Monday 28 December 2009

Did Dr. Khalid al-Mansour pay for Barack Obama's education at Harvard Law School?

Thomas Lifson
Legendary lawyer and politician Percy Sutton has died at the age of 89, and the major media are omitting mention of one of his most notable acts. The former Borough President of Manhattan, Sutton had a long and distinguished career as a lawyer (he was Malcolm X's attorney) and media mogul, who purchased radio stations in New York and other cities, making them into high rated black-oriented outlets. He also purchased and renovated (thereby saving from the wrecking ball) New York's legendary Apollo Theatre in Harlem. To top it off, Sutton was a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, one of the most celebrated groups in military aviation circles. A man of great accomplishment, whatever else one might think about his politics, and a man worthy of great respect.

However, one of Sutton's most notable moments is absent from the media hagiographies I have seen: he stated on television that he knew that an Islamic supremacist, Dr. Khalid al-Mansour, and advisor to a wealthy Saudi, had paid for Barack Obama's education at Harvard Law School.

Exactly how young Barack Obama, a man of slender means, managed to pay for a Harvard Law degree has long been a mystery, and the President has not been forthcoming about any details of his elite education.

See for yourself, Sutton's remarkable statement, which has been considgned to the Memory Hole, by the major media. Not even a reference to a "controversial contention" or other such euphemism. It simply never happened as far as the media are concerned.

Thursday 1 October 2009

Obama Administration fights to take Military Pensions

Senators fight for Guardsmen's war pension

PROTECTED SHORES: 26 members of Territorial Guard could lose funds.


Published: September 25th, 2009 11:24 AM
Last Modified: September 26th, 2009 04:18 PM

WASHINGTON -- In a strongly worded message to Congress outlining presidential priorities for a military spending bill, the Obama administration said Friday it disapproved of including money for pensions for 26 elderly members of the World War II-era Alaska Territorial Guard.

The White House move drew swift rebuke from the state's two senators, Republican Lisa Murkowski and Democrat Mark Begich, who had together sponsored the pension fix.

The legislation honors 26 elderly Alaskans who are the few remaining survivors of a military unit that served the country with valor, Murkowski said, calling the administration's direction "deeply disappointing, bordering on insensitive."

A Senate military spending bill up for a vote in the Senate allows the former Guard members to count their service as part of active military duty, and it reinstates the pension payments.

Sunday 16 August 2009

Burger Watch

MICHELLE Obama, like her husband, enjoys a good burger, but not as well done.

The first lady brought daughters Malia and Sasha to former "Top Chef" contestant Spike Mendelsohn'sGood Stuff Eatery in DC for cheeseburgers, onion rings, fries, and milkshakes. "They got the burgers medium," says a spy. (President Obama was mildly ridiculed after ordering a burger medium-well in January.) "Three starving Secret Service guys were literally standing over the grill as Spike made the burgers, but didn't eat," our source adds.

Fellow patrons had their cellphones temporarily confiscated to prevent pictures from being taken.
Source: New York Post, via JuliaM.

Obama's stepmother praises NHS care

US President Barack Obama's stepmother said that she owed her life to the NHS.

British doctors and nurses saved Kezia Obama when she suffered chronic kidney failure seven years ago.

But the 66-year-old, who lives in Bracknell, Berkshire, insisted she would never have been able to afford healthcare if she had been in America at the time.

Ms Obama told the News of the World: "It's very simple: I owe my life to the NHS"
Source: The Metro.

Tuesday 11 August 2009

Barack Obama Was For Single Payer Health Care Before He Was Against It

From today’s health care town hall in New Hampshire, here’s President Obama:

‘I Have Not Said That I Was a Single-Payer Supporter’……`I believe it would be too disruptive’

“I happen to be a proponent of a single payer universal health care program. I see no reason why the United States of America, the wealthiest country in the history of the world, spending 14 percent of its Gross National Product on health care cannot provide basic health insurance to everybody. And that’s what Jim is talking about when he says everybody in, nobody out. A single payer health care plan, a universal health care plan. And that’s what I’d like to see. But as all of you know, we may not get there immediately. Because first we have to take back the White House, we have to take back the Senate, and we have to take back the House.”

Friday 31 July 2009

In the 70s, Obama's Science Adviser Endorsed Giving Trees Legal Standing to Sue in Court

Since the 1970s, some radical environmentalists have argued that trees have legal rights and should be allowed to go to court to protect those rights.

The idea has been endorsed by John P. Holdren, the man who now advises President Barack Obama on science and technology issues.

Giving “natural objects” -- like trees -- standing to sue in a court of law would have a “most salubrious” effect on the environment, Holdren wrote the 1970s.

“One change in (legal) notions that would have a most salubrious effect on the quality of the environment has been proposed by law professor Christopher D. Stone in his celebrated monograph, ‘Should Trees Have Standing?’” Holdren said in a 1977 book that he co-wrote with Paul R. Ehrlich and Anne H. Ehrlich.

Thursday 30 July 2009

White House Science Adviser Advocated 'De-Development' of the United States

President Obama’s top science adviser, John P. Holdren, advocated the "de-development" of the United States in books he published in the 1970s.

"A massive campaign must be launched to restore a high-quality environment in North America and to de-develop the United States," Holdren wrote in a 1973 book he co-authored with Paul R. Ehrlch and Anne H. Ehrlich. "De-development means bringing our economic system (especially patterns of consumption) into line with the realities of ecology and the global resource situation."

Wednesday 22 July 2009

Obama White House breaks another promise to reject Bush secrecy

The still sort-of new Barack Obama Democratic administration has again adopted yet another policy straight out of the administration of his much-criticized Republican predecessor George W. Bush.

Obama administration officials have rejected a watchdog group's request for a list of healthcare industry executives who've been meeting secretly in the White House with Obama staffers to discuss pending healthcare changes being drafted there and in Congress.

According to the Citizens for Ethics and Responsibility in Washington, which is suspicious of the influence of health industry lobbyists and company officers, it received a letter from the Secret Service citing an Obama Justice Dept. directive and denying access to visitor logs under the "presidential communications privilege."

Sunday 12 July 2009

Broken Promises — to Voters and the New York Times

“[O]nce it is clear that a bill will be coming to the president’s desk, the White House will post the bill online,” White House spokesman Nick Shapiro told New York Times reporter Katherine Seelye for her June 22 story on President Obama’s “Sunlight Before Signing” campaign pledge. “This will give the American people a greater ability to review the bill, often many more than five days before the president signs it into law.”

The story, titled “White House Changes the Terms of a Campaign Pledge About Posting Bills Online,” was about the White House effort to walk back from President Obama’s campaign pledge to post bills he receives for five days before signing them.

When the New York Times published the story, five bills had been presented to the president and were awaiting his signature. Four more were presented to him after the story’s publication. All nine are now law.

And for the life of me, I can’t find where any of them have been posted on Surely it was clear to the White House that the five bills it had and the four soon to come would reach the president’s desk.

Saturday 4 July 2009

Obama Uses His Volunteer as Plant at Healthcare Propaganda Event

It turns out that the woman at a White House-sponsored healthcare forum who pulled the heartstrings of the media by asking President Obama for help in treating her cancer — as if she were channeling the afflicted who, in the New Testament, besought Jesus of Nazareth for a healing touch – was an Obama plant.

Debby Smith is a member of Organizing for America, a network of volunteers whose mission is to rouse public support for President Obama and his political and social agendas; it is also a project of the Democratic National Committee. Smith was invited to the event not by an outside group but by the White House itself.

No wonder the president hugged her.

Saturday 27 June 2009

Cuba Dissidents Win Award but Not Obama Audience

Five Cuban dissidents who have collectively spent decades in jail for their pro-democracy activities were given a top award by the National Endowment for Democracy last night. But, unlike in past years, their representative was not invited to the White House, organizers said.

Carl Gershman, president of the endowment, said the organization asked two weeks ago whether President Obama could meet with Bertha AntĂșnez, the sister of one of the dissidents, who was picking up the award on their behalf. Gershman said he never got a response. It was the first time in five years that the president had not met with the winner of the Democracy Award, according to the endowment, which is funded by Congress.

"I am disappointed, and also surprised since the President said in the campaign that Libertad would be the touchstone on his Cuba policy," Gershman said in an e-mail, using the Spanish word for "liberty."

Monday 15 June 2009

The curious firing of Gerald Walpin gets … curiouser

Senator Charles Grassley has demanded records from the Obama administration over the dismissal of the Inspector General for Americorps and raises the possibility that Barack Obama broke a law he co-sponsored in the Senate that protects the independence of the IGs. The firing comes as the Obama administration cut a sweetheart deal with a major Obama backer that allows him to receive federal funding as mayor of Sacramento, and fails to repay taxpayers for the money Kevin Johnson admittedly took illegally:

Saturday 23 May 2009

Obama picks financial backer for UK ambassador post

A little bit of Chicago's ruthless and combative political machine is soon to descend on the decorous calm of the Court of St James. Despite promising to end cronyism in Washington, Barack Obama is about to appoint one of his home town friends and financial backers to the plum posting of US ambassador to London.

Ewen MacAskill on the new US ambassador to Britain Link to this audio
The next ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary will be Louis Susman, a lawyer and financier with little experience of foreign affairs.

The appointment will end months of speculation. Susman's name first surfaced in a diary column in the Washington Post in February, but Caroline Kennedy was also mentioned, as was Oprah Winfrey, another of Obama's Chicago supporters...

Historically, about 25% to 30% of the diplomatic posts have been political appointees. It is too early to say, but Obama's ratio could yet be lower...

Obama's predecessor, George W Bush, sent two of his financier backers to the UK: William Farish, a Texas multimillionaire, and Robert Tuttle, a California car dealer. The lack of an experienced diplomat in London was felt most in the runup to the war in Iraq in 2003, with Farish invisible when a figure was needed to put the US case on camera and in print.
Source: The Guardian. Via JuliaM.

Thursday 9 April 2009

Obama Stakes His Fortunes on Failed Banksters

Now that we have a rough idea how President Barack Obama and his lieutenants plan to prop up insolvent financial institutions using taxpayers’ money, we’re left with a more difficult question: Why?

Why doesn’t the Obama administration force insolvent banks and insurance companies to come clean about their losses first? It’s the "why" that’s so vexing. The who, what, when, and how are mere details, by comparison...

He could have ordered all U.S. financial institutions to immediately confess whatever losses they hadn’t yet recognized. And he could have backed that up by vowing to prosecute every officer, director and auditor the Justice Department could find who had approved numbers they knew to be wrong.

Obama didn’t do that. And now, six months into the government’s Troubled Asset Relief Program, his administration’s approach to the financial crisis is largely indistinguishable from its predecessor’s. The only objective, it seems, is to buy time, in hopes that an economic recovery somehow will materialize and lift the financial system back to health.

The Obama administration’s "strategy", for lack of a better word, is to keep plying broken financial institutions with as much taxpayer money as the government can print. And so the government will keep subsidizing failed mega-banks indefinitely, rather than placing any into receivership or liquidating them.
Source: Jonathan Weil at Bloomberg.

Tuesday 7 April 2009

Government Sachs is in control

Lloyd Blankfein must be the luckiest guy on Wall Street. He leads one of the Street's biggest bailed-out firms, but unlike other companies propped up by taxpayers, Blankfein's Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

GS is far more profitable. And it's poised to become a more influential force with greater market share. Different from American International Group Inc. or Citigroup Inc., Goldman hasn't had to forfeit an ownership stake in its firm, and its shareholders - many of them management and employees - have benefited. Goldman shares trade above $100. That's less than half of where Goldman shares traded at their peak, but far better than the $1 and $3 that AIG and Citigroup shares trade for, respectively.

Since the fall of Bear Stearns Cos. a little more than a year ago, Goldman has taken more than $20 billion in taxpayer cash through loans, payments and backstops. Goldman's latest bailout coup was a $12.5 billion paid out of AIG's $180 billion government cash infusion.

Until it was fully extricated, Goldman always characterized its exposure to AIG as "immaterial," and that its $20 billion notional exposure to AIG was hedged. Turns out that it was - through government bailouts that didn't exist when Goldman entered the contracts.

Even former New York Luv Guv Eliot Spitzer told journalist Fareed Zakaria on Sunday that he thinks something smells. "The web between AIG and Goldman Sachs is something that should be pursued," Spitzer said. "Why did [those payments] happen, what questions were asked, why did we need to pay 100 cents on the dollar for those transactions if we had to pay anything, what would have happened to the financial system had it not been paid?"

But the AIG-Goldman affair is just the beginning, under the policy enacted by former U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, Goldman's chief executive until 2006. Major competitors have failed or been diminished. Goldman already seems, if not just poised, to be dominating what's left of the investment banking landscape...
Source: MarketWatch

Friday 3 April 2009

'Obama sale' politician charged

Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich has been indicted for corruption while in office - including trying to sell the Senate seat held by Barack Obama.
A grand jury indicted the 52-year-old Democrat on 16 felony counts, including racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud, extortion conspiracy, attempted extortion and making false statements to federal agents.

Blagojevich, who claims he did nothing wrong and is a victim of a political witch-hunt, has promised to fight the charges in court and has a book contract to tell his side. If convicted, he faces more than 300 years in prison and at least $4million in fines, according to the indictment.

Blagojevich, elected in 2002, was in his second term when the state legislature kicked him out of office nine weeks ago, following his arrest in December. The 75-page indictment alleges Blagojevich was at the centre of a conspiracy to seek cash, campaign contributions and jobs for himself and others.

They would allegedly be in exchange for state appointments, state business, legislation and pension fund investments. Among those actions were attempts to use his authority to appoint a US senator when Obama vacated his seat after being elected president in November, US attorney Patrick Fitzgerald said.

The governor was caught on court-approved wiretaps describing the Senate seat as something so valuable "you just don't give it away for nothing". Blagojevich added he might appoint himself if he could not get anything for the seat.
Source: The Metro

Wednesday 1 April 2009

Obama nominee admits tax errors

US President Barack Obama's second choice for health secretary has become the latest of his nominees to reveal tax payment problems.

Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius said she had recently corrected her tax returns and paid almost $8,000 (£5,560) in back-taxes for 2005-2007. Ms Sebelius is due to testify at the US Senate on Thursday...

In a letter to the heads of the Senate Finance Committee, where Ms Sebelius is due to testify on Thursday as part of her confirmation process, she said the back-payments were the result of "unintentional errors".

They involved charity donations, a house sale, and business expenses and came to light in a review of their tax returns ordered ahead of the confirmation, she said. She said that together with her husband she had paid $7,040 in additional tax and $878 in interest.
Source: BBC

Sunday 29 March 2009

Obama Town Hall Questioners Were Campaign Backers

the five fully identified questioners called on randomly by the president in the East Room were anything but a diverse lot. They included: a member of the pro-Obama Service Employees International Union, a member of the Democratic National Committee who campaigned for Obama among Hispanics during the primary; a former Democratic candidate for Virginia state delegate who endorsed Obama last fall in an op-ed in the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star; and a Virginia businessman who was a donor to Obama's campaign in 2008.

Tuesday 17 March 2009

Why tax problems have plagued Team Obama

It’s been a recurring question about the young Obama administration: Why have so many of its nominees come down with tax problems?

Timothy Geithner, Tom Daschle, Ron Kirk, Nancy Killefer, and a number of others who didn’t make it to the nomination stage — all have been felled, or tainted, by unpaid tax bills ranging from a few hundred dollars to more than $140,000. After the first few cases, Republican Rep. Eric Cantor quipped that “it’s easy for [Democrats] to sit here and advocate higher taxes because — you know what? — they don’t pay them.”

For their part, some Democrats have suggested that the Senate Finance Committee, which investigates nominees before confirmation, has gotten so nit-picky in examining tax returns that good candidates have gone down in flames. “The Finance Committee has gone a bit overboard, and I find it a little striking that a Democratic committee is doing this to a Democratic administration,” one anonymous insider told the Politico recently. “This has been a lot more in-depth and detailed, to the point of being silly.”

Now, we find out that neither Cantor nor the unnamed Democrat was correct. The problem is not with Democrats in general, nor with the Finance Committee in particular. The problem is the Obama White House, which, fully aware of its nominees’ tax issues, decided that those problems were trivial, or that the public wouldn’t care about them, and pushed forward with nominations that in the past would have been quietly shelved.

In little-noticed remarks last week, Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, gave us a look inside the confirmation process. Irritated by news reports suggesting the committee had been too hard on Obama’s nominees, Grassley pointed the finger back at the White House.

“I want to stress that the Finance Committee is not doing anything different now from what it has always done under the leadership of either Senator Baucus or me,” Grassley said, referring to Democratic chairman Max Baucus of Montana. “We are vetting nominees for the current administration the same way we vetted nominees for the previous administration.”

“The tax issues of the nominees considered by the committee this year came to be public only because the nominees chose to proceed.”

Grassley said the committee has always requested three years of tax returns from nominees, and always employed experts to review them. And in the past, he added, “many nominees” faced questions based on their tax returns. The reason tax problems seem more prevalent now, Grassley explained, is that in previous administrations those nominees chose to quietly withdraw. Now, they try to stick it out, leading to sometimes embarrassing controversy. “Chairman Baucus and I agree that if a nominee chooses to proceed after tax issues are identified, then the public should be informed of those issues,” Grassley said.

Wednesday 4 March 2009

Exclusive: Lawyer says Guantanamo abuse worse since Obama

Abuse of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay has worsened sharply since President Barack Obama took office as prison guards "get their kicks in" before the camp is closed, according to a lawyer who represents detainees.

Abuses began to pick up in December after Obama was elected, human rights lawyer Ahmed Ghappour told Reuters. He cited beatings, the dislocation of limbs, spraying of pepper spray into closed cells, applying pepper spray to toilet paper and over-forcefeeding detainees who are on hunger strike.
Source: Reuters.

Saturday 28 February 2009

Mixed Messages

Chinese policymakers must be bemused, or at least confused.

The current message from Washington: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has pleaded with China to continue buying US Treasury bonds amid mounting fears that Washington may struggle to finance bank bail-outs and ballooning deficits over the next two years. "It's a safe investment. The United States has a well-deserved financial reputation," she told Chinese television stations at the end of her diplomatic tour of Asia.

The message one month ago: President Barack Obama believes China is “manipulating” its currency, his choice to head the U.S. Treasury said on Thursday....Washington will “aggressively” use all its diplomatic tools to press Beijing to move faster on currency reform, New York Federal Reserve Bank President Timothy Geithner said ...U.S. Treasury bond prices fell on worries China could respond to Mr. Geithner’s frank comments by dumping U.S. Treasury bonds.

The inconsistency in the policy here becomes fully apparent only when one understands how China "manipulates" its currency: It keeps the value of the yuan lower than it otherwise might be by supplying yuan and demanding dollars in foreign-exchange markets. Those dollars are then invested in U.S. Treasuries.

In other words, Secretary Clinton is now asking the Chinese to do precisely what Secretary Geithner asked them not to do.
Source: Greg Mankiw's 'Blog.

Wednesday 25 February 2009

Obama Thinks America Invented The Automobile

In tonight's mini-State of the Union, President Obama said the "nation that invented the automobile cannot walk away from it." One problem. We didn't. That would be Karl Benz, in Mannheim, Germany.

Thursday 19 February 2009

Fury at Obama chimp cartoon

A newspaper cartoon has sparked outrage by likening Barack Obama to a crazed chimp shot dead after mauling a woman. The illustration in the New York Post cartoon has been condemned as racist by politicians and civil rights leaders.

Sean Delonas' cartoon shows two police officers, one with a smoking gun, standing over the body of a bullet-riddled chimp, with the caption: "They'll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill." It refers to a chimpanzee named Travis, who was killed on Monday in Connecticut after viciously attacking a friend of its owner.

Some critics called the cartoon racist and said it trivialised a tragedy which left Charla Nash with what police called "life-changing" facial injuries. Others said the cartoon suggests that Obama should be assassinated, with critics urging a boycott of the Post and the companies advertising in it....
Source: The Metro

Rahm's rent is just the tip of the ethics iceberg

NEWS broke last week that Rahm Emanuel, now White House chief of staff, lived rent- free for years in the home of Rep. Rosa De Lauro (D-Conn.) - and failed to disclose the gift, as congressional ethics rules mandate. But this is only the tip of Emanuel's previously undislosed ethics problems.

One issue is the work Emanuel tossed the way of De Lauro's husband. But the bigger one goes back to Emanuel's days on the board of now-bankrupt mortgage giant Freddie Mac...

Nor is this all that seems to have been missed in the Obama team's vetting process. Consider: Emanuel served on the Freddie Mac board of directors during the time that the government-backed lender lied about its earnings, a leading contributor to the current economic meltdown.

The Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight Agency later singled out the Freddie Mac board as contributing to the fraud in 2000 and 2001 for "failing in its duty to follow up on matters brought to its attention." In other words, board members ignored the red flags waving in their faces. The SEC later fined Freddie $50 million for its deliberate fraud in 2000, 2001 and 2002.

Meanwhile, Emanuel was paid more than $260,000 for his Freddie "service." Plus, after he resigned from the board to run for Congress in 2002, the troubled agency's PAC gave his campaign $25,000 - its largest single gift to a House candidate.
Source: New York Post, via Karl Denninger

Tuesday 17 February 2009

Aren't late night comics looking for Obama material?

Could you imagine if Ronald Reagan or George W. Bush had used a teleprompter to answer questions during a press conference? The late night joke writers wouldn’t have let it go until the President gave in to the merciless ridicule as he was painted as an idiot who couldn’t tie his shoes without being fed instructions on how to do it.

While people who watched Obama’s first national press conference noticed his use of a teleprompter to give his initial presentation as well as in answering questions, the media and late night joke writers completely ignored it. The American Spectator notes that in many events:

…down to many of the questions and the answers to those questions … [t]eleprompter screens at the events scrolled not only his opening remarks, but also statistics and information he could use to answer questions.

Apparently, Obama is looking to install a computer screen into the podium so that, according to one Obama advisor, ”It would make it easier for the comms guys to pass along information without being obvious about it.” [emphasis added] Obama’s aids would put together answers to a large number of possible questions so as soon as a reporter asks a particular question the computer screen would flash talking points to remind Obama how he’s supposed to respond to that question.

Jay, Dave, Conan… You don’t see anything funny here?
Source: Big Hollywood, submitted by Anti-Citizen One.

Saturday 14 February 2009

Barack Obama's second commerce nominee Judd Gregg withdraws over 'irresolvable conflicts'

Mr Gregg, who was nominated as Commerce Secretary last week after Governor Bill Richardson had pulled out after he was implicated in a corruption investigation, cited disagreements over the massive economic stimulus bill as a principal reason for his decision.

Mr Obama promised that his presidency would usher in a new era of bipartisanship in Washington. But while two Republicans, Bob Gates, the Pentagon chief, and Ray LaHood, the transportation secretary, remain in his cabinet, only three Republicans out of 219 in Congress voted for the stimulus bill.

Mr Gregg's reference to the stimulus underscored the sharp partisan divide over the centrepiece of Obama's economic recovery plan. Conservatives in both houses of Congress have been relentless critics of the plan, arguing that it is filled with wasteful spending and will not create new jobs quickly.

The Commerce Department has jurisdiction over the Census Bureau, and the Obama administration recently took steps to assert greater control over the 2010 census. Republicans have harshly criticised the decision, charging it was an attempt to politicise the survey, taken every 10 years, possibly in an attempt to redraw congressional districts.
Source: The Telegraph, via Julia M.

Friday 13 February 2009

'Sanctions' sought in eligibility case

A high-powered team of Los Angeles attorneys representing President Obama in his effort to keep his birth certificate, college records and passport documents concealed from the public has suggested there should be "monetary sanctions" against a lawyer whose clients have brought a complaint alleging Obama doesn't qualify for the Oval Office under the Constitution's demand for a "natural born" citizen in that post.

The suggestion came in an exchange of e-mails and documents in a case brought by former presidential candidate Alan Keyes and others in California. The case originally sought to have the state's electors ordered to withhold their votes for Obama until his eligibility was established. Since Obama's inauguration, it has been amended to seek a future requirement for a vetting process, in addition to the still-sought unveiling of his records.
Source: World Net Daily.

Tuesday 10 February 2009

Obama: The Market Is Issuing You A WARNING

Put the kids away - this is not going to be pleasant.

I'm done Mr. President. You stood in front of the American Public and lied through your damn teeth. You claim that America faces a "catastrophe" if we don't pass your bill - but its not YOUR BILL, its Pelosi's and Reid's bill - a bill full of PORK and BS.

I'm tired of the lies, America is tired of the lies, and we the people are not going to sit still for it any longer. You promised us change. This is what we got for "change"...
Source: Karl Denninger.

Friday 6 February 2009

Barack Obama faces taxing problems as the shine comes off his polished image

This article retreads old ground, but I didn't know this:
One of his first acts as President was to sign executive orders for a new era of civic responsibility designed to end the old influence-peddling ways of Washington by banning lobbyists from working in his Administration.

The White House swiftly bent its new rules to allow a lobbyist for the defence contractor Raytheon to be picked as the Pentagon's No 2 and another to be lined up as Mr Daschle's deputy.

Mr Daschle, though not a registered lobbyist, had received more than $250,000 (£173,000) in income from health sector clients as he amassed a multimillion-dollar fortune in the private sector. The six-figure sum in federal tax that he had failed to pay was owed from a chauffeur-driven car provided for him by a wealthy Democratic donor.
Source: The Times, via Julia M

Thursday 5 February 2009

A Barack Too Far? New Rochelle Public Schools Assign Seven Year Olds to Obama Campaign

Students at an elementary school in New Rochelle, NY, a largely Democratic suburb of New York City with a City Council and School Board dominated by Democrats, were recently assigned an in-class assignment to color in drawings of Barack Obama to mark the occasion of the inauguration of the 44th President.

The drawings depicted Obama in various heroic poses, flags waving in the background, but one drawing went beyond adulation into overt political activity disguised as a pedagogical exercise. The drawing is a campaign button, in the center of a circle Barack Obama is smiling surrounded by another circle with the words "Students for Obama 2008".
Source: New Rochelle's Talk Of The Sound.

Tuesday 3 February 2009

Two Obama nominees - Tom Daschle and Nancy Killefer - quit over tax problems

President Obama's promise of setting a new ethical standard for American politics took a knock today when his choices for budget enforcer and Health Secretary asked for their nominations to be withdrawn because of controversy over their personal tax records.

Tom Daschle had struggled for the past three days to secure his confirmation in the health role, admitting that he had been left “deeply embarrassed” by his failure to pay $128,000 (£89,000) in taxes for a car and driver provided by a wealthy Democrat donor.

Today, just hours after Nancy Killefer withdrew from consideration as the Chief Performance Officer over a similar tax issue, Mr Daschle gave up the fight, saying that he did not want to be a “distraction” for the Administration as it sought to introduce universal healthcare.
Source: The Times

Obama suffers blow over nominees

Former Senator Tom Daschle has withdrawn his nomination as US health and human services secretary after a controversy involving unpaid taxes. US President Barack Obama said he had accepted his nominee's withdrawal "with sadness and regret". It was revealed last week that Mr Daschle, an early Obama backer, had failed to pay some $130,000 in taxes.
Source: BBC

Saturday 31 January 2009

This is the sub-prime house that Barack Obama built

It is all very well for President Obama to vent his anger on all those US bankers who continued to claim billions of dollars in bonuses while expecting Washington to bail them out after the sub-prime mortgage scandal brought the banks to their knees. But conveniently overlooked has been the curious part Mr Obama himself played in the sub-prime debacle.

At the heart of it was a 1995 amendment to the Community Reinvestment Act which legally required banks to lend money to buy homes to millions of poor, mainly black Americans, guaranteed by the two biggest mortgage associations, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. And no one campaigned more actively for this change to the law than Mr Obama, as a young but already influential Chicago politician.

It was this Act which, more than anything, helped to create the US housing bubble, well beyond the point where it was obvious that hundreds of thousands of homeowners would be likely to default. And in 2005 no one more actively opposed moves to halt Fannie Mae's reckless guarantees than Senator Obama, as he was by then. As the official records show, no senator received more donations from Fannie Mae than he did (although Hillary Clinton ran him close). Thus no US politician arguably did more to promote the sub-prime disaster than the man now expected to pick up the pieces, Rather like Gordon Brown, really.
Source: The Telegraph

Obama half-brother on drug charge

The Kenyan half-brother of President Barack Obama has been arrested for alleged marijuana possession.
George Obama was arrested in Nairobi with one joint of marijuana, police chief Joshua Omokulongolo said. "He is not a drug peddler. But it is illegal, it is a banned substance," he said. Mr Obama has denied the allegations.
Source: BBC

Thursday 22 January 2009

Obama orders Guantanamo prison closed

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Thursday ordered the Guantanamo Bay military prison closed within one year and established a cabinet-level task force to determine what to do with the remaining 245 detainees held at the facility.

Obama signed the executive order on Guantanamo following meetings Thursday morning with a group of former military officers who have been urging him to shut down the facility.

"Guantanamo will be closed no later than one year from now," Obama said, adding that the move will be carried out "consistent with national security."
In your own time, Barry, in your own sweet time.


Monday 19 January 2009

Obama’s Rick Warren Scandal Just Got Worse

The Obama team has just opened up a new front in their skirmishes with gay rights supporters over Obama’s decision to invite Rick Warren, the anti-gay megachurch preacher, to give the invocation at the inauguration tomorrow.

The latest incident occurred yesterday when HBO failed to broadcast an invocation delivered by openly gay Bishop Gene Robinson during pre-inaugural events at the Lincoln Memorial. Now HBO is claiming it was ordered not to broadcast Robinson’s prayer by the Presidential Inaugural Committee:

…HBO insisted in an email on Sunday night that it was not their decision to omit Robinson’s invocation, saying, “The producer of the concert has said that the Presidential Inaugural Committee made the decision to keep the invocation as part of the pre-show.”
Source: Pensito Review

Thirty-three per cent believe that Obama was born on Planet Krypton

... the opinions on where Obama was born (opinions and beliefs being far more important than facts nowadays, two can play at that game) on a good turnout of 132 votes (thanks to everybody who voted, as ever) are as follows:

Runaway winner: Planet Krypton (33%)

Leaving that possibility aside, 37% reckoned he was disqualified from being US President:
Mombassa, Kenya (24%)
On an aeroplane from somewhere to somewhere else (4%)
It's irrelevant, he lost US citizenship when he was adopted by an Indonesian (9%)

And only 31% are True Believers:
Kapi'olani Medical Center, Honolulu (13%)
It's irrelevant, he will still Save The World (10%)
Queens Medical Center, Honolulu (7%)
Washington State (1%)

Friday 16 January 2009

Non-job axed

When Barack Obama won election to the senate back in 2004 one of the first things he did was secure a $1 million earmark for his wife's employers, who a few months later nearly trebled her salary overnight. It's the Chicago way- "Pay to play" I believe they call it.

She didn't actually do anything that enabled the hospital to treat patients more effectively, quite the opposite in fact, she was in a diversity make-work role that involved transferring money that could have been spent on medical care to political clients.

Obama defenders were insisting that it was a very valuable job and that she was being paid for the job she did. Yet amazingly now that the position, which was previously of such importance that it merited a $300000+ salary, is no longer filled by someone whose spouse can deliver the federal largesse, it turns out that the position is no longer needed. I'm shocked I tell you!
Source: Unenlightened Commentary, New York Times, Chicago Daily Observer

Wednesday 14 January 2009

Obama's pick as treasury secretary, Timothy Geithner, failed to pay taxes

The man chosen by President-elect Obama to run the US Treasury failed to pay $34,000 in taxes over several years in the first half of the decade.

The disclosure of the unpaid tax bill of Timothy Geithner, who is president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, will complicate a Senate Finance Committee hearing into his nomination as US Treasury Secretary.

It may also add some bumps into what has so far been a relatively seamless transition between the Bush and Obama presidencies.

The unpaid taxes, which relate to a period when Mr Geithner worked as a senior official at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and a separate issue regarding the employment of a housekeeper without a work permit, emerged in papers released yesterday by the Senate Finance Committee.
Source: The Telegraph

Tuesday 6 January 2009

Obama dumps scandal-tainted key nominee

PRESIDENT-ELECT Barack Obama has moved to cut short ethical controversies surrounding his incoming administration, by accepting the withdrawal of his nominee for commerce secretary, Bill Richardson, who is embroiled in a financial scandal in his home state of New Mexico.

The two issued a statement announcing that Mr Richardson, once a presidential candidate and the first prominent Latino to be appointed to the cabinet, would withdraw and return to his duties as Governor of New Mexico, after it became clear a grand jury inquiry into the dealings of a donor company with the state would take some time.

Mr Obama said he had accepted Mr Richardson's decision to withdraw "with deep regret".
Source: The Age