Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Question for Obama Critics; Could We Be Supporting al-Qaeda? and Recession? What Stinkin' Recession?

  • Instead of referring the Libyan operation as a war, the White House is calling it a "kinetic military action," which sounds better than a "potentially endless quagmire."--{Courtesy: Leno}

  • I have a question for Obama critics {as you know, I happen to be one myself}: Regarding the Libyan operation, is the criticism towards the Obama Administration by the Conservative side of the political isle the same as criticism that came from the Left/Progressive side toward George W. Bush? To put it more bluntly--is the Right being hypocritcal? I'll take a shot at answering that question. I think there might be some similarities. For example, there is a coaltion; albeit, a much smaller one than in 1991 and 2003. There were "echoes of Bush" in his speech last night as reported by some pundits, e.g. advancing freedom and democracy. Having said this, I think the major difference has to do largely with process. The Administration can try to skip around this but it's not working--they didn't get authorization from Congress. In addition, unlike every other president before him, he didn't officially speak to the nation until almost 2 full weeks after operations began. In fact, John Podhoretz makes a good observation in the NY Post today: "If the president had given the speech he gave last night 10 days ago...he would have had the best week of his presidency...instead of one of the worst." I believe Podhoretz is right. And Podhoretz goes on to make the same point many of us have been making for two weeks now regarding the President's trip to South America right as the Libyan operation started, "A leader leads or doesn't. It makes no sense to make a decision and then scamper away as though it were a boiling pot that might scald you." So, is there hypocrisy? Yes, there is some. Every politician, in my opinion, is a hypocrite at some point in his/her career. But there are clearly many reasons President Obama also deserves criticism.

  • And I'll ask the same questions to this Administration as were asked to the Bush Administration: Why are we there? {answered partially}; What do we want? {again, answered partially} and When will we leave? In other words, as was asked of the Bush Administration countless times, what is the exit strategy? Not answered sufficiently yet in my opinion.

  • According to the recent Gallup Poll, only 10% of Americans want the U.S. to take the lead in this operation. And 44% approve of the President's handling of Libya; while---44% disapprove. (Immediately after Pres. George W. Bush went into Iraq, his approval rates were much higher--91% among Republicans; 68% among Independents and 55% among Democrats. Of course, approval rates dropped as the war went on) {Source: Gallup}

  • Remember, President Obama cancelled his trip to Indonesia (a very important trip at the time) to help get ObamaCare passed. I'd say starting a military operation deserves the Command in Chief's full attention more than any health care legislation--especially legislation that was dragging on for over a year at the expense of not focusing on jobs and the economy.

  • And there are critics--on both sides of the political isle--making some good points. The President said yesterday, "Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different." Well then, if that's the criteria, we should have been in the Congo, the Ivory Coast and other areas long before we went into Libya. Millions have been murdered in those countries in the last decade alone.

  • Also, the President said he used force to protect the civilian population in Libya but not regime change to kick out Gadhafi. That does not make any sense. You cannot have one without the other.

  • Last week, the UK Telegraph reported that there are al-Qaeda operatives fighting alongside the Libyan rebels. If that's the case: Are we supporting al-Qaeda militarily in Libya? If we're giving arms to the rebels--as I believe we are--what other conclusion can one come to?

  • ABC News is reporting: 2,200 Marines from Camp Lejeune are preparing to go off the coast of Libya. What was that about not having boots on the ground?

  • With all of the challenges now faced by the Obama Administration when it comes to foreign affairs, did they spend too much time on trying to get ObamaCare passed in the first 15 months at the expense of foreign affairs and focusing on jobs? Just sayin'.

  • Ain't this a kick in the arse? The Anne Frank museum is planning to move across the street from the proposed Ground Zero Mosque. Sometimes I do believe--the Good Lord works in mysterious ways.

  • Another public school update. In NJ, almost $300 million was spent on 3 state of the art high schools--International HS in Paterson; Union City High in Union City and New Brunswick HS in New Brunswick, N.J. The schools have atriums, beatiful libraries, college style seminar rooms, first class security, world class gyms, beautiful auditoriums , dance studios, broadcast studios, several acre football fields, etc. You get the picture. Oh, and the schools range from 113,000 square feet to over 400,000 square feet. So what's their report card look like? Student suspensions range from 5% to 41% (41% is in the best of the 3 schools). Few of the proficiency rates in language arts and math even meet the state averages {Source: Newark Star Ledger}

  • Folks, as most know by now, one of the reasons we are in this economic mess is because of the housing crisis. So when I often do my, "Recession is Over" satire, I might actually have a point. As of today, over 18 million homes are standing empty. Sales of new homes have been very, very poor. In fact, they've dropped to all-time record lows. In short, there is one vacant home for every six occupied homes in America today. Bottom line, I think I'm right in questioning whether this recession is over. Add to these numbers, the almost 9% who are officially unemployed or the 17% who are truly unemployed.

  • The President spent a lot of time on his NCAA brackets. ESPN even televised his picks. Like the Presidents and mine as well as many others----they went bust. No, I refuse to pick a winner. Waste of time. It appears I know squat about college basketball or less than I thought I knew.

  • 4 WOMEN: The Mail On-Line is reporting a new study shows that women become more like their mothers at around age 32. Men didn't need a study to know that.

  • And from The Onion today: "American Dream Declared Dead As Final Believer Gives Up."--satire?

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