Thursday, December 01, 2011

Obama's rocky path to reelection

Jay Cost analyzes the strategy that Obama's aides have recently indicated will be how Obama plans to win reelection. In several recent stories, it's become clear that there are three main goals of the Obama campaign.
1. Do as well with the non-white vote as Obama did in 2008, with the expectation that it continues to increase as a share of the total electorate.

2. Hold steady with upscale white voters, who tend to be more focused on quality of life issues like environmentalism.

3. Mitigate losses among the white working class, but expect to lose this group once again.
I always wonder why aides to candidates are so open about their strategy for victory. Why announce ahead of time what they're trying to do, especially when part of that strategy includes assuming a loss among such a large part of the electorate as the white working class. James Taranto tackles that question and the only reason he can come up with is that the Obama team is trying to indicate that they do indeed have a plan for winning even if having such a plan means they have to indicate that they're planning on losing a big chunk of the electorate. Yeah, it's a lame explanation for a dumb announcement. As Taranto writes, they might indeed write off those voters, but it is gratuitous to make their indifference to those voters so public.

But even with these self-identified goals for the Obama strategy, as Jay Cost demonstrates, it is going to be extremely tough for Obama to win. For example, they might assume that they're going to lose the white working class, but examining the numbers of the vote that he got in 2008 in important swing states in the Midwest, it's clear that the white working class made up close to 50% of his victory. However, right now, his poll numbers are much worse among that group. If he loses 8 to 10% off his vote total in 2008 this time, it is going to be very hard for him to win some of the key states in the Midwest, much less in other parts of the country.

Cost goes on to examine the premise that Obama has it all wrapped up with upscale white voters who, in poor economic times, might not have the luxury of voting on quality of life issues rather than on economic issues. And while Obama is sure to win the African-American vote in a big way, it is not a guarantee that the non-black, non-white vote will go for him in the same numbers as they did in 2008.

So how does Obama appeal to these disparate groups of minority voters and high-income white voters. The best he can do is attack the Republicans and try to emulate the Truman 1948 strategy. But it is pretty difficult to duplicate a strategy that worked over 60 years ago. The situation is just not the same. For one thing, Obama is less popular than Harry Truman was at a similar point in his presidency - remember Truman had just presided over victory in a world war and could count on most of the New Deal coalition sticking with him. Labor support meant a lot more in 1948 than it means today.

And, as Karl Rove points out, it is going to be difficult to campaign against a "do-nothing" Congress" when the Democrats control one-half of Congress and have refused to pass a budget in several years. And Obama had a "do-something" Congress with a filibuster-proof majority for the first two years of his presidency and people didn't like the things that they did. What does he have to promise people other than more of the same stuff that the public wasn't pleased about at the time?

So Obama's path to reelection is indeed rocky. But we can't project in a straight line from today to next year. The economy could dramatically improve and Obama could claim credit for that. There could be some foreign policy breakthrough such as the fall of Iran's ayatollahs that Obama could claim credit for.

Or, and this is his best hope, the GOP could nominate someone who would be so unappealing that he would make Obama look good. And that is what I'm afraid of. It makes me heartsick that, in an election year when things are looking so good to defeat Obama, the Republicans main choices are now between Mitt and Newt, neither of whom is all that appealing. Mitt's weaknesses as a flip-flopper are well-known and the DNC is already trying to soften him up and perhaps take him out by putting up in key states an ad targeting him on abortion and Romneycare. It's an ad that could be run by any of his GOP opponents. And that's no coincidence. The DNC and Obama team are paying him the compliment by indicating he is the candidate they fear most.

But today Ron Paul launched an even more devastating attack on Newt Gingrich.
Romney must be so thankful to Paul for doing his dirty work against Gingrich.

History is full of "if only's," but gosh, think of what it would look like if Mitch Daniels or Paul Ryan had overcome their personal and family's objections and run this year. Or Jeb Bush. Or Bobby Jindal. If Obama wins next year, I fear it will be due to GOP weakness rather than Obama's own appeal. And that would be just a dang shame. I'm used to voting for the candidate who repels me the least, but I'm also full of daydreams about the "if only's" that would have both made Obama's path to reelection even more rocky and given us hope for much more promising future president in January, 2013.

24 comments:

Reliapundit said...

OBAMA NEEDS A THIRD PARTY CANDIDATE ON THE BALLOT IN KEY STATES IN ORDER TO IN.

AMERICANS ELECT EXISTS FOR THIS PURPOSE:

TO GIVE THOSE WHO ARE IN THE MIDDLE AND DISLIKE OBAMA PLACE TO GO OTHER THAN THE GOP.

IT WORKED IN NY CD 26.

THAT'S THEIR MODEL.

pumping-irony said...

Y, I think in this case Obama's people are conceding the case looks bleak, despite what his Kool-aid soaked media cheerleaders say. It was necessary to maintain morale amongst his remaining supporters lest they lose interest and thereby guarantee a defeat. They are basically conceding the obvious, that they have no chance of carrying the white working class vote. Obama's recent decisions, such as to block the Keystone Pipeline, reflect this; he is playing up to what he sees as the stronger groups of his supporters. The problem is that appealing to upscale white voters may cost him support amongst the minority voters. They might've been hoping for jobs such as provided by Keystone, too.

mark said...

Republicans still have two good candidates - Jon Huntsman and Buddy Roemer. Unfortunately for them, they exercised common sense and intelligence and said they believed in climate change. Republicanism and science don't mix. Had they been willing to lie (like Romney and Gingrich), they might have had their day in the sun.

Terrye said...

I have to say, it would be a lot easier for me to vote for Romney than Gingrich. I think Newt is a crook and a pompous..his supporters are so sure that he will win by debating Obama..yeah...well Gingrich is not that good and Obama is not the dummie that a lot of people on the right like to think he is. I won't ever vote for Obama, but 64 million people did in the last election. He won't do nearly as well this time, but he will be tougher than they think he will.

foxmarks said...

Too bad y’all have dismissed Perry and Cain. By the professed strategy, either one of them shatters the Obama re-election coalition.

If you are resigned to picking a lesser evil with a single purpose of defeating the incumbent, perhaps it is worth reconsidering who would have the best opportunity to exploit Obama’s weakness.

No primary votes have been cast. It isn’t too late to make a smarter choice.

tfhr said...

mark,

I see you are still promoting the notion that one must "believe" in "climate change". It's the left's religion du jour and the new name of that church is "climate change", a modification of the defunct temple of "global warming". I guess discussing the Progressive opiate known as “climate change” is preferable to someone like you rather than facing up to Obama’s glaring failure to deal with the real issue of the upcoming election, that “three letter word: J-O-B-S”, as Biden, a source of hot air surpassed by few, once put it with the same precision as he has demonstrated in his many duties. So, yes, let’s talk about “climate change”, by all means.
mark, unless you never come out of your basement, you probably know that the climate really does change every day, all day long, and has been doing so since time began ( feel free to start that clock with a "big bang", an act of God, or whenever Al Gore tells you where to put the big hand and the little hand - just don't take his instruction when he's having a side bar with the masseuse ). For example, it was cold here in DC yesterday afternoon but even colder last night when I visited the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum Annex out by Dulles. This morning, as I left for work, I noticed that it was even colder. There is a trend there but I'm not expecting woolly mammoths to be blocking the Woodrow Wilson Bridge on my way home this afternoon. Remember mark, Newsweek (Newsweak) warned us not long ago that a new Ice Age was coming. We’re still waiting for yaks and glaciers to come crashing in from Pennsylvania. I can’t believe the scientists behind those predictions didn’t get a Nobel like the high priest of the Church of Climate Change. They didn’t even get an Oscar nod, the highest form of recognition in the field of Climate “Scientology”. I guess they were too specific when they said “cooler” when they could’ve said “hotter”, but really missed it by passing up the option to use “change”. Have you noticed how numbskulls on the left always fall for the word, “change”? Hope and Change, Climate Change, you guys will never change.
The question remains a valid point for scientific debate as to just exactly what the trend is, if any, and the cause of said trend. If you, like Al Gore and many others that drool over the prospects of "carbon credit" riches or the furtherance of other agendas, "believe" that the "science" is decided I would first caution you against thinking that any field of science has been finalized to the point of eliminating further debate or study. To conclude that a cause has been determined for an unproven theory suggests to me that "climate change" / "global warming" adherents have put their politics before their science and if you have doubts about that, I suggest you take an honest look at Climategate and the deliberate manipulation of data by agenda driven "scientists". In my book, they subordinated their science to politics and while that doesn't make them political scientists in the standard definition associated with that term, it does make their results more political than scientific.

And while we’re defining terms, you should review your understanding of “republicanism” unless you truly believe that people, because they live a republic, cannot grasp science. If that’s true, then I’d like to hear your grounds for coming to such an absurd assumption. I hope it was merely a gaffE on your part, marke, and not an unintended revelation of deep, yet unwarranted contempt for our form of government.

mark said...

Yes, tfhr, I do beleive that anyone who believes climate change is a hoax is an idiot. A legitimate argument would be how much is contributed by man and what to do about it. But questioning if it is real is absurd. And not treating it as a threat is an abject failure to be paid for by future generations.

Surely the person who based his "evidence" that OBL was dead based on a "decrease in communiques" doesn't need much to convince him. Then again, you defended a child rapist despite a grand jury indictment and his own admission of wrongdoing.

tfhr said...

mark,

Don’t be an idiot.

I defended a man's right to a fair trial. When you begin to respect The Constitution, you will understand but in the meantime, don’t confabulate yourself into suggesting that defending the right to a fair trial is the same thing as acting as an attorney or apologist for the accused. It’s intellectually dishonest on your part to do so and I suggest that you find another way to compensate for your inability to hold sway on the point.

As for bin Laden, I'm not the only one that came to that same conclusion and yet none of us called on the government to put this country at any risk of any sort by holding this opinion. Hunting down terrorist leaders continues daily and the process for finding them is largely the same. What cracks me up about you is how you will bend yourself into a pretzel trying to dismiss the process that eventually delivered bin Laden. You will whine and cry that interrogations of KSM were too harsh and try to ignore that his information helped identify the courier that lead the US to his boss. I'm glad bin Laden is dead but without the methods you so despise, we would still be looking for him.

But back to the other damage you do: You want billions of dollars to be spent on an unproven theory like "climate change" with no idea of the outcome other than the certainty that money wasted in the pursuit of "green energy" will be squandered ala Solyndras to pay off leftist buddies and all important Obama campaign contributors. Do you really want more genius green projects like the Volt to "save" GM? Those UAW jobs aren't much safer than incandescent light bulb makers in the US these days with "climate change believers" in charge. But having that dim bulb of "climate change belief" flickering and fizzling over your noggin identifies you as the willing and gullible type of fool that makes a moron like Al Gore look smart only because you obligingly stand by and watch him take your money while he jets around and builds mansions. You're being a chump, mark, and while I know you can't help yourself, it still amazes me to no end. Now run and get in line and see if you can get GM to buy back your Volt. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_VOLT_BATTERY_FIRE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2011-12-01-14-56-43

mark said...

tfhr,
Fact check: you did defend Sandusky. But I guess I'm glad that you're embarassed enough to lie. Here is your quote:


"but we must withhold judgment about his (Sandusky's) criminality until he's had his day in court"

I've already said that he has a right to a trial. But I and others are free to make judgments about this and other things. For you to say otherwise is idiotic. Did you accidentally go to the ACLU website before you wrote that?

Among your many judgments, you've called Kennedy a criminal without a conviction or a confession. You hide behind the Constitution the same way you hide behind the troops to defend your nonsense. And you disgrace both.

As I've said, what to do about climate change is a legit debate. But first, we need to use a bit of intelligence and acknowledge that it is real.
Romney and Newt are the top candidates partly because they are willing to say whatever is necessary to appease ignorant conservatives. And now you're on board with Romney because you're not looking for "the perfect candidate." You're so easy.

Pat Patterson said...

Oops, it looks like the Daily Telegraph in the UK has gone over to the Dark Side by actually talking with a scientist that has gone out in the field and measured one of the fairly tales of the Temple of Climate Change. Turns out that by actually using tide markers and satellite measurements the rise in the oceans is miniscule and not likely cause Great Whites in invade lower Manhattan any time soon.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/5067351/Rise-of-sea-levels-is-the-greatest-lie-ever-told.html

mark said...

Oops, perhaps you don't know how newspapers work, Pat. The Telegraph printing an article about sea levels changing does not mean that the scientist is right (Obviously, there are many scientists who disagree with Dr. Morner).
The NYT has an interview with Jerry Sandusky defending himself against child abuse charges. That doesn't mean they are declaring him innocent of the charges.
Perhaps you should stick to the comic pages. Marmaduke is quite humorous this morning (He thinks he's people.)

Pat Patterson said...

Do you trust the guy that builds your home by a computer model vs the one who uses a tape measure? I could probably program a computer that would spit out statistics, like the risible hockey stick graph, that shows the inevitable return of the dinosaurs.

mark said...

ummmmm, I wouldn't trust a builder who didn't use both.

Who said there's no such thing as a stupid question?

tfhr said...

mark,

Suggesting that judgement be withheld until the outcome of a trial is to take a neutral position, not a position favoring one outcome or another. If you should be accused of a crime, especially something as horrible as the charges against Sandusky, I think you might want the same consideration. Or perhaps you would prefer to be convicted in the media by people that believe they know ALL of the facts.

Let's review Kennedy's case. We know that Mary Jo Kopechne died in his mother's car. We know that Kennedy was the driver and delayed reporting the accident until the next day though he gathered two of his friends to attempt to retreive her from the car. He left the scene knowing that she was still in the car and did not attempt to call authorities and advised his friends to remain silent, claiming that he would make the call. Are you suggesting that he was not responsible for the death of his passenger? Was Kennedy also not responsible for alerting the authorities? Being a Progressive must mean never having to say you're responsible and this allows you to overlook the actions of a drunk that caused the death of an innocent girl. I guess the cherry on top of that sorry Kennedy episode was that Ted actually quoted his brother John's book, Profiles in Courage, when he publicly excused himself for his actions and lack thereof. You have to at least admit the sad irony that JFK used his actions in the water saving an injured crewman from his PT boat to political advantage while his pathetic brother ran away from the scene while his girl friend suffocated. Did you know that his wife blames her miscarriage on Chappaquiddick?

Kennedy was not tried for murder, manslaughter, or anything at all and that was a miscarriage of justice, if you'll pardon the pun. An accident can be said to be an accident and whether there was negligence involved should be determined in court but deliberately delaying the report of the crash was no accident. Astoundingly Kennedy avoided an open trial and crept through the back door with a quick, closed hearing. No, there was an inquiry but the findings were withheld from the grand jury and so was the evidence that Kopechne suffocated to death hours after the crash rather than drowning. I think Kennedy should have had a fair trial but he had no trial at all and that was the injustice.

You mentioned something about me with regard to Romney. Find where I've endorsed him because I've not done so. In fact, find where I've endorsed ANY opposition candidate above another this year. Challenging you to substantiate your attacks on a given candidate does not constitute an endorsement for any candidate, it's just my way of illuminating the fact that you have no way of supporting Obama's awful performance so you resort to baseless attacks on his opposition to deflect. You should admit that - it will free your mind.

mark said...

tfhr,
There is no need to review the Kennedy case. I've already agreed with you on that. He committed a disgraceful, cowardly act, and avoided prosecution due to wealth and connections. So please don't lie and pretend I've ever defended him on that.
You are parsing your words. You didn't "suggest" that we withhold judgement. You said:

"but we must withhold judgment about his (Sandusky's) criminality until he's had his day in court"

You claim that is in the Constitution. Where? That is nonsense. We have a system designed to weed out people who have already formed an opinion. It is not unconstitutional, you fool! You, me and others have expressed opinions here and made judgments on many issues, including those of criminality without benefit of confession or conviction. Your criticisms about Kennedy are an obvious contradiction to your recent words. I have no idea why you chose to take a stand for a child-rapist, but you did.

Your expertise and "respect" for the Constitution is as phony as your support for the troops and your supposed military acumen.
Once again, you prove yourself a fraud.

tfhr said...

mark,

Are you telling me that a right to a trial is not in The Constitution?

The 5th Amendment: No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime...nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law....

The 6th Amendment: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed...to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence.

I cannot stop you from forming your conclusions and that is not my intent but to suggest that the man does not have rights guaranteed under The Constitution, well, you're just wrong. Again.

But this discussion was never about Sandusky but rather your propensity for running off at the mouth with charges of "fraud" against anyone that does not agree with you. I suppose leveling charges of criminality is your choice of tools for stopping debate rather than losing it on your lack of merit. You've done it over and over and once again here. Fraud is a crime and accusing people of committing crimes when you simply disagree with their viewpoint is probably a result of your inability to form a persuasive argument in favor of your own opinions and serves as a means of venting your frustration with yourself and the man you unwisely supported for President of the United States. You've taken buyer's remorse to the next level, mark!

mark said...

tfhr,
One more time; read more slowly if it helps:

Of course Sandusky has a right to a trial (as I've previously). You said that "respect" for the Constitution requires us to maintain neutrality until a jury renders a verdict. That is complete and utter nonsense, and you know it. I brought up the Sandusky case to refute your argument that we can't refute your idiotic defense of Cain. I never imagined you would defend Sandusky. But you did. (Just for kicks: Has your "respect" for the non-existent Constituional requirement maintaing neutrality still kept you from forming an opinion? Is everyone else who think he's guilty guilty of disrespecting the Constitution?

I've called two people frauds: Herman Cain and you. Like many, I believe Herman Cain never intended to run a serious campain. He never did the necessary work and study the issues a president would face, and he had no support structure in many states.
I've called you a fraud for many reasons:
You misused the sacrifice of our soldiers by pretending all criticism of Bush was "spitting on the troops".

You claim you work in military intelligence, yet you've said some amazingly idiotic things. I also question why someone working in military intelligence (whether on the ground in Iraq or in an office in the states) would be posting on a blog, especially about military matters. (Actually, I think it would be against policy). Simply put, I don't believe much of what you've said about your past or current work. Nope, no hard proof, just a lot of circumstantial evidence
If I'm wrong and you have been truthful, you are incompetent and should retire for the good of our country.
Even your outrage of my use of the word "fraud" is phony. I have clearly not charged you or Cain with a crime. My use of the word "fraud" clearly pertains to being a "fake" or "phony". Accusing me of libeling Cain is not only ironic and absurd, but demonstrates once again your ignorance: Criminal libel includes damage to a person's reputation or livelihood. Are you saying I damaged Cain's reputation. I know he's looking for scapegoats, but that's a bit of a stretch. If only I had that much influence.

tfhr said...

mark,

You are so bitter for a fragile peach.

I guess falling on your face with Obama and his myriad failures has taken a terrible toll on you and you just have to lash out at the world.

Fraud is defined as a deception deliberately practiced in order to secure unfair or unlawful gain. I think your choice of derogatory labels was over the top and completely unwarranted, unless you can show us how Cain was unlawful. And just for preserving some sense of sanity for yourself, even the thinnest veneer, you ought to reconsider accusing others of crimes in these threads because one of these days this second nature habit of yours is going to shoot its mouth off in public and someone might take offense.

The "spitting on the troops" meme you trot out here needs qualification. I would use it when you devolved to excess but I have never suggested that any President cannot be criticized. The problem with those of you caught in tertiary stages of BDS is that you cannot find a way to offer reasoned criticism but seem to fall all over yourselves trying to imply criminal intent to any and every policy decision attributed to the Bush Administration. Instead of a rational and loyal opposition we get hysterics along the lines of a spittle flecked Al Gore braying "He betrayed our country!" Unhinged.

The point of spitting on the troops is also arrived at when someone like Harry Reid announces that "The war is lost." That undermines the troops - worse than spitting on them. There was no excuse for that and many of the other excesses of people on the left. Dick Durban compared us to Nazis, Soviets, etc. Really? Does that seem rational to you, mark?

So yeah, there are still plenty of you 60's radicals out there stuck in the good old days when spitting on the troops was fashionable but it isn't tolerated now and I won't tolerate it from you either. I guess you believe people in the military and Intelligence Community are not allowed to have a voice in the debate. I know you would prefer that but once again, you are wrong.

mark said...

Yes, tfhr, that is one definition. And this is another:

a person who makes deceitful pretenses; sham; poseur.

As I have stated, that is clearly the definition I am using when I describe Herman Cain and you. You can accept that or continue to pretend you don't.


I'd think people who actually work in military intelligence would be very careful discussing such intelligence. Posting tactics and strategies, disecting and criticizing missions on a blog? Don't think so. Seems strange that you can't say what agency you work for, but you can discuss things so openly.

But I'm just a 60s radical. (How did you know?)

tfhr said...

mark,

You're pretty free with the slurs you toss around here and maybe fraud isn't such a bad thing in your parts but to me, calling someone a fraud suggests criminal activity or intent.

As for your idea that I discuss classified, well you're simply ignorant on the subject and I expect that. However, if you had an ounce of intellectual curiosity, the agency I work for would have been easily revealed to you but apparently you're pretty stupid and very lazy if you haven't figured it out.

You seem to have focused on military intelligence which suggests an active affiliation with one of the service branches, either as a civilian or as an active duty or reservist employed in that capacity. There are also civilian agencies that include military personnel and service branch civilians in various capacities working on matters that may not include strictly traditional military intelligence issues. As I've been retired for a couple of years now, I could be anywhere but as I've already said, it really isn't too hard to figure out.

Depending on how you like to count them, the Intelligence Community is comprised of 16 or 17 agencies or organizations. I guess that means you're going to have to take your fuzzy bunny slippers off either way. I don't think of the DNI as an intelligence agency as much as another level of bureaucracy but they are the latest addition and bring the total to seventeen.

Either you can figure it out or you can't or you don't want to bother but it matters not either way to me. When I was in Iraq and logged on to comment on the war there were people in these threads that actually wanted me to die. They said so. They also called me a Nazi. That really made me laugh actually. It's amazing how far the twisted "liberal" mind can spiral out of control when it has lost control of the debate. You are only exhibit "B", if that.

I doubt you read any of the military blogs or the Intelligence Community blogs but there are quite a few. Maybe you can check in on some and rant about how they are all "frauds" and "liars" when you discover something you don't like. Hey, here's an idea: Drop your hilarious dead fish = dead American soldiers joke and see how that goes. It should be a grand introduction to just who and what you are to anyone that might want to know!

mark said...

tfhr,
More fake outrage. If you were really upset by my crude attempt to say Bush has the blood of 4500 soldiers on his hands, you would have been furious with W for his "No WMDs here" video in which he actually joked about the failure of the mission in which soldiers were dying. But you gave him a pass (I think you finally acknowledged it was wrong of him after I hassled you a few times).
4500 soldiers died on a war based on WMDs. The president actually planned and filmed a video joking about not finding them. And you pretend to be "outraged" by my comment.
So yes, you are fraud. You've proved it yet again. I don't mean it in a criminal way, but feel free to pretend I do. You're very good at pretending. It might be your best asset.

tfhr said...

mark,

Your BDS commands you.

Many Democrats voted for the use of force to remove Saddam Hussein from power. The term "regime change" started with Bill Clinton and it was all based on the threat Saddam was perceived to pose. BDS prevents you from admitting to yourself that many Dems advocated Saddam's removal and many voted for it and not solely based on the assessments that Iraq possessed WMDs. Be honest with yourself and admit that.

Remember that you wanted Bush to ground every aircraft, shut down civil aviation, and round up every military aged male of Arab descent in the United States while barring entry to all Muslims because there was a single PDB that said bin Laden might attack the United States. No specific date, no specific target, no names, no places, but that's enough for you to blame Bush. You wanted him to give the command to shoot down every airliner aloft inside US airspace while he was visiting a school in Florida.

It's amazing how you can hold him in the wrong when he does act when warned of a threat and wrong again when he was not provided with actionable intelligence. You cannot have it both ways unless you vote "present". When faced with the predictions that Iraq was in possession of a nuclear arms program and was in violation of UN treaties, Bush acted. Now Obama is being given the same warning. The IAEA has told him the same thing. This will be a difficult decision for any President, our current one or the one that will be sworn in January 2013.

We've seen what happens when our enemies promise to do us harm and we fail to take them seriously. Osama bin Laden literally declared Jihad against us in 1996. He said it was the mission of Muslims everywhere to kill Americans wherever they could find them. His people already had attacked the WTC in 1993. But Clinton failed to take that threat seriously and instead of treating this as a war he attempted to play it off as some sort of mere criminal event separate from the motivations and goals of the people behind it.

Yet I do not blame Clinton for bin Laden's actions because he failed to act on numerous occasions during his two terms. I see our country as the target in a war that has been waged against us for more than 30 years by both Sunni and Shiite radicals. Jimmy Carter failed against the Ayatollah and now Obama has passed on what may be our best and last opportunity to promote change within Iran when he abandoned the protesting Iranian people in 2009. He chose not to get involved and he chose not to lead.

Now Obama is going to have to make another choice soon and it will be much more difficult. I wish him well but I'm afraid he's only worried about his reelection in 2012 and that seems to be your problem too.

mark said...

"Remember that you wanted Bush to ground every aircraft, shut down civil aviation, and round up every military aged male of Arab descent in the United States while barring entry to all...."

tfhr,
Are you serious, or is this your attempt at being clever? I wanted no such thing. I asked for any evidence that he had done anything upon receiving the PDB. You and others came up with the preposterous, extreme ideas. I wanted him to shoot down airlines? What?
I wanted him to come back from his vacation, call his top people together, and asses the threat.

I am fully aware that dems supported the war. They were wrong. As were you. As were many others. I was against the Iraq war from the beginning, and I was right. Just as Obama deserves the bulk of the blame for our lousy economy, Bush gets most of the blame for not acting on the intelligence handed to him. Could action have stopped 9/11? We'll never know.

As I'm getting tired of watching football (seven hours and counting), I was going to call it a night. But this is possibly the most bizarre and pathetic post you have made (including your defense of a child-rapist). I think you may be carrying a lot of guilt regarding the war. About 4500 US soldiers and 100,000 Iraqis dead based on mistakes and lies. You are seriously troubled. Hope you get help with that. For now, you might get some sleep.

tfhr said...

mark,

Your twisted view that "Bush gets most of the blame...", is restricted to your so sad circle of BDS victims, a lingering subset of 9-11 conspiracy theorists that can find a plot under every rock but somehow consistently overlook the fact that the real plotters, al Qaeda, succeeded because they planned well, exploited gaps in our domestic and international intel collection and sharing while maintaining good operational security.

Just to see if you have any intellectual honesty remaining, consider that Bill Clinton had YEARS to handle Osama bin Laden but did not. Given that Jihadists had already attacked the WTC in 1993, why should this have been regarded as something less than an act of war even then? Clinton didn't even respond to the brazen attack on the USS Cole seven years later! American sailors were killed and Clinton did absolutely nothing.

I'm not attempting to transfer blame for bin Laden's actions to Bill Clinton but I am going to remind you once again that this country has been at war for decades - at least since our embassy was attacked in Tehran - and still we fumble along as if this is something less than war.

The extent to which we regard it as war seems to be limited by the frequency of events and the effectiveness of the weapons and tactics of our enemies rather than their intent. That thought has clouded not only the intelligence assessments that have been in existence throughout that time but also their utilization and it is further compounded by the cynical political opportunism of people like you, mark. The day is coming when terrorist organizations will have access to more destructive capabilities than ever before. In 2006 Hezbollah, courtesy of Iran, nearly sank an Israeli naval vessel with a cruise missile launched from the shore. Many countries cannot accomplish that feat and today there are more advanced MANPADs available from Libya’s unaccountable arms stocks than ever before. The ability to counter them will cost over $1 million dollars for each and every aircraft to be fitted with countermeasures and when that next unprotected airliner is downed and the culprit is found to have used a weapon from Libya, you can imagine the hue and cry that will resound as the United States is blamed for failing to secure these weapons when it ousted the former owner. Even today we still hear some blame the United States for 9-11 while others even blame Israel. There is no shortage of deranged people out there and they often have tightly held beliefs that simply cannot be swayed. You and people like you that blame President Bush for the actions of al Qaeda are as ridiculous as those that blame FDR for Pearl Harbor seventy years ago today.

Take a look at the 9-11 Commission Report and tell us where you can find a conclusion like yours. You can even go to the PDB excerpt, if you like. Take note of this line:

We have not been able to corroborate some of the more sensational threat reporting, such as that from a [-] service in 1998 saying that Bin Ladin wanted to hijack a US aircraft to gain the release of "Blind Shaykh" 'Umar 'Abd al-Rahman and other US-held extremists.
http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/report/911Report_Ch8.htm

Or this:

Perhaps the most incisive of the advisors on terrorism to the new administration was the holdover Richard Clarke. Yet he admits that his policy advice, even if it had been accepted immediately and turned into action, would not have prevented 9/11.

http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/report/911Report_Ch11.htm

Even if you had not read the rest of the report, a reasonable person could read those two chapters and come to a completely different conclusion than yours, mark. But then you are not reasonable.