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Author Topic: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness  (Read 213549 times)
G M
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« Reply #1250 on: September 26, 2012, 12:10:18 PM »

We must hate the rich! Oh, unless they are loyal party members.....

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2205541/280-000-champagne-tower-Obama-fundraiser-Jay-Z-Beyonce-Manhattan-night-club.html

Speaking to the 47%: The $105,000 champagne tower featured at Obama fundraiser hosted by Jay-Z and BeyonceBy Toby Harnden
PUBLISHED: 09:07 EST, 19 September 2012 | UPDATED: 02:06 EST, 20 September 2012

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President Barack Obama attended a fundraiser at Jay-Z's 40/40 Club in Manhattan that featured a champagne tower of 350 bottles worth $105,000 - more than twice the median household income of an American family.
The tower of $300-a-bottle Armand de Brignac Brut Gold, known as 'Ace of Spades' because of its label, is a permanent fixture at the club.
'It’s floor-to-ceiling gold bottles in the entire space,' a 40/40 representative told the New York Post. 'It’s beautiful—breathtaking. It’s the first thing you see when you walk in.'
The median income for an American family was $51,413 in 2011.




Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2205541/280-000-champagne-tower-Obama-fundraiser-Jay-Z-Beyonce-Manhattan-night-club.htm


http://news.investors.com/092512-626958-household-income-down-82-under-president-obama.aspx

In another sign that the economic recovery under President Obama is not producing gains for average Americans, median household incomes fell 1.1% in August to $50,678, according to a report released Tuesday by Sentier Research.

Since the economic recovery started in June 2009, household incomes are down 5.7%, the Sentier data show, and they are down more than 8% since Obama took office.

"Even though we are technically in an economic recovery, real median annual household income is having a difficult time maintaining its present level, much less recovering," said Sentier co-founder and former Census Bureau official Gordon Green.

Earlier this month, the Census Bureau released its annual report showing that the number of people in poverty was nearly 3 million higher in 2011 than in 2009, an increase of 6%.

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DougMacG
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« Reply #1251 on: September 27, 2012, 07:30:55 PM »

First this from the previous post:  "Earlier this month, the Census Bureau released its annual report showing that the number of people in poverty was nearly 3 million higher in 2011 than in 2009, an increase of 6%."

  - I first read that posted by GM on our cognitive dissonance thread.  Can you imagine how many times and how many places that would be running if this were 5 weeks before an election and George Bush was President!
--------------------------

John Hinderaker from Powerline covering Pres. Obama's speech to the UN mixing quotes and commentary, might be easier to read at the link:
http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/09/obamas-speech-at-the-united-nations.php

Obama’s Speech at the United Nations

Barack Obama and Mitt Romney both delivered foreign policy speeches in New York today, Obama at the United Nations and Romney at the Clinton Global Initiative. The coincidence offers an opportunity for comparison. For now, let’s look at Obama’s speech, and I will try to get to Romney’s tomorrow.

The context for Obama’s speech was turmoil in the Arab world and the murder of Ambassador Stevens and other Americans in Benghazi. The speech wasn’t as bad as it might have been; for one thing, Obama offered, for the first time, a reasonably strong defense of free speech. On balance, I give it a C-.

Obama began with a tribute to Chris Stevens’s career, as was appropriate. But at the key moment, Obama characteristically slipped into the passive voice:

    Two weeks ago, he travelled to Benghazi to review plans to establish a new cultural center and modernize a hospital. That’s when America’s compound came under attack. Along with three of his colleagues, Chris was killed in the city he helped to save.

The compound “came under attack.” By whom? At least this time, Obama acknowledged that it was an attack and not a demonstration. And Stevens “was killed.” Again, while Obama was not explicit, he seemed to be backing away from the smoke inhalation theory. But who killed Stevens, and how, and when? We are not likely to learn anything more about his fate until after the election.

The next passage is dishonest:

    If we are serious about upholding these ideals, it will not be enough to put more guards in front of an Embassy; or to put out statements of regret, and wait for the outrage to pass. If we are serious about those ideals, we must speak honestly about the deeper causes of this crisis.

Why won’t it be enough to put more guards in front of an embassy? The embassy in Cairo was protected by Marine guards, and the mob didn’t sack it, although they did succeed in tearing down the stars and stripes and replacing it with al Qaeda’s flag. More guards could have prevented that. And the consulate in Benghazi apparently wasn’t guarded at all. It should have been. Here, Obama implicitly lets himself off the hook for the needless deaths of four Americans.

Obama expressed enthusiasm for the “Arab spring.” As he ticked off his administration’s actions with respect to each country, he highlighted, certainly unintentionally, the lack of any coherent policy:

    We were inspired by the Tunisian protests that toppled a dictator, because we recognized our own beliefs in the aspirations of men and women who took to the streets.
     
    We insisted on change in Egypt, because our support for democracy put us on the side of the people.
     
    We supported a transition of leadership in Yemen, because the interests of the people were not being served by a corrupt status quo.
     
    We intervened in Libya alongside a broad coalition, and with the mandate of the U.N. Security Council, because we had the ability to stop the slaughter of innocents; and because we believed that the aspirations of the people were more powerful than a tyrant.
     
    And as we meet here, we again declare that the regime of Bashar al-Assad must come to an end so that the suffering of the Syrian people can stop, and a new dawn can begin.

With hindsight, maybe we shouldn’t have “insisted” on regime change in Egypt, or led from behind on Libya.

Obama’s discussion of the “deeper causes” of Muslim unrest included the inevitable denunciation of the YouTube video that ostensibly provoked the protests:

    That is what we saw play out the last two weeks, as a crude and disgusting video sparked outrage throughout the Muslim world. I have made it clear that the United States government had nothing to do with this video, and I believe its message must be rejected by all who respect our common humanity. It is an insult not only to Muslims, but to America as well – for as the city outside these walls makes clear, we are a country that has welcomed people of every race and religion. We are home to Muslims who worship across our country. We not only respect the freedom of religion – we have laws that protect individuals from being harmed because of how they look or what they believe. We understand why people take offense to this video because millions of our citizens are among them.

This is profoundly hypocritical. Certainly the video puts Islam and Muhammad in a bad light, but no more so than countless movies, plays, books, etc. have portrayed Christianity and Judaism. Moreover, compared to much popular entertainment, it is neither crude nor disgusting. As just about everyone has pointed out, Hillary Clinton screamed with glee at “The Book of Mormon,” which is at least as disrespectful toward the Mormon church as the YouTube video is toward Islam, and considerably cruder. It is not the case that America rejects insults to religions; on the contrary, every one of its powerful cultural institutions encourages such insults. But I guess that is a little more truth than Obama thought his audience could handle.

Next, Obama went on to explain why he didn’t ban the video. (The same explanation would apply to “The Book of Mormon,” but apparently no one has suggested that he should ban that play.):

    I know there are some who ask why we don’t just ban such a video. The answer is enshrined in our laws: our Constitution protects the right to practice free speech. Here in the United States, countless publications provoke offense. Like me, the majority of Americans are Christian, and yet we do not ban blasphemy against our most sacred beliefs. Moreover, as President of our country, and Commander-in-Chief of our military, I accept that people are going to call me awful things every day, and I will always defend their right to do so. Americans have fought and died around the globe to protect the right of all people to express their views – even views that we disagree with.

Yes, that’s right–Barack Obama and Jesus, they are both subject to so much unfair abuse!

    We do so not because we support hateful speech, but because our Founders understood that without such protections, the capacity of each individual to express their own views, and practice their own faith, may be threatened. We do so because in a diverse society, efforts to restrict speech can become a tool to silence critics, or oppress minorities. We do so because given the power of faith in our lives, and the passion that religious differences can inflame, the strongest weapon against hateful speech is not repression, it is more speech – the voices of tolerance that rally against bigotry and blasphemy, and lift up the values of understanding and mutual respect.
     
    I know that not all countries in this body share this understanding of the protection of free speech. Yet in 2012, at a time when anyone with a cell phone can spread offensive views around the world with the click of a button, the notion that we can control the flow of information is obsolete. The question, then, is how we respond. And on this we must agree: there is no speech that justifies mindless violence.
     
    There are no words that excuse the killing of innocents. There is no video that justifies an attack on an Embassy. There is no slander that provides an excuse for people to burn a restaurant in Lebanon, or destroy a school in Tunis, or cause death and destruction in Pakistan. …

All true, although it assorts oddly with the administration’s hauling in the maker of the YouTube video for questioning. Obama went on to discourse on who must and must not control the future, culminating with this:

    The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.

Really? There is a great deal to criticize in Islam, and in the life of the “prophet,” which was anything but exemplary. Peoples who now labor under the yoke of Islam will never make progress until such critiques are heard and acted upon. My own view is that the future very much belongs to those who “slander”–or criticize, anyway, which is the same thing–the “prophet of Islam.” Obama next tries to draw a parallel with other religions:

    Yet to be credible, those who condemn that slander must also condemn the hate we see when the image of Jesus Christ is desecrated, churches are destroyed, or the Holocaust is denied.

This is, of course, a false parallel; slandering the prophet is by no means on a par with burning down churches and murdering their congregants, which is what happens in the Islamic world. And the problem with Holocaust denial is that it is not an academic debate, however disingenuous; rather, the danger is that those who deny the Holocaust, like, say, Ahmadinejad and his followers, yearn to repeat it. And whom is Obama kidding? Neither he nor anyone else has any intention of defending Christians and Jews against either symbolic or real assaults. For example, don’t hold your breath waiting for Obama to denounce Bill Maher’s (that would be million-dollar Bill) slurs against Christianity.

Next, this:

    Among Israelis and Palestinians, the future must not belong to those who turn their backs on the prospect of peace. Let us leave behind those who thrive on conflict, and those who reject the right of Israel to exist.

The Israelis must wonder why Obama had to drag them into it. What do they have to do with the riots that roil various Muslim countries? Nothing. And if the Obama administration protected America’s embassies and consulates as competently as Netanyahu’s government protects Israel’s, Obama wouldn’t have to begin his speech with a tribute to a murdered ambassador.

Well, that’s enough. Obama concluded his speech with what amounted to a plea for his own re-election, which probably puzzled his listeners. Having walked through the speech once more, I think my grade may have been a bit generous. D+ is perhaps closer to the mark.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1252 on: September 27, 2012, 07:52:12 PM »

Elsewhere I have heard the opinion from those who were involved in previous administrations that the intention of the written intelligence briefing is to start the discussion on security risks, not to end it.

"one giant difference between then (Reagan's missed briefings) and now: Sept. 11, 2001"

" interestingly, since my columns appeared, Obama attended his PDB meeting seven days in a row for the first time in seven months. If live briefings are no better than paper briefings, why has Obama suddenly begun receiving briefings in-person?"
--------------------------

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/a-bogus-defense-of-obamas-intelligence-briefing-record/2012/09/25/f5ae10de-071d-11e2-afff-d6c7f20a83bf_print.html

A bogus defense of Obama’s intelligence briefing record
By Marc A. Thiessen, Published: September 25

The Post’s Fact Checker, Glenn Kessler, takes issue with my report that since taking office President Obama has skipped his daily intelligence meeting more than half the time. So let’s fact check the Fact Checker.

The facts

After hearing from sources in the intelligence community that President Obama was not attending his daily intelligence meeting on a daily basis, I asked researchers at the Government Accountability Institute, a nonpartisan research group headed by Peter Schweizer (who is also my business partner in a speechwriting firm, Oval Office Writers) to examine at Obama’s official schedule. We found during his first 1,225 days in office, Obama had attended his daily meeting to discuss the Presidential Daily Brief (PDB) just 536 times — or 43.8 percent of the time. During 2011 and the first half of 2012, his attendance became even less frequent — falling to just over 38 percent. By contrast, Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush, almost never missed his daily intelligence meeting.

After Islamist radicals stormed our embassy in Cairo and terrorists killed our ambassador to Libya on Sept. 11, I further reported that Obama also skipped his daily intelligence meeting every day in the week leading up to the attacks. The day after the attack, he scheduled but then canceled his daily intelligence meeting, while finding time to go to Las Vegas for a campaign rally.

These facts are not in dispute. Indeed, before publishing both of my columns, I specifically asked National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor if there were instances where the president had, in fact, held his daily meeting on the PDB that did not appear on the official public calendar. He offered no examples, and not once did he challenge the numbers I presented. Neither has any White House official challenged them in the weeks since this controversy erupted. So, as a factual matter, Kessler offers no evidence that the information I presented on Obama’s PDB meeting attendance is wrong.

What Kessler and the Obama White House do argue is a matter not of fact but of opinion — that it does not matter if Obama attends a daily intelligence meeting because he reads his PDB every day. Kessler compares Obama to former presidents going back to Reagan and Nixon and finds that “many did not have an oral briefing” — and that this means Obama has simply “chosen to receive his information in a different manner than his predecessor.” There are several problems with this.

First, Kessler ignores one giant difference between then and now: Sept. 11, 2001.

Comparing lax presidential briefing habits before and after 9/11 is like comparing lax presidential security habits before and after the Kennedy assassination. After terrorists killed 3,000 people in our midst, everything changed — and the president’s daily intelligence meeting took on dramatically increased importance. President Bush made it a priority to sit down with his senior intelligence advisers every day to discuss overnight intelligence on threats to the country. President Obama has not.

Kessler notes that Bill Clinton’s CIA director could not get a meeting with him, and that Clinton was known to comment that his morning papers were better than the intelligence brief. This is more an indictment of Clinton than a defense of Obama. On Clinton’s watch, terrorists attacked us repeatedly without cost or consequence — from the first World Trade Center attack in 1993, to the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia in 1996, to the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, to the USS Cole in 2000.

As for Nixon and Reagan, comparing Obama’s briefing habits to those of presidents who served 30 to 40 years ago — in an era when advanced technology consisted of electric typewriters — is irrelevant in an age of 21st-century surveillance and collection capabilities. The volume, speed and complexity of intelligence has changed dramatically in the intervening decades — and with it the need for interactive briefings.

Without criticizing Obama, former CIA director Mike Hayden recently explained the value of the in-person meeting: “With President Bush, I really saw the value of the personal interaction that we had on an almost daily basis. There was rich give-and-take, so that not only did the president get the advantage of knowing the analysts’ innermost thoughts, but they also were able to leave the room understanding what the president believed he needed in order to make the kind of decisions he had to make.”

In addition to the PDB, Hayden said, Bush also received two longer, magazine-length pieces each week, and additional in-person briefings were held on each of these. On Thursdays, Hayden also briefed Bush for a half-hour on sensitive collection programs and covert action.

The Pinocchio test

Perhaps Obama does not feel he needs such daily interaction. But the fact that he has not been having it is indisputable. (Though, interestingly, since my columns appeared, Obama attended his PDB meeting seven days in a row for the first time in seven months. If live briefings are no better than paper briefings, why has Obama suddenly begun receiving briefings in-person?)

It is a fact that for eight years before Obama took office, there was a daily meeting to discuss the PDB. And it is a fact that, on taking office, Obama stopped holding the daily intelligence meeting on a daily basis. Kessler may not think that is important, and he is entitled to his own opinion — but not his own facts.

I give Four Pinocchios to the Fact Checker.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1253 on: September 28, 2012, 11:03:10 AM »

"In March, "Foreign Policy" magazine reported that "several high-level sources" in the Obama administration had revealed Israel's secret relationship with Azerbaijan, where Israeli planes could refuel to or from an air strike against Iran's nuclear facilities."  http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2012/09/27/obama_versus_obama_part_iv_115591.html

Not really undermining an ally if they aren't really an ally.

This was last March.  Where was the investigation?  Where is the outrage?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1254 on: September 28, 2012, 11:32:48 AM »

The View, the Noise, the Nuke and the Nut
"Here comes the orator! With his flood of words, and his drop of reason." --Benjamin Franklin
 
One man at the UN gets it -- Netanyahu drew the red line for Iran's nuclear program
After two weeks of steady denials that recent strikes on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, and the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, were terrorist attacks -- along with blaming a YouTube clip for violence and unrest in all of the Muslim world -- this week opened with another smooth move from Team Hope-n-Change.
Kicking off his latest oratorical mini-seminar this week at the UN General Assembly, Barack Obama belted out a 30-minute paean to free speech and tolerance. He also grudgingly reserved only two paragraphs near the end of his screed to address what should have been his main point, the threat posed by Iran's nuclear ambitions. Although two weeks late-to-need, the speech was nonetheless underwhelming when it finally arrived.
While the majority of his remarks were supposed to be devoted to advocacy for free speech and mutual respect between differing religions and worldviews, Obama undermined his own case by once again rejecting the individual free speech rights of the producer of the 14-minute YouTube clip, "The Innocence of Muslims." He declared that the "crude and disgusting" video had "sparked outrage" among Muslims for its disparaging remarks about Mohammed. (As a side note, the man responsible for the video, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, was arrested Thursday because unsupervised Internet activity allegedly violates his parole from a previous conviction.)
At once alienating the U.S. government from this particular individual's right to free speech, Obama apparently saw no irony in affirming a commitment to that constitutional right for Americans. He must have been thinking in terms of "collective rights" -- the only kind statists allow -- so this oversight is somewhat understandable. It's also interesting to note that just the day before this denunciation, Obama told the leftist gaggle on "The View" that "the best way to marginalize that kind of speech is to ignore it." Obviously, he thinks the best way to "ignore" such a video is to denounce it in six different languages at the UN General Assembly.
Of course, immediately after stating that the U.S. Constitution protects free speech, he went on to make this pathetic addition: "I know that not all countries in this body share this particular understanding of the protection of free speech. We recognize that." If the video is indeed one of the causes of violence in the Muslim world, it becomes self-evident that those affected countries are not exactly huge fans of free speech and tolerance. Pakistan tops our list as "most tolerant," after Pakistan's railway minister offered $100,000 to anyone who kills the maker of the video.
To be sure, Obama did attempt to make a case against extremism, reminding his audience, "Let us remember that Muslims have suffered the most at the hands of extremism." While technically correct, it's another Obama half-truth as most Muslim suffering is self-inflicted. None of these attacks and protests were the work of non-Muslims. (In related news, the New York display of the taxpayer funded "art" piece "Piss Christ," in which a crucifix is submerged in the artist's urine, did not cause rioting or murderous violence from Christians.)
Throwing gas on the fire, Obama let loose a string of "the future must not belong to" so-and-so remarks, including, "The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam." He followed up this statement with a quote from Gandhi and a pleasant bromide about condemning intolerance, generally. Which statement is more likely to be repeated by Muslim extremists?
Again, perhaps the president should have focused on the imminent danger posed to the world by Iran. The ongoing Iranian nuclear crisis warranted short shrift in Obama's speech -- clearly, the matter is not a priority for him. Maybe it should be, though: In his usual, even-keeled delivery, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad this week again called for the "elimination" of Israel. We suppose this sounds slightly better than the phrase he used in 2005 -- that Israel should be "wiped off the map" -- but it still reflects deadly intent and nukes would be a tool to that end.
Nor would Obama meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who warned that Iran will effectively have a nuclear weapon by next summer, and helpfully drew a literal red line so the illiterates at the UN understand. The president was too busy chatting with the harpies on "The View" to be bothered with what he told "60 Minutes" was "noise." Obama's priorities are so out of whack, even NBC News Obamaphile Andrea Mitchell scolded, "This was not the moment to sit down with 'The View.'"
No, it was actually the moment to sit down with other world leaders, one-on-one, in serious discussions about grave matters, as many foreign heads of state -- including Israel's Netanyahu -- had asked him to do. However, that task fell to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. No doubt foreign leaders were unimpressed by the president's acting like they didn't exist.
Something else didn't exist, either: respect from the president for those who were murdered in Libya. In that same "60 Minutes" interview, the tone-deaf Leader of the Free World referred to the violence in Egypt, Libya and elsewhere, including the context of four murdered Americans, as "bumps in the road." As columnist Charles Krauthammer notes, "If Romney had said that the death of our ambassador, the attack on our embassy, the death of three other Americans, the hoisting of the black al Qaeda flag over four U.S. embassies, and demonstrations all over the Middle East all the way to Indonesia including a burning in effigy of Obama in Sri Lanka of all places is a bump in the road, it would be a three day headline." Indeed. The president's statement is disgraceful.
We close where we started: remember those denials of terrorist attacks on American sovereignties abroad? Well, not so fast. Now Secretary Clinton has conceded "preliminary findings" that, yes, well, indeed these attacks might have been terrorist strikes after all. But don't judge the administration too harshly for having zero situational awareness on the entire set of events. After all, who could have known that rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) used in coordinated attacks against American assets on the anniversary of 9/11 "might" suggest a link to terrorism?
Post your opinion.
Quote of the Week
"My statement to the United Nations would have been, 'The future does not belong to those who attack our Embassies and Consulates and kill our Ambassadors. The Angel of Death in the form of an American Bald Eagle will visit you and wreak havoc and destruction upon your existence.'" --Rep. Allen West (R-FL)
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1255 on: September 28, 2012, 11:54:54 AM »

President Obama now has more months over 8% unemployment than the last 14 Presidential terms combined, all Presidents since 1948 when the Bureau of Labor Statistics began recording the monthly unemployment rate.  The score is 43 for Obama and 39 for Truman, Eisenhower 1st term, Eisenhower 2nd term, JFK, LBJ, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan 1st term, Reagan 2nd term, Bush, Clinton first term, W Bush 1st term, W Bush 2nd term.

Source:  BLS
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1256 on: September 30, 2012, 12:46:20 PM »

Quote excerpts from (Democrat) Walter Russel Mead.  (His post also praises the President's UN speech).  http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2012/09/26/the-presidents-speech/

"...some of the administration’s (foreign policy) misjudgments have been serious. Perhaps the most fundamental and most consequential was the decision to downplay the degree to which what the administration refuses to call the global war on terror still dominates American policy and American strategic thought.  Like the characters in a Harry Potter story who don’t want to speak Lord Voldemort’s name because they are afraid that using his name makes him stronger,...
The administration sought to demobilize the American people and encouraged the nation to stand down from the war footing we assumed after the first 9/11.  Instead of providing leadership and guidance to a public baffled, weary and confused by the struggles of the last decade, this administration sought to turn the national conversation away from the radical threat. It tried to change the subject when it should have helped the country develop a serious and sophisticated view of a complicated, dangerous and continuing international threat.  9/11/12 has blown the obfuscation away. The global war on terror (or whatever we call it, and the old Bush-era name is flawed) hasn’t ended; it has evolved."
http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/wrm/2012/09/26/the-presidents-speech/
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1257 on: October 01, 2012, 12:43:23 PM »

Missing in the scandal is some storyline about what was supposed to go right that unfortunately went wrong in Operation Fast and Furious.  Here and on right wing radio the story is advanced that Obama's far lefties were sending guns to be used in violence to help them to ban more guns.  I actually think that is true and no other story line has been advanced to my knowledge.  Since this sounds cynical and far fetched, people don't know what to think about it, IMO.  Just a scandal of an  R House trying to shake down a Dem White House for more documents to embarrass them.

The White House first defense was that this was Bush program.  That wasn't true, but if it was, didn't they promise to end the failing programs of the Bush administration - so that is no defense even if it were true!

The Dept of Justice operates in the Executive Branch with oversight and funding from congress.  Oversight is hindered because of the stonewall but were they really authorized in law to perform such an operation?

Did they consult or inform the Mexican government?  Was permission granted?

Who was responsible for security in Benghazi?  State Dept?  Marines?  DOD?  WHO??  No one.

Who took credit for the one achievement overseas, killing Osama?  Well that one is easy.  President Obama directed the mission.  14 times in the first person, he made the tough decision, even declared as recently as yesterday through his surrogate on Meet the Press that Romney would not have done it.  Obama did it because he is the Commander in Chief and the buck stops there.  But only if the operation is successful.

One might recall that the President made the Secretary of the Navy issue a memo taking full responsibility while the troops were taking their positions, just in case the operation failed.

President Obama should be addressing the nation after this Univision piece, APOLOGIZING TO MEXICO, apologizing to America and the victims families, taking full responsibility, explaining what it was they were trying to accomplish and explaining what went wrong.  He will not do that.

What a worm we have for a President.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1258 on: October 02, 2012, 07:49:54 AM »



Stephens: Benghazi Was Obama's 3 a.m. Call Libya was a failure of policy and worldview, not intelligence.

Why won't the Libya story go away? Why can't the memory of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and his staff be consigned to the same sad-and-sealed file of Americans killed abroad in dangerous line of duty? How has an episode that seemed at first to have been mishandled by the Romney camp become an emblem of a feckless and deluded foreign policy?

The story-switching and stonewalling haven't helped. But let's start a little earlier.

The hour is 5 p.m., Sept. 11, Washington time, and the scene is an Oval Office meeting among President Obama, the secretary of defense, the national security adviser and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi has been under assault for roughly 90 minutes. Some 30 U.S. citizens are at mortal risk. The whereabouts of Ambassador Stevens are unknown.

What is uppermost on the minds of the president and his advisers? The safety of Americans, no doubt. So what are they prepared to do about it? Here is The Wall Street Journal's account of the meeting:

"There was no serious consideration at that hour of intervention with military force, officials said. Doing so without Libya's permission could represent a violation of sovereignty and inflame the situation, they said. Instead, the State Department reached out to the Libyan government to get reinforcements to the scene."

So it did. Yet the attack was far from over. After leaving the principal U.S. compound, the Americans retreated to a second, supposedly secret facility, which soon came under deadly mortar fire. Time to call in the troops?

"Some officials said the U.S. could also have sent aircraft to the scene as a 'show of force' to scare off the attackers," the Journal reported, noting that there's a U.S. air base just 450 miles away in Sicily. "State Department officials dismissed the suggestions as unrealistic. 'They would not have gotten there in two hours, four hours or six hours.'"

The U.S. security detail only left Washington at 8 a.m. on Sept. 12, more than 10 hours after the attacks began. A commercial jet liner can fly from D.C. to Benghazi in about the same time.

All this is noted with the benefit of hindsight, and the administration deserves to be judged accordingly. But it also deserves to be judged in light of what it knew prior to the attack, including an attack on the mission in June and heightened threat warnings throughout the summer.

So how did the administration do on that count? "That the local security did so well back in June probably gave us a false sense of security," an unnamed American official who has served in Libya told the New York Times last week.

The logic here is akin to supposing that because the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center failed to bring down the towers, nobody need have been concerned thereafter. But let's still make allowances for the kind of bureaucratic ineptitude that knows neither administration nor political party.

The more serious question is why the administration alighted on the idea that the attack wasn't a terrorist act at all. Also, what did the White House think it had to gain by adopting the jihadist narrative that a supposedly inflammatory video clip was at the root of the trouble?

Nobody can say. All the administration will acknowledge is that it has "revised [its] initial assessment to reflect new information that it was a deliberate and organized terrorist attack."

That's from James Clapper, the director of national intelligence. It suggests that our intelligence agencies are either much dumber than previously supposed (always a strong possibility) or much more politicized (equally plausible).

No doubt the administration would now like to shift blame to Mr. Clapper. But what happened in Benghazi was not a failure of intelligence. It was a failure of policy, stemming from a flawed worldview and the political needs of an election season.

Let's review:

The U.S. ignores warnings of a parlous security situation in Benghazi. Nothing happens because nobody is really paying attention, especially in an election year, and because Libya is supposed to be a foreign-policy success. When something does happen, the administration's concerns for the safety of Americans are subordinated to considerations of Libyan "sovereignty" and the need for "permission." After the attack the administration blames a video, perhaps because it would be politically inconvenient to note that al Qaeda is far from defeated, and that we are no more popular under Mr. Obama than we were under George W. Bush. Denouncing the video also appeals to the administration's reflexive habits of blaming America first. Once that story falls apart, it's time to blame the intel munchkins and move on.

It was five in the afternoon when Mr. Obama took his 3 a.m. call. He still flubbed it.

Write to bstephens@wsj.com
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« Reply #1259 on: October 02, 2012, 12:06:09 PM »

Update: American diplomats in Libya made repeated requests for increased security for the consulate in Benghazi.  Request denied. http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/congress/house-committee-says-requests-for-more-security-for-us-diplomats-in-libya-were-denied/2012/10/02/82183b4c-0cac-11e2-97a7-45c05ef136b2_story.html

From Crafty's post: "...there's a U.S. air base just 450 miles away in Sicily."  (L.A. to Reno, NV roughly)

This must have been a haunting feeling in the end.  Imagine you are one of the diplomats under attack.  The nearest support is 450 miles away and the strongest country in the world who sent you there is not willing to send help for fear of offending the group that is tracking you down, attacking and killing you.  Other than that, how do you feel about your security?

Meanwhile, we are closing out in Iraq without leaving a force 'over the horizon' and preparing to do the same in Afghanistan, before we send in our future diplomats.  There is something missing in a strategy of surrender without locking in gains, providing arms without safeguards, leading from behind without establishing a base or any military presence, enemy and terrorist denial, and scaling down our military superiority as our rivals and enemies are scaling theirs up.

Stephens, WSJ continued:
"Let's review:
The U.S. ignores warnings of a parlous security situation in Benghazi. Nothing happens because nobody is really paying attention, especially in an election year, and because Libya is supposed to be a foreign-policy success. When something does happen, the administration's concerns for the safety of Americans are subordinated to considerations of Libyan "sovereignty" and the need for "permission." After the attack the administration blames a video, perhaps because it would be politically inconvenient to note that al Qaeda is far from defeated, and that we are no more popular under Mr. Obama than we were under George W. Bush. Denouncing the video also appeals to the administration's reflexive habits of blaming America first."

Voters are confused about what to do in the Middle East right now, but the approach taken by this administration is ripe for valid criticism.  If we deny American interests are at stake, why are American diplomats on the ground?  If we deny they are at risk post 9/11/01 and after all the other attacks and embassy bombings and knowing al Qaida types are part of the coalition we supported, then we are fools escalating our own danger.

I don't know the answers but the first step is to see the enemy for what it is.  This President didn't and doesn't.  Sent his underling out to 5 Sunday shows to say it was a spontaneous reaction to an unwatched video trailer.  Egypt did not get safer after the Obama Cairo speech.  The enemies are not enemies of George Bush or Republicans; they are enemies of America.

Who got fired over the lack of security in Benghazi and isn't the James Clapper referenced here the same 'intelligence' director who said the Muslim Brotherhood is secular?
« Last Edit: October 02, 2012, 12:08:01 PM by DougMacG » Logged
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« Reply #1260 on: October 19, 2012, 05:55:50 PM »

Who knew?

http://dailycaller.com/2012/10/18/calif-official-whose-agency-under-reported-unemployment-stats-was-obama-campaign-donor/

Calif. official whose agency under-reported unemployment stats was Obama campaign donor

Marty Morgenstern, the secretary of the California agency that substantially under-reported unemployment claims last week, contributed to President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential election campaign, The Daily Caller has learned.

On Oct. 11, the federal government reported that weekly jobless claims were down significantly, suggesting a dramatic national increase in economic growth and a steep decline in layoffs.  Jobless claims, according to the Labor Department, had fallen by 30,000 to 339,000, their lowest level since February 2008.

The good news for the Obama administration spread quickly, with outlets like CNN and Bloomberg declaring, “Jobless claims fall to four-year low.”

But within hours, the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Labor Department analysts announced that one major state had failed to fully document jobless claims. They declined to name the state.

Speculation among market watchers and economists initially focused on California, but the state’s Employment Development Department strongly denied that it had failed to properly document the data.

“Reports that California failed to fully report data to the U.S. Department of Labor, as required, are incorrect and irresponsible,” California Employment Development Department director Pam Harris said in a statement last week. “The California Employment Development Department, which administers the Unemployment Insurance (UI) program in the state, has reported all UI claims data and submitted the data on time.”

Early Thursday, the federal government finally revealed that California had, in fact, under-reported jobless data, skewing the national jobless claims results. This week’s updated jobs report corrected the error and showed unemployment claims spiking back up by 46,000 to 388,000.

Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Morgenstern to lead the California Labor & Workforce Development Agency in 2011. The state agency oversees the Employment Development Department.

According to campaign disclosure records, Morgenstern donated $4,600 — the maximum amount allowed by law — to the 2008 Obama camapaign, beginning with a $1,000 contribution to Obama for America in February 2008. Morgenstern followed up that donation with a $1,300 contribution in June, and then a $2,300 payout in early September.

On all three disclosures, Morgenstern indicated that he was either ”not employed” or “retired.”

According to the Sacramento Business Journal, however, Morgenstern was employed since 2003 as a consultant for the liberal University of California education system.

California officials have denied wrongdoing.
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« Reply #1261 on: October 23, 2012, 07:34:51 PM »

Bob Woodward: Obama 'mistaken' on sequester

'What the president said is not correct,' Woodward told POLITICO | AP Photo
By LEIGH MUNSIL | 10/23/12 4:24 PM EDT Updated: 10/23/12 6:02 PM EDT

Bob Woodward says President Barack Obama got some of his facts wrong on sequester at Monday night’s debate.

Woodward’s book, “The Price of Politics,” has been the go-to fact check source for the president’s answer, in which he claimed the idea of using deep, automatic, across-the-board domestic and defense spending cuts to force Congress to address the nation’s burgeoning federal deficit originated from Congress, not from the White House.

“What the president said is not correct,” Woodward told POLITICO Tuesday. “He’s mistaken. And it’s refuted by the people who work for him.”

Woodward, a Washington Post journalist who was a key reporter on the initial coverage of the Watergate scandal, said he stands behind his reporting in the book, which drew upon sources involved in last year’s deficit talks and detailed notes taken in the meetings.

(Also on POLITICO: Woodward's book: 5 telling moments)

Woodward reports in his book that White House Office of Management Director Jack Lew and Legislative Affairs Director Rob Nabors took the proposal for sequestration to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, and then it was presented to congressional Republicans.

During the debate, however, Obama said the idea originated on Capitol Hill.

“First of all, the sequester is not something that I've proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed,” Obama said, adding his strongest pronouncement to date on its future: “It will not happen.”

Woodward said there’s a possibility the president was unaware of how the idea came about.

“It’s a complicated process — and in fairness to the president — maybe he didn’t know that they were doing this because it’s kind of technical budget jargon,” Woodward said.

“What I wrote — it’s specific date, time, place, participants,” he said. “What I’ve reported is totally accurate. Call Nabors and Lew. Or ask the White House. I mean, they know that’s accurate.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1012/82772.html#ixzz2AAjIgMNA
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« Reply #1262 on: October 23, 2012, 07:42:55 PM »

Did Pres. Obama know about two PRIOR Benghazi attacks?

If he did, then he knew this was a terror attack too BEFORE any report or investigation.

If he did not, were they in the daily intelligence briefings that he did not attend in person.

If they were in there and he did not see them, did he play golf or hold fund raisers on those days.

Just curious.

http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/special-report-bret-baier/blog/2012/10/19/benghazi-documents-show-stevens-worried-about-security-threats-al-qaeda
« Last Edit: October 23, 2012, 07:44:42 PM by DougMacG » Logged
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« Reply #1263 on: November 15, 2012, 06:20:46 PM »

"Maybe peace would have broken out with a different kind of White House, one less committed to waging a perpetual campaign--a White House that would see a 51-48 victory as a call to humility and compromise rather than an irrefutable mandate."

   - The junior Senator from Illinois, Audacity of Hope, 2006, p.20, regarding George W Bush's reelection in 2004

http://books.google.com/books?id=4vlcQZU6mwQC&pg=PA20#v=onepage&q&f=false
« Last Edit: November 15, 2012, 08:12:59 PM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
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« Reply #1264 on: November 21, 2012, 10:41:37 AM »

Obama's 3am call came in at 5pm(?) and he was already awake.

Pres Bush was visiting a Kindergartner class when the 9/11/01 attacks unfolded and took several minutes to pull away.  The delay became a major theme in a movie.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5WztB6HzXxI

One hour and 18 minutes after the attacks in Benghazi began, the President was in the room.   Still doing nothing about it. (?)

Right or wrong that it was so hard to get his attention, it took 2 months with a national election elapsed to even get the question asked publicly:  Where was he when he learned the United States was under attack and what exactly did he do in response to everything he learned - in real time.

We still have no answer.  (Please correct if wrong.)

The official White House schedule indicates he was in the White House when it happened: http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/president/2012-09-11

Benghazi is a coastal, Mediterranean city.  We had a drone in the air.  We have an Naval air base in Sicily with some of the fastest planes in the world.(?)  If the base in Sicily is only to protect Sicily, why the planes?

The stand down order has been denied.(?)  The election is over.  I understand the media's role in the election but can we please now learn what was known when and what exactly was our response.

The argument over defense cuts is academic when we don't use the defense assets to that we have to protect American lives, embassies and diplomats.

Were we just trying to set a good example for Israel in our advocacy of Obama's do-not-defend-your-own-country doctrine?
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« Reply #1265 on: December 17, 2012, 12:56:23 PM »

Is anyone following this?  

http://www.carolineglick.com/e/2012/12/chuck-hagel-for-defense-secret.php

http://israelmatzav.blogspot.com/search?q=hagel

http://www.politico.com/story/2012/12/chuck-hagels-record-on-israel-draws-scrutiny-85123.html

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/12/my-thesis-about-hagel.php

Glick:  "Obama wants to fundamentally transform the US relationship with Israel."

Hagel's record rom the 2nd link:

# In August 2006, Hagel was one of only 12 Senators who refused to write the EU asking them to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organization.

# In October 2000, Hagel was one of only 4 Senators who refused to sign a Senate letter in support of Israel.

# In November 2001, Hagel was one of only 11 Senators who refused to sign a letter urging President Bush not to meet with the late Yassir Arafat until his forces ended the violence against Israel.

# In December 2005, Hagel was one of only 27 who refused to sign a letter to President Bush to pressure the Palestinian Authority to ban terrorist groups from participating in Palestinian legislative elections.

# In June 2004, Hagel refused to sign a letter urging President Bush to highlight Iran's nuclear program at the G-8 summit.

Here's what the National Review wrote about Hagel's stance on Israel in 2002:

"There's nothing Hagel likes less than talking about right and wrong in the context of foreign policy. Pro-Israeli groups view him almost uniformly as a problem. 'He doesn't always cast bad votes, but he always says the wrong thing,' comments an Israel supporter who watches Congress. An April speech is a case in point. 'We will need a wider lens to grasp the complex nature and consequences of terrorism,' said Hagel. He went on to cite a few examples of terrorism: FARC in Colombia, Abu Sayyaf in the Philippines, and the Palestinian suicide bombers. Then he continued, 'Arabs and Palestinians view the civilian casualties resulting from Israeli military occupation as terrorism.' He didn't exactly say he shares this view - but he also failed to reject it."

And here's what the anti-Israel group, CAIR, wrote in praise of Hagel:

"Potential presidential candidates for 2008, like Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Joe Biden and Newt Gingrich, were falling all over themselves to express their support for Israel. The only exception to that rule was Senator Chuck Hagel ?" [Council on American-Islamic Relations, 8/28/06]
« Last Edit: December 17, 2012, 01:14:51 PM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
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« Reply #1266 on: December 18, 2012, 02:01:39 PM »



http://www.glennbeck.com/2012/08/15/barack-obama-this-is-your-exotic-life/?utm_source=Daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=2012-12-18_186359&utm_content=5054942&utm_term=_186359_186366
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« Reply #1267 on: December 22, 2012, 04:31:47 PM »



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« Reply #1268 on: December 22, 2012, 04:35:37 PM »

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« Reply #1269 on: December 22, 2012, 10:09:26 PM »



http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2012/12/barack_obama_s_eulogy_to_daniel_inouye_told_us_more_about_the_president.html
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« Reply #1270 on: December 27, 2012, 02:13:51 PM »

On that Inouye eulogy (previous post in the thread) the final count was “my” 21 times, “me” 12 times and “I” an incredible 30 times for total first person pronouns of 63.  http://www.wnd.com/2012/12/even-inouyes-funeral-is-all-about-obama/#QyyllVKBjupR5b0Z.99
--------------

In the Glibness cabinet, we have:

Lawless Holder at Justice,

Tax cheat Geithner at Treasury

The silent lady in hiding - Hillary - as chief diplomat

Replacing her with Sandinista supporter and admitted war criminal John Kerry.

Rumored for Defense is the most anti-Israel Senator of modern time - Chuck Hagel.

Some protest that Hagel is a bad choice, but he looks to me like a pretty good fit.

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« Reply #1271 on: January 02, 2013, 02:58:09 PM »



http://factsnotfantasy.blogspot.com/2012/10/can-it-all-be-coincidence.html
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« Reply #1272 on: January 02, 2013, 03:29:56 PM »


Absolutely!
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1273 on: January 03, 2013, 03:38:00 PM »

Great American Companies started in the Obama era:

Could be a thread in itself, trying to track this.  Henninger at WSJ writes:

"the number is about zero (Facebook emerged in 2004; Twitter in 2007)"

Solyndra?

Feel free to add to the list...
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« Reply #1274 on: January 03, 2013, 04:29:22 PM »

Only people with "connections" have a chance under the fundamentally changed nation.

Great American Companies started in the Obama era:

Could be a thread in itself, trying to track this.  Henninger at WSJ writes:

"the number is about zero (Facebook emerged in 2004; Twitter in 2007)"

Solyndra?

Feel free to add to the list...
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« Reply #1275 on: January 04, 2013, 11:39:14 AM »

I wish the President all the time with his family he can muster, and a little time out of the office.  Commuting to and from and to and from Hawaii for a false crisis he created however seems wasteful.  The cost of flying Air Force One from Andrews AFB, Washington DC to Hawaii is $1,800,000 - one way - slightly more than four years salary of being Commander in Chief.  He took four of those flights, ($7.2 million?) hopefully 'carpooling' with family on two of them, unlike the trips to Martha's Vineyard where they flew separately.  That money could have bought a lot of free birth control for the homeless.

Some complain of the cost.  Not me, my worry is with the CO2 emissions.  While he is playing little gotcha games with political opponents for a deal tht still leaves trillion dollar deficits, the Arctic is melting.

With fiscal issues still burning we can expect a fossil fuel excise tax soon that applies to ... the rest of us.

Washington Post photo, the President drains an expensive putt while the east coast Sandy victims wait for relief
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« Reply #1276 on: January 06, 2013, 05:38:59 PM »

All government employees are required by federal law to use official email accounts to conduct government business.  You wouldn't want any Freedom of Information Requests to miss any correspondence/.  Or would you?

Lisa Jackson, aka Richard Windsor, abruptly resigned from EPA last week.  Another scandal brewing?

http://dailycaller.com/2012/11/12/epa-chiefs-secret-alias-email-account-revealed/#ixzz2HF1pXGo2

http://pjmedia.com/tatler/2012/12/28/richard-windsor-drove-lisa-jackson-from-the-epa/

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/hide_sneak_aKyvy71WIkHfG3q1CcVmqM
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« Reply #1277 on: January 06, 2013, 06:18:41 PM »

Laws are for the little people. Ask David Gregory.
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« Reply #1278 on: January 06, 2013, 08:12:03 PM »



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5HeoxAmmxnI
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« Reply #1279 on: January 06, 2013, 11:18:04 PM »

Laws are for the little people. Ask David Gregory.

David Gregory is a gun criminal.  How will he ever look Eric Holder in the eye again?
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« Reply #1280 on: January 07, 2013, 07:41:52 AM »

Laws are for the little people. Ask David Gregory.

David Gregory is a gun criminal.  How will he ever look Eric Holder in the eye again?

Next week on "Meet the Press", he loads the magazine, loads the mag into an AR-15 and then gives the AR to a los zetas sicario.
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« Reply #1281 on: January 08, 2013, 09:04:48 PM »

Obama actually passed up a qualified candidate to be the first woman Sec of Defense in history.  Hagel was more convincingly anti-Israel.

The Republican debates had more diversity than this:

Dems made big fun of Romney's successful search for competent women to fill his top posts as Governor.

Ignoring race and gender and picking competence is the Obama story line.  Two thoughts on that:  1) We could have done that at the top of the ticket, and 2) what large agency has Chuck Hagel run where he demonstrated competence beyond that of all American blacks, Hispanics, gays and women?
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« Reply #1282 on: January 09, 2013, 05:28:22 PM »

Omaha World Herald July 3 1998:

Openly gay nominee won't get Hagel vote

By Jake Thompson for The World-Herald   July 3, 1998
http://www.omaha.com/article/19980703/NEWS/121229971/1685

One day last month, Bob Kerrey asked his Senate colleague and fellow Nebraskan, Chuck Hagel, a favor: Could Kerrey stop by with a controversial ambassadorial nominee who wanted to make a personal pitch to Hagel?

Sure, Hagel said, bring him over.

The meeting didn't turn out as Kerrey wished.

As a courtesy to Kerrey, Hagel said, he would listen to the man - James C. Hormel, 64, a Democratic donor, lawyer and philanthropist - whose nomination to become ambassador to Luxembourg has been blocked in the Senate, his backers say, simply because he is gay.

Perhaps Kerrey had hoped Hormel's Nebraska tie might help. The nominee's grandfather, George A. Hormel, founded the giant Hormel Foods, which opened a meatpacking plant in Fremont in 1947.

Perhaps Kerrey had hoped Hormel's philanthropic record would impress. The National Society of Fundraising Executives named him its outstanding philanthropist for 1996.

"We would love to have somebody like James Hormel as part of the Omaha community," Kerrey said recently. "He's actively involved, he gives generously to very important civic efforts."

Hormel, trying to move his nomination forward, had contacted Kerrey, who turned to Hagel. On June 3 Kerrey escorted Hormel and a State Department official to a meeting in Hagel's office. As a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, which is overseeing the nomination, Hagel could play a helpful role.

"We had a good conversation," Hagel, a Republican, recalled last week. "He's a nice fellow."

Kerrey, a Democrat, called Hormel "as well - qualified a nominee as I've seen" and said the meeting led him to think Hagel would support Hormel for the job.

Not so.

Ambassadorial posts are sensitive, Hagel explained.

"They are representing America," he said. "They are representing our lifestyle, our values, our standards. And I think it is an inhibiting factor to be gay - openly aggressively gay like Mr. Hormel - to do an effective job."

Hagel noted a documentary, filmed with money Hormel donated, that showed teachers how they could teach children about homosexuality. He said he had seen another video clip that showed Hormel at what Hagel called an anti - Catholic event in San Francisco, featuring the "Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence," a group of male drag queens.

"It is very clear on this tape that he's laughing and enjoying the antics of an anti - Catholic gay group in this gay parade," Hagel said. "I think it's wise for the president not to go forward with this nomination."

Luxembourg, he noted, is about 95 percent Roman Catholic.

Hagel thus became the latest of a group of Senate conservatives to come out against Hormel's nomination. Critics say the group is discriminating against a qualified nominee.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D - Calif., has defended Hormel, saying he opposes all forms of discrimination.

Over the years Hormel, a former dean of the Chicago Law School, has given money to civil - rights groups, colleges, symphonies, and to groups fighting autism, breast cancer and AIDS. Hormel listed the contributions in a letter to a supporter, Sen. Gordon Smith, R - Ore. In the letter, Hormel said he provided "minor" support for the teacher documentary and had no control over its content.

The Log Cabin Republicans, a gay group, says the videotape from the San Francisco event resulted when men dressed as nuns walked past a broadcast booth where Hormel, a well - known civic leader in the city, was giving an interview to a local reporter.

Hormel's homosexuality is not the problem, say Hagel and other opponents of the nomination. It's his openness about being gay and his advocacy of some causes, they say.

The Senate's majority leader, Trent Lott, R - Miss., heated the issue recently when he said homosexuality was a problem that should be treated "just like alcohol or sex addiction or kleptomania."

Fellow Republican Sen. Alfonse D'Amato of New York took him to task: "On a personal level, I am embarrassed that our Republican Party, the party of Lincoln, is seen to be the force behind this injustice," D'Amato wrote to Lott, calling for the nomination to be brought to a vote.

Then Sen. Jesse Helms, R - N.C., weighed in against D'Amato, accusing the New Yorker of using the issue to boost his re - election bid.

Helms, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, has vowed to continue blocking a vote on Hormel. The committee on a voice vote last October recommended Hormel's nomination to the full Senate. It has been held up since.

Hormel's supporters say they have the 60 votes needed to break the hold on the nomination - if Lott will allow it to come to the floor.

Hagel, meanwhile, said a homosexual should not necessarily be disqualified from all ambassadorships.

His approach to nominees, he said, has been to examine the person's qualifications first. The United States has had gay ambassadors in the past and gays in the military, who have done well by quietly adopting the Pentagon's current "don't ask, don't tell" attitude.

Hormel, however, has gone beyond that, Hagel said.

He "very aggressively told the world of his gayness and the funding and all the things he's been involved in. I think you do go beyond common sense there, and reason and a certain amount of decorum," Hagel said.

"If you send an ambassador abroad with a cloud of controversy hanging over him, then I think it's unfair to our country, it's unfair to the host country and it's unfair to the ambassador because the effectiveness of that individual is going to be seriously curtailed. That's just a fact of life. And I believe Hormel's situation is one of those."
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« Reply #1283 on: January 09, 2013, 05:35:41 PM »

Hagel until this process began agreed with extremists Richard Mourdock and Todd Akin on the question that cost them Senate seats this past year:
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/01/09/is-there-anything-chuck-hagel-won-t-say.html
Senate-candidate Hagel said that he "tightened" his position on abortion after he said he discovered that abortion in the case of rape and incest are "rare"...

Assuming that isn't what attracted the President to this 'Republican', it must have been his anti-Israel views.
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« Reply #1284 on: January 09, 2013, 11:08:37 PM »

Nice find Doug.
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« Reply #1285 on: January 10, 2013, 10:09:52 AM »



Do you believe that the former Director of OMB / Office of Management and Budget, Chief of staff, graduate of Harvard and Georgetown, does not know that passing a budget in the Senate requires only 51 votes?

Does Candy Crowley not know that either?
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« Reply #1286 on: January 10, 2013, 12:18:24 PM »

The point is cloture. The implicit assumption is that GOP senator(s) will filibuster.
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« Reply #1287 on: January 10, 2013, 01:18:30 PM »

The point is cloture. The implicit assumption is that GOP senator(s) will filibuster.

I believe you cannot filibuster a budget bill under current Senate rules.


"Budget bills are governed under special rules called "reconciliation" which do not allow filibusters."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standing_Rules_of_the_United_States_Senate

Under reconciliation, bills cannot be filibustered and can thus pass the Senate by majority vote.
http://www.brookings.edu/research/articles/2009/04/20-budget-mann

The reconciliation process, by contrast, limits debate to 20 hours and bypasses the filibuster altogether. It was instituted to ensure that minority obstruction couldn't block important business like passing a budget or reducing the deficit.
http://prospect.org/article/50-vote-senate

Budget reconciliation is a procedure created in 1974 as a way of making changes in federal policy to meet fiscal guidelines set by  Congress. Because the process includes a limit of 20 hours of debate, reconciliation bills cannot be blocked by filibuster in the Senate and need only a simple majority to pass.
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/organizations/c/congress/budget_reconciliation/index.html
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« Reply #1288 on: January 10, 2013, 01:24:39 PM »

http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2012/02/parliamentary-procedure


"It's true that you cannot filibuster a budget resolution in the Senate, because the Budget Act provides special rules for consideration of a budget resolution, including a time limit on debate. So the Senate can pass a resolution with only a majority vote.  However, the resolution does not take effect when the Senate passes it.  It takes effect in one of two ways: if the House and Senate pass an identical resolution, usually in the form of a conference report; or if the Senate passes a separate Senate Resolution (as opposed to a concurrent resolution, which is what a budget resolution is) that says the House is “deemed” to have agreed to the budget resolution passed by the Senate.
But there are no special procedures for the simple Senate Resolution required by this second, “deeming” process, so it is subject to the unlimited debate allowed on almost everything in the Senate.  If you do not have the support of 60 Senators to invoke cloture and end a filibuster, or prevent a filibuster from even starting (because everyone knows  60 Senators support cloture), you cannot pass such a deeming resolution in the Senate.
Because its rules are different, the House with a simple majority can pass a resolution deeming that the House and Senate have agreed to the House resolution so that it can take effect. This means the allocations in the resolution, such as for appropriations, are in effect in the House and anybody can raise a point-of-order against legislation that would cause a committee to exceed its allocation.
But this is for purposes of enforcement in the House only. What the House does has no effect whatsoever on the Senate or its budget enforcement.  And vice versa, if the Senate deems that its budget resolution has been agreed to."


The point is cloture. The implicit assumption is that GOP senator(s) will filibuster.

I believe you cannot filibuster a budget bill under current Senate rules.


"Budget bills are governed under special rules called "reconciliation" which do not allow filibusters."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standing_Rules_of_the_United_States_Senate

Under reconciliation, bills cannot be filibustered and can thus pass the Senate by majority vote.
http://www.brookings.edu/research/articles/2009/04/20-budget-mann

The reconciliation process, by contrast, limits debate to 20 hours and bypasses the filibuster altogether. It was instituted to ensure that minority obstruction couldn't block important business like passing a budget or reducing the deficit.
http://prospect.org/article/50-vote-senate

Budget reconciliation is a procedure created in 1974 as a way of making changes in federal policy to meet fiscal guidelines set by  Congress. Because the process includes a limit of 20 hours of debate, reconciliation bills cannot be blocked by filibuster in the Senate and need only a simple majority to pass.
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/organizations/c/congress/budget_reconciliation/index.html
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1289 on: January 10, 2013, 01:26:47 PM »

Excellent discussion, but it belongs on the Congress thread.  Would someone please paste it there so we can continue the discussion there?  TIA-- I am on my way out the door in a few minutes.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1290 on: January 10, 2013, 01:56:55 PM »

Total first person pronouns used in his eulogy of Sen Inouye: 63.  So we know he knows how to use them.

"... will not have another debate with this Congress over whether or not they should pay the bills that they've already racked up through the laws that they passed."
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324081704578231542240171394.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_MIDDLESecond


What did Harry Truman say?  The buck stops ... ... over there!?
« Last Edit: January 10, 2013, 02:01:55 PM by DougMacG » Logged
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1291 on: January 10, 2013, 03:18:37 PM »

Ummm , , , the fact is that under the Constitution the Congress must pass spending that originates in the House.  The Reps control the House.  They lack the testicles to stand erect.

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DougMacG
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« Reply #1292 on: January 10, 2013, 05:20:32 PM »

, , , the fact is that under the Constitution the Congress must pass spending that originates in the House...

All the Senate needs to do is pick up a House bill, change the amounts until they can pass it in good faith under the terms of the 1974 Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act that created CBO and most of the current process.  The House has passed a budget every year.  The Senate has not passed a budget other than "continuing resolutions" since April 2009, roughly 5 trillion dollars of debt ago.  It cannot be filibustered under  Senate rules in effect since 1974.

Crafty, yours is not the reason that Lew gave.  He gave a false reason for why they haven't passed a budget, putting blame on Republicans in the Democratic controlled chamber.  It is a lie and a deception.  As an expert on the process (OMB Director under two Presidents!), he knew that was false.

http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/house/145259-house-passes-republican-budget-for-fy-2011-in-x-y-vote
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/30/us/politics/house-passes-ryan-budget-blueprint-along-party-lines.html?_r=0
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-01-02/u-s-house-passes-budget-bill-averts-most-tax-increases.html
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/post/jack-lews-misleading-claim-about-the-senates-failure-to-pass-a-budget-resolution/2012/02/12/gIQAs11z8Q_blog.html?wprss=fact-checker
http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/021012-600854-democrats-refusal-to-pass-budget-is-illegal.htm
http://www.dailypaul.com/269094/the-law-requires-congress-to-pass-a-budget-every-america-hasnt-had-since-2009

It's true that you cannot filibuster a budget resolution in the Senate, because the Budget Act provides special rules for consideration of a budget resolution, including a time limit on debate. So the Senate can pass a resolution with only a majority vote. 
http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2012/02/parliamentary-procedure

Budget resolutions are not subject to a filibuster.
http://thehill.com/homenews/senate/206309-gop-well-pass-budget-every-year-#ixzz2HcHcSPvT

“But we also need to be honest. You can’t pass a budget in the Senate of the United States without 60 votes and you can’t get 60 votes without bipartisan support. So unless Republicans are willing to work with Democrats in the Senate, Harry Reid is not going to be able to get a budget passed. And I think he was reflecting the reality of that that could be a challenge.”

--White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew, on CNN, Feb. 12. 2012 
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/post/jack-lews-misleading-claim-about-the-senates-failure-to-pass-a-budget-resolution/2012/02/12/gIQAs11z8Q_blog.html?wprss=fact-checker
"Four Pinocchios"

"We wavered between three and four Pinocchios, in part because the budget resolution is only a blueprint, not a law, but ultimately decided a two-time budget director really should know better."  - The hard-right Washington Post

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1293 on: January 10, 2013, 09:42:43 PM »

I thank you for continuing my education (no snarkiness at all, this is 100% sincere).  I find what you post to be persuasive.

My post was responding to:

"What did Harry Truman say?  The buck stops ... ... over there!?"

My intention is to underline just how much power and RESPONSIBILTY the Constitution imbues in the House of Representatives with regard to budgetary matters.
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bigdog
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« Reply #1294 on: January 10, 2013, 09:50:11 PM »

http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=155

Step Three: Enforcing the Terms of the Budget Resolution


The main enforcement mechanism that prevents Congress from passing legislation that violates the terms of the budget resolution is the ability of a single member of the House or the Senate to raise a budget "point of order" on the floor to block such legislation. In some recent years, this point of order has not been particularly important in the House because it can be waived there by a simple majority vote on a resolution developed by the leadership-appointed Rules Committee, which sets the conditions under which each bill will be considered on the floor.

However, the budget point of order is important in the Senate, where any legislation that exceeds a committee's spending allocation — or cuts taxes below the level allowed in the budget resolution — is vulnerable to a budget point of order on the floor that requires 60 votes to waive.

Appropriations bills (or amendments to them) must fit within the 302(a) allocation given to the Appropriations Committee as well as the Committee-determined 302(b) sub-allocation for the coming fiscal year. Tax or entitlement bills (or any amendments offered to them) must fit within the budget resolution's spending limit for the relevant committee or within the revenue floor, both in the first year and over the total multi-year period covered by the budget resolution. The cost of a tax or entitlement bill is determined (or "scored") by the Budget Committees, nearly always by relying on the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, which measures the bill against a budgetary "baseline" that projects entitlement spending or tax receipts under current law.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1295 on: January 11, 2013, 10:45:01 AM »

http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=155

Step Three: Enforcing the Terms of the Budget Resolution
...
However, the budget point of order is important in the Senate, where any legislation that exceeds a committee's spending allocation — or cuts taxes below the level allowed in the budget resolution — is vulnerable to a budget point of order on the floor that requires 60 votes to waive.
...

Yes, BD, but a Budget Point of Order is a rule defined in the 3rd step, to apply to changes after a budget is passed.  The second step (same link) says this:

"Once the committees are done, their budget resolutions go to the House and Senate floors, where they can be amended (by a majority vote)...It also requires only a majority vote to pass, and its consideration is one of the few actions that cannot be filibustered in the Senate."

We never got past Step 2, to pass a budget by April 15.  Step 3 controls the process after there is a budget resolution passed.  It defines rules they must follow to change what was passed.  But there wasn't one passed in the Senate in the 3 years in question.  Right?


The original point about Lew and a lying White House is that the threat of a filibuster was not the reason the Senate had not passed a budget.  Lew said it was.  This was a Susan Rice moment.  He was sent up to create a false impression of what happened and what didn't happen.  Republicans wanted Senate Democrats to pass a budget - to show their hand; they were not trying to stop them, nor could they.  Republicans with control of the House in 2 of those years had no need to stop a budget in the Senate and no power to stop it.  This is a matter of political gamesmanship and they deserve to be called out.  Republicans wanted Democrats to 'show us your spending' as required under the 1974 law.   Show us your cuts, show us your spending and we will use that either get cuts done or for other political advantage:  'Senator so-and-so voted to cut Medicare, here is the record', or he/she refused to make any cuts at all to close a trillion dollar gap. 

But there was no need for a Dem majority Senate to follow the law and pass a budget because there is no penalty defined in the 1974 law.  They just kept the spending going without real cuts for years with continuing resolutions, blamed the Republicans, and using the cover provided by willing accomplices in the media like professional journalist Candy Crowley in the clip.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1296 on: January 11, 2013, 10:50:32 AM »

Again, great stuff, but this belongs in the Congress thread.  Thank you.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1297 on: January 12, 2013, 09:24:17 PM »


Well, if this turns out to be true, a lot of people are going to owe an apology , , ,


http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/?p=375765
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1298 on: January 15, 2013, 12:21:33 PM »

Pelosi, Obama et al voted against debt ceiling hikes under Bush to protest further spending on the Iraq war.  Now the President says the debt ceiling has nothing to do with spending.  It is only about paying bills already incurred.

The mainstream professional journalists have jumped ALL OVER HIM for the contradiction.  (Just kidding)
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1299 on: January 15, 2013, 12:50:06 PM »

President Obama Monday: "They don't think it's smart to protect endless corporate loopholes and tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans rather than rebuild our roads and our schools . . ."

But wait. It was President Obama who insisted that the recent tax bill be loaded with tens of billions of dollars worth of additional "corporate loopholes," including for his billionaire buddies in the green-energy business (and Hollywood)

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324581504578231721868759336.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop

Mainstream professional journalists jumped ALL OVER HIM yesterday for this most obvious contradiction.  (Just kidding)
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