Thursday, March 31, 2011

What the..

The Oministration is just now sending in CIA officers to find out who the rebels are after over a week of bombing to protect them?
The CIA’s efforts represent a belated attempt to acquire basic information about rebel forces that had barely surfaced on the radar of U.S. spy agencies before the uprisings in North Africa.

Among the CIA’s tasks is to assess whether rebel leaders could be reliable partners if the administration opts to begin funneling in money or arms.
They should just ask the president--just the other day he said they were mostly doctors and lawyers and such.

By the way, is funneling money and arms something we can even talk about? It's a good bet those aren't covered in the UN resolution. And what happens if they are more than just 'flickers' of al-Qaeda, do we blow up the whole country?


They should have saved this for tomorrow:
President Obama finally and quietly accepted his “transparency” award from the open government community this week — in a closed, undisclosed meeting at the White House on Monday.
With no pool reporters or photographers allowed in to watch. Unreal chutzpah.

But just another day for an administration whose spokesman recently claimed "..has demonstrated a commitment to transparency and openness that is greater than any administration has shown in the past, and he’s been committed to that since he ran for President and he’s taken a significant number of measures to demonstrate that". In other words, he's talked and thought about it more than anyone, buster!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Ayers 'Confession' Tape

Jack Cashill is all atwitter about Bill Ayers' public statement about his authorship of "Dreams":
Worse for Obama still, Ayers knows that the story he and Obama contrived in Dreams is false in many key details. The fact that Donald Trump has proved willing to challenge that story has got to make the White House even more apprehensive.

As was obvious in his speech at Montclair, Ayers does not like the application of force in Libya, and this may have been his own way of retaliating. Consider it a shot across Obama's bow.
Think he's jumping the gun a bit? Ayers' slightly sarcastic contribution no more proves authorship than the previous encounter with the Chicago blogger. The former terrorist seems to have a penchant for sarcasm and BS, and his comment about "Audacity" being a 'political hack' book could mean nothing more than it was written to square Obama up on the hot-button issues for his run, as opposed to Odyssey-like adventurism of "Dreams". This is not a bombshell.

Then again, if Christopher Andersen is correct that Michelle asked Ayers to help a hopelessly blocked Obama finish the book (assuming anyone ever asks him about it) then what might a small-c communist professor, who as recently as 9/11 said the Weathermen didn't do enough bombing, be able to demand from the president for his continued silence? Somebody should ask.


Trump has been making the rounds talking about birth certificates and phantom ghost writers, which has a tendency to pull these stories back into the spotlight. CNN has already done a feigned outrage hit piece on the Donald, mentioning his release of a hospital birth record but not going so far as to mention the subsequently released long form document. Guess that would be too close to Obamaland. O'Reilly is doing a multi-part series with Trump and chided him over the birther thing, which of course Bill debunked back in 1972 when he was a foreign war correspondent and part-time high school teacher/bouncer.

As this bubbles back up just in time for campaign 2012 (and conveniently distracts attention away from undeclared wars and a stalled economy) we will likely see more mainstreamers take on the story. Here's a San Diego paper with a birther debate (although the liberal guy just threw poo the whole time) that featured something new--not about birthing--but about Obama's time at Columbia:
Recent documents substantiate that Obama only attended Columbia University for 9 months in 1982-1983, contrary to official accounts.
Nine months? That might explain why nobody seems to remember him there. The official record suggests Obama transferred from Occidental to Columbia College in 1981, presumably for the fall semester. According to the O campaign, the O traveled to Pakistan during the summer of 1981 in between the transfer.

So *if* these mysterious new records coming from the unknown guy on show he only attended Columbia for nine months, from 1982-83, and if we believe Columbia that he was on the graduation program in 1983 (presumably in the spring), and if we believe Occidental when they say he attended two years between fall 1979 and spring 1981, then there seems to be a missing semester in there somewhere. Or maybe he really was cramming in the library the whole time. Then again, wouldn't that be something to 'trump'? Sing it!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Blessing from the Arab League?

The administration really pushed the notion that Obama's mind was finally made up when the Arab League got behind the UN push to enact a no-fly zone. Then they changed their mind. But who makes up the Arab League? Aren't they a bunch of tinpots, oil sheikhs, terrorist enablers and pan-Arabists?

Here's some history from 2003 as Bush was preparing his attack on Baghdad to save civilians when it wasn't cool, featuring former Ba'ath insurgency funder/leader and still wanted man Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri debating with the Kuwaiti foreign minister at a meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference [emphasis added]:
Sheikh Mohammed Sabah al-Salem al-Sabah, the Kuwaiti minister of state for foreign affairs, interrupted Douri with comments that were inaudible to viewers at home and to reporters in Doha allowed only to watch via closed-circuit, but which officials in the summit chamber later said referred to the Iraqi’s remarks as lies.

Douri responded: “Shut up you monkey. Curse be upon your moustache, you traitor.” “This is hypocrisy and falsehood,” Sheikh Mohammed shot back.
Nice. Sounds like an old Johnny Carson joke. And, at an Arab League Summit meeting around the same time:
Gadhafi said Saudi King Fahd had acknowledged to him a willingness to “cooperate with the devil” to protect his country from Iraq during the 1990-91 Gulf crisis.

Abdullah called Gadhafi “an agent for colonizers,” and the Arab League session was abruptly halted.
By the way, al-Douri, who still has a bounty on his head as Iraq's most-wanted outlaw, addressed last year's AL summit on tape calling for Arab leaders to "recognize the formations of resistance, armed and unarmed, and cut diplomatic relations with the power imposed by the occupying forces in Iraq."

Good thing the president got permission from these guys instead of Congress.


With all the talk about possible al Qaeda participation in the Libyan rebellion, here's a blast from the past:
Much of his work seems to be done together with Anas al-Liby, a top al-Qaeda leader with a mysterious link to Western intelligence agencies similar to Mohamed’s. In 1996, British intelligence will pay al-Liby to assassinate Libyan leader Colonel Mu’ammar al-Qadhafi (see 1996), and then will let him live openly in Britain until 2000
He's still at large. And here's a United States public service announcement about another member of AQ with an al-Libi in his name. Talking about exploding heads, imagine these guys running around the desert firing on Gaddafi forces protected by coalition air support.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Missed it live because most presidential speeches begin during or after O'Reilly; this one knocked out half of Shep's and Tingles' shows.

Points to ponder..( a quicker summary is at bottom)

> The speech sounded a tad overly sensitive.. "we acted swiftly"; "I ordered warships into the Mediterranean"; "at my direction, America led UN resolution, really, really quick compared to Bosnia, etc, etc.";

> The international community offered Gaddafi a "final chance". Gee, Saddam got one of those, too.

> "If we waited one more day, Charlotte would have been wiped out". I swear I heard that!

> "We hit Rommel's tanks in Benghazi, and cut off his supply lines". I swear I heard that too!

> It's funny how people keep talking about the Arab League being on our side; aren't they made up of a coalition of dictators or in the least non-democratic oil shiekhs? If they joined the battle it seems they would be fighting themselves. Or maybe I just don't understand it.

> If NATO actually takes over the role in 'protecting civilians on the ground' does that mean they'll be the ones providing the gun camera video and explaining collateral damage in coming weeks, not us? Also, if we're protecting citizens on the ground, does that also include civilians loyal to Gaddafi? Is there a way to know?

> Since Obama is divorcing himself from this action and handing it to NATO he can't later jump front and center and take credit for any successes after spending weeks "leading from the rear".

> Obama's argument for acting to save Benghazi was emotionally persuasive but it's hard to know what would have happened had we not acted. It's sort of like predicting how many jobs a stimulus program saved, or how many people weren't killed by a tornado because the siren went off. Gates said this wasn't a threat to US national security and Obama's itching to get out of the lead, so why couldn't we have let the Arab League, France and Britain protect Benghazi?

> He tried to make the case that letting the dictator survive after saying "he must go" would render the UN's word as impotent. Wait, that was Bush on Iraq, my bad. Obama tried to make the case that Arab revolutions would be threatened by a surviving Gaddafi because the other dictators would see it and mimic the violence, knowing we wouldn't act. That was his strongest point.

> He didn't want to put a bunch of troops on the ground to overthrow the power structure, preferring instead to leverage the local militias. WAIT.. that was also Bush, on Afghanistan. Sorry again. Obama said he didn't want to put troops on the ground because taking out Gaddafi directly would fracture the coalition, even though Gaddafi is a murderous thug bastard responsible for NATO being there in the first place.

> Around the 17:50 mark the Bush bashing began. Not sure if it was a coincidence--probably so--but when Obama mentioned "we've been down that road before" regards Iraq, Joe Biden dropped his head, almost as if in shame...

Then Obama praised "the troops" and "diplomats" for giving us "hope" that Iraq might be successful, followed by pointing out all the years it took, the deaths, and the enormous cost to put the cherry on his "I'm not a dumbass like Bush" cake.

For some reason he didn't mention any similar Afghanistan facts at all. What's even happening over there, anyway?

Apparently this poltroon doesn't have it in him to take the high road. Ever. Bush spoke many times about the quest for human freedom to include the Arab world, which was one of the solutions to stopping terrorism. In other words he got the ball rolling, and this cad bashes him for Iraq--the same cad who thought so highly of the Iraqi people that he didn't want to remove their even more brutal dictator, then in the process of removing him, wanted to bolt and leave them to their "civil war" fate.

> Oil. There was no mention of it, whatsoever.

> The future. He said the people will choose, "as it should be". Who could disagree? But Obama has some history in Africa. He went to Kenya in 2006 ostensibly to campaign with Raila Odinga, who claims to be related to Obama, is a Muslim-loving democratic-socialist or a dirty capitalist, depending on perspective, whose supporters rioted after he lost a contested presidential election resulting in a massacre. Obama told Odinga he "wanted to make history together", although it's not clear what type of history he meant. Will the administration actually take sides when the victorious rebels push towards a particular side of the political spectrum? Just sayin..

Quicker Summary-- he made the case that we have to always act to save lives when dictators threaten their own people, unless we don't. He made the case that leaving Gaddafi in power would embolden other dictators in the region, neuter the UN, and threaten the democracy movement, then said we can't be seen as taking out Gaddafi or the coalition would fall apart.
Yes, we're living in weird times.

He intoned that our national interest was involved due to keeping alive the fragile democracy movement, and when coupled with the predicted massacre in Benghazi it became an emergency that allowed him to escape the messiness of dealing with Congress. Then he bashed Bush for Iraq, thanked the troops and some diplomats for saving Iraq, and said a lot of the same things Bush said about democracy and freedom. Onward ho to wherever we go.

Might as Well Ban People

From the sensational Drudge headline about the European plan to ban cars in all cities by 2050, emphasis added:
Siim Kallas, the EU transport commission, insisted that Brussels directives and new taxation of fuel would be used to force people out of their cars and onto "alternative" means of transport.

"That means no more conventionally fueled cars in our city centres," he said. "Action will follow, legislation, real action to change behaviour."
Oh yes, action will most definitely follow if self-righteous morons like this guy keep pursuing their totalitarian environmentalism nonsense. Personal transportation and paper money are part of what make men free, and mankind will not give up this freedom without a fight. The question is, whatever happened to the can-do spirit of western civilization to solve problems like this and advance society?

Sunday, March 27, 2011


Almost 12 years ago to the day president Clinton addressed the nation from the Oval Office on national TV to explain the bombing campaign in the Balkans that had started that same day:
Ending this tragedy is a moral imperative. It is also important to America's national interest. Take a look at this map. Kosovo is a small place, but it sits on a major fault line between Europe, Asia and the Middle East, at the meeting place of Islam and both the Western and Orthodox branches of Christianity. To the south are our allies, Greece and Turkey; to the north, our new democratic allies in Central Europe. And all around Kosovo there are other small countries, struggling with their own economic and political challenges-countries that could be overwhelmed by a large, new wave of refugees from Kosovo. All the ingredients for a major war are there: ancient grievances, struggling democracies, and in the center of it all a dictator in Serbia who has done nothing since the Cold War ended but start new wars and pour gasoline on the flames of ethnic and religious division.
People on both sides were skeptical then as well, but he justified it using humanitarian reasons, protecting the power of NATO's promise, and to prevent a possible wider conflict (pointing out this area was the genesis of World War I). There were some things left unsaid, though.

Fast forward to 2011 and the Obama folks and friends have been pointing to the Balkans as a model for our recent kinetic activity in Libya:
Look at the people who reportedly influenced their governments to back a no-fly zone: Samantha Power at the White House, who began her professional career reporting from Bosnia. Bernard-Henri Levy in France, who made a 1994 documentary urging military intervention against Slobodan Milosevic. “Europe’s shameful failure to prevent genocide in the Balkans was a formative experience for a whole generation of British ministers,” explains The Economist. “Some close observers of Balkan suffering now hold key posts in the present-day coalition government.”
Beinart goes on to mention the unspoken strategic goal of shaping eastern Europe and says in Libya the unspoken strategic goal is to be "on the right side of the Arab democracy struggle". That's probably true, assuming the Arab democrats aren't actually proponents of a worldwide caliphate at some point. But there are differences between these conflicts.

As bad as Q'daffy is he wasn't doing anything near what Milosevic was doing in the Balkans. Matter of fact he was 'in his box', largely minding his own business and basking in the glow of the realpolitik victory we'd given him for handing over the nuke program he wasn't supposed to have and admitting culpability for the two civilian air crashes he ordered. The UK was dealing with their wounded pride over al-Megrahi but in return they were going to be rewarded with a huge BP oil deal. All was well.

Then Wiki Leaks came.

Few are making a connection, but most of the uprisings in the Arab world are occurring in places that suffered embarrassing Wiki Leaks. When the revolution finally came to Libya it wasn't surprising for a guy who had long used terrorism to start shooting his way back into power. Maybe one day somebody will uncover whether the leaks were part of a wider plot, but that's a digression.

Certainly the human crisis is similar--an army against citizens--but America doesn't always involve itself in such things. George HW New World Order Bush stood by with the rest of us and watched China put down a revolution while African countries seem to be in an almost constant state of genocide. Nobody moved on Darfur, but it wasn't in anyone's national interest. Obama has said we won't always go kinetic when the civilian bullets fly.

That leaves national interest and fear of a wider conflict as justifications. Clinton at least made a partial national interest argument that leaving Serbia alone might escalate into a European war that would involve NATO, to which the US is a signatory. And he was unambiguous about Milosevic, setting him up as the enemy.

What Slick didn't mention was another likely goal--getting brownie points from the radical Muslims for protecting Muslim countries. In looking back would have been THE reason for involvement. But as history shows we helped but it didn't help, just like it didn't help when we helped the Muslims defeat the Soviets or push Saddam away from Saudi Arabia. Hopefully Barack Hussein isn't expecting a different outcome this time for helping in Libya.

And the national security implications of leaving Q'daffy alone? Obviously a lot of dead civilians with a nut back in his bunker in Tripoli a little more pissed off than before. Apparently the humanitarian toll was one NATO couldn't afford to absorb since it would be seen as coddling the dictator for oil, and that can't happen when leftists are in power! Yes, America certainly owes the thug some payback and he might go back to his old ways should he survive intact, but on the same token allowing an unknown band of revolutionaries--some of whom might have loyalties to bin Laden--take over an oil rich country also affects our national interest.

We'll see how Obama makes the case Monday. Aside from the pretzel logic it'll take to rationalize why this isn't a "dumb war" when it has less of the same ingredients than the one he so brilliantly positioned himself against to win the nomination, he'll need to explain why we're still there after "days"; why he didn't copy Clinton from Kosovo and work with Congress and address the nation first; or whether we'll need to leave a peace-keeping force behind when Gaddafi finally disappears. After all, if this kinetic conflict is like the Balkans we still have troops stationed in Kosovo. Seems like somebody will have to hang around to keep an eye on the rebels and all that oil.

MORE 3/27/11

Judging by this NY Times summary of Gates and Clinton's appearance on "the Sunday Shows" minus Fox News, it appears a doctrine of sorts is emerging but it might not be something Obama can admit to on Monday. Before getting into it let me state for the record, aside from all the partisan gotcha stuff--my general uneasiness with this Libyan kinetic energy stems from the fact that our actions do not seem to be based on national security interests. In my view Afghanistan and Iraq were both in our direct national security interests. The Balkans, when approached from a NATO point of view, was justified in keeping stability in Europe and dealing with the Islamic issue.

So here's how Obama could get me solidly on his side. If we agree that our mortal enemy al Qaeda's long term goal is to overthrow the Arab tinpots and build the caliphate then the west's strategy would have to either be 1) keeping the despots in power, or 2) being on the ground floor of any grassroots rebellions by appearing to help. The obvious wild card is whether these rebels will turn out to be influenced by bin Laden or the Brotherhood, but what other choice do we have after pushing for democracy in the Middle East through Iraq? There's no reason to think we can't have influence in a new government until they push us away.

By stopping Gaddafi the west is sending a message to Assad and other dictators that a similar fate awaits them if they start rolling tanks over their protesters. This leaves us in the drivers seat when the dust settles. If Obama can somehow make this point Monday--and if he really believes it rather than seeing the US military as some kind of UN proxy army--it might be a winner. Framing Libya as a clever way to combat bin Laden using a regional strategy to steer Arab rebels towards democracies rather than Sharias works for me.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Side Tracks

Here are two legendary sportscasters reminiscing back in the 80s...

So as baseball season approaches, how about a reminiscent look back at the quintessential seventh inning stretch..

Friday, March 25, 2011

Hannity and the Letters

There's a "Wired" story going around the net about Bruce Ivins and the anthrax letters that succinctly states what everyone already knows--Dr. Ivins appears guilty as sin but he's dead; there's no smoking gun; and even some of the investigators are still not convinced. So if he didn't do it, who did?

The article breaks some new ground making Ivins look even guiltier, but it also suggests the FBI had their suspicions from at least 2003 onward. At the time Steven Hatfill was their official non-official suspect in the media. Why did the Bush Justice Dept leave him out there? Yeah, it's not too hard to imagine a sinister lefty fantasy where evil Bush warlocks used him as a foil to invade Iraq...wait, how would that have worked again?

Seems to work better to consider that if Hatfill was indeed a foil he would have been more useful as a focus to get America's mind OFF state-sponsored (or rogue non-state terrorist) culprits rather than the reverse. It was the classic lone wolf. Besides, he was paid well in the end. The plausible reason is that they needed someone, anyone, to assuage public paranoia, and if the public believed the suspect was under surveillance, the threat would be reduced.

At the same time it might also act to lessen the worry of the real culprit, leaving them open to error. But as the Wired story suggests, nothing is crystal clear. A lot seems to depend on the mailer and his/her targets--mainly media figures. In looking back at some of the early coverage a story emerged that didn't ring a bell in the ole memory banks:
A series of hoax anthrax letters are sent to Fox News commentators Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity. Hannity will later say he began receiving the letters in the winter of 2000 and then a second batch in August 2001. Most of them were sent from a postmark in Indianapolis, Indiana, but “one or two were from Trenton,” New Jersey, where the deadly anthrax letters will be sent from shortly after the 9/11 attacks.

The FBI will later allow the New York Post to see copies of these letters, which have block handwriting sloping down to the right and other features remarkably similar to the later letters containing real anthrax. Hannity will later say: “When I saw the Tom Daschle envelope and the Tom Brokaw envelope, I immediately was stunned. It was the exact same handwriting that I had recognized.… When I saw it I said, ‘Oh my God, that’s the same guy.’”
Were those letters ever published? If Hannity was getting hoax attack letters sans powder leading up to 9/11, and postmarked from Trenton, NJ--the same place the actual attack letters were sent--that seems kind of important. In the least it would provide another opportunity to check Ivins' alibi as to his whereabouts during the likely mailing windows for those letters, that is, if Hannity wasn't just blowing smoke trying to horn in on a big story after 9/11.

Also, if the Hannity letters were a match does it make sense for AQ or Iraq or some other terrorist entity to have been sending them empty before 9/11? Maybe, maybe not. Supposedly an anthrax letter was sent to Canadian authorities in early 2001 in an effort to get an Egyptian terrorist released. A hoax powder letter was also sent to former NY Times writer Judy Miller in the period after 9/11 but before the letter story had become news, and she had written a book on bioweapons. So it's hard to speculate precisely. Which is the jist of the Wired story.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

To Syria and Beyond?

The problem with going to war, oops, kinetic military operations, against countries who are not directly threatening America, just shooting their own people, is drawing a line. Where do we stop? CNN is reporting that 15 people (some say 100) were mowed down by Syrian government forces for the crime of protesting their government, including a soldier who refused to fire on his own people. Do the Syrian protesters not deserve kinetic protection from the UN/NATO going forward? How about the Yemenis? Or Ethiopian Christians being terrorized by Muslims? If not, why not? Someone needs to explain this.

Meanwhile, days have turned into a week but Gaddafi isn't a tough guy, he won't last much longer once we cut the supply lines to his hired killer army. The new face of the world Ban Ki-moon, perhaps sensing this or perhaps realizing how fuzzy everything seems, has spoken. The face hiding from the world, Obama, has not, at least publicly.

Holed up in the White House all day? Perhaps he spent the time giving NATO or the French some pointers. Or maybe he got some pointers on his putting. Or perhaps it's the other way around--perhaps he was told to sit tight and await further instructions from Ban Ki--after all, he was locked out of the Oval Office today without a key. Ban, ki, -- a warning! Though it's more likely he was drafting the "look, I did war better than Bush" victory speech.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The New, New World Order

Back on September 11, 1990, George HW Bush made famous the term "new world order" in a speech in front of Congress (full version--interesting comments on the deficit btw) discussing our coming entrance into the Gulf War to eradicate "Sodom" Hussein from Kuwait.

Over the years that phrase has been warped and twisted by a lot of fruitcakes like Alex Jones, but at the time it generally represented following the rule of law and coming together under the UN banner to 'fulfill its mission".

To radical Islamists or Arab thugs it also apparently signaled something else--a coming infidel US hegemony. Master-terrorist Ramzi Yousef entered the US in late 1992 on a forged Iraqi passport with an issue date of September 11, 1990. He was on his way to attack the World Trade Center on February 26, 1993, the day Kuwaitis chose to celebrate freedom from the invasion. The Trade Center would eventually get leveled (as promised) 11 years later on September 11th. We could pretend those things were wild coincidences but knowing how important dates are to terrorists, why would anyone?

The rest is history--Clinton came along and privately declared terrorism a law enforcement issue, built a higher wall between the spooks and the feds, and responded erratically to several attacks without using all the forces at his command, emboldening our primitive adversaries. Then 9/11 occurred. The old new world order was pretty much a failure.

Post 9/11 HW's son came along and changed the world order to "with us or with the terrorists" and finished the job on Baghdad's number one terrorist and declared a global war on terror using all the assets he could muster, to the point of dunking the primitives under water to get needed intelligence. This was not in his daddy's original plan.

Not surprisingly his congressional mandate, yet another UN resolution and international coalition followed by eradication of bad guys around the world were roundly painted as the actions of a dangerous unilateralist cowboy wrecking America's kinder and gentler image. Obama was one of his biggest critics, perhaps even winning the White House by running against that very strawman and certainly receiving the Nobel Prize simply for not being Bush.

Some tried to warn that his high and mighty hopey changy polemics were only a ruse to enact a more sinister vision but the country was so exhausted by the unilateralist cowboy they chose a unicorn of hope and change anyway. For instance, he promised to meet our adversaries face-to-face and without preconditions--does anyone remember his face-to-face with Gaddafi before ordering in the B2's and Tomahawks?

Evidently Obama's problem with Bush wasn't that he attacked other countries but that he did so after going to the Congress and American people instead of just the UN. It was only a few weeks ago he was quoted as saying "in China they don't have this problem [rulers dealing with democracy]".

But back to history. Under the first new world order HW Bush followed the UN mandate to the tee and let Saddam escape back to Baghdad where he immediately commenced using helicopter gunships to mow down the rebellious Iraqi Marsh Arabs, exactly the situation we now face in Libya. Clinton then took the world order all over the map--he saved the Kosovar Muslims and other Balkan groups partially without a UN mandate but let hundreds of thousands of Rwandans die and did nothing to slow down the gathering storm of al Qaeda for fear of using the full force of a military he once loathed. At the same time he bombed Iraq twice and warned everyone of the threat Saddam posed to the world but did little to permanently stop him either.

Dubya came along and announced to Condi he was tired of 'swatting at flies'. At the time the UN consensus was that Saddam had WMDs so Bush went in; later the consensus became that he had no WMDs and Bush was a war criminal. But there are no WMDs, and not even a Saddam anymore. Gaddafi also had WMDs and harbored terrorists but wisely cashed that out for favors after a bedraggled Butcher was pulled from his spider hole; good, but we never got total access so there's always the chance he left some hidden somewhere, such as mustard gas.

What happens if the rebels win and this stuff falls into the hands of AQ? Is that serving our interests? Obama is saying there will be no US boots on the ground but that doesn't rule out African Union or UN peacekeeping troops left to protect the WMDs from al Qaeda. Sound like a winner to you?

But here we are, another new world order. Obama attacked Libya from Rio, not bothering with the Congress or the American people to pretend America wasn't leading, and now we're depending on a rag tag bunch of civilians to defeat the dictator because the UN's mandate doesn't allow targeting the leader who's causing all the problem. This new, new world order seems to establish the use of American military force whenever internationalist bureaucrats agree on something. Kerry's global test, in other words.

Well, hopefully operation Odyssey Dawn doesn't reflect more on its first name and remains "days, not weeks". It may turn into the mother of all mission creep or a quagmire but if it's successful--or spun as successful--the precedent set will be much worse than the failing precedent first set back in late 1990 or anything done by the cowboy to turn it around. What will they say during the next revolt when the tinpot opens fire and we turn the other cheek?

America's president is first and foremost bound to the people and our constitution, not an international body. We can and should work with international military coalitions to the extent it's in our national interest in defending the country, but nothing more. It's a pretty simple concept, one that even a Harvard trained constitutional law professor should easily grasp. If the president believes our national security is at stake by having a rogue and empowered Q'daffy chest-thumping in the region then take him out, quick and dirty. If not, then stay in the background and help those who are at risk if we can, as we always have.

US POLICY? 3/23/11

Obama has been saying it's "US policy that Gaddafi needs to go". I realize the president is in charge of foreign policy but was there some kind of resolution, such as with Iraq, that clarified the policy or did Obama wake up one day and deem it so? And if Obama says Gaddafi can stay in power doesn't that violate US policy? Maybe it's time to quote Gaddafi's stooge.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


The Arab League has already semi-bailed after one day. Gaddafi has not yet surrendered. There is talk of terror attacks from a new insurgency (not the CIA insurgency fighting for freedom now), and our bombs are creating civilian casualties. Even talk of impeachment. The future is hard to know, and land sakes, Libya was actually helping us fight al Qaeda.

No matter what happens tomorrow, today it's clearly a quagmire, and this war is lost. President Hillary has some splainin' to do!


Let's be brutally honest--this whole Libya thing has nearly everyone's head spinning: left and right, socialist and capitalist, thug and academic, moderate Muslim and AQ. The only groups with relatively unflinching positions are the internationalists, neocons, and libertarian-isolationists. The trick has been figuring out where Obama would come down. His normal tendency to hang back floating over events waiting for shoes to drop so he could be on the correct side had finally caught up to him with the reality of dead rebels.

Yet as Waldo was dithering, the right--including yours truly--bashed him for filling out basketball brackets and giving talks on bullying allowing Q'daffy to regain all the gains of the "rebels" (in scare quotes because we know as much about who they are as we do about Obama's background, which is part of the problem). It looked as if he might even drift into the libertarian isolationsit camp until suddenly the internationalists persuaded him to reverse course somehow. Someone at Time Mag thinks he did it to promote the New World Order Kosovo concept, which if true would propel his image out of the isolationist camp faster than a French bullet train.

Yet he finally gave the orders, which provided an almost instant conundrum for the righties who were bashing him (like Sarah Palin). Personally, my criticism was more about the indecision and what it signaled to our allies and the enemy but, yeah. He stills deserves criticism for engaging the way he did, without coming to either Congress or the American people first (which seems to fall in line with the Time Mag theory) but he's no longer dithering. If we care about the people of Libya then we should be glad he finally acted, if that was the criticism.

That doesn't absolve him of all, though. Any president of the past would have canceled a foreign visit upon sending an order to send troops into harm's way; that Obama didn't is almost unfathomable. Imagine Bush sending 150 cruise missiles into some Muslim country while on 'vacation' somewhere. Dollars to doughnuts Obama purposely left the country to further lessen his (and America's) importance here. In other words, "it's the UN's deal, we're just assisting, so what's all the fuss?" As Time says--leading from the rear.

As usual he's too clever by half if yahoos on the internet and Time Mag can figure it out.

But back to righties. It's highly hypocritical to criticize engagement after criticizing a lack of engagement. The commander-in-chief has a right to use the military and really shouldn't need a congressional or UN approval stamp. There's a remedy for abuse--impeachment. Next to Saddam this little fruitcake was one of the worst Arab tyrants and the military is engaged in trying to get rid him, which should leave the world and region better off in the long run. I'm behind the troops and thinking of all the air disaster victims in hoping his Daffiness makes a quick exit, perhaps into the desert dust. "Days not weeks" sounds good.

As to the left it's easy--nobody who criticized George W. Bush for going into Iraq has any intellectual integrity if they enthusiastically get behind this move. On the contrary, unless there's something classified we don't know about, Libya did not pose a direct threat to national security as Saddam did after 9/11 because we KNOW he doesn't have a WMD program going in.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

What's Old is New Again

Let them be clear:
But Mrs. Clinton emphasized that the United States was not leading the effort. “We did not lead this,” she said. “We did not engage in unilateral actions in any way, but we strongly support the international community taking action against governments and leaders who behave as Qaddafi is unfortunately doing so now.”
Translation: this is not a BushCheneyBurton war for oil, no sir, regardless of BP's lucrative exploration contract with Gaddafi hanging in the balance (wonder how al-Megrahi is doing anyway). It's not a chickenhawk war against Islam, even if nobody calling the shots served. It's not an illegal war despite the lack of a congressional use of force mandate, because there are a lot of Europeans behind it, and the UN has approved. Matter of fact, America is so far removed from leading this action that our commander-in-chief didn't even bother to cancel his scheduled trip to Brazil. Our VP? Business as usual! Yawn!

Next question--will the press buy any of this, or will they take a more adult view of the situation?

Meanwhile, Gaddafi sent a warning letter to 'his son' Barack that bad things could happen if the US messes around in the sovereign nation he controls absolutely, reminding him of Libya's support in the War on Terror. Speaking of terror, everyone remembers Pan Am 103 but fewer Americans know about UTA 772:
On 19 September 1989, the UTA plane was bound for Paris from Congo Brazzaville in Central Africa.

It exploded over the Sahara desert in southern Niger killing all 170 people on board.

An examination of 15 tons of wreckage sent to France revealed traces of an explosive called pentrite in the forward hold. Then a dark grey Samsonite suitcase was found covered with a layer of pentrite. This was determined to be the source of the explosion. It had been loaded at Brazzaville.

Also found was a small piece of a green coloured circuit board which turned out to be a timing device.

It was traced back to Libya though a marketing company which, according to the document, had been asked to provide 100 of them for one of the Libyan defendants named in the lawsuit.
In other words, we may soon find out whether Quedaffy has any unconventional leverage anymore. He had formidable assets at one, but he certainly seems isolated these days.

MORE 3/19/11

Here's an excerpt from the letter Gaddafi sent to British PM David Cameron:
You never have the right to intervene in our internal affairs. Who gave you this right? You will regret it if you dare to intervene in our country. Our country is not your country. We cannot fire a single bullet at our people.
And here's Louis Farrakhan, talking to Obama about the audacity of regime change (and blowback):
"I warn my brother do you let these wicked demons move you in a direction that will absolutely ruin your future with your people in Africa and throughout the world...Why don't you organize a group of respected Americans and ask for a meeting with Qaddafi, you can't order him to step down and get out, who the hell do you think you are?
Note the similarities and veiled threats. Additionally, in Gaddafi's letter to Obama he referred to him as his 'son', while Farrakhan calls Obama his 'my brother' and refers to 'your people in Africa', before launching into a nearly incoherent diatribe about connections to Wisconsin, Ohio and armed militias in America, something Gaddafi is also known for.

Side Tracks

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Audacity of Leadership

The president's appearance on ESPN to discuss his NCAA basketball picks was embarrassing on two levels; one, because of his cheesy mention of the epic Japanese disaster in the midst of pretending to be a sports analyst, and two, his analysis--in depth enough to suggest he's been watching a lot of TV sports as the world crumbles around us. Then again, one of his sweet sixteen has already lost as of this writing, so he's got that going for him.

Clearly he's not the first president to take a deep interest in sports or golf, but that's not the point. The point is one of optics--it looks bad for the president to be horsing around while hugely important events occur that demand attention. In times of calm, no problem. In times of calamity, even outside the country, people want a leader.

It's no coincidence Hillary is apparently making noises about all of this only a few weeks after Bill did. She knows what damage this is doing to her legacy (and future). If a bombshell breaks in the birther category sometime soon everyone will know the score (no, Trump is not a bombshell).


Calm down, I know everyone was saying the same thing. But my sitemeter did have a strange entry from whitehouse.comgov (oops) the other day. Or maybe it was just the fishy patrol spying on me. Or NASA.

Anyway, the One has spaketh--it's on like Donkey Kong. In days, not weeks. After he gets back from Rio. Hey--if it becomes a dumb war he can blame it on Rio! Or not.. Er sorry, it's about jobs. Jobs, jobs. Laser focus.

MORE 3/18/11

The above is more or less gallows humor, there's no intention here of diminishing a very dangerous situation. The danger, along with the precedent set by taking actions against Quedaffy, are probably the reasons Obama has done so much dithering on the matter (no doubt after hoping and praying the rebels would somehow kill him and render moot his 'get out, damned one' command). That's understandable coming from a person who over-deliberates but it still wasn't an acceptable alternative due to the negative consequences of how a win for Moammar would destroy the image of the United States abroad, which has been my main beef.

But going into Libya militarily, even through the air, could be incredibly entangled and dangerous. This isn't Bosnia or Kosovo, this is a guy who harbored Abu Nidal and other terrorists and ordered the shoot-down of American and French jumbo jets. He's devious, conniving, ruthless and evil, and once had a WMD program.

The precedent might be more important. Bahrain is undergoing turmoil. Further south in Yemen the government is shooting people in the streets. If we go after Gadaffi what do we do when Syria, Jordan, Iran, and Saudi Arabia undergo their revolutions? Betcha Obama never thought this president stuff would be so hard.

MORE 3/19/11

Reports are coming in that French warplanes are attacking Libyan military targets to protect Benghazi; Huffpo has a headline picture of a jet crashing in a ball of flames.

Although it's mildly shocking to read about the French leading anything militarily, this development should not be overly unexpected considering that Sarkozy was the first to recognize the rebel forces and even set up an embassy in Benghazi. So politically speaking, he had more to lose than did our Indecision Guy.

Let's hope for the best and pray we don't lose any brave pilots. Gaddafi has a history of crumbling early and trying to regroup for sinister revenge actions later, so we'll see if a stray missile finds its way near his HQ at some point (amidst all the mayhem).

MORE 3/19/11

The flaming aircraft was actually a rebel plane shot down by friendly fire, obviously a hazard with a militia army. And McClatchy reports that Gaddafi forces are inside Benghazi, forcing press and civilians to flee towards Egypt. If Gaddafi takes the city he will immediately declare a cease-fire and vow to follow all the stipulations of the UN resolution. Then what?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Art of Doing Something

Here's the Commander-in-Chief saying something about Libya on March 3:

According to AP it was an "unmistakeable message" to "leave".

Today's news.. Gaddafi told rebels to leave (he's always one for irony). Meanwhile Obama filled out his bracket.

Not sure if the "My Pet Goat" analogy is apt here--perhaps Obama fashions himself a master of Sun Tzu or maybe he's Taoist--but at some point the master has to frigging do something. Quedaffy has the best thug army oil money can buy and the dead citizens he's mown down are still dead, with more to come. With each passing day a no fly zone sounds more ridiculous.

If the cwazy colonel crushes the rebellion he'll either revert to the Moammar of old, the one who once produced WMDs (hey--know thine enemy), or perhaps something worse--he'll dangle the oil contracts and leverage the fecklessness, forcing the west to endure more embarrassing moments like this one. Surely Obama's strategery is close to popping any minute now.

MORE 3/16/11

Some called this guy "Clueless Clapper" after his first major experience with the major media; is anyone willing to bet against him now?
James Clapper, the director of US national intelligence, told the Senate armed services committee “the regime will prevail”, forcing the White House into an embarrassing damage control exercise.

“With respect to the rebels in Libya, and whether or not they will succeed or not, I think frankly they’re in for a tough row,” he said, adding the momentum had shifted to Col Gaddafi.
The same guy once said Saddam's remaining WNDs might have gone to Syria.

Sunday, March 13, 2011


I don't know anything about nuclear power or the physics of radioactive fallout. But if it can be carried long distances by upper level Stratospheric winds then these wind forecast charts showing a 'zonal' or west-east flow of the jetstream across the Pacific don't look so good. Found this German site showing what appears to be a plume forecast. Most of the plumes don't reach North America, though, at least out through a week.

We have to wonder if sites like "" advising west coasters to eat lots of brown rice to combat radiation sickness are reasonable or just stoking fear and panic. My guess--and it's just a guess--is that there's no big cause for alarm in North America, at least right now. After all, if the Commander-in-Chief is out playing golf things can't be all that bad.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Side Tracks

Here are the ABB performing "Jessica" about a decade after Duane passed..

This is probably about as good as they can play this song outdoors.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Rummy Files, II

Yeah, ignoring all the union brouhaha--it's only going to get worse and spread, but you'll get it elsewhere. Just biding time browsing around in Don Rumsfeld's archive of documents at and came across this quote, from Saddam's state news agency:
"We will chase [Americans] to every corner at all times. No high tower of steel will protect them against the fire of truth."

Chief of lraai Intelligence In a Cable to Saddam, Baghdad Radio, February 8, 1991
Just sayin'. There's also this doc, a rumination about possible post 9/11 strategies that might surprise a few.

MORE 3/11/11

What an amazing coincidence:
It was a routine call for Quincy police about two homeless men fighting. Hussain Al-Hussaini was arrested. The victim was taken to the hospital.

Then came the surprise. Readers commenting on a story about Wednesday’s arrest on The Patriot Ledger’s website noted that a man with the same name was mentioned prominently in a book about the deadly bombing of an Oklahoma City federal building in 1995
While I've never been too hot on Jayna Davis' investigation of the Murrah bombing (some seems contrived or forced to fit, and why would her prime suspect still be in America) it might be interesting fodder for a hearing. If Hussein al-Husseini really was a former member of the Iraqi Army or the Republican Guard doesn't that make his pre-bombing dabblings with McVeigh just a tad bit suspicious? Davis claims he was employed, along with other Iraqi immigrants, by a Pakistani real estate mogul who had spent time in the federal pen for fraud. McVeigh was a Gulf War vet who had soured on America.

If we take Saddam's various warnings about striking America to heart isn't plausible to think he might have sent some 'individual Arabs' to enact revenge, not only for the Gulf War, but for Clinton's 1993 bombing of his Mukhabarat HQ in Baghdad (presumably for the plot to kill Bush 41)? That was a government building as well, containing security personnel--just like the Murrah. Arabs love them some revenge, and Saddam was the revenge king.

Both Stephen Jones, McVeigh's attorney, and Richard Clarke, our former counter-terrorism czar believe that Terry Nichols bombs improved after his trips to the Philippines. Neither are considered 'neocons'. Nichols visited the same city where Ramzi Yousef, Abu Sayyaf and other Islamic terrorists were known to hang, about the time they were hanging. He bought a life insurance policy and left final instructions before his last trip. What was he afraid of? Is this the real reason Bush attacked Iraq? What's wrong with having a public investigation of this as we did with 9/11? I guess I just can't let this stuff go.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Peter King, Terrorist Lover!

T-minus one til Rep King's Islamic terrorist hearings in Congress and that means it's time for a Times character slam!
For Representative Peter T. King, as he seizes the national spotlight this week with a hearing on the radicalization of American Muslims, it is the most awkward of résumé entries. Long before he became an outspoken voice in Congress about the threat from terrorism, he was a fervent supporter of a terrorist group, the Irish Republican Army.
Let's he's now a hypocrite for investigating al Qaeda connections in the USA in support of their quest to destroy the West because he once sided with the IRA during their quest for independence from Britain? That sort of leaves the Times as defending domestic Islamic terrorists in order to tear down Mr. King, unless they are simply saying he's not the best choice for committee chairman. It's hard to tell for sure.

As to the hearing, still hoping King takes my advice and investigates the redneck connection. We may actually learn something new.

EPILOGUE 3/10/11

Crying Keith's mission was successful--he stole all the headlines. The story should have been about Dr. Jasser's message and that of Melvin Bledsoe, and the dangers of radicalization to become the enemy of America--the same enemy we are fighting in Afghanistan. Good grief, Carlos Bledsoe was so radicalized he took down the picture of MLK off his bedroom wall. Yet Sheila Jackson Lee later proclaimed that Mr. Bledsoe's telling of that story amounted to inciting al Qaeda. Is nothing sacred to the left anymore?

Instead it's about the emotional division between those who think there's a problem and those who think King or anyone who brings this to light are the problem. So we got Keith Ellison. It's doubtful there will be many more of these hearings.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011


And who can forget this?

A Vulcan arriving today might assess the situation and expect a coming rant against the current president--but what do Vulcans know about Democratic political tricks? Pelosi is happy now--her man has already been doing exactly what he said needed to be done--targeting the automakers. The recession was timely enough to allow the "grand bargain" to be forced down America's throat before anyone could think to Google his speech. Eventually our hypothetical Spock might realize that it's not what Democrats say, it's what they do that matters.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Suggestion for Peter King

In another CNN 'Belief' piece that appears cleverly designed to bash conservatives and Republicans, a 9/11 mother, Talat Hamdani, reminds readers that her late son killed in the Twin Towers was an American too, and she's pretty appalled about Rep Peter King's hearings to single out Muslims planning domestic terror.

There's some validity to her opinion. America has long struggled to balance a melting pot society without devolving into bitter factions; add in the recent threat posed by radical Islam it's only natural for some people to succumb to xenophobic chants. In World War II FDR handled that problem by rounding up anyone who looked like or were related to the enemy (at least one of them) and locking them away--but we must strive to not repeat the mistakes of our past.

Some believe Rep King is doing just that, Ms. Hamdani being one of them. She advocates for slightly changing his agenda:
Make no mistake: As a mother who lost a son, I am aware of the need to ensure that our country is secure, that an event like 9/11 never happens again, and that other mothers do not have to bury their sons. And I understand that it is the job of our elected officials to ensure that we are safe. But I reject the notion that it is mainly Muslims in America who pose a threat to our security. Domestic terrorism stalked America before 9/11, and it continues to come in all forms.

That is why I support the call from Rep. King's fellow congressmen and a coalition of Muslim, civil rights and interfaith groups to expand the hearings to include a consideration of extremists of all kinds, not just those who are Muslim.
In other words-- everybody say it --TIMOTHY MCVEIGH! He's the one shining light in the left's arsenal of defense of the domestic jihad from angry teabagging union busting Republicans. They even name conservative TV characters McVeigh to make sure nobody forgets that domestic terrorists can be lily white Christians, too, even if they are fuzzy agnostics. Close enough!

The problem is that CNN and most of their alphabet network comrades, along with most in the reality-based community in general, have forgotten too much about Oklahoma City and may need to be reminded of a few things.

For instance, they've forgotten Joe Doe Number Two. They might remember Richard Clarke's testimony in the 9/11 hearings when he apologized to America for government failures (wink, wink, Bush) but have forgotten the passage in his book where he speaks of McVeigh's bombs being duds before Nichols went to the Philippines (where master bombmaker Ramzi Yousef, KSM and other jihadists were lighting at the time).

So here's a recommendation for Rep King: take Ms. Hamdani's suggestion to heart. America can always benefit from knowing whether any far right militia groups might be plotting insurrection--like these guys. It would also be helpful to know if any of them are so determined to overthrow the government that they'd actually turn to our sworn enemies to obtain help. So bring it on--surely we can all handle the truth.

MORE 3/7/11

Both CNN and Fox News have stories heralding King's upcoming hearings on Thursday. Notice the difference, keeping in mind that Fox is supposed to be biased network.

By the way, the Fox version mentioned that King will summon the father of Carlos Bledsoe, al Qaeda name Abdulhakim, who allegedly shot and killed a Little Rock Army recruiter in 2009. This case alone might be worth the hearings if nothing else but to answer a few questions. One, why was Bledsoe not charged with a federal crime despite targeting members of the military in a self-proclaimed jihad? Arkansas prosecutors are going for the death penalty but his lawyers--the ones he keeps trying to get rid of--keep trying to get him declared not competent for trial; psychologists keep determining that he's sane enough. We already know such people are crazy but not necessarily insane--that's sort of the point.

Perhaps keeping it within Arkansas has effectively squelched coverage from the national press. Bledsoe himself has claimed the FBI knew about his background and failed to stop him--it appears they knew he went to Yemen and was radicalized.

Also, as we approach the hearings Obama has now leaked that he'll restart the GTMO military tribunals soon. At the same time a video was spotlighted today on Drudge and other sites showing helicopter footage of 9/11 taken from an NYPD chopper. It was leaked to Cryptome. Interesting timing.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

When Moammar Came to America

Dateline September 2009--Quedaffy visits New York for the first time in awhile to speak at the UN. He drops little turds like this:
He also suggested that those who caused “mass murder” in Iraq be tried; defended the right of the Taliban to establish an Islamic emirate; wondered whether swine flu was cooked up in a laboratory as a weapon; and demanded a thorough investigation of the assassinations of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King.

He offered to move the United Nations headquarters to Libya because leaders coming here had to endure jet lag and because the understandable security against another attack on New York by Al Qaeda was too stringent. And he repeated his longstanding proposal that Israel and the Palestinian territories be combined into one state called Isratine.
This same guy would be called a 'birther' if he lived here. There was also a controversy about pitching his Bedouin tent in the front yard of one of Trump's mansions:
She did not immediately respond to e-mailed questions about what Trump knew and how he felt about a Gadhafi tent on his land.

Bedford officials — who learned the tent had been pitched on Tuesday — grew impatient with the real estate titan. Before the tent was dismantled at about 4:45 p.m., town attorney Joel Sachs said Trump's people were not cooperating.
All of this occurred after the al-Megrahi debacle, which we've learned was likely a quid pro quo about oil. Dictator coddling could be quite lucrative.

It certainly appears Trump knowingly made the deal to put Moammar up on his estate. After all, it's almost impossible to believe he could get hornswaggled over something like this, being the Donald and such. Maybe he had visions of that old song "Midnight at the Oasis", who knows.

Then we have the stories about Farrakhan and Wright's visit to Libya and other apparently strange connections. There are even rumors that Khalid al-Mansour worked with Quedaffy at the 2007 8th African National Congress Union Summit. There were also other rumors, coming directly out of the mouth of the late Percy Sutton, that Mansour allegedly helped get Obama into Harvard. The mainstream media was never curious.

Now we learn that several Harvard professors were getting a stipend for helping the dictator through a contractor:
But the 22-page proposal for a book on Khadafy was written by Monitor Group, a Cambridge-based consultant firm founded by Harvard professors. The management consulting firm received $250,000 a month from the Libyan government from 2006 to 2008 for a wide range of services, including writing the book proposal, bringing prominent academics to Libya to meet Khadafy “to enhance international appreciation of Libya’’ and trying to generate positive news coverage of the country.
Long long ago presidential brother and cartoon figure Billy Carter had some dealings and took some money from Moammar as well. Seems a lot of people have been in the pockets of this thug over the years. Wonder who is secretly hoping the revolution fails?

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Maybe This.... what democracy really looks like...
Meanwhile, the Wisconsin state Senate approved a resolution that would hold absentee Democratic lawmakers "in contempt of the Senate" should they not return to the Capitol by late afternoon.

The measure would allow state law enforcement to issue a warrant in an effort to detain them and return the lawmakers to Wisconsin, according to Senate Majority Leader spokesman Andrew Welhouse.
By the way, CNN readers have to dig really deep on their web page to get that story. Wonder if it has something to do with all the ammo found lying around the statehouse?

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Connecting Dots

This is the Noodles video (HT Debbie) where Wisconsin protesters advocate a socialist revolution ending capitalism in its present form, including this confused young man..

And this is Bill Ayers, talking about capitalism..

Ayers most likely knew about Obama much earlier than advertised (despite Obama's handlers); likely sponsored his first political candidacy; and perhaps even ghost-wrote the book that got that career started. Rashid Khalidi, the Palestinian 'spokesman' who also lived in Obama's neighborhood along with Ayers, had no trouble admitting in his book that he shared his coffee table with the washed-up terrorist.

And Obama, talking about Wisconsin, recently said there was 'an assault on unions'. The same guy mocked Tea Party protesters and told Joe the Plumber he wanted to spread the wealth around. Since his shellacking last November he's allowed himself to be called the next Reagan.

What more needs to be said?

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

The Huckabee Kenyan Debacle

So Mike Huckabee, in the middle of a radio interview, misspoke about Obama's childhood and put him in Kenya as a kid. Voila, Huck's a birther! Even if he spoke against them in his book. Here's what got him in trouble:
"One thing that I do know is his having grown up in Kenya, his view of the Brits, for example, (is) very different than the average American," Huckabee said, pointing to Obama's decision in 2009 to remove a bust of former Prime Minister Winston Churchill from the Oval Office.

"The bust of Winston Churchill, a great insult to the British," Huckabee said. "But then if you think about it, his perspective as growing up in Kenya with a Kenyan father and grandfather . he probably grew up hearing that the British were a bunch of imperialists who persecuted his grandfather."
His spinmeister then made everything worse--more on that dumbness in a minute--but there's more dumbness in this story. Let's take it one at a time.

Huffpuff pointed to a Yahoo 'fact check' page (yes) stating the obvious--that Obama spent the first year of his life in Seattle, Washington, then back to Hawaii, then to Indonesia, where he *might* have had a mysterious step-sister and perhaps was adopted by Lolo Soetoro and issued an Indonesian passport (nobody will fact check that), then moved back to Hawaii to attend a private school with his socialist-communist grandparents and mentor, the communist Frank Marshall Davis.

OK they didn't quite put it that way.

They basically regurgitated the narrative from Dreams from his father, which according to biographer David Remnick was not exactly a precise rendering of history but close enough for government work (and anyone who claims otherwise is a racist hack). But we must blame Huck for all this confusion, he's a Republican and clearly a racist birfer for not knowing!

Chances are he probably remembered the last media stories on the Churchill bust, which indicated it had been 'returned' to the British. In 2009 the Telegraph said it had been moved to the British Ambassador's residence. In 2010 even Media Matters, while slamming Glenn Beck, did not report the bust being located in Obama's residence. But the 'fact check' from Yahoo says [emphasis added]:
He failed to note that Obama replaced the Oval Office fixture with a bust of one of his American heroes, President Abraham Lincoln, and moved the Churchill bust to the White House residence.
First, what the hell does Lincoln have to do with the British? Second, if the bust is now in the White House residence and not the British Ambassador's residence how did it get there? Did Obama steal it back?! Arg, racist! OK, ok, but where's the darned bust?! There's a Yahoo Answers page on the web asking whether the bust was returned and Yahoo provided no answer. How can Yahoo fact check and not answer their own answers page?

Besides, one would think such a move--the re-return of the bust--would be a huge public story endorsed by our mainstream media gatekeepers triggering a 60 Minutes investigation or a proclamation from Linda Douglass. Do we need to send somebody to fact check the fact checkers? Or shall we just form a small crowd and yell "Yahoos at Yahoo News Lie! We want the truth" ala Wisconsin?!

The odd thing is Huckabee was actually trying to cut the president some slack by empathizing what it must have been like for grandpa Obama to live under imperialist Brit-thug rule. This is what happens when Republicans try to empathize.

Actually the gaffe wasn't so bad, that is, until Huck's spin office stepped in and tried to save the day by offering a completely absurd explanation--that he really meant Indonesia. Since Huck mentioned the Mao Mao Mau Mau revolution that makes absolutely no sense and reeks of a desperate, well, lie. An honest answer would have been more presidential, at least for a Republican (the inverse does not apply because Democrats mean well, even when they lie).

Here's an after-the-fact suggestion for a statement: "while speaking about Obama returning the bust of Churchill I misspoke about him 'growing up' in Kenya; the point I was making was that his Kenyan father and grandfather might have had reason to dislike the Brits, and maybe that rubbed off on Obama, Jr. As far as I know Obama was born in Hawaii, no matter what Governor Abercrombie says. Peace, out".

Too late now, though. Oh well, hey, Fox News is a good living.