Where we agreed

President Obama said lots of things. We agree on some. Conservatives agree that we need to upgrade our labor force for the 21st Century. A consensus is building for immigration reform. We should invest in infrastructure and develop energy for the future and we all believe in research and development. We all want more economic growth that will allow us to support all these things we all want.

Details are not the same. Generally, President Obama sees government as the engine of all this. Republicans see government often as catalyst and enabler but rarely the driver. Government should create conditions for prosperity, but it is the people who create prosperity & wealth.

Listing what we want is easy, but without a more robust economic growth than we have seen in recent years, little will be possible. The President's top priority should be jobs and economic growth. I think we all agree on that. The President also cannot spend money on new programs until we get the deficit under control. Making it happens is hard.

Posted by Christine & John at February 13, 2013 4:56 AM
Comments
Comment #361615

Weak job growth and a fragile economy, and all we get from this President are simplified lists of what sounds good and partisan lists blaming others.

Guess that’s easier than acknowledging the rising prices, higher taxes and admitting to dividing the people amongst themselves.

Posted by: kctim at February 13, 2013 10:44 AM
Comment #361620

The State of the Union address convinced me that obama is indeed transforming himself. He began his first presidency by comparing himself to Lincoln and now seems to believe he has morphed into Jack Kennedy.

He still sounds like a Carter/Johnson child to me.

Posted by: Royal Flush at February 13, 2013 1:55 PM
Comment #361621

It’s interesting that C&J write a couple paragraphs on a subject in the red column and Stephen Daugherty writes pages and pages of material in the blue column. It is the difference between someone who wants to bring up a subject for actual discussion and another who loves to hear himself speak.

Obama has done nothing for the economy. Things are continuing to get worse. I went grocery shopping with my wife today; something I haven’t done in a long time. I was in total shock at the prices of food. Someone in the government is lying when they say inflation is low. Obama has the same problem as Stephen Daugherty and other liberals; just make a claim…it doesn’t matter if it’s true. They just make the statements.

Posted by: George at February 13, 2013 1:56 PM
Comment #361623

This article says it all:

“It’s time for the State of the Union address, which means the president is pivoting back to jobs once more. It’s an annual game where President Obama pretends to be focused on employment and many in the media pretend to believe him.

Back in 2009, the president promised never to “rest” until the job situation was fixed. Nearly four years later, he’s done a lot of resting.

According to The Weekly Standard, Pres. Obama has had 83 vacation days overall and Factcheck.org says he took 26 of those in 2009. That means the president has taken at least 57 vacation days since his vow not to “rest.”

On Sept. 15, 2009, Obama spoke to General Motors plant employees in Warren, Ohio, about the “economic crisis.” That’s when the president made his promise. “But I want you all to know, I will not rest until anybody who’s looking for a job can find one — and I’m not talking about just any job, but good jobs that give every American decent wages and decent benefits and a fair shot at the American Dream,” he told an applauding crowd. Obama has made the same promise (either as “I” or “we”) since then, but that was the first evidence of his promise.

Dictionary.com gives several definitions for “rest.” and one of the more generous of those is “a period or interval of inactivity, repose, solitude, or tranquility.” By most definitions, that would include vacation.

But 1,245 days later, including at least 57 days off, millions of Americans are still out of work with unemployment at 7.9 percent, 0.1 percent higher than when he took office.

Now, the White House is deflecting criticism by saying jobs have always mattered. According to the Feb. 11 USA Today, “He will not be ‘pivoting’ back to the topic, [aides] add.” The paper then cited spokesman Jay Carney and told readers “Obama has made jobs and the economy his primary emphasis since he began seeking the presidency in 2007.”

http://cnsnews.com/blog/dan-gainor/obama-57-vacation-days-vowing-he-will-not-rest-until-anyone-can-find-good-job

Posted by: George at February 13, 2013 2:02 PM
Comment #361626

Not only has Obama taken vacation, each night he goes to bed and sleeps! He RESTS every night! The NERVE of that guy!

Posted by: phx8 at February 13, 2013 2:36 PM
Comment #361630

Oh, God! Another hypocrite!

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 13, 2013 3:24 PM
Comment #361631

Let me ask this: what if this economy, unemployment, and dismal jobs belonged to GWB, and what if it was GWB who spent millions of the tax payers dollars on vacations, after making the statement he would not rest until “But I want you all to know, I will not rest until anybody who’s looking for a job can find one — and I’m not talking about just any job, but good jobs that give every American decent wages and decent benefits and a fair shot at the American Dream,”. What would the left say about GWB? Would you believe he deserved a rest? Or would you believe he deserved a pass? I’m not trying to be smart, I’m asking a legitimate question. Would you be so eager to defend Bush?

Posted by: George at February 13, 2013 3:50 PM
Comment #361632

George, I wish obama would take a very, very long rest. Perhaps one that lasted about four years.

Posted by: Royal Flush at February 13, 2013 4:13 PM
Comment #361633

No, because presidents do not really go on vacation. Never. They may seek relaxation, or change locations, or work out, or play golf, but it doesn’t change the fact they are on the job at all times. The office follows them whereever they go.

Now, there are lazy and there are hard working presidents. Some have been known for putting in long hours and micromanaging, while others have been notorious for sleeping late, working short days, and turning in early. Clinton was known for working long days. Reagan was notoriously lazy.

But how hard a person works, or the number of hours put in, is not necessarily the best measure of leadership.

Presidential leadership depends on charisma, setting an inspiring example, motivating others to do their best, putting the right people in the right places, and delegating authority but not responsibility. It simultaneously requires devotion to ideals and a practical willingness to compromise.

That is why I have said in the past, you can tell a lot about a president by the way they run their campaigns.

As for Bush, I think his biggest mistake was putting the wrong people in the wrong positions. You could argue he made that mistake on the basis of his ideology, but in practical terms, the wrong people in the wrong places resulted in bad decisions.

Posted by: phx8 at February 13, 2013 4:16 PM
Comment #361634

Seems like a lot of conservatives in this column are looking for a government/Obama solution to economic growth. Very confusing.

Posted by: Schwamp at February 13, 2013 4:18 PM
Comment #361635

By the way, the presidency of Bush #41 is pretty much ignored these days, but I thought he did a good job.

Posted by: phx8 at February 13, 2013 4:22 PM
Comment #361638

“…delegating authority but not responsibility.”

obama did delegate authority regarding dealing with the Benghazi murders on 9/11 and left Washington to campaign; apparently believing that to be more important than staying in the situation room and dealing with the situation second by second as he did with the Seals killing bin laden. When the shit hit the fan he took no responsibility then…or now.

Posted by: Royal Flush at February 13, 2013 5:07 PM
Comment #361647

phx8, what proof do you have of Clinton’s long work days and Reagan’s laziness. As or putting the wrong people in positions of authority; Obama has managed to do tis very thing. He has chosen to nominate and place by executive authority the wrong people in all positions. Even Hillary was a complete failure as SOS.

“Seems like a lot of conservatives in this column are looking for a government/Obama solution to economic growth. Very confusing.”

Posted by: Schwamp at February 13, 2013 4:18 PM

The confusing thing is why Obama interfered at all. The economy would have corrected itself, had the laws of the lands been allowed to work. But Obama’s insistence on protecting the unions caused trillions in debt.

Re/delegating authority; Obama has had a hands off position on everything that has been done. He gave the authority to his worshippers to set every failed program in motion and as a result he just sets back and says, “I didn’t do that”.

phx8, so now you are “for Bush” after you were “against Bush”. Somehow I consider you comment about Bush to be a complete lie.

Posted by: George at February 13, 2013 6:31 PM
Comment #361654
What would the left say about GWB?

George, I’ll answer that with 3 words:

Read My Lips…


Posted by: Weary Willie at February 13, 2013 9:16 PM
Comment #361655
As for Bush, I think his biggest mistake was putting the wrong people in the wrong positions. You could argue he made that mistake on the basis of his ideology, but in practical terms, the wrong people in the wrong places resulted in bad decisions.

Posted by: phx8 at February 13, 2013 4:16 PM

phx8, can you spell hypocrite?

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 13, 2013 9:18 PM
Comment #361656

“phx8, so now you are “for Bush” after you were “against Bush”. Somehow I consider you comment about Bush to be a complete lie.”

George,

phx8 was talking about GH Bush. I happen to share his admiration for the elder Bush. His own party turned against him for doing the right thing on taxes and fiscal responsibility. His conduct of foreign policy with the assistance of Baker was very effective. Geez, he even made a profit in the first Gulf War.


Posted by: Rich at February 13, 2013 9:20 PM
Comment #361657

George,
YOu write: “phx8, so now you are “for Bush” after you were “against Bush”. Somehow I consider you comment about Bush to be a complete lie.”

There have been two presidents named ‘Bush.’ Come on, George. Get in the game. The administration of Bush #41 was far different from the younger Bush.

The idea that the economy would have corrected itself during the economic collapse is ludicrous. When the Republican House made clear its intention to not do anything, the stock market responded with its largest one day loss in history (10/13/08), dropping 777 points on the DJIA, resulting in a trillion dollar loss in just one day. Your path of non-interference would have resulted in another Great Depression.

As for presidential work loads… Today, the work schedule of the president is actually posted online. In the past, it could be put together through the public record and through the comments of staff. And just to repeat the point, work load does not a competent leader make.

Royal Flush,
Here is a list of attacks against US diplomatic missions:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terrorist_attacks_on_U.S._diplomatic_facilities

By objective measurement, when it comes to the security of diplomatic missions, the performance of the Obama administration is far better than his predecessors, Republican & Democrat alike.

Posted by: phx8 at February 13, 2013 9:21 PM
Comment #361659

phx8

TARP worked and was paid back. The stimulus of 2009 was poorly targeted. It was also not free. It is really a subtle argument. If I spend a lot of money I will get a result, but how much is it worth and do we buy short term recovery at longer term misery?

It would be great if we could just spend our way to recovery.

I wrote year ago that a REAL stimulus was all that shale gas. That contributed much more to recovery than the Obama stimulus. Obama should keep his word an make it easier to get permits.

Re work - it depends on what you do. Obama is in constant campaign, even now in a second term. That takes effort and energy, but it helps his own reputation and success. It is not the country’s business to self-promote and attack political enemies.

Posted by: C&J at February 13, 2013 11:10 PM
Comment #361660

Well after watching Obama on the state of the union ,then the repub response from Rubio and some of the Paul response lets just say we made the right choice this past election cycle. Obama tells us we need smart government which after the assault on the government the previous decade by conservatives is most certainly true. The conservatives, Rubio and Paul want to make the government small, but efficient. Smart or small the difference between liberal and conservative thought today.

The other notable difference was the tone set by each of these speeches. Obama talked of ideas, Paul spoke of events and Rubio spoke of Obama.

Eleanor Roosevelt said it best- Great minds speak of ideas, Average minds speak of events and small minds speak of people. Last evening proved this out.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 13, 2013 11:20 PM
Comment #361664
By objective measurement, when it comes to the security of diplomatic missions, the performance of the Obama administration is far better than his predecessors, Republican & Democrat alike.

Posted by: phx8 at February 13, 2013 9:21 PM

That is by far the most asinine statement I have read in a long time. Far better than his predecessors!? Tell that to J. Christopher Stevens, phx8!

The last ambassador killed was Adolph Dubs, in Afghanistan, 1979 and Jimmy Carter was President. Didn’t he also preside over the Iran Hostage situation? Didn’t he have 3 days warning that it would happen, also? But, I doubt Jimmy Carter had the callous disregard for the lives under his watch that this incompetent, empty suit did. I don’t think Jimmy Carter just ignored, lied, fabricated stories, and arrested innocent scapegoats like this maladroit poser did.

performance is far better…! Geesh, phx8, you’d make my eyebrows chuckle with that one if it wasn’t so profoundly stupid and insulting.

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 14, 2013 12:52 AM
Comment #361668

More conspiracy theories Willie?

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at February 14, 2013 8:32 AM
Comment #361673

Weary Willie,
Read the link. Let’s talk objective measurement, not conspiracy theory. For every administration since Carter, there have been more attacks on US diplomatic missions and more fatalities. In the case of each administration, you can easily make the same accusations that you now make against Obama, and worse. Much worse. Sorry to pop your bubble with facts. Just go right ahead promoting conspiracy theory. We progressives count on people like you to discredit yourself.

Posted by: phx8 at February 14, 2013 11:33 AM
Comment #361697

The President is not directly responsible for diplomatic security. It is the job of professionals.

In order to do their jobs, diplomats need to get out among the people. There is always some risk. Eventually somebody gets hurt or killed. The alternative is hunkering down behind the wire and that is not acceptable.

I don’t think that the Obama folks handled the reports after the attacks well. But they should not have to take the blame for the actual events.

Security could always better, but our people overseas have to take reasonable risks. Risks should be managed but if we will not take risks, we should just stay home.

What I worry about in all this “analysis” is that security will take too much precedence over the mission. People choose to take risks to get the job done. It cannot be otherwise. We have to go to dangerous places and some of us will get killed. Does anybody really have an alternative?

Posted by: C&J at February 14, 2013 4:37 PM
Comment #361713

US State Department accused of systematic failures that led to fatal Benghazi consulate attack

In an independent report made public on Tuesday evening, investigators say they found systematic failures and leadership and management deficiencies within two bureaus of the State Department, resulting in a security posture that was inadequate for Benghazi and grossly inadequate to deal with the attack that took place.

…http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/202446.pdf

Overall, the number of Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS) security staff in Benghazi on the day of the attack and in the months and weeks leading up to it was inadequate, despite repeated requests from Special Mission Benghazi and Embassy Tripoli for additional staffing. Board members found a pervasive realization among personnel who served in Benghazi that the Special Mission was not a high priority for Washington when it came to security-related requests, especially those relating to staffing.

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 15, 2013 12:17 AM
Comment #361714

Obama’s September 11 Phone Call


In a statement issued Tuesday evening, the White House said, “President Obama spoke with Prime Minister Netanyahu for an hour tonight as a part of their ongoing consultations. The two leaders discussed the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear program, and our close cooperation on Iran and other security issues…

While Americans were under assault in Benghazi, the president found time for a non-urgent, politically useful, hour-long call to Prime Minister Netanyahu. And his senior national security staff had to find time to arrange the call, brief the president for the call, monitor it, and provide an immediate read-out to the media.
Posted by: Weary Willie at February 15, 2013 12:18 AM
Comment #361715


Panetta: Obama Absent Night of Benghazi

Obama did not call or communicate in anyway with the defense secretary that night. There were no calls about what was going on in Benghazi. He never called to check-in.
The 5 o’clock meeting was a pre-scheduled 30-minute session, where, according to Panetta’s recollection, they spent about 20 minutes talking a lot about the American embassy that was surrounded in Egypt and the situation that was just unfolding in Benghazi.
Posted by: Weary Willie at February 15, 2013 12:25 AM
Comment #361716

David Petraeus claims CIA knew all along that Benghazi attack was orchestrated by terrorists

United States General David Petraeus has claimed that the Central Intelligence Agency knew all along that the 11 September attack on the American consulate in Benghazi was terrorist attack orchestrated by Al-Qaeda linked militants.
Throughout this affair, National Congress President Mohamed Magarief has maintained that the strike was indeed a planned attack, meticulously executed. Magarief has also consistently claimed that the incident involved foreigners and that investigations could turn up a link to Al-Qaeda.
Posted by: Weary Willie at February 15, 2013 12:38 AM
Comment #361718

C&J,
Exactly right.

WW,
So the Weekly Standard, the Neocon publication, somehow knows the content of an hour-long conversation between Obama and the leader of Israel was “non-urgent.” Uh huh. I see.

You’ll have to do better than the Weekly Standard. If you read that rag, you probably still think there are Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq, that Saddam Hussein worked with Al Qaida…

Never mind. Keep the conspiracy talk coming.

What is your point? That there is confusion in real time when a relatively remote consulate is hit? The Ambassador and his security were good people. They were instrumental in overthrowing Khameini, they knew Libya was a dangerous place, and they got caught by the bad guys.

Foreign Service can be dangerous. As you read in the previous link about casualties in attacks on our missions, diplomatic personnel have died in every administration. It happens, and when it does, it is bad. Most of the times, the bad guys don’t get to us, but on rare occasions, they do. There’s no conspiracy involved. Sometimes, the bad guys get lucky.

Posted by: phx8 at February 15, 2013 12:51 AM
Comment #361721

phx8, what a pathetic excuse for a response! What blather!!

Kill the messenger is all you can come up with? What’s up with that, phx8?

Your goddess Clinton’s own Accountability Review Board is not good enough, eh phx8?!

Pursuant to Title III of the Omnibus Diplomatic and Antiterrorism Act of 1986, 22 U.S.C. § 4831 et seq., (the Act), Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton convened an Accountability Review Board (ARB) for Benghazi to examine the facts and circumstances surrounding the September 11-12, 2012, killings of four U.S. government personnel, including the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, John Christopher Stevens, in Benghazi, Libya.

Sure, let’s also discount your lord’s own White House, right phx8? Why should they matter when those nasty publications should be the ones discredited, right phx8?

the White House said, “President Obama spoke with Prime Minister Netanyahu for an hour tonight as a part of their ongoing consultations. The two leaders discussed the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear program, and our close cooperation on Iran and other security issues…

And why in hell should we believe Leon Panetta? He hasn’t got any more credibility that those inconvenient rags, right phx8?

Panetta said, though he did meet with Obama at a 5 o’clock prescheduled gathering, the president left operational details, including knowledge of what resources were available to help the Americans under siege, “up to us.”

Never mind that the entire world saw him tell congress this. It’s those nasty news articles stirring up trouble for the anointed one. Isn’t that right, phx8? Right!

United States General David Petraeus has claimed.. National Congress President Mohamed Magarief has maintained..

Never mind the person behind the curtain, right phx8? It’s those pesky messengers that caused all this trouble.

It’s obvious from your post, phx8, that you have your partisan blinders on. Your puny attempt to ignore the above information and your usual “blame someone else in hopes to deflect” makes it blatantly obvious you will prostitute your posts to protect your false god and the rest of your Democratic courtesans.


Posted by: Weary Willie at February 15, 2013 5:02 AM
Comment #361728

Willie,

“Your puny attempt to ignore the above information and your usual “blame someone else in hopes to deflect” makes it blatantly obvious you will prostitute your posts to protect your false god and the rest of your Democratic courtesans.”


Perhaps Obama should have been standing shoulder to shoulder with the Marines, firing his Bushmaster wildly into the crowd of terrorists as they attacked the Consulate.

On the other hand, perhaps if the Republicans hadn’t blocked the funding to add more security…

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) said on CNN

“Later in the interview, CNN Anchor Soledad O’Brien asks, “Is it true that you voted to cut the funding for embassy security?”

Chaffetz answers, “Absolutely. Look we have to make priorities and choices in this country. We have… 15,0000 contractors in Iraq. We have more than 6,000 contractors, a private army there, for President Obama, in Baghdad. And we’re talking about can we get two dozen or so people into Libya to help protect our forces. When you’re in touch economic times, you have to make difficult choices. You have to prioritize things.”

Apparently security for the Consulate in Benghazi wasn’t as much a priority as blaming Obama for the attack.

Then again, Obama, if he was in Russia, could have swept aside his cape and deflected the meteor that landed there with a mere wave of his hand.

Rocky

Posted by: Rocky Marks at February 15, 2013 10:21 AM
Comment #361730

WW,
What are you trying to say? What case are you trying to make?

With the benefit of hindsight, the Ambassador should not have gone to Benghazi, or else have gone with more security. Of course, with the benefit of hindsight, the bad guys might have addressed more security by attacking with an even larger force or truck bombs. Perhaps they had their own intelligence that was just as good as our own, or better.

No real-time response could have changed the outcome once the attack occurred. The consulate was too far from US military forces. Jets and drones were of no help in this case.

Anytime there’s an attack on a diplomatic mission, there should be a review. If there are ways to improve, they should be identified and implemented. I have yet to see anything substantial to come out of this investigation, or anything that looks wrong or negligent, other than a general approach that more security is better, and that critical personnel should avoid remote locations, and ways to improve communication and cut through the confusion of the fog of war are always helpful.

The Ambassador knew Libya better than anybody. He made a choice that left him too vulnerable, and that’s a shame. He was a good man, and he paid for his decision with his life.

Posted by: phx8 at February 15, 2013 11:45 AM
Comment #361735

51.6 billion spent on state and usaid budget…
*
US embassy in Libya sought extension of “essential” security team

The request was denied.
*


Thousands spent by embassies to buy Obama books

Government records show the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt, spent more than $40,000 in 2009 on copies of Obama’s “Dreams from my Father.” The embassy in Greece paid more than $5,000 for “Dreams from my Father” to be used for Christmas gratuities. In South Korea, the U.S. Embassy spent $6,061 for “Dreams from my Father” for the same purpose.
In Indonesia, where Obama spent four years of his childhood, the U.S. Embassy spent almost $4,000 on hardcover copies of the Indonesian version of Obama’s book “The Audacity of Hope” for its public affairs office. Just two days after that purchase, the embassy spent $5,000 on English-version copies of both books.

*
State Department Spent 4.5 Million for Embassy Art, Had No Money for Benghazi Security


Remember Benghazi only happened because the State Department had no money for security. And the military had no money for planes. And Obama had no money for his campaign and had to rush to Vegas to fundraise with Beyonce.


Things that the State Department did have money for? Mosque renovations, promoting environmental awareness in Baghdad, and 4.5 million for Art in Embassies.

*

Embassies Facing Security Cuts Waste Money on Chevy Volts

These Chevy Volt-related purchases are symbols of misguided Obama administration priorities. I’m sure these two embassies aren’t the only places the government has spent money on environmental idealism instead of practical security measures.

*
…the lives of 4 Americans…

Priceless.

Posted by: Weary Willie at February 15, 2013 3:16 PM
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