South Side Values

March 21, 2012

You may already have heard what the First Lady  had to say when speaking with David Letterman (David Letterman?) the other night about raising kids in the White House:

“For us, it’s the values. The thing that we try to do is make sure — the residence is on the second and the third floor of the White House. And what we want to have happen is when they get off that elevator and walk in to our residence that it feels like the south side of Chicago, the same values, the same rules, the same sense of responsibility…” 

She may want to re-think the import of those “south side values,” given what’s going on back home these days:

Chicago’s police superintendent says the city is re-tooling its anti-gang strategy, following a particularly violent weekend during which several people, including a 6-year-old girl, were killed.”

“The majority of shootings in the city between Friday evening and early Monday morning happened on the city’s South Side, but areas from West Rogers Park to Humboldt Park also saw gun violence. The youngest victim was a 6-year-old girl, who was likely the innocent victim of gang violence in the Little Village neighborhood.”

Based on a quick search of “chicago south side violence”, I really don’t want South Side values being instilled in the White House. Do you?

2012: Anybody But Obama

Stoutcat

H/T: Daily Scoreboard


Boehner Acts – Obama Bows and Blinks

September 1, 2011

Stare-Down Finale: Boehner 1 - Obama 0

You almost have to feel sorry for Barack Obama.   Almost.

Obama unwisely attempted to upstage next week’s Republican Presidential Candidates Debate by scheduling his highly anticipated “Jobs Plan” speech to occur at the same time. As if that wasn’t brassy enough,  President Obama in his ever growing need for attention,  decided to go for broke by presenting his jobs plan to a joint session of Congress. One problem: He forgot this would require the cooperation of Speaker of the House John Boehner.

Bad move Barry. As Doug Powers writes, it winds up looking…

“as if the president invited himself to someone else’s house without first finding out if they wanted company that night.”

I think it’s worse than that. It was a stupid game of “Chicken” that only someone as egotistical as Barack Obama would be foolish enough to think he could win. And it leaves him with sufficient egg on his face to make an omelette large enough to serve all participants in the upcoming Republican Presidential Candidates Debate.

One can only imagine the conversation in the White House Office Of Damage Control:

“Hey, Mr. President… we”d expect something as dumb as this from Vice President Biden, but… WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING?”

Perhaps he figured with so many people out of work, everybody would gather at the Mountain Top to hear his decree, leaving the Republican candidates with a smaller viewership than normal (which is, let’s face it, usually abysmal for either party’s debates). However, by challenging (and failing to upstage) the debate, all he has accomplished is to add a klieglight to the debate stage.

On the surface, it might seem to be a simple game of one-upsmanship.  But it’s a far more telling example of how Obama’s ego blinds him to the fact that he no longer has carte blanche to do whatever he wants. Perhaps another way of putting it: without the combined houses of Congress to back his playshe still has his writers drafting ten-gallon hat speeches, but he’s now delivering them while wearing a beanie.

Still, there’s Little President Fauntelroy, demanding attention by scheduling a prime time address to discuss the jobs plan he apparently had to journey to the sand traps on the golf courses of Martha’s Vineyard to find. But in doing so, his ego may have just written another check to be returned by the First National Bank of Action marked “insufficient funds.” Because while we can all be assured the White House Peacock will be in full strut, anything less than a viable plan that has a realistic chance of success without digging the country deeper into financial chaos will result in an even bigger embarrassment for his administration.

And, somehow, I don’t think the sand traps of the golf courses on Martha’s Vineyard yield anything close to what Obama needs to avoid that.

Gerry Ashley


Bin Laden Dead: Curb Your Enthusiasm

May 2, 2011

On the surface, the news is what we’ve all been waiting to hear for nearly 10 years: Osama bin Laden, the founder of the jihadist terror organization al-Qaeda and the monster behind numerous terrorist attacks, including the 9/11 attack on the US is dead.

All devout Americans celebrate his departure from this light and his descending directly into the bowels of hell.  Michelle Malkin has done her usual stellar job in listing some of bin Laden’s most dastardly deeds, in addition to 9/11. No person with a soul will miss the vicious bastard.

But before we declare today a national holiday, let’s take stock in some additional points that should be taken into consideration:

  • In a report from About.com, as of last week-end, 4683 American soldiers have died in the combined conflagrations in Iraq and Afghanistan since the launch of Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) on October 7, 2001 and Operation Iraqi Freedom (beginning with the invasion of Iraq on March 19, 2003).  This does not take into consideration the number of deaths to coalition soldiers from other countries fighting in support of US Troops.
  • According to a March 29th report from the Congressional Research Service, Congress has approved a total of $1.283 trillion for military operations, base security, reconstruction, foreign aid, embassy costs, and veterans’ health care for the three operations initiated since the 9/11 attacks: Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) Afghanistan and other counter terror operations; Operation Noble Eagle (ONE), providing enhanced security at military bases; and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). This estimate assumes that the current CR level continues through the rest of the year and that agencies allocate reductions proportionately.

Looking at the above, bin Laden’s death comes with a mighty high price tag. But it shows the world, that the United States will not shrink away from a fight when we’ve been attacked. And whether it’s Afghanistan, Pakistan or Any-other-stan, you can’t hide indefinitely.

With the completion of the bin Laden mission, many will deem it time for American troops to leave the region. However, former President Bush added to the agenda as we moved forward. That goal was to establish a democracy in the middle-east region in hopes of creating some level of stability the region. Whether this was his Achilles heel, an idiot’s folly or a shrewd move will be debated for years. The bottom line is American troops are still there and will most likely still be in harm’s way in the middle east for years to come.

The Bottom Line:

When America was attacked at Pearl Harbor on December 7th 1941, most of the Japanese celebrated their victorious moment. Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto was the only one who saw the bigger, more ominous picture as he (reportedly) said, “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

Osama bin Laden has now learned the meaning of the term “Terrible Resolve.”  However, we would be fools if we didn’t acknowledge that Muslim extremists are also filled with a terrible resolve now that bin Laden is dead. It would not surprise me if the word goes out from whoever no leads al-Qaeda, to seek revenge on the United States for bin Laden’s death. And the options they could possibly have in their possession already  include dirty bombs, nuclear weapons and who knows what kind of chemical poisons. Perhaps worse, given the porous American border (thank you Congress, Presidents Bush and Obama), these weapons could already be in place in numerous locations around the United States… perhaps even in your town or city.

Now, more than ever,  we need a true leader in the White House, one with the kind of experience and ability to make the right decisions in a timely manner. If President Obama was ever looking for the chance to prove his leadership capabilities, that opportunity now lies at his feet.

I’m glad the monster (bin Laden) is dead. But we’re a long way from being safe, my friends.

Gerry Ashley


Reporters Not Doing So Well with That “Press=Flaming Sword” Thing

April 21, 2010

 

“The power and the freedom of the press is a flaming sword. That it may be a faithful servant to all the people, use it justly… hold it high… guard it well.”

Lafayette Park, located directly across from the Whte House, was closed yesterday, so that half a dozen servicemen could handcuff themselves to the White House fence in peace and privace privacy, unmolested by our valiant servants of the press. The protesters were objecting to the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

Michael Walsh at Big Government says his blood is boiling.

It’s not just the cop’s rudeness and bullying, although that’s bad enough… There had better be a pretty darn good reason from barring citizens, and their representatives in the media, from a public park, and this sure doesn’t seem like it.

What’s even more disheartening, though, is the way the reporters passively accept getting shoved around, and meekly shuffle backwards while complaining into their cell phones.  And they weren’t sounding off like they had a pair, either.

Lafayette Park is closed. Docile reporters meekly move back. And back. And they keep moving back.

We don’t know why the park was closed (well, of course we do), but nobody reported on that.

We don’t know who authorized the park’s closing, because nobody reported on that.

We don’t know how long the park had been closed, because nobody reported on that.

We don’t know when the park would re-open, because nobody reported on that.

Lafayette Park reportedly has the densest squirrel population known to science. It seems that our “reporters” are nothing more than a few more squirrels, hoping for crumbs from the tourists.

Pathetic.

Stoutcat

Via HotAir


That’s the Way the Cookie Crumbles

December 10, 2009

 

Even in something as benign as a Christmas party, the White House simply cannot manage to stay away from the stupid.

Most Christmas cookies are shaped like angels, wreaths, snowmen, Christmas trees, and other holiday items. But Fox News reported that at Monday’s annual Christmas party, the White House served cookies shaped like acorns.

The chocolate cookies shaped like an acorn were quite a hit with Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa. “I didn’t expect to see such stark symbolism,” King said in an e-mail…

The irony of the White House dishing out acorn-shaped chocolate cookies seemed a little, well, “nutty” to King. The Iowa Republican is one of the loudest voices calling for Congress to investigate ACORN.

There are no reports of other White House cookies in the shapes of non-holiday themed inedible nuts from common trees.

Whether inadvertent or deliberate, this is just bizarre. If inadvertent, it reinforces the impression that this administration is appallingly tone-deaf on even the appearance of propriety, particularly in matters of protocol.

And if deliberate, it’s an unprecedented slap in the face to the entire nation, and an ill-considered support and flaunting of an organization that appears to be riddled with corruption.

This administration is rapidly becoming the unfunny punchline to a bad joke. And it’s nobody’s fault but their own.

Stoutcat

H/T: HotAir headlines


Apparently, Nobody Loves FoxNews

December 7, 2009

 

Except the viewers, that is.

Politico reported yesterday that National Public Radio, that bastion of open-mindedness, put pressure on their political correspondent Mara Liasson to discontinue her regular appearances as a FoxNews contributor, due to “concerns that Fox’s programming had grown more partisan”. This was way back in October, during the “FoxNews vs. White House” skirmish (which FoxNews won handily).

According to Politico, Liasson was asked to watch the cable channel for 30 days and render an opinion. After having done so, Ms. Liasson reported back that she saw “no significant change” at the network.

According to a source, Liasson was summoned in early October by NPR’s executive editor for news, Dick Meyer, and the network’s supervising senior Washington editor, Ron Elving. The NPR executives said they had concerns that Fox’s programming had grown more partisan, and they asked Liasson to spend 30 days watching the network.

 At a follow-up meeting last month, Liasson reported that she’d seen no significant change in Fox’s programming and planned to continue appearing on the network, the source said.

 NPR’s focus on Liasson’s work as a commentator on Fox’s “Special Report” and “Fox News Sunday” came at about the same time as a White House campaign launched in September to delegitimize the network by painting it as an extension of the Republican Party…

Huh, imagine that! And while denying that the White House had attempted to influence the NPR journalist, Anita Dunn, former White House Communications Director did state in an interview with NPR:

“We see Fox right now as the source and the outlet for Republican Party talking points.”

So take that denial for what it’s worth.

And NPR mouthpiece Dana Rehr chimed in:

“There’s no relationship between the White House’s criticism of Fox and any discussions about Fox that we’re having.”

Sure. And since NPR is funded partially by the government, you can imagine that they realize which side their bread is buttered on.

And it wasn’t just the White House bringing pressure to bear. Jacob Weisberg of Slate chimed in with the following:

“By appearing on Fox, reporters validate its propaganda values and help to undermine the role of legitimate news organizations,” Weisberg wrote in an Oct. 17 Newsweek column, “Why Fox News Is Un-American.” “Respectable journalists — I’m talking to you, Mara Liasson — should stop appearing on its programs.”

So Brit Hume, Brett Baier, Major Garret, Neil Cavuto, and the late Tony Snow aren’t “respectable journalists”? Some may beg to differ with that opinion.

And according to Dunn, the problem was that those unrespectable FoxNews journalists were chasing stories that the White House just didn’t want covered:

 “What was important was the idea that just because something gets aired on them didn’t mean that they — that everybody else needed to go chasing it. And I think that if you looked at some of the fake stories that were created that the mainstream media felt they needed to go chase — because, you know, for whatever reason, they were getting pressure to, quote, ‘Why aren’t you being balanced?’” she said at a conference sponsored by Bloomberg News. “I think it did — it did help people get a sense of perspective again … to the extent that, you know, people took a step back and said, ‘Hmm, am I really wanting to go chase those stories?’”

 “I kept saying to people, ‘You know, if you’re going to go chase those stories, get a second source,’” Dunn said.

Great idea. Now if only Fow would just stop covering embarrassing stories about unvetted people crashing White House events, climate science being discovered to be a massive fraud, presidential dithering about war plans, government take-overs of, well, pretty much everything, why then I’m sure the White House — and NPR — would be extremely satisfied.

Too bad.

Stoutcat


White House vs. Fox News: Blundering

October 24, 2009

As the war between the White House and Fox News escalates, it might be insightful to take a look back and see the path which led to Thursday’s attempt by the White House to completely shut off Fox News.

The first skirmish was back in August, when people were complaining about having received unwanted emails from the White House. Major Garrett, Fox’s White House correspondent, asked Press Secretary Robert Gibbs about why and how those people received the emails. Gibbs had no ready answer, was quick to attempt to ridicule Garrett’s question, and ultimately bypassed answering him altogether.

The next bout came earlier this month as White House Communications Director Anita Dunn commented in a New York Times interview:

“We’re going to treat them the way we would treat an opponent. As they are undertaking a war against Barack Obama and the White House, we don’t need to pretend that this is the way that legitimate news organizations behave.”

She subsequently made similar comments on the Sunday talk shows, claiming that Fox News is an arm of the Republican party:

“[Fox is] widely viewed as a part of the Republican Party: take their talking points and put them on the air, take their opposition research and put it on the air. And that’s fine. But let’s not pretend they’re a news organization like CNN is.”

Fair-minded Jake Tapper of ABC News came to Fox’s defense by questioning Robert Gibbs about the legitimacy of the attack:

Tapper: It’s escaped none of our notice that the White House has decided in the last few weeks to declare one of our sister organizations “not a news organization” and to tell the rest of us not to treat them like a news organization. Can you explain why it’s appropriate for the White House to decide that a news organization is not one –

(Crosstalk)

Gibbs: Jake, we render, we render an opinion based on some of their coverage and the fairness that, the fairness of that coverage.

Tapper: But that’s a pretty sweeping declaration that they are “not a news organization.” How are they any different from, say –

Gibbs: ABC –

Tapper: ABC. MSNBC. Univision. I mean how are they any different?

Gibbs: You and I should watch sometime around 9 o’clock tonight. Or 5 o’clock this afternoon.

Tapper: I’m not talking about their opinion programming or issues you have with certain reports. I’m talking about saying thousands of individuals who work for a media organization, do not work for a “news organization” — why is that appropriate for the White House to say?

Gibbs: That’s our opinion.

This past Sunday, Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod upped the stakes by declaring outright that Fox News is not a news organization, and then working in veiled threats to the other networks:

The latest salvo was fired Thursday at a press pool event, during which the other major networks showed an amazing level of solidarity with Fox, perhaps because they realized the the shoe will eventually be on the other foot at some point during the next three years.

It seems like a mistake of major proportions to wage a war with an organization that buys digital ink by the barrel, so to speak. Given the political savvy and old school Chicago-style upbringing of the senior White House staff, I wonder what neophyte at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has the naiveté to gin up such a brawl, and the clout to make it happen.

Oh yeah, that would be President Obama.

Stoutcat