Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Aviation Update

The travails of Jet Blue flight 191 (a flight number which doesn't have very good luck in aviation) is perhaps one of the more amazing stories in transportation in a good while. It appears a real-world "Cain Mutiny" occurred, perhaps creating another pilot hero in the process, as we learn more about events leading up to the meltdown:
Captain Clayton Osbon told his co-pilot that "things don't matter" shortly after JetBlue Flight 191 from New York departed Tuesday, according to an affidavit. Court documents say Osbon told the plane's first officer that "we're not going to Vegas" and began what he described as a sermon.

"The (first officer) became really worried when Osbon said `we need to take a leap of faith,"' according to the sworn affidavit given by an FBI agent. "Osbon started trying to correlate completely unrelated numbers like different radio frequencies, and he talked about sins in Las Vegas."
Of course this is a news report, meaning it might be 50 percent inaccurate. The only sure way to ascertain what went on that caused the junior pilot to take an extraordinary leap of 'faith' and lock out the senior man is a perusal of the Cockpit Voice Recorder, which contains a tape of the final 2 hours of the flight.

I won't begin to speculate on what might have caused a 'well-respected' flight standards captain of a major airline to breakdown in such a manner, but it seems the media might be leading us towards a religious fanatic explanation, Christian this time. It would be interesting to know why he was referencing Iraq, Iran, AQ, Israel, bombs, etc, but such could be seen as lining up for the last great battle in the Middle East, which most Christians believe is nigh or somewhat nigh. Again, the CVR might shine some light. Hopefully the approaching Mayan end of time in December won't exacerbate these kind of things going forward.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Under Attack

Update on uncle Obama:
“After a thorough review, we felt it was in his interests to end the matter without any further proceedings. He’s glad to have this behind him,” said Obama’s attorney P. Scott Bratton.

The attorney added that Obama wants to “get on with his life” and to “get on with his normal quiet existence in society.”

As for Obama’s illegal alien status, his attorney added the deportation proceedings were due to his failure to “renew immigration paperwork.” Bratton said he expects that to be resolved, but he did not elaborate.

When he was arrested by Framingham police, he suggested his first call should be to the White House. A spokesman for the president told the Herald that call was never made. He actually called his boss at Conti’s Liquors.
One has to wonder how bad he would have fared had there not been a war against him. At least those barbarians allowed him to stay out of jail until the inauguration next year. But paperwork? Really? Just for wanting to live a quiet, normal illegal existence? Outrageous!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hoodies and Hijabs

Do they have anything in common? No, other than being pieces of clothing covering one's head. But some are trying to tie the Trayvon Martin story with another one out west--the death of an Iraqi woman severely bludgeoned with a tire iron several days ago in her home in El Cajon, California. Alongside her body was found a note calling her a terrorist and telling her (them) to return to the Middle East. Many are screaming that it's another 'hate crime'.

Indeed, a CNN report seems to find a common thread:
But social media users quickly compared Alawadi's death to that of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, calling both hate crimes, and drawing a parallel between a hijab and a hoodie.

Martin was killed last month as he walked back to his father's fiancee's house in Sanford, Florida, after a trip to the convenience store. Police say he was shot by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer who said he was acting in self-defense and has not been charged.

The teen was unarmed, carrying a bag of Skittles candy and an iced tea, and was wearing a hoodie. On Sunday morning, the authors of the parenting blog, Momstrology, tweeted: "A teen murdered for wearing hooded sweater. An Iraqi woman beaten to death for wearing a head scarf. Our hearts ache for you."
Terrible. But isn't it early to be allowing such faint comparisons? Police in the bludgeoning death have yet to locate a suspect or call it a hate crime but they have said it appears to be an isolated event. Maybe that's because there are a lot of possibilities in murder cases, such jealous lovers, irate husbands, spats between friends, wild rages with angry neighbors over petty nonsense, etc. Mrs al Awadi was found in her home with no signs of forced entry or theft.

Not to say it wasn't a xenophobic redneck gone wild--they certainly exist--but without hard evidence it's a little speculative to start putting the blame on guys wearing NASCAR hats or even "white Hispanics" (El Cajon has a large Hispanic population). The dynamics of Muslim marriage are not well understood in western society, which is another reason investigations need to be done. And despite 9/11 the number of violent crimes against Muslims has been unexpectedly low.

But we live in a world that demands instant justice. Look at the comments on this report; most have jumped to the conclusions Obama once warned us about when it came to the major Hasan workplace violence jihad at Fort Hood. Read an Agatha Christie novel or watch an old Perry Mason rerun--things aren't always as they seem (click on both links and take a look at the two pictures). The anthrax letters sent in 2001 included notes blaming Muslims. Later a US microbiologist was fingered as the likely culprit. There was a confusing letter left in the Jon Benet Ramsey murder. Red herrings exist.

None of which is a comfort to the afflicted. Human nature being what it is, the group 'under attack' often feels the only recourse is to emotionally call out vigilante mobs, which only begets more violence. Such times demand our leaders to call for calm and patience, not emotional self-identification. They should know their words have tremendous power. If officials stonewall investigations or refuse to prosecute obvious hate crimes after investigations complete there are many other avenues of recourse short of blood in the streets.

Our elite media should understand. Like political leaders they have an ability to shape events but an even higher responsibility to ferret out the truth and keep others in check. After all, they've all been to J-school just like Sarah Palin. Mindlessly aligning disparate events or creating false narratives to help further political causes or sell papers is itself a travesty of justice and completely un-American.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Tragic, yes

A young man is dead, needlessly shot in the prime of life. That's tragic.

But what's occurring around the circumstances of his death is not much better. The case deserves a second look (not the only one) but while America waits the media at large, apparently in their zeal to elevate this into another national conversation on race, have used an unflattering picture of Mr. Zimmerman (mug shot) juxtaposed with a not too recent photo of Trayvon Martin for maximum effect.

Some have even popularized a new racial descriptor--a 'white Hispanic'. It's funny how people of Latin descent are called 'brown people' when it's convenient, such as when conservatives are discussing illegal immigration, but become whiter when involved in the shooting of a black person. Shameless.

Of course the carnival barkers have also arrived in Florida, fanning racial bias by projecting the case into an important national issue worthy of marches hither and yon without any supporting evidence of a national trend. So now we not only have a war on women, we've got a war on black people, as Reverend Jackson tells us they are 'under attack'. It's not clear exactly who is part of this attack plan or whether it includes black people who want the right to shoot at criminals using concealed carry firearms, but surely the media will explain everything soon, such as the death rate in the president's home town and what it means, or maybe stuff like this.

The post-racial President could help here by trying to cool the rhetoric, just as he tried to do in the major Hasan jihad shooting by telling America not to jump to conclusions. Instead he steps out of bounds and takes a question leaving a presser (a first?) and invests his own race into the issue, furthering the flame. He knows where that road goes because he knows from where it comes. But apparently it beats talking about other things.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Clintonville Booms

I usually don't link to these guys, well, ever, but they've covering a story that sounds interesting--the Wisconsin booms:
Loud booming noises have shattered the air and rattled the ground in parts of the town, wrenching many residents out of their sleep. And no amount of investigation has determined the cause, city administrator Lisa Kuss said in a telephone interview.”
Of course the Jones gang is skeptical of yesterday's USGS announcement that a swarm of small earthqaukes, 1.5 magnitude, caused the noises, case closed, nothing to see, move on. Problem is, the sounds were occurring before the measured quakes:
Indeed, the Wisconsin Rapids Tribune reports that residents have been feeling the booms for months, noting that, “Several residents questioned the solution. After all, earlier that week they were told earthquakes had been ruled out as a potential cause of the sounds that shook them awake for several nights.”
Not to say micro quakes aren't the cause--they may be--it just seems odd the USGS would not show any quakes then suddenly find a swarm of tiny ones near Clintonville, solving the mystery. Small earthquakes aren't normally felt. But what else could it be?

Well, there are no railroad lines in Clintonville. There is a small airport but it's an unlikely source since small jets have been known to visit there without previous complaints. Obviously fracking comes to mind, the cause du jour for all recent mysteries, but..
No one seems to know what the mysterious booms in Clintonville are, which means runaway speculation is about to begin. City officials have checked and rechecked methane levels at the local landfill, monitored water, sewer and gas lines, contacted the military about any exercises in the area, reviewed mining explosive permits and inspected the Pigeon River dam next to city hall.

Nothing. And there is no mining or heavy construction nearby.
That leaves what, pranks? Someone shooting off contraband artillery? An alien base? Secret underground nuke tests? Dick Cheney hunting trip? AQ training? The entity that killed the blackbirds in Arkansas?

I'm stumped. Alex Jones obviously believes the earthquake explanation is a little too convenient--me, too--although he probably thinks it's an underground FEMA camp being constructed. If you watch the geologist on the linked video he says a possibility could be the low water table (lack of snow this winter) causing the granite subsurface to 'settle', which perhaps could explain the small earthquakes. It has been a very warm winter across most of the US, so perhaps we're experiencing some new geologic effects we've not seen before.

Whatever the case it shows how much mankind knows about our environment. These USGS guys are probably just guessing. Yet we've been told to implicitly trust climate forecasts out to 100 years.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Well, it didn't take long for bin Laden's presumed opinion of Joe Biden to be proved again:
“You can go back 500 years. You cannot find a more audacious plan. Never knowing for certain. We never had more than a 48 percent probability that he was there,” Biden said at a fundraiser in Morris Township, N.J. “Do any one of you have a doubt that if that raid failed that this guy would be a one-term president?” Biden asked. Obama, he said, “is willing to do the right thing and risk losing.”
Here's how David Ignatius. via the White House, described bin Laden's take of Joe:
“The reason for concentrating on them,” the al-Qaeda leader explained to his top lieutenant, “is that Obama is the head of infidelity and killing him automatically will make [Vice President] Biden take over the presidency. . . . Biden is totally unprepared for that post, which will lead the U.S. into a crisis.
Evidently the details of Operation Audacious Gutsy will keep trickling out until November. However.. there's an interesting comment in the Politico story about those very details. Several groups have been trying to FOIA information relating to the raid with no luck.  The commenter claims the DoD says they have "lost" the UBL file, which if true would be hugely conspiratorial. Did they?  It depends on what constitutes 'lost'.  Here's their reply:
The Pentagon told the AP this month it could not locate any photographs or video taken during the raid or showing bin Laden's body. The Pentagon also said it could not find any images of bin Laden's body on the Navy aircraft carrier where the al-Qaida leader's body was taken. The Pentagon said it could not find any death certificate, autopsy report or results of DNA identification tests for bin Laden, or any pre-raid materials discussing how the government planned to dispose of bin Laden's body if he were killed. The Defence Department said it searched files at the Pentagon, the U.S. Special Operations Command in Tampa, Florida, and the Navy command in San Diego, California, that controls the USS Carl Vinson, the aircraft carrier used in the mission.
The Pentagon told the AP in late February it could not find any emails about the bin Laden mission or his "Geronimo" code name that were sent or received in the year before the raid by William McRaven, the three-star admiral at the Joint Special Operations Command who organized and oversaw the mission. It also could not find any emails from other senior officers who would have been involved in the mission's planning. It found only three such emails written by or sent to then-Defence Secretary Robert Gates and these comprised 12 pages sent to Gates summarizing news reports after the raid.
How to explain this?  Maybe they never had anything, maybe CIA or some other alphabet had it.  Anyway, so many theories, so little time!  Here are a few wags:

1) The few people still in the Laurie Mylroie "KSM and Yousef were not Islamists, they were hired hit-men for Saddam who used Islamist rubes to do their dirty work" camp might see this as completely fitting--to them bin Laden was a tool and never as powerful as he or we thought.  Once the Ba'athists/Saddam terror machine was rolled up he was relegated to a safe house to dream Caliphate fantasies while watching Debbie Does Dallas.

2)  The truthery tinfoiler might say, "UBL has been a foil for 11 years now. He was killed at Tora Bora but the Pakistanis kept him alive to get money; Bush kept him alive to perpetuate the WoT and Iraq invasion; and Obama kept him alive long enough to pull of the most audacious capture in 500 years."   They would say it shows the need for a new 9/11 investigation and be so juiced they'd vote for Ron Paul 50 times in the next online poll. 

3)  Basic skeptics might look more at the Stratfor wiki leak on bin Laden's body possibly coming to America (which appeared on Drudge for about an hour before being sent to the memory hole without explanation) instead of the the bottom of the Persian Gulf and wonder WTF. 

4)  Political junkies may simply see the shutdown of FOIA requests as an attempt to completely control the narrative for reelection purposes of a certain politician that won't be named.

5)  The rest will either say "Obama is awesome" or "what a bunch of BS" and go back to their favorite goof-off endeavor. 

In other words, same old same old.

SNAP!   3/21/12

In today's version of Operation Audacious Gutsy Ignatius reveals details of a document allegedly sent from AQ media dude Adam Azzam the American Gadahn to UBL about how to win the media wars.  Bolded for effect:
In the letter, the media adviser focuses on “how to exploit” the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001, on television. He worries that CNN “seems to be in cooperation with the government more than the others,” though he praises its “good and detailed” Arabic coverage. “I used to think that MSNBC channel may be good and neutral a bit,” he continues, but then notes the firing of Olbermann. The media chatter continues: CBS “has a famous program (‘60 Minutes’) that has some popularity and a good reputation.” ABC “is all right; actually, it could be one of the best channels,” because of its chief investigator and terrorism expert, Brian Ross. But all the networks, he complains, will bring in analysts who will “conduct a smearing” of al-Qaeda figures.
Heh, the right kept telling everyone this all along. Gadahn, like UBL, also lamented the loss of Muslim life in the war, ie, Iraq.  Which suggests one) AQ was VERY involved in the Iraq outcome all along, and two) it sounds like they are saying we won based on the surge. 

Anyway, strange stuff, hopefully there will be some actual document releases. Since the administration is selectively leaking this trove to the Post it's odd they would pick items suggesting that members of AQ favored the mainstream press over Fox News. Maybe they think any slam of Fox News is good, even if coming from AQ.   Like everything else with this war it's perplexing. It may take another 500 years to figure it out.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Frosted Lucky Campaign Gimmicks

Happy St. Patrick's Day to those who celebrate.  In Irish news, campaign staffers of noted Irishperson Barack Hussein Obama have now "corrected" a campaign clover design to be more historically accurate without admitting any wrongdoing in choosing the symbol of Lucky the Leprechaun over the symbol of the Irish:
Last month, many Irish-American Obama supporters were surprised to find a four-leaf clover plastered on their St. Patrick’s Day themed merchandise, considering the three leaf shamrock is a typical symbol seen on St. Patrick’s Day. But the latest t-shirt available on their online store bears a proper shamrock. “Due to the overwhelming popularity of our O’Bama Tee,” the ad reads, “we are expanding our line of Saint Patrick’s Day fashion!” “Now you can buy the “O'Bama” Tee and the “I Shamrock O’Bama” Tee together in our new pack.”
When combined with the Rusty Hayes urban legend debacle it gives a whole new meaning to the term 'crack investigative staff'. Anywho, it's Saturday..

Thursday, March 15, 2012


Realclearpolitics has a clip of president Obama speaking in front of another hand-picked applause-light crowd about something or other in which he bashes former president Rutherford B. Hayes.  For real.  Yeah, see according to the Commander-in-Chief ole Rusty didn't see the value of the telephone back in its infancy, which the current president used to make a point about how we need smart people who look ahead, not these recent Republicans who drove us into a ditch (the 'flat-earthers').

He then mentioned noted visionaries such as Edison, the Wright Brothers, Bill Gates, and Steve Jobs to make a point that America has always looked forward, not backwards like the flat-earthers.  Problem is, none of those guys worked for the government or got where they where thanks to government.  They were self-made men.  Rugged individualists.  

But wait, did "Rootherford" even make that comment about the telephone?  Probably not:
Hayes “was very technologically savvy,” said Nancy Kleinhenz, the communications manager at the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center. In addition to being the first president to have a telephone in the White House, he was also the first president to use the typewriter, experiment with the phonograph and record his voice on Thomas Edison’s gramophone.
Hayes was also a northern Republican, party of Lincoln, who was endorsed by free-thinkers like Mark Twain. It's likely Obama was simply perpetuating an urban legend against one of his predecessors to score cheap political points.  But it's not the only mistake of late--just last week he told another assembled congregation that his new CAFE fuel economy standards would save Americans 8000 dollars per year in fuel costs. "No lie". Yes, lie, or at best a slip of the tongue.  Are they taking note of these things on

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Obama, Circa 1990

The vetting continues, this time from a news article posted in 1990 featuring an interview with president Obama when he was at Harvard.   Nothing earth-shattering; it confirms he's been a redistributionist for a long time, ie, hugging professor Bell and hobnobbing with Wright and Ayers wasn't some goofy college phase.  But the story is worth a few clips, so here goes..
Concern for Obama’s education led his mother to return him to Hawaii, where he attended public schools through high school. In 1983, he graduated from Columbia University with a degree in political science.
Isn't Punahou a private school? Yes, yes it is. As we'll see, that little falsehood was perhaps convenient as to where he wanted to take the interview. Next,
“I’m not interested in the suburbs. The suburbs bore me. And I’m not interested in isolating myself,”
He met Joe the Plumber in a suburb.  More..
“It’s crucial that people don’t see my election as somehow a symbol of progress in the broader sense, that we don’t sort of point to a Barack Obama any more than you point to a Bill Cosby or a Michael Jordan and say ‘Well, things are hunky dory,’” Obama said.
Right, progress doesn't mean progress!  Just don't call it token progress--not when he's dropping his name alongside a couple of icons, one of which plays a sport that has been dominated by blacks since well before 1990.
“Professors may treat black students differently, sometimes by being, sort of, more dismissive, sometimes by being more, sort of, careful because they think, you know, they think that somehow we can’t cope in the classroom,” he said.
They may, and they may not.  Anecdotally speaking, of course.
..Obama was not trying to solve local problems, he said. Instead he sought to construct something more lasting — a forum for the community, “I’m interested in organizations, not movements, because movements dissipate and organizations don’t,” Obama said.
Was he talking about ACORN?  It would make sense. 
“Hopefully, more and more people will begin to feel their story is somehow part of this larger story of how we’re going to reshape America in a way that is less mean-spirited and more generous,” Obama said.
Hmm. First, who is 'we'?  Second, America has had organizations trying to 'shape' people into being more generous and less mean-spirited for a long time--they are called churches. Obama clearly believes that kind of work belongs in government, hence Obamacare, et al.   And finally..
“I mean, I really hope to be part of a transformation of this country. ”And the future of black people and of America generally? “It depends on how good I do my job,” he said.
Wow, hopefully there were some context issues because otherwise he must have felt pretty high about himself back then to think his appointment at Harvard meant he carried the fate of the entire black race on his shoulders.  But it appears he was talking about his future 'reshaping', which means he was fairly prescient seeing as how he became the first black president.  So where does he think we are on progress now?  Is the reshaping complete or just getting started? What does he plan to work towards if reelected?

Such questions are why vetting is important.  There's nothing wrong with him being a champion of the black poor in America, it's who he is.  The problem lies with the media and intelligensia so afraid of the truth they would try to keep such facts from the voters.  And they are still doing it.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Did the President Just Call Pelosi a Liar?

Here's the prez, during an interview with a local Florida TV reporter..
Anybody who says we can get gas down to two bucks a gallon just isn't telling the truth," Obama said.
Well OK, here's some vintage Nancy Pelosi talking about the Democrats' version of the contract with America in 2006:
"We want to send our energy money to the Midwest, not the Middle East," Ms. Pelosi said.
Apparently the Middle East now includes Canada.  Still 2006, more:
“Democrats have a commonsense plan to help bring down skyrocketing gas prices by cracking down on price gouging, rolling back the billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies, tax breaks and royalty relief given to big oil and gas companies, and increasing production of alternative fuels.”
Or how about this..

So please, this silliness has to end.  Only Karl Rove has a meter that controls the price of oil (when it's not being used to direct hurricanes into poor areas). Everyone knows that.  And he only listens to Cheney.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Cutting the President Slack

We are either in a war against Islamic terrorists or not.   If we are there are two courses of action--kill them or capture them.  Obama seems to prefer the former, which has gotten him in trouble with a few of the principled liberals (whom the press has largely ignored).  But no longer--the Times has weighed in devoid of the standard warm fuzzies.  This curious article is worth exploring.

First, the Times Op-Ed writer applauds Holder for saying the US criminal justice system should be adequate for trying most terrorists.  They failed to mention Holder being part of an Amicus brief supporting Jose Padilla back when Bush classified him an enemy combatant, clearly the same status given to Anwar Awlaqi.  But you can't have it all.  Therein ends the love fest:
A president has the right to order lethal force against conventional enemies during conventional war, or against unconventional enemies in unconventional wars. But when it comes to American citizens, there must be compelling evidence that the threat the citizen poses is imminent and that capturing the citizen is not a realistic option.
There very well may be compelling evidence on Awlaqi, who was hiding with fellow mujidadeen in Yemen (exercising his Yemeni citizenship) on both intent and imminence. More on that in a sec. But first, take a look at the Times colorful way of expressing their outrage that the memo authorizing the hellfire that ended Awlaqi was never provided to the Congress, emphasis added:
It has even refused to acknowledge the existence of a Justice Department memo providing legal justification for killing American citizens, even though that memo has been reported by The Times and others. It is beyond credibility that Mr. Obama ordered the Awlaki killing without getting an opinion from the department’s Office of Legal Counsel. Even President George W. Bush took the trouble to have lawyers in that office cook up a memo justifying torture.
In other words they are saying "even Bushitler provided phoney-baloney justification for his crimes".  That's the kind of writing one might expect to see on a message board, not from the world's greatest newspaper.

Anyway.   What about the memo? Why did Bush fear broadcasting details of the terrorist surveillance program and the black site interrogations to every member of Congress? Leaks, of course. And as we've seen with Obama, he doesn't like leaks.  What are they protecting in the Awlaqi case?  It's gotta be something pretty significant for the president to reach the point to where a house organ would lump him with someone so evil.  Holder says they have the authority to blow away a US citizen if he/she has become an enemy of the state and is hiding in a place where capture is unlikely without large collateral damage and other complications, while being an imminent threat.  At which point..
But he gave no inkling what the evidence was in the Awlaki case, and the administration did not provide a way in which anyone other than the people who gave the order could review whether the standards were met. Mr. Awlaki made tapes for Islamist Web sites that justified armed attacks on the United States by Muslims. But was he just spouting off, or actively plotting or supporting attacks?
Since the Times is speculating let's help them with several possibilities. The first is seminal but in a way conspiratorial. Awlaqi was more than likely involved with at least two of the 9/11 hijackers, both as an Imam in San Diego and Falls Church, Virginia.  At what level, we don't know.  But at the time he was thought of as a 'moderate Muslim', even invited to the Pentagon to speak about Islam after 9/11.  That's embarrassment enough, but considering the controversy surrounding the entry of the two west coast terrorists is it possible Awlaqi was some kind of an asset?

Perish the thought--history shows at least two debacles involving Arabs our government thought were helping us only to have things end badly:  Emad Salem in the first WTC attack and Ali Mohammed before the African Embassy bombings.  Neither have received their fair share of press post 9/11 (probably for fear of a Clintonista revolt). The possibility that Awlaqi was feeding us disinformation as a supposed trusted asset isn't so far-fetched (be careful arbitrarily blaming the government in hindsight since if so it would show they were at least trying to run assets to find the bad guys--we are not going to win them all)?

Aside from embarrassment it's possible to suggest more concrete reasons Holder might not want to release the memo.  It's possible to make a very flimsy connection between Awlaqi and Ali al-Timimi, a George Mason University computational biologist and part Iraqi who was tried and convicted of sedition (yes, here in America).  Then from him it's possible to make a flimsy connection to other areas we won't explore at the moment (that case is now closed, nothing to see).

Finally, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, for whom Awlaqi preached and pontificated for online, seemed to have a penchant for aviation. Of course they are linked to the underwear bomber and the cargo printer cartridge bombs that fortunately didn't explode. But they have also taken credit for the crash of UPS flight 6 from Dubai in September 2010 and Ethiopian 409 that crashed off the coast of Beirut in January 2010. If the findings of those investigations have been made public they certainly haven't made much news.

So, recapping:
Mr. Holder said such operations require high levels of secrecy. That is obvious, but the FISA court operates in secret, and at least Americans are assured that some legal authority not beholden to a particular president or political party is reviewing such operations.
Well, the FISA courts may operate in secret but they weren't secret enough for Bush/Cheney.  Holder seems to be saying all he can say on the matter without saying the truth, which is presumably too scary to say.  That has Bush written all over it.

That leaves the following assumptions.  If we dismiss the conspiratorial stuff above, ie, the possibility that Obama didn't think Congress or Americans could handle the truth about Awlaqi, and if we dismiss the possibility the president has gone rogue and fashions himself as some kind of Rambo figure, we are left with two possible explanations of the 'immediate' nature used to justify the killing:  one, Awlaqi's command of the English language and knowledge of the internet, which posed an imminent threat because it gave him the ability to better understand US targets while talking young jihadi skulls full of mush into attacking them, with confirmation coming from the underwear bomber and major Hasan; or two, Awlaqi was up to something else that involved something quite terrible and had to be stopped (did they ever explain Denver)?  Occam's Razor suggests the former would be enough.  Of course liberals should be joining their libertarian friends to condemn all of this as a government plot to take away more freedoms.  

We'll probably never know for sure.  Even if this New York Times article pressures Holder into releasing the memo it will likely be 50 percent redacted.   But one thing we do know--Obama and Hillary were correct when they scolded the candidates for ignorantly ranting about national security affairs to get elected as both of them once did.  As Obama alluded, being read-in on threats provides a completely different perspective.  Just don't expect an apology to Bush.   

Now, as to Awlaqi's American-born teenaged son, THAT demands a thorough explanation.

Louis and the Correspondents

So it appears comedian Louis CK has bailed on hosting the Radio and TV Correspondents dinner in June due to "conservative outcry", at least according to the LA Times.  They admit there was no official reason given so it appears the writer jumped to that conclusion based on stuff like this.  But wouldn't that be caving to Fox News?   If so, perhaps an MSM first.

Or maybe not.  Maybe the Times is throwing out that preemptive explanation to hide another reason, which would be completely self-serving.  Consider all the dignified correspondents sitting in a half-drunk or full-drunk mode laughing to the insanely politically incorrect (do you need a nsfw warning?) anecdotes, then going out on Monday and writing the next story about the latest horrible thing Rush Limbaugh said.  A bit of a hypocrisy problem, not to mention that it might dilute Limbaugh right in the middle of War on Women.  Cooler heads must have prevailed.

MORE  3/11/12

The Hollywood Reporter is trickling out more information that suggests that no, Louis didn't give in to pressure from Fox News, he just doesn't want to do it anymore.   OK.   The gig had been booked in January, before both the Rush brouhaha and the Catholic-contraception blowup.   It makes sense he wouldn't want to insert himself into that cauldron, perhaps being pressured to self-sensor.  It also makes sense that some power brokers in the Democratic Party don't want to do anything to jeopardize the War on Women.    

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Gotta Love Drudge

From the Saturday morning edition..

Two slots under a story about Coke and Pepsi reacting to the yahoos in California who threatened to force them to put cancer warnings on their products we see seasoned citizen Warren Buffet taking a swig of one.   Coke, Pepsi, there's your next ad campaign.  If it's good enough for Warren, it's good enough for America!

Friday, March 09, 2012


Is it just a coincidence that Harvard professor Derrick Bell's most famous theory involved a space ship..
In the story, as Professor Bell later described it, creatures from another planet offer the United States ''enough gold to retire the national debt, a magic chemical that will cleanse America's polluted skies and waters, and a limitless source of safe energy to replace our dwindling reserves.'' In exchange, the creatures ask for only one thing: America's black population, which would be sent to outer space. The white population accepts the offer by an overwhelming margin. (In 1994 the story was adapted as one of three segments in a television movie titled ''Cosmic Slop.'')
Another famous racial thinker also uses space ships to make some kind of point:
As a core belief, the Nation believes that there is a massive airship in the sky that they refer to as “the Mother Plane” or simply “the Wheel” and that the government is trying to keep its existence hidden from the general public. THe nation also believes that the Mother Plane is extremely powerful and could destroy the entire world. In 1985, or so he says, Farrakhan ascended into the Wheel where he heard the voice of previous Nation leader Elijah Muhammad speak to him.
As Big Govmint indicates, Bell endorsed Farrakhan's brash ways.  Yeah, it's a thin reed of association, just thought the spaceship thing was weird.  Farrakhan's aliens aren't the kind of racist aliens Bell envisions who would gladly accept the entire black race in exchange for curing global warming and ending our dependence on Middle Eastern oil.  Then again, if the aliens in Bell's example are actually Farrakhan's aliens that could represent an analogy conundrum. 

The bottom line on Breitbart's bombshell on Bell is that it wasn't designed to be a bombshell, only part of a mosaic of ideology that attracted the current president, one heretofore unexplored by the sympathetic media who failed to take much interest.  It's hard to imagine those same fourth estate stalwarts would ignore McCain or Romney embracing a John Bircher or even a Klan member.

More will come out no doubt, because that's how Breitbart played his cards. He's managed to get Bell's writings in the mix even from the grave (one wonders if they are on speaking terms in the great beyond at this point) and has allowed at least one MSM journalist to beclown herself.  Time will tell if his replacements have the same knack and staying power.

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

The Tapes

Hannity will premier the first batch of Breitbart's tapes designed to 'vet' the already elected president.  If history is our judge, they will not be the only tapes coming out.  But will a tape showing a radical Obama at Harvard protesting for radical Derrick Bell really change any minds?  Most people are already aware he wasn't serving orange juice with Anita Bryant back then.  Voters pretty much put more stock in "what have you done lately" than something that occurred 20 years ago.  It has to be big.

One possibility is a revelation about Ayers and Dohrn, whom the campaign told us weren't in the picture until the infamous coffee in Ayers' living room to kick off the State Senate run in 1995.  If there's video of the two or three of them together prior to 1995, especially prior to 1990, that brings Cashill's theory about "Dreams" into play.

Also, one revelation might open a sort of flood gate, as it has with Rush's advertisers.  Political junkies are aware of at least two juicy stories the press tried to sit on; one was the Rashid Khalidi going away party tape (with Ayers and Dohrn in attendance) and the other is the interview with Percy Sutton whereupon he talked about Obama being sent to Harvard via a wealthy Saudi named Prince al-Aweed.   Funny, Politico inserted itself in that story as well, just like they inserted themselves in the tape release today.   Donald Rummy once said there are unknown unknowns.  What else might someone be sitting on?  

Anyway, if a narrative gets out that Obama was actually a hand-picked candidate by 60s-70s Marxist radicals who nurtured him up through the White House with stealth provided along the way by friends in the left-leaning media that might actually make a dent in his chances this fall.   In the least it would put him on defense and take away some of his advantage over the presumptive nominee Mittens on health care (Mitt could say that Obama will want a full state takeover if reelected, etc).  Then again, according to some in the know, Chicago has a truckload of opposition research about the Mittster, ready to pop at any moment.   Better buckle up.


PBS claims the only editing done on Buzzfeed's tape was to get rid of some background material but they played the entire portion that included Obama's words.  PBS published the entire tape in their possession, although admitting it was probably edited after being filmed in 1990.  But they are playing coy and sneaky just like Obama and friends.  As Hannity noted, the big embrace from Obama to Bell after his introduction was snipped from the Buzzfeed version.  PBS defends them by saying they were paying for the video 'by the second', which is hilarious.  How much does Public Broadcasting charge per second, anyway?

At any rate, the video itself was far from earth-shattering and had actually appeared on PBS in 2008 (meaning only a few liberals saw it).   Still, not a lot.   But a nothing burger?  Maybe not, but maybe a tough sell.  For this to be effective Breitbart's troops will have to act like lawyers laying out a circumstantial case by establishing a pattern, which takes time and requires audience attention.  Romney has already said he won't be leveling salvos at the O (ala McCain) so he'll be running from this like the plague.   Fox News and Rush can't elevate the story to national prominence--notice Obama has already done his presser and probably won't do another one until closing day of the GOP Convention in August.  So it'll be hard to challenge him on it directly.  Yeah, it might be fun to see whether they try to throw Bell under the bus with Wright and the others, but if so that will be done by Carney.   What will happen is a complete breakdown of everything controversial Bell said that can be tied to Obama but as we've seen with the Catholic birth control issue, don't be surprised if the left tries to turn this around into a "GOP is racist" meme. 

So we'll see.  Maybe this is a deliberate strategy in play--create a lot of buzz and put out the weakest tape first so everyone poo-poos it and levels snark and criticism only to launch bigger bombshells down the road.  Or maybe it's much-ado-about same ole same ole.   It will take a lot more than what we saw tonight to make a dent.

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Pondering Super Tuesday

Thinking today....who's the candidate closest to Andrew Breitbart as to fighting spirit?  Who pushes back harder on the ridiculous media memes?  Who seems to be the most articulate?  Who appears as fearless?

Then I saw this..

Wow, Breitbart was there.

But wait... more thoughts.   What's the most important issue this cycle?  Is it jobs?  Yeah sorta, but the jobs will eventually come back in time even if the president takes six months off and returns to Bali to work on another book.  People eventually need new cars and washing machines and shoes for the kids and the next Apple thing.

Is it the debt?  Yes, but that's a long term prospect.  We need someone who truly believes it's an issue, but both sides have to work within Congress, even a president Ron Paul.    

Obamacare?  Bingo.  Having the government controlling health coverage and decision-making is a HUGE CHANGE, certainly part of the change Obama promised.  Once DC controls health costs they have an excuse to mandate other things to keep those costs under control.  If they can mandate insurance coverage they can mandate things to lower insurance costs.  We are losing enough freedom as it is.

Meanwhile as the press focuses on birth control pills, condoms and Rush Limbaugh, Obama just essentially compared America's problems to those faced by Ghandi and Mandela in a speech talking about how slow change can be.  Really?  Did he just use a clumsy analogy or does he actually think our problems are akin to those faced by Mandela and Ghandi?  Shouldn't someone ask, because if so we ain't seen nothing yet in the change department.

In other words, the nominee has to be someone who can best win the argument on health care and creeping statism in general.  Can Romney?  This story should do him in once and for all.  Yes, he advocated market-based solutions instead of single payer, but he advocated for government-run insurance.  Now he says he'll repeal it.  Why?  It's basically his idea.  Splitting hairs over federal versus state will be a tough sell.   And Newt has his own baggage on healthcare and kumbayaing with liberals, not nearly as much, but some is likely still rotating around the carousel at Hartsfield.  Who does that leave?

Santorum.  Rick Santorum.  Leader of the free world.  No offense, but I'm having trouble visualizing it.  And Paul?  The vision is one of mass chaos.  Besides, the lefty media hasn't even begun to vet him.  

Anyway, Super Tuesday is coming, tick tock. The decision has not been made.  Considering the options is almost painful.  There's just gotta be someone, someone else.  Can't help but look at pictures like this and wonder...

...whether the GOP really wants to beat Obama...or stop Obamacare.  

Saturday, March 03, 2012

Side Tracks

"Crossroads", from an interesting short-lived combo featuring Clapton, Bruce and Winwood back in the 60s..

Parts of Mississippi probably haven't changed much since Johnson passed, as the photos attest.   

Friday, March 02, 2012

Target Limbaugh

From the saintly New York Times..
Some of the same activists that persuaded advertisers to boycott Glenn Beck’s television show on Fox News in 2009 are now mobilizing against Rush Limbaugh in the wake of his verbal attacks on a Georgetown University law school student this week. Actually, they are remobilizing. A Twitter account, “Stop Rush,” which has been dormant since late 2010, woke up on Wednesday, when Mr. Limbaugh first called the student, Sandra Fluke, a “slut.”
Did el Rushbo cross the line? Yep. The woman is not a slut or a prostitute based on anything seen in the public reports.  He likes to use sarcasm but it went too far.

But clearly what sent him over the line and what's being lost in the kerfuffle is the fact she was taken seriously at all.  Yes, someone actually came in front of Congress--a law student to boot--and complained that their recreational sex life and that of other fellow law students was not being adequately underwritten by the Jesuit University they attend (and by extension via ties to Obamacare, the public at large one day).  Outrageous! 

That itself is insane of course and deserving of some wild rhetoric, but unfortunately Rush went too wild and has uncharacteristically allowed the left to focus all the insanity on him not the subject.  Advertisers are bailing.  Obama even feels safe enough to weigh in and score some cheap points (yes, the actual president).  We have to consider what the 2012 election cycle might look like without him on the mic (and Breitbart on the web).  Surely more than a few are salivating at the thought, some of them probably in high places and near levers of power.

MORE  3/3/12

As Romney said, "it's not the language I would have used".  Rather a duh moment, eh?  In other words, he agrees but doesn't agree with calling a woman a slut and ho just for wanting some free pills.  Doing otherwise would be instant political suicide.  But talk show hosts are different.  Obviously this was classic Rush schtick plus one, but as Brown suggests, would an apology be helpful?   On the one hand it seems reasonable to think that if he went on the air Monday and apologized TO HER for calling her names, then went on to explain the madness that drove hm over the line it might deflate the lefty outrage balloon.  Then again, it might just pump more hot air into it, proving he did go overboard and fueling the call for his demise.

Well, he's been doing this over 20 years and has been down this road many times and has a lot of loyal listeners and has lost sponsors before, so we'll see how he handles it.  The main lefty goal has always been to marginalize him (as it was with Breitbart and Palin) so the real winner-loser outcome is whether his influence is changed in the coming months when things get really hot.

EVEN MORE  3/3/12

He did the right thing.  And by issuing it on Saturday it doesn't create large workweek headlines, plus it's on the record ahead of the Sunday talk shows.  Hopefully now focus can be placed where it belongs-- on people who want others to pay for their recreational sex fun.

And note to liberals-- the preceding statement does not mean 1) Fore Left is at war with women, 2) Fore Left is run by a misogynist, 3) Fore Left is against birth control, 4) Fore Left is against sex, or 5) Fore Left is a religious nut.  It means Fore Left is against the government forcing entities or private citizens to pay for other peoples' recreational sex if they object on First Amendment grounds or even on general principle.  We are not talking about medical treatments to save lives and promote health here.  If you want to shag, do it, enjoy it!  Just don't ask me to pay for it.

And that's the crux of the entire issue and the danger of Obamacare in general, and why it's perfectly reasonable to be having this debate before the election. If Obama is reelected this kind of mandate will be a done deal. Remember--Obama doesn't bluff, he wasn't bluffing when he said he wanted 'change' and mandates are a big part of it.

Losing a Big Voice

What a loss of energy for the conservative movement.  No, he wasn't always pristine as a journalist and sometimes went too far in the pushback (only saying what most wouldn't) but his energy will be missed the most.   He was a true idea man, a classic entrepreneur, a freewheel thinker creating websites and ventures around his passion while stepping out of the box to do it, without fear. He reveled in the "back and forth".   Like Palin, who also collected a lot of enemies for speaking freely, people listened to Breitbart.  

As to the inevitable conspiracy questions, well the timing does seem questionable but there hasn't even been an autopsy report yet. He obviously rattled cages, producing an impressive enemies list, and he had promised a video of Obama from his college days along with a new website coming about this weekend, plus had some recent in-your-face encounters with the Occupy crowd.  And yes, the Sheriff Joe presser today featured a suggestion about Ayers's mother--while Breitbart himself shared the Cashill theory about Ayers. But it's a serious, serious charge to say he was bumped off and one not to be flung around without hard evidence.  Breitbart certainly wouldn't have done it.