Author Topic: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.  (Read 44062 times)

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Offline Thucydides

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #25 on: December 13, 2008, 23:05:30 »
Chicago style politics in action: The new President will have to do a massive amount of housecleaning before getting started

http://mesopotamiawest.blogspot.com/2008/12/rahm-emanuel-on-tape.html

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Rahm Emanuel on Tape

I have no idea why this is in a British paper first, but here it is: Rahm Emanuel, Barack Obama’s chief of staff, has been caught on tape discussing the names of candidates for Obama’s Senate seat. This is like watching the fall of President Nixon (let's play that tape again), only it's before the Innauguration.

Meanwhile, let's run that Obama quote one more time; the one where he says he knows his office is clean:

    "But what I'm absolutely certain about is that our office had no involvement in any deal-making around my Senate seat. That I'm absolutely certain of," Obama added.

So the question is; did the man closest to the President-elect mention to the President-elect that he had a conversation with the Governor of Illinois over a replacement for the President-elect in the Senate?

Or to put that the old-fashioned way; when did he know about the negotiations and when did he cover this knowledge up?
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline S.M.A.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2009, 18:32:09 »
Quote
Gupta has told administration officials that he wants the job, and the final vetting process is under way.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2009/01/06/obama_wants_journalist_for_sur.html?hpid=topnews

CNN's Medical Correspondent- Dr. Sanjay Gupta-for US Surgeon General?
Our Country
--------------------------------
"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: We did it ourselves."   - Lao Zi (老子)
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"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
- Winston Churchill

Offline S.M.A.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #27 on: January 08, 2009, 14:46:51 »
Hopefully he'll deliver on this once he assumes office:

Quote
Obama To Revamp Counterterrorism Efforts - NYTimes

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President-elect Barack Obama will revamp the way the U.S. government coordinates counterterrorism efforts, The New York Times reported on Wednesday.

The newspaper, citing people close to the presidential transition, said on its website that Obama would abolish the White House homeland security adviser's office and transfer its responsibilities to the National Security Council.

A deputy national security adviser would oversee plans to guard against terrorism and also respond to natural disasters, the Times said.

CIA veteran John Brennan will be named to that post, Democrats close to the transition told the newspaper. Brennan was mentioned as a possible candidate for the post of CIA director, but the Times said criticism of his views on interrogation and detention scuttled that.

The paper said final decisions about domestic security positions would not be made until Obama's advisers conducted a formal review. But people involved with the discussions told the Times the only real questions appeared to be how to fold domestic security responsibilities into the National Security Council and how to make sure domestic security did not appear to be a lower priority.

Under the restructuring, Brennan would report to Gen. James Jones, the retired Marine commandant expected to serve as national security adviser, the Times reported. Dozens of staffers working for the homeland security adviser would likely be transferred to the National Security Council staff, the paper said. The Department of Homeland Security would be unaffected by the changes, according to the Times.

National security adviser Stephen Hadley and other aides to President George W. Bush urged Obama's advisers not to get rid of the special homeland security office because it could load too many responsibilities on the National Security Council, the Times said.

Copyright © 2008 Reuters
Our Country
--------------------------------
"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: We did it ourselves."   - Lao Zi (老子)
-------------------------------------------
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
- Winston Churchill

Offline sdpauoiuapdsf

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #28 on: January 09, 2009, 16:18:53 »
I agree with energy efficiency. I can't find any proof that global warming or CO2 is any threat to anything, anywhere, or has any scientific credence.

A "lasting peace" in the middle East will come when it quits being the goal of the relatively gigantic land areas of the Arab countries to take the 7850 square miles that is Israel's. This will not happen any time soon. Israel is roughly the size of New Jersey.

A plus for America, definitely, would be if it could actually keep its soldiers, government agencies, and others with power in check.

If the EPA actually allowed any manufacturing to be done in the USA it would be helpful, also. This comes back to the financially-motivated "carbon tax" idiocy that hs no basis in real science by basically penalizing energy usage, and any country that does more than raise livestock and gather herbs for sustenance of their economy.

In effect, the USA is bleeding, morally, financially, educationally, and in the manufacturing of stuff that actually has real value. Meanwhile, China et al are rocketing forward, drastically increasing their infrastructure (infrastructure incurs on the habitat of the lesser fart-faced nocturnal shrieking slime gecko [or whatever the victim-du-jour "discovered" by the EPA may be], and is thus is taboo in the USA, it seems)

When your people are being bombarded by media extolling the virtues of being a ho and/or gangsta, when your schools are breeding grounds for ignorance, prejudice, and sloth, when your financial institutions are run by self-aggrandizing large-scale thieves, and when your industry is being branded as the reason for the demise of the whole species of man because it produces CO2, which plants, on which we depend for oxygen, thrive, then in which direction will you head?

Downhill.

Exalting wanton excess gained by activities that are morally despicable instead of honoring constructive values such as honesty, hard work, self-sacrifice, and loyalty will lead to destruction.

There is something badly wrong when men place no value on women NOT acting in a way that would have shamed a prostitute 50 years ago, and when women place no value on men being faithful, morally upright (mongamous), and honest, but instead sell themselves to any scum that has enough money to finance the acquisition and display of trinkets, large and small, knowing that when the marriage ends, she can soak him for 50+% of anything he ever makes, ad infinitum.

The skin discoloration we are starting to see on the surface of the USA is a result of a far deeper cancer, and is not merely adolescent acne. When people, on a personal level, abandon values that are absolutely critical for a society to have if it is to continue to grow stronger, then the society fragments into petty, warring factions, (possibly rightly) fearful of being shanked by the other factions, and ceases to expend maximum energy on constructive activity.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2009, 16:24:23 by sm1lodon »

Offline sdpauoiuapdsf

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #29 on: January 09, 2009, 16:29:18 »
It seems that Google's unofficial motto "do no evil" is situational. Perhaps it is time to migrate en mass to another search engine that does not attempt to censor the Internet:

http://thesecretsofvancouver.com/wordpress/now-cached-pages-are-going-away/oddities

Control of information is how dictatorships and authoritarians survive. The question we should be asking about Google is who is directing this activity, and what are the owners and managers of Google receiving in return?

The real action we should take is to start changing our search pages away from Google and informing advertisers we will start boycotting anyone who appears on Google.

Does ANYONE here remember how Toshiba sold a giant three-story-tall seven-axis milling machine to the Soviet Union in, I believe, 1986, thus enabling the Soviets to have submarine propellors as quiet as the Americans?

When I was living in the USA, not one time did I ever find anyone who had heard of it.

In Canada, it was all over the news. At that time, I made up my mind to never purchase anything from Toshiba, and never will, it was that dramatic a piece of bad news. In the USA... no one heard of it.

Offline Thucydides

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #30 on: January 12, 2009, 15:38:12 »
It would be less embarrassing/questionable if they could wear their affiliations with pride rather than scrubbing websites and trying to hide "who they are". It's not like thinking and informed people didn't know and understand what was being offered by a putative Obama administration:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jan/12/obama-climate-czar-has-socialist-ties/

Quote
Obama climate czar has socialist ties
Stephen Dinan (Contact)

Until last week, Carol M. Browner, President-elect Barack Obama's pick as global warming czar, was listed as one of 14 leaders of a socialist group's Commission for a Sustainable World Society, which calls for "global governance" and says rich countries must shrink their economies to address climate change.

By Thursday, Mrs. Browner's name and biography had been removed from Socialist International's Web page, though a photo of her speaking June 30 to the group's congress in Greece was still available.


Socialist International, an umbrella group for many of the world's social democratic political parties such as Britain's Labor Party, says it supports socialism and is harshly critical of U.S. policies.

The group's Commission for a Sustainable World Society, the organization's action arm on climate change, says the developed world must reduce consumption and commit to binding and punitive limits on greenhouse gas emissions.

Mr. Obama, who has said action on climate change would be a priority in his administration, tapped Mrs. Browner last month to fill a new position as White House coordinator of climate and energy policies. The appointment does not need Senate confirmation.

Mr. Obama's transition team said Mrs. Browner's membership in the organization is not a problem and that it brings experience in U.S. policymaking to her new role.

"The Commission for a Sustainable World Society includes world leaders from a variety of political parties, including British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who succeeded Tony Blair, in serving as vice president of the convening organization," Obama transition spokesman Nick Shapiro said.

"Carol Browner was chosen to help the president-elect coordinate energy and climate policy because she understands that our efforts to create jobs, achieve energy security and combat climate change demand integration among different agencies; cooperation between federal, state and local governments; and partnership with the private sector," Mr. Shapiro said in an e-mail.

Mrs. Browner ran the Environmental Protection Agency under President Clinton. Until she was tapped for the Obama administration, she was on the board of directors for the National Audubon Society, the League of Conservation Voters, the Center for American Progress and former Vice President Al Gore's Alliance for Climate Protection.

Her name has been removed from the Gore organization's Web site list of directors, and the Audubon Society issued a press release about her departure from that organization.

Republicans said Mrs. Browner's work with Socialist International raises questions.

"Does she agree with the group's positions on global governance - that the United States should abdicate its international leadership to international organizations? Does she support its position that the international community should be the ultimate arbiter of climate change policy?" said Antonia Ferrier, a spokeswoman for House Minority Leader John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican.

"These are questions that merit answers - especially when you consider this group's deep skepticism about America's ability to be a force for positive change in the world," she said.

An aide on the Obama team said its information shows that Mrs. Browner resigned from the organization in June 2008. The aide, who asked not to be named because he was discussing internal matters, said the transition team was aware she had been a member of the group when she was vetted.

The Socialist International Web site didn't have a copy of her June 30 speech, but the agenda for the meeting had her scheduled to speak as part of a panel on "How do we strengthen the multilateral architecture for a sustainable future?"

Other panel participants were Sergey Mironov, speaker of the Russian legislature's upper chamber and a close ally of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin; Zhang Zhijun, vice minister of the International Department of the Chinese Communist Party's Central Committee; and Jesus Caldera, a former Minister of Employment and Social Affairs of the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party.

A woman answering the phone at Socialist International's headquarters in London said all officers were traveling.

Nobody from the organization returned a message left Friday.

Socialist International bills itself as the world body of democratic socialist movements. It includes members ranging from Israel's Labor Party and France's Socialist Party to Angola's MPLA, which won the 1970s Angolan civil war with the aid of Soviet arms and Cuban troops.

The organization distinguishes itself from violent or revolutionary communist parties. However, some such groups, including the Chinese Communist Party, have been invited to its events as guest organizations.

The Democratic Socialists of America, not the Democratic Party, is listed as the group's U.S. representative. But Mrs. Browner was listed as an individual member of Socialist International, but not a member of the DSA.

While agreeing with Mr. Obama on the need for action to address climate change, the organization wants more draconian policies than the president-elect's preferred solution.

During the presidential campaign, Mr. Obama called for a cap-and-trade system to control carbon emissions. He argued that such a system is efficient and lets the free market determine where it's easiest to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Socialist International says such "flexible mechanisms" do not clamp down hard enough on polluters.

The organization often takes a decidedly critical view of the U.S.

At this summer's meeting, the group issued a statement on economics that blasted the "neo-liberal market ideology and the unilateralist, U.S.-dominated approach in the global economic system," and attacked the U.S. for dominating international financial institutions.

At its meeting earlier in 2008 in Santiago, Chile, Socialist International endorsed "global governance" as the solution to the world's problems of peace and climate change.

At a July meeting in St. Petersburg, the commission said developed countries "should think of decreasing current consumption levels" - which would mean shrinking their economies - in order to help the environment.

Socialist International regularly blasts the construction of fencing along the U.S.-Mexico border. The fence was approved by both houses of Congress, including with Mr. Obama's vote in the Senate.

Socialist International was congratulatory when Mr. Obama won the election, issuing a statement noting that "the sky may seem a bit brighter today" but warning still that "there are enormous global challenges that must be addressed effectively and without delay."
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline E.R. Campbell

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #31 on: January 16, 2009, 09:07:28 »
This, reproduced under the fair Dealing provisions (§29) of the Copyright Act from today’s Globe and Mail, is going to really come as a pitcher of piss poured into the cornflakes of Canada’s left leaning Liberals and the NDP faithful:
-------------------------
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090115.wcogee16/BNStory/Business/columnists

Notwithstanding Obamamania, the U.S. is fixated on terrorism

MARCUS GEE

From Friday's Globe and Mail
January 16, 2009 at 12:00 AM EST

"The gravest threat that America faces is the danger that weapons of mass destruction will fall into the hands of terrorists." Who said that? U.S. President George W. Bush before the Iraq war? Vice-President Dick Cheney? Perhaps Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice?

Sorry, none of the above. The answer is incoming secretary of state Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, at her Senate confirmation hearings this week.

The world is expecting big changes from Barack Obama and his new team when they take office next Tuesday. Before the Senate foreign relations committee, Ms. Clinton promised an era of "smart power" in which "diplomacy will be the vanguard of our foreign policy" and persuasion will come before coercion.

But before we get carried away with Obamamania, let's remember one thing: Let's remember what Americans remember. The terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, may be a fading memory in much of the world. American leaders, though, remain fixated on the double threat of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.

This is not some paranoid obsession. The events of 9/11 made it clear to everyone that America faced a new enemy that had no compunction about massacring thousands of civilians. If this enemy could fly hijacked airliners into the Pentagon and the World Trade Center, what would it do if it had nuclear, chemical or biological weapons?

There is a broad bipartisan consensus that the U.S. must use every means at its disposal - including military force if necessary - to prevent weapons of mass destruction from falling into the hands of al-Qaeda or some other terrorist group. Even a liberal Democrat such as Senator John Kerry says (as he put it at this week's hearing) this is "the age of catastrophic terrorism."

Mr. Obama swears he will do everything in his power to prevent Iran, a notorious backer of terrorists, from developing nuclear weapons. Ms. Clinton calls a nuclear-armed Iran "unacceptable" - the same formulation used by the Bush crew - and says the incoming administration will not rule out any option to solve the problem. On North Korea, similarly, Ms. Clinton says Washington will "embark upon a very aggressive effort" to take nuclear weapons out of the hands of the Kim Jong-il regime, which tested a bomb in 2006.

Naturally, Ms. Clinton says the new administration prefers to talk first, draw guns later. But who doesn't? The Bush White House spent years working through diplomatic channels to disarm North Korea, eventually securing its agreement to shut down a nuclear reactor in return for oil supplies. The administration even made the extraordinary concession of removing North Korea from its list of terrorist states, though it is still far from clear whether Pyongyang will follow through on its disarmament promises.

On Iran, too, Washington stood back for years while Europe tried to talk Tehran back from the nuclear brink. Mr. Obama says he will try diplomacy again and even talk directly to Iranian leaders if it offers hope of a settlement. But that doesn't make him any less determined to keep Iran from going nuclear.

Nor is he less hawkish on terrorism. He has made it clear he will use all of his country's intelligence assets and military prowess to track down terrorist chiefs wherever they hide.

Washington's continuing fixation with terrorism and weapons of mass destruction is bound to come between the U.S. and its allies. Much as they are looking forward to better relations, most of them don't see eye to eye with the Americans on this issue. In Europe, in particular, terrorism is seen in part as a struggle within, involving alienated Muslim immigrants and the extremists among them. The U.S. idea of a global "war on terror" strikes them as over the top, and even dangerous. That makes this era fundamentally different from the Cold War, when a common Soviet enemy bound Europe and the U.S. together.

With the departure of Tony Blair, Washington's staunchest ally, even the British are warning that a new approach is needed. In a speech in India yesterday, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said the idea of a war on terror was mistaken and misleading.

Mr. Obama no doubt shares some of those misgivings, especially over how the war on terror was used to justify the war in Iraq. It does not mean he discounts the threat of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction. Since 9/11, U.S. leaders have had a recurring nightmare of destruction that would make that September day pale by comparison. It is a threat that eclipses all others, and it will preoccupy them for years to come.

-------------------------

So, the big change will be that President Obama, in seeking an extension of the Afghanistan mission beyond 2011 or in seeking our support for an attack on Iran, will ask and cajole before he blusters at us.

It is ill that men should kill one another in seditions, tumults and wars; but it is worse to bring nations to such misery, weakness and baseness
as to have neither strength nor courage to contend for anything; to have nothing left worth defending and to give the name of peace to desolation.
Algernon Sidney in Discourses Concerning Government, (1698)
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Offline E.R. Campbell

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #32 on: January 16, 2009, 09:34:04 »
Here, on the CTV News website is a useful 'ready reckoner' on Obama's inner circle (cabinet secretaries and White House staff, etc).

It is ill that men should kill one another in seditions, tumults and wars; but it is worse to bring nations to such misery, weakness and baseness
as to have neither strength nor courage to contend for anything; to have nothing left worth defending and to give the name of peace to desolation.
Algernon Sidney in Discourses Concerning Government, (1698)
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Offline S.M.A.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #33 on: January 20, 2009, 13:08:05 »
I am just posting a copy of US PRESIDENT OBAMA's inauguration speech for everyone's benefit, including the usual naysayers.  ;)  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/obama_inauguration/7840646.stm

Quote
Full text: Obama inauguration speech
Barack Obama has been sworn in as the 44th US president. Here is his inauguration speech in full.

My fellow citizens:

I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and co-operation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because we, the people, have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.

So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land - a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America - they will be met.

On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted - for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things - some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labour, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and travelled across oceans in search of a new life.

For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and ploughed the hard earth.

For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions - that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act - not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions - who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them - that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works - whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public's dollars will be held to account - to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day - because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control - that a nation cannot prosper long when it favours only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart - not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defence, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our founding fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake. And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with the sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort - even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the spectre of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defence, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus - and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West - know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. We honour them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment - a moment that will define a generation - it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends - honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism - these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility - a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

This is the source of our confidence - the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed - why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have travelled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"Let it be told to the future world...that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]."

America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.
Our Country
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"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: We did it ourselves."   - Lao Zi (老子)
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"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
- Winston Churchill

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #34 on: January 20, 2009, 17:02:06 »
I am just posting a copy of US PRESIDENT OBAMA's inauguration speech for everyone's benefit, including the usual naysayers.  ;) 

Naaaay.
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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #35 on: January 21, 2009, 15:32:27 »
So what sort of man is the new President? Inquiring minds have wanted to know for a long time:

Chicago Boyz - http://chicagoboyz.net -

Quote
Quote of the Day III
Posted By Lexington Green On January 20, 2009 @ 12:24 pm In Book Notes, Management, Politics, USA | Comments Disabled

Michiko Kakutani of the New York Times is much impressed by the [1] books Obama has read, or says he has read. I am almost in despair when I read the same list. Obama will be the commander in chief — but he appears to have read almost nothing on military history or strategy. And he does not seem to see that as a defect in his preparation for the presidency. There no books on science, technology, or economics in the list.

[2] Jim Miller

(Of the many things I do not like about Obama, this ignorance of his role as Commander in Chief scares me the most. I share Miller’s despair, but without the qualification of “almost”. Like Miller, I fondly hope he surprises me. At least, for now, he has some good advisors on the subject.)

UPDATE: Obama’s reading list, [3] with links. Dude. Wow. It is thin. (Via [4] Instapundit)

UPDATE II: Henry Kissinger somewhere said that once you get into high office you consume intellectual capital. You cannot add to it. You don’t have time. You’d better have a good stock of intellectual firewood, because you are going to burn it all. Obama’s got a pretty much empty woodshed. God help us, he better have good advisors and a good gut, and the luck of the Irish (I’ll lend him mine) and a rabbit’s foot. I don’t think you can just be “smart” in general, you have to actually know things. The very people who berated Bush for being an intellectual lightweight have bought this Obama guy like he is a bright, shiny, new Red Wagon. But there is no reason to think that Bush was less knowledgeable than this guy, other than the smoothness of Obama’s delivery. And Bush was a bitter disappointment to many of his supporters (my hand is raised) and a figure of hatred and ridicule to lots of other people. Stay tuned. We just handed the car keys to some guy from out of town with a nice smile and a glossy shoe shine. Hope it all works out … .

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Article printed from Chicago Boyz: http://chicagoboyz.net

URL to article: http://chicagoboyz.net/archives/6662.html

URLs in this post:
[1] books Obama has read: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/19/books/19read.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=Kakutani&st=cse
[2] Jim Miller: http://www.seanet.com/~jimxc/Politics/January2009_3.html#jrm6978
[3] with links: http://www.omnivoracious.com/2009/01/obamas-reading-list-revised.html
[4] Instapundit: http://pajamasmedia.com/instapundit/66882/
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #36 on: January 21, 2009, 16:19:16 »
My view of the inaugural address:

"We will not apologize for our way of life...
http://www.damianpenny.com/archived/012557.html

Quote
...nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you."
http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1872715-3,00.html

No moral relativism from President Obama. No root causes. A clear triumphalism. How, er, un-Canadian. Not that our pundits will notice.

Overall, the address was one from a stern, yet graceful, headmaster upbraiding the school assembled and reminding them of the school's great past, the values therein encapsulated--and its potential future.

He might also have been a military commander addressing troops who have shown signs of faltering. Now he is working to rebuild their faith in themselves, with tough language and his personal confidence--and without theatre. No Patton, but a very cool, crisp and determined leader.

Well done. On verra.

Mark
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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #37 on: January 21, 2009, 16:59:30 »

Via Quote of the Day III and the NYT

Quote
...Mr. Obama tends to take a magpie approach to reading — ruminating upon writers’ ideas and picking and choosing those that flesh out his vision of the world or open promising new avenues of inquiry.

His predecessor, George W. Bush, in contrast, tended to race through books in competitions with Karl Rove (who recently boasted that he beat the president by reading 110 books to Mr. Bush’s 95 in 2006),

So now, the President who was too much of a Chimp to be able to read is accused of reading too much .... and too fast.   His successor reads occasionally and slowly.
Bush, who was accused of not listening to advice, now stands accused of taking the advice he was given.  His successor is not known for reading books that offer practical advice.  He prefers poetry and philosophy.
Bush stood accused of acting.  Apparently that is not Barack's way.  He ruminates (Ruminate: to chew the cud as does the placid and docile cow).

But he does look good doing it and reads a speech very well.
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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #38 on: January 23, 2009, 19:02:50 »
“I WON.” In Bush, this would have been troubling hubris. In Obama, fortunately, it’s just manly self-assurance.

Posted at 6:45 pm by Glenn Reynolds 

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0109/17862.html

Quote
Obama to GOP: 'I won'
By JONATHAN MARTIN & CAROL E. LEE | 1/23/09 1:25 PM EST  Updated: 1/23/09 6:36 PM EST  Text Size:     
 
President Obama listened to Republican gripes about his stimulus package during a meeting with congressional leaders Friday morning - but he also left no doubt about who's in charge of these negotiations. "I won," Obama noted matter-of-factly, according to sources familiar with the conversation.

The exchange arose as top House and Senate Republicans expressed concern to the president about the amount of spending in the package. They also raised red flags about a refundable tax credit that returns money to those who don’t pay income taxes, the sources said.

The Republicans stressed that they want to include more middle class tax cuts in the package, citing their proposal to cut the two lowest tax rates — 15 percent and 10 percent — to ten percent and five percent, rather than issue the refundable credit Obama wants.

At another point in the meeting, sources said Obama told the group: “This is a grave situation facing the country.” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Obama would hold another economic meeting in the White House Saturday for a "broader group."

After Friday's meeting, Democratic and Republican leaders publicly wrangled over the developing stimulus plan.

But perhaps taking a cue from Obama’s “I won” line when Democrats were asked if they were concerned about Republicans blocking the package, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had a swift one-word answer: “No.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the bill was on track for passage by February 16, while Republicans continued to voice their opposition.

“We expressed our concerns about some of the spending that’s being proposed in the House bill,” House Minority Leader John Boehner said after meeting with Obama.

“How can you spend hundreds of millions of dollars on contraceptives?” Boehner asked. “How does that stimulate the economy?”

Boehner said congressional Republicans are also concerned about the size of the package.

“Government can’t solve this problem,” he said.

Reid said a Congressional Budget Office report that says the stimulus funds won’t be pumped into the economy until 2010 doesn’t provide an accurate picture.

Republicans have used the report to back up their argument against a near $1 trillion package. But Reid said Obama Office of Management and Budget director Peter Orszag told them CBO only analyzed 40 percent of the bill.

He also said Orszag guaranteed “that at least 75 percent of the bill would go directly into the economy within the first 18 months.”

Pelosi suggested that the package, currently at $825 billion, could become even larger.

“It has grown,” Pelosi said, “and we’re still in the process.”


At the meeting, Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, the No. 2 House Republican, passed out copies of the Republicans’ five-point stimulus plan. At first blush, Obama said, “Nothing on here looks outlandish or crazy to me,” Obama said, according to a source familiar with the conversation. He seemed particularly receptive to some Republican ideas about increasing benefits to small businesses.

But when the conversation got down to other specifics, it was clear that some of the Republican ideas were clearly non-starters with the new president – including calls to put off tax hikes during the recession. “He rejected that out of hand and said we couldn’t have any hard and fast rules like that,” Cantor said.

Lisa Lerer and Josh Gerstein contributed.


I think the next four years will be very entertaining since I will constantly be able to point out the current administration "did it just like George W Bush". Cover from exploding heads is advised!
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #39 on: January 30, 2009, 10:01:42 »
Comparisons to FDR and the "New Deal" should be treated seriously, considering what really happened then as opposed to the mythology:

http://www.damianpenny.com/archived/012606.html

Quote
A country in need of a dictator...
...when Mussolini was a Good Thing. It's interesting what has been forgotten about attitudes when FDR assumed the presidency. From a review essay in the New York Review of Books:

[...]
"The nation expected Roosevelt to claim the powers of a dictator, or close to it," Adam Cohen states in Nothing to Fear. He quotes Senator William Borah, the highly respected progressive Republican from Idaho, declaring himself ready to put politics aside and "give our incoming President dictatorial power within the Constitution for a certain period."

"If this country ever needed a Mussolini, it needs one now," said Senator David Reed, a Pennsylvania Republican. Even Lippmann, having dismissed candidate Roosevelt just a few months earlier, wrote that the use of "'dictatorial powers,' if that is the name for it—is essential.'"

Roosevelt addressed the dictatorship question in his Inaugural Address, saying he intended to work with Congress on the nation's problems and hoped the president's traditional powers would suffice to help solve them. If not, he would ask for a "temporary departure," asking for "broad Executive power to wage a war against the emergency, as great as the power that would be given to me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign foe."

As Cohen observes, this was "the most radical" passage in the Inaugural, "with its understated suggestion of autocracy." He notes that "it received an enthusiastic response from the crowd." Adolf Hitler had become chancellor of Germany just over one month earlier; Benito Mussolini, as Italy's prime ministerial dictator since 1922, was fairly popular in the United States. In the astonishing tumult of legislation that immediately followed Roosevelt's inauguration, Congress proved so eager to vote immediately for anything he wanted that he seemed to have been granted dictatorial power without asking for it.

...the present economic breakdown is obviously not terrifying enough for Obama to engage in such presidential strutting. Republican senators are not yet yearning for a Mussolini to save us from the greedy bunglers of Wall Street...
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #40 on: February 04, 2009, 21:23:32 »
Obama speaks out against trade protectionism; Harper is reportedly encouraged by these comments.

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/capress/090204/national/cda_us_protectionism

Quote
Harper 'encouraged' by Obama comments

Wed Feb 4, 4:18 PM
 
By Jennifer Ditchburn, The Canadian Press

 
OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper says he's encouraged to hear Barack Obama speak out against U.S. protectionism - but the Conservative government isn't breaking out the champagne quite yet.


The U.S. president gave two nationally televised interviews Tuesday evening during which he cautioned Congress against sparking global trade wars with protectionist policies.



Harper read some of those comments during question period in the House of Commons.


"We are encouraged, all Canadians are encouraged, by Mr. Obama's comments," Harper told MPs on Wednesday.


The Tories have been grasping for rays of hope in the public statements of key Washington players in the absence of a clear signal that bills before Congress will be watered down or altered.


American lawmakers are studying an $800-billion-plus stimulus package, which comes attached with rules that favour U.S. manufacturers and producers for public-works projects.


Such "Buy-American" provisions could deal a huge blow to Canada's industrial and manufacturing sectors.


International Trade Minister Stockwell Day warned that Obama's latest statements are still just talk, with the ball in Congress's court. Several U.S. politicians reacted to their president's comments Wednesday by reemphasizing their support of the Buy-American measures.


"It doesn't mean we're necessarily out of the woods yet in terms of making sure we're going to be absolved of any negative effects of this legislation," Day said.


Obama told ABC and Fox News that protectionism is the wrong signal to send internationally in economic hard times.


"I think that would be a mistake right now. That is a potential source of trade wars that we can't afford at a time when trade is sinking all across the globe," Obama said.


"We need to make sure that any provisions that are in there are not going to trigger a trade war."


Day said Obama's comments, and those of other senior U.S. politicians in recent days, prove Canadian lobbying efforts are paying off.


"It shows clearly that at all levels we've been engaged it's having some positive effect.... We're going to keep working 24/7 at all these various levels to make sure that there are no negative effects as far as protectionism from this legislation."


As for Harper calling Obama directly to discuss the matter, Day suggested the next personal chat will be when Obama visits Ottawa on Feb.19. The opposition and at least one former ambassador to the United States have suggested Harper should be making personal intercessions with Obama.


"We're actually hoping, and I hope not unrealistically, to have this resolved before he gets here."


Quebec Premier Jean Charest added to Canada's diplomatic efforts during a trip to Brussels on Wednesday.

The Quebec leader told the Associated Press that both the European Union and Canada should push the Obama administration and U.S. lawmakers harder.


"We have to be active in the United States, we have to make sure that our voices are heard. There is reason to be worried," said Charest, in Europe to push for a Canada-EU trade pact.

"It would be in the midterm a big mistake for the United States and something that would be a hindrance for their economy."

In the meantime, business groups in Canada are mounting their own pressure campaign to try to turn the protectionist boat around.

Jayson Myers, president of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association, says his members have been getting their concerns out to American industry groups as well as U.S. suppliers. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has taken a similar tack.


"I don't think the embassy and the consulates can do it all by themselves," Myers said.

"What's going to convince U.S. legislators is to have a company in their own district saying this is a problem for us. It's difficult for us to get that message across, so we have to work with U.S. companies to make sure they are telling their local legislators."
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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #41 on: February 12, 2009, 15:32:46 »
America and the world want what he can't deliver, and what he is delivering is so unpalatable that this prediction may come true:

http://www.dcexaminer.com/opinion/columns/MarkTapscott/Obama-is-headed-for-a-one-term-presidency-39461127.html

Quote
Obama is headed for a one-term presidency

By Mark Tapscott
Editorial Page Editor | 2/12/09 1:45 PM

Well, that didn’t take long.

Less than a month ago, Barack Obama was sworn-in as chief executive amid historic promises of “change we can believe in.” But there won’t be a second Obama term if he doesn’t admit that, no matter how adroitly he wraps himself in Reaganesque rhetoric, Leviathan is no better suited for 2009 than it was in 1933 for FDR.

Contrary to conventional wisdom, the New Deal’s Big Government spending failed to end the Great Depression. That is clear to anybody who reads Paul Johnson’s masterful chapter on the New Deal in “Modern Times.”

Or Amity Schlaes’ superb “The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression.” Or the utterly convincing data-driven study by UCLA professors Harold L. Cole and Lee E. Ohanian that concluded the New Deal lengthened the Great Depression by at least seven years.

FDR at least had nearly a decade for his Sisyphean labors. Obama won’t get a chance to end the current recession because, according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the recovery will have long since started before most of the gargantuan $1 trillion stimulus bill’s spending crosses the Potomac.

But that’s not the main reason Obama’s prospects for gaining a second term in 2012 are already fading faster than a Maine RINO can forget what being a Republican means. Obama is making himself the symbol of what’s wrong with Washington rather than being the agent of change in Washington.

Democratic pols like Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York think voters don’t care about pork in the stimulus bill,  but lots of now-former Republican members of Congress know better.

Earmarks are indeed, in Sen. Tom Coburn’s evocative term, “the gateway drug to federal spending addiction” and the basic ingredient of the culture of corruption in Washington that has driven the approval rating of Congress into the single digits.

Growing public awareness of the deeply porkified content of the stimulus package is the chief driver behind the plunge in a mere two weeks from modestly strong initial approval to only a third of those surveyed continuing to support passage.

That awareness is also why Rasmussen Reports this week found a virtual dead heat between the two parties in the generic congressional voting survey, with 40 percent saying they plan to vote Democrat in their congressional balloting and 39 percent going Republican.

“This marks the lowest level of support for the Democrats in tracking history and is the closest the two parties have been on the generic ballot,” Rasmussen said of a survey that points to the party most likely to gain a majority in the next election. This may be the best single piece of electoral news the GOP has received in three years.

By ceding to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi the crafting of the economic stimulus package - the biggest single spending bill in U.S. history - and then vigorously defending them in the most partisan manner, Obama has recast himself from icon into just another Washington politico.

It is doubtful Obama will ever say anything more damaging to his credibility than his claim “there are no earmarks” in the stimulus bill. That one no doubt caused howls of disbelieving laughter from one end of Congress to the other. Even a few of Obama’s devotees in the Mainstream Media winced at those words.

Only the most deeply naïve don’t know that both the Senate’s $838 billion bill and the House’s $827 billion measure are swollen with pork barrel spending. That’s before the conference report is completed. Even as this column is being written, the Reid and Peolosi brigades are no doubt carpet-bombing the conference report with air-dropped earmarks.

We know this because staffers for Reid, Pelosi and the Democratic conferees met during the night Tuesday to draft the final report, so it can be voted on by the Senate and House Thursday, then sent to Obama for his signature late Thursday or Friday.

We’ll know before fall arrives that the stimulus package has failed and we will be hearing demands for another one. Then, while Obama’s place as America’s first black president is assured, the odds are great that the next line in his legacy will read “the last New Deal liberal in the White House.”

Mark Tapscott is editorial page editor of The Washington Examiner and proprietor of Tapscott’s Copy Desk blog on dcexaminer.com.

UPDATE: There is a big IF up there, folks

Evidently, my saying Obama is headed for a one-term presidency IF he doesn't change course isn't sufficiently clear for some people. I'm not saying Obama has now been doomed by his actions since Jan. 20, 2009 to defeat in November 2012 regardless of what he does between now and then. What I am very definitely saying is that he is presently embarked on a losing strategy that must be changed if he hopes to win a second term.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #42 on: February 26, 2009, 11:10:36 »
And the world wants earmarks; lots of earmarks....

http://www.cqpolitics.com/wmspage.cfm?docID=news-000003061639&referrer=js

Quote
Funny how items show up in spending bills without any notice — like an earmark for a president who promised not to seek any.

President Obama, who took a no-earmark pledge on the campaign trail, is listed as one of dozens of cosponsors of a $7.7 million set-aside in the fiscal 2009 omnibus spending bill (HR 1105) passed by the House on Wednesday.

The bill is an accumulation of leftovers from 2008 — spending measures that weren’t enacted before the 110th Congress expired. Lawmakers who wanted money for local projects in those bills were required to submit their requests many months ago, while Obama was still a senator. It’s moving through Congress now because a temporary extension of funds to run the government will run out after March 6.

Obama’s name jumps out on a list of many earmark cosponsors because he and his staff have been so emphatic about his no-earmark stance.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #43 on: February 26, 2009, 13:20:09 »
America and the world want what he can't deliver, and what he is delivering is so unpalatable that this prediction may come true:

The jury is still out on that. ;)

And in the meantime, he just increased military spending. A step to the police state you fear so much? I don't think so.

Quote
U.S. DoD To Get $537B Annually For 10 Years

By vago muradian
Published: 25 Feb 19:28 EST (00:28 GMT) 

President Barack Obama's administration is expected to announce tomorrow the Pentagon's 10-year topline spending plan will start with a request for a $537 billion base budget in 2010 and assume flat budgets adjusted only for inflation over the subsequent nine years, a source said.

The White House declined comment.

The administration also is expected to seek $75.5 billion in supplemental funding to cover war operations for the rest of 2009, the source said. In 2010, the administration is likely to seek $130 billion in supplemental funding to pay for Afghanistan and Iraq operations. The administration will, however, provide separate estimates for war-specific costs in each of the coming years.

The announcement of topline budgets for government departments is intended to allow the Congress to start writing the 2010 budget resolution. details such as spending on weapons, research and development, and other categories will be released in April when the administration submits its 2010 budget request to Congress.

Obama during his Feb. 24 address to a joint session of Congress pledged to be more transparent about war costs.

"That is why this budget looks ahead 10 years and accounts for spending that was left out under the old rules - and for the first time, that includes the full cost of fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan," Obama said. "For seven years, we have been a nation at war. No longer will we hide its price."

Obama has been critical of the Bush administration practice of using catch-all supplemental funding to pay not only for sustained war costs, but also acquisition and other programs normally part of the base Pentagon budget.

The Pentagon's 2009 base budget is $515 billion, with $68.5 billion in supplemental funding allocated so far for Iraq and Afghanistan operations.

If approved by Congress, the $537 billion base budget would increase the Pentagon's topline spending by 3 percent.

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"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #44 on: February 27, 2009, 09:17:28 »
The problem with this administration and this congress is they are very adept at speaking out of all sides of their mouths. Will the Dems institute a Police State? The administration and the congress certainly show the desire for a vastly expanded role of the State in the social and economic life, and actions, of course speak volumes.

Large sectors of the Financial industry have been effectively nationalized, perhaps enough to make the private banks (especially the ones that were run in a prudent manner) uncompetative. Other sectors of the economy will go the same way as political rent seekers try to muscle out their competition, with lots of help from the "Stimulus" package. The White House is attempting to take over the US Census in direct defiance of the Constitution, and the only motive is to politicise the Census in order to send appropriations to favored (through "statistical sampling" and possibly ACORN like head counts) districts. Various Democrat congressmembers and Senators are now openly talking about re introducing the "Fairness" doctrine for radio and the Internet (coincidentally the only places where the Progressive message is seriously challenged), crippling free speech and the free passage of ideas.

Ideas that have been floated like nationalizing private IRA's and the civilian national security force are alarming in of themselves, but even more so since they fit so well into the already unfolding actions of the administration and the congress.

If the United States ever devolves into a police state, it will be to enforce the increase of State power against the efforts of citizens who object. (You might want to look at history. Even the United States had an episode of a proto "Brown Shirt" organization during WWI with the American Protective League)

If there is hope, it lies with the fact that only a slim majority of the population elected President Obama, and the rapidly growing "Tea Party" movement which could provide focus and tip enough people back to make the opposition the majority.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline tomahawk6

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #45 on: February 27, 2009, 09:53:27 »

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/26/AR2009022602908.html

Not a great speech, but extremely consequential. If Barack Obama succeeds, his joint address to Congress will be seen as historic -- indeed as the foundational document of Obamaism. As it stands, it constitutes the boldest social democratic manifesto ever issued by a U.S. president.

The first part of the speech, justifying his economic stabilization efforts, was mere housekeeping. The economic crisis is to Obama a technocratic puzzle that needs to be solved because otherwise he loses all popular support.

Unlike most presidents, however, he doesn't covet popular support for its own sake. Some men become president to be someone, others to do something. This is what separates, say, a Bill Clinton from a Ronald Reagan. Obama, who once noted that Reagan altered the trajectory of America as Clinton had not, sees himself a Reagan.

Reagan came to office to do something: shrink government, lower taxes, rebuild American defenses. Obama made clear Tuesday night that he intends to be equally transformative. His three goals: universal health care, universal education, and a new green energy economy highly funded and regulated by government.

1) Obama wants to be to universal health care what Lyndon Johnson was to Medicare. Obama has publicly abandoned his once-stated preference for a single-payer system as in Canada and Britain. But that is for practical reasons. In America, you can't get there from here directly.

Instead, Obama will create the middle step that will lead ultimately and inevitably to single-payer. The way to do it is to establish a reformed system that retains a private health-insurance sector but offers a new government-run plan (based on benefits open to members of Congress) so relatively attractive that people voluntarily move out of the private sector, thereby starving it. The ultimate result is a system of fully socialized medicine. This will probably not happen until long after Obama leaves office. But he will be rightly recognized as its father.

(2) Beyond cradle-to-grave health care, Obama wants cradle-to-cubicle education. He wants far more government grants, tax credits and other financial guarantees for college education -- another way station to another universal federal entitlement. He lauded the country for establishing free high school education during the Industrial Revolution; he wants to put us on the road to doing the same for college during the Information Age.

(3) Obama wants to be to green energy what John Kennedy was to the moon shot, its visionary and creator. It starts with the establishment of a government-guided, government-funded green energy sector into which the administration will pour billions of dollars from the stimulus package and billions more from budgets to come.

But just picking winners and losers is hardly sufficient for a president who sees himself as world-historical. Hence the carbon cap-and-trade system he proposed Tuesday night that will massively restructure American industry and create a highly regulated energy sector.

These revolutions in health care, education and energy are not just abstract hopes. They have already taken life in Obama's $787 billion stimulus package, a huge expansion of social spending constituting a down payment on Obama's plan for remaking the American social contract.

Obama sees the current economic crisis as an opportunity. He has said so openly. And now we know what opportunity he wants to seize. Just as the Depression created the political and psychological conditions for Franklin Roosevelt's transformation of America from laissez-faireism to the beginnings of the welfare state, the current crisis gives Obama the political space to move the still (relatively) modest American welfare state toward European-style social democracy.

In the European Union, government spending has declined slightly, from 48 percent to 47 percent of GDP during the past 10 years. In the United States, it has shot up from 34 percent to 40 percent. Part of this explosive growth in U.S. government spending reflects the emergency private-sector interventions of a Republican administration. But the clear intent was to make the massive intrusion into the private sector temporary and to retreat as quickly as possible. Obama has radically different ambitions.

The spread between Europe and America in government-controlled GDP has already shrunk from 14 percent to 7 percent. Two terms of Obamaism and the difference will be zero.

Conservatives take a dim view of the regulation-bound, economically sclerotic, socially stagnant, nanny state that is the European Union. Nonetheless, Obama is ascendant and has the personal mandate to take the country where he wishes. He has laid out boldly the Brussels-bound path he wants to take.

Let the debate begin.

letters@charleskrauthammer.com

Offline Thucydides

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #46 on: February 28, 2009, 18:21:48 »
The economy is coming for the Congress and Administration:
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #47 on: March 09, 2009, 22:34:07 »
Future historians will have a field day:

http://gatewaypundit.blogspot.com/2009/03/wikipedia-scrubs-dear-leaders-page-of.html

Quote
Wikipedia Scrubs Dear Leader's Page Clean of Critical Entries

Wikipedia scrubs Obama's entry clean of any critical information that may taint your view of Dear Leader.

Wikipedia airbrushes any controversial information about Dear Leader from its webpage including his 20 year relationship with mentor Jeremiah Wright and his long relationship with terrorist Bill Ayers.

World Net Daily reported, via Drudge:

    Wikipedia, the online "free encyclopedia" mega-site written and edited entirely by its users, has been deleting within minutes any mention of eligibility issues surrounding Barack Obama's presidency, with administrators kicking off anyone who writes about the subject, WND has learned.

    A perusal through Obama's current Wikipedia entry finds a heavily guarded, mostly glowing biography about the U.S. president. Some of Obama's most controversial past affiliations, including with Rev. Jeremiah Wright and former Weathermen terrorist Bill Ayers, are not once mentioned, even though those associations received much news media attention and served as dominant themes during the presidential elections last year.

    Also completely lacking is any mention of the well-publicized concerns surrounding Obama's eligibility to serve as commander-in-chief.

    Indeed, multiple times, Wikipedia users who wrote about the eligibility issues had their entries deleted almost immediately and were banned from re-posting any material on the website for three days.

Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Thucydides

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #48 on: March 17, 2009, 22:53:18 »
Dissing foreign leaders is one thing, but this....

http://unambig.wordpress.com/2009/03/17/to-care-for-him-who-shall-have-borne-the-battle/

Quote
“To Care For Him Who Shall Have Borne The Battle”
March 17, 2009 — Raphael Alexander

usarmy

There’s a good reason why even the most ardent anti-war activists will seldom publicly heap scorn and ridicule on soldiers, nor even to suggest their funding be cut back or reduced in a way that would compromise their safety. It is because the vast majority of people respect and honour soldiers who choose to put their lives on the line for the defence of their country, a thing inconceivable to many of us. One does not have to be willing to volunteer one’s own life to support putting our soldiers in harms way, but one most certainly should be willing to care for those who return from a battle fought on our behalf, and not begrudge a penny that goes toward that medical aid. To criticize a conflict based upon the perceived necessity or imperative to the country is a valid pursuit of conscience, but I think you will find that few people use the soldiers themselves as the subject for antagonism. This is why the recent protests against the returning British soldiers in Luton was so abhorrent, or why the church of Fred Phelps is universally reviled, even by those who oppose the Iraq war with every fibre of their being.

It is an understatement, then, to say that Barack Obama walks on a very tenuous tightrope by fighting against the American Legion in trying to force private insurance companies to pay for the treatment of military veterans who have suffered service-connected disabilities and injuries. Commander David K. Rehbein, leader of the largest veterans organization in America, expressed dismay after a fruitless meeting with President Obama yesterday in which the government issued intent to recoup losses in medical costs to servicemen and women injured in combat. A “wealth transfer” in the most legitimate sense of the term to date, the President hopes to save $540 million by this method, refusing to listen to arguments of a moral nature. Commander Rehbein elaborates:

    “This reimbursement plan would be inconsistent with the mandate ‘ to care for him who shall have borne the battle’ given that the United States government sent members of the armed forces into harm’s way, and not private insurance companies. I say again that The American Legion does not and will not support any plan that seeks to bill a veteran for treatment of a service connected disability at the very agency that was created to treat the unique need of America’s veterans!

    [...]

    “There is simply no logical explanation for billing a veteran’s personal insurance for care that the VA has a responsibility to provide. While we understand the fiscal difficulties this country faces right now, placing the burden of those fiscal problems on the men and women who have already sacrificed a great deal for this country is unconscionable.”

The American Legion believes that the reimbursement plan of delegating out health insurance to private companies is contrary to the mandate of Veterans Affairs to treat injuries and disabilities incurred by the directive of the United States government itself. I couldn’t agree more. “Insurance” is a kind of a misnomer; they should be called “Reimbursement” Companies, since often it takes upfront payment of medical services before one can apply for and receive a refund. Insurance, as a definition, means to “insure” against liability and expenses that one might be otherwise unable to afford. By forcing disabled veterans to pay for services that the government should be paying up front, it would create additional hardship on the servicemen and women who are already suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder conditions that have led to U.S. Army suicide rates exceeding the civilian population for the first time since 1980 when records started being kept.

Not only could private health insurance create problems with coverage limits and family plans, some employers could avoid hiring veterans because of the problems associated with obtaining company health care benefits. The greatest worry is that veterans could wind up destitute or unable to pay medical bills, and all because the government is seeking ways to reduce costs at a time when this administration has just offered up a $787 billion stimulus bill. For the good of military families and the health of the U.S. Army, I hope President Obama reconsiders.

[This article was brought to my attention by a reader. If there's an article you think deserves my attention, you can send me a "tip" by emailing me: rphl_lxndr at yahoo.ca]

We hear that there are tumults and riots in Rome, and that voices are raised concerning the army and the quality of our soldiers. Make haste to reassure us that you love and support us as we love and support you, for if we find that we have left our bones to bleach in these sands in vain, then beware the fury of the legions.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline S.M.A.

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Re: 20 Jan 09: What the world wants from the new American president.
« Reply #49 on: March 17, 2009, 23:07:07 »
Words of support from one former POTUS to the current one:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29743567/?gt1=43001


Quote
Bush says Obama 'deserves my silence'
He says he won't criticize new president and he plans to write a book


During his eighth week in office, President Barack Obama ventured into international matters, dealt with economic issues, saluted Abraham Lincoln and announced education reform efforts.
more photos

updated 1 hour, 39 minutes ago
CALGARY, Alberta - Former President George W. Bush said on Tuesday that he won't criticize Barack Obama because the new U.S. president "deserves my silence," and said he plans to write a book about the 12 toughest decisions he made in office.

Bush declined to critique the Obama administration in his first speech since leaving office in January. Former Vice President Dick Cheney has said that Obama's decisions threatened America's safety.

"I'm not going to spend my time criticizing him. There are plenty of critics in the arena," Bush said. "He deserves my silence."


Bush said he wants Obama to succeed and said it's important that he has that support. Talk-show host Rush Limbaugh has said he hoped Obama would fail.

"I love my country a lot more than I love politics," Bush said. "I think it is essential that he be helped in office."

The invitation-only event titled a "Conversation with George W. Bush" attracted close to 2,000 guests who paid $3,100 per table. Bush received two standing ovations from the predominantly business crowd. About 200 protested outside the event.

Not so unpopular in Alberta
Bush is unpopular in Canada but less so in oil-rich Alberta, the country's most conservative province and one sometimes called the Texas of the north.

"This is my maiden voyage. My first speech since I was the president of the United States and I couldn't think of a better place to give it than Calgary, Canada," Bush said.

The event's organizers declined to say how much Bush was paid to speak at the gathering.


Bush said that he doesn't know what he will do in the long term but that he will write a book that will ask people to consider what they would do if they had to protect the United States as president.

He said it will be fun to write and that "it's going to be (about) the 12 toughest decisions I had to make."

"I'm going to put people in my place, so when the history of this administration is written at least there's an authoritarian voice saying exactly what happened," Bush said.

"I want people to understand what it was like to sit in the Oval Office and have them come in and say we have captured Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks, the alleged killer of a guy named Danny Pearl because he was simply Jewish, and we think we have information on further attacks on the United States," Bush said.

Iraq better without Saddam Hussein
Bush didn't specify what the 12 hardest decisions were but said Iraq is better off without Saddam Hussein in power.

Bush was also full of jokes during his appearance. He joked that he would do more speeches to pay for his new house in Dallas.

"I actually paid for a house last fall. I think I'm the only American to have bought a house in the fall of 2008," he quipped.

He also said his mother is doing well. Barbara Bush was released from a Houston hospital Friday, nine days after undergoing heart surgery. "Clearly he can't live without her," Bush said of his father and former President George H.W. Bush.

Bush seemed to enjoy himself even though the event started a half later than expected because of tight security. "I'll sit here all day," Bush said during a question-and-answer session. "I'm flattered people even want to hear me in the first place."
Our Country
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"A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: We did it ourselves."   - Lao Zi (老子)
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"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
- Winston Churchill