American Elephants


I’m Getting Really Tired of My Government Lying to Me! by The Elephant's Child
June 24, 2015, 6:37 am
Filed under: Global Warming, Politics, Progressivism | Tags: , , ,

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy told an audience gathered at a White House conference that “normal people.” not “climate deniers” will win the debate on global warming. This is not the first time she has said that distinguished scientists were  “not normal people.” And of course “deniers” is the usual crude leftist language.

McCarthy’s remarks came as she was talking about the reasons why the EPA put out a report on the negative health impacts global warming will have on public health. She said the agency puts out such reports to educate the public, not answer critiques from global warming skeptics.

Ms. McCarthy is an administrator, not a scientist, and it shows. The agency hasn’t yet been able to come up with the science on which their regulations are based. When questioned at hearings, she doesn’t have simple answers to simple questions. One of my personal irritations is the frequency with which they attempt to sell their power grabs by claiming the number of lives (usually children;s) they will save in the future because of their actions. That’s disgraceful, and pure hogwash.

More hogwash: The EPA has released a report claiming “global action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions will bring fewer extreme droughts, floods, storms and wildfires. The report claims cutting emissions would result in billions of dollars in benefits for the U.S. and save thousands of lives every year. Floods, storms and wildfires are not caused by climate, future benefits can’t really be predicted unless the computer climate suddenly developed astonishing new powers. Ms. McCarthy, like far too many federal bureaucrats is on a power trip to grab new responsibilities, more funding and a bigger agency. Here she goes again:

Regardless, the EPA says a global effort to cut emissions would result in about 70,000 fewer people dying from extreme heat and poor air quality in the U.S., less damage from flooding and storm surges on coastal properties and other weather events by 2100.

More interestingly, the EPA said global emissions cuts would mean an “estimated 40%-59% fewer severe and extreme droughts” in the U.S. by the year 2100. The report adds that in “the Southwest, the number of severe and extreme droughts is projected to nearly quadruple by the end of the century” if nothing is done. But with emissions reductions, “the incidence of drought is not projected to change substantially from present day.”

She added “We can save tens of thousands of American lives and hundreds of billions of dollars annually in the United States…” Hubris and hyperbole, and as I said — hogwash.

Speaking at a fundraiser in San Francisco on Friday, President Obama warned “Well within our children’s lifetimes, on our current pace, the oceans go up maybe two, maybe three, maybe four feet.”



It ‘s Going to Be a Long Hard Summer: The Police and the People by The Elephant's Child
May 26, 2015, 10:21 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , ,

EE1baltimore.jpg.cms

Memorial Day weekend. In Baltimore, 29 were shot, 9 dead. In Chicago, 43 were wounded and 12 were killed. This has been the deadliest month Baltimore has seen in more than 15 years. That makes well over 100 murders this year, compared with 71 at this time last year, and it’s only (almost) June.

Any time Baltimore police officers respond to calls on the city’s west side, scene of the Freddie Gray Riots, as many as 50 people threaten them. Police Chief Anthony Batts (who is black) says “We have to send out multiple units just to do basic police work” he said. “It makes it very difficult to follow up on violence that takes place there.”

Police officers have just been gunned down in Omaha, New Orleans, Rio Rancho N.M. Victims can blame the crime surge on politicians who give criminals “space” to break the law. Who order cops to stop “stop and frisk.” Officers are called “racist,” their morale is low. Cops fear for their own safety and worry about being unfairly accused of using excessive force against Black criminals. Obama’s police reform task fore urges police to “de-escalate and retreat” when trying to arrest violent offenders, and Obama has unilaterally disarmed local police by banning military-style anti-riot gear.

Those who had the unmerited good fortune to grow up in stable, loving families, attend good schools, and belong to nurturing communities have the inside track to the acquisition of habits and dispositions that will serve them well throughout their lives, not least by eliciting the admiration of others. Conversely, no one deserves  to grow up in a dysfunctional or abusive family, attend crappy schools, and be raised on mean streets. The shortcomings we discern in the products of these environments reflect forces that have worked on them from the outside in, rather than facets of character that manifest themselves from the inside out.
But exempting the poor from otherwise widely applicable standards of conduct, like sparing them the strain of personal initiative and responsibility, calls into question how there can be moral agents in the pews capable of being inspired or abashed by liberals’ sermons.
Liberalism presupposes, then, that people are capable of responding to compassionate appeals, and can be justly blamed and criticized if they fail to heed them….If it is possible to induce and expect people to be more compassionate in order to alleviate the suffering of others, it should also be possible to induce and expect people to be more disciplined, responsible and provident to prevent and alleviate their own suffering.*

Economist Walter Williams writes that “Hustlers and people with little understanding want us to believe that today’s black problems are the continuing result of a legacy of slavery, poverty and racial discrimination. The fact is that most of the social pathology seen in poor black neighborhoods is entirely new in black history.”

Today’s black illegitimacy rate of nearly 75% is also entirely new. In 1940, black illegitimacy stood at 14%. It had risen to 25% by 1965, when Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action” and was widely condemned as a racist.

By 1980, the black illegitimacy rate had more than doubled, to 56%, and it has been growing since. Both during slavery and as late as 1920, a teenage girl raising a child without a man present was rare among blacks.

Much of today’s pathology seen among many blacks is an outgrowth of the welfare state that has made self-destructive behavior less costly for the individual. Having children without the benefit of marriage is less burdensome if the mother receives housing subsidies, welfare payments and food stamps….

The bulk of today’s problems for many blacks are a result of politicians and civil rights organizations using government in the name of helping blacks when in fact they are serving the purposes of powerful interest groups.

*William Voegeli: The Pity Party, New York 2014


Iran: It’s What We’re All Worried About, Isn’t it? by The Elephant's Child
April 20, 2015, 8:45 pm
Filed under: Iran | Tags: , , ,

From Obama’s ‘Weekly Address’ at the White House, April 4, 2015

This week, together with our allies and partners, we reached an historic understanding with Iran,  Ayatollah Khameneni which, if fully implemented, will prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon and make our country, our allies, and our world safer.

This framework is the result of tough, principled diplomacy. It’s a good deal — a deal that meets our core objectives, including strict limitations on Iran’s program and cutting off every pathway that Iran could take to develop a nuclear weapon.

This deal denies Iran the plutonium necessary to build a bomb. It shuts down Iran’s path to a bomb using enriched uranium. Iran has agreed that it will not stockpile the materials needed to build a weapon. Moreover, international inspectors will have unprecedented access to Iran’s nuclear program because Iran will face more inspections than any other country in the world. If Iran cheats, the world will know it. If we see something suspicious, we will inspect it. So this deal is not based on trust, it’s based on unprecedented verification.

And this is a long-term deal, with strict limits on Iran’s program for more than a decade and unprecedented transparency measures that will last for 20 years or more. And as a member of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, Iran will never be permitted to develop a nuclear weapon.

In return for Iran’s actions, the international community, including the United States, has agreed to provide Iran with phased relief from certain sanctions. If Iran violates the deal, sanctions can be snapped back into place. Meanwhile, other American sanctions on Iran for its support of terrorism, its human rights abuses, its ballistic missile program, all will continue to be enforced.

As I said this week, many key details will need to be finalized over the next three months, and nothing is agreed to until everything is agreed. And if there is backsliding, there will be no deal.

Here in the United States, I expect a robust debate. We’ll keep Congress and the American people fully briefed on the substance of the deal. As we engage in this debate, let’s remember—we really only have three options for dealing with Iran’s nuclear program: bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities—which will only set its program back a few years—while starting another war in the Middle East; abandoning negotiations and hoping for the best with sanctions—even though that’s always led to Iran making more progress in its nuclear program; or a robust and verifiable deal like this one that peacefully prevents Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

As President and Commander in Chief, I firmly believe that the diplomatic option—a comprehensive, long-term deal like this—is by far the best option. For the United States. For our allies. And for the world.

Our work — this deal — is not yet done. Diplomacy is painstaking work. Success is not guaranteed. But today we have an historic opportunity to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons in Iran, and to do so peacefully, with the international community firmly behind us. And this will be our work in the days and months ahead in keeping with the best traditions of American leadership.

From Tehran, April 19, 2015, the Ayatollah Ali Khameni:

Iran’s supreme leader said it is a myth that his country is trying to develop nuclear weapons, and he accused the U.S. and Israel of posing the real threat to security in the Middle East.

In remarks Sunday to mark Iran’s annual Army Day, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei exhorted troops to increase their defensive preparedness and said his country was constantly under threat of military action and wasn’t even given ample scope to defend itself.

“They fabricated the nuclear weapon myth to say that the Islamic Republic is a threat,” Mr. Khamenei said, according to his official website. “No! The threat is the U.S.,” he said, accusing Washington of interfering and fomenting insecurity. The U.S. and Israel both act without any checks and “meddle in any place they find necessary,” he said….

The other side rudely threatens us with military action constantly,” Mr. Khamenei said. “And it goes further, saying the Islamic Republic shouldn’t have defensive capability.”

After the framework agreement, Russia lifted a self-imposed ban on the delivery of the S-300 missile-defense system to Iran. If installed, its presence would complicate any effort to strike Iranian nuclear facilities.

From the Washington Post, April 19, 2015, Jennifer Rubin

But wait. It gets worse. The Wall Street Journal reports: “The Obama administration estimates Iran has between $100 billion and $140 billion of its oil revenue frozen in offshore accounts as a result of sanctions. U.S. officials said they expect Tehran to gain access to these funds in phases as part of a final deal. Iran could receive somewhere between $30 billion and $50 billion upon signing the agreement, said congressional officials briefed by the administration.

And from the Wall Street Journal, April 17, 2015. the same paragraph linked above.

If this is the current state of “the deal,” we have a lot to worry about. President Obama’s understanding of the “framework agreement” and Iran’s understanding are a few miles apart. I don’t believe either party, and I don’t believe in the deal, and I think the president is selling the country down the river, because he’s way in over his head, I just don’t see any favorable end to this effort.

As Jeff Jacoby wrote today in the Boston Globe:

Tehran’s rulers may have lied for years about their nuclear activities; their negotiated commitments to suspend enrichment and submit to inspections may not be worth the ink they sign them with.

But the mullahs don’t lie about what matters to them most: death to America, the extermination of Israel, unrelenting global jihad. They say they are deadly serious.

Believe them.



A Petulant President Attacks His Critics in Congress, And Ignores the Ayatollah Who Calls Him a Liar. by The Elephant's Child
April 14, 2015, 6:52 am
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , ,

In the fading days of his presidency, Mr. Obama clearly believes that he can determine American foreign policy all by himself. At the Summit of Americas in Panama City, the president was bad-mouthing America again, as he so readily does when abroad. But he was particularly annoyed that anyone would disagree with his unilateral outreach on Cuba, Iran and Climate Change. He was especially annoyed that Senator John McCain would dare to point out that the Ayatollah Khamenei disagreed drastically with Secretary of State John Kerry’s interpretation of the “framework” nuclear accord.

In fact it was the Ayatollah Khamenei who accused the White House of “Lying,” being “deceptive.” and having “devilish intentions”, according to multiple published accounts and posts of his own twitter feed.

Khamenei also disputed the key terms Obama administration officials have said were agreed upon in principle. Economic sanctions will not be phased out once Iran’s compliance has been “verified,” according to the Ayatollah. Instead, Khamenei said that if the U.S. wants a deal, then all sanctions must be dropped as soon as the agreement is finalized. Khamenei also put strict limits on the reach of the inspectors who would be tasked with this verification process in the first place.

President Obama held a press conference in Panama City, and announced huffily;

“That’s not how we’re supposed to run foreign policy, regardless of who’s President or Secretary of State. We can have arguments, and there are legitimate arguments to be had. I understand why people might be mistrustful of Iran. I understand why people might oppose the deal—although the reason is not because this is a bad deal per se, but they just don’t trust any deal with Iran, and may prefer to take a military approach to it,” Mr. Obama said.

But when you start getting to the point where you are actively communicating that the United States government and our Secretary of State is somehow spinning presentations in a negotiation with a foreign power, particularly one that you say is your enemy, that’s a problem. It needs to stop.”

It was the Ayatollah who first claimed that the Obama Administration was “spinning” what was in the framework, but Obama dismissed his remarks as posturing to protect his political position, and American critics should just shut up because the only alternative is war.

Secretary of State John Kerry on “Face the Nation” described the nuclear agreement with Iran as a  “global mandate” issued by the United Nations. “Congress assisted by passing sanctions.” Kerry said the State Department didn’t want the Iran talks to fall prey to partisan bickering in Washington.”We’ve earned the right to complete this without interference, and certainly without partisan politics.” Earned the right?

We don’t know how close or far the Iranians are to a nuclear bomb, or if they already have one. Our intelligence has always been surprised when a nation suddenly tests a nuke. They didn’t know it was imminent. The Obama Administration seems to believe that it would be fine for Iran to become a nuclear power. That if so, they would just become another state possessing nukes like us and Britain and France and Israel.We all get along and don’t worry about each other.

If Iran wants to dominate the Middle East, they could just control the warring tribes and we wouldn’t have to worry about interfering. But Iran is not just another country, but the world’s most active sponsor of terrorism around the globe, They are impelled by passionate religious fervor, and believe that Armageddon or the final battle would bring about the return of the Mahdi followed by eternal bliss. The Ayatollah Khamenei is dying of cancer. Does he want to get things settled within his life span?

The UN inspectors know they haven’t seen all the Iranian facilities, and they don’t know for sure if they even know how many there are. A military book talked about an EMP bomb. And there is Death to America Day, and the cry shouted by all every Friday after prayers. Our negotiators don’t seem to understand the basics of negotiation — negotiating from strength, and walking out if you don’t get some cooperation. It seems to be the Iranians who are negotiating from strength. But it is Americans and Israelis who will pay the price of Administration blundering.



“You Can’t Sell The Cow and Still Have the Milk” by The Elephant's Child
April 9, 2015, 6:57 am
Filed under: Politics | Tags: , , , , ,

U.S. Secretary of State Kerry speaks about the Ukraine crisis after his meetings with other foreign ministers in Paris

Obama’s sales pitch for his”framework” of a nuclear deal with Iran has not met with universal plaudits and applause. Partially because Iran doesn’t agree in the slightest with what the U.S. delegation claims to have been agreed upon. They seem to have a different idea entirely, which begins with the prompt end to all sanctions and continues with going to work on building their desired weapon without interference. Big words and big ideas slowly turn into farce.

Less than a week following the framework of a nuclear deal with Iran that allows the Islamic Republic to continue operating core aspects of its program, the State Department is looking for a new training course on how to negotiate.

The agency released a solicitation for “Negotiations” on Wednesday, revealing that the State Department is seeking a class for U.S. diplomats on “making and receiving concessions wisely.”

The overall course teaches the essential skills, knowledge, and attitudes for U.S. diplomats to succeed in any of 275 overseas posts performing the full spectrum of political and economic work,” the solicitation said. “This module will focus on the complex art of negotiating across diverse cultures to find common ground for advancing mutual interests.”

One might suggest that their timing was a little bit off, or make reference to “locking the barn door after the horse has been stolen.”. It would all be really funny if it weren’t so desperately important.



The Reason for the Shutdown in 1 Pic… by American Elephant

Please spread this around. Tweet it, Post it to Facebook, your blog, pinterest. Wherever you like. Obama will negotiate with terrorist Iran, but won’t negotiate with the duly elected representatives of the people. He says “I won”. But I would remind him that Republicans ALSO won. In fact, after Democrats passed Obamacare, Americans threw them out of office, and elected Republicans in the biggest electoral landslide in 75 years!  [Click to enlarge.]
Obama Wont Negotiate



Boom! by American Elephant
March 14, 2013, 11:15 am
Filed under: Economy, Humor | Tags: , ,

Barack the Giant Slayer

Michael Ramirez nails it again.




Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 7,313 other followers

%d bloggers like this: