Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Great Some Minds Think Alike II

Okay, let's take on the saga of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya.

You want a little backstory on how Zelaya was booted and how (and how quickly) Obama reacted? Here you go.

What accounts for the difference between Obama's reaction to Zelaya and Honduras and with his reaction to Ahmadinejad and Iranian protesters?


Remember during the campaign when we were all made aware of these Obama comments:

To that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical. It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution, at least as its been interpreted and Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can’t do to you. Says what the Federal government can’t do to you, but doesn’t say what the Federal government or State government must do on your behalf, and that hasn’t shifted and one of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was, um, because the civil rights movement became so court focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that. …

I’m not optimistic about bringing about major redistributive change through the courts. You know, the institution just isn’t structured that way.

Obama was speaking directly about the civil rights movement, and specifically about redistributive change in that context. The words are from 2001, but were brought to light in last year's campaign after Obama's "spread the wealth" comment to Joe the Plumber.

There were, in other words, "essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution" that Obama wished were not there. And Obama displays his, uh, lack of fondness for the "negative rights" aspect of the Constitution.

He doesn't like the idea that the Constitution fundamentally tells the government what it cannot do.

You know who else doesn't like that? Honduran president Manuel Zelaya. The Honduran Constitution had a "negative right" that said the president could not seek re-election.

Like Obama, he was not optimistic about changing that through the courts. And the legislature unanimously opposed his efforts. So, seeing the constitution as fundamentally flawed (like Obama sees the US Constitution), Zelaya sought to do a little populist community organization with a referendum that would allow him to run again, essentially giving him the power to become President for life, outside the strictures of the laws of Honduras.

It was from there that the court ordered his removal from the contry, which led to his ouster, and Obama's quick support.

Which leads us to this...

Zelaya: Likes Change Just Like Obama

Like Obama, Zelaya simply sees his Constitution as fundamentally flawed.

Like Obama, Zelaya simply wants change.

No wonder Obama came out so quickly to support him.

Like with Ahmadinejad, Obama and Zelaya think alike.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Miss Manners 1, Obama Administration 0

Who didn't see this coming?

It was an attempt by President Obama to reach out to Iran with a classically American invitation: celebrate July 4 with hot dogs and hale fellowship at United States embassies worldwide. Now, hot-dog diplomacy is the latest casualty of the bloody clashes in Tehran.

On Wednesday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who had authorized diplomatic posts earlier this month to invite Iranians to their Independence Day parties, sent out a cable rescinding the invitations.

“Unfortunately, circumstances have changed, and participation by Iranian diplomats would not be appropriate in light of the unjust actions that the president and I have condemned,” she said. Embassies that had already invited Iranian diplomats were instructed to disinvite them.

Well, good for the administration, though it comes much, much later than it should have -- and actually rescinding the invitations should never have had to occur as the invitations should never have been sent.

But notice that the disinvitation to the Iranian diplomats sounds eerily similar to the hypothetical example of a Presidential disinvitation in Miss Manners' Guide to Excrutiatingly Correct Behavior that we shared in a previous post, which read:




Nobody messes with Miss Manners.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Nobody Meddles With Obama

In our last post, we provided the evidence that Biden and Hillary may have designs on "meddling" with Obama.

But. To be fair to Obama, and his rather well-deserved reputation as a timid player in foreign policy, he apparently displays much less timidity when it comes to handling division within his own administration.

On Wednesday, word broke that Hillary and Biden were not happy with Obama's stance on Iran.

And on that very same day, it was Hillary's elbow that broke in a so-called "accident".

Accident? Coincidence? Don't be naive.


In any event, the elbow may be broken, but the finger still works:

The Elbow's Broken, But the Finger Still Works

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Someone May Be Meddling

Last week, the New York Times dropped this tibit about the Obama administration's response to the protests in Iran:

Even while supporting the president’s approach, senior members of the administration, including Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, would like to strike a stronger tone in support of the protesters, administration officials said.

To that point, criticism of President Obama was mostly confined to Republicans and conservative leaning blogs. And while that story raised more than a few eyebrows, it was quickly dismissed by the White House.

However, since that time President Obama has begun to move away from his early hesitation in speaking out against the thuggish regime and for the protesters as reportedly advocated by both Biden and Clinton.

But even with this new approach, new evidence has emerged that Biden and Clinton may have themselves moved further toward the view that Obama is simply not up to the task:

The Secrets of Biden and Hillary

Gird your loins, Obama.

UPDATE: Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has issued a joint statement with Iran's Supreme Leader Sayyid Ali Khamenei which states: “We don't want to meddle in what should be internal affiars of the Great Satan, but there may not be that much difference between any of them, and we are appalled and outraged that in a land of supposed free speech, the media so readily grants administration leakers anonymity.”

WELL, WELL, WHAT DO WE HAVE HERE: Dan Riehl has this observation concerning Hillary:

Oh my. Why would Hillary need an attack dog par excellence at the State Department? I speculated about Hillary's long-term thinking if Obama really gets caught up in a scandal, or just starts to fade for any reason. I'd keep my eye out for stories featuring "unnamed senior officials at the State Department".

Pre-mature, perhaps - but Blumenthal will say anything about anyone to help a Clinton. This is an interesting move. If there's ever any Obama blood in the water, Sidney will be one of the most dangerous sharks. Just sayin'.

Obama's Excuciatingly Incorrect Behavior

It perhaps is not shocking to discover, though it is no less depressing. Even in the midst of a bloody crackdown in Iran by the thuggish regime against its own citizens protesting the June 12th elections, the Obama administration has no plans on rescinding an invitation to Iranian diplomats for July 4th barbeques at US embassies. Allah at Hot Air has the story from AFP:

The United States said Monday its invitations were still standing for Iranian diplomats to attend July 4 celebrations at US embassies despite the crackdown on opposition supporters.

President Barack Obama’s administration said earlier this month it would invite Iran to US embassy barbecues for the national holiday for the first time since the two nations severed relations following the 1979 Islamic revolution.

“There’s no thought to rescinding the invitations to Iranian diplomats,” State Department spokesman Ian Kelly told reporters.

“We have made a strategic decision to engage on a number of fronts with Iran,” Kelly said. “We tried many years of isolation, and we’re pursuing a different path now.”

Some people are troubled by this, others are outraged. But ultimately there is but one course one should take in addressing this matter, gentle reader.

And that is, of course to consult Miss Manners' Guide to Excrutiatingly Correct Behavior.

In our copy of Judith Martin's indispensible book, we find on pages 600-601 examples of the proper eitquette the Obama administration should be following in this type of situation, rather than the unfortunate and shameful actions we see above.

Although, on Google Books, it appears that the examples are on pages 701-702 -- yet unfortunately, Google Books does not contain a preview image for page 701.

Therefore, we will re-create page 701 (without the fancy script font on the invitations) and then copy the image for page 702 from Google Books.

Miss Manners, pg 701

Miss Manners

President Obama would be wise to ask himself, WWMMD -- What Would Miss Manners Do -- and avoid what is obviously his very excruciatingly incorrect behavior.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

You're Welcome (for Obama's Disapproval Rating)

From JammieWearingFool we learn:

The imperial president's honeymoon is over. Just imagine what his approval numbers would look like if 99% of the media weren't in his back pocket.

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Sunday shows that 32% of the nation's voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Thirty-four percent (34%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -2. That’s the President’s lowest rating to date and the first time the Presidential Approval Index has fallen below zero for Obama

Well. Yesterday I received a call. Normally I don't pick up calls when I don't recognize the number. But since it was a 214 area code and I have family in Dallas, I thought it might be someone I knew.

It wasn't.

It was Rasmussen. I was being robo-polled*.

So, when we see these results today, Obama's lowest approval rating yet, I have only two words:

You're welcome.


*That link takes you to the JustOneMinute thread in which I commented (real-time!) about being robo polled. If one were so inclined, he or she could follow that link and then scroll down for some of my observations of the polling experience.

Bo Knows Iran

Twitter threatens to overtake my life.

I tweeted this yesterday:

@JTlol The reason O and the kids had to pick up doggie treats on the outing 2day ... Bo was left at WH to monitor the situation in Iran.

And sure enough, as Obama and his girls headed out for ice cream...

Obama Goes for Ice Cream, Leaves Dog Bo in Charge


Mmmmm, Tastes Just Like Freedom Voting Present

Well, for better or worse I finally dipped my toe into twitter.

Obama and his girls went out for ice cream today and, well, some people thought that was a little off key because of the crisis in Iran.

Instinctively, I went out and found an old pic of Obama eating ice cream and submitted it to twitter:

Iran Burns, Obama Stops for Ice Cream

But!!! That was an old pic, and as fast as twitter moves, the pic was quickly overcome by the actual images of today's excursion. So I submitted today's pic (via Patterico) with the same caption...

Obama Slurps While Iran Burns

And now, Patterico has a caption contest with this photo at his site...I wish everyone the best of luck.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Is the Situation in Iran a Serious Crisis?

While Obama is flipping off the protesters and demonstrators in Iran, here's a question: Where's Rahm Emanuel?

Remember that Emanuel? It's all about taking advantage of a serious crisis, right?

Empowering Iranian protesters and demonstrators crying out to be freed of the oppression of the current regime, through clear moral and rhetorical support, in an effort that could help delegitimize, destabilize and perhaps overthrow the nuclear weapon-seeking and terror-sponsoring mullahs and Ahmadinejad?


"You never sometimes want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before but which would take too much risk in expending political capital such that doing anything other than sitting on your hands becomes undesirable."

And while the President sits on his hands...

The House passed it's resolution supporting the people of Iran. Two people voted present, 25 abstained, and everyone else voted for it, except one representative.

Wanna take a guess who that was?

And then Ron Paul, the only person to vote against the House resolution, explained that he did so because he "admired President Obama’s cautious approach to the situation in Iran and I would have preferred that we in the House had acted similarly."

Of course, Paul is wrong to think he's aligned with Obama in cautious passivity, right?

We know that because the WH decided to...

...send in Gibbs!

President Barack Obama's chief spokesman said Friday that a House-passed resolution condemning the Iranian election and the unrest that followed "is very consistent" with the message the White House has been sending this week.

But wait.

"He believes those who wish to have their voices heard should be able to do that without fear of violence," Gibbs said. "That is an important universal principle that should be upheld and I think he supports that."

Gibbs thinks Obama supports that? He thinks???

Of course, Gibbs would know Obama supports that if Obama had actually come out and said that he supports that.

As it is, Gibbs is in the same position the rest of us are...

We can only speculate.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Obama Salutes the Iranians

Reacting to Obama's reaction to the Iranian sham elections and the subsequent mass protests and demonstrations, Ace writes:

Unbelievable. The resisters in Iran cry out for support -- even mere support of the moral kind -- and Obama gives them the finger. He's Ahmadinejad's boy and he's not changing that for nobody.

Ace only thought that he was speaking metaphorically about that one finger salute:

Obama to Iranians