You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Obama’ category.

  • One:  This is Gate’s retirement:  it needs to be big.
  • Two:  if this was a praise Obama book, it would sell very few copies.
  • Three:  Releasing the name-callings did it’s job:  this book is now hyped.
  • Four:  We are only seeing the parts released by the book’s propagandists.
  • Five:   Most of the statements are not news.
  • Six:  The Afghanistan Story was already told by Bernstein.  Gates replays the same conversations.
  • Seven:  It’s a book.  It’s about money. And we know that Gates did work well with Obama as he did with Bush W.
  • Eight:  We now know that Biden-Obama get along far better than did Bush-Cheney….

What is amazing is how quickly the extremists in the media raced to hype the slurs, as if they were given bonuses to make Obama look bad…   As for the rest of us… Yawn.  Based on what I’ve heard,  I don’t think I’m buying the book.  Are you?

Advertisements

Golf in Hawaii

How do you keep your legacy of Obamacare from being cut and left to bleed?

Easy. You turn Obamacare into a low priority for Republicans, by seriously challenging them on other things far more important, forcing them to drop the fight for Obamacare, because they have other battle to fight over….  Ones they will lose unless they become very lucky.

G-10-8

  • You apply tremendous force to raise taxes on the top 1%
  • You allow businesses the writing off capital investments the full amount spent.
  • You keep benefits on Social Security, and raise the fee on top incomes.
  • You do a Kennediesque moon challenge, but this time to it’s High Speed Rail connecting all major cities by 2025.
  • You proceed with a challenge to find a way to capture coal CO2, making it eco-friendly.
  • You push for keeping guns out of those who are mentally ill.  Background checks and take on the NRA.
  • You push for more union rights, and fewer right to work laws.
  • You push for stronger controls on Wall Street.
  • You push for more solar energy capture out west, more wind in the mid-west, and more tidal on both coasts….

golf in Hawaii 2

You promise every American that if they  vote for no Republicans in 2014, your goal for 2018 is that every American will be making $10,000 more than they are now.…  Examples… If they are making $10,000, they’ll be up to $20,000.  If they are at $40,000, the’ll be up to $50,000.  And if they are making $100 million, they’ll be making $100 million plus $10,000 by the end of that time frame….

With a roaring economy, that is actually a conservative estimate…

golf in Hawaii 3

The point is … as a lame duck president you have two options.  One you can play defensive, and try to foil Republicans, the wealthy, Wall Street, and the backwards Tea Partiers, as they try and chip away at the edifice you have built of Obamacare. This I argue against, because this puts you in the position of looking weak, It puts them in the position of appearing to grow stronger…  Just as does a football team which has a comfortable lead, and blows it by having their fourth string not play as aggressively as they would had they been playing a close game… The other team has nothing to lose, since they are already badly losing; therefore they play with a ferociousness unseen all previous season…  This is what will happen to you….

golf in Hawaii 4

Or..Two…. you can choose to run up the scoreboard.  You can capitalize on how well the affordable health care will be received,(it’s reputation is starting to turn already).  You can twist the knife in Republicans by showing how Democratic states are getting good health insurance cheaper than before, and how Republicans governors in Republican states, jerked around their constituents forcing them to pay more than are Democrats in neighboring states…. All you have to do is compare their numbers….

You can run up the scoreboards by filling up all court vacancies.  You can run up the scoreboard by  mandating environmental protections, by raising taxes on the top 1%. by Pushing for immigration reform,  by floating the legalization of weak recreational drugs, by having them regulated and taxed as was done with liquor post-Prohibition.

golf in Hawaii 5

You can run up the scoreboard by carrying the message to the American People that it is in everyone’s benefit if the top 1% are taxed and that money is used to pay for replacing a bridge that should fall, or a tunnel that will collapse into the river this decade or next.

You can run up the scoreboard by on every task, show that the Republican-way will hurt America, and the Democrat’s way will make it better….

Point is, you are a lame duck.  You got nothing to lose…   if you try all of these, you will no doubt be effective at some.  And some you won’t…

golf in Hawaii 6

But if you create the environment where the House is too busy playing defense to re-argue another case of the Obama bill, because Republicans are in a desperate fight for their very survival….  Obamacare will probably survive along with Obama….

The best defense is a good offense…Mr. President…. Let’s go run up that score….

Social Security despite its dislike by the wealthy class, finally became law.  It now appears Obamacare has passed it’s last and final trial by fire and will soon take it’s place next to Social Security as a basic American right….  it is so funny that it was invented by Romney, isn’t it?  I wonder how soon until he starts taking credit for the idea.

There are 8 working days left in the House of Representatives…  Although 47 bills repealing Obamacare have already passed the house, none have been put on the floor ever since the October 1st government shutd0wn…

The only bill exiting the House, was the one to delay it for only a year on the pretense of fixing the computer errors.  It turned into a giant misfire for the Republicans….

The head of the Republican leadership, is beginning to see it is impossible now to derail Obamacare….   It is one thing to get rid of a potential bugaboo which no one has any idea of what it does…  It is a totally different thing to take away 2 million American’s insurance plans, and leave them stranded with no insurance.  Acts like that play poorly during election time, and an election is only 11 months away.

The House ends the year in 8 working days.  When they return after New Year’s, all those insurance plans for which they shut down the government to prevent….  will be in effect…

So the fight is done,…over,….. finished,….. caput.   The Republicans will still keep close tabs on Obamacare, looking for any stories that discredit it, then trumpeting those ad nauseum…  But their aim in doing so is not to remove Obamacare.  At this point, they are solely looking to fan any flame possible in order to drive their voters to the polls next November….

As for Obamacare, it appears the fix is in.

 

 

 

This bears more exposure.  Originally from Allan Loudell’s blog on WDEL.  

======

I would have to disagree with XXXX’s current political assessment. I can see how he would be misguided. If one associates only with those who think like ones self, then one reinforces ones opinions instead of challenging them….

 XXXX feels like people don’t remember the shutdown… He thinks that people are more concerned about losing their insurance. If one looks at Breitbart and Red State, one can see why he feels that way. They talk of nothing else.

But the rest of America all suffered from feeling embarrassed that one wing of us was so childish, they shut down the government, then capitulated completely, getting absolutely nothing to gain from it.

In other words, all America suffered, not one single person gained. Ironically, just returning to normal was heralded as a victory for the American People, and allowing the return to normal was cast as a blemish to the Tea Party. That stains like child abuse; they will never live that down.

Now lets take the insurance exchange debacle. If you randomly pick 1000 people, 800 of them already have insurance so are unaffected. That leaves 200. Out of those 200, 170 of them were previously uninsured. So getting insurance for the first time, is a bonus to them. We are left now with 30. 30 people out of 1000 who currently buy their own plans on the open market. Of these 30, 8 will save money either through subsidies or through more direct competition. 9 will go through the process and find they are spending relatively the same. Unfortunately for those 13 left, they will have an increase in their premiums. That is 13 out of … how many? 1000.

Only 13 out of 1000 will have their insurance go up. Of course, with entreaties out to “send us your story” these 13 have a pipeline right up to the top of national media from where it is spewed out like treated water at a sewage treatment plant….

 But in the end.. by next November 4th, exactly 345 days away, those 13 will be drowned out by the 987 who received no harm from Obamacare.

The problem is not your facts. 13 people will pay more. It is with your getting your facts from only those people who want you to hear one side.

Good luck winning Congress back with 13 people.

The reason we are so sure Assad ordered the chemical attack itself, comes from an intercepted  communique from a high ranking Hesbollah official to the Iran embassy in Damascus, which states that  “Assad made a big mistake in ordering the use of chemicals.

Put yourself in his shoes.  Wouldn’t that be exactly what you would have said upon first hearing of the attack and seeing footage?  Everyone, including myself, thought is was Assad long before proof began to turn up that other alternatives existed.

So to make the assumption that a Hesbollah in Lebanon would have inside knowledge of  the upper mechanizations of Syria’s armed forces, is not realistic.   For this person to say Assad made a grave mistake is really, no different than myself, saying Obama is making a grave mistake by ordering this discussed future military strike.  Do I know if he has ordered it?  No.

But that doesn’t stop me from trying to warn them that such actions are severely harming themselves,…

And this, is our whole “evidence” supporting that Assad needs punished.

Assad in his Charlie Rose Interview, asserts that he did not order chemical weapons.  As many including the Russians have said…  doing such would be the height of stupidity. Similar to the US, nuking Damascus because chemical weapons were stored there… Duh, why would we do that?

This is corroborated by German Intelligence, who now state that intercepted phone calls show Assad was not himself involved in last month’s attack or in other instances when government forces have allegedly used chemical weapons.

Which suggests rogue elements in Assad’s forces.  That is to be expected.  In an area where religious hatred is so high, the ability to inflict causalities on one’s hated adversary, might overrule any orders to the contrary.  Those old enough to remember the Cold War, no doubt also remember the countless novels and movies depicting a rogue element inside our own military, initiating nuclear strikes to achieve a personal result….  perhaps even a promotion.

So we have a flimsy piece of evidence that a recent law school graduate could get thrown out of court, and we have an ally offering up intelligence showing Assad knew nothing, nothing… and having both together, we have to give Assad a pass, because the preponderance of the evidence, shows him to be not guilty.  Maybe he is guilty and hides it well.  However, the preponderance of evidence is not enough to convict him….  if any American courtroom would acquit him, we certainly can’t bomb them back into the Stone Age.

it’s over.  We may attack despite it being over.  That would be a mistake.  Just looking over support for an attack shows it disappearing faster than a party where the last one left pays the check….

Assad will win us over tomorrow.  Clips have been reviewed already.  Obama will state his case, but offer no evidence. It will not even be a wash.

The American People, have decided we should not go to war.  That decision crystallized this afternoon.  It would be wise to accept their verdict, and begin work on Plan B.   It also might be wise to get rid of your staff in the White House who brought you to this catastrophe and replace it with those who have recently lived outside the beltway.,…  Just sayin’…

Hagel told members of the House of Representatives in Congress it would be in the “10’s of millions…”

Each cruise Missile costs $1.5 million.   In Libya, we fired 221; 110 in the opening salvo.  Alone, that totals to $331 million.

B-2 Bombers’ fuel costs $60,000 per hour… They travel from Missouri 18 hours there, and 18 hours back… so 36 hours times $60,000 is $2.16 million for each bomber’s fuel on each run.

Weekly costs for a carrier strike force… $25 million in normal operations.  In combat mode, the cost rise to $40 million due to extensive flying, and fuel for the planes.

When reporters brought up these discrepancies to Pentagon officials, all declined to comment. Pentagon spokesman George Little told a briefing on Thursday….”This is in the national security interests of the United States,” Little said. “When something is that important, we’ll find a way to pay for it.”

Word leaked from the MId-East is we have…

Exhibit A: Saudis have put ”on the table” their offer to pay for the entire US assault on Syria.

Why would they do that?

Hedge funds are betting if war in Syria occurs,  oil jumps from $109 to $125 a barrel.  At the pump that translates from today’s pump cost of $3.45 per gallon up to $3.95 a gallon of 87 octane…  At 9.8 million barrels a day, Saudi’s will make $156 million extra …per day….  If oil jumps to top line, $150 a barrel, our pump costs soar to $4.74 a gallon and the Saudi’s pocket an extra $401.8 million a day. War is very profitable for them and the Gulf States…

Oil, at $150 a day, has China very worried.  The global economy may take quite a hit on the chin.

As an indicator of how close the price of oil is tied to this,   as reports of opposition to Obama attacking Syria grow,  and the attack looks less likely, the price of oil futures are coming down

Let us start here.  A good leader takes his people where they want to go.  A good leader does not force his people to go where they definitely don’t want to go… That is ruling.  Not leading.

A good leader convinces his people why they must do something.  He makes sure he puts in how it will benefit them.  If it doesn’t benefit them, he is ruling.  Not leading.

A good leader creates good out of evil.  There is a moral equivalency to leadership.  It can be defined shallowly at times.  Such as calling Hitler good leader based on his strategy of conquering France. But time makes such affirmations short lived.  I don’t think anyone looking over the rubble left of Germany in 1945 at that moment considered Hitler a good leader after viewing his legacy.

A good leader does not follow the rules… He decides when and where the rules apply.   Some would apply the name “great leader” to one who never wavered.  Well, such a leader would have ruined the life of a little boy whose grandmother sent along a knife to cut the cake, not knowing that knives in school were grounds for expulsion.  A lot of misdirected people in leadership positions in that particular school district, made bad decisions based on their mistaken view of what makes a good leader.  A good leader does not always follow the rules.

A good leader decides when and where the rules apply.

In Syria we have controversy.   We have one argument stating that Syria must be punished.  We have the other that says War must be reserved only for something Huge.  That “Huge” is of course undefined and fits in with “we know it when we see it.”

As the executive of the world’s largest force, militarily, economically, and morally,  our president pretty much get to decide.

Here is what a great leader would do.  He would find a way to unite the two sides into one…  He would find a way to punish Assad of Syria in a way that would scare any other despot thinking of using chemical weapons,  and do it without going to war.

That would be great leadership.

So what would scare Assad the most?   It’s hard to tell, but my guess is that his biggest fear as a man, is if his palace is overrun by Syrians, who basically tear him apart, and do his wife and children, then systematically erase any acknowledgement  that he or his dad ever existed…   That whole reign of terror becomes ridiculed, laughed at, for the rest of History.   i would guess that is how you could get to Assad.

So, we, (not just the US but the rest of the world) have to make that threat real.. We don’t have to carry it out necessarily, but we have to make it real.   How can that happen?

I think first, is that we make crossing the border out of Syria a real good move for Syrians…   Send the signal, that if you leave Syria, the world community will settle you somewhere, give you a job, and a chance to begin a life of freedom and prosperity. ideally what we are doing is a Cold War.  Over time we are saying: “See how great the Rest of the world lives?  Oh, you poor Syrians… Escape and come join us”. Where could we relocate them?  Iran could step up, Jordan,, and Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States,

This is how your hurt Assad… Turn his own people against him… No ruler can rule a group of people who don’t want to be ruled.  He can use brutality to a certain extent, but the numbers are completely on the side of the population wanting him gone.  With our intelligence capacity, he will never be safe… Every bodyguard is a potential killer..

And that, more or less, is what we should do… It is what a great leader does… He solves problems in ways where the evil get punished and the good win out.

Going to war, rewards those doing evil, and hurts the good….

It is time our President, become the great leader.  Not by  digging down and reinforcing the costly methods promoted in the past..  But to devise and implement new methods which because of their success, will be utilized far into the future….

(Senator Barack Obama (D-Il), then an Illinois state senator, delivered these remarks in October 2002 at the Federal Plaza in Chicago.)

“I stand before you as someone who is not opposed to war in all circumstances. The Civil War was one of the bloodiest in history, and yet it was only through the crucible of the sword, the sacrifice of multitudes, that we could begin to perfect this union and drive the scourge of slavery from our soil.

I don’t oppose all wars. My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton’s army. He fought in the name of a larger freedom, part of that arsenal of democracy that triumphed over evil.

I don’t oppose all wars. After September 11, after witnessing the carnage and destruction, the dust and the tears, I supported this administration’s pledge to hunt down and root out those who would slaughter innocents in the name of intolerance, and I would willingly take up arms myself to prevent such tragedy from happening again.

I don’t oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other armchair, weekend warriors in this administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.

What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income, to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression.

That’s what I’m opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.

Now let me be clear: I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power…. The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him.

But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors…and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.

I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences.

I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda.

I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars. So for those of us who seek a more just and secure world for our children, let us send a clear message to the president.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s finish the fight with Bin Laden and al-Qaeda, through effective, coordinated intelligence, and a shutting down of the financial networks that support terrorism, and a homeland security program that involves more than color-coded warnings.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to make sure that…we vigorously enforce a nonproliferation treaty, and that former enemies and current allies like Russia safeguard and ultimately eliminate their stores of nuclear material, and that nations like Pakistan and India never use the terrible weapons already in their possession, and that the arms merchants in our own country stop feeding the countless wars that rage across the globe.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to make sure our so-called allies in the Middle East, the Saudis and the Egyptians, stop oppressing their own people, and suppressing dissent, and tolerating corruption and inequality, and mismanaging their economies so that their youth grow up without education, without prospects, without hope, the ready recruits of terrorist cells.

You want a fight, President Bush? Let’s fight to wean ourselves off Middle East oil through an energy policy that doesn’t simply serve the interests of Exxon and Mobil.

Those are the battles that we need to fight. Those are the battles that we willingly join. The battles against ignorance and intolerance. Corruption and greed. Poverty and despair.”

=======

Wow! What goes around comes around…. It is haunting how by simply subbing the word Syria for Iraq, how truly this 11 year old statement applies to the situation today….

Syrian Resistance FlagSyrian Flag We are a tired generation… We grew up with ‘Nam.  Which ever side we were on during the battle here in America over that police action, or war, looking back after it was done, …. we all knew it was wrong….

After that we thought all war was wrong, and unfortunately took some of that angst out on those who least deserved it:  those coming back from the steamy jungles of hell…..

Against our will a certain president soon sent Marines into Beirut;  what happened then reinforced our belief that an American war was unjustifiable and that all other means must be utilized to prevent American war from ever happening again….  Against our will, we propped up a Nicaragua dictator against some rebels.  Against our will, we sold arms to Iran to use for paying for our support for that Nicaragua dictator, since a Congress elected by the American people, flatly said no to supporting him in Nicaragua…  We found a way to do it anyway….

I remember Senator Rudman, (R-NH) saying at the hearing while addressing Oliver North,… “The American people have the RIGHT to be wrong.”

Oliver North had been insisting that even when Americans flatly say NO, one still must do what one deems is necessary, that whatever one deems necessary, is the highest moral truth.  “Sometimes one has to go above the law!”  was actually said by the defense at this hearing.  Only one good thing came out of those hearings:  we all were introduced to Fawn Hall.

But then…  The Brits quickly regained the Faulklands. Then came Grenada, which went off without a hitch.   Then Panama, which was successful and almost painless.  Then came General Schwartzkopf.  The 4th largest army in the world, was routed in hours, and in days, had been completely mopped up.  Then came the Balkans.  We were on a roll.  We’d finally nailed down the successful formula of how to win in battle.

Today we say Iraq is a failure.  But that was so not so just after the invasion.  Inside Baghdad, the pulling down of Saddam’s statue, the victory of capturing Saddam, the ability of us to hand out billions of American dollars, initially gave this campaign the luster of looking like another success story…

Until we tried to steal their oil.  The standard global rate of dividing oil revenues is that the US gets a 20% cut for the development, and Iraq would get to keep 80% because it is after all, their resource.  That is how we deal with Nigeria.

But Brenner announced that we’d flip that to pay for the war, and that Iraq would be allowed to keep 20% because we liked them so much, and we’d only, by our good graces, take 80% of the revenues. 24 hours after letting that cat out of the bag, the first IED went off under a US military vehicle…  Before week was out, the total was in the hundreds.

The luster was gone.  We were an invading army, something  we have not called ourselves since WWII.  We always saw ourselves as the policeman who leaves as soon as order is restored…

Afghanistan likewise, got worse.  Then Pakistan.  Then Yemen.  On the diplomatic front  instead of doing no harm, .. we could do no good.  Then Libya costs us an ambassador who was running guns through Turkey.  He shouldn’t have been there; it should have been a low level staffer with security clearance.

This baby boomer generation knows that war is wrong.  We know from experience. The only time it can be employed successfully, is a) when the whole world is united behind you, b)  you go in and get out, and c) you have a structure that stays in place long after you are gone.

The only time it goes badly… is every other scenario.

Which brings us to Syria.  Syria has no importance to anyone.  (They couldn’t even defend the militarily advantageous Golan Heights in ’67!)  Which is why we let the Russians have them.

People are going to die in Syria if a):  Assad wins, b):  the rebels win, or c):  no one wins. The only thing changing upon this wars outcome, is which side will be massacred at war’s end.  Hence the battle for survival over there now.

So by having the US intervene or not, we are choosing which side gets to kill the other after the hostilities die down.

The weakest argument for going in still left with standing, is that they used chemical weapons.  In WWI, the British, French, and Germans all used chemical weapons.   Are chemical weapons really worse than being burned alive?  Or asphyxiated as a bomb blast sucks all the oxygen out of your lungs and the room?  Or a milk jug sized piece of jagged metal shrapnel ripping and leaving a hole through your body?  Or a mine being stepped on?  I’m trying to think why chemical weapons are so much worse, except for the fact that we’ve been told” they are so much worse”?

A causality is a causality.

We understand “why” some say we should go into Syria.  Because if we do not respond to chemical weapons in a big way, someone else will become confident and use theirs.  There is only one way to keep the genie inside the bottle, and that is to never leave a opening for it to escape….

We also understand “why” one of our beloved School districts had a policy that suspended, and expelled those who brought weapons to school!  Not just guns, but knives too. After all, the argument for punishing Syria, applies to soon-to-become high school felons too.

But, there came a time when the response generated by a policy, actually became the crime,   You remember the little boy expelled who brought a cake to school, and his grandmother thoughtfully sent a knife knowing teachers usually don’t have utensils in their classrooms.  The teacher actually cut the cake, served it, thinking nothing of it.. it was someone higher up, reviewing the situation, who said, “wait, that can be interpreted as a breach of regulations.  Let’s make an example out of this little boy”.  He was suspended and could have been expelled, except it eventually became news and public outcry was solidly on his side.  The policy makers were laughed out of town.

Which is why, if you are making this decision, you need to stall.  Acting quickly and decisively is equivalent to acting on rumor and innuendo.   So what if Syria lied and shot the gas cannisters off?

Does a military strike create enough excellent good will to neutralize this bad act?

Ironically what is best for the US in this situation, is for Assad to stay in power, to have a zealous change in heart, to work closely with the USA to get his economy working, to becoming a partner in that region with the US, and to signing a treaty with Israel, as did the Egyptians many, many years ago…

What is worse for us, is if the jihadists win, push out the moderates and take over the reform movement (they always do), then go to war with Israel, Jordan and Turkey.  Making ourselves into the evil empire will only create more explosions everywhere, flare-ups which would not have occurred had we taken the Jedi way, and used the “Force” in our possession, to make events on the ground turn our way and happen in our favor….

Realistically such a rosy scenario probably can’t happen; but if it did, were this to come about, there would be no doubt: Obama would be lauded as the best president we’d ever see in our lifetimes.  The cost of failure is so low that it just might be worth the try.

The second point… which all us Viet-namers will well remember, is that you may win every engagement you participate in Syria, but you won’t win the war at home, and that… will suck all your energy away from all the good you plan to do before 2016.

It broke LBJ.  It broke Bush II.  Don’t let it break you….