Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Eastern Coastal Storms, Hurricane Sandy and the Aftermath Destructions: What will Mitt Romney Do?

Keywords or Terms: Hurricane Sandy; Deaths, Floods, Train Tracks Collapse; FEMA; Privatization; Profits; Heartlessness; and, the Republican Party Flag Bearer

Is the battle for the hearts and souls of the American voters bringing the worst in the Republican Party Flag bearer? Is Mitt Romney’s obsession for making money clouding his sense of compassion and reasoning when he re-affirmed that he wanted FEMA privatized? Can anyone explain to me, since I went to late night school, how a politician would like to make money from severe super storms, likened to an explosion of a 500 thousand tons bomb coming off at the same time, by eminent climatologists? Is there really anything that people wouldn’t try to make money off? I learn some people are making money off disposal of you know what, could that happen to disaster from the fury of nature and emergency management? Can some people make money from the miseries and misfortunes that have consumed lives, properties and displaced thousands, if not millions? How shocked will anyone going through the misery of Hurricane Sandy, hearing that someone out there is attempting to make profits from their misfortune caused by ravages of the huge storm?

Talking with Mr. John King of Cable News Network sometimes ago, Mitt Romney offered to privatize FEMA. The only final public safety net in time of horrendous and disastrous storms and hurricanes; human sufferings and misery; the Federal Emergency and Management Administration (FEMA), is to be turned over to the private money-makers, if Mitt Romney had his way! Geez! Or, in the alternative, the hypocritical Republican flag bearer will send the functions of FEMA to the state or local governments, to manage. Imagine asking the State of New York alone, to manage the aftermath of 85 miles per hour winds and 14 feet of flood waters from high and historical tides from Hurricane Sandy? Imagine also, how overwhelming Hurricane Katrina was for the City of New Orleans and State of Louisiana to manage? Can you ever imagine that anyone, let alone a prominent politician who will like to be President, will recommend privatization of FEMA? What private profit-driven enterprise can mobilize enough resources and power to stabilize the confusions during disasters like this? Does the Republican flag bearer understand the implication of privatizing first responders and the selfless work they do?

Hurricane Sandy, the largest and most expansive hurricanes this year, one that is breaking old century weather records for floods, storms and rains; one that is giving virtually all climatologists and meteorologists concern, or nightmare; is being contemplated as a source of green back generation! While some progressives are miffed at our politicians still dilly-dallying over the question of the veracity of climate change, someone out there is contemplating making a buck from people’s misery and misfortune! Despicable, In-compassionate and Unthinkable? Imagine living in Staten or Long Island tonight or other exclusive Islands in New York and New Jerseys, where water front homes are collapsing like a pack of cards into water, where nature is informing all residents who is king, can you fathom that someone can be contemplating privatizing an all too important institution of public safety? Can you imagine family members living in the paths of hurricane sandy?

The horrible storm has knocked down tree branches unto roads and probably isolated thousands in various communities, on its path. Parts of New York and New Jersey have been inundated with knee deep floods; the storm has forced airlines to cancel flights and passengers, travel plans. The New York Mercantile Stock Exchange has been closed because of the storms. Many homes have caught fire, with winds blowing at unimaginable pace, electrically ignited fires continue to move from homes to homes in some areas, and worse more, no one can adequately predict the magnitude and costs of this disaster and storm?  Scary stuff, eh? Without urgent evacuation of millions of residents, the disaster may even be worse than can be imagined at this stage. With tides and extensive flooding scaring the daylights out of residents, can you imagine one politician re-affirming his belief that the last point of defense, the first responders, FEMA, fire fighters, police, teachers and more, should be privatized? No one is tallying the cost yet, but tentative estimates are putting the cost of hurricane Sandy and storms at about ten billion or more dollars. This is not counting the loss on Wall Street for shutting down transactions for two days in a row?

Interestingly, in the world of the Republicans, storms and disasters are appropriate opportunities to make money. Hurricane Sandy is about to be made a huge money maker for the Republicans, if Mitt Romney wins the November 6th elections! No more FEMA working with worried State and local governments; rather, the public will be left at the mercy of a pretty young secretary of a small-sized company held up in a tiny hole, making decisions regarding whether to warn people to quickly move to safer grounds uphill; or the soon to come, private emergency warehouse or way-house, after every disastrous weather nightmares? Can a private enterprise be able to pay or manage the size of infrastructure damage in the States of New Jersey and New York, tonight?

Executives, likely without emergency preparedness training, will be making decisions regarding the falling power lines and where private emergency vehicles are supposed to be heading and what impacted residents are to receive evacuation or support first, during any emergency like this? Someone without standard hydrological training or weather forecasts experience will be projecting what is the best line of action to help residents of many cities in the path of the storms or disaster? Small Cities and towns in remote places that are getting the attention of FEMA today, will probably be jettisoned for lesser impacted areas or peoples? Families suffering from the ravages of the storms, high dusty winds and power outages will have to depend on splintered information coming from multiple sources of private emergency companies that may or not, understand the history of the area with storms. The ruins of the disaster and tough weather; and, the aftermath mess and clean-up, will be provided by multiple private emergency companies, interested in making fortune from the disasters? For example, between two to three million New Yorkers, who have lost electricity tonight, will have to deal with multiple private companies juggling to talk the talk and walk the walk of the mantra: “private investors and money makers do it best!”

City residents on the path of the storms and hurricanes, or other disasters, can forget government shelters, supplemental help, warm food and beds as reprieves in time of these storms; some of these storms that have been known to lead to both financial and psychological stress, over extended period, is now to be managed be emergency companies without insurance to cover billion dollar losses? How will or can, a small private company, in the middle of hell, appreciate or crystallize the associated human sufferings and difficulties that also accompany these periods? Could you imagine a private emergency company in Manhattan attempting to get food and water to thousands in Staten Island right now without lights and electricity? Some of these disasters repeat themselves over several cycles of years and make residents psychologically defeated. Can you imagine an attempt to have a private for profit enterprise, managed by a few “Chiefs”, with only 50 workers, attempting to manage the emergencies associated with the type of work FEMA is currently providing? Imagine the caption on tomorrows headlines after a horrible disaster like today's, the private for profit, Storms, Hurricanes and Flood Managing Company Incorporated, had just declared Upper Manhattan unreachable after the storms, so they wouldn’t be helping those stranded residents in the Upstate and lower New York?

These are just a few of the potential consequences of privatizing FEMA, the way the Republican flag bearers had suggested and continues to re-assert. Americans must be free to make money off other peoples in their dire straight times. Yea, that’s great wisdom in privatization; that’s how to help small businesses thrive on other Americans’ misfortunes, that’s how to help Americans overcome the vagaries of weather that has been blamed for multiple loss of lives, fires that rescuers cannot get to, raging fires in several communities, unfounded stories of discomfort and hospital patients’ relocation from hospital beds, because electricity went out in their current hospital and care centers. To say the least, this is unconscionable; and, Mr. Romney must be made to retract his suggestions and apologize to the millions that are suffering in several Northeastern Coast states.

While many Americans in the US North East, especially New York, Connecticut, Maryland New Jersey and more, are so grateful and thankful for having an agency as FEMA helping out during these challenging times, without charging or attempting to make profit off their back, the Republican Flag bearer has promised. Governor Romney reaffirmed his conviction that federal disaster reliefs for natural disaster as the one in US North-East are waste of government resources. In the estimation and spirit of Governor Romney’s position; and for those who are likely to vote for him, here is my sarcastic face book post response: “No, No, our "President" Romney is going to privatize the first responders jobs! Why bother about the first responders or saving lives? Yes, we can make money off people's misery, and disaster. Strong winds, train collapse, evacuation of unfortunate stranded people going through gusty winds all over North East are good for profits! Let's go make it...! Let's go make profit at the expense of the 47% and more. That's the Republican way! BRAVO!!!”

It seems, after going through rebirth by members of the Tea Party, the now extreme hard right Mitt Romney is poised to change things as we know them. If elected, America is going to have a President endeared to the private sector; and, emboldened by extremities of the Tea party guys to over turn commonsense policies in environmental management. FEMA, the country’s last point of call for the ordinary man and woman, will likely go to the highest bidder. One could recall that when we had Joplin Tornado last year, Romney was quoted as saying that federal disaster relief for tornado and flood victims is immoral and makes no sense at all. However, privatization of FEMA is all well and dandy! Americans in the North East tonight, will have to rely on small enterprises, who hardly understand what it entails to keep people safe amidst the chaos, making life and deaths decisions. This is the challenge ahead, if Mr. Romney becomes President. 

Under Mitt Romney stewardship of the White House: "First, is the tax cut from hell; followed by privatization of Medicaid and Medicare; then Social Security. Second, is the privatization of FEMA, so that private enterprises can make money off the misfortune(s) and heartaches of Americans, just the way Mitt Romney did at Bains Capital. Third, is the privatization of Federal Reserve Bank. Fourth, is the eradication of US Department of Education. Fifth, is the demolish of Obamacare and the turning away of millions from health insurance. Sixth, is the nomination of hard right and extreme conservatives to Federal Bench and the Supreme Court. You can imagine what other stuffs this clown is going to bring into our lives! Can you imagine, if residents of New York had to negotiate how much it will cost them to be safe or pulled out of the path of the storm? 

Can you further imagine dealing with thousands of private enterprises in an emergency situation, without a centralized 911 call? The new private emergency enterprises that will spring up will likely have a representative on K-street, Washington DC, lobbying not to pay or take care of the aftermath of the deaths and miseries of Americans in storms like this one in the US North East. These companies will be lobbying for millions of corporate welfare from congress. While victims of the storms and ravages will be left to fend for themselves, these companies will be denying reality about the storms. That is essentially, what type of America we will all be experiencing under Mitt Romney’s Administration. In case anyone is still in doubt about Romney's conviction, or statement to John King of CNN last time, a reporter re-confirmed this today: Romney has not changed his ambition to privatize FEMA! Any voter, who is offended by this line of reasoning, please exercise your right to vote your interest in the coming elections.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Political Demagogue V: The Iconic language of a Smart President?

“Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military’s changed. We have these things called aircraft carriers, where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines.” - -President Obama.

Language is everything in Politics and life! Was the response to Governor Romney’s delusion about the US Navy status, the final sword that shredded into pieces his dream for the White House? Governor Romney had just intoned that we have always had a strategy to fight two wars at once since FDR; and, under Obama that strategy was changing. For Romney, the highest responsibility for the President of the United States is to maintain safety of the people; and, cutting of our military budget would only make the nation’s future less certain and secure. An apprehension that President Obama replied to with: “… Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military’s changed. We have these things called aircraft carriers, where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines” That is a classic iconic response on a Foreign Policy Presidential Debate. How Obama pulled that off is still mesmerizing! And what does the iconic response imply for the future outcome of the 2012 National Election? 

President Obama’s response was iconic in nature in that it portrays Mitt Romney as old school with respect to military build-up and strategy. The President was saying that if the Republican flag bearer had his way, the United State’s military will revert back to the times of horses and bayonets in wars. A sarcastic comment that could only be outclassed with the addition: “only this time, we will have many of the horses and bayonets inserted with computer chips to go!” Seriously, depending on one’s perspective, President Obama’s response could be seen as, call out of the military industrial complex that has always encouraged tons of spending on ammunition and security; and, which had poured gazillion dollars into Mitt Romney’s campaign. It could also be seen as a call for support of a lighter and more efficient military, able to deliver killer blows against any enemy, without spending more of our national budget on overburdening militarization; a spending that is beyond the next ten countries in the world military outlay.

President Obama had repeatedly stressed the contribution of our military and veterans to nation building; he had called for support of the veterans as they return; and, the need to integrate these heroes back to civilian life. Unfortunately, or on the other hand, the Republican flag bearer refrained from mentioning a single word about our veterans and how to help them transition back into civil life. A few watchers of the debate had argued that this was no coincidence, since Governor Romney failed to mention the contribution of our military and veterans during the Republican Party Convention in Tampa. How can anyone expect him to mention the contribution of these fine men and women in uniform during a presidential debate on foreign policy? After all, many of them are part of the 47% that are better wasted on the battle fields, marginalized when they get back home and relegated to moocher’s by the rich Republicans! Failing to mention a word about our two ongoing wars and deserved tribute to our veterans in yesterday’s debate by Mitt Romney is just simple: Romney does not want his absent military service or Mormonism to intertwine with his objective of winning the Presidency!

While many supporters of US military and veterans find Mitt Romney’s non-reference to the glorious service of American heroes abhorring, mothers and wives of our veterans want every voter to remember how ideological telling Governor Romney’s position; especially, for someone who will like to be the Commander-in-Chief of the United States of America. The absence of some level of deference to the veterans from Mitt Romney is painful for some; but for the Obama’s Campaign team, it is probably the greatest gift of all time. No wonder President Obama after debate victory lap in Florida said: "Last night, [Governor Romney] was all over the map. Did you notice that?" … "During the debate, he said he didn't want more troops in Iraq. But he was caught on video saying it was unthinkable not to leave 20,000 troops in Iraq." Just as unnerving, the failure of the Republican flag bearer to make up his mind or mention any word about our veterans, so also was his debate stance not to give credit where credit was due. Are these signs of weakness in a man who wants to be President?

The most startling and probably surprising thing in last night’s debate was Romney’s choice to embrace all the successes and strategies of President Obama on foreign policy. Even, President Obama was bewildered by Romney’s new position, since he had campaigned for a strong military intervention without exception on Iran in the past twelve months. He even embraced President Obama’s stance on no-fly zone strategy on Syria. It is not yet clear if Mr. Romney got the message, as he went about espousing his preference to spend additional money on the Department of Defense; however, the public, like men and women of Toledo, Ohio, got the message loud and clear: Romney does not have your back or that of the automobile industry; rather than spend money to bring jobs back to America, he would continue to invest in companies that ship American jobs overseas. Romney is for increased military spending but no element of gratitude for military services; and, nothing on employing first time responders: teachers, nurses, fire-fighters and other public safety officials!

Further, Governor Romney’s new foreign policy posture embraces all aspects of President Obama’s effort and reinforced the argument that our men and women in the military must now come home. Surprise, Surprise again, from the ever changing Governor Romney, like a used car sales man! Obama eschews Romney to further appreciate the nation’s position that we are tired of foreign wars and would rather spend the money we have been borrowing from China on jobs’ creation rather than multiply wars across the globe. Although President Obama did not put those words in stark terms the way it is rendered here, it is important to understand that there are legions of Americans who support President Obama’s plan on nation building, gradual and sensible military withdrawals, and renewal of investments in projects that will build schools, roads and industrial infrastructures. Obama’s campaign is more on massive infusion of investments in nation building; Romney’s plan is yet to be divulged by the candidate, or so it seems!

Finally, many undecided voters had the summation of both candidates for the 2012 National Presidential elections. As President Obama puts it:

You've now heard three debates, months of campaigning and way too many TV commercials. And now you've got a choice. Over the last four years we've made real progress digging our way out of policies that gave us two prolonged wars, record deficits and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

And Governor Romney wants to take us back to those policies, a foreign policy that's wrong and reckless, economic policies that won't create jobs, won't reduce our deficit, but will make sure that folks at the very top don't have to play by the same rules that you do.

And I've got a different vision for America. I want to build on our strengths. And I've put forward a plan to make sure that we're bringing manufacturing jobs back to our shores by rewarding companies and small businesses that are investing here, not overseas.

I want to make sure we've got the best education system in the world. And we're retaining our workers for the jobs of tomorrow.

I want to control our own energy by developing oil and natural gas but also the energy sources of the future.

Yes, I want to reduce our deficit by cutting spending that we don't need but also by asking the wealthy to do a little bit more so that we can invest in things like research and technology that are the key to a 21st century economy.

As Commander in Chief, I will maintain the strongest military in the world, keep faith with our troops and go after those who would do us harm. but after a decade of war, I think we all recognize we've got to do some nation building here at home, rebuilding our roads, our bridges and especially caring for our Veterans who sacrificed so much for our freedom.

And we've been through tough times but we always bounce back because of our character, because we pull together and if I have the privilege of being your president for another four years, I promise you I will always listen to your voices. I will fight for your families and I will work every single day to make sure that America continues to be the greatest nation on earth. Thank you.”

And in the words of Governor Romney:

I'm optimistic about the future. I'm excited about our prospects as a nation. I want to see peace. I want to see growing peace in this country. It's our objective.

We have an opportunity to have real leadership. America's going to have that kind of leadership and continue to promote principles of peace to make a world a safer place and make people in this country more confident that their future is secure. I also want to make sure that we get this economy going. And there are two very different paths the country can take. One is a path represented by the president, which at the end of four years would mean we'd have $20 trillion in debt heading towards Greece. I'll get us on track to a balanced budget.

The president's path will mean continuing declining in take-home pay. I want to make sure our take-home pay turns around and starts to grow.

The president's path will mean continuing declining in take-home pay. I want to make sure take-home pay turns around and starts to grow. The president's path means 20 million people out of work struggling for a good job. I'll get people back to work with 12 million new jobs.
I'm going to make sure that we get people off of food stamps, not by cutting the program, but by getting them good jobs.

America's going to come back, and for that to happen, we're going to have to have a president who can work across the aisle. I was in a state where my legislature was 87 percent Democrat. I learned how to get along on the other side of the aisle. We've got to do that in Washington. Washington is broken. I know what it takes to get this country back, and will work with good Democrats and good Republicans to do that.

This nation is the hope of the earth. We've been blessed by having a nation that's free and prosperous thanks to the contributions of the greatest generation. They've held a torch for the world to see -- the torch of freedom and hope and opportunity. Now, it's our turn to take that torch. I'm convinced we'll do it.

We need strong leadership. I'd like to be that leader with your support. I'll work with you. I'll lead you in an open and honest way, and I ask for your vote. I'd like to be the next president of the United States to support and help this great nation and to make sure that we all together remain America as the hope of the earth. Thank you so much.

Language matters in elections. Summation of position and debate stance are also relevant. Avid political observers and debate watchers tend to look for optimism in a candidate’s language, his spoken and non-spoken words, body language, and probably how the candidate’s message resonates with the voters and their pocket book. If you are a Democrat, you are probably happy with President Obama’s closing remarks; if you are a Republican, you may be skewered for eternity on the inconsistent message of Mitt Romney’s Campaign. However, in the spirit of the message of Mr. Schieffer’s mom, the moderator of the 2012 National Presidential debate on foreign policy: "Go vote; it'll make you feel big and strong."
Good night.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Why the Conspiracy Theorists on US Embassy Benghazi, Libya Misfortune have to be Answered or Nailed?

Keywords or Terms: FOXNEWS Special Report; Bret Baier; Credibility; Hatchet Job; Yellow Journalism; Incoherent pictures and events time line; Americans Heroes; FCC Rule

The Conspiracy theory around the United States Embassy Attack in Benghazi, Libya, has not been immortalized yet on FOXNEWS-TV; but Bret Baier’s Special Report on Friday night jeopardizes any empirical evidence that we may all rely on as the gospel truth regarding the event(s) of that night. The program, FOXNEWS-TV Special Report fails to empower any of its viewers to think or access any other position as credible as to the fact in this case. Worse more, Mr. Baier’s report fell far short of objective journalism; some would even term the report as yellow journalism. Why are we taking exceptions to the report?

Without going into the details of FOXNEWS-TV presentations, the poor quality of Mr. Baier’s story line on the Benghazi, Libya Embassy’s misfortune and the less than crystal assessment and jumbled together pictures of destruction regarding what might have happened the night of September 11, 2012, lead one to believe that Mr. Baier’s Special Report on the event(s) of that night, is nothing but, a hatchet job designed to insult the intelligence of the viewers or undermine any credibility that empirical evidence will have after an exhaustive and complete report on the investigation regarding what led to the deaths of an American Ambassador and three other heroes of this nation. The Producer and host of the FOXNEWS-TV Special Report, carried overblown schisms and trend of events that make the viewer wonder, if FOXNEWS-TV is not in the business of misinforming the public; which will now or must now be considered, contravening FCC license on Network Television broadcasts?
I imagine that the producer and host of the Baier’s Special Report were attempting to answer the following questions, among others: Is there a gap in the Obama’s Administration story line? If there is, where or what are the gaps? And to the extent that the gap may jeopardize Americans in the Foreign Service in some other tumultuous areas of the world, what can US Government do to prevent this type of event from occurring? On the other hand, if the intention of the broadcast was to dwell on politics or undermine the current White House Administration; one is left with no other conclusion, that the FOXNEWS-TV Special Report is not special, but a myopic view of the right wing ideologues of what they imagine, this current White House is all about. And for this reason, one must default to completely agree with Barack Obama’s position in the Second 2012 National Presidential Election Debate, that for anyone to intone that the current White House was holding something back or presenting incomplete information regarding the unfortunate event(s) in Benghazi, is complete nonsense.  

Any viewer of Mr. Baier’s Special Report will find the story line very disturbing; and, the claim that current White House administration are covering up any gaps in security management of our embassies, rather distasteful and questionable. First, the conspiracy theory stands only on one leg: that there is an active effort by the White House to cover up. Is this another Watergate? Contra-gate? Or what have you-Gate! FOXNEWS-TV’s Conspiracy theorists remind me so much of Mitt Romney’s Campaign line in the last presidential debate before he was smacked down or admonished by Barack Obama: White House are you saying you are washing your hands off any defunding of the foreign embassies that could have led to the deaths of these four Americans? We all saw what happened that night; that’s the same thing that viewers give to Mr. Baier’s Conspiracy right wing propaganda on his “Special” Report; or Special Nonsense!

Second, FOXNEWS-TV’s story line was not only distasteful and questionable, because it fails to appreciate how painful the nature of those pictures from their story are for members of the four dead American heroes; but, also caricatured a very unfortunate event in the history or annals of the US State Department. The relationship between what the White House knew or what Susan Rice, the US Ambassador to the United Nations said three days after the fact on Meet the Press and other Sunday Network News Show, are purely speculative. What actually transpired on the ground in Benghazi, Libya, are still unfolding as the security agencies attempt to piece together information and get the real facts of the situation. Except one was an active participant in this unfortunate event, no one can truly tell you the whole story. Except you are one of the murderers, who participated on the embassy’s assault and fire, no one can give a complete story of what led to the attack on the embassy. At best, what will be crystallized by the security agencies, are estimates of the actual events and time.

To now broadcast jumbled and incoherent pictures of dastardly events over half a million miles away from Benghazi, Libya or Washington DC, after tampering and actual destruction of the crime scene, as the real truth of the events in the case, is pure yellow journalism; and, irresponsibility on the part of FOXNEWS-TV. America and its people deserve better and seek harmony in addressing unfortunate event like this. Further, to broadcast pictures and statements that clearly are incoherent; and, un-shrewdly analyze time line events that raise more questions than answers, or cast aspersions on any of the steps taken by our government to get to the bottom of this unfortunate disaster, to say the least, is tragic. For FOXNEWS-TV to insinuate that the current White House knew more than it is telling the public, is a thesis that inspires hatred for our government; and, places the government in an unfortunate situation of explaining what it probably has no complete information. In addition, how about decency and sensitivity for the feeling of the family members of these heroes regarding deaths that had barely occurred a month ago? Handling the grief and pain of loosing one’s loved ones are not as easy as many who have lost loved ones know; raising doubts in the minds of the family members, that our government could have done more but out of negligence allowed these patriots to die, is very unconscionable. Are Mr. Baier’s “Special” Report and FOXNEWS-TV producer(s) of the program attempting to fledged this story into an overblown crisis?  Do they really appreciate the pain their unconscionable program may have wrought on surviving family members?

Third, the United Sates Congress fund American Embassies across the globe. If the State Department receives a request for extra funding, it can only allocate money from what congress has approved as the State Department’s Budget. If there is a short-fall in money allocated to the State Department, assuredly, it will impact money disbursed for security at any foreign embassy. This unfortunate incident is what happens when right wingers force unusual cuts in agency’s budget. We have the right wing congressional Republicans, who are all for a small government, who will like to cut government budgets to the bone and give tax brakes to the rich at the expense of the welfare of the whole nation. This is what happens when right-wing congressional members attempt to score political points, championing loosing arguments on waste in government and how to streamline cuts to the federal budget.

United States Congressional Republicans have a lot to answer for on this unfortunate event; if we can trace that their excessive budget cut to the State Department impacted funding of security at the Benghazi, Libya embassy that resulted in the death of our heroes, they are equally liable. When congress in its infinite power decides to cut funding to the State Department Budget, especially in the arena of embassy security, shouldn’t the blame for the possible gaps in funding of the embassy be a shared one: executive and legislative branch? The shoddy job from FOXNEWS-TV has potentially dire consequence on our perception of the nation’s preparedness to counter terrorist attack, aboard and at home. Part of the confusion from FOXNEWS-TV “Special” report stems from misconception of events surrounding this disaster, and who to clearly blame for the miss-step, if there was one that led to the deaths of these foreign affairs officers. Subversive and startling allegations from FOXNEWS-TV must be scorned, as it is very obvious that Mr. Baier’s reportage is to pick malice, to create smoke where there is no fire, to pooh-pooh honest statements made by administration officials because there are not enough information on the actual events.

Fourth, unless FOXNEWS-TV and their management have other points to score; or are discountenancing how still fresh and sensitive the disaster of September 11, 2001, fanning misinformation to increasingly alienate the people from their government, when another similar event occurs in the life of our nation, in a land far away from our shores, is subversive and tantamount to journalistic recklessness. The reductionist approach in Mr. Baier’s “Special” report, assumes that there is a specific cause for the insurrection that led to the deaths of four American foreign affairs officers and there can only be one reason for this: negligence on the path of the current White House. There are others like me who will like to take an ecological approach and reasoning to why this unfortunate event might have taken place; a poor taste in filming that derogated a specific religion, a provoked and prolonged instability in current leadership arrangement in Libya and a dastardly terrorist attack from our enemies who have scores to settle with America, and who have chosen a date that always reminds us of the worse in people, are among the reasons for this unfortunate event. The complex environment of foreign policy formation and administration is not as easy as narrowing events to just one particular association; there are always more than one thing or events that may cascade into other unfortunate events or calamities that reveal some form of weaknesses in the handling of security at our embassies. What we must now do is to look inwards and correct our possible failures in this horrible experience.

Interestingly, Mr. Baier’s Special Report on Friday’s FOXNEWS-TV stopped too soon for anyone to appreciate how balanced the reportage is; or how very mischievous the intent to broadcast this hatchet job on a Friday. In fact, the program was a collection of rehashed second hand information of what probably occurred or never occurred on the night of September 11, 2012 at the embassy. If FOXNEWS-TV enjoyed the freedom of miss-informing or insulting the intelligence of the public, viewers of their program must be wise enough to call a spade a spade: that special report from Mr. Bret Baier, is a special trash from a disastrous news outlet bent to create doubts in the minds of the audience; and, suspicion of their government by Americans. Good Night!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Political Demagogue IV: Autopsy of the Second Presidential Debate for 2012

Keywords or Terms: Obama; Romney; Candy Crowley; CNN Journalist; Second Debate; Risks in Choice; Rose Garden; Benghazi attack of the US embassy; Women in Binders; Romney’s admonishment or Embarrassment; Obama’s Triumph; and, 2012 National Elections

Richard Holbrooke, a former US Ambassador to the United Nations, wrote a piece in the Foreign Affairs journal of October 2008 regarding the daunting task ahead for the Next President; surmising: “The Next President will inherit a more difficult set of international challenges than any predecessor since World War II, a reactive and passive presidency will not succeed, nor will one in which a president promises solution but does not deliver, .. to restore United States to its proper world leadership role, two areas of weakness must be repaired: the domestic economy and the United States’ reputation in the world.” No one would question that both challenges cited by Mr. Holbrooke became front and center in the second debate for the National Elections of 2012, last night.

Understandably attentions were directed towards what each Party’s flag bearer was offering in totality to correct for the evident anomalies brought on the country by the performance of the Bush Administration. No one however will contest that the performance of Barack Obama, in the past four years, on the second agenda for the future President as identified by Holbrook’s 2008 article, has been brilliant. Barack Obama has really done well in burnishing the image of the country across the Globe by not being that lone-ranger; but a consultative reformer in international and foreign policy on the world’s stage. That credit does not go to him alone, but to the United States Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton.  And when Mitt Romney mistakenly forayed into the foreign policy arena, where many have credited Obama for helping the nation build bridge to the world’s community, Obama not only let him have it on the question of terrorist attack or mishap at Benghazi Libya US embassy, the moderator of the debate Candy Crowley, a renowned CNN News anchor/journalist, re-affirmed Obama’s honesty of purpose in dealing with the terrorist attack on the US embassy. You may contest that Ms. Crowley has no business interjecting in the debate and re-affirmation of Barack Obama’s action in the Rose Garden on September 12, 2012; however, Ms. Crowley was probably tired of the miss-information and untrue stories swirling around Obama’s action since the Benghazi attack of the US embassy.

To counter Mr. Romney’s preconception of the events, Ms. Crowley said: “he did call it an act of terror.” If Romney was about to score a point on foreign policy yesterday night, he probably got his ego deflated by the facts on the ground. And for those Republicans who are still in denial regarding their candidate, yesterday’s dramatization or debate event confirmed the indisputable fact: Mr. Romney is reactive and passive; and, with that type of person in the White House, the nation could expect the type of debacle and missed opportunities that got us into two foreign wars that has continued to deplete our resources. The President addressed issues regarding his action immediately after the terrorist attack of the US embassy in Benghazi; and, reiterated how distasteful he finds receiving American caskets when they arrive from overseas after a horrible event as this. He also found abhorring any attempt to politicize unfortunate event as this, in a time when the country should be coalescing together to form a single bond and front. As someone experiencing history and the President’s action since the unfortunate event, Ms. Crowley, the debate moderator, said she waded in to bring some clarity to the debate!

History is not immutable to facts; and those who attempt to re-write it, often suffer the type of humiliation or admonishment Mr. Romney had yesterday.  Beginning in the first minute of the debate, Americans could sense the disrespect between these two men who want to sit on Uncle Sam’s throne. What many, especially those still sitting on the fence regarding who to vote for in the coming National Elections, may have missed is that: it is reasonable to be optimistic regarding the direction of the economy, despite the hiccups that the nation has experienced since the downturn of the economy under the last two Republican Administrations. And a true candidate emerged from the second debate, one whose performance in the past four years on the economy may have been drawn out by the partisan politics in the US House of Representatives, which has made things rather difficult to get America’s economy going again. Obama’s failure on the economy wasn’t only his fault; and no one will dispute this considering the comments from the mouth of leading Congressional Republicans that they would rather have Barack Obama a one term President.

With the price of gas at the pump tripling in the past four years, a case may be made that President Obama could have done more; however, listening to him, he has opened up federal lands for exploration of oil and gas and only when holders of leases held back their exploration efforts had the federal government yanked earlier issued licenses to offer to those ready to prospect for oil and gas.  Republican Politicians have focused attention on the domestic pressure caused by high gas prices at the retail level; however, they have failed to appreciate the fact that America continues to experience the greatest transfer of wealth from her shores to oligopolistic OPEC and Middle East nations. This is a reality that began not under Barack Obama’s administration, but one which many literature had alluded to, prior to his taking office. Yes, America must take strategic decisions regarding its energy policies and do it as fast as possible; however, it does not look like the current administration has been shacking on that front. The long-term challenge for the economy from the rising oil prices is not because the nation has not awarded the permit for the Canadian pipeline that has the potential of polluting mainland America, but the yet unaddressed accumulation of wealth in oil producing nation that has been precipitated by competing world’s consumption from nations as China, Japan, India and European Union.

Over time, America would have to address its carbon-based consumption level as it is more likely to create greater geopolitical destabilization of the world order, as is currently being realized in acquired political muscle of nations as Iran and other rouge states. Can a US President make a difference on the international price of oil? Yes and No! If the Free Market doctrine advertised by our nation must subsist, international price of oil will be determined by the forces of demand and supply. It is therefore reasonable to assume that a US President can in reality, not make much of a difference regarding what a barrel of oil is going for on the world’s market. On the other hand, the US President can put more pressure on the equilibrium price of oil by diversifying the sources of energy used in the country. If investments in alternative sources of energy, solar, wind and water, are heightened or precipitated; and, stringent rules on energy consumption are put in place, including maintaining higher standard of energy efficiency-use rule for consumer products, the government could actually bring down the prices of oil on the world’s market. Declining demand of carbon-based energy source by the US because of energy-use diversification will ultimately reduce pressure on international prices. This is an issue that was not thoroughly debated yesterday because of the tone of derogation of the current administration’s policies. However, if we take the President at his words, the nation is better -off in the long-run with the diversification of energy sources and increased standard of energy-efficiency rule put in place by the Obama’s Administration. 

Given the dissatisfaction with the current administration’s handling of the economy, the freely expressed concerns of critics of the Administration probably failed to take into consideration partisan politics as one of the greatest challenge faced by the country. As long as our elected officials in congress fail to work together on legislative initiatives or efforts, no matter who comes into the White House, there would still be some unfinished business of the nation. If Congressional Republicans fail to work with a Democratic White House; how would we be able to guarantee that Congressional Democrats will work with a Republican White House?  The partisan wrangllings are killing the nation and its progress. Irresponsbile aggradization of the choice to exercise legislative power, to undermine the executive power, is one of the reason we are in the job slump. A much more cordial relationship between the legsilative and executive arms of government will not by itself  eliminate the hash reality in America's economy; however, it will go a long way in ensuring that the pressure on unemployment problems are released or diminished.

Further, whether true or not, the deeply felt view that the Congressional Republicans are hostile to the current White House, emerged in Mitt Romney’s proposition to want to be President: He said he will bring together all congressional leaders from both parties to work on the nation’s problems. However, those Massachusetts citizens who saw Romney during his governorship of their state, say his leadership was a disaster; and, most of the bills before the Massachusetts assembly were overturned by two-thirds majority. This hardly seems like a leadership the nation craves at this time with respect to the economy. There is an indisputable fact of life: the devil you know is better than the saint you can hardly define. Mitt Romney has been all over the map in his campaign: he has advanced an initiative in the day and denied it at night! He has not been upfront on some delicate issues of interest to the voters, the economy, foreign policy, women health and Planned Parenthood, his taxes and life at Bain Capital. He has advanced to kill Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, ‘voucherize’ Medicare and probably privatize Social Security Benefits. These are very important issues to many Americans; and, no Etch –A-Sketch Strategy can disabuse voters’ minds regarding how inconsistent or untruthful Mitt Romney and his campaign has been. Perhaps there is going to be a window of opening in Romney’s campaign before November 6, 2012, where and when Americans can trust and take him for his words; but for now, many Americans consider Mitt Romney as a risky choice for the White House oval office.

In addition, it is the difference between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney that are truly revealing after the second debate: Here is a President who is doing all he possibly can to improve the status of the economy; and, there are indications that his policies are working. The American Economic Engine is revving up, but not completely at full speed. There also, is a business man, who has divested in America, hidden his wealth in foreign off-shore accounts, undermine the American Economy by betting against her workers and shifting their jobs overseas. He is also disrespectful; and disdained, of the poor and women classes; and, has been overheard denigrating both groups in a privately held dinner at fifty-thousand dollar-a-plate per participant. Who do you trust? Who do you give your vote to, to become the leader of the free world? 

Obama’s current initiatives and policies, though not completely perfect, are forward looking; he proposes taxation policies that will make the rich pay more of their fair share in the nation’s resources, without hurting more than 2% of the population with respect to taxation. On the other hand is Romney, who has been accused of carrying the bag for the rich in his effort to cut across the board taxation up to 28%, with negative consequential impact on the take home pay of up to 98% of Americans. Obama argues for patience from the electorate, insisting that the economic mess he met in 2008 is greater work to complete in just four years. In contrast, Romney says, four years is enough to have cleaned up the mess from the Bush's Administration. The realities of Romney’s campaign has made it difficult to appreciate his honesty and position on his advancements and made many voters apprehensive of his candidacy for the White House Oval Office.

Consider the following: the one and a half hour or so Presidential Candidates’ debate could hardly answer all the concerns of the electorate.  The views expressed by President Obama and Governor Romney in the past two debates for the White House have been thought provoking. Both candidates have offered diverse solutions to the contending problems before America. Much as some Republicans despise President Obama, so also do some Democrats despise Governor Romney? There will be much more complications in the future debate for the White House; one moderator will remain active or passive as the case may arise. The uniqueness of the enterprise of debating for the highest office will hardly subside; as Americans continue to demand more accountability of their leadership. What we saw yesterday was the beauty of American democracy; our government is a government of the people, by the people and for the people. May God bless the United States of America!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Political Demagogue III: Autopsy of the First Presidential Debate for 2012

Keywords or Terms:  Presidential Debate; Medicare; Medicaid; Taxation; Uncommon Pronouncements; Big Bird; Apprehension; Trust; Mixed Messages; Mitt Romney; Strategic Ploy; Board Room Strategy; Barack Obama; NPR; and, America

You have heard what the pundits had to say about the first 2012 Presidential debate. You have seen the melt down on the part of some liberal press personalities regarding the failure of the President to horn his debate skills and tool kit or take advantage of the miracle of his oratory. You have witnessed the celebration of the right, regarding their candidate’s debate vanquish. You have also heard the relief from the Republican flag bearer’s supporters regarding the uncommon survival of their candidate after what was tantamount to a calamitous month of campaigning. In what is now assessed as a very unusual step or strategy to change message thirty-eight days to the actual election date, the nation experienced what will now go down in history as, one of the most difficult mixed messages from a politician and probably the worst confusion as to where the politician Mitt Romney truly stands; or better still, an appreciation of why no one must take the words out of a politician’s mouth seriously, especially when the politician is bent on winning at all cost the highest office in the land.

The difficult realization that the Republican flag bearer can deny close to virtually all his position prior to the first Presidential debate was to say the least, rather disarming for any unassuming and articulate person who had his ears close to how either candidate from both major political parties in America had been campaigning for the White House oval. What happened on Wednesday was tantamount to what many business students or persons will tell you, is replicate to a boardroom coup; or, a strategic ploy to undermine the strength of President Obama’s campaign edge before the debate. The strategy of the Republican Party’s candidate’s denials and re-arrangement of points of position, in a flip of a second or 90 minute, is one that many board room executives or commissioners of boards all over America have witnessed one time or the other over their career; and, will gladly tell you is not uncommon. Business men who turn politicians have the innate tendency to revert to their tool kit or adopt the usual cut-throat strategy to undermine the competition; even if their moral position is questionable. The usual thing for businessmen-politician like this is to get ahead of the competitor or competition, no matter the cost.

In fact, many business executives will gladly say, it is expected behavior in any business environment where each player is jettisoning for a position, be it that of the Board’s President or his vice. Could this same behavior or strategy be adaptable to Presidential politics and campaigns? From what we all know now, it depends on who you are talking or dealing with! This is probably why the liberal press must stop blaming the befuddled President Obama in an unfolding drama of denials and re-arrangement of position, ever touted by a Presidential Candidate in the history of Presidential campaigns. For one moment, all Americans saw again on television, the cut throat dishonesty that goes on in many fortune 500 companies’ executive board room; a few were thrilled, and many were completely mesmerized. The novice voter saw Romney’s performance as creditable and a good case for his Presidential ambition, others saw it as a stepping stone for Romney to be at par with the President of the United States; or, a great justification for the Republican bandwagon to come back to the White House and continue with their deregulation activities and abandonment of rational principle of taxation policy that got America into the mess we are in. For a reminder, this is the same mess that Barack Obama has been trying to clear in the past few years and he is being chastised for, for not being fast enough!

To the astute mind, the coming of a change in position, just when everyone in town knew Romney had to do something, before his campaign’s tail spin becomes a disaster, knew better and saw the wild side of a ruthless business executive, who is ready to throw the baby and the bath tub away, if that will make him win the election. In response to Romney’s repositioning, those who were taken aback, including President Obama, should take heart. Romney’s performance at the first 2012 Presidential debate is a board room gamesmanship that he had probably perfected before getting on the campaign trail; and a ploy, that he had pulled in several business deals. A leopard hardly changes his spots!

Romney’s Etch-A-Sketch repositioning and confrontational assault even against the lovable and amiable big bird, is a strategic strength better attuned to the business world or board room campaigning for top business executive position, hardly one suitable in a national election, where trust of one’s position and utterances are given; or the prior words from the prime candidate of a major political party, is taken as the gospel truth, or as the real position on which the candidate stands regarding his campaign for the office. It is a boardroom strategy often used to offset the balance of power among the big players in the business world. The fear that Romney’s chances at the Presidency was going to be endangered by the Mother Jones secretly taped voice of him lambasting 47% of Americas as mocha, was too much and the team wasn’t going to stand back and see their ambition rolled back. The campaign team and their head, Mitt Romney, failure to garner enough support among the plurality of voters was becoming a thing of concern; especially when many of the seniors were growing concerned about the pronouncement of the candidate regarding what he is about to do to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security; and what was going to be the likely outcome for seniors, children, women, the handicapped and those on social security. To win those group over, Romney resorted to the boardroom strategy of denying anything he had said in the past regarding his position on the campaign for the White House.

Just before the Presidential debate, voters, including the somewhat 67 million Americans who were said to have watched it, thought or assumed, the debate would enable them to clarify the position of either party’s flag bearer regarding their campaign message of close to one year. For some of the voters, the debate was going to: 1) increasingly make them mindful of each candidate’s position on several issues of concern to their lives; 2) decrease or increase their support for the ambition of either candidate for the White House oval office; and or, 3) allow them to quit sitting on the fence regarding who to cast their votes for on November 6, 2012. Many were looking forward to the candidates' asserting or re-asserting their past messages; some of which were already in repeated speeches at rallies, surrogates’ pronouncements and advertisements.  But boy or girl, were they surprised? Romney showed then what an Etch-a-sketch campaign is all about!

The liberal left was looking forward to Obama re-asserting he wants to grow the economy from inside out, cut taxes to the middle and poor classes and grow the economy in ways that there is an equitable distribution of opportunities for everyone to grow within his or her potential. The extreme right was looking for a more conservative Mitt Romney, re-affirming the concept of a lean federal government, where taxes are cut to the bones, where social welfare programs are relegated to oblivion, and where everyone, the strong and weak alike, are left to fend for themselves, with taxation benefits skewed very heavily towards the rich. The unions that mostly represented the millions of middle and lower income earners were routing for Obama. The Wall Street Corporations, which had contributed millions to Romney’s campaign, were looking forward to harvesting riches from their investment in the Mormon bishop’s ambition for the White house. While Obama was attempting to appeal to the sense of good judgment and fairness of the American voters, Romney was out to partially say there are some great ideas in ‘Obamacare’ and Dodd Franks, laws that were passed to either correct for the run-away hyperinflation that were scuttling delivery of better healthcare service or correct for the excesses of the Republican White House Administration under George W. Bush; but, he was going to strike down these laws to please his corporate donors and constituency. These are the choices before the American Voters!

Romney saw an opportunity to repeat uncorrelated facts, insisting that Obama had taken out 716 billion dollars from Medicare; a fact many right-headed health policy gurus dispute; as they insist it is an effort to correct for over-pricing of health care delivery and an opportunity to cut cost in America’s health care insurance services. Frankly, this amount is actually savings from the trimming of annual increases in insurance premiums, hospital reimbursement rates, and payments to home health care workers. The culpable confusion of Mitt Romney’s re-arrangement of facts or actual lies and the zeal of his repetitious pronouncements in the debate with Obama, made it seem Romney was making credible allegations; however, truth is constant. The same amount of 716 billion to a penny, said to have been taken out of Medicare by Obama, was the same amount Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney’s Vice President, had allocated to defray the huge hole that is impending in the budget, from a proposed tax cut for Americans; where the rich are going to take a huge chunk of benefit and money. The Republican ticket has just not been truthful enough to explain this arrangement plan; or, have not just found it important to explain to Americans what they have in store for them. Rather, the ticket has chosen to be devious choosing to say, the explanation of the plan will be time consuming; thus, voters must wait until after the election!

From the perspective of the Republican flag bearer, a mother carrying a baby out of an unfortunate event of rape, must carry the baby to term. Currently, if a female is raped out of incest or otherwise, she has recourse through a first trimester abortion. Republican Party’s Vice Presidential mindless campaign promise, which has been adopted by Mitt Romney, the top ticket, indicate that the possibility of the status–quo remaining, if the Republican ticket wins, is very uncertain or dicey. It maybe for example, that the Republican ticket has a grander plan for American women, elderly, poor and middle income earners; to relegate them and their welfare completely to irrelevance. If so, the worst these groups saw at that debate, is the huge disappointment in President Barack Obama not calling Governor Mitt Romney out, every time he made those unsubstantiated claims and denials? A very important and essential thing for these groups to do at this time is to stand up and vote either of the candidate out, choosing to take down the one that truly and hardly represent their interest and position. A seemingly lack of attention to all the unsubstantiated information and downright denials of Mitt Romney, of all the plans in the works of the Republican ticket, or Romney’s grand standing on Wednesday night, can easily be put to rest, by all these groups. Differential interests and positions with a party’s flag bearer on issues of vital concern, especially on voters’ personal welfare and those of their elderly parents, are easily redeemable through the exercise of the voting right come November 6, 2012!

In our culture, where truth and certainty are expected of our leadership, the unusual denial and re-arrangement of facts by Mitt Romney carry with it the element of distrust, mixed messages and treacherousness. For example, the hard working White man in the suburb, who has been advertised as loosing position in the hierarchy of American economy taxonomy, is welcomed to make a choice between Obama and Romney. Finding it hard to survive in a tough economy brought on everyone by reckless Republican Administrations for tax cuts and unpaid foreign wars, are genuine reasons to vote one’s interests. It may simply mean voting against President Obama; however, knowing what the whole country knows at this moment regarding Mitt Romney’s campaign for the White House, voting against Barack Obama is voting against the truth and one's personal interest. Voting against Obama is voting against forthrightness, honestly and humility. Voting for anyone, who is ready to change his position in a twinkle of an eye, is a recipe for disaster in a very challenging campaign and world, where many of our enemies are readily looking out for our weak points to run us over. Voting for Mitt Romney, is voting for a dishonest Mormon Bishop who will do anything at all cost to attain the Presidency of the United States and by default, leader of the Free World. The same mindlessness approach with which Romney conducted himself at the first 2012 Presidential debate is surely going to be the way he will ruthlessly deal with American elderly, women, children, the poor and disadvantaged. One has heard this in his comments on militarization of America and probably the handling of the insistent fights between the Israelis and Palestinians!

Realistically, beneath all advancements from both major parties’ flag bearers in the first 2012 Presidential debate in Denver, Colorado, is the truth, the uncanny truth. Politics is a game of chance and those who cast their last lot on any candidate will likely be disappointed or admonished. To rely solely on the outcome of a 90 minute debate on issues that under normal circumstances would take at least a day to discuss and some days, to digest, is ludicrous. I am obviously in the minority, an observer who is keener on the truth, whatever it takes, when it comes to a political party’s candidate’s campaign message and his or her position during a debate that last less than two hours.  I have lived long enough to know what I want. I have lived long and mixed with different types of people and perspectives, to know what a man who would lie to you in the day and change his story at night, is all about. 

The idea that the power of the Presidency of the United States, and by default the free world, may be handed to a man who can ruthlessly fire people, change positions in a twinkle of an eye and rail road the future of many of the weak and disadvantaged members of society to oblivion, is rather disconcerting.  Whatever flavors your political leaning maybe, whatever God you may pray to, or whatever ideology you are deeply entrenched, no one must allow himself or herself to be hoodwinked by an Etch-A-Sketch politician. No American must allow himself or herself to doubt what he is hearing from the mixed messages coming out of a man considered a Mormon Bishop, whose main goal is to undermine trust in anything; whose ambition is to toy with those important issues of welfare, taxation and quality of life for our elderly, children and women; a man who will do anything to win the Presidency, just because his wife says: Stop it, it is Mitts turn!

P.S. Today, the blog has taken a post-Morten look on the issue of honesty in communication and leadership, especially on what transpired between the two politicians seeking our vote for their White House ambition. I welcome comments, disagreement and apprehension about my position. The 2012 election is just too important to be left to be discussed by just two individual among over 360 million Americans!