Mar
18
2015
4

Barack Obama spins gold into straw in Israel elections. Again.

The New York Sun is pretty blunt about this: “It may be too soon to say who won the election in Israel but it’s not too soon to say who lost — President Obama.” …and, let’s be honest, here.  It was a remarkably silly thing for the President to try to get involved in.  No, seriously, think about it for a moment.  What was the upside for any attempt by Barack Obama to influence the Israeli election? What was his victory condition?

Because I’m pretty sure that President Obama’s victory condition didn’t involve a possible federal probe: (more…)

Mar
02
2015
10

Hillary Clinton STARTED OFF as the villain. How does she plan to become the hero?

Let us address the central paradox of the Hillary Clinton campaign.  To do that, though, we must first refresh our memories.  Specifically, this ad:

Remember it? It is, of course, an edited version of the iconic Apple 1984 ad which was altered to convert it from revolutionary agitprop praising a multinational corporation to revolutionary agitprop praising an undistinguished machine politician from Chicago. And, to be fair, it was successful agitprop. We will be arguing for decades about just how Hillary Clinton managed to lose that primary fight, but she did – and videos like this probably didn’t hurt. (more…)

Feb
25
2015
7

Buried lede, here: polling shows that Barack Obama is a *rotten* communicator.

Look, when you’re the President, you shouldn’t be getting numbers like these in a poll asking voters whether they think that you love America:

The answer: a surprising number. Democrats are convinced he does love his country (85 percent of those surveyed answered yes in the poll), while Republicans (69 percent no) are skeptical. Independents break in the president’s favor by only 42 percent to 38 percent. Nationally, only 47 percent of people think the nation’s leader loves America while 35 percent do not.

This is, in fact, representative of a communications failure on the President’s part. Even if you assume that the GOP is being horrible and inaccurate in their assessment of Barack Obama, a 42/38 split among independents is essentially a tie. Perhaps the Democratic party should be spending less time whining about how the Republicans are being mean to the President, and more time trying to prove – in a positive manner – that we’re being unfair, too.

Feb
24
2015
7

Barack Obama’s exquisitely timid Keystone Pipeline veto.

Barack Obama was literally too afraid to show his face after vetoing Keystone.

As expected: the President has decided to side with environmentalists over blue-collar unions (and the rest of the country, mind you) by vetoing the bipartisan Keystone Pipeline bill. But did Barack Obama at least do so publicly, to great fanfare? Since this is so important, after all? Of course he didn’t. That would imply moral courage. Nah, Barack Obama did so with his head down and as timidly as he dared – and these days, Barack Obama can dare to be pretty darn timid.

 

“The presidential power to veto legislation is one I take seriously,” Obama said in a brief notice delivered to the Senate. “But I also take seriously my responsibility to the American people.”

Obama vetoed the bill in private with no fanfare, in contrast to the televised ceremony Republican leaders staged earlier this month when they signed the bill and sent it to the president. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said Republicans were “not even close” to giving up the fight and derided the veto as a “national embarrassment.”

(more…)

Feb
20
2015
4

Left mad the Right’s noticed that entire ‘ambivalent about America’ thing Obama does.

There’s a reason why the Right has been laughing over the hysterical (in both senses) reaction by the Left over what were actually some commonplace remarks by Rudy Giuliani.  To wit, we all went Yes, ‘Barack Obama doesn’t love this country the way that you or I do’ sounds about right.

So what?

The perception that Obama dislikes America is nothing new in conservative circles. Radio talk hosts have asked me numerous times – often, in creative ways – if I agree that the president  “hates” America. Since none of us has the ability to bore into the souls of fellow humans and unlock all their hidden motivations, the question is distracting and irrelevant. And as political rhetoric goes it’s needlessly hyperbolic.

But really, is it that outrageous or surprising that so many Americans doubt whether the president “loves” the traditional role the United States has played on the world stage, or whether he “loves” the capitalism that’s defined us for the past 50 or 60 years, or whether he “loves” the Constitutional protections we have for religious freedoms, guns, or free speech?

(more…)

Jan
27
2015
3

Like a puppy smacked across the nose: Barack Obama to hastily drop proposed 529 tax.

HE CAN BE TAUGHT!

President Obama, facing angry reprisals from parents and from lawmakers of both parties, will drop his proposal to effectively end popular college savings accounts known as 529s, but will keep an expanded tuition tax credit at the center of his college access plan, the White House said Tuesday.

…Although I don’t know why he bothered to keep the tax credit: the aforementioned college access plan isn’t going anywhere anyway.  Oh, I’m sure that something will get signed, eventually.  But precisely what that is will be determined by the adults that the American people put back in control of Congress last November, not the petulant man-child who is still occupying the White House… for less than two more years. (more…)

Jan
24
2015
8

Barack Obama calculated that calling for 529 tax hikes was safe enough.

Megan McArdle put her finger on precisely why Barack Obama floated the oh-heck-no proposal to tax people’s 529 college funds: “About the only people I saw defending this particular idea were blue-state singles who haven’t yet confronted the monstrous expense of shepherding their progeny into the new mandarin class to which they belong.” …And that’s who Barack Obama was trying to back-channel pander to, of course. In 2012 single voters broke strongly for Obama – single women more so then men – and since a tax hike on college fund earnings wouldn’t affect them too much (especially the ones without kids), Obama probably figures that it’s a ‘safe’ tax hike to have*. (more…)

Jan
17
2015
4

Barack Obama kind of, deniably, sort of implies certain Democratic Senators may have divided loyalties.

When it comes to foreign policy. Wink-wink, nudge-nudge, say no more…

Gee. I wonder what Barack Obama could possibly be hinting at: “At a closed-door meeting on Thursday, President Barack Obama suggested that some Democratic senators base their foreign policy positions on the preferences of their campaign donors.”  The subject in question is Iranian sanctions; and after Barack Obama made his comments Sen. Robert Menendez, of all people, did not take it kindly:

Mr. Menendez, who was seated at a table in front of the podium, stood up and said he took “personal offense.”

Mr. Menendez told the president that he had worked for more than 20 years to curb Iran’s nuclear ambitions and had always been focused on the long-term implications. Mr. Menendez also warned the president that sanctions could not be imposed quickly if Congress waited to act and the talks failed, according to two people who were present.

I hope that the President understands that those are dangerous waters to go fishing in.  That wasn’t a progressive donor’s dining room or a private seminar hosted by a Big Left activist group. Comments that would be chuckled at there as being saucy euphemisms get a good deal less amusing, and a good deal inflammatory, out in the real world. And even a hack like Menendez can feel legitimate umbrage at being told that he’s operating at the beck and call of shadowy donors*.

Moe Lane

*Ironically, Menendez probably is – but not on foreign policy. I mean, I consider the man a corrupt suckweasel, but I would hesitate to insinuate that he puts his donors’ wishes before America’s. Heck of a thing when I have more respect for a Democratic Senator’s tattered integrity than does the Democratic President of the United States…

Jan
15
2015
4

Mandatory, country-wide paid sick leave is not actually a thing that will happen.

Let me just clear this up.

Previewing an element of his State of the Union address, the president will gather a roundtable of working women as a backdrop for his challenge to the Republican-controlled Congress to pass legislation even Democrats couldn’t muscle off Capitol Hill when they held the majorities. Obama will ask lawmakers to pass the Healthy Families Act, a long-stalled measure that would grant workers up to seven days of paid leave annually when they or family members have medical needs.

Imagine this imaginary conversation, in fact: (more…)

Jan
15
2015
2

Barack Obama, Democrats hit the mattresses in Baltimore.

I say that because the President is, shock, surprise! – avoiding reporters on this one: “[Barack Obama’s] mid-afternoon appearance is entirely off-limits to the media, in contrast to his 2010 appearance down the street for a similar retreat with House Republicans.”  I don’t know what’s funnier: the idea that President Obama doesn’t dare talk to the press, or that Sen. Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota doesn’t dare be at the same event at the same time as Obama. No, really, each one is guffaw-worthy, in its own way.

Jan
14
2015
6

White House remarkably blase about upcoming #obamacare subsidy case. Stupidly so, in my opinion.

This seems… unwise of the administration: “President Barack Obama is not sweating about the federal exchange subsidies. Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) says that at a roundtable discussion with congressional leaders he asked Obama why the administration hasn’t informed the public that subsidies are an endangered species. The president replied that he doesn’t anticipate the need for a contingency plan.” I mean, it’s not like the Obama administration has a great track record here when it comes to predicting what the Supreme Court will do with Obamacare.   (more…)

Jan
12
2015
4

Barack Obama’s Harriet Miers moment. Seriously.

This is getting remarkable. We’re seeing some possibly unexpectedly hostile reactions to the administration’s decision not to send anybody to participate in France’s anti-terrorism unity march:

  • Mike Lupica: “Everybody knows how complicated this country’s relationship with France has been, in war and in peace. Certainly there have been times when the leaders of France could have done better by us. We should have done better by them on Sunday. Only you couldn’t find us.”
  • Jake Tapper: “I say this as an American — not as a journalist, not as a representative of CNN — but as an American: I was ashamed.”
  • Michael Tomasky: “Look, it’s just my opinion, but extraordinary event; it’s our fight too. I, as a citizen, feel underrepresented.”
  • Fareed Zakaria: “Fareed Zakaria, host of CNN’s “Global Public Square,” called the absence of top U.S. officials a mistake… France is the United States’ “deepest ideological ally,” he said, and it would have been a meaningful image to have a senior administration member, or the President, standing shoulder to shoulder with other leaders.” (via Gateway Pundit, who is doing his own round-up.)
  • The New York Daily News (endorsed Obama for President): “The United States of America, Barack Obama, President, was inexcusably absent from one of the most critical turning points in the war between radical Islam and the West since 9/11.”

(more…)

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