American Elephants

Obama Will Think About It Later, After a Fundraiser in Palm Springs and Some Golf Time? by The Elephant's Child

This is apparently what ISIS currently has in mind. (Click to enlarge) For now. This group was formed in Syria and has moved into northern Iraq. The have been called an al Qaeda affiliate, but al Qaeda has rejected them because of their extreme violence. They are shooting and beheading people indiscriminately.

ISIS seeks to impose its vision of a single radical Islamist state stretching from the Mediterranean coast of Syria through modern Iraq, the region of the Islamic Caliphates established in the seventh and eighth centuries. In Iraq, the Kurds have carved out a homeland in the north of the country with the help of the Turks and against the wishes of the Iraqi government, that exports their own oil, runs its own border operations and has organized its own military. Shiite militias from Lebanon have moved into Syria and operated with the Syrian government. Syrian refugees have fled into Lebanon, and Lebanon now has more school age Syrian children than Lebanese children. Borders are dissolving.

When we went to war in Iraq, the Left was furious. The Left hated Bush. They said so. They hated the way he walked. They hated his squint. They hated the way he talked and made endless fun of his mangled words. They hated the way he took charge in the wake of 9/11.

It comes down to this “A substantial part of the Democratic Party, some of its politicians and many of its loudest supporters do not want America to succeed in Iraq. So vitriolic and all-consuming is their hatred for George W.Bush that they skip right over the worthy goals we have been, with some considerable success, seeking there—a democratic government, with guaranteed liberties for all, a vibrant free economy, respect for women—and call this a war for oil, or for Halliburton.
Successes are discounted, setbacks are trumpeted, the level of American casualties is treated as if it were comparable to those in Vietnam or World War II. Allegations of American misdeeds are repeated over and over, the work of reconstruction and aid of American military personnel and civilians is ignored. In all this they have been aided and abetted by large elements of the press.
……………………Michael Barone, Real Clear Politics, June 12, 2006.

That is the press from whom Obama learned about Iraq. And that was his view of Bush’s war. He came to office despising everything Bush, and blaming Bush for everything unpleasant he had to face, oblivious to the fact that every president faces unexpected problems.

Obama lives in a fantasy world of his own making. He is so accustomed to putting whatever comes up into words favorable to himself that he often cannot distinguish between what he said to make himself look good and the actual truth. I cannot imagine, with the need for urgent action so pressing, the president taking off for a trip to Palm Springs and another fundraiser, and a little golf.

The much despised George W. Bush had a video conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki once a week and worked at teaching the Prime Minister how to set secularism aside and manage a country. Obama had little contact and was clearly uninterested in anything beyond pulling out as rapidly as possible, so the status of forces agreement was not of particular importance to either party.

Barack Obama pulled out of Iraq because he had no understanding of World War I and World War II, and how just walking away from the first made the second inevitable. Defeat must be complete, and sometimes you have to put a country back together enough for them to become functional. He had no understanding of what a broken country Iraq was under the control of Saddam Hussein. Obama says his foreign policy is “Don’t do stupid s––t.” Sometimes doing nothing, or ignoring the urgency of the moment, is the stupidest thing of all.


Again, It’s Not His Fault. He is Unusually, Epically Incompetent. by The Elephant's Child

“If these allegations prove to be true it is dishonorable,
it is disgraceful and I will not tolerate it. Period.”

President Obama’s statements about his outrage over the latest scandal are always emphasized with a “Period.” He is frequently outraged and angered over events that are completely within his control. He was warned even before he was inaugurated that there were huge problems at the Veterans Administration health care system.

It would have been bad politics to expose the lousy care that is delivered (or not) to our military veterans at a time when Democrats were intent on putting American health care under government control. People might notice that the VA provided a devastating example of the federal government’s ability to run a health care organization. It might even prompt enterprising reporters to take a serious look at the Indian Health Care Service and what kind of health care that government run organization provided.

President Obama takes executive action all the time. When he doesn’t like something Congress is refusing to do, well,  he has a phone and he has a pen, and he’ll just go around them. (And get things done?) Well, no, he will have an investigation, and they will look into the allegations, and then they will investigate that, and perhaps appoint a committee, who will report back, and once enough time has passed it will be a “phony scandal.”

He was outraged about Benghazi, and the perpetrators were going to be brought to justice, and there was probably a “period.” there too, and he was outraged about  the IRS targeting conservative non-profit applicants, or at least the news reports. Obama said “It’s inexcusable, and Americans are right to be angry about it, and I am angry about it.” A few weeks later, according to Ben Shapiro, Obama would call the IRS scandal “phony.”

So far the talking points deem the Benghazi scandal “phony,” and according to my congressman Adam Smith, “Benghazi is a political witch-hunt.” We are wasting our time reaching for scandal instead of spending our time “on important issues like soaring rates of sexual assault in the military.” Give it a week or two and you will find the Veterans Administration scandal “phony” and a political witch-hunt

President Obama’s constant effort to escape blame for anything whatsoever suggests that this has been a pattern all his life. One of the most characteristic expressions you see in photos—at least before all photographs except those taken by White House photographer Pete Sousa were banned—is a pout. Just like a little kid, lower lip out—It’s not my fault!

The death count in Benghazi was only 4 people, even if one was an Ambassador of the United States of America on government business—for which he had justifiably requested additional security. The death count for veterans on the VA wait list tops 40 and is still climbing, as more are revealed. In Georgia, 5 veterans committed suicide in the VA hospital.

What would happen in the private sector? I would assume that the Secretary in charge would be out the door yesterday. An investigative staff would move in. Veterans waiting for urgent tests would be given vouchers good at the hospital of their choice for the tests and necessary follow-up treatment. Veterans so despairing of their treatment that they commit suicide in the hospital is beyond sorrow. Veterans with urgent symptoms need urgent tests, and urgent treatment. The object is good care for veterans, not good resumes for administrators.

Peter Wehner, who is familiar with White House operations, says:

The last eight months have battered the Obama administration. From the botched rollout of the health-care website to the VA scandal, events are now cementing certain impressions about Mr. Obama. Among the most damaging is this: He is unusually, even epically incompetent.

The emerging narrative of Barack Obama, the one that actually comports to reality that he is a rare political talent but a disaster when it comes to actually governing. The list of his failures is nothing short of staggering, from shovel-ready jobs that weren’t shovel ready to the failures of to the VA debacle. …

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