We’re not live-blogging it , but we followed President Barack Obama’s speech last night announcing that 30,000 more troops will be heading to Afghanistan with a withdrawal of those troops beginning in 2011:
In a speech meant to mark the beginning of the end of the eight-year conflict, Obama made the case that the future of Afghanistan is not only an American security concern at home, but an international threat – and that the added U.S. commitment will be joined by greater contributions from NATO and other allies.
“Now, we must come together to end this war successfully,” Obama said, according to prepared remarks released by the White House.
Obama’s decision escalates the United States’ commitment in Afghanistan to nearly 100,000 troops at a time when many Americans no longer believe the war is worth fighting. But by setting a date that marks the beginning of the end of U.S. involvement there, Obama hopes to ease concerns among the public about a protracted involvement in the conflict.
“The 30,000 additional troops that I am announcing tonight will deploy in the first part of 2010 – the fastest pace possible – so that they can target the insurgency and secure key population centers,” Obama said. “They will increase our ability to train competent Afghan Security Forces, and to partner with them so that more Afghans can get into the fight. And they will help create the conditions for the United States to transfer responsibility to the Afghans.”
Over at Taki’s Magazine, the top notch paleo commentary zine, Richard Spencer gives the far-too-loved writer Andrew Sullivan a talking to:
As I write this, I am in a dorm room on the campus of California State University, in Hayward, California. There is cheering, chanting, yelling, cars honking and even fireworks. There is a heavy black population here, and I can imagine that for them there is much elation in the predictable and yet also surprising election of Barack Obama as president.
The possibility of a collective African American uplift puts a smile on my face. I grew up with the spectre of racism, attending the Seattle Public Schools during a period of enforced racial quotas and weathered racial anger at a heavily black middle school. To be able to point and say that we have finally fully broken open the race barrier is amazing. Maybe we’re finally fulfilling Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream.
This weekend, the Taliban killed five members of an American delegation with a roadside bomb – including a young diplomat, 25-year old Anne Smedinghoff – while the delegation was en route to deliver donated textbooks to schoolchildren to inaugurate a new school in rural Afghanistan.
Secretary of State John Kerry eulogized Ms. Smedinghoff while justifying our presence there:
“Our State Department family is grieving over the loss of one of our own, an exceptional young Foreign Service Officer, killed today in an IED attack in Zabul province, along with service members, a Department of Defense civilian, and Afghan civilians..
“Just last week in Kabul, I met our fallen officer when she was selected to support me during my visit to Afghanistan. She was everything a Foreign Service Officer should be: smart, capable, eager to serve, and deeply committed to our country and the difference she was making for the Afghan people. She tragically gave her young life working to give young Afghans the opportunity to have a better future.”
ALGEIRS, Algeria (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton sought Algeria’s assistance on Monday for any future military intervention in Mali, pressing the North African nation to provide intelligence — if not boots on the ground — to help rout the al-Qaida-linked militants across its southern border.
Clinton, on the first stop of a five-day trip overseas, met with Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika as the United States and its allies ramped up preparations to fight northern Mali’s breakaway Islamist republic.
When Mali’s democratically elected leader was ousted in a military coup in March, Tuareg rebels seized on the power vacuum and within weeks took control of the north, aided by an Islamist faction. The Islamists then quickly ousted the Tuaregs and took control of half the country.
So much for Barack Obama being the peace president, ending the disastrous interventionist foreign policy of George W. Bush. Have we learned nothing in the past decade? We go into Afghanistan to kick out the Taliban and “restore democracy,” and end up getting Harmid Karzai, more Islamists, and a bunch of people who hate us. We go into Iraq to kick out Saddam Hussein, and what we get is a country wracked by violence and bloodshed, more militant Islamists, and a bunch of people who hate us. We go into Libya to help with that country’s rebellion, and what do we get? An unstable country, a bunch of Islamists, and four dead Americans—including our Ambassador.
Our U.S. Constitution is a remarkably efficient document. It is our only founding charter. Many times changed, rendered, adumbrated. But it’s essence is unshakable. Written in Thomas Jefferson’s handwriting, edited against his will, pored over, discussed, hushed about, while it lay about some small wooden tables in independence Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Americans believe, that the Constitution is the link between our government and our lives. Congress and the Executive, can not overstep the harmony that exists, by each American following his path of liberty. Unfortunately, too many harmful minds, want too much power in this country. Power never vested in the Constitution. Power never meant to be handled by bureaucrats or officials or committees. We need to change all this. The oath of office should be sworn on the Constitution. In the Capital Rotunda. Among the historicity of remains from past great ages of the United States.
Drones in our night skies. Unelected lawyers interpreting the U.S. Constition. Surveillance. Internet spying. Blackouts and Stasi-like encroachements. Torturing. Deaths and internment of American citizens. Socialization of medicare for the elderly, and healthcare for those in mid-age. Food stamps and deductibles for people who do not work. Taxation over representation. Data-accumulation. Groping at airports. Fumbling and nefarious Justice Department officials. Cronies. Welfare abuses. War and destruction as an industry, like Hollywood and Corporate America! Blame-games. Undermining of basic civil rights. Monetarism-mongering! Unaccountability and state-sponsored fear. Campaigns of division. Solutions disguised for self-created problems.
Republican voters are being put through the pincers. We are back to 2008. Heaps of strong candidates, but no consensus. Great speeches, but no substance. PAC money spent by the millions, but no conclusive results. GOP candidates are even welcoming Democratic voters, to smear each other, to add to their victories, or to just plainly embitter each other. The Republican race is not going to get any more civil. Once, we see these subterfuges, we can ask the real questions: what will it take to unseat Obama in November, and who can best do this?
In America the conservative movement has been changing. Neo-conservatives, who had for roughly two decades (1980-2000) held the strongarm of the party, are gone with the Bush Administration’s doctrine of “pre-emptive strike” and the PATRIOT ACT. We are in the midst of the dregs. Still trying to find out which direction this country will spill it’s spirit of changelessness.
For all his grandeur, Mitt Romney just has not taken his campaign to the next level. Rick Santorum has peaked, but more likely will not hold his miniscule leads. Newt Gingrinch’s populism and Ron Paul’s constitutionalism, so similar to each other, are self-negating. None is in charge. Marginal candidates can’t win delegates, nor the RNC party’s nomination. Mitt Romney, the ever-chameleon like business mogul, can’t strike a human touch to save his life and political prospects.
If Mitt Romney is the front runner of the wolves, ready to flay Obama; what is his version of the American Dream? How does he see this country, through which prism? Is it a legalistic, rigidly technocratic, institutional approach? It seems, his advantage is not his base, his character, anything as much as his warchest. He won’t run out of steam. Even if the delegate count gets close in Tampa, FL this spring; he’ll be able to resurrect himself, make the necessary promises and sail away with the nomination.
During four years of non-presidency, the 2012 election in the United States will finally furnish us a leader! While the media are jabbing away fruitlessly at the GOP candidates, one thing is certain: Barack Obama will not be elected twice. If he is (least likely), there will be rebellions in America’s Main Streets.
Just this morning; the USA Today reported, for instance, that the auto-industry bailouts of 2008, were a success! Success? More like highway robbery. There were two articles, one a reprieve to counter. But it is clear who is instigating GOP roadblocks: socialists, occupy wall streeters, the media, the IMF, the U.N. and other fat-cat democrat-billionaires and their crony go-for-mediocre claptraps. Cries for the ouster of president Barack Obama are heard world-wide.
Nightmare scenario reality: Obama’s assault on the markets, are plunging the world into darkness. In congress money is used like never before, to make Washington D.C. more like Paris. Let us be clear: no sane American wants/wanted this. It is time for this ghost, to make his ghoulish departure.
A government which becomes so large it is able to give to everyone, anything at anytime it wishes no matter the cost, will take it all away. Violently.
What has Obama done?
To sum up: he has stalled the economy (purposefully) into a ditch, ruined our dollar, made promises lies, frivoluosly disobeyed the constitution, waged war on all faith, handicapped elderly in a cement straight-jacket, given taxes to Egyptians for jihad against Europe, increased immigration and pummelled this great land with medicare, benefits, welfare, handouts, support, birth control, donations, freebies, impositions on all!
Auto-industry bailouts worked; only insofar as it was the only decision in a one-man’s debate. Another way to have dealt Detriot would have been; to let companies fail, let them go: whatever is left, would be parcelled out among those lasting.
Let us make fresh.
The reason why Rick Santorum would not oust Barack Obama in November, is not his faith. It is simply that he is running a ‘social message’ of uniform decency against a ‘social message’ of uniform healthcare. Plainly, Obama’s health plan, is vital: but not more pressing than the economic calamity of bailouts, frauds, money-laundering, spending and public debt. These are focal issues of the 2012 election.
Santorum is the politician everyone can super-impose themselves on. He’s no CEO like Mitt Romney, no renowned speaker like Newt Gingrich, not intellectual like Ron Paul. No, he is a regular Pennsylvania lawyer, who argued some weird World Wrestling Federation cases. Somehow he is unspectacular enough, that he could almost be your town butcher, postal deliverer or stockyard piler. You would think this is a strength. But it is not.
Eventually, while trying to keep your political pronunciations to a minimum, to correspond to the widest social base possible, you hit a tollboth going 160 mph. Santorum is earnest, he surely is: means well to families and the elderly, but he has yet to prove his salt. His record is plain: he has taken massive amounts of Washington D.C. beltway funding, voted to raise the debt ceiling, is in cahoots with the (so-called) ‘military industrial complex’ and dislikes many anomalies of our population: young pregnants, migrant-labor, jobless, gays, blacks. He has been able to entrench his campaign in an atmosphere of rustic humbleness and simpletonness.
The more connected you are, within the Washington D.C. circuit; and on the long-stretch between Los Angeles and New York, the more clout you have as a politician. Especially, if you’ve squandered taxpayer money on “bridges to nowhere” (Rick Santorum), Olympic “Games” (Mitt Romney) or have been kick-backed by Fannie & Freddie (Newt Gingrich).
All these, of course, are fine examples of Capitalist enterprise, of leadership and smart capital-management. But what do all these undertakings reveal, about abilities in leadership, necessary to plug the dam of the 2008-unward recession? Not, much.
Ron Paul is the antithesis. He negates almost in it’s entirety, every other issues brought by his opponents in the GOP presidential race. He is not reported on, because those who indeed try to, fail miserably: the way Gerald Seib did, moderating the Republican Debate in South Carolina. Ron Paul is too honest: clear, succinct, philosophically astute. This makes him a slippery fish, to place in the Republican Party, although he is by far the most consequently, stalwartly arch-conservative since that other Gipper, that slipped his way into the White House: Ronald Reagan!
Being less ‘politicized’, in other words by having put his neck out on an execution-block, or guillotine, to amass money, has meant he has to do with less campaign finance. But what Paul has lacked in initial spending, his patriots have donated in turn. No other US politician has ever raised a sum, close to over 1 million, which Paul’s campaign has been able to do in 2011. What this means, is; people base decision on mass-media, pandered bits-and-pieces of evening chatter, boxed soundbites (often misinterpreted) while heading out the door in the morning. Ron Paul is lucky to get 3 minutes airtime, after a debate platform.