lunes, 12 de octubre de 2009

Why did Obama get the Nobel Peace Prize?

It's because Europeans love him. Not "Europeans" because people in Eastern Europeans and Russians do not love him. The Brits are not so sure. But Western Europeans do love him. Friedman explains why:
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In the European mind, the Americans prior to 1945 were liberators. After 1945 they were protectors, but protectors who could not be trusted to avoid triggering another war through recklessness or carelessness. The theme dominating European thinking about the United States was that the Americans were too immature, too mercurial and too powerful to really be trusted.
they love Obama because he took office promising to consult with them. They understood this promise in two ways. One was that in consulting the Europeans, Obama would give them veto power. Second, they understood him as being a president like Kennedy, namely, as one unwilling to take imprudent risks.
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Mexican Power Union Power Struggle

Calderón has attacked one of Mexico's most powerful unions. In Mexico, unions are powerful because of the power they enjoy to disrupt daily life for ordinary people, who just want to get to work and home again and be safe. Governments have been too pusillanimous to intervene to stop their illegal blockage of public spaces. See the six-month sit-in in 2006 that paralyzed Mexico City and took billions of pesos from people as work dried up for the poorest who lost their "job" washing and parking cars in Mexico City's chaotic downtown. Etc Etc.

Calderón effectively lost a battle with the mega teacher's union"the largest in Latin America. The "teachers" blocked highways and city centers throughout the nation and Calderón's "reforms" were immasculated (not that they would have done any good anyway).

Now he's taken on the electricians' union and with it the cultural icon of the government power company. Mexicans are taught to believe that their nationalized power company is a "right
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Mexico Power Takeover Creates Sparks

MEXICO CITY -- President Felipe Calderón sent more than 1,000 riot police to take over operations of an important but inefficient and financially strapped power-distribution company late Saturday, setting the stage for a showdown with a powerful electricians' union and its political and labor allies.

The government plans to dissolve the company and lay off the more than 44,000 workers that make up the Mexican Electricians Union, or SME, the only union at Luz y Fuerza; the government said it plans to rehire some of the workers.

Analysts say featherbedding by the union, or requiring extra workers to provide more jobs, is a major reason for Luz y Fuerza's financial problems and endemic inefficiency. Some analysts say the company could have been run by a fraction of that number of workers.

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domingo, 4 de octubre de 2009

Michael Barone again

Barone has the ability to cut to the bone with very little wasted space. He's like a surgical strike on Obamoid smartough diplomacy:

A war of necessity turns out not so necessary

"This is not a war of choice," Barack Obama told the Veterans of Foreign Wars on Aug. 17. "This is a war of necessity. Those who attacked America on 9/11 are plotting to do so again. If left unchecked, the Taliban insurgency will mean an even larger safe haven from which al Qaeda would plot to kill more Americans. So this is not only a war worth fighting. This is fundamental to the defense of our people."

Now it appears that Obama is about to ignore the advice of Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, whom he installed as commander in Afghanistan in May, after relieving his predecessor ahead of schedule.
First, Afghanistan was never a "war of necessity." It was, like all our wars, a "war of choice."
Declaring Afghanistan a "war of necessity" was a way for Obama and other Democrats to attack George W. Bush
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sábado, 3 de octubre de 2009

The original self-hating Jew

Jules Crittenden » It’s A Small World After All!

Guess who’s eligible to immigrate to Israel? Crittenden asks. That's one way to look at it, I guess. But if Sabourjian/Ahmadinejad doesn't get the Jimmy Swaggart treatment, then it's only because leftists want him to bash the US for them. This would be an interesting case study in cognitive dissonance if anyone's a psychologist.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s vitriolic attacks on the Jewish world hide an astonishing secret, evidence uncovered by The Daily Telegraph shows.

A photograph of the Iranian president holding up his identity card during elections in March 2008 clearly shows his family has Jewish roots.

A close-up of the document reveals he was previously known as Sabourjian – a Jewish name meaning cloth weaver.

The short note scrawled on the card suggests his family changed its name to Ahmadinejad when they converted to embrace Islam after his birth.

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Best take on US/Obamoid Olympic bid

Happy to see Obama et al described as "metrosexual façades." This alone makes the article worth five minutes to read.

Arrogance Dooms Olympic Dream

Instead of dedicating three days and nights working the IOC members, as we hear Tony Blair did for London in its successful bid for 2012, President Obama figured all he had to do was show up for a few minutes here at Bella Center after an all-night flight on Air Force One.

But Obama was long gone by the time his ripple factor had flattened out. By then, Brazilian President Lula da Silva was wowing the room with his avuncular, rumpled flair.

With his nearest spin doctor as far away as the Amazon, Lula made his counterparts - Obama, Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and new Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatomaya - look like metrosexual façades. And the freshly scrubbed politician just did not resonate the way the guy with a face full of hair did.

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viernes, 2 de octubre de 2009

Pissed off at another failure of smartough diplomacy

The Obama Olympics debacle has pushed Jay Cost over the edge. He says,

Sooner or later, the American people are going to say, "Enough is enough" with this constant, incessant politicking that is inevitably built around the specialness of Barack Obama.

That time may be approaching faster than anyone thinks.
What should have been a story about Chicago - or better yet, Rio (good for you, Rio!) - is now a story about...Obama. Of course. Because just about everything in the public sphere must, must become a story about Obama. Because Obama injects himself and his campaign appartus/mindset/worldview into everything. And so, in this case, what would otherwise have been a "mere" rejection of Chicago and Mayor Daley has now become a rejection of the entire country. Why? Because of his decision to perpetuate the permanent campaign while holding the power of the executive.
Mr. Obama: please remember that you're just the President. It's a big deal, but it's not that big of a deal. Chester Arthur was President. For goodness sake, Warren Harding was President, and his share of the vote was much larger than yours. Thomas Jefferson's tombstone doesn't even mention his eight years as President. Your current office isn't discussed until Article TWO of the Constitution. Take the hint, and tone it down!

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jueves, 1 de octubre de 2009

Breakthrough for Smartough Diplomacy! More talking!

Iran has agreed to allow inspections of its uranium enrichment factory!

But... this is already covered under its treaty obligations. So why would it be such a breakthrough for them to agree to something they already signed, sealed, and delivered?

The answer's obvious: it's a breakthrough because we want to believe that Obama's smartough diplomacy is the answer for all our foreign policy ills.

There's really nothing new here. Like Stratfor[subscription required] says:

Bottom line: If the Iranians indicate that they will not cooperate and the Russians do not budge on their opposition to imposing sanctions, then war could come suddenly " and from the United States. All the pieces for that war are already in place. It is just a question of nerve " for all parties.

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Iran Agrees to More Nuclear Talks With U.S. and Allies

GENEVA — Iran and the big powers opposed to its nuclear program appeared to make progress Thursday in talks that included the highest-level direct discussions with the United States in many years, with both sides agreeing to hold further negotiations and the Iranians pledging to allow foreign inspectors into a newly disclosed uranium enrichment factory.

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