Friday, May 30, 2008

A Barack-track on the surge

This video says it all. Barack Obama's rigid left-wing pander on the surge has exposed his bad judgment and his senior advisor is trying to rewrite history because he knows it's a major problem once he leaves the fever swamps of the Democratic primaries.

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Strategic blunder? Hardly

While the national media continues its mindless merry-go-round coverage of whether George W. Bush "lied us into war" for about the 27th time, it's time to look at what's going on in Iraq and the Middle East.

I can understand why Barack Obama doesn't want to go there. What's happening would be painful for him to see. He would find a rapidly collapsing al Qaeda, helped substantially by President Bush's aggressive fight against terrorism. Our attack on Iraq has drawn al Qaeda into a fight it has nearly lost. That loss has heavily demoralized the jihadist movement, according to published and internet treatises by the jihadists themselves.

The surge has been a particular strategic success because it capitalized on al Qaeda's reign of terror in Iraq that turned the locals against it. The resulting al Qaeda defeat has fed perfectly into a growing reevaluation of terrorism tactics by the founding fathers of al Qaeda and other radical groups. They have come to realize that killing women and children is not advancing their agenda. The incomparable Lawrence Wright explores this in an article that Barack Obama ought to read. A question he ought to answer: How could the radical jihadist movement be so demoralized after the "failed policies" of George W. Bush? I thought we were breeding and feeding the movement?

How does American policy fit into this? Had we not pressed the issue in the Middle East and showed the Islamists that we were not going to allow the region to become a staging ground for mass murder of Americans. Of course, there are other variables. But it is undeniable that our surge in Iraq has been a major defeat for al Qaeda and the prestige of the jihadist movement within the Muslim world.

We have a chance for a democracy in pivotal territory in the Middle East. We have disarmed a dangerous foe. We have relegated what's left of al Qaeda to remote Pakistan, where popular opinion also is moving against the radicals. Yes, it has come at a stiff price in American lives. There's no diminishing that. Yet that cost arguably was miniscule compared to the lives that might have been lost had al Qaeda and other jihadists regrouped after 9-11.

We haven't been attacked again on U.S. soil. We are watching what could be a collapse of the most radical strain of jihadist philosophy years faster than many imagined a short time ago. Sell-out "author" Scott McClellan today bemoaned the "permanent campaign" nature of politics. I appreciate a different kind of permanent campaign—the one the administration wages to keep us safe from mass murder on our soil. Once history has a chance to view the Bush presidency in perspective, it will render a favorable verdict as well.

In the meantime, we have to listen to the Democrats and the MSM, who replay the same tired storylines from 2002, 2003 and 2004 instead of focusing on the hopeful trends in 2008.

UPDATE: Hugh Hewitt has more on Barack Obama's purposeful ignorance about events in Iraq.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Weasel words

As a former spokesman, I can say without knowing all the facts that Scott McClellan is a weasel. I felt the same way about George Stephanopoulos when he wrote his memoir.

McClellan, if he truly was distressed about what was going on in the White House, never should have stepped to the podium to defend the administration. Nobody forced him to take the job or keep it. If he felt that way while doing the job, it says very little about his integrity or strength of character.

If he is embellishing his distress with the White House to pander to the left wing national press and boost book sales, he also is displaying little integrity.

Either way, weasel is an appropriate label. I made it clear to the first person I spoke for, Illinois Attorney General Jim Ryan, that I would never lie for him and wanted access to all information so I could speak accurately to the public. It looks like McClellan never had that deal with the White House. He should have moved forward silently with his life instead of compounding his poor performance as press secretary with a stunning act of dishonor.

That McClellan is booked on left-wing media outlets to promote his book and not on Fox indicates that the book was embellished for a particular audience. That makes McClellan a person who apparently was duped twice—once by the White House and once by his publisher.

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Will Obama pardon Rezko?

As the news media ponders whether President George Bush will pardon or commute the sentence of prisoned former Governor George Ryan, the more relevant question is: Would a President Barack Obama pardon or commute a corruption conviction of Tony Rezko?

A Rezko verdict appears near and could come as soon as this week. Obama, by his own admission, was close to Rezko, even vacationing together with the wives in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. It's a logical question for the media to ask Obama because he has mingled freely with the corruption class in Illinois and remained silent while it flourished. Because the state is run completely by Democrats, any moral outrage against the rampant corruption of his own party risked a backlash from important allies. So he zipped his lip, saving his indignation against corruption for another continent.

President Bush will not pardon or commute Ryan's sentence. The Bush people are not fond of Ryan. Every time GWB came to Illinois during the 2000 presidential campaign, he was beseiged by press inquiries about the then-growning scandals in the governor's office. I remember talking privately to top Bush aides and they weren't happy that Ryan's problems were blocking any chance for positive press. The Tribune noted this today.

While Thompson served on the 9/11 Commission for the president, neither he nor fellow moderate Ryan are close to the administration. Bush largely steered clear of Ryan, whose opposition to the death penalty and scandal-tarred tenure made him radioactive with the conservative president.

We know that Barack has quite a bit of tolerance for corruption. He bought his house jointly with Rezko when it already was widely known he was in the crosshairs of federal prosecutors. Rezko might know a few secrets about that sale arrangement that would embarrass Barack. In other words, we are issuing a pardon warning. We don't know one is coming but conditions are ripe.

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Monday, May 19, 2008

Trends do not exist for Democrats

The Democratic governor of New Jersey resigned after a sex and corruption scandal. The Democratic governor of New York resigned after a sex and corruption scandal. The Democratic attorney general of Ohio resigned after a sex and corruption scandal. The Democratic governor of Illinois, it is widely believed, will soon be indicted for corruption.

I am still hearing about Republican "trends" connecting Mark Foley and Larry Craig. Yet, I have not seen one mention in the MSM connecting the much more serious Democratic scandals. Wonder why?

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Obama demeans women

We can only talk about "hope" and "change" during the rest of the presidential campaign, Barack "Don't call me Neville" Obama has proclaimed.

It is off-limits to talk about William Ayers, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, race (except for his glorious speeches on the topic), Tony Rezko, corruption in Illinois, arms dealers in Iraq, "present" votes in the Illinois Senate, gun ban questionnaire answers, appeasment and now, his wife Michelle.

That's even though his wife is on the campaign trail giving substantive addresses with a sharp ideological edge. She also writes fundraising letters that demonize conservatives in a highly distortive manner.

In a world without gaping hypocrisy, it would be noted that "protecting" a professional and accomplished woman like Michelle Obama is patronizing to women and insulting to the rest of us. But not in a world where the proclamations of Barack Obama are treated as edicts from a higher plane.

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Obama compares Osama with Netflix

Barack "Don't call me Neville" Obama spelled out just how unsafe we are under George W. Bush, whining today that Osama bin Laden is....

...sending out videotapes with impunity.

That's the point, Barack. If he's truly alive, he's in a cave somewhere sending out stupid videotapes, not blowing up our cities.

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Media shilling for Obama continues

Wasn't it Barack Obama who complained endlessly about the news media "looping" comments made by Rev. Jeremiah Wright to distort his true meaning. That turned out to be a political dodge statement once people started looking at Wright's views at large and realized the clips were not much of a distortion.

Yesterday, Obama curiously "owned" President Bush's appeasement comments when they weren't even directed at him. This is a bad public relations strategy—taking ownership of a negative attribute—unless you have a national press corps providing complete cover for you, which of course is the case. Noel Sheppard of Newsbusters has an excellent commentary on that point, making the argument that the pro-Obama press was guilty of the same sin Obama was falsely whining about in the Wright matter.

Yet, America's media could only see this event through the tiny prism of the upcoming presidential election, and thereby totally ignored virtually everything that was said by the most powerful man in the world to one of our nation's greatest allies.

From a speech that lasted over 20 minutes -- interrupted eight times by applause from Israeli Knesset members -- America's media exclusively reported 83 words they felt insulted the candidate for president they have been unashamedly supporting for over a year.

Everything else in the President's stirring and emotional address went completely ignored, so much so that the other 2,400 words were totally irrelevant, as was the signficance of the day and the moment.

Read the entire piece here.

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Newsweek lies

Our once-respected national newsmagazines are nothing more than propaganda journals. I can't remember the last time I bought one, although I was browsing through the latest Newsweek to read the profiles of Barack Obama's advisors.

Read the last last few lines of the David Axelrod blurb.

Axelrod's soft-spoken manner and slightly disheveled appearance—stand clear when he's digging into a bowl of chips and guacamole—can make him seem a bit like a bumbling history professor. But within the campaign's inner circle, no one's voice matters more. "He understands Barack's voice and the kind of campaign Barack wants to run," says campaign manager David Plouffe. The campaign's big-think architect, Axelrod recruited the pollsters and ad makers, and watches over their work, reviewing ads, shaping strategy, editing speeches and crafting the overall "message." Born and raised in New York City, he moved to Chicago as a student and was a political reporter and columnist for the Chicago Tribune. In the mid-'80s he got into politics himself, working to elect Democrats nationwide. Now he is the dominant political consultant in Chicago, where he and Obama became close friends. In 2004, Axelrod passed on wealthier and better-known candidates and signed on with the long-shot senator. The relationship calls to mind George W. Bush and his top adviser. Even so, aides say Axelrod is no Karl Rove. Both are serious strategists steeped in history and policy. But unlike "Bush's brain," they say, Obama's cerebral alter ego sees politics as a contest of ideals, not a contact sport.

Are you kidding me? David Axelrod is known in Chicago for playing rough in campaigns. Anybody remember Al Hofeld? Idealist? He just did work for the antithesis of idealism--Rahm Emanuel. I could go on about Axelrod's past but that's not the point.

This is an obvious attempt to make Axelrod's political work look noble compared to Rove's because of the magazine's ideological bias. Axelrod is a top level advisor/strategist who made it there by playing rough when he needed to. The same can be said of Rove, but there's not a top strategist in recent American history who possesses his combination of political, historical and policy knowledge.

Yet Newsweek tries to make Rove sound like the pure hatchet-man instead of Axelrod, when the opposite is closer to the truth. Shamefully false. Pure propaganda.

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Shirley Mae Winn, 1931-2008

Mom and me.jpg

My mother won't be around today to be doted upon on our one day celebration of motherhood. I'll be celebrating nonetheless for the remarkable life she led and the gifts she gave me and my brother and sister.

Shirley Mae Winn passed away two weeks ago in a St. Louis suburb after a courageous battle against cancer.

My mother was a memorable, gutsy, outspoken woman who for many years was a single mother, working downtown during the day and tending to her children's needs at night and on weekends.

She was a leader in the anti-alcohol community in St. Louis for a time as she was dealing with my father's alcohol addiction. Later, she fought the city, state and federal government as they expanded Lambert International Airport and seized the house I grew up in.

She loved to debate politics and religion and was passionate when discussing both.

She watched me play hundreds of football and baseball games in little league, high school and college and was there every time I stumbled in life. My mother was never famous but to me she was better than any movie star or celebrity.

Today, on the day we celebrate mothers everywhere, I am sad that I can't pick up the phone and call mine. I'm happy in knowing that Shirley Mae Winn led a productive and successful life, meaning that she was a successful mother. I was blessed.

Thanks, mom.