Barack Obama spent his first term undoing what he saw as the excesses of U.S. post-Cold War foreign policy, from land wars in the Middle East to insufficient attention to Asia. By his own account, he largely succeeded. But chances are he will spend his second term grappling with the flaws in his cure. Contrary to the usual Republican narrative, Obama did not lead a U.S. retreat from the world. Instead he sought to pursue the same interests without the same means. He has tried to preserve America’s place as the “indispensable nation” while withdrawing ground troops from war zones,
Libya, Iran, Syria etc are already problems from hell in the first term. On the domestic front, sequestration, premature need to raise the debt limit, massive lay-offs, and the taxaggedon are the problems from hell still in the first term. Look for recall elections early in the second term.
So the government shutdown continues. Although promises to make furloughed federal workers whole with back pay raises the question when is a “furlough” just another taxpayer-paid vacation? But as long as the panda-cam at the National Zoo is shut down and parking lots are roped off at national parks, we’ll accept for the sake of argument that the shutdown is real. But the president really did promise that nothing would stop Obamacare from being implemented — not Tea Partiers in the U.S. House or government shutdowns, NOTHING.
Negotiating with Republicans has never been in Obama’s playbook. Three days after his inauguration in 2009, President Barack Obama silenced Republican lawmakers who voiced concerned about the enormity of spending in his stimulus bill by uttering two brash words, “I won.” That was his governing philosophy, as he rammed through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act. But in the fall of 2010. Republicans swept into control of the House of Representatives, and since then Obama’s agenda has been stalled. With little prospect of gaining control of the House in 2014, Obama is resorting to discrediting
For the first week that the federal health-care exchanges were running … well, crawling … the Obama administration claimed that no one could get through because of overwhelming pent-up demand. Essentially it spent a week arguing that no one could have predicted that, in a country of 300 million people, 2.4 percent of those people might stop by sometime in the first seven days to check out the administration’s signature legislative achievement. We can now dismiss that theory, because the administration has: “Six days into the launch of insurance marketplaces created by the new health-care law, the federal government acknowledged for
President Obama was once a high-profile first-term senator, but he doesn´t think the current crop -- including Sens. Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio -- is serving the country well as they seek out controversy. "I recognize that in today´s media age, being controversial, taking controversial positions, rallying the most extreme parts of your base, whether it´s left or right, is a lot of times the fastest way to get attention and raise money," he said in an interview with the Associated Press released Saturday. "But it´s not good for government."
It’s called Washington Monument Syndrome. That’s shorthand for the way federal agencies react to any threat of budget cuts or a government shutdown: by closing down the most popular public services. No one has mastered this better than President Obama. Which explains the dramatic — and wholly unnecessary — confrontation Tuesday at the World War II Memorial on the National Mall. Faced with signs saying the memorial was closed, war vets rightly pushed past makeshift gates and barricades to make their visit. That there were barricades at all underscores the phony politics at work.
Three and a half years after it was signed, sealed and delivered, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act remains the undead; not interred, not thriving, but fought over on numerous fronts. This enrages the left, which calls the case settled, and says it has facts on its side: The act was passed legally by both houses of Congress, survived the Supreme Court and five center-right justices, and survived 2012 and the presidential election, in which voters endorsed it.Like other big laws — Social Security, Medicare and Medicare Part D — it had initial delays, but will soon be accepted.
The federal government wants to reduce the number of Americans diagnosed each year with cancer. But not by better preventive care or healthier living. Instead, the government wants to redefinethe term “cancer” so that fewer conditions qualify as a true cancer. What does this mean for ordinary Americans — and should we be concerned? On July 29, 2013, a working group for the National Cancer Institute (the main government agency for cancer research) published a paper proposing that the term “cancer” be reserved for lesions with a reasonable likelihood of killing the patient if left untreated.
During a crucial battle of the military campaign that ultimately propelled him to supreme power in Rome, Julius Caesar put himself and his outnumbered army in such a vulnerable position that he briefly considered suicide. He and most of his troops survived, however, because the man commanding the opposing force was too timid to take a tactical risk. Afterward, surprised to find himself alive and his army relatively intact, Caesar made an observation that the leadership of the GOP would do well to remember: “Today the enemy would have won, if they had a commander who was a winner.”
Last year, according to a Washington Post/ABC News survey, 68 percent of Democrats supported Obamacare. By July 23, however, only 58 percent of Obama’s fellow donkeys backed his chief initiative. Liberal Democrats’ approval of this law rose from 74 percent in 2010 to 78 in July.But moderate and conservative Democrats have fled on health care. In 2010, as Obamacare careened through a Democratic Congress, 76 percent of center-right Democrats cheered, while 20 percent hissed. By last July 23, only 47 percent of those Democrats endorsed Obamacare; 46 percent disapproved. So, among middle-of-the-road Democrats (57 percent of those surveyed), net support
That, in three simple words, was the question a reporter asked President Obama last week. “Yes, they are,” the president said with a straight face. “People will look back and they’ll be asking, ‘What was the argument about? Why is everybody fighting this so much?’” Why? Well, here, Mr. President, are just a few of the many, many reasons: • You can’t keep your own health care. The president spent the past four years assuring Americans that “if you like your plan, you can keep it.”
Remember that March day in 2010 when the President, surrounded by devout supporters, solemnly signed Obamacare into law? It was, as Joe Biden brayed, “a big f-----g deal.” Obama and his army of righteous reformers had finally triumphed over the forces of evil and passed legislation that would drive the moneychangers from the temple of U.S. health care. Many of those beaming down on the President as he wielded his terrible swift pen represented prestigious national organizations and coalitions whose support had made the glorious moment possible. Some of these groups have since seen the error of their ways.
One of the most predictable features of American politics is the biannual blackmail to which the Democrats are subjected by their union bosses. Knowing that “the Party of Jefferson and Jackson” cannot survive without their support, union goons like Richard Trumka usually start the process by complaining about some law that allegedly hurts workers. Then, after a month or two of bombast and bluster, we find that their definition of “worker” is actually “union member” and that they want the Democrats to grant them a special dispensation (snip) This is how the infamous Obamacare waiver program was hatched.
Every week during halftime of Sunday Night Football, Bob Costas gets to recite a personal essay about whatever hot topic strikes his fancy. This Sunday he chose the Redskins name, and spent a few minutes offering his commentary on the subject. Here is his statement in full. With Washington playing Dallas here tonight, it seems like an appropriate time to acknowledge the ongoing controversy about the name, “Redskins.” Let’s start here: there’s no reason to believe that owner Daniel Snyder, or any official or player from his team, harbors animus towards Native Americans, or chooses to disrespect them. This is
The rights of a transgendered Colorado high school student are being put ahead of girls the boy harasses in the girls bathroom. A male student at Florence (CO) High School who claims to be transgendered has caused controversy by harassing female students in the girls room, but will not face any discipline – this despite vocal protests from the girls’ parents. ‘The boy’s rights as a transgender trump their daughters’ privacy rights,’ the school has told concerned parents, according to CBN. Unidentified because all involved are minors, the students are being threatened with removal from sports teams or even hate crime charges
The Los Angeles Times headline said it all: "Rep. Paul Ryan Fails to Close Republican Divide." When this became Ryan´s job, or whether his now "controversial" Wall Street Journal op-ed was even an attempt at doing that, is anyone´s guess. But once again, Republicans have decided to cannibalize themselves viciously and needlessly instead of uniting over common goals. To be clear, the divide on the right isn´t over policy. No Republican I´ve met thinks Obamacare is good legislation. No one is suggesting capitulation on the debt ceiling. Everyone wants spending cuts, entitlement reform and deficit reduction. Where we´re divided is over tactics. Incidentally, Ryan
It’s a buyer’s market for President Barack Obama. With House and Senate Republicans preparing competing proposals to end the government shutdown and avert a default on the nation’s debt, Obama hasn’t shown any inclination to jump at the first offer. The plan House Republicans presented to the White House on Thursday night wasn’t enticing enough, and there is a sense in Washington that the GOP’s scramble to avoid further political pain from this latest fiscal crisis will give Obama plenty of opportunity to define the terms of a settlement. At this point, White House officials won’t even describe
When I have described the well-considered, coherent political and economic strategies of the conservative white South, as I have done here, here and here, I am sometimes been accused of being a “conspiracy theorist.” But one need not believe that white-hooded Dragons and Wizards are secretly coordinating the actions of Southern conservative politicians from a bunker underneath Stone Mountain in Georgia to believe that a number of contemporary policies — from race-to-the-bottom economic policies to voter disfranchisement and attempts to decentralize or privatize federal social insurance entitlements — serve the interests of those who promote them, who tend to be
Ted Cruz’s “aw shucks” act is wearing thin. The Republican senator from Texas likes to pretend he is above the fray of Washington bickering, focused on large issues and too big to engage character assassination. But the reality is that Cruz is the Republican king of nasty attacks. He explodes rhetorical nuclear bombs on his opponents, only to feign outrage when his victims respond in kind, or in many cases, with relative spitballs. Take his defund Obamacare effort. The tactic to eliminate President Obama’s health care law had zero prospect of success, which Cruz undoubtedly knew despite what he sold the conservative
The prince of the pulpit may have a revolution on his hands. Four upstart clergymen have invited more than 100 churches to knock Rev. Al Sharpton off his Harlem political throne. Speak Out Say It Loud, headquartered at Mount Neboh Baptist Church on Adam Clayton Powell Blvd., is a new coalition of black ministers determined to create a unified African-American power base with citywide clout. Mount Neboh pastor Johnnie Green, 51, said Sharpton has neglected black New York while pursuing national fame and acclaim. “While (Sharpton) is jet-setting around the country, people are going to our churches saying they don’t have money to eat,”
As the government shutdown enters a third week, a group of veterans and tea party groups protested their anger by storming the World War II memorial in Washington, DC. The protest Sunday started at the World War II memorial before moving to the National Mall and eventually winding up outside the White House. ´Tear down these walls,´ the crowd chanted. Protesters also sang ´God bless America´ and other patriotic songs as they entered the memorial plaza. The memorial has become a political symbol in the bitter fight between Democrats and Republicans over who is at fault since the shutdown began. Earlier rallies have
HONOLULU — A unit of the U.S. Department of Defense has been holding so-called "arrival ceremonies" for seven years, with an honor guard carrying flag-draped coffins off of a cargo plane as though they held the remains of missing American service men and women returning that day from old battlefields. After NBC News raised questions about the arrival ceremonies, the Pentagon acknowledged Wednesday that no honored dead were in fact arriving, and that the planes used in the ceremonies often couldn´t even fly but were towed into position. The solemn ceremonies at a military base in Hawaii are a sign of the
Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) attended a rally protesting the closure of the World War II Memorial, according to reports. The lawmakers and the former governor – and 2008 GOP vice-presidential nominee – joined a crowd that removed barricades at the memorial and chanted “tear down these walls,” according to Washington, D.C., radio station WTOP. (Snip) The presence of a Confederate flag at the protest, which later moved to the White House, sparked an uproar on Twitter.
As Cory Booker looks set to win the junior Senate seat in New Jersey Wednesday, his supposed neighbors in Newark say Mayor Booker doesn’t live in the Gateway City. Multiple residents of Newark told The Daily Caller that the longtime mayor doesn’t live at any of the addresses he has claimed as home. The mayor is believed to live in New York even though he is registered to run for New Jersey’s special senate election. Booker, who filed to run for the U.S. Senate from a B.O. Box in Newark, is registered to vote at 435 Hawthorne Avenue but his
WASHINGTON — In March, Henry Chao, the chief digital architect for the Obama administration’s new online insurance marketplace, told industry executives that he was deeply worried about the Web site’s debut. “Let’s just make sure it’s not a third-world experience,” he told them. Two weeks after the rollout, few would say his hopes were realized. For the past 12 days, a system costing more than $400 million and billed as a one-stop click-and-go hub for citizens seeking health insurance has thwarted the efforts of millions to simply log in. The growing national outcry has deeply embarrassed the White House, which