Thursday, March 31, 2011

What Constitutes an Impeachable Offense

Classic Lefty
The battle for Libya rages on with all the ebbs and flows of military advances and retreats, and thanks to the Obama administration, we find ourselves entrenched in it. In the midst of the confusing intentions being projected from the White House, one thing has come to the forefront that may spell disaster in the short term for the administration, but more so in the long term for America.

As rumors that al Qaeda may be among the beneficiaries of our intervention become reports, questions are bubbling to the surface from a most unlikely source; the media that aided in the election of Barack Hussein Obama. Israeli intelligence puts the actual number of al Qaeda members among the alleged "rebels" in Libya in the thousands, not to mention the Hamas contributions or the Hezbollah factor.

The Obama regime at first tried to claim that the composition of the Libyan opposition forces was unknown, and that ours was a mission to prevent civilians from massacre at the hands of Gadhafi's military. It was also proclaimed that we would merely provide a no-fly zone so that the rebels had "a fighting chance", and that we would have no boots on the ground. Obama also suggested that we were not going to be supplying these rebels with arms, and that Gadhafi's ouster was not our goal. But a Reuters report yesterday paints a different picture.

The report says that Obama signed a secret order, or "finding", authorizing the CIA to "help the rebels", and possibly to provide them with weapons. Interestingly, the report also states that it may have been as long as three weeks ago that Obama signed the order. Are we to believe that the CIA could be working in Libya and not be aware of an al Qaeda presence there, or the scope of such a presence? After all, they are the Central "Intelligence" Agency! So is Obama knowingly aiding our 9/11 attackers in Libya, and preparing to give them weapons?

Further, the Washington Times' Jeffrey Kuhner - in an interview with New York's Steve Malzberg - said that his sources in Israel told him that they have intelligence suggesting a significant jihadist presence at work in Libya. Granted, the Israelis are considerably under enamored of Barack Hussein Obama, but it is inconceivable that they would not share such information with the State Department. So exactly what is going on over there?

Consider this; at first, the Obama administration tepidly supported the Mubarek regime when Egypt began to erupt. Coincidentally, Obama shifted his stance when news emerged that the Muslim Brotherhood was involved, and prominently.

When protesters in Iran took to the streets demanding freedom from brutal Shar'ia rule - most wish to become more "westernized" - Obama was silent on the crushing response of Ahmedinejad. And while Gadhafi has been a big fan of Obama's, he has been less than an enthusiastic proponent of jihad since Saddam Hussein's capture, which was broadcast for the world to see. Suddenly, a seemingly reticent Obama is ready to toss the Libya strongman out on his keister.

Oliver North in 1986

We must remember the bitter outrage from the Left during the Iran-Contra trials, and then hold that up in comparison now. The Reagan administration wasn't arming an enemy at the time, they were trying to arm true rebels in Nicaragua who were fighting the Communist Sandinistas. Obama is aiding abeting, and arming an enemy that wants all non-Muslims dead or subjugated. Jeffrey Kuhner calls him a traitor. Still not enough for impeachment?

What if we add in the Constitutional violation of committing armed forces without Congressional consent, much less consultation? Both Obama and Vice President Biden called the practice impeachable in the past, so what has changed now?

Someone referred to the Obama administration as "The Gang That Can't Shoot Straight". Thank God for that, or we'd all be dead already.

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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Mindless Equivocation and Hubristic Hypocrisy

"The United States has alienated its allies, dismayed its friends and inadvertently gratified its enemies by proclaiming a confused and disturbing strategy of preemptive war. With our allies disunited, the world resenting us and the Middle East ablaze, we need [new leadership] to restore life to the global war against terrorism." - Jimmy Carter

Funny how those words ring so true, but at the wrong time. The sad reality is that those words, uttered by Jimmy Carter, were said in 2004 in the Presidential campaign of John Kerry, and designed as an attack on then-President George W. Bush.

It was slightly more than a year after the start of the Iraq War and an insinuation of the myth that America waged that war unilaterally, which is not true despite the breathless claims of leftist politicians and pundits. At its inception, the campaign in Iraq - and its predecessor in Afghanistan - was waged by more than sixty nations, all of which were cavalierly dismissed by the Democrats.

The mantra was dutifully parroted by a decidedly left-leaning media, who all pushed the notion that "Bush acted alone". One can only imagine how unappreciated the participating nations must have felt. Hurt feelings aside, the larger issue is the ability of the Progressive movement to lie with impunity and manipulate the dialogue unchallenged in the press, a press that not only provides cover for the Democrats, but eagerly disputes any attempt by the sane to point out inconsistencies in the Democrats' positions.

The evidence abounds, from Obama's "most transparent administration" despite his numerous closed-door sessions, to the sudden doctrine that borrowing and massive spending lead us to prosperity, and the selective memory and reasoning of those now in power. Consider the actions of Obama regarding Libya, where the president committed U.S. forces to combat with virtually no Congressional consent and a fragile coalition now in rapid backpedal.

How does the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, respond? On the weekend talk shows she reaches back to point out U.S. precedent in military engagement and foreign policy. And she did so by claiming a truth she once vehemently denied. Pressed on why we went into Libya when that country posed no threat to the U.S., Clinton whipped out the facts (the real ones this time). Speaking on NBC's Meet the Press, she said:
"We asked our allies, our NATO allies, to go into Afghanistan with us 10 years ago. They have been there. And a lot of them have been there despite the fact they were not attacked."
Good for the goose, the gander not so much. Will Chris Matthews or Lawrence O'Donnell call her on such a blatant act of hypocrisy? Will the New York Times OpEd pages howl in indignation? Highly unlikely, which only means that unless I can convince someone like Michael Moore or Alec Baldwin to read this piece, only the choir will see it. The Left and its mindless minions will continue their inexorable march to America's ruination.

Returning to the words of the 2004 version of Jimmy Carter, think about Obama's treatment of French President Nicolas Sarkozy or Britain's Gordon Brown. Remember the shameful reception given to Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, and the administration's belittlement and berating of Israel's internal affairs. Think now of who did more to destroy our relationship with America's friends and allies.

And which president has done more to "gratify our enemies".

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

An Unintended Benefit of a Bumbling Obama

Maxwell Smart of Get Smart?
Comparisons are already being forged between former president Jimmy Carter and current president Barack Obama as worst president in American history, and the practice is quite understandable. That being said, it must be remembered that Jimmy Carter was a genuine fool lacking both experience and guidance which led to his utter ineptitude. The jury is still out on Obama's "guidance" and his backers, even as his intellect is touted as supreme, despite the mounting evidence to the contrary.

As the debate grows over the wisdom of our interference in Libya - and Obama's very own authority to impose that sort of meddling - there is also the prospect that the same rebels we endeavor to aid may be members of the same group that attacked us a decade ago. It has even been recently acknowledged by the Libyan "rebel leader" that al Qaeda is active in that countries dispute. We may be fighting alongside our enemy. But don't despair just yet.

Despite the curious motives of Obama's illegal action in Libya, and regardless of the bald hypocrisy of the Democrats who defend his actions, there may be a positive outcome in Libya when all is said and done.

Remember back to a decade ago. It was al Qaeda who hijacked our own planes and attacked the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon in Washington, and an empty field in Pennsylvania, thanks to Todd Beamer and his fellow passengers. That was September 11th, 2001. On September 18th, a week later, the 107th Congress issued a joint resolution - Public Law 107-40 [S. J. RES. 23] - which stated, in part, "Whereas, the President has authority under the Constitution to take action to deter and prevent acts of international terrorism against the United States."

In October, we were in Afghanistan hunting al Qaeda and bin Laden, but it was rough work. Trying to find certain individuals in mountainous terrain and determining whether they were shepherds or the enemy was problematic. It was akin to a police academy shooting test where a disproportionate amount of the pop-up targets were pigtailed school girls or grandmas pushing grocery carts with an occasional bad guy springing up.

The lament was that al Qaeda had no country, no flag and no uniforms, making them quite the unconventional adversary. What if they were to have these things, then? What if we inadvertently hand them Libya?

Yes, let them raise their flag, sew their uniforms, and feel like they have achieved a victory of sorts. Let them gather in Libya and chase away the remaining Muslims not interested in the jihad, and once this is complete let them dance.

I would suggest that they also rename the country. Something appropriate. Does anyone know the Arabic translation for Very Large Target?

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Friday, March 18, 2011

He Can't See Russia at All

Searching for Foreign Policy
In the presidential campaign for 2008, we were warned of the danger Sarah Palin posed as a potential vice president. She was painted as a lightweight with no experience who couldn't be trusted one heartbeat away from leader of the free world. The media went so far as to ridicule her, with Katie Couric asking inane questions in an interview, much of which was left on the cutting room floor.

Tina Fey did such a good job - right down to the stunning resemblance - that the phrase, "I can see Russia from my house!"  is generally attributed to Sarah Palin, even though she never said such a thing. It was misconstrued from her answer to a question in another interview with Charles Gibson, who never even attempted to conceal his utter disdain for the woman.

In September of 2008, I wrote about why Sarah Palin was a credible candidate with enough foreign policy experience to handle the job. I quoted from an article that speculated that she may have been more qualified than Joe Biden at the time, based on her tenure as Governor of Alaska and its proximity to Russia, and as Commander in Chief of the Alaska National Guard. I never had any doubt that she was more qualified than Obama, yet a fawning press convinced far too many that I was wrong.

Combined with the aid of an adoring media, Obama brought a slick campaign style and shiny veneer to the battle, wowing crowds who were already receptive to him simply because they thought it was time for a Black president. None of the substance ever mattered in the campaign, and the result was what we see now. And the veneer is proving very thin and vulnerable to corrosion.

The fact of our economic anemia, high unemployment rates, and out-of-control debts and deficits aside, we are starting to see the absolute ineptitude of this man in the arena of foreign policy. Some wonder privately - and others are beginning to do so publicly - whether Obama is actually engaged in the happenings around the globe. I simply maintain that he is completely out of his league.

Libyans Under Seige
As the people of Libya fight their dictatorial leader for freedom, Barack Obama picks his March Madness NCAA brackets on TV, and plays golf on the weekends. As Japan struggles with the horrendous aftermath of an earthquake, a resultant tsunami and several nuclear reactors on the precipice of meltdown, Obama is planning to jet off to Rio, where he will give some meaningless speech about something while his family enjoys the sights.

And it's getting harder for his allies in the media to cover for him. As Joshua Hersh adroitly points out in an article in The Daily, even Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is on her last nerve with this administration, announcing near the end of her Libya mission that she will not return even if Obama wins a second term. In dealings with French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Clinton's exasperation was clearly evident, repeatedly and cryptically responding to Sarkozy's urging more action from the White House, "There are difficulties".

Hillary's passion for pressure on Gaddafhi was obviously one of those "difficulties", in that Obama never took them very seriously. In fact, at the Gridiron Club Dinner last week, Obama joked that His Secretary of State's passion made it difficult for him to sleep "for the past few weeks", quipping that she was "out there on Pennsylvania Avenue shouting, throwing rocks at the window".

North Korea defiantly fired ballistic missiles toward our shores, Iran thumbs its nose at our insistence  that they cease attempts to acquire nuclear weapons, leaders of strong allied countries are embarrassed and rebuked by this administration, and China treats us like their little brother. Meanwhile, the saplings of liberty struggle to break the surface of the soil in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Bahrain, and now Iran, while President Obama dances at the White House.

Yet the same media who fretted over the unlikely prospect of a President Palin seem to not even notice that we currently have an actual President who not only can't see Russia, but probably doesn't even know in which direction to look for it. Nor does he care.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wisconsin or Waterloo?

Voice of the Vast Minority
Today, the Wisconsin State Legislature passed a contentious bill curtailing the rights of public servants in collective bargaining after weeks of absence by Democrats, who fled to neighboring Illinois to stall a vote in the Assembly. Apparently, these Democrats did not consult a parliamentarian before they decided to embark on their ill-conceived embargo.

Since their absence prevented the requisite quorum for a vote, the Democrats assumed that avoidance would be sufficient to stop the Republicans from acting. Little did they realize, however,  that the quorum rule applies only to fiscal budgetary votes. The Republicans, tired of waiting for the Democrats to stop holding their collective breath while stomping their feet, stripped that portion of the overall bill, and voted on the collective bargaining aspects thereof.  Call it an "epic fail" on the part of Democrats.

The move caused the simmering pot of union discontent to boil over, and now the angry have become the incensed and violent. Not that their tactics while "merely cross" were much better. In that state of emotion, they carried signs of Governor Walker as Hitler, others that called for the impeachment of the Republicans, and generally accused the governor and the right side of the aisle of lying. Fail, fail, fail.

To begin, it must be pointed out these union thugs make up a paltry eleven percent of the population, and a small portion of the middle class they allege to represent. Most of the middle class are either hard working people who pay the salaries of the union workers through confiscatory taxation, or honest people desperately seeking jobs which will add to the pool of taxpayers.

In Scott Walker's campaign for governor, he telegraphed his intent to do precisely what he is doing, and he won the election by a six-point margin. That is a clear indication that the union folks did not have the votes to stop it. Now they want to force Walker and the Republican legislators out to achieve their goals, all the while claiming the mantel of "Democracy". Sorry, the folks who did get their votes ran away when the battle was brewing.

So the labor movement enlisted Representative Mark Pocan (D- Madison) to "look into" the budget of Wisconsin and, not surprisingly, he "found" that the $3.6 billion deficit cited by Walker was "bogus". Incredibly, Pocan claimed, “For this year’s budget, any shortfalls are a direct result of Walker’s policies." Since Walker has been Governor for exactly nine weeks, that is highly debatable, if not downright absurd.

Before the vote, Democratic Assemblymen predicted that the bill would ultimately be overturned because it violated the state's open-meetings law, which requires 24 hours notice before meetings. Republicans countered that they had waited long enough for the missing Democratic Senators to return. Seriously, to whine about not being present for a vote when you've fled to another state altogether - and for weeks - is an embarrassing fail.

Add to the ineptitude of the elected in this drama the machinations of the peripheral cast, and things get uglier. As union protesters became more frustrated, they became more rambunctious, storming the Capitol building and climbing through windows, prompting a temporary lock-down of the Capitol. Others, inside the building's rotunda, chanted, "Hey, hey, ho, ho, Scott Walker has got to go," and, "This is what democracy looks like."

No. Democracy looks like elected representatives who bother to show up for work casting their votes on behalf of their constituents. Those who opt out have no business complaining. For the Left in this case to believe that they have engaged in the democratic process and, by extension, won any level of sympathy have succeeded in nothing more than...say it with me..."failure".

As long as the mainstream media doesn't recognize the losing aspects of this play and drop the coverage like a radioactive isotope, what the progressives believed was a winner for the cause will turn into their undoing, just as Napoleon found at Waterloo.

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A Blow to Political Correctness

Artwork © Glenn McCoy
The much heralded hearings begin today by the U.S. Congress on the radicalization of American Muslims, much to the chagrin of Liberal apologists and inflammation of, well, radical Muslims. The irony lies in the pawns - ostensibly the concern of the Left - on the board being forced into the brutal path of the knights and bishops by the very people who pretend to care.

Chess has never been such a graphically violent contact sport.

Yet the Democrats, the media, and the Imams have all insinuated that ordinary Muslims will be so insulted by these hearings that - wait for it! - they may become radicalized. One of the reasons for the hearings is Chairman Peter King's disappointment in the lack of protests by "ordinary" American Muslims in the face of attacks waged in their name, and still we're being cautioned that to try to figure out why may cause more attacks. Forgive me for being confused by such an absurd message.

The World Trade Center attacks were carried out by radical Muslims. The Madrid subway bombings were perpetrated by Muslims. The London attacks, Muslims. The failed shoe-bomber aboard a flight, Richard Reid, a Muslim. The New York bound Christmas Day attempted underwear bomber was a Muslim, as was the foiled Times Square bomber. Yet the only Muslim member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Keith Ellison of Minnesota, states that radicalization is not contained within "one group".

Ellison et al try to equate radical Islam with a rogue Liberal maniac who flies a small plane into the IRS building or a lone psychopath who shoots up a school. Someone even went so far in the equivocation as to claim that Jared Loughner shot Gabrielle Giffords in the name of atheism. One must wonder if anyone heard Loughner shout "God is nonexistent" moments before the shootings.

And then we have the gold standard for comparisons and the claims that "all groups have radicals", Timothy McVeigh, who blew up the Oklahoma federal building because he was angry at the government's handling of Waco and Ruby Ridge, among other reasons. Oh, and he happened to be a Christian, although no one ever suggested he acted because he had seen any of the myriad Jesus cartoons or alleged "art". (Irony footnote: William Ayers is a "respected" College professor).

The real irony comes in the form of threats King has received leading up to the hearings, titled "The Extent of Radicalization in the American Muslim Community and that Community's Response." The NAACP has weighed in attempting to halt the hearings, and 56 Democratic lawmakers have joined the chorus, claiming that "it would jeopardize trust between U.S. Muslims and law enforcement officials." And Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf says that the hearings will cause more radicalization.

So the opponents are crying foul over the hearings, which are designed to figure out why American Muslims become radicalized or why they don't come forward to condemn the radicals or help law enforcement, by claiming that the attempts at discovery will only cause more.

Got it.

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Friday, March 4, 2011

When the World's Big Brother is Gone

World's Best Big Brother
Despite the vitriol hurled at us from tyrannical nations - and from sympathizers with those nations - from within our own borders, it is indisputable that no other country in Earth's history has ever been more generous with its money or human treasures than the United States. Have we always gotten it right? Of course not, but our intentions were always of the purest nature. As the saying goes, "to make an omelet, you have to break a few eggs".

During most of the twentieth century, the world understood that there was no better friend - and no worse enemy - than America. Small, peaceful nations felt secure knowing that we were ready to defend them, and bigger nations with less-than-honorable intent knew it. There was balance, no matter how tenuous.

In times of strife or war, we sent our young to fight and bleed, spent fortunes in gold to fund the efforts, claimed victory at the end and gave it all back when the dust had settled. Those who have tried to portray America as a "conquering empire" are complete fools and sinful liars. Even the Middle East nations, which critics refer to as our oil exploitation "victims", have become wealthy with virtually no other industry because we buy the damned stuff from them, after showing them where it was and teaching them how to get it.

We have history to remind us of what the world would be like without a strong America. We have the Jimmy Carter presidency, and the Islamic revolution in Iran. We have been criticized for propping up the Shah, a dictator overthrown in that revolt, but at least under his rule, secularism was the fare. People were , ironically, free. Now they suffer the tyranny of religion from the mullahs, Ayatollahs and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Carter tried the Neville Chamberlain approach to diplomacy, and for nearly the last year-and-a-half of his term, 51 of our citizens were held hostage by the new leadership in Iran, forged under the timidity of the Carter years. We weren't done yet, though. We still had fight and pride left to spend, and as Ronald Reagan was being sworn into office as the 40th President of the United States, those 51 hostages were freed, because Iran knew we'd be coming to get them back.

Coming out of the malaise of the late 1970's, during which most Americans seemed to lose their spirit, it wasn't long before the country swelled anew with pride and patriotism under Reagan's leadership. The world soon followed, bolstered by the sight of the Berlin Wall falling at the hands of ordinary Germans, and the emergence of a strange bedfellow, Mikhail Gorbachev. When the Soviet Union finally collapsed, Reagan's "Morning in America" suddenly dawned on the planet.

That was back when America was the World's Big Brother, the one who would be there to make sure no one harmed his little brother. It was back when our leadership was strong and principled, and most importantly, clearly evident. And it was when bullies dared not make the attempt to ply their trade. They were left to hide their misdeeds inside the "home", so to speak, with the likes of Saddam Hussein abusing his "children" within his own walls.

Saddam's Infamous Capture
With the events going on around Africa and the Middle East, and the reticent attitude emanating from Pennsylvania Avenue today to even speak out on it, we see the Libyan leader Ghadaffi behaving like he is beyond reproach. This is from the same lion-turned-lamb by first Reagan, then George W. Bush. Reagan sent a missile into Ghadaffi's tent, and Bush made him witness to Saddam being pulled, disheveled and haggard, from a hole in the ground where he hid in fright from the military he insisted would "die at his gates". Ghadaffi immediately surrendered his nukes at the sight of that event.

Today, he bombs his own people with military jets with impunity, thumbing his nose at the power that scared him witless on two occasions. Back home, Barack Hussein Obama dances to the sounds of Motown in the people's house while others die abroad and Americans struggle through an anemic economy. When not preoccupied with presidential palace festivities or taxpayer-funded campaign trips, Obama attacks states in his own union for exercising the precepts of the U.S. Constitution, and insults long-time allies ad nauseam.

As our house crumbles around us, the thugs outside are rioting, pillaging and looting. Southern neighbors are kicking at our doors and walls, killing members of our family. And the first family frets over calories in school lunches. Meanwhile, our press remains oblivious to the madness of it all and our foreign policy seems to be to alienate every friend we've ever had.

We now have two glaring historical examples of what the world be like without our benevolent power. If we let it all slip away, there won't be anyone to save us from the fate of our folly or the next power that fills the void. We can't assume the same level of kindness will be present in that one. And we certainly can't assume that Israel won't survive at any cost. The Jews always have.

Since America appears to have abandoned them altogether as policy, and as the fragile peace from the world that surrounds them is eroding like a dune in a hurricane, Israel remains the only friendly superpower in the region. When they finally feel isolated, and the walls begin to close in on them, that badger will fight with a fury.

I say that if we fall, and Israel is left to their own devices, history will be starkly different than its previous renderings, and when Israel finally breathes its last defiant breath, the Caliphate will be complete. And then chaos will reign once again.

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Silent Assault and a Somnambulant Press

Will the Media Pay Attention?
As the past three years have passed us by, most people have watched in bewilderment as our new president and previous Congress have sent America into a nosedive on the world stage and the financial leader board. While our standing in the world has plummeted, our debt has skyrocketed, and in the process, two classes of people have been formed; those who shriek for the madness to end and those who dance in rapture at what Obama has done.

Most of the latter group believes - by virtue of massive doses of misinformation - that the current economic precipice on which we find ourselves is because of George W. Bush's policies. It doesn't matter that the economy was humming along just fine for Bush's first 6½ years in office, or that the decline began shortly after the Democrats regained control of Congress. All they know is what they have been told by the Democratic politicians and a compliant media.

So it stands to reason that they would never accept what I am about to propose, based on recent revelations.

Just a few days ago, the Washington Times exposed a nearly two-year-old report that shines a new light on the subject, casting a significantly different shadow. Kevin D. Freeman of Cross Consulting and Services, LLC was commissioned by the Department of Defense Irregular Warfare Support Program (IWSP) to study the possible causes of the 2008 meltdown of the United States economy. The report was published in June of 2009.

The Report was titled "Economic Warfare: Risks and Responses" and written by Freeman, a certified financial analyst (CFA), and lays out a startling finding. Freeman writes that "a three-phased attack was planned and is in the process against the United States economy." He spells out those phases in a PDF available here.

Of particular interest - at least to me - in the Freeman report was the notable mention of the magnitude of the hole in which our economy now resides, and its unusual existence. It suggests that the already known issues - the Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and housing bubble exacerbations - would by themselves have caused a noticeable downturn in an economy of our size, but couldn't have been responsible for the near collapse that, so far, has been narrowly averted.

Freeman goes on to claim that outside forces have been actively hacking away at the foundation of the United States true strength; her wealth. What he terms "bear raids" in the report have coincided with a cyclical bad spell, compounding the stress on our economy. Perhaps the most chilling aspect of the report, however, is the ominous paragraph which concludes page 3:
Immediate consideration of the issues outlined in this report is vital. Further study is essential and prospective responses must be crafted to address future risks. Finally, there are legitimate questions about the performance of the regulatory regime and Wall Street institutions. Implications that these parties have been complicit or otherwise co-opted cannot be ruled out. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that this study and any task-force response be conducted outside of traditional Washington and Wall Street circles.
The ultimate question that arises in my mind as a result of all of this is, do the actions of Obama through exorbitant spending contribute deliberately or accidentally to the attacks Freeman alleges? Neither scenario offers a clear-cut answer, but only further questions. Who is running this country would be the first, and I can't honestly say I'd like any answer given in response. Any way you slice it, we're in trouble.

In other words, is Obama a Trojan Horse in the White House, or a child playing dress up in Daddy's cloths? Sadly, we may never know. If this were 1973, and real journalism still existed, we may have been served the truth, eventually. But Woodward and Bernstein have made their hay, and there don't seem to be any clones in the lab.

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