Dissappointing Obama

President Barack Obama is “not happy” says Jay Carney. He wants “accountability” from federal workers overseeing his health-reform rollout. Obama also said HealthCare.gov has “way more glitches than I think are acceptable.”. Tell us more, Spock. What Chutzpah! What hubris! Obama is an expert blame-shifter.

It is Obama's fault. The buck stops with him. How long can he get away with this game he plays? The is the president, the man in charge. He is not an outsider. We have to hold HIM accountable. He should not get to play the community organizer complaining about what other do. He IS the man.

Obama will assume anything except responsibility.

I ask my friends who are still Obama fans, will there ever come a time when you will hold him accountable? Will there ever come a time when you will say something other than the equivalent of "thank you, sir, may I have another?"

Posted by Christine & John at October 19, 2013 6:40 AM
Comments
Comment #372971

Why should he assume responsibility? He has the entire Republican party to use as a whipping boy and a national media to use as a whip.

When will his fans look at him other than a god? As soon as it hurts, as d.a.n says.

But then again, it will be the Republican’s fault. It’s always the Republicans fault. Or in Obama’s case, somebody else’s fault.

Posted by: Weary Willie at October 19, 2013 3:31 PM
Comment #372973

You are both so full of hatred. It really is off-putting.

Posted by: phx8 at October 19, 2013 4:39 PM
Comment #372981

phx8

Recall what you said about Bush and Republicans. If you want to see real hate, you will have to go over to the other side and read what Stephen writes.

Beyond that, how is asking the president to take responsibility for his programs hatred?

Harry Truman has a sign on his desk that said, “the buck stops here.” I suppose you think that is a hateful comment if applied to other presidents.

Posted by: CJ at October 19, 2013 6:32 PM
Comment #372986

This is not the first time you accused those of us you disagree with as being hateful. Get over your pontificating self and quit being so pious. I personally do not hate a single person. Now you can call me the names like you have in the past and SD of course will continue to give you a pass.

Posted by: tom humes at October 19, 2013 10:03 PM
Comment #372988

phx8,

I assume that you look at yourself as being better than all that, correct? That is a tendency for people in general you know. Rare is the person who thinks worse of themselves than somebody else. That’s one reason that personal attack arguments are so worthless for fruitful political debate, so fertile a ground for feedback loops of personal ugliness. We can, in any political forum, make everything about getting our boot on the neck of the other fellow, but what does that profit anybody?


Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 18, 2013 5:24 PM

Posted by: Weary Willie at October 20, 2013 9:24 AM
Comment #372992
It’s always the Republicans fault.

Not always Weary but 36 states that didn’t develop their own state sites can share part of the blame. They, the repubs, can also stop the HHS witch hunt, for their own political gain, and let them fix the problems.

Or in Obama’s case, somebody else’s fault.

The administration shares blame for allowing the costs over runs and for demanding significant changes in the programming so late in the process and not allowing for an increase in time to develop the changes and debugging that comes with these sites.

Posted by: j2t2 at October 20, 2013 11:10 AM
Comment #372994

Tick-tock, tick-tock…I’m awaiting a reality check answer or answers as well as a dose of contrition vis-à-vis the question C&J poses.

I’ve always been contrite and forthcoming when I personally make a mistake (in the private sector and in public). I consider myself an equal opportunity criticizer. I simply point out inconsistencies, hypocrisy, partisan spin and outright lies where necessary.

The hallmark of any and ALL leaders in any capacity is to not shift blame.

I’ve honestly never seen a person who is supposed to be the ‘leader of the free world’ blame so many things and so many people and institutions — on a regular basis.

In the private sector, such behavior quickly results in termination. To be sure, there is always blame to go around. And a myriad of partisan bickering reaches hyperbolic heights at times; however, the ‘buck’ indeed, always ends with the top person ALWAYS

In that vein, Obama always seems to get a pass.

Ironically, I was never a big GW Bush fan, but he did possess an uncanny ability to lead in a way that generally advocated for ALL Americans.

Note W’s professionalism when it comes to not criticizing Obama or his administration since he’s vacated the office.

W was despised by much of the left as well as the MSM during his presidency. Nobody called them out as racists, haters or extremist ideologues. In contrast, any person or groups who criticize Obama, his agenda, his record or his decisions are labeled as racists, haters or extremist ideologues — or worse!

In fact, many who pose a perceived threat to Obama, his administration or his agenda are oftentimes targeted for retaliation. This, ladies and gentleman, is the single most egregious thing a leader can do. “If we don’t get our way, punish our enemies.”

Obama is brilliant in that regard.

Let’s be clear: A leader is a leader, is a leader. Any ‘other’ excuses are simply crutches of the untalented.

I pose my own question to those who believe Obama is great and should not be challenged by luddites an other average citizens:

Do you think Obama uses too much “us against them” divisive language in his speeches?


Posted by: Kevin L. Lagola at October 20, 2013 1:26 PM
Comment #372995

Barking-mad and baying at the moon, picking another fight you cannot possibly win. So! Where are we this week in the conservative echo chamber? Let’s see… Obama is a tyrant? No. Obama is weak? Mmm, no, Republicans just got the epic clock-cleaning of all time. Aha! Obama does not lead! He should take the blame for something. Anything! Everything! AAAAAAAAGH!!!

There is a problem with Obamacare enrollment. It is a technological problem. NOT a policy problem. A technical problem with the federal web site. That is a big problem for the techies. It might merit an investigation into the private contractor that won the bid, or the bidding and procurement process, but that is about it. This is a temporary, fixable problem. Picking a fight over a problem that will inevitably be resolved in the near future is foolish. But that hasn’t stopped any of you recently, has it? Shut down the government, threaten the economy unless everyone agrees to your demands, howl at the moon because a web site doesn’t work- nothing is too stupid to stop you anymore. Meanwhile, the policy of Obamacare is very successful. People are signing up by phone and internet in states with exchanges, and by phone with the federal exchange.

Obama’s latest approval rating at FOX and Rasmussen? 45% and 48%, respectively. The GOP is down by double digits, with the lowest, worst poll ratings ever.

‘Curse you, Obama! You must take the blame! Not us. You!’

‘Why is everybody staring at us?’

Meanwhile, in the swing state of Virginia…

Oh. Let me explain the term ‘swing state.’ A ‘swing state’ is a state that is usually close when it comes to elections. It can go either way. Sometimes Democratic, sometimes Republican. Hence the term ‘swing.’

In Virginia, the GOP is about to get yet another epic clock cleaning. Polls show the GOP candidate for Governor down between 6 and 10 points. The government shut down and threatening to default on the debt has made that race go from bad to worse. So a swing state is about to turn into a Democratic landslide.

But keep it up, guys. Keep up the bad work.

Senator Ted Cruz is making his third visit to Iowa as part of a presidential campaign. Apparently he is popular among Republicans, especially Tea Party Republicans. Everyone else hates him, but hey, don’t let that stop you. I bet he is a really good leader, Just like George Bush! You should definitely support him. Definitely send money! Volunteer to knock on doors. Shake your fists at the moon and bay.

A-ooooooo… yip-yip-yip. A-oooooo…

Posted by: phx8 at October 20, 2013 5:17 PM
Comment #372996

Getting a little testy, isn’t he?

Posted by: Weary Willie at October 20, 2013 5:51 PM
Comment #372999

Phx8

I am surprised you compare your great guy with GW Bush, but according to Gallup, Obama has a 42% approval rate now. At this point in his presidency, according to the same poll, Bush had a 41% rating. http://www.gallup.com/poll/116479/barack-obama-presidential-job-approval.aspx

So, indeed, Obama is not worse than Bush, but he isn’t any better either. And Bush was in the middle of an unpopular war. Obama is managing to get low just on his own.

BTW - Reagan has 63% at this time. Unlike Obama, Reagan was MORE popular after people got to know him better. Reagan was more popular in his second term than his first; so was Clinton, as a matter of fact. Reagan and Clinton would not let Obama in their leadership club. Obama is in the club with GW Bush and Richard Nixon.

There is a legitimate problem for a leader in knowing when his efforts created a result and to what extent. This goes for taking credit for good things as well as blame for bad. Obama has no trouble taking credit for good things, BTW.

A piece of advice I give my kids and my colleagues is that if a few people don’t like you, it is probably their fault. If lots of people don’t like you, you are doing something to make them mad.

Obama started off with a really high approval rating and lost it. I understand Congress is less popular, but that really is not much help and not a valid comparison. Congress is an institution. You would have to compare the relative position of a member of congress in his/her district with Obama to get a apples to apples comparison.

Posted by: CJ at October 20, 2013 7:01 PM
Comment #373002

C&J-
P1)
Obama has a similarly low rating to when he was in the midst of the last debt ceiling negotiation. Your fiascoes have a way of making everybody look bad, but unfortunately for you, your party and movement more than anybody else.

P2) I think if we’re speaking inherently, No, Obama is much better than Bush. Thing is, Bush had this God-forsaken noise machine on his side, helping him to define down deviancy and get away with policy malpractice all the time.

P3) This would be equivalent to 1985. Reagan’s popularity is about to take a little spill, late the next year. His popularity picks up at the end, but for much of the time after December 1986, he’s down in Obama’s territory

p5) What a wonderful piece of advice. I’d advise you look at the polling for your party, in that light, and ask yourself, “what the hell are we doing wrong?”

p6) Congress isn’t merely less popular, it’s setting records for being unpopular. We lost the House on better polling than that. You should also see the polling on whether people want to replace their particular member of Congress.

What strikes me is that many Republicans don’t have a clue of just how badly this whole thing has backfired on them. Instead, they’re all talking about how this is just the first battle of many glorious battles.

Stop denying it, if you love your party, or if you care about the success of your movement. People are getting fed up with all the dysfunction you’re having to maintain in order to keep Obama’s numbers low. Being the party of no has lead up to this, has lead up to a situation where you can’t even agree on things that shouldn’t be political footballs. Reagan’s party wouldn’t have screwed with this.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 20, 2013 9:54 PM
Comment #373003

A third poll shows the same results: if the election were held today, the Democrats would take 49 seats in the House and solidly control it.

Thanks to solid Democratic leadership- Obama, Reid, and Pelosi- the caucus worked together as a party, backed Obama to the fullest, and defeated the GOP. The shutdown of the government failed, as did the threat against the economy over the debt ceiling.

Great leadership from Obama.

The SWING state of Virginia is about to conduct an election that will result in a landslide for Democrats.

Conservatives should comfort themselves that the midterms are a year away, and that poll used generic Democrats as candidates. Keep doing what you are doing, conservatives. Deny the polls because they are skewed. Deny them because they are the product of a conspiracy between pollsters and the MSM. (Just ask President Romney!). Listen to Senator Cruz when he tells you that is so, and pay no attention to those naysayers who point out Cruz is a stone cold liar.

Heh. Rubio is pretending he had nothing to do with the shutdown. He wants to blame Obama.

Well, when it comes to blaming Obama, one thing conservatives will be right about- they can blame Obama for the spanking of a lifetime next November.

Don’t stop now, conservatives. Keep up the bad work.

Posted by: phx8 at October 21, 2013 1:50 AM
Comment #373007

“I ask my friends who are still Obama fans, will there ever come a time when you will hold him accountable?”

Apparently, the answer to C&J’s question is a big fat NO.
No surprise there.

Posted by: kctim at October 21, 2013 9:49 AM
Comment #373008

I hold Obama accountable. His administration prevented a Great Depression, set off the one of the greatest stock markets in history, kept interest rates and inflation low, engineered a housing recovery, created an environment for year after year of a growing economy, passed legislation to promote equal rights for women, and passed the first major- and badly needed- reform of health care in decades. I hold him accountable for decreasing the unemployment from 10 to 7 percent. I hold him accountable for ending the War in Iraq, finding Osama bin Laden despite all odds and killing him, crushing Al Qaida, bringing about the fall and death of Khaddafi, and spreading democracy throughout the Middle East without a single American combat death.

The really funny thing is, everything I have just said is a documentable, undeniable fact.

So yeah. I hold him accountable.

Posted by: phx8 at October 21, 2013 11:35 AM
Comment #373009

Oh. Did I mention how Obama forced the Syrians to give up their chemical weapons arsenal without a shot? I hold him accountable for that, too. And conducting a foreign policy that has brought the moderates into power in Iran, and turning away from development of nuclear weapons.

I also hold Obama accountable for maintaining a strong and unified Democratic party, a party united solidly behind him, while dealing with a badly fractionalized, factionalized, disunited GOP utterly lacking in leadership or the ability to pass bills, or at this point, even negotiate. I hold Obama accountable for holding firm, and ending the opposition’s terrible government shutdown, as well as saving the economy from the opposition, which threatened to bring about an economic catastrophe unless their demands were met.

The big problem, kctim, is that Republicans are being held accountable, too. Even as Obama sees his approval ratings climb, the GOP is attaining new and unplumbed depths in polling, involving phrases like ‘the worst ever’ and ‘the lowest’.

Posted by: phx8 at October 21, 2013 11:45 AM
Comment #373010

The big problem Phx8, is that you have to embellish some things and ignore others, in order to hold President Obama “accountable.”
He is a liberal Democrat so you give him a pass on this ACA fiasco, the barely moving economy and how he has divided the entire nation. You give him credit for Syria giving up their chemical weapons and for Iran abandoning nuclear weapons, even though results won’t be known for years.

About the only “documentable, undeniable fact” is that the VERY liberal Democratic Party is in lockstep and does what they are told. It’s their way or no way and if they don’t get their way, it’s somebody else’s fault.

Face it man, you guys are nothing but partisan cheerleaders.

Posted by: kctim at October 21, 2013 12:37 PM
Comment #373011
The really funny thing is, everything I have just said is a documentable, undeniable fact.

No, the really funny (ie sad) thing is that you actually believe that…

His administration prevented a Great Depression

Highly dispute. It’s easy to say that because there is no way to prove or disprove it, but you say that it is a provable thing… Please tell me exactly what it was that this administration did to prevent that, remembering of course that the bailout was passed under Bush…

set off the one of the greatest stock markets in history

At the cost of having to tax future Americans who were unable to vote for it (taxation without representation) billions and billions of dollars. If it weren’t for the money that is being dumped into the bond purchase program that the fed is running, this market would flatten, as we have seen every time it is mentioned that it might stop.

Yes, people love having someone else’s money in their pockets, even if it is their grandkid’s.

kept interest rates and inflation low

Artificially, at the expense of creating more bubbles (see above).

engineered a housing recovery

Another bubble that will burst the second that borrowed money is pulled from the system. The housing market would have recovered with or without any help from the federal government, but the mind of the progressive cannot fathom such a thing.

created an environment for year after year of a growing economy

At around 1-2%, barely gasping breath and done on the backs of the workers who are losing their jobs, getting their hours cut and squashing any real economic growth, all while making rich people richer.

passed legislation to promote equal rights for women

You’ll have to remind me what that was, since by definition equal rights to women are already guaranteed by the constitution

and passed the first major- and badly needed- reform of health care in decades.

By enacting a health care system that will actually make things worse, not better. Hurrah. :P

I hold him accountable for ending the War in Iraq

Except it was only ended by Bush who signed the agreement to remove the military forces on the date that we did. Obama tried everything he could to extend that date.

finding Osama bin Laden despite all odds and killing him

He should have been taken alive to stand trail. That’s how the US is SUPPOSED to do things.

crushing Al Qaida

Which was pretty badly crushed before he came into office, in fact at the time he entered office there were maybe 2 dozen Al Qaeda members in Afghanistan… Why are we still there again?

bringing about the fall and death of Khaddafi

Unconstitutionally. That you hypocritically give him a pass on that is beyond disturbing.

and spreading democracy throughout the Middle East without a single American combat death.

Right, how did *HE* do that exactly? That’s like giving credit to Bush I for the fall of the Berlin Wall, ignoring everything that Reagan did to precipitate that.

Oh well, so much for those ‘undeniable truths’, it must be nice to live in Obama world. As they say, ignorance is truly bliss.

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 21, 2013 3:28 PM
Comment #373012

phx8

Re - “Oh. Did I mention how Obama forced the Syrians to give up their chemical weapons arsenal without a shot? I hold him accountable for that, too.”

I think the Syrians and Russian snookered us. The problem with Syria was that is was despotic and allied with terrorists. They were wiping out their enemies and the West was not happy about the murders and violence. Assad killed more than 100,000 with the usual means. Then he kills a few hundred with gas. We react. He “give up” these weapons in return for us leaving him in power, which is what he wanted all along. If you watch the news, you see that Assad is now preventing food shipments to some of the places near where he gassed. So he is back to killing the old fashioned way - with convention weapons and starvation.

And you think this is a good thing, a victory for the U.S.

If we has left a minimal force in Anbar province, Assad would be out of power today, since his buddies could not so easily help out. This was the Obama mistake. Once that die was cast, the subsequent killing was out of his hands in many ways.

Re spreading democracy in the Middle East - which country is a democracy now?

Phx8 and Rhinhold

Re other things - Rhinhold has explained well enough. I agree with Rhinold too that I have trouble believing you actually believe these things.

Posted by: CJ at October 21, 2013 6:51 PM
Comment #373013

Stephen

5) What a wonderful piece of advice. I’d advise you look at the polling for your party, in that light, and ask yourself, “what the hell are we doing wrong?”

I think the shutdown was a very bad idea and said so. So did guys like Karl Rove. That was very wrong.

Re the Republicans being dysfunctional – I agree there too. It is hard to fix that, however. But the fact that you recognize the dysfunction should tell you something re Obama. You tell me that the Obama cannot work with Republicans because they are so monolithic. Then you tell me that the party is so divided that it cannot decide what it wants. A good president could find common ground with some in such a situation. Obama manages to unite Republicans in opposition to him, when they cannot unite in any other way. That is his failure.

Re the noise machine – there is nothing as well tuned as the Obama noise machine, using twitter etc and having the support of much of the media. I expect they will start abandoning him soon, as they shift their loyalty to Hillary, but for now they are his.

I don’t think Bush was a very good leader, nor will he be called a good president. I am just telling you that he and Obama are in the same league, while Reagan and Clinton are in a better one.

Posted by: CJ at October 21, 2013 7:42 PM
Comment #373014

When Hillary takes over the globalist house of cards in 2016 where will she place the blame for further decline? I assume, even after 8 years of ‘leadership’ by President Obama, she and Bill will tongue lash the repubs.

Posted by: Roy Ellis at October 21, 2013 8:35 PM
Comment #373015

Roy

These guys would blame Republicans even if there weren’t any. It is a type of prejudice, with all that implies about the conspiracy theory. According to our liberal friends, a few Republican can ruin the best laid plans of hundreds of Democrats. This is an especially impressive accomplishment, since the Democratic lore also believes that Republicans are stupid and fractious.

It seems not to offend their logic that stupid and fractious Republicans, in very small numbers, can effectively stop the progress of super-smart and much more numerous and united Democrats. They can simultaneously hold several contradictory prejudices at the same time and never question even one of them.

I always think of this clip when thinking about these things - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWpU8sX10_4

Posted by: CJ at October 21, 2013 8:50 PM
Comment #373018

Actually, CJ, it’s part of their strategy to gain power by weakening their opponent, not by actually putting their ideas out there to be enacted. It’s like how they are claiming ‘victory’ for getting the government running again, when they actually solved NOTHING. This was just delayed another couple of months and then they can take more swipes at their opponents.

If they were what they SAY they are about, they would have found a solution that would have ended the issue altogether, not just delay it a few months. The actions are what people should be looking at, not the words. The words are there to convince you the butt raping you are getting is your idea and a super sweet…

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 21, 2013 9:47 PM
Comment #373020

Rhinehold,
The Supreme Court determines what is constitutional. You are welcome to your own opinion, but Obama must comply with the laws of the land as determined by the other two branches of government. If Obama acts within the law, including the War Powers Act and the Authorization to Use Military Force, then he is acting within the bounds of the constitution.

CJ,
As I have written many times, the GOP is currently fractured into three factions: 1) moderates, who used to be called conservatives, or establishment Republicans, 2) Crazy Republicans who can be convinced to do sane things from time to time, and 3) The Wacko Birds of the far right, the Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs crowd. These are the ones likely to take over what is left of the GOP after 2014.

Most of the time, these three factions cannot work together. They cannot do their basic job, passing legislation. The current Congress is on a path to break the all-time record of least legislation passed, a record set by the previous Republican GOP.

When important legislation has passed, it has depended on about 1/3 of Republicans and the Democrats. The Senate has pursued a strategy of obstruction, blocking initiatives through inaction or filibuster.

In the previous Democratic Congress, Obama Pelosi and Reid passed a lot of legislation, important legislation. Time and again, they have proven their competency.

Finally, Syria. The GOP seems to blame Obama for something. I am not clear why. Does someone think we ought to invade? Stay out? Covertly arm the opposition to Assad? Fight to allow Assad to keep his chemical weapon arsenal?

Obama successfully disarmed Syria of its chemical weapons arsenal without firing a shot, without the loss of a single American soldier. This, in turn, has helped deter others from considering their use, or even possession. In Iran, we are once again accomplishing our goals without firing a shot, without the loss of a single American soldier.

Posted by: phx8 at October 21, 2013 9:58 PM
Comment #373021
You are welcome to your own opinion, but Obama must comply with the laws of the land as determined by the other two branches of government. If Obama acts within the law, including the War Powers Act and the Authorization to Use Military Force, then he is acting within the bounds of the constitution.

Unfortunately, he didn’t.

Obama successfully disarmed Syria of its chemical weapons arsenal without firing a shot

So, Obama is the leader of the world? OR is it more likely that RUSSIA disarmed Syria while Obama was president of the US and Obama assisted? Remember, Obama was going to send troops until the polls told him that it was a bad idea…

The worse outcome of the nonsense was that Obama *STILL* thinks he can send troops wherever the hell he wants without congressional approval… Again, where is the Obama of 2007?

“The President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation

Now, had Clinton been able to get inspectors inside of Iraq to verify their chemical weapons dismantling, Iraq would have been out from under sanctions in the mid 90s and we wouldn’t have the mess we had for over a decade there.

But I’m sure Clinton never failed at anything either, right?

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 21, 2013 10:12 PM
Comment #373022
including the War Powers Act and the Authorization to Use Military Force

Let’s parse these two things since you seem to think they gave Obama the right to intervene in Libya…

First, the War Powers Resolution:

The constitutional powers of the President as Commander-in-Chief to introduce United States Armed Forces into hostilities, or into situations where imminent involvement in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances, are exercised only pursuant to (1) a declaration of war, (2) specific statutory authorization, or (3) a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces.

So, were any of these things in effect at the time? Nope. So the War Powers Resolution isn’t for use here…

So it must be in the Authorization to Use Military Force! Let’s take a look:

That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.

(b) War Powers Resolution Requirements-

(1) SPECIFIC STATUTORY AUTHORIZATION- Consistent with section 8(a)(1) of the War Powers Resolution, the Congress declares that this section is intended to constitute specific statutory authorization within the meaning of section 5(b) of the War Powers Resolution.

(2) APPLICABILITY OF OTHER REQUIREMENTS- Nothing in this resolution supersedes any requirement of the War Powers Resolution.

So, was Libya involved in 9/11? Did they have anything to do with 9/11 or al Qaeda?

Otherwise, I still don’t see WHERE in those two acts the president feels he has the power to use military action ANYWHERE without congressional approval…

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 21, 2013 10:32 PM
Comment #373023

BTW, here’s the interesting part… Had he gone to congress and asked for authorization, he would have gotten it! He didn’t WANT to because he felt the president should have that power. As a ‘constitutional scholar’, and after telling us that president Bush did not have that same power, it saddens me greatly.

It’s about the power. And phx8 can’t just admit that he was wrong here…

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 21, 2013 10:45 PM
Comment #373026

In Libya, according to the Obama administration, there was no exchange of fire, no sustained fighting, and no American troops on the ground, therefore it did not fall under the restraints of the War Powers Act. Congress skirmished with Obama about the issue and the definition of “hostilities,” but in the final analysis, the House did not authorize, nor did it constrain funding for Libya. The Senate refused to bring the issue to a vote.

Since the interpretation of the law by the Executive Branch went unchallenged by the Legislative Branch (they were both for and against it, I suppose), it cannot be said to be unconstitutional.

Posted by: phx8 at October 21, 2013 11:16 PM
Comment #373027

The hands down blame shifter of all time is Ted Cruz. He has voted no on every major Senate bill, and then blames Obama and everyone else who isn’t one of his followers as the source of government failing to act in a positive way for Americans.

Posted by: David R. Remer at October 21, 2013 11:37 PM
Comment #373028

So, bombing people isn’t ‘hostile’? Putting American pilots in harms way, flying over another country’s airspace (in effect evading the country), subject to being shot down and/or killed doesn’t fall under that?

Hell, now we have drones so the President can just go kill as many brown people as he wants to! Screw the American people and what they say or want, forget the Constitution…

phx8, your argument is as sad and ignorant as the president’s.

And yes, the house didn’t have the votes to do anything about it because they want that same power when they get back into office. When the next Republican president starts bombing the hell out of Iran or Cambodia or wherever, remember you gave him the authority to do it. It’s YOUR fault.

As for who decides if something is Constitutional, I’ll take my queue from Thomas Jefferson who said:

“The question whether the judges are invested with exclusive authority to decide on the constitutionality of a law has been heretofore a subject of consideration with me in the exercise of official duties. Certainly there is not a word in the Constitution which has given that power to them more than to the Executive or Legislative branches.”

“But the Chief Justice says, ‘There must be an ultimate arbiter somewhere.’ True, there must; but does that prove it is either party? The ultimate arbiter is the people of the Union, assembled by their deputies in convention, at the call of Congress or of two-thirds of the States. Let them decide to which they mean to give an authority claimed by two of their organs. And it has been the peculiar wisdom and felicity of our Constitution, to have provided this peaceable appeal, where that of other nations is at once to force.”

“On every question of construction carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.”

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 21, 2013 11:48 PM
Comment #373029

phx8

I think the initial problem was losing sight of the goal in Iraq. We could have kept a very small number of U.S. forces in the western desert. They would have been out of sight most of time and safe on a very large base surrounded by flat and empty desert. But they could have interfered with the movements into Syria, even if they took no action. Their mere presence would menace the bad guys and help protect the good.

When we failed to achieve that, Syria and other things followed. I do blame Obama, who was so anxious to cut and run that he didn’t think of future needs. But in a larger sense, this is what we often do. That is why people are suspicious of us. We show up with great force and will and then leave. We managed to avoid that impulse in the post WWII period until the 1960s, which is why the world is as good as it is today. If we had been as perfidious in 1946 as we are today, communists and/or fascists would control Europe and we would be in a world of hurt.

Re disarming Syria - it didn’t really matter. The chemical weapons was a kind of red herring. They created that artificial problem to trade off for a real concession, which was to empower Russia and Iraq and maintain Assad control in Syria. In these things, it is always good to look who is still where, rather than talk about concessions and progress. The facts on the ground is that Assad is still there. Russia and Iraq have improved their positions and the U.S. is unwilling to project power there.

Re Iraq - I have predicted since 2005 that Iraq would moderate, but have been disappointed each time. You may recall that I lectured you all many times about your hysterical ideas that we were about to invade the place. About that I was always right and you guys were just hysterical. But there is no way Obama did this.

In some ways we may have moderated Iran by giving them what they wanted. It is sort of like moderating a mugger by giving him money.

Re Republicans - my point is simply that you all claim that they are dumb and disorganized and then blame them for stopping Democratic progress. If Republican are so dumb and disorganized, we could expect a good leader to be able to get many of them to cooperate. Johnson & Clinton did. Maybe the fault is not with Republicans, but with Obama’s lack of leadership skills.

Posted by: CJ at October 22, 2013 5:34 AM
Comment #373031

Rhinehold
The only sad and ignorant part is that view from the top of Libertarian mountain. Oh if only we were divined enough to see that lofty peak. I know, I know it’s our freedoms you are defending, thanks but no thanks.

It’s a good thing there weren’t any problems rolling out the Iraq war like there is with this PPACA website rollout. Oh wait a minute:

numerous weapons lost in the initial takeover of Iraq
60 billion in cash lost forever never to be found
abu ghraib prison scandal/pictures
less than adequate armour on humvees
Rumsfeld “you go to war with the army you have not the one you want”

Problem is people’s lives were lost due to those errors in judgement. I haven’t heard of anyone dying waiting for their login on the healthcare.gov website.

You start the website with servers and technology you have not the one you want, is a good quote for this one too.

Posted by: Speak4all at October 22, 2013 10:27 AM
Comment #373032

More on the Supreme Court’s self-appointing power to decide constitutionality…

4.”The Constitution … meant that its coordinate branches should be checks on each other. But the opinion which gives to the judges the right to decide what laws are constitutional and what not, not only for themselves in their own sphere of action but for the Legislature and Executive also in their spheres, would make the Judiciary a despotic branch.”

—Thomas Jefferson to Abigail Adams, 1804. ME 11:51

“To consider the judges as the ultimate arbiters of all constitutional questions [is] a very dangerous doctrine indeed, and one which would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy. Our judges are as honest as other men and not more so. They have with others the same passions for party, for power, and the privilege of their corps. Their maxim is boni judicis est ampliare jurisdictionem [good justice is broad jurisdiction], and their power the more dangerous as they are in office for life and not responsible, as the other functionaries are, to the elective control. The Constitution has erected no such single tribunal, knowing that to whatever hands confided, with the corruptions of time and party, its members would become despots. It has more wisely made all the departments co-equal and co-sovereign within themselves.”

—Thomas Jefferson to William C. Jarvis, 1820. ME 15:277

“In denying the right [the Supreme Court usurps] of exclusively explaining the Constitution, I go further than [others] do, if I understand rightly [this] quotation from the Federalist of an opinion that ‘the judiciary is the last resort in relation to the other departments of the government, but not in relation to the rights of the parties to the compact under which the judiciary is derived.’ If this opinion be sound, then indeed is our Constitution a complete felo de se [act of suicide]. For intending to establish three departments, coordinate and independent, that they might check and balance one another, it has given, according to this opinion, to one of them alone the right to prescribe rules for the government of the others, and to that one, too, which is unelected by and independent of the nation. For experience has already shown that the impeachment it has provided is not even a scare-crow … The Constitution on this hypothesis is a mere thing of wax in the hands of the judiciary, which they may twist and shape into any form they please.”

—Thomas Jefferson to Spencer Roane, 1819. ME 15:212

This member of the Government was at first considered as the most harmless and helpless of all its organs. But it has proved that the power of declaring what the law is, ad libitum, by sapping and mining slyly and without alarm the foundations of the Constitution, can do what open force would not dare to attempt.

—Thomas Jefferson to Edward Livingston, 1825. ME 16:114

“My construction of the Constitution is … that each department is truly independent of the others and has an equal right to decide for itself what is the meaning of the Constitution in the cases submitted to its action; and especially where it is to act ultimately and without appeal.”

—Thomas Jefferson to Spencer Roane, 1819. ME 15:214

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 10:30 AM
Comment #373033

Speak4all,

Not sure why your comment was directed at me other than to insult my belief that all Americans should be treated as free…. *shrug*

I never once have defended the handling of the Iraq War, nor have I once said anything at all about the terrible IT work that was done on the healthcare.gov website. I think it is pretty boring and inconsequential that there are server problems, to be honest. It was going to happen because a) This is IT were talking about and the company I work for was not brought in to do it right and b) The American people’s grandchildren paid way over reasonable costs for getting it up and running, so it was clear those putting it together were in it for the money, not doing a good job.

So in your entire comment, the only thing you got right was that I am for protecting the rights of all Americans, not just those that I agree with. And you find this ‘lofty’ and reject it… Again, *shrug*

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 10:36 AM
Comment #373034

Oh, and let’s not forget another thing that Obama is responsible for. Turning the US into a Terrorist Nation.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/22/world/asia/civilian-deaths-in-drone-strikes-cited-in-report.html

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 11:10 AM
Comment #373035

One should actually know what’s on top of “Libertarian mountain” before commenting on it and making oneself look silly.

“I haven’t heard of anyone dying waiting for their login on the healthcare.gov website.”

Really? That’s odd, seeing how not long ago the left was proclaiming that the ACA was so badly needed because people without insurance were dying every day.

Posted by: kctim at October 22, 2013 11:54 AM
Comment #373036

kctim,
Enrollment by phone works everywhere, and in addition, numerous states have functioning web sites. What is going on with the federal ACA site is a technological problem, not a problem of policy.

There is a good reason virtually no one is a libertarian. Just look at the content of Rhinehold’s comments… They speak for themselves. Were his ideas implemented, Osama bin Laden would still be alive, Syria would still be using chemical weapons to commit atrocities against its citizens, and Khaddafi would be in power in Libya.

Posted by: phx8 at October 22, 2013 12:15 PM
Comment #373038

kctim
Speaking of looking “silly” what’s on top of Libertarian mountain, anyway? Never mind I really don’t care to know.

Rhinehold
Oh I know you shouldn’t have to answer for anything that you comment on especially the derisive comments about President Obama. You are pure of heart and mind like tim because you just want freedom, “shrug”?

Posted by: Speak4all at October 22, 2013 12:19 PM
Comment #373039
Oh I know you shouldn’t have to answer for anything that you comment on especially the derisive comments about President Obama.

I have absolutely no problem answering for anything I have said. I do have a problem answering for things I haven’t said… I never defended the way the Iraq war was handled and I never said anything about the implementation of the healthcare.gov website. The handling of the Iraq War II was atrocious and the website is a mess, but inconsequential, I have no doubt that they will get it fixed and find it a non-issue.

So, if you want to step back and focus what you want to attack me for, just get back with me when you put your thoughts together a little bit more.

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 12:40 PM
Comment #373040

Interesting, phx8, let me clear up your inaccurate assessment of my views.

Osama bin Laden would still be alive

Maybe, maybe not. But he would have been tried and found guilty under the rule of law. He would have been either in jail or executed for his crimes, but would have been afforded a chance at a defense as any human being is entitled to, even the most evil. The America I love still finds this important, apparently phx8 does not?

Syria would still be using chemical weapons to commit atrocities against its citizens

Again, nothing I stated suggests anything about Syria still using chemical weapons. I just asked you a simple question as to what Obama did to facilitate that. It seems like Russia did the heavy lifting.

Khaddafi would be in power in Libya.

No, it wouldn’t have been. Obama would have just had to ask permission to do what he did, which he would have gotten, and the constitution would not have been violated to do it, giving a precedent that the President is now a king who can do whatever the hell he wants…

So, If you want to actually debate the topics, feel free. If you want to continue ignorantly attack anyone who doesn’t agree with you to make yourself feel better, I’ll just start ignoring you.

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 12:46 PM
Comment #373041

Phx8

It doesn’t matter what the problem, people are not able to enroll. If we go by what the left has claimed in the recent past, people are dying every day because of that.

Libertarians really drive you guys crazy, don’t they. Lol!
Is it that they are so consistent in their beliefs? That you have to dismiss facts in order to debate them?
Funny how you guys support them when they are roasting Republicans, but can’t stand them when they are refering to liberals.

Posted by: kctim at October 22, 2013 12:56 PM
Comment #373042

“Never mind I really don’t care to know.”

Of course you don’t speaks, a little factual knowledge would shatter the blind devotion you display.

Don’t worry though, you can go back to not supporting indiscriminate drone strikes and endless war the next time a Republican is President.

Posted by: kctim at October 22, 2013 1:01 PM
Comment #373043

kctim,
Again, people are able to enroll- by phone. Other are enrolling through state web sites, and in OR, CA, and WA, enrollments through Medicare top 700,000.

Libertarians are fun, kctim. I like many elements of Libertarian philosophy. But sometimes it misses so badly, making fun of it proves nearly irresistible.

And this has nothing to do with the current thread, but the Pope said something amazing:

“The faith passes, so to speak, through a distiller and becomes ideology. And ideology does not beckon [people]. In ideologies there is not Jesus: in his tenderness, his love, his meekness. And ideologies are rigid, always. Of every sign: rigid.
“And when a Christian becomes a disciple of the ideology, he has lost the faith: he is no longer a disciple of Jesus, he is a disciple of this attitude of thought… For this reason Jesus said to them: ‘You have taken away the key of knowledge.’ The knowledge of Jesus is transformed into an ideological and also moralistic knowledge, because these close the door with many requirements.”

“The faith becomes ideology and ideology frightens, ideology chases away the people, distances, distances the people and distances of the Church of the people. But it is a serious illness, this of ideological Christians. It is an illness, but it is not new, eh?” — Pope Francis

Finally, a religious leader worthy of respect- a religious leader who reflects the very best about religion. About time. Sometimes, good things do happen.

Posted by: phx8 at October 22, 2013 1:01 PM
Comment #373044
I like many elements of Libertarian philosophy.

Well, there is only one element…

People should be free to live their lives as they choose unless they are preventing another from the same.

Everything else is just personal application of that philosophy. You find many varied applications of that throughout all libertarians.

But sometimes it misses so badly, making fun of it proves nearly irresistible.

Interesting and I would like to explore this. Can you tell me what some of these things are?

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 1:12 PM
Comment #373045
There is a good reason virtually no one is a libertarian.

Virtually no one? Hmmm….

In the United States, polls (circa 2006) find that the views and voting habits of between 10 and 20 percent (and increasing) of voting age Americans may be classified as “fiscally conservative and socially liberal, or libertarian.” This is based on pollsters and researchers defining libertarian views as fiscally conservative and socially liberal (based on the common US meanings of the terms) and against government intervention in economic affairs, and for expansion of personal freedoms. Through 20 polls on this topic spanning 13 years, Gallup found that voters who are libertarian on the political spectrum ranged from 17–23% of the US electorate.

I guess 20% of Americans are ‘virtually no ones’. My guess, is when defined by the appropriate description of the philosophy that I have given, instead of being defined by those trying to squash the views (ie, Republicans and Democrats, both of which spend billions of dollars trying to keep Libertarians off ballots), that that number would be even higher.

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 1:59 PM
Comment #373047

Libertarians are an essential and important part of America’s political landscape and history. Their influence on our political system is largely one of checking the excesses of the two party system. I for one, am glad the Libertarian Party is alive and well represented in the population. Libertarian philosophy is a bit like socialist philosophy, some is necessary and healthy, but, you wouldn’t want the whole of society to be run that way.

Posted by: David R. Remer at October 22, 2013 3:38 PM
Comment #373049

Rhinehold,
In Star Trek, Spock says “the many outweigh the needs of the one,” while Kirk says “the needs of the one outweigh the needs of the many.” Both are right. In my mind, Libertarians tend towards the extreme of valuing the one over the many. To put it in evolutionary terms, everything about us is not only adapted for survival as an individual, it is adapted for socializing, for relating with the other. Both are necessary for continuance of the species.

Posted by: phx8 at October 22, 2013 4:51 PM
Comment #373051

Rhinehold
The first paragraph of my comment was meant for you as I addressed your remark. The next few paragraphs were meant to address the remarks of others. Since you did not make those remarks why do you think I was attacking you? My observations of your comments seem to be only attacking you. Do you find as a libertarian that everyone attacks you and only you constantly?

kctim
blind devotion? Me thinks there is only one of us between you and I that aspires to blind devotion. No to government, no to taxes, sound familiar?

Posted by: Speak4all at October 22, 2013 5:04 PM
Comment #373056
Libertarians tend towards the extreme of valuing the one over the many. To put it in evolutionary terms, everything about us is not only adapted for survival as an individual, it is adapted for socializing, for relating with the other. Both are necessary for continuance of the species.

Most libertarians would agree with everything you just said, phx8.

Except of course the manner by which you apply it.

Socializing is a very important part of everyone’s lives. But it doesn’t need to be forced upon people by a gun (ie government). Instead, we could do most of the things we need in regards to socialization voluntarily. Will some people become hermits and never socialize? Yes, but they do now even with the strong arm of the law telling them they can’t. The only difference is that the law is then misused and abused and more people are put into jails where they can’t aid society in the way they feel they should be able to, not the way their neighbors feel they should be able to.

It is not about putting the ‘one’ over the ‘many’, it is about defending the ‘one’ against the overreaching of the ‘many’.

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 5:52 PM
Comment #373058
No to government, no to taxes, sound familiar?

Sounds like anarchists to me.

Of course, I thought we were talking about libertarians, which say no such thing…

Remember the philosophy-

People should be free to live their lives as they choose unless they are preventing another from the same.

That second part is the role of government and when taxes should be collected to pay for that government. Libertarians are not anarchists (some anarchists call themselves libertarians mistakenly) and do not wish to eliminate government. Nor do they wish to eliminate taxes to pay for that government. They just feel that the government should be focusing on doing what they are supposed to be doing and the taxes to pay for that would come from property taxes, user fees, etc. Income taxes are an abomination.

Let me provide a great example.

The roads have to be paid for. How best to do that? Well, the people who use the roads should be the ones paying for them, so let’s find a way to ensure that happens. As a result, we have a gasoline tax. A perfectly libertarian solution. And, there you go.

But, the mere mention of perhaps changing our society back away from the totalitarian course it is on is considered ‘kooky’ and ‘wacko’. *shrug*. I guess the enlightenment, from which libertarian thought came from and spread to the US in the forms of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Thomas Paine are considered kooky and wacko…

It was also the main philosophy of the Democratic Party, right up until the mid to late 20th century. I wonder how we survived with all of those classic liberals (libertarians) running things?

Instead, what we have now are two monarchist parties fighting over who gets to have the power, how the big centralized government should tell everyone how to live their lives. The libertarians are the only ones standing up for the ‘little guy’, the Forgotten Man.

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 6:03 PM
Comment #373059

From the above link, written by Charles Sumner, one of the father of American sociology, the first to teach such a class while working at Yale University.

“As a sociologist, his major accomplishments were developing the concepts of diffusion, folkways, and ethnocentrism. Sumner’s work with folkways led him to conclude that attempts at government-mandated reform were useless.

In 1876, Sumner became the first to teach a course entitled “sociology” in the English-speaking world.”

These illustrations bring out only one side of my subject, and that only partially. It is when we come to the proposed measures of relief for the evils which have caught public attention that we reach the real subject which deserves our attention. As soon as A observes something which seems to him to be wrong, from which X is suffering, A talks it over with B, and A and B then propose to get a law passed to remedy the evil and help X. Their law always proposes to determine what C shall do for X or, in the better case, what A, B and C shall do for X. As for A and B, who get a law to make themselves do for X what they are willing to do for him, we have nothing to say except that they might better have done it without any law, ‘but what I want to do is to look up C. I want to show you what manner of man he is. I call him the Forgotten Man. Perhaps the appellation is not strictly correct. He is the man who never is thought of. He is the victim of the reformer, social speculator and philanthropist, and I hope to show you before I get through that he deserves your notice both for his character and for the many burdens which are laid upon him.

Our current system in a nutshell…

Posted by: Rhinehold at October 22, 2013 6:31 PM
Comment #373075

“No to government, no to taxes, sound familiar?”

Nope.
In fact, I don’t think I have seen anybody on WatchBlog write that. Heck, I don’t think I’ve even met anyone who believes that.

Posted by: kctim at October 23, 2013 9:22 AM
Comment #373218

And the silence is deafening…

Posted by: R at October 25, 2013 10:40 AM
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