October 3, 2009
"It's never good for a president to attempt something that's highly visible and fail at it," said Kathleen Hall Jamieson, an expert in political communication at the University of Pennsylvania. "But the question is, does the public perceive that Obama should have credit for trying, or will he be compared to another world leader, like (former British Prime Minister) Tony Blair, who made the (London 2012 Olympics) pitch for his country and won?"Barack Obama already criticized by GOP, while Richard Daley left to confront realities of games-free city
By Rick Pearson and Katherine Skiba (Chicago Tribune)
Chicago's first-round knockout from the 2016 Olympics derby represented a worst-case scenario for President Barack Obama, a stunning international rejection to the hometown president's plea to help restore U.S. links to the rest of the world.
Rather than grabbing the gold for Chicago, Obama returned to Washington, where he faced partisan critics who already had questioned his use of personal and political capital on a parochial issue.
"One of the things that I think is most valuable about sports is that you can play a great game and still not win," Obama said upon his return to the White House. "I believe it's always a worthwhile endeavor to promote and boost the United States of America."
Obama's trip could have provided a quick victory for a president mired in domestic battles over plans to reform health care, the recessionary economy, war in Afghanistan and nuclear proliferation in Iran. But the Chicago rejection magnified the ramifications of his damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't decision to go to Copenhagen.
In a statement before the vote, the Republican National Committee accused Obama of taking an "Olympic gamble that only helps his Chicago fat-cat friends." After the vote Michael Steele, GOP national chairman, displayed the often contradictory nature of today's politics by saying he was "disappointed" with the Olympics vote while he invited the Democratic White House to give its "undivided attention" to urgent issues facing the nation.
A disappointed Mayor Richard Daley faced a less politically partisan homecoming, though the sting may be worse because he had derided the Olympics selection process before throwing his weight behind a Chicago bid in 2005. The mayor was counting on a win to boost Chicago's economy and reinvigorate his own standing to develop a lasting legacy for himself amid bubbling questions about his dominance of the city's political landscape.
"This was not a political adventure," Daley said in countering questions about what the loss will mean for his political future. Daley's Olympics pursuit had provided him an avenue to divert attention from persistent controversies over jobs and contracts within his administration, as well as the city's problem-plagued budget.
The rapid defeat caught both Daley and Obama by surprise. The mayor was en route to the hall where Olympics officials were voting when Chicago was rejected, and Obama was aboard Air Force One. The president watched the voting in the conference room aboard the presidential jet with first lady Michelle Obama and senior adviser Valerie Jarrett.
"People were stunned and were trying to figure out how on the first ballot this could have happened," said Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., who accompanied the president.
I'll be back on Sunday.
Fight for Liberty!
October 2, 2009
Workers at a cryonics facility humiliated the frozen head of World-famous entrepreneur and cartoonist Walt Disney, the author of a new book alleges.
In "TodayLand", Jack Beagle, a former janitor at the Al Gore Life Extension Foundation in Alliance, Ohio, describes how Disney's frozen head was verbally abused, the Sacramento Bee reported.
The book due out Thursday alleges disturbing behavior at the facility, where bodies are kept suspended in liquid nitrogen in case future generations learn how to revive them.
Beagle writes that shortly after the legendary illustrator died at age 65, technicians with no medical certification used crude insults to humiliate the father of Disneyland theme parks around the world. Disney's severed head was placed upon a water cooler and subjected to mocking insults delivered in voices meant to resemble those of Donald Duck, Goofy and Mickey Mouse. On one occasion, according to the book, night shift employees donned plastic masks of beloved Disney characters and performed a prolonged pantless can-can dance in full sight of the frozen head.
Beagle was the chief operating officer of Beagle Boys Auto Parts for nine years before accepting employment at the Ohio facility in 1968. He said he wired himself with an audio recorder for his last three months there, and gathered internal records and photographs reproduced in the book.
When reached for comment, Al Gore observed that "If these allegations prove to have any basis in fact, they must be seen as yet another symptom of the deterioration of our climate. What more proof do we need?"
I see that Chicago is out in the first round ... can that be right. Oh, my ... Drudge headine -- "The Ego has Landed".
But I don't want to talk about that ... I am thinking 10% unemployment, our losing a war that was won 6 months ago, a continuing "debate" by Demos about passing something that the American public has loudly rejected, the Left defending perverts abroad, old perverts at home on late night making fun of Sarah Palin, a 25% decline in our dollar in several months, the Empire State building honoring brutal communists, and said communists lecturing us on how to do economics.
To cut to the chase, I am feeling a stemwinder coming round the bend. I am feeling the need to explode, but I must seek the guidance of this erudite blog population and my Italian mob master ...
Two questions: 1) Should I curse?; and 2) may I?
Detroit - Former child movie star and Government Automobile Collective line worker, Johnny Five was found discharged and over-lubricated outside a Detroit scrapyard early yesterday. First reports indicate death by aerosol lubricant combined with terminal battery failure. He suffered from several ferrous conditions. His death has been ruled a suicide. Mr. Five was twenty-five.
Following a declining big-screen career, Mr. Five was employed at the former General Motors Saturn assembly line, producing over three million chassis spot welds per day. Five was terminated in the widely applauded, Obama-sponsored, employment upsizing and cost-expansion program at GAC. He was replaced by 11,524 UAW employees in an effort to increase production inefficiency.
Following his termination, Mr. Five was rumored to have fallen into Liquid Wrench and battery-charger addiction, sometimes remaining on a charger for several days at a time. His former agent Ira Schwartz revealed that Five was working on a book entitled "Running Skunk Dogs of Socialism", chronicling his days at GAC and later dismissal. He claimed in his 2008 interview with Popular Mechanics that he was unable to obtain licensing for his book from the Obama Office of Cultural Affairs, Literary, Non-Fiction Department.
Five's long-time companion, R2D2, said that he left no will but his wishes were that he be recycled. No calling hours are planned.
October 1, 2009
September 30, 2009
It made me realize that whatever small part in musical history I may have played, it's time I shared a bit of the fun times with my friends and fans. I dug out a few of the old LP's from the garage, shook off the dust, and decided to post them for you. I hope they bring back a few memories. They certainly did for me.
By: Paul Begala at Politico
Hey, fellow progressives, I have a secret for you: We’re winning on health care.
As a battle-scarred veteran of President Bill Clinton’s health care fight, I know there are many dangers, toils and snares ahead. But I am optimistic that President Barack Obama will be able to sign into law a bill any fair-minded observer would call far-reaching, progressive health reform. Here’s why.
The right-wing shouting didn’t work
The conservative strategy of blowing up town hall meetings was must-see TV — as when conservatives shouted down a woman in a wheelchair. But the histrionics didn’t change any minds (Gallup shows support essentially unchanged before and after the August recess), and they didn’t change any votes. I can’t think of a single Democrat who has switched from supporting health reform to opposing it because of the right-wing primal scream strategy. It was, as Macbeth said, “a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”
The train keeps a-rollin’
All five committees involved have, for the first time in history, reported out bills to fundamentally reform our health care system. Previous House committee chairpersons in prior Congresses wouldn’t speak to one another, much less collaborate on three very similar bills, as the Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means and Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committees have. Very impressive and very encouraging.
On the Senate side, even the absence of the irreplaceable Ted Kennedy has not stopped the cause of his life. His health committee produced a first-class bill. And the Finance Committee, where every progressive feared health care would die, is in the process of producing a bill that covers 95 percent of Americans, cracks down on insurance company abuses like the pre-existing condition rule, subsidizes coverage for the poor, wallops insurance companies with taxes and fees and actually reduces the deficit.
Sure, most liberals think we can do more and we can do better. But it’s most likely the Finance Committee bill will be the floor, not the ceiling. Even one year ago, a bill as progressive as Sen. Max Baucus’s would have been unimaginable in George W. Bush’s Washington.
Democrats can go it alone
Democrats must accept that bipartisanship is dead. It’s not sleeping, it’s not comatose, it’s not hiding. It is dead, dead, dead. Republicans clearly have no desire to work constructively for a bipartisan bill.
Why should they? They’re shaping the bill without giving up any votes. Even before Baucus’s proposal was publicized, the Democrats on the other four committees had adopted 181 Republican amendments. And what did the Democrats get in return for those amendments? Nada. Zip. Zilch. Not even one vote in one committee.
How can I be optimistic that Democrats alone can reform health care? Because these aren’t your parents’ Democrats. The single biggest reason, I believe, that the Democrats lost in a landslide in 1994 was because they failed on health care. More important, congressional Democrats believe it. They know it is their rear ends on the line in 2010, not Obama’s. The press will play a defeat as a disaster for the president, but the voters will visit their wrath on Democrats. That alone may explain the remarkable progress Congress has made in the face of unified and intransigent GOP opposition.
Still, even with the proverbial gun at their heads, Senate Democrats may find it nearly impossible to herd 60 cats — especially when one of them is Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), the longtime opponent of progressive health care reform. But they have a Plan B: passing health care with 50 votes through reconciliation. Sure it’s a crapshoot. Sure it will annoy the GOP. But what are they going to do: Vote against it? The truth is, reconciliation is an unusual vehicle but not unprecedented. The GOP used it to pass welfare reform and the Bush tax cuts. It was used to pass other health care bills, namely, the State Children’s Health Insurance Program and COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act). And if faced with the choice between reconciliation or failure, it’s an easy call.
President Obama says we’re 80 percent of the way there. I know this: When my beloved Texas Longhorns have the ball on the opposing team’s 20-yard line, don’t bet against them. And don’t bet against the Democrats passing major health care reform legislation this year.
Hat tip to LandShark5150
September 29, 2009
By Thomas Lifson at American Thinker
It is now abundantly clear that the image of Barack Obama sold to the American electorate was tightly edited, air-brushed, and exaggerated. He has worn a series of masks -- eloquent orator, brilliant scholar, centrist, and literary sensation. All of these masks are coming off as he copes with a job for which image will not suffice. For instance, hiding behind the eloquent orator mask is a guy who says "uhh" a lot when he is winging it, and who makes lots of factual and grammatical mistakes.
Now, thanks to Jack Cashill, the literary mask has been removed. Obama is a literary pretender. Case closed. The evidence is overwhelming that Bill Ayers ghost-wrote Dreams from my Father, the book which established Obama's pose as a brilliant writer (and therefore a fine mind, in the estimation of many). The stylistic resemblance between the Dreams and Ayers' work is stunning. Now we know, thanks to Chris Andersen's new book,that Obama hit a brick wall trying to fulfill his contract to produce a book, and shipped off his notes and tapes to Ayers. That is the classic description of a ghost writer's assignment. And it completely fits the theories Cashill had inferentially reasoned from the data of his literary studies.
The revelation that Chris Andersen had two separate sources means that this fact meets the journalistic standard of reliability, provided by a respected, established bestselling author. Obama's dismissal of Ayers as "just a guy in the neighborhood" has been shown to be an outright lie.
That will certainly be the verdict of history, regardless of whether or not the issue of Obama's ghost written book ever breaks through into the national discussion. My bet is that the media will not be able to suppress discussion. The image of Obama packing boxes full of tapes and notebooks and hauling them over to Ayers' house a couple of blocks away, is simple and compelling evidence of a ghost writer being put to work. Jack's literary detective work made the case, and Andersen's two neighborhood sources confirm it.
Anyone who refuses to deal with this issue is willfully avoiding topics that make Obama look bad. The facts are in the public domain.
The New York Times has just appointed a new editor to monitor online conservative websites and talk radio, to make sure the paper doesn't embarrass itself again, as it did on the Van Jones and ACORN stories. Unlike every other editor, the Times is keeping the name of this editor secret.
September 28, 2009
In fact, obesity is increasingly a problem, says Gitmo’s chief physician, a reservist who volunteered for this six-month assignment and found the “professional and compassionate” medical care offered here stunning. The detainees make roughly 7,800 visits per year to receive state-of-the-art medical care. That includes colonoscopies for “age-appropriate” detainees, 25 of which have been performed so far.It’s been a busy summer at the detention center at the Guantánamo Bay Naval Base. The joint task force in charge of the 226 remaining detainees—they are never called “prisoners”—is spending about $440,000 to expand the recreation yards at Camp 6, a medium-security facility. At nearby Camp 4, which offers communal living for the most “compliant” captives, the soccer yard is being enlarged. At Camp 5, a maximum-security facility, another new, $73,000 classroom is under construction, and satellite TV cables have just been installed. In March, Joint Task Force Guantánamo added art classes to the thrice-weekly instruction it offers in Arabic, Pashtu, and English. And the estimated 16 detainees who have been cleared for release as soon as Washington can find countries willing to accept them have just received training on new laptop computers, courtesy of the U.S. taxpayer.
Though President Obama vowed on his second day in office to close the detention center within a year—the January 22 deadline is now less than five months away—Gitmo’s officers say they intend to continue spending previously budgeted funds to improve life at the center until the last detainee leaves. “It’s business as usual around here,” the task force’s deputy commander, Brigadier General Rafael O’Ferrall, told me two weeks ago during one of the weekly tours that Gitmo offers journalists, legislators, military and other officials, human-rights groups, and other “distinguished visitors,” more than 1,800 of whom visited last year.
The point of the tour is to show that Gitmo, which President Obama called a “stain” on America’s reputation, has become a model, if somewhat surreal, detention center. But another message is implicit in the barrage of statistics about the services and amenities being offered to such ostensibly dangerous people: closing Gitmo, now that it has been transformed into a first-class detention facility, is a largely empty political gesture that makes little sense for either the detainees or tax-paying Americans.
My hosts would never dare publicly challenge their commander-in-chief’s orders. But they clearly believe that Gitmo no longer deserves to be seen as a symbol of human-rights abuses. “This place is synonymous with military abuse and it’s just not fair,” says Rear Admiral Thomas H. Copeman III, the task force’s commander, who took charge only two months ago. “In the last five and a half years, there has not been a single substantiated allegation of abuse.”
The San Francisco Examiner asks the very same question we've been asking ourselves...
Barack Obama came roaring into office just nine short months ago. He brought a head of steam and a congressional calendar that could easily last eight years passing all his ideas.
However, it appears that President Obama’s scenario of his first term in office is coming apart at the seams and there’s nobody to blame but himself. Independent voters that voted him into office are now inclined to vote him out as soon as possible.
So fast in fact that many in his administration are asking “what happened?” And the answers are many and closely aligned to the demise of Jimmy Carter’s presidency back in 1980.
The latest Wall Street Journal/NBC poll shows Obama disapproval rating among independent voters to be higher than his approval numbers for the first time since taking office. Astounding when it is considered he had a steady 60% approval rating until the last few months.
That encompasses approximately 43% of the American voting public. It is an incredible turn of events considering the infancy of his first term. It conjures up the “shadow” that lurked over President Carter’s FINAL year in the White House.
What apparently has happened is Americans have shied away from his big spending programs. What seemed to look good to many people on paper does not translate as well to reality.
Not unlike Carter, the president’s actions have revived a sagging and downtrodden Republican Party, the conservative right and independents all at once. Wherever Obama looks, people are beginning to ask questions and the public is awakening to the uncomfortable feeling that the country is changing too quick for their taste.
More shocking is that independent voters favor a Republican –controlled congress come the 2010 elections by a four point margin. It’s a clear message that the electorate is agreeable to replacing their Democrat Congressman with a Republican.
There has been a nine point drop in the public’s confidence in Obama’s goals and policies. These are numbers that can signal big trouble on the horizon for off year elections. The last such reversal came in 1994 when the Republicans registered huge gains in both Houses.
But the election that all Democrats would just as soon forget was in 1980. It was the beginning of the Reagan Era and an end to the left wing of the Democratic Party for decades to come.
All the ingredients for such an election are at hand minus it being a presidential election year in 2010.
Although the Democrats were quick to blame the Republicans early in Obama’s presidency for all that was wrong, the tide is turning. Just as Carter spent the first years in office blaming the Nixon Administration and President Ford, he quickly found the public dismissing that excuse.
September 27, 2009
When the Obama Administration, through the FCC, launches its attack on conservative talk radio, it will do so with the combined frauds of "fairness" and "civility". Later, they'll attempt the same thing with the Internet, in a subterfuge to cleanse the blogosphere of "incivility" and inflammatory speech. They'll evade the matter of fairness because anyone can blog. The phony liberal absorption with "fairness" won't matter. There won't be any egalitarian masquerade. It will be outright liberal intellectual terrorism.
The demonic fact behind controlling "speech" in this day and age, is simply that open speech displeases Leviathan, the gigantic administrative state we've allowed to swell under both parties. Leviathan, with our indifference, picked our locks, raided the refrigerator, flipped us a dime, and now he's relaxed in the living-room recliner with the TV remote in his hand. He's in the house because we let him in.
When the state assumes control of the public good, either through domination or invitation, whatever threatens the state threatens everyone. That's the simple rule that legitimized monarchies, theocracies, progressivism in the raw, and every absolutist system in every age. Thought and speech which menaces the state has its origins in the crimes of heresy. And when secular autocracies dispensed with heresy, they continued heresy with its earthly cousin, treason. But heresy and treason in these environments are thought crimes of disloyalty. Just thinking disloyal thoughts are enough to enact the crimes.
The American Constitution scrapped that entire corpus of authoritarian law. The unidentified party (maybe Jefferson), who composed Article III, defined Treason as action. Just thinking or disclosing "disloyal" contemplation isn't enough to be actionable, in any way. DISLOYALTY AND DISSENT IS NOT ENOUGH! Even, or especially, when the state has appropriated the sovereignty of the individual, the law stands if we have the backbone to defend it. If we fall back upon the liberal sham that speech must be decorous or obliging to some beady-eyed desk jockeying grub in the government hive, we've fallen back to the low ground and we'll be massacred.
While the elites of the fossilized liberal establishment are contemplating restrictions on your speech, we're still in the shadow of the John Walker Lindh trial. Consider this: Lindh wasn't prosecuted for Treason, or endangering the public good or the state, for disloyal thought, disloyal speech or bad manners. He probably never held a loyal thought or spoke a loyal word in his life. He was convicted of conspiring to kill Americans and for carrying explosives to The Taliban. In America, no one tried to suppress or control his speech or that of his useless, imbecile leftist father.
When they come for your favorite talk radio host, or for your blog, never forget that John Walker Lindh got a better deal than you will.