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Author Topic: 2012 Presidential  (Read 106080 times)
G M
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« Reply #1900 on: October 14, 2012, 05:32:38 PM »

Biden told a series of whoppers on Obama's "foreign policy," such as it is - during the debate.  That neither Ryan nor the debate moderator called him on these obvious lies (particularly about Benghazi) is regrettable, to say the least. 



Professional.

So now you want the moderator to get in a participant's face, at least figuratively. Please... be consistent. It is not as if Ryan was free of error, and it is not as if the so-called left leaning press hasn't made mention of the Biden discussion of Libya.

I've already articulated how Raddatz spun her question to provide dems cover on Libya.
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bigdog
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« Reply #1901 on: October 15, 2012, 06:02:35 AM »

Check this out:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/14/us/politics/campaigns-mine-personal-lives-to-get-out-vote.html?smid=tw-share   
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1902 on: October 15, 2012, 08:51:36 AM »

"Campaigns Mine Personal Lives to Get Out Vote"

Very creepy.  Dick Morris said give me your demographic info and I will tell you with 2/3 certainty how you vote.  With martial arts and self defense I'll bet there is a heavy leaning conservative for self reliance and 2nd amendment rights.  For inner city landlords who value property rights and have seen the failure of our welfare system up close and personal, the percentage leaning conservative approaches 100.  Single women who see the government as provider and protector, someone who look out for you until death do you part, a role formerly known as husband, they lean heavily Democratic.

In 1988 at a Grateful Dead concert, through the crowd and the haze of the smoke I found myself bumping into a voter registration table and a guy wanting me to register.  I told him I'm all registered and that I'm a Jack Kemp delegate.  He had no idea what I was talking about.  He didn't want me to vote, he wanted me to vote a certain way.  They associated taste in music with political choice and they tied a feeling of free spirit and liberties with big government advocacy.

I would rather know if a person is informed before I ask him to vote. 

“Voting is habit-forming,”  Yes.  I see the first time voters in 2008 caught up in the Obama excitement of hope and change as future conservative voters.  Come out and vote wrong.  See how it goes for you.  Make the adjustment.  Come out and vote again - and try to do better the second time.  )
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1903 on: October 15, 2012, 09:47:01 AM »

Pundits say Reagan also had a off day on the first reelection debate, 1984.  In the second debate the moderator came out hard on his age question:



Reagan had some charm you see and Obama told Sen. Reid, "Harry, I have a gift", the gift of oratory, allegedly.

Both had a predecessor they could blame for their troubles.  One didn't need to.  Reagan had a pro-growth agenda, and it was enacted by reaching across the aisle.  Obama has 50,000 new regulations, 2 dozen new taxes, and a government takeover to one degree or another of a host of industries, rejecting pro-growth economics at every turn.

Reagan had approximately 8% GDP growth rate in 1984.  Obama is going from 2% growth to 1% and now approaching zero.  3 million fewer people are working while the population continues to grow.

Reagan did not win 49 states based on charm alone.

Sorry, what were the similarities again?

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objectivist1
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« Reply #1904 on: October 15, 2012, 10:02:15 AM »

“Voting is habit-forming,”  Yes.  I see the first time voters in 2008 caught up in the Obama excitement of hope and change as future conservative voters.  Come out and vote wrong.  See how it goes for you.  Make the adjustment.  Come out and vote again - and try to do better the second time.  )

I've long favored (as I surmise the Framers would) eliminating as many uninformed voters as possible by having a citizen demonstrate basic knowledge of the government structure before being allowed to vote.  I would guess that a large percentage of voters in presidential elections cannot even name their two Senators and their House representative.  That alone ought to disqualify them.  In addition - I would prohibit anyone receiving government checks from voting.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2012, 10:04:28 AM by objectivist1 » Logged

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DougMacG
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« Reply #1905 on: October 15, 2012, 10:17:49 AM »

In the first debate Pres. Obama looked weak.  He will look sharper tomorrow. 

In the VP debate, Joe Biden was all aggressive over Ryan and the Romney plan.  As Elizabeth Warren would say, good for him.

In neither debate did candidate Obama or Biden explain how they think this is good economic progress or why anyone should think the next 4 years will be any better.

Pres. Obama through Axelrod promises to follow up strongly on the scrutiny of the Romney plan.  But we already did that.  No one has yet asked similarly tough questions on the Obama plan and the Obama math, uh, arithmetic.

The townhall format also presents the possibility of an ordinary citizen to ask the question that becomes the zinger that frames this election.  We will see.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1906 on: October 15, 2012, 10:32:53 AM »

http://www.forbes.com/sites/realspin/2012/10/14/fundamental-economic-requirements-for-our-next-president/

Fundamental Economic Requirements For Our Next President

By Charles R. Schwab

Every American voter is approaching a critical decision.  Of the two presidential candidates before us, who is best suited to lead our nation through the next four years?

The answer to that question is a simple test: can they ignite economic growth?  The economic crisis we face is our greatest threat, affecting every American. For investors – and today over half of Americans are investors in some form – this issue is particularly pressing as it impacts not just their financial situation today, but also their retirement and other long-term goals. Economic growth is the only ingredient that will help pull the country out of its present funk and allow us to solve our pressing issues.

Economic growth is the fuel that makes new jobs, creates new industries, and helps your hard work pay off.  A four percent GDP growth rate would lead to three million new jobs every year and lead to higher wages for those already employed. Growth expands the tax coffers nationally and locally, enabling investments for the future.  That same four percent growth will provide America with $150 billion per year in additional tax revenue. With growth, everyone benefits.

Growth is not complicated.  It is a force of nature. But when it stalls, as it has for the last four years, it will not return without effective leadership. A great leader understands and applies the power of incentives to encourage growth. Incentives appeal to a basic human instinct and motivate productive choices. They are used throughout our lives from grades in school that encourage learning and higher performance, to the incentives we use at work through pay, bonuses and promotions to recognize and encourage accomplishment.  Incentives are the most powerful tool a government and its leaders have to spur economic growth.

Every voter needs to ask which candidate will offer the most incentives to get our economy growing again.  For example, which candidate will look at tax policy as an incentive to spur growth? Capital gains are taxed at a lower rate in our tax system today to recognize and encourage people to put their money to work.  That money in turn gets invested in businesses which hire and expand.  That tax incentive encourages risk taking and investment for growth. Which candidate understands the power of tax incentives?

Which candidate understands how to effectively apply an incentive to encourage businesses to invest in job training? It is a tragedy today that there are jobs available but not enough people trained to fill them. Which candidate would streamline the muddle of ineffective programs today and encourage corporations to sponsor training programs through a simple, universal incentive? A properly-sized tax credit for job trainees hired over the next five years would do the trick.

Which candidate will review every line of the tax code and regulation to assess its relevance and its complexity?  If there is a simpler, clearer way to meet the goals, the regulation should be rewritten.  If the regulation is outdated, it should be scrapped. Job creators, particularly small businesses, are looking for clarity and certainty: certainty from the tax code, certainty on the regulatory environment.  Business leaders cannot create jobs when they cannot accurately assess the impact of taxes and regulations on their business.

Lower corporate tax rates in foreign countries encourage corporations to do their business outside the U.S.  Incentives here in the U.S. could change that. Which candidate would incentivize U.S. corporations to bring some of their $1.3 trillion in business now centered abroad, here to a more business-friendly U.S. through lower tax rates?

Strong economies need cheap and plentiful energy.  Which candidate will lead us to energy independence through the development of our own domestic resources, rather than continuing to kneel to OPEC and other foreign oil suppliers?

Incentives should not be confused with disincentives, their ugly step-sisters, which are based on penalties and don’t motivate progress. They stifle investment and innovation. Today, disincentives abound and are on the rise.  Increased taxes, in whatever form, are a disincentive to earn, to spend, to save and invest. Large regulatory schemes like Obama care and Dodd Frank are a disincentive when they make it unclear to companies what their cost of operations will be. Obama Care in particular, which we know mandates additional employer health care costs for new full-time employees, freezes the motivation of employers to hire new full-time employees.  The lack of certainty about what those costs will be leaves them unable to move forward.

Today, our fundamental problem is a lack of economic growth and no attention to the incentives that can re-ignite it. The test for deciding who should be our next President is who understands that and will put the pieces in place to solve it. Our economy, job prospects, investments and retirement plans will get substantial help by picking the growth candidate.

Which candidate has the record to arrive at the big decisions and incentivize growth? Mitt Romney supports all of the growth-generating measures I have outlined above. If economic growth is what we need—and I believe it is—he is the right choice.
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objectivist1
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« Reply #1907 on: October 15, 2012, 01:20:27 PM »

Michael Barone - Washington Examiner - October 13, 2012:


When a politician is in trouble, he usually falls back on what he knows best -- the world he saw around him when he entered into political awareness as a young adult.

That's what seems to have happened to the Democratic ticket after Barack Obama's disastrous performance in the Denver debate Oct. 3.

So Obama on the campaign trail and Joe Biden in the vice presidential debate fell back on what they know from their formative political years.

At least that's the best explanation I can come up with for the Obama campaign's obsession with Big Bird.

On the campaign trail in the week after the presidential debate, Obama mentioned Big Bird 13 times -- 13 times more than he mentioned Libya.

And the Obama campaign rolled out a 30-second spot showing Mitt Romney saying "Big Bird" several times. Even liberals labeled it the worst TV ad they had ever seen.

But someone in the Obama campaign -- and remember that the campaign always reflects the candidate -- thought hitting Romney for defunding PBS, "Sesame Street" and Big Bird would be devastating.

Never mind that "Sesame Street" gets little money from the government and has an endowment in the hundreds of millions. As the "Sesame" folks assured us, Big Bird is going to continue to be on the air whatever Romney does.

The Big Bird offensive would have been more effective in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when Obama came of political age. Lots of people then saw public broadcasting as a needed alternative to commercial television.

Better your kids watch "Sesame Street" than cartoons interlaced with ads for sugared cereals. And they'd learn to respect ghetto kids in the process.

It's an argument with some appeal still in the state Senate district Obama sculpted for himself in 2002, linking black neighborhoods on Chicago's South Side with the rich liberals in Gold Coast apartments. But for ordinary voters, with 133 cable channels to choose from, "Sesame Street" and PBS are just not a big deal.

Fast forward to Joe Biden at the debate. He clearly did what the Obama campaign wanted: lots of lusty attacks on Mitt Romney, repeated mentions of that magic number 47 percent, smirks and groans and derisive laughter.

He interrupted Paul Ryan and moderator Martha Raddatz more than 80 times, which may have been offputting to Independents and Undecideds. But he gave core Democrats like interrupter Chris Matthews something to cheer about.

On substance he was weaker. He denied that the White House knew that Ambassador Christopher Stevens was attacked by terrorists rather than in a spontaneous demonstration prompted by an anti-Islam video. That's in vivid contrast with sworn testimony Wednesday that the State Department knew it was a terrorist attack all along.

Biden's statement was either an untruth or a confession of incompetence. If the State Department had the information, why didn't the White House?

Another telling moment came when Raddatz asked Biden what Obama would do about the budget deficit other than raise taxes on high earners. Raise taxes on high earners, Biden repeated again and again. That's the second-term agenda.

On entitlements, Biden said that Social Security and Medicare were "guaranteed." That's not what most young voters think. They understand in some visceral way that the current programs are unsustainable.

In his closing statement Biden identified Romney's "47 percent of the people who won't take responsibility" with "my mother and father. He's talking about the places I grew up in, my neighbors in Scranton, [Pa.], and Claymont, [Del.]"

Those people, born around 1920, would rally to candidates who promised to maintain Social Security and Medicare when Biden first ran for the Senate in 1972. They would understand his reference to Republican opposition to these programs when they were enacted in 1935 and 1965. But that's 77 and 47 years ago now.

But the Obama campaign wrote off the white working class last spring. Biden was making an appeal that worked in his political youth but not so much these days.

Polling suggests Obama lost ground with women, and the CNN instant poll showed Biden scoring badly with them. As for young people, will they be attracted to a man who keeps shouting "Malarkey!" a word not in common use for years?

In the two debates, voters saw a near-comatose Obama and a near-manic Biden -- and two sober, well-informed Republicans. That's not a good contrast for Democrats.

Michael Barone, The Examiner's senior political analyst, can be contacted at mbarone@washingtonexaminer.com. His column appears Wednesday and Sunday, and his stories and blog posts appear on washingtonexaminer.com.
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"You have enemies?  Good.  That means that you have stood up for something, sometime in your life." - Winston Churchill.
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1908 on: October 15, 2012, 03:57:38 PM »

________________________________________
The Romney Tax Plan To view this article, Click Here
Brian S. Wesbury - Chief Economist
Bob Stein, CFA - Senior Economist
Date: 10/15/2012
The US federal budget is a mess. Spending has soared, which has hurt economic growth and undermined tax revenues. The result is four consecutive years of trillion dollar deficits.
Politicians are always tempted to hike taxes to fix deficits, but the US has reached the point where this is not possible. To fix this mess, spending must be reduced. The US has never balanced its budget when spending was more than 19.5% of GDP. Big government undermines economic growth.
But, the fiscal cliff is looming and our tax code is a morass of deductions, one-year fixes, and temporary rate structures. It is clear that President Obama wants to lift taxes on the wealthy and the only question is what that may look like.
Governor Romney wants to make some big changes to the US tax code: extending all the tax cuts that go back to 2001/03, ending the alternative minimum tax, getting rid of the extra income taxes in Obamacare, and then cutting regular income tax rates an additional 20%. Tax rates on regular income that now go from 10% up to 35% would range from 8% up to 28%.
The Romney campaign says his tax cuts are “revenue neutral” if we limit deductions (broaden the tax base) and count the positive effect on revenue of some extra economic growth due to better incentives. But, candidate Romney has been silent on what deductions he will choose to eliminate.
Using 2009 data, we can estimate that in 2015 taxpayers would have about $1.7 trillion in itemized deductions. In 2015, we estimate that the big deductions would be; Medical ($170 billion), State and Local taxes ($333 bil), Real Estate tax deduction ($237 bil), Mortgage Interest deduction ($592 bil), and Charitable Contributions ($223 bil).
Applying an average tax rate of 25% to the total of these deductions suggests getting rid of all of them would generate an additional $425 billion – approximately 30% of all income tax revenue. If we include traditional (and cautious) models of positive revenue feedback effects, revenues would likely be boosted by another $120 billion from better economic growth.
The total increase in revenues from excluding all deductions and a positive revenue feedback loop would be $545 billion, more than offsetting the cut in tax rates and allowing the code to maintain some popular middle class deductions.

Lobbyists in Washington have a long-standing opposition to ending any deductions and many politicians on both sides stand ready to defend all of them. But these deductions distort the economy by redirecting resources toward areas in a way that does not accurately reflect the most optimum allocation of resources. We hope that the election provides a mandate for this type of reform, it would be very positive.

There is one other major political and budgetary hurdle. The scorekeepers in Washington will not accept the current tax code as the baseline. Instead, they will assume that the Bush tax cuts expire in 2013 and all Obamacare taxes become effective. Any plan that does not include these huge tax hikes will be “scored” as a major reduction in tax revenues.

As a result, the only way to get Romney’s tax cuts passed is to get 60 votes in the Senate. But that’s highly unlikely. Instead, if elected, Romney would have to make his plan temporary using the same special budget process Bush used back in 2001/03, so he could pass them with only 50 Senators.

Bottom line, we like the plan, but don’t expect full passage on a permanent basis. Compromises will have to be made.
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G M
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« Reply #1909 on: October 15, 2012, 04:03:21 PM »

I like this version of Wesbury better.
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objectivist1
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« Reply #1910 on: October 15, 2012, 05:05:36 PM »

American Jewry’s Cherished Values

The most significant passage:  "For 70% of American Jews, party loyalty trumps all of their conceivable rational interests. For them, partisan loyalty is more important than facts. They do not want to use independent judgment. They just want to be Democrats.

The most disturbing aspect of the surveys of American Jewish voters is not that they are willing to vote for the most hostile US president Israel has ever experienced in order to remain true to their party. The most disturbing aspect of the American Jewish community’s devotion to Obama and the Democrats is that it indicates that the vast majority of American Jews have abandoned their faculties for independent thought and judgment in favor of conformism and slavish partisanship. They have rendered themselves unreachable."


Posted By Caroline Glick On October 15, 2012 - www.frontpagemag.com

Originally published in The Jerusalem Post.

Decades ago, the sociographer Milton Himmelfarb coined the aphorism that “American Jews earn like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.” And his words ring as true today as ever. Surveys show that roughly 70 percent of American Jews intend to cast their ballots for President Barack Obama’s reelection next month.

Himmelfarb’s quip indicated that American Jews abjure their economic interests in favor of their liberal values. Certainly it is true that for American Jews to vote for Obama next month they must act against their economic interests.

Obama’s economic policies have taken a huge toll on the economic fortunes of American Jews who invest disproportionately in the stock market. His nationalization of the college loan business has given universities impetus to raise tuition rates still further, thus dooming more young American Jews to start their adult lives under a mountain of debt. And it isn’t at all clear how they will be able to pay off this debt since under Obama half of recent college graduates cannot find jobs.

Obama’s gutting of Medicare to pay for Obamacare has harmed the medical choices for older Jewish Americans.

His war on tax deductions for charitable contributions has placed synagogues, Jewish schools and nursing homes in financial jeopardy.

So with economics ruled out as a reason to support Obama we are left with American-Jewish values.

But is Obama really advancing those values? What are those values anyway? Well, there’s civil liberties.

American Jews like those. But Obama doesn’t.

Take freedom of speech. Obama is the most hostile president to freedom of speech in recent memory. He has advocated implementing the so-called “fairness doctrine” for radio to stifle the free speech of his political opponents on talk radio.

He has sought to undermine the freedom of the Internet through federal regulations and intimidation of Internet companies such as Google.

He has made repeated and outspoken attempts to intimidate individuals, groups and businesses including Google to bar freedom of speech as relates to criticism of Islam. He has purged the lexicon of the federal government of all terms necessary to describe jihad, Islamic radicalism and terrorism, and so made it impossible for federal employees to examine, investigate, discuss or understand the nature of the greatest national security threat facing the US.

Then there are women’s rights. American Jews like those.

True, Obama has distinguished himself as the greatest ally of abortion-on-demand ever. He even supported infanticide of babies who survived abortions when he served in the Illinois legislature.

But, we women are a bit more than reproductive machines.

We also work and raise families. And Obama’s economic programs hurt women as much if not more than they hurt men.

Aside from that, there are females who live outside of the US.

American Jews have long been outspoken champions of women’s rights around the world. But here Obama’s record is arguably worse than any president in US history.

Obama has abandoned the women most at risk of gender-based discrimination, rape and murder – the women and girls of the Muslim world. Whereas the Bush administration liberated the women and girls of Afghanistan from the maniacally misogynist Taliban regime, the Obama administration is negotiating with the Taliban and setting the conditions for its return to power. If the signature image of the Bush administration’s war in Afghanistan was that of women voting, the signature image of Obama’s war in Afghanistan is the photo of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai. This week Yousafzai was shot in the head by the Taliban in Pakistan for her defense of the right of girls to go to school.

Then there is the cause of good governance. American Jews like that.

But here, too, Obama fails to live up to liberal values of clean politics. Every day seems to bring with it another scandal related to the Obama administration.

This week we learned that the Obama campaign is illegally soliciting funds from foreigners.

According to a report published by the Government Accountability Institute, some 20% of visitors to the Obama campaign’s fund-raising site “my.barackobama.com” are foreigners, barred by US law from contributing to political campaigns. So, too, the Obama.com website was registered by Robert Roche, a US businessman living in Shanghai with ties to Chinese state-owned companies. Roche is an Obama campaign bundler. Sixty-eight percent of the traffic on the site comes from foreign users. Obama.com is currently managed by a Palestinian rights activist in Maine.

Finally, there is the cause of Israel and US-Israel relations that American Jews are assumed to care about.

After the fiasco at the Democratic National Convention when the widespread antipathy for Israel raging in the Democratic Party was broadcast on primetime television, the Obama administration has stopped even trying to hide its contempt for the Jewish state and its American Jewish supporters.

Whereas the US refused to walk out of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s obscene address to the UN General Assembly last month, US Ambassador Susan Rice chose to absent herself entirely from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s address before the body.

Adding insult to injury, last week Obama appointed Salam al-Marayati to represent the US at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s annual 10-day human rights conference. Marayati is the founder and executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Committee. As Robert Spencer recalled this week, on September 11, 2001, Marayati gave an interview to a Los Angeles radio station accusing Israel of being responsible for the jihadist attacks on the US.

He is an outspoken supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah.

And Obama appointed him to represent America at a major human rights conference.

So what is it that drives over two-thirds of American Jews to support Obama? The only issues that come easily to mind are social issues – particularly the two flagship causes of American Jews these days – abortion and homosexual marriage.

While it is true that Obama shares their positions on these issues, it is hard to believe that these two issues have become the cri du coeur of more than two-thirds of American Jews.

It isn’t that it is wrong for people to support abortions on demand and homosexual marriage. And it isn’t wrong for people to oppose them. There are reasonable, Jewish arguments to be made for a woman’s right to abort her unborn children. But there are also reasonable Jewish arguments for constraining that right. There are Jewish arguments in favor of permitting homosexuals to wed. And there are Jewish arguments opposing such unions.

Then there is the relative urgency of the issues. With the US economy in a rut and American national security increasingly imperiled, are abortion rights and gay marriage really the American Jewish community’s top priorities?

True, there are some American Jewish fanatics who are propelled to near violence when faced with opponents of their beliefs. And they are capable of intimidating a large proportion of their fellow Jews into toeing their extremist lines. Their intolerance has been on display in all of its ugliness at synagogues around the US since the start of the election campaign. In one recent, outrageous incident, one gay marriage partisan managed to intimidate his congregation on Erev Yom Kippur.

On the most sacred evening on the Jewish calendar, at Anshe Emet synagogue in Chicago, congregant Gary Sircus led other congregants in walking out of services when, in keeping with synagogue protocol (and common courtesy), Rabbi Michael Siegel acknowledged the presence of US Rep. Michele Bachmann in the audience.

After staging the walkout, Sircus went home and began an online assault on Bachmann and on his synagogue for extending the outspoken and stalwart supporter of Israel the courtesy of acknowledging her presence at services.

Sircus wrote a letter of support to Jim Graves, Bachmann’s deep-pocketed Democratic opponent in her reelection campaign. In it, he referred to Bachmann as “this evil woman.”

Rabbi Siegel did not decry Sircus for his shocking behavior. Speaking to the Chicago Tribune Siegel said, “I am aware of the fact that our congregation’s policy in regards to [welcoming public officials to the community and honoring their presence] clearly caused pain to some members of our community on the most precious day of reconciliation on the Jewish calendar. That we regret deeply.”

In a letter of explanation to synagogue board members, Siegel spoke of the need to welcome visitors even if they don’t share the community’s “values.”

But when did the members of Anshe Emet take a vote to determine that support for gay marriage is their shared value?

Undoubtedly, Sircus’s success in embarrassing his entire community owed in part to his willingness to intimidate his fellow congregants with his moralistic sanctimony on Erev Yom Kippur.

But it isn’t only gay marriage champions who use intimidation tactics to silence their communities into conforming with their views. American Jewish Democratic partisans have taken a leading role in blocking dissenting voices from their midst.

For instance, this past May B’nai Emet Congregation in Boca Raton, Florida, invited Amb. Susan Rice to address the congregation. Synagogue officials not only rejected offers to have Rice debate opponents of Obama’s treatment of Israel. They barred community members known for their opposition to Obama from attending the speech. For these synagogue officials, the idea that their partisan prejudice might be challenged was simply unacceptable.

To be fair, there are some American Jews who have been willing to approach politics with an open mind. For instance, Susan Crown, of the Chicago-based Henry Crown business empire, has transferred her support from Obama to Mitt Romney.

In an interview with Chicago Magazine Crown explained that she switched candidates last May when Obama gave his speech calling on Israel to withdraw from Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and contract to within the indefensible 1949 armistice lines. Crown said that her switch was due as well to economic and foreign policy considerations.

Crown’s arguments for transferring her support from Obama to Romney are all rational. On the other hand, the positions taken by the likes of Sircus and the management of B’nai Emet are emotional and unthinking.

Unfortunately, the polls indicate that more than two-thirds of American Jews are with the synagogue bullies at B’nai Emet and with Sircus, not with Crown.

For 70% of American Jews, party loyalty trumps all of their conceivable rational interests. For them, partisan loyalty is more important than facts. They do not want to use independent judgment. They just want to be Democrats.

The most disturbing aspect of the surveys of American Jewish voters is not that they are willing to vote for the most hostile US president Israel has ever experienced in order to remain true to their party. The most disturbing aspect of the American Jewish community’s devotion to Obama and the Democrats is that it indicates that the vast majority of American Jews have abandoned their faculties for independent thought and judgment in favor of conformism and slavish partisanship. They have rendered themselves unreachable.

Freedom Center pamphlets now available on Kindle: Click here.
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"You have enemies?  Good.  That means that you have stood up for something, sometime in your life." - Winston Churchill.
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1911 on: October 15, 2012, 06:57:48 PM »

I've only become aware of Caroline Glick through was has been posted of her here on this forum, but on the whole I like what I read.  My fellow Jews are a mystery to me in this.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1912 on: October 16, 2012, 06:32:30 AM »

I suppose this could go in the Libya thread as well, but it seems a bit better of a fit here:


*Hillary Falls On Her Sword Over Benghazi (http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Peace/2012/10/15/Hillary-takes-responsibility-Obama-behind-it)*

by Ben Shapiro 15 Oct 2012, 6:13 PM


Late this afternoon, Elise Labott of CNN reported that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had told her that she “takes responsibility” for security problems at the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya, resulting in the murder of our ambassador and three other Americans. Clinton, who is hiding out in Peru while this blows over, took to the microphone to throw herself on the sword. She said “the buck stopped with her” when it came to the embassy, according to Labott. Labott further reported that Clinton stated, “she didn’t want to play any kind of blame game or political gotcha. She understands that the election is coming up and everyone wants to politicize this … She wants to wait for an investigation.” According to Labott, however, Clinton also blamed Congress, as well as other members of government.

Hillary is clearly playing the good soldier on the eve of the crucial second presidential debate between her boss, President Obama, and challenger Mitt Romney. After Vice President Joe Biden threw Clinton under the bus during the vice presidential debate, stating that neither he nor President Obama knew anything about the security situation in Benghazi, Hillary stepped out to the front to take the hit.

There’s a dual purpose for this sudden mea culpa. The first is obvious: Obama wants to end all speculation about his role in the Libyan disaster, and Hillary believes that she can take the hit and keep on trucking due to her personal popularity. The second is more subtle: Obama is losing the female vote now – Romney’s running just a point behind Obama among female likely voters according to Gallup – and he figures he can kill two birds with one stone if he can get Republicans to attack Hillary Clinton, the most popular female politician in the country, over Libya.

If Secretary of State Clinton was responsible for the security situation in Benghazi – as, indeed, we argued she was on the day after the murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens – here’s the question, however: was she acting outside the scope of her duties when she failed to provide the ambassador the security he requested? Or was she following the orders of a President who has always attempted to avoid making waves in the Middle East, and saw a strong security presence as a show of force?

The answer seems obvious: Clinton was acting in accordance with President Obama’s general foreign policy. She did not provide Stevens with proper security because she was not supposed to under general Obama foreign policy guidelines. That’s why the Obama administration has spent over a month trying to claim that the obvious terrorist attack in Libya was sparked by a protest; then they blamed intelligence; then they blamed the State Department. The Obama administration never came clean because the State Department was acting under color of authority.

That, at least, must be the supposition pending a full investigation. This scandal will not end merely because the Obama administration has convinced Hillary to take a bullet for President Obama, and in doing so, shore up his female support. President Obama is the person who put Secretary of State Clinton in the unenviable position of enacting a pusillanimous foreign policy. If he didn’t, he should fire her forthwith. If he did, no phony sackcloth and ashes from the Secretary of State will solve the underlying problem: a cowardly Commander in Chief who leads from behind and leaves our people in harm’s way, then throws others under the bus for his failures of leadership.

*UPDATE*: CNN has now released snippets of video from Clinton. In the video, she says she takes responsibility -- then promptly announces that security arrangements were made by "security professionals." In other words, she took responsibility, then blamed subordinates. Watch for the media to ignore that walkback on responsibility so that they can attempt to quash this scandal.
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bigdog
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« Reply #1913 on: October 16, 2012, 03:32:00 PM »

Oh, my goodness. Amusing.

https://www.youtube.com/erb
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G M
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« Reply #1914 on: October 16, 2012, 04:47:28 PM »

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Peace/2012/10/15/Seal-Team-Six-Family-ROE

SEAL Team VI Family: 'Obama’s Rules Are Getting Our Warriors Killed'
   710 39 4745

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

by Patrick S. Poole 15 Oct 2012
 
Just three months after the raid by Navy SEAL Team VI that killed Osama bin Laden, those same SEALs were in the news yet again--but for an entirely different reason.
On August 6, 2011, while on their way to assist an ongoing mission in Wardak Province, Afghanistan, the CH-47D Chinook helicopter that they were riding in was shot down by an RPG fired by a Taliban fire team approaching their landing zone in Tangi Valley. All 38 American and Afghan service members who were aboard perished, including 17 Navy SEALS, 5 Navy Special Operations support personnel, 3 Air Force Special Tactics Airmen and the five-man Chinook crew, marking the largest loss of life in America’s 11 years of military operations in Afghanistan. Twenty of the twenty-two SEALs and SEAL support were from SEAL Team VI (DEVGRU).

The parents of one of the SEALs killed in the Chinook attack, Special Operations Chief  Aaron Vaughn, are raising questions about how the Obama administration has pushed the limits of the military’s Special Operations Forces as part of its war policy (e.g. the Feb. 20th Newsweek story, “Obama’s Secret Army”), and how constrictive “rules of engagement” intended to win the “hearts and minds” of the Afghan people directly contributed to the deaths of all those aboard the helicopter.

Karen and Billy Vaughn are now trying to raise awareness of some of the problems that they believe continue to cause American service members to be killed in Afghanistan. And to support their case they have a copy of the redacted, now declassified CENTCOM report on the incident that they say raises more questions than it answers.

The report, made available to Breitbart News, was prepared by Brigadier General Jeffrey Colt and presented to CENTCOM Commander Marine General James Mattis.

“We were given a copy of the report, but it was months before we even looked at it,” says Karen Vaughn. “But as Billy and I started to read it and talk to others inside the community we found that many of the problems that contributed to Aaron’s death were widespread. That’s when we decided we had to speak out.”

One of the main concerns for the Vaughns is the operational tempo for special operations forces in Afghanistan. The CENTCOM report itself notes that in August 2009 the number of monthly objectives was 54. But in August 2011 – the month that the helicopter, "Extortion 17," was shot down – that number had grown to 334 objectives, more than a 600 percent increase in just two years.

Another outstanding issue is that Afghan military and police forces are involved in planning every special operations mission, creating a possible problem with operational security.

“We’re seeing the number of these green-on-blue attacks by Afghan troops rising, but these are some of the same people we’re trusting with the details of our most sensitive missions,” Billy Vaughn told me.

Another complaint heard by the Vaughns throughout the special operations community is that because so many special operations forces are in the field, they must rely on conventional forces and conventional equipment, rather than the specialized equipment typically used by special forces.

For example Extortion 17 was a CH-47D, rated as one of the least capable Chinook variants, rather than the newer MH-47s designed and outfitted for special operations. According to the CENTCOM report, Extortion 17 was originally a CH-47C model that was converted to a D-model in June 1985. As the report notes further, the CH-47D, unlike the MH-47, has no early warning system for RPGs or small arms fire.

The landing zone area in the Tangi Valley was also problematic. The area itself had been cleared by ISAF forces at least seven times. In the 45 days prior to Extortion 17’s mission, there had been three previous attempts by the Taliban to shoot down Chinooks with RPGs in the valley. The Taliban also maintained an early warning system in the area to warn insurgents of approaching ISAF forces.

These were the conditions into which Extortion 17 flew. While they were flying under the escort of two AH-64D Apache helicopters and an AC-130 gunship, because of the rules of engagement and the possibility that there were friendlies in the area, the escorts were not allowed to lay down assault fire around the landing zone.
As Extortion 17 was on its final approach to the landing zone, a Taliban crew appeared on top of a two-story qalat (a mud brick house) and fired off at least two RPGs at the helicopter. The second RPG struck near the back rotor of the Chinook, causing the crash.

Amazingly, because of the rules of engagement and the inability to determine whether there were any friendlies in the area, the Taliban team that shot Extortion 17 down was allowed to escape. The only fire from the escort craft noted in the CENTCOM report occurred several minutes after the crash to suppress any enemy attempting to approach the crash area.

That the Taliban team who killed their son was allowed to leave the scene unmolested after causing the greatest loss of life in Afghanistan since 2001 infuriates the Vaughns. The Pentagon later claimed that the man who fired the fatal RPG was killed in an air strike two days after the crash of Extortion 17.

That claim is of little comfort to Aaron Vaughn’s parents. As Billy Vaughn told me:

How the Obama administration has decided to conduct this war is nothing short of criminal. When the administration leaked the identity of the SEALs after the bin Laden raid, a target was put on their back. By increasing the reliance on special operators in prosecuting the war, but not giving them the top line equipment and personnel to support them, this administration bears responsibility for the events of that fateful night.. And the rules of engagement that let my son’s killers walk away unscratched is a betrayal of our commitment to our warriors in the field.
The CENTCOM report indicates that the Task Force Commander declined to strike the Taliban targets with the Apaches or the AC-130 gunship because they couldn’t confirm whether the group of Taliban they were following were carrying weapons. That shows the counterproductive nature of the rules of engagement, Karen Vaughn says:

When the families from the crash were meeting with the Army’s Investigation Team and Naval Officers, a father asked why they didn’t use a drone strike to take out the Taliban. A 3-star Admiral responded, “We are trying to win their hearts and minds.”

But what that Admiral didn’t realize is that the rules that restrain our troops and endanger their lives are making the task that we are asking them to accomplish virtually impossible, the Vaughns contend. The Admirals say they want to win the hearts and minds of the Afghans, but by creating impossible conditions for our troops to fight they are losing the hearts and minds of the American people.

This is what has prompted Karen and Billy Vaughn to speak out. At the Republican National Convention in Tampa in August, just a few weeks after the first anniversary of their son’s death, they spoke at a rally in support of the troops and condemned Obama for using the heroism, bravery and sacrifice of the Navy SEALs to support his political campaign.

A few weeks later, they were on Fox News, calling the administration leaks following the operation that killed Osama bin Laden “criminal” for divulging the identity of the SEAL team involved in the raid. They’ve also complained about the form letters that many families of fallen soldiers receive from the White House.

And last month they spoke at a press conference on Capitol Hill with members of Congress criticizing the restrictive rules of engagement that handcuff even America’s most elite military units.

The Vaughns maintain a website in memory of their son, Special Operations Chief (SEAL) Aaron C. Vaughn, For Our Son & For This Cause.

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Dog Robertlk808
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« Reply #1915 on: October 16, 2012, 06:38:07 PM »

Im not sure if this should go into the Romney Thread or Libya, so I thought maybe it could fit here since the debates are on tonight.


http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/10/16/adviser-romney-will-tell-obama-to-man-up-at-debate/

An adviser to Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney says that part of the former Massachusetts governor’s debate strategy on Tuesday night will be to ask President Barack Obama to “man up” and “accept his responsibility” for the terrorist attacks in Libya.

“There should be an effort to get transparency from President Obama on what he knew and when he knew it,” Romney foreign policy adviser Amb. William Richardson told Fox News host Bill Hemmer on Tuesday. “This was evidence that his so-called success on the war on terror wasn’t so successful. Targeted killings alone can not solve this problem.”

“This helps provide a choice to the American people between more of the same and strong, optimistic, bold leadership under President Romney.”


He continued: “I think Gov. Romney will, quite properly, be asking questions, probing. And trying to ask the president to man up, accept his responsibility and explain to the American people the failure that resulted in four American deaths.”

If Richardson’s preview of Tuesday night’s debate is correct, it could signal part of a broader tactic of subtlety questioning the president’s manhood.

During the first debate, Romney had compared the president to his sons when they were “boys” and didn’t tell the truth.

Last week, one of Mitt Romney’s son even likened Obama’s debate performance to “an obstinate child.”

“I don’t know if you guys saw the debate last week,” Josh Romney told a crowd in Van Meter, Iowa. “I take a lot of pride in that, because — I don’t know if you noticed, but I was — me and my brothers were responsible for my dad doing so well. We were the ones, as kids, that kept saying the same thing over and over. And we’d say the same lie over and over. And my dad learned then, not to believe it. While we didn’t go to any of the formal debate preparation, we did the real hard stuff.”

“So as a father, he learned how to debate an obstinate child,” the younger Romney added. “We had a lot of fun, we had a lot of fun watching the debate.”


Watch this video from Fox News via The Hill, broadcast Oct. 16, 2012.
http://thehill.com/video/campaign/262273-adviser-says-romney-will-ask-obama-to-man-up-on-libya-at-debate
 
« Last Edit: October 16, 2012, 06:39:40 PM by Robertlk808 » Logged

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1916 on: October 16, 2012, 06:40:49 PM »

Morris' new ad:

http://www.dickmorris.com/dicks-new-anti-obama-ad-a-killer/?utm_source=dmreports&utm_medium=dmreports&utm_campaign=dmreports
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1917 on: October 17, 2012, 12:21:52 AM »

Pres Obama needed to tell us why the next 4 years should be any better than the last 4 that everyone seems to admit were miserable.  He didn't.

Gov. Romney needed to show himself as Presidential and create the impression in the eyes of enough undecideds that he has a better chance than the incumbent at turning this around.

I think he did that.

Crafty, replying to my post in Political Economics on the constant workforce adjusted unemployment rate Oct 9 2012, wrote:  "I have said more than once that Romney should be using the "adjusted labor force" number all along..."

Romney weaved the adjusted unemployment, 10.7% he said, into his first answer tonight. 

Like I said, "Romney's advisers are more likely to read the forum."

Some quips:

Obama said of Romney's 5 point plan that he has a "one point plan", take care of rich people.  Snarky.  Unworthy of the event.

On pay equity / women's issues, Romney: "3 1/2 more women in poverty" under Pres. Obama.  Obama said he will "advocate" on their behalf.

Romney told the story of getting more women in senior positions in his Mass. administration than in any other state.

Romney bragged Mass. no.1 in education while he was Goveror.

Obama said Bush tax cuts took us from surplus to deficit but that was not true.  (During the 4 years after tax rate cuts were in place the deficit was falling.)

Romney said 1 in 6 in poverty, 47 million on food stamps. The growth rate keeps getting slower each year under Obama.

Obama was asked "Who denied the security request in Benghazi?"  Didn't answer but said at the end, "I am ultimately responsible".

Romney used the opening on AK47 legislation to bring up Fast and Furious.  Laid out the bizarre scandal cautiously, beginning to raise the questions.

Romney points out in competitiveness that Canada taxes corporations at 15%, the US at 35%.

Obama kept touting his goal to double our exports.  No clue except for cronyism  preferences what policies of his would lead us there.

Romney repeated: "The government does not create jobs, the government does not create jobs."

Moderator gave the President 9% more time.  Challenged only Romney on facts.  Maybe Ann Coulter could moderate the next one for balance.
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« Reply #1918 on: October 17, 2012, 12:31:20 AM »

A CBS survey gave the debate to Obama by 37 percent to 30 percent Romney, 33% tie. But the respondents found by almost a 2-1 majority that Romney won on the economy.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1919 on: October 17, 2012, 05:31:25 AM »

I think this piece pretty good.  I'm shocked that it comes from Pravda on the Hudson  cheesy


Obama’s Narrow Victory
 
By ROSS DOUTHAT


Just by showing up energized, by hemming and hawing less often and by going after Mitt Romney more directly, President Obama ensured himself a better showing than the disaster he endured in Denver two weeks ago. But the narrow win he gained in the second presidential debate also owed something to Romney’s performance, which, though highly effective in stretches, also showcased more of his flaws, both as a debater and as a candidate.

The first flaw was stylistic. Romney is very skillful at the on-stage slash and parry, but he has weak spots, and veterans of the long Republican primary slog remember two of them particularly well. One is his tendency to argue pointlessly with the moderator and his opponents over the rules of order. The other is his habit of pressing his advantage too far, seeking a kind of alpha-male moment that can seem bullying instead of strong. (His attempt at a $10,000 bet with Rick Perry was the paradigmatic example.)

Mike Segar/Reuters

He gave in to both temptations this time around. The candidates each bickered with CNN’s Candy Crowley about turns and time allotments, but Romney went at it earlier and more often – sometimes justifiably, but never successfully. He also tried too hard to pre-empt the president’s increased aggression with aggression of his own, which doesn’t work well in a town-hall format, where the candidates are already circling one another like sharks. Invading your rival’s space can make you look hyped-up rather than presidential.

On substance, meanwhile, the studied vagueness of Romney’s domestic policy platform created more problems for him than it did in Denver. Two weeks ago, Obama seemed taken by surprise when Romney didn’t just debate like the far-right caricature from the White House’s campaign ads. This time the president was more prepared for his rival’s centrist-friendly defenses of his agenda, and more adept at pointing out the holes in them. And because Romney’s proposals really do have significant gaps, the Republican nominee was repeatedly thrown back on the promise that he “knows how to create jobs,” which is more a rhetorical crutch than a compelling argument.



Related in Opinion

Frank Bruni: Obama Bares His Teeth
.

Where Romney actually has a more detailed proposal, as he does on immigration, his rebuttals were crisper and more convincing, and he also won several exchanges just by turning the conversation back to the economy’s performance under Obama. (He also had to deal with what the liberal pundit Jonathan Chait rightly described as a slate of “friendly questions from an audience that obviously leaned left.”) Nor was the president any better this time at answering the question haunting his candidacy: Why would your second term be any different?

Indeed, had the debate focused on the economy alone, Romney might have emerged more bruised than last time but still victorious. But there was also a segue into foreign policy, and there Romney showed real weakness, turning what should have been a major point-scoring opportunity on the Libya controversy into an ugly botch.

This botch looked worse because the moderator, Candy Crowley, jumped in inappropriately to fact-check Romney’s characterization of whether the president initially characterized the Benghazi incident as a terrorist attack – inappropriately because the president’s language was actually open to competing interpretations, and also because Romney’s broader point about the White House’s evasions was clearly correct and she seemed to be taking sides against him.

But Romney would have lost that exchange even without her intervention. He seemed at once underinformed and overaggressive, as he often does on foreign policy: He did a poor job of explaining what exactly the Obama White House had done wrong (he barely mentioned the administration’s fixation on the offensive YouTube video), seemed ill-prepared for the president’s obvious, dudgeon-rich, I’m-the-commander-in-chief counterpunch, and then fell back on right-wing boilerplate about Obama’s supposed “apology tour” that can’t possibly resonate with swing voters.

Then again, it’s not clear that the Libya issue in particular, or foreign policy in general, really resonates with swing voters either. This is probably Romney’s best hope coming out of this debate: That he was weakest on style points and on issues that voters don’t particularly care about, and that by hammering away at the president’s record and projecting an air of economic competence he did himself more good than harm.

The snap polls, dubious though they may be, provide some support for this pro-Romney read on the night’s proceedings. CNN’s poll shows a modest Obama victory: 46 percent rated the president the winner versus 39 percent for Romney. But even in a debate that he lost overall, the poll still showed Romney edging the president on the crucial questions of who would better handle the economy, taxes and health care.

For Obama and his supporters, meanwhile, the hope has to be that Romney’s post-Denver bounce was just that: A temporary surge that could be blunted and reversed by simply reasserting the White House’s narrative – that Romney is an out-of-touch plutocrat and ideological extremist, whereas Obama is a champion of the middle class – much more effectively and eloquently than the president did in the first debate.

The question now is whether that kind of straightforward reassertion is all Obama needed, or whether the public’s post-Denver willingness to consider Romney anew shifted the dynamics of the race in a way that a closely-fought debate can’t quite reverse. That’s something that no snap survey can tell us. The proof will be in the polls a week from now.
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bigdog
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« Reply #1920 on: October 17, 2012, 06:03:54 AM »

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/330700/libya-crowley-changes-her-tune-eliana-johnson

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/330691/fact-checkers-having-trouble-facts-jonathan-h-adler
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bigdog
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« Reply #1921 on: October 17, 2012, 08:28:35 AM »

2 more on the debate of last night:

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/330709/second-debate-yuval-levin

http://nationaljournal.com/2012-presidential-campaign/-binders-full-of-women-sweeps-the-internet-20121017
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objectivist1
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« Reply #1922 on: October 17, 2012, 08:59:00 AM »

Another Disastrous "Moderation" Job by U.S. Media Personality.

Joseph Curl - The Washington Times - October 17, 2012

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — Another debate, another debacle for America's media.
In the runup to the second presidential debate, CNN's Candy Crowley declared that she would not just be a "fly on the wall" as she played the tiny role of moderator, that she would step in whenever she chose to say, "Hey, wait a second, what about X, Y, Z?"
And boy did she, cutting off Republican Mitt Romney repeatedly and often throwing the floor to President Obama with an open "let me give the president a chance here."
More, she alone decided the topics for the debate, picking questions from the 80 so-called "undecided" voters chosen by the Gallup polling organization. Her selections were tailor-made for Mr. Obama — Mitt Romney's tax plan, women's rights and contraception, outsourcing, immigration, the Libya debacle (which gave Mr. Obama to finally say that the buck stops with him, not, as Hillary Clinton said, with her).
She even chose this question, directed to both men: "I do attribute much of America's economic and international problems to the failings and missteps of the Bush administration. Since both of you are Republicans, I fear the return to the policies of those years should you win this election. What is the biggest difference between you and George W. Bush, and how do you differentiate yourself from George W. Bush?"
Ms. Crowley, who called Mr. Romney's selection of Rep. Paul Ryan as running mate a "ticket death wish," asserted her unilateral power at the outset, telling the audience before the cameras went on that she planned to "give the debate direction and ensure the candidates give answers to the questions."
After both candidates answered Question One, she blurted: "Let me get a more immediate answer" — whatever that means. But when Mr. Romney sought to correct falsehoods told by the president, she cut him off: "We have all these folks here." In the end, Mr. Obama would get 9 percent more time.
At Question Two, Mr. Obama, asked by Mr. Romney how much he had cut federal oil permits, took over the floor — with Ms. Crowley's silent approval. "Here's what happened," he said as he filibustered for a full minute. Mr. Romney sought to get the last word — as the president had the question before — but the moderator shut him down: "It' doesn't quite work like that."
When Mr. Romney sought to counter Mr. Obama's assertion after Question Three, Ms. Crowley again cut him off: "Before we get into a vast array...." she said before asking a completely different question.
The next question was pure Obama — workplace inequality (the president mention at every stop his Lily Ledbetter legislation). But the query gave him the platform to demand Americans pay for contraception for all women, saying the governor "feels comfortable having politicians in Washington decide the health care choices that women are making."
For the record, Mr. Obama spoke for two minutes, then Mr. Romney, then Mr. Obama again. Ms. Crowley then rushed into the next question.
When the immigration question came up, both candidates gave their answers. Then the moderator once again butted in, ordering Mr. Romney to "speak to the idea of self-deportation."
By then, Mr. Romney had had enough, and talked over her demands. "No, let — let — let me go back and speak to the points the president made and — and — and let's get them correct."
At the next question, the moderator lost all control. "Candy," Mr. Obama said. "Hold on." "Mr. President," the governor said, "I'm still speaking." They mixed it up for a bit, then Ms. Crowley said: "Sit down, Mr. Romney."
The most shocking exchange took place on the Benghazi attack that left the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three others dead.
Mr. Romney: "You said in the Rose Garden the day after the attack, it was an act of terror? It was not a spontaneous demonstration, is that what you're saying."
Mr. Obama made no defense. "Please proceed, governor."
"I want to make sure," Mr. Romney said. "Get the transcript," the president said. Then Ms. Crowley jumped in to do her own fact-check, on the spot. "It — it — it — he did in fact, sir. ... He did call it an act of terror."
The truth is, he didn't. The day after the attack, he said only this: "No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for." It took another two weeks before the White House would label the attack an act of terror.
The Obama people, of course, loved it — having blamed Mr. Obama's dismal performance in the first debate on poor moderating.
"He's back," said Team O spokeswoman Jen Psaki, who lauded Ms. Crowley for her fact checking.
But then she caught herself and quickly added: "He was never really gone, but he's back."

• Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times. He can be reached at jcurl@washingtontimes.com.


Read more: CURL: Crowley skews hard for Obama in disastrous debate - Washington Times http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/oct/17/curl-crowley-skews-hard-obama-disastrous-debate/print/#ixzz29Z3oY4Qx
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter
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« Reply #1923 on: October 17, 2012, 09:34:11 AM »

Pleased to see the WSJ lead editorial followup on the discussion here.  Excerpts:

    REVIEW & OUTLOOK
    October 17, 2012, 12:38 a.m. ET

A President Without a Plan
...he still has no agenda for the next four years.

President Obama bounced off the canvas with a more spirited debate at Hofstra University on Tuesday night, as everyone expected he would. He was animated and on the attack. The question we kept asking as the evening wore on, however, is what does he want to do for the next four years?

At least two questioners put the point directly, yet Mr. Obama never provided much of an answer. Sure, he wants to hire 100,000 more teachers, as if there is the money to hire them or it would make much difference to student outcomes.

He wants to invest in "solar and wind and biofuels, energy-efficient cars," which probably means more Solyndras and A123s (see nearby). He wants to raise taxes on the rich—that's one thing he's really passionate about. Oh, and he does want to pass the immigration reform he said he'd propose four years ago but never did propose in his first two years when his party controlled Congress and he might have passed it.

But otherwise, what's his case for four more years? Judging by Tuesday's debate, the President's argument for re-election is basically this: He's not as awful as Mitt Romney.
...
The paucity of this promise, the difference between now and four years ago, was never clearer than in the President's response to the young man who said he'd voted for Mr. Obama in 2008 but is less optimistic now. Mr. Obama responded by reciting his achievements—ending the Iraq war, "health-care reform to make sure insurance companies can't jerk you around," more Wall Street regulation, the auto bailout and more jobs.

As for the next four years: He said he has a plan "for manufacturing and education and reducing our deficit in a sensible way, using the savings from ending wars to rebuild America" and pursuing "the energy of the future." Then he attacked Mr. Romney again.

The Republican followed by reciting the economic failings of the last four years, piling on fact after depressing fact. "I can tell you that if you were to elect President Obama, you know what you're going to get. You're going to get a repeat of the last four years. We just can't afford four more years like the last four years," Mr. Romney said.

...the biggest contrast in the agendas for the next four years is Mr. Romney's willingness to put ideas on the table—Medicare reform, tax reform—that meet the economic and fiscal problems of our time.

...Mr. Obama seems out of ammunition for the next four years.
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« Reply #1924 on: October 17, 2012, 10:17:49 AM »

Obj, Joseph Curl has this right.  Besides interjecting herself as selective factchecker and participant in the debate she should have said at the end, as promised, to Mitt Romney, you have 4 minutes to use any way that you like, and I'm sorry for saying "Sit down Mr. Romney" and cutting you off disproportionately.  And she should have tacked on 8 more minutes for previous debate discrepancies.

You would think they would be more sensitive to even the appearance of bias, instead of making it a main feature of the program.

I don't watch cable but I see now why CNN's ratings are down.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1925 on: October 17, 2012, 11:27:42 AM »

Brit CCN interviewer Piers Morgan endorses Romney  shocked
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1926 on: October 17, 2012, 10:35:31 PM »

Pres. Obama opens up a big lead in one key constituency group:

If every members of this group were to show up on Nov 6 and cast his or her ballot, Pres. Obama would win at least 36 states and maybe more.  What group is this that holds the balance in this election?

Unlikely voters.

Gallup, for example, had Obama leading consistently until they made the switch from registered voters to likely voters.  Today they have Romney leading by 6 among likely voters, but only by 2% with registered voters.  http://www.gallup.com/poll/election.aspx  The key to the Obama victory 2012 rests solely in the hands of these unlikely voters.  Sure they are unenthused, unemployed, they lost their income, jobs and wealth, but if they want to stay out of the workforce and well compensated they will need to get off their food stamp enhanced derriere and get out and cast that crucial vote in support of the status quo.   wink

Only you, the likely voter, can defeat them by doing what you do better than anyone else: show up and vote!
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objectivist1
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« Reply #1927 on: October 18, 2012, 08:10:29 AM »

www.weeklystandard.com/print/blogs/secret-service-aware-threats-against-romney_654788.html
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G M
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« Reply #1928 on: October 18, 2012, 05:52:33 PM »



Look for this administration to throw Hillary Clinton under the bus next.  It's very clear that this is their plan.  Biden essentially said so in the debate.  "No one told us."  Oh, really?  Bill Clinton was furious about having the "race card" pulled on him during the 2008 campaign.  Now it's Hillary's turn to eat an excrement sandwich.


The dowager empress won't take that lying down. It might be time to make some popcorn and enjoy the show.

And it begins.

"Governor Romney's argument is, we're not fixed, so fire him and put me in," said Clinton. "It is true we're not fixed. When President Obama looked into the eyes of that man who said in the debate, I had so much hope four years ago and I don't now, I thought he was going to cry. Because he knows that it's not fixed."

http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/bill-clinton-romneys-argument-true-were-not-fixed_654893.html
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« Reply #1929 on: October 19, 2012, 06:02:04 AM »

President Obama told guests that unemployment is at the lowest rate of his presidency — not a joke, he said, he just wanted to remind them — while Mitt Romney, combining references to the national debt and his comments to cut subsidies to PBS, said the event was "brought to you" by the letter “O” and the number "16 trillion."

http://thehill.com/video/campaign/262931-obama-romney-trade-one-liners-in-new-york
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« Reply #1930 on: October 19, 2012, 08:31:26 AM »

Mitt had best ingest this data before the Monday night debate!!!


Early Uncertainty on Libya Account .
By ADAM ENTOUS And SIOBHAN GORMAN

WASHINGTON—The night before Susan Rice went public with the administration's assessment that the Sept. 11 U.S. consulate attack in Libya grew out of a spontaneous demonstration against an anti-Muslim video, intelligence analysts were receiving new information that contradicted the account she gave.

Intelligence agencies soon amended their stance, but it then took weeks longer—until early October—for a new intelligence assessment discounting the protests to make its way into public statements from senior officials in the Obama administration.

Amb. Susan Rice spoke Sept. 16 about the Benghazi attack days earlier.

Ms. Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, based her statements that Sunday on intelligence agency conclusions that the attack had spun out of protests in Benghazi, fueled by anger over an anti-Islamic, U.S.-made video that had sparked protests elsewhere.

The picture began to change over that weekend, according to U.S. intelligence officials, in the most detailed account yet to emerge of a period that has been a focus of controversy over the Obama administration's handling of the aftermath of the attack, which killed four Americans including the U.S. ambassador.

Some intelligence came in on Saturday evening that contradicted the protest claim and prompted the office of the Director of National Intelligence to begin to question the agencies' initial conclusions, intelligence officials said.

Despite their growing uncertainty, intelligence officials didn't feel they had enough conclusive, new information to revise their assessment. Ms. Rice wasn't warned of their new doubts before she went on the air the next morning and spoke of the attacks being spurred by demonstrations, intelligence officials acknowledged.

More information casting doubt on the protest element came in on Sunday morning, around the time that Ms. Rice was completing her TV appearances, the officials said. She began taping the shows early Sunday morning. By the time intelligence analysts began to realize "there's enough here to build a body of evidence that there probably were not protests, those things were already recorded and she [Ms. Rice] was already out there," a senior intelligence official said.

Unanswered in the account is whose role it was to prevent Ms. Rice from broadcasting information that already risked being wrong. Also unanswered is why it took longer for the new information to come out publicly, even after the DNI revised its assessment. The administration has since said that the consulate siege was a deliberate terrorist attack by militants and not the outgrowth of a protest. Officials still describe it as opportunistic rather than premeditated, however, as they have from early on.

Officials in the first week also played down suggestions that an al Qaeda affiliate may have been involved in the siege. Intelligence officials now have evidence that al Qaeda-linked militants were at the scene of the attack, although those militants may not have been its leaders, according to people briefed on the matter.

President Barack Obama has been forced to defend his administration's response. Appearing Thursday on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show," Mr. Obama, asked about whether the administration's communications had been "optimal," said: "Here's what I'll say. If four Americans get killed, it's not optimal. We're going to fix it. All of it. And what happens, during the course of a presidency, is that the government is a big operation and, any given time, something screws up. And you make sure that you find out what's broken and you fix it."

Ms. Rice's Sept. 16 portrayal of the attack has drawn Republican calls for her resignation and charges that the White House was politicizing intelligence.

Ms. Rice based her comments on talking points provided to her the previous day by the Central Intelligence Agency and based on consultations with the office of the DNI, which was responsible for developing consensus assessments based on input from the various intelligence agencies, according to officials who described the sequence of events.

The talking points, which were initially written for congressional committees and top administration officials, said "the currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi and subsequently its annex," according to officials.

The talking points also said there were "indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations."

Defenders of Ms. Rice argue her comments were carefully hedged. "I think it's clear that there were extremist elements that joined and escalated the violence, whether they were al Qaeda affiliates, whether they were Libyan-based extremist or al Qaeda itself, I think, is one of the things we'll have to determine," she told CBS on Sept. 16.

A spokeswoman for Ms. Rice, Erin Pelton, said that the ambassador made clear in her remarks that the investigation was still under way. "At every turn Ambassador Rice provided—and said she was providing—the best information and the best assessment that the administration had at the time, based on what was provided to Ambassador Rice and other senior U.S. officials by the U.S. intelligence community," Ms. Pelton said.

Some officials briefed on the initial intelligence were surprised by Ms. Rice's assertion that the attack was preceded by protests. Intelligence agencies late in that week began to raise questions about the assessment.

"Around that time, I saw no finished products [reports] that said there were peaceful protests," said one person briefed on the investigation. "There was plenty of stuff that indicated there was the possibility of a coordinated attack."

Another U.S. intelligence official said initial intelligence reports are often incomplete and can turn out to be false, and that it took time sift through conflicting accounts to conclude that the attack didn't evolve from a protest.

"The early question was whether extremists took over a crowd, or [whether] they were the crowd," the official said. "It took time—until that next week—to sort through varied and conflicting firsthand accounts to better understand the composition of the extremist attackers that night."

Ms. Rice and other Cabinet-level officials were first informed about the assessment that there had been protests on Sept. 13. The intelligence came from press reports, intercepted communications and informants' tips immediately after the attacks.

Officials declined to provide details about the nature of the intelligence that arrived over the weekend of Sept. 15 that prompted their shift in thinking. Officials said interviews with U.S. officials and Libyans who were at the scene contributed, but it was unclear when those took place and what other intelligence affected the assessment.

The intelligence assessment was changed by DNI around Sept. 18 to reflect the new information that there was no protest, intelligence officials said.

The change wasn't made public. Officials said the DNI's findings are classified and were still evolving.

Ms. Rice and many other top officials weren't informed about the change in the assessment until Saturday, Sept. 22, according to U.S. officials.

In a rare public statement on Sept. 28, the DNI acknowledged other changes in its assessment, including that investigators were looking at possible links to al Qaeda affiliates. The statement, however, made no mention of the changed assessment on protests. The DNI declined to comment on the lag time.

Senior administration officials didn't start talking publicly about the revised assessment until last week.

Some senior officials have raised questions about the process used by DNI in developing consensus assessments. These critics say that process slows the flow of raw intelligence to policy makers who need the information quickly to make decisions.

DNI supporters say the system is designed to weed out raw intelligence that can't be substantiated and reduce the risk that policy makers will act on bad information.

"Assessments are updated when the preponderance of new intelligence tells us that our earlier conclusions need to be revised," a senior U.S. intelligence official said.
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« Reply #1931 on: October 19, 2012, 08:41:24 AM »

Following up on my previous post, the question presented is "Well then, what should Romney strategy for the debate be?"

The following by Dick Morris seems pretty good to me.

Roadmap For Monday's Debate
By DICK MORRIS
Published on DickMorris.com on October 19, 2012


There is a temptation to get lost in the weeds of when Obama recognized that the Libya attack was, indeed, an act of terror.  But the key point is that Obama treated the video as a provocation for the attack as if they had a moral equivalency.  Otherwise, why constantly mention the video in the same breath as the attack?  Why run an ad apologizing for the video in Pakistan?  Why address the video in his U.N. speech?  It may be a bridge too far to convince people that Obama was engaged in a cover-up for political purposes trying to convince people there was no premeditated terror attack.  But surely there is no good reason for lumping the attack and video together.  It's like saying "he murdered this guy but only after the guy called him a dirty word."

But, beyond the specifics of Libya, a 2011 national survey by Pat Caddell and John McLaughlin provides the key lines of attack Romney should follow in the foreign policy debate coming up on Monday. 

•  Obama's outreach to the Muslim world has decreased our national security.  30% believe it has increased our security and 47% feel it has decreased it.  Romney should attack Obama for naïveté in his dealing with the Arab world and for not seizing and holding the moral high ground but instead seeking to understand the other guy and give him the benefit of the doubt.
 
•  Romney should stress that Obama's policy toward Iran will not stop it from developing nuclear weapons.  By 77-10 voters agree that they will not stop Iran.  Asked what he would do, he should say that he will support Israel if she has to take military action against Iran.  He should say that he does not believe we need to commit US soldiers or aircraft but that we should provide Israel with the ordinance they need to destroy the Iranian missile sites.  If Obama says this could lead to a general war, Romney should say that a strong posture does not cause wars, but a weak one does.  He should say that if the US makes clear that it will help Israel if it comes down to that, then Iran will realize that it must curtail its weapons program.  In the meantime, Romney should stress the need to support the democratic opposition to the Ayatollah.  If it ultimately has to come down to a war, better now before they have nuclear weapons than after they get them.

•  Romney should attack Obama for failing to discipline China. He needs to explain that we sell only $50 billion to China and buy $400 billion from them (check numbers).  With the rest of the world, we hold our own in trade.  That's because of currency manipulation.  Obama is frightened that China will stop lending us money.  But he doesn't understand that China lends us money because they have to.  The buy dollars and sell Yuan to keep the Yuan weak so Chinese products are cheaper in the US.  Then what are they going to do with all those dollars?  Bet them in Vegas?  They buy T bills with them.  That's all they can do and that's how the lend us the money.  If they stopped manipulating, we wouldn't need their money because we'd have an even balance of trade with the.  By 20-75 voters do not believe Obama has been tough enough with China and most see fear of their no longer lending us money is the reason.

•  Romney should attack Obama's advocacy of an 80% cut in our strategic arsenal with no reciprocal cuts from Russia or China.  By 22-64 voters oppose Obama's position.

•  He should go after Obama for cutting American defense spending too much.  By 32-58, voters believe the cuts are "way too deep."

•  Romney should press Obama about what he meant by giving him more space with Russia after the election.  Most likely, he was referring to a commitment by us that we would not orbit anti-missile satellites, a key concession which would make Iran and North Korea even more dangerous.

•  Romney should criticize Obama for equating Israel and the Palestinians as two morally equivalent sides of a dispute.  He should say: "If the Arabs laid down their arms, there would be no war.  If Israel laid down its arms, there would be no Israel."

•  Romney should attack Islamic fundamentalism for its attitude toward women and criticize Obama's political correctness and refusal to face up to the threat it poses.  He should, for example, criticize him for removing any references to Muslim extremism from FBI training manuals and his firing of good conscientious FBI agents for being Islamophobic.

These are the milestones to a successful debate.
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« Reply #1932 on: October 19, 2012, 10:26:06 AM »

third post-- Has the WSJ been lurking here (and reading me in particular?  cheesy)
===============
The Foreign Policy Debate
How Romney can show Americans he can be a capable Commander in Chief..
 
When the history of the Obama Administration is written, it will be noted that never before has an American President bet so much on the power of his own charisma to change the world. As Mitt Romney prepares for the foreign policy debate in Florida on Monday, his challenge will be to show what a losing bet that's been—and how a Romney Administration would do better.

That won't be easy to do, and not merely because Mr. Romney has so far proved less sure-footed on foreign affairs than on domestic policy. (my "tin ear" commentary) The power of incumbency carries with it the voice of Presidential authority, which Mr. Obama deployed effectively at Tuesday's debate when he took belated responsibility for the security lapses at the Benghazi consulate. The President has kept his promise to get out of Iraq and looks set to do the same in Afghanistan. Osama bin Laden is dead, as you may have heard.

Above all, Mr. Obama has presented himself as the antidote to the Bush Administration and all he said it represented: costly wars, harsh interrogations, global opprobrium. Mr. Romney should expect the President to try to define him as a Bush retread, and to paint America's foreign policy options as a choice between sober restraint and swaggering bellicosity.

***
We don't expect Mr. Romney to offer an explicit defense of the Bush Doctrine, never mind that its core tenets—keeping weapons of mass destruction out of the hands of rogue regimes and promoting liberal democracy in places like Egypt—are ones Mr. Obama rhetorically endorses. (Yes!) Nor do we anticipate that Mr. Romney will retreat from the protectionist rhetoric he's been peddling on China, though it would be nice to hear him recognize that the biggest "currency manipulator" in the world today is the U.S. Federal Reserve.

But Mr. Romney can help himself by offering a serious critique of Mr. Obama's foreign policy that doesn't descend to clichés (e.g., "I won't ever apologize for America"), and by laying out a vision that answers the needs of both the national interest and the self-interest of everyday Americans. (Yes.)

Mr. Romney should also give full credit where it's due, not least because some graciousness would be a refreshing contrast to Mr. Obama's abrasive partisanship in an area where Americans yearn for consensus. That means not only commending the President for the bin Laden raid, but also for the areas in which the Administration has adopted the policies of its predecessor: the reauthorization of the Patriot Act; the use of military tribunals; the intensification of drone strikes; the (admittedly reluctant) non-closure of Guantanamo.  (Yes.)  All that should cause some indigestion among Mr. Obama's friends at MSNBC.

Mr. Romney can also play to his own strengths by pointing out that a U.S. economic revival is crucial to world stability. One reason America has less sway now than it did when Mr. Obama took office is that the world won't heed a great power whose policies produce slow growth and runaway debt. Ronald Reagan understood that before he could defeat the Soviet Union he had to show again the superiority of the American model of economic freedom. The U.S. military will inexorably and rapidly shrink without growth of 3% or more. This theme is right in Mr. Romney's wheelhouse.  (Yes)

***
Moving to the President's record, he likes to boast about responsibly ending the war in Iraq. Yet the war had already been won when Mr. Obama became President thanks to a surge that he opposed as a Senator—even as he later tried to emulate it in Afghanistan under the same military commander.  (YES!)  Mr. Obama also tried to negotiate a Status of Forces Agreement with Iraq that would have maintained a residual U.S. military presence in the country, and Joe Biden even offered to "bet you my Vice Presidency" on the negotiations succeeding. But they pursued it too half-heartedly to entice the Iraqis to a deal.  (YES)

The result is that American soldiers won a victory in Iraq at great cost only so Mr. Obama could squander the strategic fruits of their victory: a viable alliance with Baghdad and a bulwark against Tehran. (YES! YES! YES!)  Ryan honed in on this against Biden btw) Mr. Obama may think that he's come out of this as a political winner, but nobody is happier about his Iraq policy than the mullahs in Iran. (Exactly so.)

Now the U.S. runs similar risks in Afghanistan, the war Mr. Obama once said was the one we must win but from which his Vice President last week promised full withdrawal by 2014—let the Taliban do what it may. Given that Mr. Obama signed a Status of Forces Agreement with the Afghan government in May that explicitly opens the door to a post-2014 U.S. military presence, Mr. Romney might ask whether the President stands by his own signature—or by his Vice President? It can't be both.  (Good point.)

Mr. Obama will no doubt reply that the U.S. cannot endlessly be at war in the Middle East. That's true, but Mr. Obama's policies of premature military withdrawals have increased rather than diminished the chances that we will be at war in the Middle East again. The Administration can hope that its training of Afghan forces will suffice to keep the country together after 2014. But if it doesn't and the Taliban return, we will find ourselves back at square one—2,000 lives and hundreds of billions of dollars later. (So, what is the concrete proposed alternative here?)

***
Mr. Obama is also courting war in the Middle East by his ambivalent posture on Iran's nuclear designs. Mr. Romney can applaud Mr. Obama for insisting that "all options are on the table" when it comes to thwarting those designs, and for publicly opposing a containment strategy for a nuclear Iran. (Good.)

Yet the Obama Administration has consistently undermined its own message by advertising that it believes a military option would be ineffectual, by failing to provide Israel with reassurances that it needn't consider its own military options, and by first resisting sanctions until Congress passed them and then handing out waivers to those same sanctions.  (YES.)  The result is that Iran has not been remotely deterred despite sanctions, and it is now only months away from being able to produce weapons-grade uranium.

If Mr. Obama implies (as he no doubt will) that Mr. Romney wants to start a third Middle Eastern war, the answer is that the only way to prevent one is to let Tehran know we're deadly serious. Weakness and indecision invite war, while credibility and resolve still have a chance to prevent it.

The same mixed-messaging helps explain why America's position throughout the rest of the Middle East is dramatically weaker than it was four years ago. The President's Cairo speech promised a new beginning with the Muslim world. Yet in practice Mr. Obama was friendlier to Hosni Mubarak than George W. Bush had been until Mr. Obama cut him loose in the final days, and he made no effort to push the Arab autocracies toward reform before their downfall.

The result, if you can believe it, is the worst of both worlds. ( YES) The U.S. has become even less popular with the publics of such countries as Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan and Lebanon than it was in the last year of Mr. Bush's Presidency. And it also has less credibility with the rulers of those countries that have been our allies. When the Saudis invaded Bahrain, they never bothered to tell the U.S.

So much, then, for the transformative powers of Mr. Obama's charisma and good intentions—which have also failed to work their supposed wonders on the likes of Russia's Vladimir Putin (who continues to obstruct us at the U.N.), or of China's new leadership (which is trying to lay claim to most of the South China Sea), or even of little Cuba, which continues to hold American Alan Gross as a hostage. It has occurred too late to the President and his advisers that "smart diplomacy" mainly entails the calibrated uses of power, not the promiscuous promotion of personality.

As for Mr. Romney, he can't and shouldn't promise to return the genies to their bottles by reversing the gains of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood or renegotiating a new military agreement with Iraq. (YES YES YES YES YES YES!!!) He also seems disinclined to propose anything more than Mr. Obama is doing to depose the Assad regime in Syria. But if nothing else he can explain the risks that Syria's expanding war poses to U.S. interests and allies and how a defeat for Assad would mean a defeat for Iran's growing regional influence. (Again, nothing concrete here either)

***
More broadly, Mr. Romney can promise to restore America's credibility as a guarantor of peace and stability—not simply for the sake of far-flung peoples and countries, but for our own.

America has been the chief underwriter of global order for nearly seven decades, which has required large defense budgets and difficult military commitments. But we have also been a major beneficiary: no world wars; open sea lanes; expanding trade and freedom; and the human and economic possibilities of a world that, until Mr. Obama came to office, was freer than it had ever previously been.

In his farewell interviews, Mr. Obama's first Defense Secretary, Robert Gates, made a point of quoting Reagan's line that he had lived through many wars but not one of them began because the U.S. was too strong.  (YES)  Mr. Obama's first term has been marked by economic decline at home and less respect and influence abroad. Four more years of the same will tempt the world's rogues to become even more assertive.  (GOOD CLOSING POINT)

On Monday night Mr. Romney can make clear that his foreign policy will understand that strength at home and confidence abroad aren't incompatible objectives, but are mutually reinforcing.
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« Reply #1933 on: October 19, 2012, 11:08:50 AM »

fourth post:  Sorry to be relentless on this, but as my posts in previous days and weeks attests, I am concerned that Romney runs the risk of sounding like, or being portrayed as wanting a return to a Bush.



By DOUGLAS J. FEITH
AND SETH CROPSEY
A month after the murder of four American officials in Libya on Sept. 11, congressional testimony and leaked government cables have revealed that some U.S. officials immediately recognized that terrorists had planned the attack. So why did the Obama administration's top policy makers—including the president himself—persist in claiming that the catastrophe was a spontaneous outburst of rage against an anti-Islam video posted on YouTube by an American provocateur?

Many critics smell cynical politics. The president, after all, has an electoral interest in denying that terrorism remains a serious problem. Likewise, during the second presidential debate, when he could no longer justify his initial emphasis on the video, Mr. Obama claimed misleadingly that he had called the Benghazi attack a terrorist act a day after it happened.

But there's a bigger problem here than cynicism. It is that the administration's first response—to blame an American video, not Islamist terrorists—reflected strategic misjudgments. First is the refusal to accept that the terrorism threat is part of a larger problem of Islamist extremism. And second is the belief that terrorism is spawned not by religious fanaticism but by grievances about social, economic and other problems for which America bears fault.

Enlarge Image


Close
AFP/Getty Images
 
President Obama after finishing his speech at Cairo University in Egypt, June 4, 2009.
.
When Mr. Obama became president, he was intent on repudiating the previous administration's war on terrorism, which saw al Qaeda as part of a diverse international movement of Islamist extremists hostile to the United States, to liberal democratic principles (in particular the rights of women), and to most governments of predominantly Muslim countries.

Mr. Obama chose to define America's enemy not ideologically but organizationally, as al Qaeda and its affiliates. White House counterterrorism chief John Brennan, in his speeches over the past few years, has insisted that terrorists should never be described as Muslim because their extremism is not consistent with Islam. Mr. Brennan discourses on Islam as if he were an imam. The Obama administration, he said in 2010, does not "describe our enemy as jihadists or Islamists because jihad is holy struggle, a legitimate tenet of Islam meaning to purify oneself or one's community." He failed to mention that jihad also means holy war.

It is clear that not all Muslims embrace extremist Islamist ideology—perhaps only a small minority do. But the extremists claim to speak for the true Islam. Their pretensions are disputable, but it is false and presumptuous for Mr. Brennan, an American and non-Muslim, to assert that the extremists cannot be Islamic or religious leaders.

The problem with ignoring ideology is made clear—unintentionally—in President Obama's National Counter-Terrorism Strategy, released in June 2011. In it he writes: "We are at war with a specific organization—al-Qa'ida." But America also has to work aggressively against Hezbollah, he notes a few pages later—and against a number of terrorist groups in South Asia, he further adds, "even if we achieve the ultimate defeat of al-Qa'ida in the Afghanistan-Pakistan theater."

So our problem is substantially broader than al Qaeda—and even broader than al Qaeda and its affiliates. What all these groups have in common is Islamist ideology—yet Mr. Obama ignores that.

And what, according to the Obama administration, stokes the fires of extremism? It isn't the supremacist exhortations of Islamist ideology. Rather, it is longstanding political and economic "grievances," according to Mr. Brennan, such as "when young people have no hope for a job," "when governments fail to provide for the basic needs of the people," and when the Palestinian-Israeli conflict remains unresolved. President Obama, Mr. Brennan has said, thinks America should be "addressing the political, economic and social forces that can make people fall victim to the cancer of violent extremism." Mr. Brennan has also noted that the president is "concerned with how the United States was viewed in the world and how these attitudes were fueling the flames of hatred and violence."

Thus the way to defeat the terrorists, according to President Obama, isn't to counter extremist Islamist ideology but to focus on how the United States, through its actions and delinquencies—its supposed excessive support for Israel, for example, and failure to provide more economic aid—is to blame for the hatred that spawns terrorism.

White House senior director for the National Security Council Samantha Power wrote some years ago, while a Harvard University lecturer, that America should adopt a foreign-policy "doctrine of mea culpa." This is the frame of mind that President Obama brought to his famous June 2009 Cairo speech in which he suggested that tensions between America and the world's Muslims are largely America's fault. It was in that speech that President Obama asserted: "Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism."

And so we get to the false insistence for day after day that the murderous attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi arose from anger about a YouTube video. Because Mr. Obama misdiagnoses terrorism and extremism, it is not surprising that he failed to recognize their consequences; instead, he reflexively looked in the Benghazi wreckage for a cause that originated in this country.

Such thinking infects many streams of Obama administration foreign policy. If the president were clear-eyed about Islamist extremism, he wouldn't have cold-shouldered the antiregime demonstrators in Iran in June 2009. He wouldn't have cut funds for promoting democracy and human rights abroad. He wouldn't have made a diplomatic representative of Salam al-Marayati, who calls for Hezbollah's removal from the U.S. terrorist list and has said that "Israel should be put on the suspect list" for the 9/11 attack. And the president wouldn't have spent more energy denouncing foolish American bigots than condemning organized, anti-American terrorism.

— Mr. Feith was undersecretary of defense in the George W. Bush administration. Mr. Cropsey served as deputy undersecretary of the Navy in the Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations. Both writers are Hudson Institute senior fellows.
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« Reply #1934 on: October 19, 2012, 11:19:54 AM »

Yes, Crafty - you do seem to be a bit obsessed with this idea, no?  LOL.    grin

Before you crack me over the head with that stick - I fully acknowledge my own fixation on other issues...
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« Reply #1935 on: October 21, 2012, 08:42:55 AM »

Morris is echoing exactly what I've been saying to family and friends about this election - it's eerily similar to 1980, and I believe, will have a similar outcome (Romney landslide):

www.dickmorris.com/the-carter-reagan-election-and-its-parallels-to-obama-romney-dick-morris-tv-history-video/?utm_source=dmreports&utm_medium=dmreports&utm_campaign=dmreports
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« Reply #1936 on: October 21, 2012, 08:53:56 AM »

From your lips to God's ears , , ,  grin
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« Reply #1937 on: October 21, 2012, 08:58:37 AM »

As a freshman in college that year (1980), I will never forget the way that the overwhelming majority of college students were absolutely convinced Reagan would get us into a nuclear war with Russia.  I wasn't - and other kids looked at me in disbelief and told me I was a "fascist" if I voted for Reagan.  Yawn.
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« Reply #1938 on: October 22, 2012, 12:50:41 AM »

W.H. Tries to Write Al Qaeda Out of Libya Story
12:22 PM, Oct 20, 2012 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES



The Obama administration appears to be mounting yet another version of its campaign to push back on claims that it misled on the intelligence related to the attacks in Benghazi on 9/11/12. But the new offensive by the administration, which contradicts many of its earlier claims and simply disregards intelligence that complicates its case, is raising fresh questions in the intelligence community and on Capitol Hill about the manipulation of intelligence for political purposes.

The administration's new line takes shape in two articles out Saturday, one in the Los Angeles Times and the other by Washington Post columnist David Ignatius. The Times piece reports that there is no evidence of an al Qaeda role in the attack. The Ignatius column makes a directly political argument, claiming that "the Romney campaign may have misfired with its suggestion that statements by President Obama and U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice about the Benghazi attacks weren't supported by intelligence, according to documents provided by a senior intelligence official."

If this is the best the Obama administration can offer in its defense, they're in trouble. The Times story is almost certainly wrong and the central part of the Ignatius "scoop" isn't a scoop at all. We'll start there.


David Ignatius, a reporter's columnist with excellent sources in the Obama administration and the intelligence community, reports: "Talking points" prepared by the CIA on Sept. 15, the same day that Rice taped three television appearances, support her description of the Sept 11 attack on the U.S. consulate as a reaction to the Arab anger about an anti-Muslim video prepared in the United States. According to the CIA account, "The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the US Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the US consulate and subsequently into its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations."

There are two problems with this. The CIA "talking points" don't say that what Ignatius claims and the supposedly exculpatory documents were first reported three weeks ago.

On October 1, Newsweek's Eli Lake reported: "For eight days after the attacks on the US consulate in Benghazi, government officials said the attacks were a spontaneous reaction to an anti-Islam film. Now that officials have acknowledged they were a premeditated act of terrorism, the question some members of Congress are trying to answer is why it took so long for the truth to come out. Unclassified documents from the Central Intelligence Agency suggest the answer may have to do with so-called talking points written by the CIA and distributed to members of Congress and other government officials, including Susan Rice, the US Ambassador to the United Nations. The documents, distributed three days after the attacks that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens, said the events were spontaneous."

Lake continued, quoting directly from the CIA talking points, in language that may sound familiar to anyone who read the third paragraph above: "The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the US Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the US diplomatic post in Benghazi and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the demonstrations." Both the Ignatius and Lake versions of the talking points note that the "assessment may change as additional information is collected" and that the "investigation is on-going."

Note that the "talking points" do not claim that the attackers in Benghazi were directly motivated by the film, something the Obama administration claimed for nearly two weeks after 9/11. The talking points only say that the "demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired" by Cairo.

We now know, of course, that there were no demonstrations in Benghazi. Those inside the compound heard gunfire at 9:40 p.m. local time and within minutes the compound was under siege. Surveillance photos and videos taken in the hours before the attack give no indication of a protest. And one CIA official tells Ignatius that it would have been better to substitute "opportunistic" for "spontaneous" since there was "some pre-coordination but minimal planning."

The "spontaneous" talking point came from an intercepted telephone call between jihadists, in which one of the attackers notes that his group had attacked after seeing the demonstrations in Cairo. U.S. officials familiar with the intelligence on Benghazi tell THE WEEKLY STANDARD there are two schools of thought on what that means. The first view is reflected in the administration's "spontaneous" line. It holds that jihadists in Benghazi saw the demonstration in Egypt and decided, almost on a whim, to assault the compound. But the nature of the attack—the weapons, the sequencing, the coordination—suggests more planning. The attackers flushed Americans from the compound toward an "annex" two kilometers away. As the Americans fled, they encountered (and avoided) an attempted ambush on the route.

The second view is that the demonstrations in Cairo, which followed the release of a video from al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri on September 10, were seen as something of a "go signal." As we first reported on September 12, the film, in this view, was merely the pretext for an al Qaeda "information operation," and the Zawahiri video, which called directly for renewed jihad and for al Qaeda sympathizers to avenge the death of Abu Yaya al Libi, was intended to trigger protests and assaults throughout the region. Many of those with prominent roles in the protests and assaults—in Egypt, Tunisia, and perhaps Libya—had strong ties to al Qaeda leadership in Pakistan.

Not surprisingly, this view is not popular with an administration that has built its case for reelection in part on the notion that "bin Laden is dead" and "al Qaeda is on its heels." Which leads us to the claims in the Los Angeles Times article that ran under the heading: "No evidence found of al Qaeda role in Libya attack." That story begins: "The assault on the US diplomatic mission in Benghazi last month appears to have been an opportunistic attack rather than a long-planned operation and intelligence agencies have found no evidence that it was ordered by al Qaeda, according to US officials and witnesses interviewed in Libya."

The claim in the headline is not the same as the claim in the article, of course. It's possible for there to have been "an Qaeda role" in the attack without it having been directly ordered by al Qaeda central. And there is, in fact, evidence of some al Qaeda role in the attack.

The same phone call that the administration had used to pin its argument that the attack was "spontaneous" also provides evidence of such al Qaeda involvement. Indeed, as Eli Lake reported three weeks ago: "In the hours following the 9/11 anniversary attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya, US intelligence agencies monitored communications from jihadists affiliated with the group that led the attack and members of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the group's north African affiliate."

Several of the local jihadists were affiliated Ansar al Sharia, which has its own ties to al Qaeda. An August report from the Pentagon's "Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office," reported that Ansar al Sharia "has increasingly embodied al Qaeda's presence in Libya, as indicated by its active propaganda, extremist discourse, and hatred of the West, especially the United States." One of the leaders of AAS, a former Guantanamo detainee named Sufyan ben Qumu, has ties to senior al Qaeda leaders. As Tom Joscelyn first reported, Qumu's alias was found on the laptop of Mustafa al Hawsawi, an al Qaeda financier who helped fund the original 9/11 attacks. Qumu is described "as an al Qaeda member receiving family support."

The other group, al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, has a more direct relationship with al Qaeda central. As Joscelyn reported last month, AQIM entered into a "formal alliance" with al Qaeda in 2006, according to a United Nations report on the group. The Pentagon's Combating Terrorism study reported: "Al Qaeda affiliates such as AQIM are also benefiting from the situation in Libya. AQIM will likely join hands with the al Qaeda clandestine network in Libya to secure a supply of arms for its areas of operations in northern Mali and Algeria." The report also notes: "Although no information in open sources was found regarding the whereabouts of al Qaeda's leadership in Libya, it is likely that at this point al Qaeda's clandestine network is run directly by al Qaeda senior leadership in Pakistan."

One thing that has troubled both intelligence officials and those on Capitol Hill as they have evaluated the administration's early response to the attacks is what appears to be an effort to write al Qaeda out of the story. For example, the talking points first reported by Lake, include this sentence: "There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations." But according to several officials familiar with the original assessment from which the talking points were derived, the U.S. intelligence community had reported the fact that these were extremists with ties to al Qaeda. That key part was omitted.

Why was that language dropped from the talking points distributed to Congress and Obama administration officials? Did anyone at the White House or on the National Security Council have any role in drafting them?

In addition to the intercepts between Ansar al Sharia jihadists and AQIM, the Associated Press reported Friday that "the CIA station chief in Libya reported to Washington within hours of last month's deadly attack on the US consulate that there was evidence it was carried out by militants, not a spontaneous mob upset about an American-made video ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad."

As further evidence of the ever-shifting Obama administration narrative, the AP article, which ran some 24 hours before this latest public relations push, also reported: "The White House now says the attack was probably carried out by an al Qaeda-linked group, with no public demonstration beforehand."
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bigdog
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« Reply #1939 on: October 22, 2012, 05:29:47 AM »

http://www.npr.org/2012/10/20/163309696/the-undecided-voter-just-like-the-unicorn
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« Reply #1940 on: October 22, 2012, 12:58:25 PM »

Iran Deal: The October Surprise?
By DICK MORRIS
Published on DickMorris.com on October 22, 2012

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Will Obama announce a deal with Iran for a moratorium on the enrichment of uranium in return for the dismantling of some of the international sanctions against the regime?  And will the announcement be timed to appear just before the election?

Reza Kahlili (the pseudonym for a former CIA operative in Iran's Revolutionary Guards), the author of A Time To Betray (Simon & Schuster, 2010) reports in WND that "U.S. and Iranian negotiators have reached an agreement that calls for Iran to halt part of its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of many of the U.S. sanctions."

With ominous specificity, he notes that Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei "expects a letter from President Obama in a few days guaranteeing the details of the agreement arrived at recently during secret negotiations in Doha, Qatar."

Citing an "anonymous source highly placed in Iran's regime," he warns that "once Khamenei receives Obama's guarantees, he will authorize an announcement by Iran on a solution to the nuclear crisis before the U.S. presidential elections."
 
He says that "the agreement calls for Iran to announce a temporary halt to partial uranium enrichment after which the U.S. will remove many of its sanctions, including those on the Iranian central bank, no later than by the Iranian New Year in March."

The Iranians will, he says, agree to the deal because it is "in the throes of massive inflation and citizen unrest because of the sanctions."

The impact of the October Surprise on the election in the U.S. could be enormous unless the Romney campaign and conservatives handle it properly.

The first step in defusing its potential impact is to warn of the possibility of an October Surprise.  The more we talk about it and cite the chance that Obama could pull it off, the more political it will seem when and if it happens.

If such a deal with Iran is announced, Romney should question its timing and note that a key motivation for the Iranian acquiescence is the imminence of his own election.  Romney should say that the Ayatollah is afraid that a new U.S. Administration would support an Israeli attack on Iran should the sanctions fail to work.  He could point out that as the chances of his victory improve, the Ayatollah has become more willing to deal.

After all, remember that the Iranians often play in U.S. politics.  The Ayatollah Khomeini refused to release the U.S. hostages before the 1980 election to help insure Carter's defeat, only letting them go after his nemesis had lost.   

We also must question the details of the deal:

•  How will it be enforced?

•  Who will inspect to see that Iran is complying?

•  How easily can the West reinstate the sanctions if Iran fails to comply?

•  On how much of their uranium supply will the enrichment moratorium be imposed?

The devil may be in the details.

Let's remember the history of Democratic October Surprises.  Of the past five elections, two have been won solidly by Democrats - 2004 and 1996.  The other three all featured October Surprises:

•  On October 30, 1992, Iran-Contra Special Prosecutor Lawrence E. Walsh announced that he would indict Bush Defense Secretary Cap Weinberger.  The announcement came after Clinton, the Democratic candidate against Bush, had fallen behind in the tracking polls.  Clinton surged on the final weekend and won the election, in large part because of the Weinberger indictment announcement. (Bush pardoned Weinberger after the election and he was never actually indicted).
 
•  On October 1, 2000, it was revealed that George W. Bush had been arrested for DUI in Maine in 1976.  The arrest had never been made public.  Bush was several points ahead in the popular vote prior to the announcement but lost to Gore by 0.5% after the DUI story broke.
 
•  Eight days before the 2004 election, the New York Times revealed that the weapons from a conquered Iraqi weapons dump had been looted by insurgents who were using these weapons against American troops.  Democratic candidate John Kerry cancelled his regular TV ads to focus on the discovery and allege Bush Administration incompetence in protecting the weapons.  Fortunately, four days later (and four before the election), the Pentagon issues satellite photos of the dump indicating that the story was false.
 
•  The original October Surprise was pulled by Secretary of State Henry Kissinger on behalf of President Richard M. Nixon when he announced that peace in Vietnam was "at hand" on the eve of the 1972 election, only to see the war drag on for months more.

If there be any of us that doubt the potential of both this Administration and the Ayatollah for using chicanery and phony deals to impact the election's outcome, think again!
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G M
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« Reply #1941 on: October 22, 2012, 04:21:24 PM »

http://pjmedia.com/blog/obamas-bizarre-anti-gun-debate-flub/?singlepage=true

Obama’s Bizarre Anti-Gun Debate Flub
He raised two massively unpopular ideas: the farcical assault weapons ban and the disarming of the poor. by
Bob Owens

Bio
October 22, 2012 - 12:00 am     It’s generally hard to pinpoint the moment when a politician self-destructs — the “Dean scream” moments are few and far between. Campaigns tend to fall apart as part of a cascade of mistakes, where the number of things going wrong simply becomes insurmountable.

Barack Obama didn’t have a “Dean scream.”

If anything, future pundits will look back to Mitt Romney’s commanding performance at the first presidential debate in Denver as the beginning of the end of Obama’s presidency, but perhaps a response to a question at the second debate at Hofstra put the final nail in Obama’s electoral coffin.

When asked what he would do to restrict the availability of so-called “assault weapons,” the president offered the vague platitudes one would expect from a foundering candidate, before inexplicably reintroducing two unpopular gun measures:

We have to enforce the laws we’ve already got, make sure that we’re keeping guns out of the hands of criminals, those who are mentally ill. We’ve done a much better job in terms of background checks, but we’ve got more to do when it comes to enforcement. But I also share your belief that weapons that were designed for soldiers in war theaters don’t belong on our streets. And so what I’m trying to do is to get a broader conversation about how do we reduce the violence generally. Part of it is seeing if we can get an assault weapons ban reintroduced. But part of it is also looking at other sources of the violence. Because frankly, in my home town of Chicago, there’s an awful lot of violence and they’re not using AK-47s. They’re using cheap hand guns.

Obama not only attacked the best-selling and most widely distributed firearms in the United States, he also obliquely suggested he wants to disarm the poor.

The “assault weapons” ban was a provision embedded in a 1994 crime bill. It bizarrely banned several kinds of firearms by name, and made others illegal if they had a number of arbitrary cosmetic features. It also banned the new manufacture of magazines holding more than ten rounds.

The cartoonish law was dealt with as Americans have always dealt with the absurd: with mockery. Firearms banned by name changed their names. Firearms that were banned because they had a certain number of arbitrary cosmetic features rendering them criminal simply changed their features.

A company named Intratec made their contempt of the banning of their TEC-9 pistol clear. They removed the threads on the end of the barrel (which no one ever used) and dropped the superfluous barrel shroud (a stamped piece of sheet metal that keeps the shooter’s hand from touching a hot barrel). They reintroduced the gun the next day as the AB-10, with the AB meaning “after ban.”

Most other companies simply enjoyed the newfound sales that came from free Americans wanting to buy something the government didn’t want them to have. AR-15 patterned rifles that bore a cosmetic similarity (though not the select-fire functionality) to the military M-16 changed a few features and suddenly became prolific sellers. Existing manufacturers and importers of military-style weapons increased capacity, and new manufacturers sprung up like mushrooms after a spring rain. AR-15 pattern firearms became the most popular firearms in America, and the “modern sporting rifle” (as some in the shooting sports industry have tried to dub it, with mixed results) is now ubiquitous.

By the time the ban expired in 2004, it was a total failure. It did not reduce crime (such firearms were rarely used in crimes anyway), and the backlash against the ban “mainstreamed” the very firearms they attempted to render criminal. Nonetheless, it remained a hot-button issue on the left, where it has remained simmering as a near-forgotten issue for eight sad years. There is no support for it in the House and Senate, and there is no chance a new ban would make it out of committee.

Not a single soul expected Barack Obama to bring up the idea of reinstating this failed law. It was an act of political suicide.

The National Rifle Association, the nation’s leading gun rights organization, says that it is too soon after the debate to see any specific polling impact, but anecdotal evidence of a backlash against the president is already flowing in. A spokesperson for the group told PJ Media that the president’s anti-gun statement may cost him dearly.

Independents shoot AR-15s and AK-pattern rifles. Union members hunt. Feminists own handguns.

In one moment, President Obama offended 90 million gun owners to varying degrees. In an election where Barack Obama needs high voter turnout if he hopes to blunt a surging Romney (who now boasts a seven-point advantage), he’s sabotaged himself in the all-important swing states where gun ownership is high.

There is no information suggesting that Obama’s statement will “flip” votes from him to Romney, but anecdotal evidence suggests that Democrats and independents that could have been persuaded to cast a vote for the president are reconsidering.

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G M
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« Reply #1942 on: October 22, 2012, 04:27:41 PM »

http://hotair.com/archives/2012/10/22/cbs-news-why-didnt-we-send-the-military-to-rescue-benghazi-personnel/

CBS News: Why didn’t we send the military to rescue Benghazi personnel?
posted at 9:21 am on October 22, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

By now we’ve gotten the basic details of the terrorist attack on our consulate in Benghazi — no thanks to the White House, which tried to pass it off as a “spontaneous demonstration” that “spun out of control” for more than a week after the attack. Not too many people may have understood that the attack lasted for seven hours, however — and that American military assets were in easy reach.  The last two Americans who died had managed to survive six hours into the attack.
CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson asked the obvious question yesterday: If we could fly an unarmed drone over the consulate while it was under attack, why didn’t we send the military in to rescue our people?

Some lawmakers are asking why U.S. military help from outside Libya didn’t arrive as terrorists battered more than 30 Americans over the course of more than seven hours. The assault was launched by an armed mob of dozens that torched buildings and used rocket propelled grenades, mortars and AK-47 rifles.
CBS News has been told that, hours after the attack began, an unmanned Predator drone was sent over the U.S. mission in Benghazi, and that the drone and other reconnaissance aircraft apparently observed the final hours of the protracted battle.
The State Department, White House and Pentagon declined to say what military options were available. A White House official told CBS News that, at the start of the attack, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta “looked at available options, and the ones we exercised had our military forces arrive in less than 24 hours, well ahead of timelines laid out in established policies.”
But it was too late to help the Americans in Benghazi. The ambassador and three others were dead.
This question comes at a most opportune time. CBS News’ Bob Schieffer will moderate tonight’s presidential debate on foreign policy between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, and the Benghazi terrorist attack will almost certainly arise as a topic. What are the odds that the CBS News host brings up this biting CBS News report on what we might have done to stop the attack in Benghazi?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1943 on: October 22, 2012, 05:23:05 PM »



Pennsylvania Is The New Ohio
By DICK MORRIS
Published on DickMorris.com on October 22, 2012

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With Romney gaining ground gradually in the swing state of Ohio, people have not paid enough attention to his surge in next door Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania casts 20 electoral votes and Ohio casts 18. And all electoral votes are created equal. It is possible to lose Ohio if you carry Pennsylvania and still win.

In Pennsylvania, polling by Republican John McLaughlin shows Romney three points ahead of Obama and a poll by The Susquehanna Polling organization shows Romney four points ahead in the Keystone State.

In Ohio, most polls have the race tied although all show significant progress by Romney in the past two weeks.
 
Why is Pennsylvania, nominally a more Democratic state, more hospitable to Romney than Ohio? Because Obama has run tens of millions of dollars of negative ads in Ohio smearing Romney, but has not done so in Pennsylvania. Indeed, current polling suggests a very good shot for Romney in a variety of usually Democratic states that are not on the official map of battleground states. Having been spared Obama's negative ads, these states are very much more inclined to back Romney.

• Latest polls in Michigan find Obama only one point ahead

• In Wisconsin, the candidates appear to be tied

• In Minnesota, Romney is only two points behind

It may be that on Election Day, we are all waiting for Ohio to be called (eventually it will go for Romney) while, in the meantime, he sweeps Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota and wins the election.

And don't forget the impact of a Romney victory on the U.S. Senate races. In Pennsylvania, Republican Tom Smith now leads Democratic incumbent Bob Casey according to McLaughlin's survey. In Wisconsin, former Governor and Republican candidate Tommy Thompson is locked in a close battle with Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin for an open Senate seat. And in Michigan, former Congressman Pete Hoekstra (Republican) is hot on the heels of Democratic incumbent Senator Debbie Stabenow.

With Republican Senate takeaways increasingly likely in Virginia, Florida, Nebraska, North Dakota, Montana, and Ohio, victories in these other northern tier states could provide a needed cushion to assure control of the Senate (since Republicans will lose Maine and may lose Massachusetts).
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G M
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« Reply #1944 on: October 22, 2012, 05:43:46 PM »

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DougMacG
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« Reply #1945 on: October 23, 2012, 11:30:44 AM »

First must comment on the previous post, the cartoon with Obama protecting Big Bird and Romney protecting the country.  The Big Bird issue was the shiny object trick thrown back on them and they went for it.  Four years of trillion dollar deficits and they still haven't started to cut the fluff.  The Pres has no cuts on the table so he can't press the challenger for real ones, and Mediscare backfired.  The joke is that PBS doesn't even need the subsidy, and especially not for its successful brands like Big Bird and Jim Lehrer.  Just Obama fighting hard for very small things. 

I did not watch the 3rd debate, but read a lot of commentary last night and this morning.  On debate zingers they say Obama won by a little, but 60% saw Romney as ready to be Commander in Chief, looking Presidential AGAIN, blowing the Obama line out of the water trying to show that Romney is not ready.

Conservatives and hawks may be disappointed in what he didn't say or the change of course that he did not lay out for our future foreign policy.

Gallup has had Romney up big, 6%, the last few days.  Rasmussen now has Romney up 50-46.  Others have it by less.  If accurate, an incumbent does not come up from 46-48%.

Remaining is the October surprise, the November surprise, the settling in of all the information we already know, and then the get out the vote operation.

If this really is a squeaker, Obama would win by taking Ohio and some other key states.

If the polls above are close to showing the new reality as I believe they are, Romney by 3 or 4, he will sweep all those and take a few others.
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Now is the time to adopt an undecided voter and apply a little positive assertiveness on them.  )
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http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2012/10/22/krauthammer_romney_won_unequivocally_obamas_responses_were_petty.html

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: I think it's unequivocal, Romney won. And he didn't just win tactically, but strategically. Strategically, all he needed to do is basically draw. He needed to continue the momentum he's had since the first debate, and this will continue it. Tactically, he simply had to get up there and show that he's a competent man, somebody who you could trust as commander in chief, a who knows every area of the globe and he gave interesting extra details, like the Haqqani network, which gave the impression he knows what he's talking about. But there is a third level here, and that is what actually happened in the debate.

We can argue about the small points and the debating points. Romney went large, Obama went very, very small, shockingly small. Romney made a strategic decision not go after the president on Libya, or Syria, or other areas where Obama could accuse him of being a Bush-like war monger. Now I would have gone after Obama on Libya like a baseball bat, but that's why Romney has won elections and I've never had to even contested them. He decided to stay away from the and I think that might have actually worked for him.

What he did concentrate on is the big picture. People don't care what our policy on Syria is going to be. They care about how America is perceived in the world and how America carries itself in the world. And the high point is when he devastatingly leveled the charge of Obama going around the world on an apology tour. Obama's answer was ask any reporter and they will tell you it wasn't so. That's about as weak an answer you can get. And Romney's response to quote Obama saying that, 'we dictate to other nations,' and Romney said, 'we do not dictate to other nations, we liberate them.' And Obama was utterly speechless.

So that is the large picture, America is strong and respecting. What Obama did is he kept interrupting, interjecting and his responses were almost all very small, petty attacks. The lowest was when he's talking about sanctions that are old. 'When I was working on sanctions you were investing in a company in China.' I mean that is the kind of attack you expect from a guy who is running for city council for the first time, that's not what you expect from the president. A personal attack about an investment when talking about Iran?

I thought Romney had the day. He looked presidential. The president did not. And that's the impression I think that is going to be left.

MEGYN KELLY, FOX News: Mitt Romney sounded a bit more dovish, less bellicose than some, perhaps on the right wanted to hear. How will that play?

KRAUTHAMMER: Well, I think those on the right like me, who would have loved for him to have been bellicose and love the near fisticuffs will understand exactly why Romney did it. He stayed away from the pitfalls. He did not allow himself to be painted as a war monger. This is what Reagan understood in 1980, he did it extremely well. So Romney did and I think this could help him win the election.


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bigdog
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« Reply #1946 on: October 23, 2012, 01:11:21 PM »

Gallup has had Romney up big, 6%, the last few days.  Rasmussen now has Romney up 50-46.  Others have it by less.  If accurate, an incumbent does not come up from 46-48%.

What is the margin of error? Even 6 might be a statistical tie. 538 has an Obama victory at 70% or so, as of this morning. That is down from 86% about 3 weeks ago.

As for the debate winner, I think it is based on lens. My conservative friends are in line with Krauthammer. My liberal ones... not so much.

"He stayed away from the pitfalls. He did not allow himself to be painted as a war monger. This is what Reagan understood in 1980, he did it extremely well. So Romney did and I think this could help him win the election." With this I agree. The potential issue, though, is did he paint himself as fundamentally different from Obama. They tripped over themselves complimenting each other and noting their agreements in several places. How that is recieved is to be seen, I think.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #1947 on: October 23, 2012, 06:42:33 PM »

"What is the margin of error? Even 6 might be a statistical tie."

Gallup has Romney at +5 with likely voters says margin of error plus/minus 4.  Rasmussen has Romney at +4 says sampling margin of error plus/minus 3 with 95% confidence.  Others have smaller margins well within the margin.  I don't follow margin of error closely because sample size is only one of the possible causes or errors. There are others such as how likely a likely voter is to vote and is there any correlation between being unreachable or refusing to answer the poll and who they support.  Each poll applies their own 'secret sauce' to manipulate their sample, (like global warming).  We are heading into the period where their real error or accuracy becomes quickly known and their reputation is judged.  Earlier poll errors don't count against them, they just say it was a late movement.

My guess is that Romney has to win by 2 points or more in the popular vote to be confident of winning the electoral college.  Al Gore won in 2000 by more than a half point: 48.38% to 47.87%. Romney needs to pull some Senators across the finish line too, for a number of reasons.

The actual error in Wisconsin 2012 was 7%, in Minnesota 2012 it was 12%, underpolling Republican votes in those two cases.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2012, 07:05:18 PM by DougMacG » Logged
DougMacG
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« Reply #1948 on: October 23, 2012, 07:23:14 PM »

What is the biggest issue of our time?

360 debate minutes behind us, the majority of that with Obama-Biden speaking.  The closest we came to a mention of climate change or global warming was the contest between Pres. Obama and Gov. Romney to see who was the most pro-coal.  http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1012/82748.html
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1949 on: October 23, 2012, 09:56:55 PM »

If I had been Romney I would have gone after Baraq guns blazing on his lies about Benghazi.  Not saying I'm right, I'm just saying that's what I would have done.   

Also, on the military spending issue Mitt should have been quoting SecDef Panetta left and right, not just once in passing quite a bit after BO's attack on the subject.

What he said on Afpakia was incoherent: either we are willing to go to the mat with the Paks or we aren't.  (Un)fortunately this is SNAFU so few probably noticed.

=======================

Pennsylvania Is The New Ohio
By DICK MORRIS
Published on DickMorris.com on October 22, 2012

Printer-Friendly Version
With Romney gaining ground gradually in the swing state of Ohio, people have not paid enough attention to his surge in next door Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania casts 20 electoral votes and Ohio casts 18. And all electoral votes are created equal. It is possible to lose Ohio if you carry Pennsylvania and still win.

In Pennsylvania, polling by Republican John McLaughlin shows Romney three points ahead of Obama and a poll by The Susquehanna Polling organization shows Romney four points ahead in the Keystone State.

In Ohio, most polls have the race tied although all show significant progress by Romney in the past two weeks.
 
Why is Pennsylvania, nominally a more Democratic state, more hospitable to Romney than Ohio? Because Obama has run tens of millions of dollars of negative ads in Ohio smearing Romney, but has not done so in Pennsylvania. Indeed, current polling suggests a very good shot for Romney in a variety of usually Democratic states that are not on the official map of battleground states. Having been spared Obama's negative ads, these states are very much more inclined to back Romney.

• Latest polls in Michigan find Obama only one point ahead

• In Wisconsin, the candidates appear to be tied

• In Minnesota, Romney is only two points behind

It may be that on Election Day, we are all waiting for Ohio to be called (eventually it will go for Romney) while, in the meantime, he sweeps Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota and wins the election.

And don't forget the impact of a Romney victory on the U.S. Senate races. In Pennsylvania, Republican Tom Smith now leads Democratic incumbent Bob Casey according to McLaughlin's survey. In Wisconsin, former Governor and Republican candidate Tommy Thompson is locked in a close battle with Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin for an open Senate seat. And in Michigan, former Congressman Pete Hoekstra (Republican) is hot on the heels of Democratic incumbent Senator Debbie Stabenow.

With Republican Senate takeaways increasingly likely in Virginia, Florida, Nebraska, North Dakota, Montana, and Ohio, victories in these other northern tier states could provide a needed cushion to assure control of the Senate (since Republicans will lose Maine and may lose Massachusetts).
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