Wednesday, October 22, 2014

NY Times Editors Try To Rescue Obama As He Is Dissed By Dems

Too often the White House ends up scrambling to look effective after the facts point to Obama and his team once again having fucked up so badly they totally lose the public's trust. This picture has been running on the White House website for days. It shows the Obama style: the President issuing reprimands and orders, while humiliating the cause of Obama's bad press. In this picture, what is noticeable is the diminutive, really little more than decorative, display of the CDC and its leader, Dr. Tom Frieden, shrunk to hobbit size and clearly reduced to an auxiliary role in responding to the Ebola virus crisis. Shortly after this Obama said he would name an Ebola Czar to coordinate the federal response to the deadly disease. Frieden is at this point Dr. Persona non Grata.
The New York Times published an editorial today, noting the danger that Democrats posed to themselves by distancing from and just plain dissing Barack Obama.

The Times says the danger is that by appearing to agree with Republicans, and most Americans, that Barack Obama is a failure, and worse, an incompetent, Democratic candidates weaken their own message.

Why? Because as President Obama said earlier this month:
"Now, I am not on the ballot this fall.  Michelle is pretty happy about that.  (Laughter.)  But make no mistake:  These policies are on the ballot—every single one of them."
Every single Democrat owns the policies and programs pushed by Obama.

The Times argues that should be a plus for Democrats:
"There is much that is going right in this country, and there is still time for Democrats to say so."
But the few things the Times can point to are not exactly counted as positive accomplishments by most Americans:

1. "Few voters know that the 2009 stimulus bill contributed heavily to the nation’s economic recovery, saving and creating 2.5 million jobs."

The reason why nobody cares, much less believes, that the stimulus bill saved America, is that, because Obama failed to push through a sufficiently vigorous bill, with real incentives to increase employment and address underemployment, the main beneficiaries of this spending program were corporations and wealthy Americans. The long, extremely painful and destructive "recovery" was characterized by the worst post-recession employment rebound in the nation's history. Millions of Americans simply stopped looking for work, because nobody would hire them, and as a consequence the unemployment rate in the USA improved steadily (and misleadingly) as these workers were no longer counted. Of course, for many of them, they were counted another way—as part of the burgeoning number of Americans newly arrived in poverty.

Add this to the fact most Americans understand "stimulus" and "bailout" to basically mean the same thing, and it is understandable why Democrats don't want to talk about it.

2. "Similarly, the Affordable Care Act, one of the most far-reaching and beneficial laws to have been passed by Congress in years, gets little respect even among the Democratic candidates who voted for it."

Of course, you probably know this Affordable Care Act by its real name—Obamacare—a name originally pasted onto it by Republicans and, prior to the disastrous rollout of the ACA, for a while embraced by Obama and the Democrats. The problem with Obama is not just his total failure to stand his ground on key policy points—so for example he tossed away his pledge to avoid an individual mandate in his health care program—but it is the way he simply lies to people to tamp down their opposition. 

So, for example, Obama plainly told Americans that if they liked their health care (usually low cost health care) they could keep it under Obamacare. That turned out to be a lie. Many Americans saw their health care coverage canceled and they were forced into high-cost policies under Obamacare. Furthermore, as the Times itself recently pointed out, many Americans cannot use the insurance they have been forced to buy. Why? Because the huge deductibles people have to pay with their Obamacare packages mean they cannot afford to go to the doctor. Some benefit, huh?

And it isn't like Americans, and the Democrats who forced this stupid, Republican, health-care plan on them, don't understand that. So, it makes a lot of sense that no Democrat, especially in heavily Republican states, is going to be much interested in yapping about Obamacare.

And then of course there is the problem of what else Obama has accomplished, or the greater context of his deeds (or crimes and misdemeanors).

1. Obama's fawning embrace of war and slaughter—contrary to what Mr. Hope and Change promised, Barack Obama has seldom met a war or a war crime he does not love. From refusing to prosecute Bush-era kidnapping and torture operations (because it would make the CIA sad), to droning down scores of innocents because hey, if you're going to make some terrorist omelets, you're going to have to blow up some babies, Obama has plenty of reasons to have gone so gray in the hair and the countenance. Thinking about rotting in Hell for eternity is likely a little upsetting.

2. Obama's even more shocking 69 with the NSA and the US spy-thug regime. Obama obviously thinks the Bill of Rights is just a set of interesting but highly ignorable suggestions. As Obama amped up Bush's wholesale crushing of the privacy rights and Fourth Amendment rights of 300 million Americans, his henchpeople lied to Congress, lied to the American people, and lied to the FISA court that was supposed to be the watchdog insuring that the Constitution would not be used as it has been—like toilet paper to wipe the stinking butts and brains of spies. The patriot Edward Snowden revealed the truth to the world. Of course Obama wants Edward Snowden dead. That's all we need to know about the traitor, Barack Obama.

3. Obama's deep commitment to incompetence. OK, so it's one thing that Barack Obama is such a liar, such a war-mongering jerk, such a hateful treasonous bastard for treating Americans like servants of the NSA and the spy regime, but forget all that for a moment and just consider how horribly incompetent Barack Obama is at doing his job. From totally misreading and mishandling the Arab Spring, to fucking up the Obamacare rollout, to missing the signals about Putin, to missing the signals about Islamic State, and then creating one of the dumbest war strategies in the history of the world, to failing to take Ebola virus sufficiently seriously, Obama and his hapless minions seem most apt in finding new ways to completely fuck shit up.

Another Times article discusses the impact of this flood of government ineptitude, which undercuts the paper's own Obama-supporting editorial with a blow by blow explanation for America's sinking sense of self esteem and hope. And all of that, rightly, stops on the desk of Barack Obama—except in his spin of things, that is never the case.

Obama came into office with one of the biggest passes ever afforded to any president. You can call it affirmative action (many Republicans do), but the fact is for years most Americans were willing to forgive Obama concerning the execrable state of America's economy and foreign policy, because they knew those things had gone so horribly wrong under the reign of George W Bush and the Republicans.

And as a consequence, Obama got used to never having to fight to defend his failures or his alleged successes. It was always Bush's fault. Also, unfortunately, for Obama it was also too often Bush's credit, as Obama too often embraced, rather than rejected, Bush's foreign policy especially.

Four years ago, Barack Obama went to Maryland to campaign for Governor Martin O'Malley.

Obama said:
"What the other side is counting on, the other side is counting on, is that this time around you’re going to stay home. They’re counting on your silence.  They’re counting on amnesia. They’re counting on your apathy, especially the young people here. They don't believe you’re going to come out and vote. They figure Obama is not on the ballot; you’re not going to come out and vote."
Yep, things have changed that much.

Then Obama begged the crowd:
"So I know times are tough.  And I know we’re a long way from the hope and the excitement we all felt on election night and inauguration day.  But we always knew this was going to take time.  We always knew it was going to be hard.  I said it was going to be hard.  Change has always been hard."
Four years ago, maybe Obama had some chance of convincing Americans that tough times were just going to take a while to fix and that they should be patient. But six years into his presidency, with tough times having evaporated for corporations and rich Americans, what is Obama going to say—that he's just too powerless and incompetent to fight the fixed game the American system obviously is?

The American people already know that all too well.

The question for them now, and it is a question pretty much impossible to answer, is who to blame and how to blame them. Voting in Republicans is far more a punishment of the American people than of Democrats. Yet, that may be what Americans choose to do. The electoral choice, the electoral remedy, has plainly lost its potency to make things better.

Now what?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Obama Says Ebola-Shmola, Thousands Will Die From The Flu!

Obama has had just about enough of these stupid American people, in other words his bosses. Can't they understand they just need to shut up and let the egg-spurts do their jobs? Obama seems not to get, still, that being competent, and not just at doing evil, is actually the best way to quell people's concerns. At this point, even Democrats have had enough of looking at that sour, sanctimonious, puss, and just want it to go away.
On Saturday, President Obama, whose popularity is only a little better than Ebola's at this point, made his weekly lecture to the poor dumb, American people he clearly despises.

He told America—stop being hysterical about this Ebola thing, you idiots. Only three people in the USA have got it! Big friggers! (It's a Harvard Law thing).

To explain just how silly Americans are being about Ebola, in his view, the President decided to offer up this cheery comparison:
"What we're seeing now is not an "outbreak" or an "epidemic" of Ebola in America.  We're a nation of more than 300 million people.  To date, we've seen three cases of Ebola diagnosed here...we have to keep this in perspective. As our public health experts point out, every year thousands of Americans die from the flu."
Except, of course, there's a little problem with that view of things. It's wrong.

According to the CDC's own numbers, flu actually kills only a few hundred people a year in the USA, not thousands. The reason the death numbers for flu are generally inflated into thousands is because the government combines deaths from flu and pneumonia into one category. When broken into separate categories, suddenly the threat from flu is exposed as not quite as lethal as people believe or are regularly told by the government.

In addition, Obama fails to consider that people's deep fear of Ebola is not that it isn't, yet, killing lots of Americans, but that it is absolutely efficient at killing people when it does infect them.

So, there is this to consider:
Mortality rate of Ebola: 50% (as high as 90%)
Mortality rate of flu: far less than 1%

So, let's see, Ebola is at least 50 times more lethal than the flu. Yes, it might be harder to catch, although if you're exposed to an infected person, it's really easy to catch it unless you're bundled up like an astronaut, but Ebola's definitely harder to survive. So, it's a lot scarier than the flu. And that's especially the case when the government has bungled the handling of Ebola in the United State so badly.

Meanwhile, Obama appointed an Ebola Czar, a political operative whose job will be to coordinate something previously left uncoordinated. Unfortunately, the Czar, Ron Klain, has no medical experience (he only plays a surgeon general on television), and his political record is pretty crappy too. Klain is the fellow who, last time he was given the mission of saving America, lost a little battle known as Bush v. Gore, one of the most catastrophic legal and political defeats in the nation's history, as it plagued America and the world with the presidency of George W Bush. Klain was said to have cried when he lost. So did America for years since.

And if that weren't enough to give you great confidence in Klain's abilities, he's also the Obama operative who advised it was OK to give Solyndra over half a billion of taxpayer dollars to wash down the drain.

As Klain said at the time:
"The reality is that if POTUS visited 10 such places over the next 10 months, probably a few will be belly-up by election day 2012—but that to me is the reality of saying that we want to help promote cutting edge, new-economy industries."
Yeah, tossing taxpayer money around, in the midst of devastating recession, to promote bleeding-edge industries can be risky stuff. But hey, it isn't like that risk is going to harm Klain.

Kind of like saying hey, dudes, thousands of people die from the flu.

Can heckuva job Klainey be far behind?

If, and it seems more like when at this point, the Democrats get slaughtered at the polls on November 4, there won't be much doubt about why. Prior to Obama's latest drama with the CDC looking like a bunch of fools over Ebola, the Democrats had been making progress, especially in some of the key Senate races.

But, at this point, Obama is hated even by more and more Democrats. At a campaign stop on Sunday, when Obama took the stage to stump for Maryland Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, a steady stream of disgusted Democrats got up and walked out on Obama.

As with Bush, the nation has had enough of Barack Obama. And the nation will have to put up with this latest electoral mistake for two more years!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

"We Have Protocol Juju” Assures Witch-Doctor Obama To Frightened USA

Barack Obama huddles with CDC chief, Tom Frieden recently. The two are trying to figure out how to make the protocols juju thing work. So far, all their witch-doctoring has demonstrated is that nobody knows what the fuck they're doing, and also: with Ebola Virus in America, white people live, black people die—just like always.
"Stopping Ebola is a priority for the United States.  I've said that this is as important a national security priority for my team as anything else that's out there."—Barack Obama, September 25, 2014
President Barack Obama, sounding more and more like some kind of clueless witch-doctor, has been making a lot of confident statements about many things, especially since the Ebola crisis began.

Initially, the President claimed that the vast technological superiority of America compared to poor West African nations like Sierra Leone and Liberia meant that the USA would likely never see a case of Ebola Virus here:
"First and foremost, I want the American people to know that our experts, here at the CDC and across our government, agree that the chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low."
And why was that true?

Because, Obama said:
"We’ve been taking the necessary precautions, including working with countries in West Africa to increase screening at airports so that someone with the virus doesn’t get on a plane for the United States."
YAY! That worked, huh? Oh wait, no! Of course not, because those "screenings" involved asking people if they had been around Ebola-infected individuals, and did not take into consideration that most people, especially people trying to get the hell out of Ebolaland, would lie! when asked that question.

Obama followed that up by explaining that even if somebody with Ebola got to the USA, it would all be OK:
"In the unlikely event that someone with Ebola does reach our shores, we’ve taken new measures so that we’re prepared here at home.  We’re working to help flight crews identify people who are sick, and more labs across our country now have the capacity to quickly test for the virus.  We’re working with hospitals to make sure that they are prepared, and to ensure that our doctors, our nurses and our medical staff are trained, are ready, and are able to deal with a possible case safely."
Again, none of that really happened.

When a Liberian person, Thomas Eric Duncan, who was infected with Ebola Virus, flew into the USA unscreened (because he lied when asked "that question"), and ended up being hospitalized in Dallas, Texas, Obama once again assured everyone that this one case would be contained and not result in an outbreak.

Why? Because of the protocols of course:
"Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Dr. Tom Frieden updated the President this afternoon on the recently-diagnosed Ebola case in Dallas, Texas. The President and Director Frieden discussed the stringent isolation protocols under which the patient is being treated as well as ongoing efforts to trace the patient’s contacts to mitigate the risk of additional cases. Dr. Frieden noted that the CDC had been prepared for an Ebola case in the United States, and that we have the infrastructure in place to respond safely and effectively."—White House summary of phone call on September 30, 2014, between Barack Obama and Dr. Tom Frieden, head of CDC.
But then it turned out that the first hospital tasked with using protocols to defeat Ebola, Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, actually did not have any. Not only did Texas Health Presbyterian botch the initial diagnosis of Ebola victim Duncan, sending him home to mingle with other people, but when Duncan came back to the same hospital a couple of days later, and when Texas Health Presbyterian finally did figure it it was dealing with Ebola, the problem turned out to be that the hospital had no actual protocols for its nurses and for the disposal of dangerous items soiled with deadly infectious fluids from the patient.

This morning we began to learn a great deal more about this, as a nurse from Texas Health Presbyterian, Briana Aguirre, who appeared on The Today Show, explained that the hospital, contrary to what Obama and Frieden had been saying, never had any discussions with its staff about Ebola, prior to Duncan showing up, and worse—the protective suits worn by nurses who were looking after Duncan, were not actual hazmat clothing, and in fact were partially open at the neck, creating a critical vulnerability.

And that vulnerability has resulted in two nurses at Texas Health Presbyterian, ones who had cared for Duncan, getting Ebola themselves.

Once again, Obama's people kept promising the protocols would save us.

Obama yesterday amended his previous statements. Now said Obama the protocols would insure than the unlikely outbreak, which had occurred anyway, was going to be kept small.
"So bottom line in terms of the public: I want people to understand that the dangers of you contracting Ebola, the dangers of a serious outbreak are extraordinarily low."
But the facts are that well over 200 people at this point have been potentially exposed to Ebola in the United States, and that is just the people we know about.

And the information we have learned in the last 24 hours, regarding the CDC's treatment of the second Texas Health Presbyterian nurse to become infected, is extremely disturbing.

The CDC admits now that this nurse had Texas Health Presbyterian contact CDC to OK her flying from Dallas to Ohio and then back. The CDC, which was told the nurse had a fever before her flight back from Cleveland, made no effort to stop the nurse from boarding the jet from Ohio to Texas. Now CDC admits the nurse was infectious with Ebola when she got on that return flight.

It is evident that whatever Barack Obama and his fellow witch doctors mean by "protocols", they have to do more with making sure the Ebola Virus gets widely spread in the USA than stopping it.

Obama canceled political tours to convene his Cabinet to figure out how exactly things went from "almost no chance of Ebola in America" to "the outbreak won't get out of control".

The national witch-doctors have not yet begun shaking bones at people while they scream "umgawa" to exhort Americans to resist recalcitrant Ebola.

But nobody would be surprised if that is next in the protocols of Obama.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Will Kobani Be The Graveyard Of Obama's War Strategy?

Islamic State fighter attacks Kurds with a heavy machine gun in Kobani. While the world watches the northern Syrian town get blasted by American bombs and Caliphate gunmen, Barack Obama's war policy is getting blasted by just about anybody and everybody, including Democrats like Leon Panetta and ex-President Jimmy Carter. The latter, in a much-ignored comment about Obama's general (and heinous) conduct in the world, accused Obama of being a murderer.
Two months ago, when Islamic State threatened to kill thousands of Kurds and Yazidi people in northern Iraq, Barack Obama argued the United States had a moral duty to defend these people from the brutal atrocities committed by the Caliphate fighters. And Barack Obama ordered the United States to go to war against Islamic State.

That was then.

Now, the United Nations predicts that thousands of people, most of them Syrian Kurds, will be slaughtered by Islamic State, should the Syrian town of Kobani fall to the Caliphate. The US response to this—yeah, well, can't win 'em all.

Not only are there no US ground troops going to the rescue, in addition US airstrikes in and around Kobani, while making impressively large explosions, have failed to stop Islamic State from sending in more troops and resupplying them in the fight. Also, the world daily sees US alleged ally Turkey just sitting and watching the building disaster on its border with Syria.

"Double standard" doesn't even begin to describe the difference in the situations. And it is an understatement to point out that this failure on Obama's part to be effectively supportive of the Kurds of Kobani is uninspiring to any US proxy fighters against Islamic State.

Barack Obama in recent weeks has hardly been a paragon of consistency or clarity when it comes to articulating or perpetrating his war policy. The one key issue the President has failed to address with anything like a coherent or convincing answer is why the United States should be expecting a bunch of lightly-armed amateur warriors to fight and die for America’s war against the supposed global threat of Islamic State.

Of course Obama has said that this isn't America's war, and indeed on a number of occasions Obama has made the ridiculous statement that the United States is not even fighting a war at all. Instead, Obama insists that the numerous American airstrikes against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria are intended as combat support missions to aid the real fighters, the people whose war this really is, to degrade and destroy Islamic State. So far that isn't working out so well.

Further, in making his case for the use of air power, Obama has told Americans and the world that Islamic State is a global threat, which seeks to come to the West, to the United States, to kill as many people as possible.

But if that is a serious assessment, and if the threat posed by Islamic State is actually as bad as Obama and other war-pushers have claimed, then why shouldn’t American ground troops be fighting and dying right along with the Kurds and the Iraqi Shia and the utterly invisible moderate Syrian rebels?

Is it because everybody knows how long support for ObamaWar would last once Americans started dying in it in any numbers? While one imagines, should the US commit a few thousand ground combat troops, that the actual fighting would start going against Islamic State, the US has never been able to impose peace by force of arms in the Middle East.

Obama claims this is because the resentment at US invasions and occupations outweighs the calming effect of the occupying troops. And eventually, the American people want their occupiers to come home. Certainly, that was a big issue in the American operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But the problem is that now we have seen what happens when American occupation troops are withdrawn from a region where the alleged establishment of a national military to replace the Americans was put to the test. After billions of dollars and years of training, the Iraqi military, equipped with large supplies of American weapons, quickly fell to pieces when it was attacked by Islamic State during the summer.

The Caliphate fighters currently attacking Kobani, have brought with them arms and supplies they captured from the Iraqi military. Much of the Islamic State equipment being blown up by American airstrikes was made in or supplied by the United States to Iraq.

Again, “irony” doesn’t seem quite strong enough to describe the absurdity.

The criticism of the US President, and his ad-hoc fashion of dealing with everything, but especially foreign policy, now comes from the highest places in Obama’s own Democratic Party.

Leon Panetta, Obama’s former CIA chief and Secretary of Defense, has criticized the President for being more suited to lecturing people as a law professor, than leading them as President. Effective leadership, Panetta argues in his new book “Worthy Fights”, comes from a willingness and ability to engage people passionately about important issues, so that a President must be seen to fight for something—anything—he believes in.

Panetta writes:
“[President Obama’s] most conspicuous weakness, [is] a frustrating reticence to engage his opponents and rally support for his cause…Too often, in my view, the president relies on the logic of a law professor rather than the passion of a leader.”
Maybe that helps explain Obama’s low polling numbers, as everyone knows how much Americans love lawyers.

Then there’s Jimmy Carter, who recently assessed Obama this way:
“First of all, we [i.e., Obama] waited too long. We let the Islamic state build up its money, capability and strength and weapons while it was still in Syria. Then when [ISIS] moved into Iraq, the Sunni Muslims didn’t object to their being there and about a third of the territory in Iraq was abandoned.”
Now, that is the criticism most papers and pundits have focused on, with big headlines announcing how Jimmy is blasting Barack, and it prompted MSNBC blowhard Mike Barnicle to demand the USA have an election between Obama and Jimmy Carter to figure out which unpopular President America really wants. OK.

But, what has generally been ignored in the Carter article is this comment by the 39th President:
“I really object to the killing of people, particularly Americans overseas who haven’t been brought to justice and put on trial. We’ve killed four Americans overseas with American drones. To me that violates our Constitution and human rights.”
Carter’s talking about Barack Obama violating “our Constitution and human rights”. And so let us understand what Jimmy Carter is really saying: Barack Obama is a murderer.

Yet, that bit hasn’t been covered much at all.

At this point in the second term of George W. Bush’s presidency, the American people had utterly given up on him. He was the fool who had invaded Iraq and played guitar while New Orleans drowned. People despised George W. Bush. They regretted ever voting for him—which America collectively only did once (maybe), in 2004.

We kind of figured Barack Obama would struggle in his second term, as most Presidents do. But the idea Obama would have ended up like Bush, hated as a Constitution-killer, a murderer of Americans, and a war-mongering fool—not so many people thought it would go this way, this badly, this quickly.

But polling shows Barack Obama currently in almost exactly the same place as George W. Bush in terms of disapproval by his bosses at this point in his presidency.

The Presidents aren’t getting any better, which is to say the American voters aren’t getting any better either. The American system is rotten and everyone knows it, yet nobody has a better idea anyone is seriously entertaining.

None of that is going to save anybody in Kobani of course. Politics, and the endless debate about it, is just another of many ways Americans ignore the awful consequences of the folly of their terrible leaders.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Newest Episode Of Islamic State Beheading Program Shorter, Grimmer, Staler

Always absurd (and insane) Little Sissy Psycho, the star of Islamic State's "The Beheading Program", used a more restrained delivery (for the non-beheading portion) in episode 4. This week's victim, Allen Henning, an allegedly good-hearted poor soul who just went to Syria to help people, made a terse, unconvincing read of his scripted last words. This was followed by the usual claim by LSP that the proceedings are justified—like that even matters—on account of some mean thing Islamic State's burgeoning list of world-class enemies has done to it. The execution was grimmer than usual, with Henning clearly looking terrified before the standard fadeout. LSP returned to remind everyone that, assuming he has not been blown up or otherwise executed by then, he would be back soon to behead yet another American, Peter Edward Kessig.
The incredibly insane (for normal people) jihadi called Little Sissy Psycho was back yesterday with a new episode of Islamic State's snuff series, "The Beheading Program". 

This week's unfortunate guest, Allen Henning, had gone from the UK to Syria to try to do some humanitarian work. A cabby, Henning was driving in a convoy last year, when he was grabbed by bad guys and eventually ended up being made part of the succession of American and British victims on Islamic State's public response to Obama's war against the Caliphate.

One thing we noticed in the new episode, was the program itself was shorter, terser, with less (amateurish) theatricality on the part of LSP. For example, whereas in earlier videos LSP habitually employs his knife as as extension of his accusing outstretched hand, used to emphasize the alleged culpability of Obama, Cameron, or in this case the British Parliament, only when speaking disgustedly of the latter enemy did LSP bother to point his knife at the camera.

Maybe this was a kind of Freudian admission of the futility of his acting like an effectual macho creepazoid in the earlier episodes. For all his knife-waving and neck-cutting, LSP has not managed to stop Obama from blowing up whomever he wants wherever he wants all over Iraq and Syria.

One got the definite feeling LSP did not feel comfortable stretching out the performances, perhaps because he feared getting targeted and vaporized, he blathered on too long about how beheading a few unimportant non-players is a useful and appropriate response to scores of Islamic State fighters being sent on the fast-missile to Hell.

Even LSP sounded a little unconvinced his newest murder was going to do anything other than make British pilots that much more enthusiastic about killing Caliphate loonies.

The one point in the program where there was a definite change from earlier episodes was in the usually rather demure presentation of the actual execution. Whereas the thinking (such as it is) has been in earlier killings to suggest rather than show any part of the actual beheading, this time LSP and his victim were shot head-on for the execution and one can definitely see in the last second or so before the camera fades out, a look of deep terror on the face of Allen Henning, as LSP's blade runs back and forth over his throat. Henning's eyes widen and his mouth opens and you can hear the beginning of a scream. Then fade to black.

After that, and the usual display of Henning's corpse, with its bloody head resting on the decapitated body, LSP returned to show us the prospective victim for the next episode: Peter Edward Kessig, an American vet of the Iraq War.

Short of killing LSP, and all the other nuts guarding hostages of Islamic State, Kessig's time is likely short. We hope that at least one of these victims would have the courage to sink his teeth into LSP's knife hand, or better to stand up and head-butt the little coward before making a likely hopeless dash to the background. Yeah, the escapee would probably get shot, but Islamic State probably won't be showing that way of dying on the Internet.

Just a thought to spice up the already quite drearily repetitive plots of this dumb dreadful show.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Far Worse Than Islamic State, So Why Did Obama Let Ebola Invade The USA?

Obama no doubt is figuring out this morning how to address his most important priority—avoiding stepping into the giant shit-pile left by that huge African elephant in the room (or on the links). While Obama promised to protect America, by among other things "making sure that someone with the [Ebola] virus doesn’t get on a plane for the United States", he couldn't even command his own Secret Service to properly protect himself and his family. So, why should Americans think he would be any better at keeping Ebola from invading the USA? Impeachment? No, that's a waste of money. Barack Obama should resign.
Remarks by Barack Obama on September 16, 2014 at CDC:
“First and foremost, I want the American people to know that our experts, here at the CDC and across our government, agree that the chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low. We’ve been taking the necessary precautions, including working with countries in West Africa to increase screening at airports so that someone with the virus doesn’t get on a plane for the United States.”
Also, Barack Obama wants you to know that Islamic State is the jayvee team and nothing to worry about. AND, that Obamacare website?—it’s going to work great from day one!

Feel better now?

Let’s not waste time avoiding the African elephant in the room: if the Ebola virus had not been mainly killing poor Africans all these years, it would already be cured.

If regular (not-gay!), white Americans had been getting and spreading the scary disease, a mammoth war on Ebola virus would have been declared by the American president. And the disease would be cured, or better yet expensively managed by pirate pharma companies and their hospital goons. Then “the treatment” would be doled out occasionally to poor nations where infected Americans had spread the disease, as a sign of USA’s extraordinary generosity.

Oh yeah, the other African elephant in the room. The fellow from Liberia. The fellow who brought Ebola virus to the USA. The fellow nobody bothered to ask: “Hey Liberian dude—know any Ebola-people back home in Ebolaland?”

In fact he did. In fact, the poor Ebola-spreading gentleman, Thomas Eric Duncan, had the extraordinary misfortune to know and to care for a sick neighbor in Monrovia, Liberia, a woman seven months pregnant. She had Ebola. She died. After that, Duncan rather naturally wanted to get the hell out of Liberia and come to visit his relatives in Dallas, Texas.

No problem with his motives. Very understandable.

But, on the other side of the elephant, where Americans are watching the world’s poor victims (of every imaginable horror) through the bars of fear and indifference that supposedly protect them from bad things like Ebola, which let’s face it, might as well be a terrorist organization, every asshole that could have stopped Duncan from traveling out of his hellhole to come to America, failed.

Nobody, including at the entry point in Washington DC where Duncan flew into on September 12, bothered to ask Duncan: dude, do you know any Ebola-people?

And when they finally did ask Duncan a related question*: where are you from?—at the Dallas ER where Duncan went to seek help when his fever first showed up and he wasn’t feeling well, the ER team botched saving America. They didn’t bother “passing along” to members of their team the information that Duncan was fresh-arrived from Ebolaland, so somebody might want to check and see if he was sick with Ebola virus.
*—Some reports are that they didn't ask, but Duncan volunteered the information anyway.

Nope, the dullards at the Dallas hospital just told Duncan—dude, you’ve got a cold, stop wasting our time. And they sent him home to infect Dallas, Texas.

Government officials—always so reliable—and understandably anxious to avoid starting a panic, initially insisted only a “handful”—maybe three or four people—had come into contact with Duncan since he became infectious.

Now that number has gone up to 12-18 people*—or who fucking knows how many really? They’re washing down the schools where the Duncan’s relatives’ children go to school. They’re monitoring, but not quarantining, potential new Ebola victims. They’re trying to control what has the real chance to explode into a national disaster far worse than Islamic State and its idiotic beheading reality show.
*—See here however for updated information on the contact list—as many as 100 people are being sought in Dallas area, on account of their having had "direct or indirect contact" with Duncan.

They’re doing those things.

But here’s the thing.

They’re still letting people travel into the United States from Ebolaland!

And now there’s news a new Ebola case has shown up in Hawaii. UPDATE on this report: Hawaii Department of Health says the patient does not have Ebola.

We are told Barack Obama is a bad manager. We believe that is true. He could not even figure out it might be good to fire the chief of the Secret Service (again), until the nation’s pols and punditry ordered him to.

And Barack Obama failed to order a travel ban to and from the Ebola-infected nations. Or at least to institute rigorous checkpoints for Ebolaland nationals coming into the USA—even though Obama promised he would do that.

Instead, Barack Obama let the USA become the newest part of Ebolaland.

Who needs terrorists, when you have such idiotic national leadership?

Note that this morning, the liberal pushback on the travel ban question has begun. The Washington Post published this article, where it is explained that a travel ban would be bad for Ebolaland (for example, it would be bad for its economy). No doubt, but at least Americans wouldn’t be rushing to join hands in the region’s Totentanz.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Obama Reveals Shocking Ignorance Concerning Shia-Sunni-Kurd Makeup Of Iraq

Obama, as is his habit, spent a lot of time in the "60 Minutes" interview looking down and away. Whether he was trying to think of what to say, or he was trying to think of how to lie while saying it, most people find a person who cannot look them in the eye when he's answering a direct question about important matters to be shady. Add this to the fact that Obama's knowledge of what seems Iraq 101 was appallingly deficient—like who is the majority, Shia or Sunnis—and this interview may have been some kind of new nadir of Obama's presidency. The good news for Barry is that most Americans are even more ignorant about Iraq (and Syria) than he is, and so will never question all the dubious and contradictory things he claimed about his new war and its strategy.
In one of the more disturbing interviews in his presidency, Barack Obama attempted to make his case last night on “60 Minutes” for his strategy in the new American war in the Middle East.

Obama repeatedly made assertions that he later contradicted. For example, at one point Obama argued, as he has done a number of times that America is not fighting in a war against Islamic State, but is instead engaged in an extended (apparently open-ended) counterterrorism operation against any number of bad actors.

Then later, when asked by CBS interviewer Steve Kroft about the 1600 American boots already on the ground in Iraq (Obama repeatedly says there will be no American boots on the ground in this new war), Obama said that he was aware some of these troops, embedded in Iraqi operational combat units, were “in harm’s way” in “a war environment”.

Kroft of course did not catch this contradiction, and nor did he catch the most glaring and troubling Obama blunder of all, when the President answered a question about how Iraq’s national army performed so poorly after the US spent a fortune and many years training and equipping it to be able to fight against just the kind of threat Islamic State poses.

Obama was quick to deny that the United States had any responsibility for this outcome, claiming instead that Islamic State was able to roll over the Iraqi national army because the former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki had failed to build an inclusive government and make Sunnis and Kurds feel they were part of one unified Iraq:
“Well, here’s what happened in Iraq. When we left, we had left them a democracy that was intact, a military that was well-equipped, and the ability then to chart their own course. And that opportunity was squandered over the course of five years or so, because the Prime Minister, Maliki, was much more interested in consolidating his Shia base, and very suspicious of the Sunnis and the Kurds, who make up the other ⅔ of the country. So, what you did not see was a government that had built a sense of national unity.”
Certainly, if that version of the facts is correct, and the minority Shia were abusing their position to deny representative government to the Sunnis and the Kurds, this suggests the Shia-led Iraqi government might be to blame.

But there is a fundamental problem in that analysis—the Shia religious sect are not, as Obama claimed in the interview, a minority of the population in Iraq. And the Sunnis and the Kurds do not “make up the other ⅔” of Iraq.

Rather, the demographics and the history of Iraq suggest a very different situation in Iraq—one the United States has ignored during most of its involvement in its bloody wars in the Middle East nation.

Here is the actual breakdown:

Arab Shia—65-70%
Arab Sunni—20%
Kurdish Sunni—10%

Some Kurds are actually Shia, and there are other groups that make up small parts of the population as well. But as you can see, the Shia in Iraq are the sizable majority of the country, representing about ⅔ of the entire population of the country.

And you must appreciate this in understanding the Shia position versus the Sunnis and the Kurds—both of which groups are essentially separatist movements in Iraq. During decades of Sunni rule under Saddam Hussein, the Sunni minority brutally repressed the Shia majority and the Kurdish minority in the north. When the United States removed Saddam from power and enabled a democratic process in Iraq, which naturally produced a large Shia majority in the government, the Americans pushed for a reconciliation between all the former enemies.

A semblance of this arrangement was easier to enforce when the US maintained a large combat troop presence in Iraq. Even though the Iraqi Sunnis had fought a vicious civil war against the Shia and against the US occupation, the Americans had resorted to large-scale bribery of Sunni tribal leaders to convince them to stop killing “good guys” and to instead turn on al-Qaeda insurgents (their former allies).

As I have noted before, the failure of the Iraqi Shia government to continue paying bribes to these Sunni leaders, a decision that followed from the reasonable belief by the Shia that these Sunnis should not have to be bribed to be peaceful citizens, led to the Iraqi government instead cracking down on the former Sunni insurgents. That pushed the Sunni tribes back into an alliance with new, very improved, al-Qaeda-affiliated ISIL. Eventually ISIL would break its affiliation with al-Qaeda, and would rename itself Islamic State.

This reborn Sunni insurgency crushed the Iraqi government troops sent out to stop their invasion, and has dominated the landscape in northern Syria in the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s troops. In Syria, unlike in Iraq, the Sunnis do actually represent a majority of the population.

But Syria was not the country Obama was discussing when he made his blunder.

Obviously, if the USA has a Commander-in-Chief who isn’t even informed on the most important and fundamental demographics of the nation he is depending upon to bounce back from its defeat against Islamic State to be the main proxy boots on the ground for the USA, the American people are being led by an ill-prepared President.

But, as the interview proceeded another possibility was suggested. While Obama’s mistake was truly disturbing, it was reinforced a little later in the interview when Kroft made the following statement:
“OK. [Iraqis] have a new Prime Minister. They have a new administration. What it’s not produced is any sort of an enthusiasm, or much enthusiasm on the part of the disaffected Sunni majority.”
Again, the Sunnis in Iraq, disaffected or otherwise, are not the majority, but represent about 1 in 5 Iraqis.

Was Kroft making a thoughtless error, or was this reinforcement of misinformation meant to give Obama cover on his “it’s all Maliki’s fault” talking point?

Even that story did not hold up as Obama went along. Right after claiming everything was just great in Iraq when the USA left, and it was the Shia dissing the Sunnis that messed everything up, Obama lectured (basically the whole region) about its failure to follow Obama’s view of “political accommodation” and “tolerance” towards enemies.

Kroft then asked Obama a most pertinent question:
“And you think we can teach them that?”
And all of a sudden, realizing that only the most brazenly chauvinistic jerk of a US President—say like George W. Bush—would say that yes he thinks we can teach them that, Obama backtracked, pointing out that getting over bad feelings towards different ethnic groups might take a very long time:
“Well, I think this is going to be a generational challenge. I don’t think that this is something that is going to happen overnight.”
Yet, when Obama wanted to blame Maliki for the failure of the Iraqi army and the entire American Iraqi enterprise, he completely ignored this very reasonable point, that maybe it was utterly unrealistic to expect the ⅔-majority Shia to just get over, basically overnight, their intense anger at the Sunnis. That was especially the case when the Shia had good reason to think a large portion of Sunnis were plotting to recapture their dominant position in Iraq. Trust between these groups was very unlikely to come about in any short term.

Meanwhile, the role of the Kurds was, if anything, even more discordant in Obama’s scheme, since the Kurdish northern region of Iraq has essentially all but declared itself independent and sought in the early days of the Islamic State invasion of Iraq to take advantage of the Iraqi government’s losses, capturing territory—from Iraq! Again, there is no trust between Kurds and the Shia majority either.

Failing to come to grips with these basic facts—on the ground—especially after so many years of American involvement in the nation and the region is simply an inexcusable deficiency in an American President, especially one who has just taken the nation to war (or whatever Obama calls it) on the basis of his misunderstanding of the political and military dynamics at play.

Obama needs a cultural geography lesson—or at least a CIA briefing on Iraqi demographics. And the American people need to contact their Congressional representatives and demand that they debate and vote on the authorization for this most dubious ObamaWar.