How far will Ayers turn against Obama?

How far will Ayers turn against Obama?

Jack Cashill

On two unprompted occasions in October of this year, Bill Ayers admitted to having written Barack Obama’s acclaimed memoir, Dreams From My Father.

At the time, I wrote of these admissions that “however ironic their delivery, [they] remind Obama who put him in the White House and who can take him out.” I suspected then, and still do, that this shot across Obama’s bow was meant to get his attention on the question of troop deployment to Afghanistan.
After months of dithering, Obama turned his back on his leftwing base, Ayers included, and grudgingly consented to a troop surge.  Ayers is not pleased.  On Wednesday night, he took to the streets of Chicago to protest.  Never shy about using stark language, Ayers told an interviewer just what he thought about his protégé’s policy.
I am here demonstrating against the war because I am appalled and alarmed that once against we are escalating the war.    And the idea that there are benchmarks for getting out is a myth and a lie.  The fact is that you cannot imagine a scenario where six months from now or eighteen months from now the administration would say well we did not meet our benchmarks therefore we are leaving.  This is an absolute tragedy for the people of the Mideast, for Afghanistan and for us.
In response to the troop surge, Ayers counseled direct action, “I think everybody has to take a moment right now to stand up in opposition to this war.”
To this point, as expected, the major media are all but mum on the schism, let alone the dynamics behind it.  Those who have commented, like the willfully blind John Hudson, writing on Atlantic Magazine’s blog, “The Atlantic Wire,” spin the story to discredit conservative media. 
Not surprisingly, Hudson sees the split as proof that “the ‘close’ relationship between Bill Ayers and Barack Obama that many right-wing pundits envisaged had always been rather tenuous.”
In truth, the relationship between the two is deep and complex.  It is likely that the media will continue to ignore its complexity unless, of course, Ayers forces them to do otherwise.  And rest assured, he has the means to do so.

Page Printed from: at December 03, 2009 – 11:44:41 PM EST

Bernanke fights for Fed powers

Bernanke fights for Fed powers

By Krishna Guha in Washington

Published: December 3 2009 15:29 | Last updated: December 3 2009 19:10

Ben Bernanke on Thursday warned lawmakers not to strip the Federal Reserve of powers and independence it needed to promote growth and price stability.

“As we move forward, we must take care that the Federal Reserve remains effective and independent,” Mr Bernanke told the Senate banking committee during his confirmation hearing for a second term as the US central bank’s chairman. He urged Congress not to take away the Fed’s role in bank supervision or subject it to more intrusive government auditing.

The Fed chief said near-zero interest rates were not fuelling asset price bubbles in the US and that it was not the Fed’s job to prevent bubbles abroad.

“US monetary policy is intended to address both financial and economic issues in the US,” he said.

“Countries that are concerned about that have their own tools to address bubbles in their own countries” – such as exchange rate appreciation or changes in their own fiscal and monetary policies.

However, Mr Bernanke said the Fed would monitor asset prices and that, in the absence of proposed new systemic risk powers to combat bubbles, “monetary policy has to pay some attention” to asset prices. “We are looking at it.”

The Fed chairman also said the Fed had not made a final decision to end asset purchases as scheduled in March, saying this was a monetary policy judgment and the committee would decide “whether or not to do more” based on the economic outlook.

Amid tough but generally respectful questioning, most senators appeared ready to support Mr Bernanke’s re­nomination but many voiced deep concerns about the Fed as an institution and challenged the chairman’s views as to the roles it should play in the future.

Chris Dodd, the Democratic chairman of the Senate banking committee, praised Mr Bernanke as “the right leader for this moment in our nation’s economic history” – but said he wanted to pare back the Fed’s responsibilities to focus it more narrowly on monetary policy.

Richard Shelby, the senior Republican on the committee, withheld his support, saying: “For many years I held the Federal Reserve in very high regard . . . I fear now, however, that our trust and confidence was misplaced.”

The Fed chairman pledged “unsparing self-assessments” of the central bank’s failings in the run-up to the crisis, admitting that the Fed had fallen short on consumer protection and bank supervision.

But he argued that the Fed needed to retain its bank supervision role in order to be an effective lender of last resort and maintain financial stability.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2009. Print a single copy of this article for personal use. Contact us if you wish to print more to distribute to others.

Jobs Summit Will Not Produce Jobs

Jobs Summit Will Not Produce Jobs

By C. Edmund Wright

It is easy to confidently predict that Barack Obama’s job summit today will do nothing to create jobs. It’s so easy that even a climatologist could do it.

The President will hold this “jobs summit” today at the White House, where a lot of folks who have never created a single job will talk about everything except serious and adult ideas on how to realistically create jobs.
While the complete list of attendees was not available at press time, we do know that the summiteers will include labor union members, environmentalists, and liberal economists from academia. The historical entirety of these groups’ job creation: zero.
Actually, most of what these particular groups agitate for are causes that generally destroy jobs — or at least productivity — so the real figure is no doubt a large negative number.
Meanwhile, members from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) have less chance of getting in to the White House today than the latest reality TV show contestants from some obscure BRAVO network-offering. I mean, really, why would you invite business groups to a jobs summit anyway?
Yes, I know that representatives from Google and other selected high-tech and Wall-Street types will be at this summit — and they should be. However, large tech companies and investment banks who are closely linked to government and liberal causes should not be the sole representatives of free enterprise at a jobs summit. This is especially true when an entire nation is in the midst of a jobs recession, if not a depression. Quite often, these big players are disconnected from the concerns of small businesspeople — such as contractors, shop owners, and artisans — in the best of cases.  In the worst cases, they’re working at cross-purposes.
In other words, the real engine of job creation will not even have a seat at the “jobs summit,” while many enemies of these people will have numerous seats.
Hopefully, the entire thing will end up being a cynical yet benign photo-op so that the president can pretend to care about an entire economic system that he spent most of the last twenty years admittedly despising. With his agenda and the attendees known so far, if anything is accomplished, it most certainly will be damaging to free markets. That is who these people are. Many have a track record of hurting business interests and are proud of it.
Conversely, the causes of the job situation have been painfully obvious to the entrepreneurial class for many months. Last December, when a devastating job loss of over 530,000 was reported for November 2008, the writing was on the wall for any who dared to see. As written here at that time about our plans to unwind our business of nineteen years,
Watch the financial news and you will see continued job cuts each month. We are not alone in our strategy. Far from it. Atlas has shrugged all over the country. [Emphasis added.]
Apparently I, or any other business-owner who started shutting down or scaling back the day after the election, am overqualified to be a pundit on CNBC or Fox Business.
For some reason, the “Atlas Shrugged” dynamic continues to be missed by almost the entire political and financial pundit class. The job numbers each month continue to shock them, and they continue to predict “the coming recovery” as if nothing in our nation has changed. There is an assumption that the economy will bounce back because — well, it always has. Small business-owners everywhere wonder what country these people are talking about. We know when we are under attack. And by “we,” I mean the entire concept of free enterprise and entrepreneurship, as well as current business owners. 
As written last December: 
Like many business owners, we are no longer willing to take all of the financial and legal risks and put up with all of the aggravation of owning and running a business. Not with the prospects of even higher taxes, more regulation, more litigation and more emboldened bureaucrats on the horizon.  Like others we know, we are getting out while the getting is, well, tolerable. 
Remember, this was written some four thousand pages (of ObamaCare legislation) ago and before the House had passed cap-and-trade. This is not rocket science, nor was it unbelievably astute forecasting.  People who have a dream to build a better life by taking risks and starting a business instinctively know when those principles are under attack.
The prediction of “higher taxes, more regulation, more litigation and more emboldened bureaucrats on the horizon” sounds like we all had advance copies of both cap-and-tax and ObamaCare legislation in our possession a year ago. We did not. But we knew who Obama was and is, and we know who Reid, Pelosi, Frank, Dodd, Waxman, Waters, et al are. 
It does not require a genius — or even a climatologist — to figure out what kind of business environment will result when the levers of government are all to be controlled by folks who despise business. The passion for taking risks is cooling fast, and you don’t need “value added” calculations to figure that one out.
And it is just as easy to predict that the White House jobs summit will do nothing to increase those passions either. Most of the people at this sham event either know nothing about how to promote business, or they know how and have dedicated their life’s work to doing the opposite. Again, this was painfully obvious right after the election:
Liberals seem to be clueless as to where “the money” comes from.  They love to tax, regulate and redistribute wealth — all the while decrying the very profit motive that created it — something they do not understand.
The lay-offs of November 2008 – which will be part of George W. Bush’s statistical record – fall in reality on the Obama election. Business owners understand that the election just gave a lot more power to who think like the Illinois liberal “President elect” who chose another Illinois liberal for his Chief of Staff (and) Michigan liberals for his economic team.  Illinois and Michigan are broke!
The liberal blogosphere widely lampooned thoughts like these eleven months ago — especially the part about the job losses being the result of Obama’s election. Let’s see…that would be about six million jobs ago. 
As Scott Rasmussen showed on his website, the layoff mentality did indeed start right as Obama’s election became inevitable in October. Then it surged in November upon the election itself, and it has stayed high ever since. As predicted, the layoffs have indeed continued, as most entrepreneurs knew they would.
And as previously stated, we are predicting that the White House jobs summit will do nothing to help any of this. Nothing from Washington will, unless a lot of congressional jobs are lost in 2010. And the certainty of that is very, very easy indeed to predict.

Page Printed from: at December 03, 2009 – 08:00:53 PM EST

Union Executives and Academics at Jobs Summit Were Hefty Obama Donors

Union Executives and Academics at Jobs Summit Were Hefty Obama Donors


A large number of union executives and academics who gave heavily to President Obama’s 2008 campaign will be at the table for President Obama’s White House jobs summit Thursday — along with a number of corporate executives capable of creating the jobs everyone is seeking.

A large number of union executives and academics who were heavy donors to President Obama’s 2008 campaign will be at the table for his White House jobs summit Thursday. 

But few big Obama donors are among the top corporate executives on the list — and they are the ones who will bear the burden of creating the jobs that are needed to bring down the staggering unemployment rate.

And the Chamber of Commerce, with whom the Obama administration has battled over health care and climate change policies, and the National Federation of Independent Business confirmed to Fox News on Wednesday that they were not invited to attend the forum on expanding job creation.

According to Federal Election Committee records, of the 29 attendees named on a partial guest list of the 133 forum attendees, five donated personally to Obama while four others work at organizations that contributed heavily to political action committees that supported his campaign.  

Several attendees are labor leaders whose political action committees contributed impressive amounts to Obama’s war chest, including one group that gave nearly $29.5 million.

Anna Burger of Change to Win, who is invited to attend the forum, is secretary treasurer of Service Employees International Union Committee on Political Education, or SEIU COPE, a political action committee that gave $29,442,016 to Obama between February 2008 and September 2009.  Burger gave Obama $750 in personal contributions.  

American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten will also be at the summit. The AFT, along with the AFL-CIO Committee on Political Education, gave Obama $1,997,375 in October 2008.  And the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union, which donated $673,309 to Obama from February to October 2008, will also be represented at the forum.  

Of the several award-winning economists slated to attend, some are academics who donated hefty amounts to candidate Obama, like Joe Stiglitz of Columbia University, an early supporter who doled out more than $4,000 for his presidential run.    

Of the 29 known attendees, only one CEO — Eric Schmidt of Google — donated to Obama. Schmidt gave $25,000 in personal contributions to the president’s inaugural celebration last January. Employees from Google Inc. doled out a whopping $803,436 for Obama’s presidential campaign — the fifth highest of any organization to donate to his record-shattering campaign bounty.

One other CEO slated to attend, Frederick Smith of Federal Express, gave money during the 2008 presidential campaign — but not to Obama. Smith contributed $2,300 to Republican presidential nominee John McCain and served on the Republican’s “kitchen cabinet” of campaign advisers.  

In his 12th summit hosted or attended since assuming the presidency, Obama will summon a crowd that includes prominent CEOs, business owners, elected officials, non-profit groups and economists to devise a plan to boost job growth. Other attendees include executives from AT&T, Comcast, Qwest, Dow Corning and Siemens, companies that have collectively laid off thousands of employees in the past year. 

Obama said last month that the forum is intended to prevent making “any ill-considered decisions — even with the best intentions — particularly at a time when our resources are so limited. But it’s just as important that we are open to any demonstrably good idea to supplement the steps we’ve already taken to put America back to work.”

“Prosperity around the world is no longer as dependent on American consumption and borrowing, but rather more on American innovation and products,” Obama said during a Nov. 12 press conference.

The national unemployment rate in October was at 10.2 percent, the highest in 26 years, according to the Department of Labor. New government figures for November will be released Friday, the day after the forum.

The administration’s claims to have saved of created thousands of jobs from the $787 billion dollar stimulus package have been met with controversy. The White House came under fire last month when it was revealed that a government Web site,, listed jobs saved or created in congressional districts that don’t exist.

The White House was forced to slash 60,000 jobs from its most recent report on the recovery program as a result of the faulty data. 

Editor’s Note: When first published, this story wrongly identified Columbia University Professor Dr. Jeffrey Sachs as a contributor to President Obama’s 2008 campaign. It was a different Jeffrey Sachs who contributed to the campaign.

Obama science advisers grilled over hacked e-mails- House Republicans pointed to controversial e-mails leaked from climate scientists and said it was evidence of corruption. Top administration scientists looking at the same thing found no such sign, saying it doesn’t change the fact that the world is warming.

Obama science advisers grilled over hacked e-mails
Dec 2 07:17 PM US/Eastern
AP Science Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) – House Republicans pointed to controversial e-mails leaked from climate scientists and said it was evidence of corruption. Top administration scientists looking at the same thing found no such sign, saying it doesn’t change the fact that the world is warming.The e-mails from a British university’s climate center were obtained by computer hackers and posted online about two weeks ago. Climate change skeptics contend the messages reveal that researchers manipulated and suppressed data and stifled dissent, and conservative bloggers are dubbing it “Climategate.”

In the first Capitol Hill airing of the issue, House Republicans Wednesday read excerpts from at least eight of the e-mails, saying they showed the world needs to re-examine experts’ claims that the science on warming is settled. One e-mail from 2003 was by John Holdren, then of Harvard University and now the president’s science adviser.

The exploding controversy led Phil Jones to step aside as head of the climate research unit at the University of East Anglia, the source of the e-mail exchanges. The university is investigating the matter. Penn State University also is looking into e-mails by its own researcher, Michael Mann. House Republicans asked for a separate hearing or investigation into the issue, but were rebuffed by Democrats.

“These e-mails show a pattern of suppression, manipulation and secrecy that was inspired by ideology, condescension and profit,” said U.S. Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis.

The science is proper and this is about a small fraction of research on the issue, said Holdren, a physicist who has studied climate change.

“The e-mails do nothing to undermine the very strong scientific consensus … that tells us the earth is warming, that warming is largely a result of human activity,” said another government scientist Jane Lubchenco. A marine biologist and climate researcher, she heads the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The e-mails don’t negate or even deal with data from both NOAA and NASA, which keep independent climate records and show dramatic warming, Lubchenco told members of the House global warming committee.

The hearing was supposed to focus on the latest in global warming scientific findings. Lubchenco even attempted a high school chemistry lesson with two quick experiments at the witness table. Donning one rubber glove, she demonstrated how adding carbon dioxide to water made it more acidic and said that is what’s now happening in the world’s oceans. Then she put chalk in acidic water compounds and showed it dissolving a bit, to demonstrate what will happen eventually to vital sea life.

But her bubble-inducing experiments were ignored in favor of the more explosive e-mails.

Among the messages that Sensenbrenner read was one from Jones, the East Anglia scientist, in which he wrote about a “trick of adding in the real temps” in an exchange about long-term climate trends. Holdren responded that the word “trick” did not mean manipulation of data, but about a “clever way” to tackle a problem. Another Jones’ e-mail read, “I would like to see the climate change happen so the science could be proved right.”

Defending the scientists, Rep. Jay Inslee, D-Wash., said somehow the e-mails aren’t stopping the Arctic from warming, the oceans from getting more acidic, and glaciers from melting. He sarcastically asked Holdren and Lubchenco if they were part of a global conspiracy that even included fictional movie villain organizations. Holdren, played along, saying he was not.

After complaining of “scientific fascism” and “scientific McCarthyism,” Sensenbrenner chastised Holdren for his 2003 e-mail, when he was at Harvard, that dealt with skeptics by “calling them names.”

What the e-mail, not read by Sensenbrenner, showed was that Holdren used ironic quotes around the word “Harvard” in describing two of his colleagues who are global warming skeptics. Holdren also had forwarded to other scientists an article he described as “for your entertainment” in which he was quoted as saying the two skeptics were “wrong.” Holdren defended his e-mail.

Sensenbrenner attacked the work of Penn State’s Mann, who is frequently brought up in the communications. Mann is the author of what is called the “hockey stick” theory, first described in the late 1990s. It suggested that the past 50 years had been the hottest in several centuries, if not 1,000 years, and that man-made global warming was to blame. That research was so controversial that the National Academy of Sciences studied the work in depth; it was used in former Vice President Al Gore’s documentary on global warming.

Sensenbrenner said the 2006 National Academy study showed Mann’s hockey stick was incorrect and that Mann’s theory was discredited. But Holdren said the NAS study had quibbles with Mann’s methods but agreed with his results.

The chairman of the Academy of Science panel, Texas A&M University atmospheric scientist Gerald North, confirmed in an interview Wednesday that Holdren was right, not Sensenbrenner.

“The conclusions that we came to were essentially the same as the hockey stick” theory that Mann proposed, North told The Associated Press. North said even if Jones, Mann and others had done no research at all, the world would still be warming and scientists would still be able to show it.


The Afghani Wasteland: Psychopaths Will Rule The Land That Perpetually Sucks

The Afghani Wasteland: Psychopaths Will Rule The Land That Perpetually Sucks

December 2nd, 2009 Posted By Erik Wong.


Roaring Republican:

“The United States and Russia do not intend to, and cannot, create the future government of Afghanistan. It is up to the Afghans themselves to determine their future.” – Joint US/Russia release on Afghanistan – November 13th 2001

The comedian Sam Kinison had a routinue that described succinctly and almost eloquently, in its own way, our past and current travails. Noting the futility of programs to ease hunger, sold through celebrity television charity pitches, he would speak into the microphone as if speaking to a suffering family in Africa or the Middle East. “You live in the (expletive) desert,” he would yell, “move to where the food is!” Pretending to pickup clumps of silicone he would add, “You see this? This is sand, nothing grows here, you live in the desert!”

Our war in Afghanistan has hit its obvious conclusion. It is the same conclusion that was met by every outside nation that ever entered the land, though our battle is far less bloody and costly in comparison to what other nations have endured. In the end, no matter what we do, we will be incapable of forcing order in Afghanistan and will leave knowing that it will only be a matter of time before some other lunatic steps in to brutalize and then organize the people to attack us and our allies.

In reality, despite all the whining from the left, we never entered Afghanistan as an occupier, as an Empire or as Ann Coulter put the alternative, as people looking to “invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity.” Had any of those been our posture or strategy in Afghanistan, we may have found a definitive outcome. Instead we started our journey as a response to 9/11. It then became a humanitarian and nation building exercise. Unable to build that nation, incapable of finding a population wanting for western style democracy, our engine has sputtered and our enemies realigned and reinvigorated. Worse, we have lost our resolve.

Afghanistan is in fact a wasteland. I realize my ethnocentrism but I also realize that some 9/11 hijackers came to America and spent their time in strip clubs before committing cold blooded murder in an attempt to achieve the ability to deflower invisible virgins in the afterlife. Born to the hellish nightmare of living in a country incapable of producing more than some oil and drugs, we shouldn’t be surprised that more than a few of these seeds have grown into withering plants rotting in the sun.

While I know there are good and decent people in Afghanistan, let’s not pretend a small band with a home-brewed Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, George Washington, Thomas Paine and Samual Adams is currently hanging around in one of the many holes dug into the sand. Great minds don’t seem to be there. The spirit of our own revolution is not either and that spirit cannot simply be aroused or bludgeoned into people.

In reality, revolutions like ours and the many others that were sparked from it, must happen internally. Liberal progressivism maintains that simple coercion, Government action or community organized action can rouse liberation. Neo conservatism took this leftist love of Government sponsored liberation and ran the Republican Party into the ground.

While many voices on the left continue to scorn our actions in Afghanistan and Iraq, those same people complain that our government stayed silent in Rwanda and would happily see government action in the Sudan. They complain about the money wasted in our endeavors not because they wish us to have saved it, but because they wish it had been spend on their own plans for “liberation” around the world and in America’s cities. They believe the Bush administration was wrong to tell Afghans and Iraqi’s how to live their lives because they feel it is their job to do exactly that here in America.

The coin is mangled on both sides. Our nation was failed by the Bush administration just as it is being failed by Obama’s. Democrats and Republicans, elected to represent and defend the people, blew it. We are now being told by a Democrat president what we were told by a Republican, that our future lies in Afghani’s embracing freedom, democracy, equality and sensible religion. If our future depends on that, we don’t really have one.

Like most people in the world, Afghani men want sex and power. In societal systems where polygamy exists, the wealthy men have multiple wives and bare children. The rest of the men go wanting. In such societal systems, women are abused and bound. They are commodities that are trafficked, abused and demoralized. Worst of all, they are dehumanized and turned into the enemy to be vilified by all of society.

Regardless of what Islam may be in its natural spirit, in Afghanistan and large parts of the world, it is perverted into a despicable and ruthless system of abuse and control. To pretend otherwise is to embrace futility. To pretend that this perversion is in any way similar to modern Christianity or Judaism as practiced by millions of the faithful in the United States, is ignorant.

Our problem is that the men who have no access to women or power, do have access to this perversion of religion. They are told the other life will provide them all they lack in this one and then offered the brutal way forward.

The United States, in comparison, hasn’t changed the fundamentals. With women still a commodity, power lacking for the average Afghani, and land still incapable of sustaining their livelihood, we offer them a life lacking but without a brutal way forward that will provide for them in the afterlife. Worse for our pitch, the Afghanis have always known we will leave. Last night, our President, made that clear. With perverted Islam guaranteed to come back, is it any surprise they choose the dark side?

We know what will happen to the many Afghani’s who embraced the United States when we leave. Their fate will be far worse than just death. In Iraq, the bodies of our allies were found in piles, having been tortured with fire and power tools, beheaded and worse. This is undoubtedly the fate of the Afghan civilian army and police, whatever that actually is.

Our experiment a failure, the alternative is that we stay forever in Afghanistan and ship in all of the necessities and comforts the people are incapable of producing themselves. This will drain and destroy our own society and lead to our further descent into socialized madness. I cannot support socialism at home, how can I justify it abroad?

We removed the tyrants from power with swift force after 9/11. They were replaced by incompetence, fanaticism and regional tyrants. The imaginary line that distinguishes Pakistan from Afghanistan keeps our troops from killing the original tyrants, making certain they will return. At this point, as disgusting of a thought as it may be, our only hope is that we leave Afghanistan with two warring factions of tyrants brutally slaughtering one another to a standstill. The worst outcome is that they simply join hands and come back at us with a much larger nightmare than we dare imagine.

The demoralizing effect of losing the War in Afghanistan will have untold repercussions on our society. The collective guilt would be overwhelming. We would know many who perpetrated 9/11 are still in the desserts plotting another attack. Actions have reactions and in human terms they are not just physical but psychological as well. Our society can only withstand so much and at this moment of overwhelming economic and societal decline, we do not need this.

Our country will prevail, it always has. Our future is brighter than our past, of this I am sure. We are, however, in a dark and perilous time. We have no solution for Afghanistan and I am not sure for Iraq either. Our economy is on a path toward absolute destruction and our nation turning against a leader who promised hope, change and unification of race, gender, religion, ethnicity and orientation. We are fracturing too fast to properly mend and with the inability to vilify those on the outside, we will turn within.

Critics not invited to White House ‘jobs summit’

Critics not invited to White House ‘jobs summit’

December 3rd, 2009

By Kara Rowland, Washington Times

 Let’s only invite people who agree with me…

Facing rising unemployment rates and having seen uncertain results from the stimulus bill, President Obama is hosting a “jobs summit” at the White House Thursday that will be packed with business leaders and economists supportive of White House policies but lacks a diversity of opinion, several analysts say.

Missing from a partial list of attendees released by the White House are the self-proclaimed voices of business – the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business – both of which have been critical of Mr. Obama’s proposed health care overhaul.

Confirmed attendees include liberal economists credited with shaping the $787 billion stimulus package, union leaders, environmental advocates and executives from Google and other blue-chip firms.

Read More:

This Will Not End Well

This Will Not End Well

December 3rd, 2009

By George Will, Real Clear Politics

 Obama is making some big assumptions in his Afghan plan

A traveler asks a farmer how to get to a particular village. The farmer replies, “If I were you, I wouldn’t start from here.” Barack Obama, who asked to be president, nevertheless deserves sympathy for having to start where America is in Afghanistan.

But after 11 months of graceless disparagements of the 43rd president, the 44th acts as though he is the first president whose predecessor bequeathed a problematic world. And Obama’s second new Afghanistan policy in less than nine months strikingly resembles his predecessor’s plan for Iraq, which was: As Iraq’s security forces stand up, U.S. forces will stand down.

Having vowed to “finish the job,” Obama revealed Tuesday that he thinks the job in Afghanistan is to get out of Afghanistan. This is an unserious policy.

Obama’s surge will bring to 51,000 his Afghanistan escalation since March. Supposedly this will buy time for Afghan forces to become adequate. But it is not intended to buy much time: Although the war is in its 98th month, Obama’s “Mission Accomplished” banner will be unfurled 19 months from now — when Afghanistan’s security forces supposedly will be self-sufficient. He must know this will not happen.

Read More:

Obama’s surrender will end in blood

Obama’s surrender will end in blood

Matt Patterson

They say that the U.S. Military Academy at West Point was an odd venue for President Obama’s Afghanistan speech. And indeed it was – after all, surrenders are usually offered to the enemy on the battlefield.For that is exactly what the President proposed Tuesday night; surrender, abject and total.

And if that wasn’t boon enough to our enemies, Obama offered them an extra token – before our announced withdrawal date of July 2011, he will generously offer them 30,000 more American soldiers to shoot at for the next year and a half. Surely target practice is all our soldiers will be, having been told in advance that they will be coming home scarcely before they can load their own weapons.

Obama’s gall is nothing short of astounding: He dares to travel to a group of soldiers, to tell them to their face, that he is sending them to fight and die in a battle that he has no intention of letting them win; that they will be pulled from the battle-field in time to placate his left-wing base for the 2012 election.

Imagine Abraham Lincoln saying to a group of soldiers in 1862, “Men, I’m sending you south to fight, but only for eighteen months; after all, we can’t let this unpopular war jeopardize my re- election chances, can we?” How would the Union troops have reacted? How would the Confederate troops have reacted? How, indeed, could our nation have survived such a craven calculation?

It could not have, of course. Lincoln committed his full resources, and the full resources of the nation, to the fight against the Slave Power: “I expect to maintain this contest,” he wrote “until successful, or till I die, or am conquered, or my term expires, or Congress or the country forsakes me.” Such manliness seems mythic in our Age of Iron; men of Lincoln’s mettle seem as giants who once roamed the earth in a distant, Golden Age of spirit and courage. Certainly the man-child who now wields the awesome power of the Presidency is but the faintest facsimile of such a glorious creature.

Obama is blunt about the reason for his disinterest in the Afghan war: “The nation that I am most interested in building is our own,” he told the cadets. By build, of course, he means dismantle – by nationalizing whole industries, for instance, and indeed, whole sectors of our economy.

Besides, he made clear to our soldiers, Afghanistan isn’t much worth fighting for anyway. The Afghan government, he says, “has been hampered by corruption.” This coming from a man whose allies recently bribed Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) with $300 million for her health care vote.

The end result of Obama’s surge-then-surrender strategy is not hard to foresee. The Taliban will wait us out, then move in and butcher whichever poor Afghans were foolish enough to cast their lot with the United States. Girls and women will be re-enslaved; al-Qaeda fighters will flood in, confident that no matter how hard they hit us, we will never have the will to finish them off.

Having re-taken Afghanistan, they will plot their return to America, to once again paint our skies in fire and blood.

Matt Patterson is a National Review Institute Washington Fellow and the author of “Union of Hearts: The Abraham Lincoln & Ann Rutledge Story.” His email is

Page Printed from: at December 03, 2009 – 08:50:03 AM EST

Sarah Palin’s Reagan Qualities

Sarah Palin’s Reagan Qualities

By Steve Flesher

Sarah Palin has taken the country by storm, electrifying the grassroots conservative movement in a way no Republican presidential or vice-presidential candidate has been able to in a very long time. 
The last person responsible for uniting grassroots conservatives to such an energizing degree was the great conservative himself, Ronald Wilson Reagan. Reagan was the grassroots rebel to the mainstream media in a weary America — entrenched in weak national defense and poor economic leadership, which barely withstood four years of Jimmy Carter. Come the end of 1979, fifty-two Americans had been held hostage by Islamic militants for 444 days, unemployment was through the roof, and national inflation rested in the double-digits.
As in the Carter era, Americans of every stripe are beginning to feel that weariness again. This is clear from a tremendous growth in unemployment, which correlates with president Obama’s diminished approval ratings in his first year — described by Gallup as “the largest [drop] … ever measured for an elected president between the second and third quarters of his term, dating back to 1953.”
In addition to the immense-yet-strangely-encouraging disapproval of Sarah Palin among the media, Hollywood celebrities, and every liberal, Palin also finds herself at the editorial mercy of “conservative pundits” like Kathleen Parker — or David Brooks of the New York Times, who proclaimed to George Stephanopoulos on the November 15th episode of “This Week” that Sarah Palin is “a joke.”
Brooks, who used to be a liberal, was also responsible for parodying conservative pundit William Buckley, Jr. Naturally, one wonders how much attention Brooks actually paid to the 1980 presidential campaign. 
As is the case with first-generation immigrants like Arianna Huffington and George Soros, who come to America with an immediate desire to reform it, many conservatives are suspicious of liberal-to-conservative “converts” who enter their side of the aisle with a drive to dictate how to change it.
Moreover, while some progressive types scramble to suddenly defend Reagan conservatism by writing articles titled “Sarah Palin is NOT the new Reagan,” the life stories of Reagan and Palin contradict their theories by revealing stark similarities between these two fascinating Americans.
Reagan and Palin were raised with similar values, attended similar schools, had similar competitive interests, and embarked on authentic, gradual segues into public service, with an undeniable connection to conservative Americans. 
Just like Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin was born in a small town. Reagan was born in Tampico, Illinois, while Palin debuted in Sandpoint, Idaho — both in February. As a youngster, Reagan had a job as a lifeguard and developed an enriched passion for competitive sports — particularly football — in high school. Sarah worked with her family, getting up with her father on many early mornings to hunt for the family’s meat supply. In high school, she became known as “Barracuda” on the basketball court, and she eventually led her team to the state championship. 
Just like Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin never attended an Ivy League college. Reagan chose Eureka College in Eureka, Illinois, while Sarah Palin attended local and state-level universities. Both obtained bachelor’s degrees and sought work as sportscasters — Reagan for the University of Iowa, Palin for local Anchorage news station.
Just like Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin got involved in politics by taking small steps. Reagan began writing speeches (which often espoused political messages supporting pro-business conservatism) while working for General Electric. Sarah Palin got involved with her local PTA and ran for city council of her small town because she was concerned about how her tax dollars were being spent. 
Just as Ronald Reagan did, Palin contains an instantly recognizable honesty factor among the grassroots. Through honesty, both politicians’ careers in public service continued to escalate in small but definitive steps. 
Though he was honest and had good intentions, Ronald Reagan was dropped from General Electric as his speeches continued to grow more effective and persuasive. Identically, Sarah Palin made a large handful of political enemies in both parties in Alaska when, with the people’s best interest at heart, she took on the same type of establishment politicians and opinions which continue to criticize her to this day.
Two years after his dismissal from General Electric, and in the same year Sarah Palin was born, Ronald Reagan kicked off the start of his enormous grassroots influence on a national level by giving his famed “Barry Goldwater” speech in 1964. Similarly, Sarah Palin remained impressively modest while giving one of the most powerful and effective speeches of all time during the 2008 Republican National Convention. 
Just like Reagan, Sarah Palin was able to demonstrate how one lives and learns through personal moments of grievance and despair. Last year, the mainstream media went wild over Sarah Palin upon learning about her daughter’s pregnancy during the same time she was being vetted by the McCain campaign. With Ronald Reagan, liberals in the media took aim at the fact that he was “the only divorced president.” 
Just like Reagan, Sarah Palin had been out of the country only a limited amount of times before running for national office. Even during Reagan’s service to his country, his nearsightedness kept him from serving overseas
Liberals and Republicans alike declared Ronald Reagan unqualified to be president, especially after Gerald Ford beat him for the Republican nomination in 1976. Even after four years of Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford himself remarked as late as March 1979 that Reagan was “unelectable.”
Gerald Ford is not the only member of a previously-failed presidential campaign to make such a proclamation. Just last month, Steve Schmidt, who headed the losing McCain ticket, claimed that Palin would not be “a winning candidate” for president.
With the release of Palin’s Going Rogue this month, Nielsen reports Palin selling an astonishing 469,000 copies in the book’s first week of release. This trounces Obama’s The Audacity of Hope, which sold 67,000 in the same period. On her nationwide book tour, Palin is reaching out to the masses and once again drawing record crowds — and her grassroots fame gave Oprah her highest ratings in two years.
Just like Reagan, Palin continues to plow through her opposition, remaining successful by holding onto the nationwide support she had from last year while growing an entire base of new admirers from the bottom up. With the left and the elite Republicans scrambling for their best anti-Palin rhetoric while she innocuously sells her book, one wonders what they will come up with if she ever does run for president.
Most importantly, given classic Reagan history, and while some in the media ponder whether Sarah Palin will ever get support from Washington’s beltway, all grassroots conservatives seem to be energized by the obvious: She never needed it.

Page Printed from: at December 03, 2009 – 08:45:55 AM EST