Tuesday, August 30, 2011

On Onyango Obama

Interesting. On the same day we find out that Obama's half-uncle Onyango Obama (aka Uncle Omar) was in the country illegally violating a deportation order and using a social security number we are not allowed to know much more about President Obama's social security number due to privacy concerns. Some claim it has a Connecticut prefix suggesting issuance there, which if true is odd because there's no evidence Obama ever lived in Connecticut (nor did his father at the time of issuance contrary to Bill O'Reilly's flip explanation).

Ok no, it's not the biggest story in the world, but it does illustrate the problem inherent with illegal immigration when juxtaposed with large inefficient bureaucracies sprinkled with politics. Case in point, ABC's daily 9/11 remembrance series highlighting major events on the days leading up to the fateful day features this blip for August 29th about hijacker pilot Ziad Jarrah:
United flight 93 hijacker Ziad Jarrah obtains a Virginia driver's license from the DMV in Springfield, Virginia, using the address of illegal immigrant Luis Martinez-Flores. Flores had already allowed two other hijackers to claim they lived at his address
Left Tennessee residents might remember a very strange incident that occurred here in the months following 9/11 involving a DMV clerk arrested and charged with selling drivers licenses to five middle eastern illegals, along with her untimely demise in a fiery auto crash one day before her scheduled testimony. The illegals had possession of security passes allowing access to the bottom floors of the WTC. That case was never solved.

As to Uncle Omar, according to "Dreams" it's possible he's been in the states since 1963, the same year Stanley Ann divorced Obama Sr and married Soetoro. Reports say Omar has had the social security number since 1992 but is it possible he got it much earlier, such as after arriving on a work visa, then just kept it.

Or perhaps he got it fraudulently as in the Memphis incident. Nothing will be learned from Social Security due to privacy concerns but somebody is probably already in process of FOIA'ing his INS folder (as they did with Obama Sr), which could be interesting. It could get even more interesting if someone finds out his SSN contains a Connecticut prefix (attach tin foil hats firmly at this point of the ride) but chances are the uncle has been incommunicado for a long time and uninvolved in Barack's life. Or did he actually have a White House phone number? Oh well, probably nothing.

MORE 9/2/11

According to Jay Carney, HE was the one who told president Obama about uncle Omar on Monday August 29 (contrary to this CNS article). Onyango was busted on August 24 while Obama was vacationing in Martha's Vinyard. Of course there's no way of knowing if and when the president was told but it does seem strange that reporters wouldn't ask if he had any opinion on the matter, like whether anyone acted stupidly, etc.

They did say Uncle Omar would not get special treatment (as if they'd admit otherwise), but the same was also said about Omar's sister Aunt Z, who also ignored a deportation order and was rewarded. More to the point, the reporters should have asked whether the INS's new prosecutorial discretion rules come into play. The reporter highlighted in the CNS story appeared to be ashamed for even asking, although to be fair he's probably worried about his job.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Al Megrahi Dying Again

Maybe this time it's for real, that is if this CNN report on Lockerbie bomber al-Megrahi can be believed.

Supposedly CNN reporter Nic Robertson simply found the villa where the bomber was living, drove there, and knocked on the door. Despite a battery of security cameras, after fifteen minutes someone came and let him in. Moments later he was standing in the same room with the released terrorist convicted of killing 190 Americans (and our flagship airline to boot) who was reported to be within months of death back in 2008.

But there he was, on a gurney and unconscious strapped to feeding and oxygen tubes. No nurse, no doctor, only his mother and caring family members holding vigil. Obviously no need to put him on a plane for Scotland or America or anywhere else because clearly he might die at any minute. Like in 2008.

Even more bizarre, a transition leader said 'no deal' to handing him over to America or Scotland or anyone. Fine gratitude towards two NATO members who helped give the rebels the ability to make such a decision, not to mention Megrahi's closeness to the evil dictator they just defeated. Is this the kind of start they want to get off to, or is the hatred of the west stronger than the hatred of Gaddafi?

Then again, things might not be what they seem. The report above states that neighbors saw the Megrahi clan speed away in a Mercedes on the day Tripoli fell and that the front door was padlocked. Did they come back? Did they leave at all? Is something rotten here or, as the Brit foreign secretary alluded, have we not heard the last word?

Let's hope not because back in July we heard there was a 'secret deal' between Obama and Mustafa Abdul Jalil, Gaddafi's former justice minister and now rebel leader, for the US to get the terrorist after the regime was changed, supposedly as a condition for our continuing support of the non-war. Then last week Obama said he wanted Megrahi returned to Scotland. Hopefully all this will be cleared up soon.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Irene in the Rearview

The storm is moving away, fortunately leaving less carnage than predicted, so now it's time for the eggs to be thrown. The major media shied away from tying Irene to global warming but that didn't stop the Daily Beast from posting a piece by environmentalist Bill McKibben on Thursday night doing just that; some of his broadsides are worth discussing:
As she roars up the Eastern Seaboard, everyone is doing what they should—boarding windows, preparing rescue plans, stocking up on batteries. But a lot of people are also wondering: what’s a “tropical” storm doing heading for the snow belt?
Swing and a miss in the first paragraph. He clearly used 'snow belt' to paint a picture of how rare "tropical" storms should be in this part of the country even though it never snows in New York in August and tropical storms are actually quite frequent in the Atlantic waters offshore.
Category 3 Storms have rarely hit Long Island since the 1800s; one was the great unnamed storm of 1938, which sent 15-foot storm waters surging through what are now multimillion-dollar seaside homes. Normally, says Jeff Masters of Weather Underground, it’s “difficult for a major Category 3 or stronger hurricane crossing north of North Carolina to maintain that intensity, because wind shear rapidly increases and ocean temperatures plunge below the 26°C (79°F) level that can support a hurricane.” The high-altitude wind shear may help knock the storm down a little this year, but the ocean temperatures won’t. They’re bizarrely high—only last year did we ever record hotter water.
And wow, a Cat 3 didn't hit this time, either, despite the ominously warm surface water just offshore. In reality the storm was a category 1 when it reached North Carolina and a strong tropical storm when it made landfall in New York City. His piece was written as if a Cat 3 storm was a certainty, proving the world-changing strength of global warming. Strike two.
Remember—this year has already seen more billion-dollar weather-related disasters than any year in U.S. history. Last year was the warmest ever recorded on planet Earth. Arctic sea ice is near all-time record lows. Record floods from Pakistan to Queensland to the Mississippi basin; record drought from the steppes of Russia to the plains of Texas. Just about the only trauma we haven’t had are hurricanes plowing into the U.S., but that’s just luck—last year was a big storm year, but they all veered out to sea. This year we’re already on letter I—which in a normal year we don’t get to until well into October. Every kind of natural system is amped up, holding more power—about ¾ of a watt extra energy per square meter of the Earth’s surface, thanks to the carbon we’ve poured into the atmosphere. This is what climate change looks like in its early stages.
That's sort of a pop fly single to left. Nobody can deny there has been an almost Biblical level of tornadoes, drought, floods and snow-storms in since October of 2010 but the question is whether they are directly related to higher global temperatures as opposed to say prophesy from The Revelation or the end of the Mayan calendar.

Nobody of science should doubt that world temps are higher now than in the late 1800s, the question is whether this trend was created solely by mankind or if mankind only chipped in a bit on a natural upswing coming off the Little Ice Age. The guilt-ridden enviro-lefties always assume humans are completely to blame then proceed to attack that strawman by suggesting the only correction to the problem is an autocratic world government willing to force enviro-conservatism on the rubes who don't know better. Like Tea Partiers. After all, it's a crisis.

But their gloom and doom predictions on hurricane strength don't always compute. Both the Environmental Defense Fund and Al Gore's websites STILL contain an as-yet proven theory that hurricanes will be stronger on a warmer planet despite that science not yet being 'settled'. McGibben points to the massive amount of rainfall with Irene, which is true, but check out Tropical Storm Jose, currently making it's way harmlessly north past Bermuda as of this writing. On startup it had a neat little circulation but appeared skeleton-like with cloud bands and very little rainfall. Storms like Jose were hard to find in the old days before satellites but now they contribute to the annual storm count, which later translates into a proof of global warming because there are more storms.

McKibben's warming theory about Irene's rainfall can also be challenged by the curious little tropical storm named Don that hit the Texas coast near Brownsville in July then defied prediction by fizzling out within 6 hours of landfall. If higher temperatures allow storms to contain more rainfall (warm air can hold more moisture) then does it also cause them to fall apart quicker when their circulations get disrupted by land masses, the rain being absorbed back into the atmosphere through evaporation? It's far from settled, as yet just another example of how scientists don't completely understand the feedback mechanisms.

At any rate, McKibben eventually gets into the meat of his piece--politics. He tears into the Obama administration for not being liberal enough in citing their tepid environmental report on a pipeline project designed to tap tar sands in Alberta and transport oil south into the US, quoting climate doyen James Hansen:
Those tar sands are the second-biggest pool of carbon on the continent; if we tap into them in a big way, says the federal government’s premier climate scientist James Hansen, it’s “essentially game over for the climate.”
In other words, it's game over if we switch some of our sources of oil from Saudi Arabia to Alberta regardless of whether we use the same amount of energy or not. Rather illuminating because it shows what the enviros really want: world governments stepping in and crushing free-market capitalism due to the emergency. And here we were told that getting off Arabian oil would quell the war machine.

In the end Irene will be a bona fide disaster, already costing billions in lost revenue and likely costing billions to clean up. But it certainly wasn't the historic 100 year storm of our lifetimes as characterized by Obama, Christie and Bloomberg. In retrospect it will be an interesting study in human behavior as politicians felt compelled to run around like headless chickens to make sure they weren't "Katrina-ed" by the press if the worst occurred, while the media ran around like headless chicken-littles trying to create stormageddon to boost excitement and ratings (although not everybody obeyed).

And forecasters, wary of how the media would treat them should they not forecast a worse case and one occurred in a major population area, basically introduced a worse case while knowing (as McKibben pointed out) that climatology doesn't favor one. So everyone has now gone into explain, blame, slash or pretend mode until the next one comes. And it could really be bad!

A NEW MEME 8/29/11

Here's Norah O'Donnell reporting live on president Obama's good response to Irene, including something that's been showing up on several lefty message boards--the notion that Bush did not declare a federal disaster area for Louisiana or Mississippi BEFORE the storm hit as Obama did with the east coast. She made a point to note how Obama's early declaration stood in start contrast.

Just one problem. Bush issued a pre-Katrina state of emergency declaration on Saturday before the storm hit:
The President today declared an emergency exists in the State of Louisiana and ordered Federal aid to supplement state and local response efforts in d in the path of Hurricane Katrina beginning on August 26, 2005, and continuing.
So no, Bush didn't declare a federal disaster area before Katrina but he did declare a state of emergency, which was also declared at state level a day prior. For some reason that distinction wasn't worth noting to CBS.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Side Tracks

I have to admit it, I love the unique way John Jorgenson plays his guitar.

BTW, the still frame in this video shows a Gibson Les Paul; the Gibson factory that makes those beauties got busted this past week by the Feds, which has a lot of folks talking and shaking their heads. Even if they did bend the rules a bit on imported ivory and rosewood, why can't the Justice Department apply some 'prosecutorial discretion' as they are with illegal aliens?

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Path Back to 9/11

The ten year anniversary of 9/11 is fast approaching and the media is moving into second gear on the reflection stories. More will come, some likely somber and tasteful, others more raw and disturbing. There's also a good chance some will be designed to reassign old blame to score political points, something worth watching carefully.

Or how about assigning entirely new blame? This Daily Beast article goes there with a sensational sub-headline involving former counterterrorism czar (and Bush blamer) Richard Clarke:
In a new documentary, former national-security aide Richard Clarke suggests the CIA tried to recruit 9/11 hijackers—then covered it up. Philip Shenon on George Tenet’s denial.
Say what? The CIA knew about all the 9/11 hijackers and didn't tell the FBI or Richard Clarke? Not quite. The third paragraph explains:
In the interview for the documentary, Clarke offers an incendiary theory that, if true, would rewrite the history of the 9/11 attacks, suggesting that the CIA intentionally withheld information from the White House and FBI in 2000 and 2001 that two Saudi-born terrorists were on U.S. soil—terrorists who went on to become suicide hijackers on 9/11.
Emphasis added to clarify that it's really a new twist on an old story about the two west coast hijackers. Both had been surveilled going in and out of the 2000 terrorist summit meeting in Kuala Lumpur before flying into LAX. Tenet responded:
In a written response prepared last week in advance of the broadcast, Tenet says that Clarke, who famously went public in 2004 to blow the whistle on the Bush White House over intelligence failures before 9/11, has “suddenly invented baseless allegations which are belied by the record and unworthy of serious consideration.”
Not that he can always be trusted--remember in his book he spoke of seeing Bush neo-con Richard Perle in Washington on 9/11, who supposedly told him that they suspected Saddam Hussein in the attack. The only problem was Perle--he was out of the country and couldn't get back until after 9/11 due to the airline lockdown. Whoops.

But was it possible the CIA were trying to recruit the two to uncover a bigger plot? Sure. Is it possible they peddled CYA to prevent people from blaming them? It wouldn't be surprising. Does that forever change the history of 9/11? Not really. For such a change to occur Clarke would need to prove they deliberately knew of the attack specifics but kept them under wraps so they could keep watching them, something as yet proven by no one. We already knew there was a 'wall' between intel and law enforcement that discouraged information sharing between the stovepipes.

Yet Clarke seems to think he could have single-handedly prevented the attack had he only known about the presence of these two because he would have ordered them arrested immediately. Has he considered that Moussaoui was arrested before the attack? He knew something was up but kept his trap shut. Is Clarke really suggesting he would have waterboarded these guys, knowing they hadn't told him about a plot he didn't know was only a week away, or does he think UBL would have canceled rather than just reshuffled the crews? Neither were pilots.

But Clarke has a history of saying newsy things, such as his comment that Terry Nichols possibly got his bomb-making knowledge by visiting with Islamic terrorists while in the Philippines; that the glowing streak in the sky seen by hundreds of witnesses during the crash of TWA 800 twas actually the plane itself, which had blown itself up and was ascending 2500 feet without its nose section; and that bin Laden might "Boogie to Baghdad" if Clinton botched an assassination attempt on him in Afghanistan. Wait, those didn't really make much news. The media doesn't seem interesting in following up on those assertions for some reason.

Speaking of our new Vegan ex-president, what about his role in 9/11? The last time someone broached the subject he blew a gasket, evidently chilling the airwaves sufficiently such that nobody else has dared follow the path towards the entire story.

Meanwhile "Darth" Cheney's treatment remains quite predictable. He'll definitely be making news ahead of the coming anniversary, most of it bad, so evidently the plan was to get out ahead of the smear by releasing his own accounts via memoir. The press has trickled out tidbits, one suggesting he was imitating Alexander Haig right after 9/11 (I am in control) while another lists his undisclosed locations. More on this head-exploding stuff after reading the book.

Finally, George W. Bush will be making the rounds and speaking about his emotions and actions on that fateful day, including a NatGeo special this Sunday. Here's an MSNBC hostess discussing that show with its producer, focusing almost all her questions on the My Pet Goat meme. Ah yes, patriotic memories of 9/11, MSNBC style.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Angry Nature

We've just had an earthquake on "Bush's Fault" (emanating close to Monticello), which sent angry land waves up the east coast to New York and Boston. No, it wasn't likely due to fracking, as according to this map there had been few if any earthquakes in that area in the past six months. Weird, nevertheless.

Next comes the potential for a lot of ocean waves as hurricane Irene gains steam passing the "Rangel Islands" and fixes (southern slang) to head north towards yet another assault on the damn Yankees (more southern talk). The media pandemonium is just beginning--actually some of it might be warranted if it gets people to think twice about certain activities for awhile--but hurricanes along the east coast are not always as destructive as billed.

One of the reasons is the proximity of the northeast quadrant, the worst part, to the coast. If the storm hugs the coast that quadrant never makes landfall until it hits something nearing a right angle, which might be Long Island, Connecticut and Rhode Island.

Back in August 1976 Hurricane Belle spun up the coast, becoming a major hurricane at one point, then hitting the Long Island shoreline and continuing up the Connecticut River Valley. The main impact was heavy rain and flooding since the northeast quadrant never got to New York City. It's still early.

Monday, August 22, 2011


With this evening's reappearance of Saif Gaddafi it's anyone's guess whether we're seeing a Baghdad Bob-like production designed to delay the inevitable or a genuine trap/counterattack. Time will tell, and probably not much time at that.

Meanwhile, as it appears Obama is nearing another terrorist football spike moment, we are finally getting some details on US involvement--lots and lots of sorties that were never shown on CNN or most anywhere else. Guess kinetic operations have different media rules.

In the meantime NBC News brings up an obvious question--the regime intelligence documents:
Current and former U.S. intelligence officials point to the possibilities of what could be found in the files, among them:

• The intelligence service's (and Gadhafi's own) role in the 1988 bombing of PanAm 103 and UTA 772 months later, which killed 430 people in the air and on the ground, as well as their role in the 1986 LaBelle Disco bombing in Berlin, which killed two U.S. soldiers and wounded 79 others.

• Support for various terrorist groups, including Palestinian groups, the Irish Republican Army, the El Rukns street gang in Chicago and individual terrorists like Carlos the Jackal and Abu Nidal.

• A purported 1981 assassination plot against U.S. President Ronald Reagan.

• Gadhafi's financial support for the Pakistani nuclear weapons program in the 1980s and the relationship between Libya and Pakistani nuclear scientist A.Q. Khan a decade later, as well as Western countries that supported Gadhafi's chemical and biological weapons programs.
A Chicago operation? In the heart of Farrakhan land? Say it ain't so! The NBC reporterette mentioned bin Laden's trove, pointing out he didn't have time to clean house whereas the Libyans have had months--meaning there might not be much left to exploit in Tripoli. Wonder if any NATO advisors were urging the rebels to storm in over the weekend in an effort to protect those documents?

Meanwhile none of the NBC'ers mentioned much about Iraq's regime documents, many of which were also captured and showed some interesting things. Maybe that's because most major networks pretty much ignored or dismissed them. But surely Gaddafi has some documents regarding Saddam. After all, they tended to harbor the same terrorists and ran in the same circles. Oh well, if not maybe there will be a Wiki Leak. Speaking of which, what happened to Julian Assange? His leaks out of Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, and Egypt pretty much helped this entire ball get rolling.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Briefly on the West Memphis Three

Rarely do I agree with much of anything the Firedoglakers say (even ex FDLer's), and I haven't followed this case very closely since the initial resolution, but their post, despite the hyperbole, contains a seemingly obvious point:
Let’s be honest, no prosecutor in his right mind walks these three men out the front door of the courthouse if he truly believes they are guilty and there is even the slightest chance in hell he can make the charges stand up in a retrial. And no prosecutor lets them do it through Alford pleas. I do not care what kind of happy pablum they spew to the television cameras and press, it is really just that simple.
It really does have the smell of a CYA. From reading press reports it appears the state is saying they still believe they got the right culprits and therefore they see no need to look for the real killer(s), but they might lose a retrial on a technicality so the families and public will have to settle for 18 year sentences for one of the most gruesome murders in regional memory. In other words, they finally made it go away.

Then again, if the WM3 were really interested in clearing their names and knew the state was reluctant to go into a retrial for fear of losing, why not push them into a retrial before accepting a deal? Or just go ahead and insist the trial? That would have served to clear their names once and for all AND perhaps shone some light on the real killer(s) and the alleged corruption that took place back in 1993.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Side Tracks

Not canned, not fake-live, not enhanced with technology, just the Hollies, live...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Get Ready

...to hear a lot more about terrorism as we approach the 10-year anniversary of 9/11. Thing is, we'll probably be hearing a lot less about the threats from AQ this year and more about other kinds of emerging threats. Obama says he's not worried so much about another spectacular attack from the cave freaks because they've been degraded, especially in the last 2-3 years, it's those lone wolves we need to watch:
"The risk that we're especially concerned over right now is the lone wolf terrorist, somebody with a single weapon being able to carry out wide-scale massacres of the sort we saw in Norway recently," said Obama.
Or Fort Hood, which actually occurred here in America. Oops, wouldn't want to jump to a conclusion. Workplace violence is a horrible problem. But you get the drift. 9/11 brings to mind national security, which has always been a GOP issue, and the administration brains have no doubt been using theirs to find a way to counter that feeling going into September. So, get ready to hear that we've practically defeated AQ (in the last 2-3 years) so now we must be vigilant for preppers going to their local gun or surplus shop and using a form of legal tender known as cash.

Also, get ready to finally start hearing more about Libya. Media observers will note that after a near blackout we've recently seen a small burst of activity about how our non-war of protecting rebels and hoping Gaddafi becomes collateral damage is going. That's likely because things are starting to go well for the rebels and they can see Tripoli from their huts. They've cut some critical supply lines and NATO has been flying sortie after sortie (evidently including us?) to put the pressure on. Somebody must sense a coming declaration of great victory just as the GOP terrorists Congress returns in September. Timing is everything in politics.

It's 50/50 on whether the football spiking will be subdued--too much attention might provoke somebody to review the 'days not weeks' comment--but there's no doubt it will be played to some degree along with the bin Laden operation going into September. Don't misunderstand--getting both is a good thing, both for America and the free world, but doing so also bolsters O's national security chops (of course, all will be forgiven in the area of law-breaking the War Powers Resolution because we got our man). They may even find al-Megrahi and drag him back to the states for trial. All of which will be hard for GOP contenders to negatively spin. If all goes according to plan, of course.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Manchurian Candidates

Another day, another handful of negative stories about Rick Perry. Aggressive reportage of presidential candidates--especially if they are successful GOP governors--is nothing new. But the early onslaught should be a telltale of the carnage to come, affectionately known as Decision 2012, ultimate fighting edition.

The WaPo's hit piece today was entitled "The new Manchurian Candidate" on the main page, but clicking on the actual story yielded a headline of "The sad facts behind Rick Perry's Texas miracle". It details just how evil and slick this man from hillbilly country really is if he thinks he's going to get away with hoodwinking eastern liberal intellectuals into believing Texas is any better off than any blue state. Smoke and mirrors!

But wait, 'the new' Manchurian Candidate? Who was the old one? Was the WaPo actually making a comment about current president or do they mean almost every other new conservative challenger?

By the way, the Perry bashing isn't limited to the press. Ron Paul is finally spending some money to make a professional grade commercial, which turned out pretty good. In it he bashes Obama while also going after "slick" politicians, showing Perry and Romney. That's his angle, going after just about everyone, including Borg, Skynet, or any other machine trying to take over the planet. And the Paul-bots will go crazy over it.

But the commercial is conspicuously quiet on foreign policy. All it says is he will "bring peace", whatever that means. Sorta reminiscent of Obama saying he would be lowering the seas, all dreamy and full of air. Here's an exercise--try getting into a discussion about foreign policy with typical Paul fans and you'll quickly see how many of them are virtually the same as Michael Moore when it comes to wars and who's responsible (us) and what we should do (leave). Guess that wouldn't have played well in the spot.

Bryon York noted the Paul problem today, expressing the fret of the party bigwigs, just when we thought Palin and Bachmann were the frustrating ones. The fact is Ron Paul belongs in the mix every bit as much as Gary Johnson and they deserve a voice in the debates. People need to hear their message and make their own judgments. Adults can usually handle such things.

Besides, Paul may be right about both Perry and Romney, something that might not come out unless they stand on the same debate platform together and field tough questions. That's something the electorate deserves to see. Reality says Paul cannot expect to win the nomination by saying he's fine with Iran getting a bomb, or pretending we can end a war by retreating as we did in Vietnam. Such things don't 'bring peace', unless one is impressed with the Chamberlain variety. But Paul may be able to keep the pressure on the others from an economic standpoint.

Meanwhile, as the press focuses on Perry (and dumbness by Bachmann) the actual president is zipping around the corn belt in his fortified Mad Max campaign bus, campaigning and "getting in the faces" of "Tea Baggers" while calling himself the great moderate, all while denying he's even thinking about politics (as he plows the same ground the GOP candidates just plowed). And the press is happy to let him get away with it. Better get used to it.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Here Comes the Bus

Do presidential tour buses come in only one color or did they save money not painting it? Whatever, it seems rather apropos...

Wonder if that thing has some kind of pod on it that takes off in case of attack? Looks like it might have a few 50mm cannons or perhaps a few small missiles hidden somewhere. How about a lever Obama can pull that sprays oil on the highway behind it in case Tea Party terrorists take off in chase in their F-150s crew cabs?

Anyway, it appears part of the new strategy is to employ giant cheerleaders in the fight against the GOP terrorists...

WTF, indeed!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Let it Begin

The vetting, that is. Funny, undeclared candidate Sarah Palin is in Iowa this weekend and gave a pretty good interview to a CNN crew, in doing so also rebuked them for not vetting Obama in 2008. She responded with a laugh when they claimed they vetted him better than her. She was correct, of course.

Now a day after Perry declares the WaPo opens a can of China on him::
While Perry focused on Huawei’s ability to create jobs in a sluggish economy, national security experts in both the George W. Bush and Obama administrations had concluded that the global telecom giant poses a potential cybersecurity risk to U.S. military and businesses.
Dangerous! Ironically, while the WaPo was using scary China, CNN has an international story making them seem less so. Anyway, the WaPo didn't spare Huntsman, mentioning that during his time as Ambassador to China his family business in China increased by 57 percent. Just a coincidence, of course.

And that's what vetting is all about--enlightening the electorate. Only by digging under the facade of their campaign slogans and website portrayals can we get the real picture, or something close to it. Yet in 2008 they couldn't even find Bill Ayers hiding in plain sight in Chicago and have been complicit in running interference on almost every administration issue thereafter. Until lately the White House press corps has resembled a bunch of baby birds being fed by momma bird. Meanwhile, Perry's A&M grades hit the net before he had even declared.

Who knows, the WaPo might be correct about Perry. Perhaps he's a wolf wearing a sheep's costume like most other politicos, including the one in power now. If so, doesn't that leave only a few 'real' candidates who don't seem beholden to big business, unions, or other cartels? Candidates such as the Mama Grizzlies and Ron Paul? Anyone else?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Side Tracks

Carlos Santana has the smoothest, most melodic tone of any of the great rock guitarists. He can't sing worth a flip but who cares. He also had the ability to sometimes make his songs better live than on recordings, such as the LP Moonflower.

Friday, August 12, 2011


From Minnesota:
An investigation into the origins of Minnesota's first human anthrax case in many years is focusing on where the patient might have been exposed to the deadly pathogen, Minnesota State Epidemiologist Dr. Ruth Lynfield said today.

..The MDH has not revealed the patient's condition or listed any identifying details such as name, gender, home state, or hospital.
This person contracted the inhaled variety as opposed to the cutaneous kind on the skin (which is more common for human infections). The story says the FBI was briefly involved, determined it wasn't terrorism, and is already off the case. Must have been something the infected person told them. For some reason those details cannot be released to the public.

As to the privacy lockdown, according to the story the mystery family has "had bad experiences with the news media in the past" and wanted the hospital to withhold information. The same MDH spokesman was quoted yesterday as follows:
"We're not giving details about the case simply because it is not a risk to the public, and we're concerned about patient privacy," said Dr. Ruth Lynfield, the Minnesota state epidemiologist. She noted that anthrax is not spread from person to person.
Well no, it's not a risk to the public unless some AQ guy was out testing his crop duster. But to think public officials would pretend away a possible health threat is too ridiculous to ponder, so we won't. As to the privacy thing, since the family says they've had bad episodes with the media in the past that means they've had episodes with the media in the past. How many people have episodes with the media at all? Maybe this person is semi-famous, or the son or daughter of someone famous. If so it sorta defeats the purpose because there's no way a story like that wouldn't come out eventually. Getting anthrax from the wild isn't exactly like contracting VD from a hooker.

So maybe they aren't famous. The point of this silly speculation is that people are left to speculate about an extremely rare infection that mimics the bio-terror attack in 2001, which caused a lot of panic because everyone knows AQ wanted WMDs so they could more easily kill lots of infidels. Unless a worse case develops we'll likely not hear much more about this story going forward. Indeed--no news will be good news.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Politics Update

President Barack Obama in Michigan today..

"The problem isn't that we don't have answers, the problem is folks are playing political games"

And a few minutes later on calling back Congress from vacation to work on the economy (something echoed by Newt Gingrich in tonight's GOP debate)..

"the last thing we need is Congress spending more time arguing in DC"

Yes, because that would require leadership. He explains that he prefers them home and listening to 'the people' because presumably he thinks they'll all tell him to raise taxes on the rich and pass all of Obama's zillion plans that would have been creating massive growth right now if only Pelosi would have passed them in 2010, er wait, if only the Tea Party wasn't there. Actually he didn't exactly blame the Tea Party but he left the strong impression they were to blame (divided government) for most of the recent problems. He had the good sense not to compare them to terrorists, or even violent extremists, like his sidekick.

That's why he's on the bus tour, so he can spin what 'the people' tell him, which we all know will magically line up with everything on MyBarackObama dot com. In reality he'll hear the same things on the road as the Congress hears at their offices in DC--that the right is fed up with spending and doesn't want tax cuts; and the left is fed up with our Republic and wants forced quasi-socialism to maintain entitlements, and doing so requires the destruction of people who create most of the jobs--those evil rich.

By the way, he's not the first president to set himself up against Congress--almost all of them do it to one level or another, although it seems Obama has a unique disdain for them. Maybe it's his background. Several times he's referred to our "messy democracy" while mentioning that totalitarian governments don't have such impediments. He always clarifies it, but there's that one small voice that says 'if only'. This super congress seems one step closer to a concentration of power unintended in the constitution and the wise old sage will be looking down from Mt Olympus and telling them what to do, so maybe that's an 'almost there' for him.

But it was the negative tone that stood out. Applause was raucous at times, but a lot was polite. They weren't going wild on his bullet points (sorry for the anti-Tuscon metaphor) as in the past. Americans like sunny optimistic presidents, especially during hard times, and the constant furling eyebrow, scolding blamey tone left him looking defeated and vulnerable.

That means the generic GOP challenger is still in good shape. But in looking at the actual GOP candidates in tonight's debate it's not clear whether any of them could keep up with his BS in campaign mode and take him down, economy or not, sunny skies or not. We'll see what happens when Perry gets in, or maybe that mystery candidate (not named Trump), but this current crop is probably not going to cut it. Not even Ron Paul, Ron Paul, Ron Paul!

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Rebels With Another Cause

This BBC clip from the London riots is rather disturbing:
Two girls who took part in Monday night's riots in Croydon have boasted that they were showing police and "the rich" that "we can do what we want".
Apparently they consider people who own businesses 'rich' and blame conservatives for their riotous frivolity and arson. Seems the initiating racial reason has been lost in the scruff (which must tick off those who really believed there was a race problem).

But who's really to blame for youngsters seeing shop owners as evil and worthy of destruction?

Can't speak for the Brits, but here in America we have a president who goes on the stump almost every day pushing a class warfare agenda targeting 'the rich' who 'don't pay their fair share', the solution of which is to spread their wealth around. The same guy once warned bankers that he was the only thing between them and the pitchforks. His pastor for 20 years repeated the mantra of white men's greed in a world of need. And we've had a few frustrated liberals who've suggested that hitting the streets might be the only way to get something done to stop the man. Feel free to connect your own dots.

Monday, August 08, 2011

Never Let a Crisis..

Now that S&P has chastised the DC political process as the cassus belli of their credit de-rating the Democrats have quickly seen a silver lining around the giant debt thunderstorm. No, not this statist twit--but turning everything around on the Tea Party.

Over at Hot Air Captain Ed marvels at a Rasmussen poll showing almost 30 percent of those surveyed agreeing that Tea Partiers are not much different than the terrorists who attacked us on 9/11. That's a staggeringly large percentage for such a slanderous canard, even if they're all Democrats.

It should not be a surprise, though. We have a president who refuses to acknowledge that people in his party--even within his administration--are basically calling a faction within Congress "terrorists". Imagine if someone in his administration called the Congressional Black Caucus terrorists? He should have publicly condemned such comments today in his comments but apparently he stayed on TOTUS points.

Perhaps it's because he sees a visions of sugar plums ahead, media headlines such as, "Tea Party terrorists refuse to pass Obama bills, economy continues to suffer as result". Eventually the entire issue--his main achilles heel--could get stripped away and dumped on the back of those who were only trying to stop the dept chuck wagon all along.

The question is whether this strategery will work on moderates. If history is a judge the GOP will buckle long before the meme dies due to the very prospect of losing moderates, which gives O his Joe the Plumber moment. But there are ways to cave. Here's one: demand that the Clinton tax increases be restored. In their entirety. And demand a percentage of those new 'revenues' be automatically tied to debt reduction--or no deal.

Such a move would force those salivating over screwing the rich to explain why everyone shouldn't have to share the sacrifice. It would also wake up a bunch of moderates who've fallen for the lie that the Bush tax cuts were only for 'the rich'. The GOP could issue videos showing how much everyone would pay extra, and how it would be applied to the debt. If people complained they could be reminded that nobody on the left complained during the 90s when Clinton raised taxes and the budget got balanced--with Newt and company in control of the purse strings.

If Obama balked over raising taxes on everyone (to save the country) he'd have to explain his unwillingness to compromise (or defend his lack or patriotism, terrorism, or whatever the going buzz phrase might be). If he called the bluff and said "OK" it would result in revenues going directly to debt reduction instead of this or such new ballooning program. Could work.

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Rick Perry's Transcripts?

The Huff Post recently released what was purported to be Rick Perry's Texas A&M transcripts. They were not good.. a "D" in Economics. Oh my...a "D" in Shakespeare. Be darned!

But are they real? So far nobody has picked up the story in the mainstream press. Google search and you'll find the Huff Po piece and a thousand people linking to it, but nothing from the big boys.

Then again, why would they? No sooner than a story hit the net the right would be demanding to know how privacy laws were breached, who breached them, and oh by the way, why can't they be breached to show our current president's transcripts. So they are apparently taking a pass on this story. And no, a warning to candidates from NPR, or Fox Nation pointing out the disparity doesn't count as mainstream coverage.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Side Tracks

Ernie Isley was a guitar talent but he never found a unique sound and style like Hendrix.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Pass the Blame

So the thinkable unthinkable has occurred, just as the administration was licking the BBQ sauce off their fingers. Downgraded. The ultimate Friday document dump.

S&P put the blame in the usual places, meanwhile the Dems have begun blaming the people who organized to try and stop the spending. The Repubs are blaming Obama.

Will no one blame Saddam and bin Laden? They are just as much a part of this tailspin as anyone else. Oh wait--the Dems did recently caterwaul about some hostage-taking terrorists who want to blow up the government or the planet or something. Maybe that was it.

C'mon politicians, this is a wake up call. It's a cold water slap in the face after several days of partying. Tough choices are going to need to be made to save this country. It's going to hurt some. But for once it really is about the children. There's no reason why America--the country that invented aviation and put a man on the Moon--can't turn this around.

MORE 8/6/11

While some on the left are interpreting S&P's comments as being directed at the Tea Party for their unwillingness to bend on spending issues (which itself is ironic) these same folks are generally upset with Obama for giving away the store to Boehner:
White House officials believe the president’s approach will pay off politically. They think the image of him as a reasonable compromiser fits with what most voters are looking for, especially the centrist independents who are turning their backs on the Democratic Party.
They may be right. Obama talked over and over about compromise during the negotiations. Never mind that according to reports he undercut a deal for 4 trillion that included more taxes by adding a last-minute additional 400 billion tax increase poison pill. That deal might have avoided a downgrade so perhaps the press should ask both Boehner and Obama some questions about it.

Then again, that busted deal will likely be spun towards Obama's advantage by his officials, blaming Boehner for the downgrade because the Tea Party didn't want the additional 400 billion in taxes, whereas Obama was the calm moderate centrist only looking to get the big deal done and satisfy the rating agencies.

In a real world that would be water under the bridge, not a political strawman. A real leader would come out Monday, make a speech to the public and try to unify Americans for the challenge ahead. But the guy occupying the top spot has already exhausted his credibility by constantly promising, dividing and demonizing, so few would buy it.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

UN Attacks Syria

With a strongly worded statement:
“Those responsible for the violence should be held accountable,” the Council said
Yeah, that'll fix 'em. Might be more effective to send over Dennis Kucinich again--he was in Damascus speaking in the presidential palace the day IAF jets flew overhead on their way to blowing up the illegal nuclear facility supported by North Korea. He could be a good luck charm.

Speaking of stopping civilian massacres, anyone know how things are going in Libya? Our reason for joining the fray was to prevent a bloodbath in Benghazi but it seems the rebel leader has just been killed by Islamists Then again, that might make sense:
After six months battling a rebellion that his family portrayed as an Islamist conspiracy, Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s son and one-time heir apparent said Wednesday that he was reversing course to forge a behind-the-scenes alliance with radical Islamist elements among the Libyan rebels to drive out their more liberal-minded confederates.
Maybe Obama can bring them all to the White House for a beer summit or a campaign fundraiser. Or better yet, send Gore!

Monday, August 01, 2011

End Game?

As all the bargaining parties declare victory with only 1 day left on ABC's Armageddon countdown clock, the rank and file, who actually have to vote for the deal and live with the results in their districts, are being coddled and heard from. One is even calling for civil protests.

But what can they do now? They've been given one day to express their outrage. If this package is voted down we either default or Boehner and company will have to rush through a clean short-term extension--and make no mistake it WILL be short term deal if it has no extensions and Obama will have no choice but to sign it because it will be a bi-partisan epic fail he can't demagogue. Then we get to do this all again next year. Will the Senate and House leaders be able to get enough votes to prevent chaos, or are we already doomed, doomed?

Meanwhile, the government runs out of spending authority on October 1 without a passed budget for the fiscal year 2012. So barring a miracle we get to do it all over again anyway.

Aviation Update

On July 28th an Asiana Airlines Boeing 747-400F freighter crashed into the ocean off South Korea after an apparent on board fire, killing the two crew members. The first report I saw was from CNN yesterday evening on their main web page headlines section, although the byline was dated July 29 and it appeared to be an update about sending the NTSB to help investigate.

In looking around on the net here was already a Wiki page up. Strange there would be so little coverage for such a horrible accident, especially after most of the major media covered the 'miracle' crash of the Caribbean Airlines 737 in Guyana two days later.

If the Asiana disaster scenario sounds familiar it should. Last year another giant Boeing 747-400F caught on fire after taking off from Dubai and crashed on trying to return to the airport. The demise of UPS flight 6 was tentatively blamed on lithium batteries. This Asiana flight was also carrying lithium batteries and other flammable materials. The FAA issued a safety alert on handling such cargo after flight 6. Lithium batteries are certainly flammable but nobody has yet explained how the fire started on the UPS aircraft.

Although considered far-fetched, AQ also took credit for the downing of flight 6 not too long after the package bomb plot involving printer toner cartridges was uncovered last year. Also, a Lufthansa MD-11 cargo plane crashed on approach to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia almost a year to the day--July 27. But just because AQ takes credit doesn't mean they did it, as seen in the Norway murder spree.

As to coverage, perhaps the crash of a cargo plane with only two on board halfway around the world just isn't very newsworthy here. The package bomb threat was last year's news and besides, why would terrorists target South Korea?

Maybe they wouldn't. But the Republic of Korea is a coalition partner in support of Operation Enduring Freedom--in the Horn of Africa. Yemen is the epicenter of the package bomb threat. And one of the ill-fated Asiana pilots took out a lot of life insurance recently--certainly something the insurance investigators will be interested in, although such might depend on whether the airline had been getting a lot of threats of late.

MORE 8/1/11

Could this be the reason the pilot took out so much life insurance?
The South Korean jet was coming in to land at Seoul's Incheon International Airport - close to the border with North Korea - when Marines opened fire with rifles. The incident took place at dawn Friday, Yonhap news agency reported, citing a military source.

The Asiana Airlines jet carrying about 119 people was undamaged and no one was hurt.
This was from back in mid June. Maybe when your own soldiers are firing on you it's time to get some insurance. As to foul play, if local officials are considering such a thing it's probably focused more towards sabotage coming from a northern neighbor than from anywhere else.