Jan 09 2010

I Can’t Help But Wonder

Category: appeasement,Bush,government,Obamaamuzikman @ 8:45 am

The Financial Times on-line has an article entitled “America is Losing the Free World

The last paragraph of the article reads:

Mr Obama is seen as a huge improvement on George W. Bush, but he is still an American president. As emerging global powers and developing nations, Brazil, India, South Africa and Turkey may often feel they have more in common with a rising China than with the democratic US.

After reading this article I note the last paragraph would seem to be oxymoronic.  If Obama is “seen as a huge “improvement” then why the apparent worse-than-ever relations between us and these other democracies?  To some the answer will be America’s tyrannical and oppressive legacy of strong-arming their allies in an attitude of oft-repeated international arrogance.  To others it will be yet another chance to point a finger at George W. Bush and his “cowboy diplomacy”.  But is it even remotely possible that Obama himself has something to do with this?  Is there a shred of possibility that our current president is not seen as someone to be taken seriously?  Could it be that his international Apologize-For-America tour, along with his continual actions of appeasement towards terror-sponsoring regimes, his unwillingness to declare victory as our goal against Islamofacism, and his frequent rebukes and snubbing of our allies has created a perception that this president is weak and lacking in resolve?

If Obama is such an improvement, then why are those who should be our strong allies turning instead more than ever to form alliances elsewhere?

Aug 31 2009

How We Got Here – Some Thoughts on Clinton, Bush and Obama

Category: Bush,Clinton,Obamaamuzikman @ 9:11 am

We now have an occupant in the White House who, by rational measure was woefully lacking in the experience necessary to hold the office of the Presidency.  Barak Obama was elected, not on his record, but on a promise, the promise of hope and change.  For many this meant people had hope that Obama would be a change from George Bush.  By the end of 2008, Bush had become so vilified that just about any Democrat could have been elected.  We as a nation are now beginning to understand the hope and change many of us desired was not the same hope and change Obama had in mind.

How did we get here?  How did the desire for hope and change so completely trump experience, expertise and knowledge? Continue reading “How We Got Here – Some Thoughts on Clinton, Bush and Obama”

Jun 29 2009

Sometimes the Crystal Ball works

Category: Bush,Iran,Iraqharmonicminer @ 8:51 am

Read the following, and understand that it was written SEVEN YEARS AGO by Reuel Marc Gerecht. This was before the Iraq insurgency, before Iraqi elections, before the the surge, before any of it.

Much interesting analysis at the link above, all worth reading:

If the United States stays in Iraq after the fall of Saddam Hussein and his Baathist regime, and ushers in some type of a federal, democratic system, the repercussions throughout the region could be transformative. Popular discontent in Iran tends to heat up when U.S. soldiers get close to the Islamic Republic. An American invasion could possibly provoke riots in Iran–simultaneous uprisings in major cities that would simply be beyond the scope of regime-loyal specialized riot-control units. The army or the Revolutionary Guard Corps would have to be pulled into service in large numbers, and that’s when things could get interesting. The clerical regime fears big street confrontations, afraid that it cannot rely on the loyalty of either the army or the Guard Corps.

And if an American invasion doesn’t provoke urban unrest, the creation of a democratic Iraq probably will. Iraq’s majority Shiite population, who will inevitably lead their country in a democratic state, will start to talk to their Shiite brethren over the Iran-Iraq border. The collective Iranian conversation about American-aided democracy in Iraq will be brutal for the mullahs (which is why the Bush administration should prepare itself for Iranian mischief in Iraq’s politics once Tehran determines that the Bush administration is indeed serious about ensuring a democratic triumph in Baghdad). The Bush administration should, of course, quickly and loudly support any demonstrators who hit the streets in Iran. America’s approval will not be the kiss of death for the brave dissidents who challenge the regime’s armed defenders. On the contrary, such psychological support could prove critical to those trying to show to the people that the die is now decisively cast against the regime.

Dec 30 2008

Every freedom has its limits

Category: Bush,Islam,religionharmonicminer @ 10:43 am

Bush: ‘I am a lowly sinner seeking redemption’

I have found that faith is comforting, faith is strengthening, faith has been important. … I would advise politicians, however, to be careful about faith in the public arena. …In other words, politicians should not be judgmental people based upon their faith. They should recognize — as least I have recognized I am a lowly sinner seeking redemption, and therefore have been very careful about saying (accept) my faith or you’re bad. In other words, if you don’t accept what I believe, you’re a bad person.

And the greatness of America — it really is — is that you can worship or not worship and be equally American. And it doesn’t matter how you choose to worship; you’re equally American. And it’s very important for any President to jealously protect, guard, and strengthen that freedom.

A nice man to the last of his presidency, President Bush misses the point.

It DOES matter how you choose to worship, if that involves celebrating violent jihad. The President used the term “Islamofascist” only a couple of times in his presidency before the state department wimps recoiled in horror from the truth, and begged him not to say it anymore.  Too bad.

The president has acted, all too often, as if he doesn’t need to talk the talk, but only needs to walk the walk. 

In context, I can’t fault his handling of most aspects of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars; not that he’s been perfect (far from it!) but his positions and actions have been reasonable, and the tendency to see clearly in hindsight shouldn’t blind us to the failure of most people to predict what has actually happened.  The wars still needed to be fought, and he fought them.  Simple as that.

But I can and do fault his use of “diplo-speak” because it has left the American people very confused.  The president had a hard time getting his message across via the media, and seems to have just given up near the end of his first term, as far as convincing the populace of the rightness of his policies. 

The problem is not that, “If you don’t accept what I believe, you’re a bad person.”  The problem is if you think you faith gives you the right to kill me because your religion isn’t mine, too.

Christianity and Islam are not morally equivalent religions.  They do not equally teach peace.  They do not equally teach justice.  The pretense that they are alike in some significant way “under the surface” is a deadly one.

So while I cherish religious freedom, I think we need to keep clear eyes on those who would use that very freedom against us.

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Dec 19 2008

Robbing the poor and giving it to the rich

Category: Bush,Democrat,economyharmonicminer @ 12:53 am

This is what comes of compassionate conservatism, I guess.

US President George W. Bush said in an interview Tuesday he was forced to sacrifice free market principles to save the economy from “collapse.”

“I’ve abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system,” Bush told CNN television, saying he had made the decision “to make sure the economy doesn’t collapse.”

Bush’s comments reflect an extraordinary departure from his longtime advocacy for an unfettered free market, as his administration has orchestrated unprecedented government intervention in the face of a dire financial crisis.

“I am sorry we’re having to do it,” Bush said.

But Bush said government action was necessary to ease the effects of the crisis, offering perhaps his most dire assessment yet of the country’s economy.

One wonders if President Bush has read any of these books. They feature a super-secret, quite small organization of assassins and controllers who do illegal things to “save the Constitution,” and for whom no official record exists, the authorization being passed from president to president by word of mouth.

Of course, this entire book series is satire.  But President Bush and his interventions, with Democrat connivance, are for real…  if you can keep a straight face.  But as far as I can see, the only people laughing all the way to the bank ARE the banks, who have taken the federal bailout funds and are just sitting on them, instead of loaning them, behavior which seems beyond the control of the federal reverse-Robin Hoods who gave it to them.

Sep 11 2008

Libertarians vs. conservatives on the role of the presidency

I love it when the libertarians and conservatives square off and start punching. It’s always instructive, and is a good tonic for those who believe “the right” is monolithic.

Claremont Institute fellow Michael M. Uhlmann has a dismissive review of The Cult of the Presidency in the current issue of National Review: “It’s Not Just the Executive,” September 15, 2008. (Here it is if you get NR Digital, otherwise it’s available in the print edition). It seems to me that the review largely consists of inaccurate characterizations, unsupported assertions, and non sequiturs. But hey, I’m the author, and understandably biased, so check it out and judge for yourself.

Uhlmann writes that “The bulk of Healy’s book is devoted to various sins, offenses and negligences of the Bush administration.” That’s a bizarre statement, given that the book has nine chapters and an introduction, and only three of those chapters cover GWB’s tenure. In fact, the “bulk of the book” is devoted to demonstrating that, as I write in Chapter Two, “the problems of the modern presidency did not begin when George W. Bush emerged victorious from 2000’s seemingly interminable Battle of the Chads” and that–despite what some on the Left seem to believe–those problems will not vanish in January 2009 when he heads back to the ranch to cut brush.

Read it all.


Sep 01 2008

I Hate, Therefore I Am

Category: Bush,Clinton,election 2008,Group-think,McCainamuzikman @ 8:00 am

It is clear to anyone paying attention to the Presidential race that a primary strategy being employed by the Obama campaign is to establish political equivalence between George Bush and John McCain. The Democratic candidate often repeats that a vote for McCain is a vote for 4 more years just like the last 8 years. The daily drumbeat is to fix in the minds of voters this simple equation, Bush=McCain.

The thinking behind this effort is fairly obvious. Bush is despised by the Left. McCain is like Bush. Therefore McCain should be despised as well.

Where did this hatred for Dubya come from? Why is he the object of such revulsion and animosity? The obvious answers are things like the 2000 election, the war in Iraq, the housing slump, high gas prices, hurricane Katrina, “global-warming”, Dick Cheney, “connections” to Big Oil, etc, etc, etc.

But I think the source of “Bush-loathing” goes a little farther back and is helpful in pointing out one rather significant difference between liberals and conservatives. I believe the genesis takes us to Bill Clinton.

Clinton did and said some things while in office that were considered pretty despicable by many people. They do not need to be reiterated here, no one has forgotten Monica Lewinski et al. But as a result of despicable actions he came to be despised by many, especially conservatives. But for those who did (and do) have contempt for Bill Clinton, it was because he earned it.

Enter George W. Bush. From day one he has been despised by the Left. At the time Bush took office I almost had the feeling  liberals (and their mainstream media shills) were saying, “OK, now we’ll show YOU how to detest a president!” But the difference is this. Because he was despised by the Left at the outset, EVERY action he has undertaken, seen through those lenses is considered to be despicable. Bush didn’t have to earn it, it was waiting for him when he got there and it has been that way for 8 years.

John McCain is NOT George Bush (yes, I’ve seen them together). But he does share one thing with Bush without even being elected – utter contempt from the Left. And like Bush, he won’t have to lift a finger, it will simply be bestowed upon him.

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