Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Quick Hits - March 20, 2012

Media Matters for America portrays itself as a nonproft 'media watchdog group' that enjoys a tax-exempt status as a nonproft / non-partisan organization.  In reality, it's a rabidly partisan, George Soros funded progressive political entity with very close ties to the Democratic Party and Obama White House.  Rather than examining and reporting on news coverage - Media Matters is spending $20M in 2012 intending to influence media coverage in favor of the progressive agenda. 

An example of this are the efforts of Media Matters to attack and promote an advertiser boycott of conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh over his comments regarding Sandra Fluke and the charade of her 'Congressional testimony' promoting the Obamacare Contraception Mandate.

Reports indicate nearly daily communication and coordination of the efforts of Media Matters with political operatives in the West Wing of the White House.  However, new information is coming forward of another disturbing alliance / partnership involving Media Matters....their linkage to the anti-American, anti-Israeli Arab al-Jazeera network.

Media Matters Action Network senior foreign policy fellow, MJ Rosenberg is a regular on the al-Jazeera network - and their print operations regularly feature Rosenberg's columns that attack Israel and US conservatives.  Rosenberg is on record telling al-Jazeera and their Islamic fundamentalist audience that the US military has, under the Bush Administration, deliberately targeted al-Jazeera operations and reporters - extending the same canard as touted by former CNN President Eason Jordan that the US military targets journalists who represent organizations that have been 'unfriendly' to the US military interests.

In his most recent appearance, the loathsome Rosenberg was boasting to the al-Jazeera audience that President Obama purposely humiliated Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to send a clear signal to the Arab world...that Obama stands with them and not with the Israelis.

The Middle East region is more of a tinderbox now than it has been in years - to a large extent caused by the Obama Administration's change in direction regarding the region from that of the Bush Administration.  Iran remains focused on developing a nuclear program - and preventing legitimate inspections of all of their facilities to determine just what their full intentions are.  They continue to be the primary sponsor of terrorism and regularly call for the destruction of the nation of Israel.  They are threatening to close the strategic Straits of Hormuz to traffic and have threatened US vessels transiting the Straits with attack.  Internally, Iran continues to abuse their own people and operate to continue the Islamic theocracy created in 1978. 

Against this, the tiny nation of Israel, still beset on all sides by violent enemies, is debating as to whether or not take pre-emptive action once against its enemies - but unlike the past four decades, has a decidedly unfriendly President in Barack Obama.  The prevailing viewpoint in Washington, and with liberals in Israel, is that Iran deserves the benefit of the doubt regarding their nuclear efforts being entirely peaceful until irrefutable evidence becomes available that Iran has or is very near completing nuclear weapons and delivery systems.

Earlier this week, the Associate Press, citing anonymous Israeli government officials is reporting that the Israeli government 'has come around to the US thinking' that since there is no conclusive proof Iran is developing a nuclear weapon - the only acceptable conclusion that can be made is that Iran is not developing nuclear weapons. 

This advocacy by Media Matters and the Associate Press, based on their political ideology and unnamed (and unverifiable) sources, do far more to increase the risks for a catastrophe taking place in the region...even when one considers the increased risk resulting from the inept policies of the Obama Administration regarding the region.

For example, in Egypt, recent elections established Islamic fundamentalists in a strong majority position in the Egyptian parliament - and destined to replace the current military government. These fundamentalists are led by the Muslim Brotherhood which has as their motto:  "Allah is our objective, the Quran is our constitution, the Prophet is our leader, Jihad is our way, and death for the sake of Allah is the highest of our aspirations."

Last month, the Egyptian government prosecuted 43 US and Egyptian pro-democracy workers - releasing 16 Americans only after the Obama Administration paid the Egyptian government $5 million.  The Muslim Brotherhood has threatened to scrap the 1978 peace treaty between Egypt and Israel, and is encouraging the oppression of women and Coptic Christians in Egypt in the name of the Quran / Shari'a law.  Yet, despite these steps, the Obama Administration is reinstating $1.5 billion in military aid to Egypt despite Congress suspending that assistance over the actions of the Egyptian government.

The Administration's policies vis a vis Syria also remain without real purpose.  The Administration has been generally silent around the brutality of the Assad regime's actions towards the Syrian people - not speaking out forcefully regarding the Russian and Chinese support of the Assad regime in the United Nations.  Now comes reports that Russian anti-terror troops have landed in Syria to provide direct assistance to Assad as he continues to try to suppress the uprising against his regime.
A Russian military unit has arrived in Syria, according to Russian news reports, a development that a United Nations Security Council source told ABC News was "a bomb" certain to have serious repercussions.

Russia, one of President Bashar al-Assad's strongest allies despite international condemnation of the government's violent crackdown on the country's uprising, has repeatedly blocked the United Nations Security Council's attempts to halt the violence, accusing the U.S. and its allies of trying to start another war.

Now the Russian Black Sea fleet's Iman tanker has arrived in the Syrian port of TartusInterfax news agency. The Assad government has insisted it is fighting a terrorist insurgency. The presence of Russian troops in Syria could be a "pretty obvious" show of support to the regime, according to Russian security expert Mark Galeotti.

In Iraq, dozens of Iraqis were killed and wounded across the country in a new barrage of bombings that targeted members of the security forces and civilians in at least 12 cities. This continues a pattern of bombings that has stepped up since the Administration withdrew US combat forces from Iraq late last year. The latest series of attacks have killed at least 34 and wounded over 215. An affiliate of al-Qaeda last month took responsibility for a similar series of attacks that killed 70 and wounded 374.

The French Interior Minister said earlier today that the gunman who murdered three children and a rabbi outside a Toulouse Jewish school may have filmed the attack. France was placed on its highest terror alert for the first time and guards are being posted outside of French schools. Police suspect that the shooter may be one of three soldiers dismissed from the French Army in 2008 for neo-Nazi activities.

GOP voters go to the polls today in Illinois - a major battleground state in the race for the nomination between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum.  Santorum has some momentum from wins last week in Mississippi and Alabama, but really needs a win in Illinois in order to remain a real alternative to frontrunner Mitt Romney. 

Energy policy and prices continue to be a major campaign issue as the President continues to be hammered at the polls over soaring gasoline prices and his lack of taking any action towards the issues while complaining that there are 'no silver bullets' and we are already drilling sufficiently....

CBS News made the official announcement yesterday - 38 months into the Obama Presidency, he's added more national debt to the ledger than his 'unpatriotic' predecessor, George W. Bush did in 8 years in office.  During his 8 years in office, President Bush (43) added nearly $5 trillion to the national debt - a number that candidate Obama called unpatriotic and irresponsible. 

President Obama remains on path to not only breach the $16.4 trillion debt ceiling this September, months earlier than expected last fall, but to add more than $6 trillion to the national debt by the time his 4 year term expires in January 2013.

This debt level, combined with the financial cliff we face on January 1, 2013 (the expiration of the 'Bush Tax Cuts' with their resulting 10% across the board tax increases, the expiration of Obama's temporary 2% Social Security Payroll Tax reduction, increases in estate taxes, and the highest corporate tax rate of developed nations) threaten a return to recession in 2013...

Chairman of the House Budget Committee, Representative Paul Ryan introduced the GOP proposed FY2013 budget this morning. 

The GOP House budget proposal is nearly a complete opposite of the budget proposed by President Obama - cutting $5.3 trillion in spending over the next decade as opposed to increasing spending, collapsing the individual income tax rates to 10% and 25%, reducing the corporate tax rate to 25%, undertaking major tax reforms to close loopholes and eliminate the Alternative Minimum Tax, and tackling Medicare reform - making a critical step towards reining in entitlement spending which have us on the same fiscal path as Greece.

President Obama and Congressional Democrats are wasting little time going on the offensive against this budget proposal - attacking Medicare reforms as an assault on Seniors bringing back memories of their efforts last spring when they ran advertisements depicting Ryan pushing an old lady in a wheelchair off a cliff.

The Chair of the DCCC has already tossed down a gauntlet - saying Congressional Democrats will not negotiate or discuss Ryan's proposals calling them an 'obession' with ending Medicare.

With less than 6 months before the 2012 elections, both sides are drawing their lines in the sand for the American voter to see and evaluate.

The GOP is pressing for reform and changes - particularly towards reducing our unsustainable spending and increases in debt - making the tax system broader and shallower while embracing pro-growth economic principles. 

Contrasting this is the view of the President and Congressional Democrats - increasing spending, increasing government control and regulations, hiking taxes on the 'wealthy' in the name of 'fairness', continuing the 3 year trend of not passing a federal budget, and drastically increasing the national debt beyond 100% of GDP.

The effects of the progressive plan are visible - in Detroit, Illinois, New York, California, Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, in our energy / gasoline prices, in our unemployment numbers - we just have to look at them with the ideological blinders off.

Not boding well for President Obama in November are reports that General Electric's Chairman, Jeffrey Immelt, a strong Obama supporter in 2008 and through much of his first term, is now privately indicating that he is hoping for an Obama loss to Mitt Romney.

On This Day in History

1852 - Harriet Beecher Stowe's anti-slavery novel, 'Uncle Tom's Cabin' was published.

1854 - Former members of the Whig Party meet in Ripon, Wisconsin and found a new political party based on an anti-slavery platform....the Republican Party.

1953 - Nikita Khrushchev is named one of the five officials selected to comprise the new office of Secretariat of the Communist Party - created to fill the power vacuum created by the death of the Soviet dictator Josef Stalin on March 5th.  From this position, Khrushchev would maneuver to be named the next leader of the Soviet Union.

1995 - The Japanese cult Aum Shinrikyo launches a sarin gas terror attack on the Tokyo subway system - killing 12 and injuring over 5,000 with the deadly nerve gas.

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