First things first: Chuck Hagel makes a poor witness for himself. That’s clear. He’s always been this way, of course: deliberative and slow of speech, stubbornly stating his positions without concern as to who else joined with him in them. When Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., attacked the Defense secretary designee over his opposition to the surge in Iraq, and he responded simply, “I’ll let history decide,” that was classic Hagel. He’s confident that historians will judge the diversion into Iraq after 9/11 as a major strategic error, and he’s probably right.
"...diversion into Iraq..." What a lie. What I hope history will eventually reveal are the weapons Sadaam had plenty of time to hide/transfer while President Bush was busy jumping through hoops at the UN.
Is he doing poorly? Yes, but as a textbook Democrat. Vitter of Louisiana is skewering him on his "flipflops" (quoting past Hagel statements and asking if he still believes that), a term which Hagel views as inaccurate. "Not flipflops."
His good old boy Dem supporters are dwelling on his having been an enlisted man in Vietnam and his willingness to "serve his country" once again. Pretty thin gruel when stacked up against the marks against him.
John Warner actually had the gall to mention Kerry a another Vietnam veteran who continues to serve his country as secretary of state. (What happened to the Winter Soldier?)
We need more Vitters. And fewer Hagels, Warners, Kanes, Kings (Maine), etc.
Vitter cheated on his wife with a Washington hooker. Hagel served his nation valiantly -- both in Vietnam and in the Senate trying to spare this nation thousands of deaths and a couple of trillion dollars in Afghanistan and Iraq. We need fewer fat-mouthed chicken hawks and more soldiers.
This was a setup by Zero to paint the Republicans as so blindly against him that they would even vote down a Republican appointee. His cohort media will give their assistance and support for the scheme.
Defeating Hagel rests with the Senate Democrats. To confirm Hagel , they need 51 votes. The Democrats control the Senate 55 to 45. To throw up procedural roadblocks to stop Hagel, Republicans would need 60 votes. I can´t imagine that there are 15 Democrats who understand and respect the military and are willing to stop Hagel. Hagel served in Vietnam 46 years ago. For one year. We have thousands upon thousands of current military members who have done multiple year long tours of Iraq and Afghanistan. And like Hagel , many , many of them have been injured . And many , many of them have more executive and business experience than Hagel. Their recent combat, injury history and executive experience trump Hagel´s. Plus, no doubt the vast if not all , understand the dynamics of the new terror threats and do not despise our stalwart Middle East ally, Israel. Nor do they honor Iran. Credit goes to Senator John Cornyn of Texas for trying to rally the public and the Democrats to defeat Hagel. Senator John McCain was outstanding today. To those conservative purists who pouted and stayed home and refused to vote in the last election -shame, shame, shame on you. How could you do that to our troops ?
Susan Patton, the Princeton alumna who became famous for her letter urging Ivy League women to use their college years to find a mate, has been denounced as a traitor to feminism, to coeducation, to the university ideal. But really she’s something much more interesting: a traitor to her class. Her betrayal consists of being gauche enough to acknowledge publicly a truth that everyone who’s come up through Ivy League culture knows intuitively —
A New York hedge fund manager allegedly swindles $12 million from a prominent Baltimore family. An Indiana couple is accused of bilking hundreds of customers by charging for free trials of cosmetic products. A financial manager in Texas promises 23-percent returns but absconds with $33.5 million of his investors’ money in a classic Ponzi scheme.All three cases have one thing in common: money that ended up in offshore accounts and trusts set up in tax havens around the world.
Former News Corp president Peter Chernin has bid around $500 million for Hulu, the online video streaming service he helped create in 2007, according to two sources with knowledge of Hulu´s sale process. The website, jointly controlled by News Corp and Walt Disney Co, reached out to potential buyers in March after initially contemplating a deal in which one would buy out the other. It is not clear whether that transaction is still being contemplated.
After lengthy investigations, the Pentagon has determined that three Army generals committed misconduct in separate incidents, adding to an unusually long list of senior military commanders who have been censured over the past year.On Friday, defense officials confirmed that Army Maj. Gen. Ralph O. Baker, the commander of a strategic counterterrorism force on the Horn of Africa, was fired March 28 on charges of sexual misconduct. Two officials familiar with the case said Baker was investigated for allegedly groping a female civilian employee after he had been drinking.
The Obama administration appeared eager Thursday to downplay the North Korean military’s latest threat that it has the final authority to carry out “cutting-edge, smaller, lighter and diversified” nuclear strikes on the United States.“This is just the latest in a long line of aggressive statements,” (Snip)the recent tension between Washington and Pyongyang “does not need to get hotter.”The remarks were the first public reaction from the Obama administration since Wednesday’s claim by the North Korean military that the “moment of explosion is approaching fast” with the possibility of war breaking out “today or tomorrow.”
President Obama´s biggest gaffe yesterday when speaking of California Attorney General Kamala Harris was not in flirtatiously complimenting her as "the best-looking attorney general," but in introducing an observation from the system of beauty into a forum that was about the system of power.What´s that, you say? Irin Carmon does a great job in Salon in laying out the bounds of propriety for when it´s appropriate to talk about a woman´s looks as a general matter. But I´ve long felt we lack a solid theoretical underpinning for easily discussing these issues, and why precisely it is that
Political scientist Charles Murray has never backed away from controversy, but usually his opponents have been liberals. Friday, however, he managed to upset conservatives at the annual conference known as CPAC, where thousands of bewildered Republicans gathered to figure out the way forward after their party’s 2012 electoral defeat. Murray ditched his prepared remarks on “America Coming Apart” in favor of an impromptu admonition to fellow conservatives to accept the legalization of both gay marriage and abortion.
VATICAN CITY—It took Jorge Mario Bergoglio four minutes to convince fellow cardinals he was their leader. Speaking in the Paul VI grand hall of the Vatican, the Argentine cardinal warned the Catholic Church against focusing too much on matters close to home—advice that came against the backdrop of a papacy that had been consumed by infighting among Vatican officials, a dwindling flock in Europe and secular trends in the West. The 76-year-old Father Jorge, as he is known back home, said Roman Catholicism needed to shift its focus outward, to the world beyond Rome—rather than being "self-referential," he said.
When President Obama gets to Jerusalem next week, one of the signals to listen for is an indication of what country he thinks he’s in. Normally this is clear when the President — any president — goes to the capital of a foreign country. He’s in whatever country the capital is capital of. But Mr. Obama has been refusing to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Not only that, but he has been refusing to admit that Jerusalem is even in Israel.
Approaching his first presidential trip to Israel, President Obama offered a fresh and foolish — if not feckless — assessment of the Iranian nuclear threat. "Right now, we think it would take over a year or so for Iran to actually deliver a nuclear weapon, but obviously we don’t want to cut it too close,” the President told an Israeli television interviewer, in the process cutting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu off at the knees and giving the mullahs breathing room to keep enriching uranium.
I hope I´m not too late to the fight.Last week, freshman Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) held an old-fashioned filibuster against the nomination of John Brennan to head the CIA. Paul´s stated reason for taking to the floor and talking for 13 hours was that the Obama administration wouldn´t give him a straight answer on the question of whether the president can unilaterally order the killing of American citizens on American soil with "lethal force, such as a drone strike … and without trial."
An unfortunate story on CBS New York Thursday carried this headline: "Officials: 80 Percent Of Recent NYC High School Graduates Cannot Read." It´s a shocker, but it´s also untrue. And to make things worse, the story that followed was riddled with typos. According to the New York Post, which reported the same story earlier on Thursday, "79.3 percent of city public-school grads who went to CUNY’s six two-year colleges arrived without having mastered the basics" of reading, writing, and math, and had to take non-credit remedial classes to catch up.
More young men in California rise in pitch at the end of their sentences when talking, new research shows. This process is known as "uptalk" or "valleygirl speak" and has in the past been associated with young females, typically from California or Australia.But now a team says that this way of speaking is becoming more frequent among men.The findings were presented at the Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America in California. "We found use of uptalk in all of our speakers, despite their diverse backgrounds in socioeconomic status, ethnicity, bilingualism and gender," said Amanda Ritchart, a linguist at the University of
DAVID CORN: I saw a president who remains frustrated with the political-media culture that he has to work within, and that he´s looking to rally people, students here, and supporters, and people within the media. CHRIS MATTHEWS: But David Corn, you skeptic. He came to us today. He came amongst us. CORN: He´s trying to rally people behind this vision that he´s been promoting for a couple years. FINEMAN: By the way, he did it the end here, today, Chris, not by defending specifics, but by explaining why he´s in the game to begin with. And I don´t know about you, he´s
The most curious thing of all about the November jobs report released on Friday was the huge drop in the unemployment rate — and the fact that the Labor Department chose not to disclose that the data going into that figure are under investigation for falsification. On Nov. 19, I broke the news in my column that the Census Bureau, which collects data that goes into the jobless rate on behalf of Labor, had caught one of its enumerators fabricating interviews in 2010. The culprit said back then (and to me during an interview) that he was told to do so by
Denver - A baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex ceremony must serve gay couples despite his religious beliefs or face fines, a judge said Friday. The order from administrative law judge Robert N. Spencer said Masterpiece Cakeshop in suburban Denver discriminated against a couple "because of their sexual orientation by refusing to sell them a wedding cake for their same-sex marriage." The order says the cake-maker must "cease and desist from discriminating" against gay couples. Although the judge did not impose fines in this case, the business will face penalties if it continues to turn away gay
7. On the U.S. war with Iraq: “If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don’t care for human beings.” Via cbsnews.com 6. On Israel: “Israel should withdraw from all the areas which it won from the Arabs in 1967, and in particular Israel should withdraw completely from the Golan Heights, from south Lebanon and from the West Bank.” Via jweekly.com 5. On the U.S. war with Iraq: “All that (Mr. Bush) wants is Iraqi oil.” Via cbsnews.com 4. Mandela on Castro and the Cuban revolution: “From its earliest days, the Cuban Revolution has also been a
How do you get your arms around the catastrophe known as Obamacare? Is it even possible? At this point, I’m not sure it is. The list of individual disasters which threaten to ruin one-sixth of the U.S. economy and what has been, up until now, the best healthcare system in the world is exhaustive, and exhausting. The examples I will identify here barely scratch the surface. First but by no means foremost, we have the supposedly new and improved HealthCare.gov. Except it’s not, even the visible part. Stories still abound of people still failing to get in or to get through the enrollment
The question all week long was this: Who are you going to believe, an illegal alien or the president of the United States of America? Obviously, if it’s a president who once went by an alias, Barry Soetoro, you go with Uncle Omar, 100 percent, no questions asked. And so it was that the White House finally admitted to another, uh, misstatement — despite previous denials, Barack/Barry did sleep on his beloved Uncle Omar’s couch in Cambridge when he first moved here to attend Harvard Law School (speaking of which, we’re still waiting to see the president’s grades and his LSAT scores). But the
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has announced a new five-year strategic plan to improve safety for elderly drivers and passengers. Although they are statistically among the safest on the road, the number of older drivers is increasing dramatically — and with it, that group´s numbers of injuries and deaths. Since 2003, the population of older adults, defined as age 65 and older, has increased by 20% and the number of licensed older drivers increased by 21% to 35 million in 2012, according to NHTSA. Last year, NHTSA reported that 5,560 people older than 65 died and 214,000 were injured
Former President Bill Clinton shared an anecdote regarding Nelson Mandela and the aftermath of his impeachment Friday on CNN. Clinton revealed shortly after the “impeachment business” finished on Capitol Hill, Rep. Henry Hyde (R., Ill.) who managed the impeachment trial requested a meeting at the White House. The former president granted the meeting out of lessons of humility and forgiveness he learned from Mandela, he said: BILL CLINTON: I remember one day, oh, about a month after the whole impeachment business was over, Henry Hyde, who had run the whole show, unbelievably enough, maybe a few months after, it was
One definition of a pathological liar is someone who lies where the truth would serve just as well. When President Obama’s uncle, Onyango Obama, was arrested in 2011 for drunk driving, the truth — that Obama had stayed with his uncle years earlier for several weeks as a Harvard law student — would have served the president just fine. No potential Obama voter would have held it against him that an uncle he had stayed with two decades earlier was picked up for DUI. Yet the White House went with a lie, claiming that Obama had never met his uncle. Now that
Although the jobless rate in November fell to its lowest level since he took office, President Obama called on Republican lawmakers Saturday to spend tens of billions on unemployment benefits that are set to expire this month. “It shouldn’t be a partisan issue,” Mr. Obama said in his weekly address. But he said the “economic lifeline” is in jeopardy. “All because Republicans in this Congress — which is on track to be the most unproductive in history — have so far refused to extend it” Mr. Obama said. If Congress doesn’t act before lawmakers leave on their holiday break, about
Many people could die as extreme weather becomes common. There will be more freak winds like the October storm, which killed four people. Heatwaves will be lethal and the sea level will rise, leaving coastal towns at risk of being swamped by storm surges. Sir Brian Heap, president of the European Academies Science Advisory Council, said he felt “obliged” to issue the warning after a new study by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. It comes on the back of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, which has killed more than 5,000 people. Sir Brian said: “Given the tragic events this