Nobel Peace Prize-Winning President Obama’s Handling of the bin Laden Killing Isn’t Going Over Well In Surprising Places

Beautiful. The multilateralist Obama administration is about to be investigated by the U.N. Human Rights Commission. If only this were to carry through to completion! I can’t imagine a more perfect way to get liberals to turn into neocons and against multilateralism than to have the organization (that is about to induct civilian-killing Syria as a member) judge the actions of our current president.

— uo

P.S. – Even the New York-based Human Rights Watch appears ready to turn on President Obama for violating human rights and international law.

P.P.S. – I can tell you this, if this operation had occurred during the Bush/Cheney administration, the uproar would have been ferocious.  These apologists are letting Obama off easy compared to what they’d be howling if this had happened two years ago.

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Published in: on May 4, 2011 at 6:20 am  Comments (2)  

Should bin Laden Have Been Buried on Land?

Lots of reasons not to do it.  The main one being that it would create a shrine to the martyr.

On the other hand … and I can’t decide if my idea is laughable nonsense or if it’s a seriously good idea … if your objective is to look for terrorists, and you want to make it easier to find those terrorists, wouldn’t a bin Laden grave site be the ultimate “honey pot”?  Anybody who would visit the location would instantly self-identify as an al-Qaeda supporter.

— uo

Published in: on May 3, 2011 at 6:36 am  Leave a Comment  

Congratulations To Our Military and Our President

You gotta hand it to him.  President Obama could have ordered that we just enter the longitude and latitude in one of our long-range military assets.  That would be taking the easy way out.  Instead, the president ordered that we launch a ground attack deep inside another country.  That’s the kind of bad-ass, I-don’t-give-a-shit attitude that would make George Bush proud.  One snotty commentator said that the president’s actions are tantamount to cowboy justice Wild West-style.  Well, all I can say is … HELL YEAH!  Somebody needs to send Obama a pair of these!!

More proof that the president may talk like a liberal, but he acts as if he’s taking orders from Dick Cheney.

— uo

P.S. – Also, kudos to the intelligence community, who, after some disastrous failures, got this one right.

Published in: on May 2, 2011 at 10:40 am  Leave a Comment  

Has President Obama Actually Been Dick Cheney’s Secret Plan All Along?

One wonders? Seriously, President Obama has completely reversed what he said as a Senator and a presidential candidate and has become the Bush/Cheney administration’s most powerful advocate.

President Obama reversed himself on military tribunals, the closing of Guantanamo, and the Patriot Act.

He has reversed his own statements in the Senate and has become an unlikely advocate for Executive Power.

He signed into law an extension of the Bush tax cuts (notice all the happy faces!). He reappointed Bush’s Fed Chairman, Ben Bernanke. President Obama appointed Republican and corporatist GE chief Jeffrey Immelt to head the president’s jobs panel.

The president may have spoken differently as a candidate, but once in office, he completely adopted the Bush/Cheney Doctrine.  He has engaged U.S. servicemen and women to support the formation of a democracy in the Arab world, he (and the Democrat-controlled Congress) increased the number of troops in Afghanistan, similar to the surge that Bush implemented in Iraq.  Speaking of Iraq, it looks like Iraq is going to last far longer than candidate Obama promised.

And now President Obama is taking credit for cutting the budget even more than the Republican Congress first asked for.

If I was a conspiracy nut, I’d think that this guy was really a Dick Cheney plant. Think about it. The ONLY thing that President Obama has actually accomplished that is NOT in sync with the Bush/Cheney administration is health care reform.  But to get that deal done, the president abandoned the public option. What’s more, in a surprising move, the various provisions of the law are not severable. So if anything in the law is found to be unconstitutional, the ENTIRE law gets tossed. Some people think the lack of severability was was an error.  But was it?

A conspiracy theorist might believe that the healthcare error was intentional — to make it seem like President Obama was a liberal when in fact he knew that the healthcare law would get tossed on the individual mandate issue.  That is, the president talks like a good liberal.  Meanwhile, the things the president actually accomplishes is making permanent everything else that Bush/Cheney stood for.

I’ve heard that, based on the policies President Obama says he’s for, some people believe he is a Manchurian candidate for either Muslims or communists.

The president’s accomplishments, however, lead to a totally different conclusion. Looking at his actual record, President Obama may actually be a plant by Dick Cheney. The evidence is starting to become overwhelming.

— uo

P.S. – This pretty much seals the deal for me. The one liberal “social” policy that President Obama has put his stamp on is gay marriage. But again, what President Obama is doing is right in line with Dick Cheney’s views.

P.P.S. – You know what the price of oil has done lately. Have you seen what that has done to Halliburton stock since Obama took office?!

Published in: on April 12, 2011 at 9:01 am  Comments (1)  

Egypt Chaos: It’s All Bush’s Fault

This article in The Daily Telegraph, which is based on leaked cables from Wikileaks, has been getting a lot of play since Drudge linked to it.  To me, the key graph is the second paragraph where we’re given a timeline:

Egypt protests: America’s secret backing for rebel leaders behind uprising

The American government secretly backed leading figures behind the Egyptian uprising who have been planning “regime change” for the past three years, The Daily Telegraph has learned.

The American Embassy in Cairo helped a young dissident attend a US-sponsored summit for activists in New York, while working to keep his identity secret from Egyptian state police.

On his return to Cairo in December 2008, the activist told US diplomats that an alliance of opposition groups had drawn up a plan to overthrow President Hosni Mubarak and install a democratic government in 2011.

So the leader of the uprising was brought into the U.S. while Bush was still president!

I’ll say this.  After the November 2008 election, President Bush kicked the can on several issues and left the final decision to his successor, particularly economic decisions.  A classic example would be whether to allow GM to go into liquidation or to keep the company afloat until the Obama Administration came into office.  Bush chose to have the federal government loan GM enough money to stay in business till Obama was sworn in, at which point the new president chose how to bail out the failed car maker.

But when it came to national security issues in the Arab world, President Bush did not put those decisions on the back burner.  What’s more, just imagine how Dick Cheney would have reacted if an Egyptian opposition activist had been brought to the U.S. without anybody in the administration knowing about it.  There is no way that this  person came into this country without the full knowledge and backing … if not the active participation of … the Bush Administration.

If The Telegraph story is true — and no one has denied that the leaked cables contain false information — this would make a lot of sense and fits into the pattern that the dreaded neocons in the Bush Administration saw as the long-term solution to terrorism emanating from the Arab world: Freedom and Democracy.

— uo

Published in: on January 29, 2011 at 9:51 am  Leave a Comment  

Colleges Fail to Deliver – Evidence #1,287,432

What do kids learn in college?  Apparently, not much.

My favorite reaction is probably the most truthful statement I’ve read in the news in a long time.  It’s from a professor who says, “I am part of a great credentialing mill.”  I couldn’t agree more.

Perhaps that explains why so many college graduates — realize that I am talking about graduates here, not just people who attended college — are in jobs that don’t even require a high school diploma.

If all you get is a bachelor’s degree from a liberal arts college, you’re destined to be an underachieving money waster.

— uo

Published in: on January 22, 2011 at 6:46 am  Leave a Comment  

Colleges Fail To Deliver The Goods

I’ve long thought that there is a higher education bubble.  My basic premise is that the price of a higher education degree is highly correlated to the availability of cheap financing and subsidies.  This is nearly identical to what caused the housing bubble to inflate.  When cheap financing for housing disappeared, reality set in and house prices collapsed.

What’s interesting now is that we’re seeing early signs that the same economic factors that hit housing — a tightening of credit and a reduction in subsidies — is starting to hit higher education.  How important is the federal funding to the for-profit colleges?  From The New York Times a couple of weeks ago:

A majority of Apollo’s revenue comes from federal student aid. The University of Phoenix, which accounted for 91 percent of Apollo’s net revenue this year, gets the bulk of its own revenue from Title IV programs. Just 1 percent of cash revenue at the University of Phoenix comes from student loans that aren’t channeled through the federal government.

Top for-profit colleges like Apollo’s received $26.5 billion in government-funded student aid in 2009, the Department of Education says.

Over the summer, the government finally decided that there needs to be some accountability in the for-profit education space.  Check out this article about a GAO undercover investigation, and this article about new rules designed to measure gainful employment after graduation.  The Department of Education is now going to measure student loan repayment rates to determine whether attendees of the for-profit colleges get a good job in their chosen field.

The impact is that we’re starting to see these types of headlines: For-profit schools reel as rules affect enrollment.

But what about the public education sector?  Surely the nation’s private and public non-profit universities are doing a better job at helping people find gainful employment, right?

Eh, not so much.

17 Million Kids Went To College And Became Waitresses Or Flight Attendants.

I’ll admit, that the author has a clear bias in the article.  But you can’t argue with the data.  An appallingly large number of people who went to college spent money they or their financial backers (i.e., mom and dad or the government) didn’t need to spend.

And for the record, I’ve got nothing against flight attendants.  I love them!

— uo

Published in: on November 2, 2010 at 9:18 pm  Comments (1)  

Proof of Media Bias, and Why Newspapers Are Getting Everything They Deserve

Two headlines this morning provided the absolute perfect opportunity to point out media bias in full force.

The front page of this morning’s New York Times and the front page of this morning’s Wall Street Journal each contained a story about how a very large outside organization was trying to influence the election.  Both papers used financial contribution statistics to report to their readers on the gigantic financial impact this was having on the election.

Here’s the punchline.  Despite having the same access to the same financial contribution database, the left-leaning New York Times targeted its ire on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, while the right-leaning Wall Street Journal focused its attention on the government employees union.

From The New York Times:

Top Corporations Aid U.S. Chamber of Commerce Campaign

From The Wall Street Journal:

Campaign’s Big Spender: Public-Employees Union Now Leads All Groups in Independent Election Outlays

Presumably both sets of reporters, fact checkers and editors have access to the same data.  But one paper chose to write about the influence that large corporations are having, while the other chose to write about the influence that large unions are having.

Besides proving that two people can look at the same database and come to two completely different conclusions, it proves that the highly credentialed writers in the mainstream media are susceptible to the concept of confirmation bias.  That is, they ignore information that is contrary to what they already believe, focusing only on what supports their preconceived ideas.

What they really need is some diversity of opinion in the newsroom.

Oh wait, if you think differently, that will get you fired!

— uo

Published in: on October 22, 2010 at 12:19 pm  Leave a Comment  

Google to HP: “You incompetents only got your taxes cut by 13 million?”

News today about California Senate candidate Carly Fiorina, who was CEO of  Hewlett-Packard till February 10, 2005.  Apparently, on January 25, 2005, just a few days before her departure, the company asked for and was granted a tax refund of $13 million dollars.

This seems to fit a pattern: companies do things to try to increase the after-tax earnings for company owners!  Apparently, this concept is foreign to the writers at the LA Times.

Speaking of foreign, avoiding taxes is NOT unknown to the rabid Obama supporters at Google, who managed to avoid a staggering 238 times more in tax liability that Fiorina’s HP.  Apparently, the people at Google really are smarter than the the folks at HP!

To me, these stories exemplify the differences between those who are fiscally conservative and those who consider themselves progressives.  Fiscal conservatives advocate lower taxes, and then try to reduce their tax bill by a few million more.

Liberal progressives, on the other hand, advocate higher taxes for corporations and individuals, and then hire lawyers, accountants and tax consultants to help them set up all sorts of foreign corporations and tax-haven shell companies to reduce their tax bill by BILLIONS more, leaving folks like you and me to plug the deficit gap.

— Don

Published in: on October 21, 2010 at 11:08 am  Leave a Comment  

Couldn’t Have Said It Better Myself

Kaus on a roll: “Obama blames voters again!”

The only disagreement I have with Kaus’ narrative is the persistent assumption that Obama is smart as many people think he is.  He’s not!  I’m not saying the president is stupid.  It’s just that he doesn’t seem to be capable of accepting and learning from new information.

So when things change, when things don’t go as the academic elite predict (such as unemployment skyrocketing even after administration economists predicted the stimulus would drive unemployment down), it is the president who clings to tired and worn out ideas.  And it is the president and his handlers who, for purely scientific reasons, turn into bullies.

— uo

P.S. – Want proof these academics are not as smart as they think they are?  Look no further than this graph showing the laughably bad prediction for unemployment rates compared to the realized unemployment rate.

Earth to Obama: You can’t borrow and spend a trillion dollars, and get these kinds of results, and then think that nobody will notice or care.

Published in: on October 18, 2010 at 10:54 am  Leave a Comment