Friday, April 29, 2011

29 April, 2011, Fri, SoS Clinton and Staff Schedule

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/appt/2011/04/161954.htm
SECRETARY HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON
9:30 a.m. Secretary Clinton holds a bilateral meeting with Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING BILATERAL MEETING)

10:40 a.m. Secretary Clinton holds a bilateral meeting with Mexican Foreign Minister Patricia Espinosa, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING BILATERAL MEETING)

11:00 a.m. Secretary Clinton participates in the U.S.-Mexico Merida High Level Consultative Group meeting with Mexican Foreign Minister Espinosa, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY)

12:50 p.m. Secretary Clinton hosts a working lunch for the U.S.-Mexico Merida High Level Consultative Group with Mexican Foreign Minister Espinosa, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:00 p.m. Secretary Clinton attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

5:30 p.m. Secretary Clinton holds a bilateral meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto, at the Department of State.

DEPUTY SECRETARY JIM STEINBERG:
10:30 a.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg meets with Bulgarian Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

11:00 a.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

12:15 p.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg meets with Japanese Foreign Minister Matsumoto, in Washington, DC.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

1:45 p.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg delivers remarks at the Daimler Forum, at the Brookings Institution.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

3:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

DEPUTY SECRETARY TOM NIDES:
9:45 a.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Russell Rumbaugh and Mary Madler, in Washington, DC.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

10:15 a.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Charlie Houy, in Washington, DC.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

12:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides speaks with Deputy Secretary of Defense Bill Lynn.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

1:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Counselor Mills, Deputy Director of U.S. Foreign Assistance Rob Goldberg and Barbara Retzlaff, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

2:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides speaks with South African Ambassador Ebrahim Rasool.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

US FOR POLITICAL AFFAIRS BILL BURNS
11:00 a.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with Bulgarian Foreign Minister Nikolai Mladenov, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

11:45 a.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with Russian Senator Mikhail Margelov, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee of the Federation Council, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

12:30 p.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with European Union Political Director Robert Cooper, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

2:00 p.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with David Miliband, UK Member of Parliament, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:30 p.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with French Political Director Jacques Audibert, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

4:00 p.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with participants in the 2011 Alfa Fellows program, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

US FOR ECONOMIC, ENERGY AND AGRICULTURAL AFFAIRS ROBERT HORMATS
9:00 a.m. Under Secretary Hormats meets with State and USAID staff to discuss Egyptian economic issues, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

10:00 a.m. Under Secretary Hormats meets with Ambassador Carlos Pascual, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

4:30 p.m. Under Secretary Hormats attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

US FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS JUDITH MCHALE
12:00 p.m. Under Secretary McHale attends a lunch in honor of Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer hosted by the Atlantic Council, at the Jefferson Hotel in Washington, DC.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

2:00 p.m. Under Secretary McHale meets with Botswanan Ambassador Tebelelo Seretse, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

6:00 p.m. Under Secretary McHale attends a reception in celebration of the marriage of His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales to Miss Catherine Middleton, at the British ambassador’s residence.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

US FOR ARMS CONTROL AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AFFAIRS ELLEN TAUSCHER
6:00 p.m. Under Secretary Tauscher attends a reception in celebration of the marriage of His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales to Miss Catherine Middleton, at the British ambassador’s residence.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

AS FOR INTERNATIONAL NARCOTICS AND LAW ENFORCEMENT AFFAIRS WILLIAM BROWNFIELD
11:00 a.m. Assistant Secretary Brownfield participates in the U.S.-Mexico Merida High Level Consultative Group meeting with Secretary Clinton, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY)

AS FOR EAST ASIAN AND PACIFIC AFFAIRS KURT CAMPBELL
5:30 p.m. Assistant Secretary Campbell joins Secretary Clinton’s bilateral meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto, at the Department of State.
(JOINT PRESS AVAILABILITY FOLLOWING BILATERAL MEETING)

AS FOR EUROPEAN AND EURASIAN AFFAIRS PHILIP GORDON
9:30 a.m. Assistant Secretary Gordon joins Secretary Clinton’s bilateral meeting with Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING BILATERAL MEETING)

AS FOR DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND LABOR MICHAEL POSNER
Assistant Secretary Posner is on foreign travel in Beijing, China through April 29 for the U.S.-China Human Rights Dialogue.

AS FOR WESTERN HEMISPHERE AFFAIRS ARTURO VALENZUELA
11:00 a.m. Assistant Secretary Valenzuela participates in the U.S.-Mexico Merida High Level Consultative Group meeting with Secretary Clinton, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY)

COORDINATOR FOR COUNTERTERRORISM AMBASSADOR-AT-LARGE DANIEL BENJAMIN
1:30 p.m. Ambassador Benjamin attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

AMBASSADOR-AT-LARGE AND GLOBAL AIDS COORDINATOR ERIC GOOSBY:
Ambassador Goosby is on foreign travel in the Democratic Republic of the Congo through April 29 to meet with government officials and the U.S. team in the DRC and visit PEPFAR-supported programs, including those for orphans and vulnerable children.

SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR GLOBAL INTERGOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS RETA JO LEWIS
Special Representative Lewis is on foreign travel in Singapore to meet with senior government officials, business representatives, and non-governmental organizations.

Special Representative Lewis meets with Tan Tee How, Singapore’s Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Development, to discuss U.S. cities and states working in collaboration with Singapore on sustainability issues.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

Special Representative Lewis meets with business leaders from the U.S.-ASEAN Business Council to discuss opportunities for trade delegations to the region.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE TO MUSLIM COMMUNITIES FARAH PANDITH
2:00 p.m. Special Representative Pandith and Special Envoy Rosenthal host a 2011 Hours Against Hate Town Hall at George Washington University’s Jack Morton Auditorium.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)

SPECIAL ENVOY TO MONITOR AND COMBAT ANTI-SEMITISM HANNAH ROSENTHAL2:00 p.m. Special Envoy Rosenthal and Special Representative Pandith host a 2011 Hours Against Hate Town Hall at George Washington University’s Jack Morton Auditorium.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)

PRESS BRIEFING SCHEDULE:
TBD


___________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Is Comparing Obama to Coolidge Fair?

I had meant to post about this last night, but then it slipped my mind.

Yesterday Mark Steyn was complaining about all the travel and extravegance that the Obama's indulge in - flying in chefs from Chicago to cook their meals, taking vacations seemingly every other weekend, and so on. And he was saying that's not what a citizen President should do, and then compared him to Calvin Coolidge.

And frankly that was just a silly comparisons. Since the 1960s, Presidents have been known to get their little luxuries. Nancy Reagan was criticized for her insensitivity in telling the rest of the US to tighten their belts, than ordering a new set of china dishes for the White House.

So, are those people who claim that Obama is too extravagant with taxpayers money just racist? Is it okay for white Presidents to go on vacations and use the perks of office, but because Obama is black, he doesn't deserve the same kind of treatment?

No, that's not what's going on here. The point is that - here and now - the US is bankrupt. We don't have the money to pay our debt unless the debt ceiling is increased, and yet Obama can jet around on Air Force 1 to be interviewed by Oprah for a daytime talk show. (Why didn't Oprah spend her own money to come interview him at the WHite House? Heck, she took her whole show to Australia, didn't she?)

But back on point. Obama has said he "feels our pain." Obama has said that people shouldn't live above their means. So, taking Obama as himself, at this point in time, yes, he's being hypocritical and wasteful of taxpayers money.

It doesn't matter if you think that the Bush's were just as wasteful, or that Reagan was just as wasteful. Every president has to be judged by the time in which he lived. And the times we're living in now are kind of desperate for a lot of people. And its based on these times that Obama should decide how much money he gets to spend on vacations and what not.

______
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

29 April, 2011, Fri, Pres and VP Schedules

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/president
8:00 am The President meets with participants in the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Strike
Diplomatic Room
Closed Press

8:30 am The First Family departs the White House en route Andrews Air Force Base
South Lawn
Open Press

8:45 am The First Family departs Andrews Air Force Base en route Alabama
Andrews Air Force Base
Travel Pool Coverage

10:50 am The First Family arrives in Alabama
Local Event Time: 9:50 AM CDT
Tuscaloosa Regional Airport
Open Press

11:10 am The President and the First Lady view the damage as well as meet with Governor Bentley, state and local officials and families affected by the storms
Local Event Time: 10:10 AM CDT
Alabama
Travel Pool Coverage

12:45 pm The First Family departs Alabama
Local Event Time: 11:45 AM CDT
Tuscaloosa Regional Airport
Open Press

2:10 pm The First Family arrives in Cape Canaveral, Florida
Cape Canaveral Skid Strip
Open Press

2:45 pm The First Family tours the orbiter processing facility
Cape Canaveral, Florida, Orbiter Processing Facility
Travel Pool Coverage

3:30 pm The First Family views the launch of the space shuttle Endeavour
Launch Control Center
Travel Pool Coverage

5:40 pm The President arrives Miami, Florida
Miami International Airport
Open Press

6:55 pm The President delivers the Miami Dade College commencement address
Florida, Miami, Miami Dade College
Pooled TV, Open to Correspondents

9:05 pm The President departs Miami, Florida
Miami International Airport
Open Press

11:30 pm The President arrives at the White House
South Lawn
Open Press

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/vice-president
10:00 am The Vice President meets with Secretary of the Treasury Tim Geithner, Director of the Office of Management and Budget Jacob Lew, and Director of the National Economic Council Gene Sperling to discuss fiscal policy
Closed Press

__________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Interesting Financial News Out of Australia

From TheWest.com.au:US shocks no longer Australia's worry: IMF
It used to be said that if the United States sneezed, the Australian economy caught the flu. But no more.

An analysis by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has found that in the past 10 years, economic shocks in the US no longer have a significant impact on Australia. But Asia does.

In a separate article on Australia and New Zealand in its Regional Outlook for the Asia Pacific released in Hong Kong on Thursday, the IMF said economic shocks from the emerging economies of Asia have overtaken the US as the most important external factor influencing Australian business.

Using a sample period from 1991 to 2010, it found a one per cent shock to US gross domestic product (GDP) led to a move of about 0.4 per cent in Australian growth.

In contrast, GDP shocks from emerging Asian economies had an almost negligible impact on Australia.

However, the result for the shorter sample period of 2000-2010 was dramatically different, with a one per cent shock in emerging Asia producing a shift in Australian growth of 0.33 per cent.

"The impact of US GDP shocks on Australia is no longer statistically significant," the report says.

As such, the long-term trend of continued strong growth in emerging Asia bodes well for Australia.

"Should emerging Asia continue to grow notably faster than the world average, the impact on Australia will be even larger than in the past," the IMF's modelling found.

"This larger impact reflects both the increase in emerging Asia's economic size and Australia's growing integration with emerging Asia."

Over the next 10 years, the analysis suggests that a 50 per cent increase in emerging Asia's GDP, driven by tradeable sector productivity growth, would raise the Australian GDP by about 20 per cent.

"However, should emerging Asia's economic growth become more balanced, with productivity growth in both tradeable and non-tradeable sectors contributing equally, the growth dividend is roughly about half, owing to more modest improvements in the terms of trade of Australia," it says.

This article doesn't quite explain what this means for the US... that Australia is now more heavily invested in Asian countries than in the US. Proving once again that the US has lost its "Engine of the world" role... and President Obama seems content that this should be so...

__________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mark Steyn On Rush Limbaugh Today

Mark Steyn filled in for Rush Limbaugh today, and will do so tomorrow as well.

I generally don't listen when guest hosts are on, although I do like Steyn.

Steyn had some interesting things to say today.

There were two stories he quoted talking about "smart" people.

One was that there's a new organization about the ethical treatment of animals, in which two college professors say that we should stop using terms like "sly as a fox" or "drunk as a skunk" or "fat as a pig" because they are demeaning to animals.

Then he had a story about some head of the College of Physicians who was giving a speech on an academic study that had been conducted about women and their reaction to sex. According to this study, women feel good after sex because of the chemicals within the semen of a male.

So, some woman academic was aghast at this, there was a backlash against this president because he'd dared to say that women got emotional benefits from unprotected sex, and he's had to resign because of it! How stupid is that! He was just reporting on the facts of the study -he wasn't making up this stuff.

Now, having said that, you do have to wonder why in the world physicians would do such a study. Don't we have important things to study, like how to end cancer, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, etc. And he does a study on why women feel good after unprotected sex?

But he shouldn't have to resign because of it, anymore than that Harvard president of a few years ago who said myabe there weren't more women in math because women just weren't good at math. He lost his job, too, for a simple innocuous statement. How silly. If you disagree with these statements, argue about it, present proof to the contrary, but don't take the man's job away because he dared express his opinion!

And I say this as a feminist who believes that the reason more women aren't good at math, and are busy having unprotected sex because they want the free ride that comes with illegitimate babies, is thanks to mass media that has brainwashed them for over 40 years to think that way, coupled with a governmetn that has programs that reward them for their behavior.

__________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

28 April, 2011, Thurs, SoS Clinton and Staff Schedules

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/appt/2011/04/161899.htm
SECRETARY HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON
9:15 a.m. Secretary Clinton meets with the Assistant Secretaries of the regional bureaus, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

10:00 a.m. Secretary Clinton holds a swearing in ceremony for children of Department of State employees participating in Take Your Child to Work Day, at the Department of State.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)

10:50 a.m. Secretary Clinton attends a meeting with President Obama at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

11:30 a.m. Secretary Clinton meets with President Obama at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

12:15 p.m. Secretary Clinton holds a bilateral meeting with Omani Foreign Minister Yusuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah, at the Department of State.
(CAMERA SPRAY PRECEDING BILATERAL MEETING IN THE MADISON ROOM)

2:45 p.m. Secretary Clinton meets with youth and teachers from Bosnia and Herzegovina participating in a Bureau of Educational Affairs program on youth leadership, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:10 p.m. Secretary Clinton attends President Obama’s personnel announcement at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

3:45 p.m. Secretary Clinton joins President Obama’s bilateral meeting with Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli, at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

DEPUTY SECRETARY JAMES STEINBERG
8:30 a.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg participates in a White House meeting.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

1:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

2:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg attends a meeting at the White House.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY WHITE HOUSE)

3:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Steinberg meets with Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

DEPUTY SECRETARY THOMAS NIDES
10:00 a.m. Deputy Secretary Nides speaks with Dr. Thomas Frieden, Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

10:45 a.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Susan Johnson, President of the American Foreign Service Association, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

11:00 a.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with the management team, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

2:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Deputy Director for U.S. Foreign Assistance Rob Goldberg, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

2:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Ambassador Gene Cretz and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Don Yamamoto, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:00 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Deputy Special Representative Frank Ruggiero, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Ambassador Carlos Pascual, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

UNDER SECRETARY FOR POLITICAL AFFAIRS WILLIAM BURNS
2:00 p.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with Dr. Emily Haber, Political Director for the German Foreign Office, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:00 p.m. Under Secretary Burns meets with Sir Geoffrey Adams, UK Director-General of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

7:30 p.m. Under Secretary Burns speaks to participants in the Daimler U.S.-European Forum on Global Issues, in Washington, DC.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

US FOR ECONOMIC, ENERGY AND AGRICULTURAL AFFAIRS ROBERT HORMATS
Under Secretary Hormats is on foreign travel in Paris, France through April 29 to participate in G-8 Summit preparatory meetings.

US FOR DEMOCRACY AND GLOBAL AFFAIRS MARIA OTERO
9:30 a.m. Under Secretary Otero delivers remarks on “Human Rights in the Obama Administration” at American University.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

11:00 a.m. Under Secretary Otero meets with Michelle Gavin, nominee to be Ambassador to Botswana, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

1:00 p.m. Under Secretary Otero meets with human rights and democracy activists from the Middle East and North Africa, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

US FOR ARMS CONTROL AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AFFAIRS ELLEN TAUSCHER
11:45 a.m. Under Secretary Tauscher meets with Graham Allison at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

12:15 p.m. Under Secretary Tauscher speaks at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

COUNSELOR AND CHIEF OF STAFF CHERYL MILLS
9:00 a.m. Counselor Mills delivers opening remarks at the Options for Building a New Haiti Conference at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)

AS FOR OCEANS AND INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL AND SCIENTIFIC AFFAIRS KERRI-ANN JONES
9:00 a.m. Assistant Secretary Jones meets with Maggie Fox, CEO of the Alliance for Climate Protection, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:00 p.m. Assistant Secretary Jones speaks at the U.S.-Peru Environmental Affairs Council’s Environmental Cooperation Commission, at the U.S. Trade Representative’s office.
(OPEN PRESS COVERAGE)

AS FOR DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND LABOR MICHAEL POSNER
Assistant Secretary Posner is on foreign travel in Beijing, China through April 29 for the U.S.-China Human Rights Dialogue.

AS FOR EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS ANN STOCK
Assistant Secretary Stock is on foreign travel to Ankara and Istanbul, Turkey to review bilateral priorities and exchanges with government officials through April 28.

AS FOR WESTERN HEMISPHERE AFFAIRS ARTURO VALENZUELA
3:45 p.m. Assistant Secretary Valenzuela meets with Colombian Armed Forces Commander Admiral Edgar Cely, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

7:00 p.m. Assistant Secretary Valenzuela attends a dinner hosted by the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen, in Washington, DC.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

COORDINATOR FOR COUNTERTERRORISM AMBASSADOR-AT-LARGE DANIEL BENJAMIN
2:30 p.m. Ambassador Benjamin meets with Sandra L. Charles of C & O Resources, at the Department of State.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

AMBASSADOR-AT-LARGE AND GLOBAL AIDS COORDINATOR ERIC GOOSBY
Ambassador Goosby is on foreign travel in the Democratic Republic of the Congo through April 29 to meet with government officials and the U.S. team in the DRC and visit PEPFAR-supported programs, including those for orphans and vulnerable children.

SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR GLOBAL INTERGOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS RETA JO LEWIS
Special Representative Lewis is on foreign travel in Singapore to meet with senior government officials, business representatives, and non-governmental organizations.

9:00 a.m. LOCAL Special Representative Lewis meets with the Executive Director of the Centre for Liveable Cities (CLC), and the Ministry of National Development Board, in Singapore.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

10:30 a.m. LOCAL Special Representative Lewis meets with representatives from AmCham Singapore, in Singapore.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

1:30 p.m. LOCAL Special Representative Lewis meets with Chiff Lee of the government of Singapore’s Urban Redevelopment Authority, in Singapore.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

3:00 p.m. LOCAL Special Representative Lewis meets with Ho Meng Kit of the Singapore Business Federation, in Singapore.
(CLOSED PRESS COVERAGE)

SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE TO MUSLIM COMMUNITIES FARAH PANDITH
Special Representative Pandith speaks at the Guardian Activate Summit in New York City.
(MEDIA DETERMINED BY HOST)

SPECIAL ENVOY FOR CLIMATE CHANGE TODD STERN
Special Envoy Todd Stern is on foreign travel through April 28 to lead the U.S. participation in the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate in Brussels, Belgium.

PRESS BRIEFING SCHEDULE
12:00 noon Assistant Secretary for African Affairs Johnnie Carson will brief reporters ON THE RECORD, ON CAMERA, on the Nigerian Elections. Assistant Secretary Carson will speak about the recent presidential, parliamentary, and gubernatorial elections held during the month of April. He will discuss these elections in contrast to the 2007 elections which Nigerian and international observers regarded as one of the worst in Nigeria’s history.
Location: State Department Briefing Room, Room 2209

____________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Propaganda on the President's Schedule

I thought it was interesting, as I was reading the President's Schedule today, from his website, that whoever put this website schedule together thought it necessary to explain the purpose of Obama's meeting with 20 "influential" Hispanics:
2:05 pm The President meets with a group of influential Hispanics from across the country on the importance of fixing our nation's broken immigration system to meet our 21st century economic and national security needs so that America can win the future

One wonders if Latinos will read that paragraph and become offended. (Hispanics and Latinos are not the same.)

There again it's a matter of perception. Is the immigration system "broken" because illegals are allowed to come in here with impunity, and are given welfare as a matter of course, or is it broken because so many people are outraged that they are allowed to come here with impunity and are given rights that, as illegals, they do not deserve.
__________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

28 April, 2011, Thurs, Pres and VP Schedules

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/president
12:45 am The President arrives at the White House
South Lawn
Open Press

10:15 am The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
Oval Office
Closed Press

10:50 am The President holds a meeting on Libya
Situation Room
Closed Press

11:30 am The President meets with Secretary of State Clinton
Oval Office
Closed Press

2:05 pm The President meets with a group of influential Hispanics from across the country on the importance of fixing our nation's broken immigration system to meet our 21st century economic and national security needs so that America can win the future
Roosevelt Room
Closed Press

3:10 pm The President makes a personnel announcement
Rose Garden
Open Press

3:45 pm The President meets with Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli
Oval Office
Closed Press

4:20 pm The President and Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli will deliver statements to the press
Oval Office
Pooled Press

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/vice-president
10:30 am The Vice President meets with Director of the Office of Management and Budget Jacob Lew, Director of the National Economic Council Gene Sperling, and senior advisors to discuss fiscal policy
Closed Press






__________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

As Expected, Birth Certificate Doubters Cast as Racists

"Race sparking Obama debate" "Racial undertones od Obama Birth Debate"

That's the two headlines of the Yahoo news article today. Did I predict this yesterda
y? I believe I did!

What's the facts? Obama is the first black president, yes, but he's also the first President for 200+ years to have a father born in a different country. He's the first president who was raised in Indonesia (or any foreign country) as a child. With his early years so murky, and with the fact that a US President must have been born in the US, it just makes sense to want to see his real birth certificate - the kind of thing we all have to show if we want a passport! What doesn't make sense is that he refused to show it for so long, which fueled the doubts about it. That's not racism, that's human nature.

But it's just like the illegal alien debate. People are coming into this country illegally from Mexico. Because they're coming in illegally, and yet being given benefits like any citizen, a lot of people want it stopped, because, like, you know, they're here illegally.

But because they're Latino and Hispanic, a lot of other people want them to remain because it's racist to return them to their own countries. And anyone who does want them sent back is just so obviusly racist! As is wanting them to speak English, apparently, even though they are in a country where if you want a good job, chances are 99% that you have to be able to speak English well. Unless you're an athlete or a rap singer, of course. And that's less than 1% of the overall population.

There was a fuss a few weeks ago - it's died down now as far as I can tell - where Attorney General Holder told the States's state departments that too many blacks were failing the entrance exams. Instead of sending those applicants to remedial school to learn whatever skills they were lacking, he simply ordered that the passing bar be lowered, so that more blacks could get in.

It's all in your perception. According to Holder, since so many blacks failed the test, the test must be racist. According to the people giving the test, they wanted quality people in the jobs being offered and a good grade on the tests would assure that (for the most part, of course.)

Holder doesn't seem to want to address the issues that blacks are failing in school not because there is some instituted racism against them, but because young blacks - like young whites - are very impressionable. In the poor black communities, to get an education, to speak English rather than ebonics, to want to become a member of the middle class, is seen as a betrayal of one's "people" - and any black kid who attempts to do it is beaten down and excoriated by his own "side," if I may so call them.

That's the culture Holder has to fix, for, as he calls them, "his people."
____________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Reporter Asks Why Obama's Birth Certificate is Relevant

Rush shared this exchange between a reporter and Trump:
REPORTER: You say you're taking credit for it. A lot of people say what you caused was a "distraction."

TRUMP: No, I'm taking great credit -- and you have to ask the president: Why didn't he do this a long time ago? Why didn't he do it a long time ago? When Hillary Clinton was asking, when everybody was asking, why didn't he do it?

REPORTER: Why is it relevant? Why...? Why...?

TRUMP: It's shocking.

REPORTER: Why...?

TRUMP: It's shocking.

REPORTER: You don't ask other presidents. Why is that relevant?

TRUMP: It's very relevant.

REPORTER: Have you ever asked any other president for his birth certificate?

TRUMP: People asked me for my birth certificate.

REPORTER: Have you asked any (garbled)?

"You don't ask other presidents. Why is that relevant?"

Well, because for all the other presidents, there was never any doubt in people's minds that they'd been born in the United States. Apart from the earliest Presidents whose fathers might have come from England, all Presidents were born of American stock.

Obama's father, on the other hand, was from Kenya. After his birth, Obama's mother raised him in Indonesia.

That's unusual for a President, and since Presidents are supposed to have been born in the US, seems like a simple enough question to ask to see his birth certificate. The question is not why people asked to see it, but why Obama fought tooth and nail to avoid showing it (much as he's fought tooth and nail to keep his college transcripts secret. Indeed, I'd be more intersted in seeing those transcripts than in seeing the certificate.)



__________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Time To Defeat Obama on His Lack of Merit, Not his Birth

President Obama released his birth certificate today, which proves he was born in Hawaii. The Democrats are probably laughing and scoffing at birthers now, but you do have to ask yourself - since apparently there was nothing wrong with his birth certificate, why did he fight so hard for so many years to not have to show it? (And for that matter, since a President has to be born in the United States, why was he even allowed to become a candidate for President without having to show it. That's what scares me!)

Rush is of course downplaying it, as well he should. We'd be a very poor country indeed if the only reason why Obama wasn't relected in 2012 was because he wasn't allowed to run because of the fact of his not being born in the US. Surely he can be defeated on other grounds!
RUSH: Ha! So, ladies and gentlemen, if it takes a reality star to force Obama's hand on his birth certificate... and everybody's asking, "Why now? Why now?" I think I've got the answer. I think it's all about polling data. I think up 'til now the polling data showed that it was a winning issue for Obama. The birthers were considered crackpots and the polling data showed as long as it continued that way, that there was hay to be made by Obama by not releasing the birth certificate and stoking these people. But then Trump comes along, and I really believe that the polling data, the internal polling data, the White House shows that the issue was starting to take place. You saw that poll yesterday, USA Today, 38%, 40%, whatever it was of the American people don't think he's born in this country. I think the polling data shifted, and it wasn't all Republicans in that poll that showed that shockingly high number.

You know, Obama, every president, sad to say, is poll-driven. Clinton, he even polled what to wear after he polled where to go on vacation. And we know that this regime is just as poll-driven and oriented. So it probably went from a net positive to something that was starting to show a major problem, credibility, dishonesty, what have you. Now, if that's correct, and since it's my opinion it probably is -- I always say, don't doubt me -- then what it really shows, and this is gonna irritate a lot of people, what it shows is Trump's ability to connect with average voters in a way that, well, nobody else has been able to connect on this. Nobody else has been able to force Obama to do this. How long has it been going on? Two and a half years, even longer than that. All of a sudden here comes Trump, and, lo and behold, they produce the long form birth certificate. So if it takes a reality star... in fact, there's a piece I have in the show prep Stack of Stuff today, somebody has the opinion that politics has become nothing more than a reality show. I can relate to it because I did The Haney Project on The Golf Channel.

I've had my turn at reality TV. You know the only difference in reality TV and regular TV is the writers in reality TV are not unionized. Reality TV thus is much cheaper to produce. But reality TV -- don't doubt me on this, folks -- is just as scripted. Well, not just as scripted, but it's not reality, either. They have an outcome they want, and they're gonna get there while leading everybody to believe that that's what naturally happened along the way. Now, if you are asking me, "Are you saying, Rush, you didn't shoot an 83 on the final episode of The Haney Project?" No, I'm not saying that. I don't want to get into too much detail about it because I don't want to get distracted here. I'm just telling you that this guy has this piece that all of politics has become a reality show. And I've often pointed out that politics is show biz for the ugly, show biz for the unattractive. Evidence is the annual White House Correspondents Dinner, which is coming up soon and once again I was invited by four different organizations.

I politely declined three of them and emphatically declined one. (interruption) What? Oh, I despise 'em. What do you mean, it's always such fun? Snerdley, the last one I went to was 1993. Well, how many years ago was that, 1993, that's 18 years ago. How can you say it's always so much fun? You get mileage out of one joke. The whole thing is a phony baloney, plastic banana, good-time rock 'n' roller night. You got people in the room that hate each other acting like they're best friends for a couple or three hours. It's just not my cup of tea.


Okay, so, at any rate, Trump was, in the context of politics being a reality show, Trump was hilarious this morning, was absolutely hilarious. And, you know, Obama was scheduling to show up at 9:45. Trump kept going. He delayed Obama showing up. And just in terms of theatrics -- and I know that the purists don't want to even hear it discussed this way -- but in terms of theatrics there was no comparison in the energy and the confidence of the two combatants and the competing press conferences. Obama's presser was basically a snore fest. And Trump's was alive and filled with vigor and a lot of energy. So what do we have? We have a reality star that has forced Obama's hand on the birth certificate. Now, maybe, maybe that's the key. 'Cause even Trump took credit for it, said it was one of the proudest days of his life. (laughing) He started out, "I'm really proud of myself." Everybody thought that Trump was gonna be eating crow. He starts off by saying, (paraphrasing) "It's the proudest day of my life. Look what I did. Only I was able to do this." I mean for a while I thought, my gosh, I'm watching myself here. (laughing) Biggest kick out of it. So a reality TV star ends up forcing Obama's hand on the birth certificate.


_________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

27 April, 2011, Wed, Rush Limbaugh headdlines

--Reality TV Star Trump Forces Obama's Hand on Birth Certificate
What a show! Donald Trump outperforms the president.
Smoking Gun: Examines the Birth Certificate

--Barack H.W. Obama?
Libs cast Obama as a 1990s' moderate Republican.

--President Obama Is Not Unbeatable
This notion is absurd and should be dismissed by all.

--Who is "Serious" and Who Isn't?
Ruling class elitists decide who the smart people are.

--Libs Praise Reasonable Boehner
The Speaker is not wedded to Ryan's Medicare plan.

--Populism is Not Conservatism
Trump is not a conservative, but his tactics are useful.

Stack of Stuff Quick Hits Page
» Bernanke Announces End to QE2; Dismisses Inflation
» Treasury Plans for Failure to Raise Debt Ceiling
» Jacob Tapper: Obama Lied About What Topped News
» Dems Manufacture Phony Town Hall Disruptions
» Massachusetts House Votes to Restrict Unions

--Obama Encourages Rest of World to Drill for Oil So We Don't Have To
Drill, Baby, Drill: For everyone but the United States.

___________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

27 April, 2011, Wed, SoS Clinton and Staff Schedule

It's 9.34 mountain time and the US Dept of State schedule page has not been updated.

This is the third time in three days that there's no news of what SoS Clinton is up to...and if she isn't up to anything, apparently they don't bother to tell us what the rest of the diplomatic corps is doing, either!


_________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

27 April, 2011, Wed, Pres and VP Schedules

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/president
9:45 am The President delivers a statement
Brady Press Briefing Room
Open Press

10:05 am The President departs the White House en route Andrews Air Force Base
South Lawn
Open Press

10:20 am The President departs Andrews Air Force Base en route Chicago, Illinois
Andrews Air Force Base
Travel Pool Coverage

12:10 pm The President arrives in Chicago, Illinois
Local Event Time: 11:10 AM CDT
Chicago O’Hare International Airport
Open Press

1:15 pm The President and the First Lady tape an episode of the Oprah Winfrey Show
Local Event Time: 12:15 PM CDT
Harpo Studios
Pool Spray

5:10 pm The President arrives in New York, New York
John F. Kennedy International Airport
Open Press
6:00 pm The President delivers remarks at a DNC event
Private Residence
Print Pool

9:25 pm The President delivers remarks at a DNC event
Waldorf Astoria
Travel Pool Coverage

10:15 pm The President delivers remarks at a DNC event
The Town Hall
Pooled TV, Open to Correspondents

11:30 pm The President departs New York, New York
John F. Kennedy International Airport
Open Press

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/vice-president
No public schedule.

______
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Who Killed Health Care? by Regina Herzlinger

American Health Care: I'll be sharing the titles, descriptions and Tables of Contents of all the books written in the last decade or so on Health Care in America. No one denies that it doesn't work as well as it should, but the various political parties - and radio talk show hosts - are divided in how to fix the problem.

Who Killed Health Care?: America's $2 Trillion Medical Problem-and The Consumer-Driven Cure by Regina Herzlinger
McGraw-Hill, 2007
258 pages plus notes,and index. No photos
Library: 362.1 HER

Description
One of the nation's most respected health care analysts, Regina Herzlinger exposes the motives and methods of those who have crippled America's health care system-figures in the insurance, hospital, employment, government and academic sectors. She proves how our current system, which is organized around payers and providers rather than the needs of its users, is dangerously eroding patient welfare and is pushing costs out of the reach of millions.

Who Killed Health Care? then outlines Herzlinger's bold new plan for a consumer-driven system that will deliver affordable, high-quality care to everyone. By putting insurance money in the hands of patients, removing the middleman in the doctor-patient rellationship, and giving employers cost relief, consumers and physicians will be empowered to make the system work the way it should.

Herzlinger describes in precise detail how her innovative program will provide:

-Smaller, disease focused medical facilities that provide complete care for patients
-A national system of medical records that provides privacy with confidential access by approved practitioners
-Mandatory performance evaluations of all hospitals and all other medical organizations
-Mandatory health insurance with subsidies for those who cannot afford it.

Who Killed Health Care? is a call to arms that must be answered; the welfare of every American hangs in the balance.

Table of Contents:
Acknowledgments
Introduction
Part 1: Who Killed Health CAre?
1. The Day Health Care Died

Part 2: Death By a Thousand Cuts
2. Killer Number 1: The Health Insurers (Death at the hands of a dysfunctional culture)
3. Killer Number 2: The General Hospitals (Death at the Hands of Empire Builders)
4. Killer Number 3: The Employers (Death at the Hands of a "Choice" of One)
5. Killer Number 4: The US Congress (Death at the Hands of those Elected to Represent Us)
6. Killer Number 5: The Academics (Death at the Hands of the Elite Policy Makers)

Part 3: The Right Medicine - Consumer-Driven Health Care
7. Hoe it Works
8. Consumer-driven benefits:Lessons from other countries and industries

Part 4: How to Make it Happen: The Carrots, The Sticks, the Laws
9. The Carrots (Let medical business entrepreneurialism bloom)
10. The Sticks (Let information flow)
11. A bold new consumer-driven health care system (The laws and their legislators)
___________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Rush Compare Obama To Hitler...

It will be interesting to see if the Obamamedia picks up on this.

Rush compared Obama to Hitler today... not in the Obama is a racist, wants to kill Jews kind of way... but in the "everyone knew what Hitler was going to do, and no one stopped him" kind of way.

We all know what Obama wants to do -change the US into a socialist country - yet where is the Churchill crying in the wilderness to stop him? According to Rush, no Republican politician has stepped up yet..only Trump and Palin have done so - calling to see Obama's birth certificate, etc.

My own feeling is that the birthers should just let it go. If the only way to defeat Obama in 2012 is by revealing that he's not eligible to be President...well, that doesn't say much for the country.



_________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Republican Candidates Exploring 2012 Presidential Bid

Donald Trump is in the news right now...the problem is he's a businessman, not a politician. So he could get our economy back on track...but what about foreign affairs? (One would hope whoever is the next President after Obama would apologize and ask for Churchill's bust back...)

Then there's Sarah Palin - who quit in her first term as governor and has no politiacal capital since them...
RUSH: So a frustrated caller in the first hour was asking, "Where is our Churchill?"

She's specifically focusing on Chris Christie. She thinks Christie is the answer to our problems, and she said, "Look, he says he's not ready. Well, I'm sorry. We don't have time for somebody to say they're not ready. Churchill didn't say he's not ready. Churchill answered the call. Churchill didn't have the luxury of saying he wasn't ready. It's serious. Churchill, he knew what Hitler was up to." It's important to understand that Churchill is the only one in the British hierarchy who dared think that about Hitler.

They had their heads in the sand like crazy on Hitler. They thought Churchill was nuttier than Hitler was! When Churchill was trying to warn them, they thought that they need to commit Churchill to the asylum. Neville Chamberlain knew when they invaded Poland, but I can't describe it for you. They thought he was a nut. He was "the crazy aunt in the basement" that Ross Perot always talked about that every family has. It was somebody that had to be tolerated because of his previous contributions and so forth, but he'd gone off the rails on this Hitler business.

But what did it take, what element was there for Churchill to rise up? That element was Hitler. In other words, to become a Churchill you first have to believe that you're facing a Hitler. Now, what if...? I know it's easy -- and Snerdley pooh-poohs this. But what if...? I'll mention it. What if Chris Christie or any of these other people in the Republican gang right now, those who we're pretty sure are in (and those that we'd like to see in but aren't like Bobby Jindal and Rubio and Allen West) don't see it as dire as our first caller from Canada? Now, don't pooh-pooh this. All right, now... (interruption) Wait a second. Wait a second.

Snerdley just asked me... I tell you, this is the single source of the greatest frustration we all have. Snerdley just said, "How can anybody not see it?" I would dare say, Snerdley, half the country doesn't see it! Now, the polling data would suggest that we're moving closer to people seeing it, but there's a story in the Wall Street Journal today about all these hedge fund guys that gave all this money and raised all this money for Obama who are now gonna raise money and give money to the Republicans. I read this story (and I might share it with you here; I have it in the stack) and it focuses on a couple of them.

It also focuses on some hedge fund guys who are still gonna raise money and give everything they can to Obama. Now, everybody makes an assumption about people with money, and that is that they're smarter than everybody else because they have a lot of money. There's something about wealth that connotes intelligence. But I'm telling you (snorts): Where is the brain in any hedge fund guy who supports Obama? Why do we automatically assume there's intelligence there, unless there is a specific crony capitalist arrangement between that particular hedge fund guy and Obama -- which is kinds of things he's doing. Jeffrey Immelt at GE is a classic example of crony capitalism, which is Obama essentially compromising one.

But the crony capitalist -- in this case Immelt -- is not paying any taxes, his company's getting all kinds of government investment, his company's growing with government dollars. That's his job. So if it's easier to get government money to grow the bottom line, to go out and sell stuff and grow the bottom line, then he'll do it. You think Immelt cares a hell of a whit where the country's headed? You think Immelt looks at Obama as Hitler? More like the Easter bunny! More like a gift every day! Obama's Christmas morning for GE. Obama's is adult Christmas for -- well, now over half the country, in terms of what they're getting, dependence and so forth.


So when you say who could possibly not understand the dire circumstances, telling you it's a lot of people that don't see it that way. (interruption) I'm telling you that Immelt may not care about $14 trillion in debt as long as GE's okay! Of course he sees $14 trillion, but he may not think it's a problem. Why in the world would Immelt think it's a problem when GE's going through the roof? Why should he care? (interruption) The hell with the country! He's a citizen of the world. GE sells and makes stuff all over the place. They don't think the country's gonna collapse! This is exactly what I'm telling you. You and I sit here, we think, "Obama wins in 2012 and the country as we know it's over." That's what we think.

Especially if Obama keeps appointing judges and if the judiciary just becomes an extended Democrat Congress, with lifetime appointments then that's why this Supreme Court decision on not fast tracking Obamacare on this Virginia lawsuit is very troubling to me. But there are a lot of people who don't put the country first. A lot of people are self-focused. I don't know this about Chris Christie or any of these other guys. I'm just throwing it out there as a possibility. The Republican leadership is not acting like the country is facing an imminent threat. The GOP leadership doesn't see it the way we do. Do you think they do?

Paul Ryan does, but the whole leadership, do you think they do? Who are the Republicans trying to marginalize? They're trying to marginalize the DeMints; they're trying to marginalize the Tea Party people. The Republicans don't see it that way -- or if they do, they don't want to roll up the sleeves and act on it. They don't want to work that hard. All I'm doing is responding to the woman's question. She wanted to know why, in this case Christie, is sitting back and saying, "I'm not ready." There's also the possibility that he honestly thinks he's not. But she doesn't want to accept that because the circumstances are such that where's the leadership? "The country hangs in the balance. You're not ready is not an excuse."

It might be to him. Clearly Obama wasn't ready, from our perspective, but from his he was made to order! From somebody's perspective Obama was made to order. From somebody's perspective, Obama is doing a flawless job. From somebody's perspective, Obama's the best president we've ever had. This is the kind of stuff that we are dealing with. When you ask me, Snerdley -- it's a great question. When you asked me, "Who doesn't see that the country is on the brink of collapse?" another better question is, "How many people are happy to realize that, and how do they vote?" They vote Democrat.

So it's like I say: You have to believe you're facing a Hitler in order to become a Churchill. And, by the way, folks, don't anybody start getting infantile here and say that we're comparing Obama to Hitler. You can make those comparisons on social policy, health care, the way the Nazis's the Socialist Party ran things, but we're not talking about the World War II Hitler here. You know, don't go batty on me and get all childish and immature. You know what I mean, and you know what you don't mean, and don't start trying to screw it up. The point is this: I talk to a lot of Republican leaders and I'm telling you: I don't hear myself when I listen to 'em talk, and I don't know that they hear me.

I don't know how many elected Republicans actually think as we do, or see the future of the country as we do. Chalk it up to Ruling Class, chalk it up to some people who may not think that there's a whole lot here worth preserving. The country's made up of all kinds of people with all kinds of beliefs and we're having all kinds of arguments. Now, those of us who fashion ourselves as the epitome of patriotic Americans who are devoted to the preservation of this country as founded, we find it intellectually difficult to believe (or understand) how this country could be to reviled and hated, but it is.

I mean, it is despised by people born and raised here and who have lived here their whole lives -- and they vote, too; and they vote for anybody who's gonna make them think that they also see the country that way; and I guarantee you that's gonna be Democrats far more often than anybody else. I don't know how many people actually look at the future of the country and see things that are apocalyptic. So for the woman's question to be answered in an accurate way, we'd have to first find out if the people she wants to run see the future as she does. But isn't that's what's frustrating, that so many people don't see it the way we do?

_____________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

26 April, 2011, Tues, Rush Limbaugh Headlines

--Republicans Lack Courage on Oil
We desperately need more oil. Defend the industry, GOP!

--Independents Dump Democrats and Lose Their Luster with Liberals
They were the epitome of thoughtfulness... until now.

--Why Trump Continues to Appeal
He's drawing all this interest for a reason, my friends.

--Anti-Obama Sentiment is Profound
Elmer Fudd could defeat Barack Obama right now, folks.

--A Converted Obama Supporter
She asks about Herman Cain and the flat tax idea.

--Where is the GOP Churchill?
Chris Christie, others don't heed the call to run in 2012.
Obama Parody: The GOP is a Mess

--What We Need in a 2012 Candidate
A real quick list of the things our nominee must do.

Stack of Stuff Quick Hits Page
» Ron Paul In; Haley Barbour Doesn't Have Hair to Run
» Obama Calls for End of Oil Subsidies, Tax Breaks
» Troubling SCOTUS Ruling on Obamacare Fast Track

--Obama's Easter Sunday Pastor Compares Your Host to the KKK
Meanwhile, Bill Clinton celebrated a real Klansman.
________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

26 April, 2011, Tues, SoS Clinton and Staff

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/appt/2011/04/161776.htm
SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON
Secretary Clinton has no public appointments.

SPECIAL PRESS BRIEFING
1:15 p.m. Director of Policy Planning, Jacob Sullivan will brief the press on-the-record/off-camera in the PA Conference Room (Room 2208).

_______
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

26 April, 2011, Tues, Pres and VP Schedules

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/president
9:30 am The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
Oval Office
Closed Press

10:00 am The President receives the Economic Daily Briefing
Oval Office
Closed Press

11:25 am The President is interviewed by WSB Atlanta, WKYC Cleveland, WTKR Hampton Roads, Virginia, and WXYZ Detroit
Map Room
Closed Press

1:40 pm The President holds a bilateral meeting with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates
Oval Office
Pool Spray at the Top

2:30 pm The President holds an expanded bilateral meeting with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates
Oval Office
Closed Press

4:30 pm The President meets with Secretary of Defense Gates
Oval Office
Closed Press

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/vice-president
No public schedule.

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In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The guest list for the upcoming Royal Wedding is interesting

You've got to pity Kate Middleham or whatever her name is...did she ever expect this much publicity over getting married. And isn't William looking a little thin on top?

Rush was talking today about the wedding and the fact that the Obamas were not invited. I can see why they wouldn't be. As Rush said:
Why do I think the Obamas weren't invited? (sigh) Well, you know, we can only wild-guess this. It might have to do with the fact that the Queen didn't really appreciate all those speeches on the iPod that he gave her. It could be that the Queen wasn't particularly fond of Obama ditching the Churchill bust in the first ten minutes he was president, throwing it out of the Oval Office and giving it back to the Brits, not relocating it at some American museum.

It could well be that she was offended that the Obama gift to the Prime Minister was 25 DVDs of American movies recorded for Region 1, which means they won't even play on the Prime Minister's DVD system in the UK. The Queen had nothing to do with it. Hell, you know Tony Blair is not invited? John Major and Margaret Thatcher are invited (Thatcher can't go because of bad health), but Tony Blair and some other Labour leader, they weren't invited, and the official reason given is, "Well, this is not a state event, and they're not Knights of the Garter anyway. So they're not invited. We don't know if the Prince and Kate Middleton decided they didn't want the Obamas there or if that was a Queen decision.

Other folks aren't invited, such as Tony Blair. But Gadaffi was invited! (Invitation since withdrawn). SO were the rulers of Bahrain, Swaziland and Saudi Arabia! What's up with that?
______
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

"Women and Minorities Hardest Hit"

You do have to wonder about this template, as Rush calls it: "Women and Minorities Hardest Hit."

Because it's not all women... most women in the US have it pretty good, it's only those who are unwed mothers ....unfortunately an increasing percentage... who are "hardest hist" by anything. A statistic they could avoid if they just wouldn't have illegitimate children...or if they did want children out of wedlock, at least wait until they got a good education and a good job and could afford to take care of their kid(s) without being a drag on the rest of us (as regards our tax dollars going to pay them to raise the kids they can't otherwise afford to have).
Story #2: Women, Minorities Hardest Hit by iPhone Tracking

RUSH: You remember the old joke, ladies and gentlemen, that I've told year after year after year on this program? It's a joke that accurately reflects reality. The reason why it's funny is 'cause it has elements of truth in it. It's a joke about the way the media is locked into narratives and templates. So one day God's watching Oprah Winfrey and He says, "You know what? Humanity has blown it, and I've had it -- I can't take it anymore -- so I'm gonna end the world." So He picks up the phone and makes some phone calls. He calls New York Times, He calls the Wall Street Journal, He calls USA Today, and He calls the Washington Post.

All the reporters beg for an exclusive. God says, "Nope, no exclusive. World ends tomorrow. I've had it. You're hopeless." So the New York Times headline is: "God Says World to End Tomorrow," in Section B, page 8. USA Today headline says: "WE'RE GONE." Wall Street Journal: "God Says World to End Tomorrow, Markets to Close Early." Washington Post: "God Says World to End Tomorrow, Women and Minorities Hardest Hit." Today, I kid you not, from MSNBC: "Minorities Hit Hardest by iPhone Tracking Technology."

(laughing) Women and minorities are hardest hurt by virtue of Apple's tracking technology! They're so predictable -- they're so loony -- it's hilarious. MSNBC: "[Women and] Minorities Hit Hardest by iPhone Tracking Technology." It's getting even better. Do you realize you don't even need an iPhone or an iPad for Apple to know where you are? They can track you by virtue of your IP address in your desktop or laptop computer. They can pinpoint your location within a neighborhood based on that. None of this is anything new. Just the fact that it's being reported on a wide basis has people in a state of panic.

Now, what precisely does the article say about this:

It's from the Daily Caller, and of course what is meant is their's a racial tinge to it... tracking can lead to racial profiling! Oh, horrors!
Friday on MSNBC’s daytime programming, host Thomas Roberts explained that in the wake of revelations the iPhone tracks your movements with its operating software, minorities, specifically blacks and Latinos are most vulnerable, since they use their cell phones more than whites according to a Nielsen study.

“Alright, so one day after learning of a hidden iPhone feature that tracks your every single move, there’s new concern that tracking technology purchased by police can lead to racial profiling,” Roberts said. “You are looking at what’s called the ‘Universal Forensic Extraction Device.’ It can copy the entire content of a cell phone including text messages, contacts, GPS data and do it in just minutes. Michigan State Police purchased this device, though we don’t know how exactly they’re using it but civil liberties groups worry that the device endangers the privacy rights of blacks and Latinos. A Nielsen study shows blacks talk on average twice as much each month on their cell phones as white counterparts.”

Considering how much time white folks spend talking on the phone, that's truly scary that blacks spend twice as much time on the phone. (Free phones, provided by the government, in most cases. After all, heaven forbid someone who can't afford a phone should be without a phone in an emergency! Havng a phone is a basic human right!)

________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

25 April, 2011, Monday, Rush Limbaugh headlines

--Obama Presides Over US Decline, As Libs Use Jesus to Push Agenda
A simply infuriating confluence of stories, sound bites.
IMF Bombshell: Age of America Nears End

--The Left's Conspiratorial Hatred for Sarah Palin is Truly Unprecedented
They hated Reagan and Bush, but this is even worse.
Politico: The Anti-Palin Crusaders

--Doomsday for Unions, Democrats?
The states are broke and that's bad news for Democrats.
Jack Kelly: Unions on the Ropes

--If the Election Were Held Today Obama Would be a Landslide Loser
Brit Hume of Fox joins your host in this minority opinion.

--Obama Finds New Rev. Wright
Obama's Easter pastor has compared Rush to the KKK.
Breitbart: Obama’s Pastor from 2010 Speech

Stack of Stuff Quick Hits Page
» Researchers Complain About BP Oil Spill Payouts
» Women, Minorities Hardest Hit by iPhone Tracking
» Really? Europeans Shift Long-Held Socialist Views
» Snubbed: Obamas Not Invited to Royal Wedding

--Fineman: GOP Drags Down Obama
Hilarious explanation of Obama's sagging poll numbers.

________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

25 April, 2011, Mon, SoS Clinton and Staff Schedules

As of 9.38 am Mountain Time, the US Dept of State schedule page has not been updated. Will post it here if and when it is updated.


______
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

25 April, 2011, Mon: Pres and VP Schedules

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/complete
9:30 am The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
Oval Office
Closed Press

10:15 am The First Family attends the 2011 White House Easter Egg Roll; the President delivers remarks
South Lawn

11:30 am The President meets with his national security team on Afghanistan and Pakistan
The Situation Room
Closed Press

2:35 pm The President meets with Attorney General Holder
Oval Office
Closed Press

http://www.whitehouse.gov/schedule/vice-president
No public schedule.



_____
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Booklist: The Bridge, by David Remnick


The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama, by David Remnick
Alfred A. Knopf, 2010
586 pages, plus Debts and Source, Notes, Bibliography and Index, 16 pages of both b&w and color photos
Library: B Obama B

Description
No story has been more central to America's history this century than the rise of Barack Obama, and until now, no journalist or historian has written a book that fully investigates the circumstances and experiences of Obama's life or explores the ambition behind his rise. Those familiar with Obama's own best-selling memoir or his campaign speeches know the touchstones and details that he chooses to emphasize, but now-from a writer whose gift for illuminating the historical significance of unfolding events is without peer-we have a portrait, at once masterly and fresh, nuanced and unexpected, of a young man in search of himself, and of a rising politician determined to become the first African-American president.

The Bridge offers the most complete account yet of Obama's tragic father, a brilliant economist who abandoned his family as a beaten man; of his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, who had a child as a teenager and then built her career as an anthropologist living and studying in Indonesia; and of the succession of elite institutions that first exposed Obama to the social tensions and intellectual currents that would force him to to imagine and fashion an identity for himself. Through extensive on-the-record interviews with friends and teachers, mentors and disparagers, family members and Obama himself, David Remnick allows us to see how a restless unaccomplished and confused young man created himself first as a community organizer in Chicago, an experience that would not only shape his urge to work in politics but give him a home and a community, and that would propel him to Harvard Law School, where his sense of a greater mission emerged.

Deftly setting Obama's political career against the galvanizing intersection of race and politics in Chicago's history, Remnick shows us how that city's complex racial legacy would make Obama's forays into politics a source of controversy and bare-knuckle tactics: his clashes with older black politicians in the Illinois State Senate, his disastrous decision to challenge the former Black Panther Bobby Rush for Congress in 2000, the sex scandals that would decimate his more experienced opponents in the 2004 Senate race, and the story-from both sides-of his confrontation with his former pastor, Jeremiah Wright. By looking at Obama's political rise through the prism of our racial history, Remnick gives us the conflicting agendas of black politicians: the dilemmas of men like Jesse Jackson, John Lewis, and Joseph Lowery, heroes of the civil rights movement, who are forced to reassess old loyalties and understand the priorities of a new generation of African-American leaders.

The Bridge revisits the American drama of race, from slavery to Civil Rights, and makes clear how Obama's quest is not just his own but is emblematic of a nation where destiny is defined by individuals keen to imagine a future that is different from the reality of their current lives.

Contents
Prologue: The Joshua Generation
Part One
1. A Complex Fate
2. Surface and Undertow
3. Nobody Knows My Name
Part Two
4. Black Metropolis
5. Ambition
6. A Narrative of Ascent
Part Three
7. Somebody Nobody Spent
8. Black Enough
9. The Wilderness Campaign
10. Reconstruction
11. A Righteous Wind
Part Four
12. A Slight Madness
13. The Sleeping Giant
14. In the Racial Funhouse
15. The Book of Jeremiah
Part Five
16. "How long? Not long."
17. To the White House
Epilogue
Dents and Sources
Notes
Bibliography
Index



_________
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

President Obama Gets to Ignore the Law...

Every President since the 1980s has had "czars" - people who advise him on various aspects such as health care, climate change, autos and manufacturing, and urban affairs. But no one has had more of them than Obama. These czars are appointed by the president - so they are not vetted by anyone...and they are paid a helluva lot of money.

President Obama has a lot of czars - and he intends to keep them.

President Obama to ignore 'czar' ban
President Barack Obama is planning to ignore language in the 2011 spending package that would ban several top White House advisory posts.

House Republicans tacked on language to the contentious spending bill to cut the salaries for four so-called czars — policy advisers appointed to assist the president on health care, climate change, autos and manufacturing, and urban affairs.

But in a signing statement issued Friday, Obama said he's not obligated to comply.

"The president also has the prerogative to obtain advice that will assist him in carrying out his constitutional responsibilities, and do so not only from executive branch officials and employees outside the White House, but also from advisers within it," the statement said.

"Legislative efforts that significantly impede the president's ability to exercise his supervisory and coordinating authorities or to obtain the views of the appropriate senior advisers violate the separation of powers by undermining the president's ability to exercise his constitutional responsibilities and take care that the laws be faithfully executed. Therefore, the executive branch will construe section 2262 not to abrogate these presidential prerogatives."

The anti-czar language in the spending bill marked a victory for Republicans and conservative pundits, who accused the administration of giving unelected bureaucrats too much power within the White House. But the language didn't appear to have any immediate impact on Obama's staff.

Energy and climate adviser Carol Browner resigned earlier this year; health czar Nancy-Ann DeParle was promoted to deputy White House chief of staff; Obama's urban affairs adviser, Adolfo CarriĆ³n, left the White House to become a regional director for the Department of Housing and Urban Development; and the White House said auto and manufacturing adviser Ron Bloom wouldn't be affected by the language.

"Over the last several months, the White House has undergone a reorganization that involved the consolidation of several offices and positions," a White House official told POLITICO last week. "Included in that larger reorganization, earlier this year the Domestic Policy Council assumed responsibility for health care, as well as energy and climate change policy coordination and development in the White House. The agreements reflect those changes."

House Republicans attached an amendment to a spending bill that passed the chamber in February to block funding for nine White House policy advisers. Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise, the author of that amendment, warned at the time against what he called "a very disturbing proliferation of czars" under Obama.
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In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Why Don't the North Koreans See that Their System Doesn't Work?

And why in the world are we even thinking about giving them food when their government hates us and has designs on South Korea?

When, as the article below makes clear, the food will not go to the starving peasants who really need it, but as always when we make these kinds of donations to these kinds of countries - it will go to the government workers and the elites - who will laugh at our stupidity in once again feeding the enemy.

Op Ed: Should we feed North Korea?

By Dorothy Stuehmke
April 21, 2011
North Korea has recently made a desperate international appeal for food aid. Reports from aid workers and international nongovernmental organizations warn of a major food shortage. As the United States deliberates whether to restart a food aid program in North Korea, it must consider the following questions: Is there a true humanitarian need, can we address the potential risk of food diversion and can a properly monitored program allow us to engage with the vulnerable citizens of one of the most isolated countries in the world?

The concern about potential food aid diversion arises out of the political class system in North Korea. The government considers its most loyal citizens to be the elite, who mostly live in the capital of Pyongyang, and the military. However, everyone else — whose loyalty is seen as questionable and/or who has not had the good fortune of being born into the right family — lives outside Pyongyang in areas that are an afterthought for the North Korean government. And it is this vulnerable part of the population that would be the intended beneficiaries of any food aid program.

According to a month-long assessment conducted by the United Nations World Food Program and the Food and Agriculture Organization released in March, there is a true humanitarian need among these vulnerable people. The U.N.'s report also concludes that 6 million people (one-fourth of the population) are in dire need of food.

But with the importance that the North Korean government has given to the elite and the military, the major concern is will those who need this aid be the actual recipients of it? The 2008-09 food aid program agreed to by the U.S. and North Korea offers the best model for addressing this concern. The agreement set up unprecedented standards in access and monitoring, allowing the U.S. to really get to the people who needed food the most.

I traveled eight times to North Korea as a U.S. government official to oversee implementation of that program. I participated in some of the more than 3,000 monitoring visits conducted during the 10-month-long program to oversee the journey of U.S. food from its arrival in North Korea to the institutions where we distributed food to our beneficiaries. This type of thorough monitoring made it difficult for any significant amount of food aid to be diverted to the military or elite. In addition, in a country where rice is viewed as such an important part of a meal, the wheat, corn and corn-soy blend that we strategically provided is not palatable to the elite, further minimizing diversion concerns.

The food aid program also offered an incredible opportunity to engage with regular North Korean citizens. People who spoke Korean were permitted in North Korea to monitor and administer the program, something not allowed under any previous food aid program. As a Korean speaker myself, I experienced how knowing the language brought extra depth and cultural insight to the encounters with nonelite North Koreans outside Pyongyang. When I drove through those closed societies far from the capital, the visits to homes, schools, orphanages and public distribution centers gave these North Koreans an unforgettable experience: contact with foreigners and Americans. It gave them a window on the outside world and perhaps a different perspective of the U.S. Through my interaction with them, I was able to confirm how much they appreciated our help and that they clearly knew the food aid was coming from the U.S.

Granted, the North Korean government made attempts to deviate from the terms of the agreement, and it prematurely ended it. But overall, for the 10 months we lived and worked in North Korea, much was accomplished in terms of our humanitarian and diplomatic objectives.

In the event that negotiations for another food aid program with North Korea resume, the Obama administration is justified in requiring that North Korea adhere to strong monitoring standards. And although there is always room for improvement in monitoring and access, the 2008 agreement offers a proven model and foundation for any future food aid effort.

Through a properly monitored program, we have the power to preserve the lives of and engage diplomatically with an otherwise unreachable population in North Korea. As human beings and as Americans, we should not miss this opportunity.

Dorothy Stuehmke, the senior advisor to the U.S.-North Korea 2008-09 food aid program for the U.S. Agency for International Development, served in the Office of Korean Affairs at the U.S. Department of State from 2006 to 2008.
Copyright © 2011, Los Angeles Times

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Comments (41)Add / View comments | Discussion FAQ
mydictum at 3:24 PM April 22, 2011
It's China's fault. Without their assistance, Kim would have gone a long time ago and the North Korean people could have been rescued from the hell that is their country under the "Dear Leader." Worst of all, our multinational corporations, in their quest to win the race to the bottom, enable China by flooding their country with billions of dollars of investment and millions of jobs that used to employ their fellow Americans. What should be criminal is instead applauded as good business because, like China, they don't care. The ends justify the means. Well if thats how the game is going to played, lets play--no more aid for North Korea. Force the Dear Leader and China to deal with the stench of millions of starving humans in their mist.

China is a Stalinist regime willing to embrace capitalism to the extent it allows them to use the West's own greed to fortify their own economic power and spread their political influence around the world. After all, there are alot of other dictators who would love to do business with a world power whose official policy is "do what you want to your own people--just do what we say when we say it." We can all see how that policy is working out for the people of North Korea.
SoCalSir69 at 3:06 PM April 22, 2011
The notion of feeding other countries is totally insane! More than 35 million Americans struggle with hunger daily in this country. Our government is not responsible for the entire world. Why don't we take care of our own nation, our own people and our own problems before trying to help other countries that hate us. SHAME!
Cheese_Wonton at 11:34 AM April 22, 2011
I think the US, Japan and South Korea ought to refuse to help North Korea. This will be very hard for the South Koreans to do, however, and it could do great harm to our relationship with South Korea. Likewise Japan will probably be accused of treating the Koreans as heartlessly as they did during their colonial period. Even with these risks, I think the US and it's allies must now refuse to help the North.

The worst thing an Asian can suffer is loss of "face". Face has a much stronger meaning there than it does here or in European societies. For Asians it is unforgivable. But, nothing short of their loss of face will bring them down. This is a good opportunity to let their people see just how incompetently they have been led, and by extension it is also a very good opportunity to shame the miserable thugs who rule China. China might intervene militarily if things degrade sufficiently in the North, but that too is a good thing, as it repudiates a long held Chinese policy and forces them to publicly acknowledge failure to the world.





_______
In the interests of Order and Method: My Schedule of Regular Posts:
*Monday through Friday morning - schedules of President, VP and Secretary of State and her diplomats
*Monday through Friday afternoon - List of topics Limbaugh discussed on his program that day
*Monday through Friday througout the day - My posts on anything that I feel like talking about. At least one or two a day, sometimes more.
*Saturday through Sunday morning - An addition to my booklist of political books - covering Democrats, Republicans and other interested parties.