Views on the News
Views on the News*
September 13, 2014
President Obama was supposed to unite red and blue, white and black, but instead he has made divisiveness his specialty. There is no coordination between his speeches and their pragmatic realities. People rioted in Ferguson, Missouri over criminal Michael Brown’s death, and Obama did not defuse the rampant hatred. A four-hundred-pound cigarette salesman, Eric Garner, dies in New York in a chokehold by cops. Mayor de Blasio, Al Sharpton and Obama exacerbate the racial divide by emphasizing the cruelty of the choke hold and not pointing to Garner’s weight problem, diabetes, and resisting arrest. It’s almost as if they are paid outside agitators who are trying to cause riots. They focus on Garner’s tragedy. They hardly bother with the crimes of looting and burning down stores. They play to their liberal base, the lowest common denominator. They forget that they are highly paid bigshot officials. Hundreds of black kids are being shot in Chicago. The world is falling apart. It has an upset stomach. It is sick of chewing Obama’s rotten rhetoric. Something is rotten in America. It is Obama weakening our values, supporting same-sex marriage, criticizing the cops. Obama is a narcissist filled with self-love. Unfortunately, Obama’s rottenness has spread throughout the world. He has a Harvard education, but he is an ideological simpleton. There is a bad mood in America. There is a smell of possible revolution and death, a hint of revolution and worldwide warfare fostered by America’s giving up its exceptionalism and position of power in the world. It’s amusing that the liberals who hated the supposed war-mongering of the right wing will be responsible for WWIII. Reagan believed in strength and might for self-protection. Obama believes in “might.” Remember when Obama was a senator in Illinois: He never took a position on anything; he was always “present;” but he was never really present; and he has never been here for us.
(“Something is rotten in America” by David Lawrence dated September 7, 2014 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2014/09/something_is_rotten_in_america.html )
Die-hard defenders of Barack Obama’s disintegrating Presidency have shifted to a new story line: It’s not that the President is doing too little, it’s that we expect too much. Under this evolving narrative, Americans have an unrealistic image of what a President can actually accomplish with the powers allotted the office by the Constitution. One writer recently called it the myth of the magical Presidency, making the case that Americans don’t understand how effectively Congress and the Constitution can tie the executive’s hands. The poor mouthing of the Presidency doesn’t wash with either history or today’s reality. The office gives Obama plenty of power, but he just doesn’t know what to do with it. Other Presidents, from the great to the mediocre, have faced a hostile Congress and still managed to get things done. Yet since squandering his veto-proof congressional majority, Obama has been impotent, and that’s largely his fault. The President gambled that instead of doing the hard work of building alliances across the aisle, of horse-trading to get deals done, he could prevail by haranguing and humiliating his Republican opponents every single time he opens his mouth. While he’s been effective at destroying public respect for the Congress and marginalizing the GOP, he hasn’t built the relationships necessary to make things happen in Washington. He’s aloof even from his own party, with few true friends among the Democratic lawmakers he mostly ignores. Rather than work honestly with Congress, he’s trying to make over the nation with executive orders. Obama’s pen and phone are no substitute for the finesse required of consensus governing. Americans have high expectations of their Presidents because in the nation’s darkest hours, great leaders have always risen to confront the great challenges. In this dark hour, Obama is shrugging, and that’s not the fault of the office, but rather of the man who sits in it.
(“Poor-mouthing the presidency” by Nolan Finley dated September 7, 2014 published by The Detroit News at http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140907/OPINION01/309070001/Poor-mouthing-presidency )
The Democrat Party and the mainstream media joined to run interference for Barack Obama when he became a national figure, painting Obama as a charismatic, competent, new kind of politician. The passage of time destroyed this image, and now, the public increasingly sees Obama as incompetent, untrustworthy and unmotivated. Continuing the subterfuge is dangerous. Obama, once considered a savior and asset for Democrats, is now a serious liability. Defense of the indefensible was possible and advantageous when the public was unaware of the character and competence of Obama. His failed policies are now obvious, known by too many. If there were ever a "familiarity-breeds-contempt" President, President Obama surely is it. The decision to support or abandon a failed Presidency is an easy one in an ideal world -- the political class and the media should do what is in the best interest of the country. Honor, integrity and considerations for the greater good are trumped by politics. Political agendas dominate and will ultimately determine how Barack Obama is treated by his once-fawning supporters. Unique circumstances will dictate how these individuals choose. Some are running for re-election, others are not. The calculus that guides Obama supporters will be determined by self-interest, which guides every vote and position taken by the political class. How individuals in politics and journalism decide this question may very well determine the viability of their individual future success. Deciding incorrectly could truncate or even terminate careers. The President has obviously failed and increasingly is viewed around the world as a laughingstock. Six months ago it was not hard to predict a continuing decline in Obama's support and popularity. However what is happening now appears to be a complete and total collapse. The list of disasters is long -- ObamaCare, millions of more dependents, a failed economy, a senseless immigration policy (save political considerations), blatant lying to the American public, a non-existent foreign policy, the Middle East a disaster, Putin openly humiliating him, flaunting the Constitution, and now a prime time presidential speech last night to ask for billions to fight ISIS, dismissed half a year ago as junior varsity, and arm the Free Syrian Army, dismissed only a month ago as a “fantasy” as potential victors over ISIS. Now Obama’s incompetence is apparent to all but the dullest of Americans. Just as the media and Democratic Party acted in their perceived best interests when paving the way for this man, they will likely act in their own self-interest by abandoning him to avoid being dragged down with him. Both the Democrats and the media should concerned about survival, and many will abandon this sinking ship.
(“The Democrats’ (and Media’s) Obama Problem” by Monty Pelerin dated September 11, 2014 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2014/09/the_democrats_and_medias_obama_problem.html )
When they can’t meet established performance standards, the left makes up excuses, lowers the standards, and, if necessary, revises history along the way. In economics, there’s hardly a better of example of this kind of deliberate responsibility avoidance than what has happened to the idea of “full employment.” Full employment used to occur when “all … who want to work and are allowed to work are able to find employment.” The unemployment rate associated with full employment obviously can’t be zero, because there will always be people out of work who are voluntarily or involuntarily moving from one job to another. What unemployment rate represents full employment? The architects of the Humphrey–Hawkins Full Employment Act of 1978 thought it should be 4% for Americans age 16 and over. This rate represented the predominant economic thinking at the time. Forty years later, communications have improved tremendously. Unfilled job listings are available within seconds at any number of web sites attempting to match employees with employers. Applicants send resumes online instead of through the mail. One would therefore expect that the full-employment unemployment rate would have fallen, or at the very least remained the same. Recently Moody’s economist Mark Zandi said that he expects that the economy will bring the U.S. economy to “full employment” by the end of 2016. When Zandi was asked what he thought the unemployment rate would be at the end of 2016 when we hit full-employment nirvana, he replied: “5.5%.” When questioned why his full-employment rate was higher by about 1.5 percentage points, Zandi went further into the land of the absurd when he asserted that full employment was commonly regarded as 5% last decade, but that the economic damage caused by the recession had upwardly moved that standard to 5.5%. The economy fell, and it will never entirely get back up. This permanent half-point upward move must have been discovered after the Obama administration was done promoting the idea that its 2009 stimulus package would lower the unemployment rate to 5%, by the middle of 2013 - How convenient. What has really happened is that the left-dominated establishment economics community has lowered the bar for full employment to avoid having to discuss the welfare state’s pervasive work disincentives and their own Keynesian policies’ utter failure to satisfactorily revive the job market - How pathetic.
(“Lowering the Bar” by Tom Blumer dated September 9, 2014 published by PJ Media at http://pjmedia.com/blog/lowering-the-bar/ )
There is a worldwide jihadist war on western civilization that has begun to feed upon itself. In just the last several weeks we see jihadist warfare in:
· Nigeria (Boko Haram)
· Iraq and Syria (ISIS, Assad and Hezb’ollah)
· Gaza (Hamas)
· Sinai Desert (Ansar Jerusalem against Egypt)
· Afghanistan (Taliban)
· India (Al Qaida)
· Pakistan (Waziristan terrorists)
· Iraq (Iranian-sponsored terrorist group, “League of the Righteous”)
· Libya (Libya Dawn Coalition and others)
· Somalia (Al Shabaab)
· Syria again (Al Nusrah, AQ affiliate)
· Iran (International Shi’ite terror sponsor, using Hezb’ollah and Quds Brigade).
· Qatar and Saudi Arabia (Sunni terror-sponsors, including Hamas)
· Turkey appears to be a major sponsor of ISIS,. It is run by an Islamofascist regime.
These groups operate in the Gulf region, in Asian countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan, and in North Africa. We could add the Uyghurs in China and the Chechens in Russia. We could easily add Europe, the United States, Israel and Russia as targets of Islamist terror strikes, including 9/11 in Manhattan, the British Underground bombing, the Madrid train bombing, massive car burnings in Paris, the Beslan and Moscow Theater attacks, in the UK, the massive Pakistani child rape scandal just uncovered in Rotherham. Europe now has 44 million Muslims, providing fertile ground for terrorist recruitment. Whether Obama likes it or not, the Jihad War is now worldwide. The West has been in utter denial since 1993, the year of the massive Twin Towers truck bomb attack in Manhattan. Even 9/11/01 didn’t wake up our political and media elites. Twenty years of massive denial of plain facts can only be explained by huge corruption and influence-buying in the West since the 1973 Arab Oil Embargo, which gave OPEC price-setting power in the international oil market. We know about massive oil-driven corruption from multiple sources, most prominently the 1994 Wall Street Journal expose of Saddam Hussein’s Oil for Food Scandal. Jacques Chirac, Kofi Annan , and Dominique de Villepin were directly implicated in that billion-dollar scandal. Other European politicians were bought off by Muammar Gadaffi. Europeans in denial are finally beginning to realize the lethal dangers of Islamist infiltration and sabotage. Britain’s David Cameron and the Netherlands’ Geert Wilders are speaking out in public. Ironically, the Saudis are now running scared of ISIS and Al Qaeda. Iran and Saudi Arabia may well be consumed by their own hate campaigns against Israel, Europe and the United States. They have lost control of the wars they started thirty years ago. Even Iran is threatened by the rise of ISIS in Syria and Iraq. If Americans finally come to their senses, we will finally realize the truth, and mobilize our resources, recruit a coalition of the willing, and turn away from Obama and his league of liberal liars. What we know at this time is that massive aggression against our national security is now worldwide. We also know that many Muslim countries are themselves panicking over the dark forces they have helped to unleash. We know that Europe is paralyzed by its suicidal importation of 44 million Muslims. It is time to sound a general alarm and stop self-sabotage before it is too late. Democracies hate war and love denial, but denial is now ending, even in the liberal media. The Islamic Jihad is a global threat that will be with us until we eliminate it, because like it or not, it is a worldwide war.
(“The Awful Truth: The World is at War” by James Lewis dated September 8, 2014 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2014/09/the_awful_truth_the_world_is_at_war.html )
President Obama has a very clear and very consistent strategy for dealing with the Islamic State terrorists in the Middle East, and a vision behind that strategy. The strategy is to get each crisis off the front pages and off television news programs as quickly as he can, in whatever way he can, at the lowest political cost. Saying before the 2012 elections that “bin Laden is dead” and that terrorism was defeated accomplished the goal of getting reelected. Ineffective sanctions against Iran and Russia likewise serve a clear purpose, giving the illusion that Obama is doing something that will stop Iran from getting nuclear bombs and stop Russia from invading Ukraine. This forestalls the massive and enraged outcries there would be if the public were fully aware that he was doing nothing serious enough to prevent either of these things from happening. Generations of Americans yet unborn may curse us all for leaving them hostage to a nuclear terrorist Iran, but generations yet unborn do not vote, so they carry no weight with Barack Obama. Caught off guard, the President has played for time for Iraq to get its internal politics fixed, time for our allies to come together, and time for the military to create a strategy. There is always someone else to blame for whatever goes wrong in the Obama administration. Supposedly the intelligence services had not kept him informed about how imminent the Islamic State threat was, but others who received top-secret briefings by the intelligence services say otherwise. If you assume that Barack Obama is trying to protect the safety and interests of the United States and its allies, then clearly he has been a monumental failure. It is hard to think of any part of the world where things have gotten better for us since the Obama administration began. If you start from the assumption that Barack Obama wanted to advance America’s interests, this is truly an unbelievable record of failure. Barack Obama has succeeded in reducing America’s military strength while our adversaries are increasing theirs, and reducing our credibility and influence with our allies. That is completely consistent with his vision of how the world ought to be, with the West taken down a peg and humbled. We are currently at a point where we can either kill as many of the Islamic State terrorists as possible, where they are bunched together and visible against a desert background, or else leave the job half done and have them come over here, where they will be hard to find, and can start beheading Americans in America. Obama’s history suggests that he is going to leave the job half done, so long as that gets the issue off the front pages and off the TV newscasts.
(“Obama’s Shameful ISIS Strategy” by Thomas Sowell dated September 9, 2014 published by National Review Online at http://www.nationalreview.com/article/387422/obamas-shameful-isis-strategy-thomas-sowell )
* There is so much published each week that unless you search for it, you will miss important breaking news. I try to package the best of this information into my “Views on the News” each Saturday morning. Updates have been made this week to the following issue sections:
· Immigration at http://www.returntocommonsensesite.com/dp/immigration.php