is better government spending.

And then you have the Tea Party.  Facing opposition not only from the democrats but also from the republican establishment.

And what have they accomplished in their short existence?  Look at the graph above.

They stopped the spending in its tracks.

Rage on little T, rage on!

Obama’s Tyranny Speech

…hearing voices that incessantly warn of government as nothing more than some seperate sinister entity that’s at the root of all of our problems Some of these same voices also do their best to gum up the works.  They’ll warn that tyranny is just around the corner.

You should reject these voices.

Obama is talking about conservatives in general.  Republicans in congress and Tea Party republicans in specific.

He is referring to people who feel that we must ever be careful that government is only one day away from becoming a tyrannical mechanism that will restrict liberty.  He is referring to people, specific people.

Think those voices need to be rejected now?

IRS

You Know It’s Bad When

Maureen Dowd

You know it’s bad when you are a democrat and Maureen Down is piling on:

THE capital is in the throes of déjà vu and preview as it plunges back into Clinton Rules, defined by a presidential aide on the hit ABC show “Scandal” as damage control that goes like this: “It’s not true, it’s not true, it’s not true, it’s old news.”

The conservatives appearing on Benghazi-obsessed Fox News are a damage patrol with an approach that goes like this: “Lies, paranoia, subpoena, impeach, Watergate, Iran-contra.”

(Though now that the I.R.S. has confessed to targeting Tea Party groups, maybe some of the paranoia is justified.)

And more:

… a simple truth: The administration’s behavior before and during the attack in Benghazi, in which four Americans died, was unworthy of the greatest power on earth.

And still more:

In the midst of a re-election campaign, Obama aides wanted to promote the mythology that the president who killed Osama was vanquishing terror. So they deemed it problematic to mention any possible Qaeda involvement in the Benghazi attack.

Looking ahead to 2016, Hillaryland needed to shore up the mythology that Clinton was a stellar secretary of state. Prepared talking points about the attack included mentions of Al Qaeda and Ansar al-Sharia, a Libyan militant group, but the State Department got those references struck. Foggy Bottom’s spokeswoman, Victoria Nuland, a former Cheney aide, quashed a we-told-you-so paragraph written by the C.I.A. that said the spy agency had “produced numerous pieces on the threat of extremists linked to Al Qaeda in Benghazi and eastern Libya,” and had warned about five other attacks “against foreign interests in Benghazi by unidentified assailants, including the June attack against the British ambassador’s convoy.”

When the left begins to attack the left….you know it’s bad.

Benghazi – ABC Reports

Benghazi

ABC is finally reporting on Benghazi.  And the latest report from them has email showing the Talking Points went through multiple revisions, up to 12:

 

When it became clear last fall that the CIA’s now discredited Benghazi talking points were flawed, the White House said repeatedly the documents were put together almost entirely by the intelligence community, but White House documents reviewed by Congress suggest a different story.

ABC News has obtained 12 different versions of the talking points that show they were extensively edited as they evolved from the drafts first written entirely by the CIA to the final version distributed to Congress and to U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice before she appeared on five talk shows the Sunday after that attack.

White House emails reviewed by ABC News suggest the edits were made with extensive input from the State Department.  The edits included requests from the State Department that references to the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Sharia be deleted as well references to CIA warnings about terrorist threats in Benghazi in the months preceding the attack.

That would appear to directly contradict what White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said about the talking points in November.

“Those talking points originated from the intelligence community.  They reflect the IC’s best assessments of what they thought had happened,” Carney told reporters at the White House press briefing on November 28, 2012.  “The White House and the State Department have made clear that the single adjustment that was made to those talking points by either of those two institutions were changing the word ‘consulate’ to ‘diplomatic facility’ because ‘consulate’ was inaccurate.”

Now, I’m well aware that documents go through review and editing.  I’ve been part of that process.  However, the changes made to these talking points are to clarify some obscure detail or correct a time stamp in a timeline.  These revisions changed the story.

However, it is important to point out:

Like the final version used by Ambassador Rice on the Sunday shows, the CIA’s first drafts said the attack appeared to have been “spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo” but the CIA version went on to say, “That being said, we do know that Islamic extremists with ties to al-Qa’ida participated in the attack.”  The draft went on to specifically name  the al Qaeda-affiliated group named Ansar al-Sharia.

Once again, Nuland objected to naming the terrorist groups because “we don’t want to prejudice the investigation.”

It does appear that the initial report contained language surrounding the events in Cairo.  However, the testimony from the hearings gave no credence to the fact that anyone at anytime felt that the attacks were nothing but an organized terrorist attack.