Pirates, Spin and Hypocrisy

More pirate punks at sea news, U.S. Navy Apprehends Somali Pirates for the First Time

A U.S. Navy ship working as part of a multinational team called Combined Task Force 151, apprehended a group of seven Somali pirates today, the first time the task force has picked up Somali pirates.

The apprehension appears to be in response to what U.S. officials tell ABC News was an order from the Pentagon issued last Thursday to pursue pirates off the Somali coast.

Conservative spin sale

Apparently it is officially open season on pirates. Which leaves yet another Conservative blogger gasping for something relevant to add to the conversation, conservative blogger Jules Crittendon writes, The New Bloodthirstiness

But three dead pirates do not a military campaign or strategy or doctrine make, and Obama despite the tough talk has yet to demonstrate that he is willing to hunt pirates down.* In fact, news reports indicate the dithering has already begun. Never mind that. I just want to say I’m thrilled about the handwringing, Kumbayah-singing, peacenik left’s new enthusiasm for swift, extra-judicial 7.62 justice by executive order, and the lack of calls for human rights investigations, prosecutions,  etc.

Conservative spin sale

This is where we’re all supposed to suggest to the Crit to try to keep up, but it wouldn’t make any difference. A few days ago President Obama was …insert favorite epitaph to convey weakness – pantywaist, indecisive, etc. Now that  Capt. Phillips is safe, Obama doesn’t have a strategy and some strawman hyperbole about human rights. Doesn’t read the news, does not know the difference between justified military action and trumped up wars and thinks the U.S. should commit the same war crimes that we put the Japanese and Germans on trial for. That passes for citizen journalism on the Right. Where were the same conservative bloggers and pundits when Bush decided to pass on decisive action on the pirate problem, Bush Administration Had Issued Plan for Pirates in December

It was nearly silent, however, on what to do if a ship is taken by pirates and crew members are held captive. And what little guidance it provided was vague. U.S. naval forces were given authority to “terminate the act of piracy and any included hostage situation.” Just how they were to do that was left unsaid.

[   ]…”If we try to do some kind of hostage takedown, that’s a whole other ballgame than preventing an act of piracy in progress,” Rear Adm. Ted Branch, the Navy headquarters staff officer responsible for monitoring such crises at sea, told a congressional hearing on Somali piracy in February. “You certainly increase the risk to the crew members in that kind of takedown. Therefore, there hasn’t been any appetite to do those kinds of [operations].”

Asked at a press conference about the Somali pirates, Dana Perino replied, Bush briefed, U.S. consulting allies on Somali pirates

U.S. President George W. Bush has been briefed about increasing attacks by Somali pirates off east Africa, and the United States is consulting with other U.N. Security Council members on ways to combat the threat, the White House said on Wednesday.

Calling it a “a very complicated issue,” White House spokeswoman Dana Perino gave no hint of what, if any, action the United States might take following the hijacking earlier this week of a Saudi supertanker with a $100 million oil cargo.

But she told reporters, “The goal would be to try to help get this ship to safety, secure the crew and then work with our international partners to try to alleviate the piracy problem, full stop.”

So Bush took a pass on direct confrontation at the time. There are risks to life and porperty by making the pirate issue solely about fighting and capturing them at sea. It makes for great news coverage and gives the residents of Mom’s Basement brigade of Second Guessers a chance to thumb their chests. There are pirate towns along the Horn of Africa. They have hostages from around the world, one or two sea engagements do not solve that problem. Bush may have been right to take the international solution route, but Obama is held to a different standard. Anything less then a “bloodthristy” response and he is damned by the Right. Obama makes a strategic military decision and the Right flounders around searching for ways to not give credit where due. This has happned less then a hundred days into Obama’s presidency and will be the same tired old right-wing dance routine for the next four years.

Paul Krugman’s recent column was bound to get under the Right’s skin. You’re not supposed to call crazy by its name. Of all the issues touched on in that column, conservative spin meister Tom Maguire zeroes in on the assertion that Tom Delay never said that learning about evolution caused the Columbine shootings. Maquire would be wrong, Come on Now to the World of Fun Now

So did DeLay claim that evolution led to Columbine? Yes! What happened in 1999 was that DeLay went out on the House floor and read out a newspaper letters-column  by a complete imbecile, a person named Addison L. Dawson. That letter is here, and it is extremely kooky.

Delay read someone elses words to convey his thoughts on the causes of Columbine. That is upposed to relieve Delay of taking any part of said letter and believing those were his thoughts on the matter. If that was the case why did Delay bother to read it into the Congressional record.

Palin’s New Disaster

In March, Palin nominated Wayne Anthony Ross for attorney general. Ross, a colorful far-right lawyer and longtime Palin ally who sports his initials, W.A.R., on his Hummer’s vanity plates, was once considered a shoo-in for confirmation. However, his nomination was thrown into grave peril when his opponents presented evidence that he called homosexuals “degenerates,” leveled invective against an African-American student offended by a statue of a Klansman, vowed to undermine the sovereignty of Native American tribes, and allegedly defended men who rape their wives.

Way way back in October of 2008 Palin was the future of the Republican party, Win or Lose, Many See Palin as Future of Party

“She’s dynamite,” said Morton C. Blackwell, who was President Ronald Reagan’s liaison to the conservative movement. Mr. Blackwell described vying to get close to Ms. Palin at a fund-raiser in Virginia, lamenting that he could get only within four feet.

“I made a major effort to position myself at this reception,” he said, adding that he is eager to sit down with her after the election to discuss the future. Asked if the weeks of unflattering revelations and damaging interviews had tarnished her among conservatives, he replied, “Not a bit.”

Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, a conservative group, called it a “top order of business” to determine Ms. Palin’s future role. “Conservatives have been looking for leadership, and she has proven that she can electrify the grass roots like few people have in the last 20 years,” Mr. Bozell said. “No matter what she decides to do, there will be a small mother lode of financial support behind her.”

[  ]…“I would hope she would consider running for president,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, which raises money for candidates who oppose abortion.

Bozell could be correct if the pro wife raping and pro Klan is part of the reemergence of the nutroots.

Robert Parry has good column up about the media and the different standarsd applied to Democrats and Republicans, US News Media Fails America, Again

By contrast, the Right grasped the importance of “information warfare” in a modern media age and targeted its heaviest firepower on the frontlines of that war – mostly the political battlefields of Washington – thus magnifying the influence of right-wing ideas on policymakers.

One consequence of this media imbalance is that Republicans feel they can pretty much say whatever they want – no matter how provocative or even crazy – while Democrats must be far more circumspect, knowing that any comment might be twisted into an effective attack point against them.

So, while criticism of Republicans presidents – from Ronald Reagan to the two Bushes – had to be tempered for fear of counterattacks, almost anything could be said against a Democratic president, Bill Clinton or now Barack Obama, who is repeatedly labeled a “socialist” and, according to Beck, a “fascist” for pressuring hapless GM chief executive Rick Wagoner to resign.

Its not difficult to find a liberal blogger that either called Bush a fascist or suggested that he was flirting with a form of fascism. Though you never heard the major networks use such sweeping epitaphs toward Bush. Contrast that with major media figures in print and broadcasting calling Obama names like the nation was a playground and we’re all in second grade.

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