American Elephants

I’ve Got a Bunch of Drunk Robins In The Yard by American Elephant
October 23, 2012, 10:48 pm
Filed under: Environment, Fun n Games, Science/Technology | Tags: , ,

Dozens of robins are in the midst of a three-day, fermented-berry-bender in my yard. They spend the whole day eating berries, getting plastered, cackling, flying about drunkenly, smashing into windows and pooping on everything in sight. It’s quite amusing.

The trees are mountain ashes. There are two at my house. The picture undoubtedly comes from a gardening book because it is quite perfect. Mine are scraggly and yellowed, having dropped half their leaves, partly because it is October, but more because the berries have now reached a stage of desirable fermentation. The robins are having a blast.

I’ve no idea why robins are such notable alcoholics, there are lots of other kinds of birds here who don’t seem to succumb, but these birds are partying like they’re out to prove something.

I’ve been told that the robins in the Bay Area go after Pyracantha berries, also red,  as well, get stinking drunk and poop all over everybody’s cars. Lots of Pyracantha in California. The people who plant them have no idea what they’re getting into!

The World’s Dictators Support Obama by The Elephant's Child

When Governor Romney criticized President Obama’s “Apology Tour,” and quoted Obama’s apology for “dictating to other countries,” he gave one of the most memorable lines of the debate: “America does not dictate to other nations.  America has freed other nations from dictators.”

Oddly enough, in spite of all the apologies, from Moscow to Caracas to Havana, real dictators with long records of enmity towards the United States are endorsing Barack Obama for president.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, after his own rigged re-election declared “If I were American, I would Vote for Obama. He is my candidate.” This was his second endorsement in a week, and then he went off  on his plans to increase Venezuelan socialism.

Mariela Castro, daughter of Cuba’s ruling chief Raul Castro, Fidel’s brother, told CNN “As a citizen of the world I would like for Obama to win. Obama deserves a second chance and he needs greater support to move forward with his projects which I believe come from the heart.”

Vladimir Putin, once and still president of Russia said “Obama is a genuine person who really wants to change much for the better,” in what the Moscow Times said was widely viewed as his most direct endorsement of Obama. He’s apparently waiting till after the election when Mr. Obama “can be more flexible.”

That prominent gathering of dictators, the United Nations’ special rapporteur on counter-terrorism and human rights warned Americans that a vote for Mitt Romney was “a vote for torture,” an “indirect” endorsement of Obama.

The Gulf Times, a newspaper closely allied with the autocratic rulers of Dubai endorsed Obama, significant because the United Arab Emirates, of which Dubai is a part, was found to be financing “Promised Land,” a Hollywood film starring Matt Damon with the mission to discourage fracking in the U.S. which would cut back on U.S. consumption of Gulf oil.

Chinese cash has been illegally flowing into Obama’s campaign coffers through the Chinese website

There was a sudden declaration reported by Iran’s mullahs last weekend of “peace talks” soon to be held if Americans vote for Obama — which Obama denied.

Nations that regard America as an enemy prefer a weak America that they can manipulate. That’s just the way the world works.

Here Are A Few of the Apologies From the “Apology Tour” by The Elephant's Child

In last night’s debate, President Obama took angry exception to Governor Romney’s characterization of his “apology tour.” Barack Obama came to office with the idea that the United States must atone for its past policies, whether it is for America’s response to Islamist terrorism or for its overall foreign policy. Obama said during his campaign that he wanted to “fundamentally transform America,” but many thought it was a message about ending the dissent in Washington, not that America is a flawed nation that must seek redemption by apologizing for its past “sins.”

On a number of occasions, the president has sought to apologize for the actions of his own country when addressing a foreign audience. He has already apologized for his country to nearly 3 billion people across Europe, the Muslim world and the Americas.

The strategy of the Obama Administration to combine apology with constant engagement — more talks — is a recipe for failure, and the effect has been a perception of America as weak, self-centered, and a doormat. Obama has misunderstood international popularity as a valid foreign policy. Countries that are not free and do not have the liberties that we take for granted look to America for strong and principled leadership.

The Heritage Foundation has listed ten of the most significant apologies by the President of the United States in his first four months of office. Here are the apologies, excerpts from the speeches and the location and the dates.

  1. Apology to France and Europe (“America Has Shown Arrogance”)
  2. Apology to the Muslim World (“We Have Not Been Perfect”)
  3. Apology to the Summit of the Americas (“At Times We Sought to Dictate Our Terms”)
  4. Apology to the G-20 World Summit (“Some Restoration of America’s Standing in the World”)
  5. Apology for the War on Terror (“We Went off Course”)
  6. Apology in France for Guantanamo (“Sacrificing Your Values”)
  7. Apology to Turkish Parliament (“Our Own Darker Periods in Our History”)
  8. Apology for US Policy to the Americas (“The United States Has Not Pursued and Sustained Engagement With Our Neighbors”)
  9. Apology for Mistakes of the CIA (“Potentially We’ve Made Some Mistakes”)
  10. Apology in Washington for Guantanamo (“A Rallying Cry for Our Enemies”)

Do read the whole thing, you have to get the context. This is a man who took all the nasty things the Left said about the Bush Administration to heart, thought they were true, and something on which to base his presidency.  Big Mistake.

A Strong America Makes the World Safer. by The Elephant's Child

Last night Bob Schieffer did a fine job of moderating and keeping the focus on the candidates.  Governor Romney came to the debate, opting for a strategy that demonstrated his familiarity with the problems of the world, his ability to focus on what is important, and remaining cool and confident.

Many of his supporters, incensed by the scandal of the administration’s bungling of the Benghazi attack, expected the governor to take him on, and were disappointed. Romney was absolutely clear on what it was all about. A successful foreign policy depends on a strong America, and a strong America depends on a strong economy.

The Obama campaign had made a great effort to portray Mitt Romney as an out-of-touch rich businessman who got rich by nefarious means, attempting to describe Bain Capital as some kind of corporate raider, and Romney as callous and uncaring. It’s true, he is rich. But the first debate where Obama seemed unprepared, contemptuous and snarky revealed a Mitt Romney who was completely different from the Obama team’s portrayal. Here was a businessman who believed his success at reviving and growing businesses, rescuing the Salt Lake Winter Olympics from scandal and financial crisis, and as a successful governor gave him the tools to successfully tackle an economy far too long in recession.

1. Obama has done a bad job of being president. The economy he inherited was indeed in deep trouble, but the recession he “inherited” from George W. Bush ended (officially) in June 2009. He simply did not have the skill set to address it, and had the wrong ideas about what to do. He also inherited a dangerous world, and failed to understand how to make it safe. The country is far from better off after four years. A president who cannot say the word “terrorism” does not clearly understand today’s world.

2. Mitt Romney, in person, was obviously not the scary fellow portrayed by the Obama campaign. He was a successful businessman who had learned a lot of lessons in 25 years of growing companies and creating jobs, and has sound ideas about how to restore the economy and create jobs. America has enormous wealth in energy, and out abundant supplies of cheap natural gas can fuel a resurgent economy. People saw a Romney that was not only what he appeared to be, but clearly someone who could do the job.

Obama clearly failed the first debate. Even the most ardent Obama supporters were dismayed. So in the second debate, the unfortunate Townhall format, Obama came back ready for battle, angry, snarky, aggressive, belligerent, with an attack still based on Democrat campaign ads that portray that out-of-touch rich fellow. Romney seemed presidential, focused, in command of facts and figures.

Last night, if Governor Romney seemed restrained, controlled and presidential, Obama seemed like the desperate challenger. He gazed steadily at Romney with what twitterers called “the death stare” and was snarky and condescending. The exchange about the Navy was telling. Obama tried to claim that the military doesn’t want or need the men and equipment that he is trying to eliminate. This is a flat-out lie. The Military is screaming bloody murder to the extent they can while still respecting the authority of the Commander in Chief.

Romney responded that Obama’s cuts to the Navy would take the Navy back to its state in 1916. Obama responded that the nature of the military had changed and we now had ships with flat surfaces that planes land on, and other kinds of ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines, and furthermore perhaps Romney didn’t realize that the military didn’t depend on horses and bayonets any more. Um, the Navy doesn’t call them ships, they call them boats, and the military in Afghanistan has depended on horses, and every Marine gets extensive training in bayonet use, because they are still needed in close combat. This was supposedly a good line for Obama according to his supporters who are a little fuzzy on things military, but it infuriated members of the military and veterans who were appalled by presidential misinformation.

Romney did tackle Obama on his “Apology Tour,” to which Obama responded that reporters would tell him that there was no apology. Well, yes the compliant media perhaps would. Obama’s apology for “dictating to other nations” drew the response from Governor Romney that “America does not dictate to other nations; America has freed other nations from dictators.”

Romney may not have been aggressive in the final debate, but he was presidential, clear and absolutely focused. He passed the Commander in Chief test.

About the Debate Last Night— Not that One—The One Between Michelle and Ann: by The Elephant's Child

Jimmy Kimmel sent out someone to ask ordinary voters what their reactions were to the First Lady Debate last night between Michelle Obama and Ann Romney. Their reactions may be just about what you expected.

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