The simple fact is that team Obama has passed ONE UN resolution on Iran. They got only 12 votes of support in that ONE resolution (12/15 votes for a failure rate of 20% on Iran votes at the Security Council). The Bush team got FIVE resolutions on Iran (THREE with Sanctions). In those FIVE resolutions, team Bush lost just 2 total votes (73/75 votes for a failure rate of 2.6% on Iran votes at the Security Council). Additionally, team Obama hasn’t produced a UN resolution on Iran since June 9, 2010 (almost 2 years ago).
One only needs to look at the growing list of countries that have said they will ignore our request to stop buying Iranian oil to understand that Obama’s diplomatic requests are being ignored. I see India, Russia, China, South Africa and many European countries publicly saying they will buy Iranian oil and ignore the U.S. requests. While team Obama thinks the world is united, the world is enjoying the comfort of a weaker U.S. government that no longer pressures them to take action.
It is disheartening but the world is less united since Obama has been in office.
Yet Team Obama says: “Iran is weaker and more isolated today precisely because of actions that President Obama has taken. Through sustained diplomacy, the president forged unprecedented international consensus to pressure Iran — far greater consensus and pressure than the previous Republican administration achieved through its go-it-alone, my-way-or-the highway approach. President Obama secured the toughest unilateral and multilateral sanctions on Iran to date, and they’re having a devastating impact on its economy. The Iranian nuclear program has been slowed, and Iran’s leaders have signaled their willingness to resume talks, in which the United States will seek to ensure Iran lives up to its international obligations. At the same time, the president has firmly and consistently said that all options are on the table, including military action, to prevent the Iranian regime from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”
Hillary Clinton didn’t repeat it.
Hillary Clinton made it clear that this isn’t a man’s world anymore when she exposed her ankles during a visit on Friday with Saudi King Abdullah.
The U.S. Secretary of State and one of the world’s most well-known female figures talked over Saudi Arabia’s role in maintaining a stable world oil supply with the Saudi leader.
- Olbermann: The Day the Muzak Died, by Jazz Shaw. No matter how big you think you’ve gotten, everyone has a boss.
- From PJTV: Vodkapundit’s Week In Blogs, by Stephen Green. Video on the PJ Media homepage.
- The Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History, by David Forsmark. His one regret about his kill total: he didn’t shoot more bad guys.
- The Blue Social Model is Running Out of Money, by Richard Fernandez. The recent woes of Olbermann, Sharpton, Oprah, and Obama himself are making “progressivism” seem as modern as a ’33 Duesenberg.
- Holder Charges Kidnapping Solicitation of White Supremacist, Not New Black Panthers, by J. Christian Adams. The albatross of the Panthers continues to hang around Eric Holder’s neck.
- Betrayal Glorified: The Bizarre Jewish Movement to Destroy Israel by Pretending to Save It, by Barry Rubin. Behind the absurdity of Peter Beinart and J-Street is a poisonous hidden agenda.
- Giving Karzai Aid and a 20 Percent Profit, by Bridget Johnson. “Shame on us,” one Oversight subcommittee member said of the scheme. “We rolled over again.”
- Predictably, Land Day Protests Turn Violent, by Gregg Roman. Yet another failed faux-popular attack on Israel.
Wolff Bachner of The Inquisitr just wrote a good piece on the growing persecution of Egypt’s Christians, which includes an interview with me. Titled, “The Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians,” it was published last night and can be read here.
Some terrifying stats as I write this:
Debt per citizen: $49,797
Debt per taxpayer: $137,733
Just off Twitter from New York Times media correspondent Brian Stelter:
I’m told that Current TV has terminated its relationship with Keith Olbermann.
Stelter shortly afterward added:
Olbermann will be replaced by “Viewpoint with Eliot Spitzer,” according to Current TV.
Call it a lateral move. As I wrote in January, “When you stare into the TV ratings abyss, the abyss doesn’t stare back at you — because it’s already changed the channel.” After running the cable TV gauntlet from ESPN to Fox Sports to MSNBC to Current, where does Keith go next?
To the Viewers of Current:
We created Current to give voice to those Americans who refuse to rely on corporate-controlled media and are seeking an authentic progressive outlet. We are more committed to those goals today than ever before.
Current was also founded on the values of respect, openness, collegiality, and loyalty to our viewers. Unfortunately these values are no longer reflected in our relationship with Keith Olbermann and we have ended it.
As opposed to Client #9?
Update: Jim Treacher’s awesome lede at the Daily Caller: “You’ve heard of a Friday afternoon document dump. How about a Friday afternoon douche dump?” Meanwhile, Stelter’s article at the Times is now up:
This will be Mr. Spitzer’s second shot at an 8 p.m. talk show; in 2010, two years after he resigned the governorship after admitting to his involvement in a prostitution ring, he led a short-lived show on CNN. It was cancelled in mid-2011.
“We are confident that our viewers will be able to count on Governor Spitzer to deliver critical information on a daily basis,” Mr. Gore and Mr. Hyatt wrote in the letter to viewers.
With those words — “on a daily basis” — the founders of Current hinted at one of the reasons for Mr. Olbermann’s termination. It was the culmination, at least in part, of months of infighting between the famously temperamental Mr. Olbermann and his bosses at Current, including Mr. Hyatt, and David Bohrman, the channel’s president.
Whatever Spitzer’s peccadillos and odious worldview, it’s entirely possible that he’s much easier for the on-air crew and producers to work with “on a daily basis” than Olbermann. And let’s face it: he couldn’t be any worse, as even Olbermann’s fellow lefties at Talking Points Memo note:
The source added that Olbermann failed to show up for work without authorization, missing almost half of his working days in the months of January and February. Olbermann asked for a vacation day on March 5, the night before Super Tuesday, according to the source. He was told it would be a breach if he took the vacation, which Olbermann did.
Olbermann’s relationship with Current started to fray back in January, when Olbermann declined to lead the network’s special election coverage of the Iowa caucuses. Olbermann insisted at the time that he wasn’t given a legitimate opportunity to host the coverage. Eventually, both parties came to an agreement, and Olbermann was set to anchor the network’s special election after the New Hampshire primary. Still, it didn’t make for great headlines less than a year after Olbermann landed at Current.
“At the end of the day, Current made a decision, based on a strong legal foundation, that goes beyond merely business considerations – this decision was made because Olbermann was in breach of his contract and his conduct was simply not consistent with either mission of or the values of the company,” the source said.
Ace has broken out the dancing Ewok in a case of Schadenfreude Night Fever.
(Cross-posted at the Tatler.)
President Obama said at a campaign event in Burlington, Vt., today that this November would be a “clarifying election” for America.
“It’s enormous — a lot is at stake in this election,” Obama said. “And we’re going to have to fight for it.”
He told the luncheon of about 100 supporters, who paid at least $7,500 each, at the Sheraton hotel that this year’s vote is more important than 2008, throwing some kudos to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) along the way.
“In 2008, I was running against a candidate who believed in climate change, believed in immigration reform, believed in the notion of reducing deficits in a balanced way. We had some profound disagreements but the Republican candidate for president understood that some of these challenges required compromise and bipartisanship,” Obama said.
“And what we’ve witnessed lately is a fundamentally different vision of America and who we are,” he continued. “It’s an America that says — or it’s a vision that says that America is about looking out for yourself, not for other people.”
The president, who was greeted in Burlington by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), slammed Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) “Path to Prosperity,” which passed the House yesterday.
“I’m going to need your help,” Obama told the donors. “And in some ways, it may be a little harder because it has lost some of the novelty, right? When back in ’08, it was cool to say, oh, you know, I’m supporting this guy Obama — you heard of him?”
“Let me tell you about him,” he added. “Now I’m old hat, I’m gray. But my determination is undiminished.”
Unlike most liberals, Fareed Zakaria uses math on CNN, but like most liberals Keith Olbermann cannot stop talking about Rupert Murdoch. Just another day on MSM? Find out. Plus, Obama surrogates want you think that it’s not as bad as you think it is. Is it? Tina Brown’s number one kennel hound Allison Yarrow insulted Dick Cheney and mocked his health issues. Hear what she said.
The White House has defended Solicitor General Don Verrilli, awarded the Worst Week in Washington by the Post today for his clumsy defense (see the mix tape by Buzzfeed) of ObamaCare before the Supreme Court this week.
“The president is pleased with the presentation made by Don Verrilli, the Solicitor General, and his team,” spokesman Jay Carney told reporters yesterday. “The president believes that the Affordable Care Act is constitutional.”
Today, deputy press secretary Josh Earnest took reporters’ question onboard Air Force One en route to Burlington, Vt., and the first of President Obama’s four fundraisers of the day.
“I’m not sure if the president himself has heard the audio,” Earnest responded when asked if Obama had heard the arguments for himself. “As I pointed out on Wednesday, the president has been following the news coverage and received briefings from our staff at the White House about the arguments and how they’ve proceeded. I don’t know specifically whether or not the president has heard the audio of those — of the arguments.”
“As a constitutional law professor, is he not sort of interested in that on two fronts?” a reporter asked.
“There are many reasons why the president is interested in it. As I pointed out earlier, the Affordable Care Act is certainly one of the significant achievements of the first term of this administration and so the president is both personally and professionally invested in the arguments that are taking place,” Earnest responded.
“The president has been following them in the news reports and has gotten specific briefings from our legal staff at the White House,” he continued. “And I feel confident in saying that the president shares the opinion of our White House staff that Mr. Verrilli did a terrific job in representing the interests of the government for the Supreme Court, but also representing the interests of the 2.5 million young adults who have health insurance coverage through their parent’s plan because of the Affordable Care Act. And Mr. Verrilli effectively was an advocate for the 50 million Americans who have access to free preventative coverage — or free preventative services through their private insurance coverage because of the Affordable Care Act. That’s essentially the role that Mr. Verrilli was charged with and everyone at the White House was pleased with his performance.”
The Obama regime has just killed new offshore oil drilling for five years, via a bureaucratic delaying trick:
The Obama administration today endorsed new oil and gas exploration along the Atlantic Coast, setting the stage for possible future drilling lease sales.
The announcement by the Interior Department sets into motion what will be at least a five year environmental survey to determine whether and where oil production might occur.
But Republicans say the announcement is simply for show. Obama delayed and then cancelled a planned 2011 drilling lease sale for areas off the Virginia coast following the BP oil spill in the Gulf.
Five years. Didn’t the president recently use that very number regarding his tenure in office? Everything has to be about him.
Meanwhile, watch what the other hand is doing. It’s proposing a “global minimum tax” on business.
“For years, American manufacturers have faced one of the highest tax rates in the world. We want to reduce that by over 20%. We want to drop the rate, particularly, for high-tech manufacturers like you, Mr. President, even further than the 20%,” Vice President Joe Biden said at a manufacturing plant in Davenport, Iowa this week.
“We want to create (what’s called) a global minimum tax, because American taxpayers shouldn’t be providing a larger subsidy for investing abroad than investing at home,” Biden said at a campaign event.
The regime is campaigning on making the United States subservient to a global body that will impose, collect and spend a global tax so that America’s corporate taxes will no longer be alone at the top, the highest in the world.
Update: Biden’s “global minimum tax” isn’t truly a proposal to establish some world body that would levy and collect corporate taxes, it turns out. But it is a proposal to keep US corporate taxes high — as of Sunday, they will be the highest in the world — and incentivize selling US corporations to foreign ownership, to escape the Obama/Biden “global minimum tax.” So that makes it…still awful, actually.
And purely from a messaging point of view, wow. It can’t get much worse than trotting out a doddering dolt who thanks sodas and tells people in wheelchairs to stand up, to propose something in language that sounds like it would have given George Orwell nightmares. Obama’s message factory is very overrated. Or even they can’t keep crazy old Joe on message.
She won’t be ignored…
The subject line at the top of the email says it all: “Me again”
Yes, OFA has been steadily increasing its email bombardment for weeks. A favorite tactic is to send these little “personal” gems from the First Lady. The last one from her reassured all of us common folk that the president was working late at night-surely a first in the history of the office!
Now she’s giving off a “cling to your ankle and not let you walk out the door” vibe that is so creepy one can almost smell Axelrod’s mustache sweat behind it.
At The American Spectator, Paul Kengor has a first rate analysis of some of the top 50 “progressives” picked by The Nation magazine’s judge on the matter, Peter Dreier, who teaches at Occidental College. The list includes two entries that are quite revealing about some who supposedly are called progressives. One was a secret Communist, the African-American baritone Paul Robeson, who if when he was alive anyone called him a Communist, he and his son Paul Jr. quickly responded that they were Red-baiting. The other is the late journalist I.F. Stone, who for a short time in his early years in journalism, was very close to joining the American C.P., and who signed up with the Soviet intelligence agency, then called the NKVD, back in 1938. Yet another was the advocate of birth control and eugenics, Margaret Sanger, who like the others, simply loved the land of Stalin.
“Progressives” really should think about what past figures they herald, or- do they really see these folks as role models?
It doesn’t look like it. In an email titled “I’ve Got Seoul” to note the president’s trip to South Korea (where he promised something to the Russians), the White House releases this schedule for the president:
The same email notes that the vice president’s wife has been touring community colleges, the vice president is holding a forum on college affordability (maybe he’s going to work on his degree and needs help?) and a pharmacist is going to talk about ObamaCare and pills. But for the president, his entire day is not spent doing the people’s business, it’s being spent doing campaign business — four campaign events today alone, at which he’ll deliver the same speech, shake a few hands, collect some checks, and move on to the next stop.
I realize that it’s Friday in springtime, but is it too much to ask the president to put in a couple hours at his day job?
American Crossroads rips President Flexible in this new video.
The president’s “smart diplomacy” has caused ripples with our ally, Poland, drawn Mitt Romney fire from the Russian regime, and even earned mockery from Jon Stewart:
On Wednesday night’s “Daily Show,” Stewart addressed the overheard conversation in which Obama told Medvedev that he’ll have “more flexibility,” referring to discussions of missile defense, after his election.
“Mr. President… We can hear you capitulating with the Russians,” Stewart joked in a stage whisper.
Clown nose, on.
Obama was a proud member of the Soviet-funded “nuclear freeze” movement of the 1980s and still agrees with its goals. I wonder, if he’s heard anyone tell him “I transmit this information to Vladimir” at any point in his past. I keed…
Actually, I don’t keed. It would really be nice to know.
The South Carolina governor denies that she’s the subject of any IRS probe of her father’s Sikh temple, because she never kept its books:
Gov. Nikki Haley vehemently denied Thursday that she is in any way connected to a 2011 tax audit of the Sikh temple in Chapin where her parents are leaders.
“It is flat out not true,” Haley said of speculation that has swirled around the State House for weeks that she is tied to the IRS audit of the Broad River Road temple.
“I have never kept their books. I’ve never made deposits. I never signed checks. I never did financial statements,” Haley said. “This is a church that I don’t go to. There are no issues related to me and that church.”
Haley is a Christian, for one thing.
I hate to engage in “question the timing” games, but here goes: Gov. Haley’s star has rusted a bit since her election in 2010, but she has remained in vice presidential conversations. She’s a bright young governor with a fairly strong record and she’s extremely likeable and telegenic, and she’s a female minority. She has a record of thrashing Obama’s NLRB when it assaulted Boeing in South Carolina. She’s governor of a state that the Republicans expect to win, though, so she doesn’t really haul in any electoral votes for the GOP ticket. Nevertheless, she endorsed Mitt Romney, Romney is locking up the nomination, and suddenly there are unsubstantiated rumors that she’s under some kind of investigation and possible indictment.
It’s curious, is all I’m saying. Gov. Haley’s gender, race and record all maker her a strategic target for the medialeft, which cannot abide strong, conservative minorities at all, and when they’re women then they must be destroyed.
Joe Biden admits that he has had the perfect career for a liberal: All the time in the world to spout off about everything, with no direct accountability for anything that happens.
Vice President Joe Biden offered a frank assessment of his career in remarks at a Democratic fundraiser in Chicago Thursday night. According to a White House pool report, Biden, surrounded by the city’s movers and shakers, praised former Mayor Richard M. Daley and then said: “I never had an interest in being a mayor ’cause that’s a real job. You have to produce. That’s why I was able to be a senator for 36 years.”
One heartbeat away…
There are laws and twitter policies against this sort of thing:
Barr’s posting of the correct Florida address of Robert and Gladys Zimmerman came at the same time Spike Lee was issuing an apology for erroneously disseminating a tweet that purportedly contained the home address of George Zimmerman, who last month killed teenager Trayvon Martin.
But while Barr deleted her original posting, the Zimmermans’s address remains in messages in her Twitter stream. Barr’s original tweet was a retweet of a post by a new Twitter user who appears devoted to disseminating the Zimmermans’s address and phone number, as well as contact information for Joseph Oliver, who has made numerous TV appearances in support of Zimmerman, a friend and former coworker.
Still, the entertainer left open the possibility that she would again circulate the Seminole County address of Zimmerman’s parents. “If Zimmerman isn’t arrested I’ll rt his address again.” She added, “maybe go 2 his house myself.”
And do what, screech the National Anthem at them? Threaten another attempt at an awful sitcom?
Notice that line about Joseph Oliver? The only thing he has done is try to cool heads in what is fast becoming the second O. J. fiasco. But twitter seems be content to allow Oliver to come under threat too.
Twitter has a responsibility to crack down on the use of its service to commit cyber bullying and cyber stalking. Why aren’t they taking action?
First of all, I have to dispute the Service Employees International Union’s assertion that “thousands” of supporters turned up Tuesday to protest efforts to deem ObamaCare unconsitutional on the Supreme Court steps. I was there. One end of the Supreme Court steps to the other, slightly past each end, almost to the curb, minus media and Tea Partiers, does not accommodate thousands. Hundreds, yes.
The union posted commentary about the event from SEIU Local 1991 member Norberto Molina, a nurse in Miami.
…The diversity of our group was impressive. It’s an American thing. If you are trying to advocate for a law that is for Americans, you want to look like America so that comes across to the people that see you on the street, as they drive by, or on national TV.
Our people out there today were a real reflection of America. The other side was not.
I realized over the past few days that I am pretty knowledgeable about Obamacare and I realized how important it is to pass that along, both as a nurse and as a union member. …
Once again Tom Maguire does what the media is too lazy to do. He has carefully mapped the routes reportedly taken by Zimmerman and Martin, compared the various accounts of what happened and to a careful reader it appears that Trayvon’s family lawyer is handing the press rather fanciful versions of what went down. Here’s an example of his careful reconstruction of the events:
Here is Trayvon Martin’s father recreating the police version of Zimmerman’s alibi told to him a few days after the killing. Unless he had notes I wonder how much detail he was taking on, since he had to be shaken up. Regardless, the police told a tale of two encounters:
According to Tracy Martin, the Sanford, Fla., detective recounted this sequence of events: Trayvon Martin walked up to Zimmerman’s vehicle and asked why he was following him. Zimmerman denied following the youth and rolled up the car window. Minutes after Trayvon walked away, Zimmerman got out of his vehicle.
Surely that would be on the 911 tape where Zimmerman says Martin is “checking me out”? But I don’t hear it. Mute button, bad audio, BS? Why would Zimmerman make that up – he had to know he had been calling 911? Oh, well, head trauma, PTSD. Or, why would the cops make that up – to get dad to back down? How’s that working?
Then came the second encounter, according to Tracy Martin’s recollection of the detective’s account. Trayvon Martin appeared from behind a building in Zimmerman’s gated community, approached him and demanded, “What’s your problem, homie?”
When Zimmerman replied that he didn’t have a problem, Martin said, “You do now.” The unarmed teenager hit Zimmerman, knocked him to the ground, pinned him down and told him to “shut the [expletive] up.”
During the beating, Zimmerman pulled his gun and fired one shot at close range into Martin’s chest. “You got me,” the teenager said, falling backward.
“You got me”? They lost me. Save it for the screenplay.
A new poll released today shows that the warm winter hasn’t really changed any minds about global warming.
Gallup reports that 52 percent of Americans believe that we’re already seeing the effects of global warming, down from a high of 61 percent in 2008 and slightly up from 49 percent last year.
Fifteen percent said global warming will never wreak havoc on the Earth, a higher trend from when Gallup began tracking these questions in 1998.
Out of the 29 percent who responded that global warming’s effects will be felt at a future time, four percent said that will start to happen within a few years, 10 percent said sometime in their lifetime, and 15 percent opted for even further down the road.
Forty-two percent said the media exaggerate the seriousness of global warming, while 31 percent said news coverage underestimates it.
Out of those who answered “exaggerated,” 67 percent identified as Republicans, 42 percent as independents and 20 percent as Democrats.
As far as the cause of global warming, 41 percent deemed it a natural phenomenon while 53 percent attributed it to pollution generated by humans.
Peggy Noonan has noticed (finally!) that Barack Obama isn’t all that likeable a guy:
Something’s happening to President Obama’s relationship with those who are inclined not to like his policies. They are now inclined not to like him. His supporters would say, “Nothing new there,” but actually I think there is. I’m referring to the broad, stable, nonradical, non-birther right. Among them the level of dislike for the president has ratcheted up sharply the past few months.
It’s not due to the election, and it’s not because the Republican candidates are so compelling and making such brilliant cases against him. That, actually, isn’t happening.
What is happening is that the president is coming across more and more as a trimmer, as an operator who’s not operating in good faith. This is hardening positions and leading to increased political bitterness. And it’s his fault, too. As an increase in polarization is a bad thing, it’s a big fault.
The former Reagan speechwriter ticks through a few reasons that Obama has recently come across as an “operator,” beginning with the conscience-violating abortifacient mandate on January 20, continuing through the hot mic promise to the Russians and Obama’s self-centered quip about the shooting of Trayvon Martin, and landing on this week’s ObamaCare action in the Supreme Court, and irresponsibility of the law that made that action necessary.
Noonan, recall, had a revealing open mic moment of her own in 2008. She and Mike Murphy, on MSNBC, snarked at Gov. Sarah Palin.
That was in September 2008. A little over a month later, the former Reagan speechwriter was making the case for Barack Obama’s election to the presidency. His qualifications? None. He had never governed or run anything of note. He was a template. Noonan bought into the, in her own words, “bullsh*t narrative” of a black man winning a primary in Alabama and then the American presidency.
Some of her friends who saw Obama for what he really is — a closet radical with a warped view of America, and sheathed plans to remake her into something the people did not want and were not voting for — tried to warn Noonan. I was there, working on the Ingraham show. Noonan came in for a guest slot, and Laura laid out a convincing case against Obama in that way that a former Supreme Court clerk can. Noonan, Frum, from the sound of that clip Murphy — so many nominally Republican figures fell for Obama while the grassroots out in flyover country never did.
Obama never was a particularly smooth operator. It wasn’t difficult to see through him. One only had to pay attention to the things he said before he was a national figure, and he was never shy about running his mouth. One only had to do a cursory background check on his friends — Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, etc. Anyone of so little accomplishment who had written two autobiographies by age 40 is literally an open book, and in one of those books he confessed to hanging out with Marxists on campus. When he later talked about “spreading the wealth around,” a person of letters such as Noonan should have noticed a connection. Obama’s extreme self-regard has never been hidden very well. It also wasn’t difficult to see that Both John McCain and Sarah Palin were more qualified than Obama and Joe Biden, who has gotten every major issue over the last 30 years dead wrong, in 2008. To see that, though, one had to look past McCain’s age and temper and Palin’s non-East Coast accent. One had to see that there is more to the presidency than presentation and campaigning and debating. One had to see that qualifications and records matter. One would expect a former Reagan speechwriter, of all people, to see that before the rest of us did and warn us, not the other way around.
It’s good that Peggy Noonan may finally be seeing all that now. It is fair to wonder, though, what took her so bloody long.
Vice President Joe Biden, completing a three-state campaign trip in Chicago last night, told 65 supporters that there are a few conditions under which Team Obama might lose in November: “by something happening in the Eurozone or something happening in the Gulf, which could be difficult for us, or this barrage of SuperPAC money.”
“But even with that, I feel good,” he said, according to the White House pool report, noting that Biden stressed, “I don’t think we’ll be beaten by those candidates.”
“We’re going to win this election,” Biden said, because Obama is the best candidate. “The second reason we’re going to win is because of all of you. Thank God there’s rooms like this I’ve been able to go in to all around the country. You guys are putting us in the game.”
He warned that Republicans would raise $400 million to $800 million in SuperPAC money to “carpet-bomb” Obama.
Biden, who recently told donors that there wasn’t as “audacious” military operation as the one to get Osama bin Laden in 500 years, spent plenty of time revisiting the Abbottabad raid.
“He went around the table, the entire national security team, and asked them, ‘What is your position?’ Every single person equivocated. Not one person said ‘Go!’ except Leon Panetta. As Billy can tell ya, sitting in all those meetings when he was chief of staff, literally, he turned to me, I’m the last guy, I sit to his right and he said, ‘What do you think, Joe?’ I said, “Mr. President, you still have three days. I think you should do two more things… He went upstairs… He came out through that diplomatic entrance. He turned to Tom Donilon — who’s a hell of a National Security Advisor — and said, ‘Go!’ He knew, if it was wrong, he was an ex-president. He knew he was a one-term president.”
The vice president also spent time waxing about a couple of guests, former Mayor Rich Daley and his brother, former Obama Chief of Staff “Billy” Daley, “one of my closest friends in the world.”
“I never had an interest in being a mayor ’cause that’s a real job. You have to produce. That’s why I was able to be a senator for 36 years,” Biden said.
From Page 50 of Afrolantica Legacies, an alien prophetess confirms Derrick Bell’s belief that tests scores also play their part in the white supremacist conspiracy:
The source Bell cites to support Chiara’s claim that “these pen and paper tests actually measure past opportunity better than future potential”: Susan Strum and Lani Guinier, “The Future of Affirmative Action: Reclaiming the Innovative Ideal,” 84 California Law Review 953 (1996).
For a summary of Strum and Guinier’s views, consider a different article with a similar title published in 2000 in the Boston Review. The subtitle summarizes their objective:
Promoting diversity in education and employment requires us to rethink testing and “meritocracy.”
Related: See part 6 of the Afrolantica series for analysis of Bell’s attacks on meritocracy.
Here’s Srum and Guinier’s argument:
We think it is time to shift the terrain of debate. We need to situate the conversation about race, gender, and affirmative action in a wider account of democratic opportunity by refocusing attention from the contested periphery of the system of selection to its settled core. The present system measures merit through scores on paper-and-pencil tests. But this measure is fundamentally unfair. In the educational setting, it restricts opportunities for many poor and working-class Americans of all colors and genders who could otherwise obtain a better education. In the employment setting, it restricts access based on inadequate predictors of job performance. In short, it is neither fair nor functional in its distribution of opportunities for admission to higher education, entry-level hiring, and job promotion.
Question: if you need a high-risk, life-or-death operation would you choose the surgeon with the highest GPA or the one who made it in via affirmative action and just barely managed to graduate?
Here are some of the books on my to-read list in the coming months that relate to this subject:
Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan endorsed Mitt Romney for president today, just four days ahead his state’s primary.
“I think he deserves to be the nominee. I think he earned it. He has emerged as the best candidate,” said Ryan in an interview, also arguing that it’s time for “conservatives to coalesce around Romney” before the primaries take too much of a toll.
“I believe it’s getting to the point where it’s going to become counter-productive if the primary drags on. It’s going to get much tougher to defeat Barack Obama in the fall,” said Ryan, who is often touted a serious vice presidential prospect this year. The congressman was expected to campaign with Romney in Wisconsin this weekend.
After Scott Walker, Ryan is the biggest endorsement “get” in next Tuesday’s GOP primary, especially for a candidate, Romney, who has struggled to consolidate the support of more conservative voters. Ryan’s standing with the GOP base in the state extends beyond his southern Wisconsin congressional district. Walker, a highly galvanizing figure among GOP voters in Wisconsin, says he will not be endorsing anyone before the Wisconsin Primary.
Romney has had a very good week on the endorsement front, racking up support from two of the GOP’s young stars, Ryan and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, and one of its elder statesmen, former President George H. W. Bush.
Rep. Ryan appeared on Fox and Friends today to discuss the endorsement; that’s where he spoke the headline for this post. He also addressed whether his endorsement came as a result of a deal with Romney that would put Ryan on the Republican ticket in the vice presidential slot. Ryan said that there is no such deal, but he did not rule out joining the ticket at some future date.
Ryan is regarded as one of the brightest and most serious figures in Washington; his endorsement is a good get if late in the game. His framework for Medicare reform has dominated Republican efforts to rein in government spending. His budget easily passed the US House this week, while the president’s own budget went down to a humiliating defeat, 414-0. Regarding endorsing Romney, Ryan offered two reasons — that Romney’s financial background enables him to understand and be able to tackle America’s massive debt problem, and that Romney has emerged as the most likely winner of the GOP primary.
What does irony look like? It’s a concept, so normally it doesn’t look like anything. But when the President of the United States flies 1,530 miles on Air Force One to Las Vegas to give a speech on energy conservation — irony looks a lot like this:
At the Copper Mountain solar energy plant in Boulder City, Nevada, our characteristically condescending Chief Executive said this, according to the transcript issued by the White House Press Office, which helpfully adds “(Laughter)” so that those of us unable to fly to Nevada on Air Force One — although we were privileged to pay for his trip — can appreciate what it must have been like to bask in his withering wit and scintillating sarcasm (emphasis added):
Now, you’d think given this extraordinary site, given the fact that this is creating jobs, generating power, helping to keep our environment clean, making us more competitive globally, you’d think that everybody would be supportive of solar power. That’s what you’d think. And yet, if some politicians had their way, there won’t be any more public investment in solar energy. There won’t be as many new jobs and new businesses.
Some of these folks want to dismiss the promise of solar power and wind power and fuel-efficient cars. In fact, they make jokes about it. One member of Congress who shall remain unnamed called these jobs “phony” – called them phony jobs. I mean, think about that mindset, that attitude that says because something is new, it must not be real. If these guys were around when Columbus set sail, they’d be charter members of the Flat Earth Society. (Laughter.) We were just talking about this – that a lack of imagination, a belief that you can’t do something in a new way – that’s not how we operate here in America. That’s not who we are. That’s not what we’re about.
This from a man whose own vehicle is not exactly a model of what he touts for us.
At Reason, Ronald Bailey takes a closer look at what the president is promoting, and what its real cost would be:
Yes, America has always been about subsidized electricity. In any case, let’s add up once again what federal subsidies (in this case a 30 percent tax break) can conjure into existence and compare costs with a new natural gas-fired electric plant. As the president noted, the new 58-megawatt Copper Mountain facility can generate enough power to supply 17,000 homes. How does he come by that number? Very roughly, one megawatt of installed capacity when operating can supply electricity for 1,000 homes. Since solar is intermittent, the usual estimate is that solar plants operate at 30 percent of maximum capacity. In this case, Copper Mountain would supply enough electricity for 17,000 homes.
We should, of course, be suspicious.
When it comes to the president’s calculations, Bailey cautions:
The Electric Power Research Institute latest estimate for building a new 550 megawatt natural gas-fired electric plant operating at 80 percent capacity is $1.2 billion. Using the same form of calculation implied by the president (1 megawatt per 1,000 homes x 80 percent of 550 megawatts) suggests that such a plant could supply electricity to 440,000 homes.
Now let’s scale up the Copper Mountain plant ten-fold for a rough comparison to a 580 megawatt plant. The current plant cost $140 million to build, so a ten-fold increase would (again roughly) be $1.4 billion. Not so much more than a natural gas plant; but then there’s the 30 percent capacity factor to take into account. So to get the same amount of electricity generated means that a comparable solar plant would actually have to have maximum capacity of more than 1,800 megawatts. So at $141 million per 58 megwatts of capacity such a plant would cost roughly $4.4 billion to build. That’s almost four times more expensive than a comparable natural gas plant would be.
But surely, the extra expense for solar will be made up in fuel cost savings, right? Recent calculations of the levelized costs of various forms of electric power generation technologies (including lifetime fuel costs) suggest not.
Taking a puckish approach to presidential squanderlust, At the Rubicon throws down the gauntlet:
Ok, Mr. President. Let’s play a little game: You First. Declare a moratorium on the direct and indirect use of petroleum at the White House.
No more jetting around in Air Force One.
No more using the Marine One helicopter.
I guess that mothballs your big fancy bullet-proof limo and bus.
The White House is probably heated via heating oil so that has to stop.
All of the White House electrical power will have to come from non fossil-fuel sources.
And that’s why irony looks like this:
Photo credit: Leila Navidi of The Las Vagas Sun
- Nice Supreme Court You’ve Got There, by Richard Fernandez. ‘Shame if something were to happen to it…
- From PJTV: Glenn Reynolds Interviews Walter Russell Mead on Obama at War: Video on PJM homepage.
- The Green Jobs Boondoggle, by Tom Blumer. You’ll need a powerful magnifying glass to find those green jobs, since they make up barely 2% of the private workforce.
- The Appleseed Project: History, Character, and Rifles, by Bob Owens. Learning the underappreciated ingredient of our liberty: marksmanship.
- And the Budget Winner Is… Paul Ryan, by Bridget Johnson. But even the more conservative GOP alternative, the progressive and Black Caucus budgets fared better than Obama’s plan.
- ‘A Deeper Truth’, ‘Fake but Accurate’, and Trayvon Martin, by Richard Fernandez. Truth doesn’t matter with totalitarians; they appeal to a need for myth. (Update: Related thoughts from Bryan Preston at the Tatler on ABC, Zimmerman, and the case of the curiously-placed Chyron.)
- 7 Ways Wildly Successful People Screw Up Their Lives, by John Hawkins. If you’re not prepared, it’s easy to fall over the cliff, even at the height of your power and fame.
- Re-Engineering Humans: An Old Solution to Climate Change, by Ed Driscoll. The “New Man,” a trope that appears in virtually all totalitarian societies, is revived yet again.
A Missouri judge today struck down a Missouri constitutional amendment that would have established a photo ID requirement to vote.
Cole County Circuit Court Judge Patricia Joyce ruled that the referendum language, which was to appear on the Nov. 6 ballot, was “misleading” and “unfair.”
“This is a victory for voting rights and it affirms the most fundamental constitutional guarantee for every citizen in Missouri,” said Rep. William “Lacy” Clay (D-Mo.). “Today’s ruling blocks a blatant attempt to disenfranchise seniors, students, the disabled, minorities and the rural poor.“
The summary in question was: “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to adopt the Voter Protection Act and allow the General Assembly to provide by general law for advance voting prior to election day, voter photo identification requirements, and voter requirements based on whether one appears to vote in person or by absentee ballot?”
To appear on the ballot, state legislators need to rewrite the summary and pass the revised version by May 18.
“The misleading ballot language was designed to confuse Missouri voters into approving an amendment that could have disenfranchised up to 350,000 registered voters,” Clay said.
He and other activists have been trying to defeat the voter ID effort in the state.
Florida’s Democratic congressional delegation sent a letter to the state’s attorney general today expressing concern over the handling of the Trayvon Martin slaying and asking for a “comprehensive briefing” of the investigation.
Rep. Alcee Hastings led the delegation letter to Pam Bondi that included Frederica Wilson, Ted Deutch, Kathy Castor, Corrine Brown and Debbie Wasserman Schultz. The attorney general was in Washington this week for the healthcare mandate challenge before the Supreme Court.
“We remain troubled that this incident occurred on February 26, 2012, and yet Mr. George Zimmerman has not been arrested,” the letter states. “As members of the Florida Congressional delegation, we request that you keep us apprised of your findings, and provide us with a comprehensive briefing at the conclusion of your investigation.”
The lawmakers tell Bondi that they have “grave concern” over the case and are pleased to see a new state attorney investigating the case and a task force to weigh the results.
“We cannot let the standard of our judicial process be overlooked in this matter,” the delegation writes. “As you know, there are a number of laws, decisions, and procedures involved in both what happened to Mr. Martin, and the subsequent actions of the Sanford Police Department. We sincerely hope that your office will do everything in its power to find answers as to what went wrong in order to prevent an incident like this from happening in the future.”
JERUSALEM – Two reports today about Iran’s nuclear program and the possibility of an Israeli military strike have analysts in Israel accusing the Obama administration leaking information to pressure Israel not to bomb Iran and for Iran to reach a compromise in upcoming nuclear talks.
The first report in Foreign Policy quotes anonymous American officials saying that Israel has been given access to airbases by Iran’s northern neighbor Azerbaijan from which Israel could launch air strikes or at least drones and search and rescue aircraft.
The second report from Bloomberg, based on a leaked congressional report, said that Iran’s nuclear facilities are so dispersed that it is “unclear what the ultimate effect of a strike would be…” A strike could delay Iran as little as six months, a former official told the researchers.
“It seems like a big campaign to prevent Israel from attacking,” analyst Yoel Guzansky at the Institute for National Security Studies told ABC News. “I think the [Obama] administration is really worried Jerusalem will attack and attack soon. They’re trying hard to prevent it in so many ways.”
No comment necessary.
Or in Simpsons terms, Duffman sings a lot of things, oh yeah!
(Via Hot Air’s Allahpundit, who writes, “How did this not end up as a taser video? Good lord. By the time he got to “Bismillah,” I needed a drink myself.”)
Liberals have made it too expensive to build and sell a cheap sandwich.
Signs posted at Subway sandwich shops sadly inform San Francisco patrons — we hear Willie Brown is a big fan — that “all SUBWAY Restaurants in SF County DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN Subway National $5.00 Promotions,” according to the newspaper.
Customers can still buy the sub of the month for $5, according to an employee at Subway on Market and Castro streets.
Apparently, the city’s new minimum wage, raised to $10.24 as of Jan. 1, make $5 footlongs an impossible business model.
If we ever needed a clear and understandable example of how liberalism hurts average people trying to defy basic economics, this may be it. Empower liberals and they find creative ways to pick pockets and create deprivation.
Too bad for San Franciscans. The $5 selection is good and the theme song is pretty catchy. I’m partial to the spicy Italian on the herb & cheese bread, toasted, with pepper jack and veggies.
We all remember the international uproar that erupted when, during a clash between police and protesters in Egypt, the former beat and partially stripped to her bra a female protester (subsequently known as the “Blue Bra Woman”).
An older video which purports to show an Egyptian officer ordering a woman to take off all her clothes, is even worse, sparking debate anew. For the stripping is not a product of haste, blind-rage, or chaos—as apologists for the Blue Bra Woman incident argue—but deliberate, methodical, and sadistic.
According to a new report appearing yesterday on El Bashayer, Mohsin Bahsani, president of an Egyptian organization called Legal Assistance for Human Rights, has brought this video to the spotlight, saying he is preparing to submit a formal complaint to the Attorney General, asking for legal action to be taken, including identifying the perpetrators.
The video was earlier aired on the popular Egyptian program “90 Minutes” (click here; clip appears from around minute 1:45 to minute 4). It appears to be taped inside an apartment, where a man, dressed like an officer, threatens and slaps a woman around, bullying her to take off all her clothes. He constantly commands her to “strip” and orders the others in the room to keep the door closed.
First he gives her a hard, swift slap across the face when she refuses to take off her top; then she takes it off but he orders her to take her bra off as well. After protesting, she complies, but then covers her face for shame, all while sopping; he yells at her not to cover her face and gives her another hard slap. Then he resumes ordering her to continue stripping, i.e., take her pants—and presumably underwear, based on precedent—off. The video then cuts off.
Or maybe just the smart thing. Actually, the smart and right thing. In addition to the apology, he has reportedly compensated the McClain’s.
Elaine and David McClain, in their 70s, left their Sanford, Fla., home after their address was tweeted by a man who thought he had found the home of George Zimmerman, the 28-year-old who shot Martin, 17. Lee then retweeted the McClains’ address to his followers on Twitter.
The McClains have a son, William George Zimmerman, who is not related to the George Zimmerman who shot Martin and whose arrest is being sought by Martin’s family and civil rights supporters. “The McClains’ claim is fully resolved,” Matt Morgan, their attorney, said in an email. “Mr. Lee personally called them to give a very heartfelt apology. Further, he agreed to compensate them for their loss and the disruption to their lives.
“The McClains were very moved by Mr. Lee’s apology,” Morgan said. “They would like the Lee family to be left in peace,” Morgan said.
Good on ya, fellow Gooner.
Here’s a screen capture of how The Nation chose to illustrate their Trayvon Martin editorial:
The progressive flagship embraces the teenager and attacks those who “smear” him by reporting the police and eyewitness accounts of the crime:
The Orlando Sentinel seized on police accounts that painted Martin as the real aggressor, shamelessly reporting that he had once been suspended from school “after being found with an empty marijuana baggie.” Reporters revealed he once spray-painted a locker, and they trolled his Facebook and Twitter accounts for hints of thuggish behavior. In an emotional press conference, Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, said, “They killed my son, and now they’re trying to kill his reputation.”
Last month a white, racist vigilante gunned down an innocent, hoodie-wearing black child with skittles in his pocket. If you had a son he’d look like Trayvon.
That narrative (half of which comes via the President) works to manipulate people’s emotions and inspire them to hate Republicans.
Trayvon the troubled teen with a history of lawlessness and a Twitter account glorifying the Thug Life? The back of George Zimmerman’s skull showed injuries in the recent video? Zimmerman was a Hispanic and registered Democrat?
Can’t have that. Where’s the fundraising potential for Al Sharpton’s National Action Network in that media narrative?
But it’s too late. The train has already left the station. And once an icon of Marxist Martyrdom enters the pantheon of demi-gods then they’re there FOREVER, no matter what. Ron Radosh knows this better than anyone; check out this piece from him and Steven Usdin in The New Republic. The Nation still defended the Communist spies Julius and Ethel Rosenberg as recently as 2010.
Progressives knew how to give those proletariat-martyrs the imaginary idol treatment too, as Nation editorial board member Tony Kushner and HBO delivered with Angels in America:
(R-rated language warning)
Marxists have played this game for a long time — hit people in the heart hard enough and you’ll stop the blood flow to their brain.
Saad al-Katatni, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and the current speaker of the Islamist-dominated parliament was chosen as the head of the constituent assembly, during its first session.
The panel, which is made up of more than 60 percent Islamists, has been at the centre of a dispute with the country’s secular forces who fear their calls for a civil state will be muffled.
Katatni’s appointment comes after liberal, leftist and independent parties and figures angrily withdrew from the committee, accusing Islamists of monopolising the process.
Only 74 of the 100-member panel attended the first session, with 71 voting for Katatni, the official MENA news agency reported.
The Obama administration is full speed ahead with its plan to send $1.3 billion in aid to the newly Islamist state.