Why is the President talking about ISIS tonight?

This is why.

The Democrats are 18 points in the hole on foreign policy, 38 on defense. I’m trying to remember the last time I’ve seen the Democrats that far behind on those topics. Admittedly, I’m kind of loopy right now from the various cold remedies, so maybe it’s been like this for a while and I just don’t remember; still… those aren’t great numbers. To put it, as they say, mildly.


Reminder: Israel has a right to defend itself. And no obligation to be a fool about it, either.

This conversation between Sally Kohn and Guy Benson on the possibly meritorious aspects of violence – specifically, this particular exchange:



Robert Gates inadvertently gives us a good look at @barackobama’s war insecurities.

I’m going to show my readers this paragraph, than walk them through it.  Background: it’s part of Robert Gates’ memoir on his time as SecDef. Specifically, Gates (with the help of the military brass) was trying to keep Afghanistan from sliding off of the beam under the new administration, and running headlong into the Obama administration’s apparent inherent inability to understand that wars are messy and not subject to control.

Oh, and the fact that the Democrats advising the President on military affairs were also, by and large, clueless idiots.  But you knew that already.

Anyway, after apparently trying one too many times to make the President understand that warfighters need support staff, Barack Obama threw a tantrum:

[JCS Chairman Admiral Michael] Mullen and I repeatedly discussed with the infuriated president what he regarded as military pressure on him. “Is it a lack of respect for me?” Obama asked us. “Are [Petraeus, McChrystal and Mullen] trying to box me in? I’ve tried to create an environment where all points of view can be expressed and have a robust debate. I’m prepared to devote any amount of time to it—however many hours or days. What is wrong? Is it the process? Are they suspicious of my politics? Do they resent that I never served in the military? Do they think because I’m young that I don’t see what they’re doing?”

Oh, dear. This is rather exquisite narcissism, isn’t it? – And no, not self-reflection, either. The President was ‘infuriated,’ remember? That suggests that the President took the entire thing personally, in precisely the way that one should not. It’s not the military’s fault that Barack Obama was not mentally prepared to be Commander in Chief. Neither is it their fault that Obama apparently does not take constructive criticism well.  Or at all. And it certainly isn’t their fault that the man thinks that the military updating their needs is somehow an indication that they dislike President Obama.

But I digress.



The essential problem with the Chuck Hagel nomination.

It’s actually… pretty simple: Chuck Hagel is a bit of a schlemiel.  I’m not actually trying to reference Hagel’s Jewish problem*, here: it’s just that Yiddish has an excellent word to describe a sad-sack bungler, and English wants the useful words.  It wants all the useful words.

…Anyway, Hagel is a schlemiel.  Now, I know what people are thinking: they’re thinking “But… but… but being a schlemiel has NEVER been a barrier to acquiring a Cabinet post!”  And they would be correct.  We – read, both parties – have traditionally taken the opportunity given to us by the Cabinet to store inconvenient, superfluous, and/or ineffectual politicians for a while until they can be safely retired**.  This is, in fact, a time-honored tradition.  The problem here, though, is that we typically do not nominate schlemiels for Secretary of Defense; a quick review of the list of them reveals a group of sharp-tongued, tough-minded, and generally strong-willed men who would have gone through Thursday’s Armed Services Committee hearings like a hot knife through soft butter. (more…)


Chuck Hagel’s Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin moment.

Not a cock-crowing three times moment, mind you: Chuck Hagel deserves to be left twisting in the wind by an administration suddenly gun-shy about nominating an anti-Israel, anti-gay, anti-war suck-up*. From Buzzfeed:

“The White House was never actually all that close to naming Hagel, and to a degree feels awkward about the dust-up about him, however, they have no real interest in defending him because they don’t plan to pick him and see the issues being raise as hard to defend,” the insider said. “The Hagel dust-up is the best thing that could have happened for the President and the party. It nets out well, giving easy sailing to their real choice when the time comes.”

Via Hot Air Headlines. I have to say: it’s kind of fun to torpedo Obama’s Cabinet picks.  Who’s next?

Moe Lane

*I wonder when Hagel’s fellow antiwar loons will finally get tired of supporting a President who is just like George W. Bush on foreign policy, only without the competence and ability to play well with others.  Probably never.

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