Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Who’s been naughty and who’s been nice? I have made my list and checked it twice:

To President Bush: My gift to you is something that you’ll not get from many; a heartfelt “Thank you”. Thank you for doing whatever you have done to protect us from another horrific attack for more than 7 years. Though I have disagreed at times, thank you for following your core beliefs, rather than the polls; it’s been refreshing. Thank you for taking action to actually change the world rather than just talking about it; a free people in the center of the Middle-East will change the world as we know it and you have shown remarkable tenacity toward that end. Yours is not a failed presidency; I believe that history will prove it just the opposite. Thank you for being an honorable and decent man and for fighting the good fight. You were right on the central issue of our time and everything else simply pales in comparison.

To Barack Obama: You have spoken ad nauseum about Hope and Change, so that is my gift to you; my sincere hope that my worst fears will not be realized and that you, somehow, will change for the better. I did not vote for you and, if I had it to do again, I still would not. I simply do not believe in your political philosophy or your purported agenda and I never will. I hope that you will do what needs to be done and do nothing when doing nothing is the best option and I hope that you will have the wisdom to know the difference. I hope that the American people’s collective confidence in you will not be misplaced, for your success is inexorable tied to our own. Greatness is often bestowed upon ordinary people placed in extraordinary situations; I hope that you understand that and see crisis, not as an opportunity to be exploited, but the reason that you're there.

To Congress: A lump of coal - a small one. You have been uninspiring and unhelpful at best and irresponsible and destructive at worst. You have continued to spend OUR money like drunken sailors on liberty in an attempt at self-aggrandizement and buying off your constituents with shiny baubles. You have consistently failed police your members as they behaved like common criminals and, as a whole, you have sunk to new lows of corruption and greed. You are public servants, not members of the ruling class and your behavior as the latter is an embarrassment to those few honorable individuals that I hope are still among you. You have treated the American people with contempt and in the process have earned our scorn. Ponder your lump of coal and try to do better in the future with the knowledge that it’s unlikely you could do any worse.

To The American People: As a nation, we asked for Hope and Change but what we really need is a break. Whether it’s inept financial institutions or inept automobile manufacturers, we are always the ones that get the bill and the bill gets bigger by the day. Unfortunately, I don’t see that break coming any time soon and as for the Hope and Change, well, be careful what you wish for. We’ve just elected a new president who, in addition to the government Bailout du Jour, also has a long wish list for expanded government and a compliant Congress. Who’s going to get the bill for all of this? Hope and Change is expensive and we are about to find out just how expensive it is.

A Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Blagojevich, Obama and The Machine

So, here’s the story: a sitting Governor of Illinois, Rod Blagojevich, literally attempts to sell (or auction, if you will) a United States Senate seat that has been vacated by the incoming President, Barack Obama. In recorded conversations, said Governor, in profanity laced statements, makes it crystal clear that there is a price to be paid for the Senate seat and that he will be the recipient.

The reckless and “in-your-face” nature of this type of corruption leaves one groping for superlatives; “blatant” and “brazen” simply do not seem up to the task.

As for Barack Obama, he has stated unequivocally that he had no conversations with Blagojevich and has called for his resignation. Perhaps they spoke, perhaps they didn’t. Though Obama served as an advisor and assisted Blagojevich in his campaign for Governor in 2002, to his credit, he appears to have distanced himself from Blagojevich shortly thereafter.

I find it difficult to believe that Obama would not have sought, at least from an intermediary, to offer input as to his own replacement, given the Senate is integral in his “change” (whatever that is) agenda. I find it impossible that someone, at least in Obama’s orbit, would not have had contact with Blagojevich on this important issue.

It should be remembered that Barack Obama is, at the very least, a product of the Chicago Political Machine. I’m not saying that Obama is necessarily corrupt, but the system in which he arose from “Community Organizer” to State Senator to U.S. Senator and now to the next President of the United States (in an extraordinarily short period of time) has, over generations, raised corruption to an art form. I can not believe that Mr. Obama’s meteoric rise to the Presidency happened without (at least) the express consent of “the Machine”.

Though Obama swam through the unsavory Chicago political sewer for his entire career, he has shown an amazing ability to come away with nary a whiff of its fetid odor.

Yes, perhaps Mr. Obama was blissfully unaware of the system around him, even as it was consistently promoting and advancing his career. After all, he says he was unaware of the hateful, racist rhetoric that spewed from the mouth of his “spiritual mentor” of 20 years, Reverend Wright. He also seemed unaware that one of his early benefactors, Bill Ayers, was an avowed Communist and legendary domestic terrorist.

Rather I think that Obama has used the system and those around him to his own advantage in the furtherance of his career. When someone who has helped him in the past gets in the way of his current ambition, or proves to be a personal embarrassment, he jettisons them without a second thought. Personal loyalty does not seem to be one of Mr. Obama's virtues.

There is no direct evidence of corruption on Obama’s part in this Blagojevich affair, at least not at this time. There is, however, evidence that Barack Obama is a coldly calculating and cynical politician to whom ends clearly justify means. There is, admittedly, a lot of that characteristic in all politicians but Mr. Obama seems to have considerably more than most.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Reid: We won't smell the tourists anymore

How charming:
The Capitol Visitors Center, which opened this morning, may have tripled its original budget and fallen years behind schedule, but Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid found a silver lining for members of Congress: tourists won't offend them with their B.O. anymore.

"My staff tells me not to say this, but I'm going to say it anyway," said Reid in his remarks. "In the summer because of the heat and high humidity, you could literally smell the tourists coming into the Capitol. It may be descriptive but it's true."

Maybe he should have taken he staff's advice on that one.