This blog is mainly about the spectacular train wreck at The Sacramento Bee and its parent company, the McClatchy Company. But I also post about current events, the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, politics, anything else that grabs my attention. Take a look around this blog, hope you enjoy it.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Wednesday November 11 -- Got news or an update?
If you have news or an update, leave it in comments. . . .
Clinton: 'We are winning' (calls Obamacare protesters "teabaggers")
During his appearance at the Senate Democrats' weekly lunch Tuesday, former President Bill Clinton told members of his party not to back down when they're winning the health care debate.
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) said Clinton described the ongoing tea party protests against the Democratic agenda as a sign his party was making progress.
Whitehouse quoted Clinton arguing: "The reason the teabaggers are so inflamed is because we are winning."
Figures… Obama Skips Anniversary of Fall of Berlin Wall, Sends a Video & Talks About Himself (GatewayPundit)
One international leader was conspicuously absent at the 20 Year Anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall today.
But Obama sent a video instead.
U.S. President Barack Obama is seen on screens during a video message at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Nov. 9, 2009, during the commemorations of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall on Nov.9, 1989.
Even worse- Obama spoke about himself to the crowd:
“Few would have seen on that day that… that their American ally would be led by a man of African descent.”
And, of course, he did not mention Ronald Reagan or Margaret Thatcher in his speech.
Berlin and the Case of the Missing President (The New Ledger)
On November 9, 2009, the world will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Naturally, in Germany, there will be commemorations of the event, and the collapse of Communism in Europe.
And given all of this, it is safe to say that Barack Obama will attend the 20th anniversary celebration of the fall of the Wall, right?
While Candidate Barack Obama was perfectly willing to go to Germany during the 2008 Presidential campaign, President Barack Obama has chosen to skip the 20th anniversary celebrations altogether.
Needless to say, this has not elicited much outrage in the mainstream media; Newsweek has gone so far as to both sweep the President’s astonishing decision not to attend under the rug, while pretending that Berlin has already been graced by an Obamaian Presidential visit, assuming that one can consider the 2008 foray to Germany an Obamaian Presidential visit in retrospect.
Obama Draws Criticism for Sitting Out Berlin Wall Anniversary (MyPetJawa)
Boy President will sit out the anniversary of one of thegreatest milestones of the late 20th century.
Voting "Present" once again.
President Obama squeezed in a trip to Copenhagen last month to lobby, unsuccessfully, for Chicago to host the 2016 Summer Olympics.
He plans to travel to Oslo next month to accept the Nobel Peace Prize, an award that even Obama has said he does not deserve. And this coming week, he sets out on a weeklong tour of Asia.
But the president does not plan to travel to Germany to attend the 20th anniversary celebration Monday of the fall of the Berlin Wall, drawing heated criticism from those who say he's ignoring a shining triumph of American-inspired democracy.
"A tragedy," is how former House Speaker Newt Gingrich described Obama's absence.
Some question whether the decision not to go was a nod to Russia, with which the Obama administration is trying to mend relations, or just another attempt to play down the perception of the United States as an exceptional superpower.
For its part, the administration is citing a scheduling conflict. The White House says the president simply does not have the time to go, with the trip to Asia starting Wednesday.
Obama's Berlin snub in focus
The President of leisure has a pretty slow day Monday, highlighting the point that no pressing business kept him from celebrating the fall of communism 20 years after the Berlin Wall fell.
Jim Gerraghty of The Campaign Spot on National Review goes over the official schedule for our leader yesterday:
Just look at the man's schedule: He had a 10 a.m. daily briefing from the intelligence community, a 10:30 a.m. economic daily briefing, an 11 a.m. meeting with senior advisers . . . and then, right after that, at 6:45 in the evening, he had to sign an executive order about hiring veterans, and at 7 p.m. he had a meeting with Israeli prime minister Netanyahu (with preconditions).
Apparently the President spent a good part of the day sitting around the Rose Garden.
AP Rejoices: 'Obama pressed into role as national healer' (JamieWearingFool)
On Saturday opponents of ObamaCare were referred to as teabagging extremists by the national healer.
“Does anybody think that the teabag, anti-government people are going to support them if they bring down health care?
All it will do is confuse and dispirit” Democratic voters “and it will encourage the extremists.”
Today the national healer will bring us all together.
Holder: CAIR’s Links to Hamas Don’t Bother Me! PATTERICO
The FBI claims it cut “formal contacts” with CAIR after federal prosecutors in the 2007 criminal trial of officers of a Texas-based Islamic charity, the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development, introduced documents the government said showed links between CAIR and the Muslim Brotherhood, which gave rise to Hamas.
“Until we can resolve whether there continues to be a connection between CAIR or its executives and HAMAS, the FBI does not view CAIR as an appropriate liaison partner,” FBI Congressional liaison Richard Powers wrote in an April letter to Senator Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.).
But not for Eric Holder:
Attorney General Eric Holder has agreed to give a keynote speech next week to a Michigan group which includes the local branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations even though the FBI has formally severed contacts with the controversial Muslim civil rights organization.
I never thought Eric Holder would be pro-terrorist!
Other than the deal where he violated normal procedures to approve the pardons for the terrorists, that is . . . But come on!
Who ever really saw that as a warning sign?
AP: DC Sniper Execution Causes Fear
WHEATON, Md. (Sweetness-Light)
Serial sniper John Allen Muhammad’s upcoming execution has residents in the Washington area reliving the fear they felt during his three-week killing spree seven years ago.
Muhammad is set for lethal injection Tuesday in Virginia for shooting a man at a gas station.
It was one of 10 deaths in and around the nation’s capital blamed on Muhammad and teenager Lee Boyd Malvo.
The attacks began with five shootings in about 12 hours. The random targets had people all over the region changing their habits to avoid becoming the next victim.
Experts say it’s not unusual for people to feel fearful all over again seven years later. Going through trauma like that alongside their neighbors can intensify the effects.
Isn’t it amazing the lack of coverage Mr. Muhammad’s well deserved execution is getting – even from the left?
Especially, given that this was worst terrorist attack on US soil until Mr. Hasan’s recent jihad.
But even with this natural tie-in, there has been very little coverage of Mr. Muhammad’s send-off, or any remembrances of his killing spree.
Which is odd, given how much our watchdog media normally enjoy covering mass murderers.
And yet somehow talking about Muslim mass murderers always seems to be anathema to our watchdog media.
Note how even this article concentrates on the fears Mr. Muhammad’s execution is supposedly dredging up.
Whereas we suspect most people would be relieved and gladdened at the news.
Anwar Awlaqi: Nidal Hassan is a Hero (Jawa Report)
Yemeni-American jihad propagandist Anwar has been off line for a bit but manages to surface long enough to lavish praise on murderer Nidal Hasan. NEFA had the statement:
“Nidal opened fire on soldiers who were on their way to be deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. How can there be any dispute about the virtue of what he has done?
In fact the only way a Muslim could Islamically justify serving as a soldier in the US army is if his intention is to follow the footsteps of men like Nidal.”
“The heroic act of brother Nidal also shows the dilemma of the Muslim American. community.
The Beltway snipers and the Fort Hood killer: Peas in a jihad-inspired pod (Michelle Malkin)
John Allen Muhammad is scheduled to be executed tomorrow for the Beltway-area sniper spree that left 10 innocent people dead in 2002.
Several family members of the victims will attend.
At the time of the murderous rampage that stretched over three, horror-filled weeks, I lived in Montgomery County, Maryland, where Muhammad and his young partner in crime, Lee Malvo, wreaked bloody havoc.
I covered two main aspects of the story that were underplayed by the MSM–Lee Malvo’s illegal alien catch-and-release story and Nation of Islam convert Muhammad and Malvo’s Muslim hate-mongering.
Snide MSM’ers and the CAIR propagandists attacked those of who called these thugs what they are: terrorists.
The parallels with the Fort Hood case — jihad-inspired killers, media whitewash — are striking.
They’re the parallels you can’t talk about without being labeled a bigot, racist, or “extremist.”
A reminder of what Muhammad and Malvo plotted:
Malvo testified that Muhammad, driven by hatred of America because of its “slavery, hypocrisy and foreign policy” and his belief that “the white man is the devil”, planned to kill six whites a day for 30 days.
Malvo alleged that Muhammad had said: “We are going to go to the Washington DC area and we are going to terrorise these people.”
They then intended to move to Baltimore for stage two of their campaign, to shoot a policeman and then blow up explosives at his funeral.
More explosives would target the ambulances that would then rush to the funeral. Another plan to kill three busloads of schoolchildren was thwarted because the pair were arrested when Malvo fell asleep while keeping watch at a Maryland petrol station.
Muhammad’s ultimate plan, Malvo testified, was to indoctrinate 140 young homeless men at a Canada compound who would “shut things down” in cities across America, unless they received £5 million.
And what kind of indoctrination would Muhammad and Malvo’s army have received to prepare them for their terrorist assaults on American cities?
The jailhouse drawings of Malvo are worth a thousands words. I’ve dug them up again from the Wayback Machine to refresh your memories:
Obama Afghanistan Decision Likely Pushed Back to December
Barack Obama will likely hold off deciding his strategy and troop strength levels until December, according to a New York Times report on his upcoming meeting Wednesday with his national security advisers.
That would make four months since Obama's hand-picked Afghan General Stanley McChrystal made an urgent request in August for 40,000 to 80,000 reinforcements, warning the war would be lost within twelve months without them.
ABC: FBI knew Hasan Tried to Contact Al-Qaeda (Patterico)
Ed Morrissey at Hot Air links to an ABC News report that “the FBI knew that Major Nidal Hasan had attempted to contact al-Qaeda and its associates months before Hasan went on a shooting rampage at Fort Hood, killing 13 people.” But it’s not clear whether the FBI told the Army.
Ed adds this Update: “In case you missed WaPo’s story on Hasan over the weekend, note what he told a neighbor on the morning of the murders after handing her a Koran: “I’m going to do good work for God.”
President Obama warned Americans not to jump to conclusions about Hasan.
Now we learn the FBI and Hasan’s superiors, co-workers, and neighbors apparently did not jump to conclusions about Hasan, despite his questionable actions and rhetoric.
Like Victor Davis Hanson, most Americans understand the problem isn’t Americans “jumping to conclusions”:
“When the entire story emerges of Hasan’s prior clear record of demonstrable hate and venom, and when such transgression is collated with the military’s inaction, and when all that is juxtaposed to the tepid, appeasing response of the Obama administration, I predict that there will be a firestorm that we have not yet witnessed.
What we are enduring is surreal—have we lost our collective minds?”
Fort Hood suspect was reportedly e-mailing al-Qaeda supporter (but don't call him a terrorist)
The Army psychiatrist suspected of killing 12 soldiers and a civilian here last week was in e-mail contact earlier this year with a radical cleric in Yemen who has decried what he calls America's war against Islam, a federal law enforcement official said Monday.
U.S. intelligence agencies intercepted between 10 and 20 e-mails from Maj. Nidal M. Hasan to Anwar al-Aulaqi, a U.S. citizen who once was a spiritual leader at the suburban Virginia mosque where Hasan had worshipped, Rep. Peter Hoekstra (Mich.), the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, said later Monday.
Aulaqi responded to Hasan at least twice, Hoekstra said, but he described the responses as "innocent."
The FBI dropped an inquiry into the matter after determining that the e-mails did not warrant further investigation, according to a law enforcement official, who spoke under the condition of anonymity.
"For me, the number of times that this guy tried to reach out to the imam was significant," Hoekstra said in an interview.
The revelations came as Hoekstra and other congressional leaders complained about a lack of information from the intelligence community in the days since Thursday's shooting and raised questions about the adequacy of the surveillance of Hasan in the month's leading up to the massacre.
Fort Hood gunman had told US military colleagues that infidels should have their throats cut
Major Nidal Malik Hasan, the gunman who killed 13 at America's Fort Hood military base, once gave a lecture to other doctors in which he said non-believers should be beheaded and have boiling oil poured down their throats.
He also told colleagues at America's top military hospital that non-Muslims were infidels condemned to hell who should be set on fire.
The outburst came during an hour-long talk Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, gave on the Koran in front of dozens of other doctors at Walter Reed Army Medical Centre in Washington DC, where he worked for six years before arriving at Fort Hood in July.
Deadly denial: Fudging the facts on Fort Hood (NY Post)
As President Obama belatedly appears at Fort Hood today, will he dare to speak the word "terror?"
He won't use the word "Islamist." If he mentions Islam at all, it'll be to sing its praises yet again.
We've already learned that Islamist terrorist Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan attended the Northern Virginia mosque of Imam Anwar al-Aulaqi, a fiery al Qaeda supporter who later fled the United States.
We know that Hasan's peers, subordinates and patients repeatedly raised red flags that his superiors suppressed.
We know he was a player on Islamist-extremist Web sites. The FBI's uncovering one extremist link after another.
But to call this an act of terrorism, the White House would need an autographed photo of Osama bin Laden helping Hasan buy weapons in downtown Killeen, Texas. Even that might not suffice.
Four Days Later, DHS Homepage Has No Mention of Fort Hood (NRO)
The big news this morning was about the Fort Hood shooter's disturbing ties to Islamists, including an apparent effort to reach out to al-Qaeda.
I'm not quite sure what, precisely, I expect from the Department of Homeland Security at a moment like this... But the idea of an Islamist soldier in the ranks would seem to suggest that there's a threat lurking out there, and that would seem to suggest that DHS should be at least monitoring this, right?
Of course, there's more to their home page than the USFA campaign focusing on home smoke alarms and sprinklers; their home-page center graphic rotates to "Border Contraband Seizures Soar," "Secretary Testifies on Nation's H1N1 Response," and "Careers in Homeland Security."
Napolitano did find time, while in Abu Dhabi, to insist that the attacks "must not lead to the victimization of Muslim Americans."
Hey, how about a word or two about the victimization of Americans, period? That is your job, is it not, Madame Secretary?
Pissed Off Bear: 2, Islamic Terrorists: 0 (Strategy Page)
In Indian Kashmir, an Islamic terrorist leader, and one of his followers was killed by a black bear.
Two other terrorists were wounded, but were able to flee to a nearby village.
Although the terrorists were armed with assault rifles, the bear attacked quickly, and at night, and the men were unable to use their weapons in the restricted confines of the cave.
Apparently the bear was going to use the cave to hibernate in, and was upset to find that the terrorists had moved in.
The four terrorists thought the cave was abandoned, and a good place to hide out in.
Obama Doesn’t Rule Out Jail Time for Not Having Health Insurance
Chairman Obama: "I think the general broad principle is simply that people who are paying for their health insurance aren't subsidizing folks who simply choose not to until they get sick and then suddenly they expect free health insurance."
How Did Paul Krugman Get It So Wrong? (NY Times Marxist, Pseudo
Nobel Laureate, Missed the Fannie and Freddie Debacle) Real Clear Markets
In July 2008 Nobel laureate Paul Krugman wrote that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the GSEs) "didn't do any subprime lending, because they can't: the definition of a subprime loan is precisely a loan that doesn't meet the requirement, imposed by law, that Fannie and Freddie buy only mortgages issued to borrowers who made substantial down payments and carefully documented their income." (New York Times, July 18, 2008)
Earlier this month he compounded his error when he stated:
"Zombies, zombies, everywhere. One of the enduring myths of the financial crisis has been the claim that it was the result of (a) Fannie and Freddie (b) the Community Reinvestment Act, which forced poor, helpless bankers to make loans to you-know-who. It's a myth that won't go away - I get asked about it almost every time I give a public lecture - even though it has been extensively debunked." (New York Times,
November 2, 2009)
Krugman could not have been more wrong in his assertions. Somehow he missed Fannie and Freddie's acquisition of $4.3 trillion in subprime, low down payment (5% or less) and Alt-A loans. How about the $2.7 trillion of CRA loans?
After accounting for overlap among these groupings, he somehow missed some $5 trillion in such loans, trillions of which remain to plague the nation's economy.
Unemployment Is Really at 22.1%
(Economic Policy Journal)
NyPo's John Crudele reports on the latest numbers from Shadow Government Stats and fills in a bit more on how the government is able to whittle down the number to 10.1%:
My friend John Williams of Shadow Government Stats thinks the true unemployment rate would be 22.1 percent if everyone -- all discouraged former workers, encouraged, involuntary part-timers and the like -- were included.
Another Communist Flushed From Obama Administration
Good little leftist water-carriers that they are, the Washington Post manages to explain Anita Dunn's departure as Obama's communications director without once mentioning Chairman Mao.
This is about as close as the Posties come to conceding that controversy marked Dunn's tenure:
A source inside the White House, who was not authorized to speak about strategy meetings, said at the time that Dunn went out front against Fox first and foremost because it was her job, but also because it potentially gave the administration the opportunity to distance itself from the flap with the Roger Ailes-led news channel once she leaves the communications job. (No mention, of course, of the video)
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