Try to follow this logic

September 7, 2009

The Los Angeles Times, in a post that was better than their usual style (talk about damning with faint praise) was talking about how Obama is now even driving away the white Democrats who were key to his election. This basically means he’s seen his support declined amongst every category in America other than African Americans.

Helpfully, the times lays out some theories for why this is happening, and as one would expect they blame much of it on Hannity, Beck and the Birthers. Eventually, they get to the root of the problem — people don’t like his policies. But check out their advice:

Strategists in both parties blame Obama’s decline on growing discontent with his policy agenda, particularly after a month of often-rowdy debate over his proposed healthcare overhaul, in which some conservatives accused him of socialism. Obama’s ratings seem likely to rise again if he wins passage of healthcare legislation this fall.

So you see, he’s losing support because he’s trying to do things that most Americans don’t want him to do. But if goes ahead and does those things in spite of their opposition, that’ll make them love him once again. This is the kind of logic that could only make sense to someone who’s been exposed to the sun their whole lives.


Actually, some things *are* worse than doing nothing

September 4, 2009

Since it’s not every day that I praise Al Franken, I thought I’d go ahead and say that in this video I was impressed that he was able to calmly stand with a group of constituents for ten minutes and have a civil discourse.

Sadly, though, as you listen to his words it’s clear that his comportment is better than his logic. He mimics the bizarre thinking of The One by responding to a question of whether the government can pay for all this while Obama is swamping us with debt, by saying, “I know that our current system is unsustainable.”

To use an analogy, let’s say you had a small accident around the house, and you cut your arm.  Let’s say you were bleeding a bit, and your spouse came up to you with a handsaw and bolt cutters and told you that since you’d hurt your arm she was going to fix it by cutting off the injured arm at the shoulder.

You, being a smart person who’s very slowly losing blood through a small cut, would say, “But won’t I bleed to death really fast if you do that?”  How would you react if your spouse, rather than addressing the prospect of massive arterial bleeding, said this: “Honey, here’s what I DO know . . . if you continue on the current path (bleeding from a small and as yet untreated cut) it’s unsustainable (you’ll die within the next few weeks).”  Would you then let her lop off the limb knowing that the solution would kill you in a fraction of the time?  If so, you’re ready to accept the logic of letting a government with a long track record of making things worse take over the most intimate and personal one-sixth of our national economy.  Good luck with that.

The notion that anything we do is better than nothing is among the silliest things ever uttered by anyone, and certainly by a President of the United States.  But, Franken parrots the logic very effectively.  I’ll give him that.

WashPo: The "worse" economic crisis since the Great Depression?

July 13, 2009

In West Wing: Grueling Schedules, Bleary Eyes

All West Wings face fatigue at some point, but the Obama team has had a particularly frenetic start, the result of inheriting the worse economic crisis since the Great Depression and the team’s own seemingly chaotic drive to push an agenda that includes the creation of a new health insurance system, auto bailouts, Middle East peace, nuclear nonproliferation, two wars and education reform.

I expect to see the Washington Post mirroring the unsubstantiated and inaccurate talking points of the O-Team, but couldn’t they at least spell-check when they copy and paste them over from the poor, tired, overworked White House staffers?

(screencap here in case they get around to fixing it)

Joe Biden, gift to Republicans

July 5, 2009

If not for Joe Biden there’s be nothing for me to enjoy about the Obama presidency 🙂  Here’s his interview transcript from today’s “This Week”:

The fact that it’s already out means they must not let him do live interviews anymore, which is understandable I suppose.  But even on a pre-recorded interview it’s filled with fun Bidenisms.  Here’s one of my favorite exchanges, including Biden’s new plan now that he’s admitting they “misread the economy“.  That plan: “put more pace on the ball.” What a relief.  🙂

BIDEN: And so the truth is, there was a misreading of just how bad an economy we inherited. Now, that doesn’t — I’m not — it’s now our responsibility. So the second question becomes, did the economic package we put in place, including the Recovery Act, is it the right package given the circumstances we’re in? And we believe it is the right package given the circumstances we’re in.

We misread how bad the economy was, but we are now only about 120 days into the recovery package. The truth of the matter was, no one anticipated, no one expected that that recovery package would in fact be in a position at this point of having to distribute the bulk of money.

STEPHANOPOULOS: No, but a lot of people were saying that you needed to do something bigger and bolder then, including the economist Paul Krugman. He’s saying — right now he’s saying the same thing again — don’t wait. You need a second stimulus, you need it now.

BIDEN: Look, what we have to do now is we have to properly, adequately, transparently and effectively spend out the $787 billion.

STEPHANOPOULOS: That’s your job. You’re in charge of that now.

BIDEN: That is my job, and I think we’re doing it well. If you noticed, George, I mean, there were other predictions. This was going to be wasteful and all these terrible projects were going to be out there, and we’re wasting money. Well, that dog hasn’t barked yet.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well, Senator Coburn has identified some.

BIDEN: Yes — no, he hasn’t, but he did, he identified one hundred  forty-eight of which we had already killed. And so — and the rest I dispute. So the bottom line though is, I think anybody would say this has been pretty well managed so far.

The question is, how do you now — do we — what we have to do, George, is we have to, as this rolls out, put more pace on the ball. The second hundred days you’re going to see a lot more jobs created.

And the reason you are is now all of these contracts for the over several thousand highway projects that have approved.

The difference between malice and ignorance

June 24, 2009

I’m pretty sure most of the problems in Washington can be traced back to the fact that it’s populated largely by people who’ve never actually had to run a business.  Here’s the delightfully clueless Robert Reich in today’s Wall Street Journal:

Yet without a public option, the other parties that comprise America’s non-system of health care — private insurers, doctors, hospitals, drug companies, and medical suppliers — have little or no incentive to supply high-quality care at a lower cost than they do now.

Yeah, other than the fact that each of them is competing for survival with hundreds of other companies out to steal their customers, there’s no incentive at all to supply high-quality care at a low cost.

Really, how can someone even utter these words? It’s the same ignorance underlying Obama’s assertion yesterday:

Why would it drive private insurers out of business? If private insurers say that the marketplace provides the best quality health care, if they tell us that they’re offering a good deal, then why is it that the government — which they say can’t run anything — suddenly is going to drive them out of business? That’s not logical.

His inexperience with the real world is such that he’s unable to understand that a government plan, unconstrained by the need to generate profits or even avoid massive losses, would drive private insurers out of business. He doesn’t know enough about business to know that that private insurers have to account for the cost of their administrators, and have to prove themselves an attractive place to invest, while the government can plow billions upon billions of untraceable taxpayer dollars into their layers of bureaucracy and still continue to operate forever (witness Medicare or Social Security).

I used to think the Democrats were malicious about their desire to kill the free market, but increasingly I think they are just ignorant to such an overwhelming extent that anyone who ever ran so much as a lemonade stand can’t even conceive that they are sincere.

It’s utterly shocking.

I mean really, how would we decide which side to take?

June 23, 2009

Just so we’re all clear, this is the conflict in which President Obama does not want to “meddle” or appear to be taking sides:

On Saturday, amid the most violent clashes between security forces and protesters, Mr. Alipour was shot in the head as he stood at an intersection in downtown Tehran. He was returning from acting class and a week shy of becoming a groom, his family said.

A brutal repressive theocratic apocalyptic dictatorship is now shooting its citizens in the head even when they are NOT protesting, and the President doesn’t want to appear to be meddling.  Well, thank goodness for that . . . meddling would be unacceptable.

What the country needs is a hacker capable of breaking into Barack’s teleprompter and uploading the words of someone with courage or leadership.  Heck, just upload a bunch of old Reagan speeches, I don’t care if they’re topical or not it’d be better than the obsequious drivel that the current occupant of the White House seems to reserve for thugs.

Profiles in courage

June 21, 2009

It’s a shame that Barack’s teleprompter didn’t have anything loaded for the would-be leader of the free world to say to support the Iranian people being killed in the street as they protest for democracy and liberty.  All he could muster was that the US shouldn’t “meddle”.  It’s interesting to compare his view of the American role in promoting liberty with that of his predecessor or, for that matter, Reagan.  Oh, well, it was Carter who delivered Reagan unto the world, and Obama’s making good progress in driving the next surge of American interest in conservatism, I’ll give him that.

I know, wishful thinking, except as of today the Rasmussen daily tracking poll finds more likely voters agree with me than with my liberal friends:
It’s too bad Americans are slower on the uptake than Israelis, though since only 6% of Israeli Jews think Obama is pro-Israel (88% thought GWB was).  It seems as though the President is more comfortable meddling in the affairs of our allies (UK, Israel) than in the affairs of murderous thugs who are our sworn enemies. Courage.

How do you make peace with someone who won't stop trying to kill you?

June 14, 2009

Here’s something to think about on a Sunday afternoon . . .  Let’s say your next door neighbor stood in his yard screaming, constantly, that he was going to kill you and your family and that there was nothing you could do, say or give him that would dissuade him.

And let’s say he even went so far as to strap bombs to his own wife and children and send them one by one to your house in an effort to get in and kill you.  And let’s also say that each time one of his kids was dismembered and killed in such an effort this neighbor celebrated rather than mourned them.

How much time do you think you would invest trying to make peace with him versus trying to kill him to protect yourself and your family?

Not saying this relates to any real-world stuation, of course.  It’s just a hypothetical story about the world’s worst neighbor.

Is there any "journalistic" reason to do this?

June 12, 2009

I mentioned there were two galleries I clicked through on Time Magazine’s sad little website.  The other was a gallery of GOP memorabilia.  It seems pretty clear that in spite of the fact that the latest Rasmussen survey finds people now trust Republicans with the economy more than Democrats (first time in 2 years) the gallery is intended to perpetuate the meme that the GOP is dead.

But it wasn’t enough for them to simply talk about the GOP as some long-past event (the kind of thing that would even *have* memorabilia). I wouldn’t have recognized what they’d done except I recently learned about a photographic technique called tilt-shift. It makes any photo look like it came from a miniature.  For example:

And for some reason I’ll let you ponder, Time chose to show the proudest elements of the GOP’s history as though they appeared in a tiny little doll-house.  Ronald Reagan, arguably the greatest American leader of the last century, is shown like this:


A conference room where the collection is housed looks like something carved in a grain of rice:


Now, as a very infrequent reader of Time Magazine (it hurts my head to read their writing) I will admit it’s possible that they use this artistic technique on photos of lots of things.  If so, let me know in the comments.  But the last time I saw a miniaturized view of Obama, it was because some knucklheaded sycophant actually carved the goofball into the eye of a needle. Seriously:

Obamas experience shown actual size

Obama's experience shown actual size

There's not really anyone left who thinks journalism's neutral, is there?

June 12, 2009

I read a commentary in Time Magazine today (I know, why . . .) but occasionally I do check in to see if they’ve hired any journalists to replace the Obama PR flaks. (update: none yet).

The commentary itself was not what caught my attention.  Instead, I found 2 linked galleries both of which I found jaw-dropping in the extent to which they made no effort to come across as unbiased.

First, a gallery of “The Screwups of Campaign ’08“.  Like most people, when I think “Screwup” I think of Joe Biden.  But I’m figuring it’ll include elements of the 4 principals, maybe to include Obama talking about visiting all 57 states, or people “clinging to their guns” or the “spread the wealth around” comment that nearly cost him the election in the end.  Nope. It appears that the sequence changes from one viewing to the next, but the proportions are the same, and here’s the topic of the first 34 that I clicked through (I know, it was painful):

Palin – Palin – Palin – Joe the Plumber – McCain – Lieberman – Palin – Biden (gasp!) – Palin – Palin – Biden – McCain – Biden – McCain – McCain – McCain – Palin – Palin – Palin – Biden – Palin – Palin – McCain – McCain – Biden – Biden – Palin – McCain – McCain – McCain – McCain – Palin – Biden – OBAMA!!!

Mind you, this is not a list you can view, it’s a single item per page.  Which means you have to click NEXT each time to get to the next gaffe. So of the several dozen people who still read Time Magazine, one of them would have to have clicked through THIRTY-THREE pages before discovering (gasp!) that BO had called the Nittany Lions the Nittaly Lions.

But in the meatime Time had managed to find 20 or so Palin gaffes (most of them not gaffes, but things Time disagrees with) and another dozen or so on McCain.  They even covered Joe the Plumber before getting around to The One and Mr. Foot in Mouth Joe Biden.