Day: October 23, 2011

Bachmann: Gaddafi ‘May Be’ Still in Power If I Were President

Crooks & Liars

Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann admitted Sunday that Libya may still be under the rule of former dictator Muammar Gaddafi if she had been president instead of Barack Obama.

In May, the candidate called the U.S. military action in Libya “a disaster in the making.”

“If President Bachmann had been in charge, wouldn’t Muammar Gaddafi still be in power?” Fox News’ Chris Wallace asked Bachmann Sunday.

“Well, he may be,” Bachmann agreed. “I stand by that decision. I think it is wrong for the United States to go in to Libya. Barack Obama said we were going in to Libya for humanitarian purposes. It wasn’t humanitarian purposes. It was regime change. And what’s the result? We don’t know who the next leaders will be.”

“It could be a radical element. It could be the Muslim Brotherhood. It could be elements affiliated with al Qaeda. We don’t know yet who that regime will be, but worse, we’ve seen the MANPADS go missing and the shoulder-fired rockets that are very dangerous, that could fit into a trunk of a car. And there are some reports out there that they may have even gone as far as Gaza and of course, that could be used to bring down a commercial airliner. This is a very bad decision, and it’s created more instability in that region, not less.”

“Are you suggesting that we would be better off with Gaddafi’s dictatorship still in effect?” Wallace wondered.

“The world is certainly better off without Gaddafi,” Bachmann replied. “But consider what the cost will be. We are only looking at a snapshot today. The last chapter hasn’t been written on Libya… We knew who the devil was that was running [Libya]. We don’t know the next one. And again, this was leading from behind on the part of the administration.”

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Rick Perry Goes Birther: After Meeting With Trump, ‘I Don’t Know’ If Obama’s Birth Certificate Is Real

I’m sure Donald Trump told Rick Perry that to get back to the top of the polls, he’d have to embrace birtherism.  After all, Donald trump shot to the top of the polls when he went all over mainstream media touting that meme even before he declared his candidacy!

The problem with that is…the hype is over.

Think Progress

In April, in an effort to appease a vocal group of conspiracy theorists who believe President Obama was not born in the United States, Obama released his “long-form” birth certificate from Hawaii.

That wasn’t enough, however, to convince Rick Perry. In an interview with PARADE Magazine, Perry said that he recently met with Donald Trump and discussed the issue. Perry stated that he doesn’t “have a definitive answer” on whether Obama was born in the United States or “any idea” if Obama’s birth certificate is real. Here’s the transcript:

Governor, do you believe that President Barack Obama was born in the United States?
I have no reason to think otherwise.

That’s not a definitive, “Yes, I believe he”— 
Well, I don’t have a definitive answer, because he’s never seen my birth certificate.

But you’ve seen his.
I don’t know. Have I?

You don’t believe what’s been released?
I don’t know. I had dinner with Donald Trump the other night.

And?
That came up.

And he said?
He doesn’t think it’s real.

And you said?
I don’t have any idea. It doesn’t matter. He’s the President of the United States. He’s elected. It’s a distractive issue.

Perry recently secured the endorsement of Orly Taitz, known as the “birther queen” for repeatedly filing lawsuits asserting that Obama was born outside the United States. Taitz told ThinkProgress that she believed Perry will use the birther issue to attack Obama.

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Jon Huntsman Slams Republican Candidates

Mario Piperni

Jon Huntsman was asked what he thought of the Republican debate in Vegas.

I was totally embarrassed- completely embarrassed by the lack of seriousness, the lack of focus on the issues that really matter to the American people- issues about reviving our economy and addressing joblessness were given short shrift. Our role in the world and securing our position of pre-eminence were given short-shrift. It was more game-show-like than anything else.

There are not a lot of positive things one can say about the GOP these days.  It’s 40 year descent into the slime pit of politics took an even more drastic turn to the extreme fringes with the election of Barack Obama.  But if there is hope that the party will one day emerge as a viable political force worthy of respect, that hope lies in the likes of people like Jon Huntsman.  It won’t be this year but should Republicans ever shake off the Tea Party nightmare, look for Huntsman to be a serious player in 2016.

Cain would autograph life amendment

They say that Obama is ineffective and a poor leader, but I say conservatives play a mean game of projection.

Politico – Ben Smith

Herman Cain tried to clean up the running confusion over his position on abortion last night, but in the meantime opened questions about his grasp of the Constitution.

In an interview with David Brody last night, Cain said he’d sign a pro-life constitutional amendment if it crossed his desk as president.

“Yes. Yes I feel that strongly about it. If we can get the necessary support and it comes to my desk I’ll sign it,” he said. “That’s all I can do. I will sign it.”

The only problem with that statement? Presidents don’t sign constitutional amendments — they’re passed in Congress and then need to be ratified by the states, and the president plays no formal role in the process.

Candidates have in the past pledged to support such an amendment, but it’s not clear what signing one would mean.

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Pat Buchanan Won’t Disavow Idea That Minorities Have Inferior Genes on the Thom Hartmann Show

Herr Pat Buchanan is at it again…

Crooks & Liars

As we already know, Pat Buchanan has been out there pushing a new book of his Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025? Buchanan showed up on Hannity’s show earlier this week where he was treated to the softball interview I posted about here – Pat Buchanan: America is Disintegrating Because White America is an Endangered Species.

Needless to say, he didn’t get quite the same treatment when he appeared as a guest on Thom Hartmann’s radio show this Thursday. The relevant portion of the interview starts at just over three and a half minutes into the video above and the portion quoted below is about eight and a half minutes in.

From Media Matters – Pat Buchanan Won’t Disavow Idea That Minorities Have Inferior Genes:

Yesterday, radio host Thom Hartmann challenged guest Pat Buchanan over his recent writingabout minorities and test scores. Hartmann said that “a lot of people are taking what you’re saying as code for inferior genes” and twice pressed Buchanan to disavow that theory. Buchanan did not, instead claiming that he doesn’t “know anything” about the topic.

From The Thom Hartmann Program:

HARTMANN: A lot of people are taking what you’re saying as code for inferior genes. Please tell me that’s not what you’re talking about.

BUCHANAN: Well look, I’m not — don’t know anything about what genetics or something like that. What I’m saying is, is these are the test scores and we haven’t been able to –

HARTMANN: So do you disavow that?

BUCHANAN: Pardon?

HARTMANN: Do you disavow that idea, that concept –

BUCHANAN: Well, I don’t know anything about being — look. The Coleman Report –

HARTMANN: I mean, you’re being quoted over on –

BUCHANAN: The Coleman Report, and I think I’ve got in my book, the Coleman Report said what a child brings to school is far more important than what he finds in schools, in other words, heredity and home environment, nature and nurture. Do I know the differences, or what percentages, or this and that, of course not. I’m not going to get into that. I’m saying is here’s the test scores now, and this is the problem, and in our future, quite frankly, Hispanic Americans, and African Americans, because of test scores, because of the dropout rate is fifty percent, they’re going to be in the service economy and the rest of us are going to be up there in the knowledge industry and that doesn’t make for a united America.

Much, much more that in the Media Matters post with details following this statement up so go read the entire post, but as they noted, Buchanan is actually fully aware of what Hartmann was asking him about, so his denial that he doesn’t “know anything about what genetics or something like that” is just flatly false.

While Buchanan didn’t disavow the idea, he’s written about the matter throughout his career and was forced to clarify a controversial memo regarding the subject he wrote to President Nixon.

The Boston Globe reported in a January 1992 article that as a White House aide, Buchanan “suggested in a memo to President Nixon that efforts to integrate the U.S. might only result in ‘perpetual friction’ because blacks and the poor may be genetically inferior to middle-class whites.”

At the time of the report, Buchanan was running for president and under criticism for his history of controversial racial statements. The Globe reported that “Buchanan said yesterday he does not believe blacks are genetically inferior to whites and did not have that belief in the past. Buchanan said he sent the memo to Nixon as a routine matter of intellectual curiosity.”

They wrapped the post up by noting Buchanan’s praise for some of the writings of white supremacist Sam Francis on the same topic he denied knowing anything about to Hartmann here:

Near the conclusion of his section on race and education, on page 224, Buchanan quotes the writing of white supremacist Sam Francis, in which Francis writes that “the doctrine of equality is unimportant, because no one save perhaps Pol Pot and Ben Wattenberg really believes in it, and no one, least of all those who profess it most loudly, is seriously motivated by it…. The real meaning of the doctrine of equality is that it serves as a political weapon.”

Buchanan eulogized Francis in a May 2005 column, writing, “When God created him, He endowed Sam with a great gift – one of the finest minds of his generation. Sam did not waste it.” In Buchanan’s book State Of Emergency, as noted by Think Progress’ Judd Legum, Buchanan lamented that Francis was fired after he suggested that only whites have the appropriate “genetic endowments” to keep America from collapsing.

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Iraq By The Numbers: The World’s Costliest Cakewalk

Powell's infamous presentation at the U.N.

That was an extremely expensive “cakewalk” in terms of lives lost and dollars…

Think Progress

The Obama administration’s announcement of a withdrawal of all U.S. forces from Iraq by the end of the year offers the possibility of a definitive conclusion for the U.S. military’s involvement in Iraq. But while the return of all U.S. service men and women by Christmas is a cause for celebration, the costs of the war are only beginning to be fully understood. The “cakewalk” to Baghdad, as George W. Bush adviser Kenneth Adelman infamously wrote in February, 2002, has been anything but. The Iraq War, and the faulty premise that Saddam Hussein was developing weapons of mass destruction, has had a staggering humanitarian and economic cost.

Here are some relevant numbers:

8 years, 260 days since Secretary of State Colin Powell presented evidence of Saddam Hussein’s biological weapons program

8 years, 215 days since the March 20, 2003 invasion of Iraq

8 years, 175 days since President George W. Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” speech on the USS Abraham Lincoln

4,479 U.S. military fatalities

30,182U.S. military injuries

468contractor fatalities

103,142 – 112,708 documented civilian deaths

2.8 millioninternally displaced Iraqis

$806 billion in federal funding for the Iraq War through FY2011

$3 – $5 trillion in total economic cost to the United States of the Iraq war according to economist Joseph E. Stiglitz and Linda J. Blimes

$60 billion in U.S. expenditures lost to waste and fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001

0 weapons of mass destruction found in Iraq

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Bill Maher: OWS protesters ‘don’t want free love, they want paid employment’

Raw Story

On Friday’s “New Rules” segment, Bill Maher informed Republicans that it’s time to stop calling the “Occupy Wall Street” protesters “hippies”. “Woodstock was 42 years ago,” he says. Maher visited Occupy DC and says that contrary to what some people might expect, no one offered him “a single marijuana cigarette”, which he found a little disappointing, actually.

There’s more below, embedded via YouTube:

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West Wing Week: 10/21/11 or “Right Now!”

The White House Blog

This week, the President traveled to Detroit with the President of South Korea, dedicated the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial, embarked on a three day American Jobs Act bus tour, bestowed the Presidential Citizens Medal, and hosted the Norwegian Prime Minister.

 

Politico’s The week in one-liners: Clinton, Biden, Cain

 

 

The week’s top quotes in politics …

“Don’t screw around with me.” — Vice President Joe Biden getting heated  with a reporter on Wednesday.

“Wow.” — Secretary of State Hillary Clinton upon learning that Muammar Qadhafi had been killed.

“I’m running for office, for Pete’s sake. I can’t have illegals.” — Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney talking about his lawn care workers at Tuesday night’s debate.

“I misspoke.” — GOP 2012 candidate Herman Cain backtracking on a comment about prisoner exchanges.

“Bo says hi.” — President Barack Obama passing along a message to a dog in North Carolina, according to a White House pool report.

“I must say again I have never seen an uglier bus than a Canadian one.” — Sen.John McCain dissing President Obama’s wheels.

“He doesn’t like that as much.” — First lady Michelle Obama explaining how the president feels about his daughters watching “Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” according to iVillage.com.

“You’re headed for a one-term presidency.” — Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, as quoted in Walter Isaacson’s upcoming book, advising Obama at meeting last year.