Tuesday, June 29, 2010

DAY 71

Posted by Diogenes Sarcastica
June 29, 2010



But they ask "what could one man have done?"

When Barack Obama was running for President, his supporters said that he was smarter than George W. Bush and talked about how good it would be to have an intelligent man at America's helm after Bush.

Now, less than two years later, Obama's supporters are stuck saying that Obama couldn't have been prepared for the mess George W. Bush left.

Tthe Gulf Coast oil spill is a good  example. After over 71 days, even a number of his supporters are starting to wonder if he's on the ball. When James Carville starts openly questioning you, you know the Left isn't happy with you. This has left Obama's supporters asking, "Well, what would you have had Obama do?" The question is designed to show that not even Obama has all the answers and that the people who are questioning him are hypocrites because they don't have answers.

Allow me to fill that void, if I may?

1) Send down the Environmental Protection Agency after the spill happened. One of Obama's first actions after the Gulf Coast oil spill happened was to dispatch people from...the Department of Homeland Security. What were they going to do? Arrest the oil spill? Set up a color-coded system to let people know the threat level of the spill? Then he sent a battery of Lawyers.   Maybe the best thing to do would have been to send down people whose job it is to address ecological matters. Maybe a government group like...oh I don't know...the Environmental Protection Agency? I know it's a stretch, but maybe Obama could have send them down first thing.

2) Spend some Super Fund money. Part of the EPA' s budget is a little thing called Super Fund, a fund designed to help clean up ecological disasters. I'm sure some Super Fund money could be released to buy or lease the clean-up equipment that should have already been bought and in place and hire the experts to operate it.  I'm pretty sure an oil spill constitutes an ecological disaster.

3) Encourage BP. Since the beginning, Obama and his supporters have attacked BP at every opportunity, saying, "It's their spill." That has yet to be discovered in full, but that hasn't stopped Obama from laying the blame at BP's feet. Yet, who is doing most of the work in the Gulf Coast? BP. Instead of criticizing BP, the President could show some leadership and become BP's biggest fan. Being negative at this stage doesn't help the situation at all.

4) Listen to the states impacted by the spill. Is there a reason Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and the southern parishes of Louisiana are not  getting cooperation from  the federal government? Because of the length of time it takes for an oil spill to get cleaned up, Jindal wanted to build sand berms designed to protect Louisiana's wetlands. Yet, the Obama Administration and the EPA dragged it's feet on approval. Even the courts are now hindering the efforts.  And with hurricane season just starting, the more the Administration drags its feet, we could be seeing the Gulf Coast oil spill spread out and effect  entire coastal areas . Jindal's request wasn't out of the ordinary, nor is it out of the question. This should have been a priority as soon as the scope of the pending disaster was realized. Obama would be well-served to listen the people like Jindal and not to his Leftist base. I'll stop just short of advocating Gov. Jindal go rogue and deify the courts and do what is necessary.

5) Be a visible leader. One of the biggest knocks against Obama's handling of the oil spill is that he doesn't seem to be all that engaged. He does small, meaningless things, but usually in private and far away from the media's eyes. Obama may think this makes him look deliberate and thoughtful, but in truth, it's made him look distant and thoughtless, especially when he's on the golf course.  With America being fans of visual media, it's increasingly important that leaders actually appear on them. Obama didn't even mention the oil spill for nearly 10 days after it happened. That's far too long in this media environment. A lot more visibility and public statements of concern could have helped him appear more like a leader, and may well have been his finest hour.  And really, we didn't need Joe Biden down here, the circus has enough clowns.

See? Five suggestions on what Obama could have done, and I'm not even a graduate of Harvard Law. Then again, given some of the bozos that have come out of there, I might have been able to come up with these suggestions because I didn't graduate from Harvard Law.

Related Post: Day 56
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Friday, June 25, 2010

Will Obama's Incompetence Drag Democrats Down??

Posted by Diogenes Sarcastica
Friday, June 25, 2010



It doesn't take a lot of attention paid lately to come to the conclusion we have extremely  incompetent leadership in Washington these days. The lip service paid to the Gulf coast States, the White Houses lack inaction in helping to protecting Louisiana’s wetlands and the Florida beaches, even now blocking attempts to save coastal areas because of potential environmental impact of non-endangered areas in the future......the many foreign policy blunders which show us as  weak, indecisive and unreliable, the administrations seemingly cold shoulder to Israel, goofy rambling public statements and an egotistical attitude from the President, and a Vice President who can't  seem to show up at any event without acting  like a manager of a used car lot...etc..etc...etc.....

It seems the American people, despite the cheerleading from the media, are starting to see the empty suit for what he is........an empty suit!


From Thursdays Wall Street Journal:
Americans are more pessimistic about the state of the country and less confident in President Barack Obama’s leadership than at any point since Mr. Obama entered the White House, according to a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll.
The survey also shows grave and growing concerns about the Gulf oil spill, with overwhelming majorities of adults favoring stronger regulation of the oil industry and believing that the spill will affect the nation’s economy and environment.
Sixty-two percent of adults in the survey feel the country is on the wrong track, the highest level since before the 2008 election. Just one-third think the economy will get better over the next year, a 7-point drop from a month ago and the low point of Mr. Obama’s tenure.
Amid anxiety over the nation’s course, support for Mr. Obama and other incumbents is eroding. For the first time, more people disapprove of Mr. Obama’s job performance than approve. And 57% of voters would prefer to elect a new person to Congress than re-elect their local representatives, the highest share in 18 years.
The results show “a really ugly mood and an unhappy electorate,” said Democratic pollster Peter Hart, who conducts the Journal/NBC poll with GOP pollster Bill McInturff. “The voters, I think, are just looking for change, and that means bad news for incumbents and in particular for the Democrats.”

And Karl Rove's WSJ column highlights other difficulties for Democrats:
The most important indicator is the president’s job approval. In the Real Clear Politics average of the last two weeks’ polls, President Obama has a 48% approval and 47% disapproval rating. This points to deep Democratic losses. The president’s approval rating last November was 54% when his party was trounced in New Jersey and Virginia.
On the economy, a mid-June AP poll reported that Mr. Obama has 45% approval, 50% disapproval. That’s a dangerous place for any president when jobs are issue No. 1. The problem is worse in swing areas. Last week’s National Public Radio (NPR) poll of the 60 Democratic House seats most at risk this year showed just 37% of voters in these districts agreed Mr. Obama’s “economic policies helped avert an even worse crisis and are laying a foundation for our eventual economic recovery”; 57% believed they “have run up a record federal deficit while failing to end the recession or slow the record pace of job losses.”
Mr. Obama also suffers because his handling of the catastrophic Gulf oil leak has undermined perceptions of his competence. Both national and Louisiana polls rate Mr. Obama’s handling worse than the Bush administration’s Katrina response.


It's clear Americans are seriously questioning President Obama’s leadership abilities.  People started wondering about his competence when it became obvious that the stimulus didn’t revive the economy.  Add to that the mess in Afghanistan and the gulf coast inaction, you’ve got a three-ring circus of disasters.   In 1994, Republicans gained a net of 52 House seats. While I won’t be so bold  as to predict a similar result this year, I won’t rule it out either. Right now, voters are looking for candidates that they think are real leaders because they rightly see Washington as the cradle of incompetence.
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Monday, June 14, 2010

Day 56

Posted by Diogenes Sarcastica
Monday June 14, 2010


A lot has been written from the right about the so called “Obama’s Katrina”. I don't agree with the comparison.

Hurricane Katrina was hung around Bush's neck and used as a criticism of his administrations faults, of which there were many. But as a resident of Louisiana and a firsthand witness to the aftermath of Katrina, and as I now watch the coastline of my state unnecessarily devastated by the B.P. oil spill, I can safely say I have not witnessed incompetence at this level from the federal government in my entire life.
During the first two days of flooding and chaos in South Louisiana caused by Hurricane Katrina, George Bush was in communication with the leaders of Louisiana, New Orleans, and other important agencies. Governor Kathleen Blanco hesitated allowing federal help into the state, making a situation worst.  Bush did overestimated the Governor of Louisiana and the competency of the mayor of New Orleans ability to manage the problem at all, and now the left, who would not give Bush any benefit of the doubt, is coming up with excuse after excuse for Obamas  lack of action.

Despite the latter criticism, Bush did declared a state of emergency before the hurricane hit. He activated the National Guard, and addressed the nation all within the first two days of disaster. Once it was clear that chaos had broken out, the White House scrambled to get the federal government more involved. Obama’s reaction has been less urgent by weeks, almost months. Nevertheless, once he got going, Bush probably did everything a President could do in that situation, which was to authorize resources, release statements, and make appearances.

In contrast, Obama has not communicated well with BP. or the  Governor of Louisiana, Bobby Jindal.
Three days after the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico, the Dutch government offered  help.  It was willing to supply ships fitted with oil-skimming booms, and it proposed a workable plan for building barriers to protect sensitive wetlands along the fragile Louisiana coast.  The response from the Obama administration, no thanks. 
The Obama’s administrations (12 days into the spill) first reaction to the spill was to send the inept and somewhat incoherent Homeland Security Secretary to the Gulf coast to double speak and avoid tough questions. Their next move was to send Justice Department Lawyers, It was obvious they wanted send a very clear message: No matter how bad it gets or what happens, it not our fault!   Obamabots in the media picked up on it immediately. “It’s Bushes Fault……Evil Oil Companies”

No doubt rest in anyones mind, British Petroleum is clearly responsible for the oil leaking into the gulf and libel for the consequences which are yet to be determined, but being a disaster of epic proportions in U.S. waters means there should be leadership and cooperation from Washington. 
 
Obama spent the end of April and the beginning of May meeting behind closed doors with administrative officials. He made occasional and vague public statements about the incident. Seems every idea had a “study” involved. He spent time golfing, state dinners for  world leaders, nights out with the first lady, vacationing in Chicago, meeting with NCAA champions, and attending Democratic fundraisers. He skipped the memorial service for the men killed in the accident to fundraise for Senator Boxer.  It was not until the end of May that he nominally and authoritatively positioned the federal government in charge of the disaster when it became clear Florida, a must need electoral state, beaches and tourism may be endangered. (Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi did not vote for Obama). Senator Mary Landrieu (D-La) has been unusually silent.  $300 million from Washington for your vote, see my earlier post,  You're Making Us Proud, Mary, and millions in campaign contributions from big oil that without she would just be the mayor of New Orleans homely older sister, buys a lot of silence, eh Mary?
Only now, after his 7th round of golf since the spill started and just before he addresses the nation, does the President decides to meet face to face with B.P. officials.
We spend way too much of our intellectual, economic, and human resources developing technologies that prosper under perfect conditions, but do little to invest in risk management and responsibility.   And perhaps we would be wise not to elect another chief executive whose prime leadership experience is running a school newspaper.
 Katharina was not Bush’s undoing, but the worst environmental disaster in history and incredibly  incompetent leadership could be Obama’s. 
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