Tarheeltalker

Tag Team of Blame

When I was a kid, I often watched professional wrestling with my dad. At that age, I was convinced that everything I saw was reality. So, I  would get really agitated during tag team matches when one wrestler would slap hands with his/her partner indicating it was time to leave the ring and yet remain  in the ring to double team their opponent.

Now, being so much more mature than during those early years, i no longer watch pro wrestling. But I remember the concept of a tag team and in the last couple of days, I have observed exactly that. Only this tag team is of a political persuasion. I am noy quite sure if these two are ” good guys” or not. But I have my suspicions.

The individuals in question are Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi ( Speaker since January, 2007 an important fact to remember) and television personality Joy Behar, formerly of The View. I guess tv personality is the term for Ms Behar. I’m unsure if there is a better term, such as  one who promulgates wacky opinions and theories, but that doesn’t matter.

This week, both individuals have reached the same conclusions about the Gulf oil spill. Both are convinced that the Bush administration or Bush/Cheney in Ms Behar’s words are at fault. Me Pelosi maintains that it is the lax regulatory atmosphere fostered by Bush and still being implemented by Bush appointed who are burrowed deep  within numerous unnamed federal agencies. A request to her office to identify these individuals has received no response at this time. Appointees which a Congress controlled by Democrats would have had to approve, at least to some degree.

As for Ms Behar, she is quite disturbed that Obama is being blamed when he is just trying to clean up a mess caused by the Bush people. She refers, by the way, to Obama’s firing of Minerals Management Service head Elizabeth Birnbaum. At his Gulf coast press conference, when asked about that, the president asserted that he knew nothing of the firing. Again, a minor point, though a bit Clintonesque, I think.

Ms Behar, the Obama people gave this particular oil rig an  award, provided  BP waivers 10 days before the explosion and oh yes received significant campaign money from BP. Got to blame Bush though which  is interesting since the president said that he was tired of the finger-pointing and blaming. Better let your supporters know, or maybe they are just  doing the blaming on your behalf. Good political move, huh?

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May 30, 2010 Posted by | Media, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why were these people laughing?

Seems Bill Maher is at it again. You remember him, famous for wishing Dick Cheney had been killed  while at an American outpost in Afghanistan. Unlike this next, there was  no humor involved. Bet Maher was thrilled beyond words at Cheney’s recent heart attack though.

His latest attempt at death humor involves Glenn Beck. On his HBO show, he made this statement during his opening monologue.”When we see crazy, senseless deaths like this, we can only ask why, why, why couldn’t it have been Glenn Beck?” The reference is to John Bedell, a disturbed individual who opened fire near the Pentagon a couple of days ago and  was  killed by Pentagon police.

It was bad enough that Maher tried to milk the tragic event for humor. I just cannot countenance that at all, regardless of the object. What is worse to me is that the audience reaction. What was it? Alas, it was laughter and applause. I can only hope that after reflecting on their behaviour, all would be ashamed;or at least a few of them.

Video and a further article by Noel Sheppard available at NewsBusters.

March 7, 2010 Posted by | Media | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Obama, Carter and James Buchanan

James Buchanan? Yep, the 15th president of these  United States, known for  little more today than being Lincoln’s predecessor and dithering his way through a  sorta  lame 4 year term as the country hurtled towards Civil War. So, what about the linking of these three? The first two have been widely connected by many,including yours truly. I had not seen a link to Buchanan until today.

The article is by David Reilly in Bloomberg and it is just fascinating. Even the title is great.Man up, Obama or Make Way for President Palin. That is also the first time for that last phrase, but I digress. In the interest of full disclosure, financial blogger Eric Salzman made the Buchanan comparison.

One more log on the  fire of criticism. former Virginia governor Douglas  Wilder thinks Obama needs to fire some people, including DNC Chair Time Kaine, also a former Virginia governor. Wilder also thinks a number of the Chicago people need to go. No names, but think Emanuel, Jarrett and Axelrod. What Wilder neglects  to mention is that the President himself is one  of the Chicago people. Alas, yet another digression.

Back on topic for a moment. Reilly even suggests Obama could draw some inspiration in dealing with things from, gasp!!, Richard Nixon, George Bush and even Dick Cheney.

Specifically, learn from Clinton (veto) , don;t fear the banks and clean house; parroting Wilder a bit, bye-bye Emanuel ,Geithner and Summers among others.

In so many words, he tells the President get tough or ……………

I thought it was a great article and will doubtless be ignored.

February 12, 2010 Posted by | Media, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Congressman Alan Grayson

There are some members of Congress whose names are familiar to most people. Those would include Pelosi, Murtha, Conyers,Boehner, Kasich, Pence, William( the refrigerator) Jefferson, Jesse Jackson, Maxine Waters, Sheila  Jackson-Lee, to name a few. Some are known because of the position they hold or their  tenure or even their propensity to say nonsensical things. My representative is G K Butterfield, D, NC. As far as I know  Rep Butterfield is not widely known and does not fit into any of the preceding categories.

But, we also have another category.It seems to be occupied by only one person and that person is  Florida Democrat Alan Grayson. He is a first termer  who narrowly won election, 52%-48%. Why, one might ask is Florida’s  historically  Republican 8th district congressman well-known? Perhaps it is because he is trying very hard to live up or down to a title just bestowed on him, “The Biggest Jerk in Congress.”  Human Events  writer  Ross Kaminsky has so anointed  the congressman in an article  from February 3. I don’t know about the title. I was kinda leaning towards Al Franken, myself.

Kaminsky makes some pretty good points though. Grayson shares a profession with John Edwards and ranks as the 12th richest member of Congress and #7 in the House of Representatives. But, alas his wealth has bought him no immunity from foot-in-mouth disease or his  I never saw a Republican I did not want to attack affliction.

He has a particular disdain for Dick Cheney, likening him to a vampire and wondering if Satan did the intro for his  new book. He called Rush a” has-been hypocrite loser.” So many untrue metaphors in one sentence.  Maybe my favorite is this one since it includes me.  Fox News and the Republicans who collaborate with them are the “enemy” of America. Really. I had no idea.

At last count, there were 8 Republicans lines up to challenge Grayson this fall, I certainly hope the good people of Orlando and vicinity can find one to their liking, please.

February 6, 2010 Posted by | Media, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

April 12,1945 to August 6,1945

The year 1945 was momentous in an almost unprecedented way. The dates referenced above are not the only events of major significance, but they will suffice for now. April 12 is one of those days that  people would always  remember where they were when they heard the news. President Roosevelt  was dead. The only man to be elected to 4 terms; he was just beginning his 13th year in office when he succumbed to a  stroke and died in Warm Springs, Ga at the age of 63. His death elevated a virtually unknown  man to the Presidency at one of the nation’s most critical junctures. WW II, at least in Europe was drawing to an end but the Pacific theater, another story indeed.

Harry Truman was neither  a Dick Cheney or Joe Biden in terms of power or influence. He was Roosevelt’s 3rd veep  and was not what you would call highly influential or knowledgeable and in fact had only occupied the office for 82 days. Thus he was not really aware of the feverish efforts underway to develop the atomic bomb.

Apparently he came up to speed very quickly since his decision to launch the Enola Gay with the first bomb came less than 3 months after he took office. The decision was made even though it  was by no means universally lauded and was opposed by some 70+ scientists.

I would like to draw  a comparison to the situation in which Mr Truman found himself and  the ongoing process about what should be our next step in Afghanistan. I read excerpts frm  a Eugene Robinson column today that lauded the reasoned approach the President is taking versus the “ready, firm, aim” approach of George Bush. He of course makes the typical comments about  this as  well as Iraq being George Bush’s doing.

I have had the nagging thought for some time about Truman’ s position. It was not his war that he was tasked with completing and it might have been easy or expedient politically to not blame Roosevelt, but  to give either him or his policies part of the “credit” for his controversial decision. I don’t think that he did so. Remember the buck stops here?

My point, which I am not making as well as I would like is not to say the President’s reasoned approach is  all that bad. But, given the fact that this  war was frequently referenced in the campaign, it is not conducive to fall back on the Bush’s war approach.

When he took office, WWII became Truman’s war. We could always the question, if Roosevelt had lived would he have dropped the bomb or bombs?  But it remains a specious question. For good or bad, Afghanistan is Obama’s  war ( hopefully his main adviser is not John  Kerry) and history will doubtless allocate to him the credit if he succeeds.

October 28, 2009 Posted by | History, military, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Biden and Cheney

The veep is in Iraq once again, his 3rd trip this year. We can only hope he says something really Bidenesque that will make the news. But the real reason to mention his trip is to compare it to a trip made by his predecessor, Dick(Darth Vader) Cheney. Today, while Biden was in Baghdad, there was   a mortar attack in the Green Zone, not far from where Biden and  his  traveling party were. Fortunately, no one was injured. Just a few years ago, while Cheney was in Afghanistan there was  an attack  actually aimed at killing  him while  he was there. There were  comments on Huff Po lamenting its failure. These comments were removed. So, then we had  comic genius Bill Maher complain about that action. He went on to say that the world would be a safer place if Cheney had been assassinated .

Ok, now that is the set up for this next. Keith Olbermann had columnist Dan  Savage on his show on September 1. Savage said that  the Michele Bachmann’s and the Glenn Beck’s of the world  were or are , consciously or subconsciously trying to get the President killed. How are they doing this? Their strong opposition to Obamacare, including talk of death panels and the  like. Their comments I  guess are actually attempting to incite someone into killing  the President. Now, what is one  to  do if they are opposed to the President’s healthcare proposals? Is  opposition  verboten ? Seems that way, does it not.

FYI, About all I will add about Mr Savage is that he is a columnist for the  Seattle Stranger.

September 15, 2009 Posted by | Media, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Can we Stand the Truth?

In the movie  A Few Good Men, Jack Nicholson tells Tom Cruise that “you can’t stand the truth”. Senator Patrick Leahy, Democrat,Vt. is betting otherwise or sort of,depending on what the truth is and who determines it. Sen. Leahy is floating the idea of a truth and reconciliation  commission to investigate abuses of the Bush years, including  but not limited to issues related  to the Iraq war. It would not be set up to punish or humiliate but to find out the truth or  so he told a Georgetown University audience.

Verrry interesting, but stupid to quote Arte Johnson from the tv show Laugh-In. Wonder who pick the committee and would it be balanced(sure it would). Guess it would skip the last 2 years when the Democrats controlled Congress since they had it all under control. Wait,they didn’t did they? Never mind, investigate and impeach or shoot first and ask questions later. Since Bush and Cheney already are vilified  as the two most heinous occupants of their respective offices,how could Sen Leahy find  an honest broker to run such a committee.Here’s an idea, let him as chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee do it since in an Obama Administration there will nothing for the committee to oversee or investigate anyway. How about Ted Kennedy as vice-chair- can’t get any more balanced, huh?

February 9, 2009 Posted by | Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment