American Elephants

Messages for the Department of Peace! by The Elephant's Child

The Government of the United States of America Has Slipped its Moorings. by The Elephant's Child

Flags At Half Staff In Washington After Tucson Shooting

— Well here we Go! “Democrats Propose Department of Peacebuilding.” Why didn’t anyone think of this before.? The DOP would be an executive-level department “dedicated to peacebuilding, peacemaking and the study and promotion of conditions conducive to both domestic and international peace and a culture of peace.

Representative Lee explained the rationale for her bill in a press release last week: “We invest hundreds of billion each year in the Pentagon, in war colleges, military academies, and our national defense universities all to develop war tactics and strategies. Now we need that kind of investment in peace and nonviolence here at home.”

The Department of Peace would have its own Peace Academy modeled on the military academies, which would provide a four-year education in peace. The DOP would also be responsible for everything from ending bullying in schools to declaring “peace days” in America to “encourage citizens to observe and celebrate the blessings of peace.” DOPE!

—President Obama has repeatedly identified nuclear proliferation and nuclear terrorism as key dangers to the United States and its allies. His big idea, the center of his response, is declaring America’s commitment to eliminate its own nuclear weapons on the way to “nuclear zero.” This probably featured in his selection of Chuck Hagel, who also favors nuclear zero. In the meantime, the president has neglected to modernize the weapons that most consider essential to American security.

Reducing the American arsenal would be more apt to cause instability. Many  other nations depend on America’s nuclear security assurances. An American political leadership that prizes posturing over disarmament over the hard work of counter proliferation would encourage others to develop their own nuclear arsenal, and we’re off to the races.

—Ahhh. Our new Secretary of State, to no one’s surprise, has already declared that we are “not just” Americans, but “citizens of the world.” What did you expect? It’s John Kerry, in London.  And globalism comes before “protecting the country from catastrophic attack”. says our top general, General Martin Dempsey, who informed Coast Guard cadets that there are now four “national interests” guiding the military. And in that ranking “our contribution to the stability of the global economic system” comes before our armed forces’ duty “to protect the country from a catastrophic attack.”

Ooops! Chicago Politics Intrudes at the White House. by The Elephant's Child

Bob Woodward said this evening on CNN that a “very senior person” at the White House warned him in an email that he would “regret doing this” the same day he continued to criticize President Barack Obama over the looming sequester cuts.

“It makes me very uncomfortable to have the White House telling reporters,’You’re going to regret doing something that you believe in.'” Woodward said.

“Can you imagine Ronald Reagan sitting there and saying, ‘Oh, by the way, I can’t do this because of some budget document?'” Woodward said on MSNBC.

“Or George W. Bush saying, ‘You know, I’m not going to invade Iraq because I can’t get the aircraft carriers I need?'” Or even Bill Clinton saying, ‘You know, I’m not going to attack Saddam Hussein’s intelligence headquarters,’ … because of some budget document?”

Last weekend, Woodward called out Obama for what he said was “moving the goal posts” on the sequester by requesting that revenue be part of a deal to avert it.

Presidents have often had quarrels with the press, but calling a reporter and threatening him is not a good idea.  Not new though. When a critic panned a concert by his daughter Margaret, Harry Truman called the critic and let loose a little profanity.


Janet Napolitano on The Devastation of Sequestration by The Elephant's Child

Run for your lives. Or not. Obama has certainly put the word out that all parties are to go forth and scare the public, but unfortunately most of the public has never heard of sequestration. Come On. If you see an article about “sequestration,” do you listen attentively, or change the channel? Read the article or skip it and move on to something more interesting? Obama has pulled out all the stops, and painted himself into a corner.

It’s called “the Washington Monument Strategy”— turf-protecting government bureaucrats go out of their way to make spending cuts as painful as possible. The object is to convince the public that every penny the government spends is essential. If you use budget cuts as an excuse to shut down the Washington Monument, then every tourist will be reminded of how terrible it is to cut spending.

Presidential advisers said the cuts would mean 350 teachers and teacher aides could lose their jobs in Ohio, 4,200 children in Georgia wouldn’t receive vaccines and 400 victims of domestic violence in Kentucky might not receive services. Uh huh.

Even the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward said the President’s decision not to deploy an aircraft carrier because of budget cuts is a “kind of madness.” Under the Constitution, the president is commander-in-chief and employs the force. And so we now have the president going out because of this piece of paper and this agreement”I can’t do what I need to do the protect the country. That’s a kind of madness that I haven’t seen in a long time.”

The Pentagon announced earlier this month the USS Harry Truman which was supposed to leave for the Persian Gulf “will remain stateside due to budget concerns.”

Even under sequestration, the TSA (inflation adjusted) budget is projected to be more than $500 million (11 percent) higher than it was in 2008. The FAA’s (inflation adjusted) budget for operations, facilities, and equipment would still, under sequestration be about $500 million higher than it was in 2008.

A September 2012 report from the House Committee on Homeland Security took TSA to task for its “counterintuitive hiring practices during an economic downturn” which has resulted in a “net decrease in the number of people traveling each year in the U.S.  Ms. Napolitano has a lot to answer for.

According to polls though, the president’s “fair and balanced” rhetoric is playing  well with the public, who assume we should have an equal amount of tax increases on “the rich.” And as for that lie:


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