American Elephants


“This Administration’s Foreign Policy is Contemplated With Astonishment by Practically Everybody Else” by The Elephant's Child
June 1, 2015, 10:37 pm
Filed under: National Security | Tags: , ,
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President Obama attended a town hall meeting Monday with with young fellows from an exchange program for community leaders from ASEAN, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. While he was answering questions, he said his administration has restored the United States as the “most respected country on earth.”

People don’t remember, but when I came into office, the Untied States in world opinion ranked below China and just barley above Russia, and today once again, the Untied States is the most respected country on earth. Part of that I think is because of the work we did to reengage the world and say we want to work with you as partners with mutual interests and mutual respect. It was on that basis we were able to end two wars while still focusing on the very real threat of terrorism and try to work with our partners in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s the reason why we are moving in the direction to normalize relations with Cuba and the nuclear deal that we are trying to negotiate with Iran.

Oh.

The President explained to the young Asian leaders that it was important not to betray one’s principles while being a leader. He added:

One of my core principles is that I will never engage in a politics in which I’m trying to divide people or make them less than me because they look different or have a different religion,” Obama said. “That’s a core principle, that’s not something I would violate.

Well. That covers the two most common complaints about the Obama administration — That he has been the most divisive president in modern memory, and that polls confirm that the world’s opinion of the United States as a serious world power has eroded markedly. From Conrad Black:

As President Obama and his entourage and imperishable following persevere in their conviction that this president’s benign championship of non-intervention, arms control, and giving rogue states the benefit of the doubt is winning hearts and minds to a new conception of a kindly, detached America, it is clearer every week that this administration’s foreign policy is contemplated with astonishment and contempt by practically everyone else.
And from historian Victor Davis Hanson:
Barack Obama, like Carter, came into office promising a sharp break from past U.S foreign policy….Troops were withdrawn from Afghanistan on pre-announced deadlines. The post-surge quiet in Iraq fooled Obama into eagerly yanking out all U.S. peacekeepers.A new outreach to radical Islam went to ridiculous lengths. The Muslim Brotherhood was invited to Obama’s speech in Cairo that claimed the West owed cultural debts to Islam for everything from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment. Terms like radical Islam, jihad, and Islamic terror were excised from the official American vocabulary and replaced by a host of silly euphemisms.The defense budget was cut. Reset with Vladimir Putin’s Russia assumed that the Bush administration, not Putin’s prior aggression in Georgia and threats to Crimea, had caused the estrangement between Moscow and Washington.

Predictable chaos followed as the U.S. became an observer abroad. The Islamic State appeared to fill the vacuum in Iraq. Syria imploded. So did most of North Africa. Iran sent agents, surrogates, and special forces into Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, even as it pressed on to get a bomb.

Dr. Hansen suggests that the Obama foreign policy is so weak that it will likely provoke more chaos or even a large war, but correcting it will be almost as dangerous.

I saw another headline that seemed to fit the occasion. “The Left’s Self-Conception and Self-Delusion.”



Progressive Talking Points For The Democrats’ Attack Machine by The Elephant's Child
June 1, 2015, 8:13 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , ,

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) had an op-ed in The Washington Post yesterday, largely reviewing the RICO Battle with the Tobacco Companies and comparing it to what he assumes is “a massive and sophisticated” scheme by fossil fuel companies (and their allies?) “to mislead the American people about the environmental harm caused by carbon pollution.”

The Big Tobacco playbook looked something like this: (1) pay scientists to produce studies defending your product; (2) develop an intricate web of PR experts and front groups to spread doubt about the real science; (3) relentlessly attack your opponents.

There is no such thing as “carbon pollution.” We are carbon life forms. Carbon is one of the building blocks of life. We exhale carbon dioxide every time we breathe. We all supposedly learned that in High School Biology. So now we know who wasn’t paying attention. Trust me, my mother was a high school Biology teacher.

James Hansen is an atmospheric physicist who was from 1981 to 2013 the head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York City, a part of the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. He was quite involved in the development and use of computer models as a method of understanding global warming. A paper of his in 2007  claimed that CO² levels above 350 ppm would be dangerous to humans, but we have long since passed 400 ppm and the increased carbon dioxide’s natural fertilization of plants has resulted in a vastly greening planet — helping to feed the hungry. Greenhouses keep their CO² atmosphere around 1200 ppm with happily growing plants and not the slightest ill effect on the nurserymen. Dr, Hansen has since gone full global warming activist, getting arrested at demonstrations. See the interview with Freeman Dyson just below.

What fascinates me is the extent to which Progressives appear to depend on talking points. Talking points are the Democrats’ version of these are the things we are voting for. You can tell if they are talking points when 3 Progressives in a row all make the same point in exactly the same words, and can’t argue the point in alternate words or thought.

You will find increasing efforts to portray those who are skeptical of the President’s position that Climate Change is America’s most urgent national security risk as gullible dummies paid for by the Fossil Fuel Industry Cabal. You will also find that those who are absolutely positive that the climate is warming out-of-control and leading to some climate Armageddon have never read any of the science, and don’t really understand the arguments at all. Senator Whitehouse is an excellent example.



Here is the Average of 102 Climate Models Versus Observed Reality by The Elephant's Child
June 1, 2015, 6:41 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , ,

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It is even worse than shown by this graph. 1977 was a year chosen by the “warmists” to demonstrate the “massive” increase in temperature. It was actually the low temperature period of the 20th century. Headlines were full of a “New Ice Age” scare.

(h/t: Cato Institute & Never Yet Melted)



Monday morning Stress Relief by The Elephant's Child
June 1, 2015, 6:52 am
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , ,

It’s Spring and the world’s zoos are bursting with baby animals. We all enjoy looking at baby animals, and if you get a little stressed, visit  http://www.zooborns.com. Okapis and lions and tigers of course, and tapirs and who knew that a baby rhinoceros could be really cute? I am particularly attracted to baby elephants, as you might guess.

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Here is Will, a baby Okapi

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And here is a baby tapir:

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There. Can you stay stressed while viewing such cuties? Thought not.




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