May 04, 2011

Quick Takes, May 05, 2011

ITEM: At the top of our list today is the death of Osama Bin Laden in a CIA/SEAL raid on April 30. You’ve read the details elsewhere by now, but let’s make three simple predictions and see how they pan out:

(1) Mr. Obama will claim credit, even calling it a triumph of leading from behind (his spokesmen will surely do the latter).
(2) Worldwide jihadist activity will increase, particularly against Americans, in retaliation.
(3) Because this is not backed up by a consistent show of American strength, it will not suppress jihadist power in those nations currently embroiled in turmoil, but will embolden them and make it more likely that they will establish anti-American governments.
(4) George W. Bush and global warning had something to do with it.

ITEM: Birthergate Department: The birther issue has, apparently, been retired, yet the entire affair has left a bad taste in the mouths of far too many Americans. Who among us, if necessary, could not quickly produce a certified copy of our birth certificate? Most American’s parents keep such copies in their homes. Let us assume that the certificate released by Mr. Obama on April 27 is the genuine article, for there is no compelling, current reason to believe otherwise, yet the matter is not completely dead. Far too many questions remain unanswered, questions that could and should have been answered long ago, questions raised not about Mr. Obama’s place of birth, but of his obstinate refusal to convincingly confirm it. That the most transparent administration in history has been anything but transparent in this matter, and and so much else, has allowed this controversy to grow and flourish, and to whatever degree it persists, Mr. Obama bears considerable responsibility. A large part of this issue is simply trust. Having spent a reported one million dollars to kept his birth certificate--which appears to be completely innocuous--hidden, one may reasonably ask if Mr. Obama is worthy of the public’s trust.

ITEM: Blast From The Past! Remember those doctors in Wisconsin who handed out fake medical excuses to union teachers protesting Gov. Walker? Apparently some 1000 teachers used them, and many may find themselves in trouble, but what about the doctors? From Fox News (here) we learn that the University of Wisconsin--which apparently employs many of those involved--and the State Medical Examining and Departments of Licensing and Regulation are also investigating the doctors. Speaking of trust, what’s a doctor’s integrity and honesty worth? In Wisconsin, apparently not much. Wrist slaps anyone?

ITEM: NOMINATIONS FOR THE WORST EX-PRESIDENT ARE NOW OFFICIALLY CLOSED. From Hot Air (here) we discover that the execrable Jimmy Carter recently traveled to North Korea with a delegation self-styled as “the Elders.” Success? Only if you count denigrating America as success. Mr. Carter, in his own insipid style, accused America of violating the human rights of North Koreans by not showering them with food. Let me see if I understand this: The Norks are one of the last fanatical, crazy communist regimes on the planet. They torture, starve and murder their own citizens in wholesale lots. Their entire population suffers from stunted growth and people actually eat tree bark and any vegetation they can find. Any aid we send there does not go to the starving people, but to Kim Jong Il--who would not, by the way, meet with “the Elders”-- and the Army and Politboro. The Norks export terrorism, kidnap foreign nationals, randomly attack South Korea and threaten everyone in range with nuclear attack. Well of course they have the moral high ground and we must do whatever they want! Thanks for clarifying that Mr. Carter!

ITEM: Louis Renault Award of the New Century (Thus Far)! Department: San Francisco Chronicle Reporter Carla Marinucci recently recorded and posted video of protestors at an Obama fundraiser while she was serving as a White House “pool” reporter. The White House, obviously angered, notified her that she would be banned in the future. Amazingly, the SFC pushed back, publishing the story, and now the White House is claiming that Marinucci was never banned--although she still is. A card-carrying member of the Mainstream Media is now shocked, shocked! to learn that Mr. Obama and his minions are hypocrites and liars, and hypocrites and liars who don’t particularly like reporters! Go here for the story.

UPDATE: At SFGate (here) comes more on Carla Marinucci. There can be, of course, no discord! The One is universally loved and adored. Long live The One! Aren’t you glad we have the most transparent presidential administration in American history? Yeah. Me too.

ITEM: Have you wondered about the realities of health care, more specifically, Medicare? Go here for a great article by Daniel Mitchell on why Mr. Obama’s Medicare guru, recess appointed Dr. Donald Berwick, hasn’t a clue about economics or Medicare. Dr. Berwick, you may recall, is the man who think Britain’s National Health Care system is absolutely brilliant. You know the British system, interminable waits, shortages, filthy hospitals, surly, uncaring providers, dead patients who just couldn’t wait? Yeah, that one. Ah, the fierce moral urgency of change! Discuss.

ITEM: Will Barack Obama become a one-term president? Peter Wehner at Commentary (here) thinks so. I think it’s possible if the Republicans, as they are so often prone to do, do not snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Read and make up your own mind.

ITEM: Go here to see a stark before/after satellite image of Tuscaloosa, Alabama pre and post tornado. It might serve to remind us that thinking we can effect the course of nature in any meaningful way--global warming?--is utter foolishness.

ITEM: Have you heard about the King & Spaulding controversy? Go here to Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion for a sharp exposition. In Brief: K & S was hired by the US House of Representatives to defend the Defend of Marriage Act (DOMA). Under pressure by unspecified gay groups, K & S dropped the House as a client. The first backlash has been the State of Virginia under Republican AG Ken Cuccinelli. Virginia has now dropped K & S because it’s rather hard to work with lawyers who bow to outside pressures on the spur of the moment. It’s an interesting, important article worth your time.

ITEM: Tales of Smart Diplomacy, #2842: Diplomatically, things in Syria just couldn’t be going any better for the US. The regime, threatened, is engaging in the routine slaughter of its citizens, likely with help from Iran. What’s that you say? They’d never dare harass Americans? Consider Elliott Abrams (here), former diplomat/national security figure in the Bush White House, who tells us that an American diplomat in Damascas was detained, hooded and roughed up by Syrian security agents before being released. By way of comparison, such things come close to an act of war. Read Jennifer Rubin’s full account to see how Smart Diplomacy continues to make America seem so feckless that Jimmy Carter looks like a lion of international strength by comparison.

ITEM: It was May day again, time to reflect on all that it means, most particularly a celebration of communism. It is disgusting to know that a great many, including our fellow citizens, still celebrate this despicable “holiday.” It’s equally despicable that Mr. Obama hired Van Jones, a self described communist, and that Mr. Obama has spent much of his life in similar company. How many have the communists murdered? Glad you asked. Go here to the Volokh Conspiracy to find out.

ITEM: Remember astroturfing? When Nancy Pelosi suggested that the Tea Party movement was not really a grass roots movement, but an artificial contrivance of the Republican Party, hence “astroturf?” Yeah. That didn’t work out so well for the Dems in November of 2010, did it? But now the Dems have been actually astroturfing on their own, sending political operatives into Town Hall meetings by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and others to harass them and to try to make it appear that there is no support for an actually responsibly budget. It hasn’t been working out so well. Go here for the story, and a great photoshop of a classic Norman Rockwell painting. There may be hope after all. Discuss.

ITEM: Remember Ezra Klein, the reporter responsible for the Journolist debacle? For those who weren’t aware of it, the Journolist was an on line-chat room of sorts where liberal journalists (there’s an oxymoron!) actually discussed their strategy for damaging President Bush, and lo and behold, across the nation, their talking points would crop up, identically, like particularly aggressive and noxious weeds. With its exposure, Journolist became defunct, but I thought you’d like to have a preview of what the press has in store for us in the eternal campaign culminating in 2012. Here’s what Klien wrote back in 2008:

“Obama’s finest speeches do not excite. They do not inform. They don’t even really inspire. They elevate. They enmesh you in a grander moment, as if history has stopped flowing passively by, and, just for an instant, contracted around you, made you aware of its presence, and your role in it. He is not the Word made flesh, but the triumph of word over flesh, over color, over despair. The other great leaders I’ve heard guide us towards a better politics, but Obama is, at his best, able to call us back to our highest selves, to the place where America exists as a glittering ideal, and where we, its honored inhabitants, seem capable of achieving it, and thus of sharing in its meaning and transcendence.”

There just aren’t words to describe such delusion, such pathology...

ITEM: From Hot Air (here) comes the news of the governmental genital fondling of Susie Castillo, former Miss USA, at the Dallas/Ft. Worth Airport. Ms. Castillo was, understandably upset. I suppose it’s more fun to fondle beauty queens than six year old girls, but considering some of those the government apparently hires for the TSA, you never know. “You can’t professionalize unless you federalize,” said then Senate Majority Leader John Daschel (D-SD). I believe that sort of professionalism is available at any penitentiary near you.

ITEM: What Would Machiavelli Do? Go here for a short piece by the indispensable Michael Barone. Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527), Italian Renaissance political philosopher, wrote “The Prince,” a manual on how to get and keep power. I often explain to my students that the book is, even now, read and studied around the world by politicians and human beings. Machiavelli asks whether it is better to be loved or feared. He concludes that it’s best to be both loved and feared, but if you have to settle for one, it’s better to be feared. If Mr. Obama ever read “The Prince,” he apparently learned nothing from it, for particularly in foreign affairs, he’s managed to become hated and mocked, but that’s smart diplomacy for you. Discuss.

ITEM: Visit the New York Times (here) for an interesting story about Representative Alan West (R-FL). Some of Col’ West’s comments: Barack Obama is a “low-level socialist agitator.” “I don’t drink my own tub water or read my own press.” “I tell the truth and I stand on convictions and you know what you’re getting.” That’s the kind of change one could hope for.

ITEM: There was a recent raid by crack government operatives that received little airplay. Highly trained undercover FDA (Food and Drug Administration?!) operatives made a group of sinister criminals do the perp walk for foisting dangerous agricultural products on a witting public. Yes, your federal tax dollars hard at work! The FDA arrested some Amish (?!) farmers for selling raw milk to people who knew it was raw milk. No doubt AG Holder will demand terror trials in NYC. Go here for the entire, bizarre story. These guys ought to team up with the TSA.

ITEM: Have you wondered about “quantative easing?” Do you think the Secretary of the Treasury, the tax evading Timothy Geithner, isn’t exactly playing with a full deck? Well so does the invaluable Mark Steyn. Go here for the article, and if you haven’t yet read “America Alone,” please do. It’s easily one of the most important books of the last decade.

ITEM: Today (Thursday, May 5) Mr. Obama will be visiting Ground Zero and meeting with 9-11 families. This is billed as an opportunity to unify the nation behind Mr. Obama as he continues, like Sir Robin, to bravely lead from behind, run away, whatever. Remember please, gentle readers, that Mr. Obama did meet with 9-11 families once before. They left that meeting with a very bad taste in their mouths and it is unlikely that the passage of time will sweeten it, nor will they be anxious to serve as political props for Mr. Obama. Likewise please recall that Mr. Obama has, several times, called for unity and civility, and before the echo of his teleprompter-inspired words has died, done and said just the opposite. I’ll leave it to you to decide if this trip is the act of an American President or a cheap politician playing events for all they’re worth, hoping for personal benefit.

ITEM: In a related story, we learn from Fox News (here) Mr. Obama invited Mr. Bush to be present at Ground Zero on May 5. Bush reportedly appreciated the invitation, but “has chosen in his post-presidency to remain largely out of the spotlight,” David Sherzer, a Bush spokesman, said. Even in office, Mr. Bush acted with restraint and class, none of which he has lost in retirement. But it’s also a smart move in that he knows that Mr. Obama’s last meeting with 9-11 families was a disaster. Better not to be a part of that. In addition, Mr. Bush has seen how Mr. Obama treats his invited guests, such as Paul Ryan, who he recently savaged at an economic speech. Mr. Ryan is only the latest in a long line of luminaries insulted by Mr. Obama, beginning most notably with the Surpreme Court during his first State of the Union address. While in office and after, Mr. Bush has continued, without publicity and without praising himself, to meet with our military members and their families. Even if he actually cared for our military rather than photo ops for his own glorification, Mr. Obama can never hope to catch up to the good Mr. Bush has done in that arena. Good for you Mr. Bush!

ITEM: According to the Lamestream Media, at the momentous meeting that would decide the go/no go status of the mission to take out Bin Laden, before any of his startled minions could speak, Mr. Obama masterfully slammed his fist onto the tabletop and solemnly intoned “it’s a go!” What is emerging, what the Lamestream Media is not saying, is that Mr. Obama dithered for 16 hours before making the decision. Sixteen hours during which Bin Laden could have escaped. Sixteen hours during which our military assets were poised and ready. Sixteen hours of witless dithering. Sixteen hours during which it was entirely possible that Mr. Obama would have passed on taking out Bin Laden. Sixteen hours that put the earlier jump off point on Saturday, which caused a further delay of a day due to weather. Remember gentle readers that when Mr. Bush waited seven minutes—seven minutes for his helicopter to be warmed up and preparations for departure to be made—he was castigated by the same media vermin. I’ll have more to say on this in greater detail in the near future, but for now, let’s reserve awarding Mr. Obama the nation’s highest award for swift and decisive military leadership until all of the facts are known. This much we do know: General Patton he’s not.

ITEM: “Well, Duh!” Headline of the Millennium: “Soldiers With Mental Illness More Often Get PTSD.” Ya think? Story here.

ITEM: There was once a time when a great many Americans in Congress and in every walk of life were veterans. Even movie stars like Jimmy Stewart, Clark Gable, Lee Marvin and Charles Bronson served honorably. Senator Scott Brown (R-Mass) is a Lt. Colonel in the Mass. National Guard. He is asking to do his yearly service in Afghanistan. Brown is a military lawyer, so he’ll be unlikely to be in combat, but good on him!

ITEM: Remember Cindy Sheehan, you know, the woman who had “absolute moral authority” during the Bush Administration? Remember the constant press coverage of her unhinged rants in Crawford, TX and elsewhere? Remember too how when Mr. Obama was elected, she dropped off the edge of the media Earth? Well, she’s still around. Stop by the invaluable PowerLine (here) for a brief reminder.

ITEM: Louis Renault Award, Politicial Division: I was shocked, shocked! to discover politicians behaving like, well, politicians!

Nancy Pelosi, press conference, September 7, 2006:

[E]ven if [Osama bin Laden] is caught tomorrow, it is five years too late. He has done more damage the longer he has been out there. But, in fact, the damage that he has done ... is done. And even to capture him now I don't think makes us any safer.

Nancy Pelosi, earlier today (05-02-11):
The death of Osama bin Laden marks the most significant development in our fight against al-Qaida. ... I salute President Obama, his national security team, Director Panetta, our men and women in the intelligence community and military, and other nations who supported this effort for their leadership in achieving this major accomplishment. ... [T]he death of Osama bin Laden is historic....

Oh well, it’s good to know that like death, taxes and the narcissism of Barack Obama, some things, such as the political opportunism and witlessness of Nancy Pelosi, are faultlessly reliable. Go here for the story.

ITEM: Greenie Intellectual Bankruptcy Department: Via Walter Russell Mead (here) we find a fascinating article about George Monbiot, one of the greenie left’s intellectual big guns bemoaning the intellectual bankruptcy and idiocy of his own movement. Rational people have known this for many years, but some of the greenies are just beginning to wake up. Must reading.

Item: Louis Renault Award, First Lady Edition: The world was shocked, shocked! to learn (here) that the White House put pressure on a small local newspaper to remove a true but unflattering reference to the First Lady. The Pleasanton Weekly of Pleasanton, CA was pressured to remove a sentence in which the reporter observed that Mr. Obama would not speak to the Marine pilots of her aircraft apart from making eye contact with them. I am shocked, shocked to hear anyone suggest that either of the Obamas could behave in such an imperious, high-handed, superior, entitled manner. What’s that? If she didn’t, why did the White House demand the sentence be killed? Well, uh, uh…

ITEM: Continuing Tales of The Religion of Peace: It has been long known by those who do not get their news from the Lamestream Media that Arab/Muslim “leaders” routinely say one thing in English to the West, but quite another in Arabic (or other languages) to their own people. And so it goes with the death of Osama Bin Laden. Visit Powerline (here) to see how the Muslim Brotherhood—you know, those pro-American “reformers” in Egypt?—is double dealing.

ITEM: Oh Goody! Department: On May 4, the Army tested a new 5.56mm cartridge designed to replace the standard cartridge now in use for decades. According to Fox News (here) the new cartridge is supposed to be faster and deadlier, but the best part is it’s green! That’s right gentle readers, it’s lead free! I don’t know about you, but the mere fact that the Army would even think about greenie idiocy in the design of munitions is uniquely disturbing. Discuss.

ITEM: Go here for a good article by Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA) that catalogs many of the insane steps Mr. Obama has taken to wreck our economy by means of hindering and shutting down our energy industries. I’m sure most of you know, at least in general, what he has done, but this is a fine reminder. Mr. Obama claims he can do nothing to help (apart from building the Brazilian and Columbian energy industries), but we can do something about it in 2012.

ITEM: Are you still suspicious about Mr. Obama’s “Birth Certificate?” Me too. Bruce Bawer at the PJ Tatler (here) has produced a list of ten things that would tend to raise reasonable suspicions.

And on that conspiracy-mongering note, it's time to thank you, once again, for stopping by, and to say I'm looking forward to seeing you all again next Thursday! America is the greatest nation in human history. Accept no substitutes.

Posted by MikeM at May 4, 2011 09:41 PM

I’ll leave it to you to decide if this trip is the act of an American President or a cheap politician playing events for all they’re worth

Please. Have you noticed the deficit lately? He's not even remotely CHEAP.

Posted by: Tully at May 5, 2011 08:56 AM

Thanks for the wrap-up. A lot of stuff happened in just one week.

Posted by: Professor Hale at May 5, 2011 10:38 AM

OMG, Obama weighed the differing opinions of whether to launch the mission or not for 16 hours!!!

It's hilarious to see how bent out of shape you are that it was Bush who:

Outsourced the initial attack on OBL and let him literally walk out of Tora Bora

Said he didn't know or care what cave (mansion) OBL was in and didn't spend much time thinking out it.

Closed the CIA unit tracking OBL.

And that it was Obama who doubled our forces in Afghanistan, accelerated the drone program in Pakistan, and found and killed OBL.

But yeah, keep crying about those 16 hours and talking about how awesome Bush was. ha ha

Posted by: Jim at May 5, 2011 12:59 PM

Another monumental Thursday post, thanks for mentioning our (VA) AG. We are proud of him and the rest of the current admin.

Posted by: Secesh at May 5, 2011 07:58 PM

SEALs and LVMPD, doing the job that Obama won't.

Posted by: Federale at May 8, 2011 06:38 PM