Democrats & Liberals Archives

The Imminent Fall of Muammar Gaddafi

Tripoli has been surrounded and its supplies lines cut by rebel forces. The days of Muammar Gaddafi appear to be numbered, and numbered on one hand at that. Obama stands on the threshold of another foreign policy victory, a victory accomplished without a single American casualty. What does this mean for foreign policy?

What Ronald Reagan could not do, Obama will accomplish without a single American casualty- the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi. According to NBC News, Tripoli is surrounded, its supply lines cut, and Gaddafi is supposedly in negotiations to leave for Tunisia. Now, whether Gaddafi is actually negotiating could easily be disinformation. That kind of planted story could undermine a leader under pressure. In any case, while the ultimate fate of Gaddafi remains to be determined- exile in Tunisia, or justice at the hands of his countrymen- his long rule appears to be at an end.

Obama will do what Bush could not do; he will accomplish the overthrow of a tyrant without American casualties, with full international cooperation, and with Libyan deaths limited- at least, in comparison to the hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis. It will be a stunning victory for the Obama administration, for Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and others, a victory attained without expending hundreds of billions of dollars charged on the national credit card.

What no one came close to doing in the past, Obama seems about to achieve: bringing democracy and representative governments to the Middle East. Tunisia, Egypt, and now Libya is about to make the leap, and toss out authoritarian governments.

So! Early congratulations are in order for Obama, Hillary Clinton, the military, and perhaps most of all, the CIA and other intelligence agencies. No one talks about it, but none of this would have happened without you guys. Well done.

Next up, Assad in Syria.

Posted by phx8 at August 18, 2011 9:26 PM
Comments
Comment #327876

Very simple statement and acknowledgement of yet another great accomplishment for President Obama.
It will only take a few hours and a few posts for the righties to minimize the outcome and attempt to rob Obama of yet another attaboy he should get from several directions.

Posted by: jane doe at August 19, 2011 12:23 AM
Comment #327877

If this is a victory then Obama inherited it from Bush, didn’t he? The right wing sure does hate when Obama suggests President Bush is at fault for something…at least until there’s success to be touted. I’m sure this success is all Bush’s fault.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at August 19, 2011 12:37 AM
Comment #327878


Gaddafi had become a liability for the oil companies, his demands had become to extravagant. Of course, another Iraq was out of the picture. Call me crazy.

Posted by: jlw at August 19, 2011 1:48 AM
Comment #327880

Cnn.com carries a pretty good article on the current situation in Libya.

Jlw, I don’t see this as a situation driven by oil companies. It’s pure speculation on my part- with a dash of conspiracy theory added give it some zing- but I think the uprisings in the Arab countries are initially driven by rising commodity prices. They are essentially food riots which are then accelerated by technology’s social medias. The uprisings begin as inarticulate expressions of anger over the cost of bread, at which point our intelligence agencies step in and provide direction for the malcontents.

In an awful way, there is actually an upside to rising commodity prices and slowing economies around the world, because it places enormous pressure on authoritarian regimes. These regimes suppress criticism. They lack a free press. Without a free press and loyal opposition, they cannot adapt to change like democratic societies, so any missteps they may make keep proceeding in the wrong direction, and there is no corrective mechanism to stop them. There is no outlet for building pressures. As a result, the social pressure builds and builds until it explodes in riots.

Wandering far afield for a moment… It is interesting that Britain experienced similar riots to those in the Middle East. Of course, without an outside intelligence agency covertly directing the malcontents, the riots never progressed beyond mere mayhem… but like the rebellions in the Middle East, the Brits obviously have a large number of people who do not feel enfranchised.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2011 2:27 AM
Comment #327882

phx8


“bringing democracy and representative governments to the Middle East. Tunisia, Egypt, and now Libya is about to make the leap, and toss out authoritarian governments.”

yes when the muslim brotherhood fills the power vacum in these countries, i’m sure it will be paradise on earth.


Posted by: dbs at August 19, 2011 4:59 AM
Comment #327883

obamas lack of leadership at the international level is only overshadowed by his lack of leadership here at home. ATA BOY BARRY !

Posted by: dbs at August 19, 2011 5:02 AM
Comment #327886

You are giving credit to Barry for this? And he has spent tons of money thru NATO for their air raids. Oh, well have your fun in the sun you lefties. More false hope on the horizon. The American people are still a lot like sheep. They can be led around and any puffery will cause them to get the Chris Matthews Syndrome affect them. They will fall like they were in a Pentacostal church. Then they will vote for Barry the messiah, the hope and change of the world. What fools.

Posted by: tom humes at August 19, 2011 9:48 AM
Comment #327887

If Gadaffi falls, Obama does deserve credit. It will be the first time in recent memory that NATO actually took the lead role in combat and assumed direct leadership of the effort. Obama is to be congratulated for successfully persuading the Europeans to step up to the plate and take responsibility for policing their section of the world. The US did provide logistical and early combat support but stood firm in requiring the Europeans to fully take over the combat sorties and assume command responsibility.

Posted by: Rich at August 19, 2011 10:01 AM
Comment #327888

If Americans aren’t shedding our own blood and burning through treasure by the billions then it doesn’t count as leadership and it doesn’t count as success. It’s not a war until the contractors get to clean up the mess.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at August 19, 2011 10:41 AM
Comment #327899

Wow, the obama supporters are desperate for anything that might bolster this failing president. I wonder what kind of bounce obama might get in the polls from the fall of Gadaffi.

My guess is that 80% of voting Americans don’t even recognize the name Gadaffi, much less consider his ouster as helping them in the least. And, after his ouster, I can already hear obama calling for American aid, to the tune of a couple of billion, to aid Libya become a democracy.

obama is slated to give a big talk in September on jobs. I could write the speech for him. Spend more money. Raise taxes on the rich. Write more business disabling regulations. And, blame Bush for our problems.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 19, 2011 4:46 PM
Comment #327900

RF,
No doubt many Americans do not know anything about Gadaffi. However, anyone old enough to remember Reagan will also remember the Lockerbie bombing, and the F-111 air strikes that missed the dictator. I haven’t forgotten Lockerbie. There were a few other acts of terrorism as well. We owed this guy, big time, and I would be very pleased to see him removed from power. I would be even more pleased if the Obama administration accomplished American aims and spread American ideals, ideals such as self-determination, democracy, respect for the individual, and respect for Human rights, and did it with an absolute minimum of violence, all in conjunction with our close allies.

It’s disapointing to see conservatives disrespect what seems like such a great outcome for US foreign policy. A lot of people besides Obama contributed to this effort.
Gaddafi isn’t gone yet, but the writing is on the wall, and I think it’s something every American can view with satisfaction.

Remember, being in the opposition does not mean merely opposing everything. It means offering an alternative when there is a difference of opinion.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2011 5:05 PM
Comment #327901

Sorry phx8, I opposed nothing, and did not write that ridding the world of Gadaffi wasn’t a plus. Please reread what I did write.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 19, 2011 5:11 PM
Comment #327904

RF,
Relentless negativity looks like opposition. I’d call the comment ‘damning with faint praise,’ but there’s no praise in it.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2011 6:14 PM
Comment #327905

phx8, unlike most writing on this thread, I will hold my accolades until after the fact and see what emerges. The Libyans could be worse off after the regime falls. What you call “Relentless negativity” I call experience in following world affairs.

I do understand the need for obama to get some credit if Gaddafi falls. He is falling like a rock in the polls and has proven he is inept at handling anything beyond a plugged toilet in Chicago. The Folks want something done with our economy and jobs. A minor foreign success, shared with many others, won’t get this loser reelected.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 19, 2011 6:38 PM
Comment #327906

Royal is right phx8 Foriegn relations are not helping our failing economy and getting people back to work here in the U.S. Gaddafi is just a minor tyrant much like his buddy Hugo.

Posted by: KAP at August 19, 2011 7:11 PM
Comment #327907

RF, KAP,
You’re introducing economic & polling issues into a thread about foreign policy, basically as an excuse to downplay what looks like an imminent foreign policy success.

So let’s recognize that.

KAP, was the economy experiencing positive or negative growth when Obama took office v today? Was the economy gaining or losing jobs when Obama took office v today? Was the stock market higher or lower than when Obama took office v today?

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2011 7:37 PM
Comment #327908

phx8 wrote; “What no one came close to doing in the past, Obama seems about to achieve: bringing democracy and representative governments to the Middle East. Tunisia, Egypt, and now Libya is about to make the leap, and toss out authoritarian governments.”

He then has the temerity to write objections to those of us who disagree by writing…

“You’re introducing economic & polling issues into a thread about foreign policy…”

Is there any possible way that phx8 can spin his adoration of obama, his idiotic comment about obama’s achievements as being about foreign policy rather than simple politicking?

Can anyone post a link from a credible site that proclaims…democracy, and representative governments have taken hold in the Middle East, Tunisia, Egypt and “now Libya”?

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 19, 2011 7:55 PM
Comment #327909

I forgot to ask phx8 what it was that obama did in Egypt, Tunisia and “now Libya” that allows him to take any bragging rights.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 19, 2011 8:00 PM
Comment #327910

Even a blind squirrel occasionally finds a nut.

I am glad that crazy Gaddafi is on the way out. The American military was crucial for this. But Obama showed little personal leadership.

I think when the history is all settled, it will show that U.S. success in Iraq caused the cracks in Arab despotism that resulted in the fall of several tyrants. It will show that Obama played a passive role that seemed to work well in Egypt, but not so well in Iran. In Libya, the U.S. was pulled into doing the right thing by our British and especially our French allies. More decisive action might have hastened the demise of the tyrant and saved life, but at greater risk.

Now on to Syria.

I think history will also show that most of what happens in the Middle East happens for its own reasons. America often gets the blame for things that represent old fault lines that have been there since 1948, since the Sykes-Picot treaty, since the fall of the Ottoman Empire or even the fall of Roman Empire. And in the long run, we will be just another in the long line of outsiders.

The story goes like this:

At the end of the fight, on a tombstone white, with the name of the late deceased, and the epitaph drear “a fool lies here, who tried to hustle the East.”

Posted by: C&J at August 19, 2011 8:24 PM
Comment #327911

Whon cares about when he took office? I care about now and now SUCKS worse then it did when he took office, phx8.

Posted by: KAP at August 19, 2011 8:33 PM
Comment #327912

It doesn’t matter what happens to these murdering dictators in the middle-east. They get removed, a vacuum is created, and Al-Qaida moves in with the help and support of Iran.
These people are ignorant slaves to their religious hierarchy. There can be NO democracy unless the people have freedom of religion and freedom of speech, and Islam will NEVER allow this. How’s that democracy going in Egypt?

The military now rules, but sooner or later Al-Qaida and the Muslim Brotherhood will gain control. And the same thing will happen in every Muslim controlled middle-east nation. So where is the bragging rights for anyone?

Posted by: Mike at August 19, 2011 8:55 PM
Comment #327914

Royal Flush,
If my comments are “idiotic” and represent nothing more than “adoration of Obama,” then it would be pointless for you if I respond with further comments.

C&J,
The course of events in Libya could not have proceeded without active American involvement. Obama made the call and made the commitment. He put his reputation on the line, justifying American intervention as necessary to prevent genocide. A lot of people questioned this decision, including me. Did the uprising really risk genocide, or was it just another case of tribal animosities? In this case, I was willing to give Obama the benefit of the doubt, and it appears he made the right call. Some of that questioning revolved around the issue of Obama’s possible violation of the War Powers Act. The criticisms of Obama from the right continue to oscillate between accusations of weakness and cries denouncing his tyranny.

The British, French, and Italians all have long histories in Libya. Perhaps they did draw Obama into the military intervention, but in the final analysis, it only happened because Obama willingly participated. And by the way, I say ‘Obama,’ but there were a lot more people involved than just him, especially Hillary Clinton.

Syria represents a very difficult challenge. Ethnic and religious divisions make the situation extremely dicey. I think Obama is doing the right thing there- encouraging democracy and observance of human rights, while resisting direct intervention.

Mike,
Turkey has a secular democracy with a long history of success, and it is 97% Islamic.

Iran is Shia, and most of the Middle East is Sunni. The potential for Iran to interfere in most of that region is nil.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2011 9:35 PM
Comment #327915

phx8

I don’t know if it would have been better or worse if Obama had acted more decisively. I do think that he acted too cautiously in Iran. In any case, the Iranian tyrants hung onto power, so the result was not good.

I understand the complexity of the situation. There is no zero option. Everything America does or does not do changes the situation. I tried to explain this many times when Bush was president.

IMO Bush’s decisiveness is what made this present situation possible. Libya gave up its WMD after the crazy colonel saw what happened to Saddam. And Libya, unlike Iraq, was farther along than we thought. If Libya still has those WMDs, our decisions would have been different.

Obama behaved reasonably in both Iraq and Libya. He didn’t do much that Bush would not have done. Before he became president he really believed some of his own hype. Reality has a way of leveling presidents.

Posted by: C&J at August 19, 2011 9:58 PM
Comment #327922

phx8

“Iran is Shia, and most of the Middle East is Sunni. The potential for Iran to interfere in most of that region is nil.”


really? that has to be one of the most naive statements i’ve read in a while.

Posted by: dbs at August 20, 2011 7:19 AM
Comment #327924

Not only is phx8’s statement naive; it is also ignorant. The Catholic religion and Protestantism were once enemies, but have we ever heard of ecuminism? So Sunni and Shia mean nothing, they are just names of groups who follow the same book and beliefs. As for Turkey; they are controlled by the military, just as Egypt is now, but that will change. Especially with the help of radical Islamists.

Posted by: Mike at August 20, 2011 8:12 AM
Comment #327929

I don’t want to count my chickens before they hatch. However, I will say that I think those poo-pooing the prospect of Muslim Liberal Democracies will be proven wrong in the long term, but we’ll have to wait and see.

If Islamist do take control in these Sunni countries, it’s much more likely that they will be bankrolled by Saudi Arabia, not Iran. The Sunni-Shia split is more than just religion; it is also an extension of the centuries long tension between Arabs and Persians.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 20, 2011 9:09 AM
Comment #327930

BTW, I want to add that Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim country, has so far had success with liberal democracy ever since they ousted Suharto in ‘98.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 20, 2011 9:13 AM
Comment #327954

WR, a movement requires a common cause. For example: Obama ran against Bush in 2008 and the Dems ran against Bush in 2010. Obama was successful in 2008, but the Dems were not in 2010. Obama has changed; he will no longer run against Bush, but next year he will run against Republicans in Congress, in fact he has already started. Running against something is used as a common cause. To get back to the Muslims; whether Sunni or Shia doesn’t matter, as long as they have a common cause, and the common cause is destruction of Israel.

Warped said, “I don’t want to count my chickens before they hatch. However, I will say that I think those poo-pooing the prospect of Muslim Liberal Democracies will be proven wrong in the long term, but we’ll have to wait and see.”

I believe this is your opinion and I will give you mine. The Muslims will overcome their differences and attack Israel, as they did in 1967 and 1973, but the result will be an all out war in which Israel will destroy the Muslim religion by taking out their holy places. Without Mecca and the Dome of the Rock, Islam will collapse. JMO

Posted by: Mike at August 20, 2011 5:16 PM
Comment #327960

Mike, I don’t see much evidence that obama will change course on blaming Bush for our economic woes. He will continue to be the finger-pointer rather than a leader. And, some of his finger-pointing will be directed at congress. But, with the senate controlled by his folks, and with dems in the house having deserted him on some issues, this won’t help him.

The nation is weary of the blame game and want results. By election time, I believe our jobless rate will be higher regardless of how much money obama is prepared to spend. And, I believe the equity markets will be lower and the folks will be feeling even more poor and more betrayed.

obama owns this economy whether its fair or not. We want action and this president is AWOL.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 20, 2011 5:30 PM
Comment #327962

You are correct Royal. Nothing Obama has done has had any positive effect on jobs or the economy. His big plan (the latest of at least 10 speeches and 10 plans for the economy in the past 2 1/2 years) is nothing more than another call for a stimulus, which the Republican House will never pass. It doesn’t matter what Obama does, the economy is doomed under his leadership. I was around when Carter did the same thing; the difference is, the left was not quite so bent on protecting Carter. Everyone is bailing on Obama; the left MSM, the blacks, the Hispanics, independents, and democrats. The only ones still covering for Obama are the liberal socialists on WB. They seem to have never gotten the message. Honestly, it is embarrassing to watch Obama rattle on and on TV every day. What an idiot; he says the same old things over and over: do nothing congress, rich oil companies, the rich not paying their fair share, those rich who own jets. Then we have all the talking heads saying the same things as they make their rounds on the MSM. And last of all, we have the mush heads on WB, parroting the exact same things. If it wasn’t so serious, it would be hilarious. Obama is completely out of his element and an embarrassment to America.

Posted by: Mike at August 20, 2011 5:54 PM
Comment #327964

Obama reminds me of the monday morning sales meeting of a sizeable company. The top dog gives the pitch and the sales crew stumbles out of the room and does all the talking points that were covered in the sales meeting.

Obama does the same thing only it is his comrades base that stumbles out of the gate and does the talking points presentation.

Posted by: tom humes at August 20, 2011 6:03 PM
Comment #327965

Obama is completely out of his element and an embarrassment to America.

Posted by: Mike at August 20, 2011 05:54 PM

Yes, he is both. I too recall the Carter era. He was hailed as brilliant just as obama is being hailed. Carter’s brilliance soon grew tiresome when few of his policies worked. We tallied our economic woes in the “misery index”.

After taking a horrible beating at the hands of Ronald Reagan, this same inept and corrupt individual became the elder statesman for the dem party. Still today Carter roams the world looking for every opportunity to spread his hate-America trash.

obama will be a one-term president and be counted among presidential historians as even worse than Carter. And, like Carter, obama when relieved of the office he has tarnished, will roam the world looking for a few admirers among the Muslim and Socialist world.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 20, 2011 6:08 PM
Comment #327967


Royal, which is it, Obama is a weak leader or Obama is a tyrannical leader? I guess with Republicans it depends on the issue, hey?

A weak and tyrannical president? I think they call that talking out of the wrong end. A perfectly acceptable behavior when it comes to politics.

Posted by: jlw at August 20, 2011 6:25 PM
Comment #327972

jlw, a presidential Tyrant, by the very definition of the word Tyrant, doesn’t have to be a leader. Plato and Aristotle define a tyrant as, “one who rules without law, looks to his own advantage rather than that of his subjects, and uses extreme and cruel tactics against his own people.”

A leader is an entirely different entity. We have had many great American leaders. obama, is the only Tryant…so far.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 20, 2011 6:48 PM
Comment #327975

Royal Flush,

If Carter was such terrible president, then why did Ronald Reagan continue and expand his policies? Lets start with the Federal Reserve. Why did Reagan retain Volcker appointed by Carter with a clear policy and directive for addressing inflation? Why did Reagan continue with the de-regulation of US industry started under Carter? http://mises.org/daily/1544

Posted by: Rich at August 20, 2011 7:09 PM
Comment #327983


Royal, my how selective you are. Iran/contra doesn’t fit that definition? “Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeell, I can’t remember.” The Republicans can’t remember, for them, the world began on January 21, 2009.

What do you call it when the government defies the will of it’s people, puts 10’s of thousands of it’s people in harms way and spends a trillion of their treasure in so doing? I call it the Iraq War.

Partisanship was invented by tyrants.

When it comes to tyranny in America, it is hard to beat out money is free speech.

Posted by: jlw at August 20, 2011 7:59 PM
Comment #327986


Royal, my how selective you are. Iran/contra doesn’t fit that definition? “Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeell, I can’t remember.” The Republicans can’t remember, for them, the world began on January 21, 2009.

What do you call it when the government defies the will of it’s people, puts 10’s of thousands of it’s people in harms way and spends a trillion of their treasure in so doing? I call it the Iraq War.

Partisanship was invented by tyrants.

When it comes to tyranny in America, it is hard to beat out money is free speech.

Posted by: jlw at August 20, 2011 8:02 PM
Comment #327988


Royal, my how selective you are. Iran/contra doesn’t fit that definition? “Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeell, I can’t remember.” The Republicans can’t remember, for them, the world began on January 21, 2009.

What do you call it when the government defies the will of it’s people, puts 10’s of thousands of it’s people in harms way and spends a trillion of their treasure in so doing? I call it the Iraq War.

Partisanship was invented by tyrants.

When it comes to tyranny in America, it is hard to beat out money is free speech.

Posted by: jlw at August 20, 2011 8:03 PM
Comment #327996

Obama would be a dictator in a heart beat if he could get by with it. The dems and repubs for that matter have virtually given up congressional authority to this wanna be 3rd world potentate. He has repeatedly made the boast that he would never do anything without congressional approval, and then goes about to invoke laws by executive decision. Cap and trade through the EPA, obamnesty, even talked about raising the debt ceiling by ED. He can’t be sent back to Chi town soon enough.

Posted by: Mike at August 20, 2011 9:32 PM
Comment #328005

Mike: “Obama would be a dictator in a heart beat if he could get by with it … and repubs for that matter have virtually given up congressional authority to this wanna be 3rd world potentate.”

Careful there, Mike. Conservative opposition to Obama has always bordered on this idea that this leader doesn’t look like a typical US President but more like some foreign dictator. Don’t blow that racist dog whistle too hard. Remember when conservatives freaked out about Obama suggesting a dictatorship would be easier? The only problem is they forgot Bush said the same thing…multiple times.

That’s one problem with derangement. Amnesia is one of the symptoms. The past never happened. History started sometime after November 2008. That is why by default Obama is the worst president ever. He never wears a suit jacket in the Oval Office. He shoots campaign videos in the White House. He talks about being a dictator. He goes on vacation. He campaigns for re-election. His wife has staff members. His kids have a dog. How dare they?! Oh, other presidents have done these things too? No they didn’t. Liberal LIES!

Posted by: Adam Ducker at August 21, 2011 9:25 AM
Comment #328009

It looks like all hope of constructive dialogue has gone out the window.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 21, 2011 10:18 AM
Comment #328011

Adam

“He never wears a suit jacket in the Oval Office. He shoots campaign videos in the White House. He talks about being a dictator. He goes on vacation. He campaigns for re-election. His wife has staff members. His kids have a dog. How dare they?!”

I do recall all these things being used to attack Bush. Why does it surprise anybody that opponents attack a president?

My problem with Obama is not that he does the things you mention above. I am afraid he doesn’t really understand a market economy and wanted to impose an unworkable system.

Posted by: C&J at August 21, 2011 10:39 AM
Comment #328015

Hey everyone,

I’ve been upgrading the software behind WatchBlog and I’m running into some technical issues. If you leave a comment and get an error message, please email me at editor@watchblog.com

If you are publishing a new article and also get an error message from the Movable Type software, please email me as well.

I’m trying to track down what’s causing the database table corruption and your help debugging (by sending me the error message info) will help.

Thanks.

Posted by: WatchBlog Publisher at August 21, 2011 2:00 PM
Comment #328022

C&J: “I am afraid he doesn’t really understand a market economy and wanted to impose an unworkable system.”

What is unworkable about anything Obama has proposed?

Posted by: Adam Ducker at August 21, 2011 3:48 PM
Comment #328025

If Gaddafi does get ousted, it will be because of the Libyans, not because of us. We certainly can’t discount the assistance that was provided to the rebels by the U.S., the French, the British, NATO and others, but when it’s all said and done, Libyans are the ones that are on the ground fighting.

The President does deserve credit for the support he provided, but let’s also not forget that it was the French and the British that led the effort, not President Obama. It’s quite a stretch to say that somehow he would deserve credit for the whole thing. Handing tools to your mechanic doesn’t mean you can say that you fixed your car.

Posted by: Kevin Nye at August 21, 2011 5:01 PM
Comment #328029


Kevin, without the support of the air strikes, the rebels would have been crushed.

Posted by: jlw at August 21, 2011 5:37 PM
Comment #328030

JLW,

You’re absolutely correct (and they would have suffered far fewer casualties if they had received support sooner, instead it taking a month to make a decision).

All I’m saying is that providing support doesn’t give anyone the justification to take credit for the ultimate success. If it does, it wasn’t the President that lead the way, it was the French and British, so if anyone can use their support as the basis for taking credit, it’s them, not us.

There wouldn’t be an uprising that could lead to Gaddafi’s removal without the Libyans. If in fact it does happen, they are the ones that get the credit. Supporting nations only get credit for support. The people doing the fighting are the ones who get credit for success.

Posted by: Kevin Nye at August 21, 2011 5:50 PM
Comment #328057

He appears to be “gone” at this point in time, and the people are displaying signs and acts now of victory.
Suppose it’s time for all the Conservative spin to begin in earnest……….

Posted by: jane doe at August 22, 2011 12:24 AM
Comment #328058

Jane

Most conservatives urged Obama to act. Even the French pushed him. He finally did the right thing. We all welcome the fall of another evil dictator. Obama did played his part, but he followed the lead of others. This is not spin, just history.

Posted by: C&J at August 22, 2011 12:32 AM
Comment #328060

The best kind of leadership does not rely on you going around telling others what to do, and demanding they follow you. In the best kind of leadership, others come to you.

Posted by: phx8 at August 22, 2011 1:24 AM
Comment #328067

“Most conservatives urged Obama to act. Even the French pushed him. He finally did the right thing.”

C&J,

Obama did the smart thing under the counsel of Robert Gates. He agreed to act but only if the Europeans took the leadership and direct combat role. He actually made NATO function as a partnership not as a simple surrogate for US unilateral action.

Posted by: Rich at August 22, 2011 8:18 AM
Comment #328078

The response from the right is drearily predictable.

First, Obama responds unilaterally, and they ding him for that. Then it drags on, and they ding him for that. Now they ding him for being too hesitant about using air-power, even as his policy bears fruit, and rather more quickly than the wars that Republicans lead us into.

Republicans want to portray every outcome as a failure or a success that does not relate to his actions. They want this because it hurts them to lose the Presidency, and they want it back without having to do all the work it will take to earn it on the merits. They figure, despite all their discrediting failures, that they can do the actual earning of that credibility after the fact.

I’d say to the readers here to stop listening to the Republicans in expectation of a consistent point of view that doesn’t depend on contradicting Obama and the Democrats. They’re throwing their comments at him because they simply want him gone, and they figure the more they malign him the better they will look.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 22, 2011 12:48 PM
Comment #328079


Kevin, your Right, Obama deserves no credit for helping the Libyan revolutionaries, nor for inspiring Libyan, Egyptian, or Syrian revolutionaries.

Yes, the Republicans are already on the attack. Obama deserves no credit for anything that goes right and all the blame for what goes wrong.

Even I gave Bush credit for doing a couple of things right.

Posted by: jlw at August 22, 2011 1:27 PM
Comment #328081

Jlw,
Exactly. I’ll say it again for the benefit of conservatives: being an opposition party doesn’t mean opposing everything. It would seem to be virtually impossible for anyone to not be very satisfied with the administration’s actions re Libya- the accomplishment of American objectives and the spread of our ideals in a timely fashion, and without Americans dying, and without spending hundreds of billions of dollars, all in close conjunction with our allies, and with every hope for the Libyans to achieve their own democracy through self-determination- and yet, conservatives complain and bad mouth Obama. Unreal.

Posted by: phx8 at August 22, 2011 1:57 PM
Comment #328085
If Gaddafi does get ousted, it will be because of the Libyans, not because of us.

This is the most important lesson. US military involvement overseas is doomed unless it has the support of the locals. Toppling tyrants in other countries can only happen upon the initiative of the people being oppressed. This is the lesson that Obama knew that Bush never learned.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 22, 2011 2:16 PM
Comment #328087


IMO, the comparison to be made is between Obama’s actions in regards to the Libyans and G.H.W. Bush’s actions in regards to the Iraqi Shiites.

Posted by: jlw at August 22, 2011 3:13 PM
Comment #328095

Here is a good article penned by Juan Cole.Here is a good article penned by Juan Cole.

What’s really great is that the Tripolitanians are leading the revolution in their own city instead of being invaded from Cyrenaica or the Nafusa Mountains.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 22, 2011 5:01 PM
Comment #328103

Warped Reality,
Great article by Juan Cole. Thanks for the link. Over the years, Juan Cole has consistently been one of the best resources on the Middle East. His commentaries on events in Iraq during the last decade consistently proved to be right. When the Bush administration lied to Americans about what was going on over there, Cole presented solid, objective assessments. To see such an upbeat assessment of Libya is heartening.

Posted by: phx8 at August 22, 2011 7:35 PM
Comment #328111

It seems to me nowadays that Republican’s way of doing politics isn’t to be superior on the merits, but instead to take any and all achievements an opponent might make and prevent them, and downplay anything they miss as not being worthy of consideration. If they fail at that, they smear.

And no, don’t give me that crap about Bush. Bush really and truly failed, and he had his entire party and part of the other supporting him and his initiatives as he did. Obama’s position was the opposite.

Republicans here will have everybody else take credit, despite the extraordinary steps Obama took to make this happen, and the deployment they helped make controversial.

But you tell me: would the European powers moved on their own without the United states, or taken so much of the burden without Obama? Consider what a rotten track record Bush had with his intervention, and how difficult he found it to get real partners. Consider how entangled Bush got us in the local politics, and how even after nine years in Iraq, we still can’t be sure if we actually made anything better, aside from Saddam’s removal.

Republicans need to stop seeing themselves and their party as the whole affair when it comes to America, and instead see themselves as part of a whole.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 22, 2011 10:00 PM
Comment #328114

It seems to me nowadays that Republican’s way of doing politics isn’t to be superior on the merits, but instead to take any and all achievements an opponent might make and prevent them, and downplay anything they miss as not being worthy of consideration. If they fail at that, they smear.

And no, don’t give me that crap about Bush. Bush really and truly failed, and he had his entire party and part of the other supporting him and his initiatives as he did. Obama’s position was the opposite.

Republicans here will have everybody else take credit, despite the extraordinary steps Obama took to make this happen, and the deployment they helped make controversial.

But you tell me: would the European powers moved on their own without the United states, or taken so much of the burden without Obama? Consider what a rotten track record Bush had with his intervention, and how difficult he found it to get real partners. Consider how entangled Bush got us in the local politics, and how even after nine years in Iraq, we still can’t be sure if we actually made anything better, aside from Saddam’s removal.

Republicans need to stop seeing themselves and their party as the whole affair when it comes to America, and instead see themselves as part of a whole.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 22, 2011 10:30 PM
Comment #328115

It is so sad that comments by some people on WB have to be so one sided so consistently. I’m called a troll for that. Others are considered fine upstanding responsible writers. Horse**** stinks no matter the type of horse it comes from.

“Republicans here will have everybody else take credit, despite the extraordinary steps Obama took to make this happen, and the deployment they helped make controversial.”

This is called horse****. Nobody in this administration should take credit for anything involving the removal of the Libyan tyrant. The Libyans should take credit and if any nation takes credit it should be the British and the French. Obama even when he cooperated with NATO, pulled back after a couple of weeks.

Frankly in a situation like this there should not be an effort to find who to give credit for the action. When the new Libyan constitution is drawn up and Sharia law is implemented are you going to give Obama credit for that too? Maybe you should be consistent and answer yes.

My hope is that his vacation to Martha’s Vineyard be extended to after 2011.

Posted by: tom humes at August 22, 2011 10:40 PM
Comment #328116

Stephen, Your last comment LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL.

Posted by: KAP at August 22, 2011 11:13 PM
Comment #328117

tom humes-
So, indeed, you’re going to deny any and all credit to American service members who participated in the initial attack, and who have maintained support roles in all this?

That, among other things.

Yeah, he didn’t negotiate the entry of NATO, long a foreign policy arm of the United States, into this conflict, especially after the Libyans defying Gaddafi asked him to. Nothing like that, eh?

You need to seriously consider deepening your political perspective further than just what you can say to hurt President Obama, and deny him the appearance of success where it exists as a reality.

KAP-
Well, the truth is, Gaddafi’s going to fall, and he’s going to fall under Obama’s watch, after Obama organized a quick answer to Gaddafi’s attempts to crush the rebellion against him. Just like Bin Laden got double-tapped and dumped into the drink after Obama made it a number one priority, rather than giving up a year or two into his first term, like Bush did.

You can laugh all you want to. People laugh inappropriately all the time. Obama’s taking out the garbage that a lifetime full of Republicans failed to deliver.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 23, 2011 1:05 AM
Comment #328122

Stephen, He may fall under Obama’s watch but it was because of the Libian people he fell and the French and British. Obama gave very little support, so I would give the credit for Gaddafi’s fall to the Libian rebels and the French and British with a minor mention of Obama.

Posted by: KAP at August 23, 2011 8:53 AM
Comment #328124

KAP

The devil made him do it.

Posted by: tom humes at August 23, 2011 11:29 AM
Comment #328127

KAP-
Wow, you would think that I had argued that we won it all by ourselves.

Seriously, what’s the problem? Why are you people so interested in cutting an Obama-shaped hole in the history of recent events in Libya?

I guess you wouldn’t be happy unless he was riding in an open-top hum vee, bellowing a war cry with a saber outstretched, leading our troops into battle.

I know you’ve conveniently forgotten this, since the President left the main fighting to the Libyans on the Ground and the NATO allies in the air, but the first round of attacks, arguably critical in halting Gadaffi’s advance were both ordered by the President, and carried out by our jets. That we took a backseat to them later on doesn’t change that.

The President had the good idea to use America’s power as a catalyzing force that would backstop Libyan’s own ambitions to be free, rather than taking over their revolution for them. Rather than stretch the limits of American power to do little good, he took a little firepower on our part, and used it to give the Libyans their chance to free themselves.

Are you folks that allergic to giving him credit, or noting the contrast between him and his predecessor?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 23, 2011 1:57 PM
Comment #328128

I give credit where credit is due, Stephen, and Obama deserves very little in this case. All because you have a blind admiration of any democrat and that they can do no wrong dosen’t mean I do or any other politician no matter of party affiliation. Yes Stephen, we helped in the first days but the main fighting was done by NATO and the Libyan’s. Does that mean Obama gets the lion’s share of the credit? HARDLY young man. The lion’s share goes to NATO and the libyan rebels and like I stated a minor mention of Obama.

Posted by: KAP at August 23, 2011 2:20 PM
Comment #328129
Does that mean Obama gets the lion’s share of the credit? HARDLY young man. The lion’s share goes to NATO and the libyan rebels and like I stated a minor mention of Obama.

Most of Obama’s credit stems from what he didn’t do and not what he did do. He involved the US military enough to effect change overseas without entangling us in the aftermath or spoiling our image with unwanted allegations of imperialism.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 23, 2011 2:32 PM
Comment #328130

Congratulations to the people of Libya!
All that’s left in Tripoli is to round up Gaddafi and his many sons.

As for McCain and Graham’s joint statement that absolutely refused to give Obama and our troops any credit whatsoever for helping the Libyan’s take back their nation?

Steve Benen calls these two Clowns and all of the clownish conservatives who are agreeing with them: The ‘thank America last’ crowd
Because giving Obama an ounce of credit for ANYTHING is obviously anathema to them.

I also liked the comments that Rep. Keith Ellison made on Olbermann’s show on Current about this:

“Absolute unmitigated gall. This is just an absurdity. NATO doesn’t function without the United States. How McCain and Graham can sit back and sort of say that the United States and President Obama did not contribute to the fall of Gaddafi is plainly an absurdity on its face.” “But you know, these same folks were trying to give everybody except him credit for bin Laden. If President Obama walked on water they would say he couldn’t swim. He can’t do right by them.”
“They [the GOP] will declare themselves the only defenders of the American people all facts to the contrary, and accuse Obama from everything from not being a true American, to being not brave, or not supporting our troops.”
“These are the people who tarnished John Kerry and said he was less than a war hero. Don’t ever expect that they will conform their behavior to the facts on the ground. They won’t. They will simply say whatever is most advantageous to them for as loud and as long as they can.”

Warped & phx8,
I totally agree that Juan Cole consistently provides excellent analysis and insight. I try to read his blog at least once a week.

Posted by: Adrienne at August 23, 2011 2:33 PM
Comment #328131

KAP-
Stepping in at the right time is important. I give the Libyans and our NATO partners credit for all that they’ve done.

But Obama made the decision to intervene promptly, as he did. Other Presidents in my lifetime chose differently, some sticking our asses too far into other nation’s business, others letting appalling atrocities happen, while failing to intervene.

This is not about whether Obama went there and kicked their asses all by himself. This is about Obama’s decisionmaking on foreign policy. You folks want to pretend like it just vaguely happened, that NATO, an American hegemonic policy arm, just suddenly intervened on behalf of the Libyans on its own initiative.

Obama doesn’t leave messy fingerprints all over everything he does, the way Bush did. Your side has gotten too addicted to turning policy decisions into opportunities to grandstand. Obama doesn’t grandstand, doesn’t whine about press coverage when things don’t work out as planned. He simply does things.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 23, 2011 2:40 PM
Comment #328132

Stephen, Obama’s decision to intervene promptly? What presidents in your lifetime 3 maybe 4? I don’t have a side Stephen I am a conservative and will vote reguardless of party affiliation. Obama dosen’t grandstand, he dosen’t have to with the likes of his liberal following just from reading the above comments. His Decision making on foreign policy is like his decision making on our economy, FAILED.

Posted by: KAP at August 23, 2011 3:09 PM
Comment #328133

SD and Adrienne

I am not laughing too hard, just about how pathetically a great job Obama does. lol,lol,lol,lol,lol

Now tell me the game plan when the new Lybian dictator takes over and Sharia law is established. What did we accomplish? Taking out one dictator and putting another one in.

Just for the record being repeated. I was against the Afghan and Iraq wars. I am still against both wars. I am against any military action that does not correct a bad situation. That is a broad umbrella, but an umbrella that takes wisdom to carry. This administration has no wisdom. They have political clout and they use it. But not wisdom.

Posted by: tom humes at August 23, 2011 3:15 PM
Comment #328135

Since the basic premise here is not Col. Quaddafi, but that someone has to be replaced because he is a tyrant.

So when the smoke clears how do we get rid of the Syrian tyrant? Is NATO going to clear the way? And if Iraq responds how do we handle the situation? Do we assist Turkey when they invade Syria? Why?

Does the death toll have to rise to a certain numerical value before someone makes a decision to do something or do we just let them go at it on their own?

Whatever decisions that are made here will be to bolster Democratic Presidental candidate Obama.

Posted by: tom humes at August 23, 2011 3:28 PM
Comment #328136

Too bad the “garbage” man can’t haul some garbage from his own administration.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 23, 2011 3:31 PM
Comment #328138

KAP-
Yet the people of Libya are very soon to be free of Gaddafi, with America playing a constructive role. Folks are certainly thankful there for our help.

You’re invested in Obama’s failure, and that’s sad. I invested myself in the success of my country. I opposed Bush because I felt his policy really didn’t work. I wasn’t simply pretending, or following somebody’s ideological lead. I wasn’t even that liberal at the time. I just saw repeated evidence that Bush pushed policy rather than considering it, and that his people rushed to prove the case for the things his administration wanted to do, rather than stopping, judging the facts on the ground, and listening to what others had to say about different policies.

But your people? As far as I can see, the only common denominator seems to be that Obama must always be judged a failure, and if there is a success to be seen, he must always be pulled away from it as soon as possible.

It just strikes me as so ridiculous the lengths the Republicans and right-wingers go to gain power that they use unwisely to their own detriment and the detriment of all.

tom humes-
Why don’t we wait to see what shakes out, instead of simply assuming an open can of worms and panicking?

The Libyan people will probably adopt some measure of islamically inspired law. That is the norm for the region. However, there is a wide range of outcomes, in that case. One thing for sure, here, Libyans have much less reason now to hate Americans. We helped them in their time of need, and we’ll likely do a lot to help them stabilize their country.

Royal Flush-
Too bad the right can’t stop peddling the garbage these days.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 23, 2011 4:00 PM
Comment #328140

Stephen, Obama’s whole presidency has been a failure. A stimulus that was a bust, a HCR package that no one but you libs want. Unemployment that has been above 9% for a long time. Gas and food prices in the ridiculous range. At least one thing Obama has done was to give Jimmy Carter a boost.

Posted by: KAP at August 23, 2011 4:42 PM
Comment #328142

SD

You keep hammering the right for acknowledging Obama’s failure and wanting us to take pity on him.

You turn right around and call Bush a failure and wanting the right to agree with you on whatever grounds you come up with.

That approach is not what I would call honest and fair. The left continually harps on the right and says we are ruining the country. They say it but don’t back it up. I take it, therefore, that they are just trying to let people know they are still around and standing with nothing to do.

“Why don’t we wait to see what shakes out, instead of simply assuming an open can of worms and panicking?”

First of all no panic here. I know what is going to happen.

Second of all I just answered, but waiting for what shakes out just gives the left some time to formulate some kind of off the wall talk that, as usual, will not be good, factual, or even begin to work.

Third of all, you can have all the worms.

Posted by: tom humes at August 23, 2011 5:34 PM
Comment #328147

KAP-
Why bother with the facade of balance? You seem to echo the talking points of the same people you claim to be independent from, and totally deny the viewpoint of those who you should be willing to listen to, as a real independent.

I’m not fooling anybody, or trying to fool anybody. But that’s not merely in terms of what I believe, but why I believe it. I would submit that there is objective evidence that this President has done a good job. I have presented that evidence.

You have ignored it. Yet you continually repeat the talking points as if I should take seriously a point of view that entirely neglects the first few days of the military action against Qadaffi’s regime.

tom humes-
I documented Bush’s failures, I didn’t just claim them. I documented the Republican’s efforts to obstruct, I didn’t just claim them. Only in rhetoric can one turn this around on Obama, and that is all you have.

You say I don’t back it up, but I constantly am. When I do, in fact, you hit me for providing links and conveying the points of those at the end of those links. You’re fine with saying I don’t back things up, and then you’re fine with finding fault with how I back up my points!

And yes, you are panicking, are assuming the worst outcome. Your people have been doing nothing else since Obama was elected. Everything is phrased in apocalyptic terms.

Well, I’m sick of letting folks like you keep this country in it’s awful fever dream. It’s time for the fever to break and reason to reclaim it’s rightful authority in America.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 23, 2011 6:33 PM
Comment #328150

Stephen, You are truly in the minority if you think Obama has done a good job with his numbers in the tank. Even his own party is distancing themselves. Stephen if Obama did half as good a job as Clinton I’d give him some credit, but even Jimmy Carter can look himself in the mirror and say “finally someone who is worse then me”

Posted by: KAP at August 23, 2011 7:02 PM
Comment #328153

You say I don’t back it up, but I constantly am. When I do, in fact, you hit me for providing links and conveying the points of those at the end of those links. You’re fine with saying I don’t back things up, and then you’re fine with finding fault with how I back up my points!

And yes, you are panicking, are assuming the worst outcome. Your people have been doing nothing else since Obama was elected. Everything is phrased in apocalyptic terms.”

You cannot backup the charge that I am panicking. The reason is that I do not run in panic mode. So try something else.

What do I put in apocalyptic terms? Nothing. Again, you are reaching for straws and keep drawing the short one. Keep trying.

You very seldom put links or citations where your “original thought”? comes from. Your opinion is yours and yours alone. You fail to say it is your opinion most of the time. You write things as if they were your original thought and everybody knows they are not. I really don’t care about the opinions of other people. I read them for interest only. I read factual writing and never read fiction, if I can help it. I don’t have time for fiction. I get enough of that here on WB.

“Well, I’m sick of letting folks like you keep this country in it’s awful fever dream.”

That is the thing you keep getting hammered here on. You are sick of me and others like me. That appears to be hateful.

As much as I don’t like what is written by the left here, I hate none of the writers, and I don’t get sick of them. They are people who have ideas and opinions and for now can express them quite freely.

Marantha

Posted by: tom humes at August 23, 2011 7:55 PM
Comment #328160

KAP-
I will not support a candidate or forsake them on account of poll numbers. I am not a sheep who has to look to everybody else to make my decision. Bin Laden’s dead. Disasters are responded to promptly, and setbacks aren’t blamed on big government. The wars that need to be wrapped up are wrapping up, if not as fast as some would prefer, and the military engagement he did decided to get into is close to a successful resolution, with Obama taking care of another Republican’s unfinished business on terrorist leaders.

Republicans claim their policies are helping the economy, but the slowdown in job gains is almost entirely due to the layoffs of state and local workers that they are almost entirely to blame for, one way or another. And don’t tell me we would have seen a near government shutdown or that humilating dance with default with a Democratic Congress. You may think that you can pin everything that happens on Obama’s watch on Obama, but I pay attention to the votes in Congress, so I know damn well that this default dance is a matter of what Republicans forced with their majority.

I will defend a person who is doing alright and struggling against others, if I percieve that the others would do worse, that the others are simply trying to succeed despite being incompetent or just plain nuts. If you could show me a Republican who has a prayer of being nominated who can successfully tack to the left without losing his or her voters, I might be intimidated. My feeling, though, is that whoever wins the Republican Primary will have to do so by saying plenty of things that they’ll regret in later months.

Obama, meanwhile, is an extraordinary campaigner, who will not fail to run on Republican’s dysfunctionality.

And Republicans will not fail to be dysfunctional. In fact, they’ve enshrined everything that’s contributed to voter’s alienation with them over the last year as a virtue. Republicans are a political suicide cult, and there is going to be about a year’s worth of this kind of BS before Obama has to actually consider a general election opponent.

So why would I take your trash-talk seriously?

tom humes-
I want my country to return to the real world, where the country has needs that supercede the political success of its leaders. It’s not about hating you. I don’t need to hate you to find your fiscal politics both naive and mathematically implausible. I don’t need to hate you to find your military policies heavy-handed and ineffective. I don’t need to hate you to have concluded that small government policies have become an idol unto themselves, promoted even when there’s a cost to our nation’s economy, even when the consequences of those policies endanger the very fiscal situation they’re meant to protect.

I left the Republican Party when I got the sense that it’s policies would require me to take leave of my senses to support them, when I got the sense that preserving what was good about America seemed to take second place to getting into needless, often frivolous political fights with the Democrats, when it all became more about throwing hateful accusations Democrat’s way than actually doing anything constructive.

I don’t need government to be overwhelmingly big, but I do need it to be functional, and for those in charge of it to run it conscientiously and with practical good sense before political. There’s what aspire to with our agenda for government, and then there’s what the real world will allow to work well, and for too long, Republicans and folks who call themselves conservatives have failed to recognize a distinction can exist and has existed between one and the other.

That is the fever dream we have to wake from. That is the delirium this nation needs to move past, and waken from.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 23, 2011 9:32 PM
Comment #328163

Bin Laden’s dead, So is that helping Obama, NO, and neither is Libya. Disasters responded to promptly, BP oil spill? NOT!! Obama is an extraodinary campaigner, Yes he is and has been since he took office. Who do you suppose we pin things that happen on Obama’s watch on? Bush???? The republican majority in the house is kinda like pay back Stephen, for the BS your party deliverd when they had control of the whole thing. You may think he is doing alrightv but a majority of people see it differently. So you have hitched your wagon to a falling star, Stephen.

Posted by: KAP at August 23, 2011 10:42 PM
Comment #328164

So you don’t hate.

“I don’t need to hate you to find your fiscal politics both naive and mathematically implausible.”

This statement is condescending and elitist. There is nothing naive or mathematically implausible in by beliefs. That may seem that way to you but the truth of the matter is that you don’t know what my fiscal politics are all about. So how can you be that way? There is no possible way for what I believe to fall the way you said it does. I don’t use that tactic to belittle you and I won’t. I can say with all candor that I believe that the fiscal policy of this country is so screwed up by politicians of all ilk that it is going to take some painful solutions to get out of this mess. And spending is what the government has been doing for decades and here we are at a crossroad and having to make these painful choices, and nobody in government has the integrity to make the choices necessary.

Posted by: tom humes at August 23, 2011 11:38 PM
Comment #328171

KAP-
And I don’t care if I look and see it helping him politically! I care that he cares about doing his job right.

If you can’t see just how badly the previous president messed things up, and how Republican Obstructionism is keeping everybody from moving on, then that’s a tragedy, because that means you’ll never escape his legacy. Obama’s policies brought back jobs where demand and economic growth, left to itself, would not.

You can talk about payback, but I consider that kind of politics immature. I didn’t care to pay back the Republicans for Clinton by going after Bush. I only became a fierce critic of his when I realized just how screwed up his policies were, and how incredibly unwilling they were to solve the problems they created, make up for their mistakes.

I will not regret having supported Obama. Falling star or not, he puts policy before politics, and that’s what I want out of him.

tom humes-
The problem isn’t spending, so much as the failure to pay for it out of pocket, and the stubborn insistence that taxes can never be raised.

If the tax revenues had been raised for it, rather than cut before hand, the Iraq War and all the other spending needn’t have added so much to the national debt.

They only added to it because of a deliberate policy decision that make keeping a promise about tax rates more important than keeping things together.

And really, what we need isn’t necessarily painless or painful, but something else, something that works. Republicans and right-wingers keep on trying to make a trick work here, where in fact they should be simply managing the numbers correctly over the long run. All this could have been avoided if Bush sought offsets for his spending.

If you find my critique belittling, that’s your problem. I’ve just never seen the sort of powerful tax liberated response you’ve seen, or the job creation you say would come.

What we need is the bravery to deal with our fiscal problem over the long run, and in part as an economic problem.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 24, 2011 1:52 AM
Comment #328173

Stephen, This may come as a shock to you but for the first 2 years of Obama’s presidency your party owned the government, so republican obstructionism is just your way of not accepting responsibility for your parties screw ups. Yes Bush did mess up but did Obama have to continue with the screw up?

Posted by: KAP at August 24, 2011 9:06 AM
Comment #328174

You simply see fiscal matters thru a different lens. The biggest problem is that both parties, and you can’t deny it, are irresponsible with fiscal matters. Not one over the other, just both parties. The legislate matters that should not even have gotten to the point of needing legislation. In other words trying to fix a broken problem that they created to fix something that was not broken. Typical congress.

Since the first of the year the Obama Administration has proposed 340 regulations at a cost of $65 billion to the creators of jobs. Investor’s Business Daily has reported that more than 4200 regulation in the pipeline and that does not count the clean air rules at EPA, new derivative rules, FCC net neutrality rules, or the Dodd-Frank regulations which are still being written. At regulatory agencies the bureaucrats have increased 13% and budgets have increased 16%. Those are all areas that the government is growing at an alarming rate and will not do what people want it to do nor that is good for the nations economy.

Growing government is done very well by the left. Growing government is increasing the spending of the government. Growing government is detrimental to the nations health. And the left here is in denial. The government cannot spend its way out of this mess. It only adds to the problem. All of these measures are job killers for the people who do the job creations.

Maranatha

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 9:23 AM
Comment #328177
to fix something that was not broken
Care to give a few examples?

You list some regulations in your next paragraph, but each of those rules addresses a clearly identifiable problem such as a market failure or other issue.

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 24, 2011 10:27 AM
Comment #328178

W.R. Illegal imigration is a good example of trying to fix something that already has a fix. Just simply enforceing the laws already on the books would solve the problem. Regulations, companies are regulated to death, granted some saftey and health regulations are necessary and ecological regulations. Regulators are at the point of being rediculous and petty.

Posted by: KAP at August 24, 2011 10:49 AM
Comment #328179

W.R. Illegal imigration is a good example of trying to fix something that already has a fix. Just simply enforceing the laws already on the books would solve the problem. Regulations, companies are regulated to death, granted some saftey and health regulations are necessary and ecological regulations. Regulators are at the point of being rediculous and petty.

Posted by: KAP at August 24, 2011 10:50 AM
Comment #328182

KAP-
Like I said, I know the vote totals. I know that your people literally prevent hundreds of Obama’s appointments from going through, even when they had no particular problems with the candidates themselves. I know that about eighty percent of the bills that came out of the house were simply flatly filibustered, about 400 bills by the end of 2010. I know the previous two Congresses to this one had the greatest numbers of filibuster of any Congresses in American history. I know what the effect of having to get sixty votes on every bill that needed a hope of passing is.

You would have me accept your vague generalities about responsibilities when I know specific facts about just how your side did its damage. You would browbeat me into ignoring the organized and largely successful effort your side engaged in to stifle political change in Washington, and reverse your electoral fortunes.

As a person who understands the legislative process, your arguments ring hollow to me. I know that those filibusters kill those bills just as effectively as a down vote would, and without the downside of requiring the majority that Democrats have. The President can’t just order things up from Congress if his bills get killed in the Senate. Every law requires both houses, and your side deliberately paralyzed one of them with a parliamentary method taken to extremes it literally had never been taken to before.

Quit BSing me. Quit trying to shame me with talk of my partisanship into accepting arguments that objective facts don’t support.

tom humes-
Don’t you BS me, either. Democrats were willing to maintain PayGo. Republicans deliberately chose to lower taxes, deliberately chose not to levy taxes to support the new spending programs. To the degree that both side are responsible, one side is decidedly more responsible for our current condition than the other, and the argument that says the blame is equal, or greater on the Democrats’ side is merely an argument of rhetorical expedience for the right that failed to discipline itself.

As for growing government? How about growing up about government? How about admitting that what we’ve gotten for years of supposedly freeing Americans from government are Americans who are exploited more by big business, deeper in debt, unable to retire because some morons on Wall Street crashed the economy in a way that wasn’t possible before Reagan, Bush and your other leaders got their way.

I’m sick of coming up with good arguments for why regulations are needed in certain places only to get a dogma spouted at me in return by those who certainty belies an unwillingness to acknowledge the failure of their theories.

Solving the jobs problem by lowering taxes for the so-called job creators didn’t work. In fact, job creation sucked worse than it has than at any time since they started counting in 1947, and that was even before the Great Recession took on.

And not regulating the banks? Simply put, there will always be people who try to generate their wealth by playing games, rather than doing what they’re supposed to. Like I’ve said before, the most efficient business, profit wise, is conning people out of their money, since your production costs are essentially zero.

We need to narrow the range of permissable businesses and business tactics to those what are actually meaningful in a productive real world sense. We are in the hole we are in, because the system was essentially designed to put a lot of people in debt, and treat those impossible to resolve debts as if they were profits the companies would one day see, and then make bets on those money-making debts making an ever greater profit.

The real job killers, the real recession starters and poverty makers have been these big economic downturns precipitated by out of control financial sectors, whose irresponsibility and structural problems cripple the creation of businesses, jobs, and long term economic stability.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 24, 2011 11:37 AM
Comment #328183
simply enforceing the laws already on the books

That’s something easier said than done. In any case, I don’t think this is an area where Obama or other Democrats are advocating more laws/regulations. It’s usually the GOP that advocates hairbrained schemes to control immigration. On the other hand, a while back there was bipartisian support for legalization of some of those immigrants provided that they fulfilled certain conditions. Too bad the far right fought that effort to eliminate needless government regulations.

Regulations, companies are regulated to death

Instead of trotting out this talking point with no basis other than conservative dogma, why don’t you provide evidence of companies being regulated to death needlessly AND the culpability of Leftists supporting said regulations.

In any case, Obama is leading an effort to look for any such regulations in case they do exist:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-01-18/obama-orders-regulation-review-to-boost-growth-wsj-reports.html

Posted by: Warped Reality at August 24, 2011 11:43 AM
Comment #328187

WR

Dust in farming
Boeing

Those are only a sample of the type of regs that are killers.

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 12:19 PM
Comment #328188


SD

As usual you are wrong. How does one debate the negative concept and denial?

You have given your opinion and I have given mine. I have cited fact and your response is bs; “don’t bs me”. Better get a grip on what facts are and what bs is.

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 12:29 PM
Comment #328189

Well said Tom. Maybe one day Stephen will get off the BS and realize facts.

Posted by: KAP at August 24, 2011 12:36 PM
Comment #328191

Stephen, FACT, You had 60 votes in the Senate and a majority in the House and the presidency for 2 years. Republicans couldn’t obstruct unless your party let them or some on your side thought they had a better idea.

Posted by: KAP at August 24, 2011 12:59 PM
Comment #328192

SD and WR

Here is some more “BS”.

EPA has plans to take 81 gigawatts off line that is being produced by coal plants. That is 1/5 of the electrical energy produced. Of course the blackouts don’t mean anything. Nor does the loss of 60,000 jobs according to Obama’s Commerce Dept..

Just thought you could use some more bs for this Wednesday.

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 1:39 PM
Comment #328193

More bs for the left

The control of the coal plants being taken off line are under state control. Therefore the feds have no jurisdiction. Isn’t that the same as the AZ immigration situation. It a fed issue and AZ cannot get involved. Well this is a state issue and the fed should not get involved. The EPA usurped the authority.

Electric bills to consumers are reported to be going up 11%. Ya, we are all wealthy. We can take the hit. Now that is bs.
How many people living on a sole income of SS can take that kind of hit. Well Obama and his comrades showed us what they thought of the elderly on SS. They did not give a COLA to SS for two years, but a whole string of Obama’s cronies got thousands of dollars in raises just recently. And they already were making six figure salaries. Obama threatened to not send SS checks out because he could not get the debt limit increase he wanted. Now, you see what his priorities are. The people who for decades contributed with their blood, sweat and tears to make this a better place to live, get thrown under the bus by this Saint Barry of Obama aka Harrison J. Bounel.

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 1:52 PM
Comment #328194

Damn. Look at what Wikileaks just leaked:

Leaked cable: Sen. McCain promised to help Gaddafi obtain U.S. military hardware

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) promised to help former Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi obtain U.S. military hardware, as one of the United States’ partners in the war on terror, according to a U.S. diplomatic cable released Wednesday by anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.

The meeting, which took place just over a year ago on Aug. 14, 2009, included other influential Americans, such as Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Sen. Susan Collins (R-SC) and Senate Armed Services Committee staffer Richard Fontaine, the document explains.

Really makes all their criticism of Obama that much more pathetic and disgusting, does it not?

PS. Go Wikileaks!!!

Posted by: Adrienne at August 24, 2011 2:20 PM
Comment #328195

That those 3 senators would propose that does not surprise me in the least. Three liberal senators who continually place American interests (the people’s interests) out of bounds. Was this to be earth shaking news? Not to me. I could find more items on those three and others that is just as detrimental.

Maranatha

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 3:27 PM
Comment #328196

tom humes-
Not so fast.

According to the CRS:

1) Many of these plants are the oldest and dirtiest, exempted from clean air laws for years. They don’t even have scrubbers.

2) They experience significant downtime(up only about 41% of the time) and are being outcompeted by the cleaner natural gas powered plants.

3) Excess generation capacity is in large supply, so it won’t be blackouts all over the place.

4) The power industry was able to add much more than this level of power generation in a three year period.

5) As the article states:

In one example, the EPA estimates that an air-transport rule to clamp down on smog-causing sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide would help prevent 21,000 cases of bronchitis and 23,000 heart attacks, and save 36,000 lives. That’s, at the high end, $290 billion in health benefits, compared with $2.8 billion per year in costs (according to the EPA) by 2014. “In most cases,” CRS concludes, “the benefits are larger.”

But go ahead, pass on the industry lobbyists’ positions.

As for Harrison J. Bounel? Good God. For people who don’t appreciate how far your attacks on Obama have gone off the deep end, this is a single sourced allegation that Obama had an alias he used to skip out on his credit or something.

It just doesn’t stop, does it? You guys attacked him on the Birth Certificate, on being a Muslim, on basically anything that would make him look bad. Worst of all, most of it is just more of the same fever dream crap. The Conservative movement has gone into delirium. It will buy anything and say anything to diminish the Democratic Party, especially after all the self-inflicted wounds and unforced errors that it’s committed upon itself.

You may call me an elitist for saying this, but I pity Republicans nowadays. They’re trapped in worlds of lies, trapped in worlds of rationalization, and not only can they not get out of it, but they lash out at anybody who tries to bring them back to their senses.

Oh, and about the constitutionality of taking the plants offline, pollution doesn’t respect state-boundaries, and neither do power grids, which with the exception of Texas (I think. I could be wrong) are nearly all interstate entities.

You can’t just make any accusations or claims you want, you have to back them up. And by that, I mean, actually back them up, not just say you’ve got them backed up.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 24, 2011 3:53 PM
Comment #328197

tom humes-
While you’re at it, can you tell me why Gadaffi sent John Boehner a letter thanking him for criticizing the President’s policies?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 24, 2011 3:56 PM
Comment #328198

Why should I explain anything Boehner does. He is no friend of mine. You have a short memory.

Now you say many of those plants…. How many? The EPA is taking 1/5 of them and that is sizeable. You claim that the balance of the grid can make up 81 gigawatts. So explain to me how they are going to make up that much loss. And you take EPA at it word? Gheesh.

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 5:09 PM
Comment #328200

tom humes-
I already explained: excess capacity; competition from newer, cleaner, probably cheaper gas-fired plants; and energy company’s capacity to bring online new plants at a fast pace.

Plus, we don’t have to take the EPA at its word, if that bothers you, because the numbers and figures I cited were brought up by the Congressional Research Service.

What I don’t see here are the facts that justify having us take the otherwise naive position that shutting down old, inefficient plants would seriously injure grids that already have more capacity than they need to generate electricity.

From the article:

Third, electric utilities can add capacity fairly quickly if needed — from 2000 to 2003, utilities added more than 200 gigawatts of new capacity, far, far more than the amount that will be lost between now and 2017.

Or, put another way, in the same time frame as were going to see with the shut down of those plants, utilities could replace that generation capacity almost five times over.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 24, 2011 5:28 PM
Comment #328207

Government numbers are never accurate. Using them for your source is not putting forth an accurate position.

Posted by: tom humes at August 24, 2011 9:37 PM
Comment #328225

tom humes-
I think if you’re just blanketly invalidating a whole category of facts in response to my discrediting of your argument, then it’s clear I’ve won the debate here.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 25, 2011 1:27 PM
Comment #328228

Just like the liberal government you can claim anything you want to. The proof is in the pudding.

Posted by: tom humes at August 25, 2011 3:52 PM
Comment #328237

tom humes-
No, I do not believe I can just claim anything I want. If I question the government’s figures on something, I’ve got to have cause to argue it, or I’ve got to explain why your framing of those figures is wrong.

That’s why I cite the facts and figures I do. I figure if I don’t, then nobody has any reason, other than their already existing beliefs, to believe what I say. My goal is to spread my point of view, persuade people of it, so I believe that if somebody asks me how I come to the conclusion I have, I should be able to explain it.

You? You can go back and forth with your friends, but do you really convince anybody who isn’t already inclined to think your way?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 25, 2011 9:08 PM
Comment #328258

Do You?

This is not about me. I get blasted for talking the way you do, but you get a free pass.

Posted by: tom humes at August 26, 2011 12:01 PM
Comment #328276

tom humes-
Don’t play the victim here. My response to your challenge was to research for myself, find out if I could refute your facts with other facts.

Your response to me was to declare all of my facts unreliable, based on their association with the government. No explanation, no countervailing facts, just broad ad hominem argument.

Worse yet, one that depends upon me and other readers being as contemptuous of government as you.

I think I can convince people who aren’t political blood brothers to me. That’s the point of the references I make. Even when partisan, I favor those sources that can inform people’s opinion, and back mine on a factual, corroborateable basis.

You? You’ve made the decision to try and manipulate people’s emotions to get your way in the argument. Socialist this, lies that, and talking points that could have been ripped out of a lobbying firm’s Electronic Press Kit.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at August 26, 2011 11:23 PM
Comment #328282

I will let you have the last word since it has fallen on deaf ears.

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Comment #330875

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