Lame Duck Soup Bush’s tepid State of the Union speech.
Bush’s most important request of the night was for more time to let his Iraq strategy work. Yet while he was asking for support, he was also showing who (he believes) is boss. He made it clear that his surge was already under way and pressured Democrats. “I ask you to support our troops in the field—and those on their way,” he said. He was playing hardball because Democrats are terrified of being on the wrong side of the troop issue (which is why having Jim Webb give the Democratic rebuttal was so smart), but when he plays hardball on the tough issue of the day, he undermines his effort to reach out.
It was the usual boiler plate. Democrats should work with him to continue policies that have been failures Bush should not feel he should work with Democrats to mitigate some of the damage that Bush has done to America. It is the quintessential elite frat boy mentality that he can do no wrong and has nothing to make up for. Bush’s answer to making bad decisions is to simply turn up the volume – make those decisions bigger and more disasterous. Horrible decisions that Americans and Iraqis will pay for for years, but not Bush. He continues his lifelong easy ride through life immune from the consequences of anything he does. He Still Doesn’t Understand the War – Bush whiffs on Iraq again during the State of the Union
What a dispiriting State of the Union address! So many disasters, so little time left to repair them, so few insights into what caused them or what to do about them now.
President Bush may not have felt obligated to discuss Iraq in detail, having laid out his new plan in prime time less than two weeks ago. But to the extent he talked about the war, his words were at best puzzling, and at worst, maddening.
For example, the president did nothing to clarify the “surge”—the deployment of 20,000 more U.S. combat troops over the next few months. It’s unclear whether even this administration believes in the plan or knows how it will work. The new defense secretary, Robert Gates, has said in recent days that the surge might be needed only through the summer, after which withdrawals might begin. However, at hearings this morning before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Lieut. Gen. David Petraeus, the new commander of U.S. forces in Iraq, stressed the need for patience. The new troops will need time to get to Iraq; more time to understand the neighborhoods they’ll be securing; more time to conduct operations and secure the area; and still more time to build on the security. These tasks, he said, will be “neither quick nor easy.”
So, which is it: a short-term augmentation, as Secretary Gates tries to assure us—or a very long haul, as Gen. Petraeus (who will be running the operation) tries to warn us?
“I ask you to give it a chance to work,” the president (uncharacteristically) pleaded tonight. In service of this support, he proposed to set up a “special advisory council on the War on Terrorism, made up of leaders in Congress from both political parties,” to “share ideas for how to position America” to meet today’s challenges and to “show our enemies abroad that we are united in the goal of security.”
The thing is, there already are advisory councils. They’re called the congressional committees on foreign relations, armed services, and intelligence. President Bush had his chance with the ideas of a bipartisan council, the Iraq Study Group headed by James Baker and Lee Hamilton. He dismissed them out of hand. Now he has to deal with the normal constitutional arrangements. That’s democracy.
Why does anyone listen to Bush or take anything he has to say seriously. he like the crazy shut-in down the street , you make sure that he’s feed and gets to his doctors appointments ,but you don’t give his inane ramblings any credence. If Bush worked for the private sector he’d be told to clear out his desk and escorted to the door by security. If Bush is sane we have arrived at an incredibly low threshold for what constitutes sanity. Meanwhile Back At The Ranch
Tuesday, January 23rd at 2PM, Senators Gerald Ortiz y Pino D-ABQ and John Grubesic D-Santa Fe introduced their resolution to impeach President George Bush and Richard Cheney. Based on a resolution crafted by Phil Burk of impeachbush.tv and the national impeachment movement, the resolution made four charges, three of which are violations of the US Constitution.
WHEREAS, George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney conspired with others to defraud the United States of America by intentionally misleading congress and the public regarding the threat from Iraq in order to justify a war in violation of Title 18 United States Code, Section 371; and
Joseph Biden(D) while frequently correct on national security issues can be a bit grating in his presentation, but he has joined the John Murtha-Chuck Hagel Club of those who get it, Sen. Joe Biden Finally Gets It Right: “The Vice President Doesn’t Know What’s He’s Talking About”
CHRIS WALLACE: “Senator Biden, I know that this is not your intent, but, in fact, wouldn’t your resolution send a mesage that would embolden our enemy and discourage our troops in the field?”
SEN. BIDEN: “Absolutely not. Not only does Carl Levin and Joe Biden and Senator Hagel and Senator Snowe, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Iraqi Study Group – every single person out there that is of any consequence thinks – knows – the Vice President doesn’t know what’ he’s talking about. I can’t be more blunt than that. He has yet to be right one single time on Iraq. Name me one single time he’s been correct. It’s about time we stopped lstening to that ideological rhetoric and that bin Laden and the rest. Bin Laden isn’t the issue here. Bin Laden will become the issue. The issue is there’s a civil war, Chris. I said way back in November – speaking of last year – speaking at the Council on Foreign Relations, I said: ‘Does anyone support using American troops to fight a civil war? I don’t and I don’t think the American people do, but if we fail to force a political consensus, that’s exactly what we will have.’ That’s what we have. That’s what the President has to deal with and he’s doin’ it the exact wrong way and he’s not listening to his military. He’s not listening to his old Secretaries of State. He’s not listening to his old friends. He’s not listening to anybody but Cheney and Cheney – is – dead – wrong.”
The template is the Outer Space Treaty of 1967, a visionary pact developed by the U.S., United Kingdom and Soviet Union to prevent what 40 years ago was already feared as the weaponization of space. It bans nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction in space. What China, Russia - and our friends to our north, Canada - have been doing is trying to broaden that to all weapons.
It’s high time that be done and it must done be soon.
The U.S. has the technology to move into space with weapons. Believing it will end up the only nation up there with arms if it does so is a huge and tragic mistake. China and Russia - and who knows what country next - will follow us up. And, no nation will have an advantage. Meanwhile, vast amounts of financial resources will need to be expended for space weaponry by the people of these countriesmoney desperately needed for medical care, education, the environment and all the other great needs on Earth.
The U.S. must join with the nations of the world now on an agreement (that includes a system of verification) providing the heavens not become a place for war.
Just a side note about the media punditry’s take on this. Some Bill O’Reilly wannbe named Glenn Beck went off on the tired silliness that President Clinton and technology sells as the whole reason behind China’s recent test. Glenn, Glenn please don’t share the fact that during the Bush administration IBM sold its notebook computer division to China and neither the administration or a far Right Congress raised any objection. Don’t tell your audience that Reagan, Bush Sr, and Junior all have been very pro technology trade to China and that Congress must approve all technology sells. America needs a better pundit class and Beck sure isn’t the answer.
There is a Republican site called Newsbusters ( apparently one of Beck’s bookmarked sites) that claims to be media watchdogs, keepers of the ultimate truth as it were. Only they have a record of propagandizing the news that would make Joseph Stalin proud. They been caught lying before – here and not shy about making bold statements even when they don’t seem to be able to comprehend the isses – here. They continue their tradition of near zero credibility – Media conservatives hype discredited NewsBusters post on background foliage in Clinton video
Following Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s (D-NY) January 20 launch of her presidential bid, numerous media conservatives, like CNN Headline News host Glenn Beck, a new regular commentator for ABC’s Good Morning America, have touted a discredited post by Mark Finkelstein on the Media Research Center’s NewsBusters weblog to baselessly claim that Clinton recorded her announcement video months before actually announcing. The January 20 post, which immediately followed Clinton’s announcement, questioned when the video was shot by pointing to the foliage in the background of the video and asking: “Did Hillary have this video in the can during all those months while she was claiming to be making up her mind? Was it a carefully staged artificial background?” The post was later updated with the following: “A national-level reporter whom I respect informs me that the video was produced last week in DC. The reporter does not know whether the background is natural.” Further, according to Newsday, Clinton’s announcement video was filmed in her Washington, D.C., home the previous week, and National Public Radio senior correspondent and Fox News contributor Juan Williams reported on the January 22 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends that the video was filmed January 18 “[a]t her [Clinton’s] D.C. house, which is actually near Rock Creek Park.”
Beck is also a part-time clown – “OK, besides, you know, the staged, cozy living room scene, there’s a window there with, gosh, doesn’t it look like an awful lot of green trees behind her? Now, I’m no arborist, but I am a thinker. And it doesn’t seem like trees should have their leaves in January in New York or Washington, unless — unless it’s that damn global warming again. My gosh, that stuff just won’t let up.” Beck will continue to make millions as a media pundit, you know those supposedly smart people that are there to help America by providing insight and truth. The only thing Beck has given much thought to is the ratio of right-wing noise he has to generate to put the most cash into his bank account; doing right by America is the last thing he will ever think about if he thinks at all.