2010 2012 Obama Worries And Obama’s Fake Gay Benefits

Mark Halperin of Time magazine (last time he was on Morning Joe was to admire a picture of Obama in Cairo and schoolboy gush “Obama is so cool”) continues to ignore reality and facts. Halperin continues to write worshipful, and trusting, tributes to Obama. But Halperin is right about one item on his latest “love Obama” list called 10 True Things About President Obama His Opponents Are Wrong About.

The 5th item about Obama on the list:

5. He has a ferocious political operation that is thinking clearly everyday about avoiding a nomination fight and about re-election in 2012.

Nomination fight? Re-election worries? Obama?

The extremely respected (by Big Media) Amy Walter who writes for National Journal wrote an article unrelated to Halperin’s list which nevertheless explains the Obama Dimocrat worries (readers of Big Pink will not be surprised but it will come as a shock to the Hopium addled):

There are two very different elections going on.

In 2012, President Obama will have had four years to see if the gamble on big federal outlays into a stimulus package, auto and bank bailouts, and energy investments has paid off. For congressional Democrats up in 2010, however, the long view isn’t politically feasible.

At a recent Christian Science Monitor breakfast, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer handed out a tightly spaced one-pager that listed 13 “major initiatives” that have been enacted into law since Obama took office. To be sure, it’s an impressive list. But the next election will be a referendum on the economy. Period. If things are looking good, then Democrats can make the case for why it’s important to keep their party in charge. If it’s not, then all the bragging about the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act or Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights won’t mean much.

Amy Walter’s provides the reality based view about the Obama economy: “At this point, it’s tough to argue that the stimulus has indeed stimulated the economy.

Obama is right to be worried and the Obama Dimocrats are right to be petrified:

The bottom line is that right now, there’s little tangible proof that all the outflows have made much of an impact. [snip]

Yet, watching Vice President Joe Biden’s awkward attempts to promote the benefits of the stimulus package suggests that congressional Democrats will have their work cut out for them. A greater effort by the White House to get the money out the door could help matters. At this point, however, it’s tough to argue that the stimulus has indeed stimulated the economy. [snip]

As the “cheerleader in chief” for stimulus spending, Biden’s been touring local communities to give an “all politics is local” pitch for the benefits of the program. But if voters are looking at high unemployment next year, the promise of a $1.7 million replacement bridge over Conodoguinet Creek in Carlisle, Pa., isn’t going to make them feel much better.[snip]

Some congressional Democrats, especially those facing unpalatable votes on health care reform (i.e. raising taxes), will be tempted to vote against the president to avoid being pulled down in 2010. But with their party in control of Congress and the White House, it’s going to be really hard for any Democrat to run as a “lone wolf,” especially if that member is a freshman without an established identity back home. This isn’t to suggest that Democrats should simply follow Obama lockstep. But as we’ve seen with Republican moderates the last two cycles, if the brand goes bad, sometimes it doesn’t matter how you voted.

Amy Walter notes Obama’s good approval numbers but recalls a childhood game of “Don’t Break the Ice”.

The goal of the game was to knock out as many pieces as possible without sending the polar bear crashing to the ground. Sometimes the polar bear came down after one piece was knocked out; sometimes he could still be standing even as his ice world crumbled all around him.

Obama won’t necessarily be the polar bear on the floor in 2012. But a lagging economy could take out quite a bit of the Democrats’ board.

A lagging economy?:

Technical analyst Robert Prechter on Monday said he sees the United States losing its top AAA credit rating by the end of 2010, as he stuck by a deeply bearish outlook on the U.S. economy and stock market.

Prechter, known for predicting the 1987 stock market crash, joins a growing coterie of market heavyweights in forecasting the United States will lose its top credit rating as the government issues trillions of dollars in debt to fund efforts to bail out the economy.

Fears about the long-term vulnerability of the prized U.S. credit rating came to the fore after Standard & Poor’s in May lowered its outlook on Britain, threatening the UK’s top AAA rating. That move raised fears that the United States could face a similar risk, with the hefty amounts of government debt issued in both countries to pay for financial rescues causing budget deficits to swell.

* * * * *

One group that supported Obama is clearly waking up from the Hopium. 2010 Obama Dimocrats have a money problem and vote problem as voters one-by-one and interest group by interest group wake up to the Obama Dimocrat lies. As individuals and groups wake up to the Obama lies they immediately close their wallets. Closed “gay” wallets are forcing Obama to try his usual FAKE today:

Mr. Obama, in an Oval Office announcement, is expected to offer details about which benefits will be provided. It is the most significant statement he has made on gay issues, and it comes as he faces intense criticism from several gay rights leaders over what they suggest has been a failure to live up to campaign promises in the first months of his presidency. [snip]

“Extending benefits to partners of gay federal employees is terrific, but at this point he is under enormous pressure from the gay civil rights community for having promised the moon and done nothing so far,” Richard Socarides, an adviser to the Clinton administration on gay issues, said Tuesday evening. “So more important now is what he says tomorrow about the future for gay people during his presidency.” [snip]

But administration officials said the timing of the announcement was intended to help contain the growing furor among gay rights groups. Several gay donors withdrew their sponsorship of a Democratic National Committee fund-raising event next week, where Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. is scheduled to speak.

With Obama it’s always about the money. Whether it’s Rezko or healthcare (Obama sent out yet another email request for money yesterday) it’s always about the money.

The presidential memorandum — scheduled for signing tomorrow at 5:45 p.m., may in the short term, give Joe Biden something positive to say at a June 25 fundraiser that has seen prominent guests drop out, a host sharply attack the administration, and which is expected to be marked by protests.

Gay “leaders” have been secretly winking and nodding and promising their constitutents for months now that Obama was going to do great things for the Gay community “soon” These Gay “leaders” were complicit in the Obama bamboozle. But now these Gay “leaders” are running to get ahead of the parade as Gay-Americans put aside the Hopium syringes:

The order is one of several lower-profile moves the administration had promised gay groups this month, but appears to have been announced this evening to stem rising protest.


There is only one way to deal with a thug and Gay “leaders” are learning Obama is a thug:

And they’re shifting toward a more confrontational strategy, which could include a march on Washington later this year.

The executive director of the Empire State Pride Agenda, a large state-based gay rights group, Alan Van Capelle, greeted today’s announcement sarcastically.

“Welcome to 1999,” he told POLITICO. “How revolutionary of the White House to give benefits to same-sex couples, when two-thirds of conservative Wall Street are already doing it. What an achievement.”

“It’s just one of the things that should have been done in January,” Van Capelle, who was among those taking his name off the Biden event, said, calling for a “comprehensive strategy.”

It’s a memorandum, not an executive order; health benefits are not included; it will be late in the day to avoid too much news attention. Gay-Americans are waking up to the fact that

Obama simply cannot be trusted. Obama cannot be trusted on any issue. Obama cannot be trusted by his friends. Obama cannot be trusted by his enemies. Obama cannot be trusted.

Other groups need to WAKE UP too. Cut off the oxygen supply called money to the thugs it’s the only way to deal with them.

DNC Treasurer Andrew Tobias is defending a gay and lesbian fundraiser with Vice President Joe Biden, which is under attack by the movement’s grass roots over the administration’s legal defense of the Defense of Marriage Act. [snip]

Organizers, I’m told, are scrambling to get visible White House action on gay issues in advance of the June 25 dinner to prevent it from becoming a protest stage.

Obama acted later in the day as he saw the fundraiser will not get that luscious Gay money. DNC’s Tobias was reduced to crowing via email that the fundraiser would feature “protesters outside” the event so that donors could contribute yet feel protesty and secure that the toughy message would be heard.

Not to harp on this story today, but a reader sends on an a remarkable e-mail that DNC Treasurer Andrew Tobias, who’s organizing the event, sent gay donors to reassure them that there would be protesters at a June 25 gay and lesbian fundraiser with Joe Biden.

“Don’t worry; there are likely to be plenty of protestors outside to make the point that we deserve full equality NOW.

Just like Obama that double message quoted above: ‘protest me by giving me money’.

But not all Gay Americans will continue to be Obama fools. There is now a Facebook group just beginning (perhaps they will wake up fully someday and realize the problem is Obama himself) dedicated to “Democratic Party Boycott Until DOMA or DADT Are Repealed

“I pledge to withhold all donations to the Democratic National Committee (and all Democratic Campaign Committees), Organizing for America, and all Democratic Senators and House Members until the Obama Administration begins to repeal DOMA or end Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.”

Howard Dean, who claims he was unaware of all the misogyny and sexism during 2008 because he did not have cable television is still making excuses for Obama. Others are not so easily duped (warning: Huff n’ Puff link):

Howard Dean protested on The Rachel Maddow Show that he doubts Obama himself was aware of the recently filed brief in defense of the Defense of Marriage Act. [snip]

I have no doubt that President Obama was well aware of the brief filed in defense of DOMA. He also has indicated that his office intends to defend DOMA in subsequent legal challenges.

Despite this outrageous decision, in the great game of politics, Obama is attempting to silence the gay outcry by announcing the extension of benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.

Dean went so far to suggest that repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell would appease the LGBT community.

Well, I hate to be the one to explain a rights struggle to the first Black President, but the equality movement is not a grab bag of rights. You don’t get to reach in and see which prize you’ve won. [snip]

Now is the time to pull the funding you have given to the DNC (like some of the most high profile gay leaders in this country). Now is the time to send a letter explaining why you won’t be directing any future donations to the Obama administration no matter how many nice emails they send you. Now is the time to blog, argue and get angry.

Gay fools who trashed Hillary Clinton are now forced to wake up to reality and admit that Obama cannot be trusted.

First off, Chuck Todd on MSNBC said that because this is only a “memorandum,” as he called it, it will expire when Obama leaves office. Lovely. Second, health benefits for federal employees won’t be covered. [snip]

The other announcement Obama will be making is a non-discrimination “something.”

The Clinton haters who made false charges against Bill and Hillary Clinton and excuses for Barack Obama are now waking up with Obama throwing them out of bed. At this late date Gay “leaders” begin to wake up to the Obama treacheries. However if the money supply is halted, 2010 Dimocrats will suffer as they deserve:

It’s over, folks. A lot of us have been saying that if Marty Rouse, the Human Rights Campaign’s National Field Director, were to pull his attendance from next week’s DNC $1,000 a person gay fundraiser, then the fundraiser would effectively be dead. Well, HRC official Marty Rouse just pulled out as a result of the White House’s homophobic DOMA brief in which they equated gay marriage to incest.

The DNC was hawking the attendance of “HRC’s Marty Rouse” for a few weeks now, among other gay luminaries, in order to build attendance at the event.

Other Gay Obama supporters are getting out of that stinky bed:

Alan Van Capelle, Executive Director of the Empire State Pride Agenda and Foundation, has confirmed to me that he has pulled out of the DNC gay fundraiser as a result of the DOMA brief flap. Kudos to Alan.

These foolish Gay “leaders” who supported Barack Obama over the long time friend Hillary Clinton are even waking up to Big Media Obama complicity:

Note to our friends in the media. This is a story deserving a little national attention. It seems the Obama folks have gotten to the mainstream media – you’ll note that practically none of the corporate media are covering the growing rupture between Obama and the gay community other than on their blogs, even after HRC sent probably the first chastising letter to a Democratic president since 1996 (and reporters always have told me in the past, it’s not a story until HRC weighs in – well now they have, twice). Guess that means we’ll just have to ramp up the pain.

Speaking of pain, I contacted top gay blogger Andy Towle today to ask if he’d be attending the big gay fundraiser the DNC was holding later this month with VP Biden as the special guest. Andy was on a list I’d seen of already committed attendees. Andy told me that he had already contacted the DNC to say that he wouldn’t be attending at this time (yet another reason we like Andy and his blog). The DNC had planned to raise a lot of money from gay A-listers by coinciding this fundraiser with the 40th anniversary of Stonewall. Instead, the DNC may be about to witness Stonewall 2.0.

(Oddly, we’ve heard nothing in four days, since the DOMA brief scandal broke, from gay congressional leaders – Barney Frank, Tammy Baldwin, and Jared Polis – all of whom are hosting this rather ill-timed and inappropriate Democratic effort to milk money from our community at the same time Democrats are equating us with incest and not lifting a finger on any of our legislation priorities in Congress or the White House. It’s not awfully clear why any gay person would give a Democrat a dime ever again. Check back, we’ll be updating you daily on whether Barney, Tammy and Jared ever decide to say boo about the hate brief and their role in this fundraiser that is quickly turning into a major fiasco for the Democratic party.)

Andy’s news comes on the heel of word that veteran gay advocate, and longtime friend of Bill Clinton, David Mixner is pulling out the fundraiser as well. David wrote one hell of an essay this weekend about the hateful DOMA brief the Obama administration submitted late Thursday night.

It’s not just Gays, Women and Jews who are getting angry and threatening to cut off money. Rural Democrats are “angered” too.

Even the most stupid, Hillary hating, Bill Clinton hating Gay “leaders” are waking up and worst of all – cutting off the money supply. That’s why 2010 Dimocrats and 2012 Obama are worried.

Iranians Americans are waking up.

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183 thoughts on “2010 2012 Obama Worries And Obama’s Fake Gay Benefits

  1. Well, I guess I understand what is happening here, but O gave plenty of evidence that he could not be trusted, and glimpses of how he dumped people for politics. Yet, HRC had a record of going to China, and telling them that Human Rights were Women’s rights. HRC does not dump her friends.

    We all know that even if this event fails, the main stream media will make it a success or not cover it so few people will know. They really need to do something that will show higher visibility.

    Excellant Article. Admin you should win the pulitzer the way you have provided information, and continue to provide information that truely keeps the American people informed. I find the rest of the media following, or ignoring what is going on. Blogging and twittering are leading the way on national and international news.

  2. Good Morning all. Maybe today is the day that the American people will wake up and say, And We Could have Had Hillary.

  3. Well said, Admin.

    So this is the reason bambi is going primetime so often. The dims can’t afford to stop the subliminal lovefest. The results would be disastrous.

    Almost like a balloon shrivelling up from lack of air.

  4. Obama is attempting to silence the gay outcry by announcing the extension of benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.

    So he is following Hillary again. Didn’t she do this for the State Dept employees?

  5. Yes she did. She announced a while ago that all gay members and their partners of her international diplomatic base of employees would receive benefits.

  6. “She announced a while ago that all gay members and their partners of her international diplomatic base of employees would receive benefits.”

    Yes, to both things. Hillary leading from the SOS’s position and taking care equal rights are alive and well at the State Dept-

  7. OBAMAECONOMICS–

    That is the word people need to understand. It needs to be the first thing they think about in the detriorating scenario we are facing.

    They need to understand what Obamaeconomics is, how it differs from the traditional approach to a recession and how it will lead inevitably to the malaise that lies ahead for our country.

    We have faced recessions in the past. We have gotten through them by cost cutting, tightening credit (Volker). Obamaeconomics is counter intuitive in this respect. Here is their answer to the worst economic recession since the 1930s:

    First, tell the world that the sky is falling in. Then when people whisper in your ear that this is not the best message to be sending at this particular time, do an abrupt about face. Become a cockeyed optimist.

    Second, establish a phony budget based on unrealistic projections of future economic growth. Understate the recession in terms of depth and durantion. Reject realistic projections by Wall Street, et. al.

    Third, when the lie becomes obvious, send Biden on television to tell another lie, i.e. that “everyone” believed this garbage. In fact, most people knew they were ridiculously polyanayish.

    Fourth, use those phony budget projections as a pretext to engage in a spending splurge unrivalled in history. Mortagage the future of generations of Americans to the hilt. (Jack Welch’s point.)

    Fifth, bail our zombie banks with taxpayer money. Force them to accept TARP monies even when they don’t want them or need them. Block efforts to investigate how those monies are wasted. Let those banks keep the money rather than lending it out.

    Sixth, pass a huge spending bill in the middle of a recession, against the advice of other nations (Germany, China, etc), and the dictates of common sense.

    Seventh, call that bill a stimulus package and promise that it will create 6 million jobs, then revise that estimate to save or create, then when it proves to be a piece of crap say we were overly optimistic.

    Eighth, sugar coat the truth about the massive and continuing job loss to the American People. Say it will not exceed 8% as it climbs to 9.4%. Hide the truth that the real rate of unemployment is 16%.

    Ninth, as the opposing paty prepares to issue a report send the designated major domo of the program on television and admit that it aint a perfect world.

    Tenth, fire Inspector General officers who uncover waste fraud and abuse by Obama cronies with respect to stimulus monies. Let those culprits keep half of what they stole. Block Congressional investigation.

    Eleventh, direct your media cronies to censor information about what is really going on in the economy. Specifically, hide the fact that major players in the world economy are making decisive moves to move away from the dollar as the world reserve currency and are meeting on it.

    Twelth, direct your media cronies to censor information about the reluctance of other countries to invest in a nation which cannot control its currency, due to spending programs like the ones you implmented.

    Thirteen, set the nation up for a perfect witching hour in a couple years where the Fed must choose between hyperinflation vs. deep, painful and prolonged recession.

    Fourteen, in the midst of all this, spend $40,000 on a night on the town in New York at taxpayers expense–to set the right example for families who are seeing only bills and pink slips.

    Fifteenth, expand the costly unwinnable war in Afghanistan.

    These are the core tenets of Obamaeconomics. They exist separate and apart from anything Bush ever did. And although Obama inherited a mess, he has violated the first rule of the Hippocratic Oath: First, do no harm. Simply put, he has compounded the harm he has inherited to the detriment of our country through Obamaeconomics. Caveat voter.

  8. Sixteenth, call the bill a stilulus package when it is really a slush fund for the 2010 and 2012 elections, financed by taxpayers.

    Seventeenth, invest taxpayer money in zombie car company GM (Government Motors), and protect the lavish benefits of union workers while screwing bond holder and their pension fund investors.

    Eighteenth, suppress growth in the private sector through irresponsible tax policies. Create make work (featherbedding) jobs in the public sector, subject to the law of diminishing returns.

    Nineteen, raise taxes on all Americans starting with the wealthy. Wall Street contact says the effective rate may rise to 70% on wealthy, which will engender massive capital flight to other countries.

    Twenty, when things get really bad, make the ultimate Faustian Pact with China, which has not been hinted at publicly yet, but is coming.

  9. From May 25, 2009

    Clinton to Extend Benefits to Gay Partners
    Draft Memo Outlines New Foreign Service Policies for All Unmarried Couples

    By Glenn Kessler
    Washington Post Staff Writer
    Monday, May 25, 2009

    Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will soon announce that the partners of gay U.S. diplomats are eligible for many benefits currently denied them and allowed to spouses of heterosexual diplomats, according to lawmakers and others advocating the change.

    The Bush administration had resisted efforts to treat same-sex partners the same as spouses. Thus those partners were denied a wide array of benefits, such as paid travel to and from overseas posts, shipments of household effects, visas and diplomatic passports, emergency travel to visit ill or injured partners, and evacuation in case of a security emergency or medical necessity.

    Those benefits will be extended to all unmarried domestic partners — both same-sex and heterosexual — under the policy shift to be announced by Clinton in the coming days, according to a draft memo prepared for Clinton’s signature. The draft was provided to The Washington Post by an official with the organization Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies. J. Michelle Schohn, president of the organization, said she had read media reports on the draft memo and was hopeful the changes would be implemented soon. “It would make great changes in the lives” of gay Foreign Service officers and be “a giant step for equality,” she said.

    “Historically, domestic partners of Foreign Service members have not been provided the same training, benefits, allowances, and protections that other family members receive. These inequities are unfair and must end,” Clinton writes in the memo. “At bottom, the department will provide these benefits for both opposite-sex and same-sex domestic partners because it is the right thing to do.”

    Advocate.com, a Web site that focuses on gay and lesbian news, first reported on the draft memo. State Department officials confirmed the authenticity of the draft on Saturday and said it indicates the shift Clinton hopes to enact, but they cautioned that the final policy document still requires additional consultation within the department, including with the union that represents all Foreign Service officers. Officials are hoping to make the new policy official before the summer transfer season begins.

    The issue achieved prominence in 2007 when a respected ambassador, Michael Guest, resigned in protest after 26 years in the Foreign Service. The rules and regulations, he argued, gave same-sex partners fewer benefits than family pets. Guest said he was forced to choose “between obligations to my partner, who is my family, and service to my country,” which he called “a shame for this institution and our country.” Guest was a member of Obama’s State Department transition team. And Clinton, during her confirmation hearings, indicated a greater willingness to explore the issue.

    Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-Calif.), head of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, last week dropped plans to legislatively require such changes in State Department policy. He did so, he said, after he had been assured that State would soon shift its policies.
    “It is my expectation, based on very recent conversations, that the secretary of state will move forward with implementing all of the benefits provided in that provision in the very near future,” Berman said at a hearing on the bill.

    Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida, the top Republican on the committee, is also a strong supporter of the new policy, having lobbied for it during the Bush administration.

    In the draft memo, Clinton says State will exercise “its inherent authority to change its regulations” and that, when appropriate, the benefits will extend to the children of domestic partners as well.

    washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/05/24/AR2009052402145.html

  10. June 17, 2009

    Clinton Consults Predecessors on Troubled World…

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing a world of diplomatic woes from Iran to North Korea, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton had the opportunity to get some heavyweight advice at a dinner held by eight of her living predecessors.

    Tuesday night’s private dinner at former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright’s Washington home gathered top U.S. diplomats from five previous administrations with decades of hands-on experience in some of the most difficult foreign policy crises America has faced.

    A spokeswoman for Albright says all but one living former secretary of state attended the event to honor Clinton: Henry Kissinger, George Shultz, James Baker, Lawrence Eagleburger, Warren Christopher, Albright, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice.

    The only one missing was Alexander Haig. No details about the conversation or menu were immediately available.

    google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jYiDvp-3dyTJ8kQ_IIYZuoRevCqwD98SFK2O0

  11. Clinton consults predecessors on troubled world
    19 minutes ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing a world of diplomatic woes from Iran to North Korea, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton had the opportunity to get some heavyweight advice at a dinner held by eight of her living predecessors.

    Tuesday night’s private dinner at former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright’s Washington home gathered top U.S. diplomats from five previous administrations with decades of hands-on experience in some of the most difficult foreign policy crises America has faced.

    A spokeswoman for Albright says all but one living former secretary of state attended the event to honor Clinton: Henry Kissinger, George Shultz, James Baker, Lawrence Eagleburger, Warren Christopher, Albright, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice.

    The only one missing was Alexander

    google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jYiDvp-3dyTJ8kQ_IIYZuoRevCqwD98SFK2O0

  12. John R. MacArthur: Obama a very smooth liar

    Wednesday, June 17, 2009
    JOHN R. MacARTHUR
    NEW YORK

    IT ISN’T QUITE FAIR to call Barack Obama a liar. During the campaign he carefully avoided committing to much of anything important that he might have to take back later. For now, I won’t quibble with The St. Petersburg Times’s Obamameter, which so far has the president keeping 30 promises and breaking only six.

    And yet, broadly speaking, Obama has been lying on a pretty impressive scale. You just have to get past his grandiloquent rhetoric — usually empty of substance — to get a handle on it. I offer a short, incomplete list, which I’m sure others could easily enlarge.

    • Obama portrayed himself as the peace candidate, or at least the anti-war candidate. He is not a peace president, nor is he stopping any wars. True, he promised military escalation in Afghanistan (to blunt John McCain’s accusations of wimpishness), but well-meaning folks believed their new hero would genuinely move to end the occupation of Iraq and seriously try to negotiate with the Taliban. Instead, he has not only increased the number of troops and attacks against the Afghan insurgency, he has also expanded on George Bush’s cross-border raids into Pakistan, which have killed many civilians. The way things are going, Pakistan could become the new Cambodia and Obama the new Nixon.

    In Iraq, Obama has promised to withdraw all the troops . . . unless, which means that we’re not leaving. Whether it’s 50,000 troops remaining at the “invitation” of the so-called government of Iraq, or just enough to man the 14 permanent military bases, or some combination of U.S. military personnel and private mercenaries that exceeds 50,000 soldiers, our army will almost certainly stay in Iraq past the stated deadline of Jan. 1, 2012.

    • Obama said he wanted to reform Washington and “fix” its “broken” system of corrupt lobbying. But Obama is neither a reformer nor a skilled legislative mechanic. Hatched from the Daley Machine in one-party Chicago, Obama wouldn’t be president today if he rocked boats. Witness the appointment of Roland Burris by the corrupt former Gov. Rod Blagojevich to fill Obama’s Senate seat: not a word of public protest from the new administration because Burris is a made man in the Chicago Democratic organization. So what if “Tombstone Roland” can be heard on the U.S. attorney’s wiretaps of Blagojevich, dancing around the delicate question of how to raise money for Blago without appearing to be buying his seat.

    As for pork-barrel politics, Obama named one of its greatest champions, Chicago’s own Rahm Emanuel, as his chief of staff, and the new budget (as well as the “stimulus” package) is loaded with pork. Meanwhile, have you heard anything serious about campaign-finance reform from Obama? Not very likely from someone who refused public financing and still has about $10 million left over from record receipts of $745.7 million. It’s just a detail, I know, but Obama’s naming of former Raytheon lobbyist William Lynn III as deputy secretary of defense seems to be at odds with the president’s alleged crusade against special interests and the “revolving door” between private business and government. He has also “sold” ambassadorships to campaign donors. The biggest plum, London, is slated for Lou Susman, a Chicagoan and former Citigroup executive who bundled $239,000. Paris has been reserved for Charles Rivkin, who raised about $500,000 for Obama.

    • Obama, with his Arabic middle name and his big Cairo speech, wants people to think that he is the Muslim world’s new best friend. Well, the photograph of a cheery Obama with Saudi King Abdullah and a smiling Emanuel with Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal, proves the contrary. The Saudi royal family hates the idea of representative government for ordinary Muslims and is cruelly indifferent to the fate of the Palestinians. A democratic, independent, partly secular Palestine could only make the Saudi oligarchy look bad. Thus, the House of Saud is perfectly happy with the status quo, and so, evidently, is Obama.

    Without Saudi pressure, there will be no resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, since Saudi oil is the only lever that would cause America to press Israel into making real concessions. Indeed, the president doesn’t mean for one minute to force Israel into anything more than symbolic withdrawals of its illegal settlements on the West Bank. Meanwhile, the Saudi elite continues to play its double game, paying protection money to extremist Islam and granting pensions to the relatives of suicide bombers. It’s just politics, say Barack and Rahm, grinning ear-to-ear with their sleazy new friends from Riyahd. Just keep the oil pumping around election time and all will be well.

    • Obama makes like he’s a friend of organized labor, at least he did during the Ohio primary when he needed to beat Hillary Clinton. At the time, he put out a flier headlined “Only Barack Obama fought NAFTA and other bad trade deals” and charged that “a little more than a year ago, Hillary Clinton thought NAFTA was a ‘boon’ to the economy.” In a debate with Clinton on Feb. 26, 2008, he said, “I will make sure that we renegotiate [NAFTA] in the same way that Senator Clinton talked about” and “use the hammer of a potential opt-out as leverage” to get “labor and environmental standards that are enforced.”

    But two months ago, U.S. Trade Rep. Ron Kirk said such a blunt instrument was no longer necessary and that the leaders of Canada, the U.S. and Mexico were now “of the mind that we should be looking for opportunities to strengthen [the North American Free Trade Agreement].” And, of course, there is no discussion at all about renegotiating Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China, a “bad trade deal” that has done even greater harm to American workers and unions than has NAFTA.

    Meanwhile, as I noted in my April 15 column, “Wall Street sharks circle the UAW,” Obama and his banker friend Steven Rattner are liquidating the United Auto Workers even as they liquidate the American auto industry. Robert Reich, Bill Clinton’s pseudo-secretary of labor, said as much. “The only practical purpose I can imagine for the bailout is to slow the decline of GM to create enough time for its workers, suppliers, dealers and communities to adjust to its eventual demise,” he wrote last month in the Financial Times — no surprise, considering that Obama’s chief economic adviser remains Lawrence Summers, a champion of deregulation and “free-market” economics in the Clinton administration and very much the enemy of labor unions.

    Yes, of course it’s nice to have a president who speaks in complete sentences. But that they’re coherent doesn’t make them honest.

    John R. MacArthur, a monthly contributor, is publisher of Harper’s Magazine.

    projo.com/opinion/contributors/content/CT_rick17_06-17-09_RIEMPHH_v17.44937d8.html#

  13. Excellent summary, wbb-

    I will recommend posting it everywhere. Number 20 is the scariest one. As I’ve said before, “China is the Pale Horse”. Just to explain a bit of my thinking of the 4 Horseman of the Apocalypse. Simply put, the 4 Horseman represent the human race/humanity. The power instilled within each culture at different times in history.

    The White Horse- Caucasians, The Red Horse- Indians, The Black Horse- the AAs, the Pale Horse- Orientals.

    Well, I don’t have to repeat once again what follows the Pale horse…

    You may chuckle at my analysis.. but it’s my take anyway.

  14. Secret Ballots, Unions Are Essential to Preserving Democracy

    Published: Tuesday, June 16, 2009

    The secret ballot is at the very core of our democracy. The secret ballot is the first line of defense against intimidation when you go to vote.

    Many states have a caucus and not a primary election like we do in Florida. In a caucus state people meet in a school or some public place on a given night and vote for their candidate for president. This determines how the delegates will vote from that state at the Republican or Democratic national conventions.

    All of the Democratic state caucuses chose Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton and they did not have a secret ballot. Intimidation is very easy when there is no secret ballot.

    Did Hillary Clinton lose the Democratic nomination for president because of intimidation by the unions and ACORN at the Democratic caucuses?

    Republicans have a secret ballot in all their state caucuses for president.

    Barack Obama and the Democratic Congress are now trying to pass card-check (Employee Free Choice Act) which would do away with the secret ballot when trying to form a union. We need to protect workers from intimidation by employers and unions by keeping the secret ballot. The election should take place in a public building like a school.

    Barack Obama and the Democratic Congress do not support the secret ballot and do not support this core value of our democracy.

    The first thing a dictator will do is take away our guns. The second thing a dictator will do is take away our right to form a union. Unions have always been a safeguard against America ever having a dictatorship. We need to keep both unions and the secret ballot.

    theledger.com/article/20090616/NEWS/906155021/1398?Title=Secret-Ballots-Unions-Are-Essential-to-Preserving-Democracy

  15. The republicans want to wait for UHC for 1 yr, surely everyone know why they want to extend it 1 yr, they hope to gain more seats to defeat UHC. Obstrutionists the lot of them. I just wish we did not bail out all the businesses and just went for full UHC. I am sure thats why the Repubs went with bailing out the rich instead of helping the poor.

  16. Appropos of the Arab saying: “the dog that didn’t bark”– Barkie the moral coward. From Foreign Affairs magazine this morning:

    IRANS STAND OFF CONTINUES

    ——————————————————————————–

    Top story: Iran’s opposition has called for another day of demonstrations as authorities continued to crack down on the movement. The Basij militia raided university dorms last night and two well-known reformist journalists were arrested. This morning, the government warned international journalists not to venture outside to cover the rallies. Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard has also threatened to shut down Web sites if their content is found to “create tension.” A prosecutor in the central province of Isfahan warned that protesters could be executed under Islamic law.

    Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, has not appeared in public but appears to be working actively to figure out a solution to the crisis. He issued a statement yesterday telling the opposition, “Nobody should take any action that would create tension, and all have to explicitly say they are against tension and riots.” All the same, opposition leader Mir Hussein Mousavi continued his call for “a new presidential election that will not repeat the shameful fraud from the previous election.”

    Despite calls to speak out more forcefully on behalf of the opposition, President Barack Obama maintained yesterday that it would not be helpful for the United States to be “seen as meddling” in Iran’s internal politics.

  17. Secret Ballots, Unions Are Essential to Preserving Democracy
    ——————————————————–
    That is a pretty convoluted argument.

  18. “President Barack Obama maintained yesterday that it would not be helpful for the United States to be “seen as meddling” in Iran’s internal politics.”

    ————————————

    But I guess it would be “helpful” to meddle in Israel’s affairs? To send a warning to North Korea?

  19. JanH

    The intimidation at the elections we had for delegates you could have cut it with a knife. After the intimidation I felt in IOWA, I had to come back to my own state and see it in the primary, and the country and state election of Delegates.

    I had a friend with me, and she does not meddle in politics. She was at the Co delegate election, and she brought the intimidation up to me immediately.

    It is amazing when at least at the Primary level that the Republicans look more Democratic than the Dims.

  20. This whole thing heakens back to something William said on TM a year ago, when we were all in the depths of despair over the implications of the Democratic Primary, and the theft in broad daylight we saw. He said this marks the end of New Deal liberalism, and the rise of the media controlled totalitarian state. His words were prophetic.

    If you look at it from the standpoint of the big media class, who are wealthy, well connected and anxious to participate in the governing process–without standing the test of an election, this feels grand. They see him as a sugardaddy for their declining industry, someone who will perpetuated their social priviledge and who will let them play co-pilot. By contrast, in the Clinton and Bush presidencies, the press was treated more like an adversary. The latter is the proper role for them in a democracy; whereas the latter is aberant and ultimately evil because they become the moral equivalent of Goebbels.

    That is precisely where a shill like Halperin is coming from. Honestly, he is an embarrassment to the profession–and one more example of the kind of journalist who sells out to the establishment. There is no honor in that. It cannot be reconciled with the concept of democracy, because democracy presupposes an informed electorate and the only way that happens is if journalists like him tell them the truth. I would tell him as much but it would be no more effective than pissing in the ocean. His opinion carries no weight.

  21. To continue, the fly in the ointment is this: they assume, incorrectly, that they are full partners with the administration in the governing process. Nothing could be further from the truth. They are limited partners at best. They will be fed only what they need to know to present he picture the administration wants, and at some point it will become obvious even to them that they are being used. Also, as with all power relationships, they will seek more power and will be rebuffed. And when things really do start spinning out of control as Hillary noted in the video I posted last night, and the answers of the administration are not satisfactory, then they will find themselves between a rock and a hardplace. It is in the nature of what they do that they would adopt a global perspective, as opposed to a national one. And they ride around the world with the fraud doing his bidding and believing at long last that they are part of the process. In the end, they will have a front row seat to the decline of American power, and as that happens they will become cynical. If they are to be any use to the country, they need to get over the election and make sure that there is credible opposition in 2010 and 2012. I am afraid they will fail once again, and after that their commentary will be irrelevant. The damage to our nation will be irreparable.

  22. Believing At Long Last that they are part of the process, is so revealing.

    They have alway been part of the process by making sure the electorate was informed. Now they are a part of the establishment in power, and not a part of the process. Your Democracy has gone down the tubes when that happens.

  23. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, has not appeared in public but appears to be working actively to figure out a solution to the crisis.
    ********
    Since Ali Khamenei is the power in the country, the Iranian President is a front man who controls nothing. The only thing that makes sense to me is that the presidential election and subsequent problems are the public aspect of a power struggle among the Mullahs. Ali Khamenei has been rumored to be in poor health for several years and maybe we are seeing the positioning for his replacement.

  24. John R. MacArthur: Obama a very smooth liar

    Wednesday, June 17, 2009
    JOHN R. MacARTHUR
    NEW YORK
    —————————
    Jan–despite what I wrote a moment ago, I find this article encouraging. If the writer was from the Weekly Standard, National Review or Newsmax, I would associate it with a Republican agenda. But he is from Harpers, which is a moderate to left leaning publication, therefore it is more probable than not that he is a democrat and most likely he voted for Obama. Evidentally, he too sees Obama as a God that failed. The concluding line is pretty effective:

    Yes, of course it’s nice to have a president who speaks in complete sentences. But that they’re coherent doesn’t make them honest.

    The challenge is to get enough people to realize the inescapable fact that Mr. Obama is on the side of corporations and foreign interests, but not the American People. His policies will continue to reflect that fact.

  25. WOW! New pics from Iran are something, I believe those people want to be free. I just don’t think they know this Monsavi is almost as bad as Ahmandinejad.

  26. Since Ali Khamenei is the power in the country, the Iranian President is a front man who controls nothing. The only thing that makes sense to me is that the presidential election and subsequent problems are the public aspect of a power struggle among the Mullahs. Ali Khamenei has been rumored to be in poor health for several years and maybe we are seeing the positioning for his replacement.
    —————————————-
    That is pretty close to Clemmons thesis. That would also explain why the Administration has not backed the opposition. They do not know how this hypothetical power struggle will turn out, and they do not want to guess wrong at this point. Because it they take a position and do guess wrong then they will have an even more adversarial relationship with the successor administration. The problem with that risk adverse response however is we lose moral credibility and relevance in the eyes of the world.

  27. confloyd

    That is the problem in the US. Had O not gotten the Primary nomination, the Kids would have taken to the Streets. O counted on the older people not doing that. So you indoctrinate the kids, you have a ready army and you don’t need to worry about the older citizens. You just screw them.

  28. Funny timing as the night before maddow, beleive it or not, was critical of BO’s gayness agenda and his failure to moveon it…the next day, gays have federal benefits…I am all for it, but it is interesting to see how bambi works.

  29. WOW! New pics from Iran are something, I believe those people want to be free. I just don’t think they know this Monsavi is almost as bad as Ahmandinejad.
    —————-
    Confloyd: this rebellion may have more to do with the quaint notion that their vote should mean something, than the merits of the opposition candidate. Unforunately, our own Democratic Party has corrupted our electoral process to the point that the vote is meaningless in this country.

  30. I wonder what the chances of a civil war breaking out??
    —————————————————
    Doubtful.

  31. They do not know how this hypothetical power struggle will turn out, and they do not want to guess wrong at this point.
    *********
    One of the few smart things that they are doing, IMO. They don’t know who are the real players behind the scenes. In addition, the “reformer” has a bad history and his Idea of reform is to return to the ideals of the revolution. The enthusiasm over Monsavi reminds me of the early enthusiasm of the American media for Castro.

  32. What the jackass does one minute to the next on a whole range of issues–let them languish, have opposition build, and then come in with a remedy is part and parcel of his boil the frog stategy. Nothing to get excited about.

    The elephant in the living room is the economy, and his response–Obamaeconomics. That is his Achilled heel. That is in short the moral arrow, when things do not improve. See above.

  33. confloyd

    I really don’t know, but what I do know is he used the youth in this country. We all know he threatened to take to the streets is he did not get the nomination, and then when it was obvious he could bribe, threaton, intimidate the superduds, that threat really went away, and the fact that HRC won the popular vote was ignored and made meaningless.

  34. The elephant in the living room is the economy
    *************
    Exactly…if unemployment is 12% in 2010, the Obama magic will be gone and it will be an election free for all for the Dems.

  35. One of the few smart things that they are doing, IMO. They don’t know who are the real players behind the scenes. In addition, the “reformer” has a bad history and his Idea of reform is to return to the ideals of the revolution. The enthusiasm over Monsavi reminds me of the early enthusiasm of the American media for Castro.
    ——————————————
    You make a good point. It isnt just that they dont know who will win, but they may probably know that the opposition candidate has a bad history and do not want to be associated with it by endorsing him. I concur that this is smart strategy, and that can only mean it is Hillarys strategy not Obamas. Obama is a foreign policy idiot.

  36. Gays and supporters appear to be the first to separate themselves from Obama. More will follow. Here we are, less than 6 months into the Age of Fake and even on the sulphur site DailyKooks some are putting some of the Hopium in the fridge.

    These Kooks pretend to care about issues now, after having trashed Hillary Clinton. These Kooks still love their Obama though. Now these Kooks are calling themselves the “Issue-Left” no longer the “creative class”. Unfortunately after they trashed Hillary and thugged for the Boob there are no issues left – they are responsible for the horror and will not be forgiven.

    One of our very very rare (possibly the second) links to DailyKooks: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/6/16/743142/-What-Happens-if-Obama-Loses-the-Left

    There are the Financial Issue People, who…for some unknown reason….object to giving away hundreds of Billions of dollars to corporate interests and the bankers who crashed the economy.

    While allowing those same bankers to keep kicking REGULAR people…. people who don’t have Lobby, regular people who don’t “Own The Senate” …. out of their homes. Billions for crooks, nothing for The People.

    Obama is losing them. and is about to let watered down regulations go through that will lose more of them.

    The Civil Liberties Issue people, people likeRuss Feingold over continuing Bush’s wiretapping program. People who don’t think the Government should be able to invoke state secrets to cover up the fact that there was a rendition program. The people who think that allowing a previous administration to get away with curtailing or destroying Constitutional Rights…..just because it looks bad for one Administration to investigate and prosecute the last one…..no matter how egregious their crimes.

    The Environmental Issue People, who are pissed at his continuation of mountain top removal and the….in the face of the reality we are facing especially…weak efforts to address it.

    The Anti-War Issue People, who are just seeing more of the same, escalation in Afghanistan with a VERY suspect new commander and now, perhaps, even waffling on getting out of Iraq on the timetable that Obama ran on. (and yes I know, he waffled then too)

    The Human Rights Issues People….Torture. And again, actively fighting to let the past administration to get away with it. I can tell you that these people are VERY close to, in light of the Obama Administration to protect Bush and Cheney, STARTING to make noises about collusion and cover-up.

    One or two more bad decisions, continued inaction by the DOJ and that WILL start, if what I am hearing is correct. Not to mention the apparent caving on Gitmo. Not to mention making Bagram INTO the new Gitmo.

    The Equal Rights Issue people. Yeah….the Gays. The people who…for some reason….resent being equated to pedophiles, practioners of incest and bestiality. People who wonder why White Supremacists and Neo-nazis are welcomed into the Army, but Gays aren’t.

    Now some of you good folks on the Center-left are going to see this as me making a threat. I fully expect to see exactly the same defenses, the same excuses…and the same insults…..in the comments that issues people always see. From the people who mistake advocacy on important issues for whining. Fine, I have learned that just about nothing will change your mind so I won’t take much time trying to convince you of this, but….

    This is not a threat, it is the political reality. It is an observation of what is happening.

    People, Issues people, are getting awfully damned tired of Obama pandering to the Right….

    While at best ignoring….

    And at worst insulting and and directly working against their issues. The issues of the Left. The Left wants to work with Obama. The Right NEVER will.

    But Obama panders to them…and ignores us.

    The Right is rabidly against Obama. Nothing is going to change that.

    But Obama and the Center-Left CAN prevent the Issue-Left from turning on him.

    Which…..LIKE IT OR NOT….they are on the verge of doing.

    So…..what happens if BOTH the Right and The Left turn on him?

    Has he thought about that?

    have you?

    Especially those of you who insist on insulting, belittling and marginalizing the Issue People?

    [snip]

    Yeah, I know, you disagree with me, with my methods, with my….and all of the other issue people’s……shrillness. You disagree with all the whiners and the pony wanters and “Obama Haters.” Yeah, I know, you think that we have already turned on Obama, because we want to put pressure on him to do the right thing. Because we advocate for what we want Oabama to be a “fierce advocate” for.

    But we haven’t…..yet.

    The issue people ARE …..STARTING to run out of patience. And that is a LOT of people.

    And we are the most active people. The Loudest People. The (in most cases) People who worked the hardest to get Obama elected ….so that he would address Issues.

    We don’t hate him. We haven’t turned on him.

    If you don’t like us now, lol…..just wait.

    Now, undoubtedly…. you will blame the issues people if this happens.

    It will never even occur to you to blame Obama for not addressing the issues.

    Obama can’t be trusted, he simply cannot be trusted, by friends nor foes – Obama can’t be trusted.

  37. The bots were led to believe that the election was about THEM. It was NEVER ever about them. It was about putting a new face on the corporate agenda which is adverse to the interests of the people of this country. How else can anyone explain the adoption of so many Bush policies, and the expansion of the war in Afghanistan to people who claimed to be opposed to war in principle. At some point, even to the most hopuim addled brain, the EXCEPTIONS SWALLOW THE RULE.

  38. I’m waiting for these “issue” people to blame Hillary for all of bambi’s mistakes, backtracking, etc…

  39. Protest information for the Gay fundraiser, which we will highlight in coming days:

    Thursday, June 25, 2009
    5:00pm
    Mandarin Continental Hotel
    1330 Maryland Ave SW, in Washington DC

    By Metro in D.C – Smithsonian Metro Station on Blue/Orange lines

  40. Admin

    I guess they did not have issue people in his job as neighborhood organizer. It is obviously that he has used the first 100 days to do window dressing on the easy issues, and not address the tough issues or make it obvious that he will not. When he is in trouble with the issue people he throws them a crumb.

  41. I’m waiting for these “issue” people to blame Hillary for all of bambi’s mistakes, backtracking, etc…
    ————————-
    Jan–I do not see how they can without acknowleging that she is in charge–not their Messiah. It would be an acknowlegement of his weakness.

    Those who are driven by values must surely be experiencing some degree of cognitive dissonance. The more perceptive are feeling acute buyers remorse. He is not the one they have been waiting for.

    Those who are personality driven, rather than issue driven will miss the point altogether. But those benighted souls are beyond hope and should be treated by Dr. Kervorkian if we could lure him out of retirement.

  42. “Those who are personality driven, rather than issue driven will miss the point altogether. ”

    ——————————

    probably the majority.

  43. nmf, do u think our govt is n on the unrest in iran?
    ———————————————–
    The Iranian Government warnings to foreign journalists suggest that our own big media may be involved in it. If they are I hope they pay. If people get killed because of their known propensity to create stories and pour fuel on the fire, then they should be held criminally responsible.

  44. That said, I admire what Hedges did, but not these corporate clowns working for AP, NYT, NBC, CNN.

  45. probably the majority.
    ————————-
    Yes. But it is like Paretos Law: the significant few–20% (the values people), and the insignificant many (the sheep).

  46. The very fact that very few in the media are challenging bambi’s actions regarding Iran or anything else, tell me they are involved in massive coverups.

  47. If you remember the movie The Caine Mutiny, then you will recall the budding writer played by Fred McMurray. He is the one who orchetrates the mutiny, and then denies it under oath. That gets him a glass full of scotch in the face from Jose Ferrier. That is the kind of moral cowardice that runs through big media. It is why if someone gets killed because of their known propensity to make news rather than reporting it, I hope they get exactly what they deserve. This is now an unstable situation, and they should stay in their rooms and behave.

  48. I think that big media has become meaningless. People look for the crap and all the crap. Have you notice a decline in the rag sheets, or a report they are going out of business? I have not. They are the top magazines in the grocery store racks?

  49. The hits keep on coming:

    ” June 16 (Bloomberg) — Brazil, Russia, India and China are considering buying each other’s bonds and swapping currencies to lessen dependence on the U.S. dollar as their leaders meet for a summit in Russia’s Ural Mountains.

    The leaders of the so-called BRIC countries will discuss measures to promote regional currencies, including “possibly placing part of reserves in the financial instruments of partner countries,” during their meeting in Yekaterinburg, Arkady Dvorkovich, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s top economic adviser, told reporters.

    The BRIC countries have combined reserves of $2.8 trillion and are among the biggest holders of U.S. Treasuries. The first BRIC summit comes after Brazil, China and Russia announced plans to shift some foreign reserves into International Monetary Fund bonds, driving
    Treasuries and the dollar lower.
    (snip)

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aSdhVkf.e1RY

  50. Obama will blame Bill for” don’t ask, don’t tell…..”. The bait he feed the gay community today will satisfy them for a few more months…

  51. I think that big media has become meaningless. People look for the crap and all the crap. Have you notice a decline in the rag sheets, or a report they are going out of business? I have not. They are the top magazines in the grocery store racks?
    ————————————–
    Yes, they do have a problem. The people who hate bamb will not tune in and watch them fawn over him. The people who support him based on a perceived alignment of values now see the hipocracy and are less likey to tune in and hear more of it. And he groupies dont watch anything that requires an intellect above room temperature to understand–the 80% of his supporters. Therefore, it is a declining market for those hucksters, and their sponsors know it.

  52. This writer is an Obama operative speaking to the Palestinian leadership. He wants Abbas to get off the sidelines and align himself with the American position, so the Administration can muscle Israel into a Faustian Pact. This was in Foreign Policy Magazine this morning:
    —————————————

    How the Palestinians should respond to Netanyahu
    Tue, 06/16/2009 – 1:40pm

    Arabs should stop complaining about Israel’s aggravating prime minister and prove they’re the more reliable partner for peace.

    By Hussein Ibish

    The response from Palestinian and Arab leaders to Benjamin Netanyahu’s defiant foreign policy speech last Sunday has so far consisted mainly of throwing up their hands in despair. While understandable given the prime minister’s intransigence on Israel’s prior commitment to a complete settlement freeze and other key issues, this approach is not likely to accomplish very much.

    By reproducing rhetoric from the 1990s that led to massive Palestinian frustration, Netanyahu may be hoping to provoke a reaction that is more visceral than strategic. If the Palestinians and Arabs adopt a less than constructive attitude at this stage, there is every danger that President Barack Obama and his administration will conclude that the Israelis and the Palestinians are simply two recalcitrant and irresponsible parties that are impervious to reason, and walk away to focus on other matters. But Obama’s new approach, combined with Netanyahu’s unconstructive attitude, presents a rare opportunity for Palestinian leaders to seize the initiative in the peace process.

    Rather than simply dismissing Netanyahu’s words, it is vital that they instead move quickly to draw a stark contrast based on a constructive stance of their own, and position themselves in as close alignment as possible with the American president. The Palestinians should be emphasizing their moves to fulfil their road map commitment on security, as recently demonstrated by the Palestinian Authority’s bold and politically costly security operations against Hamas militants in the West Bank.

    A new initiative to bolster security measures by combating incitement by militant groups, as Obama urged Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to undertake at their White House meeting in May, would strongly reaffirm Palestinian seriousness to fully play their part in promoting peace and would be an effective means of keeping the focus on Israel’s continued avoidance of its own responsibilities.

    It is also important that the Arab states, led by Saudi Arabia, express a sincere desire to engage productively in the peace process in response to significant Israeli moves such as a complete settlement freeze. They should frame such a move as operationalizing the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative.

    Future public diplomacy efforts by the Palestinians and Arab States should also focus their attention on the mainstream American Jewish Community. A large number of American Jews support Obama’s efforts to push Israel toward a settlement freeze, a fact Netanyahu is keenly aware of. He seems to be calculating that his rather tepid, theoretical acceptance of the concept of Palestinian statehood and his rhetorical invocations of Israeli nationalism might weaken support for the president’s efforts. The extent to which Netanyahu is effective in gaining currency with this crucial constituency may be an important factor in determining whether the Obama can remain firm with the Israeli government without intolerable domestic political cost.

    Obama has placed a great deal of political capital at stake on the issue of settlements. In order to successfully shift the Israeli government from its present position, he is going to need help.

    If a settlement freeze can be achieved, along with reciprocal gestures from the Palestinian Authority and Arab states, such as maintaining security and continuing diplomatic overtures, the parties can move quickly into permanent status negotiations, tackling such bedrock questions as borders, refugees, Jerusalem, and security. Many on the Israeli right, possibly including Netanyahu, would prefer to avoid these issues because they may not yet be prepared to take the necessary steps to advance peace.

    By supporting Obama’s position through constructive measures, Palestinians and Arabs can greatly strengthen the prospects that permanent status talks become unavoidable, and that with strong American leadership the parties could soon find themselves in serious peace negotiations for the first time since January 2001.

    Hussein Ibish is a senior fellow at the American Task Force on Palestine. He blogs at http://www.ibishblog.com.

  53. In these heady days for big media, as they congregate in bars and hotels with their foreign counterparts, it is no difficult to imagine conversations between them wherein they talk about the need to manage the news away from the partisan interests of the peasant class in their respective countries and toward a new world order where the media at large will communicate the same message in every country on issues of common concern. They can orchestrate the overthrow of governents, make the news rather than simply reporting it, hold political candidates and elected officials accountable to them, and thereby rule the world. I am sure they talk about Orwellian things like that, secure in the knowledge that they alone know what is best for the world, and their shareholders not always in that order.

  54. SHV, the currency story is getting very little attention. It deserves a lot more. When Americans find their dollar is no longer respected, in any way, Big Media will be to blame for the surprise.

    JBStonesFan, the typical response from the Hopium eaters is that Bill signed DOMA and DADT therefore he is to blame. The Hopium eaters’ lack of historical knowledge is a constant surprise. They don’t understand that Gays in the military had zero rights before Bill Clinton and he wanted to do the right thing but latter day Obama supporters like Colin Powell and Sam Nunn blocked Bill Clinton by stirring up a hysteria.

    The Hopium eaters then respond that Bill should have gotten rid of DOMA and DADT at the end of his term (this is when the Republicans were busy impeaching Bill). True life comments we have read at Hopium sites.

    The Hopium eaters also don’t understand that DOMA was a tactical move to block what would truly have been a nightmare – a Republican pushed and likely to be passed constitutional amendment to stop Gay Marriage for ever and ever (also possibly civil unions which might have adversely impacted heterosexual couples too).

  55. Taipan Daily: The Terrible Rise of the J Curve, Part II
    by Justice Litle, Editorial Director, Taipan Publishing Group

    When things get hot, events can move faster than the 24-hour news cycle can keep up.

    On Monday afternoon, not long after part one of this two-part series was submitted, news came in that unauthorized mass protests took place in Tehran in spite of crackdown warnings. The latest, as of this writing, is that Iran’s Guardian Council is open to a limited vote recount. The concession comes in response to the country’s largest demonstrations since 1979. Seven have died thus far. By the time you read this, the situation on the ground may have changed yet again.

    Like breaks in a fault line or cracks in a dam, pressure points around the world are starting to build. Taken in isolation, any single pressure point might be deemed of little concern. But simple probability tells us that, as the number of pressure points increases, so too do the odds that one of them will explode…

    One might look around and wonder, “why this growing trend of instability?” In other words, why does it feel so true that, geopolitically speaking at least, “when it rains it pours”?

    In part it has to do with long-term cycles, in which conditions oscillate between stability and instability. There is peace and quiet for a time, and then there is chaos. Then things settle down and the cycle starts again…

    During the heyday period of “Bretton Woods 2,” for example – in which U.S. consumers gorged on “stuff” paid for with Chinese credit – we had a multi-year period of artificially induced stability.

    Many saw the deal as unsustainable, and that view turned out to be quite correct… but while it lasted, the trend of rising leverage, rising valuations and rising debt was a stable one. The directional rate of change was more or less constant. Investors got what they expected for a lengthy period of time.

    But, as cycles throughout history have shown, stability begets instability. There was a great buildup of hidden excess in the stable period… until finally, when fresh instability burst forth onto the scene, all turned to chaos.

    We are in a period of extreme instability now (as if you hadn’t noticed). Many of the old conventions have been turned upside down. Stemming from that, one benefit of unstable times is a new focus on ideas. When the old clichés no longer apply, closed minds tend to open… the search for answers gains a new sense of urgency.

    Introducing the J Curve

    And so, with the search for answers in mind, let’s talk about the “J Curve” – a concept that helps explain much of what the world is going through now.

    The concept was first presented in a book called The J Curve: A New Way to Understand Why Nations Rise and Fall, by Ian Bremmer. The book was first published in 2006. Bremmer is head of the Eurasia Group, a global consulting firm focused on political risk.

    The thrust of the J Curve idea has to do with “closed” countries versus “open” countries.

    Imagine a graph in which the X axis (horizontal) represents how free and open a country is, while the Y axis (vertical) represents how stable and prosperous a country is. The upper right quadrant of the graph represents maximum openness and stability. The lower left quadrant represents a closed and unstable regime.

    The key takeaway can be summed up like this.

    “Closed” countries (like North Korea) can be stable, at least for a time.

    “Open” countries with functioning democracies (like the United States) can be even more stable for great lengths of time.

    To make the transition from closed to open, a country must pass through a period of great instability.

    This is where the letter “J” comes in. There is a sort of less-than-desirable stability at the tail end of the J.

    In order to make it to the other side – to the top of the J, where greater openness and stability coincide – the country must first travel downward through the dangerous part of the curve.

    As Bremmer writes, “movement from left to right along the J curve demonstrates that a country that is stable because it is closed must go through a period of dangerous instability as it opens to the outside world.”

    Iran and North Korea

    Bremmer introduced the J Curve as a way to understand the geopolitical dynamics of closed versus open countries. In that respect, it’s a helpful tool for understanding countries like Iran and North Korea.

    For decades, Iran has been more or less a closed-but-stable country. Now that there is a powerful surge of interest in making Iran a more open and tolerant society, a dangerous instability has been introduced. The hardliners, comfortable with the old way, are running headlong into the forces of change… and blood has already been shed.

    North Korea is another clear example of how the J Curve works. In order to preserve a harsh stability born of being closed to the outside world, the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) has shunned openness at all costs. As Bremmer writes,

    To protect the DPRK’s isolation – and therefore its stability – the North Korean leadership has used tactics familiar in other closed authoritarian societies, but it has taken them to extremes rarely seen anywhere else. Few foreigners are allowed into the country. Those who are admitted are allowed virtually no meaningful contact with locals. They are shown “Potemkin villages,” hastily built movie-set style communities meant to persuade outsiders that the standard of living is substantially higher than it is. In general, aid workers are no more welcome in the DPRK than are international weapons inspectors. The leadership doesn’t want foreigners to see North Koreans – or North Koreans to see foreigners. The country’s J curve is already too low to allow such a threat.

    North Korea’s recent escalation of threats – including open talk of nuclear war – is likely born out of fear that the fragile stability holding the country together, and thus keeping the Kim Jong Il regime in power, is under dire threat. That threat could bear down in the form of outside pressures, internal power struggles, an exhaustion of resources, or a combo of all three.

    It is the potential for a sudden plunge into the lowest part of the J curve that the world rightly fears. As Bremmer reminds us, “North Korea is geopolitically important because it is a heavily militarized police state with a million soldiers, several million malnourished citizens, and an arsenal of the world’s most dangerous weapons.”

    Golf Swings and Bankruptcies

    But the J curve’s usefulness is not strictly limited to country analysis or the plight of unsavory regimes. Taken a little more broadly, it applies in many other walks of life as well.

    This is because the transition from one form of stability to another, higher form of stability is almost always a challenge.

    Take the golf swing, for example – something many Taipan Daily readers will be familiar with. When Tiger Woods decided to completely take apart and rebuild his golf swing early on in his career, it was seen as an incredibly brave act.

    Why? Because, in abandoning his old swing, Tiger Woods had to descend into the depths of the J curve. He had to risk the possibility of ruining his old swing forever (which seemed to work well enough), without knowing for certain his new swing would work out.

    Descending into the J curve, and enduring the period of instability required before emerging victorious on the other side, takes bravery and conviction. It requires a willingness to take calculated risks in the present, in confidence that the future will be worth it.

    This explains why big stakeholders in any existing system are loath to endure the trials of the J curve. They would rather preserve the status quo because, in casting a wary eye on that looming period of instability at the bottom of the J, they see too much at risk… and too much to lose.

    This attitude often displays itself as stubborn resistance to change. Such resistance can lead to disaster.

    Take the $691 billion Lehman Brothers bankruptcy, for example – the largest bankruptcy in all of corporate history. (The second biggest, that of Washington Mutual, was less than half as big.)

    Was Lehman doomed no matter what? We’ll never know. But we do know that, well before the ship went down, Lehman’s executives were given plenty of chances to take workable losses and pare back their risks. Bear Stearns went under a full six months before Lehman. There were countless warning signs, and opportunities, for Lehman to do the hard thing and cut back the portfolio.

    Why didn’t they do it? In part because Lehman’s execs feared the J curve. They didn’t want to sell hundreds of billions worth of assets at what they perceived as fire-sale prices. (Those same prices would appear golden in hindsight).

    But even more than eating a heaping helping of balance sheet losses, Lehman’s stakeholders didn’t want to let go of the status quo. They feared and loathed change because they had too much to lose, in terms of pride and stature as well as financial worth.

    And so Lehman stayed crowded and bunched up on the tail of the “J”, passing up all their chances to go through a voluntary period of wrenching change… until finally the buildup of pressure forced them violently down the curve against their will, at which point extinction was assured.

    What Washington Doesn’t Understand

    Let’s talk about the U.S. financial system for a minute.

    In order to make it to the “other side” – to return to a beneficial environment of stability – we have to pass through the bottom of the J curve. We have to endure the unstable nature of change in order to reap the long-run benefits of that change.

    Because the big stakeholders in the current system (politicians, oligarchs, Wall Street fat cats and so on) have the most to lose, they are also the most resistant to change.

    Unfortunately, these same stakeholders also tend to be the ones with their hands on the levers of power. And so again we see that sort of “crowding up” on the tail of the J, with great hesitance to make the journey through reform and real change.

    This refusal to move forward is likely to make things get worse before they get better. As with the Lehman bankruptcy, it’s all about the difference between spotting a problem early and taking tough measures to fix it, versus trying to preserve the old order of things until the bitter end, when the moment of forced awareness arrives.

    What Washington fails to understand, in your editor’s humble opinion, is that the tail of the J is not a place America can stay. There is no way to avoid moving forward. It’s a matter of whether we do so willingly and intelligently, making the wisest decisions we can… or whether we stick our fingers in our ears and pretend the moment of forced awareness will never come. It will.

    Broader Applications

    To sum up, the broader lesson is that we are not going to find a true period of stability again until we descend into the depths of the J curve and really come to grips with what got us here.

    In result, my trading plan will have a heavy emphasis on volatility and instability until that sense of awareness has been demonstrated. It is not the same world… we can’t go back to the way it was. For instance:

    We are going to have to deal with the reality of a deleveraging U.S. consumer (and stop fantasizing that this process is anywhere near done.)

    We are going to have to start thinking about what a U.S. economy might look like that is no longer 70% oriented towards consumer spending.

    We are going to have deal with the rotten bank balance sheets once and for all, rather than papering over the looming losses.

    Tomorrow’s emerging market leaders will have to truly wean themselves from Western export dependency, and build robust economies based on internal domestic demand instead.

    The open question regarding trillions of dollars in debt weighing on the developed world, and the trillions of dollars of stimulus cash pumped in to counter it, will have to be resolved.

    We will have to get our heads around the dollar problem, and get a clearer sense of what the next world’s currency will be (or what exactly will replace it).

    A tall order, no? Every one of those elements requires a descent into the J curve… a willingness to embrace instability for the sake of positive change before we get to the other side. So far, the powers that be have barely opened their eyes.

    Expect serious volatility, and serious trading opportunities, as the J curve makes its presence felt in the years ahead.

    Warm Regards,

    JL

  56. wbboei Says:

    June 17th, 2009 at 1:54 pm

    ——————————–

    This disgusts me. It also frightens me.

  57. Tomorrow’s emerging market leaders will have to truly wean themselves from Western export dependency, and build robust economies based on internal domestic demand instead.
    ——————————-
    The same is true of developed countries. We cannot continue to abide an import driven economy. And our buying decisions must factor in the political and economic consequences.

    This fact struck me on Sunday, when I was at the supermarket buying strawberries and wine. The choice was between products produced in California (which could well mean Mexico), and those produced in my home state. All things were not equal but I ended up getting the ones produced locally. If as economists tell us is true and that dollar passes through seven sets of hands before it leaves the community, then the aggragate effect of consumers buying local products will build a stronger economy, and the failure to do so will have the reverse effect in this age of State deficits, higher taxes and incompetent political leadership. Correction: corrupt and incompetent.

  58. This disgusts me. It also frightens me.
    ————————————
    Yes, I agree. But it was pretty obvious they would play the game this way, and I doubt anyone who supports Israel is surprised. The Palestinian Authority is a puppet government and has no control over its people. If it embarks upon serious negotiations Hamas will cut its legs out from under it and any agreement they might enter into would have no stability, despite the concessions. This whole thing is one big circle jerk and my guess is that if the economic situation worsens other issues will take precedence. The game here is to make sure that Obama gets the blame for failure, and no one else. That is a doable proposition, despite the forces arrayed against us.

  59. I am also getting tired of reading that the “American Jewish” population is in complete agreement with bambi. Where are they getting their figures from? And why place so much emphasis and importance on American Jews as opposed to Israeli Jews?

  60. I hope the gay community does not get bamboozled by the latest crumbs Obama has thrown their way. He’s doing it to ease the few gay power brokers in the government and on his donor list.

    Wake up. If the gay community knows what is best for their future interests in the Democratic Party, they should protest the 2010 and 2012 elections until their demands are met. STOP giving these crooks your vote when they’ve done nothing on your behalf.

  61. admin Says:

    June 17th, 2009 at 3:03 pm
    SHV, the currency story is getting very little attention. It deserves a lot more. When Americans find their dollar is no longer respected, in any way, Big Media will be to blame for the surprise
    ———————————————
    What is really critical here is to establish a NEXUS between Obamas stimulus plan and this flight from the dollar. Or more broadly, his welfare state policies and our excessive debt. If you will recall, Obama tried to get other countries like Germany to adopt stimulus plans and they categorically refused. I have got to believe that China made some specific comments about this stimulus plan at or near the time it initiatated this revolt against the dollar. The prosperity of the world should not depend on the fiscal irresponsibility of one govenment which is free to pass the costs of its prolifigate practices off to the world through monetary policy–or words to that effect. I am sure this issue has been brewing for some period of time, but to be effective it must be shown that his policies in general and his stimulus plan was the straw that broke the camels back, and caused the pain which spread to the country, while he enjoyed a $40, 000 night on the town.

  62. With so much instablility in the world it will be increasingly difficult for big media to cover for him. They will become more and more like the little boy with all his fingers in the dike, which continues to spring water.

  63. wbboei Says:

    June 17th, 2009 at 3:51 pm
    With so much instablility in the world it will be increasingly difficult for big media to cover for him. They will become more and more like the little boy with all his fingers in the dike, which continues to spring water.

    ————————

    Which makes them just as culpable or even more.

  64. What is really critical here is to establish a NEXUS between Obamas stimulus plan and this flight from the dollar\
    ****************
    The holder of US debt also have a huge problem..If they “tank” the dollar, their billions of $ of American bonds turn to sh*t.

  65. Which makes them just as culpable or even more.
    ———————————————-
    in pare delicto–partners in crime.

  66. The holder of US debt also have a huge problem..If they “tank” the dollar, their billions of $ of American bonds turn to sh*t.
    —————————————————
    Correct. And that is why when and if they agree upon a concerted stategy it must be executed in an appropriate time frame which allows bonds to mature, and then move the money to hard assets. Also, there is no immediate advantage to them in killing the consumer market. Again, the approach will be more gradual than sudden and precipitous. But even in that scearion, it would tend to cause a seconf valley in this L shaped recession.

  67. I hope the gay community does not get bamboozled by the latest crumbs Obama has thrown their way.
    *********
    From my reading of comments at various LGBT sites, people are pi**ed. The faux benefits announcement by the WH was a panic move to try and save the June 25 fund raiser in DC. The response seems to be similar to throwing salt on an open wound. The “big names” are pulling out of the fund raiser and protests are being planned. The best antidotes to a toxic sociopath such as Obama are ridicule and disdain.

  68. U.S. State Dept. urged Twitter to delay maintenance

    Twitter, the popular social networking site that lets users share messages and pictures in 140 characters or less was scheduled for maintenance late Monday night EST. That would have disrupted daytime service for Iranian tweeters who were disputing the results of their election.

    The Iranian government has kept a tight lid on the information coming out of Iran as the violence has grown. But Twitter has kept much of the world informed, as Iranians fed major news outlets bits of information and pictures.

    The U.S. State Department confirmed on Tuesday that Twitter was “an important source for information” and that it had, in fact, contacted Twitter to urge them to reschedule.

    The site will undergo the maintenance Tuesday evening, EST, which will correspond to the early hours of Wednesday morning in Iran.

    State Department officials also stressed this was not a U.S. attempt to get involved in the Iranian election, but rather about allowing voices to be heard.

    digitaljournal.com/article/274270

  69. The other thing which would be important to show is that this retreat from the dollar as the world reserve currency did not occur until AFTER bambi took office. That raises a futher inference that it was not a reaction to Bush and if in fact Bambi had adopted the right policies on the economy rather than the wrong ones this dramatic move would have never occured.

    The one thing this does explain, however, why he turned regulatory oversight of US Corporations over to an international body of bankers while he as in Europe, i.e. to buttress the position of the dollar. But now it is rather obvioius that it did not work.

  70. From my reading of comments at various LGBT sites, people are pi**ed. The faux benefits announcement by the WH was a panic move to try and save the June 25 fund raiser in DC. The response seems to be similar to throwing salt on an open wound. The “big names” are pulling out of the fund raiser and protests are being planned. The best antidotes to a toxic sociopath such as Obama are ridicule and disdain.
    ——————————————————————
    Obama must be shocked, dismayed, his world must be toppling. It took him 47 years to realize that not everyone can be bought of with OPM (other peoples money).

  71. Obama recruited some very outspoken, liberal Jews who claim to speak for the “Jewish Community”. While I would agree that most American Jews (who never visited Israel or did a dam thing for her) are for the so called two state solution, a majority are against a nuclear Iran as well as the uneven pressure Obama is placing on the Jewish Stare. Obama’s lead Jew is my representative, Robert Wexler. In the many years he has represented our district, he is a darling of the Jewish retirement communities and was always a loud voice in support of Israel. As we saw, he went hot and heavy for Obama early, and assured all of us that Obama was a great friend of the Jewish state…..From what I see, there is a quiet unrest among most mainstream Jews now, but not enough to cause any real damage to Obama at this time.

  72. the bottom line…as things get worse and worse…unemployment continues to go up…the stimulus plan fails at even ‘saving’ jobs and at a cost of the reported $600,000 interest a day on the borrowed ‘stimulus’ money…more neighborhoods become ghost towns, more empty strip and large malls…more foreclosures…and now more and more large, empty car lots…we will come full circle and back to basics…”it’s the economy, stupid” will prevail…

    the irony will be the repubs may be the ones using it…

    ***********************

    ADMIN – do you ever sleep?

    WBBOEI and JAN H – great summaries/comments and articles, thanks to you both

  73. jbstonesfan: it may be enough to move a heavily pro Obama group of people to a position of neutrality at this point. It may be asking too much to turn them against him. If they can just become open minded, which is to say sceptical of Obama, then future events will cause them to wake up to what is occurring. But AIRPAC and others cannot sit on their hands. They must help them understand why Bibis position is the right one for everyone who supports Israel. They must also understand the primerose path of a two state solution with a shill counterparty.

  74. By JAY SOLOMON

    WASHINGTON — The emergence of Mir Hossein Mousavi as a challenger to Iran’s clerical establishment has been cheered as potentially heralding a new moderation in Tehran. But his record also suggests that he would hew to a number of Tehran’s more controversial policies.

    Mr. Mousavi governed as a social conservative while he was prime minister during the 1980s, and remains a committed supporter of the values and clerical system born of the 1979 Iranian Islamic revolution, diplomats and Iran analysts said.

    He was one of the early supporters of Iran’s nuclear program, and as prime minister he specifically approved Tehran’s purchases of centrifuge equipment from the nuclear black market run by the Pakistani scientist A.Q. Khan, according to a 2007 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog.
    (snip)

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124519676619521077.html

  75. Double post..I screwed up the link
    ***********
    By JAY SOLOMON

    WASHINGTON — The emergence of Mir Hossein Mousavi as a challenger to Iran’s clerical establishment has been cheered as potentially heralding a new moderation in Tehran. But his record also suggests that he would hew to a number of Tehran’s more controversial policies.

    Mr. Mousavi governed as a social conservative while he was prime minister during the 1980s, and remains a committed supporter of the values and clerical system born of the 1979 Iranian Islamic revolution, diplomats and Iran analysts said.

    He was one of the early supporters of Iran’s nuclear program, and as prime minister he specifically approved Tehran’s purchases of centrifuge equipment from the nuclear black market run by the Pakistani scientist A.Q. Khan, according to a 2007 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog.
    (snip)

    /online.wsj.com/article/SB124519676619521077.html

  76. Agreed. During my son’s Bar Mitzvah two (2) weeks ago, as always, I got into a heated discussion with my reform rabbi over Obama. In fact, when I was asked to make a speech, I was going to include a plea to the congregation about what Obama was doing to Israel. The rabbi asked me to please refrain from politics and I respected his wishes.

  77. jbstonesfan,

    I was always taught the importance of a Jewish homeland as being paramount. I remember in the Jewish elementary school I attended how we would send money to plant trees every year.

    For even one Jewish American to put bambi first just boggles my mind.

  78. OT…Obama fires Mr. Milpin for being “senile” to cover for his crooked friend Kevin Johnson and now the FBI is investigating mayor Johnson for obstruction of justice. Now Bambi has to fire the FBI.:>)

    ” The FBI’s Sacramento division is investigating a former St. HOPE executive’s allegations of obstruction of justice, Acting U.S. Attorney Lawrence G. Brown confirmed Tuesday.

    The news fuels the controversy that has followed Mayor Kevin Johnson since 2008, when his brainchild St. HOPE Academy first was investigated for misuse of public funds.”

    ww.sacbee.com/topstories/story/1952940.html

  79. Thank you JanH…………..I think you and I think a like on many issues. We certainly love Hillary, Bill, and Israel.

  80. Clinton Affirms Iranian People’s Right to Choose Leader as Massive Opposition Protests Planned

    Wednesday, June 17, 2009

    * Print
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    AFP

    June 16: Supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi run in the street during protests in Tehran after the nation banned foreign media from covering rallies.

    June 16: Supporters of Mir Hossein Mousavi run in the street during protests in Tehran after the nation banned foreign media from covering rallies.

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    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton affirmed Iranians right to choose their own leader in the violent wake of a contentious presidential election amid accusations from Iranian leaders that the United States was meddling in the country’s internal affairs.

    “The people of Iran reserve the right to have their voices heard and their voices counted,” Clinton said at a news conference Wednesday afternoon. “The result of any election should be the will of the people.”

    President Mamoud Ahmadinejad was declared the winner in a landslide late last week, prompting calls from opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi to investigate potential fraud.

    On Wednesday, Iran accused the U.S. of “intolerable” meddling, but Clinton said the election impasse was “up to the Iranian people to resolve.”

    State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley dismissed the allegation, telling reporters that the U.S. is withholding judgment about whether last week’s presidential election was conducted fairly. He said the U.S. is not interfering in Iranian internal affairs.

    Also Wednesday, Mousavi issued a direct challenge to the country’s supreme leader and cleric-led system, calling for a mass rally to protest disputed election results and violence against his followers.

    A crackdown on dissent continued, with more arrests of opposition figures reported, and the country’s most powerful military force — the Revolutionary Guard — saying that Iranian Web sites and bloggers must remove any materials that “create tension” or face legal action.

    In one high-profile display of apparent opposition support, several Iranian soccer players wore green wrist bands — the color of Mousavi’s campaign — during a World Cup qualifying match in South Korea that was televised in Iran.

    • Click here for photos. (WARNING: Graphic images)

    Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has told Mousavi to pursue his demands through the electoral system and called for Iranians to unite behind their Islamic government, an extraordinary appeal in response to tensions over the presidential vote. But Mousavi appears unwilling to back down, issuing on his Web site a call for a mass demonstration Thursday.
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    * EU Nations Criticize Iran Election, Concerned Over Protests
    * Reformists Arrested Following Street Clashes in Iran
    * Clashes Erupt in Iran After Ahmadinejad Declared Winner of Presidential Election
    * Ahmadinejad Takes Big Vote Lead as Rival Warns of Possible Fraud
    * Warnings of Riots in Iran if Election Rigged in Ahmadinejad’s Favor
    * U.S. Cautiously Awaits Iran Presidential Election
    * Iran’s Hard-Line Guards Vow to Crush ‘Velvet Revolution’
    * Iran’s Powerful Former President Attacks Ahmadinejad, Vows to Sue Hard-Line Leader
    * Ahmadinejad’s Challenger Seeks Path for Ties With U.S.
    * Ex-Iranian Guards Chief to Challenge Ahmadinejad for Presidency
    * Iran’s Supreme Leader Rebukes Ahmadinejad Over Powers

    “We want a peaceful rally to protest the unhealthy trend of the election and realize our goal of annulling the results,” Mousavi said.

    He called for his followers to wear or carry black in mourning for the alleged election fraud and the deaths of protesters, and said there should be “a new presidential election that will not repeat the shameful fraud from the previous election.”

    Web sites associated with Mousavi and the reformists called for at least one rally later Wednesday. An amateur video showed opposition supporters in Tehran.

    The video showed thousands marching on an overpass in the capital, some flashing the victory sign or carrying placards with others dressed in green — the color associated with pro-reform candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi’s election campaign. Mousavi has accused the government of rigging the election in favor of hard-line Ahmadinejad.

    It was the third day in a row that Mousavi supporters have taken to the streets. Iranian officials have confirmed seven people killed this week in violent clashes over the election.

    Mousavi and his supporters accuse the government of rigging the June 12 election to declare Ahmadinejad the overwhelming winner. Their street protests, paired with dissent from powerful clerical and political figures, have presented one of the gravest threats to Iran’s complex blend of democracy and religious authority since the system emerged from the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

    Election tensions appeared to be spreading further into the Iranian political and religious classes — and into the sports world.

    Mousavi’s Web site said seven Iranian players wore the green bands on their wrists in the first half of the World Cup qualifier, although most were forced to take them off in the second half. Mehdi Mehdavi-Kia kept his green band on throughout the game, which Iran and South Korea drew 1-1.

    • Iran’s World Cup Hopes in Jeopardy After Draw

    Fans from Iran unfurled a banner in the stands that read “Go To Hell Dictator,” and waved Iran’s national flags emblazoned with the plea “Free Iran.”

    Blogs and Web sites such as Facebook and Twitter have been vital conduits for Iranians to inform the world about protests and violence.

    The Web became more essential after the government barred foreign media Tuesday from leaving their offices to report on demonstrations on the streets of Tehran.

    Mousavi condemned the government for blocking Web sites, saying the government did not tolerate the voice of the opposition.

    The violence has left at least seven people dead, according to Iran’s state media, although videos and photos posted by people inside Iran show scenes of violence that have not been reported through official channels. The newly imposed media restrictions make it virtually impossible to independently verify much of the information, which includes dramatic images of street clashes and wounded demonstrators.

    Much of the imagery has been posted anonymously. In other cases, those who have posted have declined to be identified due to fear of government retaliation, or cannot be reached due to government restrictions on the Internet and mobile phones.

    The Revolutionary Guard, an elite military force answering to Khamenei, said through the state news service that its investigators have taken action against “deviant news sites” that encouraged public disturbances. The Guard is a separate military with enormous domestic influence and control of Iran’s most important defense programs. It is one of the key sources of power for the ruling establishment.

    • YouTube Video May Show Gunman Killing Protesters in Iran

    The statement alleged that dissident Web sites were backed by Canadian, U.S. and British interests, a frequent charge levied by hard-liners against the opposition.

    “Legal action will be very strong and call on them to remove such materials,” it said.

    The semiofficial ISNA news agency and the private ILNA news agency reported that scuffles broke out between two legislators — one a reformist and the other a hard-liner — in an open session of parliament after they argued about the election.

    The agencies said hard-liner Ruhollah Jani Abbaspour attacked reformer Amir Taherkhani after a parliamentary committee probing the protests met Mousavi and the speaker of parliament gave a report on the inquiry.

    Mousavi has also sought support from Iran’s grand ayatollahs — widely respected clerics at the top of the religious hierarchy, although most don’t have direct political roles. He sent a letter to one liberal grand ayatollah, Yousef Sanei, who was encouraging, issuing a statement calling for “achieving rights and respect for the people’s votes.”

    Iran’s most senior dissident cleric, Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, said widespread vote fraud had undermined the legitimacy of the ruling Islamic system and that “no sound mind” would accept the results.

    “A government that is based on intervening in (people’s) vote has no political or religious legitimacy,” said Montazeri, who had once been set to succeed Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as supreme leader until he was ousted because of criticisms of the revolution.

    State media said Khamenei would deliver the sermon at Friday prayers, the most important religious address of the week. The supreme leader generally leads Friday prayers only two or three times a year.

    Unlike past student-led demonstrations against the Islamic establishment, Mousavi has the ability to press his case with Iran’s highest authorities and could gain powerful allies. Some influential clerics have expressed concern about possible election irregularities, and a fierce critic of Ahmadinejad, former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, is part of the ruling establishment.

    Rafsanjani, who was president from 1989-97, also heads the Assembly of Experts, one of the cleric-run bodies that is empowered to choose or dismiss Iran’s supreme leader. Khamenei is Khomeini’s successor, and the assembly has never used its power to remove Iran’s highest authority.

    Iranian TV showed pictures of Faezeh Hashemi, Rafsanjani’s daughter, speaking to hundreds of Mousavi supporters, carrying pictures of Khomeini and others.

    The U.S.-based International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said that several dozen noted figures associated with the reform movement have been arrested, among them politicians, intellectuals, activists and journalists.

    Among them was well-known activist and economist Saeed Laylaz, a professor at the University of Tehran.

    • Arrested Economist Pushed for Economic Reform

    • RAW DATA: Economist Saeed Laylaz

    Tehran-based analyst Saeed Leilaz, who is often quoted by Western media, was arrested Wednesday by plainclothes security officers who came to his home, said his wife, Sepehrnaz Panahi.

    At least 10 Iranian journalists have been arrested since the election, Reporters Without Borders said, and a Web site run by former Vice President Mohammad Ali Abtahi said the reformist had been arrested.

    Prominent reformer Saeed Hajjarian has also been detained, Hajjarian’s wife, Vajiheh Masousi, told The Associated Press. Hajjarian is a close aide to former President Mohammad Khatami.

    To try to placate the opposition, the main electoral authority has said it was prepared to conduct a limited recount of ballots at sites where candidates claim irregularities. The recount would be overseen by the Guardian Council, an unelected body of 12 clerics and Islamic law experts close to Khamenei.

    Mousavi charges the Guardian Council is not neutral and has already indicated it supports Ahmadinejad. He and the two other candidates who ran against Ahmadinejad are calling for an independent investigation.

    His representative, reformist cleric Ali Akbar Mohtashamipour, said after a meeting with the council Tuesday the number of votes in counted in 70 districts was higher than the population in those districts. He also said many polling stations were closed sooner than scheduled on election night while people were still lining up.

    On Tuesday, the government organized a large rally in Tehran to show it too can bring supporters into the streets. Speakers urged Iranians to accept the election results.

    The appeal for unity failed to calm passions, and a large column of Mousavi supporters marched peacefully in north Tehran, according to amateur video.

    A witness told the AP that the pro-Mousavi rally stretched more than a mile. Security forces did not interfere, the witness said, speaking on condition of anonymity for fear of government reprisal.

    Ahmadinejad, who has dismissed the unrest as little more than “passions after a soccer match,” attended a summit Tuesday in Russia that was delayed a day by the unrest. He returned to Iran and held a cabinet meeting, saying on state television Wednesday that people had voted for his “policies of justice.”

    In Washington, President Obama expressed “deep concerns” about the legitimacy of the election and post-voting crackdowns.

  81. “The people of Iran reserve the right to have their voices heard and their voices counted,”

    ————————–

    Bravo Hillary!

  82. Here are some questions for anyone who believes Israel should concede to a two state solution. They do not address the merits of such a deal, but the bargaining dynamics which militate against it ab initio.

    Question: does Mr. Abbass have bargaining authority to represent the Palestinian people?

    Answer: as a practical matter, no. Many of those people owe their loyalty to Hamas. And Hamas opposes negotiation.

    Question: do the people who he represents want a negotiated settlement with Israel?

    Answer: by the poll I saw 2 out of 10 do. Hence 80% do not.

    Question: are the people he represents willing to make concessions in order to get a settlement?

    Answer: it depends on whether they have more memories of the past or dreams for the future. Religious absolutism is a further problem.

    Question: if a settlement could be negotiated could it be would it be sufficiently stable to hold?

    Answer: probably not because the core tenet of any agreement, i.e. recognition of Israel as a Jewish Homeland is contrary to the core tenet of Hamas.

    Question: does the Irish Peace Settlement negotiated by George Mitchell prove that it is a settlement is equally possible here?

    Answer: no–because in that case the negotiators had bargaining authority, and the desire for lasting peace was mutual.

  83. “The people of Iran reserve the right to have their voices heard and their voices counted,”

    ————————–

    Bravo Hillary!

    —————-
    Deja vu the primary. Hillary says count all votes. Bambi says no because we do not want to interfere with the skull crushers.

    Razzle dazzle them. And they’ll never get wise–big media.

  84. I doubt Bambi knows quite what to say. It is like the pirate episode where he maintained he would not get involved. In that case, the military forced his hand. In this case, Hillary spoke out because we cannot maintain our moral leadership if we sit there like a potted plant while all this is happening.

  85. I think the inside story here is bambi has created such a bureacracy of intergalatiacally brilliant people around him that he has 99 different opinions on what to do and absolutely no consensus. Sometimes it is wise to walk away from a conflict and let it play itself out. This is not one of them, especially when you are the messiah.

  86. wbboei: The reason why Obama and his minions believe that conflicts can play themselves out is because they know they have the media on their side. When I turned on the television news today, all I heard was the federal benefits Obama was giving to gays and lesbians and the ABC/Obama Network’s health care special from the White House. I mean, if the media will report things in a positive way (how dare those gays demand more from the dear leader when he is nice enough to * almost * treat them like full human beings with * some * benefits) and basically give Obama all the time he needs on a major news network to tout his half-assed health care plan…then yes, Obama will continue to stab his supporters in the back (or throw them a few crumbs now and then to keep them happy enough to continue donating) while the media continues to worship everything he does.

  87. “Question: are the people he represents willing to make concessions in order to get a settlement?”

    —————————-

    While agreeing with 99.9% of your brilliant post, I would answer the following here:

    The answer is NO. 100% NO. They do not believe in Israel’s right to exist, hence they do not think they should make any concessions.

  88. By the Way Admin, I want to know when you sleep also. I got up this morning, rubbed my eyes, and there was this new article posted in the middle of the night. Of course if there is a staff, then one of the night staff had the assignment of the article for the blog.

    Some Day We Will Know.

    It was a nice thing to wake up to.

  89. NewMexicoFan, “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty”.

    Also, here is more on Obama’s Age of Fake announcement from an Obama lover and Hillary hater website:

    http://www.americablog.com/2009/06/is-obama-giving-federal-agencies-right.html

    The answer is “yes.” I just asked OPM Director John Berry, on a White House media conference call, whether in fact federal agencies already have the right to give these benefits to gay employees. The answer, “yes.” So what’s new about tonight? Obama is going to “tell” the agencies to give the benefits – as if any agency in the Obama administration would dare tell a gay employee no to a request for time off to attend their partner’s funeral?

  90. The fallen dictators always underestimate how much shxt people will put up with, and how much you can shxt on them. I think O is about to learn some lessons about shxt. There are some very intelligent powerful people in the Gay community.

  91. frankly, I have this image of Obama’s caretakers meticulously putting together all the words on any given issue he must enunciate daily via his teleprompter…you can picture them going over and over what he will say and then sending him out to read…he is always so tentative and general…always equivocating so as to not really say anything…

    people are beginning to see a big talker blowing in the wind…

    so unlike Hillary who needs nothing but herself and her convictions to state clearly and sometimes bluntly what she means with her eyes wide open, clear and focused…you don’t have to wonder where she stands

  92. What I see here is a meglamaniac grabbing power in every direction and threatening more interests as he does so. Today I understand was his attack on capitalists and executives. As the circle of people he threatens grows ever wider so do the risks to his presidency. Latent now, they will materialize for sure between now and the election.

    In the midwest, they tip cows over for the sport of it. Cows are not the smartest beasts in the animal world–like the 60% who still love the meglamaniac even though his policies are adverse to his interests. You push a cow so far and then it falls over–from whence cometh the term “tipping point”. It will take time for the counter force to emerge. But emerge it will because nature abhors a vaccuum. And reality won t stand for it–nor will Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Brazil, et al.

  93. Lieberman tells Clinton settlements won’t be frozen

    WASHINGTON – Public confrontation in Washington over settlement issue: Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday evening that Israel would not freeze the construction of settlements.

    “People are born and people die in Judea and Samaria, and the settlements cannot be completely frozen,” Lieberman said during a meeting with Clinton in Washington. “Our stance is clear. We have understandings with the previous administration on their matter,” he added.

    Clinton reiterated the stance voiced by President Barack Obama, saying that the United States wanted to see a stop to settlements. The secretary of state stressed in response to Lieberman’s claims that there was no written or oral agreement from President Bush’s era approved by any American participant. She implied, however, that a compromise could be reached between Israel and the US.
    Clinton noted that the process being conducted by special Mideast envoy George Mitchell had only just begun. “There are a number of critical concerns, many of which overlap in their impact and significance, that will be explored in the coming weeks as Senator Mitchell engages more deeply into the specifics as to where the Israelis and the Palestinians are willing to go together,” she said.

    Deputy Foreign Minister Daniel Ayalon said earlier Wednesday that “the Americans also want to find a practical and acceptable solution. This debate will take place mostly during the prime minister’s meeting with George Mitchell in Paris next week.”

    Lieberman and Clinton met face-to-face for about half an hour, and were then joined by the Israeli and American delegations for another half-hour meeting defined by both sides as “very good”.

    The secretary of state noted that Israel had several prime ministers – including Ehud Olmert and Ariel Sharon – who changed their views over the years. The State Department was later expected to announce the renewal of the strategic dialogue between Israel and the US.

    ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3733186,00.html

  94. BREAKING NEWS: OBAMA KILLS A FLY

    Alert the media: President Obama killed a fly. Oh wait, it’s obvious that the media already knows this.
    In case you haven’t been forwarded the viral video, or haven’t seen any of the dozens of the headlines splashed across world-wide news sites (AP: “Barack Obama: The human flyswatter,” Canadian Press: “Obama kills annoying fly, then keeps going on in TV interview,” NY Daily News: “No presidential pardon for this pest”), here’s the video of our president killing a fly whilst doing an interview with CNBC.

    With America’s obsession with all things celebrity, it’s not surprising that our photo-friendly president would become paparazzi fodder. But is it getting to be too much? When a story about Barack Obama killing a fly makes it into the same story as Kate Gosselin allegedly spanking one of her eight children, should we be re-evaluating our priorities?

    The always-controversial Bill Maher put it this way, in his “Real Time” monologue last Friday:
    “This is not what I voted for. I don’t want my president to be a TV star…[Obama’s] getting a puppy! He’s eating a cheeseburger with Joe Biden! He’s taking the wife to Broadway and Paris —- this is the best season of ‘The Bachelor’ yet!”
    The self-described Libertarian pundit went on to say that he’s glad Obama got elected, but that it’s disappointing that Obama hasn’t been “putting it on the line against the banks, the insurance companies, the energy companies who run the country and in many ways, have ruined this country.”

    Though Maher went out on a limb with his rant, he noticed something interesting at the Friday taping. He told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

    “Up until last Friday, whenever I said anything critical about him, I was getting booed by my audience because they’re liberal Southern Californians…But on Friday, they were cheering.”

    Is it true? Are more Americans agreeing that Obama is focusing too much on winning the world over with his charm and not enough on bringing about the change he had promised?

    Anne Dunev concurs with Maher. The Huffington Post’s health writer, annoyed by Obama’s ubiquitous TV appearances (“Who does Obama think he is – Lindsay Lohan? Every time I look at the news, there is Obama – having another Kodak moment.”) implores Obama to, instead, concentrate on fixing our failing healthcare system.
    She wrote:
    “Our PR is not going to matter much if the Ship of State is rudderless and we crash on the shore of our own greed and stupidity.”
    Exposure in it of itself isn’t a bad thing. There’s nothing inherently wrong with having a president who is as comfortable making a cameo on the Daily Show as he is meeting with foreign ministers, as long as he uses the political and popular capital he’s sowing to get things done.
    With the troubles of the world demanding attention (two wars, Iran, North Korea, to name a few) and the tribulations of our own country ringing in our ears (unemployment, foreclosures, healthcare, etc.), forget the flies, we want a president who will swat Congress into action.

    -Allison Louie-Garcia

    ***************************

    soon we may start hearing ‘He’s Not The One’

  95. Joint statement between U.S. and Israel

    By Eric Fingerhut · June 17, 2009

    Here’s the joint statement issued by the U.S. and Israel Wednesday after the meeting of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. The U.S. once again “underscored” its “unshakeable commitment to Israel’s security,” and the two countries pledged to renew the U.S.-Israel Strategic Dialogue, which last met in July of 2008:

    Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman met today in Washington, DC. The two discussed a range of subjects including shared concerns regarding threats to regional security and stability and the need to advance a comprehensive Middle East peace.

    The meeting of the Secretary and the Foreign Minister reflected the strong and enduring bonds between the two nations and underscored the United States’ unshakable commitment to Israel’s security. The Secretary and the Foreign Minister committed to renew the U.S.-Israel Strategic Dialogue in the near future. The decade-long dialogue provides a high-level forum for the two countries to discuss regional and international threats. The last session was held in July 2008.

    blogs.jta.org/politics/article/2009/06/17/1005963/joint-statement-between-us-and-israel

  96. Maher is a joke and a nasty one at that.

    LOL…watching bambi kill a fly would actually be more interesting than what he usually does on primetime.

  97. That Brokaw would lend his persona to this charade raises serious questions about his character, judgment and integrity which were never in doubt before. It would appear that he is politically naiive and not at all the stuff of the greatest generation he famously wrote about. How do you reach a guy like that? As the French say, it is impossible.

  98. Fired IG Calls White House Explanation ‘Baseless,’ Says He’s Being Targeted

    Gerald Walpin, who until last week was the inspector general for the Corporation for National and Community Service, tells FOXNews.com that part of President Obama’s explanation for firing him was a “total lie” and that he feels he’s got a target on his back for political reasons.

    By Judson Berger
    FOXNews.com
    Wednesday, June 17, 2009

    The government watchdog President Obama canned for allegedly being “confused” and “disoriented” fired back sharply Wednesday, saying the White House explanation for removing him was “insufficient,” “baseless” and “absolutely wild.”

    Gerald Walpin, who until last week was the inspector general for the Corporation for National and Community Service, told FOXNews.com that part of Obama’s explanation was a “total lie” and that he feels he’s got a target on his back for political reasons. “I am now the target of the most powerful man in this country, with an army of aides whose major responsibility today seems to be to attack me and get rid of me,” Walpin said.

    Facing bipartisan criticism for the firing, Obama sought to allay congressional concerns with a letter to Senate leaders Tuesday evening explaining his decision. In the letter, White House Special Counsel Norman Eisen wrote that Walpin was “confused” and “disoriented” at a May board meeting, was “unduly disruptive,” and exhibited a “lack of candor” in providing information to decision makers.

    “That’s a total lie,” Walpin said of the latter charge. And he said the accusation that he was dazed and confused at one meeting out of many was not only false, but poor rationale for his ouster. “It appears to suggest that I was removed because I was disabled — based on one occasion out of hundreds,” he said, adding that the administration is grasping at “non-existent straws” to explain its actions.

    “I would never say President Obama doesn’t have the capacity to continue to serve because of his (statement) that there are 56 states,” Walpin said, adding that the same holds for Vice President Biden and his “many express confusions that have been highlighted by the media.” Obama mistakenly said once on the campaign trail that he had traveled to 57 states.

    White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Wednesday that the administration stands by the letter, and reiterated that board members shared the concerns expressed in it.

    Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., who had raised questions about the firing Tuesday, released a statement Wednesday in light of the letter saying the president’s reasons are “substantial” and the decision to remove Walpin “appears well-founded.” She said the letter puts the White House in “full compliance” with the law, which requires the president to provide an explanation before firing an inspector general.

    Walpin, though, concluded that his firing stems from bad blood between him and the board, as well as with Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson — an Obama supporter whom he had investigated for alleged misuse of federal funds. He said his performance at the May meeting drew criticism because he issued two reports critical of the board. In one, he criticized the settlement reached in the Johnson case; in the other, he criticized the use of millions of dollars for a program at the City University of New York. “The board at that meeting was clearly angry at my temerity,” he said.

    The White House, in its rationale for giving Walpin the boot, also complained that Walpin was “absent” from the corporation’s headquarters, “insisting” on working from home in New York over the “objections” of the board.

    Walpin, though, said he reached an agreement with the agency early this year that would allow him to work from home. The former inspector general, who was appointed by George W. Bush, said he originally was going to resign before Obama took office because his wife of 52 years was not happy with their “commuting marriage” — he was commuting weekly from New York to Washington. He notified Bush of his intention to leave, but said his staff convinced him to reconsider.

    In the end, Walpin said he worked out an agreement with corporation leaders under which he would travel to Washington two or more times a week, and spend the rest of the time working from home in New York. He said some board members had initial reservations, but they were resolved.

    “I never had a single objection” before reading Tuesday’s letter from the White House, he said.

    foxnews.com/politics/2009/06/17/fired-ig-calls-white-house-explanation-baseless-says-hes-targeted/

  99. Maher is a joke and a nasty one at that.
    ————————————–
    Maher is human garbage, just like Letterman.

  100. sadly Brokaw is part of the NBC – MSNBC ‘insider family’ who are married to O

    all these voices we relied on in the past have gotten comfortable and lazy…and lost their ____.

  101. Maher is a joke and a nasty one at that.
    ————————————–
    Maher is human garbage, just like Letterman.

    ******************************

    and he is a colossal sexist…I agree with it all, however I am glad he said what he said…it was the opening shot from that side…one of the koolaid drinkers momentarily putting down his cup…

    plus if he actually said it…you begin to wonder how many more are thinking the same thing but still too emotionally invested or afraid to actually say such things…but now it is out there…

  102. Fired IG Calls White House Explanation ‘Baseless,’ Says He’s Being Targeted
    ———————————
    1. is he credible?

    2. is his complaint valid?

    3. was he fired in whole or in part because of it?

    The rest is bullshit. Especially the faux corroboration by McCaskill–a junior senator, Obama worshipper and cover-up artist. Grassley is senior senator, has the credibility which McCaskill does not, and his position is more valid than anything McCaskill would say on the subject.

  103. The self-described Libertarian pundit went on to say that he’s glad Obama got elected, but that it’s disappointing that Obama hasn’t been “putting it on the line against the banks, the insurance companies, the energy companies who run the country and in many ways, have ruined this country.”
    ——————————
    A wonderful non seqitir. I am glad he got elected even though he is not doing what he was put in there to do. Mahr is a loon. And a malicous one at that.

  104. I would assume that Saudi Arabia is in contract with Tehran in this crisis and is controlling Obamas response to the current crisis. He says nothing because they tell him to say nothing, and he bows all the way to the waist.

  105. So the latest human rights report that came out of the U.S. State Department sites huge violations on the part of Syria and Lebanon.

    And these are the same countries bambi is enthralled with?

  106. It pisses me off that Bill is relegated to Haiti and you have an idiot like Carter , who definitely has Obama’s ear, off receiving awards from the Palestinian Authority. Bill’s talents could and should be used not only in the middle east, but to sttrengthen our ties with allies like Great Britain, France, germany and even Russia. The man has gravitas and is universally loved and respected. Obama may be universally loved, but he commands little respect from our friends or enemies. Say what you want about Bush, you knew were here stood, even if it was in shit. I am hoping against hope that like a deck of cards, the House of Obama unravels and Hillary gets out leaving either 2012 or 2016 open. I long shot, but at this point, the only shot we have.

  107. Well another big money donor bails out on the June 25 fundraiser and says no more money for the DNC.

    “Bruce Bastian is the latest major, gay Democratic Party donor to pull out of a major fundraiser for the party after last week’s brief from the Department of Justice upholding DOMA as law”

    Mr. Bastian made his $$ with WordPerfect software and had a peak net worth of $1.1 billion…he is also a rare breed, an “Out and activist Gay Mormon.

  108. 1/ Getting an award from a hate-mongering nation isn’t my idea of an honor in any way shape, or form.

    2/ Accepting an award from a hate-mongering nation when one is supposed to be unbiased and a broker for both sides strikes me a highly unethical.

  109. As far as I’m concerned, whatever little credibilty Carter had, is now gone forever.

    I agree that Bill would be fantastic in the Middle East, but I can understand why he is not involved in Middle East issues. It comes too close to what Hillary is doing and would be construed as a definite conflict of interest.

    Of course bambi is so insecure where the Clintons are concerned, there is no way he would want Bill involved in such a big negotiation.

  110. Machiavelli wrote a book called The Prince. In it he asks whether it is better for a Prince to be loved or feared. He makes no bones about it. It is better to be feared. Why? Because in Obama eubonics them enemies of yers aint gonna mess whss ya. For all his faults, the last president was named Cheney, and for all his faults, he was not a man to be messed with. He was not loved but he was never challenged or disrespected. Obama is loved. He is loved by the frogs, the trees, the sky, hugo, raul and brian williams who some have suggested can claim carnal knowlege. Yes, he is a much loved man. But he is not, repeat not respected by the nations in the world who wish to do us harm. And that is why this open rebellion against US leadership, financial, military did not start until after he took office. The bullies in this world are connoseurs of power and for all their faults they know a weakling when they see one. And when they watch Obama and what he is doing to our country, they realize that all they need to do is sit back and wait. He will do to this country what they never could. It is almost too late.

  111. Well another big money donor bails out on the June 25 fundraiser and says no more money for the DNC.

    “Bruce Bastian is the latest major, gay Democratic Party donor to pull out of a major fundraiser for the party after last week’s brief from the Department of Justice upholding DOMA as law”

    Mr. Bastian made his $$ with WordPerfect software and had a peak net worth of $1.1 billion…he is also a rare breed, an “Out and activist Gay Mormon.
    ————————-
    Thank God for people like this. They are great Americans.

  112. wbboei Says:

    June 17th, 2009 at 8:59 pm
    The self-described Libertarian pundit
    ***********************************

    true, the koolaid kids have to take baby steps…put a few toes in the water first…and Maher already had one show cancelled for being too ‘outspoken’ so he has to go gingerly into the night…or light, as it were…

    but now it is out there floating in the collective consciousness for others to ‘catch on’ to

    …and then you have this…the gay community puts down the koolaid…

    President Obama betrays the gay community
    salon.com/opinion/feature/2009/06/17/gay_rights/

    “In other words, the only reason we’re getting anything: The gay ATM ran dry…
    Many of us were willing to cut our new president some slack. Not anymore.”
    ***************************************************

    …and just heard that PETA is angry with O for killing the fly…

    ******************************************

    in other words…as others here have hinted or suggested…a critical mass begins to take shape…form…manifestation…

    Ooops, He’s not ‘the one’…

  113. Even as the DailyKooks realize Obama can’t be trusted, Head Kook Markos (a homophobe in college) sings this song:

  114. Good question JBStonesFan. How does Geffen feel now about the utter contempt Obama has for his kind? “His kind” – rich Gay men and others who knew Hillary could be trusted on the issues.

  115. To a seasoned negotiator Obama looks like a rube to be had.

    1. First of all, when he blames his own country for problems, he reduces its stature in the eyes of the opposing party, and invites them to seek indemnification.

    2. Second, when he draws false moral equivalencies, he echoes the ideological talking points of our adversaries, rather than rejecting them for the propaganda statements they are, he sounds like Tokyo Rose.

    3. Third, when he accedes to the demand of an adverary to replace his chief negotiator because he is a Jew, he projects weakness. He should deflect that demand by asking the Iranians whether they are willing to give him veto power over who they select as a negotiator.

    4. Fourth, when he asks to be invited to the Sino Russian summit and they refuse he should show some spine and refuse to take no for an answer. He should advise them that if he is not invited then they may not be invited to the next ad hoc summit held by the western powers. Do you think Cheney would have taken no for an answer?

    The bottom line is clear. He is inviting them to walk over him, and they are doing it with impunity. When you project weakness such as this, your opponent will revise his expectations upward and demand more.

    and lets them off the hook.he projects weakness. When he condemns his own country to foreigner he invites them to do likewise, and to test him. (Note: no experienced negotiator would ever do this.)

    2. Second, he dra

  116. To a seasoned negotiator Obama looks like a rube to be had.

    1. First of all, when he blames his own country for problems, he reduces its stature in the eyes of the opposing party, and invites them to seek indemnification.

    2. Second, when he draws false moral equivalencies, he echoes the ideological talking points of our adversaries, rather than rejecting them for the propaganda statements they are, he sounds like Tokyo Rose.

    3. Third, when he accedes to the demand of an adverary to replace his chief negotiator because he is a Jew, he projects weakness. He should deflect that demand by asking the Iranians whether they are willing to give him veto power over who they select as a negotiator.

    4. Fourth, when he asks to be invited to the Sino Russian summit and they refuse he should show some spine and refuse to take no for an answer. He should advise them that if he is not invited then they may not be invited to the next ad hoc summit held by the western powers. Do you think Cheney would have taken no for an answer?

    The bottom line is clear. He is inviting them to walk over him, and they are doing it with impunity. When you project weakness such as this, your opponent will revise his expectations upward and demand more.

  117. The Prince it is made explicity clear that love is fleeting.
    ——————————————-
    Yes indeed Admin . . . .

    And so did Cole Porter

    JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS

    As dorothy parker once said
    To her boyfriend, “fare thee well”
    As columbus announced
    When he knew he was bounced,
    “it was swell, isabel, swell”

    As abelard said to eloise,
    “don’t forget to drop a line to me, please”
    As juliet cried, in her romeo’s ear,
    “romeo, why not face the fact, my dear”

    It was just one of those things
    Just one of those crazy flings
    One of those bells that now and then rings
    Just one of those things

    It was just one of those nights
    Just one of those fabulous flights
    A trip to the moon on gossamer wings
    Just one of those things

    If we’d thought a bit, of the end of it
    When we started painting the town
    We’d have been aware that our love affair
    Was too hot, not to cool down

    So good-bye, dear, and amen
    Here’s hoping we meet now and then
    It was great fun
    But it was just one of those things

  118. Bambis response to Iran looks so weak that there has got to be more going on here from Hillarys end. There may be a back channel that in operation here which provided sufficient reassurances to Israel for them to reject plans to bomb those facilities. I suspect this rebellion was aided and abetted by western forces, and the power struggle at the top scenario advanced by Clemmons which I previously rejected sounds increasingly plausible, especially after SHV’s posting this morning. If that is the case, then Ross is enough of a pro to step aside if it would abet the process. Knowing Hillarys history with him and the trust they have for eachother, I can imagine a scenario where she said I will support you if you want to remain as envoy and he said I would never forgive myself if my presence became an obstacle to peace so I think I should step aside. That is how pros operate. Amateurs like Bambi gutspill, ponitificate and then run and hide. I wouldn’t want you to think I didn’t love bambi. I hope it is not becoming too obvious.

  119. 4. Fourth, when he asks to be invited to the Sino Russian summit and they refuse he should show some spine and refuse to take no for an answer. He should advise them that if he is not invited then they may not be invited to the next ad hoc summit held by the western powers. Do you think Cheney would have taken no for an answer?
    ——————————————————
    What I would be afraid of here is that this contrarian group would gain stature and traction as an independent entity and challenger to the status quo. What I would tell them is I do not think it is prudent to head down that road. What I would suggest as an alternative is that all members of G-2O meet and that your group take as long of a caucus as you need to formulate a position, but once you have I want you to present it to us in the same room so we can address it in the moment, rather than having it fester and build momentum.

    My god this is negotiation 101. Quo vadid bambi. Whiter goest thou?

  120. Comment by wbboei | 2009-06-18 03:59:33

    McCaskill is a beast with the brain of a fruit fly, the morals of an alley cat and the savoir faire of the assailents in the movie Deliverance. She loves to play grab ass bambi on airplanes, and he has is loathe to recipocate. Often he has to remove her hand from his shoulder.

    Thus it is hardly surprising that after no investigation she would reach the inelutalble conclusion that Bambi’s minions were in compliance with the law when they fired Walpin for doing his job, and slandered his good name by calling him senile.

    Her husband was a barrister and he died. He was a lucky lawyer.

  121. awful news

    admin – looking for any updates on hillary’s condition. supposedly fell on way to WH, fractured elbow, requires surgery.

    damn!

  122. Hillary Clinton fractures elbow in fall
    7 hours ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton fractured her right elbow during a fall Wednesday, her chief of staff said.

    Clinton was on her way to the White House when she fell and injured her elbow, chief of staff Cheryl Mills said in a statement released late Wednesday.

    Clinton was treated at The George Washington University Hospital, just a few blocks from State Department headquarters, before going home. She will undergo surgery to repair her elbow in the coming week, Mills said.

    “Secretary Clinton appreciates the professionalism and kindness she received from the medical team who treated her this evening and looks forward to resuming her full schedule soon,” Mills said.

    Clinton had been scheduled to join actress Angelina Jolie on Thursday morning at a Washington event marking World Refugee Day. That event has been removed from Clinton’s public schedule.

    google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hq4K89IEtxpLX5U4CTUhBhiMaq2wD98SSAN00

    ———————————–

    Take care, Miss Hillary. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  123. Republicans still worried about Obama ‘infomercial’ despite ABC promise

    BY Richard Huff
    DAILY NEWS TV EDITOR
    Thursday, June 18th 2009, 4:00 AM

    Republicans are concerned that ABC News is getting a little too close to President Obama for its health-care coverage.

    ABC pledges GOP a healthy debate
    The Republican National Committee isn’t buying ABC News’ assurance that its day-long focus on the Obama administration’s health-care package will be unbiased.

    Indeed, the RNC will open up its television studio in Washington next Wednesday – the day of ABC’s programming – and foot the bill for House and Senate Republicans to do interviews with stations in their home districts. The RNC made the offer in a memo Wednesday that was obtained by the Daily News.

    “The RNC will absorb the costs of the satellite time and offer assistance in setting up the satellite interviews with the local affiliates,” it said. The move is the latest attempt by Republicans in response to ABC’s decision to broadcast multiple programs on the White House’s new health-care program.

    On Wednesday, ABC will air an interview with President Obama and the First Lady on “Good Morning America.” It will also have Charles Gibson anchor “World News” from the White House and will air a prime-time, hour-long town-hall-type special with the President fielding questions on health care from Gibson, Diane Sawyer and a panel of guests.

    ABC News officials have said the special will be balanced, with opinions and pointed questions from all sides on the issue.

    Earlier this week, in a letter to ABC News President David Westin, Ken McKay, chief of staff of the RNC, said he was concerned that “this event will become a glorified infomercial to promote the Democrat agenda. If that is the case, this prime-time infomercial should be paid for out of the [Democratic National Committee’s] coffers.”

    Kerry Smith, senior vice president of ABC News, responded in a letter to McKay in which he wrote: “ABC News prides itself on covering all sides of important issues and asking direct questions of all newsmakers – of all political persuasions – even when others have taken a more partisan approach and even in the face of criticism from extremes on both ends of the political spectrum.” ABC News officials vow they have full control over the selection of the audience and questioners at the town-hall meeting. They also noted that having a one-sided discussion doesn’t make for good television.

    Meanwhile, it seems it’s not just the RNC that’s upset with the network. Yesterday, the advocacy group Conservatives for Patients’ Rights lashed out at ABC for refusing to accept its paid advertising. Rick Scott, chairman of the organization, called it “unfortunate – and unusual” that ABC would turn down the ads.

    According to an ABC spokeswoman, it’s not unusual – in fact, it’s a policy. “ABC as a network does not accept advocacy advertising, and never has,” the spokeswoman said. “This is for all divisions, including news, prime, etc.”

    nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv/2009/06/18/2009-06-18_republicans_still_worried_about_obama_healthcare_informercial_despite_abc_promis.html#ixzz0ImagviIb&C

    ——————————-

    “this event will become a glorified infomercial to promote the Democrat agenda”

    YES!

    “ABC News officials vow they have full control over the selection of the audience and questioners at the town-hall meeting.”

    What a joke!

  124. JanH, I wonder what time it was when she fell? Your post says 7hrs ago so that would be about 1am, if that is the time they are really working her ass off. Bambi plays golf and goes out on dates while Hillary is still at work at midnight???
    It makes me sick how they have done her!!
    When and where did you get this news, I watched TV all night and there was nothing on Hillary??

  125. confloyd,

    I would think that it happened at least few hours before that. I’m sure between getting her arm examined and making the announcement to the news that it was maybe mid-evening?

  126. As far as where I found it, BBC, Associated Press, and a few others had it when I was checking on news on the internet this morning.

  127. I guess neighborhood organizer did not include negotiations. Of course this was evident during the primary. O has been strung along for some time, placed in positons where he really did not function, getting his ticket punched. If a record need to be had, someone created it for him.

    Now he has to create his own record. Yes, he is not a negotiator, never had any experience, and does not know the first thing about maintaining a powerful positon amoung the nations of the world. He has 4 years or more to religate us to subservent status. It looks like he is well on his way.

    I listened to the comic Colbert last night. He brought in a Iran expert. He said he felt Iran was ready for change, and a new perspective. I felt like I was hearing an O supporter. Now I am convinced that the challenger might be another O.

  128. What do you think would have happened if Obama or Meanchelle would have fallen and fx their elbows. I would have been a media event.
    Of coarse Hillary I am sure would rather it not be, but I think we have a right to know this.
    World events at this time is scary enough without Hillary overseeing them. If she is going to have to have surgery, it was a bad break and probably requires a rod or at least a couple of pins.
    Elbow fractures are extremely painful and require lots of physical therapy.
    Gees with all the SS around her, why couldn’t they have caught her?

  129. WTF, Sotomayor has a broken ankle and Hillary has a broken elbow, what the heck is this all about.
    He has all the hard working women working above and beyond the call of duty while he goes out on dates and plays 6 hrs of golf.
    This is WHY I have a problem with most men. This is also my life.

  130. You guys will love this statement from another poster on TD.
    Obama swatting a fly, flies are always attracted to manure. ROTFLMAO!!

  131. You folks should go over to the confluence and see Hillary at a press conference wear a beautiful shade of green!

  132. I understand the irritation, and many times this site is the only place I can seem to work it out.

  133. I hear Pita is pist about the fly POTUS killed. They should be more interested in Al Queda strapping bombs on the horses and blowing them up.

  134. I guess we did not get an overnight article. But then I can remember that happening only about two times. I guess it keeps us on our toes.

    I love the way Hillary presents herself. She is not this scarecrow Hollywood type, and has always just done the best she can with what she has.

    I just returned from a reunion, and I felt like people were looking at me saying why does she not look 20 anymore. I really don’t want to look 20 anymore. The peer pressure we accuse the young of is also obvious in the old. Many of these women are dying their hair. Don’t get me wrong, if they want to do that fine. My goal is to grow old GRACEFULLY. It is amazing that the older group of people try to push standards on their goup also. Be a skinney scarecrow, dye your hair, and you are not allow to live with someone, you are suppose to marry them, when the young no longer bother to.

    Anyway, confloyd, that is my pet peeve for the morning. I really think that HRC is aging GRACEFULLY.

  135. Yep, we must look young and be skinny at all cost, thats BS. What I tell these youngsters is when they make as much as I do, then come and talk to me, until then STFU.
    I absolutely take no BS from any men. I have a friend that is my age and is letting a man tell her what she can and can’t do, I told her unless he is supporting her then he has no say, even if he is supporting her he shouldn’t be telling her what to do. I believe in mutual respect for one anothers feelings, in that case, we can do what the other ask out of love, not control.
    Men are irritating, and the women who support them are even more irritating.

  136. Confloyd,

    Not much, but a few more details…

    Hillary Clinton falls, fractures elbow

    Thu, 18 Jun 2009

    US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has broken her right elbow after tripping on her way to the White House for a meeting.

    The top US diplomat’s chief of staff, Cheryl Mills, broke the news of the former First Lady’s mishap on Wednesday, noting she will carry on with her full assignments after surgical procedures on her elbow are concluded.

    “On the way to the White House late this afternoon, Secretary Clinton fell and suffered a right elbow fracture. She was treated at The George Washington University Hospital before heading home,” Mills noted.

    The 61-year-old secretary’s accident comes a week after the US President Barack Obama’s candidate for the Supreme Court Justice, Sonia Sotomayor, fractured an ankle, which forced her to resort to crutches.

    The 55-year-old US federal judge also underwent similar mishap before boarding a flight from New York to Washington for a Senate visit.

    presstv.ir/detail/98429.htm?sectionid=3510203

  137. A Canadian journalist’s viewpoint…

    David Frum: Iran violence leaves Obama among wounded

    Posted: June 16, 2009

    Among other casualties of the violence in Tehran: President Obama’s foreign policy hopes. If he persists now in his deal-making efforts, he’ll be acquiescing in fraud and violence. What is happening in Iran now is this year’s Tiananmen Square, and if Obama tries do business with the regime afterward, he’ll open himself to exactly the same criticism Bill Clinton meted out to the elder George Bush: of coddling tyrants.

    On the other hand, if Obama does not persist in his deal-making, what else does he do? He promised in 2008 to end the “threat” from Iran’s nuclear program. Diplomacy was his plan A to deliver on his promise. If he abandons diplomacy, there’s no Plan B. Sanctions have repeatedly failed. The president describes force as “on the table” – and there it will stay.

    Obama’s outreach to Iran has been slapped away. If the regime prevails in this power struggle, the American president will be left trapped and optionless. Obama badly needs a Mousavi win, not because such a win means change (let’s not get over-excited about that), but because it offered the appearance of change. Without that appearance, the realities for Obama with Iran get very dismal.

    network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/fullcomment/archive/2009/06/16/291445.aspx

  138. Jan H, I doubt they want to publish the time line for the fall since it would show how hard she is working compared to the perpetual vacationist that is running the WH.
    They did not release the until after midnight. My guess it was somewhere around that time. I am sure the hospital did not make Hillary wait to get taken care of. I sure she was whisked off to xray and the physician was waiting for the images while the tech was working with Hillary. My guess, being an xray tech, would be around 10pm.
    How could she trip during the day, it was after dark I bet.

  139. wbboei, re: your wonderfully inclusive list above pertaining to Barky’s lack of negotiating skills, it occurred to me what a horrible lawyer he would have been if he had ever actually worked as one- I certainly wouldn’t have retained him, as he surely would have lost the case during opening remarks and would have needed to pay the jury to stay awake during the trial, maybe with that good German beer they gave out during European Vacation, part uno.

  140. confloyd,

    I’m just hoping it isn’t the hand/arm she predominantly uses. Having fractured an elbow in the past, I know how frustrating it can be.

  141. Sounds like Hillary’s going to be tough like Kobe: “Put back in coach, the team needs me, for my skills and my leadership”.

    The details in the Yahoo article were kind of sketchy as to how she fell. Is she onto BASE jumping??

  142. politicsdaily.com/2009/06/17/president-obama-attacks-fox-news/

    H stuff and ws

    I guess O is upset with Fox news as they attack him all the time. The question is, why are not the others questioning him. Oh of course I forgot, we lost our Democracy during the Primary, and how dare Fox new question the one. I guess he feels picked on, something that has not happened for a long time to the one, who has been announted, and created.

  143. JanH Says:

    US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has broken her right elbow after tripping on her way to the White House for a meeting.
    &&&&&
    Did MO stick her foot out? “I was planting arugula, and I have a wide stance”.

  144. “Surreal” is the best word to describe Bambi and his unholy alliance with big media. This has become a media induced flight from reality. A form of bread and circuses. They are trying to create a false euphoria to cover up up a dismal disturbing reality. Our military strength, economic power and security are fading. And crooks are looting the treasury and destroying our future. They hope to distract us from all this by offering a 24/7 procession of pornographic images, sounds, and propaganda. The intent is to turn us from sentient beings into blind worshippers of a false god. Their goal is to ensure that when reality hits as it always does we will be so anesthesized by what has happened that we will do whatever this fraud does. The reported fact that ABC is doing this informercial bambis health care plan, and the further fact that one of their commentators is embedded in the White House staff and gives them political advice each morning on how to bamboozle the public with their partisan political message is merely the tip of the iceberg. It is therefore essential that the public reach the point where they no longer accept the false narrative presented by big media and concentrate on the realities of life and his failure to fulfill his promise to fix the economy. That is the question they are running from and we must pursue them to the gates of hell to obtain answers, and tell the world that he inherited a recession and is turning it into a depression.

  145. Red Cross to Hamas: Let us visit Schalit

    Jun. 18, 2009
    Itamar Sharon , THE JERUSALEM POST
    The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) criticized Hamas on Thursday for its continued refusal to allow the organization’s representatives to visit captured IDF soldier Gilad Schalit, as well as its refusal to allow him contact with his family throughout three years of captivity.

    In a statement issued Thursday, the ICRC stated: “Since [Gilad Schalit’s] capture in June 2006, the ICRC has repeatedly asked Hamas to allow the exchange of Red Cross messages between Gilad Schalit and his family. The most recent requests were made at the highest level, but these and all others have been refused.”

    “Repeated requests by the ICRC to visit Gilad Schalit to ascertain his conditions of detention and treatment have also been refused,” the organization said.

    “We welcome the fact that yesterday, former US president Jimmy Carter handed Hamas a letter from Gilad Schalit’s family to him,” said Béatrice Mégevand-Roggo, the ICRC’s head of operations for the Middle East and North Africa. “However, this cannot replace the regular and unconditional contacts with his family that Gilad Schalit is entitled to under international humanitarian law. The ICRC regrets that in his case, political considerations are judged more important than the simple humanitarian gesture of allowing a captive to be in touch with his family after three years of separation.”

    Mégevand-Roggo added that the people holding Schalit were entirely responsible for ensuring that his treatment and living conditions were humane and dignified.

    In its statement, the ICRC said that it had held several meetings with Schalit’s parents, Noam and Aviva, to brief them on its efforts regarding their 22-year-old son.

    “We share their concerns. Despite the lack of progress so far, we will continue to press for family contacts for [Schalit] and for ICRC access to him,” said Mégevand-Roggo.

    jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1245184867207&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

    ——————————–

    3 whole years and no outrage from the Western world. This is Hamas. This is what they do. Somebody remind obama please.

  146. Like no other town, New York City epitomized the Roaring Twenties–art decco, bathtub gin, and all the excesses. The Mayor was a bon vivante charismatic named Jimmy Walker who was as corrupt as he was flamboyant. When reality hit, he was out, and the voters elected an entirely different kind of Mayor named Fiorella La Guardia (the little flower). He wa everything Jimmy Walker was not, i.e. dull as opposed to flamboyant, frugal as opposed to spendthrift, Republican as opposed to Demoncrat. In time the cycle of history will repeat itself. Bambi is Jimmy Walker. Who will be the next La Guardia remains to be seen. We will have to go through the bottom of the J to destroy the corrupt DNC infrastructure which now exits which is squeezing the blood out of our pocketbooks and the liberty out of our political life. In so many ways this is Tammeny Hall revisited. The words of its founder ring out over a vast expanse of time: “I seen me opportunies, an I tookem”.

  147. JanH, She’s right-handed, so that would be the arm/hand she uses.

    Please get well soon, Hillary! Our country needs you!

  148. lililam Says:

    June 18th, 2009 at 10:43 am
    ————————–
    Lililam: you are right about Barkey and your view is shared by the honest members of the Illionis Bar. It is never a good thing when your attorney rises to make an opening statement and the first words out of his mouth are my client is no damned good, and I would not blame you at all if you threw the book at him, however . . . He does that now as President to our enemies whenever he is on foreign soil. It has become a joke around the world, but it will not deter them.

    Now when he was representing Rezko and defending corruption I am sure the speech was a little different, something like . . . your honor I rise in support of my client Antonin Rezko who has devoted his life to the betterment of the poor, and has subscribed a large portion of his income to ensuring that they have a solid roof over their heads and heat in their homes in the when the winter wind blows cold off Lake Michigan and . . . goddamnit Uncle Tony quit kicking me under the table when I am standing here in this courtroom before this judge and lying through my teeth for you, as you have paid me to do.

  149. BY Michael Saul
    DAILY NEWS POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT
    June 18th 2009, 9:25 AM

    President Barack Obama’s policies are not as a popular as he is, shows recent polls.

    President Obama remains popular with the American people but two new polls find deep misgivings about major policy positions, suggesting the new president’s honeymoon may be coming to an end.

    A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll pegged Obama’s job approval rating at 56%, a fall from 61% in April. Obama’s approval rating among independents in this poll dropped dramatically, from nearly a two-to-one approval to closely divided.

    Similarly, this poll exposed deep concerns about the administration’s approach to the economic crisis, notably its policy prescription for the beleaguered auto industry.
    Nearly seven in 10 Americans said they had concerns about the federal government’s intervention in the economy, including the administration’s decision to take an ownership stake in General Motors and the limits set by the White House on executive compensation.

    Obama and Congress should worry more about keeping the deficit down, 58% of the respondents said. A majority disapproved of Obama’s decision to close the prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The latest New York Times/CBS News poll revealed 60% of Americans believe the Obama administration has failed to develop a clear plan for dealing with the budget deficit. A majority, 52%, said the government should not spend money to stimulate the economy and should focus instead on reducing the deficit.

    According to the poll, fewer than half of the country approves of Obama’s handling of health care or the crisis facing the nation’s auto industry. Obama received positive reviews for his handling of foreign policy and the threat of terrorism.

    The president’s job approval rating, according to this poll, was 63%. But the poll showed his approval rating among Republicans plummeted from 44% in February to 23% today, a sharp drop suggesting the partisan divide might be even tougher to bridge.

    On Tuesday, in an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Obama acknowledged the hits from critics have taken a toll. “If you have an argument made frequently enough –whether it’s true or not — it has some impact,” Obama said. “If you want to attack a Democratic president, how are you going to attack him? Well, you’re going to talk about how he wants more government and he wants to socialize medicine and he’s going to be oppressive towards business. I mean, that’s pretty standard fare.”

    The President said he’s committed to plowing forth on his mission for change, especially in the area of health care and energy. “I suppose we could just stand pat and not do anything on either of those fronts,” he told the Journal. “That’s been tried for four or five decades. And in both energy and health care, the problems have gotten worse, not better.”

    nydailynews.com/news/politics/2009/06/18/2009-06-18_president_obamas_still_popular_but_his_policies_are_not.html#ixzz0InjUN7Gx&D

  150. ‘Israel and US agree on 19 of 20 topics’
    By JPOST.COM STAFF
    Lieberman: Israel and US agree on 19 of 20 topics

    A day after his first meeting with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, which yet again aired the sharp differences between Israel and the US on the settlements issue, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman played down the tension between the administrations, saying that Israel and the US “agree on 19 of 20 topics.”

    Lieberman and Clinton continue fight over settlements

    Speaking with Israeli correspondents in Washington, Lieberman explained that indeed the settlements remained an unresolved point, but he sensed from the Americans “goodwill to bridge over the differences.”

    “We are trying to put everything on the table in the most candid fashion, no tricks and no shticks,” said the foreign minister, “and we believe that the best mediator is direct talks between the sides.”

    While Israel didn’t plan on creating new settlements, Lieberman continued, in line with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s declaration in his Sunday Bar Ilan policy speech, that “we have no intention on suffocating our people.”

  151. ABC Says No to GOP Ads During Obama Healthcare Special

    By Paul Bedard
    Posted June 18, 2009

    Conservative and Republican National Committee attacks on ABC for refusing their ads to respond to next week’s planned ABC-White House healthcare special are being met with a stiff push back from the network which says it doesn’t accept the type of ads Obama opponents want to air.

    “ABC Television Network has a long standing policy that we do not accept advocacy advertising,” said a spokeswoman. Also, the network brushed off GOP charges that the special would be an Obama healthcare infomercial.

    Nonetheless, the RNC today demanded some air time and issued a fundraising letter attacking the network, something conservative groups did earlier this week. Here’s what Republican Party Chairman Michael Steele sent out:

    Dear Republican,

    It seems that the mainstream media has finally decided to dispense with the pointless denials of favorable coverage of the Obama Administration. Now one network, ABC News, has actually turned its entire programming over to President Obama and his big-government agenda.

    On June 24th, ABC News and anchor Charles Gibson will broadcast “World News”from inside the White House, and make Barack Obama’s case for nationalized health care for him, without any opportunity for opposing views to be aired.

    The liberal special interests have clearly learned from their missteps the last time they tried to force Americans into a socialized health care system — the abysmal failure of the Clinton Administration’s “HillaryCare.”

    That’s why their friends at ABC News will be promoting Obamacare at virtually every opportunity, from “Good Morning America” to “Nightline,” and reach from ABC News’ websites all the way to the White House’s East Room.

    Republican, the Republican National Committee’s request for an opportunity to add our views along side those of the Obama Democrats’

    — to ensure that all sides of the health care reform debate are heard

    — was flatly rejected by ABC News.

    What are the Democrats and their media allies afraid of? The truth? That is outrageous! And we will not take it!

    We will be heard!!

    Please help us raise the nearly $100,000 we need to buy air time to get the truth about the disastrous consequences of the Obama Democrats’ government-run health care plans out to the American people. Make a special donation of $25, $50, $100, $500 or $1,000 to the Republican National Committee today, and your gift will support our fight to counter the ABC/Obama “special programming” with our plan for meaningful, genuine health care reform.

    Please stand with us. Help us get on the air and get our message to the American people! President Obama and the Democrats are blurring the lines between government and the private sector to pass their big government agenda. Help us keep things clear. Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    Michael Steele

    usnews.com/articles/news/washington-whispers/2009/06/18/abc-says-no-to-gop-ads-during-obama-healthcare-special.html

  152. jbstonesfan Says:

    June 18th, 2009 at 12:50 pm
    ‘Israel and US agree on 19 of 20 topics’

    ——————————

    LOL…great countermove/word-playing on Lieberman’s part. The Arabs are going to be furious.

  153. “ALL HAT, NO CATTLE” OBAMA

    NY Times wishing his response to Iran’s elections was less tepid, but they do it in a manner that makes an excuse for him:

    “Some in Washington, meanwhile, have been complaining that President Obama hasn’t been tough enough in his criticism of Iran’s government. He may have to speak out more forcefully in the days to come. But given its history with Iran, the United States must take special care not to be seen as interfering. That would only give Iran’s hard-liners a further excuse to blame the United States for their own shameful failures.”
    &&&&

    Agreed, Obama makes Carter look bold and decisive.
    Obama, not sure what to do, opts to do….nothing.

    nytimes.com/2009/06/18/opinion/18thu2.html

    Iran’s Nonrepublic
    =============

    Looking at the behavior of Iran’s government, one can only conclude that it is terrified of its own people. Looking at the courage of the hundreds of thousands of protesters who have taken to the streets, one can only feel admiration and anxiety for their safety.

    Government authorities bulldozed the results of last week’s presidential election — declaring the incumbent, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the winner by a landslide before the votes could be credibly counted. Now they are threatening and killing protesters, arresting opposition leaders, trying to block journalists from reporting and predictably blaming everyone but themselves.

    Fortunately, many of the same people who fomented the 1979 revolution with what was then advanced technology — recorded speeches by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini — are being thwarted by Twitter and the Internet. While authorities are trying to block communications, Iranians have become skilled at using proxy Web sites and posting videos on YouTube to get messages out.

    On Wednesday, tens of thousands of Iranians were again on the streets silently protesting the bogus results. Mir Hussein Moussavi, Mr. Ahmadinejad’s main rival, has called for more peaceful protests on Thursday in honor of people killed in postelection unrest.

    The Guardian Council — which supervises elections — has tried to pacify the opposition by offering to recount votes in a limited number of districts. This was a cynical gesture not least because the authorities made clear that the recount would not change the final result. Even a full recount would be suspect. How could anyone be sure that the ballots were valid?

    More violence against the Iranian people will only highlight the government’s illegitimacy and desperation.

    If the authorities want to resolve this impasse peacefully — that must be the goal — they should call a new election, monitored by independent Iranian observers. Before last week’s results were prematurely and improbably declared, a runoff was expected between Mr. Ahmadinejad and Mr. Moussavi. As a first step, authorities should set up a commission representing all major candidates to examine the election data and jointly determine a face-saving and credible way forward.

    Some in Washington, meanwhile, have been complaining that President Obama hasn’t been tough enough in his criticism of Iran’s government. He may have to speak out more forcefully in the days to come. But given its history with Iran, the United States must take special care not to be seen as interfering. That would only give Iran’s hard-liners a further excuse to blame the United States for their own shameful failures.

  154. If Will Rogers were living today and he took a long look at Mr. Obama, he would probably say that this newly minted politician reminds me of a man I met at the country fair last summer. He walked up to me, stayed in my face and just kept smiling, and smiling and similing. And while he was standing there smiling, I felt a light tug at my back pocket which I did not pay much attention to at the time. I was too entranced. But when I finally figured out it was late, that I had stayed too long at the fair, I went home. The next morning I woke up and discovered that my wallet was missing. For the life of me I cannot figure out where I lost it.

  155. Thousands of years ago, Moses told his people in Egypt get off your asses, get on your camels, we are going to The Promised Land. They did and the world was made better for it.

    Today, Mr Obama tells his worshippers sit on your asses, light up your Camel, this is the Promised Land. But not for long the way he and his cronies are plundering it.

    (Note: a rabbi friend who lives in my building told me that one.)

  156. blogs.nashvillescene.com/pitw/2009/06/republican_staffer_e-mails_oba.php

    H stuff but no ws. This is at Huffington Post. Evidently a Republican staffer sent out a poster that has all the American Presidents, however, O is shown as a black space with just two large eyes. Of course it was meant to be funny, but they are calling for a firing of this person. Of course it is being called racists. Now if this was HRC with some female trait being highlighted, I don’t think anything would be said. They would expect everyone to laugh at it.

    So what do you think?

  157. Also saw a headline at Huff Post that indicated Dashle is trying to get the health care package withdrawn???

  158. NMF,

    Obama or not, this is not amusing in the least way. Even so, I think a sharp reprimand/loss of pay maybe, but I don’t think he/she should be fired though.

  159. NMF: you are right of course. What I do not understand is why the Republicans feel compelled to hit below the belt when Bambi leads with his chin, and gives them the perfect target. Instead they do this and it opens the door for his robotic supporters in the media to renew their false charges against the Party of Lincoln. Also it allows and to divert public attention from the real issue which is what this sociopath is doing to destroy the country.

    It appears to me that the public is figuring out the Obama-Media scam on their own, based on the above poll. The economy is not being fixed, the job losses continue, the dollar is under seige and the big media put on a happy face campaign is becoming mawkish, sickening to more and more people. It is better that wisdom come late than it not come at all. I think Hedges is right:

    Barack Obama, and the criminal class on Wall Street, aided by a corporate media that continues to peddle fatuous gossip and trash talk as news while we endure the greatest economic crisis in our history, may have fooled us, but the rest of the world knows we are bankrupt

    When the economy tanks due in part to his policies, Obama, who pretends to be a savior, “will suddenly look pitiful, inept and weak. And the rage that has kindled a handful of shootings and hate crimes in the past few weeks will engulf vast segments of a disenfranchised and bewildered working and middle class. The people of this class will demand vengeance, radical change, order and moral renewal, which an array of proto-fascists, from the Christian right to the goons who disseminate hate talk on Fox News, will assure the country they will impose.”

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