Archive of Articles for May, 2009

Friday Talking Points [77] -- There's Always Next Week...

[ Posted Friday, May 15th, 2009 – 17:44 UTC ]

I have to start by saying that in all honesty, President Obama and the Democrats didn't have a great week.

Read Complete Article »

Obama's Tortured Logic

[ Posted Thursday, May 14th, 2009 – 16:29 UTC ]

President Obama recently reversed his position on an appellate court ruling which orders the release of hundreds of torture photos, and is now saying he will fight the decision. Since the court in this case is already a federal appellate court, this would seem to mean that the Obama administration will file an appeal with the Supreme Court. The practical effect of this filing will be to delay any action until October, when the court's next session begins. And since the court does not rule immediately in most instances, it will likely delay it at least until the end of the year. This leads to the question of whether this delay is precisely the desired outcome for Obama -- six months of breathing room on the matter.

Read Complete Article »

First Milestone Approaches In Iraq Withdrawal Timetable

[ Posted Wednesday, May 13th, 2009 – 16:42 UTC ]

America is approaching an important date for our military involvement in Iraq. By the end of next month, American combat forces are supposed to pull out of Iraqi cities. Little attention has been paid to this first withdrawal deadline in the American media, but as the date gets closer hopefully they'll realize what is about to happen. Because the next phase of America's military presence in Iraq could determine how fast President Obama can draw down the total number of American troops in the country.

Read Complete Article »

Star Trek Gets A Few Things Right

[ Posted Tuesday, May 12th, 2009 – 22:45 UTC ]

My only other suggestion for their next movie would have to be: bring back Yeoman Janice Rand! Hopefully, that is something on which we all can agree.

Read Complete Article »

Solving Kashmir

[ Posted Monday, May 11th, 2009 – 16:57 UTC ]

Last week, a lot of attention was focused on Afghanistan and Pakistan, since the leaders of the two countries were visiting President Obama in Washington. But nobody seems to be talking about an obvious (if difficult) solution to at least part of the problem Pakistan finds itself in currently -- solving the Kashmir problem once and for all.

Read Complete Article »

Friday Talking Points [76] -- Countering The Luntz Playbook On Health Care

[ Posted Friday, May 8th, 2009 – 17:04 UTC ]

Frank Luntz is one of those Republicans that is both respected and feared by Democrats. And rightly so. Because Luntz is a master at the business of teaching Republicans how to speak. He gets paid a bundle of money for doing this sort of thing, unlike amateurs such as myself on the web. [Note to Democratic Party: I will cheerfully accept bundles of money for writing this column, just to let you know....]

Read Complete Article »

Pressuring Arlen Specter

[ Posted Thursday, May 7th, 2009 – 17:46 UTC ]

The intraparty struggle within the Democratic Party over what exactly to do with Arlen Specter now seems to have been worked out. For the time being, at least, Specter will not get to keep his overall seniority (which was apparently promised him by Majority Leader Harry Reid), but as a consolation prize will chair the Crime and Drugs Subcommittee, part of the Judiciary Committee he used to chair as a Republican. This struggle may wind up being re-fought after the 2010 election, but for the next year and a half the dust appears to have settled on the issue.

Read Complete Article »

Is The Media Misinterpreting Obama's "Empathy" Dog Whistle?

[ Posted Wednesday, May 6th, 2009 – 16:13 UTC ]

President Barack Obama made an announcement last week just after Supreme Court Justice David Souter announced his impending retirement. In it, the president spoke of the qualities he is looking for in his first nominee to the highest bench in the land. He used the word "empathy" which, strangely enough, Republicans pounced on. They lost no time in denouncing "empathy" as a "code word" meaning Obama was about to appoint Michael Moore to the court. Or something. Their logic, at times, gets a wee bit confusing, I have to admit. But seriously, conservatives are gearing up for a confirmation battle (which they will lose), and this was the first pre-emptive strike in that battle. But in my own opinion, if Obama was speaking in "code" (which is debatable in the first place), I think everyone missed his point. Because by speaking of "empathy," I think Obama was doing nothing more than signaling he's about to put a woman on the Supreme Court.

Read Complete Article »

Fear-Mongering The Flu

[ Posted Tuesday, May 5th, 2009 – 15:09 UTC ]

On a much more serious note, Mexico and the H1N1 flu virus are in the news. Actually, for the past week or so they've pretty much been the news. Ever since last week, the so-called "swine" flu didn't just hit the headlines, it pushed everything else aside. The mainstream media went predictably berserk over the whole story, as is their wont. Nightly news shows devoted over half of their coverage to the issue, even though the death count in the United States currently stands at one (more people probably got killed by lightning in the same time period, to say nothing of traffic accidents). But the media bravely didn't let facts get in the way of a good story (especially one guaranteed to scare the pants off just about everyone).

Read Complete Article »

Obama Poll Watch

[ Posted Monday, May 4th, 2009 – 16:42 UTC ]

Welcome to the first installment in what will hopefully be a four-year (or eight, even) monthly series of articles examining President Barack Obama's job approval ratings with the public, as provided by America's pollsters. Each month we will take a snapshot of how Obama is doing, and track it for his entire term. [...]

Read Complete Article »