Posts Tagged ‘President Bush’

US Is in Even Worse Shape Financially Than Greece. And Why Is That In The Age Of Obama???

June 14, 2011

Thanks for “fundamentally transforming” our economy, Barry Hussein!

We’re constantly being told that Obama has done a great deal to make our economy stronger.  Because who wouldn’t rather have 9.1% unemployment than that 7.6% that Obama started out with.

The thing that most killed the US economy in 2008 was the sheer weight of godawful subprime mortgages that Democrats imposed on Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and all the other mortgage lenders in order to create more “fairness” and allow everyone (especially racial minorities) to have “the right” to own a home whether they could actually afford to do so or not.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were “Government Sponsored Enterprises,” all the investors knew.  So even as Fannie and Freddie began bundling together thousands of riskier and ever riskier mortgages into giant mortgage backed securities to advance Democrat-enacted policies, large investment houses continued to gobble them up.  After all, this was an arm of the United States Government – and the United States Government ALWAYS pays its debts.

Like all scams, it worked for a while.  But as soon as there was a correction in the dramatically overvalued housing market, the whole boondoggle began to implode.  And since Fannie and Freddie had bundled all kinds of bad mortgages in with the good ones, there was absolutely no way for anyone to know how much risk was contained in any of these giant investment vehicles all these giant private banking houses found themselves holding.

And suddenly the perception that Government Sponsored Enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were “safe investments” turned into a “misperception.”  And the fecal matter began to hit the rotary oscillator bigtime.

Fannie and Freddie were the first to collapse.  The big private players who had played ball with them shortly followed.

President George Bush tried SEVENTEEN TIMES to reform Fannie and Freddie when there was actually a chance to do something.  Go back to what the New York Times stated in 2003:

WASHINGTON, Sept. 10—  The Bush  administration today recommended the most significant  regulatory  overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings  and loan  crisis a decade ago.

Under the plan, disclosed at a Congressional hearing today, a new   agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume   supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored   companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending   industry.

The new agency would have the authority, which now rests with   Congress, to set one of the two capital-reserve requirements for the   companies. It would exercise authority over any new lines of business.   And it would determine whether the two are adequately managing the risks   of their ballooning portfolios.

Republicans were demonized for “deregulation” by the dishonest Democrat Party machine.  But they TRIED to regulate what needed to be regulated.  Democrats stopped them.

Many Republicans like John McCain literally begged Democrats to do something before it was too late.  But Democrats threatened to filibuster any bill that in any way prevented Fannie and Freddie from continuing the reckless economy-killing policies.  Conservative economists such as Peter Wallison had been predicting the Fannie and Freddie boondoggles would cause an economic collapse since at least 1999.  Wallison had warned back then:

 In moving, even tentatively, into this new area of lending, Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980′s.

From the perspective of many people, including me, this is another thrift industry growing up around us,” said Peter Wallison a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. ”If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.”

But rigid opposition from Democrats – especially Democrats like Senator Barack Obamawho took more campaign money from Fannie and Freddie and dirty crony capitalism outfits like corrupt Lehman Bros. than ANYONE in his short Senate stint – prevented any “hope and change” of necessary reform from saving the US economy.

The timeline is clear: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were giant behemoths that began to stagger under their own corrupt weight, as even the New York Times pointed out:

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are so big — they own or guarantee roughly half of the nation’s $12 trillion mortgage market — that the thought that they might falter once seemed unimaginable. But now a trickle of worries about the companies, which has been slowly building for years, has suddenly become a torrent.

And it was FANNIE and FREDDIE that collapsed FIRST before ANY of the private investment banks, which collapsed as a result of having purchased the very mortgaged backed securities that the Government Sponsored Enterprises SOLD THEM.  It wasn’t until Fannie and Freddie collapsed that investors began to look with horror at all the junk that these GSE boondoggles had been pimping.

The man who predicted the collapse in 1999 wrote a follow-up article titled, “Blame Fannie Mae and Congress For the Credit Mess.”  It really should have read, “Blame DEMOCRATS.”  Because they were crawling all over these GSEs that they had themselves created like the cockroaches they are.  But Wallison is nonpartisan.

That same New York Times article that said President Bush was trying to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac ended with this demonstration of Democrats standing against necessary reform:

These two entities — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac —  are not  facing any kind of financial crisis,” said Representative  Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services  Committee. ”The  more people exaggerate these problems, the more  pressure there is on  these companies, the less we will see in terms of  affordable housing.”

Representative Melvin L. Watt, Democrat of North Carolina, agreed.

”I don’t see much other than a shell game going on here, moving   something from one agency to another and in the process weakening the   bargaining power of poorer families and their ability to get affordable   housing,” Mr. Watt said.

Why was Barney Frank deceitfully claiming that Fannie and Freddie weren’t facing “any kind of financial crisis”?  BECAUSE REPUBLICANS WERE RIGHTLY WARNING THAT THEY WERE.

Only about a month before the whole Fannie and Freddie boondoggles Democrats had fiercely protected collapsed – taking the entire US economy with it – Democrat Barney Frank was on the record saying THIS:

REP. BARNEY FRANK, D-MASS.: “I think this is a case where Fannie and Freddie are fundamentally sound, that they are not in danger of going under. They’re not the best investments these days from the long-term standpoint going back. I think they are in good shape going forward.”

So we blew up nearly COMPLETELY BECAUSE OF DEMOCRAT POLICIES.  But Democrats along with an ideological mainstream media that is the worse since Joseph Goebbels was the Nazi Minister of Propaganda were ready.  They ran on a platform that it happened while Bush was president, and that therefore Bush was entirely responsible for the thing he tried over and over again to fix while Democrats used their power to block those efforts.

Let me just say “Franklin Raines.”  Raines as Fannie CEO presided over Enron-style accounting policies and got $90 million in his account because of those corrupt policies.  But Raines was the first BLACK CEO of Fannie Mae.  And even though he was a Democrat and a Clinton guy, President Bush lacked the courage to push the “first black Fannie Mae CEO” out.  Which of course is the same reason that the “first black Fannie Mae CEO” didn’t do hard time in prison where he belonged.  “Political correctness” is a demonic device by which liberals protect themselves – usually from going to prison where they ought to go.  He got a sweetheart deal basically so Republicans wouldn’t be accused of being racists by
Democrats who of course call them racists no matter what they do.  My main point is simply that it was Democrats, Democrats, DEMOCRATS who did this to us.

Fannie Mae was well politically-connected Democrats went to make millions as they bounced back and forth between “public” employment where they developed contacts and “private” crony capitalism to get rich.

Here’s the conclusion of New York Times financial markets writer Gretchen Morgenson about DEMOCRAT Jim Johnson:

Morgenson focuses on the managers of Fannie Mae, the government-supported mortgage giant. She writes that CEO James Johnson built Fannie Mae “into the largest and most powerful financial institution in the world.”

But in the process, Morgenson says, the company fudged accounting rules, generated big salaries and bonuses for its executives, used lobby and campaign contributions to bully regulators, and encouraged the risky financial practices that led to the crisis.

And of course DEMOCRAT Jim Johnson who got rich plundering Americans was an OBAMA Democrat.

Morgenson – again a New York Times writer and not someone from Fox News – said of Fannie Mae on Larry Kudlow’s CNBC program on Monday, June 13: “Whatever Fannie Mae did, everybody else followed.”  And of course they all followed right into an economic Armageddon created by Democrats for Democrats.

But who got blamed?  Republicans, of course.  George Bush and Republicans were to Obama and the Democrats what Emmanual Goldstein was to Big Brother in 1984.  George Bush and Republicans were what the Jews were to Adolf Hitler.  Fascists always need a bogeyman.  And so the people who were truly to blame turned the people who tried futilely to stop them into the scapegoats.  All with the mainstream media’s complicity.

The analogy would be holding the police officer who tried but failed to catch the rapist for the rape of the woman rather than holding the actual rapist who raped her responsible.  But it was easier to say “This is the result of President Bush’s failed Republican policies” than it was to actually explain the facts to an enraged Attention Deficit Disorder-ridden ignorant pop culture – particularly when virtually no one in the biased mainstream media had any intention whatsoever of telling the truth.

Barack Obama – the ACORN community organizer who pushed these very America-killing policies – ran a demagoguing campaign promising to fix everything.

But has he?

How about a great big giant “NOT”???

What has Zero Obama done to fix that housing market that he helped collapse?  How about NOTHING???  After nearly three years of Obama, housing isn’t the worst since 2008; it’s gotten WAY WORSE than 2008 and is the worse since the Great Depression!!!  Obama started out with a terrible plan.  And we have terrible results to show for his terrible plan.  And yet this disgraceful fool actually keeps claiming he’s made things better!!!

Before you read this article, check out the “current account balance” compiled by the CIA.  Ours is a negative figure that dwarfs everyone else’s by so much it’s a joke.  Which is to say that Gross’s assessment is 1000% correct.

US Is in Even Worse Shape Financially Than Greece: Gross
Published: Monday, 13 Jun 2011 | 10:33 AM ET
By: Jeff Cox
CNBC.com Staff Writer

When adding in all of the money owed to cover future liabilities in entitlement programs the US is actually in worse financial shape than Greece and other debt-laden European countries, Pimco’s Bill Gross told CNBC Monday.

Much of the public focus is on the nation’s public debt, which is $14.3 trillion. But that doesn’t include money guaranteed for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, which comes to close to $50 trillion, according to government figures.

The government also is on the hook for other debts such as the programs related to the bailout of the financial system following the crisis of 2008 and 2009, government figures show.

Taken together, Gross puts the total at “nearly $100 trillion,” that while perhaps a bit on the high side, places the country in a highly unenviable fiscal position that he said won’t find a solution overnight.

“To think that we can reduce that within the space of a year or two is not a realistic assumption,” Gross said in a live interview. “That’s much more than Greece, that’s much more than almost any other developed country. We’ve got a problem and we have to get after it quickly.”

Gross spoke following a report that US banks were likely to scale back on their use of Treasurys as collateral against derivatives and other transactions. Bank heads say that move is likely to happen in August as Congress dithers over whether to raise the nation’s debt ceiling, according to a report in the Financial Times.

The move reflects increasing concern from the financial community over whether the US is capable of a political solution to its burgeoning debt and deficit problems.

“We’ve always wondered who will buy Treasurys” after the Federal Reserve purchases the last of its $600 billion to end the second leg of its quantitative easing program later this month, Gross said. “It’s certainly not Pimco and it’s probably not the bond funds of the world.”

Pimco, based in Newport Beach, Calif., manages more than $1.2 trillion in assets and runs the largest bond fund in the world.

Gross confirmed a report Friday that Pimco has marginally increased its Treasurys allotment—from 4 percent to 5 percent—but still has little interest in US debt and its low yields that are in place despite an ugly national balance sheet.

“Why wouldn’t an investor buy Canada with a better balance sheet or Australia with a better balance sheet with interest rates at 1 or 2 or 3 percent higher?” he said. “It simply doesn’t make any sense.”

Should the debt problem in Greece explode into a full-blown crisis—an International Monetary Fund bailout has prevented a full-scale meltdown so far—Gross predicted that German debt, not that of the US, would be the safe-haven of choice for global investors.

America is going down because her stupid citizens wickedly voted for corrupt dishonest Democrat fools – the very fools who imploded our economy – to have complete power.  Nancy Pelosi took over dictatorial control in the House of Representatives, and Harry Reid took over the US Senate, in 2006.

Thanks to Obama, America is now worse off than Greece.  But that didn’t stop Obama from offering to bail out Greece.  Maybe it’s because George Soros is Greek; maybe because the American left has always adored the European-style socialism in spite of Thomas Jefferson’s warning that “the comparison of our governments with those of Europe is like a comparison of heaven and hell.”  Maybe because Obama simply WANTS hell for America.  But there you have it.

Republicans acknowledged they failed to live up to their values and spent too much.  But the last Republican budget (Fiscal Year 2007) passed in 2006 had only a $161 billion deficit.  The very next Democrat budget for FY 2008 had a deficit of $459 billion – nearly three times larger than the one they’d demonized Republicans for.  Then their FY-2009 budget dwarfed that deficit with a black hold of red ink deficit of $1.4 TRILLION.  That was more money than any government in the history of the world had ever contemplated.  But Democrats dwarfed that the very next year with a FY-2010 budget with a $1.6 trillion deficit.  And as for FY-2011, the Democrat Congress simply refused to perform its most basic duty of governance and didn’t even bother to pass a budget.  Republicans are now forced to do the last disgraced Democrat-controlled Congress’ job for them – and Democrats are demonizing them for it.

That’s how this game is played.  Democrats are fascist demagogues who shrilly launch into Republicans as they try to save the American people from unparalleled future suffering.  They are people who ROUTINELY demonize, demonize, demonize until THEY are the ones forced to call for the very things they demonized and tried to prevent from happening.  But by the time they react this time, just as before, it will be too late.

Try this on for size: our actual debt isn’t the $14 trillion we constantly hear about; it’s more like $200 trillion.  And even THAT gargantuan number doesn’t take into account the massive debts that all the liberal labor unions have amassed in state pensions (e.g., California’s public pension system has unfunded liabilities of $500 billion).  We cannot possibly hope to pay this – and yet Democrats demand more and more and more, and demagogue Republicans for even trying to cut millions when we need to cut TENS OF TRILLIONS or collapse.

Democrats run ads showing a look-a-like of Republican Rep. Paul Ryan pushing an old lady off a cliff; but they want every single senior citizen to die terribly as the Medicare system completely collapses while they refuse to do anything to fix it – as even Bill Clinton openly acknowledged.

We are going to end like the PIIGS – Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain- because we elected Democrat swine to ensure we perished like pigs.

Greece just got downgraded to the point where they are the lowest-rated currency in the history of the planet.  And it happened yesterday.

When that happens to us it will be the worst nightmare in history.  300 million Americans are going to go into an insanity of panic – and of course the violence will begin with the left.  If you don’t have an arsenal, someone will kick down your door and murder your whole family just to eat the food in your house.  And that hell on earth will be entirely because you trusted Democrats like Anthony Weiner to run your health care, your pension, your economy, your life.

I hope you vote in 2012 like your very LIFE was at stake in these elections.  Because this time it truly is.

Barack Obama Loses Control At Rally, Falsely Demonizes ‘Side’ That Saved More Than A Million Lives

October 31, 2010

Barack Obama is a liar without shame.  He is also a pathologically petty man, a man who has singlehandedly reduced the once great office of the presidency of the United States of America to “dude.”

It’s bad enough to constantly lie, as Obama constantly does.  But he proceeds to falsely demonize Republicans who saved the lives of more than a million people suffering from AIDS.

It’s past time to call this shameless liar and disgrace to the office of the presidency out for what he is.

OBAMA LOSES IT!… Presidential MELTDOWN in Connecticut (Video)
Posted by Jim Hoft on Saturday, October 30, 2010, 8:38 PM

Woah!
Unbelievable– President Obama loses it in Connecticut!
Watch him go off on the protesters… Then he switches side and starts going off some other people.
It went on for 3 minutes.

This Was Wild—

He was campaigning for Blumenthal.

More… Chisum added:

Obama said: “We’re funding global AIDS and the other side is not!”

What? I thought it was our tax dollars? He deserves to be booed and ridiculed just for that statement!

The Hill has more on the meltdown.

Still More… President Bush’s international AIDS-fighting campaign saved 1.1 million lives.

The last link above is to a Washington Times article which says in part:

Former President George W. Bush’s international AIDS-fighting campaign has reduced by 10 percent the mortality rates in 15 targeted countries, primarily in Africa, and has saved 1.1 million lives, according to a study that for the first time quantified the successes of his program.

The study by two Stanford University doctors showed the treatment part of PEPFAR, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, which involves making drug treatment available to about 2 million people, has shown solid success while the prevention efforts under the program have not yet produced the same concrete results.

“It has averted deaths – a lot of deaths – with about a 10 percent reduction compared with neighboring African countries,” said Dr. Eran Bendavid, a fellow in infectious disease and in health policy and research at Stanford who led the study. “However, we could not see a change in prevalence rates that was associated with PEPFAR.” […]

Some Republicans fought during the 2008 debate to keep the focus on treatment, arguing it produced concrete results compared with what they saw as vaguely defined prevention efforts. Those advocates saw Monday’s report as vindication.

Barack Hussein Obama is not just a shameless liar who demonizes good people.  He is an evil man.  He is the very worst kind of fearmonger and racial demagogue who tells Latinos “to punish your enemies.”

The New York Times once ran a story about Obama that began:

WASHINGTON — At the core of Senator Barack Obama’s presidential campaign is a promise that he can transcend the starkly red-and-blue politics of the last 15 years, end the partisan and ideological wars and build a new governing majority.

To achieve the change the country wants, he says, “we need a leader who can finally move beyond the divisive politics of Washington and bring Democrats, independents and Republicans together to get things done.”

I pointed out Obama’s failure and lie a year ago.  And his disgrace is even more profoundly obvious now than ever before.

This liar without shame, character, or honor who billed himself as the leader who would transcend ideology and partisanship is now out there telling one group of people – one RACE of people, in fact – to “punish” another group, another race, as “enemies.”

There is no question that this evil man broke his “core promise” to the American people.

I pointed out after the election that made Obama president that he is the president of “God damn America.”

And that, too, is more obvious than it has ever been before.

You want to punish somebody?  Punish the Liar-in-Chief.  Punish the Democrats who have brought us to the point of ruin.

P.S. Richard Blumenthal, the candidate for whom Obama was campaigning, and Obama are like two peas in a pod.  So it’s fitting that Obama would tell such an egregious lie while campaigning for him.  Lest we forget, Blumenthal is the man who despicably lied about his having served in combat in Vietnam when in fact he hadn’t even been there.  And in addition to a complete lack of character, Obama shares with Blumenthal a complete and pathetic lack of understanding as to how to create jobs.

If you want losers and liars like Barack Obama and Richard Blumenthal, then vote for God damn America.

If, on the other hand, you are fed up with this crap, then show up on Tuesday and vote these Democrat bums out of office.

Thinking Of The 9/11 Tragedy. With Pride.

September 11, 2010

It’s been nine years.  But most Americans remember where they were when they first learned that a hijacked passenger jumbo jet had just slammed into the World Trade Center.

We also remember how we felt: the incomprehension, the shock, the fear and the anger.

A few moments stand out for me that give me pride to this day.

The Events That Took Place In the Skies Above Pennsylvania:

United Airlines flight 93 was a Boeing 757 on a morning Newark-to-San Francisco route. On 11 Sep 2001 the plane was hijacked by a four man hijacking team. Evidence suggests that the hijacking was apparently thwarted by the efforts of the plane’s passengers and flight attendants. The plane crashed southeast of Pittsburgh in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. The plan  was carrying 37 passengers and 7 crew members. There were no survivors.  Todd Beamer, a passenger, tried to place a credit card call but was routed to a customer service representative instead, who passed him on to supervisor Lisa Jefferson. She called the FBI. Beamer reported that one passenger was dead.  He asked if together they could pray the Lord’s prayer, which they did.  Later, he told the operator that some of the plane’s passengers were planning “to jump” the hijackers. The last words Ms. Jefferson heard from the plane were “Are you ready guys? Let’s roll.”  The plane crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at 10:03 AM, killing all aboard.  It is believed that this aircraft was intended to be crashed into the United States Capitol building in Washington, DC, Congress was in session at the time.

A shiver goes up my spine every time I try to visualize the raw courage of Todd Beamer and the beyond-heroic men and women who assisted him in taking back the plane so that it could not be used as a weapon against other Americans.  Even as they likely knew that they would surely die themselves.

I think particularly of Todd Beamer asking to pray with an operator whom he would never see in this life, and afterward that operator being able to recollect his last words, spoken to other passengers: “Are you ready guys?  Let’s roll.”

I feel pride.  and I pray, and hope, that I would have been like those heroes had I been on board that flight.

The Events Of The 343 Firefighters, Paramedics, And Police Officers:

As thousands of workers in the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center desperately fled down the stairs, there were heroes laboring their way up carrying their heavy gear.  Laboring up floor after floor, trying to make their way up to render aid when everyone around them was trying to make their way to safety.

Few if any of those men knew that they were climbing to their deaths.  But you know what?  I have a feeling that many of them would have kept on climbing even if they did know.  It was just who they were.

And on this day, I honor them.  And I’m proud of their sacrifice.

The Events On The Top Floors Of The World Trade Center:

One of the most vivid images in my mind was the footage of people in the top floors of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center throwing themselves out of windows to their deaths to escape the raging inferno within that dying skyscraper.  We can only imagine their horrific and terrorized desperation in facing the nightmare choice of a certain death by fire, or a certain death by fall.

In the months afterward, I watched a program putting these events into a spiritual context.  If my memory serves, it was R.C. Sproul who had the made the most memorable impression in my soul.

He spoke of 9/11 representing both the greatest evil and the greatest good in the world, of the evil of the terrorists, and of the love exhibited by those who perished as a result of their evil.

He described how he imagined the final moments of those who had been in the top floors, unable to escape the inferno.  He focused on the image of many of those who threw themselves out of the building: how they leaped to their deaths holding hands with their fellow workers.

I can imagine a crying, terrorized secretary, afraid to jump, but even more terrified of the terrible heat and smoke, and the approaching roaring flames.  And I imagine someone telling her, “Come with me.  Hold my hand.  We’ll go together.”

And amidst all that evil, they leaped.  Holding hands.

What love.

The image brings tears of sorrow, that so many such anonymous, but such wonderful, people, died that day.  But it also brings pride.

What would you do in that situation?  I hope if I had to go out like that, someone would be holding my hand.

The Events Of The President’s Visit To The Ground Zero Site:

Another vivid memory for me was President George Bush’s so-called “bullhorn moment” on September 14, 2001 as he visited Ground Zero following the attack.

I had joined my brother and his family and my parents in a restaurant which had a giant screen television.  And that’s where I saw Bush step up – literally – and say a very few, but now very famous, words:

As described by eyewitness and participant Karl Rove, who documented the scene in his book, Courage and Consequence:

Bush was hearing and seeing the rescue workers up close.  They were not shy about sharing their feelings.  These men were working on adrenaline and passion and, after three days and increasingly less frequent good news about survivors, they were nearly spent.  Pataki was right; the presidential visit was energizing for many of the people we met.  Bush later told me what he felt from the workers was deep, almost overwhelming anger, even hatred. […]

There was a tug on my sleave.  It was Nina Bishop, a White House advance woman working the event.  She pointed to the chanting workers and said, “They want to hear from their president.”  No one had prepared remarks, but she was exactly right…

I pointed at the battered fire truck.  Andy [Card] made a beeline to the president.  Nina had commandeered a bullhorn from a man who worked for Con Ed and met me at the fire truck with it.  The bullhorn’s batteries weren’t that good, but it was all we had…

The president took the bullhorn and reached his hand up to the rescue worker, a retired sixty-nine-year-old firefighter named Bob Beckwith.  Beckwith looked down into the scrum below him, saw the outstretched hand, grasped, and pulled.  In an instant, Bush was sharing the top of the truck with Beckwith, who suddenly realized he’d helped up the president of the United States.  Beckwith tried to crawl down but the president asked, “Where are you going?”  Bob said he was getting down.  Bush said, “No, no, you stay right here.”

The cheers and chanting subsided and the president started to speak into the bullhorn.  With the National Cathedral prayer service still fresh on his mind, Bush began by saying, “I want you all to know that America today is on bended knee in prayer for the people whose lives were lost here, for the workers who work here, for the families who mourn.  This nation stands with the good people of New York City and New Jersey and Connecticut as we mourn the loss of thousands of our citizens.”  Someone yelled, “Go get ’em, George!”  Someone else yelled, “George, we can’t hear you!” and others echoed this complaint.  Bush paused and then responded in a voice now fully magnified by the bullhorn, “I can hear you.”  The crowd went nuts – and he knew what to do from there.  “The rest of the world hears you,” he went on, “and the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon.”  The crowd broke into defiant, even bitter, chants of “U.S.A.!  U.S.A.!”  Bush handed the bullhorn off and he climbed down.

In an iconic moment, George Bush was very much alone with an enormous responsibility.  The nation wanted reassurance; it wanted to know it had a leader who understood the mission America now faced.  No speechwriters, no aides, no advisers were involved in Bush’s response.  It was an authentic moment that connected with the public in a strong, deep way.  Without assistance and in an instant, George Bush gave voice to America’s desires.

Seeing President Bush hop up on that busted truck and stand shoulder to shoulder with a weary firefighter is a sight forever etched in my mind, and for many it remains one of the most inspiring scenes from the terrible events of 9/11.  Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley’s assessment of Bush’s visit to Ground Zero was prophetic: “We can’t just judge him as President Bush anymore, but we’re going to soon be judging him as commander-in-chief.”

Karl Rove, Courage and Consequence, pp 277-279

President George Bush was at his finest moment when the country needed him the most.

The Events Of Our Very Greatest Americans: The Congressional Medal Of Honor Recipients:

Our soldiers are all heroes, these days.  You don’t volunteer to serve in today’s military without realizing that you may very well be called upon to serve in a combat zone.  And with terrorism and the tactics used by terrorist fighters, anyone can suddenly find himself or herself on the front lines.

I’ve marveled at our soldiers and Marines since the first footage showed them ready to go into battle.  And from those first days to the present, they have been magnificent.

I am so proud of them, so proud of what they have accomplished, and so proud that these incredible men and women wear the flag that I cherish.

I obviously can’t name them all, and tell all of their stories.  But here are the stories of the greatest of the great: our Congressional Medal of Honor recipients:

  • Salvatore Giunta, Staff Sergeant, B Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Infantry Brigade (Airborne), US Army
  • Robert James Miller, Staff Sergeant, A Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), US Army
  • Jared C. Monti, Sgt 1st Class, 3rd Squadron, 71st Cavalry, 10th Mountain Division, US Army
  • Michael P. Murphy, Lieutenant, Alpha Platoon, SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team ONE (SDVT-1), US Navy
  • Jason Dunham, Corporal, 4th Platoon, Company K, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment (3/7), 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, USMC
  • Ross A. McGinnis, Specialist,1st Platoon, C Company, 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, US Army
  • Paul R. Smith, Sgt 1st Class, B Company, 11th Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division, US Army

These men, in receiving this the highest award for valor, have transcended themselves, and rightly epitomize the greatest attributes of not just soldiers, sailors, and Marines, but of human beings.  I think of the words of Jesus, “Greater love has no one than this, than that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).

On this 9/11, I remember that the United States was attacked by men who had murdered their very own humanity in the name of a rabid religious ideology before they murdered nearly 3,000 Americans.  I remember that we are at war, whether all of us recognize it or not.  And I remember that we must hold the same steely resolve to fight against an adversary who practices no rules, has no compassion, and stops at no moral or rational limits.

But most of all, I remember the men and women who gave us the greatest possible example of love, of courage, of sacrifice, and of both the human and American spirit.

And I’m proud to be an American, because I am surrounded by such a cloud of magnificent heroes.

Thank you, Lord, for producing these magnificent men and women.

And Lord, please make more of them and keep them coming.  For we surely need others like them.

History Already Beginning to Positively Re-evaluate President Bush

August 21, 2008

President Bush – mired in low polls (unless you consider the Democrat-controlled Congress’ polls, which make his numbers look fabulous) is beginning to receive more favorable consideration, according to both polls and a survey of analyses.

President Bush’s favorability rating is at 30% according to Quinnipiac (8/12-8/17), with Gallup holding him at 33% (8/7-8/10). His ratings are definitely beginning to improve. And other reports are now speaking more favorably in both tone and substance of the Bush record. The success of the surge is cited as the largest contributing factor.

A Zogby survey shows that just 3% of Americans approve of how Congress is handling the war in Iraq; 24% say the same for the President. Why the media has spent so much time broadcasting President Bush’s low numbers, while basically ignoring the Democrats’ far lower numbers, would appear to reveal a clear bias and even an agenda.

Most telling of all may be how even left-leaning media is now evaluating the President more positively. Fareed Zakaria has a Newsweek article titled, “What Bush Got Right” that states that Bush learned from his failures and set a successful new course. A survey of the article reveals that President Bush positively transformed the U.S. relationships with China and India. Zakaria writes that:

“blanket criticism of Bush misses an important reality. For whatever reasons and through whichever path, the foreign policies in place now are more sensible, moderate and mainstream. In many cases the next president should follow rather than reverse them.”

Also this week the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank led by former Clinton chief of staff John Podesta, released its survey of national security experts, who say they are “more positive about the war in Iraq, U.S. efforts in fighting global terrorist networks, and the security of the United States and its people.” The survey reveals a decidedly upward trend in the confidence and approval of President Bush’s handling of a host of foreign policy issues.

I challenge any Democrat who opposes the war in Iraq to confront the positions of their own leadership both prior to and shortly after the beginning of the war. Freedom Agenda has a compilation of quotes from prominent Democrats on Iraq, Saddam Hussein, WMD, and the need to oust the regime. It is my contention that a reading of Democrats will reveal them as a treacherous and even traitorous band of rat bastards who betrayed not only the President in time of war, but their own expressed convictions, for cheap political gain.

I will always wonder what would have happened if Democrats had presented a united face, rather than divide the country over a war that 60% of the Democrats in the Senate voted for. I believe that had the country been united, there is a very real probability that more European countries would have supported the leadership of the United States, and that Saddam Hussein might have blinked and opened his regime to the inspections President Bush demanded.

Iran And The Bomb: What Are We Going To Do?

August 7, 2008

Remember that National Intelligence Estimate saying that Iran had ended its nuclear weapons program five years ago? A December 2007 Washington Post article cast it this way:

A major U.S. intelligence review has concluded that Iran stopped work on a suspected nuclear weapons program more than four years ago, a stark reversal of previous intelligence assessments that Iran was actively moving toward a bomb.

The new findings, drawn from a consensus National Intelligence Estimate, reflected a surprising shift in the midst of the Bush administration’s continuing political and diplomatic campaign to depict Tehran’s nuclear development as a grave threat. The report was drafted after an extended internal debate over the reliability of communications intercepts of Iranian conversations this past summer that suggested the program had been suspended.

If Iran ever truly did in fact suspend its nuclear weapons program, it did so immediately after – and obviously as a direct result of – the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Understandably Iran didn’t want to be the next country to face the consequences for illegal weapons programs.

When the story came out that Iran had suspended its nuclear weapons program (the one Iran claimed it never had in the first place), Democrats and liberals immediately pounced all over President Bush’s claim that Iran continued to represent a nuclear weapons threat. President Bush was called a liar, he was called a warmonger, for continuing to describe Iran as a threat. The left openly mocked conservatives for calling for a tough stance against Iran. We didn’t need to worry about Iran, they said.

The Washington Post claimed that Iran was actually ten years from developing the bomb.

Given these reports, liberals made the argument that any “threat” from Iran was theoretical or academic. And President Bush was merely proving that he was the paranoid neo-con that they had been casting him as all along.

When Barack Obama initially said that Iran did not represent a threat, he was merely assuming the longstanding standard doctrinaire liberal mentality. It was only when he began to be presented with the overwhelming evidence to the contrary that he “refined” his remarks to acknowledge that Iran was in fact a threat.

In any event, as the United States began to succomb to increasing internal division over the war in Iraq, and as the United States began to bog down, the facts now overwhelmingly reveal that Iran clearly decided to restart its nuclear weapons program.

How long until Iran develops enough nuclear material to build a bomb? Ten years, like the elite media says?

Try six months to one year. That abstract academic threat is getting real concrete and very, very real.

Israel has been warning for some time now that Iran could have the bomb far more quickly than many Western experts were willing to acknowledge. They’ve been claiming that Iran could have enough material to build a bomb far earlier than most estimates stated. But they were ignored. After all, in the leftist view of the world, Israel is the biggest and most paranoid warmonger of all (or at least a very close second to the United States).

But now someone else is affirming that President Bush and the state of Israel were right all along.

And it’s not some neo-con warmonger saying this but none other than the U.N.’s International Atomic Energy Agency director-general, Mohamed ElBaradei:

Mohamed ElBaradei: “If Iran wants to turn to the production of nuclear weapons, it must leave the NPT, expel the IAEA inspectors, and then it would need at least… Considering the number of centrifuges and the quantity of uranium Iran has…”

Interviewer: “How much time would it need?”

ElBaradei: “It would need at least six months to one year. Therefore, Iran will not be able to reach the point where we would wake up one morning to an Iran with a nuclear weapon.”

Interviewer: “Excuse me, I would like to clarify this for our viewers. If Iran decides today to expel the IAEA from the country, it will need six months…”

ElBaradei: “Or one year, at least…”

Interviewer: “… to produce [nuclear] weapons?”

ElBaradei: “It would need this period to produce a weapon, and to obtain highly-enriched uranium in sufficient quantities for a single nuclear weapon.”

Sadly, ElBaradei – in the words of one writer – “seems to be more obsessed with politics than with doing his job. His job is to monitor the nuclear developments of countries, such as Iran, and to prevent them from developing nuclear weapons. That’s what he should be concerned about. Instead, he’s concerned with what countries may do when other countries ignore the UN and develop nuclear weapons regardless of world opinion.” Mohamed ElBaradei has claimed that any attack on Iran would be “unnecessary” and that he would resign if such an attack were to occur. That’s a pretty political statement from a supposedly apolitical weapons inspector.

And meanwhile Iran is getting closer and closer to the bomb with each passing day.

What would happen if Iran actually got the bomb? Many pooh pooh the possibility that Iran would start World War III by attacking an also nuclear-armed Israel. But only a fool would ignore the numerous “death to Israel” statements from both Iran’s president and its Ayatollah. What is particular frightening is that these Iranian rulers hold to an apocalyptic interpretation of Islam which holds to the doctrine that the last Imam will return during a period of crisis.

But Iran doesn’t actually have to use its nuclear weapons to make use of them. Ask yourself: would the United States dare attack a nuclear Iran? Even if Iran – through its terrorists surrogates – carried out another 9/11 attack against it?

Will they share nuclear technology and materials with terrorist organizations, and attempt to carry out nuclear attacks by proxy?

Iran is and has been the leading source of terrorism around the world. If they obtain a nuclear weapons capability, you can only expect them to be more emboldened and feel more invulnerable to meaningful retaliation than they have ever felt before. President Ahmadinejad has said, “I Have a Connection With God, Since God Said That the Infidels Will Have No Way to Harm the Believers”; “We Have [Only] One Step Remaining Before We Attain the Summit of Nuclear Technology”; The West “Will Not Dare To Attack Us.”

Are you ready for that? Are you ready for the kind of hell that a rogue, terrorist, totalitarian, jihadist, and Armageddonist state could unleash upon the world given the impunity of being protected by nuclear weapons?

What are you willing to do to prevent that nightmarish scenario from occuring?

One thing is certain: we absolutely cannot count on diplomacy to prevent this catastrophic threat to world stability and security.

Russia and China – both veto-wielding permanent United Nations security council members – have both repeatedly disallowed any meaningful sanctions against Iran. I write about this in detail in an article.

There’s all kinds of evidence of their refusal to all for any sanctions that would have any chance of forcing Iran to comply.

From August 5, 2008:

The United States, Britain and France warned Monday — two days after the deadline expired — that they would press for additional sanctions against Iran if it did not respond positively and unambiguously to the offer. The six powers will hold a conference call Wednesday to consider their response to the statement. But they remain divided, with China and Russia reluctant to support tough sanctions.

“I don’t see any reason to believe that the Russians and the Chinese are any more willing today to support really tougher sanctions against Iran,” said Flynt Leverett, a senior fellow at the New America Foundation and former Bush National Security Council staffer.

Iran is clearly more interested in becoming a nuclear power than it is in taking any of our carrots. And with the stick being removed from the proceedings, diplomacy simply has no chance of succeeding.

And we’ve seen all this before. I have written a three part series titled, “Iraq War Justified” that points to the fact the United States was placed in this exact same situation prior to 2003 (Part 1; Part 2; Part 3). A pitifully pathetic and corrupt United Nations was absolutely incapable of doing anything. The United States had good reasons to believe that Iraq was engaging in the illegal production of weapons of mass destruction, and inspectors were blocked from carrying out any meaningful inspection program. Iraq was able to use its abundant oil – and even the United Nations’ own oil for food program – to buy allies who would prevent the implementation of tough UN sanctions. And an attitude of anti-Americanism and a view that American influence should be siphoned away in favor of “a multi-polar world” (which is really just a cosmopolitan way of being anti-American) all combined to make it impossible for diplomacy to work in forcing Iraq to open itself up to inspections.

The United States was forced to attack Iraq because every other available option had failed, and we were not willing to allow the possibility of an Iraq armed with weapons of mass destruction.

When we attacked Iraq in the Gulf War, it was learned that Iraq was FAR closer to developing nuclear weapons than had ever previously been believed by Western “experts.” It was also realized that this threat – stopped in 1990 – carried through into the future:

In summary, the IAEA report says that following the August 1990 invasion of Kuwait, Iraq launched a “crash program” to develop a nuclear weapon quickly by extracting weapons grade material from safe-guarded research reactor fuel. This project, if it had continued uninterrupted by the war, might have succeeded in producing a deliverable weapon by the end of 1992. [PBS source: Tracking Nuclear Proliferation, a Guide in Maps and Charts, 1998, Rodney W. Jones and Mark G. NcDonough, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. (1998). p. 191] …

Nuclear physicist and Iraqi defector Khidhir Hamza agrees. He told FRONTLINE that Iraq did not relinquish certain critical components of the nuclear program to the inspectors, and that it retains the expertise necessary to build a nuclear weapon. He believes that Iraq may have one completed within the next couple of years.

Even now, the United Nations is questioning the intelligence pointing to Iran developing the bomb. How are we ever going to attain the “consensus” that liberals demand we have in this sort of perennially hazy political environment?

How can one condemn the Iraq attack and then sanction an Iran attack given all the similarities? On just what logical or moral basis?

It’s the exact same thing happening all over again, and Israel and the United States will be faced with the same choice: Are we willing to allow an Iran with doomsday capability? Are we willing to carry out an attack alone given a pathologically weak, corrupt, and frankly both pathetic and apathetic world?

This is the question that will effect – and possibly haunt – American foreign policy for generations to come.

If we elect Barack Obama, we are tacitly choosing to allow Iran to develop the bomb. Any of his tough-sounding rhetoric aside, you need to realize that Barack Obama has already repeatedly philosophically condemned the very same sort of preemptive attack that would be necessary to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons. And he continues to do so even today. Just how was a preemptive attack on Iraq wrong if a preemptive attack on Iran is right? If Barack Obama believes that our intelligence will be flawless regarding Iran’s nuclear program when it was so flawed regarding Iraq’s program, then he is a genuine fool of the very worst kind. And if he refuses to attack until the evidence against Iran is certain, he is an even greater fool. For Iran would greet our attacking soldiers with mushroom clouds.

Israel is clearly doing far more than threatening to attack Iran
in order to prevent this patently anti-Semitic and defiantly evil regime from obtaining nuclear weapons. It is clearly merely a matter of time, with many thinking that Israel might even attack prior to the change in American administrations. If and when they do, we will see just how vulnerable the Democrats have made us over the past thirty years in refusing to allow America to develop its own source of domestic oil as the price of oil goes up to over $300 a barrel and over $12 a gallon for gasoline.

Obama, Democrats attack of Bush Knesset Speech Reveals Appeasement

May 15, 2008

President Bush gave a speech on 15 May 2008 before the Israeli Knesset that has drawn condemnation and outrage from Democrats. The most “outrageous” position he expressed – in context – is presented here:

Some of the reactions:

Obama communications director Robert Gibbs said, “Obviously, this is an unprecedented political attack on foreign soil. It’s quite frankly sad and astonishing that the President of the United States would politicize the 60th anniversary of Israel with a false political attack. … We have come to expect, and seen from this administration over the last eight years, this type of cowboy diplomacy. We’ve come to expect it, but over the past eight years it’s made this country far less safe than we were. … I think people are going to ask themselves in this election, are we safer than we were eight years ago, under this president, and I think the answer is going to be a resounding no” (“American Morning,” CNN, 5/15).

A listing of similar cries of angst and outrage:

It is sad that President Bush would use a speech to the Knesset on the 60th anniversary of Israel’s independence to launch a false political attack,” Obama said in the statement his aides distributed. “George Bush knows that I have never supported engagement with terrorists, and the president’s extraordinary politicization of foreign policy and the politics of fear do nothing to secure the American people or our stalwart ally Israel.”

Senator Joe Biden responded with unusual eloquence:

This is bullshit, this is malarkey. This is outrageous, for the president of the United States to go to a foreign country, to sit in the Knesset . . . and make this kind of ridiculous statement.”…
“He is the guy who has weakened us,” he said. “He has increased the number of terrorists in the world. It is his policies that have produced this vulnerability that the U.S. has. It’s his [own] intelligence community [that] has pointed this out, not me.

Senator John Kerry said, “[Bush] is still playing the disgusting and dangerous political game Karl Rove perfected, which is insulting to every American and disrespectful to our ally Israel. George Bush should be making Israel secure, not slandering Barack Obama from the Knesset.”

There is no escaping what the president is doing,” said [Dick] Durbin, who supports Obama. “It is an attack on Sen. Obama’s position that we should not be avoiding even those we disagree with when it comes to negotiations and diplomacy.

“I am shocked and, actually, very, very saddened by what the President has done,” [Tom] Daschle said during an interview he gave to Fox News.

“This is an unprecedented political attack that we’ve never seen a president do before.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she, “would hope that any serious person that aspires to lead the country, would disassociate themselves from those comments…

The tradition has always been that when a U.S. president is overseas, partisan politics stops at the water’s edge. President Bush has now taken that principle and turned it on its head: for this White House, partisan politics now begins at the water’s edge, no matter the seriousness and gravity of the occasion. Does the president have no shame?”

What on earth did the President say? I mean, it must have been really, really awful. He must have said that Democrats were all direct descendants of Satan, or that Barack Obama was secretly in direct communication with Osama bin Laden to plot against the United States or something. I mean, it had to be really despicable to generate such a reaction, right?

Wrong. We are dealing with people who have no moral compass, and think only in terms of self-serving political rhetoric.

Here is the statement that President Bush actually made, in context (the full speech is available online):

We believe that targeting innocent lives to achieve political objectives is always and everywhere wrong. So we stand together against terror and extremism, and we will never let down our guard or lose our resolve.

The fight against terror and extremism is the defining challenge of our time. It is more than a clash of arms. It is a clash of visions, a great ideological struggle. On one side are those who defend the ideals of justice and dignity with the power of reason and truth. On the other side are those who pursue a narrow vision of cruelty and control by committing murder, inciting fear, and spreading lies.

This struggle is waged with the technology of the 21st century, but at its core it is the ancient battle between good and evil. The killers claim the mantle of Islam, but they are not religious men. No one who prays to the God of Abraham could strap a suicide vest to an innocent child, or blow up guiltless guests at a Passover Seder, or fly planes into office buildings filled with unsuspecting workers. In truth, the men who carry out these savage acts serve no higher goal than their own desire for power. They accept no God before themselves. And they reserve a special hatred for the most ardent defenders of liberty, including Americans and Israelis.

That is why the founding charter of Hamas calls for the “elimination” of Israel. That is why the followers of

Hezbollah chant “Death to Israel, Death to America!” That is why Osama bin Laden teaches that “the killing of Jews and Americans is one of the biggest duties.” And that is why the president of Iran dreams of returning the Middle East to the Middle Ages and calls for Israel to be wiped off the map.

There are good and decent people who cannot fathom the darkness in these men and try to explain their words away. This is natural. But it is deadly wrong. As witnesses to evil in the past, we carry a solemn responsibility to take these words seriously. Jews and Americans have seen the consequences of disregarding the words of leaders who espouse hatred. And that is a mistake the world must not repeat in the 21st century.

Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along. We have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: “Lord, if only I could have talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided.” We have an obligation to call this what it is – the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history.

Some people suggest that if the United States would just break ties with Israel, all our problems in the Middle East would go away. This is a tired argument that buys into the propaganda of our enemies, and America rejects it utterly. Israel’s population may be just over 7 million. But when you confront terror and evil, you are 307 million strong, because America stands with you.

America stands with you in breaking up terrorist networks and denying the extremists sanctuary. And America stands with you in firmly opposing Iran’s nuclear weapons ambitions. Permitting the world’s leading sponsor of terror to possess the world’s deadliest weapon would be an unforgivable betrayal of future generations. For the sake of peace, the world must not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon.

Ultimately, to prevail in this struggle, we must offer an alternative to the ideology of the extremists by extending our vision of justice and tolerance, freedom and hope. These values are the self-evident right of all people, of all religions, in all of the world because they are a gift from Almighty God. Securing these rights is also the surest way to secure peace. Leaders who are accountable to their people will not pursue endless confrontation and bloodshed. Young people with a place in their society and a voice in their future are less likely to search for meaning in radicalism. And societies where citizens can express their conscience and worship their God will not export violence, they will be partners for peace.

In an article titled, Appeasement, the Democrats, and Shakespeare, posted Democratic Representatives Jim McDermott (Wash.), David Bonior (Mich.) and Mike Thompson (Calif.) going to Iraq to attack President Bush from foreign soil – in a visit that turns out to have been financed by Saddam Hussein’s intelligence service.

He cites former President Jimmy Carter’s statement from England.

And he cites remarks made by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi when she took it upon her self to go to Syria.

Given the fact that President Bush did not name a single Democrat by name, given the fact that his only allusion to any American political figure was an unnamed American senator back in 1939, and given the fact that Barack Obama claims the remark did not in any way resemble his own foreign policy position, why say anything at all? Why all the outrage?

President Bush didn’t attack Democrats or Barack Obama. They attacked themselves, and blamed him for it.

These Democrats shrilly proclaim that President Bush is beyond contempt for attacking them, when he didn’t, and then demonstrate that they are not in the least beyond launching vicious personal attacks themselves. It’s really a quite remarkable act of hypocrisy.

While watching Fox News with Megyn Kelly interviewing an Obama spokeswoman this afternoon, I heard the Obama camp first claim that Bush’s policy of refusing to talk with our enemies was causing political instability, and then almost immediately thereafter claim that Bush had dialogued with leaders of countries such as Sudan to show that it’s Bush – and not Obama – who is dialoguing with enemies. You wonder how these people’s heads don’t explode trying to contain all the contradictions.

Barack Obama has famously said that he would be willing to have direct dialogue with leaders of state sponsors of terrorism, such as Iran, without any preconditions. His website says, “Obama is the only major candidate who supports tough, direct presidential diplomacy with Iran without preconditions.” It was a position that her Democratic rival Hillary Clinton repeatedly pointed to as an example of his inexperience and naiveté. It is a substantial departure from the policy of every American president over the last fifty years.

I point out in an earlier article that:

The Bush administration – like all U.S. presidential administrations before it – had the policy of refusing to directly engage with terrorist states and rogue totalitarian dictatorships. Doing so, they argued, gives these states credibility and legitimacy in the eyes of the world while doing little to change their despicable ways.

In other words, by dialoguing with terrorists, we implicitly recognize them, and thereby recognize the acts that they commit. We abandon the belief that some acts are so heinous, and so deplorable, that anyone who commits them should be shunned and reviled instead of being rewarded with recognition and legitimacy. Instead, we tacitly acknowledge that using violence and suffering to advance one’s cause is a valid path to international recognition. Otherwise, we would not have allowed their violent approach to succeed.

In an article detailing Jimmy Carter’s recent visit to the terrorist entity Hamas, Katarina Kratovac wrote the following:

Carter, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate who brokered Israel’s historic peace agreement with Egypt three decades ago, is on what he calls a private peace mission. He contends the U.S., Israel and other Western states should stop isolating Hamas if they want peace efforts to succeed.

Heading the Hamas delegation in Cairo were Gaza leaders Mahmoud Zahar and Said Siyam. “This meeting is a message to those who don’t recognize Hamas’ legitimacy as a movement,” Zahar said as he left for Egypt, according to Hamas’ Web site.

In Cairo, Hamas spokesman Taher Nuhu told The Associated Press that the purported Thursday meeting would be “a recognition of the legitimacy” of Hamas’ victory in the Palestinians’ parliamentary election in 2006.

Hamas obtained the desired prestige and international attention it wanted, and gave up absolutely nothing in return, which is exactly what American conservatives and Israelies said would happen.

Barack Obama – and prominent Democrat’s – argument that the President of the United States must be willing to talk directly to our enemies because otherwise there will be no communication and no possibility for compromise or peace is simply a straw man. In reality, the United States has constant lines of communications with countries such as Iran through other countries, through lower level diplomats, and through various other “back channel” sources. A meeting with the President of the United States should be reserved as a conditional reward for abandoning behavior harmful to the interest of the United States; not as a reward for engaging in that very behavior we find despicable.

Do you want to know the real reason why all these Democrats are so livid?

Because – in talking about the colossal errors of the past – President Bush showed why liberals are so terribly wrong in the present.

In a speech by Newt Gingrich which I have available on this blog (under the title, “Fighting For Survival Means Fighting For Truth – by Newt Gingrich”), Gingrich, in discussing what he learned from his reading of a book titled, Troublesome Young Men, says, “And we tend to understate what a serious and conscientious and thoughtful effort appeasement was and that it was the direct and deliberate policy of very powerful and very willful people. We tend to think of it as a psychological weakness as though Chamberlain was somehow craven. He wasn’t craven. Chamberlain had a very clear vision of the World, and he was very ruthless domestically.”

Ultimately, Bush wasn’t attacking Barack Obama or any other Democrat for being willing to speak to this leader or that, even without preconditions. Such is the allegation by Democrats attempting to divert attention to what Bush really was criticizing, which was: the historic tendency to dismiss genuine moral evil on the part of leaders of rogue regimes, and the historic tendency to be all-too-willing to appease to such leaders.

If Democrats truly agreed with these two basic positions, they merely had to affirm that they too embrace these ideas, and will be true to them if elected.

In demonizing Bush’ position, they implicitly proclaim that the spirit of appeasement from 1938 is still alive and well in 2008.