Vacation all he ever wanted? (Or, educating POTUS.)

Red State

Dec. 27, 2009

Increasingly unloved and ridiculed from both sides, a new and embittered President Obama is emerging this Christmas season as he begins a badly needed vacation in Hawaii.

Why ‘badly needed?’ What, exactly, has the President done this year, besides calmly watch legislators from his party drain the treasury?

Moving along, while I recognize that the President’s in need of a serious attitude adjustment I don’t see any way of getting him to have one until the Democrats get smacked around a bit more.  Losing thirty House seats might do it: flipping the House may do it.  Flipping the House and getting more than five seats in the Senate back will almost certainly do it, particularly if there’s a discreet amount of payback afterward.  Admittedly, it would have been better for the country’s sake if the President’s party had cared enough about Obama’s personal development to teach him some limits as a state legislator, but the past is the past.  What’s important now is making sure that, going forward, he learns proper life lessons.

After all, we’re stuck with him for the time being.

Moe Lane

How did the bomber get a visa when he’s on the terror watch list?

American Thinker

December 27, 2009

Clarice Feldman
I am not the only person shaking my head at the thought this man was issued a visitor’s visa. A thorough investigation is called for:

The revelation of Abdulmutallab’s background has confounded terror experts. Dr Magnus Ranstorp of the Center for Asymmetric Threat Studies at the Swedish National Defence College, said that the attempted bombing “didn’t square”.

“On the one hand, it seems he’s been on the terror watch list but not on the no-fly list,” he said. “That doesn’t square because the American Department for Homeland Security has pretty stringent data-mining capability. I don’t understand how he had a valid visa if he was known on the terror watch list.


A source said Dr Mutallab was “devastated” at the news but also “surprised” his son had been allowed to travel after he had reported him to the authorities. Abdulmutallab had allegedly become noted for his extreme religious views when he was at the British International School in Togo, where he is said to have preached Islam to his friends.

An official briefing on the attack said the US had known for at least two years that the suspect could have terrorist ties. Abdulmutallab has been on a list that included people with known or suspected contacts or ties to a terrorist or terrorist organisation. The list is maintained by the US National Counterterrorism Center and includes about 550,000 names.

Obama’s Real Report Card

Canada Free Press

By Daniel Greenfield

report cardAs Obama’s first year in office approaches, his long calendar of corruption and failure flutters its windblown leaves into the abyss of the past. Let us take a brief look back at the full unmitigated ugliness of the Sham in Chief’s first year in office… for a proper report card.

The Economy

Obama campaigned on promises to help create jobs and fix the economy. Instead he ballooned the deficit to record levels, failed to create jobs and then lied about it, implemented the same policies he had criticized under Bush, lied about them too, and by the end of the year not only is the economy worse off than it had been under Bush, but the national debt is far higher, the dollar is weaker and America’s economic prospects look bleak.

Obama promised to help working class families, instead he burdened them with generations of debt, forced them to make mandatory payments to insurance companies and kept down job growth by promoting “green” projects over shovel ready infrastructure projects. No wonder that Obama’s fall has been hardest among working class families and even black leaders are protesting against his abandonment of the black community.

While Obama has shoveled untold billions of dollars into Wall Street brokerages, green tech companies with no real business model and insurance companies—the same working class families he has promised to help have been left behind and lied to, and worse yet forced to bear the burden of his corporate welfare.

While Obama’s Democratic congress had 192 million to spend on rum factories in the Virgin Islands, 20 million for the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Senate, and almost half a billion for Tesla Motors, a company which has currently sold around only 700 cars… there was no money for school vouchers for Washington DC’s kids.

This is par for the course in a chain of spending bills that primarily benefited Obama’s corporate backers and ladled out congressional pork earmarks with all the self-restraint of a herd of pigs guzzling from a mud puddle.

While the dollar has fallen almost 20 percent over Obama’s term in office, and many American businesses are looking for a way out of a political system that has destroyed the economy with out of control tax and spend policies… the bailouts keep on coming. And so do the lies.

The same Democratic congress that has preserved and protected felons like Congressman Rangel and Senator Dodd, reached into the depths of hysteria to attack Senator Lieberman for having the gall to block their plan for a Public Option, a plan that even the Congressional Budget Office admitted we can’t pay for. The resulting battles turned political bribery into a new low with 100 million dollar earmarks being thrown around to win the favor of Senators like confetti.

And the final bill as always goes to the American worker.


War on Terror

On the war, Obama promised to use multilateralism to create a new alliance using soft power. 12 months later, his multilateralism has failed, and his Afghanistan policy looks a lot like Bush’s Iraq policy, except it comes with a built in 18th month deadline that Barry Hussein helpfully announced to the Taliban ahead of time.

Despite a year of global criss-crossing, Obama has not achieved a single meaningful result for all that effort. Genocide continues in Sudan, China continues to repress its citizens, Iran and North Korea are continuing their nuclear programs, and none of America’s allies have offered front line troops for Afghanistan.

For all his rhetoric, Obama has demonstrated that he has nothing new to offer in the War on Terror that Bush was not already doing… except for his willingness to appease terrorists and the far left by treating the butchers of 9/11 like ordinary criminals, instead of as mass murderers.

When it comes to the War on Terror, just like the economy, it is clear that Obama has nothing new to offer except rebranding, snow jobs and cowardice.



Obama promised a new era of bipartisanship and inclusiveness, but as it turns out he can hardly even tolerate conservative Democrats, let alone Republicans, aside from the easily bought off kind. Not only did his White House launch repeated smear campaigns against critics such as Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck, but the attacks on Lieberman recently are outright reminiscent of 1984’s Two Minute Hate.
And each time Obama demonstrates his blatant intolerance for any dissent from the party line, the results help poison the national dialogue and increase opposition to his policies.


International Diplomacy

Well over a year ago, Obama assured his gullible audience that they were witness to the moment when the oceans stopped rising. But all of Obama’s diplomatic clout couldn’t even get an actual binding agreement out of Copenhagen. If Obama couldn’t even sell global warming internationally, it’s quite clear that he can’t sell anything.

Diplomatically, Obama’s high profile trips around the world have resulted in a lot of publicity and a lot of humiliation as the man occupying what had once been the office of the leader of the free world, instead went around the world pleading for change, and getting laughed at instead. It’s not just the sight of Obama crawling to the Japanese Emperor and the Saudi King that’s contemptible, but the sight of him penned in on his visit to China, and being mocked in Turkey.

With his constant trips, Obama has managed to keep himself constantly in the news, while completely devaluing the mystique of the office. Unsurprisingly his visits have accomplished nothing except to create a long stream of photographs of Obama around the world.

Meanwhile traditional allies who tried to visit America had those same visits turn into diplomatic disasters as the White House did its best to show its contempt for them. As a result America is now more isolated than ever, and America’s enemies are openly taunting the White House at every occasion.

Instead of the B+ that Obama ever so generously gave himself, a real report card might read F+. And that is being very generous indeed. But really it might be better to settle for incomplete, just like Obama’s policies.

Barry Obama and his Wall of Secrets

Western Journalism

Everyone has gotten the memo by this point: Do not question Barack Obama. Even conservatives have been warned by other conservatives about mentioning the secrecy issue: It’s pointless and can only harm conservatism.

Obama has done his best to hide his secrets

Recently, Rusty Humphries broke the rule and asked Sarah Palin if she would make the “birth certificate an issue” if she runs for office. In her answer, she noted that people “still want answers” and “it’s a fair question.” Her enemies pounced quickly, casting her as a wild-eyed conspiracy theorist.

The real issue, however, is not about birthers or theories or racism or whatever else you want to add. The real issue is about the secrecy of Barack Obama, and it involves more than the release of his complete birth records. Hospital records; high school, college and law school records; transcripts; writings; and passport info have been requested, and all are being withheld by Obama.

Mr. Obama is presented as the smartest man in the country, yet we have not seen his college course list or grades. Hmm, hmm, hmm.

A normative democratic society cannot allow a president to continue to speak disingenuously about transparency while withholding basic information.

Read More: By Monte Kuligowski, American Thinker

Nebraska governor to Ben Nelson: Keep the money


Nebraska’s Republican governor has a stern message for Ben Nelson, the senior Democratic senator from his state: We don’t want Washington to cover all the costs of the proposed expansion of Medicaid under health care legislation.

“The last few days have made Nebraskans so angry that now it’s a matter of principle,” Gov. David Heineman told POLITICO. “The federal government can keep that money.”

Told about the governor’s comments, Nelson said: “If he wants to subject Nebraska to future liability — it’s his call.” And he called it “foolish,” because the money wouldn’t be available until several years down the road, when other states would almost certainly lobby to get increased federal aid.

Nelson is engaged in a tense war of words with his home-state governor over his health care vote and the Medicaid deal he helped secure for their state, a signal that Nelson’s political opponents plan to bloody him up for his health-care stand — and that could impact his standing ahead of his 2012 reelection campaign.

“The reason he’s in hot water right now is that he’s not listening to Nebraskans — it’s very unusual for him,” Heineman said. “I am shocked.”

Asked about the governor’s direct aim at him, Nelson said it’s just “partisan politics.”

The back-and-forth exchanges are somewhat unusual, Nebraska political analysts say, because the state’s governor and senators have historically stayed out of each others’ affairs.

“I think that’s what’s been the courtesy,” said Nelson, who was governor of Nebraska from 1991-98. “But if he chooses not to recognize that courtesy and continue it there’s not much I can do about it.”

Some see that this battle could presage a potential Nelson-Heineman 2012 matchup for the Senate seat, but Heineman said being governor is “the one job I love doing” and that he has expressed no interest in the seat, though he wouldn’t rule it out.

Heineman said while he usually he tries to avoid getting involved in Senate affairs, “health care is different,” given the costs to his state and fears that it would raise taxes and negatively impact people’s insurance premiums.

Since he announced he would vote for the health care bill last Saturday, Nelson has been the subject of intensifying criticism from the right for appearing to reverse his position and support the measure after securing deals to exempt Nebraska from new Medicaid payments, ease an excise tax on home-state insurer Blue Cross and Blue Shield, and for brokering a middle-ground deal over whether federal dollars can be spent on abortion services.

Nelson has denied a quid-pro-quo over the deals, saying his position has been consistent and that he voted for the bill to deliver relief from rising health care costs to Nebraskans.

But that hasn’t stopped fierce attacks in his Republican-leaning state, with scathing editorials and sharp attacks from Republicans dubbing the Medicaid deal the “Cornhusker Kickback.” The Omaha World Herald, the state’s largest newspaper, carried an editorial cartoon Sunday of a man waiting in line to return an item he’d purchased — the item was Nelson.

“I think he probably earned himself the title ‘the most vulnerable Democratic incumbent in 2012,’” said Jennifer Duffy, a Senate expert at the nonpartisan Cook Political Report. “Think of the ads you can run with Ben Nelson before-and-after quotes.”

Despite being a Democrat in a solidly GOP state, Nelson has found long-running success at the ballot box after first being elected governor with a bare 50 percent of the vote. He lost once, when — as a sitting governor — he ran for the Senate in 1996 but lost to Republican Chuck Hagel, a senator with whom he had a frosty relationship.

Nelson, 68, is considered one of the most cautious legislators in the Senate and has long been one of the biggest swing votes in the upper chamber. His frequent defections on votes have even prompted unsuccessful attempts by Republicans to convince him to switch parties.

Democratic Senator slams Obama over earmarks

Washington Examiner

By: Mark Hemingway
Commentary Staff Writer
Dec. 27, 2009

Remember when President Obama promised to go through legislation “line by line” eliminating earmarks? Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., hasn’t forgotten:

Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) said Obama made earmark reform “a very big part of [his] campaign” but still signed this month two massive spending measures that both included approximately $4 billion in earmarks.

Feingold, who broke with his party to oppose both the $447 billion 2010 omnibus spending bill and the $636 billion 2010 Pentagon spending bill, said the president could have used his veto pen to reject the measures and force lawmakers to cut earmark funding.

“We’ve got to have a fresh start next year, and I’ve signaled that if they want my vote, they’ve got to stop just signing onto huge numbers of earmarks,” Feingold said.

Obama talked tough about earmarks on the campaign trail.

“Absolutely, we need earmark reform,” Obama said in his first presidential debate with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). “And when I’m president, I will go line by line to make sure that we are not spending money unwisely.”

There’s no bigger illustration for why we need earmark reform than the health care legislation just passed. The problem ultimately isn’t so much that billions in pork barrel spending targeted to lawmakers districts — though that’s pretty egregious in and of itself –but  the $15 billion in earmarks handed out this year amount to chicken feed at the rate Congress is currently spending. The problem is the way that earmarks grease the wheels to buy votes needed to pass much more expensive legislation. Just ask Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., and Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., whether they would have voted for Obamacare had they not received hundreds of millions in earmarks.

Father of Nigerian Would-Be Plane Bomber Warned US


U.S. government officials tell The Associated Press that the Nigerian man charged with trying to destroy a jetliner came to the attention of U.S. intelligence in November when his father went to the U.S. embassy in Abuja, Nigeria, to express his concerns about his son.

A congressional official said Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a 23-year-old Nigerian, popped up in U.S. intelligence reports about four weeks ago as having a connection to both al-Qaida and Yemen.

Another government official said Abdulmutallab’s father went to the embassy in Abuja with his concerns, but did not have any specific information that would put him on the “no-fly list” or on the list for additional security checks at the airport.

Special: Get Sarah Palin’s New Book – Incredible FREE Offer – Click Here Now.

Neither was the information sufficient to revoke his visa to visit the United States. His visa had been granted June 2008 and was valid through June 2010. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because neither was authorized to speak to the media.
© Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The massive accounting blunder that should sink health care reform

Washington Examiner

By: Mark Hemingway
Commentary Staff Writer

Yesterday, David discussed the CBO’s miscalculation regarding the Senate health care bill. Democrats had been insisting that bill somehow cut the deficit and strengthened Medicare, but as it turns out the CBO had to clarify that the savings of the bill were being double counted. The “savings” the bill produces either have to be applied toward the Medicare trust fund or they have to be put toward the cost of the legislation to make it reduce the deficit by $132 billion over the next ten years. (That’s assuming you buy into the shady accounting tricks used to score the bill.) Megan McArdle has a typically astute blog post up discussing the implications all of this. Megan even observes that as recently as Saturday, President Obama was trumpeting the bill’s twin achievements of deficit reduction and strengthening Medicare. However, Megan didn’t quote Obama in full — fortunately The American Spectator’s Phil Klein did. The entirety of Obama’s remarks in the immediate aftermath of Senate Democrats securing finally securing 60 votes to pass their health care bill are worth pondering:

[