Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Change You Can Believe In: Foreign Policy Gaffes

Following up on yesterday's story from the UK Telegraph on Obama's disinterest in foreign policy, here's more coverage of the Obama Administration's gaffes:

Brit reporters in bit of a snit over lack of Obama-Brown news conference

They see it as a snub.

"Embarrassing," says Benedict Brogan of The Mail. Embarrassing, that is, for Brown.

"Mr. Brown might lament," writes Toby Harnden of The Telegraph, "that despite the so-called 'special relationship' Britain is now getting the same treatment as the president of Uruguay but he need not despair. I'm told there's a chance he might get drinks with Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday evening."

Excellent, Obama snubbed our best ally. What does the rest of the world think when it sees this? Our enemies must be licking their chops, hoping to take advantage of this fissure.

Obama's blockbuster gift for Brown: 25 classic films

No10 had tried to keep the present a secret, refusing to answer reporters who asked what President Obama had given to mark the reaffirmation of the special relationship. However, the Evening Standard discovered the truth through White House insiders.

One reason for the secrecy might be that the gift seems markedly less generous and thoughtful than the presents taken to Washington by the Prime Minister.

Obama's gift was so embarrassingly inappropriate and offensive that PM Brown tried to hide it.

Now, Hillary gets into the act:

Wrong red button

We worked hard to get the right Russian word. Do you think we got it?” Clinton said as reporters, allowed in to observe the first few minutes of the meeting, watched.

“You got it wrong,” Lavrov said, to Clinton’s clear surprise. Instead of "reset," he said the word on the box meant “overcharge.”

Clearly they didn't work hard enough. Seriously, how do you get ONE word wrong?

Russian media teases Clinton over 'reset' button

A correspondent for NTV television called it a "symbolic mistake," pointing out that US-Russian ties had become overcharged in recent years due to discord over such issues as missile defence and last summer's war in Georgia.

…"Yet this curious episode did not stop Clinton and Lavrov from pushing the button in front of television cameras."

Just the right footing when you want to reset your relationship with a country! And, what exactly are we resetting to - the Cold War? - WWII?

Tongue-tied Clinton gets warm EU welcome

Hillary Clinton raised eyebrows on her first visit to Europe as secretary of state when she mispronounced her EU counterparts' names and claimed U.S. democracy was older than Europe's.

…One working lunch later with EU leaders, Clinton raised more eyebrows when she referred to EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana, who stood beside her, as "High Representative Solano."

She also dubbed European Commission External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner as "Benito."

I thought
only idiots like Bush could make mistakes like that! And of course this article defends her saying she hadn't gotten much sleep on her
whirlwind tour.

Isn't it great we elected "hope and change" instead of someone with a proven track record of experience and responsibility?

More to come tomorrow...

Monday, March 09, 2009

Change You Can Believe In: Obamateur Hour

The UK Telegraph today had a devastating article on how the Obama Administration is neglecting foreign policy, especially our special relationship with Britain. I thought Obama was going to restore our image in the world and improve our relations with other nations? Maybe that's only for our enemies and our best allies will fall by the wayside.

Barack Obama 'too tired' to give proper welcome to Gordon Brown

British officials, meanwhile, admit that the White House and US State Department staff were utterly bemused by complaints that the Prime Minister should have been granted full-blown press conference and a formal dinner, as has been customary. They concede that Obama aides seemed unfamiliar with the expectations that surround a major visit by a British prime minister.

These are the types of slips and slights that happen with an inexperienced and overwhelmed administration.

But Washington figures with access to Mr Obama's inner circle explained the slight by saying that those high up in the administration have had little time to deal with international matters, let alone the diplomatic niceties of the special relationship.

Oh, excellent, the Obama team doesn't have any time for foreign policy and diplomacy!

...A well-connected Washington figure, who is close to members of Mr Obama's inner circle, expressed concern that Mr Obama had failed so far to "even fake an interest in foreign policy".

He's doing such a great job on the domestic front, we can forgive him for ignoring foreign policy, the sole domain of the Executive Branch.

A British official conceded that the furore surrounding the apparent snub to Mr Brown had come as a shock to the White House. "I think it's right to say that their focus is elsewhere, on domestic affairs. A number of our US interlocutors said they couldn't quite understand the British concerns and didn't get what that was all about."

I thought diplomacy, dialogue and symbolic gestures were what Obama's foreign policy strategy was all about. How hard is it to find out what is appropriate and expected when important foreign dignitaries visit?! How do you manage tick off our best ally?!

The American source said: "Obama is overwhelmed. There is a zero sum tension between his ability to attend to the economic issues and his ability to be a proactive sculptor of the national security agenda.

"That was the gamble these guys made at the front end of this presidency and I think they're finding it a hard thing to do everything."

And yet the American voters thought it would be a good idea to elect such an immature, unproven and untested person during such an important time in history. Experience and proven results do matter!

...But they concede that the mood music of the event was at times strained. Mr Brown handed over carefully selected gifts, including a pen holder made from the wood of a warship that helped stamp out the slave trade - a sister ship of the vessel from which timbers were taken to build Mr Obama's Oval Office desk. Mr Obama's gift in return, a collection of Hollywood film DVDs that could have been bought from any high street store, looked like the kind of thing the White House might hand out to the visiting head of a minor African state.

Who is in charge of gifts?! They should be fired with this and the "reset" button disaster with Russia.

...The real views of many in Obama administration were laid bare by a State Department official involved in planning the Brown visit, who reacted with fury when questioned by The Sunday Telegraph about why the event was so low-key.

The official dismissed any notion of the special relationship, saying: "There's nothing special about Britain. You're just the same as the other 190 countries in the world. You shouldn't expect special treatment." The apparent lack of attention to detail by the Obama administration is indicative of what many believe to be Mr Obama's determination to do too much too quickly.

Wow, sounds like someone screwed up and is trying to deflect the blame! I can't believe a nameless official at the State Dept would make such an outrageous statement denigrating our best ally to a British newspaper! Another person to fire. The administration should immediately apologize and explain this offensive statement.

...The Sunday Telegraph understands that one of Mr Obama's most prominent African American backers, whose endorsement he spent two years cultivating, has told friends that he detects a weakness in Mr Obama's character.

"The one real serious flaw I see in Barack Obama is that he thinks he can manage all this," the well-known figure told a Washington official, who spoke to this newspaper. "He's underestimating the flood of things that will hit his desk."

That's certainly not Obama's
only character flaw, but it may signal a ticking time bomb ready to go off and sink his presidency and the country with the next crisis.

The Obama presidency has been a failure so far on the foreign policy front (as well as domestic). In the coming days, I will highlight recent articles that vindicate Bush and show gaffes and screw ups of Obama, while antagonizing our friends, and attempting to placate our insatiable enemies. Stay tuned.

Related posts:

Obama Irony: So Far, Worse Than Bush

Obama set to lower our standing in the world

Obama to abandon Israel?

Meet the new Great Satan, same as the old Great Satan

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Joe Biden is an Idiot, Part 385,734

On CBS News last week, Biden was at his bumbling best. First, a woman asked for specific details of how the bill will help small businesses like hers. Biden couldn't really answer, so he first tells her to call his office directly - yeah, I'm sure his staff is just standing by ready to walk us all through how the bill will affect us each individually. And then he proceeds to say maybe "the bridge going across the creek to get to her business needs repair." Oh, yeah, that's why businesses are failing, because people can't cross bodies of water to get to them! What an idiot!

If you need a bridge, call Biden:

Biden also has a "series of tubes" moment when he doesn't know the url for Recovery.gov "You know, I'm embarassed. You know the website number?"

Call him up on that website, and he'll help you get a bridge across the creek to your business:

In that same interview, Biden made the claim, in responding to Gov. Bobby Jindal, that Louisiana was losing 400 jobs a day. Turns out LA and DC were the 2 only states or districts that gained jobs in December.

KSLA, a local affiliate in LA has the story: Reality check for Vice President Joe Biden:

Man, I miss having a competent Vice President!

Related posts:
These two are going to be such fun!

Biden's just a barrel of gaffes


Monday, March 02, 2009

CPAC Day 3

Saturday was the last day of CPAC and it ended with a bang with Rush Limbaugh as the closing speaker. CPAC was buzzing the whole day in anticipation and a long line at the door for seats began several hours before he was to come on. As a blogger, I got to jump the line and be in the room with Rush - others had to watch on tv screens in three other ballrooms in the hotel.

Before Rush's speech, I got to see a presentation by the film makers of Not Evil, Just Wrong - a documentary about the true cost of global warming hysteria on the lives of vulnerable people. They were very entertaining and I can't wait to see the movie.

Ward Connerly also spoke on race - he is famous for fighting to make America a colorblind society by making race preferences, or affirmative action, illegal.

Now, here are some scenes from inside the main ballroom with Rush:

Rush takes the stage and begins an hour and a half speech that the crowd never wants to end.

Even in the main ballroom we had to look at screens to see him closely.

The crowd laughs and enjoys Rush's speech.

Rush is presented with the Defender of the Constitution Award. It's a framed original document written by Benjamin Franklin.

Rush gets another of many standing ovations.

The crowded lobby at the end of CPAC - off to Reaganpalooza at the Hawk and Dove bar on Capitol Hill.

Conservative Brawler
has links to the videos of Rush's whole speech as well as a transcript.

All in all, it was a fantastic CPAC - one I wish I had had more time to enjoy. Everyone is already excited for next year when it will be moved to a larger venue to accomodate all of us conservative activists. On to #CPAC10!

Previous entries:

CPAC Day 2

CPAC Day 1